Janice Horton celebrates her First Blogiversary

Celtic Connexions welcomes Scottish author, Janice Horton, as she celebrates her First Blogiversary

Take it away Janice!

Today and over this whole weekend, I’m celebrating my First Blogiversary over at www.janicehortonwriter.blogspot.com and I’ve so much to celebrate!

Who would have thought that in the course of just one year, I could have made so many new friends and been given so many exciting opportunities. Who knew that social networking isn’t just about making virtual connections but making real friends? It was how Melanie and I first ‘met’- on my launch day blog event – so we are celebrating our year of friendship and success together too!

This time last year I was just about to launch my first ebook ‘Bagpipes & Bullshot’ and was apprehensive about starting a Blog and joining Twitter. I had no idea what was in store for me and to be fair I had very few expectations. I certainly didn’t expect my whole world to be turned upside down!

A year ago, I didn’t have a clue that both the ebooks I would launch from my new blog would go on to be Amazon Bestsellers. I didn’t expect that from a single timeous tweet on Twitter I would be invited to write an article for ‘Friday Magazine’ the most popular English magazine in the United Arab Emirates. I certainly didn’t imagine that through my tentative first posts and tweets I had caught the eye of Linn B. Halton, the founder of Loveahappyending.com and that I was about to be invited to join her in an elite and innovative website project – not as not just an author – but an associate editor.

Who would have thought it all possible?

So do help me to celebrate my blogging year by popping over to my blog and joining in the fun. There are yummy treats on offer as well as my latest ebook, which is on Amazon today and over the weekend completely free of charge. Yes, my five star rated novel about a media stalked and disillusioned celebrity chef entitled ‘Reaching for the Stars’ is FREE. It’s my blogiversary gift to you! So please download ‘Reaching for the Stars’ – and if you already have it on your Kindle – why not recommend it to a friend? Leave a comment on my blog today or retweet one of my tweets @JaniceHorton to be in the draw for the yummy gifts!

Janice’s Blogiversary Blog: www.janicehortonwriter.blogspot.com

The Link to Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com for your FREE copy of ‘Reaching for the Stars’

Find Janice Horton’s books on Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com

Janice’s Facebook Page:

Follow on Twitter: @JaniceHorton

And on: Loveahappyending.com

Celtic Connexions welcomes author Sheryl Browne as she re-launches her romantic comedy Recipes for Disaster

LAHE logo

Loveahappyending.com author Sheryl Browne re-launches Recipes for Disaster…

Recipes for Disaster

The shortest way to a man’s heart.

Mix romantic comedy and step-by-step cooking instructions. Bake at 200 degrees for an entertaining read and handy guide.

She’s a single. He’s a widower. She wants him. He wants her. She wants to impress. So does he. There’s just one catch – she can’t cook. To get him, she needs to get past the big fish – his mother. Lucky her, she’s got an Ace up her sleeve and all she’s got to do is impress this one time. Bad luck, though, her new guy can’t cook either, her dog Rambo is on the loose and now they’ve got to pull off the big lunch at the club. Will it be a match made in heaven? Will they be able to pull off a culinary miracle? Will their combined efforts result in love at first bite? Or is it simply a Recipe for Disaster?

Publication Date: 1 February 2012
Format: Paperback. Also available on Kindle
ISBN: 9781908208057

Available from: Amazon, any local bookstore, or direct from Safkhet Publishing Price: Paperback: £6.99, €7.99, or $9.99 respectively

Author website: http://www.sherylbrowne.com/
Twitter A/c @sherylbrowne: https://twitter.com/#!/SherylBrowne

Author Facebook page: http://on.fb.me/AvJ2qg
RNA page: http://bit.ly/xgSxQo

Amazon.co.uk Buy: http://amzn.to/yhC15N
Safkhet Publishing Buy: http://www.safkhetpublishing.com/

Taster of Recipes for Disaster:

“One cup red or green seedless grapes, three cups shredded chicken…”

“OK, got it.” Phone wedged between shoulder and ear-hole, I scribbled down the ingredients Becky was giving me — while frantically spraying Febreze to disguise the stench of dead fish.

“…cooked,” Becky added.

“What?” I knitted my much furrowed brow.

“three cups shredded… cooked… chicken.” She spelled it out, slowly, as if talking to an incompetent. I might have taken umbrage, but for the fact that my domestic Goddess gene wasn’t so much deficient, as it died, probably at birth. A slave in the kitchen I was not. Slut in the bedroom I could do. Or would quite like to. Somehow, though, I doubted the new man in my life would want to make mad passionate love to the girl who’d just killed off his mother.

“Honestly, Lisa…” Becky sighed. “It has to be cooked before you shred it. You can’t shred raw chicken, can you?”

She was taking the pee now. “Obviously,” I dripped, indignant, though there was a good possibility I might have tried.

