Barb Caffrey's Blog

Writing the Elfyverse . . . and beyond


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Folks, I’m very happy to be able to finally report that my second novel — and the second novel in the Elfy duology — A LITTLE ELFY IN BIG TROUBLE has been released. It’s available right now at Amazon and OmniLit…the latter will be most useful if you need an e-pub version of the file.

Edited to add: Barnes and Noble link is now live as well. Now returning you to your regularly scheduled post…

ALittleElfyinBigTrouble_medIf you have never seen anything at all about the Elfyverse — or read book one in the Elfy duology, AN ELFY ON THE LOOSE — this little blurb may help you what’s going on:

Young Bruno the Elfy and Sarah, his mostly-human teenage girlfriend, are in deep trouble. Bruno’s Elfy mentor Roberto the Wise is about to be sacrificed by a Dark Elf, and Sarah’s parents have decided to help the Elf rather than the Elfy. Things look bleak and are getting worse by the minute, but Bruno and Sarah have a number of allies — human, Elfy, and ghosts — that the Dark Elf can’t possibly expect. Can young love, desperation, and great unexpected power win out despite it all?

And here’s a short excerpt — note, it first appeared here, as part of the Marketing for Romance Writers Book Hooks blog hop:

Bruno took Sarah’s hand and led her back outside. He looked with his mage senses, and felt nothing; no Elfy magic, no Human magic, and as far as he could tell, no Elf magic, Dark or Bright.

He put up a light shield that should help conceal their voices, and decided it was safe enough to talk for a bit.

“Tomorrow is Baaltinne, Sarah.” Bruno rubbed his fingers through his hair and tried not to look too hard at Sarah. Goddess, she was beautiful. But he had to stay on topic. “That’s your May Day. Tomorrow.” He shook his head and tried not to frown. “How can we get everything together in time to stop Dennis the Dark Elf?”

“I have faith in you,” she said. Her eyes darkened. Bruno felt as if he were falling, before she gently brushed her lips against his.

————————— End Excerpt ————————————-

If this has intrigued you (and of course I hope it has), but you aren’t sure you will like my book yet, I also have three sample chapters available at Twilight Times Books’ website — here’s the link for that:

A LITTLE ELFY IN BIG TROUBLE continues to make me laugh. I’ve enjoyed writing about Bruno, Sarah, Reverend Samuel and his family, Lady Keisha, even Dennis the Dark Elf…and I hope to write more about them, ’cause I have a hunch their stories are not over.

At any rate, most of you know the labor of love that kept me working on Elfy for years. I’m ecstatic that both halves of my novel have now been published, and I hope you’ll enjoy reading them as much as I’ve enjoyed writing them.

Anyway, both novels are available now, and both are priced for the moment at ninety-nine cents as e-books. So what are you waiting for? Go grab a copy — or copies — today! (And be sure to tell your friends. ‘Cause, really…how can you go wrong at ninety-nine cents?)

Written by Barb Caffrey

November 21, 2015 at 7:22 pm

Welcome to the Elfyverse…

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Thank you for stopping by my blog, which is called either “Barb Caffrey’s Blog,” or “the Elfyverse.”

Why two names? Well, I figured it would be easier for people to find me if they used my name. But I’ve been writing about Elfys, Elfs, Dwarves, and more for over ten years — thus “the Elfyverse.”

As for what I do here, it’s simple: I talk about anything I like.

I’ve been blogging now for over five years. (Here’s a link to my first blog post, if you don’t believe me.) Over that time, I’ve talked writing, publishing, music, sports, current events, politics . . . anything that I feel like talking about.

So while you’re here, expect the unexpected . . . because you never quite know what I’m about to say.

Please feel free to stop by any time you like. And tell your friends about all my work, including AN ELFY ON THE LOOSE (Barnes and Noble link is here) and the first two stories of my late husband Michael’s, “A Dark and Stormy Night” and “On Westmount Station,” all available at Amazon.

And remember . . . support a real writer.

