Friday, 21 December 2012


After a lot of hard work (not me, my editor Silvia Paoletta of Dark World Books) and a lot of patience - yep, that part applies to me. Think of me as a Hovering Saint - The Ferryman's Wife is FINALLY back up on Amazon and available to purchase. Shouldn't be long before it's available on Kindle too.

What a relief! As I said, I am looking for reviews, so please do share your thoughts. If you are a reviewer and wish to read my book, please get in touch. And if you have already read it, be sure to transfer your review over to the new Amazon page. AND don't forget to Like it while you're there.

I can't wait to find out how this new version will be received. There are new scenes as well, which I think you'll find make the whole experience that little bit more affecting. The manuscript has been gone over with a fine-toothed comb, so it's sleeker, stronger and all-in-all a better product. I look forward to hearing what you think.

Friday, 14 December 2012

Getting Excited

Not long now until The Ferryman's Wife is available. I'm so excited! I'm honoured to have my connection with Dark World Books, and am thrilled that they've been willing to edit the manuscript.

Well, it's been one heck of a week! If you've been following what's going on, you'll know what I'm talking about. However, if you have not, I regret to inform you that wont find me talking about it here or anywhere else, other than the original article. And I wont be posting links either, sorry.

After a small set back involving poor health, I am going strong. With several projects on the go, I can almost see the creativity pulsing from my being (it's orange, BTW).  I have rediscovered my love of poetry, and in doing so I am finding more and more opportunities. It wont be long until my first project, the poetry anthology Dark Company, will be set for release. I'm lucky to have found a group of authors who hold the same ideals as me. All royalties will be paid directly to the charity buildOn. It's a worthy cause that tackles "poverty, illiteracy and low expectations through service and education." As they say, they are not a charity, they are a movement. I for one am delighted to be able to contribute. When it's available to buy I'll provide the relevant links.

Those who know me are aware that my writing process is 70% research/plotting 30% writing. Sure, a lot of new ideas come to me once I start to write, but most of the twists are planned well in advance. I usually begin writing, but most of the story making goes on in my head and my note pads. The writing of The Heart Thief (Devils Light Book 2) is still underway, but these past weeks I have been thrashing out the first major twist in the plot. For obvious reasons, I can't say what it is, but what I will say is that it involves deception, a white velvet cloak, and a murder. I am working out the set up just now. As always, it's a pleasure when writing this story. Each and every character is fun to write.

Until next time, bye folks.

NB: As an afterthought, I realized I had forgot to tell you that my 1 star review was removed. Funny that.

Saturday, 1 December 2012

1 Star Attitude

Well it has yet again been a funny old week. Between the craziness of a certain Voldemort of a publishing company, (They-who-must-not-be-named) and the hurdles of day-to-day life, I am one tired bunny. 

I also received my first 1 star review this week. I only wish it were actually a genuine critique of my work. I am open to criticism; I want to improve as a writer and I love hearing what I could do to be better. A 1 star review does not upset me as it stands. Sadly, this person actually removed a 4-star review and replaced it with a 1 star, purely because she decided to act on a hissy fit. I'd approached her about joining the collaboration me & a few others are doing for charity. Rather than see it as an invite & an opportunity, this particular author got hostile. Well,  I don't do hostility. So, I told her that although she'd received my support up to then, she would get it no more. Rather than go about being a mud-slinger, I discretely removed the book from my to-read list on Goodreads and kept quiet. I didn't want to be horrid, I just didn't want to support her anymore after she'd been rude to me. However, when I noticed the blank 1 star review today, instead of the "wonderful debut novel" review, I decided to speak my mind. Why was I being nice? Why did I not just actually say what I thought of her book? That it was so dull, poorly written and badly edited, it had been putting me off reading it for about a month.  I had fallen prey to this Nicey-Nice culture of not actually writing my opinion. So I did. I wrote my review, my genuine opinion, and posted it earlier today. Now please understand, I don't normally do tit-for-tat. But when someone decides to act like a tit... well, you get me, I'm sure. Besides, my bad reviews are always far more entertaining.

