I’m lost for words…

… which believe me is a little unusual for an author!

Just recently I have been feeling more than a little lost. My writing has been slow and getting words onto a page has been like pulling teeth. It’s the reason I haven’t posted anything here for a while; every word I can muster has been put into a WIP.

Then this morning, I woke up to some wonderful news.

The beautiful and talented Maria K.  has been steadily putting her books into Audiobook form, and has quite a catalogue building up.

I’ve thought about putting my books into audiobook form, but as I’m struggling just to get my books finished, edited and published in e-book, I’ve been putting it off as I only want to focus on one project at a time.

So when Maria asked me if I was okay with her putting the Land Far Away books out in audiobook form, I knew that it was a sign that I should dip my toe into the Audio Sea…

I didn’t expect it to happen very quickly, so I kept the news quiet…

But this morning I woke up to a wonderfully sweet surprise!

 

Maria had already been working on getting the Land Far Away books into audio; she engaged the services of Trista Shaye to narrate the books  and this morning,  I woke up to something that cheered me up immensely!

I was feeling yucky (I’m currently fighting some kind of virus) and tired and generally depressed about my lack of usefulness. I slipped into Facebook to see what my friends from the rest of the world had been getting up to…

The first Land Far Away book had appeared in Audio!

Ahkoo is actually the second book in the series (don’t question it – Audible has its own timetable by the looks of it) and is the one that my oldest son inspired – the main character was his creation. Trista has a smooth, calm voice and manages the strange words that I made up with aplomb – she brings out the characters personalities perfectly!

I just wish there was a way of combining Maria’s gorgeous pictures with the Audio too… maybe that’s a project for another day.

Now I feel so much better – I suppose I ought to get on with some author things, you know, writing, editing etc…

But I’ll leave you with the blurb:

While all respectable fligaphluphs make a point to stay away from the enticing lair of the terrible and powerful Snafflewich,

Ahkoo is determined to do the opposite and pay her a visit.

An adventurous and irrepressibly curious Fligaphluph, Ahkoo’s parents have trouble getting him to go to bed at sunrise when all the other Fligaphluphs do. So his Granddad tells him about the Snafflewich, hoping to make him stay in bed when the sun is in the sky.

Unfortunately, this has the opposite effect and off goes Ahkoo to discover what the Snafflewich really is like…

All the links to Ahkoo in all his glorious forms you can ever need can be found here

I hope you enjoy listening!

Ancient History, Cake and Time Travel

I sometimes forget that there was once a world without the technological miracle / horror that is the Internet and Computers.  I work with it every day and it sucks up large tracts of my time…

…hmm, maybe that’s what The Internet lives on,  the time that it sucks out of its users…

…there might be a story there; I bagsie it!…

Ahem.

Anyhoo… I lived through the era when Computing was just starting out. My Dad bought a BBC computer (before you ask, he had an A & a B at the same time) when I was at Primary School and I was quickly hooked on being able to type on the keyboard  and see the letters appear on the screen. I even borrowed one of my Dad’s Computer Magazines and wrote a simple programme.
You might think that would have sent me down the programming route, but I found that I was more interested in what a computer could do for me rather than what I could do with the computer.

It wasn’t until I was doing my GCSE’s that I started using a Word Processor on a computer; up until then, the only subject that used computers was Maths and that was usually to play with a LOGO Turtle and draw geometric shapes. That was when the lightbulb went on in my mind for writing and I spent two years worth of lunchtimes writing a nonsense play with my friends.

I didn’t start this blog until 2009… in fact my very first post was an explanation of the various types of jargon that I used in my posts.

Highly enlightening…
…Sarcasm intended… why haven’t they come up with a sarcasm font yet? They can do almost anything else…

2009. I’ve been blogging  for seven years and writing seriously (for publication) for at least five of those. O’course, I’ve been writing for a lot long than that, but it wasn’t until I started teaching that I found I needed another outlet for my emotions and writing was it.

In that time I’ve eaten a lot of Cake… *looks ruefully at her figure*… so joining Cake & Quill seemed a logical step. I’ve decided that I’ll write a story for another one of their anthologies… this time the theme is: CAKE

Easy, huh? All I have to do is write a short story involving Cake somewhere… sadly, Puff has decided to go on holiday again, so actually writing it is causing me some trouble.

