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Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Dear Oliver with Hywela Lyn

Hello and welcome to another episode of Dear Oliver! Today’s special guest is my dear friend Hywela Lyn. You don’t want to miss her pet peeve, especially if you happen to be a UK author dealing with the IRS! So, come on in and belly up to the bar. And while you’re eavesdropping on Oliver’s sound advice to Lyn, why not treat yourself to one of his legendary martinis! You’ll find his impressive menu listed on the sidebar. Not a martini fan? Not a problem. Oliver will make whatever strikes your fancy. And rumor has it that his chocolate bridge mix is out of this world. With no further ado, let’s give a warm round of applause to Hywela Lyn!

Oliver: What can I getcha to drink, love?

Lyn: Well, a glass of mead always goes down well, Oliver, and one of your flashing smiles. What a winning combination!

Humming away to one of his 007 theme songs, Oliver presents a goblet of mead to Lyn with a wink and a smile. He skims his hand along her face. Why so glum, chum?

Lyn:  I am so fed up with ‘Red Tape’! We have enough of it in the UK, and now I find it’s just as bad in the USA. Oliver, do you think I exist?  The IRS doesn’t. I have to fill in form W-7 and I need to prove my identity with a Passport or Driving license. I can’t afford foreign holidays, so I don’t have a Passport, and the only transport I own is my horses. They don’t need a vehicle license, although ironically, they both have horse passports! (Compulsory in the UK), although they don't travel abroad either, and it's really a form of animal licence. Since I have neither drivers permit nor Passport, it seems I am a non-person! Perhaps I’m just a figment of my own imagination!

Oliver: Hmm…given the way you downed that rather large goblet of mead I just poured in seconds flat, I would say you must definitely exist, my sweet. He pours more mead into Lyn’s glass. When her eyes glaze over and she coils her fingers around the stem of the glass in a dead lock grip, Oliver shoves a heaping dish of his chocolate bridge mix in front of her and smiles a beguiling smile. Best have a bite to eat, love. Remember how tanked the boss lady got last week when she so foolishly thought she was woman enough to handle more than one James Bond martini. As if! Oliver pumps his biceps and hums a verse of Nobody Does it Better from The Spy Who Loved Me. Plucking a chocolate covered peanut from the dish, he plops it into Lyn’s mouth. Then another. Now about your pet peeve with the IRS, love. I’m truly sorry about all the red tape and paper work. I can only imagine what a headache it is for you. Perhaps the American Embassy can straighten it all out for you. In the meantime, who can I play for you on the jukebox to chase your blues away, my sweet?

Lyn: Dearest Oliver – so thoughtful. How about Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers singing ‘Islands in the Stream’? That always makes me feel more cheerful. Maybe if I close my eyes I can forget about Red Tape and imagine you’re singing to me as we drift along in a little boat on a beautiful lake in the sunshine. I’m wearing my ‘Oliver’ teeshirt and sipping Chai tea from my Oliver mug.

Oliver presses a button on his JB remote and the requested song plays. Flashing Lyn a smile designed to melt hearts, he whisks her in his muscular arms as they glide as one across the dance floor. In a husky voice, he serenades her. “Islands in the stream, this is what we are. No more in between… we can sail away where we make love to each other…”

The audience explodes with hoots and whistles when the song ends and the couple take a sweeping bow.

Oliver: Thank you for the dance, love. Whew, I dare say I’m in need of a drink after that rather cozy dance. Oliver fans himself. Now, back to the subject at hand. when did you develop this pet peeve?

Lyn: Oh, just before Christmas last year, when my Publisher wrote to all UK authors telling us that anyone published in the US but living overseas has to have an ITIN number in order for them to continue to pay us our Royalties, however small those may be. *sigh* and it’s not just my own US publisher who is involved, but each and every one! So any UK author published in The States has to obtain this number, which involves filling in forms and travelling to the American Consulate in London with proof of identity *another sigh*.

Oliver: That sounds like a royal pain in the you know what! I wish I could cut away the red tape for you, my sweet Lyn, truly I do. He fills her goblet with more mead. As an after thought, he pours himself a glass. Propping his arms on the bar, he gazes into Lyn’s eyes. Tell me, sweet thing, where do you think utopia is?

Lyn: Utopia would be a place where Red Tape is forbidden. Completely and utterly. Where form filling is unheard of and where old fashioned things like Birth Certificates and Marriage Certificates are still accepted to prove I’m who I say I am, and that I’m not telling ‘porkies’. Where all animals and children are wanted and loved and well cared for – (I threw that in because I can’t bear to hear of little helpless souls being abandoned or ill treated) and where you, dear Oliver, would gaze at me in adoration and wait on me hand and hoof – I mean foot.

Oliver: Amen to that. Their glasses clink in a toast. Here here! Now, how can I help, my pet?

Lyn: Well, another glass of mead perhaps? And maybe some tea – yes, some Chai tea, lovely.  And chocolate – I need chocolate, how about a slice of that Black forest cake you and I both love so much, and which you bake with such finesse! And then perhaps if you could just give me a little shoulder massage … ooh Oliver, I swear you remind me of that Ray Bradbury Science Fiction title, ‘I Sing The body Electric’. You certainly do have the electric touch! 

Oliver: Your wish is my command, love. He presents the treats with a roguish wink. After feeding a fork full of decadent Black Forest cake to Lyn, he works his magic with his fingers, easing the tension from her aching muscles.

Lyn:  Oh… you meant about the Red Tape?  Dearest Oliver, any suggestions or advice you can give would earn you my undying love and devotion.  (Oh yes, of course you have that already. Well I’m sure I can think of something.)

Oliver: Lyn, my sweet little cumquat, unfortunately, no matter what country, there will always be red tape and hoops to leap through. I ought to know, being a secret agent man and all. In the meantime, have more mead. Why do you think there are pubs in every watering hole in the world? To chase your blues away!


Hywela Lyn lived in Wales for most of her life, and its beautiful countryside and legends inspired her to write. Although she now lives in a small village in England, she is very proud of her Welsh heritage and background. She enjoys weaving romantic tales of the future, and distant, mysterious worlds.  Her pen name is a combination of her first two names. 'Hywela’ is Welsh and her first name but it was never used and she has always been called by her second Christian name, Lyn. One thing remains constant in her writing:  The power of love.  Love, not only between her hero and heroine, but between friends and siblings, and for their particular world and the creatures that share it.  

She is crazy about all animals, especially horses. She lives with her long suffering husband, Dave, and her animal family includes two horses, two ferrel cats and an adopted Jack Russell terrier called Bouncer.

Hywela Lyn’s first novel, 'Starquest', a futuristic romance was released by The Wild Rose Press in 2008. The sequel to ‘Starquest’, 'Children of the Mist' released in 2009.  Both are available in Ebook format or print and she is currently working on the third stories in the series. She is also one of nine authors who each contributed a story about one of the nine Greek muses in the Wild Rose Press anthology ‘Song Of the Muses', with her story about Terpsichore, Muse of Dance, ‘Dancing With Fate.

Lyn loves to hear from readers and fellow authors, and you can write to her at
Visit her at her website:
You can purchase her books on her Wild Rose Press Author Page:  where you can also download a free copy of her short fantasy romance ‘A Bargain With Death.’


Hywela Lyn said...

Lyn plants a kiss on Oliver's lips and heaves a sigh.

Thank you so much for the sympathetic ear, and the chocolate and the *hic* mead! I feel so much better now.

And thanks to dear Sharon too, for letting you 'moonlight' on a Wednesday, despensing tea (or something stronger) and sympathy as only you could.

Are there no limits to your talents,you gorgeous man!

Sharon Donovan said...

Oliver smiles and pumps his biceps. More mead, sweet thing?

Sharon Donovan said...

A warm welcome to Hywela Lyn! I feel so terrible for all the red tape and frustration she and other overseas authors are going through because of this proof of identity the IRS is requesting. But as Oliver pointed out, there is red tape in every country and watering holes in every port to proove it!!!

P.L. Parker said...

AAACCCKKKK - dealing with the IRS here is bad enough - glad I don't have to deal with it from afar. Get on that horse and ride I say!

Hywela Lyn said...

LOL Sharon, it was a lot easier in the Old West, wasn't it! Thanks for stopping by!

Rachel Lynne said...

Hi Lyn! I saw all of those messages coming through the loop around Christmas. It sounded like it'd be a huge headache but I never dreamed it'd be this much. Here in the States just about everyone has a driver's license; of course half the men who seek employment with our family's business don't have them but that's because they've lost them to drunk driving and such, (I swear, there is a whole generation of young adults screwing up their lives before they hit 25!)
I'm still hearing talk about the IRS demanding I send 1040, (form that tells IRS how much I paid a person without taking out taxes),everytime I pay someone an amount over $600.00. That is almost all of my suppliers-every week! Stupid, stupid, stupid. I've yet to see an official notice saying I must do it so I don't and probably won't :)
My husband came in the other day with one word written on a notepad: THEIRS look at it and then break it down: THE IRS pretty much says it all, huh?
All of this security stuff is a pretext to find out who has what amount in their bank. Makes me think of those old WWII movies with the German guard demanding: "Paper please!"
Good Luck my friend, simplest thing is to probably just get a UK driver's license; I don't have a passport either but I'll have to cough up about $200.00 and surrender my privacy to them if I ever want to visit your glorious country!
I'm off to write some words in the much neglected wip: If I make my word count this week I get to start Starquest, Charade of Hearts is my next reward ... sigh, sooo many great books; Note to self: must work harder and faster!

