And The Best Supporting Character Is : Viscount Stafford

Source: Let us Talk of Many Things; of Books and Queens and Pirates, of History and Kings…: …. And The Best Supporting Character Is : Viscount Stafford

…. And The Best Supporting Character Is : Viscount Stafford

Join a selection of fabulous authors and their

Supporting Role Characters
Twitter #SupportingRole

We all know the protagonist is the hero (or anti-hero!) of a novel. He or she usually has a companion main character, often the ‘love interest’ or maybe the stalwart side-kick, but what about that next rank down: the supporting role guy or gal? You know, the one who doesn’t get Best Actor, but Best Supporting Actor at the Oscars. I thought it time that some of these supporting cast characters had a chance to step from the shadows of novels and have a turn in the limelight.

So, a rousing round of applause please for…Adam Lawrence, Viscount Stafford

a Supporting Role Character from novels

by  Regina Jeffers

Helen: Hello, I believe you appear in several of Regina Jeffers’s novels. Would you please introduce yourself?
Stafford: I am Adam Lawrence, the only child and heir to the Earl of Greenwall, with whom I am often at odds. I employ of father’s courtesy title of Viscount Stafford. I have appeared in eight of Mrs. Jeffers’s novel: two of her Austen-inspired titles and six of her Regency-based “Realm” series.

Helen: What role do you play in the novel/s?
Stafford: I first appeared in Jeffers’s cozy mystery, The Phantom of Pemberley. In it, I begged shelter at Pemberley House during a raging snow storm. Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy, Austen’s most famous hero, would have preferred to turn me away for I was traveling with my mistress, and Darcy wished not to expose his wife and sister to such a woman. However, as I am an intimate acquaintance of his cousin, Darcy relented. Later, he was glad of my attendance in what turned out to be an impromptu house party because I aided in his attempts in locating a killer at the grand manor.

In other of Ms. Jeffers’s books, my role varies. I had a “walk through” role in A Touch of Velvet, greeting the Duke of Thornhill and Miss Velvet Aldridge at the infamous Vauxhall Gardens. In A Touch of Grace, I was the foil to Gabriel Crowden, the Marquis of Godown, for he and I often vied for the same women. I again came to the aid of the heroes of A Touch of Mercy, A Touch of Love, and A Touch of Honor by providing transportation, advice, and a bit of “pretense.”  I attended the house party in His American Heartsong and persuaded Lawrence Lowery to seek out an American hoyden, Miss Arabella Tilney, as his lady love, as well as protecting the reputation of both Lowery and the lady. In Ms. Jeffers’s most recent release, Mr. Darcy’s Bargain, I assist Darcy in the capture of the infamous Mr. George Wickham, an event which brought me more renown than I cared to acknowledge.

Helen: No spoilers. But are you a ‘goody’ or a ‘baddie’? (Or mayhap you are both!)

Stafford: I suppose many among the ton would characterize me as a “rake.” I hold the reputation of being a man about Town, but I privately pray that does not define me. I enjoy the turn of a card for my winnings supplement my allowance from my father, the Earl. I admit that I have not been the easiest of sons for Greenwall, for I am often defiant and disrespectful. I learned long ago that I could not live up to him reputation, and so I chose no longer to try. Nor have I been a “true friend,” for the majority of my “friends” are mere acquaintances, not trusted companions. However, in each of Mrs. Jeffers’s novels, the dear lady has been kind enough not to paint me with a “black stroke.” She saw beyond my shallow facade and presented me with a few redeeming qualities.

Helen: So you support the lead character? Who is he or she and tell us a little bit about him or her?

Stafford: I said prior that Fitzwilliam Darcy was not happy to accept me into his home. In truth, I was not much pleased with the idea either, for his cousin had filled my head with tales of Darcy’s “perfectionism.” However, my attitude changed when I observed Darcy’s tender care of his sister, his wife, his servants, and his house guests. I began to envy the relationship he and Mrs. Darcy share.

I admit to enjoying plaguing Lord Godown. In my opinion, the man is too thin-skinned. I have been known to seek out a particular woman just because Godown showed interest in her. However, I have witnessed the man’s devotion to his wife. To my regret, their marriage brought an end to our “competition.”

As to the other men of the Realm, I am a bit desirous of their “brotherhood.” I have no doubt that their duties to the Home Office often placed them in danger, but as I have never known the type of loyalty they display, I feel ashamed of my failures.

Helen: Do you like being the ‘supporting role’ or do you wish you could have a lead part in a book of your own?

Stafford: My dear Ms. Jeffers has been kind enough to bring me from the shadows and into a starring role. I am greatly in her debt and that of her loyal readers who kept asking for me to have my own tale. His Irish Eve takes place some six years after I released my mistress to a return to her family after that debacle at Pemberley House. Little did I know at the time that Cathleen Donnel was with child. It was only after Cathleen’s cousin contacted my father for financial assistance that I learned of my “bastard.” When I arrived to claim the child, I found not only a son, but also two daughters. As I am certain you readily suspect, they are triplets.

This encounter brought me into the life of not only the children, but also their cousin, Miss Aoife Kennice, who assumed the children’s care when Cathleen passed. Miss Kennice is the type of woman to demand that a man be a better person. She rejected my flirtations while enticing me to learn more of my responsibilities as the future Earl of Greenwall, a task I had avoided for years. Needless to say, we were meant to be together for she is “Aoife,” the Anglicized name for “Eve.” I am much impressed when Ms. Jeffers adds these little details to a story, for I am quite happy to be “Adam and Eve.”