The latest Cake & Quill Anthology, Hearts and Other Dead Thingshas received a great review from Author/Blogger  Suzanna Burke – you can find it on Amazon and on her Blog; Sooz Says StuffRemember, every book sold means that the profit from the book goes to the charity we are supporting.

I can’t seem to keep my mind on one thing at the moment, so in an effort to keep myself actually writing something, I’ve been working on “Teacups and Time Travel”… and it’s sunday… so let’s have a Sneak Peek Sunday!

Teacups & Time Travel

cover

 

Elizabeth laid in her bed, staring up at the ceiling. In the parlour, Thirrin had curled up on the couch and Elizabeth could hear him snoring despite the thick blanket she’d laid over him.

Why would they send him to talk to me? If he’s spotted and captured, he’ll end up dead on some alchemists table, being taken apart for ingredients. She shivered. Not for the first time she wondered why she’d settled here in the first place. Stemsin is Zonlasin without the ethics or advanced technology.

The thought of the other Earth Analogues out in the Hall of Worlds made her heart flutter. No. she took a deep breath and quelled the sense of anticipation that had filled her the moment the Faerie Dragon had appeared. I gave all that up. I gave up being that person when the Council stopped me from saving them. One breath wasn’t enough to calm her, so she settled into the meditation pattern that she’d learned in Quargard, one deep breath held for ten seconds before letting it out slowly. That breath was followed by another, and by the time she’d released the third, she’d dropped into sleep.

Then she began dreaming…

A knock at the library door heralded the entry of Mr Booth. “The Chief Constable begs a moment of your time Lady Beadington-Ritterson.” Uncharacteristically, he didn’t come all the way through the door, merely pushed his head and shoulders through the gap.

Elizabeth stared at him. The Chief Constable… Lady… for me to be called that… no, surely not… it has to be something else

Mrs Butcher stood up and moved behind her. Elizabeth could feel the warmth of the housekeeper’s body behind her suddenly chilled flesh. She drew strength from Mrs Butcher’s presence and nodded, not trusting herself to speak.

The butler appeared to understand and turned away.

Elizabeth heard him murmur to someone outside, then, as he opened the door fully and ushered the Chief Constable through, she also heard the patter of running feet. Two directions? I can understand sending a maid to the kitchens to make refreshments, but where would the other one be going?

The figure of the Chief Constable, resplendent in his dark blue uniform, silver epaulettes and buttons gleaming, wiped the thought out of her head. He swept into the room, tall blue hat held in white gloved hands and strode towards her. Booth took the top hat as the chief constable came to a halt in front of her.

Out of habit, Elizabeth rose and greeted him, hand held out to shake his. He took it, sank to one knee in front of her and looked up into her eyes. “I have some terrible news, Lady Beadington-Ritterson, I would suggest that you sit down.”

She raised him to his feet and as he stepped back releasing her hand, sank back onto her seat as gracefully as she could manage with suddenly trembling knees. He swallowed.

“I have the unwanted and tragic duty to inform you that Lord Victor Beadington, William Beadington-Ritterson and Hamish Beadington-Ritterson perished in the village square of Yeracha an hour ago.”

Elizabeth’s tongue felt huge and numb as the fear that had been lodged at the back of her mind ever since the news of her tutor’s death made itself known. She worked her jaw for a moment, until her tongue felt normal again, swallowed and managed. “How?”

The Chief Constable looked behind himself at a nearby chair. “Do you mind awfully, if I sit, down, my Lady? My limbs have no strength in them.”

She nodded. “Of course.”

He sat down with a sigh. “The vehicle they were travelling in had developed an engine fault and the passengers were sitting inside, waiting for the engineer to finish his repairs. As he tinkered with the engine, there was a sudden swelling in the steam condenser and the engine exploded. The only person to escape unscathed was Sir James Starley and that was by mere chance that he happened to be talking to the local blacksmith in his forge at the time.”

“Then how many people perished in total, including…” Elizabeth’s voice faltered.

“Two thirds of the village, My Lady. The village school had been let out early so that the children could see the conveyance and many of those who work around the square were there as well. An estimated one hundred and twenty souls were sent on to the Goddess’ cauldron for rebirth.” He pulled out a spotless handkerchief and wiped his brow.