Hywela Lyn said...

Hi Rachel. Seems the whole world is just tied up wth red tape, doesn't it. Those of us who have worked hard for what little we have, seem to bear the brunt of it and the 'fat cats' can pay someone to fiddle their paperwork!

Hope you enjoy Starquest, I'm sure you'll enjoy COH it's a fantastic read! I certainly echo your last sentence!

Caroline Clemmons said...

Lyn, your situation boggles the mind! Beauracracy at it's craziest. Loved the photo of you on horseback. Perhaps you've heard the American saying, "Don't let the turkeys get your down." Keep that thought!

Hywela Lyn said...

Hi Caroline. Thanks for dropping by and your kind comments.

That's a good saying, I'll keep on repeating it! :)

Oliver, a glass of mead and some cake for Patsy and Rachel and Caroline, please.

Miriam Newman said...

Lyn, now you know why we have to drink to put up with it! Too bad we don't have more Olivers here in the States, though. He sounds dreamy. Chin up. And if that fails, drink more mead.

Margaret West said...

I was lured by the scent of chocolate. Thank god I have a brit publisher and canadian one. Red tape!! Bah, hang them all I say!! darn procrastinators, all of them.
BTW is Oliver for hire..and not just for the day my dear heh heh

Hywela Lyn said...

Hi Miriam

Thanks for stopping by. Yes, it's enough to drive one to drink -and it's no better over here. I spent most of the morning trying to sort out a mistake Rewenue & Customs had made with my husband's tax!

Oliver, more mead over here please! :)

Hywela Lyn said...

Hi Margaret, thanks for stopping by Sharon's blog - let Oliver ply you with chocolate.

Sadly, Oliver is fiercely loyal to Sharon, and no amount of bribery, threats or even kisses will persuade him to hire himself out to anyone else. I'm very privileged to be allowed to spend time with him today! I had to agree to a Contract signed in blood, and promise to give him back by midnight!

Mary Ricksen said...

I wish there was a way they could pay me and I could send it to you!
If there is anything I can do...
Although, here's a thought, how about stomping on them with your tiny feet?
As for you Oliver, I feel awfully neglected. You always are nicer to Lyn then me. When do I get a back rub? Oh when I do a blog and complain I can have one? Hmmmmm. I could start to complain about men, but then I'd be here all day and your eyes would glaze over as you drifted away, always to polite to give it back. Well I have a lot of issues too!!! I can moan and groan with the best of them!! I got it all!!!

Sandy said...


I'm so glad to have seen this blog. It was so fun, and I'm in love with Oliver. You have a great site here, Sharon.

Lyn, I can truly sympathize with you on the red tape. Maybe, this is the reason for agents, so they can do all this nasty stuff. I hope the American Embassy can help you.

Don't you think everything is difficult about this business?

Friend from Ning.

Miss Mae said...

Lyn, I'm so disgusted for you with all this hassle about the IRS. Believe me, about 99% of Americans can't stand to deal with them either! But I think it's absolutely ridiculous what they're enforcing upon you "other" authors (outside US). Seems like UK needs to get involved and tell the US to take a hike! LOL

Love the mead and chocolate -- any left over? *waves to Oliver and Sharon*

Debra St. John said...

Oh Lyn...Red tape stinks. I'm sorry you're having such a problem. It's often the non-writing aspects of writing that give us the most trouble, don't they?

On a brighter note, I'm heading over to the chocolate and am going to sway to Kenny and Dolly. Two of my favorite muscial duet partners ever!

Hugs and kisses, Oliver.

Hywela Lyn said...

Mary, you're so sweet!
Stomping sounds good! :)

Aw, don't fret. Your turn will come - Just ask Oliver's boss, Sharon, if you can have an appointment with him - and don't be jealous. You know Oliver - when he's not with the one he loves - he loves the one he's with!

Hywela Lyn said...

Hi Sandy

Welcome to Oliver's -er I mean Sharon's - blog. Yes, *sigh* we're all rather in love with Oliver, but I fear his heart belongs to another - although he does love to flirt! ;)

I'm not sure even an agent would be able to take on the IRS for me though!

Thanks so much for stopping by, and don't forget to visit a week today when I think Oliver will have another problem to listen to!

Now, what can I ask Oliver to get you?

Linda Swift said...

Hello, Hywela and Sharon. I love the new format with dear Oliver. And isn't he???? And I love mead. I could drink it like iced tea. In fact, I do like it with ice in it.Haven't tried it with chocolate. Don't know if I could handle that much p;easure at once. Especially if Oliver was serving. Be still my racing heart. Linda

Hywela Lyn said...

Miss Mae, my dear friend.