Helen: What is one of your least favourite scenes?

Stafford: My least favorite scene in all the books comes in His Irish Eve. I planned to propose to Miss Kennice when she turned over the children to me. We were to meet in Manchester. Unfortunately, the day of our meeting was also the day of the Peterloo Massacre at St. Peter’s Field. I have never been more frightened in my life, not for myself, for I could have turned and walked away from the melee, but I could not leave Aoife and the children, who were caught between the cavalry and those who came to the park to demand the reform of parliamentary representation. I had to fight my way across the field to reach my family.

Helen: And your most favourite?

Stafford: There was a moment in A Touch of Mercy where I executed something “heroic,” but not dangerous. Aidan Kimbolt, Viscount Lexford, searched for Miss Mercy Nelson, who had been kidnapped. I had encountered the woman upon the road, although I did not recognize her situation at the time, and informed him of where to search. Meanwhile, his friend Lord Swenson was to purchase a special license in Lexford’s name so Lexford could marry the girl quickly when he found her. Needless to say, the Archbishop did not approve of Swenton’s maneuvering. With the combined efforts of Lexford’s Realm companions, I pretended to be Lexford in order to convince the Archbishop that the special license was necessary. Despite it being but a twist of the facts, it was quite satisfying to know I served the Lexford well.

Helen: Thank you – that was really interesting – I look forward to meeting you again in Ms. Jeffers’s novels!

Helen: Now something for the intrepid author to answer. You can invite six fictional characters (not your own!) to Christmas Dinner – who will they be?
Jeffers: Gosh, this threw me at first. I am accustomed to answering the one about what “real” people I would ask to supper.

First, I would choose Mr. Rochester from Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre. Rochester fascinates me because he plays his games with Jane and Miss Blanche Ingram well. He is the perfect Byronic hero: dark, brooding, intense, troubled, arrogant, emotional. His great passion and forcefulness make him an appealing character. As a military brat and a military wife, such men do not intimidate me.

A character I return to often is Lieutenant Rebecca Phillips in Zack Emerson’s (really Ellen Emerson White) Echo Company series (Welcome to Vietnam, Hill 568, ’Tis the Season, Stand Down, and The Road Home). Rebecca is a nurse in Vietnam who encounters Echo Company when her medvac helicopter is shot down. Although the story was written for young adults, it is filled with enough grit to satisfy even those who wish for a description of the horrors of war. Having once thought to be a nurse, this would likely have been my calling for Vietnam was my era and the military was my life. I adore Rebecca’s vulnerability and her wit and her larger-than-life optimism in the midst of war’s worst scenarios.

One Thousand White Women: The Journals of May Dodd brings us the fictitious adventures of an “J. Will Dodd’s” ostensibly real ancestor in an imagined “Brides for Indians” program of the United States government. The premise of the story is that the Northern Cheyenne Indians are shrinking in numbers and seek a way to assimilate into white society. They decide to marry white women and have half-blood children, enabling the two cultures to blend naturally. The Cheyenne Chief Little Wolf approaches President Ulysses Grant with the proposal to trade 1000 white women for 1000 horses, an offer publicly refused by the government. May Dodd chooses to join the program as a means to be released from a mental asylum, where she has lived since being incarcerated by her family for having two children out of wedlock. I would be very interested in her backstory, one of which the reader learns only bits and pieces.

Sharyn McCrumb’s The Songcatcher, shares the story of pioneer settler Malcolm McCourry beginning in 1751, when nine-year old Malcolm was kidnapped from his home on the Scottish island of Islay to serve aboard a sailing ship. As an adolescent Malcolm turned up in Morristown, New Jersey, where he apprenticed with an attorney, later becoming a lawyer himself. He fought with the Morris Militia in the American Revolution. In the 1790s, Malcolm McCoy left his wife and children in New Jersey, and in the company of his daughter and her husband, he made his way down the Wilderness Road to western North Carolina, where he homesteaded, married, and raised a second family. As I live in North Carolina, this book and character struck a real chord with me. I often used it in my classes on Regional literature when I was a teacher. I love how McCrumb intertwines the traditional ballad sung by Malcolm with the country music star modern-day relative, who searches for the old song to give it new life. I have a ton of questions I wish to ask Malcolm on what he witnessed.

Another female I would choose would be Regina Hubbard Giddens in Lillian Hellman’s The Little Foxes. The role of Regina Giddens was one I adored performing over the years in community theatre. Tallulah Bankhead originated the role on Broadway, and Bette Davis played the part in film. The play’s focus is Southern Regina Giddens, who struggles for wealth and freedom within the confines of an early 20th-century society where fathers considered only sons as legal heirs. She is conniving and will do anything to be independently wealthy, including taunting her fatally ill husband Horace with her contempt. She withholds the medicine he requires to live. I ask you: Who does not love a woman who takes no prisoners? Especially in a time when women held few options.

Those of you who know me can guess the last person on my guest list. I fell in love with Jane Austen’s Fitzwilliam Darcy from Pride and Prejudice when I was but 12. That emotion has not changed. Darcy exhibits all the good and bad qualities of the ideal English aristocrat — snobbish and arrogant, he is also completely honest and sure of himself. As Darcy’s nemesis, George Wickham, notes in his sly assessment, “His [Darcy] pride never deserts him; but with the rich, he is liberal-minded, just, sincere, rational, honorable, and perhaps agreeable — allowing for fortune and figure.” Darcy falls in love with a girl who is smart, witty, a bit judgmental, sympathetic, and naive to the ways of the world. At age 12 (and now at age 69), those traits still describe me.


