The Calm Before the Storm

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What to pack for Edinburgh?

I feel I’ve been keeping a low profile lately, but only because I’m conserving energy for what’s to come!

This summer (July) sees the release of my third novel for Polygon THE UNMAKING OF ELLIE ROOK. Ellie had her first outing this week at Noir @The Bar, Edinburgh, before a hugely supportive audience of fellow writers. Thanks to all of them, and especially to Jacky Collins and Kelly Lacey for inviting Ellie and myself to the party!

 

In other news, BONE DEEP, in its stunning new jacket, will be unleashed on American readers in just two weeks time! Gallery Books are gearing up to run a huge Giveaway on Goodreads and I’ve also contributed an article about the relationship between folklore and psychological crime stories for CrimeReads, a popular US online magazine.

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BONE DEEP coming soon from Gallery Books

And speaking of folklore…June also sees the beginning of a series of workshops I’ve planned at the Two Sisters Cafe, Carnoustie. Entitled FINDING INSPIRATION THROUGH FOLKLORE, this course, being run as part of my Creative Scotland award, will bring together writers, poets, musicians and artists as we scour our rich storytelling heritage for inspiration. The workshops are full subscribed, but look out for the other courses I’ll be running for Lifelong Learning Dundee in October.

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A corn dolly from Something Corny, Inverurie- a prop for my Folklore Workshops!

Over the last few months I’ve had the great pleasure of taking part in the Love Stories Panel, with authors Noelle Harrison, Laura Lam, and Ella Hayes, ably chaired by Dawn Geddes. Sponsored by House of Elrick Gin, we visited Waterstones Edinburgh, Waterstones St Andrews and Blackwells Edinburgh to discuss how we approach love, sex and romance in our books and the relevance of the ‘romance novel’ today. Obviously I was representing the black cloud of toxic relationships everywhere! We enjoyed some lively discussions and brilliant audience participation, all washed down with a delicious honeyed gin cocktail (Monarchy of Bees) mixed by the talented Talia!

Have book, will travel…

This week I’ve had my sales hat on….books don’t sell themselves! This seems to be the least favourite part of the whole publishing process for most writers. I suppose we are by nature a solitary bunch, happiest hunched over a keyboard, glass in hand (I still type with one finger) wrestling with words long into the dark night…Any gathering of writers usually includes one or two who are still mentally wrestling. You can see it in their general twitchiness.

Now I’m not given to a lot of twitchiness (mainly because dark nights for me usually mean settling down with Bake Off) but I did try and keep the weirdness

in check when I visited the very lovely Waterstones Kirkcaldy for an author visit and book signing this week. They call Kirkcaldy the ‘Lang Toun’, and Waterstones is placed a lang, lang way doon the toun, depending on where you park (and your sense of direction).

After a lovely welcome from manager James, we talked books and writing long into the dark night (well, for at least an hour). Well done to the hardy souls who made it through the cold and rain- it was great to meet you. It wasn’t a very nice evening, weather-wise, but you can always be sure of a warm welcome in your local bookshop. Where would we be without them?!