Smorgasbord Blogger Daily – Friday 18th August, 2017 -Tony Riches/Wendy Janes, D.G. Kaye/ Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, Dan Alatorre/ Heather Kindt, Christy Birmingham


Smorgasbord Blogger Daily

Welcome to the last of the week’s blogger daily posts and perhaps you can enlighten me as to how Friday has come around so quickly!  Anyway I have been offline quite a bit today but I have a small selection of posts you might enjoy from around the community.

The first is from Wendy Janes who is not only an author but a professional proofreader too. This is part three of a series that she has been sharing and if you confuse your its and it’s and other transgressions, this is a post for you (and me). This is posted on Tony Riches blog.

The odd thing about grammar and punctuation rules is that they are a bit of a moveable feast. Some change depending on whether you’re using US or UK English and others are flexible depending on context, style and genre. Sounds like a can of worms, if you ask me. But let’s dive in and try and make some sense of it all.

First, I’d like to select the three rules that I see authors breaking most often. These ones are non-negotiable.

Use of it’s and its
it’s = it is (It’s raining)
its = belonging to (The creature protected its young)
The easy way to remember correct use of it’s and its is to say ‘it is’ whenever you come across either version. If the sentence makes sense when you say ‘it is’ then the correct term is it’s.

Get the rest of the three rules that are most commonly broken: http://tonyriches.blogspot.ie/2017/08/tips-for-new-writers-part-three-rules.html

We have had a post on the subject of writing and now we have one on the topic of reading and how important it is to keeping our brains engaged and active. Madelyn Griffith-Haynie is an authority on the brain and its functions and she was a guest of Debby Gies a couple of days ago.

Madelyn has written a fantastic article on the importance of reading books and explains in her post, just how far the information we retain from reading can help us relate to others, how reading benefits us as we age, the beneficial impact reading has on warding off Alzheimer’s disease, and much more!

Thanks to our ability to scroll through endless words on our computers, tablets and smart phones, more people are reading than ever before.

Still, while the act of reading itself has increased, there is a significant difference between reading anything and reading a book that pulls you into the mind of the author as you take a mental vacation.

Even hours of reading on FaceBook, or skipping from blog to blog reading multiple articles on various subjects, does not seem to have the same positive effect as reading a novel, a memoir or a carefully curated collection of short-stories.

And the more time we spend online, the less time we have for reading those wonderful books on our TBR lists (“To Be Read”).

That’s a real shame, too, because reading a good book is not only an enjoyable, affordable “vacation” that broadens our perspective, it turns out that science has discovered that it actually improves our brain functioning in ways that translate to improved thinking, mood, functional intelligence, more positive and productive connections in our lives, and so-much-MORE.

Read more about the benefits to the executive function of our brains of reading effectively: https://dgkayewriter.com/guest-feature-madelyn-griffith-haynie-power-reading/

Now that the winners for the Word Weaver competition that was created by Dan Alatorre have been announced, it is a great pleasure to share the beginning of the winning story by Heather Kindt.  As the first prize we are looking forward to working with Heather when she is ready to publish her book.

Ruby Slips and Poker Chips  by Heather Kindt

“It was Toto that made Dorothy laugh, and saved her from growing as gray as her other surroundings.”

July 1995

Quandary Pond was situated between my house and the tiny one-bedroom shack that sat five minutes down the road. The shack was a rental, and a poorly cared for one at that. Our neighbors didn’t stay there much longer than a barefoot on the pavement outside Price Chopper in July. The house appeared lopsided to me, shingles falling off, and the siding was worn with time. Grass grew as high as my thigh and Uncle Embry often stated his intention to go over there and give the yard the weed whacking it deserved. The last residents had left in the middle of the night. I overheard Aunt Henrietta say something about drug charges.

“I’m going down to the pond!” The screen door shut behind me. Uncle Embry was at work at the air-conditioned post office and Aunt Henrietta reclined in the oversized Lazy boy trying to stay cool in the heat of the Kansas afternoon. The fan that oscillated next to the chair made more of a racket than what it was worth.

I preferred cooling off by the pond. Dressed in cutoffs and a tank from the local thrift store, my braids bounced against my back as I skipped down to my favorite hangout.

Making my way down the path from the house to the pond, I glimpsed a red station wagon sitting in front of the shack. New renters. I never really took the time to get to know anyone who lived there, since they’d probably be gone in a couple of months. Removing my shoes, I dove into the pond, no longer worried about the leeches that some of my girlfriends squealed about. After a short swim, I trudged out, settling on a drip dry as I made my way to the tree where I hid my stash. The hollow in the tree contained a jar for bug catching (usually fireflies at night), a couple bottles of water, a net, a pail and my science journal (which I kept in a plastic bag in case it rained). I picked out the net and started to creep around the reeds looking for Old Bill, the bull frog that was as large as a grapefruit and had so far avoided capture. My goal was to sketch and categorize each frog in the pond, as well as many of the insects. Rounding the bend by a large tree, Bill sat on a rock sunning himself. This was going to be the day. A crop duster flew overhead masking any sounds my feet made in the grass. I lifted my net at the perfect angle for frog catching, ready to pounce.

This is really a terrific story and I am sure that the book will be a winner too: https://danalatorre.com/2017/08/16/dan-alatorres-word-weaver-writing-contest-first-place-ruby-slips-and-poker-chips-by-heather-hackett/

For many people who are recovering from operations or illnesses the thought of bed rest can be attractive initially but then boredom sets in. Christy Birmingham looks at the issue and comes up with some strategies to stay sane.

There are numerous reasons why you might find yourself confined to your bed for a period of time. The most obvious are those regarding health; an injury or illness that means you have to follow doctor’s orders until you’re back to your best.

The idea of being on bed rest sounds, to the average busy person, pretty ideal. Bed is the space we all love; that we have to reluctantly drag ourselves from every morning, and leave behind when we go to work with a forlorn last longing glance. How could bed rest – staying in bed because you’ve been told to! – ever be a bad thing?

What at first feels like a luxury has a tendency to soon feel stifling. Being confined to a single room becomes boring; you find yourself wanting to get up and about, just see something different. While there is an element of enjoyment to be found in a period of bed rest – especially if you are usually always on the go – it’s not quite so enjoyable when you have to be there.

So if you find yourself in a situation where your life is going to revolve around a bed and not much else for a period of time, here is a simple guide to ensuring you stay comfortable both mentally and physically for the duration.

