1. I have just, reluctantly, finished your book [I wanted it to go on forever I enjoyed it so much!!] I loved every minute of it – it kept me guessing to the end! I’ve now lent it to my 25 year old daughter, and recommended it to all my friends. I cant wait for your next book – hopefully it wont be too long? Thankyou so much, Margaret

    Comment by Margaret Johnston on June 22, 2009 at 11:28 pm
  2. Hi Jane

    I started reading your book yesterday and I have to tell you it is awesome!! It is such a smooth read and so gripping. I am someone who enjoys a little more esoteric books, but for some reason your book screamed at me in the book store. I sat at a coffee shop and I just could not put it down.

    So, goodluck and I look foward to the next book!


    Comment by Keshnee Rughbeer on September 3, 2009 at 12:51 pm
  3. It was good to meet you yesterday. Sorry I had to make a quick exit. I would have loved to join you in All Bar One but I had to rush off to another appointment.

    Good luck with your next books.

    Comment by Captain Black on July 9, 2010 at 8:38 pm
  4. I was searching for post on this topic and i was lucky to find yourblog.I will also send this url to my school mate so he can also read and complete our project.hope to get some good marks in this project.Thank you for this awesome post.

    Comment by Shayari on July 16, 2010 at 1:10 pm
  5. Always glad to be of help with a school project. Get in touch if you need anything more specific. Good luck with the grades.

    Comment by admin on July 16, 2010 at 5:24 pm
  6. Like it!
    I much prefer ‘ I design gardens’ to the rather snooty ‘Garden Designer’. It could be even longer ‘I give Nature a hand and do a bit of plant choosing and editing’. Ultimately I can design all I want, but if my choices were wrong, Nature has a way of letting me know!

    Comment by helen williams on July 29, 2010 at 1:19 pm
  7. I can’t help watching these things, despite their flaws. I’ve been a sci-fi addict for years.

    Comment by Captain Black on August 9, 2010 at 3:49 pm
  8. Given the current weather conditions, I’d stay put if I were you.
    I hope you have a great Xmas and New Year.

    Comment by Captain Black on December 21, 2010 at 5:51 pm
  9. http://carolynsplace.com/fun/funniepics_files/10.jpg

    Comment by Captain Black on February 20, 2011 at 4:50 pm
  10. I, for one, actually prefer dumb tick-box questions on a census form. Not particularly trusting “the authorities”, I prefer to give them the minimum of information that’s legally required.

    Comment by Captain Black on March 15, 2011 at 9:48 am
  11. @Jane: I may have to quote you on that when I post review of the Show! Caught the re-run yesterday having missed Tom McCarthy’s segment first time round.

    It’s this kind of BA foundation course, up-its’-own-tailpipe, self-reflexive intellectual BS that got me out of accademia.

    It was the one thing that spoilt an otherwise execellent, if a little over-earnest show. I still don’t know what BBC4 is for; what’s wrong doing your thinking on BBC2? RC

    Comment by Robin Catling on April 23, 2011 at 4:36 pm
  12. Wow, that’s a really clever way of tihinkng about it!

    Comment by Delores on May 5, 2011 at 10:05 pm
  13. I’ve never formed attachments to places or buildings, though they often remind me of people and times to which I do have attachments.

    It’s good to hear you’re working on something new.

    Comment by Captain Black on May 31, 2011 at 8:29 am
  14. Please let us know when the interview is available.

    Comment by Captain Black on June 7, 2011 at 11:31 am
  15. Thanks Jane… I enjoyed reading that. 🙂

    Captain – all three episodes are available as special podcasts 25, 26 and 27 – links on my website (http://morgenbailey.com) and blog (http://morgenbailey.wordpress.com) depending on how you want to listen (e.g. via iTunes, Google Feedburner etc). I hope you enjoy.


    Comment by Morgen Bailey on July 8, 2011 at 1:03 pm
  16. Thanks Morgen, I managed to download the three (m4a) files, although I nearly got lost along the way. I’ve heard the first two parts but don’t tell Jane, as she thinks I’ve heard all three. Some very interesting journeys.

    Comment by Captain Black on July 8, 2011 at 7:47 pm
  17. I want some. Where can I get some?

    Comment by Captain Black on July 30, 2011 at 7:02 am
  18. Hi Jane. Pleased to have found your blog. Coincidence – I live in Surrey!
    Best, Penny G

    Comment by Penny Goring (@triplecherry) on August 4, 2011 at 8:06 am
  19. Next you’ll be telling me you don’t need no education.

    Comment by Captain Black on August 5, 2011 at 8:42 pm
  20. I think “concrete jungle” by the same band would also be appropriate.

    Comment by Captain Black on August 10, 2011 at 12:32 pm
  21. I don’t remember The Owl Service that well either, but I really like Elidor. I must read that again some time…

    Comment by Captain Black on August 23, 2011 at 8:13 am
  22. Ah, for me it was Swallows & Amazons. Still brings a nostalgic smile to my face. Also the excellent Stories from Uncle Remus, which was the Brer Rabbit, Brer Fox collection which is probably not available anymore due to political correctness. Along these lines did you know they renamed the children from Enid Blyton’s Magic Faraway Tree series. Dick becomes Rick, Fanny becomes Frannie & Bessie become Beth. Honestly, children don’t care about these things…

    Comment by Amanda O on August 24, 2011 at 9:20 am
  23. Hi Jane,

    Lovely to have met you on Saturday. Your website is lovely, and I’d really appreciate the name of your friend who designed it!

    Many thanks, and take care,


    Comment by Shelley Harris on October 17, 2011 at 11:18 am
  24. I’ve been known to read so-called chick-lit, a term I dislike, as I quite enjoy romantic comedies (as books, not films). I have to say though, those “pink silhouette” style covers put me off completely.

    Comment by Captain Black on November 28, 2011 at 12:11 pm
  25. Data protection paranoia? That’ll be me, then ;oP

    Happy New Year!

    Comment by Captain Black on December 27, 2011 at 12:44 pm
  26. I bet e-book outlets are on the rise though.

    Comment by Captain Black on September 25, 2012 at 10:27 am
  27. Ooh, thank you 🙂

    Comment by Captain Black on January 12, 2013 at 11:13 am
  28. Hi! Do you use Twitter? I’d like to follow you if that would be okay. I’m absolutely enjoying your blog and look forward to new posts.

    Comment by used epos hardware on February 11, 2013 at 10:11 am
  29. Hi, Yes I am on twitter. https://twitter.com/janerossdale

    Comment by jane on April 2, 2013 at 3:47 pm
  30. Jane, know this is not the correct forum. BUT had to personally thank you on behalf of Megan (Chef, Owner, Daughter) and myself for such a super review. Pity you’re not a food critic!!!
    I will read your book and let you know what I think. One of my degrees is English Literature (18th & 19th Century). However, for my Dissertation I studied Virginia Woolf, and To the Lighthouse is one of my favourite books.
    Take care & all the best to you both.

    Comment by Ethna on March 24, 2013 at 7:27 pm
  31. Hi Ethna,

    Many thanks for making our visits to Artelier so enjoyable. Compliments to Megan. Tell her we will be back.

    Please do let me know what you think of the books. I’m not sure that they will stack up next to the classics. These Fragile Things is the more literary of the three. (I have the final proofs for the paperback version today!)


    Comment by jane on April 2, 2013 at 3:59 pm
  32. Please share away!

    Comment by jane on April 2, 2013 at 3:47 pm
  33. Thanks so much for having me today! 🙂

    Comment by Jessica Bell on October 1, 2014 at 6:21 am
  34. Thanks for dropping by! The answer is 2. But seeing as time is up and no one else commented, I’ll send you a copy of the book anyway! 🙂

    Comment by Jessica Bell on October 4, 2014 at 8:38 am
  35. Great post. Interesting take on the US vs GB accent thing. So many issues regarding regionality over here, too. Not snobbishness, I mean a story set in the South of England might not ‘sound’ right read in Geordie accent. But I would agree that you always should get someone else to do it and enjoy their interpretation. I suspect it will only be a matter of time before ACX opens up a bit more to UK actors. It’s almost an untapped market.

    Comment by Dylan Jones on November 14, 2014 at 7:27 am
  36. What a fascinating interview.Thank you, Jane and Chloe. I’m looking forward to reading The Art of Letting Go. Many congratulations on its publication.

    Comment by Joanna Campbell on November 26, 2014 at 1:25 pm
  37. I’ve never studied art, so it was interesting to learn about some artists I didn’t know about from Chloe’s book.

    Comment by Suzi on November 26, 2014 at 7:02 pm
  38. Thanks, Dylan! I think ACX is now open more to UK actors, so maybe there is more choice now.

    Comment by Roz Morris @Roz_Morris on November 28, 2014 at 6:21 pm
  39. Thank-you Joanna! I hope you enjoy it. And, Suzi, I’m glad I was able to pass on a bit of what I learned at least!

    Comment by Chloe on December 1, 2014 at 3:00 pm
  40. Thanks for putting me in the hotseat Jane – I’m always surprised at what I find out about myself answering good questions!

    Comment by Jean Gill on December 11, 2014 at 3:05 pm
  41. Excellent post, Jane. My understanding of where things are at in publishing chimes with yours.

    Interesting times indeed.

    Comment by Anne Stormont on December 17, 2014 at 1:56 pm
  42. Great post, Jane. I recently attended the Writers & Artists Self-Publishing in a Digital World conference (report on my blog) where it was absolutely clear that self-publishing has reached maturity.

    There are many trad-published authors such as myself who are happy to become ‘hybrids’ and self-publish in addition to having ongoing deals with what must increasingly be called ‘old fashioned’ publishing houses. My particular peeve is that traditional publishers are simply rubbish at marketing and are utterly clueless when it comes to transferring work to the digital platforms – I had to reject my book three times before they got the Kindle version right.

    Indie is definitely the way forward, with the fresh option of collectives being offered by groups like Triskele Books, of which JJ Marsh is a member.

    Comment by Henry Hyde on December 17, 2014 at 3:57 pm
  43. A very well-reasoned round-up of the situation, and thanks for including me! I’m really pleased to see such a balanced view, including such progressive and adaptable agents such as Andrew Lownie, visionary small publishers like Galley Beggar, booksellers who care about the books like Peter Snell and authors who write great books readers love, such as Alison Morton, Piers Alexander and Linda Gillard. And I’m very pleased you chose to go indie, Jane, otherwise my mum and I would never have read A Funeral for an Owl. Thanks for a wonderfully upbeat end to the year.

    Comment by JJ Marsh on December 17, 2014 at 4:16 pm
  44. Thank you for such a good summary of the current situation. Very interesting.

    Comment by Kristin on December 17, 2014 at 6:01 pm
  45. An excellent overview of the current status of publishing, Jane, which anyone trying to navigate their way through it should read.