I am now looking for genuine, honest reviewers, and if you think that you are someone for the job then please post a comment below & a place to connect. With The Ferryman's Wife soon to be re-released, some reviews would work a treat. If you have read it already, but haven't left a review, then this is the time to do so. It's still up on Goodreads so please do post. It doesn't have to be long or complicated - just your thoughts. And if you just want to leave a star rating - well, that's fine too. It's only deleted & altered reviews out of spite that I take umbrage with.

Speak soon.

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Burn You Baby (Speakeasy #85)

You know, I don’t even remember his name-
And I’m okay with that.
I mean, why bother with pretences?
Let’s all deal in Fact.
I’m sure he won’t remember me,
Next month, or next weekend,
This flame is only for tonight
So I’ll keep kissing and just pretend.

Monday, 26 November 2012


My book, The Ferryman's Wife, is off for a dusting down,  nip/tuck, and polish. It will be back up and available to buy very soon. Watch this space...

Friday, 23 November 2012


Massive congratulations to Silvia Paoletta and Francesca Poggi on the launch of their new company Dark World Books. 

They describe themselves as a "customized boutique services for independent and published authors of Urban/Dark Fantasy, Dystopian, Steampunk, YA Paranormal, Paranormal Romance, Historical Romance and Dark Erotica genres." So right up my street. I'm thrilled to be part of their client base and I wish them all the very best in their endeavours. So, dear readers, do me a favour, pop on over to their website, take a look and tell anyone you know who'd have use of their services.

Thursday, 22 November 2012

You know, it has been one of those weeks when I have neglected almost all of my writing duties. My blog, my poor, sweet, neglected blog ~ I am sorry. I have been working hard to try and make a couple of projects come together. I have a couple of stories I'm working on, one of which is for the anthology which will feature my epic poem, The Sorcerer. I'm working on another story, one a that I think will appeal to Jackdaw fans and a certain Miss Toal.

I am also working on getting The Ferryman's Wife back up and available on Amazon. Hopefully it shouldn't be too long before everything is back to normal. I'll be on again soon - probably sooner than you think.

Saturday, 10 November 2012


The publishing company that released The Ferryman's Wife has folded. Although my book is still available to buy, I shall be looking to re-release it with another publisher. I wasn't happy with how it had been edited so I'm seeing this as an opportunity as opposed to a set back. It gives me a chance to right some wrongs and to start fresh.  In the meantime, I shall still be working on Book 2 as well as other, smaller projects. I had forgotten how much I enjoyed writing poetry, for example. I've never felt confident in writing short stories, maybe I should work on that too? Either way, I am not going away. To all of you who enjoy my work, thank you for your continued support.

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Autumns Orchard (Speakeasy #82)

In Autumns orchard, branches burden bear,

Bursting to give the gifts they wish to share.

Sweet are the fruits so ripe, ready and round,

Full and juicy, maturity abound.

To touch, to taste, perchance to take a bite!

Smooth skin, softness within, a sheer delight!

Titillating in mouth on tongue, and lips,

The nectar flows and down the chin it drips.

Licking as juice sticking to fingers wet.

Deliciousness as good as it can get.

Friday, 26 October 2012

Comment Appreciation Society

Well here we are again, with me making excuses for not posting... what can I say, I was on honeymoon! Besides, it's hard to tell who's actually keeping track. If more people commented then I'd know who was paying attention. Och! Forget the hints; Let's hear what you've got to say, folks! Have you read or are you going to read The Ferryman's Wife? What are your thoughts so far? If you have read it, how did it come into your possession? Is the genre something you would normally go for? Who are your favourite characters and why. Who do you hate? Or if you have any questions for me then feel free to comment.

Other than that, I've little to say this week. I'm feeling pretty ill with what I can only assume is a cold. Not that I've time to rest up, so it's Autopilot Mamma until it clears. It means I've very little brain power; all energy is diverted to getting on with  la grind. So writing is on hold. After all, if you don't require brain power to write, then your writing is probably brainless. However, my plan in the meantime is to get filling up my creative ink well with all those little things that get my imagination ticking. I've books to read, art to view, films and programs to watch, music to listen to. All of these are so important to me when writing fiction. They really spark my creativity to the point where I'm desperate to get writing. It offers me the best of both worlds, really. So the next couple of nights will be spent chilling out, getting better whilst "researching".

