The Perfect Blend: Coffee and Kane


Coffee at Christmas: Jenny Kane’s Christmas Collection

Jenny Kane’s Christmas Collection!

Comprising of my three previously published novella length sequels to my debut novel, Another Cup of Coffee (- Another Cup of Christmas, Christmas at the Cotswolds, Christmas at the Castle – ), Jenny Kane’s Christmas Collection is available in both e-book format – and will be available as a paperback very soon!

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Blurb for the Jenny Kane Christmas Collection-

There is something very special about Christmas…

Jenny Kane’s Christmas Collection combines all three seasonal shorts from Jenny’s best-selling Another Cup of … series in one festive anthology.

In ‘Another Cup of Christmas’, we return to Pickwicks Coffee House in London, the setting for Jenny’s bestselling novel Another Cup of Coffee. Together with old friends Kit, Amy, Scott and Peggy, we meet new Pickwicks waitress Megan, who’s in charge of organising a charity event for the local hospital…is romance as well as seasonal goodwill in the air?

‘Christmas in the Cotswolds’ sees Megan, now an established face at Pickwicks, travelling to the beautiful Cotswold countryside after an emergency call from her friend Izzie. Can Megan help Izzie pull off the perfect Christmas at her Arts and Crafts Centre – and save the business from disaster?

Kit Lambert, Pickwicks’ writer-in-residence, takes centre stage in ‘Christmas at the Castle’. Already nervous about appearing at her very first literary festival, in the grounds of a magnificent Scottish castle at Christmas time, Kit suddenly finds herself co-organising the whole thing – and trying to repair old friendships – with the deadline fast approaching…

***

Each novella is deliberately short, so that you can fit a peaceful moments reading into your busy Christmas preparation schedule. Either Another Cup of Christmas, Christmas at the Cotswolds, or Christmas at the Castle, can be easily consumed in one delicious ginger and nutmeg flavoured mouthful at a time!

You can still buy each story as a separate e-book, but now you can buy them in one book as well-

Amazon UK- https://www.amazon.co.uk/Jenny-Kanes-Christmas-Collection-Short-ebook/dp/B01M0ICD7A/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1474386377&sr=8-2&keywords=jenny+kane%27s+christmas+collection

Amazon.com-  https://www.amazon.com/Jenny-Kanes-Christmas-Collection-Short-ebook/dp/B01M0ICD7A/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1474387008&sr=8-1&keywords=jenny+kane%27s+christmas+collection

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Here’s the very beginning of Another Cup of Christmas

December 4th 2012

Having politely escaped her third ‘So what are you doing for Christmas?’ conversation of the day, Megan Johnson was retreating back to the counter when she spotted Pickwicks’ most regular customer sit up from her work and brush a stray red hair from her eyes.

Knowing it had been at least half an hour since Kit’s caffeine addiction had been attended to, the waitress swiped up the percolator jug and headed in her direction.

Without bothering to ask if it was required, Megan poured the steaming liquid with practised care, before taking advantage of the lull in Christmas shopping trade, and sitting down opposite her friend. ‘Going OK?’

Swivelling the laptop round to face Megan, Kit rubbed the back of her neck, ‘I’m sure I’ve missed something. What do you think?’

Pickwicks Festive Fundraiser!

Spoil Yourself With An Afternoon of Pickwicks’ Finest Festive Fare.

 In Aid of the Royal Free Hospital’s Spinal Ward.

Saturday 22nd December from 2pm.

Deluxe Buffet And Festive Fundraising Fun!

Tickets are ONLY £25 per person

Don’t miss out!

Book your place at Pickwicks Coffee Shop, Richmond – NOW!!

Megan scanned the poster. ‘Oh, that’s fabulous! I thought you were writing your latest novel.’

‘To tell you the truth, that’s exactly what I should be doing, but Peggy asked me to do some publicity for the fundraiser and I thought I’d better get on with it. Time seems to be dissolving. It’ll be the 22nd before we know it.’