“And make sure it’s a happy chicken.”

“Ri-ght.” I paused to ponder. “Cooked and shredded, I should think it’ll be highly amused.”

“Oh, ha-di-ha.” Becky didn’t sound impressed. “I meant, an organic chicken, plucked and without giblets. Wash it under cold water, then place the whole chicken in a big pot, cover it with water, and bring it to boil over a high heat.”

“By which time it will be positively ecstatic.”


“Ahem. High heat, got you. Go on.”

“Make sure it doesn’t boil over,” Becky continued, after an audible humph. “Once it’s boiling, you can turn down the heat. Let the bird cook for at least one hour and then check if it comes off the bone easily. If not, turn off the heat and leave it in the pot until it does. Depending on the size of the bird, this might take a bit longer.”

“Becky, slow down!” I scrawled frenziedly and tried to keep up.

“Right, got it. I think. Next?”

Becky emitted another despairing sigh. “Order a takeaway.”


“Never mind.” She sighed — again, pointedly. “Repeat back what I’ve just said.”

“Hold on.” I turned to kick the back door closed before I got frostbite, then grabbed up the saucepan containing the culinary catastrophe I might have poisoned new man Adam and his mum with — and tipped it in the dog dish.

Then padded back across the kitchen and fell over the dog.

“Ooh, God! Three cups shredded cooked… absolutely delighted …chicken!”

I snapped, straightening up from the work surface, which mercifully broke my fall before I parted company with my teeth. “Good boy, Rambo,” I cooed, more sweetly. “Din dins, hon.”

My midget Jack Russell looked at me, looked at the dish — wherein floated a monkfish head, sniffed it, curled a lip, I would swear, then beat a hasty retreat to the hall.

“What else?” I asked after the next ingredient, while heaving out a sigh of my own, then trying hard not to breathe back in. The Bouillabaisse — traditional Provençal fish stew (Easy Fish recipe book now in trash) — I’d decided to serve for the brunch Adam had invited himself and his mother to, smelled horribly pungent while cooking. Burned, it could strip the lining from your lungs. I shudder to think what it would do to your digestive tract.

“Patience, lots of… on my part,” Becky went on wearily, “one cup thinly sliced celery, half a cup thinly sliced green onions, half a cup chopped, salted roasted pistachios…”

“Pistachios?! Where am I supposed to get…”

“Kitchen cupboard, right hand side. At least, that’s where they were at Christmas.”

“Oh, right.” I nodded and wondered whether I should also do an inventory of my kitchen cupboards… sometime.

“Next…” Becky went on efficiently: “…a quarter cup of fresh chopped mint leaves. And, yes, you have got some,” she assured me. “You bought it when you got the parsley and thyme for the Bouillabaisse. You’ll also need … two cups cooked couscous. If you like, you can use Bulgur or rice instead.”

“Is that it?” I asked, feeling overwhelmed by the task ahead as well as odious smells.

“For the salad, yes. For the Curry Chutney Dressing, you’ll need…”

Tescos, I thought wanly.

Re-launch of Shades of Appley Green by loveahappyending author Miriam Wakerly

LAHE logo

Shades of Appley Green by Miriam Wakerly

Shades of Appley Green – a modern village novel

Once revered as the landed gentry, the Devonish family and their patronage to the village of Appley Green go back many generations. Within recent living memory, the very approachable Ted Devonish was well known as the local landowner and farmer, wealthy but generous to a fault. He recognised some of the changes that had taken place in the village during his lifetime, not all good, and decided to leave a sustainable legacy that might do something to help.

He had a philanthropic vision and, before his sudden tragic death, identified a spiky, capable young woman as the right person to make it happen, initially for Appley Green.

Steph Perriman always remembered how he singled her out and put his trust in her. She would never let him down …

ISBN: 9780955843228
Publication Date: 01.03.2012 Launch Waterstone’s Camberley by invitation 7 March.
Publisher: Strongman Publishing
Buy now on Amazon.co.uk: http://amzn.to/wn01fD
Buy now on Amazon.com: http://amzn.to/yJ1KiG

Author website: http://miriamwakerly.blogspot.com/
Follow Miriam onTwitter @MiriamWakerly: https://twitter.com/#!/MiriamWakerly

Already available on all Amazon sites as Kindle ebook from 01.01.2012

Miriam Wakerly’s first two novels, Gypsies Stop tHere (2008) and No Gypsies Served (2010) with a theme that is clear from the titles, are set in the fictitious village of Appley Green. ‘Readers said they liked this place and really enjoyed the storytelling’ so I decided to show another side of Appley Green in a new series of village novels that begins with Shades of Appley Green.

‘Steph is a special, but troubled young woman. Chosen by the most venerated man in Appley Green to fulfil his mission, she feels publicly admired rather than privately loved. She certainly does not trust men!

In helping a once famous, elderly architect with Parkinson’s regain a social life, she finds herself taking personal risks, fending off objections, blind to danger. We wait for the moment when it dawns on Steph what is driving her deep-seated obsession; for only then can she find the happiness she deserves.

Appley Green is a charming English village. Everyone says so. But people are still people. With the emotional turmoil that comes with love, birth and death, a close-knit community can harbour betrayal and guilt, as well as joy and laughter.’

Excerpt – first page of novel:

Every year since her daughter was five years old, Steph had read aloud to her a special page from her old Diary. Even long after Faith was perfectly able to do this for herself, it had become something of a tradition, a birthday ritual. It was to remind her who she was, who her real father was.

As she was about to leave for school, Faith casually remarked, “So, tomorrow I’ll be able to read the rest of the Diary – at last.”


“You always said – when I’m grown-up I can see the whole thing. Until then I wouldn’t understand …”

Steph blinked. Sixteen! Is she an adult?

“Oh … When you’re eighteen, I meant, or twenty-one.”

“That’s just mean!”

“I’ll have to read it through to see what I wrote. You know, it’s…” She struggled to find the words. This had taken Steph by surprise, much to the amusement of her teenager, who went off to school, swinging her bag, clearly thinking she had also swung the argument.

Steph knew she must park this domestic issue somewhere in her overcrowded head until her working day was over.

For today, she was going to see Jackson, her favourite elderly ‘client’, as Special Support for Seniors, or SSS, called them. This was not going to be an easy ride – for she must sit down with Jackson to broach the dreaded subject of residential care …

Book Review – Cells by loveahappyending author Harriet Grace

CELLS – One woman, two men, a last chance for happiness

The biological clock is ticking for Martha, an archetypal forty-something career woman. She longs to have a baby, but can’t get pregnant. With several failed courses of IVF behind her, she and her husband, Grant, have decided to stop trying to have a child and are attempting to put parenthood out of their minds. This very topical dilemma explored by Harriet Grace in her first novel ‘Cells’ is one faced by thousands of couples who can’t conceive naturally. When these couples have been given the extra hope of IVF and that fails how do they cope? Martha isn’t completely sure she wants a baby, but can’t bear the failure. Grant is haunted by memories which make him long for a baby one moment, and want to walk away from his marriage the next. When the computers crash on the Features Floor of a national newspaper, Martha has a migraine and is losing control of her job. She looks up and sees Jon, one of the messengers, and for a few seconds he seems like a saviour. Relationships collide in this tale of love, sex and betrayal, causing all three to question their consciences.

Format: Paperback and Kindle
ISBN: 9781906236618
Language: English
Publisher: SilverWood Books (2nd edition July 2011)

Available on Amazon – paperback, kindle; through bookshops; and direct from publisher, SilverWood Books

Amazon.co.uk (BUY) UK: http://amzn.to/y0s6X8
Amazon.com (BUY) US: http://amzn.to/zTZ0XD
Publisher – SilverWood Books: http://www.silverwoodbooks.com/detail.asp?item=70

Author Website: http://www.harrietgrace.co.uk/Harriet_Grace/Home.html 
Twitter A/c @Harrietgrace65:  https://twitter.com/#!/Harrietgrace65
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=752268153


I started Cells late yesterday afternoon and finished it today. It’s one of those books you hate to put down. Harriet’s writing drew me in and kept me hooked. Her characters are true to life – all have their strengths, weaknesses and inner demons to deal with. Some are able to that more successfully than others.

I’m looking forward to more from this author.

My Road to Publication

It’s been long and filled with many setbacks along the way. But if it had been a smooth ride from the beginning, it wouldn’t have been as rewarding.

In his book, On Writing, Stephen King told of having to replace the nail he hung his rejection letters on with a spike. Well I, too, feel that way, although I prefer to think of it as having enough of them to wallpaper a room.

I joined a writers group but this first one wasn’t what giving me what I needed so left them when my membership expired. About the same time a small group was forming in my hometown so I joined them. This was much better for me. During this time, I heard about the Ottawa Romance Writers Association and went to two of their meetings/workshops as a guest and attended their 2008 conference. That was an educational experience! So I joined Romance Writers of America and this chapter and have seen my writing improve tenfold if not more.

Along the way, I discovered Brian Henry, aka Quick Brown Fox and began attending his workshops… Mississauga, Kingston, Brampton, Sudbury… I’ve learned so much from Brian that I can’t begin to put it all in one small blog post.

My novel's cover created by Aidana WillowRaven
Then last fall, I heard about an online Writers Conference and signed up to pitch to an editor. Well the rest is history. My road to publication is nearing the end. I have a contract, a talented cover artist, fantastic editor, and a great company to be associated with – 4RV Publishing LLC.