So where's the snow?

Muddling through in Austria; God, life and a small black dog


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Compromise – a review!

This is by Christine Meunier on her equus blog, I was so honoured!

Compromise is the second book by this author that I have read, the first being Challenger.  The two novels are loosely related with some characters that are in both stories. But readers are able to read them as standalone novels.  In Compromise, Molly finds herself struggling with the day to day tasks involved in her job in a local riding stable.

Compromise by Anna Rashbrook | Equus Education (Click to buy)
Compromise by Anna Rashbrook | Equus Education (Click to buy)

As more pressure gets put on Molly to step up into an overseeing role whilst their manager is in hospital, she finds that the joy of working with horses diminishes.  The gossip and nastiness of the women she works with overrides any joy that she used to get from horses and working with them.

As things come to a head, Molly is amazed to find herself suddenly without the security of a job or a home.  An unexpected compromise is provided to her in the form of Chris, a man who has been helping with her previous employer’s stallion.  Molly is surprised by Chris’ solution to her problem but feels that the situation offered may work for her.  She just questions if living with a man she barely knows is a good idea.

As time passes, Molly comes to learn the role of milking cows on Chris’ farm. She also learns that the recluse farmer has a lot more going on than you may first suspect.  Compromise is an insightful look into the world of someone struggling with gender identity.

It features horses throughout and they have a healing affect on the main characters.  There is a faith aspect that is touched on lightly but seems to sit under the surface.  There are a couple of characters within the story that readers may love to hate, as they provide a good amount of friction in the story.  Compromise is an interesting read that finishes off nicely for each of the main characters involved.

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And MOO are you?

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Fairy, Faerie and Sylva Fae

More on Sylva and also the meaning of words!

Glossologics

In today’s blog, we are highlighting a wonderful children’s author, whose name and work reflect the word we are looking at. Sylva Fae writes for young children, and there are many examples of fairy, or indeed faerie, folk in her latest book, Elfabet.

Fairy

Here is an interesting word, a nice example of how perceptions can change. These days, we may think of fairies and our minds go to fairytales, to cute little creatures with wings and wands, the stuff of children’s films and stories, such as in Sylva Fae’s books.

But this has not always been the case, and fairies have also been viewed as terrifying beings. Certainly, the fairies in Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream are nothing like the Tinkerbells of Disney.

So what of the origin of the word? Even though people have believed in supernatural beings for centuries, fairy was not the original word preferred to…

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Sylva Fae Author of the Week Blog Tour

More on Sylva Fae!

Indie Lifer

Sylva Fae Sylva Fae

Introducing Sylva Fae

This week Mom’s Favorite Reads is featuring Sylva Fae. She writes children’s stories and loves beauty and nature. You’re certain to find her among the fae, listening and learning.

I first got to know author Sylva Fae in an online writing group and fell in love with her positive, gentle spirit. Her books are wonderful for young children, and my grandkids own more than one.

Mini Bio

Sylva Fae is a married mum of three from Lancashire, England. She grew up in a rambling old farmhouse with a slightly dysfunctional family and an adopted bunch of equally dysfunctional animals. She spent twenty plus years teaching literacy to adults with learning difficulties and disabilities but now lives in Cheshire, juggling being a mum, writing children’s stories and keeping up with the crazy antics of three naughty rabbits.

Her earliest memories are of bedtime stories snuggled up…

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Sylva Fae

This week , Mom’s favourite reads author is children’s book writer, Sylva Fae, hope you enjoy these posts!

Hannah Howe

I first met Sylva Fae around three years ago in a Facebook author group run by a mutual friend. We interacted in that group, on occasion, and became casual friends, as you tend to do in Facebook groups.

At that stage, I didn’t know much about Sylva or her books. However, as our Mom’s Favorite Reads project developed we interacted more often and I did get to know Sylva and her books. In a short space of time, she became a key member of our team producing beautiful graphics and supporting other authors in tireless fashion.

The first thing to say about Sylva is she is a beautiful person. And that cannot be said of everyone in the world these days. She also writes and produces beautiful children’s books. These books are amongst the finest on the market and I highly recommend them. Her books are a joy to read…

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Riding Festival, Burg Moosham

First time we’ve been for a few years. Really made me miss the horses and riding. But it was great fun, with the first time I’ve seen a musical chairs competition in Austria. Lovely Norrikers, Icelandics and Haflingers. And a most odd enactment of a local fable with goats!


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Guest Post: Lucinda E Clarke

Thank you, Anna, for the invitation to bore your blog readers. I’ll do my very best to answer your questions.

I try not to panic when asked to say something about myself. Where do I begin and who will believe me? And do you really want to know?

My first memory was running away from home at the age of 3 because my widowed mother mentally abused me, but only because she had a personality disorder. This set me up to marry a wildly, exciting, charismatic charmer who was also a bit of a psychopath.

A few years on and I was left in the African bush 25 kilometres outside Nairobi with a 9-week-old baby, little money, no food, electricity or transport. But, I had a guard/gardener and a maid and a leopard visiting each night, so all was not lost.

How about the time I was broadcasting live with a bayonet resting on my shoulder the point pricking my neck? I wouldn’t want to do that again.

And then there’s the day I walked around the corner to see soldiers hanging three young men – which reminds me of the tear gas attack we ran from in a different city.

Living on a sinking boat was also an interesting experience and when your husband is dragged off to prison and the police deny all knowledge of him and your Arabic is severely lacking, well that was a problem too. Solved when we were thrown out of the country.

Later I made history handling my own divorce – tricky when psychopath mentioned above has gone AWOL.

Try running a riding school with 4 horses two of them not fit for the knacker’s yard, plus I couldn’t ride and I had no idea how to feed them or look after them.

