New Series – Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Book Reading and Interview


Sally's Cafe and Bookstore At the beginning of the year I said that I was going to focus the author promotions in 2017 around Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore.. which you will note has had a bit of a refurb.. this is my new library that we created in a previously closed up corridor on the ground floor of the house.. We have book cases in various places around our home but these shelves hold my most precious possessions.. such as my entire collection of Wilbur Smith that I have accumulated since the age of eleven, and many of my non-fiction buys over the years. They also hold some of the first books that I read such as Black Beauty and Little Women as well as my favourite authors from the last 50 years.

You will just have to imagine that they are in my virtual Cafe and Bookstore…along with all the wonderful 155  authors who have been added to the shelves in the last year.

Author Book Reading and Interview.

Now that I have a few of my own projects done and dusted… I can focus on the next promotion for the bookstore.

If this was a real cafe and bookstore I would set up regular book readings and interviews with the authors on the shelves.. But they is no reason why we cannot do that here.. The only thing missing of course is the customers who would be listening to the reading and asking questions of the author.

But I have that covered.

Here is how it works…

The author will answer four of my questions that I send to them out of twenty… They will also select a short extract from their book to share in the post. They will then also choose their favourite review for the book that we can add.

I will then do the introduction, the book blurb, about the author and the book links.

Then I will ask those who read the interview to add their questions to the comments section of the post for the author to answer.

This way we do manage to get some interaction, a wide range of questions and a chance to meet the author is a slightly different way.

First and foremost — authors who would like to be interviewed have to be already on the shelves of the bookstore (don’t worry if you are not.. there is a way to get there).

Also the authors must be willing and able to be around on the day or next day of the interview (Saturday and Sunday) to answer the questions.

I already have several authors lined up and if you are interested in joining the list then please contact me on

For those of you who are not already in the bookstore.


If you are not on the shelves then that is easy to fix.. I will do an individual promotion for you first and the details are in this post.

Look forward to hearing from you… and if you are a blogger I have a new promotion that will be posted tomorrow. Thanks Sally


Let’s Walk A Marathon! – Internal Fitness Programme – Day Two – Getting enough oxygen to walk.

Getting enough oxygen to power you through the 26 miles of your marathon.

I have posted this before as part of the anti-aging programme but it is vital before beginning any exercise programme that you learn to breathe correctly. Not just because you will need the oxygen to enable you to exericise, but because breathing efficiently has a whole raft of health benefits.

We can live for around six weeks without food, six days without fluids but any longer than six minutes without oxygen and we are gone for good. It is estimated that 70% of us do not breathe correctly. Good singers are probably the best role models for breathing as are athletes and free divers. Taking regular exercise that forces you into breathing more intensively will also bring oxygen into the system but there are ways to maximise the benefits of that.

What sort of benefits will people begin to see in the short term?

Breathing correctly and taking in the right amount of Oxygen for our body can help you relax and reduce stress. It will improve your skin tone, reduce stress and improve your sex life. You will sleep better and in some cases lose weight.

More importantly many functions of the body, including the essential elimination of waste and toxins is dependent on our breathing. 70% of our elimination is through breathing, yet most people only use 20% of their lung capacity. This causes a build-up of toxins which leads to disease and chronic illnesses associated with old age.  Very importantly, most bacteria and viruses do not thrive in an oxygen rich environment.

Our lungs are a tool that we can learn to use effectively at no cost and without taking in suppressive drugs that can cause us long term damage. A few minutes each day spent in a deep breathing exercise and learning to breathe correctly using the lungs at full capacity, will have lasting benefits.

How can it help to lose weight?

As far as losing weight is concerned, achieving an aerobic state means getting enough oxygen into the bloodstream to convert fuel to burn fat. This does not necessarily mean racing around breathing as hard as you can manage. What it does mean is achieving optimum breathing in gentle but effective exercises.

Reducing Stress

Breathing correctly can also release endorphins into the brain. Anything from panic attacks to migraine headaches can be improved by increasing oxygen into the system.

It may take some practice but after a few days you will be amazed at the sort of power you can achieve working with your body’s own capabilities.

