Review The Raven’s Head

    I first met Karen some ten years ago now, at a literary festival in Lincoln, and I was delighted to do so. Only a few weeks before I had read her stunning and evocative book THE COMPANY OF LIARS, and it had blown me away. I was fascinated by her depiction of a … Continue reading

Author incomes – when does the money come in?

This is a quick post to answer the question I have been asked several times recently, which is: how soon are authors paid for their work? Oh, boy, I remember the day Marion Donaldson called me to confirm that Headline wanted to buy my first book, and that she wanted another two titles in the … Continue reading

Time. It’s only time.

I have some bright, intelligent men as brothers. And they may read this, so I won’t go into their foibles here. Well, not all of them. I am the youngest of four brothers. And I am inordinately lucky with my choice of family, since authors don’t always have smooth and easy lives. Having brothers who … Continue reading

Questions to the Author: Samantha Norman

An Interview with Samantha Norman For most people, writing a book is hugely daunting. The idea of sitting down and typing every day for months is not something to inspire people. However, for Samantha Norman it was probably harder when she chose to write her first novel, “Winter Siege”, because this was a book started … Continue reading

Getting back into the Rhythm

This year has been particularly hard so far. We’ve already lost one lovely lady, Shelagh Palmer, and last week we helped celebrate the life of Roger Paul. Both great friends, and both will be hugely missed. Still, life has to go on. I was struck yesterday by a blog post by Harry Bingham. It makes … Continue reading

Sorting the Good from the Bad

I once read that the real problem that the allies had during the second Gulf War was information overload. They had satellites, men on the ground, aircraft, communications intelligence – so much data was coming in, that they couldn’t focus. Yes, the weaponry was superior, but they kept hitting the wrong targets because analysis was … Continue reading

Holiday Blues

Writing is hard enough without the interruptions. I have, this week, to write a significant chunk of one novel, complete a short story, write the synopsis and outline for another, and gather ideas for a third. I have to also read a book, with another to read next week, and write up reviews. I have … Continue reading

WINTER SIEGE by Ariana Franklin and Samantha Norman

WINTER SIEGE Published by Transworld Books, ISBN 978 0 857 50147 9 It is not often that I have time to try out a new writer. I don’t have enough time to read, apart from anything else. I’m still trying to catch up with Karen Maitland’s books, with Susanna Gregory’s, with the latest Paul Doherty’s … Continue reading

Morris – an Introduction

There are some elements of any culture that cause embarrassment or difficulties when trying to translate them to people from other countries. I daresay some Scots find explaining why men wear kilts (and do or don’t wear anything beneath) as tricky, let alone the attraction of the noise of a series of pipes fed by a bladder … Continue reading

A New Week

It was just as I finished my last video, which was all about Conway Stewart’s demise, that I had a contact from a wonderful couple of guys who have set up a new company. This firm, called Bespoke British Pens, has been dealing with Onoto and other pens for some time, and now they have bought up … Continue reading