My Garden is a Lifesaver by Sharon Ibbotson

What a treat today! We have an absolutely lovely post by Sharon Ibbotson in praise of her garden. Sharon writes for Choc Lit.

It seems strange to talk about a garden as a lifesaver, but for my family over the last eighteen months, it’s a statement that’s definitely true.

My husband and I live ten miles outside of the centre of London, and we love our home for many reasons. When people talk about London, they generally refer to it as an unfriendly, cold, or dirty place. We’ve found the exact opposite to be true. In our neighbourhood, people are friendly, helpful, and keen to be involved in their community. Our little pocket of this city is warm and wonderful, and we’re very happy here. But it is still London, and while it does have more green space than many other urban centres, it is very built up. This is why, when my husband and I were planning our future together, a home with a large garden was top of our requirements. 

Our house itself is fairly unremarkable, the kind of detached post-war building you can find repeated across vast swathes of the city. But our garden, over the years, we’ve turned into something individual.

When we first settled together in our house, the garden was neglected and overgrown with weeds and brambles (in fact, the brambles reached our back door!). We spent the first two years cutting back mainly, finding all sorts of hidden treasure along the way – as well as a fair amount of rubble from the Blitz. But, when our son came along nine years ago, we had to escalate our plans for the garden quickly, so that he would have a safe place to play. 

We wanted our garden to be a refuge from the city. We wanted it to be a haven for nature. We wanted it to be a working family garden but also attractive to the eye. In all honesty, we’ve spent far more money and time improving our garden than we have our house, which shows where our priorities are! Still, after the last year, when Covid19 forced us to spend most of our time at home, and alone, that investment paid off magnificently. In 2020, our garden became the most used room of our house. It became a schoolroom and work space. It became our dining room and play area. It was, quite frankly, a life saver. 

We have a pond in our garden, with a rockery and cascade. It’s a large pond, filled with water lilies, and is home to a large colony of newts. In the summer, our son Ben spends hours by the pond with a net, trying to catch them (or butterflies, or dragonflies, or frogs). When we have barbeques or coffee outside, the sound of running water is in the background, blocking out the frequent planes and trains noise of London (although in 2020 that was not a problem). 

Our daughter Sarah has a fairy garden she built herself, with little houses and bridges, including a Red Lion pub my husband created for her out of an old tree stump (I’m sure even the fairies appreciate a pint). At the back of the garden, there is a fort for the children to play in, with a slide, climbing wall, zip-line and swings (yes, we built a playground at the back of the garden, and no, we don’t regret it!). 

But the garden isn’t just for the children. No, it is very much a refuge for the grown-ups in our household too. My husband and I are both keen gardeners, and we both have areas of the garden we have claimed for ourselves, to grow our favourite plants and flowers in (we have wildly different tastes at times!). My husband loves evergreen shrubs and trees, and perennial flowers. He takes care of the rockery and pond, and also of the camellia bed he planted for me (camellias are one of my favourites). I have a kitchen garden and care for all the patio pots and flower beds. The kitchen garden, full of herbs over the spring and summer, turns into a pumpkin patch by September when the gourds take over, the vines spreading far across the patio floor.

Luckily, we’re at the stage now where we can grow most of our own plants. For my 30th birthday, my husband built me a greenhouse. It’s a large brick and glass building, and my husband – who is a mathematician and physicist – designed it so that the foundations of the building are a giant heat sink, so it’s nice and toasty inside too. I spend HOURS in that greenhouse. From the greenhouse, I can see both the playground and trampoline, so I can watch the children play while I work. And I do work in the greenhouse; I have a chair in there, a small table, and access to power and Wi-Fi so I can write among my seedlings when I chose to. 

The smell of the greenhouse is incredible. Its rich, earthy, moist, and fresh. I grow dozens of tomato seedlings simply because I love the smell of them (I give the excess plants I can’t use to neighbours, the local school, and friends). I grow all my herbs myself, filling the room with lemon thyme, cinnamon basil, apple mint and dill. Last year, with time on my hands, I branched out into exotic plants, buying up Australian seeds and trying my hand at germinating more difficult crops. I grew my first Australian Banksia last year, which was ridiculously difficult. I had to freeze the seeds, scarify them, boil them, and then keep them at a steady temperature of 21 degrees for 28 days (I bought a special heat mat for that purpose). I planted 18 seeds and ended up with one plant which I nursed like a baby over the summer. I’m nothing if not dedicated!

I’m very keen on attracting wildlife to the garden. This year I’ve set aside a wildflower patch for the bees (conveniently close to my blueberry and strawberry plants for pollination) and we have bug hotels scattered around the garden. Behind the playground we also have a section for rotting wood, to let the stag beetles live in. We also keep nesting boxes for birds high up in our trees, and have a family of blue tits return to the same nest year after year. I have to keep my cat inside when the birds fledge, which is a trial to both him and me, but its worth it to see those lovely baby birds learning to fly.

I wrote most of my second book in the garden, as well as my fourth and fifth. There’s nothing quite like sitting at the table next to the pond, the sun of your face, for inspiration. Likewise, sitting in the greenhouse when its grey, warm and toasty while the rain falls on the glass, is lovely, and the perfect setting for writing winter romances. 

I think people underestimated their outdoor spaces before Covid19. I think even I did. But after the last year, when we spent so much of our time out of doors, I won’t ever take it for granted again. Gardens are a wonderful space in which to live and create, and I’m so lucky to have a beautiful one to call my own.

(Wow that all sounds amazing! What a lovely tribute to your garden. I shall be in touch as I have some Australian seeds in the cupboard, but have never been brave enough to try to start them off! Thank you for the lovely post. Mx)

About Sharon Ibbotson

Sharon Ibbotson was born in Sydney, Australia, to British emigrant parents and lived there until her sixteenth birthday, at which point she was schooled in the U.K. She started writing from an early age, including a long-foray into ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ fanfiction, and was a Sydney Morning Herald Young Writer of the Year in 1997.