As we get older we find we become more and more breathless as we undertake activity but this need not be inevitable and in this post I am going to provide you with the tools you need to improve this absolutely vital function. These very simple exercises are a definite weapon against ill health and also will enable you to walk your marathon more comfortably.

What are some of the benefits to the whole body by breathing correctly?


  • Gives you more energy.
  • Reduces mental and physical fatigue.
  • Reduces chest pains caused by tight muscles, the tension causing anxiety of “heart attack potential” is reduced.
  • Aids in relief of many long-term respiratory difficulties such as asthma and bronchitis.
  • Reduces need for artificial stimulants and many harmful prescription drugs.
  • Helps eliminate waste from the body


  • Improves blood circulation and relieves congestion.
  • Increases supply of oxygen and nutrients to cells throughout the body. Major organs such as brain and eyes need plenty of oxygen.
  • Eases the strain on the heart by increasing oxygen to the heart.
  • Helps increase the supply of blood and nutrients to muscle blood and bones.


  • Better breathing can calm or stimulate the nervous system, balance or unbalance brain hemispheres, depending on the technique.


  • Diaphragmatic action acts as a pump to massage the internal organs, aiding their function.


  • Helps push the movement of lymph throughout the body, which helps eliminate toxic wastes and strengthen the immune system.


  • Shallow breathing puts stress on other organs of elimination.
  • Better breathing can reduce oedema, (swelling of the body) by eliminating fluids thorough the breath.


  • CO2 waste is eliminated more directly through breath.
  • Wrinkles can be lessened due to improved circulation and blood oxygen flow.
  • Radiant skin is a sign of good oxygenation


  • Relaxes muscle spasm and relieves tension.
  • Releases and reduces muscular tension that eventually may cause structural problems.
  • Helps increase flexibility and strength of joints; when you breathe easier you move easier.
  • Facilitates stretching of connective tissue, which prevents formation of adhesions and reduces the danger of fibrosis.
  • Can partially compensate for lack of exercise and inactivity due to habit, illness or injury.



Our breath is much more than just an intake of oxygen. It is our connection to life itself as without air we would die. There are 4 parts to every breath,

The inhale, a moment’s pause, the exhale and another natural moment’s pause before the next inhale. Exhale usually longer than the inhale.

Morning exercise

Stand with arms loose by your side, the whole body relaxed and still. The posture straight but not held taut. The shoulders rolling back and down to open the chest and release neck/shoulder tension.

As you inhale slowly lift the arms out and up above your head with palms parallel. As you exhale, release the arms back down gently to your sides.

So not only do you receive a gentle stretch to wake you up, but also there is more space in the body to take a deeper inhalation. It is very simple but very effective. The most important thing is to unite the length of the inhale with the rise of the arms so that when the arms reach the furthest point above the head you have completed the inhale; there is a tiny pause, then the exhale down, slowly lowering the arms. When they reach your side the exhale is finished.

Generally the exhale is longer than the inhale as you are ridding the body of impurities with it. Then a little pause. The movements follow the breath, like surfing a wave. Don’t rush the moves or you will get tense, better to do them slowly and relaxed with total concentration, better still outside (on a beach) or in front of an open window to receive all that free energy!

Practice for several minutes or at least 12 times. Better to do 12 focused breaths then 25 rushed ones. Quality versus quantity.

If you suffer with high blood pressure and or restrictive shoulder/ arm movements, better to take the arms up only as far as the shoulder height.

Evening exercise –

Lie down on your back on the floor. If you suffer with lower back pain, better to have your knees resting up over on sofa or chair. If your head doesn’t relax onto the ground easily, use a cushion.

Start with hands on lower belly, fingers pointing down to groin. Notice how you are breathing. The breath reflects our mental, physical and emotional state.

After several minutes consciously encourage the beginning of the breath into the belly to feel the hands rise with the inhale and relax down with the exhale. So you are using the abdomen to breath. This in good health should happen spontaneously, but all too often with stress many people breath only using the upper chest.

Do this for several minutes, then place the arms out in a cross, shoulder height with palms up. Now there is more room to take the breath up into the middle lungs, feel the movement of the ribcage outwards and upwards. But you still begin each breath down deep in the belly. Do this for several minutes, relaxing the body on the exhale.

