Monday, March 27, 2023


What an honor! The promotional trailer for “Lone Oak” was nominated for Best Trailer at the International Christian Film Festival.

I was hesitant about entering the trailer because we are still raising money to make the film, but here we are, nominated for best trailer. This is a very humbling experience. I sure didn't do this on my own. In fact, without the help of numerous people, prompting from my beautiful bride and God, the script would still be sitting on a shelf collecting dust.

The nomination is not the win. We won't know who the winner is until May, but this is certainly an encouragement. I'm amazed at how many have loved the script. I know I like the story, but I am the author of the book the screenplay is based on, so I better like it. I never envisioned myself making a movie, but then, I never envisioned myself writing two published books either.

What have I learned on this still unfinished journey? I could make a list that is longer than my arm, but you'd get bored. I'll highlight a few things.

First and foremost, you'll never get anywhere by dreaming about it. I don't mean to not dream, but in order for that dream to become a reality, you have to work at it. It will cost you time, effort and money. Sleepless nights, frustration that things aren't happening on your schedule and uncertainty that you should even try, are all part of it. Those who succeed aren't any smarter or more lucky that you. They simply did not quit. Don't give up on your dreams, but do more than dream. DO!

Be humble enough to know you don't know and willing to look to others for advice. Many successful people are happy to give helpful advice. They know that their success is not dependent on your failure. In the words of Ronald Reagan, they know “A rising tide lifts all boats.” Additionally, if they have succeeded, they know how to succeed. Nobody knows all of the answers, but those who have succeeded know how to succeed. One other thing that is very important. In order to succeed, you must define success for yourself.

Last on today's list, be thankful! No matter what you have, you will appreciate it more if you take time to be thankful for it. Hard times teach you perseverance. Good times teach you to rejoice and to be generous. Daily tedium teaches you that your joy comes not from your surroundings, but from the One who made your surroundings and provides for your daily life. Messes made by your children let you see happiness in the little things. Being tired each gives you the satisfaction of a day of accomplishments, no matter how large or small.

“Today is the tomorrow you dreamed about yesterday.” Phil Hardy

Thank you for reading.

You can contact me at or visit our website,

Friday, January 27, 2023

Radio Interview

Dave at WCNO Radio.

 As I was preparing for a recently recorded radio interview at WCNO Radio, I was a bit nervous about how Dave and I would interact. We had spoken on the phone a few times and I had an idea about the line of questioning, but it was the first radio interview I had done in a decade or two. Would it all be serious, or would there be time for some smiles and laughter? Well, a few minutes in he asked me what brought me to Florida from Michigan. I couldn't pass up that question. "A car" was my response. The ice was broken, and we had a wonderful 20 plus minutes of discussion about my salvation, my books and the movie project I am working on based on my novel "Lone Oak". We had some serious discussion and laughed, joked as well. 

 Dave was extremely gracious and kept us on track. If he hadn't, we might have spent hours talking about writing, our Lord and westerns. When I have the broadcast date and time, I will certainly post it. I think you'll enjoy listening to it almost as much as we enjoyed recording it.

 By the way, my reason for coming to Florida has brunette hair and stands about 5'3". She is my beautiful bride. God put us together and I could see no reason to argue that point. He does know best.

 If you have a question you would like me to address about writing or the "Lone Oak" film project, please email me and I will do my best to answer it.

 Signing off until next time.

Phil Hardy



Friday, December 23, 2022



Faraway lands and time travel

I have a question. What exactly do you do?

      I was recently asked the question, “What do you do”. I thought about it and asked myself, “Are your books merely entertainment?” I hoped they were more than that, but what? I asked myself, "Is a book or story more than just entertainment?" As I thought about it I came up with the following answer.

       This is what I do. I take people on journeys through space and time to destinations that they can only imagine. I provide adventures fraught with danger and excitement and even provide a touch of romance at times. I touch people's hearts and minds and give them a reason to fear and to cheer.

