K. A. Richardson’s Time To Play: Blog Tour

Friday 30th September 2016

image

The book I’m currently reading is Time To Play by North East Crime Writer K.A Richardson.

 

I always like

to have a book

to read.

Missuswolf Time To Play K.A Richardson

For those of you who’ve followed this blog for a long time, you’ll recall the days when this was solely about books and writing.

It’s somewhat expanded in the last couple of months but my heart will always be with literature.

Crime and psychological thriller’s tend to be my forte.

 

K. A. Richardson

I used to work with Kerry a few years back and I’ve loved following her writing journey. Back then, she was busy writing her first book, With Deadly Intent (cheeky post plug – read more on my interview with her here).

She was also in the process of setting up her blog too Kerryannrichardson.com

2016 has been a busy yet exciting year for Kerry. Her debut novel, With Deadly Intent, was released in April, followed by I’ve Been Watching You in June and now Time To Play was released on the 22nd of this month.

Back in July, Kerry also won author of the month over at the UK Crime Book Club.

At the time of going to press, I’ve Been Watching You was number 2 in the free Kindle Crime Chart and no 6 in the overall free Kindle Chart.

Pretty impressive achievements while working in a (very important) full-time job.

Biography

Missuswolf K A Richardson Author PictureMy name is KA Richardson, and I am a crime writer based in the North East of England. I write around my other work commitments so am constantly on the go. I love reading many genres, love speaking to people and spend a lot of time people watching in coffee shops, though if I’m honest this is more for the purposes of character building and plotting. I enjoy watching ‘cop’ shows from both the UK and the USA, and am a fan of sci-fi. I began thinking about writing as a career in 2010 and completed my Ma Creative Writing in 2011. I love to be inspired, and enjoy spending time with friends and family, as well as other like-minded folk. My website has some more info on me, if you’re interested pop on over to www.kerryannrichardson.com, or I can be found on Facebook as KA Richardson.

Time To Play …

DI Alistair McKay is still reeling from the ‘one that got away’ but when he is called to deal with a potential murder at the water side, he must put his personal worries aside.

As police diver, Marlo Buchanan, starts pulling bodies out of the water, it becomes clear that something isn’t right.

Someone is torturing young girls and dumping them in the local reservoir.

Then the body of a man is discovered and Mackay and Buchanan are pulled into the seedy underworld of human trafficking.

As the team race against the clock tensions start to run high.

Can they overcome their personal demons to work together?

And will they find the killer before he strikes again?

The team are back in the third novel from the gripping North East Police series.

 

Missuswolf Time To Play K.A Richardson

You don’t have to have read

the previous books

to read Time To Play

Although the book is part of the ‘North East Police’ series, the beauty of Kerry’s work is that the books are stand alones in their own right.

They focus on a different character in each novel and, although they make reference to previous character’s who are bobbing along in the background, this doesn’t distract from the main storyline.

My favourite style in this book is that the sections are snappy; almost like an intertwined diary. In any chapter, the date and destination heading change allows us to follow different character’s; from the police dive team, detective’s and scene’s of crime officer’s to the horror of the human trafficking world.

Interlaced within all that are the sub stories of the police officer’s lives.

The pace is good, it keeps it interesting the technique that Kerry has used.

The topic is very raw and the level of research that Kerry has done on both the subject and the roles of the police teams involved is a real credit.

Richardson’s got a good knack of getting inside the mind of a killer and their thought process to justify their actions.

Chilling,

but thrilling.

I’m not going to give too much away on this one for fear of dropping any spoilers.

The nights are drawing in and what better way to get all snug and cosy than to get your nose in a new book.

Time To Read

Time To Play

Missuswolf Time To Play K A Richardson

Have you read any of Kerry’s books?

Love Missuswolf xxx

Cuppa and a Catch-Up – An Author Interview with … Kristina Gause Stutts

WEDNESDAY 22nd APRIL 2015

Cuppa and a Catch up pic

Today, I would like to wish a warm welcome to the lovely Kristina Gause Stutts, author to Amethyst Chronicles: Winter’s Kiss, the first book in a Sci-fi romance series.

~Author Bio~

K.G. Stutts is the author three sci-fi romance series as well as several romance stories. She has a degree in massageKristen author photo therapy. As a contributor to Independent Writers Association (IWA) her insights can be seen regularly there and on her own blog at kgstutts.blogspot.com and her website at kgstutts.webs.com

When she’s not weaving words, she enjoys reading, playing RPGs, hockey, wrestling, and football, and is a big sci-fi nerd. Currently she resides in North Carolina, USA with her husband, Brad.

~Synopsis~

Amethyst is a secret team of genetically enhanced humans which is Earth’s greatest defensive weapon. Leading the team of super soldiers is Ember Wilson, a tough woman with a huge chip on her shoulder. The team gets
their name from the after effect of the Genesis Project which turned their eyes and even their blood purple.

amethyst pictureFor decades, Earth has been ravaged by unpredictable weather which began to cause crops to fail. Most of the planet’s food sources have deteriorated. Dr. Clayton Rudo has proclaimed he has the means to save the soil. He has created a weather machine to regulate and help replenish. But Ember knew the truth. He didn’t want to save the planet. He wanted to control it. Amethyst destroyed the machine, but was placed in stasis. Two years later, Rudo recreated the device and has frozen Washington, DC.

