Friday, 30 November 2012

Life Changes

Today I’m delighted to welcome Jennifer Loiske, author of three paranormal books.
Jennifer Loiske is a Teen/Young Adult Author who mainly writes paranormal romance. She lives in Naantali in Finland with her hubby, two beautiful daughters and two unruly dogs. Jennifer is a total bookaholic and very addicted to dark fantasy, funny chick lit and paranormal romance. She is very dedicated to charity work and tries to help those in need whenever she can. Most of her royalties goes to charity, mainly to help families with epileptic children and epilepsy units in hospitals. Jennifer has published three books, IMMINENCE, SEDUCTION, CLUB NUMBER FIVE, and more is to come in 2013
Your daughter fell ill suddenly and as a consequence developed severe epilepsy. How did that affect your family?
Well, obviously it was a huge shock at first. I had to stay home and quit my job as a pre-school teacher, my hubby was working in a different city and we had just sold our house and were looking for a new one, so when Anna got a brain fever and after that severe epilepsy our world turned completely upside down. We knew little about epilepsy before but nothing could have prepared us for what was about to come. But we are all fighters and we survived. However, our journey is not over and as Anna’s epilepsy is relapsing Lennox-Gastaut type we have no idea what the future will bring to us. One thing is certain though; I would never have written a book if I’d stayed at my day job. But as things are I’m very devoted to the charity work and always willing to help others as I know how much a little help will do when you’re child is ill and your world is falling apart.
Do you find it hard to find the time to write when you have your family to look after?
Sometimes, yes. But I don’t need much sleep so I’m mostly working at late evenings and nights. When the house is quiet ‘my time’ begins.
One of your characters in the Shape Shifter series has epilepsy. Was it hard to write the scenes where the illness takes hold?
No. All I had to do was think of Anna’s seizures. I actually didn’t have that character in my book before Anna got ill. I only had some sketches and dreams that one day I’d finish my book but it felt as if something very distant. Anna’s epilepsy changed everything. I wanted or more like needed to add Marie, a young girl with epilepsy, in the story. I wanted to show that no matter how hard your life is you can still be a hero and I also wanted to share epilepsy awareness to my readers. I felt that the more I could share the more it helped both me and the others alike.
Have you had a lot of support from readers?
Yes. A lot of people email me giving their support. Many of them also have a story to share and I feel honoured to be the one they want to share it with. My professional email address is no secret and it can be found on my homepage.
I know some of the profits from your books go to an epilepsy charity. Are the doctors pleased that a character with epilepsy is portrayed in a work of fiction?
Oh, yes. Epilepsy awareness is something that can never be spread too much.
You have a variety of books listed on your website; some published, some in the planning stages; where do you get your inspiration for your stories from?
That’s a hard question. Sometimes an idea just pops in my mind. Sometimes I see something that starts to haunt me or sometimes it can start with very small things. A word, some lyrics of a song, dream or like in my upcoming novel, BLACK DIAMOND, an invitation to a birthday party. I usually get very obsessed with my novel ideas and they won’t leave me alone until I’ve written them down. So you can only imagine how many files full of ideas my computer holds!
When you write do you have your story planned out?
Yes and no. Usually I do plan the story in my head for a long time before actually writing it down but sometimes words are just flowing from me and when I’m finished I’m as surprised as my readers! A thought: Did I actually write that? Comes in my mind quite often. Thankfully, so far it’s been a positive thought.
What are you working on at the moment?

I have my spoon in many pots. I’m currently writing a sequel to my Immortal Blood series, taking part of a charity book project, finishing up my upcoming novel BLACK DIAMOND and the third part, CHANGE, in my Shape Shifter series.
What do you do in your spare time?
What spare time? Haha! I’m a bookaholic so I read A LOT. I also train my two beautiful dogs. Enjoy the nature, sail and ski and if I have an opportunity I go to gym.
Which do you prefer to read from – ereader  or book?
A book. There is nothing more satisfying than curling on the sofa with a book.
Anything else you’d like to say?
I enjoy connecting with my readers and other writers. So don’t hesitate to contact me or connect with me on Facebook and Twitter. If you have a story about epilepsy to share or you just want to chat, I’m more than happy to listen. My professional email is:
Thank you to Jennifer for sharing her story. You can find out more about her by clicking on the links below and to buy her books click on the relevant Amazon link.


Saturday, 24 November 2012

Gift Ideas

With the Christmas season fast approaching I thought I’d put together a little gift guide – of course there will be lots of books on there – but surprisingly some other things too. There’s something for everyone; from youngsters to adults. Take a look; help out an artist and get something a little bit different. Simply follow the link to the relevant pages and be prepared to part with some money.

For books for youngsters, from the under 5’s upwards visit or\author\mariegodley  

For Poetry take a look at 

For the teenager in your life, especially if they are into wolves (especially shape shifting ones)

A collection of horror stories can be found at

Okay, I know, I promised something other than books – although how can you go wrong with a book as a gift?
For stunning and unusual pictures.


For traditional jewellery
 And for jewellery made from vegetable ivory visit
Thank you to Adam Hollier for allowing me to use his photo.

I hope this list has inspired you on your quest for the perfect gift.


Merry Christmas



Monday, 19 November 2012

Hopes & Dreams

Today I’m joined by Loretta Livingstone. Loretta has published three poetry collections.
“I wrote my 1st poem at school when I was ten - the teacher asked us to write a poem about a haunted house. I scared myself to death at bedtime for weeks with that one! I never took further education, although my teachers were rather miffed about that. Notwithstanding, I never found myself out of a job until I came down with M.E. some years later.”


What made you write (or continue to write) poetry?
I started writing poetry at school, when we were set it for English lessons, and found I was rather good at it. Then a few years later my sister, a friend, and I started making up silly rhymes to go on the Christmas cards at Church. They more or less stopped, but I continued, and the Pastors enjoyed reading them out. It turned out people loved it when I wrote them poems. And of course most teenagers write reams of teen angst - yup! Been there, done that! I eased up a bit from time to time, in fact for 10 years or so I hardly wrote any, but in the last few years it's all started pouring out again!
Do you write on a daily basis?
 No, not at all. I can go several weeks without writing, then write 4 or 5 in a day. For Hopes, Dreams and Medals I did write quite a lot each week though. Normally, when I have enough, I start to think about my next book. Hopes, Dreams and Medals is probably the only book I will write to a schedule.
Do poems come to you when you’re doing other things, like shopping?
Sometimes! That's often how I get my inspiration. But sometimes situations just pop into my head. Also when I'm chatting away to God I tend to get my more inspirational verses.

What are the reasons behind your themes for your books? And what made you decide to publish your poetry?
 The first one, Fire and Ice, is a little bit of a mish mash. I hadn't written poems for a few years, but they were becoming much more frequent, and I found that people liked them, it seemed a shame to shove them in a drawer somewhere, but I didn't have a clue how to go about publishing, so I prayed about it and a few months later I discovered a way to do it. The rest is history. My latest two books are much more structured, but of course that comes with experience.
How has M.E. impacted your life? And has your poetry helped you at all?
 The M.E. had a devastating effect on my life. It almost came to a standstill. Even now I can do so much less than people with normal health. I have to rest a great deal, which is incredibly boring! I am improving somewhat now, but still have to rest loads more than I'd like. I can at least write lying down!
You recently did a book signing. Were you nervous?
 Incredibly, as it was a reading as well, although I did used to sing with various (not terribly good) groups when I was younger, so I was at least used to having to get people's attention. I'm not sure I could have done it without that previous experience. And I was completely wrung out at the end of it.
Are you working on any more poetry collections?
Well I am still writing, though with somewhat less frequency at the moment. When I have enough work I will doubtless start putting it together into another book. But I have written 3 books within the last year, so I think I need a bit of a break now.
What is the most exciting thing happened to you since your books have been published?
 One of our well known and well loved British athletes has just told me she definitely intends to invest in one of my books as it looks fab. (I'm assuming she means Hopes, Dreams and Medals)
Anything else you’d like to mention?
 Yes. 'Hopes, Dreams and Medals' and 'Jumping in the Puddles of Life' are both also available from Apple iBookstore from £1.99
Paperbacks are available in the U.K. From my own website and hardbacks and overseas sales are available from
Thank you to Loretta for visiting me today. Please go to her Twitter or Facebook page for more information.

