Category Archives: General

Progress Report ~ It Happened in Gastown #sweetromance

progress report

Progress Report

I’ve been conspicuously absent from my blog, so I thought it was about time I got my skates on and wrote a post. This one is a progress report on my work-in-progress – It Happened in Gastown.

The book is written. Yay! There could be an epilogue but that can be written and edited separately.

Currently, this episode of the “It Happened” series is longer than the first (It Happened on Dufferin Terrace), but that’s okay. Many series have different length books in them. Harry Potter comes to mind.

It Happened in Gastown has been through Grammarly – copied and pasted from Scrivener one scene at at a time – and corrections made in both applications.

Next, I compiled the entire document to word format (.docx) using Scrivener and imported it to Autocrit. That process wasn’t without its challenges. It seems the version of Safari I’m running on my MacBook Air and Autocrit didn’t like each other. Only a portion of my document loaded. Nothing past chapter 15 and there are 21 chapters in total.

Thanks to Kevin at Autocrit, that problem is sorted and I’m happily editing away using Chrome. Again, I’m making the changes in both applications so if something goes pear-shaped (as things sometimes do), I’ll have an up-to-date copy.

The Office 365 version of Word has the ability to read your manuscript back to you, but since I don’t have that version, I depend on either Scrivener or Natural Reader to do this step for me. The beauty of doing it in Scrivener is the corrections only need to be made once.

Finally, it’s off to my readers who will undoubtedly pick out errors that slipped through the cracks.

My plan is to post a cover reveal at some point during this process with pre-order links for kindle and kobo.

If you would be interested in hosting a cover reveal for It Happened in Gastown, leave a comment and I’ll get back to you with the details.

 

Please welcome Katherine and Jared from YESTERDAY TODAY ALWAYS

Today, I have the pleasure of not just one guest in the “hot seat” for a fireside chat, but two. Katherine Murphy-Whithorn and Jared Martin, from Melanie Robertson-King’s novel, YESTERDAY TODAY ALWAYS, are with me here today.

Can you tell us a bit about YESTERDAY TODAY ALWAYS?

Katherine: Unbeknownst to me, I have a stalker. I thought he was just a poor homeless bloke, plenty of them in Aberdeen, so never paid much attention to him.  That’s it. In a nutshell, it’s a psychological, romantic suspense, thriller.

I understand you met under somewhat unusual circumstances. What can you tell us about that?

Jared: I still have the mark on the top of my foot where she rammed a spike heel down on me. *chuckles*

Katherine: It wasn’t that bad. * swats playfully at his arm* I was looking at CDs in HMV and backed up to move away from the bin. I didn’t know Jared was behind me and I trod on his foot. He’s never let me forget it.

I imagine it was rather painful at the time.

Jared: If she’d been half an inch closer to my toes, she would have hit the steel cap in my work boots, and I wouldn’t have felt a thing. *winks at Kat*

What do you do for a living?

Katherine: I own a bookstore on Exchequer Row – As the Pages Turn – you might have heard of it? *far away look crosses her face*

Jared: I work offshore on the Alba Ecosse platform.

After a long time apart, you recently found each other again. How?

Katherine: I had sent my part-timer, Melissa, up to the corner of Shiprow and Union Street to collect the new chalkboard sign, so it didn’t get nicked like the old one. I advertise our shop up there because of the increased foot traffic.

Jared: I happened along, onshore for a few weeks, and saw her struggling with it, so I offered to carry it for her.

Back up one second. Katherine, you just said you advertise our shop. Earlier you said you owned.

Katherine: *takes a deep breath* My husband, and I started the business before he was killed in the London Bombings when he was off on a book buying trip.

I didn’t mean to upset you. I’m sorry for your loss. *leans over and rubs the back of Katherine’s left hand*

Jared, before I interrupted you, you were saying?

Yeah. I picked up the sign and carried it down the street and into the shop. Poor kid never have managed on her own. It’s a heavy sucker.

Katherine: You could have knocked me over with a feather I was so gobsmacked to hear Jared’s voice and see his face. I didn’t think I would ever see him again.

If you don’t mind me asking, how did you fall apart in the beginning?

Katherine: My father was high up in the Royal Bank of Scotland. My parents didn’t approve of mine and Jared’s relationship, so when the chance came to get me away from Aberdeen, he accepted the position in Canada. They dragged me off kicking and screaming.

