Books, Life, Self-publishing, Uncategorized

Goodbye 2016 – Hello 2017

2016 has been on the whole a great year for me, there have been ups and downs but I can honestly say that it has been more positive than negative.

I started the year in one job where I wasn’t happy and in November got a new job which is in walking distance (three minutes door to door). Although I am still learning the ropes in this new field my stress levels are so much lower. I’m sleeping at night instead of waking up at ridiculous o’clock worrying what the next day will bring. My health had started to be affected by my job and now I feel as though I am getting back to where I was before. We spend so much time at work that its important that we enjoy it, when you realise that you are dreading it you know the time is ripe to move on.

I look forward to getting to know more about my new job in 2017 and feeling like I know what I’m doing. My previous role was in the motorcycle industry and I am moving into investment and acquisitions predominantly dealing with property and construction. I think this will keep me interested for a while to come.

In 2016 I was lucky enough to get some motorbike training on a 600cc motorbike from one of the instructors, Tony, who has also moved on to another company. In 2017 I hope to do some more training and hopefully take my full licence.

I was lucky enough to go on two fabulous holidays this year, in May I went to Portugal and in November the Dominican Republic. For anyone who knows me they will know that holidays are my main priority, foregoing many other things in order to get my fix of holidays. Each holiday gives me the chance to relax and unwind. I love to explore new areas and spend time reading and writing in the most beautiful of settings. I was very fortunate with the Dominican Republic holiday being upgraded from a 3* to 5* hotel with premium service. The room was bigger than my ground floor at home. I had a hot tub on the balcony which looked out over the sea which was lucky as they had unusual weather with 5 out of 10 days being solid rain. Needless to say I spend a lot time writing. During my time there I went on an adventure excursion which included a zip wire, this was quite a challenge for me as I hate heights but loved it so much that they allowed me a second turn.

I published another novelette this year, which I wrote for an anthology for the first UK Indie Lit Festival but decided to publish when I received such positive feedback on it. The festival was a blast and was a chance to meet up with the fantastic authors that I have been talking to online. We have now forged strong bonds and the support network is phenomenal in particular my friendship with Su Echo Falls S’ari (aka Rose English). We have formed a partnership for book signings and online parties, Roses & Dreams which goes from strength to strength.

In 2017 I have signed up for The West Midlands Book signing which is being held on 4th February and the UK Indie Lit Festival later on in the year, date to be confirmed.

My new book (novel) A Boy from the Streets is with my editor now and will be published as soon as is humanely possible. I am very excited about this book and can’t wait to share it with everyone.


A few little teasers:


I have two more novels lining up for 2017 as well as about thirty other ideas in various different stages.

‘Is this Love?’ and the sequel ‘Illicit Love.’

Last but not least I have spent quality time with my family who are as always amazing, the biggest blessing in my life. I am proud of each and every one of them and look forward to spending time with them next year.

I look forward to seeing where 2017 will take me in all areas of my life.

Wishing everyone a happy, healthy and prosperous 2017.


Books, Life, Self-publishing, Uncategorized

Hello 2016, Goodbye 2015

As the year nears its end, we all take a little bit of time to reflect on our year and make plans or resolutions for the year ahead.

For those who have enjoyed a good 2015, their hopes are that 2016 will be just as kind and for those who have suffered through 2015 the hope is that 2016 will be a better one for them.

Earlier today I saw a friend on Facebook mention that it is in reality only passing from one day to another as it does every other day of the year. She mentioned that she set goals or resolutions throughout the year. She is correct, and I think we should all do that, but there is something about the idea of an ending and a beginning that we as a species tend to like. It feels as though you can package the previous year up in a box, gift wrap it, tie it with ribbon and consign it to the dusty realms marked as the past. As the clock chimes midnight signalling the beginning of a new year we take out a new box, all neatly wrapped up and inside is a blank journal that we will write our new experiences, joys and sorrows on. It seems exciting because we feel as though we can do anything, fill it with adventure. It lets us know that we still have hope and while we have hope we can achieve so much.