Have a great weekend folks And comment! Bloggers LOVE comments!

Friday, 12 October 2012


It's been a quiet week on TFW front, hence the lack of blog post on Monday. There's very little to report. What I've been trying to do is focus (Focus!) on writing an epic poem. It's called The Sorcerer and it is set to appear in a collection of stories and poems called Misery Loves Company due out in December through Mystic Press.

I do enjoy writing poetry. I take a different approach when constructing verse than I do when creating fiction. When I'm writing a story I need solitude and the ability to get into The Zone, whereas poetry I could write in a hurricane.

I want my poems to rhyme. I also enjoy words which when placed together play, like instruments in the mouth. I love clackety-clacks, slithering sumptuous sounds, punching punctuation;  awesome assonance and alliteration are the way! My poetry projects are verbal constructs of my command of the English Language. In my mind I see them like equations; when rhyming there are a limited number of  answers, right? Oh yeah, and I can rhyme with Orange too: door hinge, scavenge, lozenge, challenge... ooh, there's just so much fun to be had with such a venture!

With The Sorcerer I've attempted unconventional stanza, as well as a change rhythm half way through each verse as a vehicle with which to manipulate the pace. As I'm in a good mood today I'm going to show you verse one as a little teaser. Please leave comments and let me know what you think. Signing out for today, see you all soon.

The winter night was stormy black,

The air was bitterly cold.

The full Wolf Moon was icy white,

Shining bright and bold.  

Streams of beams so silvery thin

Cracked the clouds apart,

Coursing through like the misty veins 

Of a glowing, glacial heart.

It shone down on the town below,

Over rooftops

Shimmering so,

Into the homes of Sister’s Knell,

A place you will not know. 

The Sorcerer, Verse 1, G Merry

Friday, 5 October 2012

Touching Base

Not much to report this week, it's very much been a waiting game. Waiting for books to arrive, waiting for people to get back to me, waiting for reviews, waiting for Godot...

There have been a few great reviews on Amazon, which I'm thankful for. It has spurred me on to write a few reviews of my own. I'll ask, but I don't expect any of my friends to review. So, to those that have: thank you! It's quite funny. I often get asked by friends: How's the book going? It is invariably those who have yet to purchase it who ask me this, bless 'em. Don't get me wrong, my friends are wonderfully supportive. Still, I can't force people to buy my book, and if they don't buy it then there's really little to report. As for the wider public, I should probably work harder to get The Ferryman's Wife noticed. Self-advertising is something I'm not sure I'm that great at. I know it gets me out there, but I'm sure it must be pretty annoying. I prefer promotion to advertising. Advertising seems so neon compared to promotional events.

There. That's my decision for the week. To think up a new promotional event instead of advertising. There you go. And there was me, only writing this entry because I made a commitment to write twice a week. It seems sometimes the blog makes the ideas, rather than the other way around.

Monday, 1 October 2012

My Cards!

I'm a bit late in posting today because I've been a little busy. Also, I've been uploading pictures. How great is this? Look at the heap of cards I received from the 1st and 2nd year English pupils at Trinity Academy. I feel so honoured.
There are some really lovely messages in the cards. There are also some great pictures, I've simply got to have them up so you can see. There were a couple of large ones signed by some of the other students. The reference to one of the teachers made me laugh out loud.
I am particularly fond of the cards made by three of the Teen Titles reviewers. The fact that they had read the book really showed in their artwork, and I love that. It was great to see just which parts of the story had inspired them to draw. I guess this is me saying: All Fan Art Welcome! Anyway, here they are, in no particular order:

This version of the twisted castle is fabulous. I love the craggy rocks and the positioning of the "Thank You". Look at the yumlits!
I think this one on the right is fantastic. The rings, even the rubbed out finger, all adds to it.  I totally get what it's about, and that's what makes it rock. It is a wonderful representation of what the artist felt stood out in the story.

