Category Archives: Books/writing

Four Famous Frenchwomen

Today is International Women’s Day. It celebrates women’s achievements and highlights the plight of the millions of women around the world who are oppressed, living in abject poverty and certainly not considered equal to their menfolk. Fellow blogger Finding Time … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, French life, History, Personalities, World War I & II | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

The Little Free Library Inaugurated at Saint-Antonin

  So many words have poured out in the past few days, and no doubt will continue to do so, about the horrific events in Paris this week. I can’t add anything to them that isn’t trite or obvious. So … Continue reading

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Parisot Literary Festival 2014: how did it go?

  This poor old blog has been a bit neglected of late, but that’s because so much has been going on that it’s been hard to get to it. One of the local events that has taken up some of … Continue reading

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Corsican Vendetta in Fiction and in Reality

  We have recently returned from our fifth visit to Corsica, the setting for my novel, The House at Zaronza. L’Île de Beauté is a captivating place, with a savage beauty and a culture all its own. If you haven’t … Continue reading

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Parisot Literary Festival October 2014

A heads-up about the second Parisot Literary Festival/Festival Littéraire de Parisot, which will take place this year from 10th to 12th October. Parisot is only a small place with about 500 inhabitants but there’s a lot going on. This event … Continue reading

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New Literary Magazine from Ex-pat Writing Group Writers Abroad

The online writing community for ex-pats that I belong to, Writers Abroad, published the first issue of its new literary magazine on 1st September. It’s packed full of interesting stuff and it’s absolutely free.

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It’s Never Too Late to Start Writing

Originally posted on Jane Bwye:
Happy Birthday, Vanessa! You can be a young writer at any age, Vanessa Couchman tells me. She is one of the more recent Crooked Cat “finds”, and I can vouch for the quality of her…

Posted in Books/writing | 1 Comment

Figeac: Medieval Gem

  Every time we go to Figeac I ask myself why we don’t go more often. About 50 minutes’ comfortable drive from here through attractive countryside, it’s no particular hardship to get there. You often need an incentive to do … Continue reading

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French Women and World War I

  It can’t have escaped anyone’s attention that the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of World War I is almost upon us. Huge amounts have been written about almost every aspect of the war. But some topics have received less … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, History, World War I & II | Tagged , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Another excerpt from ‘The House at Zaronza’

With a little over two weeks to go before publication, here is another short extract from my novel The House at Zaronza. The story is set in early 20th-century Corsica and at the Western Front during World War I.

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An excerpt from my forthcoming novel, ‘The House at Zaronza’

I’m getting very excited about the publication of my historical novel with Crooked Cat Publishing, which is only just over a month away. I’m also delighted with the cover, above. Between now and 29th July, I’ll publish a few short extracts, starting … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, Corsica, Places | Tagged , , , , , | 20 Comments

Unexpected Finds About World War II at a Vide-Greniers

It’s that time of year again. You only have to park the car for five minutes and you find your windscreen bristling with flyers for vide-greniers (jumble sales). Around here, there’s at least one a week for the foreseeable future. … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, Customs, History, World War I & II | Tagged , , , , , , | 18 Comments

Meet My Main Character from My Novel ‘The House at Zaronza’

Today, I’m taking part in a blog hop for historical novelists, entitled ‘Meet My Main Character’. I was tagged by fellow writer and Writers Abroad colleague Dianne Ascroft who wrote about her main character last week.

Posted in Books/writing, Corsica | Tagged , , , , , , , | 25 Comments

My novel, The House at Zaronza, to be published by Crooked Cat Publishing

I’m thrilled to announce that my novel, The House at Zaronza, will be published by independent publishers Crooked Cat Publishing, probably this summer. The novel is based partly on a true story, which we discovered on holiday in Corsica in … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, Corsica | Tagged , , , , , , | 30 Comments

Parisot Literary Festival 2013: the Verdict

‘I [want to] congratulate you on a tremendous literary festival. We enjoyed it immensely and marvelled at the quality of writers you attracted.’ We’ve received many kind comments from people who attended the festival during the weekend of 11th-13th October. … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, Places | Tagged , , , , , , | 18 Comments