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Author - Kizzy Lee

Today on my blog, I would like you to welcome horror author Kizzy Lee.
Kizzy Lee is a happily married mum of four kids and two dogs; she loves all things paranormal and has a head full of stories all trying to get out. She lives by the sea and could not live anywhere that didn't include a beach, finds the countryside scary because 'where is the sea shore?' no matter how much you search them fields there is no sand!
Kizzy Lee sews too, making dance costumes. She used to make pageant dresses but there wasn’t much call for it in England.

When did you start writing?

It's a time I remember very clearly, not just because it was so recent, but because it was a rather pivotal point in my life, I have a blog in my name and in August this year (2012) I could not think of a post so I wrote a short story for my lovely follower friends and they loved it and made such lovely comments all suggesting I should write a book so I did ^_^ I wrote my first ever book - a collection of short stories mostly horror stories, and I published it in September this year.
Did you always want to be a writer?
No in fact it never occurred to me that anyone would like my stories enough to actually by them, I panic every time someone buys a book in case they don't like it, but now that I have found such immense pleasure that I get out of writing I do wish I had started to write a lot younger it almost feels like I have wasted years of good writing time ^_^
You have four kids-Is it hard to find the time to write?
Well life is what you make it, so I look on my life as being a mum first, I have always adored being a mum, writing is what I do when the kids are all occupied doing something else, so a lot of my writing gets done either when they are all at school or really late at night when they have all gone to sleep but I like it this way I would not want anything to get in the way of my being a mum and I love the fact that writing works around my kids; it fits within those times when I would get bored ^_^
Your books are horror stories. Why that genre and is there any other genre you’d like to try?
This question makes me smile, because I have had a complicated life, others have said with the life I have had I should write a book, and I did - just not about my life ^_^ I love horror, but it has to be horror of a certain kind, it had to be not too gory and it usually had some kind of twist, I am very fussy on endings; I really hate a rubbish ending I am quite fussy, I adore anything paranormal, but when I write I find each story is only say 50% me, the rest of it just kind of pours out of me, part of me actually feels a little awkward because my first two books literally just fell out of me, all the stories were right there in my head my fingers couldn't type fast enough to keep up with the flow of words, they were not even edited  each story was fully formed and just needed to be put on paper, when I came to my third book; which was my first full length book all one story, now that was the first one were the story was there in my mind but in writing it down I actually worked hard, I researched, and I edited and improved, my fourth book I felt I had improved even more and I felt I was finally the horror writer I wanted to be. I love horror that makes you scared of ordinary situations, and I guess I love horror because it is a chance to escape from reality and to explore situations that I would never entertain in life, and I just like a good old hiding behind the cushion kind of fright ^_^.  As to your other question well I had once thought I would be good at the erotica style writing but I feel the market is saturated at the moment and if I was to do something in that genre it would need to be something different something to make people think I couldn't do straight erotica I find it hard to read too much of, I always found the best piece of advice I was ever given was to write the book you want to read and that is always some kind of paranormal horror ^_^ 
Where do you get your inspiration from for your stories?
Oh crikey it's hard to say really, a lot of them - my stories- are already in my head and I don't really know where they come from because I have always chose comedy as my main reading matter, I own every Terry Pratchett book there ever was, I even have a signed one ^_^ and sometimes I have two copies of the same one just because I love his writing that much same with Douglas Adams I have everything he wrote too, so I am not sure why I should be inspired to write horror ^_^ people would probably assume I have shelves full of Stephen King or something but no I don't own a single one, I am not keen on his endings ^_^ so no authors have inspired me but I do have a morbid imagination ^_^ even as a child I would always see something that others would not think twice about but I would see it and think hmm what if..........and usually the what if turned gruesome ^_^ , I have to keep a supply of little notepads, I even carry one in my bag because I get ideas all the time and I have to write them down I have filled so many notepads it's mad ^_^, if the news comes on the TV for instance I will never hear half of it because part way through one little sentence uttered by the newscaster will bring about a little fountain of ideas and I just start scribbling them all down in my notepad ^_^, I am very keen on art and a lot of pictures will inspire me, or sometimes  a good photo, especially a good photo of nature outside, anything showing the autumnal season and that's me scribbling away for half an hour, sometimes a whole paragraph pops in my head so I scribble it down and I know one day it will fit perfectly in some story I am writing ^_^, I am very observant I notice little thing, details, walking down an alleyway and I will notice an old wooden door, I always have my camera and I take a picture of it and jot down any words or sentences that occur when I see it so I guess I should say I get inspiration from everywhere ^_^ and at the same time a lot of it is just in my brain.
