Smorgasbord Weekly Round Up – South Africa, Barbra Streisand, Judith Barrow and Horatio Grin revealed.

Welcome to the round up of some posts that you might have missed this week.  I have been offline more than on but I hope to reveal the cover of What’s in a Name Volume II in the next few days. It is done all bar the shouting (Amazon) which as an independent author and not part of KP can take a few days.


I would be really grateful for an opportunity over the weeks following the book’s release if I might do a guest post. Each one will be sharing the inspiration behind the main character of the story with a short excerpt.  If you feel that might fit in with your blog and schedule please email me and once I have a firm release dates I can let you have the weeks that are currently free.

William Price King is on his summer break now until September. He has gigs in the Nice region which as you know is a very popular tourist destination. I will be reposting one of his contemporary season from earlier in the year to make sure you don’t have withdrawal symptoms.

Horatio Grin caused quite a stir with his essays on the origins of Fairies and this week we revealed the last mystery behind the man…. Quess Who… and the initials are PA… If you would like a FREE Epub or pdf of Horatio’s book which contains additional bonus essays, then the details are in the post.

Robbie Cheadle takes us on a tour of Cape Town to celebrate the release of her latest children’s story and cookbook – Silly Willy goes to Cape Town with some traditional foods from South Africa that definitely brought back happy memories.

Judith Barrow shares the story of her treatment and survival of breast cancer. A must read for every woman.

My thanks to everyone who has contributed this week and of course to all of you for your ongoing support. Enjoy the rest of Sunday and see you soon.  Sally

William Price King meets some legends

I thought you might like to listen to one of my favourite tracks while you browse.

Guest post by Horatio Grin

The jig is up as they say and the mystery surrounding guest writer Horatio Grin is revealed.. with a FREE book with extras for you to enjoy.

Guest post by Robbie Cheadle 

To celebrate the release of the latest children’s book Silly Willy Goes to Cape Town, Robbie shares some of the delicious traditional food you can find in South Africa.

The Black Bitch and other Tales by Geoff Cronin

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Update

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – New on the Shelves

Air Your Reviews

The Blogger Daily

The new series of Blogger Daily has begun again and please do not hesitate to let me have the link to your most recent post either in the comments section or by email.


Guest Post Judith Barrow – Surviving Breast Cancer

Top to toe – The Male Reproductive System.


Short Story


Well that’s all folks.. I hope you will pop in again next week and in the meantime.. be good.. and if you cannot be good… be careful. Thanks Sally


Smorgasbord Poetry – #Haiku – Petrified by fear.

My thanks to Paul Andruss for allowing me to use one of his stunning photographs from a day out to Powys Castle..well worth a visit..

Catch up with all of Paul’s post at the following links.

Smorgasbord Poetry – Time on my Own – by Sally Cronin

Life is not one never ending fairy tale. Not many people sail through their years without encountering obstacles to their happiness and most of us, being human, contribute to the problem.

I was only twenty when I fell for an older and charasmatic man. I was told I was playing with fire but knew better. Four years later the charm offensive had just turned offensive, and I left with a couple of suitcases.

At first I thought a distance of 100 miles was sufficient but a few late night calls from friends persuaded me that I needed to put even more miles behind me and I headed to  Snowdonia in Wales to work in a hotel. Forty years ago, without the Internet you could disappear quite effectively. It eventually took me three years to disentangle myself legally and my divorce was finalised on April Fools Day 1980!.

They say that our lives are mapped out for us. I find it ironic and slightly spooky that if I had not run off to Wales I would not have met David six months after my divorce.. and that would have been the bigger tragedy.

I wrote a lot of song lyrics back then (never seen the light of day). They are good old fashioned country with plenty of angst.. But those original lyrics have formed the basis for later poetry and this is a poem about what was a short but impactful period in my life.

Time on my Own

I came to these green hills in search of peace
Away from the betrayal and blame
Hoping the distance would make nightmares cease
help me banish the feelings of shame

Some told me that it was mainly my fault
That our marriage was doomed from the start
Filling my wounds with their pinches of salt
Ignorant of what caused us to part.

Some of the truths I will take to my grave
There are others I need to let go
It is frightening but I must be brave
Learn to breathe and to go with the flow

I doubt that I will completely forget
The emotional scars of those years
And my decision I do not regret
refusing to shed any more tears.

I am young and despite all this drama
I will not let its pain mar my life
I just need time to patch up my armour
And forget I was ever your wife.

Life is taking me along a new path
Winding around and not very clear
I hope to a safe place where I can laugh
Throwing away these feelings of fear.

Will I love again I really don’t know
For now I just need space of my own
But it is time to get on with the show
To stop my heart from turning to stone.