Her first novel, ‘The Marked Lord’ was published by Choc Lit in January 2019, followed soon after by ‘A Game of Desire’ in June of the same year. Her third novel, the U.K’s first inter-faith Hanukkah romance, came out in December of 2019 and was discussed on a panel at the 2020 Frankfurt Book Fair.

In 2020 Sharon was a contender for the Joan Hessayon Award.

By day she can mostly be found parenting her two small children and black cat, while by night she writes, often into the early hours. 

Sharon currently lives in London, the U.K, with her husband, son and daughter.

To contact Sharon use the following links –

Twitter: @seibbotson

Facebook: Sharon Ibbotson – author

Instagram: @sharonibbotson 

Buy link for Amazon: https://smile.amazon.co.uk/Sharon-Ibbotson/e/B07NDLQLMD/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

Thank you for your lovely post, Sharon!

Watch out next week for an extract from my own new release Summer at Lucerne Lodge published on 20 April 2021.

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Summer at Lucerne Lodge available for preorder now and published as an eBook on 20 April 2021 – Amazon Check on my Choc Lit author page for other options here 

International Bestseller Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe published as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and Choc Lit for other options.

Bestseller Sunny Days at the Beach is now available as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and at Choc Lit for other options.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon KindleAudioApple iBooksKobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKoboApple iBooks and also as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms –Amazon KindleApple iBooksKobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

Posted in Uncategorized | 8 Comments

What I Love About My Garden by Kate Ryder

This week we have a treat with lots of lovely photographs as Kate Ryder, author of Beneath Cornish Skies, tells us about what she loves about her garden. Over to Kate

“I like gardening. It’s a place where I find myself when I need to lose myself.” – Alice Sebold, Above and Beyond (interview with Katharine Viner, The Guardian, 23.08.02).

Thank you so much for inviting me to your blog, Morton.  Did you know that I was a fellow shortlisted author for ChocLit’s 2016 “Search for a Star”?  It’s amazing that you’ve had five books published since winning and number six out soon … Congratulations, by the way!

My latest novel, Beneath Cornish Skies, was published in January and I’m thrilled to say that within three weeks of publication it reached #1 bestselling Kindle in Paranormal Ghost Romance on both Amazon UK and Australia!  It’s also available in paperback from Waterstones, W H Smith, Foyles and other major bookshops, and I hope independent bookshops will stock it too.

My garden has been a godsend through three lockdowns, and I’m so pleased my late mother passed on some of her passion for gardening!  The Latin names of plants don’t roll off my tongue as they did hers, but when we first moved from the Home Counties to Cornwall the garden was a blank canvas and her guidance helped enormously in creating the one we enjoy today.

I live in a cottage situated in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty on the jam-first side of the Tamar Valley.  When my husband and I first viewed the property, we were informed that it had been repossessed 10 years previously and since rented out.  To say it was in a sorry state is an understatement, but as soon as I saw the cottage I knew it would be our future home.  At the time of viewing a rainbow arced high over its roof, which helped convince my husband that although he’d moved the sales particulars to the “not of interest” pile, it was the one!  Luckily, we were blissfully unaware of the number of years it would take to renovate that Cornish stone cottage, but ultimately it has proved worthwhile.  In fact, the discovery of a time capsule hidden by a previous owner inspired me to write Secrets of the Mist – the novel that was shortlisted for ChocLit’s competition under its self-published title, The Forgotten Promise!

Anyway, back to the garden…

At the initial viewing, the estate agent warned us the property needed a fair amount of TLC, and she wasn’t far wrong.  It was as good as derelict!  The removal of a supporting ground floor wall 30 years previously had caused the floors of the two upper storeys to sag dangerously and we ended up gutting the cottage.  The neglected garden comprised one immature Rhododendron and a patch of grass that fell away steeply and was overshadowed by trees.  However, a sea of bluebells added a wonderful dash of colour and I was captivated by a glimpse of rolling hills beyond; a beautiful view in any season.  An abandoned vegetable patch contained a couple of struggling gooseberry bushes and a small-gauge track ran around the perimeter of the garden – apparently, a former owner had been a model railway enthusiast.  And that was it!  As with the 200 year old cottage, the garden was crying out for someone to breathe life into it… and I knew just the person!

Once we’d completed the purchase of the property, we wasted no time in hiring a local digger to excavate a driveway – the only parking was in the lane on a first come, first served basis.  We employed a couple of ‘old boys’ to build a drystone wall enclosing the car parking area and also to lay a side path where a dilapidated garage had stood before we demolished it.  The men must have been all of seventy and soon became a talking point of the village, arriving each day in an ancient tractor with one of them transported in the front bucket!  Best of friends since primary school, these master stonemasons bickered like an old married couple in their broad Cornish accents that my southern ear had trouble tuning into.

As soon as the wall was built, we erected trellis fencing on top and I planted climbing plants, such as Virginia Creeper, Honeysuckle, Clematis, Jasmine and Passion Flower, which during lockdown produced fruit for the very first time.  Welsh poppies appeared from nowhere and now grace the parking area each year.

Where possible I like to recycle and conserve and we used the soil from the driveway to level the garden.  Due to the overshadowing trees it was still in darkness, and sadly we made the decision to remove a few.  A couple were ancient, gnarled, apple trees that no longer bore fruit; the last-remaining of an old Tamar Valley orchard.  But what on earth was a previous owner thinking when she planted a giant sequoia?  It towered above the garden at 60-plus feet and I postponed the fateful day for quite a while before eventually calling a tree surgeon.  However, I’m a firm believer in upcycling and the sequoia provided enough timber to create a garden swing, window ledges throughout the cottage and a rustic shelf room divide, which is now filled with books!

Next, we dismantled the remains of the railway track and started to clear foliage from an overgrown rockery.  The newly levelled area of garden was grass-seeded and I created a number of flowerbeds, planting shrubs including Camelia, Pieris, Rhododendron, Hydrangea, Japonica and Ceanothus.  I also replanted a small clump of bamboo from the family home where I grew up.  On a rare day off, I visited nearby Buckland Abbey and when I saw the wonderful Callistemon welcoming guests at its door, I couldn’t resist visiting the plant nursery and treating myself to a Bottlebrush of my own.