Regina Jeffers, an award-winning author of historical cozy mysteries, Austenesque sequels and retellings, as well as Regency era romances, has worn many hats over her lifetime: daughter, student, military brat, wife, mother, grandmother, teacher, tax preparer, journalist, choreographer, Broadway dancer, theatre director, history buff, grant writer, media literacy consultant, and author. Living outside of Charlotte, NC, Jeffers writes novels that take the ordinary and adds a bit of mayhem, while mastering tension in her own life with a bit of gardening and the exuberance of her “grand joys.”

You may find Regina at …

Every Woman Dreams Blog
Austen Authors
Twitter @reginajeffers
Amazon Author Page
Also on Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Google+.

Come back tomorrow to meet the next Supporting Role Character 

Here’s the full list of authors and their characters  – links will be added as each character makes his or her entrance

6th     Inge H Borg and Vergil
7th    Matthew Harffy and Coenred
8th     Alison Morton and Lurio 
9th     Regina Jeffers and Viscount Stafford – today’s Guest
10th   Anna Belfrage
11th   Christoph Fischer
12th   Pauline Barclay
13th   Antoine Vanner
14th   Annie Whitehead
15th   Derek Birks
16th   Carolyn Hughes
17th   Helen Hollick

“Ludwika” is a download ‘bestseller’

piI download-9know it’s not strictly a bestseller when you don’t charge for your book, but check out these screenshots: Amazon does call this Bestseller Charts.

And: Even if you give it away for free, it’s nice to see that people want it and not snub you.


All the more important as the story and photos have relevance to the family of Ludwika, who are still trying to connect with their counterparts in Poland and want to find eye witnesses of their mother’s times in Germany.

If I have to give away the book for free to reach the biggest possible audience, then I will do so happily. Please share with your Polish fri15401040_10153855635382132_4255378386268465297_nHalina and Ludwika 15401001_10153855635352132_4477538078546115778_n 15326575_10153855635302132_4918281892429012435_nends.


And the Best Suporting Role Is: Lurio

Source: Let us Talk of Many Things; of Books and Queens and Pirates, of History and Kings…

And the Best Suporting Role Is: Lurio

Join a selection of fabulous authors and their

Supporting Role Characters
Twitter #SupportingRole

We all know the protagonist is the hero (or anti-hero!) of a novel. He or she usually has a companion main character, often the ‘love interest’ or maybe the stalwart side-kick, but what about that next rank down: the supporting role guy or gal? You know, the one who doesn’t get Best Actor, but Best Supporting Actor at the Oscars. I thought it time that some of these supporting cast characters had a chance to step from the shadows of novels and have a turn in the limelight.

So, a rousing round of applause please for…Cornelius Lurio

a Supporting Role Character from 
The Roma Nova Series

by Alison Morton

Helen: Hello, I believe you appear in Alison Morton’s novels, INCEPTIO, PERFIDITAS and SUCCESSIO.  Would you like to introduce yourself?

So gracious of her to fit me in (snorts). In INCEPTIO I’m an Inspector in the Department of Justice Custodes – police to you. In PERFIDITAS, I’ve been promoted to Commander and in SUCCESSIO, Senior Commander of the Urban Cohorts, Roma Nova. Oh, and as you’re an English speaker, custodes is pronounced cust-oh-days.

Helen: what role do you play in the novels?

Role? Ha! I’m the one who chivvies the so-called super hero Carina Mitela along and clears up the mess she makes. I’m a simple policeman, not like that glamorous Praetorian Guard lot she belongs to. Okay, in INCEPTIO I assist the Justice Minister – damned desk job mostly – then later in SUCCESSIO I run the entire urban police force for my sins.

Helen: No spoilers. But are you a ‘goody’ or a ‘baddie’? (Or maybe you are both!)

What sort of a question is that, for Mercury’s sake? Are you some kind of do-gooder? The custodes (cust-oh-days, remember) keep law and order in Roma Nova. They’re police. End of.

Helen: So you support the lead character? Who is she? Tell tell us a little bit about her.

When I first met Carina Mitela, I thought she was some little rich girl amateur, dabbling in serious matters, a complete nuisance who’d scream and run away if a mouse squeaked at her. Then I saw her in the arena at her gym. Pluto, she managed to down Mossia Antonia, the five times champion gladiatrix. And she turned out to have great instincts for undercover work. She completed a hard assignment well and kept her cover in trying circumstances. Kudos to her. Oh, and she wiggles her arse nicely.

Helen: Now be honest – what do you really think of this lead character!

You take what I’m going to say now out of this room and I’ll throw the whole Lex Custodum at you. Or I might settle for less and have your hide.

She’s hellish irritating, goes off piste all the time but so persistent and dedicated that I usually forgive her. She’s one of the most intelligent and effective undercover operatives I’ve ever had the privilege to work with. Gets a bit emotional at times, though, and has a big mouth on her. She’s pretty nifty in bed as well, but the less spoken of that, the better. I was devastated when she made a different choice, but I’ll sail over the Styx before I show her or anybody else that I cared. Just remember that.

Helen: Do you like being the ‘supporting role’ or do you wish you could have a lead part in a book of your own?

Support? Isn’t that what we scarabs always do. Oh, you didn’t know that’s what the public call us? (Gives interviewer a look as if explaining the obvious to a one day recruit) Scarab is a dung beetle that processes shit. That’s what we police do. A book of my own? What in Hades would readers find of interest in my life?

Helen: What is one of your least favourite scenes?

