February 15th 2018
The trouble with writing so many books is that I sometimes feel I might be in danger of running out of characters to populate my future stories. I’ve been struggling for weeks to come up with the right kind of girl to be in my next book. She has to be feisty from the start, to work in the plot I have in mind, but she needed a soft side too. Would she be tall and willowy, short and plump, dark or fair? I knew she had to be exceptionally pretty, but I didn’t want a picture perfect girl with no spirit. I scrolled through images on the internet, looking for the perfect girl but I simply couldn’t find the elusive quality I needed.
I can’t begin to write the story without knowing my main character inside and out, and although I knew her nature, I couldn’t picture her, so I began to draw some sketches. Reverting to my art training of many years ago, I drew many variations of eyes, noses, and mouths, in different shapes and posed the features in various ways until I found her. Hazel Harris came to life under my pencil yesterday, and now the first chapter of her narrative is in the bag. (Or rather, on the page.)
I know I’ve been quiet for the last month and haven’t blogged or messaged on social media because I was so preoccupied with my search, but now I’m going to go silent once again while I concentrate on writing the book.
As soon as I have a taster ready to post on my web-site, I’ll let you all know. Meanwhile, I hope you’ll find something to interest you among my previous works. Please browse my web-site to find tasters of all my books. Perhaps there’s something there you haven’t read yet?
January 7th 2018
The New Year sales are on and I thought I’d join in and go one better than a discount! I’m offering some of my eBooks FREE in all Amazon stores.
Through January, I will offer a different book FREE every four or five days, so you will have the opportunity to download up to:-
***FIVE FREE BOOKS***
These books will showcase the different genres I like to work with, so this is your opportunity to try something different in 2018.
What have you got to lose?
Visit my Author List to find the current book on offer.
January 6th 2018
Happy New Year to all my readers.
Marketing is a chore, but a necessary one for any self-respecting Indie author. In my publishing years, I’ve tried various strategies, and recently I scrutinised what works best for each of my books. (I have around twenty published to date in many genres under the same author name.)
I’ve had some surprising results when I look back over the lifetime of each novel. What I perceived to be one of my bestsellers, in fact, has enjoyed average sales, and what I thought was an old has-been, continues to sell steadily, whether I advertise it or not.
What do I conclude from all this number crunching and analysing? Well, I haven’t wasted my time. I learned that a good book in a popular genre sells well, no matter what I do to enhance those sales.
I like to jump out of the box occasionally to try new genres like sci-fi, paranormal, and time travel, but have discovered my time would be better employed in writing what sells best for me. Stories about ordinary British people loving, fighting, hiding secrets while enduring the WW2 era are the books my readers seem to like best.
Fans of historical romance, watch this space.
If you’ve enjoyed, ‘The Scent of Bluebells’ or ‘A Snowdrop’s Promise’, you might also enjoy, ‘Evelyn’s Fight’ and ‘Peace for Gladys’. I have lots more characters and plotlines in my head for this genre. I now need to explore the ideas and work them into stories my readers will enjoy.
Meanwhile, my next book ready for release soon is, ‘Freedom for Cassie’ the fourth and final novel in the series, WW2 Women of Courage. This series shows a different angle of the war years, seen through the eyes of young German, Russian and Polish women. They all have struggles, loves, dreams and goals, and I hope my readers will come to love them as much as the British women in my stories.
December 4th 2017
I’m busy writing the fourth novel in the series, WW2 Women of Courage and hope to have this published in the first months of the New Year.
My WW2 Women of Courage series are darker and more intense stories than I usually write. These novels deal with the war years from a slightly different angle. Read the opening pages of the first book, ‘Your Name is Jane’, here to get a flavour of what is to come.
Meanwhile, I’m running a Goodreads Giveaway for the newly released third novel, Ingrid’s Mission.
Enter below for a chance to win one of two paperback copies. Entries are drawn on 30th December.
Good luck and happy reading
November 17th 2017
I’m busy writing, editing, marketing and generally getting myself in a tizzy but I wanted to give readers a heads up on my latest FREE promotion. I don’t do these often, so take advantage while I’m feeling generous!
Click the Amazon Logo above to get your FREE eBook
Limited offer from 18th to 22nd November
Evelyn’s Fight, the first book in the series, Women of Wakefield, will be FREE in all Amazon stores for five days from 18th to 22nd November.
Evelyn’s Fight is the first book of the Women of Wakefield series following Yorkshire women as they love, learn and try to survive in a war torn world.
Each book can be read as a stand alone novel, but might be better enjoyed when read in sequence.
Take advantage of this FREE offer. Scroll up and click to begin the emotional adventure now!
More Exciting News
Starting on the 25th November is the Goodreads Giveaway of Ingrid’s Mission. This is the third book in the series. I’m writing book four right now, (between blogging, marketing and generally promoting the series.) Click below to enter for a chance to win one of two paperback versions of Ingrid’s Mission.
November 2nd 2017
I can’t believe so much time has gone by since I last wrote anything here. I’ve been busy researching and writing the third book in my series WW2 Women of courage. Ingrid’s Mission is now available for pre-order in all Amazon stores. I hope my loyal readers will enjoy reading this holocaust story of bravery and romance as much I loved writing it.
During the final stages of writing this novel, a dear German friend of mine died suddenly. Although we didn’t speak often, because Ulla lived in USA and I’m in England, her passing came as a shock and has left me feeling very saddened. She died too young, and that is always sad, especially for the family she left behind.
Ulla inspired me to research the subject matter for my latest series of novels by pointing out to me that not all Germans who lived through WW2 were evil.
She directed me to the books she had read on the subject and helped me to understand things from a German viewpoint. I knew I was hearing about a different perspective of WW2, and one that had to be shared. I have dedicated this book to her memory.
July 20th 2017
How time flies when you’re having fun! A whole month of my life has vanished in a blur. My Australian family are safely back home after what seemed like a whirlwind visit, though they were here for four whole weeks.
We visited castles and stately homes, historical cities and nature’s natural wonders, but the place that will live on in the memories of all my grandchildren is Sherwood Forest, where they all did the treetop adventure, ‘Go Ape’. They skipped along the terrifyingly high walkways, clinging precariously to flimsy wooden structures, while we older ones watched in awe from the ground with cricked necks.
We tried to put a little culture in the mix by dragging them around the places of historical interest, but children just love having fun. Consequently the local trampoline park, crazy dino golf and playing with their English cousins were voted as the best days. However, they managed to find fun even in the most cultural spots we took them to. Harry Potter broomstick riding lessons at Alnwick Castle and fishing in the river at Bolton Abbey were big highlights for them.
All good things come to an end, and it was painful to say goodbye. Having all my family together was very special, and I will treasure the happy memories we made until the next time, whenever that might be.
June 10th 2017
I’m taking a short break from writing because I have family arriving very soon from Australia. They will stay with me for a month and I’m so excited to see them. I can’t believe three years have passed since the last time we were together.