The majority of plants soon established, sinking their roots deep into the soil, but others didn’t fare so well.  However, it’s a learning curve and, today, the garden has matured wonderfully and the bamboo is an impressive sight!  We have a couple of lawned areas; a small copse that will soon be a carpet of bluebells; a stone patio, which is often watched over by the curious heifers that occasionally graze an adjoining field; a large rockery with a natural-looking waterfall that my husband created one year; and a small pond that is home to goldfish, visiting frogs and a number of newts.

Before I started writing full-time I worked as a country property negotiator and at a Bodmin Moor farmhouse I was selling I discovered a standing stone.  It lay discarded with several other large granite slabs in a field and the owner of the farmhouse said that if we could lift it into the boot of my car I could have it.  Well, I’m not one to baulk at a challenge, so now it has pride of place at the head of the waterfall.  The cats love sitting on it, as well as the granite mushroom!

We added an area of decking a couple of years ago, which provides me with a wonderful writing space on warm, sunny days.

We also made the difficult decision regarding a multi-trunked beech tree.  Reaching high into the sky, it was a magnificent specimen that unfortunately kept one side of the garden in darkness all year round.  It took three men two full days to remove and the wood now provides us with a seemingly never-ending supply of fuel for the woodburner.

It’s hard to believe that next month we will celebrate 20 years of living in that once-abandoned, near-derelict property.  Where has the time gone?  

As everyone has experienced, life over the last 12 months has been very strange and we decided to give ourselves a lockdown project, turning part of the garden over to vegetable growing.  I now have a poly tunnel, two raised beds, a wildflower area to attract pollinators, and four apple trees in pots that last autumn provided an abundant crop of fruit.

Green-fingers crossed, hopefully this particular Tamar Valley market garden will be blooming in 2021.  Head gardener, Bella, assures me she will keep a watchful eye over the comings and goings from various vantage points!

Wow, what a lovely story and what gorgeous photographs. Thank you so much for sharing this with us! Mx

About Kate Ryder

Kate Ryder is an Amazon Kindle international best seller who writes timeslip and romantic suspense in a ‘true to life’ narrative. On leaving school she studied drama but soon discovered her preference for writing rather than performing. Since then, she has worked in publishing, tour operating and property, and has travelled widely.

A member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and The Society of Authors, in 2017 Kate signed a 4-book contract with Aria (digital imprint of award-winning independent publisher, Head of Zeus).

SUMMER IN A CORNISH COVE, a contemporary romantic suspense set on the Lizard Peninsula, saw her nominated for the RNA’s 2018 Joan Hessayon award, while its standalone sequel, COTTAGE ON A CORNISH CLIFF, reached the heady heights of #2 in Kindle Literary Sagas.

SECRETS OF THE MIST, a mysterious timeslip romance, was not only rated in the #top 50 on Amazon UK Paid Kindle but also achieved #1 Kindle best-selling status in the UK, Canada and Australia. In its original, self-published version as ‘The Forgotten Promise’ it was awarded the first Chill with a Book “Book of the Month”.

Her fourth book, BENEATH CORNISH SKIES, a beautiful romance with a hint of ghostliness set on the north Cornish coast, achieved #1 Kindle best seller on Amazon UK and Australia. 

Originally from the South East of England, today Kate lives in Cornwall with her husband and a collection of animals.

Keep in touch with Kate:

http://www.kateryder.me
Twitter: https://twitter.com/KateRyder_Books
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kateryder.author
Instagram: @kateryder_author

About Beneath Cornish Skies

To an outsider, Cassandra Shaw’s life looks perfect. She lives in a beautiful, luxurious house in the English countryside, with a handsome, wealthy boyfriend who insists she needn’t do a day’s work in her life. But Cassie knows that something is not right. Her boyfriend has grown colder, treating her more like a housekeeper than a future wife. And her time feels empty and purposeless.

Cassandra has always been riddled with insecurities and self-doubt, but, just for once, she decides to take a chance on a new beginning. She answers an advert for a live-in nanny, horse trainer, cook and all-round ‘Superhuman’ for a family living in a rambling manor house on the rugged North Cornish coast. The work is hard and tiring, but Cassie has never felt so fulfilled.

As she learns to connect with the natural beauty unfolding around her, Cornwall starts to offer up its secrets and, soon, Cassie starts wondering if she was drawn to this isolated part of the coast for a reason. Why was she guided to Foxcombe Manor? What are the flashes of light she sees in the valley? Is it her imagination or does someone brush past her? And who is the mysterious man living deep in the woods?

A beautiful romance with a hint of ghostliness, Beneath Cornish Skies is for anyone who has ever longed to start their lives again.

To buy the book use the following links:

UK: https://amzn.to/3qxjDjX

US: https://amzn.to/37qkiMS

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Summer at Lucerne Lodge available for preorder now and published as an eBook on 20 April 2021 – Amazon Check on my Choc Lit author page for other options here 

International Bestseller Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe published as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and Choc Lit for other options.

Bestseller Sunny Days at the Beach is now available as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and at Choc Lit for other options.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon KindleAudioApple iBooksKobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKoboApple iBooks and also as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms –Amazon KindleApple iBooksKobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

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Publication Month Twins

Carol Thomas and I both write for Choc Lit Publishing and/or their imprint Ruby Publishing. My latest novel Summer at Lucerne Lodge will be published on 20 April 2021 and Carol’s A Summer of Second Chances is out on 27 April 2021 just a week later. We both have lovely shiny new covers with large houses on them too, so I decided that we are publishing month twins!

I first met Carol at a Romantic Novelists’ Association Conference held in Leeds in July 2018 and we became firm friends. Here is a picture from that conference of the two of us and fellow Apricot Plots’ member, Angela Barton.

