New place to read my work…

I’m always on the lookout for new readers… and I came across this site called Tapas while I was browsing my timeline on Facebook.

It’s like Wattpad but has Comic Artists as well as Writers.

So now that SB is three months old (where has the time gone?) I’m going to start putting myself out there again. I’ll be publishing “Teacups & Time Travel” on Tapas in chapters until I finish the storyline, so come and read along with me…

Click on the image to go to the book!

On Wattpad I’ll be working my way through “The Seven Towers: The Lost Princess”  – the first three chapters are already up there, along with my book of poetry

Click on the Cover to go to the book!

I’ll also start adding new posts to my Patreon page again – and should you feel so inclined, I’d be delighted to add you to my patrons…

There will also be some new things available soon, so keep your eyes peeled and watch this space!!!

Poverty, Food and Politics…

Before I start, I want you to go and read this blog – believe me it’s worth it!

You may remember that  until a year ago, my family and I were considered Homeless by the local government. We’d been kicked out of the Privately Rented house that we’d lived in for 13 years; the Landlord having decided to sell the house because they couldn’t be bothered to rent it out anymore.

I’m not going to speculate the real reason that the Landlord wanted us out – it’s too depressing.

We were put into Temporary Accommodation by the council (due to my partner’s disability and the autism of 2 of our 3 children) that happened to be a fairly decent house. We were lucky in that we also had a lot of support from various agencies (again because of the disabilities in the household) so our poverty level wasn’t as bad as it could have been.

We still had to subsist on Ready Meals and Takeaways though – the Temp Accomodation didn’t have a cooker until the Kid’s Social Worker raised the roof and insisted that the council buy one for the house!

We eventually got the house we are now living in and I am pleased to say that we’re settling in nicely (it takes a while for Autistic People to settle in anywhere) and making plans to decorate etc.
That isn’t to say that we are out of the woods financially yet.
Not even going back into Teaching would do that at the moment – until I can drive and afford the car insurance hike; until I can update my subject and education skills so that I’m considered worth employing; until I can afford the childcare that full time work would require (for two of my four children) and until I can be certain that my disabled partner will be able to look after himself here without needing a constant companion.

The UK Govt seem determined to push us back down with their policies – nothing I have seen coming out of Westminster appears to be designed to help those of us at this end of the wealth spectrum. The money is being removed from the system designed originally to support those of us who found ourselves in this sort of situation.

Jack Monroe, other chefs and cooks can work miracles with basic ingredients, but without the money to buy the ingredients or pay for the energy and equipment needed to actually cook those ingredients, thousands of people below the Poverty Line won’t be able to use the recipes. Austerity policies are causing this and nothing is getting better for many people in Poverty.

Until the Politicians do something about it that is.

Author Identity Crisis…

Meet one of my favourite artists… click the picture and visit his website…

*grins* That headline makes it sound so dramatic…

It’s not a true identity crisis of course… it’s one of those where my author identity is clashing with the real life me. I have two Pen names – Kira Morgana and A. E. Churchyard – but they don’t get  much notice to be honest.

If you google Kira Morgana, you get  404,000 results. Only the first page (the important one really) will have exact results from me. There will be others scattered through the next 3 pages – mostly because Kira Morgana is the main focus for my publishing.  Any others will be about other people.T
This is completely normal when you’re what the Publishing Industry & HMRC calls a “Hobbyist” Author.

Why do they call me that? Well, it’s because I don’t earn enough money off my books to live on. *eye roll*

If I google A. E. Churchyard, I get 354,000 results. On that one  only the first page will be about me. Again, that’s the important page, but the reason there aren’t many other posts is that Churchyard is less prolific (she’ll have a few more if I can manage to get them edited and get covers…) and tends to deal with darker subjects.

If you google my real name – Mandy Ward – you get everyone and anyone other than me…

This is both a good thing and a bad thing.

Good – it means that I can go for Teaching Interviews without my writing being discovered unless I want to mention it.  This was the whole reason that I started in publishing using pen names. I have a private life this way… not that it’s all that necessary – I don’t exactly have paparazzi wanting to find me to take my picture… *grins*

Bad – I am on a lot of social media as myself. If you become friends with me on Facebook for example, you aren’t friends with Kira Morgana or A. E. Churchyard,  you’re friends with Mandy Ward.
The problem with that, is that if other Publishing Industry people are trying to contact me and they know me from facebook, they don’t tend to know my pen names.
Also, when I mention to a friend that I write and publish books, they tend to look me up through my real name… which doesn’t exist in Publishing (well, unless you go right back to my first publications as a teenager) and then they can’t find my books.

It’s a tricky subject.