Head over and get these strategies under your belt.. you never know when you might need them: https://whenwomeninspire.com/2017/08/14/bed-rest-survival-guide/

Thanks very much for dropping in and I hope you have enjoyed the snippets and feel inclined to head over and read all the posts. There are a few posts over the weekend and the Blogger Daily will be back Monday.. Take care and thanks Sally

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Smorgasbord Short Story Festival and weekly round up – and The Mummy!


Welcome to a slightly shorter round-up this week as I get back into the swing of things after my weekend in London.  You can read all about the day at the 3rd Annual #BloggersBash in my post earlier today: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/13/thebloggersbash-2017-time-to-turn-virtual-hugs-into-real-ones/ and I hope that next year more of you will be able to join the party.

David came with me for the weekend and we flew by City Jet into London City Airport and if you are travelling to spend the weekend in London then I can recommend this as an airport. Small and easy to navigate and there is a Docklands Light Railway station that links to Bank station and Central line into the heart of the City.

We opted to stay at the Travelodge which to be honest is cheap and cheerful. But we reckoned we were only going to sleep there and at the weekend the airport is on restricted hours meaning you can get some sleep! They were very friendly and the rooms are fine and economical. We spent what we would have on accommodation at central London rates on eating out during our stay… and perhaps the odd G&T!.

Friday night was very nostalgic. We both worked in the Docklands from 1987 to 1996 and when we first started Canary Wharf was still a hole in the ground. The amount of construction in the last twenty years is astonishing and we barely recognised the place. The year that I left to move to another part of the company, a floating Chinese Restaurant opened in the wharf where our office was based. The Lotus is like a paddle steamer and so 22 years after my leaving lunch.. we enjoyed a feast for two… including our favourites Crispy Duck and some Sake…

On Saturday we split up and David headed off to see his brother and family and I headed off to the hugfest in Central London.We had booked to eat at Zedel’s Brasserie in Piccadilly Circus after the #BloggersBash but David sent me a text to get a cab to The Cafe Royale where we downed a couple of G&Ts before heading off to eat.

The weather was sweltering all weekend but we had pre-booked tickets to see The Mummy and after a lengthy walk around Marble Arch and Oxford Street we retired to the air conditioned Odeon.

To be honest I would only give The Mummy 6 out of 10. The movie had some great stunts and special effects but they were linked with a very suspect script. It was not Tom Cruise’s finest work and Russell Crowe spent most of his time mumbling into his beard with a dodgy English accent. The Mummy herself however did a pretty good acting job!  If you like action with little plot then it is worth going to see.

We were not up with the lark but with the first plane taking off at 7.00 on Monday morning. We had breakfast in the airport and a pleasant hour long flight back to Dublin where thankfully we remembered which row we had left the car in at the long term carpark! It was a great weekend with plenty of highlights and I do have one tip for you if you are going to London for sightseeing and are going to use public transport of any kind. Buy an Oyster Card online before you go (can take a while to get to you) or buy at a station. This will save you at least half on your fares and you can use on the Docklands Light Railway, Underground and buses. https://oyster.tfl.gov.uk/oyster/entry.do

I will be updating the directories with all of last week’s posts but I wanted to mention the wonderful writers who took care of Smorgasbord while I was off gallivanting. The Short Story Competition was a huge success and I must also thank Paul Andruss for providing his usual fantastic post on Friday morning.

For those of you who missed the finale of The Stevie Wonder story with William Price King here is the link.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/07/william-price-king-meets-some-legends-stevie-wonder-highlights-from-the-last-20-years/

You will find links to all the contributors blogs and social media in their individual stories and if you missed.. here they are.

Thanks to Paul Andruss, Sheila Williams, John Howell, Phillip T. Stephens, Mary Smith, Wendy Janes and Robbie and Michael Cheadle. 

You will also find three of my stories from my previous collection and hope you enjoy.

Thomas the RhymerFrankenstein

Paul Andruss with the background to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/09/writer-in-residence-frankenstein-by-paul-andruss/

Boy with a Harmonica

Sheila Williams with a story set in France during World War II with a supernatural twist.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/09/smorgasbord-short-stories-festival-9th-12th-june-boy-with-a-harmonica-france-1943-by-sheila-williams/

Albert

Sally Cronin –  Meet a man who was the perfect candidate for the job set in the near future.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/09/smorgasbord-short-story-festival-9th-june-12th-june-albert-the-perfect-candidate-by-sally-cronin/

Saturday 10th June.

The Matmakers

Geoff Cronin – As a boy Geoff befriends the travellers who come to the beach near his home every summer.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/10/the-black-bitch-and-other-tales-the-matmakers-by-geoff-cronin/

The World Darkly

John Howell with a story that makes you rethink your approach to finding lost property!

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/10/smorgasbord-short-story-festival-9th-12th-june-the-world-darkly-by-john-w-howell/

The Last Emperor

Sally Cronin with a story of redemption and loyalty in the Magic Garden.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/10/smorgasbord-short-story-festival-9th-12th-june-tales-from-the-garden-the-last-emperor-by-sally-cronin/

Sunday 11th June

Flinches

Geoff Cronin explains the old country ways of bird catching.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/11/the-black-bitch-and-other-tales-serialisation-flinches-by-geoff-cronin/

Search and Seizure

Phillip T. Stephens with a futuristic look at border and customs control.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/11/smorgasbord-short-story-festival-9th-12th-june-search-and-seizure-by-phillip-t-stephens/

From Hackney to Hollywood

Wendy Janes takes us on the trail to stardom from Shakespeare in Hackney to the chat show sofa in Hollywood.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/11/smorgasbord-short-story-festival-9th-12th-june-from-hackney-to-hollywood-by-wendy-janes/

Monday 12th June

The health benefits of laughter and an invitation to join the academy with your favourite jokes, videos or images.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/12/smorgasbord-health-2017-laughter-the-best-medicine-the-health-benefits-and-the-laughter-academy/

Sir Chocolate and the Stolen Moon and Stars

Robbie and Michael Cheadle bring us another adventure story starring Sir Chocolate in verse and also Michael’s original concept for the tale.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/12/smorgasbord-short-story-festival-9th-12th-june-sir-chocolate-and-the-stolen-moon-and-stars-by-robbie-and-michael-cheadle/

Trouble with Socks

Mary Smith with a story of how simple things can become very important to us.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/12/smorgasbord-short-story-festival-9th-12th-june-trouble-with-socks-by-mary-smith/

Elaine

Sally Cronin with the story of a woman planning to surprise her husband on his birthday.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/06/12/smorgasbord-short-story-festival-9th-12th-june-elaine-by-sally-cronin/

 

My thanks for all your support during the week and over the weekend. Sally

Smorgasbord Short Story Festival – 9th – 12th June – From Hackney to Hollywood by Wendy Janes


I am delighted to welcome my next guest Wendy Janes with her contribution to the festival. A story of a rise to stardom that has its roots in a school production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream

From Hackney to Hollywood by Wendy Janes

“You’re on in ten, Mr Sullivan.”