The Next Big Thing – Writers Abroad’s Latest Anthology

Every year since 2010, the online writing group for expat writers to which I belong – Writers Abroad – has published an anthology. Since we are spread across the globe and all the work is carried out online, this is … Continue reading

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Behind the Scenes at the Parisot Literary Festival

First, a reminder to anyone who lives in the area or is visiting that our first Literary Festival will take place in Parisot this weekend (11th-13th October) with a line-up of both French and British authors. See the programme on … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, French life, Places | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Goose Fat and Garlic

A few weeks ago – only just found time to write about it – I attended the launch of a new edition of Goose Fat and Garlic, a book about the cooking and recipes of SW France. Jeanne Strang, who … Continue reading

Posted in Aveyron, Books/writing, Food/drink/recipes | Tagged , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

Ex-Pat Writers – Contribute to a New Anthology

Originally posted on Vanessa Couchman:
The online ex-pat writers’ group, Writers Abroad, of which I’m a member, will be publishing its fourth anthology this year, with the working title of Far Flung and Foreign. We are looking for other ex-pat…

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Ex-Pat Writers – Contribute to a New Anthology

Originally posted on Vanessa Couchman:
The online ex-pat writers’ group, Writers Abroad, of which I’m a member, will be publishing its fourth anthology this year, with the working title of Far Flung and Foreign. We are looking for other ex-pat…

Posted in Books/writing | Leave a comment

A Great Way to Celebrate Three Years

My blog is three years old today. It has survived the terrible twos and is now learning joined-up writing. And it has readers as far apart as Nova Scotia and Qatar. It will not have escaped your notice that today … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, French life | Tagged , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

The Next Big Thing – ‘The House at Zaronza’

Since I wrote this (in 2013), The House at Zaronza has been published by Crooked Cat Publishing, in July 2014. Find out more about it on my writing site. This post belongs here, rather than on my writing site, owing … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, Corsica | Tagged , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

Foreign Encounters Book Launch

I’m a bit late reporting on this event, which took place about 10 days ago. Blame this wretched novel I’m working on for National Novel Writing Month. I have almost reached the requisite 50,000 words but mine is going to … Continue reading

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French Provincial Cooking

When pondering what to serve dinner guests this coming Saturday I reached for my disintegrating copy of Elizabeth David’s French Provincial Cooking. Not because I expected to copy a user-friendly recipe but because it is chock-full of ideas. First published … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, Food/drink/recipes, Personalities | Tagged , , , , , | 13 Comments

Foreign Encounters, a New Anthology from Writers Abroad

Writers Abroad, the online writing group for ex-pat writers I belong to, is publishing a new anthology today, entitled Foreign Encounters. It contains short stories, non-fiction and poems by writers who are, or have been, ex-pats. They live in, or … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, World War I & II | Tagged , , , , , | 9 Comments

A Romantic, and True, Corsican Tale

Wherever I go, I find out so much more if I speak to the locals. This was certainly so during our recent – fourth – visit to Corsica, where we always find new things to see. We would not have … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, Corsica, History | Tagged , , , , , | 13 Comments

Opportunity to Contribute to a New Expat Anthology

My online, expat writers’ group, Writers Abroad, will be publishing its third anthology this year, Foreign Encounters. We are seeking submissions of short stories, non-fiction pieces and poetry on the general theme of relationships around the world. Contributors must be … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, French life | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Who Won the Blog Hop Book?

Just a short post today to say thank you to everyone who joined in the blog hop last Monday, organised by Steph at Blog in France . I enjoyed reading some new (to me) blogs and ‘meeting’ other bloggers and … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, French life | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

Book Review: Aveyron, a Bridge to French Arcadia

I don’t often do book reviews here. It’s difficult to strike a balance between being overly ingratiating and offensively critical. However, I am making an exception today to mention a book I have just finished and enjoyed about the Aveyron … Continue reading

Posted in Aveyron, Books/writing, History, Places | Tagged , , , , | 10 Comments

Awards, Awards!

In the past couple of days two people have very kindly given my blog an award (now three – see below). This has really brightened up the end of January for me, which in my opinion is the most dismal … Continue reading

Posted in Books/writing, French life | Tagged , , , , | 19 Comments