Monthly Archives: May 2013

Friday Quote by Claire Rayner

>Wisdom for our times

The quote this week comes from Claire Rayner, taken from Wisdom for Our Times
‘This too will pass.
I was taught these words by my grandmother as a phrase that is to be used at all times in your life. When things are spectacularly dreadful; when things are absolutely appalling; when everything is superb and wonderful and marvellous and happy – Say these four words to yourself. They will give you a sense of perspective and help you also to make the most of what is good and be stoical about what is bad.’

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Photo of Corfe Castle, Saturday 25th May 2013

Corfe Castle 1

Corfe Castle in Dorset – an awe inspiring place to visit – the following excerpt is taken from the National Trust site – Visit for more information.

‘Thousand-year-old royal castle shaped by warfare
Enjoy one of Britain’s most iconic and evocative survivors of the English Civil War, partially demolished in 1646 by the Parliamentarians.
A favourite haunt for adults and children alike, you can’t fail to be captivated by these romantic castle ruins with breathtaking views across Purbeck.
Discover 1,000 years of our history as a royal palace and fortress. With fallen walls and secret places, there are tales of treachery and treason around every corner.
Spot the ‘murder holes’ and count the arrow loops. Feel history come to life and see the wildlife that has set up home here.’

The town itself is also worth a visit with its quaint shops and cafes serving cream teas. You can’t possibly leave without sampling a cream tea!

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Quote for Friday 24th May 2013

Wisdom for our times
Another lovely quotation from the above book:

If you have not often felt the joy of doing a kind act, you have neglected much, and most of all yourself. – A Neilen

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Guest Posts for New Authors

I'm Stronger Than You!
Are there any new authors out there who would like to guest on my blog? No horror or sexually explicit books will be considered. Please DM me via twitter @ShirleyFord11 if you are interested.


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Review of Goodreads for Authors by Michelle Campbell Scott

Goodreads for Authors: How To Use Goodreads To Promote Your BooksGoodreads for Authors: How To Use Goodreads To Promote Your Books by Michelle Campbell-Scott
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A great book for Authors. I have found it very helpful. Having read it through once, I now need to go back and chapter by chapter try and put everything into practice. I don’t know whether it was just my Kindle, but I found it difficult to see the examples given, they were too small and changing the font size made no difference.

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Guest Blog by Alan Lee Ford

Three Books
Thank you, Shirley for giving me some space on your excellent Blog.

Writing is a casual hobby for me and not something I have to do every day, but to see my three books to date available for the Kindle from Amazon has given me a real sense of achievement. My first release was a ‘lightweight’ thriller called The Hickory Factor. A friend and inspirational writer, Sallyann Sheridan, suggested I should have a go at writing a novel.
“But what could I write about?” I asked.
Her simple and logical reply was, “Write what you know.”
Well, almost everything I know involves the city of Birmingham and the fitted kitchen industry – with a little bit of building industry thrown in.
Birmingham is my home city although I was actually born in Smethwick. If I haven’t been living within the city boundary, I have been working there in one way or another most of my life and almost all of my long-time friends still live there.
I have been involved in the kitchen industry since the late 60s. My first six years of working life were spent as an apprentice plumber. Following redundancy in 1968 I used my experience and knowledge to further my career by joining a city centre Builders’ Merchants. During that time I began designing kitchens using the original Hygena System 70 and Wrighton furniture. I went on to manage a showroom in Solihull, open my own showroom in Moseley and then venture into manufacturing and product design. My latter years have been in a training role and now I am the KBSA designated Kitchens and Bathrooms Expert for the Grand Designs Live show at Birmingham’s NEC and London’s Excel centre twice a year.
So naturally The Hickory Factor is all about a Birmingham kitchen designer who finds himself and his son in mortal danger brought about by a family seeking revenge for something he did in his past. I have a sequel partly penned, but no release date as yet.
My biggest project at present is my autobiography. I haven’t led a particularly remarkable life, but there have been some interesting periods. I carry some baggage, like all of us, but have been extremely lucky to have reached my 66th birthday. The story is told in three parts: It’s All About My Parents’ Son – Part One 1947-1962 is available now for the Kindle. Part Two 1962-1980 will be available in 2014 and Part Three 1980 to 2010 some time in 2015. In part one there is some social history, some social comments, quite a lot about my parents and grandparents and the variety of influences on my life. If you know Birmingham, maybe attended Birchfield Road Boys School in Perry Barr, then there will be something, in fact quite a lot, which should interest you.
My third book is a collection of short stories entitled The Day Trip, Other Short Stories and Poems. There is something for everyone, but all adult stories, not for children.
You can follow me on Twitter @HickoryFactor or download my Kindle books from Amazon: Click here to go to my author’s page

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Review of CIA Fall Guy by Phyllis Zimbler Miller

CIA Fall GuyCIA Fall Guy by Phyllis Zimbler Miller
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I was disappointed! Having read and enjoyed two other books by the same author, I was expecting to get the same satisfaction from this one. Stories about the CIA and the FBI always interest me and I love getting involved with all the usual twists and turns, but this book fell short of my expectations. There was quite a complicated plot-line and I found it difficult to remember who was on whose side. There were also quite a few grammatical errors.

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Saturday Photo – Jacob’s Ladder

Jacob's Ladder

This is Jacob’s Ladder, which can be found to the West of Sidmouth beach in Devon. It isn’t really as precarious as it looks! At the top of the ladder is picturesque secluded Connaught Gardens complete with the Clock Tower Cafe- the cakes need to be seen to be believed! From the bottom of the ladder, you can take a cliff-side walk, which leads to the promenade and the town centre.

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The Friday Quote for 17th May 2013

Wisdom for our times

Today’s Friday Quote has been taken from a book called ‘Wisdom for Our Times’ – A Helen Exley Giftbook.

‘There is so much in the world for us all if we only have the eyes to see it, and the heart to love it, and the hand to gather it to ourselves’ – Lucy Maud Montgomery (1874-1942

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Guest Blog this week – Children’s Author, Don Jones


I’m Don Jones and I have been writing for many years. In 2002 I was a reading helper at a village school and I started to write short stories for my class. These were well-liked and I was asked to write more, some of which were commissioned by the Head teacher.
In 2005 I moved to Devon and joined a writers group and was encouraged to have some of my stories published. The result was Bookworms and other Stories a beautifully illustrated collection of humorous short stories aimed at the six to tens, but which has proved to be equally popular with grown ups, either to read to children or simply for their own enjoyment.
Stories include When the Tooth Fairy Went on Strike, which introduced such characters as the Nappy Fairy and the Junk Food Fairy; Ring, Ring, which is a day in the life of Nursery Rhyme Police Station, where problems include lost sheep, and Rock-a-by Baby falling out of a tree; and Stinky-Tinkie Winkie where poor little Freddie has to change his baby sister’s nappy.
Bookworms and other Stories is available on line through Amazon, WH Smith, Waterstones and Blackwells at the modest price of £5.99 or less.

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