I glance up to see the outline of a young woman in jeans and t-shirt standing by the green room bar.

“Can I get you anything?” Her thin arms gesture to an array of refreshments.

“No.” I just wish you’d go away and leave me in peace. I’ve been in interviews all day.

Radio, magazines, blogs, and now telly. You name it, I’ve done it. I’m knackered, and to cap it all, this settee is bloody uncomfortable.

“Oh, OK, sorry.” A look of alarm crosses her elfin face. For one awful moment I fear I must have voiced my thoughts out loud, but then realise my one-word growl had been sufficient to make her think I’m simply one more celebrity jerk.

I hastily add, “No thanks. Very kind of you, I’m fine, thanks,” and flash her one of my award-winning full-on smiles. Her cheeks flush. She really is very pretty … but also very young.

When I started out, these creatures scurrying around with headsets and clipboards, and more recently iPads and tablets, had been my contemporaries, but while I’ve got older, they haven’t. This one – she could only be about nineteen – well, it’s not beyond the bounds of possibility that in another life I could have had a daughter of her age. I feel protective towards her. I hope she has a family to keep her safe.

Turning away, she busies herself at the bar, tidying up bottles, glasses, plates and bowls left lying around by previous guests this evening. Job done, she perches on edge of the armchair opposite me and says, “If you don’t mind my saying, you look all in.”

“Thanks, precisely the look I’m going for today.” I give her my wry smile this time.

“Must be exhausting being a glamorous Hollywood star, going to all those fabulous parties with famous people, and having to jet first class between England and America.”

“Are you teasing me?”

“Maybe.”

I like how her playful tone matches mine.

“I’m not flying first class with the Hollywood stars, yet.” I continue to keep things light. I’m aware she doesn’t want to hear how I feel about shallow glitzy parties, soulless hotels, and forever taking crumpled, stale clothes out of a suitcase. Today’s suit has seen better days.

“A long-running series on television over here, and three films in three years in America – you’re getting close,” she says.

“Well, I’ll admit it’s more fun than street theatre in the pouring rain and bit parts on TV.”

“Oh, a bit part would suit me. I’m doing work experience here before I go to drama college.”

Jeez, she’s even younger than I thought.

She tells me about the plays she’s been in at school, how brilliant her drama teacher is, and her hopes for her acting career – stage, not television or film – but she knows she can’t be too choosy. I relax and listen to her chatter. Her naivety is delightful.

“Mum’s been a big fan of yours for years.”

Oh, lordy, she’s making me feel so much older than my forty-three years.

“We saw you the other day in a repeat of that series you used to be in on the BBC. The episode ended with you storming round to your girlfriend’s workplace to have it out with her boss who’d been harassing her.”

I remember that role; I was barely out of my teens, and at the time thought stardom was round the corner. How wrong I was, but my career of waltzing in and saving damsels in distress – on and off screen – dates from then.

“Mum told me she saw that episode first time round. Reckons she’s watched everything you’ve been in. She’s going to see your new film next week with some mates from her book club.”

“Well, please thank your lovely mother for being such a loyal fan. And I hope she and her friends enjoy it.”

The girl giggles and attempts to smooth her wild curls which spring back the moment she lets go. Nadine’s beautiful face from long, long ago flashes before me, but is cruelly snatched away as I’m whisked off by a couple of people wearing headsets, and I find myself sitting on a vast sofa, under the harsh studio lights, answering questions about my latest film, Lying.

Claudia Marshall has been doing this Friday evening slot for years. I know how it goes. You have to give her a chance to show off her knowledge first, then, usually after the clip, she gives you the space to tell one anecdote. I’m not a fan of all the interruptions, the flattery, and the fluttering of her false eyelashes, but, hey, if it gets the job done.

“… the studio re-worked the original book to focus on the men, but the wrangles over the rights and the script meant this film nearly didn’t get made …”

God, that on-off-on-off stuff was a nightmare.

“… out of this stellar ensemble cast, your character is the most complex and talked about.

Now, without giving away the audacious twist at the end, can you tell me, and this lovely audience, a little bit about Billy O’Keefe?”

Ah, my turn.

“I wouldn’t go so far as to say Billy is the most talked about role, in fact I think there are other characters in the film who are more controversial.”

“You’re being far too modest. Come on, Ryan, tell us what makes Billy tick?”

“OK, let’s see.” I pretend to think, trying to keep this as spontaneous as I can, despite trotting out the same lines for what must be the tenth time today, the hundredth time this week. “Billy’s an ambitious man, and he’s a romantic. The key to his character, his flaw, is that he loves his wife too much. He’d do anything for her. Literally anything.”

I pause, and Claudia leans in towards me, all eyes and teeth.

“Oh Ryan, I’m sure there are many of us who can only dream of such devotion. But can you explain to us how one reviewer can describe him both as ‘a pushover, the weakest sop on earth’ and ‘a ruthless man who’s determined to get what he wants whatever the cost’?”

“Well, I think it comes initially from the great writing. As soon as I read the part I understood why Billy feels and acts the way he does, and–”

“Is Billy anything like you?” she interrupts.

I rush my reply in order to cover my irritation. “I’m a romantic like Billy, but he’s obsessive, and I’m definitely not. Right at the start of the film Billy says he’s been bewitched by his wife–”

She jumps in again. “Over the years we’ve seen you take on a variety of roles – troubled teen, devoted family man, lovable rogue – but always with a strong love interest. I think I can safely say this is the steamiest film we’ve seen you in.” Claudia does the leg-crossing, cleavage thrust forward pose. “How did you feel about doing the bedroom scenes?”

“Hey, if it’s integral to the plot …”

The audience pick up their cue and are generous with their laughter.

Claudia coaxes more from them. “Yes, we get to see quite a bit of you.”