    Comment by Jane Turley on December 17, 2014 at 6:16 pm
  46. Thanks for a fantastic and concise round-up. As Stephen Hawking puts it, “You cannot predict the future.” But I think it will be good for readers.

    Comment by Carol Cooper on December 17, 2014 at 8:39 pm
  47. Thank you all for your shares and comments. It’s been interesting. More of the same next year!

    Comment by Jane Davis on December 17, 2014 at 8:42 pm
  48. I read this with great interest. Thank you.

    Comment by M. A. McRae on December 18, 2014 at 1:27 am
  49. Great post, Jane, and inspiring, but with one caveat.

    You write, “authors under traditional contracts – who typically receive 25% of the cost of e-books sales – were demanding the same terms as self-published authors, who receive as much as 70%.”

    The same terms as self-published authors? So the publisher has to pay you an advance, pay for the cover design,editing, proofing and production and distribution of your book, pay Amazon 30% to sell it, and then hand the author the entire remaining 70%, leaving them with nothing. Like that’s gonna happen. 🙂

    Comment by Ebook Bargains UK on December 18, 2014 at 8:00 am
  50. Wonderful post Jane, very informative.

    Comment by Isabel Wolff on December 21, 2014 at 10:06 am
  51. Thanks Jane for a most interesting and provocative article. Really like the statistic about 2020 – that’s just 5 years away! And with more and more agents expanding their ‘slush pile’ to include ebook sales lists can see the whole dynamic is shifting. Liker the line in ‘All the Presidents Men’: follow the money!

    Comment by Chris Corbett on December 23, 2014 at 4:49 pm
  52. Very informative and well balanced. Tough new year ahead but I am encouraged by your determination and ethos.

    Comment by Kristin on December 31, 2014 at 11:37 am
  53. Honest and inspiring, Jane. Email follows about Get Writing 2015.

    Comment by Geoffrey Gudgion on December 31, 2014 at 5:23 pm
  54. Thank you for the heads-up about facebook book promotions, Jane. I’m wondering how much they will charge since Facebook in all its glory has always promised to be free.

    Looking forward to the myth about self-publishing.


    Comment by Claire Stibbe on January 1, 2015 at 8:59 pm
  55. You have everything it takes to succeed – great books, a day job to feed you and eyes open to the world we work in. I’m rooting for you. Just keep writing!

    Comment by Jean Gill on January 1, 2015 at 9:06 pm
  56. Great piece, Jane. Interesting, informative and really well researched. New authors should take note! I’d also add that a new model is currently being trialled by one of my publishers, Harper Collins, with a new series by a brand new author. (One that I co-wrote. With the Julie Shaw trilogy:
    (http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_0_10?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=julie+shaw&sprefix=julie+shaw%2Caps%2C248) they produced a pre-release series of three part-books for each title, the first free, the 2nd and 3rd at around £1.99 each. This gave readers a decent chunk of book for ‘try before you buy’ purposes, and when the whole ebook was promoted at £1.90, shortly after publication (cheaper than parts 2 and 3 combined), sales of it rocketed. So it seems to me that indie authors could perhaps adopt a similar approach; enticing the reader with sufficient of the book to properly hook them, and then getting a reasonable return on the rest. It would also create an environment where quality fiction thrives, rather than the ‘buy it cheap (or free), toss it aside’ one we see so much now…

    Comment by Lynne Barrett-Lee on February 3, 2015 at 12:29 pm
  57. Thanks, Lynne. On the issue of serialisation, Roz Morris did just that with My Memories of a Future Life several years ago. She divided it into four parts.

    Comment by Jane Davis on February 3, 2015 at 12:47 pm
  58. Ooh, found myself mentioned here! Excellent analysis, Jane. I’ve never seen the sums set out like this and you’ve highlighted the realities very clearly, which brings solid facts to an emotive subject. I’m off to tweet.

    Comment by Roz Morris @Roz_Morris on February 3, 2015 at 1:07 pm
  59. Excellent post,Jane, makes everything clear. Thanks for featuring our box set – but let me remeasure you and the readers of your blog that it is priced at £1.50 because we are using it as a PR tool -not because the contents are of no value. Diane Capri has been part of two good crime box sets with 12 writers and they priced at £0.99 – and, incidentally, became a best seller, and sold 4500 copies.

    Comment by Fenella J Miller on February 3, 2015 at 1:13 pm
  60. Further to my previous comment – should read ‘reassure you’ not ‘remeasure you’. 🙂

    Comment by Fenella J Miller on February 3, 2015 at 1:15 pm
  61. Excellent post, Jane, with some pretty shockingly quotable lines: “Disturbingly, for a group of bookaholics, many said that they never paid for ebooks and only read those that were free.”


    Just confirms my feelings about giveaways. Don’t do it – or, at least, be prepared for bitter disappointment.

    Comment by Henry Hyde on February 3, 2015 at 2:10 pm
  62. ” I won’t cheat a book to fit a market fashion. The writers I admire don’t do that.” That, right there, is the heart of Indie writing. Well said, Roz.

    Comment by A.C. Flory on February 13, 2015 at 9:42 pm
  63. Thanks, Andrea! I feel so lucky to be in an age where it is possible for us to have this freedom.

    Comment by Roz Morris @Roz_Morris on February 15, 2015 at 11:52 pm
  64. I’ve moved a lot in the 60+ years I’ve been alive and I think of “home” as the things I own and what I see through my windows. Those things also say a great deal about who I am. When I became semi-disabled with chronic pain a few years ago, “who I am” became very much about what I surround myself with because I now make so few excursions into the outside world.

    Comment by Linda Gillard on February 18, 2015 at 12:57 pm
  65. Incredible interview by an amazing woman! Thanks for sharing your story with us. It was very inspiring to say the least. And what a great idea for the boxed set!

    Comment by Traci Sanders on February 19, 2015 at 3:54 am
  66. Wonderful post that tells it like it is. Thank you so much, Joni, and Jane for hosting.

    Comment by Carol Cooper on March 3, 2015 at 12:10 pm
  67. Beautifully economical writing, paints the picture perfectly, makes a critically important point about marred and damaged things pointing better towards perfection than trying to find, or express, the undefinable!

    Comment by Philippa Rees on March 3, 2015 at 12:44 pm
  68. I learned a lot by working as a life model; one artist always drew me as a goddess. When I remarked on this, she said, “That’s because you are.”
    I think my blogging is like the life modeling. I might shift a little to give a more pleasing aspect but in essence nothing of my faults is really hidden.

    Comment by Vivienne Tuffnell on March 3, 2015 at 5:09 pm
  69. Interesting. An enviable self-belief that gets up at 4.30 to create a world stretching into the future!

    Comment by Philippa Rees on March 31, 2015 at 8:52 am
  70. Philippa- Run on dreams, ambition and a full pot of Folgers coffee 🙂

    Comment by Nathan Roten on March 31, 2015 at 2:01 pm
  71. Hi Suu and Jane. Jane, Sue is my lovely editor also. Part of the credit for the successes of D&D and H&O lie with her vigilant eye and sense of lexical rhythm. It is a pleasure to be edited by a poet and novel writer…makes all the difference.

    Comment by Carol Hedges on April 7, 2015 at 9:56 am
  72. Sue..you superstar!..x

    Comment by karen little on April 7, 2015 at 10:29 am
  73. Interesting insights. The books sound up my street. All it asks (of me) is why write when all of time could be occupied in reading? Oh dear! The itching question presents itself over and over again.I was interested in the idea of novelty versus depth in creativity; to me novelty is best revealed in exposing new depths, and (being deep) resonates because it is newly familiar ( and universal- and recognition is usually moving because we find a part of ourselves we’ve have mislaid). Much to think about.

    Comment by Philippa Rees on April 9, 2015 at 11:19 am
  74. I agree Philippa. Writing something truly original but with universal appeal, that’s the challenge!

    Comment by Jane Davis on April 9, 2015 at 11:25 am
  75. Many thanks for having me as your guest today, Jane. I particularly love the excerpt above, because it’s Charlotte’s first meeting with Derry. Racing is particularly popular in Ireland, and we’ve events right through the year, but certain ones stand out. There’s nothing like Ladies’ Day during one of the bigger festivals, especially when the sun shines!
    x Sharon.

    Comment by Sharon Black on April 14, 2015 at 12:42 pm
  76. Fascinating Jane. Thanks for that blog.

    Comment by Kristin Gleeson on April 14, 2015 at 3:04 pm
  77. Great article on Molly Gambiza. A mother who seems to fill every hour with good, honest hard work. This is how we get books written, even when you have a full-time job. She is an example to us all.

    Comment by Claire Stibbe on April 25, 2015 at 1:49 pm
  78. Realistic assessment but the other variables are time & formatting & marketing skills. A one-off self published author may be enthused by the novelty, but to maintain all the roles long term for a big backlist is challenging. As a traditionally published author, who has now ventured into digital self publication for rights reverted , proven print popular titles, it’s very time consuming. But I agree that ‘indie’ publishing is the future, as long as you can format. I wrote ‘Authorprenereurship;The Business of Creativity’ as a kind of record of the apprenticeship of changing into a brand.Worthwhile, but unsure if Amazon is the answer for all. Distribution is still vital.

    Comment by Hazel Edwards on May 1, 2015 at 7:46 am
  79. Wonderful interview, interesting questions, informative replies! Enjoyed seeing my generation proactive, creative and successful! Thank you for sharing!

    Comment by Anita Kovacevic on June 3, 2015 at 6:11 pm
  80. This was a challenging interview I really enjoyed thinking through. Thank you to Jane for inviting it and the care taken with this posting.

    Comment by Philippa Rees on June 10, 2015 at 7:47 am
  81. Thrilled to participate in the “virtual book club” of an author whose work I’ve read and loved! Thanks for having me, Jane; you asked great questions I was happy to answer. Look forward to connecting to your readers!

    Comment by Lorraine Devon Wilke on June 17, 2015 at 2:20 pm
  82. Thanks for doing the interview, Jane. Really enjoyed answering your questions

    Comment by Clare on July 5, 2015 at 10:37 am
  83. A very timely( for me) post on cover design and the warning on the single image risk! I would never have thought of that!

    Also good to have your strong endorsement of Jessica Bell, who I had already contacted. I confess a weakness for the simple clear image and have always liked your covers for this reason.

    Comment by Philippa Rees on July 7, 2015 at 12:45 pm
  84. It’s a beautiful new cover on a brilliant book, which I am currently reading and enjoying thoroughly. I completely agree about the fine art and necessary detail of designing a book cover, something too few indie authors invest in. An artistic cover that meets marketplace quality standards is SO important, as is, as you mentioned, a cover that pops off that page as a ebook thumbnail. You’ve achieved all the objectives… congrats, Jane!