‘I know what you mean.’ Megan started to collect the dishes left by a couple who’d just vacated a nearby table. ‘The next three weeks are going to fly by.’

‘Two and a half weeks!’

‘Oh, hell! Really?’

‘That’s why I want to get these done; otherwise everyone will be too booked up with their own celebrations to have time to come.’ Gesturing towards the kitchen, Kit asked, ‘How’s Scott doing out there, or shouldn’t I ask?’

Megan’s permanent smile widened further across her lightly freckled face. ‘He’s amazing. I have no idea how he does it. The temperature in that kitchen is tropical, and yet Scott’s still beaming that massive toothy grin of his. I’m seriously beginning to think he is physically unable to stop cooking! Surely he must have pre-prepared as much as he can for the fundraiser by now?’

Kit nodded. ‘He probably has, but Peggy is getting paranoid there won’t be enough food.’ Glancing around, checking that Megan wasn’t needed by a customer for a moment, Kit pointed to a fresh pile of abandoned cups. ‘If I clear those, will you have a proper read of the poster? I’m sure I’ve missed something obvious but I can’t put my finger on it?’

Kit was already standing up and taking a tray from Megan’s hands before the waitress said, ‘On one condition.’

‘Which is?’

‘I can check my emails? I’m supposed to be liaising with the hospital about this for Peggy, but we’ve been so busy over the last few days I haven’t had time to see if Nick has got back to me about how many of the ward staff are coming.’

‘Nick?’

Megan silently cursed her inability to prevent the involuntary warm pink blush that hit her pale cheeks, ‘Yeah, he’s the admin guy for the ward that cared for Scott after his accident.’

‘Nice, is he?’ Kit gently teased the petite blonde waitress, wondering, not for the first time, why someone as kind and pretty as Megan hadn’t been snapped up years ago.

‘I’ve never met him, but he seems friendly. Well, he does via email and over the phone at least.’

‘You’ve spoken to him then?’

‘There are loads of things to sort out.’ Megan, knowing that the crush she’d developed on Nick’s Irish accent was utterly ridiculous, turned her full attention to the poster on the screen before her…

***

jennykanes-christmas-collection-new

I hope that snippet has tempted you into taking a look at my coffee loving, friendship enhancing, romance brewing, mulled wine sipping, stories.

Happy reading everyone,

Jenny xx

 

 


Carol Warham’s Blog Tour: Resolutions

I’m delighted to be taking part in the blog tour for Carol Warham’s debut novel, “Resolutions”.

Many congratulations Carol.

Hi Jenny, thank you for inviting me along to your blog and offering me the opportunity of writing a guest post. I wondered for a while what I should write about but then it hit me; without the support of people like yourself, bloggers, reviewers, social media writer friends and those I’ve now met in ‘real’ life, I wouldn’t have a novel to talk about.

I have recently had the pleasure of ‘appearing’ on a few blogs, answering questions about myself and my first novel RESOLUTIONS. Most of the questions have centred around where the idea came from and how it developed. This would be followed by a discussion about my ‘journey’ to publication.

It occurred to me that one of the main things a writer, or would-be author, really needs never entered into the questions, or not as fully as I felt it should. One of the things I recognised as most important to me was support. The support of family and friends is, of course, important and probably taken for granted at times. When we are tapping away at the keyboard late at night or at any odd times of the day, we quite possibly are forgetting those around us.

However for me the main support has come from other writers. The writing groups on social media have been invaluable. Many writers have been generous with their advice, information and suggestions. Others have supported by hosting me on their blogs and offering reviews. It is hard to describe how much this means to a new author, it has been overwhelming. You are bolstered up by a whole community, including other new writers and some very well-known ones. It is a delight to belong to such a caring and supportive group of people.

I am especially indebted to those I’m proud to call my special friends. These are the writers that I now know personally, and am able to meet up with on occasions.

They have been there for me every step of the way. They have never grumbled when I’ve distracted them from their own writing and deadlines. Every time I have sought advice, on any subject, it has been freely given. My grammar and punctuation have been corrected, and suggestions have been made to overcome lengthy sentences and ‘clunky’ passages.

Sometimes I’ve been given a kick up the proverbial, when suddenly the ironing or even cleaning the windows has looked so much more interesting than sitting at a key board.

I have been encouraged and praised during those times when I felt the whole book was totally rubbish and I was a failure as a writer. Believe me, those times came frequently. If it wasn’t for my friends, the manuscript would have been in the virtual bin many times.

When I’ve been stuck as to which way to go or what was needed in taking the story forward, the suggestions have flowed into my inbox. At other times we’ve discussed them over endless cups of coffee or Harry Ramsden’s fish and chip lunches.

Without this community and certainly without my friends I would never have been in the happy position of having my first novel published, by Tirgearr.

Excerpt

As she walked slowly along the main street, she sensed eyes watching her. Perhaps some people recognised her, while others were unsure as to whether it was her or not. Her slow progress continued up High Street, passing all the shops she knew so well. Belle’s Book Shop stood on the corner, with its lovely little café serving homemade baking. She remembered the days when her mum met her from school and they had gone there for something to eat and to browse the bookshelves. They always seemed to leave with a new book to read. As she grew older, she was allowed to meet her friends there. Eventually, she and Steve had their first date there. They’d both been only fifteen, and sat sipping hot chocolate and talking for hours. On their first walk home together, he’d held her hand and given her a shy peck on the cheek when they reached her front door.

Silvio’s Italian Deli was next door. Going in there was always a treat, with its delicious aromas of cheeses and traditional cured hams. Her dad would take her in, saying they were going to buy a treat for her mum, but she knew it was really for himself. The next shop was Adrienne’s Dress Boutique, very expensive, but always busy. She had known and loved all these shops – and their owners – since she was a child, but now she was reluctant to go through any of their doors. She turned down one of the steep cobbled side streets, walking carefully since the uneven cobbles tended to be slippery when wet.

The Victorian bow window of Earnshaw’s Antique and Bric-a-Brac shop caught her eye. There was always something of interest in the window display. She had spent many a quiet hour browsing through the shop, delighting in ornaments, furniture pieces, silken scarves, and occasionally some vintage clothing.

An older woman, warmly dressed in a thick coat and fur-lined boots and hat, hurried out of a grocery shop, but stopped abruptly in front of Carly. “Whoops, sorry.” The woman tried to clutch at her bags as they began to fall, and Carly stopped to help her. Mrs. Williams’ mouth opened as she stared. “Carly? Goodness, it is you. I thought I was seeing things for a moment.” She pulled down her scarf and smiled. “Yes, it’s me.” Mrs. Williams’ eyes widened and her mouth dropped open. “Well, well, so you’ve finally returned. I never thought you’d dare to show your face again here, especially at this time of year!”

Blurb

Carly Mitchell returns to the small town of Yeardon in Yorkshire almost a year after running away on her wedding day. Now she wants to try to make amends with Steve, his family, and the townspeople who had prepared a huge party to celebrate her New Year’s Eve wedding.

She intends to stay only for a few days at the Resolution Hotel, owned by Steve’s parents. However, her plans change when Steve’s father is taken ill, and she feels obliged to step in and help with running the hotel. This also means having to deal with Steve’s antagonism since he has never forgiven her for humiliating him.

A further complication comes in the form of Ben Thornton, the local doctor, to whom Carly feels an immediate attraction. They enjoy getting to know each other and falling in love, until a famous model from Ben’s past arrives in the town, and stays at the hotel.

Steve attempts to get his revenge on Carly by driving a wedge between her and Ben, and by threatening to reveal what he knows about Ben’s troubled past unless Carly leaves town.

The resolution lies in Carly’s hands as she struggles between wanting to flee from the town again and wanting to stay with the man she has grown to love.

Buy Links

Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2ACs7gz

Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2ACrV0P

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/resolutions-carol-warham/1126682700

iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/resolutions/id1254717659?mt=11

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/gb/en/ebook/resolutions-11

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/733425?ref=cw1985

AUTHOR BIO

Resolutions is Carol’s debut novel and is set in a location close to where she lives.

