Wednesday, 18 December 2013

New website launch

I'm very pleased to launch my new website. It contains information about all of my writing, including my latest book for children, Adventures of the Time Travelling Friends.

Adventures of the Time Travelling Friends

Adventures of the Time-Travelling Friends is about 14 year-old Beth who has to stay with strange old Aunt Hypollita (Aunt Hippo) while her mum has a baby. Beth shows off about going but once there, gets to quite like funny Aunt Hippo.

One night Meg, a girl who lived in Aunt's house in the 1780s magically appears in Beth's room and they become friends. The story flips between Beth's time and Meg's time. Meg's mum plans to marry Meg to a rich Scottish Lord who the girls call 'The Fuzzy Ginger Beard'. It's up to Beth to save her with the help of Meg's friend Bryan and his beautiful horses and Marigold Maybelle, a good witch who makes magic with her rap songs!

All the time the girls have to dodge nasty Seawick, Meg's mum's sinister manservant who they suspect of stealing Meg's last treasure, her lovely silver Chalice.

Can they find it and save Meg from the Fuzzy Ginger Beard?

Buy Adventures of the Time Travelling Friends from Amazon now.

The Flower of Remembrance

My article "The Flower of Remembrance" in the November 2013 edition of the Countryman Magazine traces the history of the Poppy and how it became a worldwide symbol of commemoration of the fallen, to John McCrae's famous poem: In Flanders Fields:

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

The idea of a manufactured poppy was pioneered by Moina Belle Michael of the YMCA in New York in 1918. Inspired by McCrae's poem, she hunted down 25 manufactured red poppies and sold them to anyone willing to buy.

The story quickly spread and ever more poppies were demanded.

Anna Guérin of the French YMCA Secretariat was enthralled by Moina's idea of wearing a manufactured Flanders Field Poppy as a poignant memorial and potential fund-raising initiative. In France she organised the production of cloth poppies on a grand scale with the help of women, children and veterans.

The idea took off and in the following years millions were made and sold to support war veterans and their dependents. Poppies were soon being assembled, sold and worn with pride worldwide, every one a deed of courage remembered.

My writing tips

Coming soon - I will be sharing some of my writing tips!

The Archangel and the White Hart

The Archangel and the White Hart is an anthology of work by members of the Verulam Writers' Circle. It also includes the winning entries from the 2010 "Get Writing" competition.

Buy The Archangel and the White Hart now on Amazon.

Saucy Shorts for Chefs

A tasty collection of sumptuous short stories mixed with delicious recipes. Divided into starters, main courses and desserts this title is a literary candle-lit dinner. £1 per every copy sold will benefit Breast Cancer Campaign.

Buy Saucy Shorts for Chefs on Amazon now.


Dave Weaver is a prolific writer of stories short and long. Look out for his super new fantasy novel 'Jacey's Kingdom' which will burst onto the scene soon!

Interview with Dave:

What first got you interested in writing?

School essays, I enjoyed writing stories and usually did quite well with them. Then one day about twelve years ago I thought I’d try writing again. I don’t know why.

What kind of stories did you start writing and how have you developed?
What inspires you?

The first thing I wrote when I started writing again was a novel called ‘The Timekeepers’ which wasn’t very good but did three basic things; proved I could finish a project, showed me how to write a dramatic scheme and taught me how to structure an over-reaching arc of plot for a whole story. I’m not saying I did these things well but I managed to find out how to do them.

What were your favourite childhood books?

Enid Blyton’s Mallory Towers and St. Clares novels (for girls!) and the Thomas the Tank Engine stories (had the whole set in hardback). The first Science fiction novel I read was Robert A Heinlein’s Starship Troopers (nothing like the film). I got into the classic American Sci-fi writers in my early teens. ‘Day of the Triffids’ and other John Wyndham read at school were a big influence.

What do you think are the main differences in modern children's books? 
What do children expect now?

Children’s books now seem to be both more realistic and more fantastic; the reader is not spoken down to as maybe they were previously because either the writer is much younger or better able to be simpatico with a younger mind. Or simply have a more fluid and adaptable writer with a better realised imagination. The age range is greater; there is something for all ages and no longer an enforced dividing line between boys and girls in subject matter which works for the benefit of both sexes. There is more swearing/natural language in pressure situations, more realism in relationships and death and sex are usually both dealt with in a responsible un-patronising fashion.

Why do you think children still enjoy reading hard back books as well as e-books?

Children like collecting items and the physical touch of things. They also like to collect and trade which you can’t really do with e-books.   

If you could keep only one book, what would it be and why?

‘Lord of the Rings’ – I could re-read it at any time and be transported from any situation into sublime fantasy; my desert Island book.

Are any of your fictional characters based on real life people?

George in my first novel ‘Jacey’s Kingdom’ is the grumpy side of me with the same pathetic sense of middle-aged bloke humour.

Do you have a 'dream book' waiting to be written?

I could be trite and say the next one, but I’d love to write a really exciting trilogy once I get a great deal better at what I’m doing.

Anything else you would like to add?

My next novel out on Elsewhen Press is called ‘Japanese Daisy-chain’. It’s an interlinked-character collection of stories set all over modern day Japan where the end returns us to the beginning with a new understanding of events that have taken place. I hope readers will enjoy it and also enjoy reading my YA fantasy novel ‘Jacey’s Kingdom’.
Here’s a link to my blog with links to ‘Jacey’ and a couple of other e-books of my short stories:
Thanks for the interview Wendy!

Thanks Dave!