Monthly Archives: August 2015

My Year in Progress

It has been some time since I last wrote a piece for my blog.  As some of you know I have requested my favourite authors to write an article of their own ‘year in progress’  which was most successful. If you look back you can read about them too.

Many of you already know about my year,  but for those who haven’t been following me closely here are some of the challenges I’ve had to face.

In January, I came across to England from Holland with my husband, Chris, to look for a new house.  He is retiring in December this year and our plan is for the whole family to spend Christmas 2015 together in England and celebrate his retirement as well.  We viewed eight properties and settled on a lovely barn conversion in the heart of the west Devon countryside.  Chris wanted a project for his retirement and without too much hard work this property needs a few renovations here and there, but it’s perfect for our needs. We actually own a riverbank and very often we watch as a herd of cows pass by the house and over the bridge on their way to the next field. There are 39 species of birds and its a wonderful place to do my writing.  I also have a sneak view of Dartmoor. We have been living in Holland 14 years and now I have to learn how to be British again.

Moving house doesn’t come without problems, of course.  I have a house for sale in Holland which doesn’t look like it will sell this side of Christmas 2016 at the rate the Euro is going.  It may be that we have to settle for renting.

So, after unpacking more boxes than I could count, we are now living in England, it’s official!  Sadly, Chris has to stay in the Dutch house until he retires.  However, we are in constant touch, thanks to modern technology and Exeter airport is only half an hour away.

As a fairly new author on the block, I have had to start over and in some cases carry on where I left off in Holland. My book The Tanglewood Affair is ready for submission to various publishers and Harold, the Good Soldier, is a work in progress.  Goodbye Henrietta Street is now well on the way with some good reviews and a new cover on Amazon, thanks to Silverwood Books who rescued me from disaster when my first publisher closed its doors. Goodbye Henrietta Street

Writing a synopsis before writing the book can be challenging, but I had a recent request from an agent to submit the synopsis and first three chapters, so I think it’s worth providing her with an idea of my writing skills and storytelling.

Due to the lovely area in Devon, I shall be in a position to offer workshops for new writers after this year. So watch this space for members of the Romantic Novelists’ Association New Writers Scheme.  As I was once a new writer, I must never forget the struggles a writer has to endure in order to be published.  I feel it is important for new writers to attend workshops and share stories with those who had similar experiences.

I have plans to join the Exeter Chapter of the RNA and I have also joined the local amateur dramatic society. I am in the middle of writing a play, but purely for practice.  The skills required for playwriting are very different from novel writing, as I recently discovered.

It’s very strange living in a new place where you don’t know anyone.  What I have discovered about Devon is that everyone is so friendly and thoughtful.  I haven’t heard one negative word spoken about life here.  I have been made to feel most welcome and now I can carry on having a great time and concentrate on writing and staying healthy.



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