Written by Barb Caffrey

June 9, 2014 at 5:21 am

My novel, “An Elfy on the Loose,” Is Now Available

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It’s been a long time in coming, but my first novel, AN ELFY ON THE LOOSE (now with a subtitle of “Book One of the ELFY duology”) is now available at and will be available soon at all major e-book retailers.

**Edited to add: AN ELFY ON THE LOOSE has also “gone live” at (Barnes and Noble’s website), as Paul Howard told me in the comments. If you have a Nook and want to read AN ELFY ON THE LOOSE, now’s your chance!

Now back to our regularly scheduled post.**

I’m very pleased that AN ELFY ON THE LOOSE is now out, even though I hadn’t expected it to “go live” on Amazon tonight, of all nights — but as it has, I figured I’d best skedaddle and get a blog post up, pronto.

For those of you who want a sample, please go here and read the first five chapters of AN ELFY ON THE LOOSE . . . then, I hope you’ll go to Amazon and get the e-book, as it’s on sale for a limited time at the low price of $3.99.

Because I’m a new author, and because I’m decidedly not well known, it is anyone’s guess as to whether or not AN ELFY ON THE LOOSE will do well enough to warrant an actual “dead tree” edition (that is, a paper edition).

For all I know, this e-book copy is all that we’re likely to get. So I hope you’ll enjoy it in the spirit intended.

In other words, if you want to read my novel because you’ve been intrigued about Bruno the Elfy and Sarah his human companion and want to know all about Sarah’s house (which is an Elfy trap of major proportions), or if you want to figure out why a Dark Elf would go to Northern California, or if you even want to know why Bruno’s mentor Roberto is worth saving despite being more than a bit of an butthead sometimes, now’s your chance.

I also hope that if you read and enjoy AN ELFY ON THE LOOSE, you won’t be averse to letting people know my book exists. Because I need all the help I can get . . . and I’m not shy about saying so.

Written by Barb Caffrey

April 12, 2014 at 12:34 am

How to Keep Writing when the World Seems Against You

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Folks, it’s no secret that the last few weeks for me have been difficult, complex, and frustrating.

In other words, they’ve been a long slog.

How are you supposed to keep writing when the world seems against you? When life circumstances jump up, and impede your work, and derail your progress…how can you keep going anyway?

Today’s blog is about how to get through one of these fallow periods, as a writer. (Or at least what I try to do to keep my head in the game, even when most of the rest of me can’t do much.)

What I try to do, with my writing, is to make prose notes. If nothing else, I usually can write one-sentence ideas, and that allows me to continue making a small amount of progress.

See, every day you have to make a little progress, if you can. It may be tiny. It may even be infinitesimal. But if you make that small amount of progress — even during difficult times — it gives you the confidence to keep trying.

Sometimes, I think creativity is all about confidence. Or at least all about the thought that if you try, if you think hard, if you are able to continue, then you can create with a whole heart.

It’s not easy to find time to write when you’re in the crux of a crisis, mind. But take a few minutes here, a few minutes there — I like using the minutes before going to bed, personally, but my late husband was a morning person; whatever works for you — and keep writing.

In other words…the only way through a long slog is forward.


As for me? I’m still hanging in there…but I still don’t have a clue where I’ll end up. I’ll keep you posted. (If you want to help me, see this post and act accordingly.)

Written by Barb Caffrey

April 27, 2016 at 4:33 pm

An Update to the Frustrating Situation, Already in Progress…

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Folks, bless you all for caring. I need to say that before anything else.

I am extremely fortunate in my friends, especially in the writing community. I am astonished by the outpouring of love and support in my direction. I appreciate that so much.

Now I need to get into some “weeds,” I’m afraid.

Next Tuesday, the house I live in will be sold. I can do nothing about this. I have tried everything I know to avoid this fate. And it has not worked.

Because much of this story is not mine to tell, I can’t say much more than this.

I don’t know what will happen next Wednesday at all. I’ve never been through this process before. I’ve heard, from a friend who’s been through it, that they usually give you at least thirty days to get out — but as I’ve not been through it, I’m very, very worried about what will happen next. And about what will happen to Trouble, too.