General Tom Blanchard brought Amethyst out of stasis to work with an elite Air Force team, led by Major Liam Ross. Tensions between Ember and Liam rise as they butt heads. Can they work together before Earth is completely under ice?

Grab that cuppa and get settled as we catch up with Kristina Gause Stutts … 

coffee and cream

 

Hi Kristina and welcome! It’s great to have you here.

Thank you so much for having me!

Where did you get the inspiration behind this novel?

I’m a big fan of Joss Whedon. He writes these incredible, tough, kick-butt women. I wanted to develop a character worthy of that. A woman who can fight as fiercely as she can love. Someone that readers can look up to, inspire to be, and root for. And then came Ember Wilson.

How would you compare writing this book with anything that you have written previously?

Oh, gosh. The Amethyst Chronicles is a bit different than my other books. It’s definitely less science-y than my Mirror series and more action. But I keep the humor and both series are very character driven.   

How did you start writing? Was there a particular book or moment in your life that spurned you on?

I started writing in high school. Started off with little songs and poems. I began to write fan fictions and plots, but it didn’t reallyMirror Image go anywhere for a long time. I started to have a dream a couple of years ago about a woman who found out she’s actually a clone. I went to bed every night hoping to pick up where I left off and I got really excited. So I started writing it out and that became my first novel, Mirror Image. It’s getting ready to celebrate its first anniversary published.

How do you organise your writing time?

I work in a call center so often times I’ll write in between calls. I always have a notebook with me so I can jot things down when I can. Sundays are a big writing day for me, but I do try to write every day.

Where is your best ‘writing space’; the place where you feel comfortably locked away from the world and able to let your creative juices flow?

Sometimes it’s just sitting down with a pen and a notebook and write. I don’t have a set place really. Life is too busy to schedule things like that.

And finally, tell us an interesting fact about yourself that not many people know.

I used to referee independent wrestling matches on the weekends. Had to stop after a back injury. I’m still at CWF Mid-Atlantic. It’s definitely a passion of mine that I miss, but maybe one day I’ll get in the ring again.

Thank you for being here today Kristina.

Thank you for having me!

~Where to find Kristina~

amethyst picture
Love Missuswolf xxx

Cuppa and a Catch-Up – An Author Interview with … Clare Mackintosh

WEDNESDAY 01st APRIL 2015

Cuppa and a Catch up pic



I am delighted to feature on my blog today the lovely Clare Mackintosh, author to the brand new psychological thriller that everyone’s talking about ‘I Let You Go’.

~Author Bio~

Clare MackintoshClare Mackintosh is an author, feature writer and columnist. She has written for The Guardian, Sainsbury’s Magazine, The Green Parent, and many other national publications, and is a columnist for Cotswold Life and Writing Magazine.

Clare spent twelve years in the police force, working on CID, in custody and as a public order commander, and has drawn on her experiences for her début psychological thriller I Let You Go. She is currently writing her second novel.

~Synopsis~

A tragic accident. It all happened so quickly. She couldn’t have prevented it. Could she?

In a split second, Jenna Gray’s world descends into a nightmare. Her only hope of moving on is to walk away from everythingI Let You Go she knows to start afresh. Desperate to escape, Jenna moves to a remote cottage on the Welsh coast, but she is haunted by her fears, her grief and her memories of a cruel November night that changed her life forever.

Slowly, Jenna begins to glimpse the potential for happiness in her future. But her past is about to catch up with her, and the consequences will be devastating . . .

~Thoughts~

2015 has haphazardly seen my reading habits drift toward the psychological thriller. The pleasure I receive for these books toying with my mind is exquisite – I get a kick out of reading material messing with my brain.

And I Let You Go is not one to disappoint.

The story itself is an extremely good concept – however it’s the structure, the style of narration and the writing that make it breath-taking. It’s a book that not only has a great twist, it’s full of surprises.

The depth in which we’re allowed into the minds of the character’s and what makes some of them tick is what makes this such a great psychological thriller. It allows us a greater understanding of the big picture.

We’re even privy to a glimpse into Detective Inspector Ray Stevens life; we get to experience his struggles not only investigating the incident, but within his own family as well. 

The final pages of the story catapult us into an extremely tense and emotional ending. The pace doesn’t give you the opportunity to put the book down – you’re yearning for the next chapter, the next sentence, hell you’re even craving the next word.

I’m on a spate of reading such good psychological thriller’s and I Let You Go is no exception to the rule.

In fact, it’s as if it wrote the rule.

So grab that cuppa and snuggle in as we get to know more about Clare Mackintosh …

cuppa

What was the inspiration behind ‘I Let You Go’?