“I see. Were there no survivors at all?” she asked as there was a soft knock in the family pattern at the door. Mrs Butcher called out for the maid to enter.

Booth opened it and ushered a maid into the room, pushing a tea trolley. The maid left it beside the fireplace and left quickly. The butler then served tea to Elizabeth and her guest, who appeared to be relieved at the interruption.

Once they both had a cup of tea in hand, Booth returned to his position beside the door.

Elizabeth repeated the question and the Chief Constable sipped before he answered.

“Several of the school children were far enough away to only receive minor injuries, but those inside the carriage, the engineer, the flag runner and all of those who had crowded close to the machine were killed instantly.”

She nodded and pushed her untasted cup away. “Thank you for coming to tell me. I appreciate that it isn’t the most pleasant duty in the world for a constable of any rank to have to do.”

He smiled, sadness etched on his heavy features. “It is one of those duties which have to be done, my Lady and it is all the more upsetting when I have to come to such a prominent family with such bad tidings.”

She found her hands trembling and folded them into her lap in an effort to remain calm. “I appreciate the personal attention.”

The smile gave way to a frown and he looked at her. “Is there anything I can do for you, Lady Elizabeth? Do you have any other relatives to help you in this sad hour?”

She blinked and swayed in her chair for a moment before her back automatically stiffened. “Only my Aunt, the Duchess of Arking Vale, but I suspect that has already been set in motion.” She glanced toward where Booth stood beside the tea trolley. He inclined his head just enough to tell her that her hunch was correct.

“Then if you wish it, I shall leave a constable with you to fend off those who may try to disturb you unannounced.” He picked up his hat and stood, looking uncomfortable. “I need to return to Yeracha, so if you will forgive me…”

WWWWWWOOOOHHHHHOOOOOOO!!!!!!

It’s here, it’s finally here!

*dances around the room*

TTATE Collection (1)

 

That’s right, THE TOWER AND THE EYE has been let loose upon the world of ebooks!!!

AND….

On Facebook right now, there’s a party going on! Yup, I’m having a launch party!!
*Can you tell I’m excited?*
So if you’re on Facebook why don’t you pop in to the party and see what’s going on…

PARTYYY!!!!

There’s a whole lot more in this edition of the book than there was in the separate ones; Blue Hour Publishing worked hard with me to enhance each book’s potential. There is also some brand new content  only seen by my editor and beta readers, so even if you’ve already bought / read the first four books, this one is worth getting!!!

So let’s take a peek at the new content shall we?

*grins wickedly*

A quick meal and several changes of clothing later, they were ready to go. Aranok kept glancing at Kalytia whose beauty shone even more in the tight fitting fighting harness of the Dark Mistress. Her blue dragonscale armour hugged her figure and the smooth faceless helm hid her own face completely, only her eyes were visible through a slot, making her allure all the more dangerous.

On one hip she carried a long coiled whip and on the other a wicked looking sword, its blade writhing like a snake moving through the grass. Her blue dragonscale tunic hugged her figure and fell over matching leggings which ended in spike heeled boots.

Kaltyia took a moment to check her sword and Aranook shuddered. Those spines on the back edge would make for a very messy wound and you could probably open someone’s throat with just the teeth on the hilt. He thought, trying hard not to cut himself on his own blade as he sharpened it. At least the sharkskin and wire will make for a good grip; you’d need one with the amount of blood using it is going to create.

“Where did you get all that?” the half elf asked.

Kalytia slid the blade into its sheath, the dragon headed hilt sparkling where the light hit the gems in the eye and teeth.

“I described the fighting harness of the women we… Loric encountered in the dungeon in Galivor to Eliethor. She had the leatherworkers make it and then she and a mage of Tyr modified it with some of the details from your report of the dungeon in Valdier and Kraaz’s information from Jinra.” Kalytia ran a self conscious hand over her body. “I’ve only worn it once, but it’s really quite liberating. There’s nothing to get in the way of quick movements and the Dragonscale stretches in a way that normal leather armour doesn’t.”

Joran grinned at her.

“If I weren’t in love with Julissa, you’d just have become a target for my affections.”

Want to read more? Well I’ll be posting excerpts in the launch party today or you can go pick up a copy – it’s on sale for the introductory price of £1.99!!

“The Tower and the Eye” should be available on all of Amazon’s sites…. please enjoy!!!!!!