How much time have you got? The first time I sat down and worked with Mitela, it was at her place and she was so up herself. Okay, I’d been a bit rude to her the day before… I’ll let her tell the story:

Of course, Lurio picked holes in it [the plan] – out of perverseness, I thought at first. But to be fair, he was right about some of his points. When he stopped being so prickly, he was easy to work with and sharp with it. I could see why he was Fulvia’s special assistant. We identified the areas I needed training in, but thankfully they were few, mostly spook stuff.

We reached a natural break when something occurred to me. ‘If this operation is deep-cover then why are you here?’


‘What’s the reason for you coming to see me? I haven’t done anything criminal yet and Aemilia Fulvia isn’t here with my grandmother, so you can’t have tagged along with her.’

He flushed again. Really, it was fascinating watching a tough nut like Lurio doing such a girls’ thing.

‘It doesn’t matter.’

‘Really?’ I raised my eyebrow.

‘Will you stop saying that in such a superior way?’

A few moments passed in silence.

‘The cover story is that I’m seeing you,’ he mumbled.

‘What!’ I burst into laughter.

He looked like thunder. His chin jutted out and deep vertical lines appeared between his brows.

‘You can’t be serious,’ I retorted.

‘I wouldn’t be the first man in uniform you’ve boffed.’

Helen: and your most favourite?

That’s easy! When Mitela was undercover, she used the code name Bruna. She was detained by the Praetorian Guard Special Forces after the operation take-down. I went to recover her at their barracks and had the pleasure of wiping the smile off that Praetorian major’s face when he realised who my undercover agent was. It was so funny I nearly pissed myself. She tells it best:


He didn’t greet me or say anything else. He straightened up and fixed me with an intense stare. A warning. Absolutely no mistake. I stayed silent, but my thoughts were unprintable. He was so lucky my hands weren’t free.

[The Praetorian major] dismissed the guards. He glanced at me then turned a full-strength glare on Lurio. ‘Is this really your agent, Inspector?’

‘It certainly is, Major.’ He smiled at me. ‘Hello, Bruna.’

‘Hello, sir.’

[The major]’s eyes locked on to me. He stared at me as if I were a Martian. His disbelief was obvious. Despite feeling cold, tired and furious, a glimmer of smugness stirred in me.

Lurio beamed an extra-friendly smile at me, his shoulder turned away from [the major].

‘Have you eaten recently?’

His faux concern was overdone, I thought. He was relishing getting one over the oh-so-clever PGSF.

Helen: Thank you – that was really interesting – I look forward to meeting you again in ‘your’ novel!

Pleasure. Now I must get back to work. The duty custos will see you out.

Helen: Now something for the intrepid author to answer. You can invite six fictional characters (not your own!) to Christmas Dinner – who will they be?

(It would be Saturnalia on 17 December rather than Christmas)

Falco and Helena from Lindsey Davis’s Roman detective series

Sally Gilmartin from William Boyd’s Restless

Deb Grantham and Max Ravenscar from Georgette Heyer’s Faro’s Daughter

Gordianus the Finder from Steven Saylor’s Roma Sub Rosa series


Connect with Alison on her Roma Nova site:

Facebook author page:

Twitter  @alison-morton

Amazon UKauthor page:

Amazon USauthor page: 

Book trailers


Buying links (multiple retailers/formats):

“Quick ‘n’dirty” links page:






Come back tomorrow to meet the next Supporting Role Character 

Here’s the full list of authors and their characters  – links will be added as each character makes his or her entrance

6th     Inge H Borg and Vergil
7th    Matthew Harffy and Coenred
8th     Alison Morton and Lurio today’s guest
9th     Regina Jeffers
10th   Anna Belfrage
11th   Christoph Fischer
12th   Pauline Barclay
13th   Antoine Vanner
14th   Annie Whitehead
15th   Derek Birks
16th   Carolyn Hughes
17th   Helen Hollick

Introducing Mystery Writer Alison Golden and her new book

ag_cropToday I welcome Alison Golden, a lovely writing colleague of mine, whose books looks lovely. And what do you know – she’s got a brandnew one out this week: The Case of the Broken Doll (An Inspector David Graham Cozy Mystery Book 4) – already blessed with outstanding reviews.

Alison is the creator of the Reverend Annabelle Dixon cozy mysteries, a charming, fun series featuring a female vicar ministering in the beautiful county of Cornwall, England. She also produces a Jersey-based detective series featuring Inspector David Graham and the Diana Hunter series, set in Vancouver.the_case_of_the_broken_doll_4

Her books’ themes range from the humorous and sweet to harder hitting suspense.

They are recommended for readers who like to relax and unwind with their books, who enjoy getting to know the characters, and who prefer the tougher side of life implied.

She is based in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and twin sons. She splits her time traveling between London and San Francisco.

Hello Alison. Plese tell my readers what type of crime fiction do you write and why?

I write in the cozy mystery genre with a few slight twists. All my books are clean reads no graphic violence, sex, or strong language. Two series are set in England where I am originally from, although I have lived in California for twenty years. One of my series is a sweet, light, funny cozy featuring a ditzy but ultimately smart vicar who loves cake, the other series set in England is a more traditional British detective with some fun and seriousness written into it. The third series features a badass heroine, former spy. That one gets the heart pumping a little with some romantic tension and some suspense.


Do you find any crime fiction writers or detective over-rated, and if so, why?

Not so much writers but I’m not keen on books where there are no redeeming characters. I struggled with Gone Girl and Girl on a Train for that reason. I simply wasn’t rooting for anyone and emotionally they left me flat.


