Tag Archives: Juliet Greenwood

What’s in your bagesk?

Digital imageDigital imageDigital imageNo, not baguette, otherwise mine would be cheese and tomato, or ham and mustard, no, bagesk, that item that holds all you need if you’re on the move.

Here’s my latest bagesk. A present recently brought back from Mom and Dad when they had a week away; for looking after the house and garden, I had a lovely tapestry style (I love that kind of thing) bag. It’s got all in there that would be on my desk, so that’s why it’s the bagesk.

Digital imageNot only is it a smashing pattern, wild flowers ladybirds and butterflies, it’s got a waterproof lining, and pockets back front, side and inside as well. Perfect.

In it is my larger diary, page a day where I jot ideas and titles etc. Also the books I’m reading, ‘we that are left’ Juliet Greenwood, and A Country Affair, Rebecca Shaw. My folder of short stories fits in there, with the bike and cushions piled up sticker on the front, and in the back of there, I tuck any of those brown envelopes that come back, ready for when I take another look at them and send them elsewhere, or edit.

There’s a red exercise book in there for my o.u. course. That free one, begin writing fiction. It’s good. I’m at the stage where we need to write a short story now.

I posted this after reading on Diane Parkin’s blog, where she’s showing us her writing bag. Previous post from the DD one. Lets have a blog in of bags…. what’s yours like? And what’s in it. By the way, this is a new bagesk, so it’s quite tidy. I have a wardrobe full of others. And, sometimes they throw up an idea for a letter that pays well. This happened recently, so never throw anything away.

Digital imageDD veterans, thank you and we love you. xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Ivor pussy cat.

Digital imageThis little chap keeps popping in to say hello. Cute eh?

He isn’t ours, and we have new people next door, who are out at work all day, so we are guessing he belongs to them. He likes to come and have a fuss though. He trots in as if he lives here. In our back kitchen, there’s a window, that looks out on to a shed. He began by sitting on the shed roof, and peering in to the kitchen. Must have liked what he saw.  He’s adopted us as his daytime people… Must ask them what his name is. I think Ivor suits him.

Looking at all those chins, think Ivor got to get down the gym as well. At least I started back swimming over the last couple of weeks. Swimming, I find is more relaxing; especially as the water is really warm this time of the year. The leisure centre card gives you access to the gym as well, so maybe next week…

Digital imageWhat, you like to take pictures of me? Oh, yes, I am lovely though aren’t I….

Digital imageNope, no sign of my owners, so might as well hang around with these oldies for a while. They talk to me and fuss me anyway.

The synopsis and first three chapters of my novel have gone off to Diane Banks, agent. Keeping fingers crossed, also working on the rest of it. Well, she might read it, then throw her hands in the air and scream…..’where has she been all this time, get the whole lot in here, we need to publish. asap….’

Latest news, I won a book. This one….. by Juliet Greenwood. I’m thrilled, as I also have her first book. Eden’s Garden. Looking forward to reading that. Also, I’ve discovered Dorothy L. Sayers.  She writes like a combination of Wodehouse and Agatha Christie. Old-fashioned, mystery. The one I’m on is ‘Busman’s Holiday.’ Also reading Frances Di Plino set of three psychological thrillers. Scary, but good.

Have a great week, writing and otherwise……. till next time….


Be inspired.

I’ve been tagged by Juliet Greenwood author of Eden’s Garden, which I was lucky enough to win a while ago.  It’s a brilliant book, and will review it when I’ve read it all.  Puts me in mind of Charles Dickens, with more romance.

So now I’m going to answer Juliet’s questions about my book!!! Well, that’ll teach me to go bragging about a contract.  It’s actually, (she says backtracking only a little bit) a story in a book, but it’s a contract nevertheless.

Remember a while ago I mentioned that Black Coffey Publishing wanted stories for Leaving home for the first time? well, the next book out, second in the series is, ‘Growing up in the 70’s’ I have a story accepted in there.  You’ll notice on the website that the editor Paul Coffey said there were over eighty entries, so wowee, not sure how many stories are in the book.  We get paid, da da da daaaah, how lovely.  It’s an e.book so, I love e.books now naturally.  So, keeping in the spirit I’ll answer Juliet’s questions, and pass on the award.

1. What is the name of your book?

Growing up in the 1970’s

2. Where did the idea for your book come from?

The 70’s is a decade I love, so it was easy to write about that era.

3. In what genre would you classify your book?

All of the stories will be set in the 1970’s.

4. If you had to pick actors to play your characters in a movie rendition, who would you choose?

Anyone good-looking or glamorous of course.


5. Give us a one-sentence synopsis of your book.

The decade of the 1970’s

6. Is your book already published/represented?

Should be published next month.

7. How long did it take you to write your book?

My story took a week or two including editing and re-writing.

8. What other books within your genre would you compare it to? Or, readers of which books would enjoy yours?

Remember that programme on t.v. with Amanda Holden and Brian Conolley?  I think Noddy Holder was in it as well.

9. Which authors inspired you to write this book?

The editor was asking for humour, I love anything funny, especially Terry Pratchett  Not that this resembles Terry Pratchett’s writing in any way though.  I also enjoy anything written by Sue Townsend.

10. Tell us anything that might pique our interest in your book.

I just had to look up pique?  Something to make you bitter. Apart from that it’s published by Black Coffey, notice not coffee, I’m sure nothing would pique your interest in Growing up in the 1970’s.  Maybe if you weren’t part of that decade you’d be piqued…

Thank you Juliet for choosing me.  Now, I tag 5 people with 10 questions about their books.

Patsy Collins.  Escape to the Country.  I’ve read this, it’s brilliant, also I must thank you for blogging about Black Coffey in the first place Patsy.