Last of all, slide the arms higher up above your head relaxing on the floor, if you cannot do this due to tension or injury, leave them where they were in a cross. The purpose of this move is to now bring more space and awareness to the upper chest towards the base of the throat. There is little movement here compared to the ribs, but you can feel the rising of the chest and clavicular bones to the throat and chin at the peak of the inhale, just before you exhale.

So you now have 3 places to breathe into, the abdomen, the ribs and the upper chest to make one long, deep, satisfying breath. Feel each of the 3 places as the breath flows up the trunk as one long wave. As you exhale the wave retreats back down to the lower abdomen. Remember to feel the slight pause between inhales and exhales, but don’t hold your breath.

Try and practise this for at least 5 minutes, but 10 is better. It also helps improve your posture with the back flat and the arms out.

Complete the morning exercises before you walk or exercise and again last thing at night to help you sleep better.

The next Marathon post will be on Thursday and I will be talking about your nutritional programme for the next 26 miles.

Please feel free to share with anyone who you feel might be interested in joining us in our marathon. Thanks Sally

Writing Links 4/24/17

Traci Kenworth with one of her incredible list of blog posts. They take a huge amount of work to head over and find some new blogs to follow and a whole bunch of great posts to read. #recommended..

Where Genres Collide


Writing Links…4/24/17

Traci Kenworth


  1. Fanfiction helped her get her start. I dabbled in this as well when I was eighteen-nineteen.


  1. Best articles last week and what’s coming up next.
  2. When an idea won’t let go.
  3. One writer’s choice to go traditional.

Romance/Women’s Fiction:

  1. Spring in OH. I look forward to it as well.
  2. Life is about risk.


  1. The Big Yes.
  2. Use your blog to bring readers. Blog regularly. It doesn’t have to be every day. Once a week is fine.
  3. A fresh way to tell the story.
  4. An editor’s many roles.
  5. What’s in a contract.


  1. The architectural design of many well-known places in Great Britain. The Elizabeth tower or Big Ben. Palace of Westminster. Scarisbrick Hall.



  1. Reading your book aloud can be good for sales.

Short Stories/Anthologies/Novella/Comics:

  1. A new…

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A giveaway – how I’ll share my love

Some of you have been following Eamon Wood’s travels in his wheelchair across the USA.. far from his own home in New Zealand. Eamon is offering some of his equipment completely free to someone who wants to start their own adventure.. Head over and find out more.. There may be someone you know who is planning to travel to find their own path who could use a tent,sleeping bag and a backpack.. #recommended

A Backpack , A Chair and A Beard

“Happiness is not so much in having as sharing, we make a living by what we get but we make a life by what we give”

I literally want to give you the backpack off my back, and all the gear with it…My sleeping bag, and tent. Someone out there needs change or mabe they have already started. Someone out there wants experience and may need a small hand to start it. Love reflects love and here is how I’m loving you. There more I travel the more I realise I don’t need much, So I want to give you my gear and not only lighten my load but share it with love. All pretty new, it doesn’t come with a receipt but it comes with a story, love and a small change.

A macpac 50 litre backpack

A macpac 500 escapade sleeping bag

A companion pro-hiker tent

Share this…

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Smorgasbord Blogger Daily – Kevin Morris, Curry Lives, D.G.Kaye, Paul Andruss and Thom Hickey


Smorgasbord Blogger DailyPoet Kevin Morris has got a radio interview coming up on Vancouver Co-op radio in the first week of May.. something to put in your diary.  If you get the opportunity to be interviewed on air then do take it.. brilliant book promotion.

I am pleased to announce that I shall be appearing on Vancouver Co-op Radio (, on Thursday 4 May, to talk about my soon to be released collection of poetry, “My Old Clock I Wind and Other Poems”.

My interview will also include me reading a selection of my poetry. To listen please tune in at 1:10 pm Vancouver time (9:10 pm UK time).