Smorgasbord Weekly Round Up – Magic, Music and Master storytellers oh and a bit of a laugh

Welcome to this week’s round up of posts that you might have missed. I have been busy preparing next week’s posts in advance as much as possible because I begin writing Tales from the Irish Garden with the assistance of illustrator Donata Zawadzka who has created some delightful images for the stories. I will be in and out of course to boost posts and in particular the book promotions that are planned.

Apart from the regular author promotions there will also be some health, humour and music from Barbra Streisand.. so I hope to keep you entertained.  I also hope to pop in a couple of posts on how you can take best advantage of book promotions to reach a few more readers.

I find it hard to believe that it is July already. I have no idea where the first half of the year has gone. I have come to the conclusion that before the Internet, 24/7 media in our homes and mobile phones we measured time by when we ate and it went slower. Just a theory.

My thanks as always to those who have contributed to the blog this week including William Price King, Paul Andruss and Horatio Grin and of course my later father-in-law Geoff Cronin and his tall tales.  I know that in whatever dimension he is now in he will be entertaining the other occupants and would be delighted by your comments about his stories.

On that note.. on with the show and something to listen to while you read any posts you might have missed.

William Price King meets some legends

Writer in Residence Paul Andruss

Thomas the Rhymer

Guest writer Horatio Grin

The Black Bitch and other Tales by Geoff Cronin

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Update

New on the Shelves

Air Your Reviews

Smorgasbord Poetry

Smorgasbord Short Stories The Psychic Parrot by Sally Cronin


Smorgasbord Health 2017

Personal stuff.. in celebration of July 4th.


Thank you once again for your continued support.. I wish you a wonderful week of love, laughter and sunshine.


Smorgasbord Weekly Round Up – Barbra Streisand, The Gospel Truth and Summer Schedule

Welcome to the weekly round up of posts that you might have missed.. It has also been the first week on the summer schedule which will be focused on health, music, book promotions and humour.  Throw in some reblogs of some of the outstanding blogs and I hope that when you have time to come in from the garden you will find something that you enjoy.

Apart from my own garden I will be completing a three R’s challenge.. Reading, Riting and Relaxing..I am of course as keen as always to promote authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and those who receive great reviews and those posts will continue. However the Book Reading at the Cafe will be back in September.

After the series on Barbra Streisand in a few weeks, William Price King will be taking his usual summer weeks off for performing and relaxing with his family but will be back in September with a new series.

This is the first summer in four years where we have not been doing up a house to sell, or doing one up to live in.  We intend to take some time out to explore and meet up with old friends. I hope to have some photos to share with you of our day trips.  I will still be here once or twice a day but I will be around less on social media.

My thanks as always to William Price King and Paul Andruss for their amazing contributions to the blog..Also this week to guest writer Horatio Grin who has shared his research into the origins of our beliefs in gods and fairies, sometimes revealing where the two crossed paths.

Thanks to you for your wonderful support and feedback.

Here are the posts this week in case you missed them.

William Price King meets some Legends

Writer in Residence – Paul Andruss

The Black Bitch and other Tales by Geoff Cronin

Guest writer – Horatio Grin

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – New book on the shelves

The Updates

The Swamp Fairy

Air your Reviews

Personal Stuff

My thanks to Dan Alatorre for a very pleasant interview over on his blog… where I managed to give away a number of secrets.

An Inteview with Dan Alatorre:


Smorgasbord Health 2017

Smorgasbord Health 2017

Smorgasbord Laughter Academy

Smorgasbord Poetry

Enjoy the rest of your weekend and thank you again for your visits and feedback. Sally


Smorgasbord Poetry – Water God by Mary Smith

I am delighted to welcome Mary Smith today with her poem Water God from her collection Thousands Pass here Every Day. The poem is dedicated to her son and a reminder of his childhood.

(To David)

Sun-gleam on wet bronze limbs,
seal sleek you slip
into the deepest pool.
From the rocks I watch,
afraid of your fearlessness,
breath held as brown water
closes over you.
Surfacing, you laugh,
a careless toss of your head
scattering miniature rainbows –
my water god of the Otter Pool.

Other children splash,
playing safe
in sun-warmed shallows.
Their mothers silently question
my carelessness of you.
They do not know
how deep the fear,
how powerless
the mother of a deity
who believes he’s indestructible –
my water god of the Otter Pool.

©MarySmith 2017

Two reviews for the collection

This is a poetry collection you will want to keep going back to. Mary Smith’s work is subtle and delicate, possessing a quiet, sure strength. The poems are well crafted but never over-written, a difficult balance to get right. Many of the poems have a quiet magic with wonderfully understated effects. The book also has a wide range of subjects, moods and forms so there is much variety and the reader is continually stimulated with fresh insights and discoveries. Highly recommended.