Do you plan your stories out?
No, I never plan anything really, not in my life or in my books, plans are strange things they get broken, they restrict, for me I just literally surround myself with my notepads full of bits and pieces and type, I only require one thing when writing and that is sweeties ^_^ I like seeing my story unfold before my eyes, I like just seeing where a story takes me, and a lot of the time it wouldn't matter if there was a plan or not because the story just writes itself, I thought with my third one was it long enough? there was certain word amounts that denoted whether a story was a novella or a novel in the end I thought it doesn't matter the story was done I still don't know if it had enough words to be called a novel ^_^ but I knew it had reached its full potential so it was done ^_^, plans well they require some kind of organised thinking process and I am not very good at organised, it never feels natural to me, to me how could my story flow along its own course if it had plans that said otherwise? No I don't like plans ^_^
You say that you couldn’t live away from the sea. Have you always lived in the same place?
Gosh no ^_^ I have lived in many places, from very young my parents took me and my brother travelling, my father was a petrochemical engineer, he worked for an American company and his work took us to different countries, I have touched on my early life a little in my blog, I have mentioned one or two of the countries we lived in, of all the places we lived during my childhood my favourite was Czechoslovakia, that shows how long it was, it's not called that now, I loved the place and did not want to come back to England at all, I was 15 and they said 'oh we are going back' I swear I cried for a fortnight  ^_^, the people were so lovely and the place was gorgeous, but I was only young then ^_^. I carried on travelling even when I had met and married my first husband, we mainly covered Europe though, it was during those travels when I realised how much I missed the sea, I began to realise I was only happy when I heard it as I fell asleep or if I could take a walk and it was there I felt more grounded, more at peace. Then at one point we were travelling through Spain and I knew I just got this gut feeling, I wanted to come back home and have children and raise them in the little town by the sea where I had grown up. It was living in other countries, and living away from the sea, that made me appreciate what a nice little town this was and I had been lucky to grow up here and so I came home. Of course life has its own ideas and it wasn't quite that straight forward but I feel very lucky that right now I live a stone’s throw from a gorgeous beach in a tiny house with my kids and dogs and very happy with it all.
You are a talented sewer too, making dance costumes. Is that something you do to relax?
I like your questions they make me smile ^_^ sewing ahh well, I wouldn't say it was relaxing, ^_^ it is far too much hard work to be relaxing, the style of sewing I do is very detailed and all sewn by hand in very intricate designs. Sewing is something I had always done, right from the age of six I was taught to embroider, not really shown as much as given some thread, a needle and material and told to get on with it ^_^ through the years it became something although largely self taught it was a great talent to have, I loved being a child of the late seventies/early eighties were my formative teenage years and if you remember fashion was such that I could explore my sewing to the fullest extent and indeed I made all my own clothes and loved dying materials and making outfits from my experiments with dyes or weaving I can also knit crochet and make lace, so very often everything on an outfit is made by me, if anything going out for the night was more an excuse to make a super outfit than socialising ^_^, I was born a highly creative person though and I refuse to make what I call boring sewing you will never find me making curtains ^_^, the dance costumes came about because having three girls necessitated it, my oldest wanted to dance as soon as she could walk, she was kind of obsessed, not only were costume prices horrendous but they were never really had what we wanted, it soon descended into me making everyone in the dance school' costumes, now that was horrific ^_^ luckily she gave up dancing after a while and years later my second daughter tries dancing, she too did not like the costumes available and begged me to make hers, now by this time eBay had been invented so I took to selling those that they grew out of, then we saw pageant shows like toddlers and tiaras and I took to making pageant dresses, which was great I loved it, it seemed like the one area where I could really satisfy my burning creative edge I have and make some pennies as well, now none of the girls are at dancing any more but I still love the creating so I still make the costumes, it keeps my creative side satisfied.
Of all the books you have written, do you have a favourite?
Oh crikey no that would be like saying do you have a favourite child, no I love all my books equally ^_^
What books do you like to read and do you have a favourite?
I always read Terry Pratchett or Douglas Adams and I suppose of everything Hitchhikers guide to the Universe has to be my favourite ^_^
Kizzy - Thanks for joing me today. I wish you luck with your books.
You can find out more about Kizzy by clicking on the following links