Monthly Archives: April 2015

Reading again after a long time

This is a great post, I’m glad you’re reading again.
I believe it doesn’t matter if you present/read stories electronically – just to place the magic of words in front of a child/person’s eyes is to give them a precious gift for life. One I would never want to be without:-)X


The Idea of Identity

Love this blog, makes you think…:-)X

Two sides of the same coin


This last week has been a tale of two halves, I finished editing my book on Marie Antoinette, uploaded it to go on sale on 1st May and then I started to plan my next writing project. All good.

I realised that I haven’t done a lot of reading lately while I’ve been writing like a ninja and I felt that I had missed the lovely process of reading and being absorbed in another world with characters that you can learn to love or loathe as the pages pass by.


You know what? I set aside the writing and dedicated myself to reading, in the last few days I have happily devoured a book on creative writing – OK, that’s a bit workish, half of a historical biography on Queen Mary, wife of King George V and I tried to read Glenarvon by Lady Caroline Lamb, one time love of Lord Byron the notorious poet.

I say tried because her writing style suggested that her mind was on fire, it was so overwritten that it made simple melodrama look dull! Glenarvon was the novel she wrote about their affair so perhaps there was a lot of emotion to fire from her pen.

I may return to it on a day when I have energy to spare, it’s not a relaxing read. One day, perhaps.

Tomorrow, I start my next writing project, today you’ll find me luxuriating in a book. I love to do both and I often miss one when I do the other exclusively.

It’s true, they’re two sides of the same coin. One can’t thrive without the other.

The London Marathon was held today – big respect and congratulations to anyone who even contemplates running 26 miles – I quickly penned this tanka this morning…

I confess I’m pooped

In my sleep I’ve somehow run 

The great marathon 

Tortured for twenty six miles

Finished first, collapsed in style.



Have a great week.


Election insanity!


The great news is that I am putting the finishing touches to my new e-book about Marie Antoinette of France which will be out on 4th May 2015.

As I finish one project my mind is pondering what or who the next one will be about or if I’ll change to fiction this time. Decisions, decisions!

PenguinMeanwhile, with less than three weeks to go until the General Election in the UK the politicians are promising the earth, the moon, the stars, the improbable and outright miracles to get votes.

Some are making themselves even more unpopular by the day, others seem to think that they can make or break a nation almost singlehandedly. BUT there is one aspiring political lady (who I won’t name) who really overstepped the line this week.

She suggested – and her political party worked quickly to detach her comments from their visions -that people with mental health issues should wear wristbands to indicate that they were suffering from an mental illness – apparently different colours for different mental conditions – this would help the authorities to know what they were dealing with.

WHHHHHHHHAAAAATTTTTT was/is she thinking? Isn’t there enough stigma in the world already????

I wrote this to show my feelings on the subject:


Blooming hopping mad

Just read something truly bad

In the news a political type

I won’t say her name, I’ll simply gripe

Says mental health sufferers

Should wristbands gladly wear

So that everyone can know

That we’re not healthy, oh no

So, if I have to wear one

In her crazy world of stigmatised fun

What colours shall we choose

For coughs, colds and the flu? 

Oh dear, she didn’t suggest that too.

I’m still a human being – Surprise!

Her “good” idea is discrimination in disguise.


I’m so glad that not everyone thinks in the way that she does, with the anxiety disorders OCD and PTSD I’d presumably have to wear two “look at me” wristbands for all to see, hey, what a fashion statement.

Oh, and fair warning, the politician who suggests that mental health patients should

a. be poked with sticks and/or

b. made a spectacle of

will be cruising for a metaphorical bruising as this isn’t the dark ages they can join the 21st century rather than drag humanity backwards.

Have a great weekend.



Don’t Miss Out!



Have you ever wondered what the British aristocracy’s titles are, how and when they were created, what their social history is?
What do these people wear on ceremonial occasions?
What are the Orders of the Bath and the Order of Merit and why are they different to the Order of the Garter?
Which titles have become extinct and why?

Do present day Dukes and Earls live in fairytale castles or do they have jobs like the rest of us?
Life peers outnumber hereditary peers in the House of Lords? Why and who are these life peers?
Find out about M.B.E’s, O.B.E’s and C.B.E’s, knighthoods, damehoods, and other chivalric orders that date back hundreds of years.

Here’s a few interesting facts as a taster…

Her Majesty the Queen is the Duke (not the Duchess) of Lancaster. Why?
Prince Charles is the Grand Master of what order?
The Duke of Leinster is the premier Duke of Ireland – he lives in Oxfordshire, England. Why?
The Earl of Cadogan is one of the wealthiest people in Britain – how did the family make their fortune?

A number of titles were invented to give Charles II’s illegitimate children status. But which ones?
In 1917 a number of royals found themselves retitled but not to the same rank as they’d held before World War One. Why and who were they?
Why did people refuse particular honours? e.g. Winston Churchill.
Who has been stripped of their honours?

This book gives you the answers and many many more interesting facts about honours in British history. So, if you want to learn more then please click BUY.

Most of all, please enjoy this book about British social history, heritage, culture and social graces.

$2.96 Offer Ends 15th April 2015

£1.99 Offer Ends 15th April 2015


This book is also available from Amazon in a printed book version for its full cost of $12.99/£8.72.

Thanks and have a great rest of the weekend, Joanne.

PS If you want to reblog this post, please do!! Or you can buy 100 copies, you know, if you want to!!

Big thanks. 🙂

We are responsible for our own happiness! :)

I’ve had to learn how to think this way…felt I had to reblog it:-)X



I think I may have invented a new crime!

Hope you enjoy this fun tanka poem.


Murder? Bunnyside?

Or an act of choccyside?

Easter chocolate bunny

Is no more, eaten him with pride

His revenge, I’m six feet wide!


PS Remember to do something fun every day – on purpose – your brain likes it. smiles

Family – Biased readers?



Is it just me or do other writers find it just plain wierd when a family member is reading their book?

My mum has been reading my novel Heads or Tails and it’s not a comedy although I have made one of the characters a slightly hysterical social climber – Mum keeps laughing as she’s reading.

I am a strong believer that each reader will have their own experience of a book and there have been a couple of times that I’ve heard her say “that is so you” or “I can imagine so and so saying that” but overall I think that she has genuinely been enjoying the story not because I’m her daughter but because she actually likes the story and the characters in it.

But at first in the back of my mind came the inevitable voice…maybe she’s only laughing/commenting because it was written by me, she knows my habits and the inspirations and she can see them in my writing…love me, love my writing by default?.

I stopped analysing for the sake of my sanity! Mum is enjoying the book whatever the reason and family loyalty over 100000 words might wane anyway so if she likes it – she likes it – end of.

I have not pummelled her for critiques and I learned quickly to let her react how she wants to without me questioning why and which chapter she’s in.

She should finish it today and I’ll just let her read for herself, by herself same as every other person who reads it.

Could you imagine going to everyone who bought your book and giving them an inquisition? NOOOOOOOO!!

Last week I finished the first draft of my book on Marie Antoinette. It’ll be out on 4th May.

I won’t advocate sending anyone to the guillotine but at crucial moments when she could have tried to win the peoples favour she really didn’t help herself.

But she was a human being with flaws and strengths and that is what makes people interesting – past, present and future.

We all have life stories, we are the main character through the good and the bad times and who knows where our story will take us next? We live, we learn.

Have a great week.



Sights and sounds of nature

This is a lovely poem, as nature decorates the landscape it does indeed restore your soul and give you perspective. A great write:-)X