This is the family I wrote about in one of my earlier books. ‘It’s Penguin Shooting Day’ tells the story of when my son-in-law had a horrific car accident. I flew to Australia on the first available flight to help look after my baby granddaughter so my daughter could be by her husband’s side during his long fight for recovery from a traumatic brain injury, (among many other injuries he sustained.)
Those heartbreaking times are behind us now, but I’m sure you’ll understand why I want to spend quality time with these very special people. Read their story here, but while you read of the upsetting and difficult times we lived through, know that we all came through as better and stronger people, with a greater love of life and each other than we had before.
My eldest granddaughter, whom I formed a very close bond with during my time as her surrogate mum, is now 11-years-old. I can’t believe 10 years have passed since that fateful day.
The family has grown and my little angel now has a 7-year-old sister, who is just as adorable. They can’t wait to meet their younger English cousins, and I am looking forward to having my whole family around me - a very rare treat!
Please forgive me if I don’t write for a while. I’ll be enjoying lots of cuddles and playtime with all my precious little ones.
May 23rd 2017
Wow! I can’t believe how much time has passed since I last wrote anything here. I’ve had my nose to the grindstone writing my last two books for so long, but I had to get the stories written while the ideas were buzzing in my head. Hannah’s Conflict continues the story from Your Name is Jane, and these two feisty women will stay with me for some time.
Reading around the subject of the WW2 holocaust in Germany was not easy, but while my research opened my eyes to the horrors of Hitler’s Regime, it also gave me a great insight into the intrinsic good in people. My characters face some testing times and horrific situations, but their courage and compassion shine through, just as these qualities shone in the people who lived through those years.
You’ll find links to ‘Your Name is Jane’ further down the page.
April 1st 2017
Congratulations to the winners of my latest Goodreads Giveaway. Colleen from NY and Marnie from ID, your copies are in the post.
I hope you enjoy the read.
March 3rd 2017
‘Your Name is Jane’ is ready at last and now the marketing begins in earnest. To coincide with the eBook publication, I’m running a Goodreads Giveaway of the paperback version from 10th March, which will be drawn on 31st March.
Be one of the first to read ‘Your Name is Jane’ in paperback. Win one of two copies of this stand-alone novel by entering the Goodreads Giveaway now.
For lovers of World War Two sagas, this is the first book of the WW2 Women of Courage series. ‘Your Name is Jane’ paperback is available now, with eBook format available for pre-order. Publication date for eBook is 24th March.
“After a devastating air-raid, a young woman finds herself trapped in the ruins of a building. She has no idea where she is or how she got there. The only fact she is certain of is adding to her confusion. Her thoughts are in German, but her rescuers are speaking English.”
February 23rd 2017
Introducing my latest novel, Your Name is Jane. This is Book 1 in the new series, WW2 Women of Courage.
Available for Pre-Order now. Release date is 24th March. Order now and be the first to read this thrilling suspense drama set in Sheffield and Nazi Germany.
After a devastating air-raid, a young woman finds herself trapped in the ruins of a building. She has no idea where she is or how she got there. The only fact she is certain of is adding to her confusion. Her thoughts are in German, but her rescuers are speaking English.
You can read the first chapter here.
Will soon be available in paperback.
February 1st 2017
The Christmas holiday season is now a distant memory and thoughts are turning to the year ahead. The summer of 2017 could be pretty amazing for my family if all my wishes come to fruition. I’m hoping to travel to the USA in August with my family here in UK, and with a lot of luck, my Australian family might be visiting us in June.
I know I’m fortunate and I have much to look forward to, but I work hard to afford the things I want in life, and sometimes work a little harder to accomplish bigger dreams.
I’m back at my keyboard working away on my next book, and even though I spent the last two weeks coughing and sneezing, I’m already half way through the first draft and I’m quite excited about where this one is taking me.
Right now, I’m working on another Second World War novel. This one is a little darker and will be a more intense read. I’m attempting to show the war years from a different perspective and my girl, ‘Jane,’ has a lot to tell us about her life.
My heroine faces some complicated and dangerous challenges as she finds her way through a tangle of difficulties. Read the beginning of her story here for a taste of what’s to come.
I’m hoping to have this ready for publication by the end of March of this year.
December 12th 2016
I think most people will be busy preparing for the Christmas holiday and I don’t expect many of my loyal fans or new readers to come anywhere near my web site or Blog for a while, but I thought I’d put fingertips to keyboard before I get completely swamped by the festive season.
I don’t know about the rest of you, but I see this time of year as challenging. As a woman with children and grandchildren; a husband, friends and extended family I feel pressured to perform like superwoman. Do any of you feel the same?
Christmas shopping for suitable presents for everyone is only the start of it. Would Aunty Dot like bed socks or might she think I was referring to her need to keep warm as she gets older and see it as an insult? What about my youngest sister? Would she appreciate some anti wrinkle cream or would that be a step too far? If I bought my niece that lovely cropped top I saw, would I be encouraging her to express her sexuality too soon? She’s sixteen but would my brother-in-law still see her as a child? It’s a veritable minefield!
I find trying to remember what I bought the same people last year a nightmare. I don’t want to repeat the mistake of giving my brother a bottle of brandy when he swore off the booze in November and forgot to mention it to anyone! Then there was the time I watched my sister unwrap the very same perfume I got her the previous year, and only remembered when I saw the sarcastic smile of thanks on her face.
How do so many people seem to find hitting the right note of festive cheer so easy? If you’re one of them, what’s your secret?
Don’t even mention the festive food! I admit that my kitchen duties have now downsized since my daughter took over and now invites the family to her house. At first, we all made contributions to take with us, to ensure the preparations were easier for her. It all worked well, until the year I forgot to bring the cranberry sauce I’d slaved over the previous day, and the pigs in blankets were still nestled happily in my fridge at home. Now we turn up early and lend a hand peeling the sprouts instead.
I’m happy when the big day is well into the afternoon and nothing else can go wrong! It’s not a quiet day. Conversation flows among the adults, fueled by alcohol to keep the volume above the squeals of children playing with new toys. Then, just when I think I can’t put up with the children under my feet a moment longer, it grows quieter as adults fall into booze induced slumber and the young ones watch Frozen for the hundredth time on their new ipads.
Why do we put ourselves through this torture every year? Because we love it, of course!
November 21st 2016
Only one week to go before the eBook of Peace for Gladys is published. Thank you to all who placed a pre-order for this book.
If you’d like to read the paperback, it is available now from all Amazon stores and directly from Creatspace.
If you’d like a chance to read this paperback for FREE, please enter the Goodreads Giveaway. Entries will be drawn on 7th December. Good luck if you decide to enter.
November 6th 2016
At last, my next novel is now available for pre-order in all Amazon stores.
Peace for Gladys has a publication date of 30th November 2016.
This book follows on from Evelyn’s Fight with the story about her best friend’s secrets and inner conflict. Readers of Evelyn’s Fight will discover what happened next for both women.
