The Lure of a Country House Library

I was inspired by an Instagram post I read recently from a fellow-author. She said she was warming up with a cup of coffee at the Dorchester Curiosity Centre in Dorset, while waiting for her MOT to be done, and ‘contemplating how cover design has developed over the decades’. She was looking at an entireContinue reading “The Lure of a Country House Library”

Highlights of My Australian Journey 2022: A Travel Diary #10 Leura, The Blue Mountains, and the Gold Mining Town of Sofala, New South Wales

This is my tenth Highlight; we have arrived in the beautiful town of Leura, full of quirky shops, white blossom trees, pretty houses and cafes. Here we stayed for two nights. We were now in the Blue Mountains, with majestic views of cliffs and rainforest canopy. At the lookouts – Echo Lookout and Sublime PointContinue reading “Highlights of My Australian Journey 2022: A Travel Diary #10 Leura, The Blue Mountains, and the Gold Mining Town of Sofala, New South Wales”

My Australian Journey 2022 #4: #ShiotaGOMA

This post is dedicated to an amazing exhibition we saw at GOMA (Gallery of Modern Art) on Brisbane’s South Bank. Japanese artist Chiharu Shiota presented ‘ The Soul Trembles’ – an astonishing collection of artworks and installations with the power to change the way you see the world. The first installation put these ideas intoContinue reading “My Australian Journey 2022 #4: #ShiotaGOMA”

Book Review: ‘The Secret River’ by Kate Grenville

As one who lived in Australia for nearly five years, before returning to live in England, I found this novel by Australian author Kate Grenville totally immersive. Kate Grenville takes her main protagonist William Thornhill from his life as a Thames waterman in the late 1700s out to New South Wales on a convict transport,Continue reading “Book Review: ‘The Secret River’ by Kate Grenville”

A Poignant Story from Charlestown, St Austell Cornwall

We recently visited Charlestown, a beautiful little Cornish seaport, which opened up several stories for me. Not only did we explore the moving and compelling tales of numerous historical shipwrecks and recovered artefacts  in the Shipwreck Treasure Museum: but also I learned the poignant story of the man who created, designed and built Charlestown: CharlesContinue reading “A Poignant Story from Charlestown, St Austell Cornwall”

Perfect Cottage Retreat in the Surrey Hills

Hello – I write on the first day of the relaxation of the lockdown here in the UK and we have travelled from Warwick in the Midlands to the lovely Surrey Hills, close to Leith Hill Tower with its wonderful views.   This early 18th century cottage was originally a gamekeeper’s cottage and is hiddenContinue reading “Perfect Cottage Retreat in the Surrey Hills”

Spring 2021 Writing News

Spring is almost with us and new hope is rising. What’s new here in Warwick, during what we hope will be the final months of the final lockdown? I’m following lots of online courses  – Pilates classes; online song rehearsals with community choir Songlines; a writing course with the amazing sitcom scriptwriter Paul Kerensa, which I do with my comedy blogger son Jamie;Continue reading “Spring 2021 Writing News”

Glimpses of Paranormal Warwickshire Part 1: Shakespeare’s Ghosts and Spirits

This is the first of a series giving you a few tasters from my book Paranormal Warwickshire which will be released by Amberley Publishing on 15th November 2020. Warwickshire is a county steeped in the supernatural, as befits the county of Shakespeare and the many ghosts and spirits that he conjured up in his works.Continue reading “Glimpses of Paranormal Warwickshire Part 1: Shakespeare’s Ghosts and Spirits”

Cornwall Mini series Part 13: St Mawes and Gorran Haven

The previous post in this series describes the glorious gardens at Trellisick National Trust, on the Fal Estuary. From Trellisick, motorists and pedestrians may take the King Harry ferry across the River Fal, and then travel on to St Mawes. We found St Mawes a peaceful and charming fishing village, on the Roseland Peninsula oppositeContinue reading “Cornwall Mini series Part 13: St Mawes and Gorran Haven”

#covid19walks #socialdistancing – A Strange New Name for Local Walks in the Springtime

A strange new title for local walks in the springtime has emerged. Steering clear of other walkers, whilst wandering along in the balmy spring afternoon, seems dreamlike…