    Comment by Lorraine Devon Wilke on July 7, 2015 at 4:30 pm
  85. Thank you so much for endorsing me! I am very proud of this cover. It’s definitely one of my favourites. 🙂

    Comment by Jessica Bell on July 7, 2015 at 4:37 pm
  86. J.D has great ( and enviable) clarity, both about herself and her books. A bit like a mug of fresh spring water. I enjoyed this interview.

    Comment by Philippa Rees on July 15, 2015 at 11:41 am
  87. xxx good luck!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Comment by Anne Pelham McMahon on August 1, 2015 at 10:34 am
  88. This was a sensitive and thoughtful interview with questions that brought us to the heart of the writing.

    Comment by Rosalind Minett on August 3, 2015 at 6:26 am
  89. I have followed Jan Ruth for some time, but because of my eyesight problems have failed to complete any reviews. I was attracted to her books by the feeling of the titles which gave me the promise of some possible continuing thread. Thank you for this interview it has been most enjoyable.
    Pelham McMahon

    Comment by Anne Pelham McMahon on August 4, 2015 at 5:22 pm
  90. I read the opening to Face Value. Great hooking beginning that would impel a reader to follow. Just wondered about the very exact details of the anatomical damage at that point? Congratulations.

    Comment by Philippa Rees on August 11, 2015 at 3:27 pm
  91. Hi Philippa,
    Thanks for taking the time to read the opening of Face Value and I’m glad you felt it was a good hook. As for the anatomical detail, it is indeed exact thanks to input from a real-life mortician! I hope it reveals what a very precise and coldly logical person Kara is. Her ability to know exactly what “damage” was being done and to concentrate on it rather than the emotional impact was important in establishing an insight to her personality. Hope that explains… come follow me on Facebook and let me know what you think once you have finished the whole book 🙂

    Comment by Ian Andrew on August 13, 2015 at 1:56 pm
  92. I love Kathy’s work, having read and thoroughly enjoyed both her novels, and it’s nice to be able to get a bit of background on her journey as a writer. I hope this interview inspires readers to pick up her books; they’re both beautifully written with great characters and intriguing plots! Thanks, ladies!

    Comment by Lorraine Devon Wilke on August 20, 2015 at 6:38 pm
  93. Thank you so much, Lorraine, for your kind words. Knowing that my writing is being enjoyed is very precious – and also helps me through my struggles with the WIP. 🙂

    Comment by Kathy Shuker on August 21, 2015 at 5:56 am
  94. Excellent interview. I’ve read and enjoyed both of Kathy’s published novels and it’s interesting to read so much background, although I find it hard to believe that such well-structured plots can grow naturally from the gardening approach!

    Comment by B J Burton on August 21, 2015 at 7:30 am
  95. Thank you BJ. But maybe those ‘well-structured plots’ you so kindly describe would be written more quickly if I could only plan better!

    Comment by Kathy Shuker on August 22, 2015 at 7:46 am
  96. Congratulations on a mammoth achievement. I will take advantage of I Stopped Time offer!

    You are enviably organised. I have always had the impulse to shake Sylvia Plath, but never quite known why! Mind you Ted Hughes comes across as pretty self absorbed. Great recommendations. Have shared.

    Comment by Philippa Rees on August 26, 2015 at 11:08 am
  97. Congratulations on your book ….have enjoyed looking at your blogg will enjoy more I am sure

    Comment by Harvey Jones jan on September 13, 2015 at 6:16 pm
  98. It is SO refreshing to read a critical response to a book which clarifies the criticism without being waspish or disappointed or, indeed, off-putting. If anything it induces one to discover whether one agrees. That is good critical reviewing and it is very rare.

    On another level this has really stimulated a desire to see whether the boxes of photographs that has survived my family’s carelessness could provide a framework for another ‘Shooting the Past’

    Great post Jane.

    Comment by Philippa Rees on September 16, 2015 at 2:51 pm
  99. How could I have forgotten about ‘Shooting the Past’? Thank you for your comment, Philippa. I don’t like to post negative reviews, but thought that I should comment as the subject-matter is so close to I Stopped Time’s that, when I read the blurb, I thought that Boyd had written my book (Thankfully, that’s not the case). What was interesting for me might not interest someone who had not researched the timeframe through the work, notebooks and biographies of the same photographers. For example, the phrase about stopping time is not original, and found three uses of it.

    Comment by Jane Davis on September 16, 2015 at 3:25 pm
  100. I loved your interview. The teaser was definitely compelling, in eager to get to read your novel!

    Comment by Chantel on October 2, 2015 at 2:17 am
  101. Wow! Heavy Jane you are a great writer and shouldn’t worry so much.

    Comment by Anne Pelham McMahon on October 6, 2015 at 11:54 am
  102. Donnelle’s answers to these questions have a beautiful, almost lyrical quality to them. If his books are anything like his responses here, they must be thoughtful and insightful. Thank you for a wonderful post.

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on October 28, 2015 at 2:01 pm
  103. Thank you Jane Davis for this interview.

    Comment by Donnelle McGee on October 30, 2015 at 1:21 pm
  104. Thank you for the introduction to Amy Spahn, who is a new-to-me author. Her books sound very interesting. Her responses to your questions seemed thoughtful and insightful and I enjoyed the interview immensely.

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on November 24, 2015 at 6:23 pm
  105. Yes, Amy is an author who tempts me to read outside my comfort zone.

    Comment by Jane Davis on November 25, 2015 at 7:14 am
  106. Thanks for hosting me on your blog, Jane!

    Comment by Amy Spahn on November 25, 2015 at 1:22 pm
  107. It was sweet and cool to be one of the authors who were lucky enough to be presented at the indieberlin Book Fair, by Polly and Claudia and Noel, via the fluffy Literophone booth described above. What fun to purr one’s deathless prose down the phone from London to a succession of complete strangers in Berlin, while buoyed-up (and just a bit girled-up too) by the knowledge that one was part of the global resurgence of the fluffy-booth lifestyle… So nocturnal a booth wouldn’t have been out of place in Polly’s own inspired novel Cured Meat, for reasons I elaborate on here.

    Thanks to the indieberlin team for enabling this early telephonic distribution of my upcoming Hollywood Canyons novel –
    – and hats off to their hard work and sizzle in birthing what deserves to become an annual fixture on Berlin’s literary calendar.

    Comment by Rohan Quine on December 2, 2015 at 11:16 pm
  108. I would like to sign up for your newsletter

    Comment by Christina Abt on December 7, 2015 at 3:42 am
  109. Thanks for the reviews. My only complaint is that my reading list just got a lot longer. I haven’t read any of those you’ve highlighted but I do like John Ironmongers work and someone else recommended Not Forgetting The Whale, so the universe is telling me to read that one.

    My top 3 reads of the year (my only 5 stars) are:
    The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov – a wonderful satire, which I’d been wanting to read for years. I was not disappointed. A Riot of a book, full of surprise and humour, but with a dark, satirical vein running through it.
    HHhH by Laurent Binet – a beautifully written and engaging story (based on fact) about the attempted assasination of Himmler in Prague. Binet defies genre in this work and it combined accurate historical account, with fiction, journalism and almost, memoire. Truly innovative.
    A Riot of Goldfish by Kanoko Okamoto a little book, but such an exquisite study of character. The story tells of the pursuit of the perfectly bred goldfish (culturally important in Japan) but the real story are of the characters involved. They are so acutely observed and I loved it.

    but close behind:
    Elena Ferrante My Brilliant Friend – the first in the Neopolitan trilogy; a lovely examination of friendship and growing up
    Early One Morning by Virginia Baily – a great story, gripped me from the start
    Belinda Seaward The Beautiful Truth – lives and events slipping between wartime Krakow and the modern day – thoughtful and moving

    Wishing you a very happy Xmas,and a successful writing (and reading) year ahead

    Comment by Ian Hobbs on December 25, 2015 at 8:54 am
  110. Hi Jane,

    Thank you for the great interview. I appreciate being on your website. I’m happy to answer any questions any readers have.



    Comment by Heidi Skarie on January 6, 2016 at 3:58 pm
  111. I thoroughly enjoyed the interview with Helena Halme. Her responses were candid and fascinating! Best wishes, Helena, on the success of The Navy Wife! Thank you, Jane, for the spotlight on this wonderful author.

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on January 20, 2016 at 10:06 pm
  112. Thank you Amy, and thanks to Jane for allowing me to go on about The Navy Wife and my writing life.

    Comment by Helena Halmee on January 22, 2016 at 4:04 pm
  113. Very interesting interview. I was troubled by the comment made by the agent – that your work had a ‘Henry James quality about it’ because I feel that is so often the pathway used by agents – to compare a writer to another, instead of focussing on the orginality of our work. It is as if agents need a security blanket because they lack the courage to be original in their own judgements. But meanwhile, well done, I hope the ‘Silent Children’ is successful and you are inspired to begin the next book, this time with your own slant upon the content and style. I am too old to do other than expose my lack of talent – I rejoice in my mistakes – I write as I am – not as an agent would wish me to be. Long live Albert Einstein – for all of my life he has inspired me with ‘The man who never makes a mistake, never makes anything!’ Heve courage to be yourself Anna! Buying your book.

    Comment by Anne Pelham McMahon on January 27, 2016 at 12:17 pm
  114. What a wonderful interview! It sounds like Amna has the right approach to writing: take your time, don’t try to digest ideas at breakneck speed, and get others’ opinions before putting work out there. as someone who is not a fan of ghost stories (even though I have a book with a ghost in it!), The Silent Children sounds wonderful. Thanks, Amna, for the insight, the advice, and the encouragement.

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on January 27, 2016 at 7:31 pm
  115. Thank you Amy and Anne for your kind comments.
    P.S. I failed to mention that I’m afraid of ghosts, but I still had to write this ghost story!

    Comment by Amna Boheim on January 27, 2016 at 9:50 pm
  116. Great interview and fabulous answers. The Silent Children is definitely on my TBR list.

    Comment by Luccia Gray on January 28, 2016 at 12:42 pm
  117. I cannot wait to read this book. I’m dying to know who was trying to get in touch with Ollie. I don’t live in the UK, so I’m not eligible for a copy, but you can be sure I’ll be looking for it on Amazon. Many thanks.

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on February 4, 2016 at 3:45 pm
  118. Thank you so much for your comment, Amy. Lovely to know the opening extract intrigued you.
    Thanks, also, to Jane for the Q and A. I enjoyed having the chance to ‘go on’ about The Broken Road, and to reflect on my writing career.