I do have some tentative good news, though. My father has said he will help. I can stay with him temporarily. He may even help me find an apartment, for me to live independently…if he does, that would be wonderful.

And my mother believes she will be able to find a way to keep both Trouble and her dog, Brat, together. If so, that would be a good outcome.

My sister, who is a huge dog lover, has also said she’ll make sure that Trouble and Brat will be fostered in an emergency situation, so they will not go to the pound. (She already has a dog, and is in a subdivision where they do not allow multiple animals.)

I believe my family has the best of intentions. But I remain very worried and extremely upset.

This is not a place I’d ever expected to be. That’s why I decided finally to talk about it, and to tell you I’m in trouble…as much as my family dislikes me saying it, what I’m telling you is my truth.

Because I have caring, deeply concerned friends, they are trying to help in all sorts of ways. I appreciate this, more than I can ever tell you.

One of them, knowing how hard I’ve tried over the years, got so frustrated over this situation that he said my family had “abandoned” me. That isn’t true. They are difficult in their ways, as I am difficult in my ways, and sometimes we don’t mesh well. I love them, they love me, we have some serious disagreements, but they usually will help me when push comes to shove.

Do they have a lot of means to do that with, though? No, they don’t. Which is why I decided to do a Patreon appeal. And it’s why I reopened my GoFundMe account as well.

I don’t want my father to be wholly responsible for what happens to me. He’s in his “golden years.” He should not have to do this.

I don’t want my sister, or my mother, or anyone else in my family to have to give all that they have, just to keep me going.

My family deeply dislikes it that I have “put my troubles on the Internet.” My mother in particular is very angry that my concerned and caring friend said that my family has “abandoned” me, and views the fact that I have these two appeals as somehow deceitful, or at least distasteful.

But I’m telling you the flat truth. I do not know what will happen next Wednesday (the day after the house is sold at auction). And that terrifies me.

If you want to help, you have three ways to do it right now.

First, I have a number of books and stories out there — go to my Amazon page, and also to my late husband Michael’s Amazon page, and pick a story. Everything is $2.99 or less; most are only ninety-nine cents. They are all good reads, and I hope might make you feel better. (That’s why Michael and I wrote these stories. Life is too short for doom and gloom.)

Second, I still have the Patreon appeal going. This is a new way to do something very old-fashioned — support an artist, writer, or other creative type. That’s why I was drawn to it, especially because I can give back a little to those who help (by offering stories, etc.)

Third, I still have the GoFundMe appeal going. This is to give me options, in case I can find a job out-of-state. (No matter what, I will have moving expenses.)

I appreciate anything you can do. Thank you.


Oh, one more thing:

As I am trying my best to make a better life for myself, I am looking into Americorps VISTA jobs. They don’t care what your age is. They only care about your ability. And I like the idea of public service, along with what I’m already doing with my writing, editing, and occasional music-making.

If I can find one of these jobs, I could be much better off in a few months than I am right now. (Here’s hoping.)

Written by Barb Caffrey

April 21, 2016 at 5:24 pm

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ReLaunched GoFundMe to Help with Moving…

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Folks, as you know, I’m going to have to make an emergency move next week. I’ve set up a Patreon account (I’ll have to figure out how to add a button for that here, I suppose), and now I’ve updated my old GoFundMe Account as well and changed the URL so it’s easier to find:

It is dispiriting to have to do this. But it is also gratifying that so many other writers and friends have stepped up to help me get the word out.

My hope is that I’ll be able to move and then get back to what I do best: Writing. Editing. Playing music. And living life.

Thank you for reading, and for supporting me during this trying time.

Written by Barb Caffrey

April 20, 2016 at 2:09 pm

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Need Immediate Help Here with Relocation

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Folks, one of the reasons I’ve been cagey for months here at my blog is because I’ve been enduring hardship. I can’t go into that many details as most of them are not mine to tell; all I can tell you is that in seven days, I am going to lose my home. And I need immediate help to relocate, get set back up on my feet, and to continue to create — because my goodness, CHANGING FACES is due shortly.