As the laughter begins to ebb, she continues, “I understand you had no need of a body double, even for the more risqué scenes.”

“At first I considered it, but then after a few sessions at the gym, and I thought, why not, I can do this.”

“I think this clip proves that!”

And there on a huge screen is a man in boxers having a stand-up row with his semi naked, fabulously beautiful wife. The contrast between his tousled black hair against her mane of red looks incredible. The cameraman has captured the smooth curves of her milk-white skin, and I find it difficult to comprehend that the man with the lightly bronzed torso is actually me. The argument has resolved itself in an embrace, and for a moment I can almost believe that long, passionate kiss is real. The film pauses on the close-up, and the applause thunders out.

“Wow! Let’s move from your latest role to your first role, Ryan. I’d now like you to tell us about your first acting experience.” Claudia sits back in her chair, as if to indicate, yes, it’s anecdote time. Your turn.

Nadine’s beautiful face appears again.

“I was fourteen, and I had a huge crush on this girl at school.” I’m not sure why I’m in such a confessional mood, but I need to tell this story. “She was ever so popular, constantly surrounded by her girlfriends.”

I can picture Nadine in the dinner hall, deep in serious conversation with a couple of other girls. Her mass of brown curls framing her face, her left hand reaching up to touch the silver pendant she always wore. It had her initial on it, and she’d slowly run the N back and forth along the chain whenever she felt nervous or was concentrating really hard.

“Well, when I heard she was part of the drama group performing short scenes from A Midsummer Night’s Dream I went along for the auditions. Not sure how the drama department thought Shakespeare was the right choice for a bunch of kids from Hackney, but anyway I was cast as Pyramus, and this girl as Thisbe in the tragicomic play within the play. I don’t know what I thought I was doing, I hadn’t even read the script properly; I just wanted to be near her. Sounds pathetic, I know.”

“Not at all,” says Claudia. Her voice low.

“The first rehearsal was a nightmare. It was only at this read-through I found out we had to kiss. I really wanted to kiss her, of course, but not on stage in front of everyone. I can still remember the ordeal of sitting round with our scripts, stuttering out the words, ‘O, kiss me through the hole of this vile wall,’ and hearing her reply, ‘I kiss the wall’s hole, not your lips at all.’ Honestly, I’ve never felt more embarrassed in my whole life. It was a valuable lesson learned though, because I’ve never taken on a part since without reading every single word of the script first.”

“Sound advice for all young actors who may be watching,” says Claudia. “So, what happened next?”

“Before I could dash down the corridor never to return, my Thisbe came up to me and suggested we get over our embarrassment by practising so much before next week’s rehearsal that it didn’t feel awkward any more. So we met after school in an empty classroom, and she helped me see the humour in the role, and as soon as I got that, I could do it. By the end of the week, we were totally comfortable and getting quite blasé about the scene, and the kiss. But I still didn’t have the guts to talk to her about anything beyond the play.”

“Sorry, I find it difficult to believe that the handsome, confident hero, Ryan Sullivan could ever have found it difficult to talk to girls.”

“Ah, but I was a shy, fourteen-year-old with a face full of spots.”

In fact I wasn’t even Ryan Sullivan then, I was Ryan Eyre – a name my agent had refused to let me keep and had sworn me to secrecy about. When I told my da, he’d said, “Ye’d have to be a bletherin’ ejit to confuse an airline with an actor.” My ma on the other hand was thrilled I’d chosen her family name.

“So, Ryan, did you and your Thisbe sizzle with on-stage chemistry?”

“If only we’d been given the chance! The day before the next rehearsal, the drama teacher, in her infinite wisdom, decided the play within the play would be re-cast to reflect historical accuracy. In other words – an all-male cast. She tried all sorts of bribery and trickery to persuade me to play Thisbe, and in the end she paid me hard cash. I’m guessing she did the same with the six-foot-two high jumper from the school athletics team who played Pyramus. And we were brilliant, even if I say so myself. Had the audience in stitches, we did. But I could never have done it without that girl’s guidance.”

“This audience won’t forgive me if I don’t ask: did you and the girl ever get together?”

“Alas, no. Her family moved to south London during the summer holidays and I never saw her again. But if she’s out there I’d like to thank her from the bottom of my heart for giving me my first acting lessons and for kick-starting my career.”

“Well, thank you, Ryan, for sharing your bitter-sweet story. Unfortunately that’s all we have time for this evening. So it only remains for me to thank Mr Ryan Sullivan, star of Lying, for being such a charming and witty guest, and I wish you all a good night.”

With the applause from the audience ringing in my ears I’m ushered out of the studio and into a cab to take me through the dark, rainy streets to my last interview of the day.

In a small south London suburb, Nadine sits on the sofa beside her husband watching the credits roll on the 42-inch TV dominating their modest living room. She runs her silver pendant back and forth along the chain around her neck. Throughout the programme she’d seen traces of the teenager she once knew in the middle-aged man now recognised by millions. A smile to cover his shyness, a laugh to hide embarrassment. She knows it shouldn’t still hurt like this. Not after all these years. Not when she’s made a good life with Archie and the kids.

“Bit of a pretty boy, isn’t he, that O’Sullivan bloke,” says her husband.

“Sullivan. There’s no ‘O’.” She fixes her eyes on the screen as if doing so will hold Ryan there.

“Can’t you picture him poncing around in tights doing that Shakespeare stuff.” Archie lets out a big belly laugh. “Wouldn’t catch us doin’ it at our old school. They do it at yours?”

“Nearly, um, well actually…” As she has many times before, Nadine senses she’s on the verge of telling him. She’s filled to the brim, the words are waiting to spill from her. Turning to Archie, she’s about to speak, but as she opens her mouth she sees his attention is focused on his mobile phone.

“Meeting the lads for a pint in The Harrow before the footie tomorrow.” The sofa creaks as her husband hauls himself up.

“Cuppa tea, love?” he says as he lumbers into the kitchen.

“Yeh, thanks,” she replies, unsure whether she feels relieved or thwarted. She thinks of the two younger ones upstairs in their bedroom, and Davina at the TV studio. A flutter of something a little bit like hope quivers in her chest as she wonders if her daughter and Ryan could have met tonight.

“No, you silly woman. Get yourself back to the real world,” she mutters to herself, wrapping her cardi around her and reaching to the pendant round her neck.

Alone in the living room, Nadine allows the familiar waves of longing and regret to sweep through her.

