Of Seasons and Senses

22nd October, 2020

Season of Mists and Mellow Fruitfulness, is the opening line of one of my favourite poems, To Autumn by Keats. I love the autumn, it’s my favourite season. I recently visited Exbury Gardens, somewhere I’ve been to a few times but haven’t previously seen in the autumn. It was glorious. My head became filled with… Read More

Is self-publishing for you?

17th April, 2020

I’m frequently asked about my experience of self-publishing, so in this blog I’m going to explain how I went about self-publishing my Smuggler’s Town Mysteries. Next year it will be ten years since I began this journey and much has changed so I’ve invited contributions from Eve Bonham, Helen Baggott and Shelagh Mazey, three great… Read More

In Broad Daylight

1st August, 2019

‘Them ships now,’ Will pointed. ‘They’re probably bringin’ in tea and brandy; watch they’ll of’en stop an’ tub boats will side up an’ lift off contraband, e’en in broad daylight.’ The Thirteenth Box   My Smugglers’ Town Mysteries are set in 1780s, though smuggling into Christchurch, the small town on the south coast where the… Read More

A Very Special Constable

24th March, 2017

(A different from the usual blog, following the attack at Westminster, Wednesday 22 March 2017)   I cried when I saw the picture of a smiling PC Palmer on TV when his identity was disclosed after the events in London on Wednesday. People who know me know I like policemen. I like them especially in… Read More

Created with love

13th February, 2017

Valentine’s Day has its origins in pagan rituals and has been a feature in the year’s calendar in one form or another ever since. The 18th century was no different and customs we would recognise today were also enjoyed at that time. The sending of messages and love letters was common. Use of pre-printed cards began… Read More

An 18th-Century Christmas

21st December, 2016

Christmas Gambols. Print by John Raphael Smith (British Museum)   In The Moonrakers of Avon the action takes place at Christmastime. Before the story begins to unfold, Danny Clark is looking forward most of all to Twelfth Night; why then and not Christmas itself? Today’s Christmas traditions have evolved over the centuries from pagan winter… Read More