Thursday, 26 December 2013

Bookseekers - a great new site to find books for children!

My books are now listed on a great site that helps search for books for children.  More info below - do check it out!


We love kids' books, and we've created to help parents and kids of all ages find the very best books to read. Come and join in...
Finding the one that is right for you can, though, be tricky. To help you navigate through the huge set of choices available for kids – from toddlers to teens - we’ve created Here you can search for books using keywords, find a book based on ones you already like and browse themed collections of all kinds. Our Books in Series section does exactly what it says – shows all the books in a series, and the order they should be read in. And if you want books aimed at beginner readers, explore our Learn to Read section. Register your interest now to be the first to see the site when it launches - you might find something wonderful…

Sunday, 15 December 2013

The business of writing workshop

I’m teaching a workshop in Canterbury next year called The Business of Writing: Getting Published.  Details below.  The workshops get booked up fast!

Date: Saturday 1 March 2014 | 10am-4pm
Will 2014 be the year your novel or short stories are published? This day school offers tips and advice from a professional writer who shares her personal experiences of both being traditionally published and successfully going down the independent route of publishing e-books via Amazon. Marketing, selling, agents, publishers, blogging and social media are also discussed.

Cost: £27.50 | code: cccuds141
Canterbury Christchurch University
North Holmes Road,
Kent. CT1 1QU

To book go to the link below and scroll down to the course.

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Saturday, 7 December 2013

Are you a book snob? (Postscript)

Back in September I had a little rant about the public and proud snobbery  at the University of Kent's Creative Writing Centre, who belittled commercial fiction and children's authors.

So I was interested to read how they had recapitulated (kind of) and glad to discover I wasn't the only one to take offence.  Judging the quality of writing by genre is both misguided and unhelpful, amongst other things.  Click below to read more....

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Joyrider only 99p for 7 days!

My dark horse mystery drama for children, teens and horse-loving adults will be LESS THAN HALF PRICE for the next 7 DAYS as part of the Kindle Countdown Deal!

So if you fancy a read for JUST 99p and want to grab it before the price reverts back to  £2.01 click on the icon on the sidebar.

About Joyrider by Jane Ayres

Fourteen year old Linzi has it all. Or so it seems. She's bright, pretty, popular, lives in a glamorous clifftop apartment and has her own perfect horse - a stunning copper chestnut gelding called Ambrose. But appearances can be very deceptive....

On the other side of the sleepy seaside town, teenager Bex lives in a tiny flat with her widowed mum above the café they both run. She's prickly, moody, and a loner, trying to escape from her tragic past. She doesn't want friends - especially not girls like Linzi.

Linzi suspects her rival, Sheldon, who resents her for beating him to a place in the jumping team, is the mystery joyrider - someone who takes other peoples horses at night and rides them - and she is furious when her beloved Ambrose is targeted. However, afterwards, Ambrose seems different, and Linzi is baffled to discover that his behaviour is much better than before. Can the joyrider have a magic touch?

She determines to solve the mystery and discover the true identity - and motives - of the joyrider. But in the process she soon finds herself - and Bex - in terrible danger.

This exciting novella is a fast paced read for children, pre-teens, teenagers and young adults.

Available in all Amazon territories. 

Amazon links:

Sunday, 1 December 2013

Female Gothic: words, sounds and storytelling

Do you have any favourite words?  Or are there words or phrases that really grate?
If I hear someone in the media say “robust” one more time I will scream.  Another phrase I strongly dislike is “punching above their weight.”  It makes my skin crawl.

I’ve been reading a lot recently, both fiction and non-fiction, and I’ve nearly finished a bestselling novel which is structured in an unusual but disjointed manner.  I haven’t warmed to the protagonist and I’m not exactly enjoying it, but the concept interests me so I want to see what happens.  And I’ve realised that my problem with the book is not the story, but the writing.  I just don’t like the words the author uses.   Or the way she wields them.

The sounds of words matter.  Magenta.  Melisma.  Luminosity.  Vortex. I enjoy elegant sentences, repetition when skilfully used.   I recently saw an eerie one woman show* at our local theatre – a retelling of Victorian ghost stories by lesser known female writers – which reminded me of the power of the spoken word.  There were few props needed;  a chair, candles and spooky lighting created the atmosphere and intimacy between actress and audience. Towards the end, the storyteller spoke of birth and death as simply a reordering, reorganisation of matter.  I liked that.  And after the stories had stirred our senses, unsettling and disturbing with fear of the unknown – the root of all fear -  those words were strangely comforting.

* The show was called Victorian Gothic and is highly recommended!  The weblink is here

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