Friday 27 January 2012

Mighty Zeus and my walk to work

I haven't been updating this blog much lately as I have been busy working on The Boy with Two Heads. We are having some problems getting the right image for the front cover, but we are confident that the book will be out by the end of February.

Contemplating imagery from the book, I thought of this picture on my way to work: it is from Karen's Whimsy

Speaking of my walk to work- I thought I might share  it with you:

About to go out of the door
On the way- the views of Skiddaw and the Northern Lake District Fells are often amazing, but barely visible today

Nearly there! We built this solid wooden cabin in that very hot summer we had a few years ago

Nearly at my desk!

And as I sit at my desk in my cosy office, a stone's throw across the
garden, I realise how lucky I am: the walk to work may not give me much exercise, but the views of the garden, the fells, the birds and the snowdrops just beginning to show, lift the heart and the spirits. And I love my work!

Head Office. The dark green board came from my first workshop in Wigton, and the new cream sign was a Christmas present from my daughter

Monday 16 January 2012



"History is full of ordinary people with extraordinary stories"

I follow quite a lot of blogs- mainly about historical fiction, and most of them are fascinating, well written, well researched accounts of the history behind the book

This one however, struck me as different- its about the story behind the book, and as the posts are by the authors themselves, and they are writing about what they care passionately about, ie their book, they are not just well written, they are exceptionally well written!

I want to read each and every story on this blog!

So I was extremely pleased and excited when Deborah asked me to write about Moon in Leo for her blog

Only problem- I am not the author. Just the publisher. Perhaps I am being unjust to myself when I say just. This was a book that its author was passionate about and wanted to share with humanity. She had a vision and plenty to say about the state of our society, but she suffered with a stroke, and its aftermath- confusion, depression and delusion. All through what were some very dark years however, she held onto the fact that she had written an excellent book, and that she had a friend who had promised to help her get it published. Read her story, but take time to read other authors' stories too!

Tuesday 10 January 2012


I have had this little puzzle for longer than I can remember. It is my metaphor for life. It reminds me that everything you do impinges on something else. It reminds me that if I want to do X, Y or Z, I will almost certainly have to do A, B and probably C first! It reminds me that nothing is ever as simple or as easy as it seems.

When I fished it out of the drawer just now, it already displayed LADY on the top line. Could I make another word without losing the lady? Well, I could, but I had to move every other little plastic square. Perhaps I can now make CUT- but the prospect makes me feel tired. Oh hang on- if I make CIT (not a word- really except as op. cit.)- or better still TIC- I could have PURR!

Instead, I will embark tonight on the final styling and typesetting of The Boy with Two Heads, adding maps, lists of characters and author notes. I am excited at this prospect but know from experience that it will be just like my slidy plastic puzzle: when I change something at the beginning, it will mess up a page near the end; just as I think I have got it all sorted, in the right order, I will find a typo, and have to go onto the next page to change it; and it will take 10 times as long as I had bargained for. Meanwhile, Kate will be waiting for me to order the cover template so that she can get on with the final design. I can't order the template until I know exactly how many pages the book will have, as this affects the width of the spine. You see- it's exactly like my plastic puzzle!

Don't forget to visit Julia's new blog, and read the story from her POV!