If you’ve read my Author Bio, or my About page, you’ll know that I grew up in Coventry, England. My family have deep ties to the City and most of them still live there, so I visit often. When I returned to the UK in 2012, I spent my first six months back in the country living there again, only moving away due to my husband’s work. It’s a place that holds a lot of happy memories for me.
Coventry is also the real-world setting for my Ambeth books. Alma lives on my old street, and the Gate of Oak is in the Memorial Park, a place that has always held magic for me. It is telling that, when I sat down to write my first book, Coventry was the inspiration and starting point. It is a city I still hold close to my heart.
The Bloke and I are hoarders. We’re not obsessive – we don’t keep things like old newspapers, boxes or general household goods, but we both are easily attached to things that we consider to be of sentimental value. As a result, our house is filled with stuff, even more so now the wedding is over.
On a whim, we decided to try and downsize and sell some of our things in a car boot sale, creating some space and hopefully earning some cash in the process.
It was an eye opening experience.
We found a reputable car boot about half an hour away that didn’t require you to sign up and only charged £8.00 per car. We were ruthless and threw together a load of things that we could possibly sell, and at 5.45am we found ourselves stood in a muddy field in freezing temperatures… as you do.
Six hours later, we had sold all but one box of the stuff we had brought, and I had a brilliant time talking to loads of lovely people. I learned a lot, and I was already planning the next one by the time we drove home. Continue reading →
The plan for Friday evening last week was to drive up North to visit The Bloke’s Sister (my new sister-in-law!) as it was her birthday the following day. However, the snow heavens opened, The Bloke’s school closed early and so we decided to risk it and drive up at lunchtime instead. There wasn’t even a hint of snow there and so we spent the Friday afternoon and Saturday catching up, playing with Harvey and Charlie (my sis-in-law’s Goldendoodle and my mother-in-laws retriever), going through some social media (sis-in-law is a blogger and photographer) and eating the BEST fish and chips that I’ve ever had at the Garden Room Cafe in Braithwell. It was nice to kick-back and relax in a different surrounding. Continue reading →
Every Sunday evening between 7 pm and 8 pm (GMT) bloggers from across the globe unite and take part in the Bloggers Bash Blog Bash Chat using the hashtag #BlogBashChat on Twitter.
It’s an hour of introductions, learning, connecting with fellow bloggers, and fun. The Bash Chat following is growing every week and the engagement is incredible. One of our dedicated bloggers is Australian and gets up at 5 am just to take part!
We don’t want you to miss out on this fun interaction. It’s just an hour out of your Sunday (which goes very fast!), but the possibility of finding answers to your blogging questions, making new friends, and discovering alternative blogs to follow is worth your time. Continue reading →
Now in its fourth year, the Annual Bloggers Bash returns bigger and better than ever. The venue is booked (check out my info post for the venue here), and the committee is busy working behind the scenes to ensure the day is full of fun, learning opportunities, networking, and, of course, the blogtastic AWARDS CEREMONY.
Over the next few months, we will be sharing various posts about the award nominations, the attendees, our writing competition, and the other fantastic opportunities that will be available for those bloggers who attend.
To enjoy this day out in London surrounded by fellow bloggers, we suggest you sign up for the early bird tickets TODAY, so you don’t miss out. Continue reading →
In August the brother of my oldest friend shared an advert on Facebook for a Sci Fi convention taking place in Manchester on the 2nd and 3rd December. Now, those of you who follow the blog regularly will know that The Bloke is an enormous geek, but while I like to embrace his geekiness, the convention wouldn’t necessarily be the sort of thing I would actively seek out. That is, until I saw that one person in particular would be appearing: Continue reading →
I am. It’s one of the highlights of my year – this will be my fourth year of attending (I’ve been to every single one) and I credit this event with being one of the biggest inspirations to pursue a different career path. The people that I know from the Bash have become valued friends, and have been instrumental in developing my confidence as both a writer and as a person.
A really interesting article from Hugh about the validity and necessity of blog comments. Please don’t like or comment on my reblog, hop on over to Hugh’s Views and News and let him know your thoughts!
I’ve always believed that leaving and responding to comments on a blog is one of the actions at the very heart of what blogging is all about. Imagine my surprise when I then read that some bloggers are turning off comments being left on their blogs for good.
If you’re lucky enough to get lots of comments left on your blog, then responding to them can become overwhelming. In the almost four years I’ve been blogging, I’ve approved and responded to nearly 30,000 comments, and it can sometimes take me a whole morning responding. However, I’ve always had the attitude that if somebody has taken the time to read and leave a comment on one of my posts, then it’s only right and polite that I acknowledge them and write a response.
‘Treat every visitor to your blog, as you would any guest to your house.”
The Bloke and I met up with a friend that we haven’t seen in a few years. As we were chatting and catching up, he asked us a question that has been in my head ever since:
‘So, what’s the plan next?’
I suddenly realised that, for the first time in over two years, I didn’t have a plan, or goal, or even a general direction that I wanted to go in. Since 2015 I have changed my job, got engaged, got married and been on our honeymoon, and these large life adventures have predominantly taken up the majority of my headspace. Now that it’s all done and dusted, what do I do now? Continue reading →
It’s Wednesday, and time to wander again. I recently visited the French coastal town of Biarritz, and this week I’m going to wander to Le Musee De La Mer – the Biarritz Aquarium.
Opened to the public in 1933, the building is a stylish example of Art Deco architecture, much like the nearby Casino. However, the origins of the aquarium go back a few decades earlier, when the Marquis de Folin convinced the French authorities to commence scientific studies of the Bay of Biscay. He wanted to create a ‘seat of learning’ where people could come and learn about the oceans, a field of study that was gaining in popularity at the time. The First World War halted development of his idea, and it wasn’t until the 1930s that it came to fruition.
Perched upon cliffs high above the town, the Aquarium looks out onto the sea…