Welcome To My Blog

Book reviews ... Author interviews ... and anything else I think might be of interest to writers and readers.

Monday, 30 January 2012

Expected by Sarah England

I've been aware of Sarah England for a while now as an extremely talented short story writer. Her stories regularly appear in all the magazines and are always a fabulous read.

Sarah's also written a novel, and today I'm thrilled to have her as my guest to talk about that. This is what Sarah had to say about 'Expected'.

You know I’ve read an awful lot of chicklit - and what struck me more than anything, particularly with the hugely successful Shopaholic series, not to mention Bridget Jones - was that the female protagonists were upper middle class and rather well off. They had adoring families they could run home to. They had nice jobs in the city, friends with fab apartments, and they met dishy men who they wanted to marry and have children with. Well - funny and well written these chicklit books might be - but realistic??
So my heroine, Sam, is working class - from a sink estate she has no desire to return to. Sam dreams of having a career - yearns for a nice, safe place to live, and desperately doesn’t want to end up as a single mother on benefits like most of her school friends. So she makes a mistake and moves in with the outwardly desirable and very middle class doctor she met at a party. Instantly her mother spreads the news, begins to plan the wedding, and wastes no time in pushing (no pun intended) for grandchildren. So now Sam is trapped.
I’ve been trapped, have you? I’ve been trapped in a lousy marriage, when my job was precarious and someone at work was gunning for me because my face didn’t fit. I’ve been vulnerable and scared. And I’ve been badly let down by the one person I thought I could run home to. So what keeps us going? Well hope, youth, optimism, fantastic mates and a massive sense of humour. And that’s where Expected comes from. Only I couldn’t leave Sam without a bit of spice - I think we’ve all looked up and met the eyes of a drop-dead gorgeous sex on legs - take me now - kind of guy?! Oh - just me then. Anyway, she deserved a treat after all she’d been through. Bit of a catch at the end, but ….well, never let it be said I do cheesy!
The fun bit? Oh venting fury and frustration! And the creation of monster mouse, Bernie O’Reilly - the smiling assassin. Yes I did have a giggle. Actually I loved writing this book - I had a blast!! Hope you like it too!

Thanks Sarah, the book sounds fantastic.
You can buy the book at Amazon in the UK here. Or in the USA/Aus here.
And you can find Sarah's website and blog here.

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Writing Courses

I've got some new workshop dates set up for the beginning of 2012. Full details are on my website, but in brief ...

Insight Into Writing Short Stories For The Women’s Magazine Market will run in Northampton on Saturday 3 March.

Moving On In The Women’s Magazine Fiction Market will run in Northampton on Saturday 31 March.

New for 2012:

Day Retreat For Writers

Come and spend a day with fellow writers being inspired, exercising your writing skills and sharing your work in a supportive atmosphere.

The retreat will be on 21 April 2012 in Northamptonshire. Exact location to be confirmed.

Further details of the two workshops can be found under the ‘Workshops’ tab on my website. For a booking form, or if you have any questions, please get in touch via the contact page on my website.

And now for something completely different ...

If crime writing is more your thing, the fantastic Adrian Magson will be offering a course at Chez Castillon in April. Adrian really is a fantastic tutor, I've been taught by him so I speak from experience. And it's in France. What could be better?

More details can be found here