Writing has been her love since childhood. She started by making small comics for her dolls, progressed to training as a journalist for a short while. Once the family had grown up Carol settled down to writing and published short stories, poems and holiday articles.

In recent years she has become a judge in the short story section for the HysteriaUK competition and also for the RNA’s romance novel of the year.

Carol lives in Yorkshire, surrounded by some beautiful countryside, which is ideal for her other passion of walking, often with a dog called Sam. This lovely area is the location for her first novel, Resolutions.

I can be found here.

https://www.facebook.com/carolwarhamauthor/

https://carolwarham.blogspot.co.uk/

https://twitter.com/carol_warham

 

Blog tour organised by Writer Marketing Services. Follow the entire week’s tour here: http://writermarketing.co.uk/prpromotion/blog-tours/currently-on-tour/carol-warham/ 

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Many thanks for visiting today Carol. Good luck with your new book.

Happy reading everyone,

Jenny x


To Scotland! Christmas at the Castle

Today I’m taking a look at the third of my Pickwick’s café festive short stories. Christmas at the Castle (which follows hot on the heels of Another Cup of Christmas and Christmas in the Cotswolds), is available as a standalone story, or as part of the ‘Jenny Kane’s Christmas Collection.’

 

This, my fourth outing with the Pickwick Coffee House crew, begins in a little café in Richmond (on the outskirts of London), before flying one of the regular customers, writer Kit Lambert, off to the Deeside region of Scotland for a Highland adventure.

Seven years have elapsed since the close of the original novel, Another Cup of Coffee, and there are quite a few new faces to be spotted amongst the original line up now. One of the most exciting things about writing any series of stories is introducing these new characters and working out how their personalities would mix- or not- with those of the main cast.

It is this friction within the personalities that makes the stories work, and creating these new interactions over the festive season makes this task all the more interesting- and challenging. No other event in the calendar can add the pressures on a relationship, be it a friendship or a romantic connection, than Christmas can. So much is expected of us over the festive season. Everything has to be perfect, and happy, and sugar-coated…which is a tall order under any circumstances. Add in a literary festival, a business woman who has forgotten how to act like a human being, a wallflower of a writer, and a go-getting Gran from the WI, as I have in Christmas at the Castle, and even the strongest of friendships can suffer…or blossom…

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Blurb

Christmas at the Castle is a seasonal treat from Jenny Kane, featuring much-loved characters from her bestselling novel Another Cup of Coffee.

When hotshot businesswoman Alice Warren is asked to organise a literary festival at beautiful Crathes Castle in Scotland, her ‘work mode’ persona means she can’t say no – even though the person asking is her ex, Cameron Hunter. Alice broke Cameron’s heart and feels she owes him one – but her best friend Charlie isn’t going to like it. Charlie – aka famous author Erin Spence – is happy to help Alice with the festival…until she finds out that Cameron’s involved! Charlie suffered a bad case of unrequited love for Cameron, and she can’t bear the thought of seeing him again. Caught between her own insecurities and loyalty to her friend, Charlie gets fellow author Kit Lambert to take her place. Agreeing to leave her London comfort zone – and her favourite corner in Pickwicks Café – Kit steps in. She quickly finds herself not just helping out, but hosting a major literary event, while also trying to play fairy godmother – a task which quickly gets very complicated indeed…

***

As you would expect from one of my cosy café tales, it doesn’t take long for Kit to find a coffee shop that will be a good temporary replacement for Pickwicks while she is away. And she soon realises, that if she is going to gets to grips with the fact that she is to help organise a literary festival in a place she doesn’t know, with people she isn’t sure she likes, with next to no budget and very little time, then that supply of caffeine is going to be more vital than ever…

Although Christmas at the Castle follows on from Another Cup of Coffee, Another Cup of Christmas, and Christmas in the Cotswolds, it can also be read as a standalone piece.