All of this upheaval is not conducive to creativity, to put it mildly. But I need somehow to get it done anyway.

Of course, I don’t know how I get all this done. Right now, I feel overwhelmed, overmatched, and extremely frustrated. I have tried very hard in my current situation to make everything right, and yet I could not do it.

I’m hamstrung in many ways trying to explain what’s going on right now. It’s a crisis situation. In seven days, the place I’m living will be sold…and I can do nothing whatsoever about it.

That much, I think I can say.

As anyone who regularly reads my blog knows, my health isn’t tiptop. I manage a number of health conditions, including carpal tunnel syndrome, asthma, allergies, and at least six others. I also must bring along with me my thirteen-year-old dog Trouble, as he’s my true friend and I refuse to leave him behind…he’s not always the best-behaved dog (thus his name), but I love him, and he loves me.

Anyway, I’ve set up a Patreon page. I’m asking for $4400 for help in relocating; this is a three-month projection of what I will need. Over time, I figure I’ll need about $1200 a month to live as my needs are small…an internet connection, a safe space to work, write, and edit, a good place for Trouble to take a walk perhaps…some serenity, because I surely don’t have any right now.

At Patreon, people offer things in exchange for support called “rewards” — I assume so we artists, writers, and creators don’t have to feel bad about asking for help. I’ve offered four things: “Trouble with Elfs” for anyone who helps me; if you pledge $5 per month, the reward is Michael’s original versions of “Columba and the Committee;” if you pledge $10 per month, the rewards is Michael’s original version of “Columba and the Crossing;” if you pledge $25 per month, I’ll send you the original version of Michael’s novel MAVERICK, LIEUTENANT…I don’t think he’d mind.

I intend to keep on writing, keep on creating, keep on doing the best I possibly can. But what I’m faced with right now is a disaster…I need to keep mind, body and soul together while I figure out what my next move is.

I implore you, please help me to do just that. Go to my Patreon page. Anything will help.

I’d also appreciate your prayers, good thoughts, warm wishes, and any job leads you think may be beneficial. I am an excellent editor with references; I am a solid writer who tells entertaining stories; I know how to research, to do administrative work, understand most computers to a certain extent…I’m hard-working, dedicated, resourceful, and persistent.

Thank you for reading, and I wish I hadn’t had to write this whatsoever.


Edited to add: I’ll keep you updated on what’s going on as best I can…and I still intend to write about baseball in a few days. (Why not? I need a diversion, too. And I still love baseball.)

Written by Barb Caffrey

April 19, 2016 at 1:52 pm

New Guest Blog Is Up…and Other Writing Stuff

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Folks, before I forget, I wrote a new guest blog for the Opinionated Man (who’s doing some book promotion for me; I like him, and his audience, and so far it seems to be a good situation). It’s called “Why I Wrote the Elfy Duology,” and if you’re interested in more thoughts about why I do what I do (or at least some of what I’ve done), please go take a look at it.

I appreciate getting a chance to write about my favorite characters Bruno and Sarah. I want them to have more adventures. But I have to know that someone out there likes what I’m doing…and wants maybe to see more of it?

That is the hope for all writers, of course. We write our stories because we need to tell them. We hope that others will enjoy what we do, and maybe tell more people — it’s like a nicer version of a pyramid scheme, except everybody wins.

Right now, I’m still stuck in the weeds of CHANGING FACES, trying to figure out how to give Allen and Elaine the happy ending they deserve. As most of you probably know (especially if you’ve been following my blog for any length of time), my book is due soon, and yet there’s something that is eluding me. And when I feel like I can’t get at whatever it is that I need to get at, I’m like anyone else.

In other words, I get frustrated. I think a lot about what I’m doing. I try to write other stories, when possible…but right now, my attention is riveted by CHANGING FACES on the one hand and my Elfyverse on the other as I’ve had a long-simmering situation going on there, too. (I have both a prequel and a sequel set up — the sequel will have to be split into three parts, while the prequel can go as one book.)

What I’d tell anyone else, in this situation, is simple: Relax. Take a breath. Take two. And I’d tell them that the story will come to them.

