Last month I mentioned my fun visit to Mitcheldean Library to talk about Keepers to their reading club. The wonderful person who couldn't put the book down left me a review* on Amazon. It's short, so I can share it here -
This is a beautifully written book, uplifting and heart warming. I could not put this book down and read it in one session. I do hope you will write another book soon.
I'm getting there! Encouragement like this helps. This reader isn't the first to have to keep going to the end. Raine, Teddy and Alf have even converted some 'I don't normally read this genre' readers. (Take a look at this review - her best book she has read this year.)
Best news of the year! A teacher has asked me to talk with a group of 'reluctant readers' about the trilogy after I gave her a set for the class (now three sets). One lad romped through it, several others are loving it and want more books to read. Result!!
I have said I will recommend some 'reluctant reader' books for her. If you have one which converted you or your child into an avid reader, please let me know.
The High Alps of Asfarlon has now gone to a reader to pick it apart for characters, plot etc. This person was an elementary teacher for many years and I'm very lucky to have her undertake this task. It won't be out before Christmas, but it will be a better book for not rushing it.
*A word on reviews...
Reviews are critically important in helping others decide whether this is a book they want to read. Also, once you get 50, Amazon's mystical algorithms do more to promote your book. So if you want to make an author happy this holiday season, write a review. It will be all the gift they want! And it's free!
We had a lovely response to our competition and on 29 November announced our three winners, drawn from a hat by the granddaughter of one of our authors. Congratulations to these people who are, between them, 12 books and one murder mystery game richer.
The shop is open - 24 hrs a day - until the end of the year. Your visit will be appreciated by our indie authors, so come on in! Click on the image to see it all.
Forest Read Easy Deal (FRED)
A great charity
I was privileged to be the online speaker for Forest Read Easy Deal's (FRED) AGM on 30 November. This is a great charity which helps adults with literacy issues to learn to read and write. It's hard for most of us to imagine what life would be like without being able to read the labels of what's on the supermarket shelves, or fill in a form for the doctor's surgery.
Some of you will remember that sale proceeds of Dean Writers Circle's 2020 anthology, Resilience went to FRED. We were able to raise over £400 for them.
Here's an offer: we still have a few left (not many). If you'd like to make a donation to FRED by purchasing one, or more - great Christmas presents - go here to do so. Thank you!
Fellow author Jean, kindly interviewed me for her blog soon after the release of Keepers, so I am delighted to return the favour. A keen historian, Jean writes historical fiction and historical fantasy as well as maintaining three blogs on books/writing, genealogy and family history. Her most recent novel is The Heron, published earlier this year. Read about her writing and research life in Texas here.
WRITERS ARE READERS TOO
An Unsuitable Match
Someone decided, on the basis of the blurb, that Keepers sounded like a Joanna Trollope novel. I'd heard of her of course, but never read any, so off I went to find out more. Read what I concluded here.
St Ceyna's Well
No story this month. Instead, a piece about my current book project set here in the Forest and along the Severn. I've taken our local St Anthony's Well as one of the settings, inhabited it with a real life Welsh princess turned hermit, and renamed it... that's novel writing!
Here's a little information about both the well and the princess.
A few years ago I was asked to give a view on the draft of a novel. The book had a highly imaginative plot, some fascinating characters and great settings. But the first chapter was pretty much all backstory about the character's life to date and the history of the kingdom. I nearly gave it up on the spot.
But how do we get the important information across without boring our readers with a family history lesson or leaving them totally confused? I did some research, and this is what I found.
Next month's guest author is a little different. I'm sure you will enjoy her story. In the meantime, however you are celebrating this season, may it be happy and safe.
Thank you for reading!
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