musings from Canadian author Cheryl Cooke Harrington ... home of The Write Spot

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

The Write Spot: Sandra Carey Cody

Welcome to The Write Spot, a bi-weekly author series spotlighting the many and varied places where writers write. This week, I'm delighted to welcome mystery author Sandra Carey Cody as my guest.

Sandy says she dreamed of being a writer for most of her life. She was born and grew up in St. Louis, Missouri and eventually attended Washington University there. She met Pete, the love of her life, when she cut an algebra class to go ice skating, proving that breaking the rules can sometimes be a good thing! The two were married not long after and job transfers took them down the Mississippi, first to Memphis, then to Baton Rouge, and finally "up north" to Doylestown. Sandy went to work as a legal secretary when her two sons were still in school. She's a proud grandmother now, and she enjoys volunteering, usually doing something with either books or small children – sometimes a happy combination of the two.

So, how did Sandra Carey Cody finally become a writer? In her own words: "I've always been a lover of stories, but didn't actually begin writing until my boys were grown. I joined a writers' group at the Doylestown Library and met others who shared my dreams (and fears). Fellowship with those kindred spirits made me realize that maybe, just maybe, I could actually BE a writer. They gave me the courage to follow my dream – and I've never looked back."

Sandra Carey Cody's Write Spot

Your Write Spot definitely says "Author at Work" – spacious, organized, lots of books – and I love your leafy view. What makes this the perfect Write Spot for you?

One thing I love about my space is that it's upstairs, in a corner room, tucked away from what's going on in the rest of the house so it's possible to get away from the distractions of the "real" world and live in the world of my imagination. I have some of my favorite books within easy reach, a picture of William Faulkner to remind me of the possibilities of storytelling. Equally important is the uncurtained window, just to the left of my desk. It looks out into the branches of a huge maple tree – alive with birds and squirrels and a constantly shifting pattern of light and shadow – sights and sounds that never fail to delight and often inspire.

Nice. I might spend more time tree-watching than writing! Other than your computer or laptop, what's the one thing you couldn't be without in your 'Write Spot'?

See that mug on the desk? It's indispensable – not as much for the tea it contains as because it gives me something to do with my hands when I can't find words to type. When that happens, I wrap my fingers around its warmth, run them over the smooth surface, and allow myself to daydream until random thoughts assume the shape of a story. And (pretty please) if I can have just one more thing, it would be my dictionary. I'm a terrible speller – not a good thing for a writer.

What are you working on now?

I'm working on a sequel to Love and Not Destroy, something that was totally unplanned. That book was intended to be a standalone, but I found that I had to write a sequel because I needed to know what was next for the characters.

In Love and Not Destroy, a young woman who was abandoned as an infant learns who her biological parents were and why they made the choices they did. There is closure for her, but I couldn't stop thinking about her situation, wondering how she would relate to her newly-discovered birth mother, and how the biological and adoptive mothers would relate to each other. That was the genesis of All That I Am, my current work in process. However, in the writing, the story took an unexpected turn. Another character stepped forward and demanded equal time. So now I'm weaving two storylines together – and loving it. I feel that I'm digging deeper with this story than I have in the past, challenging myself in new ways. I admit there are times when I wonder if I can pull it off, but am excited by the challenge.

Where can readers find out more about you and your books?

Readers can visit me at and at the following:

Twitter: @sandracody
Amazon: Author Page    

Sandra Carey Cody's Love and Not Destroy is available now. 

A baby is found in a basket on the grounds of a small-town museum during their annual Folk Festival. Twenty-two years later, a homeless man is murdered in the exactly the same spot. Connection? Or coincidence? Peace Morrow, the foundling, now an adult working at the museum, is haunted by this question and thus begins a quest that explores the nature of family, of loyalty and responsibility. As she tries to reconstruct the victim's history, his story becomes entangled with her own search for family roots. Her journey leads her through the dusty boxes in the museum’s storage area, to an antique market in a tiny hamlet in northern Pennsylvania, and, ultimately, to the innermost reaches of her own heart. 

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About The Write Spot:
I've always been fascinated by what goes on behind the scenes. Whether it's backstage photos from my favourite play, a peek into the kitchen where a chef is working her culinary magic, or simply a glimpse through an uncurtained window into a stranger's private world, there's an undeniable thrill of discovery, a sense of secrets shared. It's no surprise, then, that I'm immensely curious about where other writers do their work. I've blogged about it before in this post about my own 'write spot' and so enjoyed the comments, I was inspired to launch a regular feature here at stillpoint. Watch for The Write Spot every other Wednesday and join me as I discover the many and varied places where writers write.

stillpoint is the blog of Canadian author Cheryl Cooke Harrington

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At 8:43 am, Blogger Sandy Cody said...

Cheryl, thanks for having me and letting me show off my Write Spot.

At 9:02 am, Blogger Sandy Cody said...

I just realized that the window is to the RIGHT of my desk. To the left is my messy (but helpful) bulletin board. Am I embarrassed? Well ... yes, I am.

At 9:41 am, Blogger Jane Gorman said...

Great to see your space Sandy, thanks for sharing! I love a good view, too. Distractions can turn into inspiration. Jane

At 10:03 am, Blogger Cheryl said...

My pleasure, Sandy. And about that "travelling" window - don't be embarrassed. I didn't notice, either, not even when I cropped the photo to remove the door frame that's actually on the left.

Clarification: Readers, we meant the OTHER left. Right? ;-)

At 11:05 am, Blogger Joanne Guidoccio said...

Hi Sandy, Excellent post! I also take advantage of the excellent view from my condo and indulge in moments of tree-watching. Joanne :)

At 1:51 pm, Anonymous Susan McNicoll said...

I'm with Cheryl, Sandy, in that I would get lost looking into the trees. Just beautiful. Love and Not Destroy sounds really interesting and I plan to check it out. Good luck with the sequel. I like your description of your cup of tea and how you use it. I am a big tea person.

At 2:20 pm, Blogger Heidi said...

I so enjoyed this--thanks Cheryl and Sandy!

At 3:50 pm, Blogger Sandy Cody said...

Thanks so much to those who stopped by. I see that we're all alike in our love of nature as inspiration - also a distraction, but worth it.

At 7:03 pm, Blogger Sheila Seabrook said...

Wow, Sandra, I love your view! Thank you for sharing your writing space with us.

At 12:01 am, Blogger Cheryl said...

Many, many thanks to all our visitors. Nice to see Sandy's Write Spot so crowded! ;-)

At 10:22 am, Blogger Sydell Voeller said...

Sandy, I love your write spot, and it reminds me a lot of my own. My window looks onto a huge maple, too, I and my bulletin board is a bit cluttered as well. I always thought we have a lot in common! : )

At 8:12 am, Blogger Sandy Cody said...

Yes, I think we do, Sydell. Thanks for your comment.

At 3:45 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I live in Arizona, where leafy trees and views like this one are hard to come by. Although I'm a humor writer, not a mystery writer, I would kill for a Write Spot like this one! Enjoy it...

At 3:19 pm, Blogger Victoria M. Johnson said...

Hi Sandy--
It's so nice to see your writing space. I agree about having that mug for warmth and to give hands something to do while thinking! I am thrilled to hear that you're writing a sequel to Love and Not Destroy. I can't wait :-)

At 3:24 pm, Blogger Victoria M. Johnson said...

Hi Sandy--
It's so nice to see your writing space. I agree about having that warm mug to wrap your hands around while you're thinking :-) I'm pleased to hear that you're writing a sequel to Love and Not Destroy! Can't wait to read it.


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