Order your copy now - Peace for Gladys
From Amazon UK - https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01N05FP97
From Amazon USA - https://amzn.com/B01N05FP97
Gladys hides a secret past that could ruin her marriage, but fortunately her husband, John, is still away, fighting. With the war in its fifth year, she believes the gossips may have forgotten her past mistakes, but still worries what might happen if her husband should ever learn what she’d done.
When she comes into an inheritance, she uncovers more family secrets that are just as troubling as her own. Should she tell what she knows, or let the past stay hidden?
Will she be forced to live her life looking over her shoulder, or will she ever know peace?
Read the first chapter here
September 21st 2016
Well, at last I’ve made a start on the next book, and I’m keen to continue but thought I’d take a few minutes to let my loyal readers know what I’m up to. I don’t have a title yet, but this will be a sequel to Evelyn’s Fight. I’m continuing the story from Gladys’s point of view as she has an interesting tale to tell. I’ll make sure to cover the next events in Evelyn’s life too, and try to tie up a few loose ends for the other characters I’ve come to know so well. If you’d like to read the first, unedited chapter of this untitled sequel, click here.
September 15th 2016
I’ve just returned from a wonderful vacation. I thoroughly enjoyed a cruise in the Mediterranean with my husband. Now, I’m feeling rested and restored and almost ready to start the new book. I just have the normal chores to get out of the way first. A mountain of laundry, dust I can write my name in and food cupboards with bare shelves – which is just as well as I need to diet after two weeks of lazing around and eating some wonderful meals.
To celebrate my feeling of goodwill, I’m offering the Kindle version of my psychic sleuth novel FREE from 16th to 20th September. You’ll be able to download ‘For the Missing Girls, A Kerry Malone, Psychic Novel,’ from your local Amazon store from Friday, 0.01AM 16th USA time. (Around midday in UK.)
If you take advantage of this freebie, paranormal suspense thriller, please leave a review. As this is a completely different genre for me, I’d love to know your thoughts on this deep and scary story.
Download from Amazon UK here
Download from Amazon USA here
July 1st 2016
At last, my latest wartime saga is available in paperback and as a pre-order in the kindle version from all Amazon stores. The kindle version will be published on 29th July.
‘Evelyn’s Fight,’ follows the story of a young family living in Britain during the Second World War. Evelyn battles to hold things together while her world falls apart.
World War Two interrupts Evelyn’s life when her husband, Dennis decides to enlist.
After a tragedy in the street, her mother, Nora, confesses secrets that rock the foundations of Evelyn’s world. When a telegram informs her that Dennis suffered wounds in action, she has no idea what to expect.
His injury changes everything.
More secrets are revealed and Evelyn finds she’s been living in a web of lies for years. Determined to fight to keep her family together, she faces an uphill struggle.
Will she win the fight? Can life ever be the same again?
If you can’t wait, you can read the first chapter here.
Enter the Goodreads giveaway from 8th July for a chance to win one of two copies of the paperback of this moving novel.
June 16th 2016
I’m almost there with the new WW2 Saga novel, but thought I’d give my loyal readers a treat for being patient.
FOR THREE DAYS ONLY, “ For The Missing Girls, A Kerry Malone psychic novel,” is available FREE in all Amazon stores.
Download this dark and scary eBook from Friday 17th June to Sunday 19th June, but don’t read this alone!
Kerry is a psychic. Reading about her life is not for the faint-hearted!
She prefers not to witness the darker forces from the other side. Most spirits are benign but some are pure evil and scare the hell out of her.
She uses her psychic powers to help the police to investigate a case involving abducted girls. With guidance from a spirit child, she uncovers a series of terrible atrocities and determines to face her fears to help the victims.
Will Kerry be strong enough to face the demons?
Can she save the missing girls?
Download from Amazon UK here - http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01BFJ9YNI
Download from Amazon USA here - http://amzn.com/B01BFJ9YNI
PS, If you take advantage of this offer, it would be awesome if you could leave a review. Your opinion counts more than you know. A good review lifts my spirits and a not-so-good one will make me think what I might do to improve the reader experience.
May 18th 2016
I haven’t blogged for a while because I’m busy writing the next WW2 Family Saga. I’m happy to report that this is now almost finished. I hope to have it published and available by the end of summer. Watch this space...
March 25th 2016
Hi to all my new followers and loyal friends. I’m so glad to have you with me on my writing journey of discovery.
As so many people entered the giveaway of, ‘For the Missing Girls, A Kerry Malone Psychic Novel’ the odds of winning was drastically reduced. I was blown away to read that an incredible 1342 people entered!
For everyone who entered and didn’t win, I know you will probably shrug and accept the odds were diabolical. However, to assuage your disappointment, I have reduced the price of the eBook, ‘For the Missing Girls,’ to $0.99 or £0.99 on Amazon and Smashwords for the next ten days. (Price reduction should commence by end of 25th March and will end on 4th April.)
Available on Amazon USA here
Available on Amazon UK here
Available at Smashwords here using coupon code TG76X
I hope you’ll take advantage of the opportunity to purchase the Kindle version or the eBook format of your choice from Smashwords, at the reduced price for a limited time.
Once again, many thanks for entering my giveaway and boosting the visibility of my work. I appreciate your interest immensely.
March 6th 2016
Everyone loves a bargain - right? I love to keep my readers happy, so here are some discounted books for you at Smashwords.
Smashwords 'Read an Ebook Week 2016 begins at one minute past midnight Pacific time on Sunday March 6 and ends at the stoke of midnight Pacific time on March 13.
Simply enter this coupon code RAE50 when making your purchase of, 'For the Missing Girls' and 'Nicolette' to receive the HALF PRICE discount during this promotion.
This discount code will only work on the Smashwords retail site. Links are provided below to my book pages.
If you’re not familiar with Smashwords, they are an online eBook distributing company. They provide eBooks in all formats for all reading devices.
€˜For the Missing Girls’
˜Women of Verdun, Book three, Nicolette’
All the books in the trilogy, ‘Women of Verdun’ can be read as stand alone novels. They are written in chronological order, but each story can be read independently to the others.
Don’t forget, Belle, the first book in the trilogy is available FREE on Smashwords.
February 15th 2016
I’m giving away two copies of my latest novel, For the Missing Girls, a Kerry Malone, Psychic Novel in a Goodreads giveaway.
This book is a new direction for me, and I’m hoping my loyal readers will enjoy the change of genre from my usual, historical wartime romance, to this paranormal crime mystery.
While my characters are still the gritty, down to earth people I love to write about, the story is faster paced, darker, and more esoteric.
For a chance to win one of these copies, enter the Goodreads giveaway, starting on 16th February and ending on 24th March.
If you can’t wait, you can read the first pages on my website, here
For the Missing Girls, A Kerry Malone, Psychic Novel is available to pre-order now on Amazon, Smashwords and many other on-line stores. Publication date, 4th March 2016.
