Friday, 24 February 2023

Hornsea Writer, Penny Grubb, On Writing

Image: Mystic Art Design, Pixabay

Give me a 3-word summary of what you will be doing, writing-wise, in the coming year.

Editing, writing, blogging.

Tell me more:

EDITING: I’m editing for a publisher. I’m a second editor on books that are being prepared for publication later in the year. The big plus is that it pushes me into reading books I wouldn’t otherwise look at. If I were an initial reader, rather than 2nd editor, that big plus could be an equally big minus, as I might get stuck with badly written books that were a chore to wade through.

However, these are books that have already been approved and gone through initial edits from good editors. They might not be titles that I would have picked up off a shelf, but they are, by definition, good reads.

I’m currently editing an epic fantasy, a contemporary relationships story, and a historical romance. Not that I edit 3 at a time, but they overlap or I would miss my deadlines. I would never have chosen these 3 books to take on a trip with me, and yet if I had, I would not have been disappointed. Although I occasionally fall into the wrong fictional world and confuse myself over why a character in a WW2 drama is not using magic powers, I have become totally engaged in all 3 books.

These initial three have set a high bar for books still in the pipeline. I have hedgehog adventures, folk tales, and space adventures yet to come. Can’t wait!

WRITING: I completed a novel at the start of the year. It’s a crime story set in the 1990s. I’m hoping it’s at the final polish stage, but you know how it is, when you get too close to a book, you no longer see the flaws, the ambiguities, the plot holes. Several people are reading the manuscript for me and I’m leaving it well alone for a few months.

Meanwhile, I hope to get started on a new novel. I’m nurturing an idea for a new installment in my Private Investigator series. I’m also dabbling with a “slightly sci-fi” but given that “slightly sci-fi” isn’t a recognised genre, I might have difficulty placing it.

BLOGGING: I blog about life, the universe, and everything as the mood takes me. This is an article about handbags as a cause of marital strife. This one is about my flock of dinosaurs. And this looks into the oddities of writing life.

Tell me about a writing-related event from last year

My children’s book Horse of the Same Colour, written as Melodie Trudeaux, was launched in the autumn. The book is a sequel to Horse of a Different Colour. The launch video features the first chapter from each book.

Learn more about Penny here.

Friday, 10 February 2023

Valentine's Romance Promotion!


For the love of Romance, from 10th until 15th there are stepped price promotions via Amazon UK and Amazon USA on Historicals by Linda Acaster.

Beneath The Shining Mountains is set in the region now known as Wyoming and Montana in the USA; the date the early 1800s. For the Apsaroke people, the place is Apsaroke lands; the time, the good years between the coming of the horse and the arrival of land-hungry settlers. Game was plentiful; the creeks ran clear. A man could prove his worth by his military exploits – and a woman, if she wanted, could ensnare herself her chosen husband. But why would a man with so many lovers want to take a wife?

Native American daily life on the northern Plains has enthralled Linda since childhood —obviously too many Westerns watched on television — and over the years she collected a substantial reference library on what she discovered was both an ever-expanding subject and a fascinating way of life.

A chance meeting with like-minded individuals led to pow-wows in the UK, which is when her research morphed into what is now considered ‘experimental archaeology’. Beneath The Shining Mountains blossomed from this.

“...loved learning about their customs and rich culture...

Hostage of the Heart
is set very much in Britain, on the Welsh Marches, during the autumn of 1066 when the destiny of both Wales and England hung in the balance because of outside forces.

With the northern militia hurrying to York in support of the new king, Rhodri ap Hywel, prince of the Welsh, sweeps out of the forest to reclaim by force stolen lands, taking the Saxon Lady Dena as a battle hostage. But who is the more barbaric, a man who protects his people by the strength of his sword-arm, or Dena’s kinsfolk who swear fealty to a canon of falsehoods and refuse to pay her ransom?

“...a historical that really grips the reader with lots of twists and turns...

The novels are clean Romantic Suspense, and between them have over 90 review ratings. Promotional prices start at 99p / 99c today rising back to full price on Wednesday evening. Grab them while you can, and snuggle down with a Valentine’s read of Romance and Adventure

Global Links:    Beneath The Shining Mountains            Hostage of the Heart

Monday, 30 January 2023

Crime and Punishment

I enjoy writing what I think of as short cosy crime mysteries. 

Murder or mayhem remain implausible, and that implausibility allows them to be entertaining. There is plenty of domestic detail, crimes happen offstage with no grisly details, and the police rarely make an appearance. All this can be wrapped up satisfactorily in short story form.

What I have realised, looking back, is that all my victims somehow deserved their fate. There is the over-zealous council official, the supercilious husband forever putting his wife down, the Indian mother-in-law plotting to poison her half-English daughter-in-law, the high-flying executive who pushes her colleague to suicide, the love rat who destroys his girlfriend’s self-esteem, the money-grabbing antiques dealer, and – crème de la crime – the woman who poisons the dog alongside her intended victim.

Let the punishment fit the crime.

The ever entertaining Crimeucopia anthologies offer something for everyone and are published in ebook and paperback by Murderous Ink Press and available on Amazon, for example


Madeleine McDonald

Sunday, 1 January 2023

2023 - The Year To Kick Back And Relaaax

Hello and welcome to a new day, a new month, a new year: 2023!!

Members of Hornsea Writers trust you enjoyed your Christmas feasting – food, drink, and reading books.

Fiction is what we offer, escape portals into other worlds to make your own, to ease your way through the absurdities of real life. And we have plenty to offer.

Do you believe in unicorns? 

Evidently Penny Grubb does, or at least Melodie Trudeaux, her alter ego who keeps her humorous Young Teen fiction separate from her seriously adult Crime novels. Horse of the Same Colour is the sequel to Horse of a Different Colour, with Megan and Amy finding more trouble with horses… and otherworldly beasts.

Paperback, Ebook, Kindle Unlimited

Linda Acaster moved from Contemporary Fantasy to Contemporary Mystery for The Forever House

After the death of her husband, Caroline Haynes is doing her best to carry on renovating their house. But with her son and his family only available on video calls, she has too much time to think. Does anyone ever know what layers of wallpaper might reveal? Or layers of life?

Paperback, Ebook, Kindle Unlimited

Very hot off the press comes Who Wants To Live Forever? April Taylor’s final novel in the Georgia Pattison Mystery series. 

Georgia may at last have agreed to marry her beloved Sir Edward Broome, but an unknown man calling halt mid-service is just the beginning of Gerogia’s problems in this multi-layered story of intrigue and corruption.

Ebook, Kindle Unlimited    

Other members have not been slothful. Many are writing fiction and non-fiction shorts for a variety of print and digital imprints, with Shellie Horst’s Whitebridge Heroes gaining an Honorable Mention in the prestigious “Writers of the Future” competition.  

Madeleine McDonald’s Enchantment in Morocco has a new cover, and she won an award from Press 53 for a flash fiction tale. Joy Stonehouse is putting the finishing touches to the fourth in her faction series set in 18th century Reighton, Yorkshire. Stuart Aken, author of An Excess of… and an SF trilogy set on Mars, has penned a contemporary Christmas short available to read on his website.

On the non-fiction front, Karen Whitchurch continues to entertain and inform with her monthly newspaper column on living with dogs.