Why Corsica Should be a Happy Hunting Ground for Authors

Prehistoric menhirs at Filitosa. Corsican culture was forged early on.

I went to a very interesting talk at the Parisot Literary Festival in October 2013 by former journalist and think-tank head Martin Walker. It was about why France is a happy hunting ground for authors. Martin should know: he has written a successful series of novels set in the Dordogne about Bruno, an engaging local policeman.

Continue reading “Why Corsica Should be a Happy Hunting Ground for Authors”

Milestones or millstones? Or how to stop beating yourself up when your writing goals elude you

Where the writing gets done - or not...
Where the writing gets done – or not…

I don’t make New Year’s resolutions. I invariably break them before January is over. And there’s something about these worthy tablets of stone that kills one’s enthusiasm even before they are fully formulated.

For a few years, I faithfully used to set out my writing goals for the year. I even tried to make them SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound), as all good goals should be, or so I was taught when I took my MBA. Continue reading “Milestones or millstones? Or how to stop beating yourself up when your writing goals elude you”

Indie Authors Appreciation Week Starts Friday 9th January

The dynamic author Carmilla Voiez (does she ever sleep?) has organised a great event, starting this Friday, 9th January. Indie Authors Appreciation Week brings together 60 authors on Facebook to meet new readers and old friends.

During the week-long event, each author has a one-hour timed slot to present their books, provide excerpts and run competitions. I’ll be on from 7-8 pm (GMT), which is 8-9 pm CET on Friday.

You can hear more about The House at Zaronza and the inspiration behind it, I’ll be publishing an excerpt or two from that and another work and, best of all, there’s a chance to win a signed paperback copy of the book.

Front cover final 2

 

Felix the cat will be doing the honours to help me choose the lucky winner, as he did during my launch party back in July. Here he is psyching himself up.

 

And there’s also a grand prize draw to win a $50 (or equivalent currency) Amazon voucher. You just have to buy one (or several) of the books listed. Every book you buy gives you one chance to enter the draw.

To find out more about the event and how to enter the prize draw, just click here.

Tell all your friends.

Epiphany, the Day of the Kings, in France

 

Galette des Rois, the Kings’ cake, traditionally eaten in France at Epiphany. Copyright PhotoXpress

 

This is another of my contributions to Christmas with the Crooked Cats, our seasonal serving of short stories, poetry and non-fiction articles. The Twelve Days of Christmas are almost over, but our event goes on until 9th January.

Epiphany takes place tomorrow, but Crooked Cat friend Sue Barnard will be posting then, so here is an avant-première about this festival. This was originally published on my French life blog, Life on La Lune.Continue reading “Epiphany, the Day of the Kings, in France”

Crooked Cat Winter Sale – now on!

Crooked Cats' Cradle

If you’ve been wondering what to do with your new ebook reader, you’ve come to the right place!

From 28th – 31st December, you will find many Crooked Cat ebooks reduced to 77p / 99c!

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Fancy a romantic read, something historical, a mystery or even crime? You’ll find them here:

Amazon UK   Amazon.com

Enjoy your new reads, and Happy New Year! 🙂

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A Corsican Christmas in Times Past

Nonza - church
Church at Nonza on Cap Corse

I live in southwest France but I’m very attached to the island of Corsica and fascinated by its culture and customs.

My historical novel The House at Zaronza takes place mostly on Corsica during the early 20th century. The main character, Maria, goes to Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve with her parents. How did Corsicans celebrate Christmas in the past? Continue reading “A Corsican Christmas in Times Past”

Corsica, Setting for THE HOUSE AT ZARONZA, a Top Destination

Saint-Florent, Corsica
Saint-Florent, Corsica

Have you been to Corsica? No? Then get there fast: National Geographic Traveler Magazine recently put Corsica in the no. 1 spot out of its top 20 chosen destinations for 2015.

I’m not surprised. The island has everything: a wonderful landscape with azure seas, jagged mountains and perched hilltop villages, a fascinating culture and a turbulent history. 

Continue reading “Corsica, Setting for THE HOUSE AT ZARONZA, a Top Destination”

…Authoress Vanessa Couchman shares the genesis of her historical novel, THE HOUSE AT ZARONZA…

Prolific and highly successful author, Seumas Gallacher, kindly invited me onto his blog today. I talk about the inspiration behind The House at Zaronza.

Seumas Gallacher

…yeez may often wonder as do I, from whence (posh WURD, that, Mabel, ‘whence’…it means ‘from where’) Authors derive their ideas and plots … sum’times it’s a wee incident that sticks in yer mind… other times the glimpse of a place and a feeling yeez get while ye’re there… or p’raps a soupçonof an urban myth that triggers the creative writer’s grey cells… whatever it may be, my Guest Blogger today, the LUVLY Vanessa Couchman lets yeez into the genesis of her fine historical novel, THE HOUSE AT ZARONZA ( I just LUV the ring of that title!)

Vanessa with HAZ 30-7

VANESSA COUCHMAN

A Gift for a Novelist

Thank you for inviting me to appear on your blog, Seumas.

Sometimes a gift drops into your lap when you least expect it. That’s how my historical novel, The House at Zaronza, came about.

Serendipity works in strange ways. We’ve been…

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Christmas with the Crooked Cats

Christmas with Crooked Cats

Crooked Cat Publishing authors are running a Christmas promotion on Facebook starting on Saturday 29th November and continuing until Friday 9th January.

During that time, we’ll be posting on our blogs/websites and in the Facebook group. You can read stories, poems, non-fiction pieces, jokes, etc. – all with a Yuletide theme, some light-hearted, some a little more sinister.

What’s more, there’ll be freebies, giveaways, competitions and other promotions of our books. So if you’re short of ideas for presents, or looking to fill up your Kindle or spend that Amazon token post-Christmas, look no further.

Crooked Cat covers a variety of genres, including romantic, historical, contemporary fiction, crime, thriller, mystery and young adult. So there’s something for everyone.

I’ll be posting on this blog and linking to the Facebook group on the following days:

  • Friday 5th December – “Bertie’s Buttons”, a short story about a strange event on the Western Front at Christmas 1914.
  • Wednesday 17th December – “Leroy’s Christmas”, a short story about a department store Santa with a difference.

**And look out for a competition featuring my novel, The House at Zaronza.**