Many years ago, when I joined the police, a young boy was killed by joyriders on an estate in Oxford. It was a terrible crime and the offenders were never caught. I tried to think how it would feel to be responsible for something so horrific, but not coming forward, and couldn’t begin to imagine how the child’s mother felt. The hit and run that starts I Let You Go is very different, and the subsequent story is not at all the story of that boy from Oxford, but I thought of him and his family often when I was writing the book. I wanted to explore what motivates people to commit and conceal crime, and I wanted to create characters that weren’t straight forward.  

How would you compare writing this book with anything you have previously written?

My first book was a romantic comedy called Hot Property. I worked with a great literary agent who really helped me develop the story, but after a year or so it became clear this wasn’t the right book. I had a yearning to write something much grittier, and as soon as I started I Let You Go it felt right. When it was finished I signed with a different literary agent and worked on a rewrite before she submitted it to publishers.   


One thing that impressed me with ‘I Let You Go’ was the structure of the story – I thought it was incredibly clever. Without giving too much away about the storyline, how did you plan this out?

Thank you! I’m obsessed with structure and dissect everything I read, or watch on television. I love seeing how stories are put together. With I Let You Go I started in the middle, where I had a really clear idea of what I wanted the story to do, then I worked out from there. I knew how the book started, and I was fairly certain I knew how it ended, so it was a question of filling in the gaps! With psychological thrillers it’s all about the pace, so I had to drop in pointers that would keep a reader turning the page, without giving away the plot!

How did you start writing? Was there a particular book or moment in your life that spurned you on?

I’ve always written: I have a diary I kept when I was seven, and a fictionalised account of a family holiday in which I detail our ‘intrepid’ explorations of a campsite in Yorkshire. I wasn’t encouraged to consider writing as a career (and doubt I’d have made a success of it, back then), but carried on writing bits and pieces throughout the years. When I was pregnant I took over as editor of the local NCT newsletter and loved writing columns and putting together features. I started a blog which quickly gained followers, and from that was invited to write a column for a regional magazine. Gradually I began pitching features to other publications until 2011 when I left the police to write full-time.

Where is your best ‘writing space’; the place where you feel comfortably locked away from the world and able to let your creative juices flow?

I have several! My regular writing space is my office: a very small room in my house where I have my desk, printer, huge book case, a wall planner and two enormous white boards. At the moment I also have a vast map of the London Underground (research for my next book). When the house is empty I can work quite well in there (although am easily distracted by the internet, a beeping washing machine, or a dog needing a walk) but I find it almost impossible to work when the children are in the house, however quiet they ‘think’ they’re being… I sometimes write in cafes, where I feel obliged to be productive because I’ve spent £2.50 on a latte. My favourite place to write is Chez Castillon, a writing retreat in the South of France, where I write four times as much as at home. If only I could live there all the time!

And finally, tell us an interesting fact about yourself that not many people know

When I was 19 and at university I wangled an invitation to Downing Street. I was waitressing at a golf club and was talking to one of the guests who was involved in an award ceremony taking place at the PM’s place. I persuaded him to include me on the guest list, and he sent me an invitation the next day! 

Thank you for being here today Clare and best of luck with the book.

~ Where to find the Author~

Website

Facebook

Blog

Twitter

 Love Missuswolf xxx 

Please note this post contains affiliate links

ARC

What I’ve Been Reading – January 2015

FRIDAY 30th JANUARY 2015

Happy Friday folks!

I’ve managed to take a break from the day job today (I’ve had to wait in for someone from Sky) so it’s meant that I’ve spent all day reading and writing – yey!

This month, I’ve tried to read a bit more than just a couple of chapter’s a night. So instead of watching the TV, I’ve had my head in a book.

January’s reading list has consisted of the following books:

Stephen Booth – Dying To Sin

Paula Daly – Just What Kind Of Mother Are You?

Lee Child – One Shot

Stephen Booth – Dying to SinDying to Sin

Synopsis

For decades, Pity Wood Farm has been a source of employment for poor workers passing through Rakedale, migrants with lives as abject as the labour they sought. But now it seems a worse fate may have befallen some of those who came upon this isolated community.

Routine building work at the farm has unearthed a grisly discovery: a human hand preserved in clay. When police dig up the farmyard, they find not one, but two bodies – and several years between their burials.

With pressure from a new superintendent and scant forensic evidence to aid them, DS Fry and DC Cooper have only the memories of local people to piece together the tragic history of the farm. 

In a case as cold as the ground, Cooper finds himself drawn to a desperate theory: that somewhere, there lies a third body which holds the key to these dreadful crimes.

Thoughts:

I’ve read a Stephen Booth book before – back in October 2011 –  Scared To Live (read blog post here). I’m a scatty reader when it comes to his and James Patterson books. I never seem to read them in the right order in the series. But that’s the beauty of writers like these – they write in such a way that you can just pick up – say book eight – and off you go. No real need to have read the previous book in the series. You get the gist.

