Announcements: A quick update on my book

I’ve been delighted with the support from you all for my first book The Summer of Madness.  It’s meant so much. As such, I just wanted to give a quick update. Sales have been going well, both in digital form and in paperback. It’s such a wonderful feeling to know the story has connected with people.

You can read the reviews so far, including a rather amazing one from a blogger whose site I have admired for years. Beetley Pete has had a very entertaing life, full of anecdotes and adventures. You’ll love his blog.

Thanks again to you all 🙂

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Announcement: Exciting News. First Published Story.

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In the summer of love, or rather of madness, a whole set of stories are emerging. But there is one that has got everyone talking. When Kurt Vannes decides to win back his ex-girlfriend with the help of a literary classic, he sets off a string of events that will build to a dramatic finale.

It’s been a pleasure to share with you my favourite literary works since creating the blog, but this time I have very exciting news. This is my first ever short story published and something I had to share with you all. I’ve long been a fan of short stories and it’s wonderful to finally have something of mine within the genre in print.

If you want to find out whether Kurt’s big gesture does win her back, it’s available here in both Kindle and paperback form.

The Summer of Madness

Line(s) of the Day #CanneryRow

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Early morning is a time of magic in Cannery Row. In the gray time after the light has come and before the sun has risen, the Row seems to hang suspended out of time in a silvery light. The street lights go out, and the weeds are brilliant green. The corrugated iron of the canneries glows with the pearly lucence of platinum or gold pewter. No automobiles are running then. The street is silent of progress and business. And the rush and drag of the waves can be heard as they splash in among the piles of the canneries. It is a time of great peace, a deserted time, a little era of rest.

The charming style of gifted Californian writer John Steinbeck from his acclaimed novel Cannery Row (1945). Winner of the Nobel Prize of Literature in 1962, the literary titan also wrote other masterpieces such as Of Mice and Men, The Grapes of Wrath and East of Eden.

Line(s) of the Day #TheOldManandtheSea

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Now is no time to think of what you do not have. Think of what you can do with that there is.

As said by the elderly fisherman Santiago in the maritime novella The Old Man and the Sea (1952) by American literary giant Ernest Hemingway.  Widely considered to be one of the all-time great works, it won Hemingway a Pulitzer Prize and was instrumental in gaining him the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954.

Line(s) of the Day #TheThirdMan

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I had paid my last farewell to Harry a week ago,when his coffin was lowered into the frozen February ground, so that it was with incredulity that I saw him pass by, without a sign of recognition, among the host of strangers in the Strand.

The lines of inspiration for the film that became The Third Man. In a rather unique turn of events, these lines never made it into the book, the film was set in Vienna and Graham Green’s book (never meant to be anything other than a draft to help plan the screenplay), was published after the success of the 1949 British film noir. It’s still my favourite film. Feel free to share any examples of any time you have preferred the silver screen adaptation to the original novel.

Line(s) of the Day #BraveNewWorld

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Words can be like X-rays if you use them properly — they’ll go through anything. You read and you’re pierced.

As said by Helmholtz Watson, an Alpha-Plus lecturer at the College of Emotional Engineering, in the dystopian novel Brave New World by Aldous Huxley. Published in 1932, the literary masterpiece tells of a future where genetically modified citizens have their future careers programmed, war and violence has been removed and the government assisted drug Soma is encouraged to remove any thoughts of unhappiness.

Line(s) of the Day #TomsMidnightGarden

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Nothing stands still, except in our memory.

As said in Tom’s Midnight Garden (1958), the much-loved children’s fantasy book written by Philippa Pearce that I just finished reading. Thanks to my sister who got it for me for Christmas.

Line(s) of the Day #TheWindintheWillows

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Spring was moving in the air above and in the earth below and around him, penetrating even his dark and lowly little house with its spirit of divine discontent and longing.

A sense of the adventurous possibilities within nature, as wonderfully described in The Wind in the Willows (1908) by Kenneth Grahame. Still enchanting readers of all ages over a century after its initial publication, the much-loved children’s novel tells of the friendship of Mole, Water Rat, Toad and Badger, four anthropomorphised animals who live near the river.

Line(s) of the Day #ChocolateCake

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So I take a knife
I think I’ll just tidy that up a bit,
cut off the crumbly bits
scoop them all up
and into the mouth

oooooommm mmmm
nice.

Look at the cake again.

That looks a bit funny now,
one side doesn’t match the other
I’ll just even it up a bit, eh?

An excerpt from Chocolate Cake, a much-loved poem by British writer Michael Rosen. You can find it in its complete form here, where anyone who loves chocolate will identify with the child narrator. Barbra Streisand and Lora Brody would surely include themselves.

Line(s) of the Day The Hundred Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of a Window and Disappeared

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She also had a diploma that showed that Herbert was a certified driving instructor and a receipt showing that she had just bought the local driving school and given it a new name: Eintein’s School for Driving.

This was all fantastic, Herbert thought, but… it didn’t make him a better driver, did it? Well yes, in a way it did, Amanda expained. Now he had a position. Now he would decide what was good driving and what wasn’t.  Life worked in such a way that right was not necessarily right, but rather what the person in charge said was right. 

Herbert’s face lit up: he got it!

One of the many highly amusing scenes from The Hundred Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared by first novelist Jonas Jonasson. In a dual narrative, the story tells of hundred year old who decides to slip out of his old people’s home and then encounters a whole array of adventures.