Jared: Didn’t approve was an understatement. Back then, I was living in a grotty bedsit trying to work my way through school. Not only was I from the wrong side of Aberdeen, I was from the wrong side of the border.

I thought I detected an English accent. What part of England?

Jared: North Yorkshire.

Recently, Melanie redesigned the cover of the book. Can you show us?

Katherine: *brings up the image on her iPad*  This one is different from the print version. While it was beautiful, it didn’t quite pull off the theme of the book – the psychological thriller aspect. This new design says it so much better.

Katherine
Yes, it is quite a powerful image.

Fire and blood are both red, making it associated with energy, war, danger, strength, power, determination as well as passion, desire, and love. It’s also an emotionally intense colour.

In contrast, the hint of yellow reveals freshness, happiness, positivity, clarity, energy, optimism, enlightenment, remembrance, intellect, honour, loyalty, and joy, but also cowardice and deceit.

Melanie’s name in stand-alone white on red grabs the reader. The relationship of colours works well together. This book is going to the top of my TBR list.

Did I hear the book is nominated for an award?

Katherine: The 2019 Reader’s Choice Award in the thriller category. Reader’s Choice Awards in the thriller category which you’ll find on page 9. I’d love it if you voted for this book. It is a cracker.

The trailer for it is amazing. Do you think your readers would like to watch?

Blurb

Who is stalking Katherine and why?

Still reeling from the death of her husband in the London Bombings, Katherine builds a wall around her heart to prevent further hurt.

In a serendipitous moment her first love, Jared Martin walks back into her life. Old feelings are rekindled, but as their second-chance-relationship develops, another cruel twist of fate strikes. The helicopter Jared is a passenger on ditches in the North Sea.

Who, if anyone, will survive the ordeal? Is fate still not done its dirty deeds?

Will a reckless moment from her past come back to haunt her?

Contains adult content, violence, and strong language. 18+ recommended.

Where can YESTERDAY TODAY ALWAYS be purchased?

amazon

kobo


Books a Million


Barnes and Noble (print & nook)

iBooks

Diesel

Thank you, Katherine and Jared, for stopping by Celtic Connexions. It’s been a pleasure getting to know you.
Thanks for stopping by everyone. I hope you enjoyed the second in what I hope will be a number of fireside chats with characters from Melanie’s books.

D is for Dublin ~ 2018 #AtoZ Challenge

D is for Dublin

D is for Dublin

2018 #AtoZ Challenge

Day 4 and we’re catching a flight to Ireland – Dublin to be precise.

Dublin is located on the east coast and is the capital of the Republic of Ireland. During the week of Easter, 1916, the aptly named Easter Risings took place. Launched by Irish Republicans, it was to break away from British rule and form their independent nation.

D is for Dublin
By Keogh Brothers Ltd., photographers [1] [No restrictions], via Wikimedia Commons

Dublin is home to the Jameson Distillery and the Guinness brewery.

C is for Calgary ~ 2018 #AtoZ Challenge

C is for Calgary

C is for Calgary

2018 #AtoZ Challenge

We’re staying in Canada today but are headed west. “Go west young man” as the saying went. Although, to be more politically correct these days, I guess it should say ‘young people’. Anyway, we’re off to the province of Alberta and the city of Calgary.

Home of the famous Calgary Stampede and host to the 1988 Winter Olympics, Calgary is a cosmopolitan city which can attribute its growth to the Canadian oil industy.

It’s nickname is “Cowtown”.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

St. Patrick's Day

In previous years, I’ve had a virtual party on occasions such as this. Well, life got in the way and I’ve had to dig out a short post from a few years ago, and resurrect it.

For all you Irish folk or descendants of Irish folk or anyone who likes to get together and listen to good music and drink green beer…

St. Patrick's Day

May the luck o’ the Irish be with you.

St. Patrick's Day

 

 

Ghost #BookHugs ~ A LOVE RESTRAINED by Becky Flade

#BookHugs

A Love Restrained

by

Becky Flade

 

Becky Flade

#BookHugs #ALoveRestrained

Philadelphia police officer Kylee Parker is dedicated to protecting and serving. She sees the work in absolutes: right and wrong, black and white, good guys and bad guys. That is, until she chases a drug dealer into a dead-end alley and finds the bad boy she had a painful crush on throughout her teen years has turned into a more dangerous and more attractive man.

