A note to my readers
This week I sent the following email to friends and colleagues, and I would now like to share it with my readers.
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
I’ve been out of touch for a long time, for which, my apologies.
I have been hospitalised for much of the last year, first with a broken bone in my back and then with a stroke, therefore my silence. I am mostly recovered, encouraged by the thought of Andrew Marr, who had a stroke and is now back to normal. He has the advantage, of course, of comparative youthfulness.
In the meanwhile, I have left my husband and am divorcing him, complaining of coercive control and financial mismanagement.
Considering everyone else’s troubles this year, my own are mere hiccoughs.
I am now safely with my family.
Best wishes to all,
After the Peace
The fifth novel in the Dilberne family saga – in which the author traced the life and times of both Upstairs and Downstairs, from the end of Queen Victoria’s reign through the first half of the twentieth century – jumps now into the bright new female light of the twenty-first.
This is the story of Rosalind, the genetic daughter of the 9th Earl of Dilberne. Known as Rozzie to her few friends, she was born at midnight on January 1st, 2000: a true child of the new millennium. She’s officially the offspring of Sandra (a nurse) and Clive Smithson (a jobbing actor), but Rozzie’s real father was described in the sperm bank catalogue as: ‘6ft 1in, blue eyes, blond hair, BA (Oxon), action man’. Back in the old world of 1979, Lord Sebastian – at the age of twenty-two, and cheerfully drunk – had earned 25 quid by selling his spoonful anonymously (as the law then allowed) to an IVF clinic. Twenty years on – sold at half price as old stock – his seed unknowingly produced Rozzie. Rozzie, now discovering all this, is hell-bent on vengeance.
We’re told the tale by the Smithsons’ interfering neighbour Gwinny, a woman with a most interesting, if naughty, past of her own.
Published 4th October 2018ORDER ON AMAZON UK
Why Will No-One Publish My Novel?
My writing tips book Why Will No-One Publish My Novel? is published in UK on 12th July.
ORDER ON AMAZON UK
Death of a She Devil
In The Life and Loves of a She Devil women fought men for power and won. But four decades later the fight continues on a new front…
Ruth Patchett, the original She Devil, is eighty-four and keen to retire. She has worked hard to make the world as she wants it: women triumphant, men submissive. Now she is tired. Her business is done. The mantle of power and influence is up for grabs.
Who can take up the role? Valerie Valeria, hot shot millennial, is ready and eager for power to inherit…
Paperback published 5th October 2017ORDER ON AMAZON UK
Before the War
Before the War is my last book: it’s about – well, lots of things. Primarily about how looks dictate our destiny, how pretty girls flourish while plain girls don’t, and how it isn’t fair. It’s about how Vivvie – too tall, plain, Aspergery rich girl – manages to subvert her fate and die happy and a saint: but has to fight her beautiful but wicked mother Adela (of Long Live the King!) to get there. It’s about the world of London publishing between the two World Wars. It’s about how international tensions mirror family dysfunction. It’s about how the charismatic and faithless thriller writer Sherwyn Sexton (Vivvie’s husband – she has to buy him) confuses himself with his fictional swashbuckling hero. It’s about how love wins out in the end: just about. I hope it’s funny when it’s not being sad.
Anyway… (I nearly titled the book Anyway but was dissuaded) that’s the book I believe I’ve written. The reader may see something entirely different. Over to you.
The fabulous Julian Clary reads my novel Before the War unabridged / CD or download:
In February 2015 my publishers Head of Zeus brought out out an anthology of my short stories: twenty-one of the total of five times that number that I’ve written. Although most have seen the light elsewhere some have not; the book also includes my new hundred-page novella The Ted Dreams in print form for the first time.