February 5th 2016
My latest work is now available for pre-order
For the Missing Girls
A Kerry Malone, Psychic novel
is now available for pre-order
Release date is set for 4th March 2016
Pre-order now from Amazon UK here
Pre-order now from Amazon USA here
If you can’t wait, you can read the fist chapter here
‘For the Missing Girls’ is now available to pre-order in all Amazon stores. I changed the name of the main character and the title and cover, but I hope you’ll agree the changes were for the better.
This paranormal, psychological crime novel is a new direction for me. If you’ve enjoyed my historical romances, this work holds the same depth of storyline and character but in a darker genre.
I’m hoping this will be the first of a series about Kerry Malone and her clairvoyant gift.
I hope you’ll enjoy the read as much as I enjoyed writing it for you.
January 16th 2016
I hope the New Year is treating you well.
I’m busy with my new book, ‘Kerry Matherson, Psychic.’
You can read the first few pages by clicking here.
I have two cover ideas for the book and would really value your opinion. Which cover would entice you to read the book? The caped figure or the spooky face?
December 31st 2015
Happy New Year
As a special New Year Gift to you, A Snowdrop's Promise will be free to download from Amazon from 1st to 4th January 2016
With more than 40 positive reviews on Amazon.co.uk, see what others are saying about this epic war time saga.
"A truly lovely story"
"it was funny in places, sad in others and romantic in others"
"page turning and full of good, believable characters"
If you take advantage of this offer, I'd be really happy to see your review.
Download it now from Amazon UK
Download it now from Amazon USA
Happy New Year to you all
December 23rd 2015
to you all.
I was hoping for a relaxing December, but life isn’t like that, is it? With Christmas parties, children’s Nativity plays, Carol concerts and shopping, I’ve barely had time to sit down, let alone relax!
However, the 23rd has arrived and everything is done. Presents are wrapped, dinner is organised and Christmas day bubbles are cooling in the fridge. So I have a few minutes to add a word or two here.
My mind has been busy planning my next project and I did manage to jot a few pages down. I’m very excited about my next book. It’s something very different to my usual work. It’s darker and more sinister. I’m working on a paranormal thriller. I love to try new ideas and I’m hoping to develop this one into a series. You can read the start of it here. I don’t have a title or cover yet, but the characters are coming to life in my head and the plot is getting deeper. Watch this space.
December 3rd 2015
Wow! What a busy month I’ve had. What with proof reading, marketing, promotions, and forward planning, I’ve barely had time to draw breath. So December is going to be a relaxing month for me. I’ll be doing what everyone else will be doing. Christmas shopping, decorating the house, wrapping presents and I’m hoping to do some kissing under the mistletoe with my soul mate after a few mulled wines.
Whilst I’m taking time away from my computer, I’ve planned a FREE giveaway to tempt new readers to try my books. I’m giving away my personal best seller in time for Christmas.
From 4th to 8th December you can download “The Scent of Bluebells” absolutely free.
With 40 positive reviews on Amazon.co.uk, see if you agree with what other readers are saying about this novel.
In spring of 1939, life seems full of promise for the young girl from a northern mill town. War is brewing and for many women like Amy, it would change their lives forever.
Through the following five years of turmoil, Amy endures heartache and loss. Just as she is about to give birth, Jimmy, her husband, is reported missing in action and presumed dead.
After more than a year with no further news of her missing husband, she slowly begins to enjoy freedom and independence like she’d never known before.
The war continues with no news of Jimmy and she dares to love again.
Will this new love survive the war?
Will Jimmy be found?
Hope you enjoy the read
October 31st 2015
Published just in time for Halloween, Spyger, a scary novel for 9 to 12 year olds, (or for the young at heart.)
Zoe and Kirsty witness a flying saucer landing at a disused factory the day before Kirsty leaves for a new life away from the town. Later, after Kirsty has left, Zoe discovers the saucer left something behind. An alien egg.
Zoe is excited about the sighting, but has no one to share the secret with, until she meets Tom who has moved into Kirsty’s old house. He suggests they keep the discovery a secret. They are both afraid what the authorities might do to the alien egg.
Can they protect it?
Will it survive?
Will their secret be discovered?
October 19th 2015
Women of Verdun, Book Three, Nicolette
my latest publication
is now available in for pre-order in kindle format in all Amazon stores. Release date is set for 28th November, but might be brought forwards.
Print version available soon from create space and Amazon stores.
At last, the final story in my three book trilogy, Women of Verdun, is now available for pre-order. Book Three, Nicolette, will be released on the 28th November at the very latest.
I’m working with my team of readers to iron out the last few editing kinks, and as soon as we feel the book is ready, I will set it free on Amazon. As a taster, here is the story in brief:-
Nicolette was raised in England but her French roots go deep. She is determined to follow in the footsteps of her maternal grandmother to try fight for her country in the war with Germany.
Her fiancé is less than enthusiastic about enlisting which causes her to rethink her relationship. Instead of getting married on her twenty-second birthday, she embarks on a dangerous course that will lead her back Verdun, the home of her family.
She works undercover to defend her country of birth, and the homeland of her ancestors. Blending seamlessly into the local population she uncovers secrets, from the present and the past, and moves into a future that she never dreamed possible.
October 10th 2015
Phew, I reached the end at last! Women of Verdun, book three, Nicolette is almost ready for publication.
This third and last book in the series is complete and will now enter the final round of editing and polishing. Nicolette began life as the concluding episode of my warmly romantic family saga but has turned into an epic adventure story. My lead character held my hand the whole way through. She spoke to me so urgently that I couldn’t ignore her voice.
Consequently, this book leans more to being a thriller than my usual theme of historical romance but what can I say? My heroine whispered in my ear as I wrote. She guided me down unchartered roads and I had to follow her. She still has time for romance in her hectic and exciting life, so my loyal followers of this genre won’t be disappointed.
I feel quite sad that she won’t be in my life for much longer. Nicolette has become my closest friend over the last few months but I’ll soon let her fly on alone.
Watch closely, she’ll be coming to an Amazon store near you in around four weeks time, (if not sooner)
October 1st 2015
The great divide.
The Atlantic Ocean is not the only thing that separates us from our American friends.
We may be able to understand each other but we don’t speak the same language. I’m not referring to the simplistic misunderstandings of different pronunciations. We all know that a tomato is a ‘tom-ah-toe’ in England but is a ‘tom-ay-toe’ in America and aluminium in England is pronounced ‘al-yu-minium’ but Americans say ‘al-oo-minum’ but what happens when we delve into the languages, especially when written in books, newspapers, and on the internet.
Can you tell which side of the Atlantic these two examples originate from?
‘Son, don’t ride your bike on the sidewalk, stay on the pavement.’
‘Son, don’t ride your bike on the pavement, stay on the road.’
Pretty easy to spot the difference isn’t it but you can see why we might get confused.
I write in English, not American English. I wouldn’t insult the intelligence of my readers by trying to write in American. I am English and my stories are written in my native tongue.
I have no objection to reading a novel by an American author. In fact, I enjoy the diverse terminology. The language transports me to the country and I can experience the differences in our two cultures through the author’s mind.
