Glit-er-ary

Don’t you just love it when WordPress goes all Christmassy and falling snowflakes appear across the page.

Eeek, can’t believe how long it’s been since I posted! And I’ve published another novel since then too. Failing Flynn Matthews is available on Amazon now and only 99p! It’s “totally addictive reading” and apparently an “‘Effin’ awesome book!!! This is every bit as gripping, enthralling and at times frustrating as the first book.
You won’t want to put it down until you get to the end.” Thank you dear reader 🙂 and thanks to all the other 5 star reviewers too for Ordering Flynn Matthews and Failing Flynn Matthews!

I’m in the middle of formatting Working Flynn Matthews so you never know it might be published before Christmas. Move over Ellie, there’s a new girl in town.

A short story of mine, The Stuff of Fairytales, has been published in Bridge House Publishing‘s anthology, Glit-er-ary and is available in book and kindle form. There’s a wonderful variety of stories, some sad, some funny and some glittery 😉

I love the cover of the Anthology.

Click on cover to take you to Amazon

A little teaser from The Stuff of Fairytales:

I’ve been paid a mighty sum to kill her. It would cost the villagers nothing to do it themselves but they are simple god-fearing folk who don’t want her blood staining their hands…darkening their souls. Still I’m not complaining as their fear gives me work.

I collect her from the gaol, shackled at the ankles and wrists and wrapped in an oversized cloak. People never cease to surprise me. They want her dead but still they give her protection against the winter cold. A tiny slip of a thing, possibly no more than seventeen winters old, she is easy to bundle in the back of my cart. I make sure her chains are secure so there’s no means of escape. She doesn’t struggle. How this girl evokes such fear astonishes me. True her kind exist but I refuse to believe that she could tear me to pieces and rip out my heart – that is the stuff of fairytales.

It’s usual to provide some proof of death, the body for instance but not this time. Not one single drop of her crimson blood is to return to the village. I’m an honourable man so I’ll do as they ask. I will earn the bag of gold that’s stowed away in my cart.

As I drive the horse along the track it clears of people, dust flying up as they hurry towards the safety of their homes. Doors bang shut and the scraping and rasping of furniture being pushed up against them echoes out. As we round the corner and disappear from view a breath-like breeze ruffles my hair as if the villagers sigh in collective relief.

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Through The Decades

Writing and publishing Failing Flynn Matthews is on hold for now as moving house may be happening quicker than we thought (panic!) so this past weekend has seen a flurry of activity and this morning I took another car load to the charity shop. I’m not sure how we accumulated so much and if we ever needed it all.

Sorting through our belongings I unearthed many memories. From the decade of my life I call the Carefree years (age 1-10) I found my first teddy and a framed picture that hung on the wall above my bed.

Isn’t my teddy cute?!

From the Awkward years (11-20) books, loads of them! Some my Nan gave me, beautifully illustrated but battered from the 1930’s.

From the London years (21-30) a huge A4 binder with examples of typesetting – you know, the old way we used to print newspapers! I learned how to set type during my Occupational Therapy course – loved that module!

Typeset by me – ok, ok these words were cool at the time!

From the Child Rearing years (31- 40) there is so much and it’s hard to let go of anything – everything has a memory whether it be of our children or family. Sorting through the thoughtful gifts my mother bought reminded me of how much time she dedicated, sitting for hours playing games, doing puzzles and reading with them. It reminds me of how much I miss her and how much our children and her other grandchildren have lost out on since the dementia took what makes her, her. It is a cruel disease. We still have her to hold and hug but we do miss how she would have been without it.

My Mum and kids spent many hours having fun with these 🙂

The next decade I will call the Finding Myself years (41-50) – first I was ill but on the upside I finally put pen to paper and wrote. My first short story was published and I haven’t stopped writing since. I think it’s the first interest I’ve actually stuck with. My past is littered with discarded hobbies: pottery, water colour painting, oil painting to name but a few.

And now we come  to this decade – no name yet as it’s early days however we’re going on adventure and renovating (sort of) a property and are trading this:

for this:

Very excited 🙂 Wish us luck! Publishing and writing will resume shortly! 😀

We’re off to see the Wizard

I’m coming to the end of my holiday and had some good news waiting for me when I got back from Rome. My short story We’re off to see the Wizard has been accepted for Bridge House Publishing’s 2016 anthology ‘Baubles’.

It’s dedicated to my mum and is another story about dementia – although it’s fiction I’ve drawn on my relationship with her and my experience of working in a dementia unit. Losing a person to dementia is sad but there are real moments of joy. It helps to remember them.

Here’s a photo of a cobbled street at the Roman Forum – not yellow bricked though!

dav

Bridge House Book Launch

On Saturday, courtesy of my chauffeur (husband) I made it to Bridge House’s launch of Snowflakes and Cafe Lit anthologies not far from Leicester Square in Waxy O’Connors. Such a cool place. Should’ve worn a cloak!

Waxy O'Connor's

While my husband and son hung out in London my daughter and I had an interesting afternoon chatting with the other writers, listening to readings and finally meeting Debz, my wonderful editor! Her critique of my early novel writing was and still is invaluable. I’ve learnt so much from her.

DSC_1288

Me & Debz

Sometime during the afternoon her handbag was stolen right from under our noses. Amazingly she didn’t let it ruin her day. Check out her post about the day here: When Writers Meet

Snowflakes

I’m delighted and thankful that a story of mine has been accepted by Bridge House Publishing for its 2015 Anthology.

I don’t write many short stories as I prefer to write novels however my novel writing improved when I was told to treat every chapter like a short story. It has to have a purpose, something has to have happened, it follows the story arc. Like a short story every chapter has to grab the reader. All the same rules apply.

Anyway I digress. Back to the short story and anthology.

‘Murmuration’ had been circulating in my mind for some time and when I read the submission brief

Our theme for 2015 is snowflakes. Real ones? Perhaps but more likely stories that are like snowflakes. Unique and perfectly formed. As they melt into the psyche they bring a life-sustaining force. Snow can be beautiful and it can be treacherous. It can swing from one extreme to another in seconds. It is an important part of the nature cycle 

I knew I had to write it. Although fiction the subject is a personal one. I won’t say anymore for now. I’ll save that for nearer publication. Snowflakes is due out 15.11.15!

Snowflakes

 

On This Day

My short story Trojan was published on 21st June 2012 in On This Day, an anthology of short stories. The kindle version will be out in July – date to follow.

Stories had to be linked to a “world stopping event” for the competition. The event was to be the backdrop for the story. Trojan takes place during the London bombings on 07/07/2005.

Trojan

The blast brought clarity to her thoughts. She was no soldier but every day of her life was a fight without hope of defeating the enemy… today fate presented her with the opportunity to win the war. In that moment of truth Meg took her moment to live.

Hastily she left Market Crescent and returned to the scene of the explosion. Traffic was at a standstill, a broken bus was the centre of activity, its roof peeled off and back end open. A fine layer of dust covered everything and the paper that had been flying around before, now lay on the ground. The screaming she had ignored ten minutes earlier was replaced by the wailing sound of sirens. She saw two blood soaked bodies crumpled on the pavement. She ought to help. It would be the right thing to do… that’s what people did when others were in need. Meg shakily picked her way through the rubble. Her right ankle went over as she trod on a broken wing mirror and she grabbed a metal railing to steady herself. The reality of it hit her. With blood on her hands she could not deny what she had done.

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If you want to read more of Trojan and the other stories order your copy by clicking on the book cover below: