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It’s book launch day over at Crystal Lake Publishing:

You never know who is on the other side of the screen.

Sidney, a single mother with a dull day job, has big dreams of becoming a full-time horror reviewer and risqué gore model. She’s determined to make her website a success, and if her growing pool of online followers is any indication, things are looking good for her Elvira-esque aspirations. In fact, Sidney has so many followers that chatting with them is getting to be a job in itself. More than a job, it might be getting a little risky….

When Sidney is attacked on a dark trail late one night, it becomes clear that the horror she loves is bleeding into her real life. She learns that real-life horror is not a game, and being stalked isn’t flattering—it’s terrifying, and it could get her killed.

Sidney—and her loved ones—are now in serious danger. This stalker isn’t just another online fan: he knows her movements, and he knows her routine. In fact, he’s right behind her… and when he gets close enough, he won’t take no for an answer.

Followers is a mystery and thriller with a strong female protagonist that blends women’s fiction with horror.

Grab one now on paperback and Kindle:

Proudly represented by Crystal Lake Publishing—Tales from the Darkest Depths
Writer's Talk / Re: All good things...
« Last post by rewh2oman on Today at 05:49:40 PM »

And if you ever figure out what you're "supposed to do now", please let us know.
Writer's Talk / All good things...
« Last post by Jo Bannister on Today at 08:45:45 AM »
...must come to an end, and usually quicker than the bad ones!

It's official: I've retired.  And yes, it was my decision; and no, it wasn't because my publisher dumped me!

Since finishing "China Roses" I'd been wondering if I really wanted to start the whole process again.  Even though I had a new book plotted out in my head, I hadn't the enthusiasm for it that I'd always had before.  I don't think it was the book's fault, I think it's just anno domini.  I've been doing this - professionally, not just for pleasure - for forty years. 

When my editor e-mailed earlier this week to ask if there was a new book on the way, I felt I had to make a decision - or rather, communicate a decision I had already all but taken.  So I spoke to my agent and then to the publishers.  Both were very understanding - my editor emphasised that "Roses" is one of their top sellers in the States at the moment, and left the door wide open in case I change my mind - and we parted on the best of terms.  I feel privileged to have been able to make the decision for myself instead of having it forced on me, and am satisfied that "Roses" was a worthy book to finish on.

So here I am, an ex-novelist.  Beats me what I'm supposed to do now!

The Bar & Grill / When your 'resting' characters have a go at you ;-)
« Last post by Gyppo on September 23, 2021, 11:40:47 AM »
"Dear Author (or whatever you call yourself these days).

Since you abandoned me thirty years ago to pursue those tedious real life issues such as having children and earning a living, (whatever that means), I have been sat here in a cold cave in the Brecons, surrounded by people who are hunting me with murder in their hearts.  And believe me, after thirty years frozen to one spot in all weathers, especially the poor sod you left falling halfway down a rock face, they are truly and deeply murderous.  Wouldn't you be?

If you are going to stomp back into our lives and cause us a whole new round of grief may I suggest the following...

For yourself, a metaphorical bullet-proof vest, although that won't protect you against 'Mr Headshot', your unbelievably accurate Master Sniper.  He was always a conceited bastard anyway.  None of us liked him.  We pissed in his thermos of Earl Grey tea whenever he wasn't looking.

For us, time to walk out the cramp from our joints without you making a Mills & Boon type meal of it.  We will not be saying "Ooh argh, that hurts.  We have had three decades in which to invent some wonderfully imaginative and lurid descriptions of yourself and your ancestry.

We would like a decent story line this time, not the pathetic shrivelled little thing we desperately tried to support for you before you just put the cover back on your typewriter and walked away.

People use word processors these days, in case you haven't noticed.  Their 'resting' characters drowse away in comparative comfort in snug little electronic files, rather than spread over a thick wedge of damp, mildewed, and rodent nibbled pages stored in some ghastly loft or garage.

You have absolutely no idea what we have been through since you so cruelly abandoned us.  (Although some of us did manage to escape a few times to the Station Bar on some writer's circle or other for a while.)

But if you ask nicely, and are prepared to accept a few less than complimentary observations along the way, we may well be willing to dance to your tune again.  And we'll dance better than you.  Because we are no older than when you walked out.  Whereas you...  But I don't need to rub it in, do I?

PS:  Bring Chocolate, Spirits, and maybe even some flowers for the ladies.  And throw your cap in first, don't just barge in.  Some of the lads have set traps.

The Bar & Grill / Re: Good fences make good neighbours: Hammering home the point ;-)
« Last post by Laura on September 23, 2021, 11:40:27 AM »
Your Dad knew how to find his way in this world, didn't he?

Now, let's revisit that bit about the sidecar. Were you touring on motorcycle?
The Bar & Grill / Good fences make good neighbours: Hammering home the point ;-)
« Last post by Gyppo on September 23, 2021, 11:20:06 AM »
    I remember one year when we were going away for a holiday.  Dad locked up the caravan quite carefully, but he'd put some of the more portable and valuable stuff into our little shed 'just in case'.

    We were just about ready to go when he stopped, took another look at the rather flimsy padlock on the shed, and took an extra ten minutes to nail the shed door shut with half a dozen six inch nails.  Banged in at various angles in a kind of metallic 'dovetail joint' around the door frame.

    I queried the need for this, saying our neighbours seemed honest enough.

    "They probably are, Son, but this will help them stay honest."

    The claw hammer was just casually lobbed into the back of the sidecar and off we went.

    It took him well over half an hour to 'break back in' when we got home, but everything was safe.

    I've realised since this was also a public statement/warning to any would-be pilferer who might be watching.

The Bar & Grill / Re: Your Favorite Song Today
« Last post by Vienna on September 22, 2021, 08:23:39 AM »
RIP Richard H Kirk

Cabaret Voltaire - Nag Nag Nag
The Bar & Grill / Re: Your Favorite Song Today
« Last post by Gyppo on September 21, 2021, 04:26:47 PM »
The Bar & Grill / Re: BWF Bar and Grill
« Last post by Gyppo on September 19, 2021, 10:21:31 PM »
I can't remember the last time i saw a dog with a docked tail.


I've had a plethora of 'you have mail' dings today, and nearly all of them have automatically ended up in my junk mail folder.  Which at least shows my filters are working ;-)

Apparently my non-existent MacAfee anti-virus is; a) about to expire, b) has expired, or, c) will expire because I haven't paid for renewal.

I'm happy to say messages like 'your account has been terminated for non-payment' are a mere nuisance and not a cause for panic.

All a great mystery as I've never used it, which could be why I've not renewed it ;-)

I suspect this will go on for a few days now, as it did last time.

In the meantime I'll listen to some gentle Irish Accordion music as I wend my way gently towards bedtime after a fairly laid back day.


The Bar & Grill / Re: BWF Bar and Grill
« Last post by Jo Bannister on September 19, 2021, 03:14:38 PM »
Four lovely things about that pic, Mark.  Dog having fun playing with people.  Man having fun playing with dog.  Exuberance winning hands down over common sense (though as you know, if your horse took off that far from a jump you'd be out the back door.  Or at least, I would).  And the tail which is every dog's birthright to express his pleasure. 

Today, for the first time in a while, I saw a docked springer spaniel.  It looked pathetic.  It may have been perfectly happy, but without a banner to wave, how is anyone to know? 
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