I suspect that many Americans don’t feel the same sense of adventure when choosing books written by English authors. My opinion is based on the sales of my work in both countries. Less than 1% of my total sales come from readers in the USA. Is the language barrier the only reason? If you know something I don’t, please let me know.
September 21st 2015
A few words can make a huge difference. It seems reviews are everywhere these days. Who makes an online purchase, booking for a holiday, hotel or meal out without reading the reviews first? It is the same with books.
A review can be a way of feeling the fabric, tasting the wine, or testing the experience, when buying or ordering something from cyberspace. Other people take the time to let us know what they think of the product and we read a few assessments from strangers to discover whether this product, hotel, holiday, restaurant, or book will be right for us.
However, for the retailer, reviews are a two edged sword. They cut both ways. Whatever type of business the review is written about; there is a person who reads that review and takes it personally. It might be the owner, the agent, the chef, the designer, or the person that sweeps the floor. Even chambermaids like to read that the hotel room was spotlessly clean but will feel upset if her work is disparaged.
It is no different for me as an author. My online ‘business’ depends a great deal on reviews, but sadly, less than 5% of my readers leave one. It saddens me that many readers aren’t aware of how much difference a few sentences can make to the writer of that book they just read.
Most people that leave a review are polarised. They either love the book or hate it. Fortunately, most of the reviews on my books are good. I have some low scores, from readers who didn’t like my work, but I try to be philosophical. You can’t please all the people all the time.
I start each day by checking the status of my published works. This helps me target my marketing. When I see a new review, my heart lifts.
If it is a bad review, I am disappointed, especially if there is no explanation of why the reader thought to give only one star. I feel down and find it difficult to write another word.
However, if the review is constructive, and points out why they disliked the book, I take it on the chin and move on.
A good review will brighten my day and a great one will lift and carry me through the week on a high, encouraging me to write more.
If you are a reader, please consider leaving a review for the author. It means a lot and good or bad, we authors love to get feedback. It’s a lonely life and a little interaction with our readers goes a long way!
August 6th 2015
At last, Women of Verdun, Book Two, Belle’s Girls is published and available in Amazon stores world wide. The paperback edition will be out in the next couple of days.
I’m now working on book three, but this one might take a little longer to research.
‘Nicolette’ is Belle’s granddaughter. She has been brought up in England and is planning her wedding when the Second World War breaks out. Her fiancé’s decision to stay out of the fight confuses her. She wants to help to defend the country she calls home and can’t understand why Robert refuses to join up. Her patriotism leads her down new pathways and away from her childhood sweetheart.
I won’t spoil the story by disclosing any more of it here, but Nicolette embarks on dangerous adventures that change her life forever.
You can read the first few pages of Nicolette in my ‘Work in progress’ section.
July 21st 2015
Would you like a free kindle copy of the second book in my trilogy, Women of Verdun? Then why not become a Beta Reader for me. (That’s just another name for guinea pig in the world of writing.)
Ever since the weather turned a little cooler and showers keep me away from my garden, I have managed to complete the second book of my trilogy, Women of Verdun. I’m not ready to publish yet. The manuscript still needs lots of editing.
Do you think you have the ability to help with the proofreading of this work? You’d need to know a little about grammar and spelling and also have the ability to spot flaws in the flow of the story. For example, did I kill off a character in chapter 2 and then reintroduce him in chapter 8? You get the idea?
If you’d like to help, please message me for details of how to get your free copy.
July 7th 2015
Well, I’m going to be a typical British person today and write about the weather again. After a glorious week of sunshine, the thunderstorms came on Friday night, as promised, waking me up at silly-o-clock with crashing and banging over my house. The downpour that accompanied the light and sound show was spectacular too. I love a good storm!
Saturday morning dawned grey and misty, but the garden plants looked fresh and perky in the cooler, humid air. As the day wore on, the clouds dispersed and we enjoyed another blistering afternoon. I love this summer week so far!
I managed to proof my paperback from cover to cover while sitting in the garden sipping lemon tea. Then I had the editing to do, which meant staying inside and working on my computer, boo-hoo. Fortunately it was cloudy again the following morning, with no sunshine to tempt me away from the chore.
Before you ask – yes it WAS Sunday and I planned to work but we self employed people don’t stick to the rules of 9 to 5 or Monday to Friday. I have the luxury of choosing when, where and what time I work, so when you are back in the office on Monday, I can treat myself to a spot of retail therapy when the shops are quiet, and maybe some lunch out with something sparkling or frothy to wash it down. (Non alcoholic, of course, I’ll be driving!)
Before I go, I’d just like to say that I burned the midnight oil and now ‘Belle’ is now available in papreback at createspace and all Amazon stores.
Happy Reading x Pearl
June 3rd 2015
At last my new release is launched! I took advice from my readers and decided to keep this epic story as one novel, although the series will eventually run to three books.
Women of Verdun, Book One, Belle is now available in all Amazon stores.
As a reward for your patience, I am launching my new book at a promotional price of £0.99p so all my loyal followers and readers can take advantage of this offer in the first few days of publication. The price will rise to £2.99 on Saturday 6th June.
Belle is nineteen in the late nineteenth century. The world is changing rapidly, but in France, in the district of Verdun, life flows at a slower pace. Belle is in love with her childhood friend and hopes he feels the same way. While visiting the Exposition Universelle in Paris, in the most romantic place in the world, Julien proposes but to her disappointment he does not speak of love
Belle settles for a marriage of convenience, but realises her mistake when she discovers the husband she adores has a terrible secret that could ruin both their families. Can she find the courage to confront him? How can she love him after such a betrayal? How will she protect her family?
This is the first story in an epic three book saga that will cross two centuries, three generations and two world wars. Book Two, Belle’s Girls will be coming soon.
Paperback edition coming soon from create space and all Amazon stores
7th May 2015
I’m looking for some advice from my readers, please.
My next novel is almost ready, but it is a very long one, and will be around 500 to 600 pages in total. I’m thinking about pricing such a large book in the £2.99 to £3.99 bracket.
I’m also considering breaking it down into a series of 4 smaller novelettes, each one leading to the next, of around 100 to 150 pages each. Pricing for each would be around £0.99, but if I go down this route, I’ll try to get the first one permanently free, so you’d still be paying £2.99 to £3.99 in total.
My question is in three parts:-
Firstly, how much do you normally pay for an eBook and what would be your upper limit?
Secondly, would you rather pay more and have the novel in one chunk, or pay in instalments for the shorter serial read?
Thirdly, would you feel cheated if you bought one of my books and then found it was only 100 pages long?
I’d love to hear your views on this. Please contact me here.
1st May 2015
If you like a bargain, you’ll like my long term sale on Amazon. Starting today, almost all my books are £0.99, or $0.99 USA, for at least the whole month of May.
As you know, I love to write, but I intensely dislike the time I have to put aside to market my books. However, today I made myself work on just that subject, and it wasn’t as bad as I thought it might be. I’m hoping the results will prove my time well spent.