©WendyJanes
About Wendy Janes

Wendy Janes lives in London with her husband and youngest son. She is the author of the novel, What Jennifer Knows and the short story collection, What Tim Knows, and other stories. She has also contributed short stories to a number of anthologies, including the fundraising anthology, A Kind of Mad Courage.

Her writing is inspired by family, friends, and everyday events that only need a little twist to become entertaining fiction.

As well as writing contemporary fiction, she loves to read it too, and spreads
the word about good books online and in the real world.

Wendy is also a freelance proofreader, and a caseworker for The National Autistic Society’s Education Rights Service.

Books by Wendy Janes.

Read the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Wendy-Janes/e/B016J66C9G

Read more reviews and follow Wendy on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14433891.Wendy_Janes

Connect to Wendy.

Website: http://wendyproof.co.uk/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/wendyproof
LinkedIn: uk.linkedin.com/pub/wendy-janes/56/852/11a/en
Google + : https://plus.google.com/106071781880105004637/about
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/wendyjproof/about

My thanks to Wendy for sharing her story and please share on your own networks.  Coming up tomorrow a story from Mary Smith and one from Robbie Cheadle.

Smorgasbord Short Stories Festival – 9th to 12th June – The programme of events.


As you may have already heard there is a #BloggersBash going on in London this weekend and having been unable to go the last two years, I am delighted to be heading off tomorrow.

As usual when taking a break I invited some guest writers to contribute their fiction short stories to keep you entertained while I was offline. And I am very grateful to Sheila Williams, John Howell, Phillip T. Stephens, Wendy Janes, Mary Smith and Robbie and Michael Cheadle for their wonderful tales.

There will  also be the regular posts from Paul Andruss and the start of the serialisation of Geoff Cronin’s second book written when he was 84 years old with more stories of life in Ireland in the 1920s onwards.

On Monday morning I have also scheduled a health post and an introduction to a new series.. The health benefits of laughter and the Smorgasbord Laughter Academy.

The Programme – Friday 9th June

Thomas the Rhymer

Frankenstein

Paul Andruss with the background to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein.

Boy with a Harmonica

Sheila Williams with a story set in France during World War II with a supernatural twist.

Albert

Sally Cronin –  Meet a man who was the perfect candidate for the job set in the near future.

Saturday 10th June.

The Matmakers

Geoff Cronin – As a boy Geoff befriends the travellers who come to the beach near his home every summer.

The World Darkly

John Howell with a story that makes you rethink your approach to finding lost property!

The Last Emperor

Sally Cronin with a story of redemption and loyalty in the Magic Garden.

Sunday 11th June

Flinches

Geoff Cronin explains the old country ways of bird catching.

Search and Seizure

Phillip T. Stephens with a futuristic look at border and customs control.

From Hackney to Hollywood

Wendy Janes takes us on the trail to stardom from Shakespeare in Hackney to the chat show sofa in Hollywood.

Monday 12th June

The health benefits of laughter and an invitation to join the academy with your favourite jokes, videos or images.

Sir Chocolate and the Stolen Moon and Stars

Robbie and Michael Cheadle bring us another adventure story starring Sir Chocolate in verse and also Michael’s original concept for the tale.

Trouble with Socks

Mary Smith with a story of how simple things can become very important to us.

Elaine

Sally Cronin with the story of a woman planning to surprise her husband on his birthday.

I am sure you will enjoy the stories from my guest authors, and as I shall be offline completely for the weekend from tomorrow, I will catch up with you on Monday evening. 

As I will not be here to click the share buttons.. I would be very grateful if you would do so for me.  Thanks Sally.

 

 

Guest Post – Wendy Janes – Musings on proofreading fiction and non-fiction


As writers it is always helpful when those who edit, proofread and format our words, provide us with tutorials.  This post by Wendy Janes was published two year’s ago but I think is worth revisiting. Particularly as I need to update Wendy’ books.

I will now hand you over to Wendy…. enjoy.

710u6nvmhnl-_ux250_Musings on proofreading fiction and non-fiction.

Back in the twentieth century when I started out as a freelance proofreader I worked solely on non-fiction, mainly academic texts for a variety of publishing houses. Each had an in-house style guide that editors and proofreaders were expected to work from, which was very useful for a newbie who felt she needed a safety net.

In addition to correcting grammar and punctuation, I became involved in decisions about the hierarchy of headings, styles for different types of lists, plus the setting of figures, tables and boxes. I was also required to check in-text quotations and references against bibliographies and reference lists, as well as ensuring that bibliographies and reference lists were set correctly and contained full publishing details. It was meticulous and rewarding work.

Friends used to remark that I must be very clever, since I spent my days reading so many interesting books about obscure aspects of subjects such as education, history, politics, art and film. Alas, this wasn’t the case. Although I had been totally immersed in a book while proofreading, once I’d finished, it was astonishing how little I could remember. Maybe there’s only so much my brain can retain. However, one fact I do recall is that Queen Victoria and Prince Albert were delivered by the same midwife.

Anyway, let’s get back to the proofreading…

After a few years, a publisher offered me a novel to proofread. Elated by a sense of freedom – no lists, no figs/tabs/boxes, no quotes and, joy of joy, no extensive bibliographies and references to double-check – I reckoned this was going to be a doddle.

To my surprise, it wasn’t.

Very quickly I discovered that I had to constrain my initial impulse to impose every single rule I’d been required to use when proofreading non-fiction. Let’s take the following sentence, as an example:

The therapist should ensure they keep their notes up to date.

In the textbooks I’d been proofreading I was expected to change this to:

The therapist should ensure he or she keeps his or her notes up to date.

OR

Therapists should ensure they keep their notes up to date.

Some of my publishers encouraged their authors to make a note at the start of the book if they had chosen to run with masculine or feminine, but the mix of singular and plural was to be avoided at all costs. This is far less of an issue with informal non-fiction and in novels, where common usage and flow is more important. For a while when proofreading fiction I had to physically stop myself from correcting this. Mentally, I still make the correction, whatever I’m reading.

Similarly, I would correct the following contractions in the reference books I was working on:

Good therapists don’t doodle in their notebooks during therapy sessions. It’s not professional.

TO

Good therapists do not doodle in their notebooks during therapy sessions. It is not professional.

That formal style would make for a very stilted novel, and in dialogue (unless the character is particularly prim and proper) it would sound downright wrong.

