Sunday, 28 April 2013
Friday, 26 April 2013
Hillary has a signed copy of her book to give away. I'll put the names of everyone who comments on this post by 6pm Friday 3rd May in a hat and the first one picked wins the book.
Meet the Author: H.A. Corby - Writer of historical and contemporary Italian crime fiction.
When did I prefer Sherlock Holmes and Hercule Poirot stories to hunky men and voluptuous risk-taking sirens in romance novels? A morbid fascination sent me hurrying to the library on a monthly basis voraciously consuming books on true crime, which I tempered with my other passion; all that stuff that happened hundreds of years ago.
I visited Rome for a milestone birthday and was barely off the plane when I trudged into the Coliseum. The brittle crumbling stones of this ancient theatre breathed life, offering a glimpse of another world. I heard the throngs cheering the mock sea battles, the dramas, or muscular gladiators in chest-baring and somewhat sexy gear. By the time I had seen the Trevi Fountain twice, I was hooked on the glory, history, and thrill of a majestic ancient land.
After two years in Sicily, I moved to Florence. I spent Sundays in the centre weaving in and out of the hordes of visitors trying not to appear like a whacko as I stroked the rough stones of the Medici homes and other palazzos with my eyes closed trying to absorb their memories through my fingertips. I didn’t walk with my head down because I felt shy; staring at the road permitted me to block modern life and imagine da Vinci or Michelangelo bustling from studio to patron on those very streets, Botticelli throwing tangible genius onto
the fire and the end of Savaranola’s madness by the hangman. The ancient rhythms of this magnificent city had embraced unconditionally. I could travel back to a city fulfilling its glory and relive the past anytime I wanted.
Relaxing under a full golden moon, ideas flooded my mind. I had the means to take others along on a journey to a time and place in history that chiselled the future forever, and I was excited. Writing became a spiritual, cathartic almost magical experience. I hardly went anywhere, and the social life diminished along with the regular exercise regimen as I hardly noticed the hours passing. I wrote and researched then wrote some more. I did not write for more than four months after I left Florence. Brain drain had set in, and some life
obstacles had dampened the inspiration and the wolf was at the door. It returned in La Serra, a small medieval village overlooking the sea in the mountains north of Tuscany. Walking the sandy cove, Golfo dei Poeti (Golf of the Poets), I passed the houses that D.H. Lawrence and Lord Byron had sought refuge in and I knew the time had come to finish. Staring out at the turquoise waters that Lawrence and Byron had seen, I resurrected the intimacy with my characters. Finally, in November 2012, When Angels Fall A Benedetti Renaissance Mystery was born!
“Race along the passageways of love, murder, betrayal, and treachery as a previously unknown evil wraps its feathery arms of death around the women of Florence.”
Thursday, 25 April 2013
Woman's Weekly are holding a fiction workshop in London on 7th June. If you're keen on writing for this magazine, whether serials or shorts, it'd definitely be worth getting yourself booked onto this. Details here.
Also that free ebook The Showman's Girl by Julia Douglas's I mentioned a couple of posts back - there was a delay getting it published. It's now free to download from iTunes for the next month - here.
Monday, 22 April 2013
On Sally Q's blog I talk about how I came to write the book in an obscenely short length of time. She kept interrupting me while I wrote this post, as you'll see.
And on Edith O'Nuallain's lovely blog I sit beneath a glorious picture of Glendalough, Ireland, while she interviews me about my writing background and habits.
And today I'm on Della Galton's blog talking about what's to gain from writing classes.
I've recently discovered Elizabeth Dulcie's blog, where she has several posts on tax and finance and all those horrid things authors shy away from but which are essential to understand if you are trying to make a living from writing.
And finally, as a complete contrast and for no better reason than to look at stunning wildlife photos, take a look at this blog by a brilliant photographer. Eases my soul, that one does.
Sunday, 21 April 2013
When Angels Fall
Thursday, 18 April 2013
Did you know that Saturday is World Circus Day? To mark the occasion, Douglas McPherson, writing as Julia Douglas, is giving away his ebook, circus romance The Showman's Girl, on iTunes over the weekend. Amazon may well match the zero price as well, so keep an eye on it.
I will add links to the book as soon as I have them.
Writer Cara Cooper is doing a series on her blog on how to write serials for magazines. Serials are probably one of the hardest things to get right - each episode must be the right length and end on a cliff-hanger. But they pay well and are a good stepping stone between writing short fiction and full length novels. Definitely worth taking a look at Cara's blog linked above to find out tips of the trade.
Fans of Kate Long's books might like to find out how she got her big break - see her Author Spotlight post on Morgen Bailey's excellent blog, here. And don't forget - there is still chance to enter the draw to win Kate's latest novel, Bad Mothers United. Just leave a comment on her guest post (scroll down about 2 posts). You've got till 5pm BST Friday to comment. Actually, make that 6.30pm as I think him indoors and I will be going to the pub at 5pm (to celebrate the start of the weekend!)
Excellent post on Della Galton's blog here on issue-led fiction. As her latest novel Ice and a Slice (only £1.94 at the moment!) is about alcoholism she's had plenty of experience of writing this kind of thing. It can be incredibly powerful, and yes, the women's mags do take stories with strong themes.
Della's also running a workshop at Bournemouth's Festival of Words at the end of May. Take a look at the link there for the programme and competitions. If you're down south, come along!
If you're not down south but would like to do a writing course, try Sally Quilford's online course. Next one starts in mid May. Details here.
Think that's it for now - if you have anything you'd like me to publicise on this blog, do get in touch via the Contact page above. As long as its of interest to writers of short fiction I will consider it!
Tuesday, 16 April 2013
Click here to buy from Amazon.co.uk or here to buy from Amazon.com. It only costs £1.53 (or $2.35) which one lovely writer friend described as a bargain. Hope you like it - if you do, tell everyone. If you don't, tell me!
Saturday, 13 April 2013
Thanks Kate! A fascinating post. I love the photos of your research notes, and am pleased to see they're almost as unreadable as my own notes. Research certainly pays off. When I read Bad Mothers United I felt I was completely immersed in Charlotte and Karen's world.
For more words of wisdom from Kate, see her guest post on Sally Q's blog, here.