I have been blessed with a good year. In January, I self-published a short story and followed up with another short story in February. Since then I have been working on a number of projects all in various stages of completion. I have learnt to do things that I wouldn’t have dreamt possible, faced things that scared the bejeebers out of me. I have made some amazing friends that I have never met and may never meet. I have read books that have transported me to other worlds. I have been lucky enough to have gone on two holidays this year: Malta and Maldives. I have also experienced some personal sadnesses this year that I won’t dwell on. I also achieved a half-marathon and a whole day sponsored silence. I also am now the proud owner of a Honda CG125 motorbike which I love.

I would like to thank everyone who has been part of this year with me, those who have bought my books and kindly left me reviews. More than anything I would like to thank my family and friends who are always there when I need them.

2016 for me will be about pursuing my writing further, publishing my WIPs and hopefully getting some more sales.

So I will bid a fond farewell to 2015 and greet 2016 with open arms and a bottle of Prosecco 😉

Both of my books are on sale until the end of Friday 1st January 2016. If you are interested in making me smile on New Years Day then click & buy


As Dreams are Made on:

A Lifetime or a Season:

New Year Sale.001.jpeg



Life, Self-publishing

Life throws a curve ball – watch this arc

It started with a lump, well maybe it didn’t quite start there. The roots probably go further back, but I am starting this life journey at the lump.

This year I fulfilled a lifetime’s dream of publishing my writing. I bit the bullet and self-published. I have two short stories out there, one soon to be in print and at least 8GB of brain memory filled with new ideas.

I started writing as a child, one who read voraciously. Enid Blyton was my hero, followed by J.R.R Tolkien a few years later. A whole host of amazing authors have made their mark on my brain, and my favourite author as an adult is Sharon Penman.

I have spent -gasp- 13 years working on a novel. Life got in the way, and when I thought it was finished, I discovered that it was a long way off, by about 70,000 words. In that time though I have worked on many other projects and have a list of WIP that rival the normal person’s TBR list.

Last year I met a man who has become a friend, a man who inspired me and woke me up from merely existing. I followed his advice (not to the letter) and in January I published ‘As Dreams Are Made On’ followed by ‘A Lifetime or a Season’ in February. I have learned so much in that time, made changes, paid for a professional to design my covers. (A Lifetime will be receiving an overhaul imminently) I have been able to take this experience though and put it into the changes that I need to make with the novel.

How did I meet this guy? He turned up to do a CBT (Compulsory Basic Training Course) for Motorbikes at the place I work. I also met another man there who came to do his full bike licence with us and after chatting he gave me the details of a friend of his who is also an author. She gave me some great advice when I started out, and it is through her that I came to employ the services of the amazing woman who provides me with the most beautiful book covers.

So, I can hear you asking “Where does the lump come into this?”

I woke up one morning some years ago, stretched -as you do. As I lifted my arm up above my head, I discovered a lump under my arm. This wasn’t a little limp that you had to use a magnifying glass to see. This was a lump of epic proportions. I eventually had it nicknamed my ‘third boob’. I’m sure you can all imagine the fear I experienced, the C word reverberated around my head. Imagine my fear when the Consultant ran across the hospital to see if he could get me booked in for an emergency scan. Mmm yes, I haven’t seen many doctors running outside of A&E.

It turned out to be a Lipoma (a benign tumour of fatty tissue). I was given the opportunity to have it removed straight away, or I could leave my third boob in place ( Rival Anne Boleyn’s finger count!). Of course I wanted it removed, sunbathing with three boobs was just weird. It tucked in rather nicely under my arm until I lifted it up and then the thing sat bold as brass. The Doctor was straight with me and said it is only cosmetic but because of the placement of it I could risk losing the use of my left arm if the surgery went wrong. I made the only sensible decision: so my third boob stayed.They told me to monitor it and if things got worse it would be removed.