This is a wonderful first collection by Mary Smith. I know her work as a novelist through her novel No More Mulberries and I was delighted to find she has included several poems about Afghanistan. These poems provide vivid snapshots of life and landscapes and of a people who come across as resilient and life affirming despite the war.

She writes, too, about her native Scotland, in particular the wonderful wild landscape of Dumfries & Galloway and she explores themes of memory and identity, drawing on her own childhood experiences. Whether writing about the small boys in Afghanistan who, with their flocks of sheep, `helter-skelter down a mountainside/in a cloud of dust’; losing a parent to dementia; Afghan women laughing at her lack of education; or Glasgow’s Ramshorn Kirkyard where `the dead draw us in, entice the living/to consider past lives’ Mary Smith brings a warmth and compassion to her work.

Some of the poems, like the very amusing `Erratic’ and `Smeddum’ are in Scots, though most are in English, in this collection which readers will want to dip into time and time again.  

Read the reviews and buy the collection:

Other books by Mary Smith

Read all the reviews and buy the books:

Read more reviews and follow Mary Smith on Goodreads:

About Mary Smith

Mary Smith has always loved writing. As a child she wrote stories in homemade books made from wallpaper trimmings – but she never thought people could grow up and become real writers. She spent a year working in a bank, which she hated – all numbers, very few words – ten years with Oxfam in the UK, followed by ten years working in Pakistan and Afghanistan. She longed to allow others to share her amazing, life-changing experiences so she wrote about them – fiction, non-fiction, poetry and journalism. And she discovered the little girl who wrote stories had become a real writer after all.

Drunk Chickens and Burnt Macaroni: Real Stories of Afghan Women is an account of her time in Afghanistan and her debut novel No More Mulberries is also set in Afghanistan.

Connect to Mary on her blogs and social media.

Facebook address

My thanks to Mary for her contribution to the poetry posts and if you would like to share one of your poems then please email me at




Smorgasbord Poetry – Holidays by Sally Cronin

Holidays By Sally Cronin

Time between holidays was very slow
Anticipation growing by the day
Kept asking the question ‘When do we go?’
On and on from the beginning of May.

Food filled memories remain on my lips
Of scones on a plate, warm, laden with jam
And plates of piping hot and crispy chips
Served with thick slices of crumb crusted ham.

Other summer treats are fresh in my mind
Crisp battered fish, served with peppery peas.
Soft whirling ice-creams of every kind
That made you forget the cold icy seas.

The days at the beach with sand in your pants
And in the hard boiled egg sandwiches too.
Left over crumbs that attracted the ants
And painful wasp stings that turned the air blue.

Far too quickly the summer was over
And the long wait for the next festive break
Weeks before Christmas went even slower
Looking forward to that marzipanned cake.

Now I am older the time goes so fast
I don’t have to wait so long for the fun
I know how to make the holidays last
Despite the fact there is too little sun.

I fill up my trolley with scones and jam
And a pot of the finest clotted cream.
Cornish icecream, battered cod and crumbed ham
I am now finally living the dream.

©sallycronin 2017

If you would like to share your poetry here then please contact me directly on  Next week a poem from Mary Smith.

Smorgasbord Poetry – Self- Portrait by Carmen Stefanescu

I am delighted to share Self-Portrait by Carmen Stefanescu as part of the new poetry series. If you would like to share your poem here then please contact me on and we can talk about what I need to showcase you and your other work.


I am the seagull
whose wings have been broken.
I am the frail leaf
snatched by the gust.
I am the hour
that’s already wasted,
I am a dream
that belongs to the past.

I am the foreseer
that people mock at,
Or the guitar
that has no more strings,
I’m the dried well
that won’t quench the thirst,
I am the jester
scorned by the kings.

I’m not the bright rainbow
that shines after storms,
Or the swift eagle
high up in the sky.
I am not the oak tree
defying the time.
I am just a drifter
reluctant to die !

©Carmen Stefanescu 2017

Carmen Stefanescu was born in Romania, the native country of the infamous vampire Count Dracula, but where, for about 50 years of communist dictatorship, just speaking about God, faith, reincarnation or paranormal phenomena could have led someone to great trouble – the psychiatric hospital if not to prison.

Teacher of English and German in her native country and mother of two daughters, Carmen Stefanescu survived the grim years of oppression, by escaping in a parallel world, that of the books.

She has dreamed all her life to become a writer, but many of the things she wrote during those years remained just drawer projects. The fall of the Ceausescu’s regime in 1989 and the opening of the country to the world meant a new beginning for her. She started publishing. Poems first, and then prose. Both in English.

Books by Carmen Stefanescu

Read the reviews so far and buy the book:

Buy Dracula’s Mistress:

Connect to Carmen


If you would like to share your poetry and also your other written work then please contact me on