This third one is brilliant. I love the simplicity of it. It's incredibly effective, anyone who's read the story would know immediately what it's referring to. Much like the picture, the message inside was wonderfully concise; something I appreciate in writing.

Here are some of the other great pictures:



I've even had my portrait done, not a bad likeness (note the sensible clothes). And I do like the the "Thank you 'ferry' much!" 
See you all on Friday :)

Friday, 28 September 2012

It's the Little Things

It's been a funny old week. Some mornings, like today, I've simply not wanted to get out of bed and face the world. It's just been one of those weeks. Without going into detail, my book and it's quality have been at the heart of my worries. I think this happens to writers from time to time. Sometimes, I can get all the praise in the world, but the one, tiny little piece criticism is the only thing I'll hear. It's stupid, I know this, especially when more often than not I don't actually care about the criticisms being made. So long as people aren't criticising the quality of my writing or story-telling I couldn't give a hoot. But on weeks like these... every little thing stands out.

I am having doubts about my choices as an author, about my ability and about my story. The worries have increased over the last week. It was then a real treat to receive an email back from Mr Clarkson, the librarian at Trinity Academy, with an order for ten of my books. Ten! I can hardly believe my luck. Ten pupils have decided to buy my book on the back of the presentations I gave a couple of weeks ago. Surely that has to be a good sign? Mr Clarkson also informed me that some of them have made cards for me. Now, this is a wonderful thing. It pleases me no end. In fact, it gives me a lovely, warm, fuzzy sense of achievement that really takes the edge off of how I've been feeling this week. How lovely is that? The pupils have made me cards! I am well chuffed. It makes me feel as though my visit to my old school was truly a fantastic event.

It just goes to show that these little gestures can make the world of difference to someone like me. Without knowing it, these teens have reassured me that I'm meant to be a writer. Simply by hearing about what they've been up to has me uplifted. A positive end to an otherwise an awful week.

Monday, 24 September 2012

Back to Life, Reality; La Grind

After a short and unavoidable break (I got married. It was grand) I'm back to fill you in on all that has been going on.

Last Thursday was my big promo event at Trinity academy. It was a rip-roaring success! What a bright, enthusiastic and entertaining group of youngsters. I gave a presentation to the 1st & 2nd year English pupils and managed to squeeze the Teen Titles interview in between the two. It was a jam-packed sandwich, and I loved every minute of it.

In the first part of the day I spoke to the 2nd year English students. I wasn't sure how they would receive me. I am, after all, a rather uncool, 30 something mother with sensible clothes and not a lick of glamour. Armed with a belly full of coffee and my butter knife wit, I plunged ahead. Althought the first presentation was good, by the second I'd picked up more a pace and it ran a little smoother.

I didn't want to be one of those stuffy lecturers that just stands up and talks to the group like a politician. I wanted to interact with them and find out what they knew. Engage them.  It worked. Throughout the beginning of both presentations I would stop and ask them if they knew what I was talking about. With a smattering of eye contact and a little persistance for answers, I got what I was after.  Their questions were many and varied in topic, which I always welcome.

The interview was also fun. The reviewers from Teen Titles were a delight to spend time with. Their questions were well thought out, they were polite, well spoken. They are fine examples of teens who get overlooked when summarising the demograph. It is my opinion that most teens are too easily grouped into this adult-imposed idea of the "modern teenager". But then, it is also my belief that it has always been this way. It's just too easy for adults to forget how much we know our own minds as youngsters.  These young reviewers from Teen Titles certainly seemed to me to be intelligent and strong-minded individuals. I could have chatted with them for ages.

As you can imagine, after the interview the conversation soon turned to books and I particularly enjoyed hearing about what they had read.  Also, speaking to the 1st years after the second presentation interview, I got to hear about what they were reading. Only a fellow book lover could understand the enjoyment gained from talking about books.

All in all, it was a fantastic experince and a wonderful opportunity to get so much exposure for The Ferryman's Wife direct to my target audience. I really couldn't be happier at how it all went. I can only hope that they show as much enthusiasm in actually getting hold of my book and actually reading it. Here's a huge Thank You! to all who were involved.