For my previous interview on Vancouver Co-op Radio’s The World Poetry Reading Series, please visit

To follow Kevin and his blog please head over:

Smorgasbord Blogger Daily

David makes curries from scratch and I was weaned on them as I was a toddler in Sri Lanka.  We have had Sunday curry lunches as a tradition wherever we have lived including in Texas where Indian restaurants were few and far between in the 1980s. We hope to revive the tradition here as it turns our our neighbours are all keen curry fans. However, today it is the turn of an expert to give us the recipe for one of our favourites Lamb Rogon Josh.. Always great to compare recipes and to learn new twists that enhance the dish.  Here is Deepa from Curry Lives.

Rogan Josh is a popular Kashmiri dish; it is a beautiful dish with wholesome blend of exotic spices.

It gets its signature color from those less spicy red Kashmiri chillies and crispy fried onions. Many recipes add tomatoes in this dish but better not, it may bring that color to the dish but it will ruin the authenticity of the dish.

Get the recipe for the Rogan Josh:

Talking about hot and spicy!!! Debby Gies put me on the grill for a light roasting on Friday in one of her New Book promotions.. I love nothing better than talking about myself.. My thanks to Debby of course for the chance to talk about What’s in a Name..As always she was very generous with her introduction.. Here is an excerpt from the post.

Welcome Sal. I’m so happy to have you over today and share more of yourself and your writing with us all. So let’s dive in!

Can you share with us where your story ideas came from for this book?

I was fascinated with the origins of my name when I was young, and I asked my mother why she had called me Sally Georgina. Apparently she just liked the name Sally, but Georgina was after her mother. My grandmother was a very petite woman with small hands and feet and very ladylike. As I grew, and grew to nearly six feet tall, with very large feet and hands I felt increasingly embarrassed by my middle name. 

Read the rest of the interview:

Thomas the Rhymer

Regulars will have been enjoying the posts by Paul Andruss every week for the last six months.. A mixture of treasures from his archives and original posts written specifically for Smorgasbord. Here is a post on his own blog about the enigmatic, talented but tragic Joe Orton whose plays shocked and also delighted audiences in the theatre and on the big screen during the 1960s.

When Joe Orton’s future agent, Peggy Ramsay, said she found his first play derivative, Joe blithely replied: “I’ll try ’n write you a better one, dear.”

To which she answered: “That would be gorgeous!”

Peggy was referring to his one act drama called ‘Ruffian on the Stair’ aired by BBC Radio on 31 August 1964.

Joe had only started writing seriously a year or so before, after his release from prison. He served a sentence for defacing library books. Ornamenting the dust-jackets with preposterous collages, which Islington Local History Centre now treasure as works of art.

Read this fascinating expose of the life and work of Joe Orton:

Time to end with some music. Thom Hickey of The Immortal Jukebox celebrates the life of Jesse Winchester a singer, songwriter that I admit I had not heard of.. but when you read this posts including a tribute from Bob Dylan and you listen to the videos you will be entranced as I was.

Sometimes I’m asked because of my eclectic tastes if there is one under appreciated, lesser known artist who deserves to be much better known. I always answer – Jesse Winchester.
To explain why and to pay tribute to his wonderful songs three years after his death I am Reblogging my Post on him from 2014.

An investment in Jesse Winchester records will pay you dividends for your lifetime.

Jesse Winchester died at the age of 69 in April 2014.

I first heard him in the mid 1970s on Charlie Gillett’s rightly legendary radio show, ‘Honky Tonk’ which became my open university course on 20th century popular music.

and this from later in the post.

“Bob Dylan, surely the dean of Songwriting, said that you could not talk about the best songwriters in the world without including Jesse and he paid him the compliment (granted to few of his contemporaries) of playing one of his songs on his wonderful radio show, ‘Theme Time Radio Hour’.”

Enjoy the rest of the post and the music from Jesse Winchester:

I hope that you have enjoyed today’s selection of posts I have enjoyed.. not enough time I am afraid to read all those I follow every day.. but what I do manage I love.

Guest author – Paul Andruss: The Story of Thomas the Rhymer

Paul Andruss is the guest post of Sue Vincent today and if you have wondered about the origins of his book Thomas the Rhymer,Paul explains all in this post. A fascinating story of a time when believing in other worldly creatures was perfectly normal. We have become cynical…but I still believe. #recommended

Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

I was recently lucky enough to be interviewed by Sally Cronin.

