Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Author Spotlight – Life Changing Moments

Welcome to the new series of the Cafe and Bookstore Author spotlight which begins in September.

In this new series I am inviting authors in the Cafe to share what they consider to be a defining moment in their lives that resulted in a major positive change.

Here are a few examples, and I am sure you will have plenty to add:

  • Meeting a stranger with surprising consequences
  • Accepting an invitation that took you out of your comfort zone
  • Being fired from a job or resigning without another job lined up that turned out to be an opportunity.
  • Taking a wrong turn on a journey and discovering something about yourself.
  • Being in the wrong place at the right time when an opportunity presented itself.
  • Overcoming a challenging situation such as a failed relationship and finding happiness.
  • Taking part in a charity challenge such as a parachute jump and how it conquered a fear.
  • Accidentally walking through the wrong door and finding an uplifting experience
  • Moving to a new country and feeling immediately at home.

You can choose to stick to the facts or can write a fiction story that has ‘A Life Changing Moment’ as its theme.

Here is an example of how your post will look.

Here is something I wrote about how a number of factors came into play following my disastrous first marriage. It was a decision that took me hundreds of miles away from home, to meet someone who would change my views on love and romance, and subsequently my life all in the space of six weeks.

The Rocky Road to True Romance

Have you ever wondered why the classic fairy stories that involve a beautiful farmer’s daughter, scullery maid or even a princess, who are swept off their feet by a handsome and rich stranger on a white horse; end with the words ‘And they lived happily ever after’.

Because most were written by men at a time when a woman was a chattel who cooked, cleaned and bore children. The men however went about their business as usual; of course living happily ever after.

That may sound a bit cynical, but I can remember as a child being fed the propaganda. Most commonly via bedtime stories and the ‘Happy Ever After’ films that we were allowed to watch in our teen years. Disney had the whole thing down to a fine art.

By the time I was sixteen, I was convinced that at some point, a rich and handsome stranger was going to gallop into my life and sweep me off into a fairy tale future in a palace with  a new generation of princes and princesses, and a life of love and contentment.

By the time I was 19 years old I had kissed a few frogs, and thought that Prince Charming had ridden in a few times, but discovered that in reality they just as quickly rode off into the sunset. Still that is all part of growing up, but because of the indoctrination of childhood, I mistook one particular prince for the real thing.

Oh the joy in the royal family that the princess had been chosen by a prince of such standing in the neighbouring country. A large and lavish wedding was orchestrated by the two queens with the kings simply opening the doors to their treasure houses. The invitation lists in both palaces grew by the hour as dignitaries were invited from far and wide. Many of whom the princess and prince had never met. The reception was a masterpiece of just the right location and the food suitably divine. A vaulted arch of the prince’s entourage lined the drive from the grand cathedral; carriages awaited to take the jubilant bridal party to the festivities.

A few glasses of champagne, elegant speeches and a thrown bouquet that was caught by the next lucky bride, and the prince swept the princess off on his charger into the sunset to the awaiting bridal chamber.

They call it a day to remember, and certainly as I thought about the celebrations in the weeks, months and years that followed, I knew it would be etched on my mind forever. Such an auspicious beginning, and at first it seemed that the dream would continue. However, pretty quickly, what I had believed to be the epitome of true romance had vanished. As tragedy, a controlling environment and betrayal came to light, I found myself trapped by the web that had been spun around me; I felt it would be impossible to break free without angering so many.

But one morning I woke up to find the spell had lost its power, and despite the threat of banishment to a far off land where my shame would not be witnessed by family and friends; I packed up a small bundle of clothes and hit the road. I spent the next three years concealing my whereabouts and keeping well away from anyone who knew me. I ended up in the depths of the Welsh mountains where I worked hard to make my own way, and drifted in and out of a few half-hearted relationships. I was not going to be caught up in the fairy tale again. I was very happy to be alone and to spend my life making my own decisions and being loved by cats.

Then, would you believe it… a prince arrived in disguise. Quiet and bespectacled and riding an ancient nag that had seen better days. There were no grand or extravagant gestures, just a gentle wearing down of my defences. But there was magic involved, of that I am certain. I felt myself being drawn in despite the walls I had built around me. A different kind of spell was being woven that enchanted me, and after only one dinner date, I found myself saying yes to spending a lifetime together with this softly spoken handsome suitor..

The Queen and King back at the castle were I was born were aghast on hearing that I was betrothed again. And to a foreign prince from afar with as yet unknown credentials, who had the audacity to propose on our first date; the Queen announced that she was about to faint.

My prince was not about to let the grass grow under his steed however and he approached the King and asked for his daughter’s hand. With the memory of the extravagance of the previous match, the king offered him £5 and a step ladder in the hopes there would be an elopement.

Which there was, and within six weeks, very quietly and without undue ceremony, we were married. This time just both sets of Kings and Queens and one lady in waiting attended! Drenching rain blessed the union in a small registry office in Wales.

After a festive lunch we set off on the prince’s ancient steed to a rather dark castle in the mountains where the bridal suite, decked in red flock wallpaper, vibrated to the noise emanating from the public bar beneath.