Jayson Donovan knows he doesn’t deserve someone as good as Kylee Parker. As the right hand man to a local drug-pushing mobster, he’s solidly on the wrong side of Kylee’s moral compass. But he can’t help reaching for her time and again when he knows he shouldn’t.

Even when his secrets threaten them both.

Where to purchase A Love Restrained

Amazon US | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords | iBooks | Kobo

Enjoy the following excerpt from A Love Restrained:

Spring in the city brought people out of winter hibernation like a siren song, but as the temperature rose, so in turn, did the crime rate. Cops had to be sharp as they walked the streets of Philadelphia. In her ten years on the force, on these streets, she’d seen a lot of crazy and often stupid criminals do a lot of crazy and often stupid things. But to be so brazen, or so plain dumb, as to do a hand-to-hand drug buy right in front of two uniformed officers rode high on her list of top ten.

“Tell me you saw that?”

“Saw what?” Hunks of half chewed soft pretzel fell from Sherman’s mouth.

Pete Sherman’s not a bad cop, just not an observant one whose paunch portrayed his love of all things fried and his reupholstered recliner. He hadn’t seen a thing in the last six months. But he took direction well, despite the fact he had seniority.

“There, across the street.” She pointed. “The junkie walking east just scored off the guy in the leather bomber heading west. I swear the dealer looked right at us before the exchange. Call it in, Pete, and grab the junkie. I’m going after the dealer.”

Sherman didn’t argue. She took off into a quick lope, kept her footsteps light so as to not alert the man she pursued. The spring day had drawn people out and the complaints of the pedestrians she weaved through grew loud. The guy glanced over his shoulder, and the edge of his mouth tipped into a grin before he sprinted around the corner.

“Cocky jerk.” She turned the corner, and shouted, “Stop! Police.”

She ran clean and fast, closing the distance between them with little effort. The dealer ducked into an alley she knew to be a dead end. She slowed and put one hand on the butt of her service pistol as she approached. He had his back to her, his hands on his hips as he stared at the brick wall in front of him.

“Philly PD, you’re under arrest. Slowly put your hands above your head and against the wall to your left.” She closed the few feet between them, using her free hand to release the handcuffs from her belt, the other remaining on her weapon. She cuffed him, with practiced efficiency, and then read him his rights before leading him out of the alley, preferring to do the pat down with her partner present.

“Kylee Parker, I’ll admit I daydreamed a time or two about you cuffing me, but it was never in this context.”

For more information, including cover art, trailer and buy links, see:

http://www.tirgearrpublishing.com/authors/Flade_Becky/a-love-restrained.htm

About the Author:

Home is where the heart is and Becky makes hers with her very own knight in slightly tarnished armor, their three daughters, son-in-law, two grandsons, and their psychotic cat Jaxon. When she’s not busy living her own happily ever after, she’s writing about someone else’s.

Contact Details:

http://www.beckyfladeauthor.com/

https://www.facebook.com/BeckyFlade

https://twitter.com/beckyflade

http://www.amazon.com/Becky-Flade/

http://www.goodreads.com/Becky_Flade

#BookHugs

Jim Henson once said, “My hope is to leave the world a bit better than when I got here.” I live my life by that same ideal; it’s posted in my office, on my media stand in fact, so that I never forget to be kind, thoughtful and considerate in every interaction. May your every dream be a reality and every day a poem.

#SEWES2016 ~ Sept 17 – Castle Day and Pub Supper

#SEWES2016

Sept 17 – Castle Day and Pub Supper

Not one of the nicer days we’ve had weather-wise but since returning to England from Wales, there have been cooler, rainy days.

Our first stop of the day was Castle Rising Castle.

Sept 17
Castle Rising Castle from outside the gift shop
Sept 17
Inside Castle Rising Castle – notice how the ceiling isn’t perfectly centered between the windows and the one is partly obstructed
Sept 17
Castle Rising Castle
Sept 17
Castle Rising Castle
Sept 17
“Monty” in the centre of the car park from the keep

The brisk wind, as evidenced by the billowing flag, made it feel even colder when I took to the top of the curtain wall to get a photograph of the castle keep.

Sept 17
The keep from the stop of the outer curtain wall

I’m a junkie when it comes to collecting interesting rocks when on vacation and despite the weather, I found an interesting one.