For me, Dying To Sin is not one of the fastest paced novels I’ve read – but it’s not the slowest. I know that’s a vague description but that’s how I felt about it – vague. I like Stephen Booth’s style of writing – I really did feel like I was out in the Peak District, shivering with Fry and Cooper as they try to piece together what’s happened. I was a bit slower reading this – I spent most of January with Dying To Sin. It had a slow start and I felt the story went on quite a bit, as if I was waiting for something to happen. But I persevered as I’ve experienced this before with James Patterson’s Beach Road. I didn’t connect with that book to start with and I had similar feelings with Dying To Sin. However, I learnt to always give books the benefit of the doubt – and the last 100 pages of Dying To Sin did pick up pace and did leave me satisfied. But it’s not one of my favourites.

Paula Daly – Just What Kind Of A Mother Are YouPaula Daly Just What

Synopsis

Your friend’s child is missing. It’s your fault.

No family is perfect.

A husband, three children and a full-time job, so many plates to keep spinning.

No wonder you forgot you were supposed to be looking after your friend’s daughter.

But no one has seen her since yesterday.

And she’s not the first to go missing from your small town.

So who’s hiding something?

Thoughts:

I LOVED this book! Unfortunately you will have to wait until next month to hear more about it as Paula Daly has kindly agreed to take part in ‘Cuppa and a Catch-Up’ (thanks Paula!) But all I can say is that this book is on par with when I read The Hunger Games. A real page-turner – I didn’t want to put this one down and it really was a case of ‘just one more chapter’. I started it Saturday and finished it Monday. It’s gripping and it gets inside your head as you think ‘oh god, it could potentially happen.’ I’m not a mother so I can only begin to imagine what it would feel like. But the author brought that all to life for me. I laughed and I cried at this book. I’ve got her next one lined up Keep Your Friends Close (thanks Tammy Exton – check out her blog here).

Lee Child One ShotLee Child – One Shot

Synopsis

Six shots. Five dead.

A heartland city thrown into terror. But within hours the cops have it solved. A slam-dunk case. Apart from one thing. The accused gunman refuses to talk except for a single phrase:

Get Jack Reacher for me.

Reacher lives off the grid. He’s not looking for trouble. But sometimes trouble looks for him. What could connect the ex-military cop to this psychopathic killer?

 

Thoughts:

I’m 198 pages into this book at the moment. I loved the last Lee Child book that I read (Worth Dying For) so when I inherited this book from the Harvey’s, it was a must. Although it’s not as good as Worth Dying For which I couldn’t put down. One Shot I’m not so fussed about. It does have me hooked as to how the story is going to pan out. Lee Child’s style of writing is fast-paced and very visual. A lot happens at the start of the book and he brings this to life very well. Of course, all is not as it seems and Jack Reacher gets called in. That’s when the real mystery starts to unravel. Again I’ll persevere with this one as I may be pleasantly surprised. I think it’s had a hard act to follow when I’ve fallen so deeply in love with Paula Daly’s novel.

On that note, I’ll go and read a couple more pages …

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

Cuppa and a Catch-Up – An Author Interview with … Michelle Betham

TUESDAY 15th JULY 2014

Cuppa and a Catch up pic

I would like to wish a warm welcome to the lovely Michelle Betham, a fellow North Easterner and Author to numerous romance novels, including Bon Voyage and Unbreakable.

~Author Bio~

I’ve been making up stories for as long as I can remember, so it stood to reason that, at some DIGITAL CAMERApoint, I’d start writing some of them down. I currently have ten novels in total to my name, ranging from the sweet to the really quite steamy – which is my favourite kind of romance!  When I’m not creating hot heroes and sexy scenarios I like to read everything from erotica to horror. I’m also a bit of a TV addict with a penchant for “binge-watching”, I love football, darts and rock music, have a slight obsession with Timothy Olyphant, and I’m also an unashamed ‘Breaking Bad’ geek!

 With a string of steamy novels under her belt, including her current football based trilogy ‘The Striker Series’, Michelle is who I liked to refer to as the North East’s answer to Jackie Collins.

 Today she is discussing ‘Extra Time’, the second book in the trilogy.

~Synopsis~ 

Extra Time begins just a few months after Striker, Book #1 in the trilogy, left off, and the lives of Amber, Jim, Ryan and Ronnie have all moved on…

*May contain slight spoilers if you haven’t yet read Striker*

Extra Time CoverProfessional footballer Ryan Fisher is determined to show the world he’s a changed man. But moving on isn’t easy, and leaving his old life behind isn’t something he’s coping all that well with, especially when so much of it is still so close to home; when a life he didn’t realise he wanted until it was far too late is still right there in front of him. Does he reach out and try to grab it a second time? Or does he make a decision to leave it all behind in the only way he knows how? Before temptation becomes too hard to resist…

Amber’s life is moving along at breakneck speed. In every aspect. But is everything as happy and settled as she’d like it to be? Has she finally found her happy-ever-after? Or is the past just waiting to creep up on her?

At the age of forty-nine, Jim Allen feels as though his life is just beginning. He’s in love, and his career as one of the country’s most successful football managers is on the ascendant. But Jim knows all is not as it seems. He knows there are more secrets just waiting to come out, secrets that could potentially damage his new life. And this time, they’re secrets he isn’t sure he can control. Is a past he’s spent so long trying to hide finally starting to catch up with him?

