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Zoo Nation: the animals speak out!

Finally it’s here. The poetry collection which my Sheffield bestie Bev Cross and I have been promising you. Sincere apologies for the delay. That has been down to me entirely as I was in charge of the final edit and only just recently got my act together.

A huge thank you to our ART team for helping us make this collection reader ready. Your support is invaluable and immeasurable.
£1 from the sale of each book will go to our respective animal charities.
Bev’s Sheffield based chosen charity is cat-CHING. Follow them on Facebook or Instagram to see the incredible work they are doing. Also, click on his image and take a moment to meet BBIII (aka Beaumont Barrington the Third), recently rehomed and now settled in the Fulwood area of Sheffield. Bev chose this charity because she admires the selfless work of the two women running it in their spare time.
My chosen charity is Ebony Horse Club which is based in Brixton. Follow them on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. My main reason for choosing thi…
Recent posts

Can South African Coloured Girls Write SciFi? - Back Catalogue Secrets

SciFi Picked Me It came as quite a revelation that SciFi was my chosen genre for my second novel. At the time I didn’t analyse my choice but now I think I understand the why. The genre gives me the freedom to explore ideas to an end point which could be. I can people my world with whomever I please. The very possibility thrills me. Fantasy does this too, but there is something linked to the here and now in SciFi which cannot be escaped I feel. It centres around the fact technology is moving at such a pace now that in my lifespan telephones have evolved into flat slabs of plastic, keyboards can be rolled up and you can tell your TV what you want to watch. Hell, our house didn't get a Blaupunkt TV till I was 13. When I’m reading SciFi these days, it feels as though I’m reading predictions of a future lurking on the very near horizon.

Book the 1st Where Rainbows Hide was born out of my love for chimpanzees. As a child I always wanted to have one as a pet and was distraught my parents di…

Does Apartheid & Chauvinism Extend to SciFi? - Back Catalogue Secrets III

Why SciFi? For years Sci Fi has been the purview of male writers. Specifically white male writers. This is the reason Octavia Butler was repeatedly asked in interviews: Why Science Fiction?
And her response was always “Why not!”
My introduction to screen Sci Fi was through my mother. Growing up in the 60s and 70s, television meant that series such as Dr Who and Star Trek were making their way onto the small screen. I didn’t learn about Dr Who till I came to the UK and went to university. Because of my mother however, Beam me up Scottie, Lieutenant Uhura kissing Captain Kirk and Vulcan salutes regularly featured in conversations. This at a time in my particular part of the world, when cross-racial kissing was frowned upon and not every household owned a TV. The wealthiest families polished their set with Mr Sheen every Friday before friends came round to watch The World at War or Dallas after dinner.
Interestingly, I initially only consumed Sci Fi on the small screen and at the cinema. I a…

Reluctant Poet, Sod it I’m 50 now & out of the closet

Oh the shame For many years I hid the fact I wrote poetry, even from fellow writers. Why? My shame stemmed from the thought I wasn’t doing it right: my iambic pentameter was bound to be all wrong, my rhythm none existent, my rhyme cliché. I quivered in fear of collective poetic outrage. Instead I secretly sent work off to collections and quietly attended readings. No-one was more surprised than I was when my writing got accepted several times. But still, I refrained from openly mentioning my habit to all but a select few I felt would keep my secret safely stashed.
The evidence
Whatever… Then I turned 50 and suddenly I didn’t care. Older friends told me this would be so but I doubted their wisdom. I realised I truly didn’t care. About a whole list of things. E.g. Grey hair Hairy legs Nail polish Perfectly arched brows Voicing my opinion freely
See how I snuck that one in there. The very day I turned 50 I began to sound remarkably like my mother. I waited for this thought to horrify me and discov…

Eye to Aye with Poetry

Recently in my writing group we had a very interesting conversation about poetry and why so many people feel they are unqualified to comment on it let alone attempt writing it. Both myself and another very accomplished poet argued that poetry should be for everyone and the reason so many people are put off is because their introduction to it has been stultifying. We are made to feel that if we don’t understand form, method, metre, then we’d best step aside and leave it all to the professionals. But I believe we all intrinsically grasp poetry because it is first and foremost about the sound of words. Us humans relish rhythmic sounds. It’s why we listen to music, sing and dance. I stand by this opinion as I have to teach children about poetry and am met by their fear of it coupled with the idea it will be too difficult to understand.
In a classroom full of resistance to poetry I start with just one word. Your basic, everyday common noun. I ask them to list several objects: book, cheese, …

Memoirs Launch

It is my great pleasure to announce the launch of Memoirs of a Feline Familiar. I merely acted as amanuensis to Jinx Obsidian Bastet (aka Kastaspella’s famous feline Familiar). In this memoir he tells us of the hardships a Familiar has to deal with on a daily basis and spills the beans about the famous and infamous alike.
MAILING LIST EXCLUSIVE OFFER ON 22 MARCH the E-book will be completely FREE. Just follow the link below.

FREE E-book

Back Catalogue Secrets II

The Main Characters
Brueberon – A very lonely over-sized dragon in need of a friend.
Clarissa Henry – An extreme reader who dreams of worlds other than the one she lives in.
Kastaspella – A dastardly witch who detests Clarissa and hopes to make her life even more miserable than it already is.
A Book Is Born

My intention was never to write a children’s book. Before I started working at Inkhead I actively avoided little children quite simply because I was afraid of them. Okay, terrified is more accurate a description. As a teacher I stuck with teenagers. Despite their erratic qualities I related to them very well. Perhaps I was still a teenager at heart.

Ultimately I assumed my writing would focus on teen and adult themes. At the time I was already writing the first in my Sci Fi series and was almost done with the final edit of my debut novel. So I was a little stunned to find myself writing The Lonely Dragon. I’m even more surprised now to find myself producing a sequel. And still more astou…