I’m trying something new. Following advice from fellow authors, I dug deep into the search engine of Amazon and discovered a few tricks of the trade to lift my gems from obscurity into the public eye. I won’t bore you with the details, but I changed categories, tweaked keywords, examined algorithms I know, I don’t understand them either! Then I waved my magic wand, bit my lip and lowered the prices.
Grab a bargain, I don’t know how long I can hold my nerve while I wait for the graph to start rising, but I promise the prices will remain until May is over.
Go here to see all my books on my author page in the UK Amazon store.
Go here to see all my books on my author page in the USA Amazon store.
14th April 2015
Spring is here and the garden is calling me, but my head is stuck in nineteenth century France. My characters have hooked me with the rhythm of their lives and I'm singing along to their tune.
I began with a well constructed plot that had a beginning, a mid-section and a cliff hanger ending that leads to the next book in the series, but as usual my imaginary friends have taken the lead and are driving the story in different directions. I’m not complaining, as they are making a better job of it between them than I ever could have done without their help.
The sun might shine tomorrow and tempt me back to my own world for a while, but for now, I’m happy in the land of make believe, where anything can happen, and surprises are around every corner of the unwritten page.
Easter Sunday Morning, 5th April, 2015 take two.
My Science fiction sales have dropped to almost nothing. I suspect that avid readers of hard core Sci-fi will not like my style of writing in this genre because I focus on real people who live normal lives, but are confronted by extraordinary events.
So, in an attempt to attract more readers to my version of sci-fi, I’m offering the first book in the two book series FREE in all Amazon stores for 5 days. What have you got to lose?
Book one of the two part series,
They Take our Children
is available FREE in all Amazon stores from 6th to 10th April 2015.
If you haven’t tried my Science Fiction yet, now is the time to sample it for free. If you take a chance, please let me know what you think.
Easter Sunday Morning, 5th April, 2015
What can I say? It’s been too long since I wrote anything on this blog, but I have moved house, and been very busy settling into my new home. I lost my writing mojo for quite some time because real life took over and all my imaginary friends abandoned me. Fortunately, one of my future characters stayed with me throughout the turmoil of dealing with solicitors, removals companies and utility services. She hovered in the shadows of my mind, whispering her story and waiting for the right time to emerge fully into the sunlight. I feel she blossomed with the daffodils and when I began to listen to her, she had a very interesting story to tell me.
So I’m back to the flower theme for my next book, and it will be another war story romance, but with a twist of espionage. I immersed myself in history once again, concentrating on the spy schools of the second world war to ensure I got the details correct for my heroine’s adventures.
I conjured more characters from thin air to keep her company, and fleshed them out with personalities, friends and family. Then I began to write the first chapter, but another, very strong lead character started to interrupt the flow of words. She is the grandmother of my heroine and she dominated the whole thread of my thinking processes. Her influence was so great that I could not ignore her. She told me that my new book has a back story that needs to be told first- her story.
I spent the next month going further back in history and researching life in France to make the backgrounds more authentic for my new dominant character to act out her story. She took me to places I’d never considered before, and when she told me the full account of her life, my fingers began to itch. I couldn’t keep these words inside a minute longer.
The words are flowing rapidly as I involve myself in her story and I can see another woman emerging with yet another tale of romance, love and loss. I’m keeping this new character quiet for now, but I can see that she will be my next heroine and the original girl, who has been with me all along, will have to get to the back of the queue.
What started as a stand alone love story set in the second world war, is now becoming a family saga spanning three generations. I hope to turn this into a two or perhaps three part series, so that takes care of the rest of 2015 for me!
4th November 2014
Wow! I can’t believe it’s been so long since I wrote on here. I’m in the middle of moving house, so I do have a good excuse, but while I was clearing out the attic I came across a file of handwritten papers that, many years ago, I asked my parents and grandparents to write for me. I planned to write a romance book set in the Second World War. I read the notes, wrote a manuscript and put the notes away.
I tried to get my novel published through conventional routes, but although a few publishers were interested, none wanted to take it further. I suffered rejection after rejection, and there is only so much of that a person can take. I put the manuscript away. Later, I published this on Amazon and ‘The Scent of Bluebells’ turned out to be my personal best seller. I followed this up with ‘A Snowdrop’s Promise’, and that novel is doing well too.
I inherited photographs and memorabilia from my beloved family as they each passed away. I filed them away with the notes they had written, feeling sad as each of them passed from my life, but hoping that one day, I would use the file again to bring their experiences to life.
When moving house, there is a lot of time to kill. Waiting for solicitors and estate agents to do what they do is frustrating and I find it an agonisingly slow process. So to keep myself occupied, I began another story, using the notes I had found in my attic. Surprisingly, this novel almost didn’t need me to write it. I sat at my computer each day, filled with inspiration and energy. The words filled each page and the story came alive, seemingly, without much effort on my part.
The novel uses lots of facts from my grandparents experiences of the time, but the bones of the story is pure fiction. I loved creating this book as I felt the presence of my grandparents and my mother all the time I was writing. I felt I was spending precious time in their company while reading their memories.
I hope you will enjoy the product of my imagination. ‘Lost in the Memories’ is now available as a kindle eBook in all Amazon Stores. You can read an extract here to whet your appetite.
22nd August 2014 - updated
Ella’s Destiny is now available for pre-launch orders. I have the cover design and the full draft, I am busy editing and polishing the story. Release date is 30th September 2014. Paperback due in early October.
13th August 2014
After weeks of formatting, ‘A Snowdrop’s Promise’ is now out in Paperback! Available from Amazon stores worldwide, and from Createspace.
I’m currently working on something different. Still a romantic family saga, but the backdrop is in the future, and in the past. A little unusual, but I’m hoping my fans will find it an exciting and moving story. Look out for ‘Exodus Venture,’ coming soon......
20th July 2014
Call me arrogant, call me smug, or in the words of the song by Wham, “call me anything you want to baby”, but I’m the one laughing all the way to the bank!
Here is my story of raw determination in the face of repeated humiliating rejection. If I can come through this journey and emerge a winner, you can too.
I began my writing career cutting my journalistic high teeth on articles for magazines and newspapers. I was not able to give up my day job, but the small extra income was useful.
Thirty years ago, I took the plunge and wrote my first novel, a science fiction, end of world scenario with a heroine playing centre stage. I submitted this work to agents, publishers, and even tried the new online eBook stores that were beginning to emerge at that time. Rejection followed rejection, and I could have easily given up, but undeterred, I put the manuscript aside and wrote another book, this time about alien abduction! (I know, I know, I can hear you laughing!) I was mortified to get the exact same response from agents and publishers alike. An emphatic no!
I began to think my writing skills might not be up to scratch. I joined a local writers’ group for help and encouragement. I received both in abundance and I was brimming with newly found confidence. Following advice to write in a popular genre to persuade agents and publishers alike to take an interest in my work, I began a third novel, a romantic comedy. This time the rejections were kinder, and the manuscript passed the first post, only to fall at the first hurdle, the publisher already had a similar title ready for release.