As I received more fiction titles it became clearer that while errors in fiction can suck all the drama from a novel, errors in non-fiction make the reader doubt the authenticity and accuracy of the information. I also realised the importance of listening to the novelist’s voice and the need to take time to decide when to intervene and when to let something go. In fact my touch is now much lighter with both fiction and non-fiction, and I reckon that makes for better proofreading.

I believe I was lucky to start off proofreading non-fiction for publishers, picking up invaluable tips from the editors I worked with while honing my skills. I think this post is a sort of thank you for that start. Without it I wouldn’t have been able to make the move into proofreading for independent authors. Initially, working with indie authors felt like swinging through the air on a trapeze without a safety net below. No in-house style sheet to rely on, no editors to double-check things with, just a knowledge that I had the confidence and skills to take that leap, catch the bar, execute a perfect somersault and land gracefully on the other side.

Books by Wendy Janes

Wendy JanesOne of the excellent reviews for What Jennifer Knows

‘What Jennifer Knows’ is a subtle and shocking tale of modern family life and relationships.
Sensitively drawn characters charm us but we, like them, are unsure who to trust. The shifting nature of loyalty and love is portrayed through searingly honest glimpses into the characters’ lives, both past and present.

The children in the novel are beautifully drawn and the way Tim’s siblings give him the acceptance and understanding he needs is both heart-breaking and wonderful.
As the complex plot deepens, we become so caught up in the characters’ lives that we have a real sense of urgency to know what will happen. How will Jennifer deal with what she knows? The final twist gives a fitting ending to this extra-ordinary book.
 

Wendy Janes

One of the reviews for What Tim Knows and other stories.

After reading and enjoying “What Jennifer Knows” by Wendy Janes, I was looking forward to seeing what these short stories held. Although all the stories were engaging, my favorites were “The Never-Ending Day” and “What Tim Knows”.

“The Never-Ending Day” tells the story of a new young mother, and I was completely impressed with Janes ability to make the reader feel this poor woman’s anxiety, fear, and isolation as she tried to adjust to her new role as a parent. Becoming a mother is often painted as an awe-inspiring experience, but in truth we know that many women struggle with the new responsibility, and when they do it’s easy for them to feel as if there’s something wrong with them. This piece was intensely honest, and I was relieved when the story ended on a positive note.

“What Tim Knows” tells the story of a young autistic boy going to his first birthday party. Janes did an excellent job of showing what it must be like to go inside the mind of someone on the spectrum and the constant struggle to make sense of the world, especially as a child.

Janes has a wonderful ability to place herself inside the hearts and minds of a variety of character types, making her readers feel empathy for those characters, even in instances when the reader may not particularly like them. I would highly recommend this read. 

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Wendy-Janes/e/B016J66C9G

About Wendy Janes

Wendy Janes lives in London with her husband and youngest son. She is the author of the novel, What Jennifer Knows and the short story collection, What Tim Knows, and other stories. She has also contributed short stories to a number of anthologies, including the fundraising anthology, A Kind of Mad Courage.

Her writing is inspired by family, friends, and everyday events that only need a little twist to become entertaining fiction.

As well as writing contemporary fiction, she loves to read it too, and spreads
the word about good books online and in the real world.

Wendy is also a freelance proofreader, and a caseworker for The National Autistic Society’s Education Rights Service.
There are many testimonials for Wendy’s work and I am just sharing one with you here. I suggest that you pop over and read the others. You will be impressed.

“Wendy proofread my second novel, she is a pleasure to work with. Her knowledge, skill and sharp eyes picked up numerous, minor errors which both I and my editor had overlooked despite numerous read throughs. Wendy noted misleading sentences, caught graves which should have been acutes and found spaces in places they shouldn’t haven’t been.

My manuscript now sparkles, and I would definitely use Wendy again. Her prices are fair, her work is exemplary, and the proofread was completed ahead of schedule.
Thank you, Wendy, for a scrupulous and professional service. Thoroughly recommended.” Sam Russell, author of the contemporary romances A Bed of Barley Straw and A Bed of Brambles
 

To find out more about Wendy, proofreading, her own published work and how to get in touch here are the links.

Website: http://wendyproof.co.uk/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/wendyproof
LinkedIn: uk.linkedin.com/pub/wendy-janes/56/852/11a/en
Google + : https://plus.google.com/106071781880105004637/about
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/wendyjproof/about

My thanks to Wendy for her very interesting and useful post and you are of course welcome to share in anyway that is physically possible.  You are also most welcome to contribute to this blog.  I consider it a collaborative work in progress and the more variety the better..

Guest Post and #Challenge – Wendy Janes – An Invitation to leap…..


I was delighted when Wendy Janes suggested that she share a post here today on the subject of our extra day this year on February 29th. Apart from her entertaining and informative post, we also have a small and easy to enter challenge for you.  I will hand you over to Wendy.

Wendy Janes

An Invitation to leap…..

I was playing hop-scotch in the primary school playground with my friend Katy and her cousin Maria when Maria announced that she only had a birthday once every four years.

What?

My seven-year-old mind thought how impossibly mean her parents must be. How could they make her miss out on years and years of birthday cake and presents? And then I wondered what dreadful thing she must have done to be punished so severely. Before I could even start to articulate any questions, the dinner lady with the hat like a plum pudding had rung the bell for the end of playtime.

Luckily my mum explained it all to me at home time, and reassured me that Maria wasn’t being punished for a misdeed, but had simply been born on 29 February.

Many questions later, I was a seven-year-old expert on leap years. I loved hearing about the scientific origins of needing to tidy up that messy quarter of a day every four years. And spent ages debating with my parents the logistics of whether it was correct to celebrate on 28 February, a day early, but in the right month, or on 1 March, a day late, but in the wrong month.

At that time the whole thing about women proposing to men on 29 February didn’t mean much to me. But in later years as my girlish thoughts turned to boys and weddings, these traditions became far more interesting. Recently the whole women proposing to men thing gave me an ideal opening scene for my book, What Jennifer Knows. In preparation for writing I thought I’d immerse myself in the origins of the tradition, and while the detail wasn’t needed for the story, the research was enlightening.