Are you like any of the characters (and how so)?

I am most like Annabelle, my vicar. Like her I have a sweet tooth, I love to drive the English country lanes in my car, and can appear quite ditzy and absent-minded. I’m just thinking about so many things at once! I also have some Diana Hunter in me, too. I wanted to be a Charlie’s Angel as a girl and would imagine myself righting all the wrongs I used to hear about on the news.

What is more important in your books – the plot twists or the characters?

Ooh, that’s a difficult question. I would say they are both equally important. I love character. That is where my heart is. I am a huge observer of people and have spent hundreds of hours analysing different psychological types. My characters become like friends to me and I love to find out where they go next. But I think plot is important too. It is important to feel tension, especially in a mystery, and for there to be underlying conflicts. Surprises add something extra and can elevate a book from good to excellent.

Do you plot the entire novel and know who did it before you start, or can that change?

Until my most recent book, The Case of the Broken Doll, I would have said I know it all beforehand. However, when I read over the first draft of Broken Doll. I felt there wasn’t enough suspense and I completely rewrote large parts of it and changed who did it.

Do you include humour?

Yes, all my novels contain humour of some kind. Often dry, but sometimes slapstick and farce. It is addicting to be able to make people laugh, it’s the best feeling in the world, and if I can do that through my writing, that’s fantastic.

What are you working on now?

I am plotting two Reverend Annabelle Dixon novels. My lips are sealed.

What do you do when you don’t write?

I market my books, hang out with my family, sleep. That’s all I have time for.

What is your favourite book?

My favourite books are “We Need To Talk About Kevin,” by Lionel Shriver, “Life After Life” by Kate Atkinson and “In Cold Blood” by Truman Capote.

Great choices, Alison. What book are you currently reading and in what format (e-book/paperback/hardcover)?

I’m currently re-reading “The Sculptress” by Minette Walters in paperback.

To get three free cozy mysteries, up-to-date promotions and release dates of upcoming books, sign up for the latest news here:

Alison Golden was born and raised in Bedfordshire, England. She writes cozy mysteries and suspense novels, along with the occasional witty blog post, all of which are designed to entertain, amuse, and calm. Her approach is to combine creative ideas with excellent writing and edit, edit, edit.

Readers can get the first books in each of my three

series for free, plus updates about new releases, exclusive promotions, and other insider information if they sign up for the Cozy Mysteries Insider mailing list at:

Book links:
The Inspector David Graham Mysteries
Reverend Annabelle Dixon Cozy Mysteries





Diana Hunter Mysteries

Welsh Wednesdays: Everything you need to know about the #Llandeilo X-Mas Book Fair, this Saturday Dec 10th


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13029662_1689809881271994_4234272720636115043_oThe Book Fair will start at 9:45am with music by the Llandeilo Town Band and the official opening by the Mayor.  You can find the Civic Hall on Crescent Road, next to the main town car park. 

There will be signs throughout town to gfc349-posteruide you.

The day will be filled with performances, readings and events for the entire family.


9:45 am: The Llandeilo Town Band will kickstart the day with festive music and the town Mayor will open the event officially.14509147_10153791704897327_2015750842_n

10:00 am: Book Fair opens with Hayley Addis: “The Goblin Circus” (children & adults) reworking fairy-tales

10:45 am: Will MacMillan Jones presents his ‘Enchanted Darkness,’ a performance for children and adults.9b2e4-welsh_cakes_and_custard

11:15 am: Wendy White, ‘Tir-nan-Og’ winner, reads from her children’s book ‘Welsh Cakes and Custard.’

11:45 am: Hugh W. Roberts reads “What If Summer Never Arrives” from his brand new book “Glimpses”

12:15 am: Colin R. Parsons reads his Christmas Story “Norman’s Christmas Spirit”

12:45 am: Short Story Competition Award Ceremony. images-23

1:00 p.m. Sharon Tregenza reads from her Middle Grade/Mystery Adventure “Shiver Stone”

1:00 p.m. Carol Lovekin reads from her magical novel ‘Ghostbird.’

8d87e-willow2bcoco2bsanta2bkindle2bsm2b1:30 pm: Rachel McGrath reads from her children’s book ‘Willow and Coco meet Santa.’

2:00 pm: Poetry Readings. (Open Mic) download-2

2:30pm:  Welsh Poem Recital Competition.

3:00 pm: Liz Riley-Jones reads from her Celtic fantasy novel ‘ Hiraeth a burden – baich’ and talks about the significance of the Welsh Language in it.81ae2-hiraeth-a-loss-front-cover-artwork

3:30 pm: Graham Watkin reads from his best-selling mythology collection ‘Welsh Legends and Myths.’ a4a17-welsh2bl2band2bm2bfront2bcover2bdraft2b2

4:00 pm: Kate Glanville reads from her novel ‘Stargazing.’

4:30 pm: Christoph Fischer reads from his Carmarthenshire-set murder mystery ‘The Body In The Snow.’

17:00: Book Fair closes with the announcement of Raffle Prize winners. Donations were received from many local businesses: Organica, Scorpio, Cuckoo’s Nest, Heavenly Chocolate, Deb’s Wool, Coffor Bach, Dragon’s Garden, In Stitches, Eve’s Toy Shop, The Little Welsh Dresser, Papillon, Crafts Alive.ea9a1-15181591_10153830343087132_6351907246076881168_n

Catering by THE HANGOUT at the YARD Llandeilo (traditional, healthy and vegetarian options)


Gift Wrapping in aid of the Air Ambulance all day long



Let us Talk of Many Things; of Books and Queens and Pirates, of History and Kings…

Inge H Borg’s character Vergil interviewed by Helen Hollick – join us for a twelve day character interview extravaganza

Source: Let us Talk of Many Things; of Books and Queens and Pirates, of History and Kings…

6 December 2016

… And the Best Supporting Role is: Vergil

Join a selection of fabulous authors and their

Supporting Role Characters
Twitter #SupportingRole

We all know the protagonist is the hero (or anti-hero!) of a novel. He or she usually has a companion main character, often the ‘love interest’ or maybe the stalwart side-kick, but what about that next rank down: the supporting role guy or gal? You know, the one who doesn’t get Best Actor, but Best Supporting Actor at the Oscars. I thought it time that some of these supporting cast characters had a chance to step from the shadows of novels and have a turn in the limelight.

So, a rousing round of applause please for…Vergil,

a Supporting Role Character from the Five-Volume

Legends of the Winged Scarab Series

by Inge H. Borg

Helen: Hello, I believe you appear in several of Inge H. Borg’s Legends of the Winged Scarab novels? Would you like to introduce yourself?

Vergil: I am Vergil, with an e. That’s how my Puerto Rican mother spelled it.

I am a relative late-comer to Borg’s Legends, appearing only in Books four and five, The Crystal Curse and The Nile Conspiracy.

Helen: What role do you play in the novels?

Vergil: I turn into a rather important character due to my special skills acquired while plying the Southern Atlantic in search of ships. It’s how I wound up in that stinking Venezuelan prison on Margarita Island. Twenty-five years, I got for what the crappy Caracas court called ‘Piracy on the high seas.’ (I am sure, Helen, you are familiar with the term as you seem to have a soft spot for those engaged in the trade.)

Helen: No spoilers. But are you a ‘goody’ or a ‘baddie’? (Or maybe you are both!)
Vergil: Depends who you ask, doesn’t it? I think I am rather good. Especially at what I do. Well, getting caught was bad luck.

Helen: So you support the lead character? Who is he or she and tell us a little bit about him or her?

Vergil: I wouldn’t exactly say I am supporting the lead characters, high-minded archaeologists Naunet and Jonathan Wilkins, trying to save those silly Ancient Egyptian golden tablets from obsessed people like my new boss, Lorenzo.

Rather, in The Crystal Curse, I support Lorenzo Dominguez, the South American billionaire and art collector; a bit of a pirate himself, to put it mildly. After he sprung me and some of my murderous buddies from jail, he made me guard his “guests” on board the Bucanero.

Helen: Now be honest – what do you really think of this lead character!

Vergil: You are talking about that Boston boy, Jonathan? He’s always wondering if I only speak Spanish, or if I understand English as he and his exotic-looking wife are plotting their escape from Lorenzo. He keeps poking me in the chest, and in his broad ‘haavaad-yaad’ accent tests me with things like, ‘Your mother’s a whore.’

But I am smart [taps the side of his nose with his finger]. I keep my cool. Although, one day, pretty-boy …

As to Lorenzo? He thinks I am beholden to him, poor bugger. He plum forgets he owns a ship. From the outside, the Bucanero may look like a wreck, but inside, she’s a palace. Very tempting, that’s all I can say.


Helen: Do you like being the ‘supporting role’ or do you wish you could have a lead part in a book of your own?

Vergil: Naw. I am kept plenty busy, especially in The Nile Conspiracy. Did I tell you I am very handy with weapons? Balancing on the skid of a helo trying to shoot off a rocket launcher takes nerves of steel—and the prospect of a juicy prize.

Helen: What is one of your least favourite scenes?

Vergil: Remember, I’d been in prison for some time. So, I suggested to Jonathan I would appreciate a little romp with his lovely wife Naunet. The ungrateful sod slams a steel door in my face. I can tell you, I really had to hold on to my pistol (no pun intended).

Helen: And your most favourite?

I have a real good chance of getting my hands on a super ultra-modern yacht, the A&N. She belonged to a shady Russian billionaire (aren’t they all, shady I mean). This yacht was confiscated by the Egyptian president for his own use. He renamed her the Khamsin. As I said, I may have a real good chance …

Helen: Thank you – that was really interesting – I look forward to meeting you again in ‘your’ novels!

Vergil: El gusto es mio, Señora Helen.

Helen: Now something for the intrepid author to answer. You can invite six fictional characters (not your own!) to Christmas Dinner – who will they be?

Inge H. Borg [panic stricken] Does that mean I have to cook?

Seriously, I’d love to get to know a real pirate. I am thinking of Jesamiah Acorneand his lovely Tiola from On The Account.

Oh, you wrote The Sea Witch Voyages series, didn’t you, Helen. Well, a bit of sucking up never hurts. But honestly, it’d be great if they would accept my invitation.

Then, I’d like to meet Aurelia Mitela, the strong woman from Alison Morton’sAurelia, Book four in her Roma Nova series and, skipping back to the previous three novels in the series, add her grand-daughter Carina.

Placing William the Conqueror and Harald Hardrada from the 1066 Turned Upside Down: Alternative Fiction Stories, a collaboration of nine authors, at the dinner table prior to the battle of Hastings, of course, would certainly bring animation to the conversation, if not drawn swords.

But that leaves me in the odd seventh chair. Can’t have that. So, I am choosing as my dinner partner Charles from Christoph Fischer’s Conditions. I always wondered if sweet Charles really had ‘a condition.’ Surely, the sequel Conditioned will tell.