As those secrets slowly start to reveal themselves, everyone’s lives once more become entangled as faces from the past and dreams of the future collide, and sex, lies and betrayal all play a part in turning everyone’s worlds upside down. All over again. And when a secret of her own adds to Amber’s heartache, is running back to her old life the best way to escape the pain? Or just the easy option. Is she really strong enough to let go of a man whose hold over her is something she just can’t break? Even if everything inside of her is screaming at her to do so.

But when that old life starts to take hold in a way no one could have envisaged, the game changes once again…

Extra Time – The game continues… but just who is winning…?

 

Hi Michelle, it’s my pleasure to have you here again!cuppa

Where did the inspiration behind the ‘Striker’ books come from?

I’m a big football fan. I always have been. And I’ve always been fascinated by the world that surrounds the top flight players – that world of excess, money and glamour. I was also a HUGE fan of ‘Footballers Wives’ when it was on TV. I loved that show! But, surely, that glamorous, glitzy world they all live in, it can’t be THAT perfect, can it? After reading a book called ‘I Am The Secret Footballer’ I realised it wasn’t. Written by a real-life Premiership footballer, it gives readers an insight into his life as a top-flight player, both on and off the pitch – the good bits, and the bad. It was certainly an eye opener, and proved to be an invaluable research tool for me as I created the character of fictional bad boy footballer Ryan Fisher. Nothing I wrote in any of the ‘Striker’ books is too far fetched, believe me. Because, as far as these players are concerned, anything goes. But money can’t always buy you everything, as Ryan soon finds out…

As a reader, what can we expect from ‘Extra Time’?

Michelle was recently featured in The Sunday Sun. Click here to view more

Michelle was recently featured in The Sunday Sun. Click here to view the interview with Ian Robson on Highbeam.com

Well, as the story continues here in book 2, the reader can expect a few more secrets to come to light, a lot more scandal, and a great deal more action off the pitch that’s guaranteed to get the heart racing! These books definitely aren’t ones you’d give to your granny, that’s for sure! I even nicknamed them “Fifty Shades of Football” because they can get a little bit hot in parts! You have been warned…

You like to do a lot of … ahem … research into characters for your stories. Who was your inspiration for Ryan Fisher?

I certainly DO like my research! But actually, Ryan Fisher wasn’t really inspired by any one particular individual. I kind of looked at professional Premiership footballers on the whole, and mixed it all up a bit. So Ryan has a little bit of everything going on, really. Yes, he’s a bad boy, but there’s also another side to him that really starts to come out more in books 2 and 3.

Which football team do you support?

Tricky one this. I used to be a season ticket holder at Newcastle United back in my teenage years, but after marrying a Sunderland supporter I hate to admit that my loyalty is shifting somewhat. And I know that, coming from a Geordie, that could almost be considered treason to even just think that. But it’s really hard to live with a Sunderland fan and NOT get sucked into the drama that team can sometimes create! Am I a full-blown Sunderland fan, though? I’m getting there…

I know you can’t give too much away, but what can we expect from the third book in the trilogy?

It’s quite difficult to say a lot without giving too much away, but, let’s just say there is some kind of conclusion to the trilogy in book 3. But not before yet more drama ensues, and another character gets to show us a side of him that we may not have seen before. It was a really emotional experience for me, writing that final book, because I’d grown so close to the characters in the Striker Series. And it was hard to let them go. But, again, without giving too much away, it may not be the last we see of them…

Thank you for being here today Michelle.

~Where to find Michelle Betham~

Blog

Facebook

Twitter

Pinterest

Extra Time Cover

Click here for your copy from Amazon!

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

Cuppa and a Catch-Up – An Author Interview with … Philip A. Oldfield

WEDNESDAY 09th JULY 2014

Cuppa and a Catch up pic

Today I would like to welcome Phillip Oldfield, author to Blood Relationships.

~AUTHOR BIO~

I was born in Cambridge, England, in 1959. When I was eight years old, I spent a few years living in Connecticut, USA as my family had emigrated. I still feel America is my second home. However, following the untimely demise of my father’s health and subsequent death, England, once more, was home.

Author pic philip oldfieldI have written short-stories and poetry from my early teenage years. I read Geography as a mature student at the University of Exeter, starting when my third child was 3 months old.

I have been an active parent for thirty-two years and a single parent since 2007. I have four adult children and two grandchildren. My youngest son left home in 2012.

I have had, and continue to have, an eclectic working life which has spanned the private, public and voluntary sectors within the United Kingdom. My experience stretches across the police service, marketing and, business, social and economic development.

The novel Blood Relationships is my first completed book. It started off as a concept several years ago. With the opportunity to write full-time combined with long hours of research and writing this year (2013) I was able to bring it to fruition. It is the first of a planned trilogy called Resurrections.

I have recently published My Dream Mother, a novella and finishing off twenty-five micro-stories, called, Flash Fiction 25 (Volume 1). I have five other books clambering over one another calling out to be finished, read and heard. Two are fantasies, two are historical fiction and the fifth is a romance.

I live and write in Exeter, England and enjoy its growing cosmopolitan feel along with the blessings of living in close proximity – 30 minutes or less – to the sea, rural landscapes and the wildness of the moors.