I know all this. But I’m still having trouble believing it, at the moment.

Anyway, wish me luck with this, will you?


Also…I intend to talk a little baseball soon, if possible. I’ve had some questions about what Vinny Rottino’s doing (that one’s easy; he’s in AAA for the Chicago White Sox, and is currently on the disabled list, poor man), and about what I think about the Milwaukee Brewers season thus far, and whether or not I think the Chicago Cubs will win it all.

So, look for that in the not-so-distant future, along with a book review or two over at Shiny Book Review (SBR).

Written by Barb Caffrey

April 18, 2016 at 1:10 pm

Two New Books from Friends to Share…

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Folks, it’s Saturday. Time turns to reading, at least for me…sometimes to book reviewing, too (though I’m way behind on that, I do intend to get back to it sooner or later).

Today, I have two great books to share with you, especially if you enjoy military science fiction/adventure stories.

ConfederatedStarSystems_medFirst, my friend Loren K. Jones’s second e-book from Twilight Times Books is out; it’s a short story collection called STORIES OF THE CONFEDERATED STAR SYSTEMS. I edited this book, and it’s a fun, fast read with a lot of great stories…right now, it’s only ninety-nine cents, too! (That won’t last long.) I grabbed my e-book copy right away, and hope you will, too.

Edited to add: If you want a copy from OmniLit, go here; if you want a copy from Barnes and, go here. I now return you to your regularly scheduled blog post, already in progress…

“But Barb,” you protest. “I want to know what I’m getting into, before I buy this book, even for ninety-nine cents.”

Ah. Well, I have you covered…there is a free sample of Loren’s newest up right now at the Twilight Times Books website.

“So, who’s your other friend, Barb, that you’re ‘pimping’ today?”

Hmmm. I’d not use that word, quite…it’s more of an informative thing, really.

“Spit it out, Barb.”

OK, OK. My friends Jason Cordova and Chris Smith recently released KRAKEN MARE as an e-book. It’s about a disillusioned former Marine, who stumbles onto a mystery after taking a job on Titan’s moon. But it’s not a benign mystery; oh, no. (That would be too easy.) Instead, it’s a mystery that will “shock the foundations of the universe…something out of a nightmare,” as the book description says.

I don’t have a picture to add to this one…but I can tell you I’ve read several chapters already, and am enjoying it quite a bit. (No one does military SF/horror hybrids quite like Jason Cordova. And Chris Smith’s influence is felt in myriad ways…this book will not disappoint.)

Hope you enjoy them!

Written by Barb Caffrey

April 16, 2016 at 11:29 am

To Survive the Maelstrom by Michael B. Caffrey + @BarbCaffrey #bookreview #99cents #ASMSG

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Very happy with this new review for my and my late husband Michael’s story “To Survive the Maelstrom.” Mrs. N.N. Light read it, reviewed it, loved it…what’s to say, except I’d better keep working on more of Peter’s story? (Michael wrote enough that I can finish it. Which I will do, after CHANGING FACES is done and in the can.)

POTL: All Things Books, Reading and Publishing

To Survive the Maelstrom

Title: To Survive the Maelstrom: A Tale from the Atlantean Union (Peter Welmsley Book 1)

Author: Barb Caffrey, Michael B. Caffrey

Genre: Science Fiction

Book Blurb:

Command Sergeant-Major Sir Peter Welmsley of the Atlantean Union has lost everything he holds dear. He wonders why he lived, when so many others died at Hunin — including his fiancée, Lydia, and his best friend Chet.

Into his life comes Grasshunter’s Cub, an empathic, sentient creature known to those on Heligoland as a “weremouse.”

Weremice are known for their ability to help their bond-mates. But how can this young weremouse find a way to bring Peter back from the brink of despair and start living again?

Note for readers: This is a novella.

My Review:

Peter is a commander in the Atlantean Union and he is at a crossroads. Everyone he loves is dead and he’s left all alone. Why was he spared?…

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Written by Barb Caffrey

April 11, 2016 at 4:37 am

Posted in Uncategorized


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