That’s it. Shall we adjourn to the living room for coffee and cognac?

* * *

Inge H. Borg’s e-Books and Paperbacks are widely available:






Come back tomorrow to meet the next Supporting Role Character! 

Here’s the full list of authors – links will be added as each character makes his or her entrance

6th     Inge H Borg and Virgil
7th    Matthew Harffy
8th     Alison Morton
9th     Regina Jeffers
10th   Anna Belfrage
11th   Christoph Fischer
12th   Pauline Barclay
13th   Antoine Vanner
14th   Annie Whitehead
15th   Derek Birks
16th   Carolyn Hughes
17th   Helen Hollick

#BOOK REVIEW BY @COLLEENCHESEBRO OF “A Merry Mountain Christmas, BY AUTHOR @PCZick | Lit World Interviews

Source: #BOOK REVIEW BY @COLLEENCHESEBRO OF “A Merry Mountain Christmas, BY AUTHOR @PCZick | Lit World Interviews



  • Title:  A Merry Mountain Christmas: Sweet Romance (Smoky Mountain Romance, Volume 4)
  • Author: P. C. Zick
  • Print Length: 102 Pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
  • Publication Date: August 31, 2016
  • Sold by Amazon, LLC
  •  Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1537152130
  • ISBN-13: 978-1537152134
  • Formats: Paperback and Kindle
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Romance, Clean & Wholesome,

*I voluntarily reviewed an Advanced Reader’s Copy of this book*

In the author’s words:

“Fran is adjusting after her husband’s death when her first love comes back to town upsetting her family and leading her to inspiration. Fran first fell in love with Michael as a teenager. When he broke her heart, she married Carl and lived a happy life for more than thirty years until Carl died tragically. Just when she’s becoming fed up with the well-meaning, yet tiresome comments about Carl’s death, her first love returns, and stirs long-forgotten emotions. Rescue dogs and a love resurrected bring a sweet Christmas celebration to the Smoky Mountains.”

My Recommendation:

I like nothing better than finding a character from a previous book starring in their own book! That is exactly what P. C. Zick did. I read and reviewed Mountain Miracles (click here to read the review) and the character of Fran, was a real standout! This novel is a continuation of Mountain Miracles and one of the sweetest romances. Not only that, but the characters leap off the page as if you already know them.

Fran does the baking for Beanery Joe’s, a local coffee shop owned by Cecelia Jones. Fran’s husband, Carl, is recently deceased. Life has dealt a blow to Fran, and she isn’t sure how to cope.

The one shining light that helps to keep Fran moving forward is the impending marriage of her friends, Cecelia Jones and David Bellwood. When David’s father, Michael shows up to attend the wedding, Fran realizes he is her long lost boyfriend from high school. It doesn’t take long for the old sparks to ignite feelings that Fran and Michael had hidden for years.

The fact that Michael betrayed her and married someone else complicates their friendship. To make matters worse, Fran’s son Nick, and Michael’s son, David, struggle with their parents new found relationship. Fran’s memories of Carl and their life together muddle things further ensuing in plenty of fireworks.

Fran is one of the most endearing characters I have read in a long time. I really connected with her and felt the pain of her loss, and the joy of her new love. P. C. Zick deftly spins a love story that is poignant and real. If I met Fran today, I would want her as my friend.

This story is more a journey of healing for both families. It centers on dealing with life and the choices we made in the past and learning how to forgive, and move on. The theme of getting a second chance at love resonates through the entire story.

I read quickly to find out what happened next. I could not put the book down. If you love a romance where the characters walk off the page to meet you, this is the book for you. It was a “me time” read and I loved it!❤


My Rating:

Character Believability: 5
Flow and Pace: 5
Reader Engagement: 5
Reader Enrichment: 5
Reader Enjoyment: 5
Overall Rate: 5 out of 5 stars






Author, P. C. Zick

About P. C. Zick:

P.C. Zick describes herself as a storyteller no matter what she writes. And she writes in a variety of genres, including romance, contemporary fiction, and nonfiction. She’s won various awards for her essays, columns, editorials, articles, and fiction.

The three novels in her Florida Fiction Series contain stories of Florida and its people and environment, which she credits as giving her a rich base for her storytelling. “Florida’s quirky and abundant wildlife—both human and animal—supply my fiction with tales almost too weird to be believable.”

Her contemporary romances in the Behind the Love trilogy are also set in Florida. Her most recent works are set in the Smoky Mountains. All of her books are stand-alone reads, even if they appear in a series.

Her novels contain elements of romance with strong female characters, handsome heroes, and descriptive settings. She believes in living lightly upon this earth with love, laughter, and passion, and through her fiction, she imparts this philosophy in an entertaining manner with an obvious love for her characters, plot, and themes.

You can keep track of P.C. Zick’s new releases and special promotions by signing up for her newsletter here: Visit her website to find out more about her writing life at

Make certain to connect with P. C. Zick through Twitter at @PCZick

Book Review by @ColleenChesebro of

Colleen 5.3.16

The Best Supporting Role is…

Source: The Best Supporting Role is…

Starting on 6th December on Helen Hollick’s
Come and meet a host of wonderful supporting characters from the novels of twelve different authors (including me!). The characters you will be meeting will be one of those who might get Best Supporting Actor at the Oscars, rather than Best Actor. Helen thought it was high time that some of these supporting cast characters had a chance to step out of the shadows of novels and have a turn in the limelight. What a great idea!