      I'm a tour guide, of sorts, leading my readers down twisting turning trails of the imagination. I point to the landscapes and characters while letting surprises grab you leaving you wondering how you missed the clues. Each adventure is pure fiction, so your mind's eye is the only limit.

       I hope that I make people think a little deeper about this world in which we live and instill a little more courage to stand for what is right. My desire is to give my readers an escape from the toils of today for a short time so that they can return a little stronger in their desire to defend the defenseless and help the helpless. My stories have heroes who are just like you and me, regular everyday people.

      What am I and what do I do? I am an author, a tour guide and a spinner of yarns. I'm a storyteller whose stories are only limited by the imagination.

 Thank you for visiting.

       Phillip Hardy


Monday, October 24, 2022


Book signings!

This is where the real fun begins!

Book signings are great fun but be prepared to do some preparation. You can't just hang up a sign the day of your event and expect it to be successful. Remember the 5 P's. “Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance.” This holds true in all parts of life, especially when putting something like this together.

A few steps are critical. First and foremost, remember, you are a guest. Don't demand anything. Let the proprietor know your needs, but they have the final say. Some business owners feel, justly or unjustly, that anyone who comes into their business who is not a direct customer of theirs, is an inconvenience. DO NOT be that inconvenience. Be a gracious guest and they are far more likely to be that gracious host you are looking to partner with.

Next, ask the business owner or manager how YOU can help them. This is their livelihood you are asking to interrupt. Give them any fliers or literature they may find helpful and take it down for them immediately after the book signing unless they want to keep it.

BRING A CROWD!! I can't emphasize this enough. Bringing some extra customers to their place of business goes a long way to making you welcome then and in the future. Even if it is only a few people that show up, make sure you invite everyone you can think of, even if you don't think they will come. They might surprise you.

Make sure you have enough books! You don't want to run out of inventory. Unless you are extremely well known, 30-40 copies will be sufficient, but have extras just in case. It's easier to go to the car and get some extras out of the trunk than it is to tell someone, they will have to wait for their signed copy.

Make sure you select a venue that works for your genre. Two things will come from this. First, you are more likely to get permission to hold your event. Next, you are more likely to be successful. For example, I don't think my westerns would be as well received at a high society tearoom as they are at a western cafe or coffee shop. However, a romance novel would be far better received at the tearoom that at a rodeo.

ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS thank your host. A handwritten card to them by name goes a long way. Remember, you're an author, so writing a heartfelt thank you should be easy.

As always, thank you and God bless.

Phillip Hardy

Author of Lone Oak, Vengeance Is Mine and several short stories with more on the way.

Monday, September 19, 2022



I hope that you are having fun. There is an adage that you write some parts of your story to create friction between the characters, some you write to develop your characters and some you write simply for fun! Why not? Yes, writing is serious work, but why write if you can't have fun?

I find great joy in creating characters who are a bit quirky. For example, Aunt Mable, in “Lone Oak” is sassy with a heart as big as the Alaskan outdoors. She has a sharp tongue at times but also a tender heart. Everyone calls her “Aunt Mable” even if there are no nephews nor nieces in the story.

Just a couple of examples of my, and my children's, favorite character from “Lone Oak”.

Elizabeth stomped her foot. “Ugh! Can you believe the nerve of that man? Thinking I need someone to look after me. Why, I was doing just fine before he came along.” Her face was crimson with anger, and she clenched and unclenched her small fists. “Why I have half a mind to—”

To what, dearie? He just wants to make sure you’re safe is all. Maybe he’s a bit overprotective, but he means well. Give him a little bit of an opportunity, and you’d find him a real gem. Of course, all gems need some polishing. That’s where us womenfolk come in.” Aunt Mable smiled at the young woman pacing the floor in front of her. “Now come sit here before you wear a hole in my rug.”