    Comment by Lindsay Stanberry-Flynn on February 5, 2016 at 9:18 am
  119. Hi Lindsey and Jane. Great interview. Lindsey, I don’t know if you remember me, but I was shortlisted in a couple of the WFL flash fiction competitions. It’s good to read about the new book and your thoughts on writing it. I was particularly struck by the question about letting go of characters. In my debut novel, the title character is killed off in the Prologue, so there’s no coming back from that – but I keep getting this niggle that will lead me to writing his early history one of these days – because I just don’t want to let him go. Oh, and I’d love to enter the giveaway if I may. Ex

    Comment by Elizabeth Ducie on February 6, 2016 at 11:12 am
  120. Fascinating interview. I recognise your approach to writing. I start each book as a pantster, then run out of steam and have to go back and start the detailed planning. But, if it works, that’s fine. E x

    Comment by Elizabeth Ducie on February 6, 2016 at 12:43 pm
  121. Hi Elizabeth, Yes, I definitely remember you. Lovely to hear from you, and I’m glad you found the interview interesting. It’s strange how some characters stay with you, isn’t it? I’m delighted you want to enter the giveaway. Lindsay

    Comment by Lindsay Stanberry-Flynn on February 7, 2016 at 12:37 pm
  122. Thank you and Happy Valentine’s Day to you!

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on February 14, 2016 at 7:46 pm
  123. Thanks for having me, Jane! The interview was a lot of fun. Many intriguing questions to choose from…

    Comment by Anna Castle on February 16, 2016 at 2:21 pm
  124. Sounds like a great series. I’d love to enter the giveaway please. My email address is margarita@margaritamorris.com . Thanks.

    Comment by Margarita Morris on February 17, 2016 at 10:41 am
  125. Wonderful interview! Linda sounds like someone who puts a lot of herself in her work, even if not as a character. Her background in psychotherapy, her ability to teach English and work with words, and her experiences as a parent are all in her books, it seems. Congratulations on your most recent release, Linda! The cover is gorgeous, and the story sounds fascinating, too.

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on February 23, 2016 at 3:42 pm
  126. Thank you, Amy! The cover is by the amazing Cover Collection – it’s exactly right for my book. My background is physiotherapy, though. Still a lot of stressed people involved, especially during the time I worked with brain injuries, and in a clinic for handicapped babies. Thank you for your kind comments!

    Comment by Linda Huber on February 23, 2016 at 6:22 pm
  127. This is a terrific post and I really enjoyed the architect/gardener question, I’d not heard that before. It’s lovely to read more about you and your books Linda 🙂

    Comment by Georgia Rose on February 24, 2016 at 7:28 pm
  128. I’ve only just had the notification about this so I’m probably too late but it sounds a really interesting book so if there’s still time please count me in the giveaway competition.

    Comment by Harriet Steel on February 26, 2016 at 7:30 am
  129. I’m glad you think The Broken Road sounds interesting, Harriet, and I’m sure you’re not too late. Lindsay

    Comment by Lindsay Stanberry-Flynn on February 26, 2016 at 9:29 am
  130. That’s hard work. It’s difficult to fill an empty page. Once you know what you want to write, in broad sortkes, just pound out material. Doesn’t need to be perfect. Figure on twice what the final length is to be after editing. Good luck! I know Tynan has written several shorties about 100 pages each. I actually have one of them somewhere.

    Comment by Fabian on February 28, 2016 at 10:24 am
  131. I noticed on Amna Boheim’s Facebook page that she’ll be speaking at the March Novel London. How I wish I didn’t live so far away! What a wonderful experience for both the writers and the readers. Good luck to you!

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on March 1, 2016 at 2:29 pm
  132. Hello, lovely interview. I am interested in the giveaway

    Comment by Lauren on March 2, 2016 at 6:51 am
  133. Thank you very much Jane!

    Comment by Safeena on March 3, 2016 at 11:38 pm
  134. This was a tantalizing introduction to Kay Seeley’s books. I’ve only visited London once, but I was hooked and I love reading about the city, particularly in books that are set in the past. I’m looking forward to reading Kay’s work. Thanks for the spotlight!

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on March 8, 2016 at 4:00 pm
  135. Aw thanks Amy. Always great to read about people who share my love of London, books and history.

    Comment by Kay Seeley on March 9, 2016 at 9:26 am
  136. As a lover of all things BBC, I was hooked even before the interview started. Great photo, too, of the author as a young boy! Both the fiction and the non-fiction work of Ian Richardson sound intriguing- I love thrillers AND I’m spending part of this year working on a family history to present someone as a Christmas gift. Wonderful post. Thanks.

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on March 15, 2016 at 10:12 pm
  137. I would like to sign up for your newsletter please.

    Comment by Jim Richardson on March 16, 2016 at 1:21 pm
  138. I have had the good fortune and pleasure to have worked with Ian at radio 3BO Bendigo and Macquarie Radio 3AW in Melbourne, (as has my journalistic wife Heather) and his thoughts and views on journalism I can thoroughly endorse. As he found in writing God’s Triangle, truth is sometimes far more intriguing than fiction.

    Comment by Graeme Turpie on March 17, 2016 at 12:15 am
  139. I don’t ever sign up for news letters and seldom write book reviews. I read 830 books in the last three years. After finishing Death of an Owl, I wanted to read more from this author. Thank you Jane Davis.

    Comment by Hester Botha on March 19, 2016 at 4:36 am
  140. Correctio:A funeral for an owl…notDeath of an owl

    Comment by Hester Botha on March 19, 2016 at 4:40 am
  141. Well said, Jane. In 100% agreement. And judging by the tone of the article, anyone with such entrenched, outdated opinions who doesn’t understand the publishing landscape is right. She really shouldn’t self publish.

    Comment by JJ Marsh on March 22, 2016 at 3:06 pm
  142. Well said, Jane. I’m traditionally published by a small publisher. I write genre fiction (romance). I’m not considering self publishing, but I found the tone of the original article snooty and irritating.
    I’m glad you responded with a better informed and much more measured post.

    Comment by Rhoda Baxter on March 22, 2016 at 3:13 pm
  143. Many thanks, Rhoda.

    Comment by Jane Davis on March 22, 2016 at 5:55 pm
  144. Well said Jane. I was equally outraged when reading that blog post. I’ve published my own response here. Onward! – Ed Renehan

    Comment by Edward Renehan on March 22, 2016 at 3:13 pm
  145. This has cheered me up – thank you! I read Ros Barber’s article this morning after seeing it featured in The Passive Voice newsletter. I thought her opinion was outdated and wrong on so many fronts.

    Comment by Margarita Morris on March 22, 2016 at 3:38 pm
  146. Thank you for a brilliantly-structured and thoughtful post on the benefits (and some of the pitfalls) of self-publishing. You are spot-on when you say that “complete creative control” is one of the greatest advantages in making a decision to self-publish.

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on March 22, 2016 at 3:42 pm
  147. Absolutely!

    Comment by Jane Davis on March 22, 2016 at 5:52 pm
  148. Not a rant but a calm and thoughtful response, Jane – well said! – Ros Barber’s article was the rant – and a poorly argued one at that. If she attempted to self-publish she would experience a massive fail. Wrong temperament.
    I thought it instructive last year when a group of trad-published, big-selling panellists at HNS Denver 2015, when asked what they would do differently if they had their first advance again, ALL of them said they would spend it on marketing! And yet Ms barber naiively believes marketing, editing, prooofing etc provided for free out of the goodness of her publisher’s heart.

    Comment by Clare Flynn on March 22, 2016 at 4:24 pm
  149. I must admit that if I had my time over again, I would have invested some of my competition winnings in marketing but I was advised ‘that would all be done for me.’ My greatest regret in this roller coaster journey is not self-publishing sooner so that I could have carried some of my 15,000 readers with me.

    Comment by Jane Davis on March 22, 2016 at 5:52 pm
  150. A superb riposte.

    I can, incidentally, confirm that traditional publishers are now asking their authors to carry out most of the marketing for their own books. I’m trad published in non-fiction, where I reckon I do 95% of my own marketing, and after the first six months following publication, that rises to 99.9% (I’ll allow the 0.1% for the fact that the publisher still has the book on their website). And that’s for a book which Amazon and the publishers classified as a ‘best seller’ for the first year of its life and has an average score close to 5 after more than 75 reviews.

    I’m not complaining; that’s how I knew it would be from all the warnings I’d read from other people, so it’s just a fact of modern publishing life, whether traditionally or self-published. For fiction, there’s no question that I see self-publishing as the superior option.

    Comment by Henry Hyde on March 22, 2016 at 4:59 pm
  151. I totally agree. I was contractually obliged to market my book, but why an author wouldn’t want to participate in active marketing is beyond me.

    Comment by Jane Davis on March 22, 2016 at 5:50 pm
  152. Well said. Perfect reply.

    Comment by Hallee Bridgeman on March 22, 2016 at 5:04 pm
  153. A leading literary agent at an event I attended recently said that she sometimes worked with authors for a year to get the book right – meaning as they wanted it to be for the market. No thank you, I thought, it wouldn’t be my book at the end of it! I’m with Amy M. Reade in her comment on your cogent and honest-minded post. Thank you!

    Comment by Tanya van Hasselt on March 22, 2016 at 5:26 pm
  154. Excellent response, thank you Jane.

    Comment by Helena Halme on March 22, 2016 at 5:45 pm
  155. Thanks for this excellent article, Jane!

    Comment by Liza Perrat on March 22, 2016 at 8:06 pm
  156. I decided to self publish after finally growing tried of trying to secure an agent. In under two years I’ve sold over 33k copies of my two novels.

    I don’t view marketing as a chore, but see it as another creative outlet. I write because I want to be read. That means putting your book in front of people, but doesn’t have to mean stuffing it in their faces.I don’t use social media a great deal either. I don’t really tweet and post to my FB author page around once a month.

    I enjoy almost every aspect of the self publishing process, I design my covers, write what I want to write, organise and create my own marketing plan, have the final word on everything.

    Oh, and my readers seem to entity my books, which would otherwise be sitting in a drawer or on a hard drive unseen.

    Comment by John Bowen on March 22, 2016 at 8:39 pm
  157. Couldn’t have put this better myself, well done. As a traditionally published and also successfully self-published author, I did try to reason with Ros Barber on Twitter yesterday, as I knew her some years ago as a poet, but it’s clear she is not interested in hearing any truths about self-publishing from actual practitioners. Only points of view that support her own.

    I can see she meant literary fiction on the whole though, rather than genre fiction, and the former is undoubtedly a hard sell when self-publishing. I have two lit fic novels which I only shift in reasonable amounts by dint of pretending they are genre novels, LOL.