A year later, Carol and I took advantage of the fact that my husband had a flat in Dublin when he was working there for a while. Hubby flew home to look after my dog and son and we flew to Dublin for a writing weekend.

I thought I’d tell you about our new books, so here goes:

Could a beautiful old house and a handsome stranger hold the key to a life-changing secret?

Rosie Phillips could be forgiven for not being immediately won over by Tanner Bryant. After all, their first meeting involves him knocking a tray of prawn cocktail over her very expensive dress at a charity event in the grounds of Lucerne Lodge. 

But little does Rosie know how pivotal that awkward first meeting will be, or how the Lodge will become the unexpected backdrop for a summer spent finding out who she really is, and who she could be …

Summer at Lucerne Lodge can be pre-ordered here.

&

Does first love deserve a second chance?

Ava Flynn sometimes feels like the clothes donated to her charity shop have seen more life than her, but ‘maximum dedication for a minimal wage’ is what it takes to keep her mother’s beloved wildlife charity, All Critters Great and Small, running – especially in the village of Dapplebury, where business is certainly not booming. 

But when Ava’s first love, Henry Bramlington, returns to the village, suddenly life becomes a little too eventful. Henry escaped Dapplebury many years before, but now he has the power to make or break the village he left behind – All Critters Great and Small included. Can Ava trust the boy who ran away to give both her and her charity a second chance? 

A Summer of Second Chances can be pre-ordered here.

Carol Thomas will feature on my blog on 5 May 2021.

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Summer at Lucerne Lodge available for preorder now and published as an eBook on 20 April 2021 – Amazon Check on my Choc Lit author page for other options here 

International Bestseller Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe published as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and Choc Lit for other options.

Bestseller Sunny Days at the Beach is now available as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and at Choc Lit for other options.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon KindleAudioApple iBooksKobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKoboApple iBooks and also as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms –Amazon KindleApple iBooksKobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments

Three Lesser Known Facts About Writer Sue Kittow

I have something a little different on my blog this week. I have followed Sue Kittow for many years on social media and on her own blog. She’s agreed to join me today to share three lesser known facts about herself and some details about her walking books. The latest is Walks in the Footsteps of Rosamunde Pilcher. Over to Sue 

Three lesser known facts about me…

One – I’m a late starter. I didn’t marry until I was 41 (on the other hand, I was widowed at 52). I had my first journalistic commission when I was 50, my first walks book was published when I was 54. I would love to have my first novel published before I’m 64….

Two – Despite having written five books on literary Cornish walks, and written probably another 50 walks for Cornwall Today and other magazines, I have a lousy sense of direction. This is why I make sure I don’t do new walks on my own … If we do a walk, I have an excellent sense of recollection and can picture it in my head, but give me a map and my mind goes blank.

Three – I was anorexic for many years from the age of about 12 until I was in my mid twenties, though it’s difficult to give a cut off point, because eating disorders have immensely long, powerful tentacles that wrap themselves around you. But it wasn’t till a friend pointed out, when I was 53, that I needed to eat every 3 hours, that I finally realised why I kept getting tired and grumpy. It was lack of food, as I have a high metabolism. So wherever I go, I am accompanied by cereal bars.

This was the reason I decided to write my novel, HUNGER, which is a love story but written by a mother whose daughter is anorexic, and also the daughter’s diaries, so we get both points of view. I wanted to prove that, while this is a devastating, terrifying and complex disease, there is life after eating disorders.

Wow that novel sounds amazing! Good luck with it. Mx

About Sue Kittow’s Books

Latest book – Walks in the Footsteps of Rosamunde Pilcher

Walks in the Footsteps of Rosamunde Pilcher features eighteen walks each associated either with a places special to her or a location from her books and films. Rosamunde Pilcher was born and brought up in Lelant, Cornwall, and started writing at the age of seven in a house overlooking the Hayle estuary. Her love of Cornwall is evident in her descriptions the sea s varying shades of blue and green, the way it sighs and swells like a living being; her knowledge and love of the Cornish landscape and its people which is reflected in this book of carefully selected walks. Walks in the Footsteps of Rosamunde Pilcher is a unique tribute to this writer who sadly died in February 2019. Buy here.

Walks in the Footsteps of Daphne du Maurier

It is well known that Daphne du Maurier fell in love with Fowey at the age of 18, and soon made Cornwall her home. Her life long love affair with the county is evident: no one can describe the creeks, the moors, the birds or the sea quite like her. Her deft observations of people are wry, accurate and can be frighteningly vivid. Walks in the Footsteps of Daphne du Maurier is an unusual tribute to this great and unusual writer. Each of the 14 walks is inspired by her books, characters or places special to her. Some are famous Frenchman s Creek, as the setting for the novel of the same name while others are less familiar, such as Stowe Barton near Bude the starting point for The King s General. Walks vary from three to seven miles, have concise directions, clear maps, and essential information: length, refreshments and places of interest. Buy here.

Walks in the Footsteps of Poldark

Walks in the Footsteps of Winston Graham s Poldark features 12 walks each associated with a different Poldark location from the books, a character, or where an event was filmed for the TV series. Winston Graham was so good at evoking the real landscape of Cornwall, the Cornish people and the unpredictability of the Cornish weather. Feature in page turning plots and empathetic characters, and you have a winner, which the Poldark books have proved to be. Enjoy these walks and learning more about the Poldark places, characters, and history. Each walk includes details of maps, refreshments, history, points of interest and clear directions and sketch map. Buy here.

Walks in the Footsteps of Cornish Writers

Circular Walks with Cornish Writers features 20 walks each associated with different writers connected to Cornwall. It is a fascinating insight to contemporary authors and their favourite walks as well as the places that were so special to those well known writers who are no longer with us – and why they were so special. Some writers, like John Betjeman, have made their favourite places famous through verse or novels. Others, like Philip Marsden, use regular walks as a valuable part of their writing day. From Derek Tangye s books based in Lamorna to the Reverend Stephen Hawker at Morwenstow, here are a variety of walks that inspired the authors, and it is hoped will inspire readers too. Each walk has an introduction, a factbox with all essential information, and details of maps, refreshments, history, points of interest and clear directions. Buy here.