When we’d had our fill of this castle, we visited the toilets one last time and ventured down the road to Castle Acre Castle.

Sept 17
Sign in the car park about Castle Acre Castle
Sept 17
Castle Acre Castle
Sept 17
Tower house sign at Castle Acre Castle
Sept 17
Remains of the tower at Castle Acre Castle
Sept 17
Remains of the tower at Castle Acre Castle

We could have walked to Castle Acre Priory from here but with the weather threatening to close in, we opted to drive.

In the end it wouldn’t have taken any longer because dear Satnav Sally had a very hard time finding the place.

I don’t have pictures of the bailey gate but we did drive through it a couple of times.

We’d almost given up on the priory altogether, when we spotted an English Heritage sign at the main road so followed it instead.

Sept 17
Model of Castle Acre Priory
Sept 17
The other side of the model showing the reredorter or latrine
Sept 17
Castle Acre Priory
Sept 17
Castle Acre Priory
Sept 17
Sign describing the reredorter or latrine
Sept 17
Looking inside the remains of the reredorter
Sept 17
The end of the redorter showing both ‘canals’ that ran through it

We made a quick stop in Swaffham on the way back to Old Catton for a stop at a bank machine for some cash followed by another stop at a different services – this one located right on a roundabout.

When we got back to Catton Old Hall, I took my laptop down to the dining room where I connected to the Wi-fi and got the blog post up and scheduled for Monday. I didn’t like leaving it quite that long but I assumed that these places that offered free Wi-fi, it really did work everywhere in the building.

Don’s cousins were picking us up to take us to the The Fur and Feathers Inn for supper.

I got a number of pictures of all of us but there always seemed to be one person in each shot that turned out to be ‘not-so-good’ so they won’t get posted.

We had a lot of fun, a lot of laughs, and when we left the restaurant we went back to theirs for a drink. Since they wouldn’t let us even chip in on the bill from the restaurant, when we got back to theirs, I sneakily signed and presented Susan with a copy of The Secret of Hillcrest House as a thank you. We also had bottles of maple syrup for them but forgot them back at our room.

Don and I could have walked home but Andrew, who was the DD for the night took us back to Catton Old Hall.

Tomorrow, we’re moving on to Market Rasen with a stop for lunch at my writer friend, Nicky Wells’s house. But first, we’ll have to swing by Susan and Andrew’s house to drop off the maple syrup.

2015 North American Hammett Prize nominees announced

Canadian author Hammett prizeMichael J. McCann is one of the nominees for the 2015 North American Hammett Prize for literary excellence in crime writing by a Canadian or US author. McCann has been nominated for his latest novel, Sorrow Lake, which is set in eastern Ontario and is the first book in a new series featuring Ellie March and Kevin Walker of the Ontario Provincial Police. McCann is also the author of the Donaghue and Stainer Crime Novel series set in Maryland.

Last year’s winner of the Hammett Prize was Stephen King for Mr. Mercedes.

For the list of 2015 nominees, please see http://www.crimewritersna.org/news/index.htm.

 

The unveiling of Tim’s Magic Christmas

The Unveiling

You’ve seen the cover of Tim’s Magic Christmas revealed a bit at a time every day this past week. Now, it’s the unveiling of the actual book!

I received an email from CoBa Studios & Print Shop at 7:20 pm Friday, June 12th saying that my books were printed and I could pick them up any time. The email went on to say that they would be open from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm the following day if I wanted to pick them up then.

Can we say no brainer? I couldn’t wait to see all my “book babies” even though I already had a proof copy. Saturday morning, I was up early (nothing new there) and ready to head to CoBa’s location in Merrickville to be there shortly after they opened.

Once I got my “book babies” home, I transferred them from the copy paper box I’d brought them home in (a bit difficult to do a series of unveiling photos in a box with no lid) to these “plain brown wrappers” which were the perfect size!

So, let the unveiling commence!

unveiling

unveiling

unveiling

unveiling

Blurb:

For Tim Frost, Christmas 2011 is a washout. No Santa. No presents. Nothing. His father lost his job when the mill closed and now the family is on the verge of losing their home.

A chance encounter with Nick Kringle, a modern-day Santa Claus, teaches Tim that the greatest gift you can receive is the gift of giving.

Currently, Tim’s Magic Christmas is only available in paperback. If you’re interested in finding out more about this book or purchasing a copy, please leave a comment.