Here’s to Auld Lang Syne and New Year Resolutions


As we bid farewell to the old year and bring in the new, should we forget old times and friends? I think not. 2014 has not only brought me some recognition as a writer, but new ‘virtual’ friends, also writers, and whose many books I have enjoyed over the past months.

The first writer to cross my path early in the year 2014 was the crime writer Oliver Tidy. His many detective stories make excellent reading and his blogs funny: both are well worth a read.

My second virtual friend came in the spring of 2014, in the guise of a military/action/adventure writer by the name of Josef Black. He has not only entertained me with his fictional exploits of a band of SAS soldiers, but with his lengthy emails and down to earth sense of humour. He, too, is well worth a read.

My third virtual friend came in the summer of 2014. I didn’t meet him in virtual space, but at an Armed Forces Day. Sean Connolly has written several autobiographical books about his life in the army, and are well worth reading.

Those three friends above have provided me, over the months, with lots of advice. They have all been encouraging in different ways. Oliver providing information through his emails and blogs. Jo, with advice and help with book covers and promoting oneself, and Sean for sending my latest book to a friend of his. I thank them all.

The year 2014 is one I shall truly remember, so I wish you all – friends and readers alike – a happy and prosperous New Year.

Doctor Schmidt – Book 2.


My fourth book was published on Smashwords yesterday, and it’s the sequel to A Life Once Had, which was published earlier this year. For those who like bumper reads, it should prove satisfying as it’s 170,000 words in length. As a thank you to all those who have read and reviewed my previous work, it will be free on Smashwords for a few days from Christmas day.

Thank you so much for your support and trust you all have a Happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year.

Am I Truly Global?

Xmas tree


It’s been a year since I first published on Amazon, and what a year it’s been. But the thing that has amazed me most, is the fact that I have had hits on my blog from Canada to Kazakhstan, from Istanbul to India, from Britain to Brazil, from Europe to America. I have found it very pleasing to think you might be entertained by what a white-haired Granny has to say. And, yes, that picture on my blog WAS only taken this summer.  I am like any other book cover: should not be judged.

I could use that other old cliché, been there, done it, bought the T-shirt, but I have seen vast changes since I was a girl, and most for the good. My once limited view of the world as an eight year old has grown to such an extent that other countries are now so easy to reach, and people even easier to contact as we all have either land-lines, mobile phones or an email address. The thought of visiting another country when I was eight seemed as unlikely as taking a rocket to the moon.

I have been lucky enough to visit many countries; Pakistan being one of those countries where I lived for a while. I will never forget the friendly welcoming from the people I met there, and living in another culture was better than any humanities lesson taught in school. We are now a multi-cultural society and I take every opportunity to learn about other cultures; other people.  After all, I write about people, and the steeper my learning curve, the more authentic I can make the characters in my books.

So to all of you out there who have read my blog; commented on it; or simply glimpsed it, I give a big thank you for making my first year of being a Self Published eBook Author truly wonderful, and for taking the time out to be interested in what a wise, white-haired granny has to say.

Here’s to 2015, and a continuing friendship.

Just A Little Prick


That’s what the practice nurse said to me. It was just a little prick, and I couldn’t feel a thing as it went straight in then immediately came out again. But, boy, did I feel it a few days later. That little prick indisposed me to a nasty virus, then a very painful ear infection. I am finally over these various setbacks to get back to work again. And here I was thinking Flu vaccinations were supposed to stop you getting it.

When a woman is ill, you know, because she looks dreadful, as I did. I threw a towel over every mirror in the house. But no-one said, ‘mother you look awful so rest up and I won’t bother you for a few days, or ask you to baby-sit.’  Hubby never said, ‘shall I make you a cup of tea, dear?’ or, ‘Granny, do you need anything from the shops as I’ve just raided your biscuit tin?’ Man-flu, on the other hand, usually consists of a cough and a sneeze, and a week in bed asking for drinks.

And as its that time of year again when that jolly man dressed all in red, pops up to fill children’s heads with the promise of getting a sack-full of presents, if they are nice, but if they are naughty will be obliterated from his nice list forever, and as I have just been presented with my ninth grandchild – another boy: that’s four on the trot – I have had to dig deeper into my pocket for another Christmas present.

Crotchety old bugger, you may be thinking, but I’m putting it down to the after effects of being ill and the fact I’ve not been able to work, which leaves me very frustrated. So now it’s back to getting up between five and five thirty to format the book I want out for Christmas. And I am pleased to say it is now ready, but it’s been a marathon for the past few days, sticking rigidly to a timetable, and if anyone disturbed that timetable, usually hubby, I’ve bitten his head off. Someone has to show him who’s boss.

This year, though, I am prepared for the onslaught of Christmas. The most important thing being, I have all the booze in. All presents are bought and wrapped and under the tree: all Christmas cards written and sent, so all I have to do now is buy the food to feed sixteen mouths.

The year usually ends by attending a Christingle service with the grandchildren, then sitting frozen to death, wrapped in my Arctic weather gear, at my youngest grand-daughter’s school who always hold their Carol Concert, at night, outside in the playground. As she’s off to big-school next year I will not have to endure, ever again, the annual freezathon. Unless they decide to sent my four youngest grandsons to the same school.  Bah Humbug.