Saturday Sale – 25th March


Tina Frisco’s fantasy book ‘Plateau: Beyond the Trees, Beyond 2012’ will be free on Smashwords today.  You can download the novel using the code CU75J at the checkout.


W’Hyani was born strong, willful, and the predestined Keeper of the Crystal Heart, the key to unlocking the mystery of the Great Mosaic of Life. Unaware of the shard’s significance, W’Hyani’s fortitude is tested by the cosmic forces that sculpted her destiny. She ultimately comes face-to-face with herself in a battle that would shrink the will of the most intrepid warrior, unaware the realization of her destiny will irrevocably impact all beings on earth and beyond. The Great Mosaic of Life holds a message of hope that would allow us to see and live beyond the year 2012.


To mark the anniversary of the WWI Battle of Messines Ridge, Linda de Quincey’s novella-length memoir ‘Tommy’s Tunnel’ is now $0.99/£0.99.


A note from Linda de Quincey:

Tommy Gray was my grandfather. He fought in The Great War and fraternised with the enemy during the Christmas truce of 1914. He witnessed and took part in atrocities that affected the rest of his long life. Plagued by guilt, he suffered in silence until after my grandmother’s death. His grief was intolerable and the catalyst to a heartbreaking confession.







Friday Roundup – 24th March

1.  Thanks to Anne Allen for this info on what makes a good author bio:

2.  Kathryn on ‘A Writer’s Path’ gives advice on writer’s block:

6 Ways to Transition Out of Writer’s Block

3.  Nicholas C. Rossis talks about scaling up Amazon ads:

4.  Marsha Ingrao gives advice on how to write a top book review:

5. D.E Haggerty tells it like it is about blogging:

6.  Melissa Bowersock at Indies Unlimited advises us regarding back matter:

7.  Gem Stone talks us through how to build a mailing list:

8.  Great idea from Damyanti at The Daily Write:

9.  Liz Long advises us on how to pitch to magazines:

How to Properly Pitch to Magazines

10.  Anne R. Allen asks “What should an author blog about?”

11.  Thanks to Martin Crosbie for this blog regarding whether e book sales are dead:

12.  Kate M. Colby, guest writer on ‘A Writer’s Path’, writes about finding the best book cover:

How to Get a Great Cover Design for Your Self-Published Book

13. Loretta Ellsworth, guest writer on ‘Writer’s Digest’, informs us how to overcome rejection by 200 literary agents:

Thanks to D.G Kaye, Don Massenzio, Chris, the Story Reading Ape, and Kim’s Author Support Blog for the re-blogs.


The Sully Award Competition is now open!


Will YOU be the lucky winner?

Last week on this blog I asked you a question: “Should I start a writing contest?”

I followed up my question with a promise: “If there is enough enthusiasm for a writing contest, I will start a writing contest.”

So. Was there enough enthusiasm for a writing contest?

Sort of!

And that’s good enough for me.

Welcome to the First Annual
Sully Award for Excellence in Writerishness!

The (one and only) winner will receive a bunch of valuable prizes!

A $20 gift card to Starbucks, because writers need to wake up before writing.
A $10 gift card to iTunes, because writers need to be in the right mood while writing.
A $20 Gift card to Barnes & Noble so you can read after writing.
And, best of all, a beautiful SULLY AWARD CERTIFICATE, because great writers deserve great accolades. The certificate will look something like…

View original post 366 more words


Some good tips here from David Kummer.

Mystery Thriller Week

Welcome to this lesson of David Kummer’s writing course. That’s me, by the way. If you have any questions, comments, concerns, success stories, or just something fun to say, email me at I’d love to talk about anything and everything, especially if that everything has to do with books, basketball, or Chinese food. I am a teenager, after all. So that’s that! Head on down and read what might be the best writing course of your life, but also might be the worst 😉 You won’t know until you try!


When your character cries, the reader should weep. When your character hurts, the reader should feel like dying. When your character succeeds, the reader should celebrate. When your character is real, the reader will love them.


View original post 1,566 more words

Thursday Cite and Insight Invite – 23rd March

Today’s quote is from the American comedian and TV host Ellen DeGeneres:

‘Beauty is about being comfortable in your own skin. It’s about knowing and accepting who you are.’

When we’re at that awkward age of about 12 – 17 we are desperate to be the same as our peers and to ‘fit in’.  We wear clothes that do not suit us and shoes that might possibly cause us to have to visit a podiatrist later in life,  just so as not to appear different to our friends.  I remember falling off my 6 inch platform shoes in 1974 in full view of shoppers in Lewisham High Street and tearing my bell bottom trousers.  In 1970 I walked about with a cow bell around my neck.  Now I think…why?

However, generally by the time we are in our fifties we wear clothes that suit us and eschew the more outlandish creations.  I care not two hoots whether I’m fashionable or not, because I now have no desire to fit into anybody’s idea of what I should look like.  I walk around wearing jeans, jumpers and trainers, and carry my faithful old rucksack on my back.  I can still hear my dear aunt telling my cousins…”She goes shopping with a rucksack!”.

Okay, so I’m a bit ‘bo-ho’ (bohemian) as my son calls me.  I hate handbags.  I like rucksacks, tassels, ruffles and fringes.  I like sitting in the middle of a field listening to rock bands playing, and I often go walking about in the dark with a torch.  I cannot remember the last time I wore a dress, but hey, that’s me.  I’m comfortable with it.