So, you see, I’ve been falling into things all my life. Of course, I wanted to write but was told to get a ‘proper job.’ I became a teacher.

From teaching I fell into writing for a living. My SABC radio audition was appalling but they liked the material (written by self on a typewriter minus the letter ‘n’). Bullied into entering the Playwright of the Year Awards, to my amazement I won. Now, there was no stopping me.

Since then (1984) I have written radio plays, hundreds of radio scripts, fell into television and eventually I ran my own video production company before leaving South Africa.

In between I also wrote magazine articles, reports, adverts, mayoral speeches, my own newspaper column, and two books for the Big 5 traditional publishers. (I turned down further contracts as I was too poor to wait for royalties. I had to feed the husband, two children, the home help and her family, the gardener and his relatives, the St Bernard, cats and the variety of small furry creatures that lurked around the house). Heck, I wrote anything for anyone who was prepared to pay me and pay quickly. I am the queen of propaganda with no morals or ethics in sight. It’s easier to ditch those to clothe and feed the children. Monday would see me extolling the excellence of red meat for the Meat Board, while on Thursday I’d scream in favour of being a vegetarian for a corporation making soya products.

But I have also; sewn giant teddy bears, cleaned toilets, climbed rubbish dumps, bred small animals for pet shops and Cairn Terrier puppies (I bred a couple of my own offspring around the same time), made dresses, taught English, presented on radio, and television (TV briefly, I have the perfect face for radio), hosted ambassadors and met royalty, heads of state and deep rural folk.

Altogether I’ve lived in 8 different counties, from a millionaire in a mansion to a one bed flat – and the boat with holes in it. I’m now ensconced in a rabbit hutch in Spain pretending to be retired.

Well of course that lasted all of 9 months before I was bored silly and turned to writing books. A huge learning curve after so many years writing scripts.

Having passed my sell by date, I learned I couldn’t write – well not ‘write proper’ according to my editor, with a sea of red marks to prove it. How the hell had I earned my living for almost 30 years if I couldn’t write? One of life’s little conundrums, I guess.

I made a conscious decision to self-publish, at my wrinkly age I couldn’t hang around waiting for acceptance by any Big 5, or small ones either, and my former contacts are also way past retirement. Anyhow, after freelancing for decades I was used to being self-employed. At last I was free! I merrily cast off the shackles of irritating clients, unreasonable CEO’s and the precise timing required for broadcasting services.

This new venture meant I could make every mistake in the book – which I can proudly attest to – every single one of them.

I didn’t know you had to be on social media. I’d thought readers would find my first biography Walking over Eggshells, by osmosis. They didn’t – well 12 did in the first year.

Next, they tell you to stick to one genre. Really? I’ve written on topics as diverse as splitting the atom, generating electricity, how to climb a ladder, interviewing Julius Caesar, bathing a baby, 52 ways of making a living with no capital and what to feed cows etc etc etc.

So, after the first memoir I turned my hand to fiction and created Amie (I have a sneaking feeling it’s the other way around).

Realising my memory was decidedly dodgy I fired off two more memoirs about my career in the media and how I wrote for cash.

Next came two more Amie books – a few deluded readers had asked for these.

Then during my ‘once in a decade spring clean’ I found an old mss lurking under the bed and I finally completed Unhappily Ever After my satirical Fairyland tale.

Two more Amie books plus a couple of back stories brings me to the present day and I’m now scribbling a psycho thriller.

I don’t write cosy books, or romances or sci-fi. I’ve just seen too much real life to believe in a cotton wool world. Amie has morphed from a shy, naïve, whining, newly-married housewife to a tough cookie who has learned to kill and survive. I’ve put her through a lot and in the latest book Amie Savage Safari, she is witness to the wheeling and dealing of governments that will go to any lengths to secure the rights to mine precious minerals.

Amie has been described as a female James Bond without the sex and the swearing. I like to think that my books can be read by anyone with an interest in travel, other cultures and African wildlife. Despite being cross genre, there is something for everyone.

When do I write? Once upon a time I had a study – a proper office and production studio. When I was still teaching, I’d get up at 4.30am and write and then work every day after school with a break for children quality time and continue every evening until bed time.

Now, it’s the dining room table in our only lounge so it’s a bit hit and miss. I’m still training my DH (Dear Husband) to keep quiet when the muse floats by but he’s constantly forgetting and I have to battle with the radio and even the TV on occasion.

The current work in progress is the only one I have ever mapped out in advance. Usually I have a vague story in my head and the characters – Amie in particular – then take over and do their own thing. I simply get dragged along for the ride.

My favourite book? I honestly can’t tell you. I began with Enid Blyton before I started school, and these days I read about 80 – 100 each year. I like action adventure books that move quickly, that surprise me and can make me laugh and cry.

I have two ambitions left. I’d like to get one book once on one of those prestigious lists out of London or New York and I’d die happy if one of my memorable remarks was ever included in a book of quotations. We can all dream.

I have all the usual addresses – oh for the days when we only had one. And I love to hear from readers and always reply.

Thank you again Anna I appreciate you putting me in the spotlight.

 

Web page – https://lucindaeclarkeauthor.com

Blog link  https://lucindaeclarke.wordpress.com  then add date

Amazon author page:  author.to/Lucinda

twitter name   @LucindaEClarke     https://twitter.com/LucindaEClarke

Facebook  My page https://www.facebook.com/lucindaeclarke.author

WOE page https://www.facebook.com/pages/Walking-over-Eggshells/284671991724167

Amie page https://www.facebook.com/AmieanAfricanAdventure

Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCBIaMN5uEKjs9PwXzGwWgdQ