About Sue Kittow

Sue Kittow is an author, researcher and freelance journalist, having written for the Daily Mail, Woman’s Weekly, Classic Boat, Classic Sailor, Sailing Today, Vision Now and Cornwall Today, where I have been Sailing Correspondent, columnist and a regular contributor since 2008.

She writes personal profiles, health pieces, sports articles, features, reviews, author interviews and walks.

Sue has interviewed many authors including Bill Bryson, Ian Rankin, Lionel Shriver and Rosamunde Pilcher for the international writing magazine, Writers’ Forum and Cornwall Today.

Sue is now seeking representation for her novel Hunger and writing another one.

To keep in touch with Sue you can use the following links:-

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/sue.jackson.5099940/

Twitter – @floweringpot

Website – www.suekittow.com

Blog – www.flowerpotdays.blogspot.com

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Summer at Lucerne Lodge available for preorder now and published as an eBook on 20 April 2021 – Amazon Check on my Choc Lit author page for other options here 

International Bestseller Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe published as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and Choc Lit for other options.

Bestseller Sunny Days at the Beach is now available as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and at Choc Lit for other options.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon KindleAudioApple iBooksKobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKoboApple iBooks and also as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms –Amazon KindleApple iBooksKobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

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New From Morton S. Gray – Summer at Lucerne Lodge

The cover is revealed today for my sixth book for Choc Lit PublishingSummer at Lucerne Lodge. Here’s a photo of me looking suitably proud of the lovely cover.

This is what it says on the back of the book :

Could a beautiful old house and a handsome stranger hold the key to a life-changing secret?

Rosie Phillips could be forgiven for not being immediately won over by Tanner Bryant. After all, their first meeting involves him knocking a tray of prawn cocktail over her very expensive dress at a charity event in the grounds of Lucerne Lodge. 

But little does Rosie know how pivotal that awkward first meeting will be, or how the Lodge will become the unexpected backdrop for a summer spent finding out who she really is, and who she could be …

And here is the cover in full glory :

Isn’t it a beautiful cover?

The characters in this book are very special to me as I’ve been working on this story for quite a while in the background. I hope my readers will love Rosie and Tanner as much as I do. The book will be published on 20 April 2021 and if you would like to preorder a copy, here is the link

Summer at Lucerne Lodge

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Summer at Lucerne Lodge available for preorder now and published as an eBook on 20 April 2021 – Amazon Check on my Choc Lit author page for other options here

International Bestseller Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe published as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and Choc Lit for other options.

Bestseller Sunny Days at the Beach is now available as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and at Choc Lit for other options.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon KindleAudioApple iBooksKobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKoboApple iBooks and also as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms –Amazon KindleApple iBooksKobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

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Exciting Morton S. Gray News Soon

I hope that my blog readers have been enjoying my recent guest posts. I love hearing about the lives of other authors and it gives me great pleasure to host writers on my blog. However, this week I thought I would put out a teaser message for myself and tell you what I’ve been up to.

My hair is getting long now! I’m even wearing long earrings!

I’m currently editing my sixth book for Choc Lit and hope to be able to reveal the title, cover and release date very soon. It’s fingers crossed scheduled for publication towards the end of April and is about one of my favourite hero and heroine duos – Tanner Bryant and Rosie Phillips. The story is once again set in and around my fictional seaside town of Borteen and is a stand alone story. I can’t wait to share more details with you.

I’ve already seen some draft art work for the cover and the possible title and hopefully I will be able to share news very soon.

Busy putting the finishing touches to Book 7 too and hope to submit that to my publisher before long.

Meanwhile, lockdown appears to have turned me into a crochet addict – its like a wool meditation! I’m on my third blanket and have more planned.

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

International Bestseller Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe published as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and Choc Lit for other options.

Bestseller Sunny Days at the Beach is now available as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and at Choc Lit for other options.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon KindleAudioApple iBooksKobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKoboApple iBooks and also as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms –Amazon KindleApple iBooksKobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

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Claire Sheldon – What I Admire About the Heroine of My Novel

This week I’m joined by Claire Sheldon who writes for Ruby Fiction as she tells us about what she admires about Jen the fictional heroine of her latest novel The Silent Child. Over to Claire …

What I admire most about Jen my main character is how she has developed as a person, and since returning to her original police team and now Nottingham special ops team, she hasn’t returned to being a super bitch. She has managed to find a place in her life for family, policing and dealing with the past she left behind.

Jen didn’t have a great time growing up, her parents never wanted her and made sure she knew this at a very young age. They continued partying, leaving her in her room while they had their partying friends round.

As Jen grew older, she turned to sex, drugs and rock and roll, until she woke up one day coming down from a high, surrounded by people she didn’t know and knew she needed to find a better life for herself. She found her way into police training and then into Max’s team and he became the father she never had. She thought this was where she was destined to be for the rest of her life until she met James, who changed her again, because here was man who didn’t just want her for sex and a one night stand. He cared about her and finally she moved to Nottingham with him and out of the service. Having an adventurous sex life with James made up for all the highs she used to get from tracking the bad guys down.

We meet Jen in Perfect Lie as the perfect wife and mother until her past comes back to haunt her. She returns to her original police team to find out who killed her former bestfriend, Chloe Seaward and by the end of the book she returns home in the hope James and the kids will have her back. (PLOT SPOILER ALERT)

At the beginning of A Silent Child, which is approximately six months later, Jen is still trying to re-build the trust that has been lost between her and James. When DI Chris Jackson comes to her door and tells her that a child called Mikel has been found and is asking for Lisa Carter, Jen’s alter ego from when she was in the service, her whole life gets thrown into a tail spin yet again. Except this time she doesn’t do a runner, James recognises how much she needs to go back to find out what happened to this child and his mum.

