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Showing posts from July, 2013

The Incident of the Fly in the Night

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Our house is incredibly quiet at night, but the disadvantage is that it makes you hyper-aware of the smallest sounds. I once became aware of a tiny rhythmic rustling noise and eventually realised it was my heartbeat disturbing the feathers of the duvet! But tonight there’s nothing but the click of my Kindle and Tom snoring gently as he drifts off to sleep. Investing in a Kandle (pricey, but so superior to those stalky lights that wobble about and poke you in the face) has even put an end to the ‘when are you going to turn the light out?’ debate and has made my love of reading in bed more comfortable for both of us. 
I’ve just finished a chapter of a childhood favourite, The Little Grey Men, by BB reissued as an ebook, and now that I know Baldmoney, Sneezewort and Dodder are tucked up and safe, I feel lovely and cosy and decide to settle down too. I have barely fallen asleep when there is a moan of protest beside me. A gnat has decided to take a bite out of Tom. I’m largely untrouble…

About a Book

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Ask an author which of their own books is their favourite and I suspect it’s like asking a parent to say which child they love best; it can’t be done. Turning the Tide will always be dear to me because it was my first full-length novel and it earned me a publishing contract. I’m proud of Move Over Darling because I wrote it during a very tough period with Stuff Happening externally and a crippling lack of self-confidence internally. Getting through that long dark night of the writing soul taught me a lot. Oh, but I did love writing Book 3!

I loved returning to Little Spitmarsh, the setting for Turning the Tide, I loved seeing what Harry and Matthew had been up to and I loved my new heroine and hero. And fortunately, phew, everyone at Choc Lit loved them too and I was offered a new contract faster than I dared hope. One thing they didn’t love, though, was the title, so my working title went out the window and a new one was born, Follow a Star.

Then I waited for my cover. Now, cov…

All in Good Time

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After Tom’s ‘what if?’ it’s his turn to attend conference. It’s in London so that means a whirlwind of catching up with as many friends and family as we can fit in while we’re there.

We travel down on Wednesday via the Gower, where some friends are on holiday marvelling at their good luck in enjoying such fabulous weather, and arrive at Ma’s in the evening.

Ma’s leg still hasn’t healed after her dive from our greenhouse nine weeks ago and since her nurse is on holiday, Thursday begins with me taking over to dress the wound. It’s Tom’s only free day so his parents arrive shortly after for coffee, then the four of us (we have to leave Ma behind because our car’s too small) drive to Richmond where we meet Stepson Two for lunch. In the afternoon it’s time to see Stepdaughter-in-law and Harry, our grandson. Harry takes one look at four faces beaming at him and sobs, but cheers up mightily at the sight of his daddy coming through the door.

On Friday, I spend the day with Ma whose propensity …

My RNA Conference 2013

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We leave the house at Crack of Doom so that I can catch the 7.30 train from Aberystwyth. My head’s full of ‘what ifs’ covering all kinds of worst case scenarios from missed connections through taken seats, stolen bags, comfort breaks and so on. I am, however, carrying plenty of anti-fainting rations so hopefully that’s one ‘what if’ I can forget about. For the first part of the journey I can just relax and enjoy the view as the train winds out of Wales.



I make The Edge, where the conference is taking place just after lunch and without a mishap. Result.



The accommodation’s excellent and a far cry from the student housing of my day when my clothes seemed to carry a permanent whiff of mould.
The conference begins with a welcome from RNA Chairman, fellow ChocLiteer, Pia Fenton, but what happens next? A quick internet search of any Romantic Novelists’ Association gathering will bring up plenty of pictures of shoes, frocks and parties, but a great deal of thought and hard work goes into t…

Away, Home, Away, News.

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I never take Tom’s support for my work for granted and always count myself lucky to have someone who puts up with me and my imaginary friends. However, it’s always good to return the favour. Tom’s about to complete his MA in music and last week we did an overnight stay in Milton Keynes where he was presenting an academic paper at the Open University. I worked in the Hub which was very comfortable though strangely devoid of what I would recognise as students. Whilst I couldn’t attend the lecture it was just brilliant to be there to see Tom’s face when he came out and know that his presentation had gone well.
On the home front, we’ve been enjoying this rare spell of glorious weather with visits from MiL and DiL and Lily and Russ.

I’ve also been reorganising my study which involved moving what felt like a never-ending pile of books into the hall. There are bookshelves all over the house, but these are just some of my ‘keepers.’

On Friday morning, I’m leaving at crack of doom (trying no…