Sunday, 31 October 2010

The Launch of Haunted Worthing

Haunted Worthing was launched yesterday at British Bookshops in Montague Place in Worthing, and many thanks you all who came, and a special thanks to all who bought a copy. It was a very successful day and I do hope you will enjoy finding out a little more about Worthing and its surrounds. Worthing is noted for its seaside and 'fresh air' qualities and is relatively new as towns go, so at first glance you may not even consider it a spooky town. But think again! The ghosts who reside at Worthing are quite a friendly peaceful bunch, so it is obvious that they are content to life in harmony with their surroundings. So next time you wander into the town keep a lookout for the ghostly figures of two children peering from an upstairs window onto the main street, or you may catch a sighting of the tall ghost dressed in white that once frequented the Dragoon public house, the scene of a brawl that ended in murder. Some say it's his ghost that used to frequent the pub before it was demolished, so where is he now? Perhaps you have even caught a glimpse of the 'Grey Lady' making a fleeting appearance in the Connaught Theatre? If walking is your pleasure then on your travels you may encounter the 8ft hooded monk studying his prayer book, or perhaps you may see the flickering candles in the middle of road, possibly connected with the Knights Templar. Just 'down the road' at Littlehampton a visit to the Dolphin Hotel, declared to be the most haunted building in the town, is a truly freaky experience, and not one for the fainted hearted. Here live a whole family of ghosts, including a nursery full of mischievous children who love to play games together, run around, make plenty of noise and are known to throw the odd item or three, but don't stay in room number 2. as you may meet the top half of a lady!
However launch over, no time to rest as I am putting the finishing touches to Shipwrecks of Sussex, so watch this post for updates. Meanwhile I am eagerly waiting copies of The Story of Pembrokeshire which is due for release on 15 November. This is a greatly updated version of the book that came out in 1993, and has been in print every since. This edition will have two sections of coloured photographs, and will be approximately 50% longer. If you enjy this beautiful historic part of the world, so look out for a copy.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

It's Arrived!

It is a long time since I posted, but that is because life has been full of exciting things!
First of all it has arrived! Haunted Worthing, I mean, always a truly exciting time for an author when you actually have something to show for all that research and hard work. I must say I am very pleased with it, and I do hope readers will enjoy it too. Worthing grew from a very small coastal, mackeral-fishing hamlet recorded as 'Ordings' in 1086 with a population of just twenty-two into a market town by 1803 and into a bustling Victorian seaside town. It has been home to smugglers and several well known literary figures over the centuries not to mention a holiday destination for thousands. The town is rich in history, and it is this past which has surely helped supply its pubs, theatres, streets ad houses with more than their fair share of ghouls and poltergeists. The ghosts in this book are on the whole a peaceful, fairly friendly bunch, but don't be misled. There are the exceptions, those poor souls with a sad past. In my latest book you will meet the 8ft monk reading his prayer book, the young girl whose hair is stroked by an unseen hand, two ghostly children caught on security camera, the famous musician who frequented his last home and the painting that weeps salty tears, and I am sure these tales will leave you chilled to the bone. But for a truly spooky experience pop down the road to the Dolphin Hotel in Littlehampton, declared the most haunted building in the town and meet a whole family of spooky ghosts and enjoy the truly freaky experience, but not one for the faint hearted. Here live Fred the blacksmith who resides in the cellar, and a nursery of mischievous children who love to play games together, run around, make plenty of noise and are known to throw the odd item or two, but don't stay at room number 2, as you may meet the top half a lady! The book has 70 black and white illustrations too.

The last few weeks have been very interesting as I pursue my research for shipwrecks! Did you know that over 200 ships were wrecked in Seaford alone? I have enjoyed days in Hastings, Seaford, Newhaven, and Worthing and Chichester nearer home. Deadline for Shipwrecks of Sussex is 30 November and I am in the happy position of feeling I will reach the deadline with no worries! In fact I have too much material! Watch this space for more information on publication date.

Finally the delayed Story of Pembrokeshire will be published on 15 November, so it has been a busy year to say the least, but a rewarding one!

On Tuesday 5th October I run a Day for Journalists and Non-fiction Writers for the SWWJ at The Writers House in London, which turned out to be most enjoyable as we shared our methods of working on a feature as well as on a non-fiction book. It was interesting to learn how each of set about sorting out our material. We also looked at various magazines as potential markets and I am sure everyone went home with at least one idea to pursue.