One popular story originates with St Bridget. In the fifth century it is said that St Bridget had complained to St Patrick that women were having to wait far too long for their suitors to ask them to marry. In response St Patrick gave women one day in a leap year to ask for a man’s hand in marriage. Stories about what could happen to men if they refuse such a proposal vary around the world. It is said by some that Queen Margaret of Scotland made a law that fined men who refused to accept a marriage proposal from women in a leap year. However, as Margaret would have been five years old at the time, maybe that story isn’t the strongest. I rather like the handing over of twelve pairs of gloves (Denmark), or giving fabric for a skirt (Finland). Apparently the gloves are to cover the woman’s hand so she doesn’t have to show her lack of an engagement ring.

In my research I found this thoroughly entertaining list: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/9113311/Top-20-craziest-facts-about-leap-years.html

I also came across a 2012 article about BBC Radio 4’s PM programme that asked listeners what unusual or different thing they would do to take advantage of the extra day. Ideas included resolving to speak Mandarin all day, taking up the hula-hoop after a break of more than fifty years, and getting a tattoo. This year the programme is repeating the invitation for people to take a leap of some kind.

As 29 February 2016 falls on a Monday, it’ll be a working day for many of us. I’m not brave enough to take a leap, but I have been trying to decide what I could do on my “extra” day, and after dismissing bungee jumping (too scary), learning to ice skate (too cold), or taking up playing the harp (too many strings), I thought I’d do something I’ve been meaning to do for far too long.

I have many old pairs of spectacles…pause for a chuckle at some examples from the 1980s and 90s…

w1w2

and I’ve lost count of the number of years I’ve been saying I must take them to our local optician who will send them to Vision Aid Overseas. That organisation recycles old glasses in an environmentally friendly way, and raises money to fulfil their mission “to enable people living in poverty to access affordable spectacles and eye care”. So, on 29 February 2016 I shall go round the house delving into drawers and cupboards and finally take all my old spectacles to the optician. Not exactly an imaginative or exciting activity, but I hope it’ll help make a difference.

Thank you to Sally for giving me the space to share this post on her blog. Now it’s over to you. Is there something you’d like to do on your “extra” day?

Thanks very much Wendy for a highly entertaining post and also for inspiring the challenge for next week.

THE CHALLENGE

Wendy and I put out heads together and thought it would be a fine way to celebrate Leap Year and our extra day by asking you to send in your plans for the day.

Up to 100 words.. Entitled – What I will do with my extra day this year. Please send to sally.cronin@moyhill.com with your photo and a link to your blog, website or main social media site such as Facebook.

On the 29th I will post all of the entries…. Unless of course we hit the jackpot in which case there may be more than one post!

There are no prizes as it is not a competition but just a fun way to celebrate Leap Year 2016.

About Wendy Janes

51xuKwBmwjL._UY250_

Wendy Janes lives in London with her husband and youngest son. A number of her short stories have appeared in anthologies, and she is the author of the novel, What Jennifer Knows. Her writing is inspired by family, friends, and everyday events that only need a little twist to become entertaining fiction.

Image what jennifer

She is currently working on half a dozen short stories that are loosely linked to What Jennifer Knows. Although she is still extremely fond of Jennifer and her husband Gerald, her next novel will be a modern-day drama featuring completely new characters. Wendy has contributed to a number of anthologies and an historical memoir.

As well as writing contemporary fiction, she loves to read it too, and spreads
the word about good books online and in the real world.

Wendy is also a freelance proofreader, and a caseworker for the National Autistic Society’s Education Rights Service.

Buy all of Wendy’s books.

Amazon author’s page: http://www.amazon.co.uk/-/e/B016J66C9G

To connect with Wendy.

Website: http://wendyproof.co.uk/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/wendyproof
LinkedIn: uk.linkedin.com/pub/wendy-janes/56/852/11a/en
Google + : https://plus.google.com/106071781880105004637/about
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/wendyjproof/about

Thanks for dropping by and look forward to hearing what you are going to do with your extra day this year… up to 100 words and sent to sally.cronin@moyhill.com etc.

 

 

Discounted Book Offer – What Jennifer Knows by Wendy Janes – 14th -18th January


Free or Discounted

Welcome to another new promotion series. Free or Discounted Books. Today Wendy Janes is celebrating her birthday with a discounted offer for her book What Jennifer Knows. The book has received some wonderful reviews and I am sharing just two with you today. The book is just 99p/99c from today until 18th of January. I recommend that you head over to the links and take advantage of the offer. And please do not forget to review.

About the Book

51xuKwBmwjL._UY250_

A vital member of her Surrey community, Jennifer Jacobs is dedicated to her job as a dance therapist, helping children with special needs to express themselves through movement. Wife of a successful though reclusive sculptor, Gerald, she is known for having a deep sense of empathy, making her a trusted confidante.

So when two very different friends, Freya and Abi, both share information with her that at first seems to be an awkward coincidence, she doesn’t tell them. But as the weeks roll by, the link revealed between the two women begins to escalate into a full-blown moral dilemma – and also brings to the surface a painful memory Jennifer believed she had long since forgotten.

What is the right thing to do? Should she speak out or is the truth better left unsaid?

Two of the reviews for What Jennifer Knows

A page-turner that would easily transfer to TV screen By Patricia Hallett on 20 Oct. 2015 Format: Kindle Edition

Wendy Janes’ tale of intrigue, bitter-sweet love affairs, and naïve calculating is etched on our hearts from the moment we meet Freya . She is organising a surprise supper in a desperate attempt to snare her lover in marriage when she turns for help to Jennifer, the central character and lead storyteller.

Once known for her beauty this attractive and gentle mother and grandmother is a teacher of dance, who soon finds herself an unwitting catalyst in young Freya’s life revealing a shocking dilemma almost impossible to deal with.

We continue on an emotional journey with Jennifer, feeling her reluctance to divulge too much too soon as indecision plays havoc with her conscience.

From her middle-class home, in leafy Larksmill which she shares with sculptor husband Gerald, we are soon heavily engrossed in the gossipy lives of her other friends and family.
Janes’ novel also gives Jennifer the chance to reflect on her own poignant story of regrets and lost love. Touching and moving this deviation only serves to build further tension as the reader subtlety uncovers layer by layer what Jennifer knows.

An enjoyable read I feel this riveting page-turner would easily transfer to the television screen.

A new contemporary fiction author to watch – stunning debut By SoozBuch on 29 Oct. 2015 Format: Kindle Edition

I received an advance review copy in exchange for an honest review. My star rating – 4.5 stars
I’d already read and enjoyed a couple of short stories by this author, and was looking forward to her first full-length novel.