    However, she is living in a fool’s paradise if she believes publishers do the marketing for authors – maybe two decades ago, but no longer! – or that being traditionally published means an automatic pass into Waterstones. Not so, I could assure her, since I’ve had nine books published by Penguin Random House and Hodder in the past 5 years, and only got a handful of copies onto shelves in the High Street, despite them being genre fiction – and one actually won an award. Despite all that, despite having a major publisher behind me, I still felt like a pariah walking into my local Waterstones and asking if they would stock my books. The answer was always a very cut and dismissive NO.

    After a while I stopped asking, and even stopped going there. It was too painful.

    Last year, I had my debut thriller (Girl Number One) rejected by a dozen or so publishers, until my agent (who is very supportive) suggest I self-publish it instead, since I have been self-publishing short and romantic fiction for several years now with some success.

    Lo and behold, this apparently unpublishable novel began to sell well almost immediately. I have now sold nearly 50,000 self-published copies, got it to number 1 in the UK Kindle charts back in December 2015, and then had it picked up by Thomas & Mercer, one of Amazon Publishing’s imprints. A new edition will be out later this year, followed by a second thriller, which I am currently writing.

    Not bad for a self-published book. If that makes me an amateur, it makes me a highly successful one.

    Comment by Jane Holland (@janeholland1) on March 22, 2016 at 10:58 pm
  158. What a fantastic story, Jane. I am sure that many self-published authors will be surprised to hear how difficult it is to get stocked in bookshops as a trad published author, and how soon after release books are taken off the shelves. Like you, I had a competition win. I would visit my every branch of Waterstones within my reach and they would order 2 copies and say ‘We’ll see how they sell,’ but there was no re-order system when they sold. The next time I went in, I had to ask again. Can I ask if you are an ALLi member? It not, would it be possible to quote your comment in our open forum?

    Comment by Jane Davis on March 23, 2016 at 7:32 am
  159. Not an ALLi member, no. I probably ought to be but I already belong to so many pro bodies, I lose track and hardly use any of them – except the Soc of Authors, perhaps. Feel free to quote me. It may be that, now, with Waterstones having turned some kind of corner in the past year, getting a traditionally published book in there has become easier. But I doubt it. It’s also possible that I started my career in historical fiction with PRH etc at a really bad time, at the height of the recession, and that’s why so many Waterstones’ staff treated me with open contempt when I said I was a writer. Who knows? But it is certainly NOT true that all trad Big 5 published books automatically get onto bookshelves.

    That sentence above should have been ‘curt and dismissive’ btw. My typing! 🙂

    Comment by Jane Holland (@janeholland1) on March 23, 2016 at 9:59 am
  160. Well said Jane. Your book Half Truths and White Lies was one of my best reads last year. I self published Grandma’s Poetry Book as it is impossible to get an agent or publisher for poetry unless you are famous or the Poet Laureate. The shelf for poetry in even a large W H Smiths is about 2-3 feet long, about 12 books. No wonder children do not engage with poetry when it has such a low profile. That is why I self published as I felt I had something worth reading and I have sold nearly 900 books. The book has been used for reminiscence therapy and in schools so I must have done something right. Don’t be put off by this conceited writer. You are doing great and we all appreciate your wisdom in your blogs and ALLI posts. Keep going.

    Comment by Di Castle on March 23, 2016 at 8:40 pm
  161. Well, bravo!

    Comment by David North on March 25, 2016 at 3:48 pm
  162. A very open interview. It must be difficult to make characters both believable and yet realistic/like the rest of us. If I don’t have much empathy with a character I feel less connected to the book.

    Comment by Alyson on March 29, 2016 at 8:06 pm
  163. Thanks for an interesting interview!

    A quick extra Q for Karl…you mention you’re working on short stories at the moment but have you got an idea for another novel brewing away on the back burner too? Interested to see how you’ve work in different genres and wondering which way you may go next…

    Comment by Sam on March 29, 2016 at 9:28 pm
  164. Hi Alyson,
    It is difficult, and it is only the reader who can decide if the author was successful or not! In one of my planned future novels I want to play with this a bit, and introduce a protagonist that the readers will dislike, though hopefully read on to find out what happens. My hope is to eventually reveal enough that the reader comes to sympathise with him, and turn everything on its head. It will be a tricky thing to pull off.
    Best wishes,

    Comment by Karl Drinkwater on March 30, 2016 at 9:44 am
  165. Hi Sam,

    My next few projects will all be short stories (the horror one si almost ready for release; then literary; then probably another collection in each genre, since I have so many stories planned or written!) However, then I’ll be back on track with my novels.

    A few years ago I wrote a timeline of future works – http://karldrinkwater.blogspot.co.uk/2012/05/projects-timeline.html
    Over-optimistic. 🙂
    Of those projects, some of them are still in the pipeline for after I finish with short stories:

    – Ravenna Revisited (this is literary, and is the one I hinted at in my reply to Alyson)

    These are horror:
    – Kor
    – Returner
    – Full Charge

    There are also three novels I haven’t mentioned elsewhere.
    – Psycho Hospital (balls-to-the-wall horror, bringing in Government manipulation and conspiracy, censorship, and a heroine we can all root for)
    – “Irish Horror” (working title only – imagine The Hills Have Eyes but through a UK lens)
    – “B&M” (working title only, literary, possibly written in reverse, with each chapter going back further in time to explain how things came to be as they are; I imagine this will be hard to write, technically and emotionally)

    Thanks for the question!

    Comment by Karl Drinkwater on March 30, 2016 at 9:56 am
  166. A fabulous interview. I was one of Karl’s teachers at FE college and he was one of my most inquisitive and motivated students. It’s great to see that that motivation and curiosity have yielded so much tasty fruit. 🙂

    Comment by Jay Spencer Green on April 1, 2016 at 6:32 pm
  167. A fabulous interview. I was one of Karl’s teachers at FE college and he was one of my most inquisitive and motivated students. It’s great to see that that motivation and curiosity have yielded so much tasty fruit. 🙂

    Comment by Jay Spencer Green on April 1, 2016 at 6:43 pm
  168. Thanks John/Jay! You were an inspiring tutor who led me to Plato and philosophy, up out of the cave of shadows. 🙂

    Comment by Karl Drinkwater on April 2, 2016 at 1:09 pm
  169. I’ve often wondered how difficult it must be to write autobiographical scenes in a story. I’m not sure I could do it. Kudos to Rosaline for having the courage to write about things so close to her!

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on April 11, 2016 at 2:33 pm
  170. Ellie’s books sound like a treat to read. I love the historical time periods she has researched, and particularly so in England. Though I don’t often read supernatural or time travel books, these are two I think I will check out. Thanks for a lovely and intriguing interview!

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on April 26, 2016 at 8:49 pm
  171. I must say that halfway through this interview I went to Amazon and bought “The A to Z of Normal” before returning to finish the interview. It sounds like exactly the type of book I need to read right now in my life and I can’t wait to start it. Jane, thanks for featuring Ms. Barbour on your blog!

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on May 12, 2016 at 1:34 am
  172. Amy, thank you very much indeed for buying The A to Z of Normal – I do hope you enjoy it!

    Comment by Helen Barbour on May 12, 2016 at 3:23 pm
  173. Have always thought your covers were stunning, and somehow have an ‘in commoness’ that distinguishes you without looking like they are trying to ‘stamp’ your identity.


    Comment by Philippa Rees on May 16, 2016 at 5:16 pm
  174. Thankyou, Philippa. It’s great to see Andrew Candy’s work receiving some well-deserved recognition.

    Comment by Jane Davis on May 16, 2016 at 5:21 pm
  175. I’m a singer too and this sounds like the kind of book I would enjoy. I’ve just borrowed it from the Kindle Owner’s Lending Library and am looking forward to reading it.
    PS – the link to Paul’s website needs fixing 🙂

    Comment by Margarita Morris on May 17, 2016 at 6:23 pm
  176. Thanks for pointing that out, Margarita. It’s now fixed. I hope you enjoy the book.

    Comment by Jane Davis on May 18, 2016 at 9:21 am
  177. Tim Gurung sounds like a truly amazing and learned man. It’s not often one finds a writer with selfless goals, but Mr. Gurung appears to be one such person. His work sounds fascinating, but also possibly heartbreaking. The covers convey a sadness that promises an emotional ride through the books.

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on May 31, 2016 at 1:39 pm
  178. Congratulations!! Well-deserved!

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on June 2, 2016 at 4:35 pm
  179. Margarita’s books sound wonderful. Just today I saw a haunting photo on Facebook of an East German soldier helping a small boy through the barbed wire. I find that visiting the place where a story is set is invaluable and adds an indefinable dimension to descriptions. It’s also a great way to gather more story ideas. Thanks for introducing me to Margarita!

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on June 7, 2016 at 9:48 pm
  180. Hi Amy – thanks for commenting. I know which photo you’re talking about. If that soldier hadn’t let the little boy through the barbed wire he would have been separated from his family for 28 years! There are so many moving photos from that period. Would you like a copy of Oranges for Christmas? Please let me know if you’d like a Kindle version or an epub and where I can send it to. Best wishes, Margarita.

    Comment by Margarita Morris on June 8, 2016 at 9:48 am
  181. Your book sounds interesting. I look forward to reading it.

    Comment by Barbara on June 13, 2016 at 8:05 pm
  182. How great to get your wonderful writing free! Cannot wait to read it!

    Comment by Barbara R McGregor on June 13, 2016 at 8:15 pm
  183. Looking forward to reading it!!

    Comment by Julie Whitley on June 15, 2016 at 2:00 pm
  184. I’ve just finished reading this book. I was disappointed but it was not so poor that I had to set it aside because of life being too short. I do agree that the photographs all seem poor and therefore it’s difficult to believe the narrator could have made a living from it. I felt no empathy with her or the men she loved. Its quite a long book but you don’t get much idea of what the blokes she supposedly loves are like or why she would. Oddly the brief humiliating fling with the Australian photographer was rather more believable and interesting than the tedious longer term relationships that the narrator describes and the photograph of the Australian was the best portrait and most engaging photo in the book too I thought.. There was another one of the hippie commune leader I quite liked. As to the description of times and places I didnt feel they came to life other than the deserted highway and being shot at but then that was melodrama and the reader can just fill in from all the movies they’ve watched. I thought she sounded like someone who has like me only read about them herself. Like Oscar learning the blues rather than feeling it. Thus for example if you read tobias Wolfe you really do get a sense of being in Vietnam and living it and I suppose actually being him whilst you read either his memoir or short stories about that war I didn’t get any of that from reading this book in the pieces of it set in Vietnam or the Weimar Republic etc. I also found the treatment of mental illness trite and unnecessarily sensationalist. I think I am opposed to any writing that portrays mental illness and suffering in the way that it does here as a spectacle to be frightened of or jeer. The contemplated suicide and postscript about it seems as poor somehow as the corny old line about someone waking up ffom a dream. It’s a rather depressing read. Bit like seeing based on a true story at the end of what must have been a poor movie to resort to that awful line.