And finally, I have several favourite sayings garnered from others, which I call upon from time to time to spur me on. My favourite, I guess, which has helped me in many ways is, I think, a Chinese proverb:

‘Behold the tortoise; he only makes progress, by sticking his neck out.’

Always live in hope,

Philip A. Oldfield

~SYNOPSIS – BLOOD RELATIONSHIPS~

Blood Relationships

The story propels the reader into a roller coaster of emotions: the depths of despair and terror to the strongest feelings of love, hope and faith. The journey set in 2012 is at times violent and jarring as troubled and sadistic characters are encountered, from the freneticism of a crowded London nightclub, the claustrophobia of a macabre basement, to the expansive beauty of the Aegean Sea and the turbulent roads of Southern and Eastern Europe. Yet the heroes in the story, Claire Yohanus and Tom Abimelech, who unwillingly are caught up in ensuing events and stumble across the horrors of the past and the plans for our future, cast light and deliver hope as they grapple with truth, doubt, fear and courage and face, head on, their dilemma to tell the world.

 

~SYNOPSIS – MY DREAM MOTHER~

An inspiring tale, full of hope and a richly satisfying conclusion.My Dream Mother

​A mother dies in childbirth giving birth to a son. His father, wrought with grief and helped by Death, brings his own mother into the home to care for the child and raise him. But mistakes happen. And so begins the sorry life of Benjamin Bedford destined to live in a small corner of the world, unknown, unnoticed, in quiet oppression as he is slowly indoctrinated into the family system – much like his father was brought up to be – by his controlling and self-absorbed grandmother.

Destined, that is, until Hope played her part. That’s when the dreams began. Ben’s imagined destiny begins. But, does reality ever meet our innermost desires and create another stage for us to dance upon? The calling may be strong, the dreams may be vivid, they may even be better than life, but they’re never real are they? Follow Ben’s life from tragedy to fame and find out if dreams really do come true.

Now grab that cuppa as we chat to Philip A. Oldfield …

CUPPA

Hi Philip and welcome to my blog.

 

Where did the inspiration behind Blood Relationships come from?

The initial idea for Blood Relationships, the first book of a trilogy that I am writing called Resurrections, was drawn from my Blood Relationshipsinterest in psychology. I wanted to explore how individuals might maintain or lose faith, if pushed to the limits of endurance and what part, serendipity, and personal history might play in the process of our lives. Some while later, I was discussing progress on the book with one of my daughter’s, she’s a historian, and the conversation drifted on to events in World War II and the nature of fertility experiments. After I had researched around the topic, pre and post war medical trials, the links into the story grew, became symbiotic. Hence why the story draws on historical facts and science, but is set in contemporary times across London and Europe.

How would you compare writing this book with anything you have previously written?

My Dream MotherUp until I researched and wrote Blood Relationships, I had focused on writing poetry and short stories. I like the immediacy of short stories, even the writing of micro-stories (flash fiction) and also the challenge to absorb myself and the reader in a few pages, grab their attention, so to speak. I am just finishing off a collection, Flash Fiction 25, Vol. 1, which is coming out soon. Prior to this, I published in June this year, a novella, ‘My Dream Mother.’ I chose to write these tales to give myself some space from the intensity of writing a novel.But, I have to say, writing a full-length manuscript is overall more satisfying and ultimately, rewarding, delivering a sense of achievement that I had brought to life a tale that had waited in the wings many years to be told. It’s exciting to be in a position to write. I have several other novels in development, all in differing stages of progress, ranging across historical fiction, romance and fantasy and of course, the next two instalments in the trilogy, Resurrections. For me, it was an absolute joy, emotionally and intellectually, to immerse myself in the breadth and depth required to write a novel and maintain a focus on several story lines intersecting and/or running parallel throughout. It required a lot of planning and mapping out. For this, I primarily used A3 paper for storyboards, and used them as frameworks upon which the plot and the characters interacted and inevitably, I guess, as their characters spoke up, changed the course of the book.

How did you start writing? Was there a particular book or moment in your life that spurned you on?

 

At the age of eleven, whilst in an English class, the teacher led a discussion on the First World War. Afterwards, we were asked to write a poem. I found that I was able to readily generate emotions, imagine events and conjure words from the ether.

 The teacher was effervescent in his personal feedback, which has motivated me to write poetry and fiction, ever since.

How do you organise your writing time?Love shadows and light

I am normally at my desk from around 8.30 am onwards, reviewing what I had planned to do, and deciding if those tasks are the main things to do. I pretty much work flat out then until around 1 pm, when I like to listen to Radio 4 news over lunch. By around 4.30 pm, I look to stop work. In between these hours, I pick and mix activities either indoors or outside to stay fit. Of course, writing is a diverse range of activities including idea generation, research, outlining, structuring, imagining, reading and editing. It also involves, for me, a whole raft of emotions too. I need most of my mental energy when I am writing creatively, using my imagination. And when I am wrapped up in these moments, when characters and plots are chattering away, then I will stay connected to them, which might mean I wake up early and write and write, or work late into the night.  