Back to base to lick my wounds, you’d think I would be disheartened, but no! I was determined to succeed. I wrote another novel, this time a romantic wartime saga, and submitted the synopsis and first few chapters far and wide. The rejections were kind, but they were still REJECTIONS!
At this point, I did give up. After spending ten years of my life dealing with hundreds of rejections over four novels, I was thoroughly demoralised. I put my manuscripts in a dark cupboard and refused to look at them. I got on with my life, working hard at the day job, just like everyone else I knew. However, in the depths of my heart, the ambition wouldn’t lie down.
I wrote short stories and entered them into competitions. I won almost as many as I entered, third-prize, second-prize, first-prize, and commendations were dropping through my letter box frequently, and I rode the crest of this wave ecstatically. I hadn’t lost it. I could write!
About that time, my family suffered a catastrophe. My son-in-law had a car crash and suffered massive brain damage. I flew to Australia to help my daughter look after their one-year-old baby so she could be with her husband. I kept a diary of the ten weeks I spent there, and realised the account would make a good story, and one that might inspire and encourage other people who were going through a similar ordeal. Months after my return, I set about polishing and organising my scribbles into a readable format. Then I began the usual round of submissions to agents and publishers, but got the same general response. No thank you, it’s not what we’re looking for.
I knew there was a market for this novel, and considered vanity publishing, but it would be more than I could afford, so I searched and searched until I found Kindle Direct Publishing on Amazon. I couldn’t believe what I read. For no outlay, I could publish a book and have it available to readers almost immediately!
I did more research, lots more work on the manuscript to edit and format it correctly. I made a cover in Photoshop, and submitted ‘It’s Penguin Shooting Day,' with firmly crossed fingers.
In less than a year, I have published nearly all my work on KDP and some are also in paperback. I have written another wartime romance, and again, I am riding that wave of success. My monthly income is not to be sniffed at. I’m earning a living from my writing, and have given up the day job. It’s taken me thirty years to learn that, with self-belief and hard work, anyone can make anything happen. I did it, you could too. Although, I hope your journey won’t be as long as mine was.
Now where did I put that first novel? Maybe I could make it work for today’s market.....
19th July 2014
My latest World War Two novel is now available as a Kindle eBook in Amazon stores world wide. ‘A Snowdrop’s Promise’, is a story of love, hate and tragedy, woven with secrets and embroidered with lies. Using details from my grandparent’s memories to help paint an authentic background to the fictional tale, I added historical facts, and sprinkled a few villains in for good measure.
As this one goes live, I’m already planning the next one, so back to the grindstone......
This will soon to be available on Createspace as a paperback.
7th June 2014
If I’ve been quiet for a while, please forgive me. I’ve been busy playing at being God.
I’m halfway through the process of writing my second, World War Two romantic saga, and I realised that I’m a very lucky person to be doing something I enjoy so much. I spend days at my computer, writing and researching as I go to fill in the historical details as accurately as I can while keeping the flow and the tempo of the story.
It occurred to me today that writing fiction is like playing God. I create my fictional world, adding details as I go, filling in the streets and workplaces to make the stage as realistic as possible for my characters to dance across. Then I add the characters. I sculpt them with words and describe how they look in an unobtrusive way so as not to jar the course of the story. I have control of their emotions and feelings, I can make them happy or sad, angry or willful. I can decide if they are to be lovable rogues or demons, simpering idiots or suave heroes, heroines or harridans. It’s a huge responsibility, but I love to make my little people believable in whatever role I chose for them to play.
As the story progresses, I have big decisions to make about the individuals who populate my world. Do I make them fall in love or do I make them become bitter enemies? Do I create more life by including a birth? Will I decide to kill anyone off? How will a death help to push the story forward? Who has a secret to hide, and what will that secret be?
I can become any one of those characters and get inside their head. I can hear what they are thinking, and I know how they will react to anything I chose to throw at them. I journey with them through years of their lives, and then I have to decide where to leave them. I like a happy ending and I think most readers do too, but I’m tempted, now and then, to allow the villain to triumph for a change.
It’s not easy to play God, but I wouldn’t swap my life as an author for anything else. It’s so good to be in control of a microcosm of humanity. To see the final product of my imagination in print is the ultimate pleasure. My little world is complete and I set it free to spin through the universe of literature, watching and hoping that my creation finds its own momentum and attracts a following of happy readers.
20th June 2014
This month I have a chick lit romantic comedy out in paperback. You can enter the Goodreads giveaway to win one of two free copies. Entry is open until 30th June. good luck if you decide to try for one.
Congratulations to the two winners, Becky in Lancashire and Mona in Florida. Happy reading!
21st May 2014
Any self published author must have heard about the maze of square holes. If you haven't, you are about to learn of it here. Marketing self published books is like confronting the maze full of bottomless square holes. Square one has a sign declaring, 'Invest in me and I'll invest in you!' Square two says something like, 'Do it my way for instant fame and fortune!' Square three promises, 'Give me your money and I'll sell your books!' You get the picture? In reality, each hole is simply waiting to swallow up your hard-earned cash and spit out zilch in the way of sales results. What's a poor struggling author to do?
Well, this author turned away from the maze and looked at ways to market my work without spending a great deal of money. I first invested in some good editing software and polished my work until my eyes bled! I republished every single book, once I had made sure that they were as good as I could possibly make them in terms of a cracking great read, with little to no errors.
I made a website and filled it with samples of my work, pictures and links, blogs and excerpts of upcoming work. (as you must know, or you wouldn’t be reading this here!) Then I joined Facebook and spent a few pounds on advertising, joined Twitter and tweeted my life away, began blogging and started to get a small following on all these sites, but no real sales!
I joined Goodreads and did a free giveaway of The Scent of Bluebells. This resulted in a few friends, five fans, and some sales after the giveaway ended, but the royalties from these sales didn't cover the cost of sending out two free paperbacks! Should I go back to the maze and square one? Not yet! I’m trying another Goodreads giveaway below, for, ‘It’s Penguin Shooting Day, A true account of the first weeks living with brain injury.’ This ends on the 10th June 2014.
I tried free promotions to lift the ranking of my books in Amazon, believing that a higher ranking will get more exposure, and a free book will surely bring more reviews. The Scent of Bluebells got more than 1500 downloads in the first 2 days of a free promotion. That's 1500 sales I didn't get any royalty payment for! It barely rose in the rankings, got no reviews from that process that I know of, and the book sank into oblivion days after the promotion ended. A very similar scenario followed when I put the same book on the Kindle countdown promo a few weeks later. I DID get a few sales, but again, the book dropped away to insignificance very quickly.
So I contemplated the maze again and stared at the first square hole for hours. Should I take the plunge? NO WAY! I can do this, I told myself. I just have to think outside the box! (Or outside the square hole.)