At the end of the interview, my good friend Sue asked a thought provoking question: what drew me to the ideas behind Thomas the Rhymer?

To be honest Sue’s incisive question left me realising I have forgotten a lot about why I wrote the book in the first place. I was long overdue a trip down memory lane.

Sue certainly deserved a much better answer than I provided at the time. And what better place to post it!

The Legend of Thomas the Rhymer

Thomas the Rhymer is a 17th century Scottish ballad collected by folklorist Francis Child in 1883 as part of his exhaustive compendium of English and Scottish Ballads. The ballad comes from a first person account written in the 1400s. It is allegedly by Scotland’s greatest prophet; Thomas of Erceldoune, also known as True Thomas…

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Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Author Update – Mary C. Blowers, Bette A. Stevens and P.H. Solomon

Welcome to this week’s first cafe and bookstore update. And the first author with some news is Mary C. Blowers in collaboration with Leah Cutter, Blaze Ward, Douglas Smith and Prasenjeet Kumar with a box set for authors. Ultimate Guides to Indie Publishing – Make yourself a best seller. On pre-order for April 26th.

Source: Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Author Update – Mary C. Blowers, Bette A. Stevens and P.H. Solomon

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Author Update – Mary C. Blowers, Bette A. Stevens and P.H. Solomon

Welcome to this week’s first cafe and bookstore update. And the first author with some news is Mary C. Blowers in collaboration with Leah Cutter, Blaze Ward, Douglas Smith and Prasenjeet Kumar with a box set for authors. Ultimate Guides to Indie Publishing – Make yourself a best seller. On pre-order for April 26th.

About the Ultimate guides To Indie Publishing Box Set

I remember sending photocopies of my manuscript out to children’s book publishers, only to be met by rejection.

Imagine my delight when I heard I could publish on my own very inexpensively.

Authors no longer have to wait for acceptance by the big Five–Hachette, HarperCollins, MacMillan, Penguin Random House and Simon Schuster–or find an agent. Just write and upload. You’ll need a cover and some other features, but it’s really possible to do it yourself.

My children’s book? It’s now The Prophecy of Enchantria, available on Amazon along with 18 others.

Read how I did it, and how the others in this box set did it. We offer our recommendations for many facets of the writing career. Make 2017 the year you get published.

Table of Contents
1. “Create Your Book Start to Finish” by Mary C. Blowers
2. “Business for Breakfast, Volume 1” by Leah Cutter
3. “Business for Breakfast, Volume 3” by Blaze Ward
4. “Playing the Short Game” by Douglas Smith
5. “How to be an Author Entrepreneur Without Spending a Dime” by Prasenjeet Kumar
6. “How to Market Your Books Without Spending a Dime” by Prasenjeet Kumar

Buy the book at the pre-order price of $5.75 for delivery on April 26th:

About Hoarder’s Nightmare released on April 17th.

Beware of your stuff taking on a life of its own.

Do you think you might be a hoarder? Read about Mina, who buys something from a thrift store and has major trouble with it. Something gets lost in the clutter and could involve legal trouble! Read as she travels to distant places and finds treasures beyond her wildest dreams. But do they last?

A small selection of other books by Mary C. Blowers

Read the reviews and buy the books:

Connect to Mary via her blog:

Our next author, Bette A. Stevens is offering her book Amazing Matilda at 99c in celebration of Earth Day 2017. The monarch butterfly and milkweed (the caterpillar’s food source) are endangered.

About Amazing Matilda

Inspire the Kids with an Award-winning (Excellence in Children’s Literature) Monarch Butterfly Tale.

In this age of instant gratification, there’s an award-winning children’s picture book out that teaches kids that patience and hard work really do pay off.

‘AMAZING MATILDA: A Monarch’s Tale’ is a timely tale that follows MATILDA, a tiny monarch caterpillar, from the time she hatches from her egg on a giant milkweed leaf until she realizes her dream to fly. The story provides challenges and adventure at every turn.

Grandparents, parents and teachers will find that AMAZING MATILDA is a book that kids will want to read themselves and hear read to them again and again.