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Buy Links

You can buy Christmas at the castle along from –

http://www.amazon.com/Christmas-at-Castle-Jenny-Kane-ebook/dp/B015J87DTI/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1442603723&sr=1-1&keywords=christmas+at+the+castle

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Christmas-at-Castle-Jenny-Kane-ebook/dp/B015J87DTI/ref=sr_1_2?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1442588560&sr=1-2&keywords=christmas+at+the+castle 

Or you can buy it alongside Another Cup of Christmas and Christmas in the Cotswolds within Jenny Kane’s Christmas Collection

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Jenny-Kanes-Christmas-Collection-Short-ebook/dp/B01M0ICD7A/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1474386377&sr=8-2&keywords=jenny+kane%27s+christmas+collection

https://www.amazon.com/Jenny-Kanes-Christmas-Collection-Short-ebook/dp/B01M0ICD7A/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1474387008&sr=8-1&keywords=jenny+kane%27s+christmas+collection

***

Happy reading,

Jenny x


Christmas in the Cotswolds: Choirs, mulled wine and a carpenter

Christmas in the Cotswolds is the second festive novella to feature the characters from Pickwicks Café. A sequel to Another Cup of Christmas – which in itself follows the novel, Another Cup of Coffee – this story can be read as a standalone festive tale.

Rather than being set in the Pickwicks café in Richmond however, this festive tale takes Megan, Pickwicks’ regular waitress away from her day job, on a mercy mission…

 

Blurb Izzie Spencer-Harris, owner of the Cotswold Art and Craft Centre, is due to host the prestigious Cotswold Choir’s annual Christmas carol concert in her beautiful converted church. Or at least she was, until a storm smashed a hole right through the chancel roof. Days from Christmas, Izzie suddenly finds herself up to her neck in DIY, with her last dodgy workman having walked off the job. She does the only thing she can … calls in her best friend Megan to help.

Leaving Peggy and Scott to run Pickwicks Café in her absence, Megan heads to the Cotswolds for Christmas. Within minutes of her arrival, she finds herself hunting down anyone willing to take on extra work so close to Christmas. It seems the only person available to help is Joseph Parker – a carpenter who, while admittedly gorgeous, seems to have ulterior motives for everything he does … With Izzie’s bossy mother, Lady Spencer-Harris, causing her problems at every turn, an accident at work causing yet more delays, and the date for the concert drawing ever nearer, it’s going to take a lot more than Mrs Vickers’ powerful mulled wine to make sure everything is all right on the night …

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I’ve always loved the Cotswolds, and was lucky enough to grow up not too far from their villages filled with yellow stoned picturesque cottages and stunning churches. For me, once I’d decided to take Megan away from Pickwicks for a while, the Cotswolds was the obvious choice of location. It is precisely the type of area I can imagine Izzie setting up an arts and craft centre, which- were it real- I have no doubt would flourish! I’d go there for sure. It has a café after all!

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If you’d like to have a read, you can buy my latest novella from all good e-retailers including-

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Christmas-Cotswolds-seasonal-short-story-ebook/dp/B00PK2MA3I/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1415899501&sr=8-1&keywords=Christmas+in+the+Cotswolds+jenny+kane

http://www.amazon.com/Christmas-Cotswolds-seasonal-short-story-ebook/dp/B00PK2MA3I/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1415899535&sr=8-1&keywords=Christmas+in+the+Cotswolds+Jenny+Kane

Or you can buy it as part of the Jenny Kane Christmas Collection

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Jenny-Kanes-Christmas-Collection-Short-ebook/dp/B01M0ICD7A/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1474386377&sr=8-2&keywords=jenny+kane%27s+christmas+collection

https://www.amazon.com/Jenny-Kanes-Christmas-Collection-Short-ebook/dp/B01M0ICD7A/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1474387008&sr=8-1&keywords=jenny+kane%27s+christmas+collection

Happy reading,

Jenny x


Fancy Another Cup of Christmas?

Today I’m kicking off a three day explore through the Christmas stories which make up Jenny Kane’s Christmas Collection.