In this section of Jen’s story, she doesn’t just click back into operation mode and the more she learns about what Mikel has gone through, the more it affects her, thanks to the person she is now. At several points in the story, we see her in tears and being comforted by James and Hannah. She can no longer take on these missions and turn the other cheek, because she has changed and become the one person she may have never become without having James and Max in her life.

Jen is one of the ultimate comeback girls, but she isn’t just coming back, she is coming back as a changed person from her days in the field.

About A Silent Child

The streets are no place for a child …

After a traumatic event that almost ripped Jen Garner’s family apart, life is finally starting to get back to normal.

Then a woman’s body is found in the river. Shortly afterwards, a young boy is discovered wandering the streets. He refuses to speak to anyone, just repeats one name over and over, to the confusion of most of the local authorities –but Jen knows exactly who he’s asking for, and it’s enough to make her blood run cold.

Buying Links

Amazon

Perfect lie is now in print via On Demand printing and will hopefully be in trade print in July…https://smile.amazon.co.uk/Perfect-Lie-gripping-thriller-twists-ebook/dp/B088ZQ3DSJ

Ruby Fiction for other retailers

About Claire Sheldon

Claire lives in Nottingham with her family, a cat called Whiskers and a dog called Podrick.

She suffers from Multiple Sclerosis and as a result of the disease had to reduce her hours working in insurance for an Insolvency Insurer. This spare time enabled her to study a creative writing course which inspired her to write her debut, Perfect Lie.

When Claire isn’t working she enjoys reading crime novels and listening to music – the band Jimmy Eat World is her biggest muse! Claire is also an avid reader and book blogger. The inspiration for her novels comes from the hours spent watching The Bill with her grandparents and auntie; then later, Spooks and other detective programmes like Inspector Morse, A Touch of Frost and Midsomer Murders.

To keep in touch with Claire, you can use the following links:

Twitter @ClaireEESheldon

Facebook Author Page https://www.facebook.com/clairesheldonauthor

Thank you for joining me on my blog Claire and good luck with your new book! Mx

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

International Bestseller Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe published as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and Choc Lit for other options.

Bestseller Sunny Days at the Beach is now available as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and at Choc Lit for other options.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon KindleAudioApple iBooksKobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKoboApple iBooks and also as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms –Amazon KindleApple iBooksKobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

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Memories of Childhood Holidays – Kirsty Ferry

Delighted to be joined by Choc Lit author Kirsty Ferry this week as she tells us about her childhood holiday memories. She has recently released a fun book, It Started With a Pirate which is already getting great reviews. Over to Kirsty

When I think about it, a lot of the things I experienced in my childhood holidays have found their way into my books. The Cornish cottage that Lissy stays in, in The Girl in the Photograph, for example, is vividly painted in my imagination as the cottage we used to stay in at Appledore, near Tiverton, in Devon – not to be confused with Appeldore on the coast down there. I know it’s a different county, but I recall the quirky, old, white-painted bungalow which had a huge garden out the back, and I used to climb up onto the lawn (it had steps up to it) and run to the far end of it where I could hide out amongst the trees and take root in the little wooded area with my books and drawing things.

On one memorable holiday there, we went for a touristy trip on the Tiverton canal, and the narrowboat was pulled along the towpath by a horse. I was in secondary school and loved my English lessons, and I knew we’d have to write about our holidays when we got back. The word I came up with to describe it then was ‘idyllic’ and I still think of those two things hand-in-hand, even nowadays. I also have fond memories of visiting Tintagel Castle in Cornwall a few years earlier, and looking at the Witch Rock Joel and Rosa visit in Summer at Carrick Park, when they are having their “Green Smoke Dragon Day”.

We used to have two holidays a year – I was very lucky, when I think about it. We’d go away the last Bank Holiday week in May, and also for a week in August, but always to somewhere in the UK. One year we did Land’s End in the May, and John O’Groats in the summer. We stayed for a couple of nights at my mum’s cousin’s flat in Scotland that year, and I remember on the last night we did a fashion show – she let me wear all her lovely dresses as I paraded around the house, and the finale was a beautiful white broderie anglaise frock, along with her wedding veil! She let me keep the veil, which was very kind.

Another time, we visited more of the Highlands of Scotland and went to Skye and Culloden and from then my deep love of all things Jacobite emerged. You’ll maybe notice that the Jacobites are a little bit of a recurring theme in my books – Killiecrankie and Culloden are mentioned by Angel in Spring at Taigh Fallon, and she loves the Skye Boat Song. She’s also extremely moved by ruined crofts and the Highland Clearances and even Eilean Donan Castle. Yes, that’s all me, that is…along with the fact Flora MacDonald is a kind of heroine to some of my heroines (and Nessa from the Schubert series has Flora as one of her middle names!). It Started with a Pirate is a prime example of how I’ve always wanted to do a Jacobite story, and finally I’ve done it – yay!

I remember that year, as we were driving up through the Highlands, I couldn’t help but be stunned by the scenery and the aforementioned crofts. I had some pastels and some charcoal and stuff with me (I always had art stuff and books and writing equipment on a long journey!)  and my Dad pulled the car over into a layby so I could draw it. My mum and my gran, who were also in the car, were less than impressed. That art stuff had come with me to Devon as well, because I bought a postcard of Stonehenge when we visited that on the way down, and we’d barely unpacked when I’d ran off and was scribbling away at a messy (and rather terrible) picture of Stonehenge in my private little woods!

One of the nicest things about the long journeys was lying down for a nap in the back with my head on my gran’s knees. She always, always wore a pinny (a Geordie term for an apron!) and it always had a special smell of baking and washing powder about it. I’d bury my nose into it, take a few deep breaths and that was me asleep for a few hours – or at least until someone said ‘Food!’ and I’d wake up like a shot. Not much changes!