Sarah Mallory.  The Dangerous Lord Darrington.  Lovely romantic reading.

Karen Clark  Great writer, with a book deal in process.

Rosemary Gemmell  Writer of great romances.  Also adventure.

Teresa Ashby.  One of my favourite short story writers, who now has books on kindle…

Here are my questions to the five lovely ladies above.

1.  What gave you the idea for your book?

2.  How long did it take to write overall?

3.  What kept you going when you were half way through?

4.  Are any of your characters based on real people, even though you have to say they aren’t?

5.  Did you ever wonder if you’d have the work published?

6.  When you’ve had one book published, do you feel under pressure with the next one?

7.  Would you write in a different genre next time, or do you always stick with what you know?

8.  Do you prefer writing a novel, or short stories?

9.  Do you use everyday happenings in your writing?

10.  If your book was to be on t.v. who would play the lead male and female roles?

Thanks Juliet for the award.  Look forward to hearing from Patsy, Sarah, Karen, Rosemary and Teresa.

A Book Signing.

No, it’s not me, I’m quite a way off that yet.  As in the sun is quite a way off from planet earth.  I’m on youwriteon.com  there you can have your work reviewed by others.  It’s brilliant.  A lovely reviewer recently pointed out that my dog in chapter 1 was Lucy, who had turned into Rosie by Chapter 3.  Then he said I should change the word bit into bid.  I had an elderly couple who bit farewell to their new friend.  Maybe they were undercover vampires in disguise.  So I’m re-writing.  Someone said most of writing is re-writing, they were right.  That’s enough about me, I’m proud to invite Juliet Greenwood on to my blog.  She did a book signing in Llandudno, North Wales recently.  I’m nosey, so I asked her if she’d tell us how she got on.  Over to Juliet.

Thank you, Susan, for inviting me to be a guest on your blog, and to talk about my recent experience of signing my novel Eden’s Garden in Waterstones in Llandudno. Because I live in a rural area in the hills of North Wales, my nearest Waterstones is a half-hour journey away. I drove along the coastal road on a gloriously sunny day, with the deep blue of the sea on one side and the fresh green of the mountains on the other, both excited and nervous and not quite sure what the day would bring. Supposing no one turned up and I sat there in utter mortification for the next few hours? Ah, there’s nothing like a bit of stage fright to get the adrenalin going. 

This wasn’t exactly my first signing. I’d had my lovely launch  in St Asaph with my editor and my wonderfully supportive friends, the North  Wales Novelistas. After Eden’s Garden was chosen as Welsh Book of the  Month for May, I’d also signed copies of books in several local bookshops, all  of whom had been supportive and seemed just as excited as I felt. But this was  my first signing in a big chain like Waterstones and it felt much more – well,  exposed. In both a good and a slightly nerve wracking way.  Because I’ve had quite a bit of press coverage since the  publication in March, I’d made up a small display board with press cuttings, a  few nice reviews and some photographs of the gardens that were the inspiration  for Eden’s Garden. Luckily they aren’t heavy and they swung over my  shoulder as I made my way from the car park to the main street. The street  wasn’t exactly busy, and Waterstones was ominously quiet. It was the first  sunny day in weeks, and despite the cold wind I was certain everyone within  miles would have gone shooting off to find a beach.

The staff  were lovely and made me welcome, settling me down at a table with my books,  along with the author’s essentials of a coffee and a glass of water. Then  the wait began. There were about three people in the shop, all of whom passed  me by without a second glance. I dithered. So do you shout out and grab a  punter as they pass? Possibly to find them slipping away as fast as they can  while everyone else gives you a wide berth. Do you smile sweetly and wait, as  people scuttle past, studiously avoiding your eye? The press cuttings seemed a  mistake, too. No one appeared to want to stop and study them, in case they  found themselves drawn into conversation and feel obliged to buy a book they  would never read. I had just decided this was a very bad idea  and maybe I should hide myself in the children’s section until it was time to  go home, when my first customer arrived. Then another, and another. As I chatted away, more browsers came nearer and began to look at the book and read the blurb on the back. People began to look at the photographs on my display board, so I could explain about Brondanw Gardens, the home of Clough Williams-Ellis who built Portmeirion, and which had been such an inspiration.

 I met some lovely readers that day. I loved chatting to them – even if they didn’t eventually buy my book. I secretly hoped that some would download it to their Kindles (at about half the price, so I couldn’t in all conscience blame them), and that some might come back and buy a copy anyhow. I met readers who shared my love of adventurous women and gardens, and who pounced on copies with the magic words ‘this looks like just my kind of book’. And throughout the day friends turned up to cheer me on and support me, which was great, too. Finally, I packed up my display board and made my  way home again. Making sure I stopped for an ice cream at the beach in quiet celebration that my signing had been a success – and fun, after all. I’m sure I’ll be back signing my books again somewhere  before long. But this time I shall feel relaxed about it, remembering the  lovely readers I met at Waterstones, and looking forward to more absorbing conversations along the way. So here’s to bookshops and readers! 

I’ve won a book.

Whoopee, I’ve won a book.  Now this is one I’m really looking forward to reading.  Set in the lovely village of Portmeirion, Eden’s Garden was the prize.  Thank you Juliet Greenwood  who also writes as Heather Pardoe, for this generous offer.  That link shows you how lovely Portmeirion is.  One of my favorite places.  Lucky me, that’s the second book this week.  It was the Dangerous Lord Darrington last week, and some seeds.  Keep on entering competitions I say, someone has to win and it could be you.


The link above is to Juliet’s blog.

Thank you to both of these lovely ladies who have provided me with some great reading for in my deckchair in the garden.