Welcome message

Welcome, friends old and new, to my blog. This is the place where I can share my scribblings and thoughts on loving life. I hope you enjoy them, make suggestions and come back to read more.

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Strange Ideas: Death, Destiny and Decisions gets the fairytale ending it deserves.

The two most beautiful words:


If you've been keeping up, you'll know what a drama I've been having with releasing Strange Ideas in Europe. In fact, if you substituted my book for a beautiful but naïve young girl, I reckon it'd be a bit of a blockbuster tale. Let's give it a go.

Act 1: the set up

Looking for Love

I went looking for love...
... I looked in the tiny, rough cracks in the bricks of a house older than my grandfather's grandfather
... I looked in the delicate buds of the flowering weeds that danced in a mass of wild green
... I looked in the silver-hued patterns the children's shadows made on the playground

I went looking for love...
... I found it in the rich, purple berries that were hidden behind waxy leaves
... I found it in the cold, fresh gusts of wind that lifted my hair and widened my smile
... I found it in the face of my friend as she closed her eyes and faced the sun

And, after I had found it, I held love in the space between my hand and a child's hand
My hand surrounding his
Love's hand surrounding us.
And I was happy.

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Strange Ideas: Update

Well, the plot thickens...

I've heard back from Amazon- a lovely man named Charles- and have been informed my book has been "suppressed" in Germany. I've no idea why, or what that actually means, but because Germany apparently won't allow it, and is in Europe, then it cannot be sold on any European Amazon site, including the UK.

I've been assured they have passed this on to the Content Validation team and that they will get back to me by Thursday.

In the meantime, I'll get on with enjoying my holidays and trust the clever people to fix the problem. I hope you lucky Kindle readers are enjoying my Strange Ideas, and are thinking about leaving me a review


Monday, 27 May 2013

Review: Unlikely

Unlikely by Frances Pauli

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed reading this! The characters and locations were easy to imagine due to the detailed but not onerous description, and I loved Satina's quick wit and her banter with Marten. Lots of fun!

View all my reviews

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Bad news, friends...

Due to a monumental cock-up with the distribution process at Amazon, the paperback of Strange Ideas is currently only available on Amazon.com or the Createspace e-store at the moment. I am e-mailing and hassling to get this fixed, but am stressing that the book will not be available on Amazon.co.uk in time for Monday. If anyone is desperate to get their hands on a copy, you can either buy via Amazon.com or https://www.createspace.com/4140414 (shipping prices and times are out of my control)

Needless to say, I am really sorry and very disappointed that this has happened. Considering that I prepared well in advance and that everything was fine and good to go last weekend, I am fuming that Strange Ideas has disappeared from Amazon.co.uk with no explanation, and am working hard to get the problem fixed.

I'll keep you posted x

Friday, 24 May 2013

Friday Five: Five pieces of advice...

...from children.

Today I asked my class, in preparation for a writing task, to visualise travelling in the Tardis to visit their future selves, ten years from now.

As well as thinking about what their future selves would look like, where they would live, and what they would be doing, I asked the children to imagine their future self whispered a few words of advice into their ears before they returned to their own time.

Here's what they said.

Saturday, 18 May 2013

Big News! (and a headache)

Wheee! Good morning, my lovelies!

My head aches a little (damn those Bon-Bons) but, other than that, I'm in fine form this morning and I hope you are too.
Big News! After months of hard work, tantrums and a small meltdown, Strange Ideas: Death, Destiny and Decisions is out now for Kindle. I woke up feeling like it was Christmas morning and got straight on my laptop to check- and there it is! All shiny and pwetty, and a little disturbing...
I hope you get a chance to take a look today and, even better, that you download my five creepy tales to mess with your head. Even better than that, I hope you enjoy the bizarre twists and lovingly-crafted chills and leave a review on Amazon, Goodreads or anywhere else reputable (no bathroom walls please).
Click the cover to check it out, and enjoy your weekend xxx