Aw, thanks for the sympathy. To be fair though, it's all to prevent us being taxed twice, once by the US and once by the UK - but I sure wish they'd make it simpler!

Ooh look, here comes Oliver with the mead and chocolate!

Hywela Lyn said...

Hi Debra

So good to see you, you're right - writing is the easy part!

Do have some mead and some of Oliver's chocolate bridge mix and a slice of Black forest gateau. How lovely to meet another Kenny and Dolly fan!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

How dreadful to have to deal with two governments about taxes. I'm envious of you having horses. I miss them from my youthful days.

Hywela Lyn said...

Hi Susan,

Thanks for coming by and for your comment. Yes, it's hard trying to deal with tax at the best of times. I've lost track of how many times I've tred to contact the Consulate in London to try to clarify what they will or will not accept for identification purposes, and in the end my dear friend Sharon 'phoned the IRS over there for me!

Yes, I've been crazy about horses for as long as I can remember. I saved up for five years for my first horse and they're the reason I can't afford to drive or have foreign holidays - but I wouldn't be without them for the world; They're so worth the sacrifice!

Hywela Lyn said...

Hi Linda
Isn't he just!

Sorry I replied to your comment earlier and its seems to have (hic) disappeared into the ether!

Oh mead, chocolate and Oliver! What a delicious combination. Can you imagine what its been like for me sitting here all this time drinking mead, eating chocolate and telling Oliver my troubles. Talk about pleasure overkill! :)

Lori, Sr. Editor for Wild Rose Press said...

I applaud your efforts to banish red tape and wish you well. However, I think I'd rather just sit and have mead and dance with Oliver. At least with that, there is a chance of some kind of fun. Well done

Hywela Lyn said...

Hi Lori

Thanks so much for calling in - I agree, drinking mead and dancing with Oliver is definitely more fun than red tape!

Marianne Stephens said...

We need "Olivers" in all bars! What a sweet, compassionate man and listener.
Doesn't your country issue ID cards for those that don't drive? Non-drivers in the USA can get ID cards.
Good luck!

Sharon Donovan said...

Sharon saunters into the bar and sighs. Empty jugs of mead litter the counter. Cake plates scraped clean to the bone china, and her precious Waterford candy dishes are overturned, not even a measly peanut left to munch on. The ladies are all smiles, waiting their turn to dance with Oliver.

Ladies, I see that Oliver has been keeping you well entertained. Thank you all for popping in to support Hywela’s pet peeve. Here’s to a world free of red tape and frustration where an endless supply of chocolate and wine await!

A special thank you to Hywela Lyn for being my special guest this week. Thanks for sharing your pet peeve with us, Lyn. I invite you to come back next Wednesday for another episode of Dear Oliver when my guest will be senior editor of the Crimson line of The Wild Rose Press Lori Graham. Until then, may the luck of the Irish be with you as you travel through life.

Love and Blessings


Hywela Lyn said...

Lyn, grinning from ear to ear, walks dreamily over to Sharon and gives her a bear hug.

Hello Sharon. Um, sorry about the mess. I'll help you clear it a bit.

*Waves to Marion* Hi Marion. Yes, Oliver is - well he's just one of a kind. Sharon is SOOO lucky to have come upon such a treasure! :)

Our Government was going to introduce National ID cards, but there was such an outcry from people who didn't need them and didn't want them, that the idea was scrapped, unfortunately. So I am just as peeved at my own Country as I am at the IRS!

We do have voluntary Citizen's Cards,though, which aren't quite as powerful, but hopefully will be acceptable by the IRS, and I'm waiting for mine to come through. My dear friend Sharon has been such a help and support to me in this problem.

Thank you so much everyone, for visiting, and for your messages of support. It means a great deal to me, and also I'm sure to other authors in a similar position.

Special thanks to Sharon, for giving me the opportunity to unburden myself to Oliver. And thank you Oliver, for being you, and for being so sweet and understanding (Not to mention hunky and handsome). I feel so much better now, and ready to take on the whole IRS system if need be!


Can't wait until next week to see what Lori Graham's going to say to Oliver.

Love and blessings back,

Lyn X

Jane Richardson, writer said...

Lyn - as you know - I TOTALLY sympathise! On the last leg now, my dear. :)

Jane x

Hywela Lyn said...

Jane - hello, my friend, how nice to see you! (Waves madly)

I'll keep you clued in with what happens! x

January 20, 2011 1:38 AM

Cheryl said...

I live here and I don't even like the IRS. Something about how they are always so eager to take my money, but not eager to give it back.

Hope it all works out. If not, post a picture of Oliver by your bed. At least you'll have something nice to look at.


Hywela Lyn said...

Thanks for commenting, Cheryl. I don't think tax offices are very popular in any country! (Grin)

I love the idea of keeping a picture of Oliver by my bed - not sure how hubby would feel about that though! :)