    Comment by Conal on June 17, 2016 at 8:05 am
  185. Hi Conal, It’s not often I get a comment on a post so long after the event, so thank you. I agree that many of the ideas in the book seemed underdeveloped, with little sense of place or time. In other words, there seemed to be too much reliance on the photographs. I must admit that the treatment of mental illness didn’t jarr with me as it clearly did with you, and I have history.

    Comment by Jane Davis on June 17, 2016 at 4:14 pm
  186. Thanks Jane. After I finished reading the book this am I had done an Internet search to discover if any of the named photographers mentioned in the novel were real people and came across you. I liked your thoughtful and much kinder comments rather more than my own mean spirited stuff ! But I wouldn’t recommend this book to someone to read I think. I will have a read of your “I stopped time ” very best wishes Conal

    Comment by Conal on June 17, 2016 at 4:52 pm
  187. HI Conal, I have to be honest, I was pretty miffed at the time of release because I saw the poster for the book at my local train station and the publisher was using the exact same tag line I had been using for I Stopped Time, and I simply don’t have the resources to go after the big guys so I changed mine. I’m over it now.

    Comment by Jane Davis on June 18, 2016 at 6:34 am
  188. Thank you, I enjoyed this interesting interview. How lucky the author is to live in a beautiful place like Granada,

    Comment by Harriet Steel on June 25, 2016 at 7:57 am
  189. This is marvellous news – and I am especially happy that this has happened to someone who is so generous and encouraging to other self-published authors. Thank you for all you do, as well as for the pleasure of your writing …

    Comment by Tanya van Hasselt on June 29, 2016 at 7:24 am
  190. Great post! Adam’s works sound intelligent, socially aware, and thought-provoking. What a great idea to turn God into an immigrant- to have God experience the same things that people experience who are trying to make better lives for themselves in new places with different languages, customs, foods, and histories. Kudos! The book sounds fascinating.

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on July 27, 2016 at 8:03 pm
  191. His website is fabulous. Have you checked it out? I’m so envious.

    Comment by Jane Davis on July 28, 2016 at 3:39 pm
  192. Hi Jane, it has been a great pleasure working with you – thanks for including me in the Virtual Book Club.
    Best wishes

    Comment by Adam Bethlehem on July 28, 2016 at 8:23 am
  193. It was an honour to do this interview with you Jane! I thank you for opportunity to share my story with you and with others. I will always be grateful to you for the exposure you have given to I Promised Not to Tell and the eloquence with which you conducted this interview. Yours truly, Cheryl B. Evans
    p.s. your readers can also find me on goodreads 🙂

    Comment by Cheryl B. Evans on September 6, 2016 at 4:41 pm
  194. Great, honest post, Jane. Thanks for the mention. I was touched by your response to what I said.

    I sometimes think producing a book is like producing a child. You want people to like your offspring and to approve of you as a parent. But there comes a time to let go and trust your child to stand alone. You will never be a perfect parent/author but you just need to be good ENOUGH.

    You won the competition. You deserved it. Enjoy it.

    Shame and anxiety are horrible. They need kicked off the park. A wise one once said to me ‘just get on with your life.What other people think of you is none of your business.’ Easier said than done but worth trying to remember.

    All best for your new ‘baby’ 🙂

    Comment by Anne Stormont on September 13, 2016 at 8:52 pm
  195. Hi Jane, I didn’t realize for quite a long time that your blog updates were going to my spam folder. I’ve missed so many posts that I fear I’ll never catch up!

    I am entranced by this description of Haweswater. I’ve added it to my Christmas list on Amazon.

    And I’ve just pre-ordered My Counterfeit Self. I’m excited for its release!

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on September 26, 2016 at 10:05 pm
  196. It’s a wonderful place. Do fictional characters have ghosts, do you think?

    Comment by Jane Davis on September 27, 2016 at 8:59 am
  197. Thanks so much for sharing this link with me, and the one to the program itself. I loved seeing Olive get a fleeting cameo in My Counterfeit Self. 🙂

    Comment by Cindy Rinaman Marsch on September 30, 2016 at 6:09 pm
  198. I love your P.S. at the bottom of a very interesting post

    Comment by Barb on October 5, 2016 at 12:45 am
  199. Interesting interview with Jane Davis, particularly on the focus that village life offers to interactions and characters. Love your book covers!

    Comment by Philippa Rees on October 11, 2016 at 10:40 am
  200. A big thank you, Jane, for hosting this interview. It was a pleasing challenge to answer your original and thought-provoking questions.

    Comment by Kathy Shuker on October 11, 2016 at 5:18 pm
  201. Your descriptions of the setting sold the book to me.

    Comment by Jane Davis on October 11, 2016 at 7:26 pm
  202. I’m going to give you a present that I’ve earned by accident: write the fears down, and then ignore them.

    The fact that you have fears just means you really, really care about what you write.

    But long illness has made me drop most things which have no real value, and fear is one of the ones I’ve tossed. The only fear I have left is that I will not longer be physically able to write, and if that happens, and I can’t do anything about it, that will be that.

    Meanwhile, though, fear likes to be acknowledged (which is why I write it in the Fear Journal), and it is wonderful for keeping myself writing during the hard parts, because fear means I haven’t finished digging deeply through the scene – it goes away when I’ve finally figured out what’s missing and have written it. So I use it as a touchstone, thank it, and KEEP WRITING.

    And give it to my characters, of course.

    Just never let it do anything other than remind you that you’re on the right path.


    Comment by Alicia Butcher Ehrhardt on November 4, 2016 at 5:39 pm
  203. Lovely rant. If anything, you were too nice.

    Author control vs. publisher-that-doesn’t-understand-the-work control – an easy choice.

    Then all you have to worry about is writing a good, nay, great book – one up to your standards.

    You’re going to have to market it anyway – it must be very difficult to market your own work when you feel its voice has been trampled on, the type is way too small in the print version, or the cover has nothing to do with your story. Because yours is the name on the front.

    Comment by Alicia Butcher Ehrhardt on November 5, 2016 at 6:25 am
  204. Thanks so much for having me back on your website, Jane!

    Comment by Linda Huber on November 9, 2016 at 2:11 pm
  205. Lovely to see you again!

    Comment by Jane Davis on November 9, 2016 at 2:14 pm
  206. Thanks for having me on your book club Jane! I hope everyone’s having a good day and feel free to ask me anything…I’m always up for a chat about books!

    Comment by Rosemary A Johns on November 26, 2016 at 10:51 am
  207. Thanks for a great post and interview, Jane. The winner of the illustrated paperback in the drawing for new subscribers in November is Abigail in Kentucky. Join the Readers List linked above for more great offers in 2017!

    Comment by Cindy Rinaman Marsch on December 3, 2016 at 8:27 pm
  208. Hi Jane,

    Well done on all your accomplishments for 2016. It looks like you’ve had a terrific year. I’m not sure what my favourite read of 2016 is, although this was the year I discovered Val McDermid’s books and she’s now one of my top authors. I also read some first-rate non-fiction such as “Never Had it so Good” by Dominic Sandbrook. My target for 2017 is simple to say but hard to do – write more books! Wishing you all the best for Christmas and the New Year!


    Comment by Margarita Morris on December 14, 2016 at 4:46 pm
  209. Well done you and I hope you have a happy Christmas not a blue one.

    Comment by Josa Young on December 15, 2016 at 8:35 am
  210. What a great interview! I love the way Edmund Kelly’s mother encouraged him to keep reading, and that he continues the tradition with his own daughter. There’s so much honesty in his interview–I find the idea of the Four Horsemen metaphor fascinating.

    And…I just downloaded Scrivener myself. I don’t have the time right now to learn it, but in a few weeks things should calm down enough for me to spend some time getting to know it. It’s great to hear such a glowing recommendation of the software.

    Best wishes on the book!

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on January 17, 2017 at 3:33 pm
  211. Oh my goodness. I cannot wait to read The Fragrant Concubine. Thanks for shining a spotlight on it! The process of researching to write historical fiction is fascinating–I loved learning what Melissa had to do to be able to write with honesty and credibility.

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on January 24, 2017 at 7:01 pm
  212. Yes, I’m looking forward to it too. I’ve been fascinated by all things Chinese since middle school and even more so since I visited The Forbidden City.

    Comment by Jane Davis on January 25, 2017 at 8:44 am
  213. Thank you Amy, I hope you enjoy it and would love to know what you think of it when you’re done! – and do pick up The Consorts for free as well if you’d like to, it’s a novella set in the same period, just a few years earlier and features many of the same characters. It’s on my website at http://www.melissaaddey.com/free.

    Comment by Melissa Addey on January 25, 2017 at 9:31 am
  214. Another great interview! I will literally read anything set in the Highlands of Scotland. Boyle’s Law sounds great, and it’s eerily reminiscent of some physics homework I helped my daughter do not long ago. 🙂

    I wish you much success with the book, and I look forward to reading it and hearing more buzz about it.

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on February 7, 2017 at 7:42 pm
  215. Hi Amy, Thanks for your kind words. The interview was a lot of fun to do. As it happens, my husband, Charlie, is a diver, so Boyle’s Law features regularly in our lives. Hope you enjoy the book 🙂

    Comment by Lorraine Thomson on February 8, 2017 at 11:28 am
  216. Thank you, Jane, for this opportunity to appear on your website and talk about my book.

    Comment by Mary Maddox on February 16, 2017 at 2:16 am
  217. Brilliant promotion – a great way to read authors new to me.

    Comment by Sally Salmon on February 24, 2017 at 5:30 pm
  218. Sounds both intriguing and heartbreaking. Congratulations on another novel!

    Comment by Amy M. Reade on February 28, 2017 at 9:56 pm
  219. Thank you so much, Jane, for this opportunity to be interviewed on your blog. You ask great questions! I will check in over the next few days to see if your readers have anything they want to ask me.

    Comment by Kassandra Lamb on March 9, 2017 at 4:33 pm
  220. Great interview. Really insightful comments about reading and writing. I have tried to approach my writing the same way as Leonora suggests. It has challenged me mentally, physically, emotionally exactly the way she describes. And I completely agree. The only way that you can be in any way satisfied with a piece of work is if you know you have given it absolutely everything. It isn’t always easy but it is definitely worth it.
    The book sounds fascinating. I’m probably far too slow off the mark but I’d love a copy if there are any left.
    All the best

    Comment by Helen Taylor on May 26, 2017 at 10:13 am
  221. Thank you, Jane Davis, for another fine example of the eclectic mix of authors you invite onto your Virtual Book Club. I’ve therefore just nominated this blog for the Versatile Blogger Award. You can read about that here: http://wp.me/p3uiuG-1p1

    Comment by Carol Cooper on May 30, 2017 at 6:44 pm
  222. Thanks for the interview, Jane 🙂

    Comment by Laura Read on June 15, 2017 at 12:37 pm
  223. Thanks, Jane, for your patience and generosity!