I wasn’t disappointed. From perhaps about a third of the way in, you can see the ‘car crash’ waiting to happen, as you are meant to, however the journey to get to that point is what keeps us hooked, and wanting to read more. I found myself being annoyed by the household tasks which got in the way of my being able to read more, always a good sign! I liked Jennifer, and to a slightly lesser extent her husband, who I thought was a bit up himself. But I did think Jennifer would have been an interesting person to meet, and a helpful soul.

Abi, her friend, would have been interesting to meet too, but I liked her a bit less. She was very self-absorbed, but was meant to be. Only later in the book do we find out much more about Abi, her emotions and the reasons for her behaviour.

Freya, Jennifer’s new friend, is the antithesis of Abi, and you could imagine people walking all over her, as she was so nice. The dilemma facing Jennifer when she unearths a common link between her two friends, old and new, is an age-old, and tricky one. I’d like to say I would have done the opposite of what Jennifer did, but who can tell. This is the kind of novel which you could happily debate with your friends about whether the right choice had been made.

I particularly loved the ending, and found it a little unexpected. The gall and the audacity of the male lead in all of this knew no bounds and I would certainly give him a piece of my mind if I ever met him. The writing style is easy to read, yet the prose is beautiful. A very well-crafted book for a debut novel, with the various strands being seamlessly woven together, and the denouement coming as a bit of a shock.

I think we have a new contemporary fiction author to watch. I look forward to the next book

Here are the Amazon UK and US links to take advantage of this offer:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B016IPN8W2
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B016IPN8W2

Other books by Wendy Janes

51-B7wh4iGL._UY250_index

About Wendy Janes

710U6NvMhNL._UX250_

Wendy Janes lives in London with her husband and youngest son. A number of her short stories have appeared in anthologies, and she is the author of the novel, What Jennifer Knows. Her writing is inspired by family, friends, and everyday events that only need a little twist to become entertaining fiction.

She is currently working on half a dozen short stories that are loosely linked to What Jennifer Knows. Although she is still extremely fond of Jennifer and her husband Gerald, her next novel will be a modern-day drama featuring completely new characters. Wendy has contributed to a number of anthologies and an historical memoir.

As well as writing contemporary fiction, she loves to read it too, and spreads
the word about good books online and in the real world.

Wendy is also a freelance proofreader, and a caseworker for the National Autistic Society’s Education Rights Service.

Buy all of Wendy’s books.

Amazon author’s page: http://www.amazon.co.uk/-/e/B016J66C9G

To connect with Wendy.

Website: http://wendyproof.co.uk/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/wendyproof
LinkedIn: uk.linkedin.com/pub/wendy-janes/56/852/11a/en
Google + : https://plus.google.com/106071781880105004637/about
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/wendyjproof/about

If you would like to take advantage of the various book marketing opportunities FREE here on the blog then please take a look at the directory.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/smorgasbord-free-promotion-opportunities-2016/

I hope you will take up Wendy’s offer for her book and also be so kind as to hit a few share buttons to spread the word. Thanks for dropping by…Sally

Happy Birthday Wendy.

Christmas Grotto – Books – What Jennifer Knows by Wendy Janes


Christmas GrottoToday the featured book is the newly released novel What Jennifer Knows by Wendy Janes. Wendy has been contributing short stories to anthologies for some time and has also published a historical memoir. This is her first novel and marks a new chapter in her writing career. Many of you will be familiar with her highly interesting and informative posts on the subject of proofreading. A subject dear to all our hearts!

51xuKwBmwjL._UY250_

About the Book

A vital member of her Surrey community, Jennifer Jacobs is dedicated to her job as a dance therapist, helping children with special needs to express themselves through movement. Wife of a successful though reclusive sculptor, Gerald, she is known for having a deep sense of empathy, making her a trusted confidante.

So when two very different friends, Freya and Abi, both share information with her that at first seems to be an awkward coincidence, she doesn’t tell them. But as the weeks roll by, the link revealed between the two women begins to escalate into a full-blown moral dilemma – and also brings to the surface a painful memory Jennifer believed she had long since forgotten.

What is the right thing to do? Should she speak out or is the truth better left unsaid?

 Buy the book

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B016IPN8W2

About Wendy Janes

710U6NvMhNL._UX250_

Wendy Janes lives in London with her husband and youngest son. A number of her short stories have appeared in anthologies, and she is the author of the novel, What Jennifer Knows. Her writing is inspired by family, friends, and everyday events that only need a little twist to become entertaining fiction.

She is currently working on half a dozen short stories that are loosely linked to What Jennifer Knows. Although she is still extremely fond of Jennifer and her husband Gerald, her next novel will be a modern-day drama featuring completely new characters. Wendy has contributed to a number of anthologies and an historical memoir.

As well as writing contemporary fiction, she loves to read it too, and spreads
the word about good books online and in the real world.

Wendy is also a freelance proofreader, and a caseworker for the National Autistic Society’s Education Rights Service.

A selection of Wendy’s other published work.

51-B7wh4iGL._UY250_index

Buy the books
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Wendy-Janes/e/B016J66C9G
Amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B016IPN8W2

Wendy the Proofreader.

There are many testimonials for Wendy’s work and I am just sharing one with you here. I suggest that you pop over and read the others. You will be impressed.

“I highly recommend the proof reading services provided by Wendy Janes. I hired Wendy to proofread my novel, Behind Blue Eyes. Some reviewers on Amazon and Goodreads had complained about wonky grammar and spelling errors (I had already had an editor look at the book, and checked it myself a number of times). I was amazed at the amount of errors Wendy found. Wendy makes corrections and suggestions with care and sensitivity, she never forgets that it is your book, and treats you and the novel with respect. I found the style sheet that Wendy includes to be a fantastic idea, it notes the common issues that she found, and the edits she made. I will definitely use Wendy’s services in the future.” – DM Wolfenden, author of Behind Blue Eyes

To find out more about Wendy, Proofreading, her own published work and how to get in touch here are the links.

Website: http://wendyproof.co.uk/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/wendyproof
LinkedIn: uk.linkedin.com/pub/wendy-janes/56/852/11a/en
Google + : https://plus.google.com/106071781880105004637/about
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/wendyjproof/about

The Shelves are filling up with books and gifts that I will be showcasing up to Christmas. If you would like to feature your book, artwork, designs, gifts and music then please get in touch and I will send you the details.. sally.cronin@moyhill.com

Previous books in the emporium.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/christmas-grotto-2015-books/

Look forward to your feedback.  thanks Sally