I’m in festive mood as I line up a mince pie next to my cup of coffee. It really doesn’t feel like three years since the publication of the novella length sequel to my debut novel, Another Cup of CoffeeAnother Cup of Christmas!

 

Here’s the Blurb-

Five years ago the staff of Pickwicks Cafe in Richmond were thrown into turmoil when their cook and part-owner, Scott, had a terrible accident. With help from his friends, his wife Peggy, and the staff at the local hospital, he made an amazing recovery. Now Pickwicks is preparing to host a special Christmas fundraiser for the hospital department that looked after Scott.

Pickwicks’ waitress Megan has been liaising with the ward’s administrator, Nick, as all the staff who helped Scott’s recovery are invited are invited. As the problems of organising the fundraiser take up more and more of their busy lives, Megan and Nick contact each other more frequently, and their emails and phone calls start to develop from the practical into the flirty.

But can you actually fall for someone you’ve never met?

As the fundraiser draws closer, Megan is beginning to think that she had imagined all the virtual flirting between herself and Nick – he promised to arrange to meet her for real, but he hasn’t done so. Now he’s bringing someone with him to the fundraiser, and they’re just bound to be everything Megan feels she isn’t …

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Deliberately short, so that you can fit a peaceful moments reading into your busy Christmas preparation schedule, Another Cup of Christmas can be easily consumed in one delicious ginger and nutmeg flavoured mouthful!

As an extra treat to warm up a Monday. Here’s how Another Cup of Christmas begins…

Chapter One

December 4th 2012

Having politely escaped her third ‘So what are you doing for Christmas?’ conversation of the day, Megan Johnson was retreating back to the counter when she spotted Pickwicks’ most regular customer sit up from her work and brush a stray red hair from her eyes.

Knowing it had been at least half an hour since Kit’s caffeine addiction had been attended to, the waitress swiped up the percolator jug and headed in her direction.

Without bothering to ask if it was required, Megan poured the steaming liquid with practised care, before taking advantage of the lull in Christmas shopping trade, and sitting down opposite her friend. ‘Going OK?’

Swivelling the laptop round to face Megan, Kit rubbed the back of her neck, ‘I’m sure I’ve missed something. What do you think?’

Pickwicks Festive Fundraiser!

Spoil Yourself With An Afternoon of Pickwicks’ Finest Festive Fare.

 In Aid of the Royal Free Hospital’s Spinal Ward.

Saturday 22nd December from 2pm.

Deluxe Buffet And Festive Fundraising Fun!

Tickets are ONLY £25 per person

Don’t miss out!

Book your place at Pickwicks Coffee Shop, Richmond – NOW!!

Megan scanned the poster. ‘Oh, that’s fabulous! I thought you were writing your latest novel.’

‘To tell you the truth, that’s exactly what I should be doing, but Peggy asked me to do some publicity for the fundraiser and I thought I’d better get on with it. Time seems to be dissolving. It’ll be the 22nd before we know it.’

‘I know what you mean.’ Megan started to collect the dishes left by a couple who’d just vacated a nearby table. ‘The next three weeks are going to fly by.’

‘Two and a half weeks!’

‘Oh, hell! Really?’

‘That’s why I want to get these done; otherwise everyone will be too booked up with their own celebrations to have time to come.’ Gesturing towards the kitchen, Kit asked, ‘How’s Scott doing out there, or shouldn’t I ask?’

Megan’s permanent smile widened further across her lightly freckled face. ‘He’s amazing. I have no idea how he does it. The temperature in that kitchen is tropical, and yet Scott’s still beaming that massive toothy grin of his. I’m seriously beginning to think he is physically unable to stop cooking! Surely he must have pre-prepared as much as he can for the fundraiser by now?’

Kit nodded. ‘He probably has, but Peggy is getting paranoid there won’t be enough food.’ Glancing around, checking that Megan wasn’t needed by a customer for a moment, Kit pointed to a fresh pile of abandoned cups. ‘If I clear those, will you have a proper read of the poster? I’m sure I’ve missed something obvious but I can’t put my finger on it?’

