Time flies!

Well, I seem to be averaging two blogs a year at the moment! Not brilliant for a writer. In my defense, we have moved THREE times this year and I’m mindbogglingly shattered. Still, I am writing – plowing on regardless – but it’s slow process. I’m still working through book 1 of the murder mystery series and trying to find new ways to promote the trilogy. If anyone fancies reading and reviewing any of the Eshla books, please let me know. I’m happy to send a free mobi file, for use on kindles, or a pdf.

It hasn’t all been hard work though – got in a few good days at the beach (with best friend in picture below) and an amazing 12 hours on the flying Scotsman in vintage luxury (strictly for historical research you understand!).

I’m back! New job, new country, new hair colour, new writing project…

It’s been a long and fairly difficult, but also exciting, Summer. I haven’t blogged in ages but I’m back in front of a keyboard once again!

So first, the new family member…

IMG_9533 This is Daisy – I think the expression on her face says it all!

Then the short, dark hair (we won’t mention all the extra pounds, ahem)…

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The new country is Wales! I’ve wanted to live here for years – Land of my Mam and my lovey grandparents.

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But I had no idea how hard it would be to move 200 miles! With a four month hop into rented accomodation in Middleton, after selling my house, I felt as if my whole personality was packed into a cardboard box for most of the summer.

The new job is fantastic, and very exciting. I’m a virtual teacher now for a company called Academy21. They offer schooling for students who cannot access mainstream schools for whatever reason (like my son, with ME). It’s got me really excited to teach again.

Finally, I’m about to start writing my new novel, having researched the life out of the 1920’s! Inspired by my Gran’s antics in London as a housemaid, I am re-imagining her as a Lady’s maid turned sleuth! Much more on this in the following months. Meanwhile, meet my new protaganist (also my real life Gran!), Megan Jones…

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Meanwhile, if anyone out there would be interested in reviewing my children’s books – The Eshla Trilogy – please let me know. I’m happy to send Amazon vouchers to download them on Kindle, or send a pdf if you prefer! Thanks x

Powering a Planet!

One of the most enjoyable aspects of creating Eshla was deciding what was going to make the world tick! This type of creative writing is quite unique to fantasy/sci-fi writing and I wanted to take full advantage of it.

Firstly, it was important that Eshla was sustainable. I didn’t see it as a smoky industrial world, but I didn’t want something that felt medieval either. The challenge was; how can I create a technologically advanced civilisation without destroying its natural resources? The answer was to create a kingdom where the humans worked alongside the flora, utilising their natural resources in a way that didn’t destroy or over-use them. Here are some of the special plants that Eric came across:

Ignis – The leaves of the Ignis plant, when pulverised, create a tremendous heat which is carried around rooms by pipes under the floor and blasted out into the air via the trumpet. The crushing process releases pollen which is pushed up and out of the castle via the main duct. The wind catches it and carries it back to Jarmuthe where it takes seed and grows more Ignis.

Goleuni flowers – They give off a strong golden glow that can be used in the same way as an electric light

Hedfan – Little blue flowers that are always trying to fly away, unless cold air is blasted on them, in which case they close. These were used by the inventor Drake Owren to power flying ships

Buwun – Legend has it the Buwun tree was the first plant on Eshla. They grow mainly in Cedwigod and supply light and energy throughout the forest region, via luminous green tendrils which stretch out for miles.

Cufithum – A plant with pollen that has a direct impact on a person’s auditory senses, enabling them to hear whatever language is being spoken, translated into their own tongue.

Gats stones – Possibly the most important natural resource on Eshla, thanks to the Bradwar family. Gats is used to stop evil tyrants from controlling people’s minds with Bel-Arayba stones.  It is created when you smelt down Bel-Arayba and mix it with Meddul soil. This scrambles the mind-controlling Mennif rays and makes them completely useless.

Kussgull – A flower which grows in Jarmuthe. In powder form, it sends people to sleep almost instantly for at least eight hours. Great for sneak attacks!

A Busgot – A large see through leaf used in fishing. You hold it in the water and when you see a fish swim under the leaf, pull hard on the stem. The Busgot curls up and traps the fish which you can then pull out.

Gwella – A fantastic healing plant, which sends the patient to sleep while their wounds heal.

There are a lot more plants and natural resources on Eshla to discover – you’ll have to read the books to learn about them all!

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And time marches on…

It’s been an amazing year – in the last twelve months I’ve hit the ‘publish now’ button three times… and the series is complete!

The Eshla Adventures were supposed to be for my son – just four when I began the first book – but lack of confidence stopped me from finishing that book for twelve years! I don’t know what changed, but I’m, glad it did; writing Eric’s adventures in Eshla have seen me through a difficult year career wise and shown me what I really want to do with my life.

The next project is already well underway – a cosy (or cozy for US readers) murder mystery set in the 1920’s – but meantime, here are the links to the Eshla Adventures. If you would be willing to read them and write a review, please get in touch through the contact form and I will send a copy.

Many thanks x

Book 1 – The Lost Heirs

The adventures begin, as Eric Grayson – an ordinary fourteen year old schoolboy – discovers Eshla and begins a quest to help Prince Joel rescue his trapped brothers. Things get complicated when the villain who imprisoned them turns out to be closer to home than Eric expected, and the location of the missing key is lost in time!

Armed with friendship, bravery and a fluffy blue alien creature from Eshla, Eric rises to the challenge!

The Lost Heirs US – Link: http://amzn.com/B00NJX2DQY

The Lost Heirs UK – Link: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00NJX2DQY

Book 2 – The Second Stone

In the second installment, the quest continues with Eric, Corbin, Rose and Lydia trying to release the next prince from the Bel-Arayba Cave. The four friends have some tough decisions to make while looking for the second stone in 1842, and things are getting pretty tricky in their own time too, as Lowick Bradwar, masquerading as their head teacher, steps up his plans to get back to Eshla.

