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Welcome, Pat Casselden…

Can you tell me a little about yourself? Pat~head and shoulders

I am a 67 year old wife, mother and grandmother, now retired after spending many years working with adults with learning disabilities.

I write fiction under my pen name of Tricia Cass which is a shortened version of my full name and have just written a story for an anthology, to raise money for Alzheimer’s Research UK, under my own name, Patricia Casselden

What is the title and genre of your book?

My book is titled ‘No Going Back’ and is a story of Drama / Crime / Family and LovePat's front cover~25th May 2016~green text~used snipping tool

How did you come up with the story?

‘No Going Back’ is totally fictional. It started in my mind as a short story when I attended a Creative Writing course at my local college.

As the characters grew, the story evolved.

It has a lovely cover. Did you have any say in what you wanted the cover to be?

Thank-you. Yes, I knew roughly what I wanted and met with a local Artist who came up with the cover. I loved the colours and felt it was perfect for the context of the book.

Do you have any tips for aspiring writers?

Look for writing groups / courses where you get advice and support. The local Library is a good place to get information.

Believe in yourself and enjoy.

What is your writing routine?

I don’t actually have a routine as I write when the mood takes me. I can get lost in my writing so I try to clear anything pressing before I start.

I like background noise when I write – it seems to help my concentration.

Do you have an editing process?

I did most of my own editing for ‘No Going Back’ as it was my first book and I had no idea of how to go about things. I had invaluable help once I found out more about the process and I will use an Editor for my next book. The cost involved will be well worth it when I think of the blood sweat and tears I used up this time.

What do you enjoy the most/least about writing?

I love getting lost in my work.

I love discovering how my characters come to life and take me off track.

I love it when one chapter flows into another (This doesn’t always happen)

I get excited when I’m nearing the end.

I get frustrated when my ideas get blocked.

I hate it when my brain won’t switch off when I’m trying to sleep.

Where can people find you on the internet?

Facebook:

Pat Casselden: https://www.facebook.com/patriciacasselden49/?fref=nf

Tricia Cass: https://www.facebook.com/Tricia-Cass-Author-100423340370911/?fref=ts

Twitter:

@patcasselden

@triciacassauthor

Is there anything else you would like to share with your readers?

Yes – I will be at the East Anglian Festival of Culture (Eafoc) across the weekend of 2nd and 3rd July in Lowestoft (details below). I would love it if people stopped by to say hello so don’t be shy.

How does it feel to finally hold your book in your hands?

So proud I can’t describe it – it’s a lifetime dream come true.

I love all the positive feedback I’ve had.

Thank you, Tricia. You have been a marvellous guest and I look forward to seeing you at the East Anglian Festival of Culture (EAFOC) this July in Lowestoft, Suffolk.

And if you would like to come and meet Tricia and get a personalised signed copy please visit the website for more details: www.eastanglianfestivalofculture.co.uk . Alternatively, if you are unable to come  to the festival here is the link to buy a copy on Amazon

Pat's front cover~25th May 2016~green text~used snipping tool

https://www.amazon.co.uk/No-Going-Back-Tricia-Cass/dp/0993493475/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1466250135&sr=1-1&keywords=tricia+cass

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Welcome Ellie Holmes…

Can you tell me a little about yourself? (inc if you use a pen name and why)Paula Guyver

I was born in Essex but made in Cornwall and use those two places as the source of inspiration for my writing. Like most people, I juggle commitments to family and friends, a part time job and my writing so my days tend to be hectic and my nights are long.

I write under the pen name of Ellie Holmes which is a combination of my two grandmothers’ names. I decided to use a pen name because I also write darker, crime driven novels which I may publish under my own name in due course although I haven’t completely made up my mind about that yet. I might introduce a darker line of Ellie Holmes’ novels instead.

What is the title and genre of your book?Ellie Holmes front cover

My debut novel is called The Flower Seller and it is commercial romantic fiction.

How did you come up with the story?

Believe it or not, it was supposed to be a short story about a woman re-entering the dating game after many years of marriage. One hundred thousand words later you can see my imagination took over. It developed into an exploration of the idea that people are not always how they first appear which is a rich seam for a writer to mine.

It has a lovely cover, did you have any say in what you wanted the cover to be?

Thank you, that’s very kind of you. Yes, absolutely.  As an indie author the cover is so important. I chose the cover designer I wanted to work with – the wonderful Berni Stevens www.bernistevensdesign.com and wrote her a detailed brief.  My brief included my wish for the cover to be “eye catching and beautiful with rich colours” and she certainly delivered on that. I love it and count myself very lucky to have such a beautiful cover.

Do you have any tips for aspiring writers?

Do something writing related every day. Really it’s the only way. If you can carve out a few precious minutes each day you will be amazed by what you can achieve. But that doesn’t just mean writing. In addition to that it could be catching up on a webinar on an aspect of the writing business you need guidance on. It could be researching a topic for your next book. It could be choosing editors or cover designers if you are self-published.

If you are engaged in the business of writing and serious about what you are doing and have the commitment and the strength of will to keep going for longer than a few weeks you are a writer. Being a writer is not about having a deal or not having a deal. It is not about traditional publishing or self-publishing. It is about the commitment.

What is your writing routine?

I aim to write 5,000 words a week, a 1,000 words a day for five days, usually in the evenings. In addition, I write two blog posts a week.  The blogs I tend to write first thing in the morning. The one day a week I am at home (apart from weekends), I spend editing.

Do you have an editing process?

I usually let a piece of work sit for a few weeks before I start editing. When I do, I’ll read it through making a few notes about the flow, any loose ends I haven’t tidied up and the areas that need expanding upon. Then I start the hard work of working through it chapter by chapter until each chapter sings. Once I reach the end of the beginning (usually around the thirty thousand word mark for a full length novel) I’ll do an out loud read through of that section. It helps to improve the flow and sharpens up the dialogue when you hear it out loud. Then I repeat the process for the middle section and the final section. Before doing an out loud read through of the whole thing. My read throughs for The Flower Seller were accompanied by the loud snoring of my longhaired Dachshund Sasha, hopefully my book won’t have the same soporific effect on humans!!

What do you enjoy the most/least about writing?

I love the buzz when you have an idea and you start to develop it and suddenly the characters take over. When you are in the zone it’s almost as though you are taking dictation from them which is wonderful.

I don’t enjoy writing the blurb for the back of a book. I am a hundred thousand word kind of girl (fifty thousand for my novellas) sticking to 150 odd words is HARD!

Where can people find you on the internet?

People can find me at my website www.ellieholmesauthor.com

I am also on Facebook at www.facebook.com/EllieHWriter  and Twitter @EllieHWriter

and Pinterest at www.pinterest.com/EllieHWriter

Is there anything else you would like to share with your readers?

Yes – I am going to be taking part in a pop up book shop at the East Anglian Festival of Culture across the weekend of 2nd and 3rd July in Lowestoft (details below). I would love it if people stopped by to say hello so don’t be shy.

How does it feel to finally hold your book in your hands?

When I first held my book it was a bittersweet feeling. My mum had very much been looking forward to sharing the moment with me but she died earlier this year. My dad is also gone and I know he wanted this for me perhaps even more than I wanted it for myself. Then, as I remembered all the hard work that had gone into not just writing the book but creating it, I felt very proud.

Thank you, Ellie. You have been a marvellous guest and I look forward to seeing you at the East Anglian Festival of Culture (EAFOC) this July in Kirkley, Suffolk.Ellie Holmes front cover

The Flower Seller   http://goo.gl/UrHYRb

 

 

And if you would like to come and meet Ellie and get a personalised signed copy please visit the website for more details: www.eastanglianfestivalofculture.co.uk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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It’s been a busy year …

Books published:

Chatty Cat: Spring into Summer

Supervision Skills

Making the Most of Your Supervision

Little Kitty: the Cat Burglar (all royalties to Alzheimer’s Research UK)

Thank you to everyone who has purchased my books.

My book, ‘Beyond My Control: Why the Health and Social Care System Need Not Have Failed My Mother’ was a Finalist – People’s Book Prize and Shortlisted for Best Achievement Award – People’s Book Prize and thank you for voting for this if you did, greatly appreciated.

If you would like to read about my books or purchase a copy please click on this link http://www.amazon.co.uk/Suzan-Collins/e/B0037DXY46/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

Group of authors:

At the beginning of the year saw the creation of the Waveney Author Group and I am very proud to be the founder and co-ordinator of this group. The authors are fantastic and very supportive. They have monthly author gigs booked right through to next September and if you wish to follow them here is their FB page and the link to their blog

Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/Waveney-Author-Group-503636863123829/

Blog: https://waveneyauthorgroup.wordpress.com/

 Supporting Writers to Write:

I ran some facilitated writing workshops and at the end of them some writers set themselves a goal to finish their writing and independently publish their work with the support of my writing company, Get Writing2.

If you wish to follow here is the FB page, the link to the blog & the website

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Get-Writing2-366023433491753/

Blog: https://getwriting2.wordpress.com/

Website: www.getwriting.co.uk

Alzheimer’s Society:

My third year of helping to organise the local Memory Walk and raise money for the Alzheimer’s Society and this year we raised over £8000.00+ (final total is not in yet as the Just-giving pages only closed yesterday) but very proud to have raised this amount which is our largest yet.

Alzheimer’s Research UK:

Apart from organising the writing of the book, ‘Little Kitty: the Cat Burglar’ I also wrote a chapter and it is available to buy in two formats, paperback and kindle. Here is the link if you wish to purchase a copy (it’s a great children’s book and adults will like it too) http://www.amazon.co.uk/Little-Kitty-Burglar-Caterina-Longtail/dp/0993169074/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1451603685&sr=1-1&keywords=little+kitty+the+cat+burglar

I ran a raffle and an auction for people to bid on having the name of their pet in my next book in the Chatty Cat series and I am looking to start this book in January.

Training & Consultancy in Social Care & Management:

It’s been a busy year, I have enjoyed delivered training to staff and writing some policies and procedures, what I haven’t enjoyed was leading some investigations into poor practices and alleged abuse against older people. Although I didn’t enjoy doing these the outcomes were beneficial to people receiving care.

Pre-inspection CQC compliance checks:

Many organisations have asked me to audit their homes against the standards of the Care Quality Commission, something I enjoy doing, I just wish that all organisations were proactive and had their care homes audited.

2016:

I’m looking forward to 2016 , I am planning another East Anglian Author Festival and 32 authors have booked thus far, oh and I hope to write 3-4 books before June 2016.

Wishing you all a lovely New Year and I hope that 2016 will be a good year for you.

Thank you for your support. Suzan x

Happy New Year

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As you will have read in my recent blogs Jo Wilde and I are in our third year of organising the local Memory Walk to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Society and this year we also teamed up with six other authors, one children’s editor, one illustrator and one designer to create Little Kitty, a children’s book. We all gave our time freely and all royalties will go to Alzheimer’s Research UK.

I invited Jo to come along and talk about her support for two charities close to her heart, Alzheimer’s Society and Alzheimer’s Research UK (two different charities). Jo told me …

There’s so much going on at the moment, and life is getting very busy, what with all the writing and editing and publishing and fundraising.

I’ve just been involved in a really exciting project – writing a book to raise money for Alzheimer’s Research UK, a great charity that is working hard to find a treatment for dementia.   It’s the first time I’ve written anything that’s made it as far as publication – and seeing it out there in print is fantastic!   I’m so excited, and sharing it with everybody!  I signed my first copy today, that’s when I realised that I’m now an author…and I just want to keep writing.

I can’t remember how I first got involved with the Alzheimer’s Memory Walk, but I suspect it was because Suzan asked me, and she’s not an easy person to say no to.  Besides, I’ve always done various sorts of voluntary work, which I had less and less time for when my  paid working hours got ridiculously long, so it was nice to get a chance to do something that didn’t take up as much time, but was equally valuable to the community.

For the past couple of years, we’ve done all the organising locally, with some help from the local Alzheimer’s Society branch, but this year for the first time we registered as a community walk which meant we had involvement from regional and national offices.

We’re trying to grow the walk, to enable more people to participate, and raise more money so that more people can benefit.  This year for the first time, we had a whole committee to help organise, which has been great – there have been other people to do some of the work, and to bounce ideas off.  I’ve met new people and reconnected with old friends, and altogether had a blast.

I love organising things like this, and seeing the whole community come together to support a common cause.  As the day gets closer there’s more and more to do…and we all get busier and busier until the day. Our walk on Sunday 27th September was bigger than we expected. Would you like to join us next year? https://www.facebook.com/Lowestoft-Memory-Walk-25th-Sept-2016-1070431756308752/timeline/

My first book and my first book signing, Little Kitty – the Cat Burglar

Jo signing Little Kitty

LITTLE KITTY CVR FINAL

Amazon UK http://goo.gl/m84FTe

Amazon USA http://goo.gl/AAYYfR

Let’s find out about the authors who took:

Jo Wilde

Jo was born in Yorkshire, many more years ago than she cares to remember. She works in a theatre and a library, and fills up the rest of her time reading, writing, editing, proofreading, event organising, eating chocolate and drinking wine.

To find out more about Jo, or to follow her on social media, visit: www.scaryjojo.wordpress.com

Ann Bowyer

Ann is a retired Business Studies teacher. She has two sons and six grandchildren, and lives in Norfolk. After writing factual articles for magazines, Ann published her first fictional book in 2013. A Token of Love, which is based on the true story of her grandparents’ lives, has sold all around the world. She was featured in an article in the Hindu, India’s national paper, and, following numerous requests, is due to publish a sequel, Lost in a Homeland.

To find out more about Ann, or to follow her on social media, visit: http://www.annbowyer.com

Suzan Collins

Suzan is an internationally selling author who writes in various genres, both fiction and non-fiction. Her non-fiction includes textbooks pertaining to her work as consultant and trainer in Social Care and Management. Suzan also writes fiction – naughty, spicy and otherwise – under the pen name Zina Adams.

Finalist – People’s Book Prize, 2014 Shortlisted for Best Achievement Award – People’s Book Prize, 2014

To find out more about Suzan, or to follow her on social media, visit: www.suzancollins.com

Tottie Limejuice

Tottie Limejuice is one of the pen names of former journalist and copywriter Lesley Tottie. Lesley lives in France and now writes full-time. Her travel memoirs are published under the name Tottie Limejuice, and she also writes crime novels as L M Krier and children’s books as L M Kay. Her interests include organic gardening, camping and walking with her two rescued border collies.

To find out more about Tottie, or to follow her on social media, visit: www.tottielimejuice.com

Ros Lyons

Ros is interested in writing both fiction and memoirs. Her two cats provide much inspiration for creating stories. She belongs to two writing groups, where authors share their work and learn from each other. She enters the occasional writing competition and has had some success. As well as writing, Ros enjoys walking, the theatre and playing social bridge.

Lucille Rayner

Lucille is a Support Worker and assists and supports older people. She loves holidays in the sunshine, family get-togethers and walking in the Suffolk countryside. Lucille enjoys writing in her spare time and is currently writing a children’s book.

To find out more about Lucille, or to follow her on social media, visit:

www.facebook.com/pages/Lucille-Rayner/362171100645432?fref=ts

Tracy Terry

A Geordie lass, rumoured to have been born with a paperback in her hand, Tracy spends her days reading and reviewing books on her blog Pen and Paper. A lover of hedgehogs as well as cats, she also enjoys writing and receiving letters and is quite the movie buff. Her taste in films is almost as eclectic as her taste in novels!

To find out more about Tracy, or to follow her on social media, visit: www.pettywitter.blogspot.co.uk

About the Artists

Catie Atkinson

Catie is an illustrator and designer based in Leeds. When she’s not drawing, she enjoys reading, cooking, acting, singing in the choir and attempting to play various instruments – although not all at the same time! She also loves crime thrillers and is convinced that in another life she would have made a great detective!

To find out more about Catie, or to follow her on social media, visit: www.catieatkinsonart.co.uk

Rachel Lawston

Rachel is a book designer who has worked with Penguin Random House, HarperCollins and Walker Books, to name a few. Rising to the challenge of designing books and commissioning artwork for amazing authors like Terry Pratchett, John Boyne and Malorie Blackman are some of her biggest accomplishments. She is a huge tortoise enthusiast, and is

secretly hoping that at least one of the fantastic authors who took part in this project might base their next book on

her two naughty Hermann’s tortoises, Daenerys and Om . . .

To find out more about Rachel, or to follow her on social media, visit: www.lawstondesign.com

About the Editor:

Jaine Keskeys

Jaine is a Senior Editor who has worked in Children’s publishing for over ten years. She has written and edited projects for many fantastic publishers, including Penguin Random House, Egmont, Parragon Books and Titan. She spends her spare time reading and writing, and hopes to one day have her own picture books – perhaps even a novel! – published.

To find out more about Jaine, or to follow her on social media, visit: www.editorjaine.com

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On Sunday we had our memory walk. The sky was aqua blue and the sun shone not only on us but also on the sea. It was beautiful. A beautiful day where everyone appeared happy but no doubt had mixed emotions, either walking for someone they knew who had dementia or walking in memory of someone who had passed who had dementia. I took a few minutes of time out to sit on the bench and gaze into the sea, keeping my own emotions under control but I couldn’t help think of the lovely young lady who a short while previously asked if she could buy a second medal to put on her Nan’s grave. We gave her the medal. This fabulous young lady had cared for her Nan for many years and I take my hat off to her.

12046584_10204137717117857_6355478371482454488_n

There wasn’t a tree where we held the walk so we couldn’t have a memory tree and instead we had a beacon tree (tied some string round the beacon and the walkers wrote on a tag who they were walking for and tied it to the string on the beacon).

Beacon tree

We had various stalls, cakes, guess the name of the monkey (he was called Charlie but I think he should have been called Dave), guess the weight of the cake, a super raffle, and we raised the fantastic amount of £747.49 (this amount does not include any sponsor money).

Monkey

Jo and I starting the walk~1  Jo and I starting the walk

Jo Wilde and I started the walks this year. Not expecting such a big crowd we didn’t really know how to get everyone’s attention and start the walk (next time we’ll have a microphone), so as you can see from this pic, Jo and I stood on the   table, thanked everyone for supporting this great cause and then we counted down from 10-1 and off they walked, along the cliff overlooking the sea. We had two walked around, a small one of 2K and one of 4K and everyone, inc people pushing wheelchairs chose to do the 4K one.

P1130840

It will be a while before we know the actual amount that was raised as we wait for people to send in their sponsorship money and the on line just-giving pages are open for up to one year (which is great as someone has just put £15.00 on my page). The weekly totals for the amounts that have come in on the just-giving pages are passed on to me (in my role of one of the organisers) and we, the Lowestoft fundraising committee are proud to announce that already it looks like we will pass the £5000.00 mark.

Our Memory Walk next year will be even bigger than this years. The committee will be meeting in two weeks’ time to discuss our next event. Here is our new page on Facebook, please feel free to like it and if you would like to be involved next year please let us know.

https://www.facebook.com/Lowestoft-Memory-Walk-25th-Sept-2016-1070431756308752/timeline/

Piece in the local newspaper

Dozens take part in Lowestoft Memory Walk: The Lowestoft Memory Walk held its third annual walk on Sunday. http://b it.ly/1iEu7dA  #Lowestoft

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1st Annual East Anglian Author Fair/ Pop-up Bookshop 2015

Readers, writers, lovers of books, fiction, non-fiction, agents and publishers… come one, come all.

New and established authors, some reading their work but all showcasing their books.

Dates: Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th July 2015.

Venue: The Coconut Loft Art Gallery, 8 Waterloo Rd, Lowestoft, Suffolk NR33 0AA. Tel: 01502  521845

Time: 10 am – 4pm. And after a successful Saturday, why not join the authors and unwind with fish and chips on a Blue Flag beach just 100 metres from the gallery, and on the Sunday an Italian ice cream.

Pop up bookshop~The Journal 24th July 2015

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I know you don’t spell ‘writery’ like that but I say it so I wrote it. And it is an exciting time…

Last November I led a set of writing workshops and had the fabulous authors/tutors: Glynis Smy, Ann Bowyer, Rosy Thornton, Jayne-Marie Barker  and Jo Wilde run some sessions. 6 of the writers set themselves a challenge to write and self-publish before July 10th. I decided to join them in this challenge. We decided on the name Waveney Author Group (WAG) as we all live within the Waveney area.

Our first meeting was at The Coconut Loft Art Gallery and we were grateful for the support of The Journal newspaper who came to do an article on us and took this picture.

Group photo~24th Jan 2015

The Coconut Loft Art Gallery became our place to meet. Firstly on a monthly basis and now we meet on a weekly basis to enable the writers to achieve their goal. The Coconut Loft Art Gallery is a great place to write, an inspiring place that not only sells lovely food but also Richard and Gina, the owners, are always willing to help, whether it be to help one of the writer’s sort her blurb out or help another writer sort her page layout.

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The owners Gina and Richard watching new author Pam Finch press the button and upload her work to Create Space (and within a short space of time her book, Minho Moments, was on Amazon).

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Gina helping a writer with her formatting.

Helen and Enid~WAG Meeting Coconut Loft~11th May 2015

Helen Thwaites helping her mum with her tablet.

Helen, Helen and Enid~WAG Meeting Coconut Loft~11th May 2015

Enid and Helen Thwaites and Helen Meneghello.

Helen, Pam, Richard and Enid~WAG Meeting Coconut Loft~11th May 2015

Richard helping Pam Finch with her blurb (watched by Helen and Enid)

Pam Helen Enid and I at the coconut loft~June 2015

Helen Thwaites, Me (Suzan Collins), Enid Thwaites and Pam Finch writing in The Smugglers’ Gallery.

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Enid Thwaites, Helen Thwaites, Bronwen Grono, Pam Finch, Helen Meneghello, Me (Suzan Collins) and Jo Wilde.

All writers have either now published their books or will in the next week or so. #excitingtimes

The Waveney Author Group will be joining other authors at the pop-up bookshop at The Coconut Loft this July. For more info please go to www.getwriting.co.uk

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