Then it was off to the damp and musty rooms that we managed to find whilst we worked and built up enough savings to buy our first modest home. This was followed by 40 years of travelling the world, living in wonderful countries and working together, with the promise we hope of many more years to come. Despite what had gone before; compelling me to seek sanctuary in that isolated spot in the mountains, it was clearly meant to be, and without doubt led to a life changing moment.

©Sally Cronin 2020

So are you up for the challenge?

If so details of how you can participate are at the bottom of the post.

About Sally Cronin

profile twitter, FB and LinkedIn and Bookbub size.

I have enjoyed a nomadic existence living in eight countries including Sri Lanka, Malta, South Africa, USA and Spain, before settling back here in Ireland. My work, and a desire to see some of the most beautiful parts of the world in the last forty years, has taken me to many more incredible destinations around Europe and Canada, and across the oceans to New Zealand and Hawaii. All those experiences and the people that I have met, provide a rich source of inspiration for my stories.

After a career in customer facing roles in the hospitality, retail, advertising and telecommunications industry, I wrote and published my first book in 1999 called Size Matters, about my weight loss journey, losing 150lbs in 18 months. This was followed by 11 further fiction and non-fiction books, including a number of short story collections.

My first book release resulted in a radio interview in Spain that led to four years as a nutritional consultant for an English language station, and this was followed by four years with my own health show and Sunday morning show on local radio station in the UK and then as station director, newsreader and presenter for an online television station.

As a writer I know how important it is to have help in marketing books and from 2002 I have been working with authors on their book launches and publicity. At that time it was very much physical book launches and press coverage locally to stimulate national interest. Today it is very different with a global market via the worldwide web. As important as my own promotion is, I believe it is important to support others within our community and this led to the creation of the Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore

A selection of books by Sally Cronin

One of the recent reviews for Life’s Rich Tapestry

Avid Reader 5.0 out of 5 stars An appreciated work of literary fiction. Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 1 June 2020

Cronin’s “Life’s Rich Tapestry” is like a box of Merci chocolates because her book offers an indulgent collection of short stories, micro fiction and poetry that match so many of life’s moments.

Her book made me smile and dream, it brought chuckles and it even made my eyes wet. Is a book you want to read on, as the author is a gifted writer, each chapter in her book a temptation, and so are the illustrations.

An appreciated work of literary fiction.

Sally Cronin, Buy: :Amazon US – and: Amazon UK – Follow Sally:Goodreads – Blog: Smorgasbord Invitation – Twitter: @sgc58

How to participate.

  1. Approximately 1000 words about a Life Changing Moment that ended positively
  2. Include two or three photographs
  3. Send to

As you are in the Cafe and Bookstore I have all your information and will add your bio, books and links to the post.

If you are not already in the Cafe and Bookstore then here is the link to join the other 150 authors receiving FREE book marketing: Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore

Looking forward to hearing from you..thanks Sally.



79 thoughts on “Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Author Spotlight – Life Changing Moments

  1. What a moving story, Sally. And lovely photos. I’m so glad you found your prince charming in the end. I’m definitely in. … Who would’ve thought that losing a limb could be the very life-changer I needed?
    Thanks for this opportunity. Hugs x 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Oh, Sally – I loved the way you wrote that. And you didn’t even have to kiss a FROG!! Your second marriage must have seemed like a fairy tale compared to the first… Thankfully! I’ll have a go…hugs xx

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Thanks for sharing your Life changing Moment with us, Sally. Life never seems to work out as we plan, does it? I think the spotlight idea is a great one. I look forward to learning more about the life of fellow authors.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. SALLY! You took my breath away! Brilliant writing and such a peek at the intimacy of your life! WOW… So let me tell you the synchronicity of this for me…!
    I bought fun special food to prepare tonight and when Tom asked. “What is the occasion?” I answered, “Tomorrow would have been my 39th wedding anniversary to the ‘other one’, and I am celebrating that I am so happy I decided to divorce and move on in life.”
    How is that for running in tandem with my friend across the pond 😉 WOW, brilliant piece, I loved reading it, and it made me admire you even more!
    Here is to finding the right prince in a world full of frogs!!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Your Prince Charming must be a remarkable man to have opened your heart to love after that first marriage. In your engagement photo, you are positively glowing. I look forward to reading the posts in this new series.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. A lovely story with the happiest of endings. I love your idea of writing about a defining moment in our lives. I will enjoy taking a shot at this invitation.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Sally, what a wonderful and beautifully written story. Liz is right about your engagement photo, you are glowing and you are both beaming in your wedding pic. It’s just lovely. Again, your generosity knows no bounds and this series is a great idea. ❤ to you both. Xx

    Liked by 1 person

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  9. Hi Sally, I will make time for the challenge, would love to take part. I read your bio (again!) and I see you were on radio in Spain. Was that Radio Ondecero? I sent them a letter from South Africa for years! Be warned. If I ever come back to Ireland I’ll insist on meeting up – we have so much in common. 🙂 And thank you for all the help you give other authors, it is so appreciated. Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I love your fairy tale/ real-life story (I’m sure David loves his part of the prince charming), and I look forward to reading many life-defining moments in this new feature. Another great idea to introduce and promote bloggers and writers. Thanks, Sally!

    Liked by 1 person

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I would be delighted to receive your feedback (by commenting, you agree to Wordpress collecting your name, email address and URL) Thanks Sally

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