I won’t dwell too much here on Canal Cottages in Wales, where we left after only a couple of days as the place was rank. The kettle blew up as soon as Mum switched it on, the springs were through the nasty smelly mattresses, there was a huge cockroach or something that came out in the bedroom – it survived a wallop to the head with one of my gran’s slippers, so goodness knows what it was – and it was a damp, horrid place and it rained relentlessly. I also won’t discuss the camping expedition near Stratford upon Avon, where we came back to the airbeds floating around the tent thanks to more torrential rain (and my “Stratford upon Avon” bracelet snapped in the car coming back. I was only about 5 and I vividly remember all the letters falling off it and me thrusting it at Dad and demanding he ‘Fix it!’ even though he was driving). Or the caravan holiday in Scotland where someone had a drunken argument every night yelling, ‘Christopher! Christopher!’ in the van next to us… .but who knows – those experiences might yet find their way into a story; and if they do, you’ll know it’s based on fact!

About Kirsty Ferry

Kirsty Ferry is from the North East of England and lives there with her husband and son. She won the English Heritage/Belsay Hall National Creative Writing competition in 2009 and has had articles and short stories published in various magazinesHer work also appears in several anthologies, incorporating such diverse themes as vampires, crime, angels and more. 

Kirsty loves writing ghostly mysteries and interweaving fact and fiction. The research is almost as much fun as writing the book itself, and if she can add a wonderful setting and a dollop of history, that’s even better. 

Her day job involves sharing a building with an eclectic collection of ghosts, which can often prove rather interesting. 

For more information on Kirsty visit: 

www.twitter.com/kirsty_ferry
https://www.facebook.com/kirsty.ferry.author/ 

About It Started With a Pirate

Coffee, cake and cats …

These are a few of Lexie Farrington’s favourite things, and when she walks into the Thistledean Café in Edinburgh, she’s delighted to find all three: coffee, cake, a big black cat on a purple lead being held by a very grumpy-looking pirate. Okay, maybe she wasn’t quite expecting that one …

Of course, Billy McCreadie isn’t really a pirate; he just knows a lot about them and is on his way to give a historical talk to school kids, hence the get-up. He’s also in desperate need of a cat sitter.

When Lexie steps in, little does she realise that Billy will be the key to a hidden Edinburgh she would have never discovered herself, and he might also be the man to help solve a certain piratical puzzle of her own …

Buying link for book – It Started with a Pirate (Schubert Book 4) eBook: Ferry, Kirsty: AmazonSmile: Kindle Store

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

International Bestseller Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe published as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and Choc Lit for other options.

Bestseller Sunny Days at the Beach is now available as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and at Choc Lit for other options.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon KindleAudioApple iBooksKobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKoboApple iBooks and also as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms –Amazon KindleApple iBooksKobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

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My Little Corner of Paradise by Marie Laval

Quite a moving post this week from Marie Laval this week as she shares with us thoughts about her garden. I swear my blog guests are determined to make me feel emotional, or am I just sensitive? Marie writes for Choc Lit and her latest novel Angel of the Lost Treasure is released on 23 February 2021. Over to Marie

We moved into our current house about five years ago. It was the end of May – my favourite time of the year. For one reason or another when we viewed the house before it was always raining and I hadn’t paid much attention to the garden. To be honest, whereas I loved the house, the garden hadn’t made much of an impression. It was flat and quite small. There were raised beds and a nice patio area. It was nothing special.

How wrong I was…That very first morning was magical. I got up really early, made myself a cup of tea and went outside feeling quite stressed and my head full of all the jobs to be done – admin and paperwork, unpacking mountains of boxes, tidying up and settling into our new house…But the moment I stepped into the garden, all the stress and the worries slipped away. The sky was pastel pink and baby blue. The air was still and quiet, except for the birds chirping and singing, and there was a lovely view of the hills across the valley which I hadn’t noticed before.

I have to make a confession. I love flowers. I love the scents of freshly mowed grass or of the garden after the rain. I love walking in the countryside or in the woods and breathing in the scents of bluebells and wild garlic in the spring. And I love visiting gardens when we are on holidays, taking photos and making notes of names of plants and flowers. But I don’t know the first thing about gardening… I used to sit down in front of the television in the evenings to watch programmes like Gardener’s World, the Chelsea Flower Show, Ground Force or Love Your Garden or only to nod off on the sofa after half an hour… There is something soothing about gardening programmes that sends me straight to sleep!

Therefore I leave the gardening to my partner who has done a great job turning what was a rather bland space into a riot of colours – my only contributions being watering the flower tubs in summer, and Leo the gnome, which I won at a ‘Name that Gnome Competition’ at my school.

Like that very first morning, being in the garden always fills me with peace and contentment. I love nothing more than being out there to drink my first cup of tea before work, enjoy family meals or a glass of wine when the summer evening stretches into the ‘blue hour’. My garden is truly my little corner of paradise.

Thank you for a lovely post and photographs, Marie and best wishes for your new novel Angel of the Lost Treasure Mx

About Marie Laval

Originally from Lyon in France, Marie has lived in the Rossendale Valley in Lancashire for the past few years. She writes both contemporary and historical romance. Her novels are published by Choc Lit and include best selling contemporary romantic suspense novels LITTLE PINK TAXI and ESCAPE TO THE LITTLE CHATEAU, shortlisted for the Jackie Collins Romantic Suspense category of the 2021 RNA Awards, as well as A PARIS FAIRY TALE and BLUEBELL’S CHRISTMAS MAGIC.

Her latest novel, ANGEL OF THE LOST TREASURE, will be released in February 2021.

Marie also contributes to the best selling Miss Moonshine’s Emporium anthologies together with eight author friends from Yorkshire and Lancashire.

You can get in touch with Marie on

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/marie.laval.9/

And Twitter https://twitter.com/MarieLaval1

About Angel of the Lost Treasure

An ancient secret hidden within a mother’s song …

When young widow, Marie-Ange Norton is invited to Beauregard in France by the mysterious Monsieur Malleval to collect an inheritance, she has no choice but to accept.