Friday, 17 May 2013

Review: The Little Camera

The Little Camera
The Little Camera by L.K. Jay

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book caught my attention straight away- initially because I wanted to throttle Ryan, who is everything the middle-aged fear teenagers to be i.e disassociated, disenchanted and disrespectful. Given a community service order for yet another petty theft, young Ryan is forced to spend time with Mr Jedras, a Polish Jew with a tale to share. His story is a worthy of a book all to itself, and I stayed up way too late to find out how he made it to England. Meanwhile Ryan is getting deeper and deeper into trouble with his gang, led by the despicable Jamal. I had a feeling L.K. Jay had something up her sleeve for Ryan and (no spoilers) I'm glad I was right. My only (small) gripe is that Ryan's language seemed a bit formal for one so young and street-wise. Although this book pulls no punches in showing the evil of the past (Nazi invasion) and present (gang culture), it leaves a positive message for the future, and I even warmed to Ryan enough to wish him well as I finished reading. A suitably serious tone, considering the subject matter, and very different to The Ghosthunters Club, but equally as enjoyable.

View all my reviews

Friday Five: Five cute photos of my dogs


Happy Friday!

Just a quickie today, as I'm busy getting ready to hit that "publish" button tonight- a process which involves champagne and strawberry Bon-Bons, and a little Blood, Sweat and Tears (the band- it's for my victory dance).

Here are five very cute photos of my boys, Harvey and Alfie, for you to go "awww" over, while you wait to read Strange Ideas: Death, Destiny and Decisions. It's out tomorrow, and I'm squeely excited!

Sunday, 12 May 2013

Review: The Ghost Hunters Return

The Ghost Hunters Return
The Ghost Hunters Return by L.K. Jay

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Absolutely loved this! The girls were as fab as ever, and I chortled my little socks off (in between the scary bits). Lots of fun!

View all my reviews

Friday, 10 May 2013

Friday Five: Five details that never made the book.

Happy Friday!

Only seventeen days to go until Strange Ideas: Death, Destiny and Decisions is released, and I've been poring over the proof, making sure everything is perfect for you.

It's been lovely to read the proof as a book, rather than edit it (although I have spotted and corrected a few clunkers) but one thing that struck me was how much of the story is not actually on the page.

J.K. Rowling famously wrote detailed and elaborate back-stories for all her characters, and so did I- although not in as much detail, obviously. These are short (ish) stories, after all! But, for my Friday Five this week, I'd like to share a few details with you. These won't make one jot of sense until Monday 27th May, but here you go.

Thursday, 9 May 2013

Bank Holiday Book Nerd Quiz- the answers.

So, how did you do? And how many did you cheat on? (I know you too well...) Check your answers here.

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Strange Ideas: Death, Destiny and Decisions



Sorry, I couldn't help myself- my proof copy of Strange Ideas arrived today and it looks GORGEOUS! The nice man over the road (Geoff, not John) took it in for me as it arrived while I was at work, and jolly grateful I am too. I don't think I'd have slept a wink all night knowing it was sat at the post office, all lonely, waiting for me.

Monday, 6 May 2013

Bank Holiday Book Nerd Quiz

Greetings, fellow readers!

I hope you've all been enjoying your lovely long weekend, and that you've taken the opportunity to catch up on some reading- preferably in a field with a chilled beverage (or two).

Having finished all the hard work on Strange Ideas, I thought I'd do something fun today. Can you identify the books from which these opening lines are taken? No cheating and googling them... Bonus points if you can name the author too.

Friday, 3 May 2013

Friday Five: Five things that make me feel like a proper author


Happy Friday!

When does a "hobby-scribbler" writer like me become a "proper" author? That's the question I've been pondering this week.

I would imagine that, if you follow the traditional publishing route, the precise moment is simple to pin-point. Surely, it's the moment when a publisher accepts your manuscript? You are now "published" and therefore "proper". You can give up the day-job and spend happy days in a cottage by the sea with a laptop and a terrier (or two), cooking up your next best-seller.
Us indies don't have that. We are our own publishers (as well as editors, designers, marketing team and accountants). Our books go on sale when WE decide they're ready, not when one of the Big Six validates us. We usually keep our day jobs, too. So, when does it become "proper"? It's not so easy to define.
*Warning- brief rant coming up*