    Comment by Keith Dixon on June 28, 2017 at 12:01 pm
  224. For me a very interesting ( and timely) post. I am struggling with revelatory photographs and inscriptions that throw light on my own grandmother’s stories, none of which seemed remotely possible, and which I disbelieved.

    How I regret that! Particularly her own and private link to George Eliot through circumstances no-one knows about. I would like to think I could make a coherent work of all that, which you clearly have done. Thanks for this post, it is always interesting how writers derive their works.

    Comment by Philippa Rees on July 22, 2017 at 11:10 am
  225. How poignant photographs are and people are drawn to black and white photographs still. I treasure the few I have of my grandparents who I never knew properly, but in a digital age they have also been scanned and shared out in the family and appeared on Facebook!If we don’t remember to print our family photos we will have nothing to pass down. Most poignant in your writing is Josephine’s last note.

    Comment by Janet Gogerty on July 22, 2017 at 4:29 pm
  226. Hi Janet, yes the note is truly extraordinary. It is such a fragile piece of paper just ripped from a pad of lined paper. Yellowed and torn down the middle, it is amazing that it survived at all. I have no idea how it came into Dad’s possession. He also has the robe he and his two sisters were christened in, which has all of their initials embroidered on it – that is quite something too.

    Comment by Jane Davis on July 22, 2017 at 7:28 pm
  227. Philippa,I would love to read to that piece.

    Comment by Jane Davis on July 22, 2017 at 7:29 pm
  228. Jane, I know where the letter came from. If you would like to know, email me and I’ll tell you. It’s very poignant. K.

    Comment by Kathleen Crowley on July 23, 2017 at 9:52 pm
  229. I often wonder when we hear about people with mental health problems, or who have actually commited suicide and their family can’t understand why; they could have had some terrible trauma happen to them which nobody ever knew about. Not everyone has the strength to forgive or reclaim their life, but hopefully others are helped when they read or listen to someone who has been through the same suffering.

    Comment by Janet Gogerty on August 3, 2017 at 10:56 pm
  230. Interesting story about the route to publication and diversions along the way. I do wonder if many people prefer a shorter book these days ( 60K words) rather than the average 80 -90 because of the attention span issue. Thanks Jane for posting this.

    Comment by Angelena Boden on September 12, 2017 at 11:28 am
  231. I really enjoyed this interview as Voinks brings out some excellent points. Val and I have never met, yet I know her through the wilderness of the internet. Having read some of her work it is clear that she is too self-effacing in describing her talent. If anyone deserves to make it, Val does.
    And by the way, her wit is legendary in certain close knit circles. Just ask my Minion mate Kev.

    Comment by Rick Haynes on September 14, 2017 at 7:30 pm
  232. Very interesting interview with excellent questions and great answers. I have come to know Val purely through the writing world and her sense of humour and dedication to writing up “the wild idea” is inspiring! She is a great support as a beta reader and helped me hugely with my collections of short stories. I think there is still a place for both short & long fiction and think that Val’s work can meet the quite distinctly different requirements of both. We did finally actually met in person, so I know she’s real, although she kept her unicorns hidden. Good for you Val and here’s to the publication of your next novel!

    Comment by Paula Harmon on September 16, 2017 at 5:15 pm
  233. Love those haircuts…! Hey, I’m also 50 this year, love your idea of the book bargains to celebrate, do you mind if I do the same? Mine is in November… x

    Comment by Louise Walters on September 27, 2017 at 3:17 pm
  234. No problem, Louise. I’ll let you know how I get on!

    Comment by Jane Davis on October 9, 2017 at 8:34 am
  235. Have all your books, love everyone of them and so proud to have known you. Please keep writing any subject will do.

    Comment by Anne Pelham McMahon on October 9, 2017 at 2:35 pm
  236. That’s one area where I’ve been fortunate: there are only a couple of Kathleen Jowitts worldwide, and I don’t think any of the others write fiction. I do have to contend with a lot of misspellings, though. (What happens if you include Jane Davies? Or Jayne Davis? Or…)

    Hope you have a great birthday!

    Comment by Kathleen Jowitt on October 12, 2017 at 1:44 pm
  237. Hi Kathleen, Very happy to see you here. I meant to say how much I enjoyed your book. I’m afraid I haven’t got round to posting a review yet because, well, things have been a bit traumatic at this end. Sorry if I have been guilty of misspelling your name!

    Comment by Jane Davis on October 12, 2017 at 5:15 pm
  238. Happy Birthday!

    Comment by Margarita Morris on October 15, 2017 at 11:01 am
  239. Dear Jane, Happy birthday and thanks for all the memories posted. Regrettably I am old enough to remember the swinging sixties – but they say that means I wasn’t there! Well I was – without the drugs – so I’m making up for it now with morphine patches galore. Much love and so proud – looking at all your publications. You are a brilliant novelist. Loving you, Annie. x

    Comment by Anne Pelham McMahon on October 15, 2017 at 5:17 pm
  240. Hi Roz and hi Jane! I just checked your book list and realised I’d read – and enjoyed! – one of your books. Small world.
    Anyway, I was interested in that quote from John Green. I believe all authors like to talk to others, but are constrained by a lack of ‘small talk’. When we launch into a pet subject, normal people’s eyes glaze over, and we realise that we’ve done it again. So we retreat to the blank page.
    -cough- of course that royal ‘we’ could just be me -cough-

    Comment by acflory on October 26, 2017 at 8:32 am
  241. Hi Andrea! I think you’ve identified the problem – lack of small talk. I can only do ‘big talk’.

    Comment by Roz Morris @Roz_Morris on October 26, 2017 at 11:15 am
  242. Thank you for inviting me onto your Virtual Book Club Jane. Very perceptive questions!

    Comment by Jean Gill on November 15, 2017 at 10:32 am
  243. I would love to read “I Stopped Time.”
    Thank you!

    Comment by Betty Reynolds on November 21, 2017 at 4:32 pm
  244. Really enjoyed this post, and your interview with my friend and critique writing partner, Alison. We’ve certainly been on a long journey from those first tentative steps, but we can proudly call ourselves writers now.

    Dream come true for both of us!

    Very impressive Blog, Jane.

    Comment by Denise Barnes on November 21, 2017 at 6:07 pm
  245. Thanks, Denise. Mind you, Alison is the perfect guest.

    Comment by Jane Davis on November 22, 2017 at 9:27 am
  246. Yes, a long journey, all hard work but a fantastic one; one would wouldn’t had travelled so well without each other.
    And thank you for your kind words, Jane.

    Comment by Alison Morton on November 24, 2017 at 11:06 am
  247. Really enjoyable and insightful interview.

    Comment by Clare Flynn on December 1, 2017 at 11:00 am
  248. I really enjoyed your end of year review, Jane. I haven’t written one for myself as I’ve done a poor job of tracking what I’ve actually read. I haven’t even kept track for the reading challenges I signed up for. I think my new year’s resolution needs to simply be to keep a better record so that I can write a meaningful post at the end of 2018!

    Comment by Melinda Tognini on January 4, 2018 at 11:46 pm
  249. Thank you so much for such an interesting experience, Jane. Incidentally, if there are any book club leaders out there who are thinking of adopting ‘The Wolf of Dalriada’, there is a list of suggested Book Club questions on my website.

    Comment by Elizabeth Gates on January 10, 2018 at 12:34 pm
  250. Thank you, Jane. You’re a wonderful writer and friend.

    Comment by Victoria Dougherty on January 24, 2018 at 4:12 pm
  251. I can also be reached here.


    I read, review and promote on my Social Media.

    I’d be thrilled to read your books.

    Thank you.


    Comment by KATE ROCK on February 1, 2018 at 10:13 pm
  252. Thank you, Jane. I truly appreciate your support and I hope readers enjoy my work.

    Comment by Darlene Jones on February 6, 2018 at 5:30 pm
  253. I have read all of Darlene Jones’ books and loved every one of them. Her descriptions are so vivid I feel as if I’m there in the scene. Whether it’s a love scene or a battle scene, the imagery comes through the words and makes a movie in my head. You won’t regret reading any of Ms. Jones’ novels.

    Comment by Anneli on February 6, 2018 at 7:49 pm
  254. Thank you, Anneli. Compliments like this are so heartwarming.

    Comment by Darlene Jones on February 10, 2018 at 9:27 pm
  255. I always say you are an inspiration. Your love for writing and impacting society is inspiring. Keep spreading the love

    Comment by Sheilla Ankunda on February 13, 2018 at 12:48 pm
  256. Congratulations, Chantelle. PS I agree that marketing is hard — harder than writing the book.

    Comment by Darlene Jones on February 13, 2018 at 7:55 pm
  257. You and Andrew have done a great job. Building a cover is one of the aspects of novel writing that I enjoy and I’m lucky enough to have found a great designer. https://emandyves.wordpress.com/2017/05/14/building-a-book-cover/

    Comment by Darlene Jones on February 27, 2018 at 6:51 pm
  258. Great (and useful) post. Love the cover!

    Comment by Mary Dalton on March 3, 2018 at 3:06 pm
  259. Beautiful cover/s. Interesting article.Thank you

    Comment by Dianne Bown-Wilson on March 5, 2018 at 3:32 pm
  260. Dan sounds like the perfect “coach” for you. Looking forward to reading Smash all the Windows!!!

    Comment by Darlene Jones on March 6, 2018 at 7:25 pm
  261. I’ve really enjoyed this series of posts, Jane, taking us through all the professional input that goes into producing a book. I too work with John Hudspith and Perry Iles both of whom have made my manuscripts so much better.

    All the best for the launch (and beyond) of Smash All The Windows. I’ll definitely be getting it not only because I’ve enjoyed all your other ones, but because it looks so enticing.

    Comment by Anne Stormont on March 27, 2018 at 4:01 pm
  262. Congratulations! Ali, I’m picking up a copy for sure.

    Comment by Darlene Jones on April 3, 2018 at 5:43 pm
  263. Thank you so much, Jane – it’s a delight to be here.

    Comment by Rohan Quine on April 17, 2018 at 5:34 pm
  264. My server says your site is cloned and will not let me in. I’d like to continue on your list please

    Comment by Andrea on April 18, 2018 at 8:14 pm
  265. Thank you for making me think! Great questions and lovely to be invited back on your blog, Jane!