Kit was already standing up and taking a tray from Megan’s hands before the waitress said, ‘On one condition.’

‘Which is?’

‘I can check my emails? I’m supposed to be liaising with the hospital about this for Peggy, but we’ve been so busy over the last few days I haven’t had time to see if Nick has got back to me about how many of the ward staff are coming.’

‘Nick?’

Megan silently cursed her inability to prevent the involuntary warm pink blush that hit her pale cheeks, ‘Yeah, he’s the admin guy for the ward that cared for Scott after his accident.’

‘Nice, is he?’ Kit gently teased the petite blonde waitress, wondering, not for the first time, why someone as kind and pretty as Megan hadn’t been snapped up years ago.

‘I’ve never met him, but he seems friendly. Well, he does via email and over the phone at least.’

‘You’ve spoken to him then?’

‘There are loads of things to sort out.’ Megan, knowing that the crush she’d developed on Nick’s Irish accent was utterly ridiculous, turned her full attention to the poster on the screen before her…

****

christmas-pud

Just for an hour, why not forget about the mince pies that still need making, and the present wrapping that hasn’t been done yet, and curl up on the sofa with some Christmas chocolates close by, and a hot drink to hand (a cup of coffee perhaps?), and escape into the adventures of Nick and Megan, and their friends from the Pickwick café…

***

If you’d like to buy Another Cup of Christmas, it is available as a standalone read from all good eBook suppliers including-

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Another-Cup-Christmas-Jenny-Kane-ebook/dp/B00GMO4ZIQ/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1384329366&sr=1-1&keywords=another+cup+of+christmas+jenny+kane 

http://www.amazon.com/Another-Cup-Christmas-Jenny-Kane-ebook/dp/B00GMO4ZIQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1384329400&sr=8-1&keywords=another+cup+of+christmas

jennykanes-christmas-collection-new

You can also buy it as part of Jenny Kane’s Christmas Collection from-

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Jenny-Kanes-Christmas-Collection-Short-ebook/dp/B01M0ICD7A/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1474386377&sr=8-2&keywords=jenny+kane%27s+christmas+collection

https://www.amazon.com/Jenny-Kanes-Christmas-Collection-Short-ebook/dp/B01M0ICD7A/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1474387008&sr=8-1&keywords=jenny+kane%27s+christmas+collection

Happy reading everyone,

Jenny xx


Mark Norman: Folklore Thinking

Today I’m joined by one of my fellow members of the Exeter Author Association; folklore expert, Mark Norman.  So go and grab a cuppa, then come back and have a read…

Hello. My name is Mark Norman. I am a folklore researcher and author based on the edge of Dartmoor, in the South West of the UK. Although I sometimes stray into the world of fiction, most of my writing is non-fiction, being based around my research. So today, I would like to introduce you to the world of folklore, and my writing within that area.

Folklore essentially boils down to being an examination of the traditions and beliefs of individuals and communities: literally, folk-lore or the beliefs (lore) or the people (folk). It can be seen to span various broader disciplines such as psychology or anthropology, but I prefer to think of it as a part of social history and it is therefore as a history discipline that I tend to work most.

Although I am a committee member of the Folklore Society, the UK’s oldest academic organisation for the study of the subject, I am not affiliated to any institution, being an independent researcher. I am therefore free to focus on whatever aspects of the subject I choose to explore.

My interests within the field of folklore are quite broad, but the areas that I mostly focus on are the more regional aspects of folklore within the area that I live and most particularly, the phenomenon of ghostly apparitions of phantom Black Dogs. This is the aspect of folklore upon which Sir Arthur Conan Doyle drew when he wrote what is arguably one of his most famous Sherlock Holmes stories, The Hound of the Baskervilles.

My most involved publication to date is my book, Black Dog Folklore, which was published in 2015 by Troy Books. To date, this book is the only academic investigation of the subject by a single author. I hold what is thought to be the UKs largest archive of Black Dog sightings, traditions and eyewitness accounts (probably over 1,000 now) and around 700 of these are included in a gazetteer in the appendix of the book.