Where is your best ‘writing space’; the place where you feel comfortably locked away from the world and able to let your creative juices flow?

Hmm, my best writing space. It varies. Most often, I write at a desk in my bedroom, with my work spread out along its surface, with ready access to my bookshelves, paper cuttings and writing materials. Here, I either type, write or dictate, depending on the nature of the writing I am working on. s often then, that I find the inspiration I need. And of course, a cup of coffee or green tea always helps too.

And finally, tell us an interesting fact about yourself that not many people know.

I lived in Connecticut, America, between the ages of 8 and 10 years of age. I still think of America as my second home and dream of living there again, for a while, one day.  

 

Thank you for being here today Phillip.

~OTHER PUBLICATIONS~

Love shadows and light

Love: Shadows and Light (November 2011). An anthology of poems depicting the upheaval, both blessed and traumatic, that love can bring.

~Where to find Philip A. Oldfield~

www.philipoldfield.com

Blood Relationships
My Dream Mother

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

Book A Day Challenge UK: Day 29 – The one I have reread most often – Roald Dahl

SUNDAY 29th JUNE 2014

Today’s #BookADayUK is one I have reread most often.

Roald Dahl.

Image from Amazon - go on - have a click - you know you want to

Image from Amazon – go on – have a click – you know you want to

I could say that it’s rather the author who I have reread most often rather than a particular book.

But I did read the majority of his books more than once; Matilda, James and The Giant Peach, Charlie and The Chocolate Factory, Charlie and The Great Glass Elevator, The Twits, The Witches, Fantastic Mr Fox and one of my old-time favourite’s – The BFG.

I remember the summer of 1992.

It was  a summer spent disco dancing on the front driveway.

It’s also more memorable as the summer I read a lot of Roald Dahl, tucked up in my sister’s room when I had made her swap room’s for the whole holiday.

(I was convinced that wasps lived in my bedroom. They didn’t. I’d just found a dead wasp at the end of my bed one morning and from then on I believed they were out to get me.  After my sister experienced an uneventful summer,  I sharp swapped back when a huge spider appeared on her East 17 poster.)

Hmmm. I think Mr Dahl’s books only fuelled my already overactive imagination …

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

 

Book A Day Challenge UK: Day 18 – Bought on a recommendation – The Accident

 

WEDNESDAY 18th JUNE 2014

Today’s #BookADayUK is one that was bought on a recommendation.

The Accident.

Image from Amazon - click to download your copy ...

Image from Amazon – click to download your copy …

There are so many I could have chosen from – The Hunger Games being one of them but it’s had its airtime (and may appear again! Shout out to Andy Wright for that recommendation).

My good friend Emma Buckton (shout out to Lady B!) downloaded The Accident and posted a lovely reading-my-kindle-in-the-garden pic to my FB page by way of suggestion.

After A.J. Fikry, there was the dark reading void, that follows upon completion of a good read, and that void needed to be filled.

The urge to read something else was satisfied by The Accident. Keep toot for a future blog post on this …

Love Missuswolf xxx

Book A Day Challenge UK: Day 15 – Favourite Fictional Father A.J. Fikry

SUNDAY 15th JUNE 2014

Today’s #BookADayUK is very apt with it being Father’s Day – favourite fictional father …

A.J. Fikry.

Image from Author Gabrielle Zevin website, please click to view more

Image from Author Gabrielle Zevin website, please click to view more

Not an obvious choice by most accounts but it’s a book I read only recently and one that really nuzzled deep inside my head – and my heart.

A.J. Fikry’s story is simply wonderful; his journey through fatherhood is a beautiful and heart warming one – sprinkled with collective stories and notes for his child.

It truly is a delight to observe his character transition and adaptation after he is catapulted into fatherhood without warning.

If you are a book lover, I can’t express how much you need to read this book (more on that in another blog post).

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

Cuppa and a Catch-Up – An Author Interview with … Michelle Saint-Germain Weidenbenner

MONDAY 19th MAY 2014

Cuppa and a Catch up pic

I would like to wish a warm welcome to the lovely Michelle Weidenbenner – Amazon bestselling author of SCATTERED LINKS and CACHE a PREDATOR. Scattered Links is only 99 cents to buy today on Amazon!

~Author Bio~

Michelle grew up in the burbs of Detroit with five brothers. No sisters. Each time her mom brought the boy bundle home from the hospital she cried, certain her mom liked boys better than girls. But when her brothers pitched in with the cooking, cleaning, and babysitting, without drama, she discovered having brothers wasn’t so bad. They even taught her how to Michelle SGW Author Pictake direct criticism without flinching, which might come in handy with book reviews.

When she’s not writing she’s winning ugly on the tennis court. She’s known as “Queen of the Rim Shots.”

No joke. It’s ugly.

Her debut novel, Cache a Predator is a geocaching mystery and an Amazon bestseller in the thriller/crime category.

Scattered Links (initially titled Love is Just a Word) was the winner of the 2013 Aspiring Writers Competition, sponsored by Write on Con and The Reading Room.

Michelle blogs at Random Writing Rants where she teaches and encourages writers how to get published

 

~Scattered Links~

Scattered Links

Book Description:

Scattered Links is a novel that pulls its characters from the gutters and, in the end, celebrates the tenacity of the human spirit.

Thirteen-year-old Oksana lives on the streets of Russia with her pregnant mama and abusive aunt—both prostitutes. When Mama swells into labor, Oksana makes a decision to save herself from abandonment, a decision that torments her forever. When her plan fails and her aunt dumps her in an orphanage, she never has the chance to say goodbye to her mama or tell her the secret that haunts her.

Scattered Links is a story of family and the consequences that come from never learning how to love, of a girl’s inability to bond with her adopted family and the frustrations that follow.

How can a child understand the mechanics of forming a healthy relationship when she never had a mother who answered her cries, held her when she was frightened, fed her when she was hungry, or loved her unconditionally?

Only when the child meets a rescued abused horse, and recognizes the pain in his eyes, does she begin to trust again.

Now grab that cuppa and get settled as we chat to Michelle Saint-Germain Weidenbenner …

coffee and cream

Hi Michelle and welcome today!

Where did the inspiration behind ‘Scattered Links’ come from?

In 1997 we traveled to Russia to adopt our daughter from an orphanage, so some of the story came from what I saw and the families and therapists I interviewed since then.

CACHE-Book-CoverHow would you compare writing this book with anything that you have written previously?

It’s totally different. My debut novel, CACHE a PREDATOR, was a thriller. The other books I’ve written are about kids—some with super powers. This novel is multi-cultural and reads like nonfiction.

How did you start writing? Was there a particular book or moment in your life that spurned you on?

My parents often encouraged my writing. After we adopted Olivia I didn’t want to go back to work full time so I decided to try my luck at writing for magazines. That was more difficult then I thought. So I attended Taylor University in Ft. Wayne, Indiana—an hour from my home. I had a bachelor’s degree in business, but I wanted to learn more about how to write fiction, too. It was a blast. I love going to college. One of my friends once called me a consummate learner. I want to learn something every day.

Scattered LinksHow do you organize your writing time?

Honestly? Not very well. Ha! It’s always a struggle because I work at home and my family thinks I can cook, clean, and wash their dirty underwear. Sometimes all that living invades my writing time. I’m better if I make goals for myself. During NaNoWriMo I rock the words out, but my family suffers.

Where is your best ‘writing space’; the place where you feel comfortably locked away from the world and able to let your creative juices flow?

We recently moved into a home that has a large room over the garage. It was used as a play room by the previous owners, but I’m going to make it into my cave so I can go in and shut the doors (there are double ones) and pretend I’m not at home, but in some far-away place where no one can find me.

Also, I’m going to paint one large wall with paint that can be used as a dry erase board. I can scribble with markers on it and wipe it off when I change my mind. Have you heard of this type of paint? It’s different than a blackboard/chalkboard. Won’t that be cool? I will plot my story line on the wall. I love visuals. It’s going to be a blast once I get it all going.

And finally, tell us an interesting fact about yourself that not many people know.

I can be mechanically inclined. When I was a teenager my dad made me learn how to change a tire, my oil and filter, and the spark plugs in my car. Back then spark plugs had to be checked and I couldn’t afford someone else to do it for me. (What can I say? I’m old.)

Now when I have to put something together I’m not intimidated. Plus, there’s You Tube Videos that can show you how to do just about anything. I love that!

However, I do have my tech ‘tard moments, but when I look at how far I’ve come in the social media world I think I’m doing better than others. I’m proud of that. We’re never too old to stop learning.

Thanks for being here today Michelle – I love the idea of your dry erase board for a wall it sounds amazing!  

~Where to find Michelle Saint-Germain Weidenbenner~

Blog: Random Writing Rants

Teaching adults and teens how to get published

Website

Facebook 

Twitter: @MWeidenbenner1

Goodreads

Scattered Links

M. Weidenbenner

Young adult contemporary, multi-cultural

 Pages: 256

 ISBN: 978-1494366957 

 Ebook: ISBN: 978-0-9894049-3-8

 Cover artist: Avalon Graphics

 Random Publishing LLC

Buy on Amazon today for 99 cents!

~Endorsement~

“CAPTIVATING!

SCATTERED LINKS takes you down the street of nearly any Eastern European town, arm-in-arm with the orphaned. Michelle has captured the beauty and horror millions of children live everyday. The attention to detail is impressive. Having lived in a post-Soviet country for a time, visiting orphaned children, this fictional account rings with truth, from the heart-wrenching pain of abandonment to the realization of self-worth, and the love family and faith brings. Thank you for such an uplifting book, appropriate for the young reader, as well as adult. May your heart be encouraged, as mine was.”

Kim de Blecourt, speaker and award-winning author of “Until We All Come Home: A Harrowing Journey, a Mother’s Courage, a Race to Freedom”

Reviews

Check out the fab Book Trailer for ‘Scattered Links’ here:

 

 

You can also check out the Book Trailer for ‘Cache a Predator’ here too:

 

 


 Love Missuswolf xxx