He has you treatin’ his wounds and fussin’ and frettin’ that he might get killed, and then he thinks, just because he’s been shot a couple of times, he can get out of it? I’ll give him a few more lumps if that’s what he thinks,” the oldster fumed.

I love Aunt Mable. Just don't get on her bad side. Why did I create her? Because she was fun, funny, sassy, tough and tender all in one. Kind of like the grandma we would all love to have. And if you read the story, you'll find out she can cook like your favorite aunt or grandma too. I think she adds to the story, but the real reason she is such an integral part, is because she was fun to create.

Are we having fun yet? You better believe it!!

Until next time, this is Phil Hardy signing off.

Wednesday, August 31, 2022

Writing Groups

Join a writing group, they said. It'll be fun, they said.

Hopefully your writing group won't look quite this intense, but the truth is, for them to be any good, they must be honest. Sometimes that honesty is quite brutal to our egos. No matter what, if there is a writing group, join them. Before you do though, check your ego at the door. None of us are as good as we could be and that should make us want to improve. That constructive criticism will help you polish your writing and help you overcome some of your bad habits.

Why is it important? The truth is, because we all read our work like we THINK we wrote it. Someone who is unbiased, or at least less biased than we are, will find the errors in what we thought was the perfect "Great American Novel". Our friends and family are great for boosting the ego, but sometimes we need our bubble burst in order to improve. 

I remember my first foray into the "coliseum". I was fresh and excited and looking forward to hearing how wonderful the first chapter of my book was. Coliseum is the right term. After reading the first few pages, the half dozen other writers shredded what would later become a highly recommended western novel. "Lone Oak" is now a much better story with fans clamoring for the next book in the series thanks to their honest critiques. 

These groups will also help you, should you decide to publish your work, in finding editors, publishers and book distributors. They can be your toughest critics, but they are also some of your greatest fans.

Signing off for now.

Phil Hardy

You can learn more about my works, or even order your own copies at,



Wednesday, August 10, 2022

How to organize your thoughts.


Organizing your book

A lot of people debate about how to organize your book. I mean, how do you keep on topic and keep the story moving forward? You can't go about it all willy-nilly, can you? You'd end up with a mess that no editor could possibly fix for you. The truth is, there are numerous ways to organize your writing, and no single way that works for everybody. However, there are some principles that apply to all of them. Know your characters, know your plot and know where you are going.

I think that most authors use the outline method. What that means is they write down, in outline form, the main points of their story and then flesh them out. This helps them to keep the story flowing in a definite direction. The outline can be as simple as a single page or as detailed as you decide to make it. The main point is, if this is how you work best, write the outline so you can work from it. Make sure to include the main characters and action sequences. You don't want to put things out of order, nor forget names and places critical to your story. Readers will notice that.

Others write completely “freestyle”. In other words, they write whatever is in their mind at the time and let the story develop itself. This can work, if you write continuously. The problem arises when you leave the story for a few days or weeks and then try to return. While it does lend itself to your imagination, there are times when you may forget critical elements or go off on a tangent that doesn't enhance the story. That means you will have to rewrite parts of the story in order to make it coherent. Your editor will be a critical asset when you write this way.

Others write as if writing a screenplay. What I mean by that is, they think of the story in scenes and write the scenes, tying them together to make the story complete. When writing this way, you can write a scene out of order, knowing where it fits into the story and insert it at the proper time. It sometimes leads to the issue of how to tie all the scenes together into a comprehensive product. In this method, as with the outline, you must know the beginning, middle and end of your story.

These are a few ways that people organize writing their books. Whichever way you choose, one of the most critical things is, select the one that works best for you and try it out. You may decide later to change your method of organization, but try them until you find what one, or combination, works for you.

Which one do I use? Well, let's just say, I still use a pen and paper most of the time and leave it at that. Until next time, keep writing.

To order your signed copies of my books go to:

  What an honor! The promotional trailer for “Lone Oak” was nominated for Best Trailer at the International Christian Film Festival. I...