The latest reviews  for Amazing Matilda

on April 20, 2017

I love nature and animals. All animals. I love butterflies. When I saw Amazing Matilda, I had to buy and read it. Little Matilda is desperate to fly, but doesn’t know how. This is a wonderful and cute story about learning patience. It’s an encouraging book for children and adults alike. The story takes you from Matilda as a small caterpillar to her metamorphosis as a beautiful Monarch butterfly. A quick read, you’ll be done with it in no time at all.
I highly recommend this book to lovers of nature, animals and children of all ages from two to 100. It is beautifully yet simply illustrated.

I just read this little cutie… it is a great learning tool, especially for the extremely young… the sentence structure in some places could be shortened (for the extremely young), but otherwise it will help to teach kids to keep trying no matter what, that anything is possible… I will definitely be suggesting this to my cuz, to read to her new baby… thanks for putting this out in the world…

Read all the reviews and buy the book at 99c:

Also by Bette A. Stevens

Read the reviews and buy the books:

Connect to Bette via her Website/blog:

The next update is for fantasy author P.H. Soloman who continues to receive excellent reviews for The Bow of Destiny (The Bow of Hart Saga Book 1) published in September 2015.

About The Bow of Destiny

Fantasia Reviews 2016 Book of the Year, “in the vein of R. A. Salvatore and Piers Anthony.”

Haunted by his past. Hunted in the present. Uncertain what is real.

Athson has seen things that aren’t there and suffered fits since being tragically orphaned as a child at the hands of trolls and Corgren the wizard. When a strange will mentioning a mysterious bow comes into his possession, he’s not sure it’s real. But the trolls that soon pursue him are all too real and dangerous. And what’s worse, these raiders serve Corgren and his master, the hidden dragon, Magdronu, who are responsible for the destruction of his childhood home. Athson is drawn into a quest for the concealed Bow of Hart by the mystic Withling, Hastra, but he isn’t always sure what’s real and who his enemies are. With Corgren and Magdronu involved, Athson must face not only frequent danger but his grasp on reality and the reasons behind his tragic past.

One of the latest reviews for The Bow of Destiny

I’ve never written a fantasy story, but I love to read the genre. There’s something about being transported to a different realm where various creatures live in unfamiliar habitats, food and currency are foreign to me, and (almost always) there’s an epic quest.

P. H. Solomon’s THE BOW OF DESTINY fulfills everything I look for in a fantasy and more.

This is the story of Athson, son of Ath, who was raised by elves when his parents were violently killed by trolls and an evil wizard. That sounds like a story in and of itself, but it’s only the backstory to this wonderful tale.

Athson is such a relatable character—which is saying something, because in the beginning of the novel, it’s not even clear that he’s sane. He’s having visions of dead people and dogs, and he needs medicine to keep his fits under control. But it’s this vulnerability—and the unreliability of his narration—that makes him such a compelling character. When he is given “the inheritance” and told to seek the bow destined for him, you can really feel his confusion and distress. Masterfully done.

Athson has two journeys in one—his personal journey regarding the bow and his group’s journey to find the Withing’s stolen book. What’s a Withing? Well, I don’t want to give too much away, but Hastra is powerful and revered and Athson doesn’t trust her. There are secrets kept on both sides, secrets that could have disastrous implications.

Of all the characters we meet on his journey, I’m particularly fond of the giant Ralda. He is brave, kind, fearless, and tortured by tragedy in his past. All of the characters were well-developed and easy to relate to, but I could read volumes of Ralda’s story.

If the novel wasn’t exciting enough, the epilogue blew me away. It was totally unexpected, and I can’t wait to read the next installment.

Solomon hit the ground running with the first novel in the series. I highly recommend it.

Read some of the 50 reviews for The Bow of Destiny and buy:

Also by P.H. Solomon

Read all the reviews and buy the books:

Connect to P.H. Solomon via his Website:

Thank you for dropping in and if you are in the bookstore and have changed a book cover, got a great review, have an offer or have released a new book.. just let me know I do try to check every author myself over a period of two or three weeks but I will miss updates.. Any news goes in on of these posts that go out Mondays and Fridays… it is free so you have nothing to lose but the time it takes you to send me an email.