AND each author is also asked to invite six fictional characters (not their own!) to Christmas Dinner. I wonder who they’ll invite?

Here are the authors taking part. To find out who their Supporting Role Character will be, join us at to find out!

6th    Inge H Borg
7th    Matthew Harffy
8th    Alison Morton
9th    Regina Jeffers
10th  Anna Belfrage
11th   Christoph Fischer
12th   Pauline Barclay
13th   Antoine Vanner
14th   Annie Whitehead
15th   Derek Birks
16th   Carolyn Hughes
17th   Helen Hollick

Twitter #SupportingRole

Ludwika is #freeonkindle for the next few days #Freebook #Promotion

download-10I’ve decided to take advantage of my KDP Select arragement for Ludwika and share her story for a limited time for free. We’re still hoping to connect with more of her relatives in Poland and to learn more about her time in the Dalum Lingen camps. 7d276-12360399_10153067444957132_5703419004838921262_n

Please, download, share and have a merry Christmas / happy holidays!



Ludwika: A Polish Woman’s Struggle To Survive In Nazi Germany
It’s World War II and Ludwika Gierz, a young Polish woman, is forced to leave her family and go to Nazi Germany to work for an SS officer. There, she must walk a tightrope, learning to live as a second-class citizen in a world where one wrong word could 14322418_10153634910882132_6527470197106954044_nspell disaster and every day could be her last. Based on real events, this is a story of hope amid despair, of love amid loss . . . ultimately, it’s one woman’s story of survival.
Editorial Review:

“This is the best kind of fiction—it’s based on the real life. Ludwika’s story highlights the magnitude of human suffering caused by WWII, transcending multiple generations and many nations.
WWII left no one unscarred, and Ludwika’s life illustrates this tragic fact. But she also reminds us how bright the human spirit can shine when darkness falls in that unrelenting way it does during wartime. historical-1

This book was a rollercoaster ride of action and emotion, skilfully told by Mr. Fischer, who brought something fresh and new to a topic about which thousands of stories have 14445083_10153656932992132_754319931656305073_oalready been told.”

Mystery Mondays: J.P McLean On Writing Deeper Dialogue

Source: Mystery Mondays: J.P McLean On Writing Deeper Dialogue

Mystery Mondays: J.P McLean On Writing Deeper Dialogue

This was posted on NOVEMBER 29, 2016

J.P. (Jo-Anne) McLean is the author of The Gift Legacy series, Awakening, Revelation, Redemption, Penance and, Betrayal. Reviewers call the series addictive, smart and fun. Within those pages, a young protagonist, Emelynn Taylor, tests the theory that what doesn’t break you makes you stronger.


Writing Deeper Dialogue by JP McLean 

Putting words in your characters’ mouths can make for an entertaining day of writing. Your characters say things you never would, in a tone your mother wouldn’t approve of, and using language that would raise eyebrows. It’s a bit of a power trip. It almost makes up for all those times you thought up the perfect comeback … moments too late.

But dialogue isn’t just the words in a conversation: it’s language, it’s context, it’s nuance. Dialogue gives the writer the opportunity to show a character’s education, origins, ethnicity, wealth, temperament, age, mind-set and so much more.

  • Is your character gonna or going to?
  • Is your character speaking in an east coast accent or a southern drawl?
  • Is your character late because she was dealing with an incompetent sales woman at Holt Renfrew or teasing bubble gum out of her two-year-old’s hair?
  • Are your characters using short, truncated sentences, or are they long-winded?
  • Are your characters speaking in a clipped tone, or with the patience of a nun?
  • How your characters describe something says something about them. Do they describe the homeless person as a rumpled waste of breath, or an unfortunate soul.
  • Where are your characters situated while they have their conversation? You can keep your readers grounded in the scene by occasional references to place. Will your characters gaze upon an original Picasso or a McDonald’s Ball Pit? If you’re referencing clothing, are they smoothing the nap of a fine wool overcoat, or picking burrs from an old pilled sweater?

And a few final notes:

Make sure you are punctuating your dialogue correctly—a quick refresher never hurts.

Read your dialogue out loud to double check that it sounds real—people rarely speak in full sentences, or use grammatically-correct English.

Use simple dialogue tags (he said/she said). Readers expect “said” and therefore it doesn’t get in the way or pull them out of the story. I’m not saying don’t use other tags (whispered, rasped), but use them sparingly, and let the dialogue and body language convey the sentiment.

Make sure the reader knows who’s speaking. You don’t need to tag each line of dialogue if there are only two people speaking, but in lengthy conversations you may want throw in a character reference to keep readers on track.

You can also use what are called “beats” to identify who’s speaking. In a bar scene for example, if only one of your characters is drinking beer, then we know who’s talking in this line: He downed his beer. “That’s it for me.”

And that’s it for me as well. Now go stir up some mischief and put words into your characters’ mouths! Best of luck with your writing.

Who is J.P. McLean?

Jo-Anne and her husband live on Denman Island, nestled between the coast of Britishjpmclean-headshot-1034x1034 Columbia and Vancouver Island. J.P. holds a degree in commerce from the University of British Columbia, is a certified scuba diver, an avid gardener and a voracious reader.

The first book of her Gift Legacy Series, Awakening, received Honourable Mention at the 2016 Whistler Independent Book Awards. In 2016, J.P.’s body of work was included in the centennial anthology of the Comox Valley Writers Society, Writers & Books: Comox Valley 1865-–2015.

She would love to hear from you. Contact her via her website at or through her social media sites. Reviews are always welcome and greatly appreciated.

You can also find her here:

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