Monday, 10 September 2012

...and Breathe

Not much to report from the weekend. Other than ensuring a good copy of The Ferryman's Wife was transferred to my mother's kindle - a new skill learnt, yay! - most of my activities have been relatively unrelated.

What I have been doing is working on The Heart Thief, which is Devils Light Book 2. I envisage the story being twice as long as book 1, with more character exploration, more action, and more, well, everything. The story begins one month after book 1 finishes. Obviously I can't say much about what will happen, but what I can say is that there's plenty to look forward to. One thing I can let you in on is that Percy Dunwrite, who we meet briefly in The Ferryman's Wife, has a bigger role to play.

It's exciting, for me, to be getting back in touch with all my characters once more. I've missed them. Even though they're always with me, when I'm writing they're just that little bit closer. I spend most of my days thinking about them, and about what's going to happen. It doesn't bode well when I'm meant to be doing something like food shopping, I can tell you. As much as I wouldn't say that any of these characters are like me, they are a part of me. I experience their adventures as they do, I feel what they feel. I just hope that when you read it, you will to.

Friday, 7 September 2012

Keep On Keepin' On...

This has been an... interesting week. I found out yesterday that the copies of my book, ordered in August, haven't left Texas. They've been sitting in the post office for some time and no one saw fit to tell my publisher about it. This is not good. As mentioned in a previous post, I have a promotional event coming up. The plan had been to sell these copies at the event. It's now just a waiting game to see whether the problem is resolved in time for the books to be here by the 13th. Fingers crossed, folks.

I sent The Ferryman's Wife out for reviews this week. I have to say, I'm looking forward to hearing what people think. I was discussing this earlier with Silvia of Darkest Sins and Franny of  Dark Mind Booktours. There seems to be a culture amongst authors for writing extremely positive reviews. Now, please don't misunderstand me, I am all about Turning On The Positive Side. However, I cannot be bothered with this sycophantic, rave-reviewing trend, where people will give a book 5 stars, purely to impress the author. Criticism, if given properly, can be extremely valuable. It can help the writer progress, develop and take their skill to a new level. At the same time, it must be said, my own negative reviews tend to be the most entertaining. When I look back over some of the bad reviews I've given they always make me chuckle. If you fancy reading any of my book reviews you'll find them on Goodreads.

As far as I can tell, any time a trend starts, a backlash soon follows. So, if everyone only writes super-duper-positive(!) reviews, it'd only be a matter of time before a new wave of writers began looking for the negatives. The answer? I'm not sure I have one. In general, my attitude is all about being honest. What's the point in saying things that aren't true in a review, good or bad? In fact, what's the point in saying something that isn't true, period? Lying only ever leads to trouble in the end. Like I've already said, I'm not about dissing something for the sake of it, just as I'm not up for praising something that doesn't deserve it. Is it so impossible to find a happy balance? I'd like to think not.

Monday, 3 September 2012

In the Spotlight!

It's been a busy few days.

First off, on Sunday I was interviewed by Gracen Miller as part of her Road to Hell Series. Of all the interviews I've done so far, it's certainly been the most fun. If only all interviewers asked questions like Gracen. Enter the competition for the chance to WIN a paperback copy of The Ferryman's Wife.

So, there was me this morning, all happy - even on a Monday - with my little guest appearance on Gracen's blog. I logged on to start posting about the interview and what should be awaiting me? A little surprise email from Darkest Sins. They've only gone and put The Ferryman's Wife in the Spotlight! Once again I am indebted to Slivia for helping to get my book noticed. Click on the on the link to view their fantastic blog. It is full of exciting book news, as well as being beautifully designed and a real treat to look at.

Quite a couple of days, I'm sure you'll agree.  I'm still trying to get my head around it all. The fantastic reviews that The Ferryman's Wife has received and all the interviews and guest spots on the various blogs has me overwhelmed.  I've been lucky enough to be interviewed by Beauty and Books Janiera Eldridge and be featured on Zoey Sweete's Sweete Spot. Also, The Ferryman's wife received another fantastic, double-whammy review on Something Wicked This Way Comes. It's all happening, and there's more yet to come.