A few years later, the tumour spread. I got to the point where I was in pain and couldn’t really move my neck easily. I returned to my local hospital where I was patronised by a different Consultant and had to wait ages to get an appointment for the removal. I went to my GP and was then referred to The Royal Marsden one of the best cancer hospitals in the world. The treatment I received was second to none though I felt slightly fraudulent when I saw the patients with ‘real cancer’. The operation was a success, but I had to take two weeks off work and wasn’t allowed to ride my scooter or lift anything heavy for three months.

In that time, my CBT bike licence expired as did my insurance, so my brother wheeled it into my back garden to wait my return. When the three months was up, and I knew my arm was strong enough, I booked myself in for a CBT. If my insurance and CBT hadn’t expired, I would have taken my bike to the training centre. Instead, I took my helmet, jacket, gloves and trousers. (Gear that other people have worn stinks to high heaven!) My instructor’s name was called Lewis. I was one of those students who pipes up with all the answer and an array of anecdotes and jokes (probably very annoying!). It transpired that Lewis’ mum lived locally to me, so I cheekily said “Give us a lift home.” He did. We chatted a while, and he told me that he and a friend Terry were setting up their own business. I knew of Terry, he also lived around the corner from me.

A week or so later I bumped into Terry, and we also talked about this new business venture. I was ready for a new challenge, so said if they were looking for admin then let me know.

It was about a year later that Terry turned up on my doorstep asking “Are you still looking for a job?”

I said “Potentially, come on in.”

So that is how the lump that scared me, that had me envisioning all sorts of dire ends brought me to a new job and meeting two men who in their own ways helped me in my self-publishing journey.

So maybe the moral of this particular story is that even when life is as bleak as it can get, it might just be a stepping stone to the life you are destined for. I look forward to continuing to pursue my dreams. At the moment I’m not living the life I love but I am on the path.


Biking- the dangers for a new rider

I wrote a post a few months ago, through the eyes of a biker. At that time, I was a scooter rider with fantasies of being a “proper” biker. On Monday, I bought a Motorbike and the only thing I am missing is the leathers.

I clocked up about 15,000 miles over four and a half years, riding my scooter became as natural to be as breathing which was as well because it gave me ample opportunity to watch out for the idiots on the road. The less I had to concentrate on what I was doing the more I could concentrate on everything around me.

A scooter has three control, the throttle that you twist and go; it controls your speed and a front and back brake like on a bicycle. Simple.

The motorcycle is a completely different animal. You have a clutch, throttle and a front brake controlled by your hands. Then you have a back brake and gears operated by your feet. You need to learn to listen to your bike, it screams at you if you need to change gears. It is a finely tuned operation. And scariest still you can stall it… and I have done on numerous occasions. If you stall your car and the person behind you isn’t paying much attention or maybe illegally on their phone you’ll get shunted along, maybe a dent on your bumper. If I stall it, I may get a car or van sending me flying through the air…two cars came perilously close yesterday.

I know that give it a week or two and my riding will be really smooth, a month’s time and I won’t even remember what it was like to ride a scooter but at the moment I am shaky, I may stall it, I may take off a tad too slowly at the lights as my natural scooter instinct screams throttle but the bike screams clutch at me and feed it out gently to avoid the kangaroo jumps. It may take me a tiny bit longer to process that I need to change up a gear to match the road speed.

Other road users if you open your eyes you will see us, you will see that we are not as confident, that we are still learning, be patient…your need to get to where you are going could cost us our lives. Today I had a Land Rover following me at an indecently close distance and as I turned into another road he tried to overtake me on a bend. I won’t put into print what I think of him.

None of us like being behind learners but to bully them… really… is that what you’re about? A learner is less likely to be able to respond to situations so if your driving places them in a vulnerable position you could be responsible for it all going wrong.

The road belongs to us all. Slow down and think about what you are doing before you have to explain to someone’s mum, dad, husband, wife, child, friend why you getting to your destination two minutes earlier was more important than their loved one’s life.