Have you accepted who you are, or are you still trying to fit in?  Below, here I am aged about 12 on a ferry somewhere, desperate for long straight blonde hair like my best friend, but…alas….(I’m okay with my mop now and have got it under control)!!

Aged about 11042.jpg



Unconventional Research Sites for Writers

Some more useful info for authors.


writer researchI read recently that 70% of millennials get their news from Facebook. Really? Isn’t Facebook a place to share personal information, stay in touch with friends and families, post pictures of weddings and birthdays? So why do students turn to it for news? And then, not two days later, I heard Twitter has reclassified their app as a news purveyor rather than a social media device. Once again: Who gets news from Twitter? Apparently a lot of adults. No surprise news shows are littered with references to listener’s tweets and the President breaks stories via his Twitter stream.

One more stat — which may explain the whole social-media-as-news-trend — and then I’ll connect these dots: Only 6% of people trust the press. I guess that’s why they prefer blogs, Twitter, and Facebook.

Research is a similar change. Your grandmother relied on encyclopedias, reference books, and museums. Your mother probably…

View original post 773 more words

Useful Sites for the Novice Writer

Thanks for this info Richard!

Richard M. Ankers

Author’s Note: This is my latest post to Medium. Please feel free to join me there if you so wish.

Useful Sites for the Novice Writer

I often think the act of writing to be not that difficult, you pick up a pen or open a laptop and start to note your ideas. The problem comes for many people with what to do with them once you’ve finished.

As a long time WordPress blogger (that’s me,) I know that there are many wonderful writers out there who just don’t know what to do next. Some are afraid to display the products of their imaginations, others just aren’t that computer savvy; I was both.

There are in fact a great many places to display one’s literary masterpieces (hopefully) and here is a list of some of the easiest ways to find them. I have assembled (just like The Avengers) the…

View original post 589 more words

EU Cookie Law Banner Timed Appearance…

Thanks Chris, I wasn’t aware of this.

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

You may remember the my post on 11th January 2017:


which advised about the law and described how to comply with it.

One of my blog followers, Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, asked if the banner can be timed out instead of having the compulsory CLICK AND ACCEPT Option

The answer is YES.

Go into your Admin


Scroll down to find the EU Cookie Law Banner

(which I placed at the bottom of my sidebar)

Once in place, open the Widget using the small right hand triangle

You will find the recommended option is ‘after the user clicks the dismiss button’

Select the ‘after this amount of time’ option instead

Change the default from 30 seconds, to whatever you want to make it


View original post

Doing a Car Boot



My US friends might ask “What’s doing a car boot?”

Well, it’s where you pack the boot of your car on a Saturday night with as much tat as you can find, and then set your alarm to go off at 05:10 hrs on the following Sunday morning in order to stand in a cold, muddy field from 07:30 hrs with about fifty other like minded souls in order to sell said tat.   The bit about setting your alarm for 05:10 hrs isn’t funny, as I came to realise last Sunday.

My daughters-in-law are prolific car booters.  I’ve never discovered just why my eldest daughter-in-law always has so much tat to sell.  Where is it all coming from?  She usually makes quite a bit of money every time too.  After finally clearing out my mother’s flat and being left with a mountain of tat, she suggested adding Dot’s tat to my own tat and joining her for a car booting session, and she knew just the one to go to – the Sunday market at Woolpit.

Woolpit Sunday market has been going for years, certainly for as long as we’ve lived in Suffolk.  The tat stretches far and wide across the aforesaid muddy field every Sunday morning, and if it’s a nice day then vultures start arriving from 07:00 hrs in order to buy up the best tat before somebody else takes it.  Sam and I had so much tat that we had to pay £14 for two cars to enter the field.  I fervently hoped that we’d soon sell all of it and make a grand profit.

The weather was a bit cold and overcast, but otherwise dry.  I trundled my car across the field and parked next to Sam and Kelly’s cars.  Before we had turned off our engines the vultures were flapping around all three of our cars, shouting through the windows and asking what we’d got.  I had some of the grandchildren’s outgrown toys in a Fortnum and Mason’s wicker basket that we’d been given several years back.  One chap asked how much for the basket.  I shouted back that it wasn’t for sale, just the toys inside.

We set up tables with our tat, and the vultures starting picking it over.  Quite a few of them wanted our Fortnum and Mason wicker basket, and Sam suggested selling it for £100. The sight of a group of vultures around our tables sent other vultures racing over to see what they were missing.  We were surrounded; this was a good start!

The morning ticked by. I felt as though I’d been up for hours, and it was only 08:15.  Kelly as usual was raking it in with her kids’ toys, books and games, but our tat wasn’t being shifted as fast.  Sam wandered off to buy a bacon roll and to look at other people’s tat, with strict instructions not to bring any of it back as we had enough of our own.  I yawned, sat in my beach chair still covered in Isle of Wight sand, and looked ever hopeful whenever a potential customer mooched along.

By 11:00 hrs everybody was packing up and I was windswept and starving hungry, as I’d eaten my breakfast at 05:45.  Kelly had made nearly £90, but Stevie with twice the amount of tat had only made £22.50 and had to bring the majority of it back home again.  Hey ho, such is life.  I worked on the assumption that it was a cold day and not many people had ventured out.  Kelly said to try again, but I think I’ll leave it until the summer!

Have you ever ‘done a car boot’? Would you do another one?  What’s a car boot sale called in the US?