Friday, 31 August 2012

Promo Prep

So I've been trying my hand at self-promotion. I have to say, I'm pretty rubbish at it. Still, needs must. Having my book published is only the beginning, so it seems. I now have to find a million and one ways to get it noticed. This takes up an alarming amount of my free time and ironically keeps me from writing my other projects  - which I'm told also helps get me noticed. (Imagine here, if you will, me sighing wearily.)

I wanted to do something that was a little different. Something that would reach my target audience, and that it would be - old fashioned as it may seem - not online. About a month ago I decided to contact my old high school librarian, John Clarkson. Thankfully, he remembered me, even after 14 years. This could be that he has an excellent memory, which I don't doubt. It could also be that I spent every free period, lunch and break time in his library, and I wasn't a quiet kid. In fact, I'm pretty sure I was a right royal pain in the...  but, I digress. Mr Clarkson (even after 14 years I have trouble calling him "John", that's what school does to you) was pleased to hear that my book had been published. He's invited me to give a talk at the school to some of the pupils. Score! A whole library filled with my target audience, what more could a self-promoting YA author want? The plan is for me to visit on September 13th, give a little talk about myself and then do a reading from my book. Now all I need to do is make sure it's not completely boring. Maybe I should do something totally random, like wear a tutu, high-vis vest and wellies, you know, to stand out. Maybe not.

Anyway, I met with Mr Clarkson to discuss promoting The Ferryman's Wife on Wednesday. Turns out that he's still involved with Teen Titles.  It's a great magazine, all about new books for teens and distributed to every City of Edinburgh secondary school. The reviews are written by teens too, which is great because there's nothing worse than some stuffy old fart telling you what's good to read. Even this stuffy old fart. Back when I was a pupil I was lucky enough to have a couple of reviews featured Teen Titles. I still have the copies, I keep them in my memory box. It's funny how things come around, isn't it? Because now, thanks to the legend that is John Clarkson, not only will The Ferryman's Wife be reviewed in the publication, they plan to run an interview with me too!

All that time spent in the school library really seems to have paid off in the long run. Back then I got to spend my free time surrounded by my favourite things (ahhhh, books. Lovely, dependable, beautiful books) doing my favourite things, writing and reading.  I was always made welcome by Mr Clarkson, even though my classmates thought me too weird and opinionated. Returning to the school library as an adult makes me think of the kids there who, like me, seek solace amongst the pages of a book. Those who write because they want to, not because the have to for school work. I hope that by returning to give this talk I can offer a little inspiration to those teens. I mean, I'm not expecting miracles or anything.  And I'm not under any illusion as to my powers of influence; I am decidedly uncool. However, if they see that a former pupil can achieve something by working hard, then maybe they might have confidence to follow their own dreams. I just hope that they get something positive from the experience.

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

New Look!

I am thrilled with my blog's new look! Thanks to Slivia Paoletta and Francesca Poggi of Darkest Sins my page has never looked better. In fact, it's looking pretty damn fine, if I do say so myself.

I connected with Slivia and Franny online back in 2010. They've offered me great support since then; retweeting tweets and generally having a great attitude when it comes to online networking.  I have a lot to thank Silvia for in particular. Without her sage advice I would never have started up this blog, would never have written The Ferryman's Wife, and subsequently never had it published.

It makes me realise how lucky I am to have made these connections. These wonderful ladies are fabulous in their support of me and I've always done my best to return the favour. In my experience of the Arts world there are too many people who are purely out for their own gain. Since making online connections with fellow authors and book lovers I have been overwhelmed at the amount of people who want to offer assistance. And I want to do the same. The more people offer their support, the more I want to do to assist them. What can I say? It's a cliche, but it really does pay to be nice.

So, Silvia, I'll try to keep blogging more often. For you, anything!

Saturday, 7 July 2012

Book Trailer

My amazing publisher Tabetha Jones of Mystic Press has been working hard to get my name out there. Not only has she kindly put together a trailer for The Ferryman's Wife, an Author Showcase of yours truly is now available on the Mystic Press blog (link below)  Take a look and see for yourself, I'd love to know what you think.

Author Showcase: