Novel Boot Camp

Attention aspiring novelists, get your manuscripts ready for Novel Boot Camp! It’s a brand new writing course and workshop that will be offered for FREE throughout the month of July…



Speed reading skills needed!

The Girl in the Box (Books 1-3)

by Robert J Crane


Book #1 Alone 

4 stars


Sienna Nealon was a 17 year-old girl who had been held prisoner in her own house by her mother for twelve years.

Then one day her mother vanished, and Sienna woke up to find two strange men in her home.

On the run, unsure of whom to turn to and discovering she possesses mysterious powers, Sienna finds herself pursued by a shadowy agency known as the Directorate and hunted by a vicious, bloodthirsty psychopath named Wolfe, each of which is determined to capture her for their own purposes.

Book #2 Untouched

4 stars



Still haunted by her last encounter with Wolfe and searching for her mother, Sienna Nealon must put aside her personal struggles when a new threat emerges – Aleksandr Gavrikov, a metahuman so powerful, he could destroy entire cities – and he’s focused on bringing the Directorate to its knees.

 Book #3 Soulless

4 stars



After six months of intense training with the Directorate, Sienna Nealon finds herself on her first assignment – tracking a dangerous meta across the upper midwest.

With Scott Byerly and Kat Forrest at her side, she’ll face new enemies and receive help from unlikely allies as she stumbles across the truth behind the shadowy organization known only as Omega.



My thoughts:

I love a good series, and this has the makings of a great one. These first three books have been more than gripping, indeed I read all of them within a week and couldn’t wait to get on to the next one. Each book sees Sienna develop, both as a young woman and as a metahuman with extraordinary powers. We see her grow as she faces up to regular everyday issues that have been missing in her life thus far. She makes  friends and learns to control her feelings, although not always successfully. At the same time she is struggling to master her powers and not destroy everything just because she can. It’s a learning curve for her and we, as the reader, get to accompany her on her journey into adulthood. Whilst her life is way beyond normal, the emotions she expresses are raw and genuine; her reactions are typical of her peers, but lack subtlety. It’s a fun read, full of unexpected twists and intrigue. Fortunately there are several more books to follow in this series, so by the time I’ve finished them, my speed reading skills will be honed to perfection.


Training Your Writing Life

WordServe Water Cooler

056A new puppy joined our family a year ago.

Yes, he was that cute. All puppy smells and fuzzy bums and soft little pads on his feet.

Such a baby! He could hardly run in a straight line back then. He kind of hopped and flailed with his feet, and somehow he made progress.


There were a lot of other things he had to learn.

Like going outside to do his business.

And how to get along with the big dog.

And how to play with the cat.

026But he learned all of those things (although he still makes mistakes).

As he reached the ripe old age of ten months, things got interesting. That’s the adolescent age for dogs. He lost all brain power and forgot everything he had ever learned.


The rest of the family was ready to give up on him.

But patience and consistency are the keys.


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Swings & Roundabouts


British – A situation in which different actions or options result in no eventual gain or loss.


A while ago I promised to read and review a number of books before the end of May this year.

There were 7 in total and the results are now in:

I read 6 of the titles listed – theoretically meaning I didn’t complete the challenge.

However, in my defence (and I always have one!) the last book on the list was a little too similar to one that I’d finished not long before and so I felt the need for a change in genre.

Which leaves me to add that I read another book giving me a total of 7 in all.

So, as the saying goes – it was a case of “swings and roundabouts”.

Promise met, although with a slight tweak 🙂

My books, my rules 🙂

5 Ways to Improve Your Blogging in Less Than 24 Hours

See on Scoop.itWriting in the 21st Century

Apply these 5 tips in your blogging and see an instant improvement in your writing, and your WordPress traffic.


In my experience in coaching writers, I’ve discovered that the most common fear writers have is not being understood. Fear of not being heard causes people to over explain and to use more words than necessary.
This can also manifest itself in people’s speech and it subconsciously communicates fear and insecurity. You can overcome this by trusting that your readers will know what you’re talking about. Over explaining can be worse than talking down to your readers and it clutters up your writing with fluff.
So the next time you edit one of your blogs, ask yourself whether you’re over explaining and remove the sections where you’re saying too much.

See on