Spectacular Settings – WEP entry August 2015


The paragraph below is taken from:

Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee:

An Indian History of the American West – by Dee Brown

Image (24)
‘I did not know then how much was ended. When I look back now from this high hill of my old age, I can still see the butchered women and children lying heaped and scattered all along the crooked gulch as plain as when I saw them with eyes still young. And I can see that something else died there in the bloody mud, and was buried in the blizzard. A people’s dream died there. It was a beautiful dream …’

Black Elk (1863 – 1950), of the Sioux


The book is factual, and touched me on several levels. The statement may sound poetic, but it is the way in which great medicine men like Nicholas Black Elk spoke. It not only summarises one scene, but gives an insight to the atrocities performed by the multi-national invaders upon North America.


An excerpt from my Goodreads review:

‘Apart from the callousness and cruelty visited upon the original caretakers of the North American continent I feel one of the most sickening thoughts is that it happened so recently – some of it in the late 19th Century.

I cannot recommend Dee Brown’s insights too highly. It should be compulsory reading for all American citizens – they owe that much to the memory of the Indians. Those same citizens should also educate their offspring to the deeds of their ‘brave’ forefathers.

An optional title for this book might be ‘Man’s Inhumanity to Man’.’


And now, in total contrast:
My Work in Progress is an erotic novel – publication 1st Sept 2015.Give and Take - the final cover

Give and Take
(an excerpt from Chapter 2 – The White Room)

Nick sat up in bed, experiencing déjà vu as he lifted the glass. He sipped the water and let the fresh liquid wash around his mouth before he swallowed. As he placed the glass down again, the bedroom door opened.

“I see you’ve finally come back to life.” The visitor was an attractive woman. “My name is Heather.”

Nick leaned back on his elbows. His eyes opened wide, and his lips parted. Heather was in her mid-thirties, and at least 6ft tall. When she turned to close the door, her long brunette ponytail swished from side to side. A narrow band of black skirt showed below the hem of her short white lab coat. Thin black seams ran straight down the back of perfect legs and disappeared into shining black high heels.

Nick acted like a startled rabbit in headlights when his visitor turned to face him. High-arched eyebrows, hazel eyes, and long dark lashes gave Nick a warm feeling inside. When she spoke again, it brought Nick’s gaze to her sensuous ruby lips.

“It’s time to shed some light on the situation,” Heather said, and strode to the nearest set of drapes. She gave a gentle tug on a concealed cord, and the heavy material parted silently to let in natural light. Heather walked around the bed to the other drapes. As she walked, her unbuttoned coat opened, to show a white blouse and short black skirt.

Nick was feasting his eyes on Heather’s attributes when she reached the second window. She tugged a concealed cord, and the room became even brighter. Nick slid down under the duvet to lie flat on his back. He was aware of familiar stirrings as he devoured this stunning woman with his hungry eyes.

“Do you like what you see so far?” Heather asked as she stepped away from the window. She placed her hands on her hips which pulled the white coat back. There was a clearer view of the well-filled blouse, the top two buttons of which were undone.

“Well?” Heather asked, and inclined her head as she took a step forward.

“Yes,” Nick said and swallowed hard. “I like it a lot.” As usual with Nick, his head was ruled by a pulse further down his body – much further down than his heart.

“Good,” Heather said, as she stepped to the edge of the bed, reached down and pulled back the duvet. When Nick lay uncovered from head to toe, Heather looked down at his arousal and smiled.

Nick had been staring at the steady rise and fall, of Heather’s chest. He gasped at the sudden revelation of his condition. In the short time, he’d been in these strange circumstances it had never occurred to him that he was completely naked. He turned from admiring the statuesque woman and looked down at himself.

“Oh, Nick,” Heather said. “What have you been thinking? You’re blushing too.”

“How do you know my name?” he muttered as he reached to pull the duvet back up. “Where am I?” The thoughts that should have occurred to him earlier were surfacing. “Where is Kirsten?”

Heather leaned on the edge of the bed with both hands and looked into Nick’s wide-eyed stare. She knew what she was doing, and a smile played on her lips. Nick’s gaze fell to the improved view of Heather’s cleavage.

“Later, Nick,” she breathed. “First, you get freshened up and dressed. We’ll talk after you’ve eaten.” She rose to her full height and strode to the door, where she stopped and looked back over her shoulder. “If you don’t want to miss breakfast, you’ve got 20 minutes.”



        Word count 900 :  NCCO

Thank you to all who’ve made the effort to reach this far, and I wish the best of luck to all the participants in the WEP Competition – August 2015



Spring In My Step

Which step is that then?  Well it’s the next step in my writing of course, but more of that shortly.  As we in the UK all take that common leap of faith from March to April we hope to experience a marked change in season, from Winter to Spring.  I for one, will not be holding my breath … .

Small section of the Walled Garden at Blair Castle.

Small section of the Walled Garden at Blair Castle.

What is the graphic all about?  A good question and one that deserves an answer.  In some ways it represents that leap of faith as mentioned above regarding the weather, but it also represents a similar leap … regarding my writing aspirations.  How so? I hear you ask, so I’ll enlighten you.

The walled garden only partly pictured above, has a lot going on within and by virtue of the ‘walled’ aspect it is reasonably under control.  As the garden is cultivated and nurtured there is a fervent hope to see great things from it in time.  In my own case, since October 2012 I’ve been working a three-day week.  Mainly thanks to Tony Brown, my Area Manager and Kev Bailey, my Store Manager at Ryman, my transition from management to staff and reduced hours has been easy.  I have much more time available for writing, reading and increasing my art portfolio.

The key word of course is ‘available’ … and now, you dear reader wonder why.  Gaining all the extra time in the world is no good unless it is used for the intended purpose.  Like many others I’m guilty of allowing other things to encroach on my time; DIY projects, TV programmes, clearing out the attic, etc.

Between October and December last year I relaxed and enjoyed the extra free time.  January 2013 arrived and I made a concerted effort to tackle more projects related to my newly announced job title: ‘Creative Writer and Freelance Artist’.  I finished off a couple of outstanding short stories, completed the term of writing classes with the Inkerman Writers and settled in as a member of ReadWave online.

More recently I’ve finished reading the incredible book, ‘Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee’ by Dee Brown.  It’s a tale of the atrocities committed against the Native Americans as the white man ‘discovered’ and ‘tamed’ America.  If you’d like to read my review, please click on the appropriate Good Reads panel in the right hand column.

Why is April so important with all this leaping?  Another good question.  It sees the start of the new tax year and I will now start to maintain records of all my expenditure and income related to my writing and artwork.  I will have a couple of months to decide whether or not I want to go down the route of ‘self-assessment’ with our wonderful Customs and Excise department.

I’ll be back soon with news of a move for my e-published books … could they be heading for Amazon / Kindle publishing?