But when she embarks on the voyage with her fiery-tempered travelling companion Capitaine Hugo Saintclair, little does she know what waits for her across the sea in turbulent nineteenth-century France on the eve of Napoleon’s return from exile. When she arrives, she is taken aback by Malleval’s fascination with her family – seemingly inspired by his belief they are connected to a sacred relic he’s read about in coded manuscripts by the Knights Templar.

As it becomes clear that Malleval’s obsession has driven him to madness, Marie-Ange is horrified to realise she is more the man’s prisoner than his guest. Not only that, but Hugo is the only person who might be able to help her, and he could represent a different kind of danger …

Angel of the Lost Treasure will be released on 23rd February and is available for pre-order amazon and kobo.

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

International Bestseller Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe published as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and Choc Lit for other options.

Bestseller Sunny Days at the Beach is now available as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and at Choc Lit for other options.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon KindleAudioApple iBooksKobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKoboApple iBooks and also as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms –Amazon KindleApple iBooksKobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

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Three Lesser Known Facts About Me – Helena Dixon

Helena Dixon joins me on my blog this week to reveal three lesser known facts about herself! Helena is currently writing a series of cozy crime novels, the latest is Murder in the Belltower. She is part of a group of writers who have kept me sane during the last year with weekly Zooms, so she will always have a special place in my heart. Her sage advice about writing and life is invaluable and it’s great to get to know even more about her with this post. Over to Helena …

Lesser Known Fact One

I have severe dyscalculia. I cannot remember or retain numbers. I see them jumbled up or back to front. I don’t know my own phone number or car registration. I struggle to read a digital clock or use a calculator. I have poor spatial recognition and have difficulty following directions. I cannot visualize distances and don’t know my left from my right without making the L with my thumb to decide. Dates and times are difficult and as for remembering birthdays etc, well, let’s just say I am not your woman.

I rely heavily on my calendar and diary. I have only ever used an ATM twice in my life and only acquired a mobile phone last year. I rarely make or receive calls on it, I use it for messaging and as a camera. Dyscalculia is part of a group of disorders carried genetically, dyslexia and dyspraxia are also carried on the same gene. I don’t have dyslexia, but I am quite dyspraxic.

Lesser Known Fact Two

One of my passions is architecture. I love buildings and the impact the built environment has on people. I love church and cathedral architecture and studied it at A level. I’m fortunate to live in the UK where there are buildings that go back thousands of years.

The human story of the people who made those buildings and lived, died and worshipped in them is absolutely fascinating. I use a lot of this passion in my writing. My favourite period is the Georgian era when they seem to have really understood the dimensions of space. I highly recommend the Avoncroft museum which has a fascinating selection of buildings and a brilliant collection of telephone boxes and exchanges.

Lesser Known Fact Three

My faith is very important to me and is central to the way I live my life. I don’t believe that going to church every Sunday makes you a Christian anymore than standing in a garage once a week would make you a mechanic. For me, faith is a living thing. It’s about your service to others and your care and regard for those around you and your own personal spiritual journey.

Faith is a deeply personal thing and has to be discovered by the individual. Not religion, but faith. Everyone has their own beliefs. It’s what makes us all human after all. What it should never do is divide us. Instead, it should bring us together. The central tenet of all the worlds faiths commands us to Love one another. That to me means love in accepting our differences, finding the positives and doing our best to forgive, accept and support our fellow humans. I rarely speak about my faith, I don’t feel that I should need to. I hope I can live it instead.

Thank you for sharing the above with us, Helena. Absolutely fascinating. I also love buildings, especially ecclesiastical ones. My belief systems, even though I don’t give them a particular label these days, are also important to me and I applaud yours. Mx

About Helena Dixon

Helena Dixon

Helena Dixon splits her time between the Black Country and Devon. Married to the same man for over thirty-five years she has three daughters, a cactus called Spike, and a crazy cockapoo. She is allergic to adhesives, apples, tinsel and housework. Her addictions of choice are coffee and reality TV.

She was winner of The Romance Prize in 2007 and Love Story of the Year 2010 as Nell Dixon. She now writes historical 1930’s set cozy crime.

Nell enjoys hearing from readers and you can read her news and contact her via her website at https://www.nelldixon.com, visit her blog at http://www.nelldixonrw.blogspot.com, find her on Twitter @NellDixon and friend her on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/Nell-Dixon/228642037151856

About Murder in the Belltower

Kitty Underhay’s hymn book is open… at murder.

Winter, 1933. Kitty Underhay is enjoying a restorative break from sleuthing on a visit to her family at Enderley Hall. The only thing marring her peace – aside from the uncomfortable sensation she has of being watched – is the obvious history between her beau, ex-army captain Matthew Bryant and another guest, the beautiful Juliet Vanderstafen. So, when the parish clerk is found dead on her front doorstep, Kitty leaps at the chance of distraction.

The police are happy to conclude that Miss Plenderleith met her unfortunate end on a patch of ice, but Kitty isn’t convinced this was a case of bad weather and worse luck. And when the Reverend Crabtree fails to show for tea the next day, she heads to the church to speak to him. But she arrives to find the clergyman hanging from the bell rope, dead.

With Matt seemingly wrapped up with his alluring Austrian, Kitty must solve the case on her own. But as she snoops into parish affairs, she makes some less-than-saintly discoveries. Just who has broken the sixth commandment? Meanwhile the killer is preparing a churchyard grave for Kitty, and she’ll have to use all her wits to avoid falling in…

Buying Link https://t.co/qivg75A3qj

To learn about the other books in the series check out Helena’s website at https://www.nelldixon.com

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

International Bestseller Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe published as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and Choc Lit for other options.

Bestseller Sunny Days at the Beach is now available as an eBook, audio and paperback – Amazon KindleApple iBooksKoboNook BooksGoogle Play and at Choc Lit for other options.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon KindleAudioApple iBooksKobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKoboApple iBooks and also as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms –Amazon KindleApple iBooksKobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

Posted in Uncategorized | 11 Comments