Publication of Black Dog Folklore was the culmination of around ten years of research, on and off; an undertaking which could have continued for longer had I not taken the decision to draw a line under the research at the time and decide that the book should come out at that stage. One of the difficulties of working in an area of cultural history such as this is that one story will inevitably lead to many more. New information comes to light all the time and stories change and develop. So, although the book is out on the shelves, the work on the subject most definitely continues.

Aside for this full-length study, I publish a lot of short-form articles for magazines, websites and in other places where I am invited (or sometimes cajoled) to contribute. Amongst these, for example, are pieces for Mythology magazine on Christmas traditions, an article on dog bones discovered at an archaeological dig and related to my research for Folklore Thursday website, an article for a personal site on the folkloric links of The Hound of the Baskervilles and a piece on the links between Sirius (the dog star) and dogs in folklore. I was also asked by the producers of one of Sir Tony Robinson’s documentary series’ to advise on some Black Dog lore in the area being discussed.

I have been asked to contribute to, or contribute myself to, various books and anthologies. Most recently I co-authored a chapter on fairies in Devon for a new book called Magical Folk published by Gibson Square and a chapter proposal I was asked to make for a new academic book published by Palsgrave Macmillan is being looked at currently. My fiction short story The Padding Horror which sets some of my research against a fictional backdrop of Victorian Dartmoor in Lovecraftian style was published in the UK as part of a charity anthology called Secret Invasion, to raise money for the mental health charity MIND and is published this month in America in another anthology called Fairy Tales and Folklore Reimagined.

Another large chunk of my writing time is taken up in script writing. I am the creator and host of The Folklore Podcast which is quite widely listened to around the world. In fact, just a couple of hours ago as I write this, I learned that it is currently ranked at #141 in the US iTunes charts for History. The podcast is released twice a month, with one episode being a guest interview and the other a presentation written by myself. It is admittedly a lot of work to script this frequently alongside other projects and so sometimes I share my research across other projects that I do to help with this. For example, as I speak relatively frequently at conferences or public events, I will sometimes adapt talks for podcast episodes or vice versa.

As far as future book publications go, I am currently planning to release a volume of extended essays on a range of folklore subjects. The backbone of these will be from past scripts I have written for the podcast episodes, which will then be expanded and researched more tangentially to form longer studies suitable for book chapters. I am also looking to work on another longer study of an area of folklore in the same style as Black Dog Folklore. There is another well-known piece of widespread folklore which has not been seriously studied or collected together since the 1930s to which I am hoping to turn my attention.

It is certainly the case that books and writing form a large part of my life. At home I live with my wife Tracey who is also a writer (see her recent blog on this site about her play WITCH for example) and, with a colleague, we also produce and narrate audiobooks. I am also on the judging panel for a national book awards for non-fiction titles and with what remaining time I have left in the week, I work for Libraries Unlimited, the umbrella organisation for Devon Libraries.

I hope that you have found this short insight into my research and writing interesting. I am always happy to talk about my research and you can contact me easily via my social media pages below. If you are interested in the subject, please do get in touch.

BOOKS

Black Dog Folklore is available at https://thefolklorepodcast.weebly.com/store/p24/blackdogfolklore

Magical Folk is available at https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0783R465X/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?_encoding=UTF8&btkr=1

Fairy Tales and Folklore Reimagined is available at http://btwnthelines.com/dd-product/fairy-tales-and-folklore-re-imagined/

Secret Invasion is available for charity donation at www.justgiving.com/secretinvasion

WEBSITES AND SOCIAL MEDIA

The Folklore Podcast: www.thefolklorepodcast.com

The Folklore Podcast: www.facebook.com/thefolklorepodcast

Research and writing: www.facebook.com/marknormanfolklore

The Folklore Podcast: @folklorepod

Mark Norman: @Mr_Mark_Norman

***

Many thanks Mark,

Happy reading everyone.

Jenny xx


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