Orenda Roadshow Southwell library 27th February 2020

Just got back, I had to walk off some of my giddiness. I had a wonderful time. I spoke to a few people, authors mostly, plus Anne Cater the fabulous blog tour organiser and Karen Sullivan, publisher. I bought 6 books, some from authors I’ve read before, like Matt Wesolowski and Antti Tuomainen, and some by authors I haven’t read but I liked the bits they read out, like Will Carver and Kjell Ola Dahl. I also got the Vanda Symon book I was missing, Ringmaster.

And it was 3 for 2 so I had a bit of a spree and supported a small independent bookshop, The Bookcase in Lowdham, Nottinghamshire. Indie publisher, indie bookshop, supported by a local library. It’s wonderful.

I really enjoyed meeting Johanna Gustawsson. I have all three of her books but I only brought Blood Song as it was the first one of hers that I read and I didn’t want to overwhelm her. We had a chat about realistic autistic representation.

I am slowly calming down, the walk through night time Southwell and then writing this has helped, but I’m still all bubbling with happiness. Going to journal for a bit to ground me again. I need to get some sleep tonight.

It was probably a mistake getting a room at a pub. I can hear conversations down in the bar.

Sale on 1st Edition books


First Come First Served

In December, with any luck, I will have a 2nd edition of both Hidden Fire and Fire Betrayed available, ahead of publishing the third FIRE novel, Fire Awakened, in the new year. I know it’s been a while but I’m feeling more up to writing and stuff. I got the new Prologue written for Fire Betrayed this afternoon and some corrections made to the text.

Anyway, I have three of each of the first edition left from my author’s copies. Normally I sell them for £8 each but to clear stock, as it were, if you buy Hidden Fire I’ll send you Fire Betrayed for free. £8 + postage.

Email me if you want a signed copy. I take paypal payments.

Theakston’s Old Peculiar Crime Novel of the Year Award Shortlist Announced

This morning on the festival website.


The short list has some fabulous books, none of which I’ve read yet, unfortunately.

Belinda Bauer – Snap

Steve Cavanagh – Thirteen

Mick Herron – London Rules

Val McDermid – Broken Ground

Liam McIlvanney – The Quaker

Khurrum Rahman – East of Hounslow

I did start reading Thirteen but it was a netgalley download and not a blog tour book, so it got put to one side. I’m sure I saw a copy in the charity shop last week, so I’ll get that.

Having read the summaries on the website, I think I’m going to try to get hold of a copy of each of the books so that I can talk intelligently about them at the awards ceremony.

I forgot to mention that. Because I got my PIP back pay, I’ve booked myself a holiday to Harrogate. I’ve been to the town before but not the Crime Writing Festival. The first event I’m going to, on the Thursday evening, is the awards ceremony. I’m really looking forward to it, but fear my anxiety will make it impossible for me to speak to anyone, or that I’ll say something stupid.

As I said, I’ve been to Harrogate before so I know the train route (tickets bought and collected from the station already) and I’m getting taxi to my hotel – nothing fancy, just the Premier Inn – so I won’t get lost. I’ve got a map to get from my hotel to the Swan Inn where the festival takes place, so I won’t get lost. I made plans and got everything organised as soon as possible because it helps with my anxiety if I know what, where, when, how and why.

I have everything planned out. I have two full days of writing goodness on the Friday and Saturday, a couple of things on the Sunday morning and then all of Sunday afternoon to decompress – by which time I expect to be completely peopled out – before I make the trip home on Monday afternoon. I’m hoping to do some exploring, because I’ve never really had the chance on the few occasions I visited a former-friend in Harrogate before. There was always something planned every day, and a lot of that was sitting around watching films.

Back to the books.

I like the sound of Bauer’s Snap and McIlvanney’s The Quaker, both based on unsolved crimes. Of course, I definitely need to read McDermid’s novel, and Thirteen. East of Hounslow and London Rules aren’t my usual reading matter, but I’ll definitely give them a go. I haven’t got a clue when I’ll fit them in, since June is a busy blog tour month (six so far), but I’ll try.

And now, back to my reading.


Dissertation Update: Week 6

Some progress has been made since last week. Although I haven’t been writing much.

The dissertation supervisor now likes my villain, and the hints of a darker undertone, but is still holding out on Lucie. He said he knows I think I’m writing a stereotype but people won’t realise she’s autistic unless I do. I think we’re at stalemate on that front.

The other thing he mentioned was the landscape, it still isn’t ‘solid’ enough, and he suggested adding the texture in the passage about Lucie taking a night walk around Lincoln. I need to get back to Lincoln and walk around a bit making notes, I think.

I also need to re-write the essay for the third time. It has to be objective, I need to take the ‘I’ out of it. This could be interesting.

In other Rosie news:

I’ve submitted Hidden Fire to Inspired Quill, an independent, traditional publisher. Inspired Quill was recommended to me last September by one of their authors, at a Book Connectors meet-up.

I have book post! So much book post, because I treat myself to a stack of books once the money the county council owed me arrived. Plus, a book from Authoright, which I will be reviewing for them at some point later in the month. After I make my way through my pile of lovely books. Some of them are actually doing double duty as research for my dissertation, but still. Books! I don’t often get to buy new books, so I’m very happy.

Saturday 16th June marks the first anniversary of the publication of Hidden Fire: I will be at The Crafty Collective Open Day/Craft Fair selling copies of my books. If you’re in North East Lincolnshire, or nearby, come and support a local craft club. We have a raffle! I have donated gift packs of books and bookmarks to the raffle, and some peg bags that I made, to the club’s table. I’ll have a few of my dragons with me.

And now i have to go and collect up all the bits that have blown out of my plastics bin. It’s recycling box day; the box is rather full, and the wind is rather high.

What I’m reading today

Morning all,

I’m not feeling fantastic today, so I’m listening to the ‘Small Town Murder‘ podcast and reading Veronica Bird’s autobiography, Veronica’s Bird. Veronica was born in 1943 to a coal mining family in Barnsley. Her father was a bully, although I suspect the brain injury and alcohol abuse might not have helped.

Clever and driven, Veronica got a scholarship to a girl’s boarding school at the age of 11, but was forced out two months before she was due to take her GCSEs because her brother-in-law wanted cheap labour on his market stall. Later she joined the prison service at a time when women didn’t. I’m really looking forward to reading about her time in the prison service; reading about her abusive childhood is painful.

There will be a full review as part of a blog tour at the end of the month. I’ve got other books I should be reading but I’m really intrigued by this book.



I’ve been sleeping a lot

Yep, I over did it last week and have basically spent two days asleep. Which is why I’m awake at one in the morning writing a blog post. I’m hoping getting things written down will allow me to get some sleep tonight.

Continue reading “I’ve been sleeping a lot”