Meanwhile in Eshla itself, things are far from peaceful, as the malicious Galed continues her campaign against the Arwain family.

The Second Stone US – Link: http://amzn.com/B00TDR1YRE

The Second Stone UK – Link: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00TDR1YRE

Book 3 – The King’s Chamber

Time is running out for Eric and his friends to release the lost heirs of Eshla! With the final prince, and true King of Eshla, still trapped within his icy blue chamber, the lost stone must be found before Lowick Bradwar can return to wreak havoc.

Eric, Corbin, Rose and Lydia (and not forgetting Espog) find themselves mingling with Jane Austen’s polite society in 1795, whilst desperately hunting for the missing key. As they get caught up in the lives of people from the past, the four find themselves beginning to consider their own options, and how Eshla has changed their futures forever.

The King’s Chamber US – Link: http://amzn.com/B00XUO0XGE

The King’s Chamber UK – Link: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00XUO0XGE

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Cover Reveal!

The third and final cover in the Eshla series is here! Thanks to Renee from The Cover Counts for the whole set. The book should follow in a few weeks; it’s with my lovely editor!

The adventure reaches its conclusion with, The King’s Chamber’…Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000039_00072]

99 pence/cents bargain!

Taking the plunge with a kindle countdown deal on both books! ‘The Lost Heirs’ and ‘The Second Stone’ will be on sale for three days, Saturday 2nd May – Monday 4th May, for just 99 pence/cents.

Discover Eshla, and embark on a time travelling, steampunk, fantasy adventure to a different world.

You will become engrossed in the terrible tragedy of the Arwain family, fall in love with a blue fluffy purram, and follow Eric on his quest to release the lost heirs of Eshla.

Amazon reviewers have stated:

“The world of Eshla is a like an entertaining dream. You know the kind, you wake up only to be disappointed that it’s no longer there”

“So fascinated was I with the Eshla world beautifully created by the author, that I completely lost track of time and like the main protagonist, 14 year old Eric, found myself swept into a another world full of magical adventures.”

“The writing reminded me of Harry Potter, The Chronicles of Narnia and even Dr. Seuss.”

“The parallel world is an exotic and interesting steampunk invention, but the part that really grabbed me was the travel back to 1927.”

“Has all the wonderful elements of great fiction authors who have trod this path before…. JK Rowlings & Enid Blyton move aside!”

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It’s here!

The sequel to ‘The Lost Heirs’ is available to buy now!

How do you disguise a fluffy blue alien in Victorian England? How do you stop your evil headmaster from ruining your exam grades? How do you live down the humiliation of your whole year group thinking you have a teddy bear in your rucksack? Join Eric as he searches for the answers in the next Eshlan adventure.

The quest continues with Eric, Corbin, Rose and Lydia trying to release the next prince from the Bel-Arayba cave. The four friends have some tough decisions to make while looking for the second stone in 1842, and things are getting pretty tricky in their own time too as Lowick Bradwar, masquerading as their head teacher, steps up his plans to get back to Eshla.

Meanwhile in Eshla itself, things are far from peaceful, as the malicious Galed continues her campaign against the Arwain family.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00TDR1YRE

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‘The Second Stone’ is the second book in The Eshla Adventures series. Be sure to read the first: The Lost Heirs – a five star Amazon rated, middle grade/YA steampunk, fantasy adventure! FREE for today only…

http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00NJX2DQY

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What’s it all about?

‘The Lost Heirs’ – quite a grand title… but what’s it all about?

It is the first of a three part adventure, with something for everyone: time travel, a fantasy world, a touch of steampunk, mystery, friendship and battles.

Originally written as middle grade fiction, it evolved into an adventure loved by all ages and particularly appealing to the young adult market. The main character, Eric, is fourteen and attends a British boarding school with his best friends: Corbin, Lydia and Rose. Life is pretty average for Eric, until one day he finds himself called into the world Eshla and presented with a seemingly impossible request. Eric’s humour, and the loyalty of his friends are his greatest weapons – that and a furry blue creature from Eshla with an enormous appetite!

The original story was inspired by my son, but he went and grew up before I had the courage to finish it! Now, the second book is about to be released, and the final part of the trilogy is half way through its first draft – I found my courage and discovered that Eshla is my dream world. The perfect place to escape!

Eshla is made up of four distinct regions: Jarmuthe, Elgion, Caregon and Cedwigod, with the city of Hendref at the centre. It’s a self-indulgent creation made up of my favourite things! Hendref has a steampunk feel – mainly through inventions and flying machines. The 1920’s was an exciting era, and who doesn’t love treehouses? Cedwigod is a combination of those two things. Elgion is inspired by Venice – one of the most beautiful places on Earth. Finally, there’s a place in Derbyshire called Black Rock, which I used to climb all over in my teens – the inspiration behind Caregon. Whilst Jarmuthe is a combination of every beautiful English meadow you have ever picnicked in!

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A big part of the book involves time travel, as Eric and his friends have to go back to their boarding school in 1927, and try to blend in – you can imagine how different life was! I had a great time researching this period and learning what school life was like for the poor inmates of a twenties British boarding school!

The Lost Heirs is meant to be fun, fascinating and exciting. Key themes in the book are friendship and family, and another main one is the importance of just doing the right thing – not because of a reward or recognition, but just because you can. I hope you love this book and the characters as much as I do, and will stay with Eric to the end of his quest to release the lost heirs of Eshla.

http://amzn.com/B00NJX2DQY

http://amzn.com/B00TDR1YRE

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