I looked at the results of the Kindle countdown deal. People seemed to want to buy the book if it was for sale at a rock bottom price. I wouldn't earn as much per sale, but I wasn't earning much anyway, so what did I have to lose? I took a deep breath, crossed all my digits and lowered every one of my published books to .99c or .99p and then I waited, trembling and peering through my fingers every time I dared to look at the sales figures. It was a slow and painful first month, but sales were happening. I couldn't deny that my books were selling. It was there on the screen, and the line on the graph was rising!
Two months later, The Scent of Bluebells is averaging 50 sales a day in the UK, has risen in the rankings on Amazon.co.uk to the top 500 overall, and around the top 20 in 3 sub categories. Whoop whoop!!!! (I'm jumping around in my chair now!)
The other works are all selling slowly but surely, but they ARE selling! I guess I can't pay off the mortgage yet, but I can start saving for a nice little holiday! Maybe a writers retreat where there are no mentions of the maze of square holes. Maybe I'll see you there?
3rd May 2014
At last I have published, ‘It’s Penguin Shooting Day’ in paperback. Since first published in October as an Amazon kindle eBook, it has consistently been rated in the top 100 in its sub category of emotions and feelings. I’m hoping the paperback will be just as successful. To help it on its way, I am giving away 2 copies in the Goodreads giveaways. Be sure to enter to have a chance of receiving a copy.
Link removed as this giveaway has ended.
To read more about this emotional and inspiring true account of emergence from brain injury, and to purchase the kindle or paperback version now, please click here.
6th March 2014
The Goodreads giveaway has now ended for ‘The Scent of Bluebells.’
Thank you to all who entered my free ‘book giveaway’ on Goodreads. This has now ended, and two books are on the way to the lucky winners, Emily in Idaho and Diane in North Carolina. Happy reading girls. I hope you enjoy the story.
I was amazed at the response to my giveaway draw, with more than 1100 requests and a further 500 or so adding it to their ‘to read’ shelf.
As a gesture of thanks to all you lovely people, I am putting this book on Kindle countdown promotion from 8am, 8th March to 12 noon, 15th March. PST and GMT times apply. Buy early for the best price!
6th February 2014
I’m enjoying being a self publisher, but finding it harder than I ever expected. It has been a steep learning curve, and I’m still climbing!
I’m disappointed that I can’t devote as much time to the actual writing because I also take charge of editing, cover design, publishing and marketing. Fortunately I have great motivation, and the drive and ambition to keep me functioning in all these directions to get the job done. I’m looking forward to the day when all my worthy works are in print, and I can settle to concentrate on the next new project.
The rewards are starting to come through, though, and with each new sale, good review or new follower on any number of social network sites, I feel elated. I may never be a millionaire, but I thank the stars that I’m rich in health and happiness. Having lots of money in the bank has always been a secondary goal, though still a target I would like to reach.
As my first full length fiction goes to print, I feel a great sense of satisfaction. The journey from computer file to paperback has not been easy, but I have learned some important lessons along the way, and feel I have grown spiritually throughout the process.
My first adult paperback is The Scent of Bluebells and is available from Amazon and Createspace among other outlets. It is also available as a kindle eBook from Amazon. From midnight 6th February to midnight 6th March 2014 I am offering two FREE copies of the paperback. To enter the draw, please go to Goodreads, using the link below.
LINK REMOVED as giveaway has ended.
22nd January 2014
I became interested in UFOs a few years ago after seeing strange flying objects in the sky above my home town of Wakefield, West Yorkshire. I discussed my sightings with a police officer friend, and he warned me that I would not be taken seriously if I reported it to the authorities. I was astonished when he also confided in me that he had been abducted by aliens, but was too afraid to talk openly of his experience.
I decided to do some research on the issue. I talked with more abductees, attended UFO conferences, read many books on the subject and trawled the Internet for more information. I was surprised how much I found. I had no idea where my investigations would lead, but I was totally unprepared for what I uncovered.
Sifting the genuine stories from the fake accounts was challenging. Unfortunately, this subject is often trivialised and ridiculed, and I know that some will believe ALL the accounts are phony, no matter how much compelling testimony and physical evidence can be found.
I was drawn to a series of accounts that followed the same theme. Balls of light were seen in the sky, followed by abduction to a strange place, where physical examinations were made on the abductees by alien beings. Some abductees mention a breeding programme of some kind between aliens and human beings. How can so many similar stories, from individuals around the world, be false?
The idea of a book began to take shape. I wanted to expose the facts that I had discovered, but my police officer friend had warned me that nobody would listen. So I wrote a fictional account, using details from my research. You can read the story in my two book series, They Take our Children, now available in Amazon.
Fact or fiction? Urban myth or government cover-up? You decide.
6th January 2014
Many new authors mistakenly believe that children’s books are easier to write than adult fiction.
Here are some of the reasons why they may think this, followed closely by the reason why they are wrong:-
1. Children’s books are not usually as long as adult books, so are quicker to write.
JK Rowling proves that children do like longer books. The Harry Potter series is widely read by children as young as 6 years old.
2. Children aren’t as well educated and you can get away with the odd mistake and so don’t have to spend too much time editing.
Don’t be misled! Children are super critical of mistakes. Remember they are still in the school environment where mistakes are marked in RED. They will quickly lose respect for an author who knows less about grammar than they do.
3. Children don’t understand big words so vocabulary won’t be too taxing.
Having a rich and varied vocabulary is just as important in children’s books. Obviously don’t be too far advanced for your target reader, but don’t ‘talk down’ to them with over simplified text.
4. The children’s book market is not as big as the adult one, so will sell easier, with not so much competition.
The market for children’s literature is huge, so new authors will still face an uphill battle to have their work seen by potential publishers and buyers.
The opinions above are my own and not intended to offend or instruct. You may agree or not.
I am on the threshold of publishing my first children’s book, so this subject is close to my heart
Indi authors often get a bad press but I’ve found this is often due to bad or nonexistent editing. I do my best. I proof read until my eyes are sore and then I ask some very good friends to do the same for me before I take the book to publication. However, I am the first to hold my hand up and confess that my work may not be as ‘polished’ as it might have been had it been published by a large and well funded publishing house with a team of professional editorial staff employed to sift through every semicolon and double word typo.
I don’t price my books to compete with the big players. If the term, ‘you get what you pay for,’ is true, then I hope my readers will appreciate that they are not paying for a professionally edited novel, but I hope they will realise that they are getting a great deal and a good read for a very small price.
I recently entered the great big scary world of publishing and I’m thrilled to see my work in Amazon stores around the world.
I’m loving the freedom of being able to put my work out there for all to see, without the restrictions set by formal publishers. It is refreshingly liberating to self publish after coming so close to being accepted with some of the big players, to be let down for reasons beyond my control. ‘I love your style, but we have a very similar title just going through,’ was one reason. ‘Perhaps if you included more gritty S & M, we could do business,’ was a comment from a publisher of erotic fiction. I didn’t want to compromise my principles on that particular genre, so I backed away from the offer.
I can put together my own anthologies, work in any genre I choose and concentrate on my writing, which is the closest thing to my heart after my grandchildren, children and husband, (in that order!)