    Comment by Jean Gill on May 10, 2018 at 6:19 pm
  266. I used to detest walking. I couldn’t see the point of it. Why not run; you get wherever you’re going faster? Walking for walking’s sake just seemed stupid to me. Of course, growing up in Finland, walking in the woods was a national past-time, but usually you walked with a purpose: for berry or mushroom picking or to get to a lake for a swim.
    It wasn’t until we had a dog that I understood the calming effect of walking. The twice daily walks with Jerry provided me with uninterrupted thinking time. Being in the woods with him gave my brain its much needed rest, and this inactivity often gave birth to new plot twists or insights into my characters.
    Walking without ou beloved Jerry just isn’t quite the same.
    Great post, I must get back to my daily walking routine!

    Comment by Helena on May 27, 2018 at 7:07 am
  267. I walk every day with my dog. Even f. Didn’t have a dog, I’d still walk. If I didn’t, I’d go stir-crazy very no ideas for my stories. If I get stuck with one of them, on go the walking boots.

    Comment by Wendy Clarke on May 27, 2018 at 8:23 am
  268. Thank you so much for having me.

    Comment by Vivienne Tuffnell on June 21, 2018 at 1:59 pm
  269. As ever, a beautifully written, moving article. Thank you – I loved reading it:)

    Comment by sjhigbee on June 22, 2018 at 11:30 pm
  270. A powerful and complex piece. It’s so demoralising that people think everything people work at is free. I’d like to challenge the abusive sharers by going along to their workplace and insisting they give me their services and products for no payment.

    Comment by Alison Morton on July 23, 2018 at 5:46 pm
  271. Depressing … especially the observations about the lengths Amazon go to selling a different product to the one that bought the “customer” to their shop in the first place. That they still do it even after you have paid them to get the “customer” to view your book is tragic!

    Even more so following their decision to block reviews by “friends” often people who you only know through interaction about an earlier reading experience.

    Comment by Ted Bun (@Mr_Ted_Bun) on July 24, 2018 at 3:21 pm
  272. This is an appalling set of circumstances.
    That Amazon encourage people to buy other products rather than your book after you have paid them for the click to take them to your book page!

    It makes me sad

    Comment by Ted Bun (@Mr_Ted_Bun) on July 24, 2018 at 3:25 pm
  273. I’m astounded at the commission charged by Amazon. I sell through Etsy, and fee is 13 US cents (less than 20p) a listing and under 5%commission on the total sale.
    Thanks for bringing this to my attention.

    Comment by Dawn Gill on July 24, 2018 at 5:15 pm
  274. It is theft. Theft from the author and the potential vendor. As a bookshop owner I take it very personally when anything is stolen from my shop. Even showrooming hurts me to the core. IP must be protected and ebooks must be copy protected or the life of the author will attract fewer and fewer new talents.

    Comment by Peter Snell on July 24, 2018 at 8:22 pm
  275. A very thorough and depressing piece. I’ve given up trying to earn a living from selling books and gone back to work! I do agree with Alison Morton’s comment that all the innovation (or most of it) is in the Indie sphere – we really need this. It seems as though fiction authors (lit fic that is) are in the same position as poets – virtually impossible to earn a living from it, however it’s valued by society. Fortunately I’m bloody minded and will just keep on writing books and getting them out there. Amazon is both friend and foe in one and I don’t know how we solve that. Thanks for putting it all into words Jane.

    Comment by kathleen jones on July 24, 2018 at 8:23 pm
  276. This makes very interesting reading. I am a fairly new author, just wondering how to go about getting my work published. (A minefield with very little mapwork.) This has made me rethink. And – incidentally – any sites/blogs etc, that could give the slightest insight into getting started would be much appreciated.

    Comment by Mia Mannion on July 25, 2018 at 7:43 am
  277. A real eye opener.
    Thanks for sharing

    Comment by Angie Phoenix Rainez on July 28, 2018 at 10:56 am
  278. Great read, and like books images are a very personal taste aren’t they.

    Comment by Tea and Cake for the Soul on August 1, 2018 at 2:57 pm
  279. Thanks for hosting me Jane – this has been a great idea for a blog series. Jenny

    Comment by Jenny Harper on August 1, 2018 at 3:23 pm
  280. Thank you for including me among the contributors to this inspiring series, Jane!

    Comment by Valeria Vescina on August 1, 2018 at 4:01 pm
  281. I am considering that the next book I publish (IF I ever do) will be in paperback only. I’ve shifted the poetry to be paperback only, because poetry is really not right in e-format, so I cannot help feeling that I’d rather only have hard copies out there.

    Comment by Vivienne Tuffnell on August 4, 2018 at 2:52 pm
  282. Thanks for this. He sent me a print copy for review, and I hope to get to it soon (well… as soon as I can after reading a real door stopper of a novel about historical Paris)!

    Comment by Davida Chazan on October 21, 2018 at 8:36 am
  283. I just loved An Unchoreographed Life, penultimate chapter made me cry. Beautifully crafted. More please.

    Comment by Rebecca Piesse on November 4, 2018 at 10:33 am
  284. Thank you so much, Rebecca. I think I shed a few tears in the writing of it!

    Comment by Jane Davis on November 4, 2018 at 10:37 am
  285. I’ve really enjoyed several of Alison’s Roman Nova novels, so I’m really excited about this collection!

    Comment by Liza Perrat on November 5, 2018 at 8:35 am
  286. Almost finished reading Roma Nova Extra. Really enjoying these stories and my husband has started reading it too. You never know, he might actually read the novels as well!

    Comment by Chris Torrance on November 5, 2018 at 11:17 am
  287. I read and enjoyed these Roma Nova short stories when they came out recently, and i thought this was a great way to share bonus material about the fascinating world of Roma Nova outside of the usual novels. I love the way Alison Morton brought history to life all through the ages, as well as in the alternate history setting.

    Comment by Debbie Young on November 5, 2018 at 12:57 pm
  288. Thank you, Liza, Chris and Debbie!

    Happy reading to you all and let’s hope your other half takes to them too, Chris.

    Comment by Alison Morton on November 16, 2018 at 1:57 pm
  289. Jane,

    Thank you so much for featuring me and THE CHRISTMAS HEART on your blog. Your questions were challenging but very pertinent and observant.


    Comment by Helena Halme on November 26, 2018 at 11:08 am
  290. I love how books allow readers to virtually travel around the world; it’s so fun to get immersed in an entirely different setting. I’m reading Debbie Young’s Sophie Sayers series right now, and I’ve enjoyed these little tastes of Cotswold Village life. (Debbie’s FB page is actually where I read about this interview.) I look forward to checking out some of the books in this series…it’ll be fun to immerse myself in Scandinavia. Quite a change from my Austin, Texas, home! Thank you, Helena and Jane (and Debbie)!

    Comment by Shay Tressa DeSimone on November 30, 2018 at 12:29 am
  291. Thanks for the tweets and this terrific opportunity to introduce A Different Kind of Fire to new readers.

    Comment by Suanne Schafer on December 11, 2018 at 8:07 am
  292. Thanks for hosting me on your excellent blog, Jane. I really enjoyed answering your questions.

    Comment by Helen Matthews on December 12, 2018 at 5:12 pm
  293. I’ve just finished reading “A Funeral For An Owl”
    Oh, how I cried. Your writing is superb.
    I want to subscribe to your newsletter but I haven’t been able to, despite following instructions. How can I subscribe, please.

    Comment by Denise Cavanaugh on December 22, 2018 at 4:21 am
  294. Hi Denise. I’m so glad you enjoyed Owl. I have just checked and the subscription is still working, so I have added your email address and details. You should now receive an email asking you to confirm that you want to subscribe. Obviously if you’ve changed your mind, just say no. There is a possibility that the email will go to spam, so best to to check there! Hope that helps.

    Comment by Jane Davis on May 3, 2019 at 1:31 pm
  295. Sounds fantastic. Brilliant book club choice. Adding to my list

    Comment by Lexi on December 22, 2018 at 11:36 am
  296. Thanks so much for featuring The Swooping Magpie Jane!

    Comment by Liza Perrat on January 9, 2019 at 12:23 am
  297. Hm… sounds interesting, and different. Thanks!

    Comment by Davida Chazan on January 15, 2019 at 12:15 pm
  298. So interesting to hear about other authors’ experiences – particularly captivated by Kathleen’s comment about radio (funnily enough just this morning I had been thinking I’d like to try writing short stories that sound like radio programmes!) and by John’s reference to having to read Middlemarch at university. I had to read it not once but three times as part of my English Literature degree, and am only just bracing myself to read it again now after a gap of decades! I’m expecting to enjoy it a lot more now I’m a proper grown-up rather than a teenager!

    Thank you very much for including me in this post, Jane.

    Comment by Debbie Young on January 22, 2019 at 3:35 pm
  299. Congratulations!

    Comment by Margarita Morris on March 14, 2019 at 10:05 am
  300. Sounds like a great new series. History and mystery – two of my favourite topics. Congratulations on the award.

    Comment by Margarita Morris on March 27, 2019 at 7:32 pm
  301. Congratulations. Can’t wait to read

    Comment by Jackie on March 28, 2019 at 2:18 am
  302. Thanks Margarita! History and mystery are also my two favourites, who’d have guessed?

    Comment by Jane Steen on March 28, 2019 at 10:12 am
  303. Prairie Dog has a jaunty pace through a different time in America. What was it about those early years of our century that attracted you to the time period?

    Comment by Ron Seybokd on May 30, 2019 at 9:38 am
  304. I wanted to explore a time in the not-so distant past where a glitch in a mainframe application could wreak havoc in a state agency totally reliant on it. I felt there was comedic potential there as well as an opportunity to satirize a time and place not so far from now.

    Comment by Scott Semegran on June 1, 2019 at 12:56 pm
  305. Thanks for the opportunity, Jane!

    Comment by Emma Baird on July 10, 2019 at 3:09 pm
  306. I’ve subscribed (loved Owl), but never got the link for your free book. I am happy to buy it from iTunes, but the offer was made so I think you should know the link never materialized.

    Comment by Pam Flowers on November 14, 2019 at 4:40 pm
  307. Hi Pam, I have just tried to email you, but my email has been rejected by your server, so I suspect your security settings are very tight. If you are on FB, please send me a friend request and I will be able to message you a file.

    Comment by Jane Davis on November 14, 2019 at 5:05 pm
  308. Fabulous answers!

    And isn’t that Word on the Water a fun place to visit? We didn’t buy anything there when we went, but it was a lovely outing!

    Comment by Davida Chazan on February 8, 2020 at 11:23 am
  309. Thank you Jane.
    I must say up front that I know John and worked with him and ‘around and about’ him for many years.

    I have bought and read all his books.
    His writing style makes complex topics so accessible and understandable with that special talent to take you off to meet real people in real places through the pages in a book.

    I just wanted to tell everybody that, as I am so proud to know him and his work, and thank you for reminding me of his great talent.

    Sean Brennan

    Comment by Sean Brennan on April 18, 2020 at 5:56 pm


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