Anita Dawes & Jaye Marie

We Read – We Write – We Review


9 Comments

Something is broken…

new blog tour

Just when everything was going smoothly, someone dropped a clanger in my lap!

I had double checked everything and made sure all the links worked…

And on my computer, they did… But…

And this was a big but… on some of the blogs involved, they apparently don’t.

Why some of them work on some sites is a question I am not smart enough to answer. How links work (or don’t) has been driving me nuts for a long time now.

Links

Website:     http://jenanita01.com

Twitter:      https://twitter.com/jaydawes2/media

Facebook:  http://facebook.com/anita.dawes.37

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8638857.Jaye_Marie

UK Amazon Link :  https://www.amazon.co.uk/Broken-Life-Jaye-Marie/dp/1326866753

US Amazon Link  https://www.amazon.com/Broken-Life-Jaye-Marie/dp/1326866753

Right! These links have been triple checked and are working. It appears the problem involved some of the shortened links. Something else I will have to sort out.

I’m off to have an official meltdown… today is supposed to be the hottest day so far…


Leave a comment

Out of the Shadows…

people-925235_1920

 

For more than a week now, I have had this new character in my head. He has been following me around, watching my every move. I have tried to talk to him, in my head, you understand, but he has this enigmatic smile, and that’s all I get from him.

I think he wants me to figure out what to do with him, guess what he wants to do but so far, my brain is siding with him and refusing to cooperate.

This morning, I decided I would try to interview him, something I have done before with several of my characters, but you guessed it, he wouldn’t even sit down!

All I know so far is that I do want to write about him, and if I must go through hoops to do it, so be it!

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw him nod just then, so it would seem the game is on…

At first glance, he seems an unlikely hero, at least for one of my books. Not very tall, and slender with dark eyes and long hair tied back in a ponytail. Simply dressed in a dark shirt and jeans. But there is an aura about him, he could be a magician, magically producing doves from balls of tissue or flowers from thin air.

He has moved a little closer. I seem to have his full attention…

He is probably something in law enforcement, a police officer or detective, or why would he have turned up on my doorstep? I get killers too, but somehow I know he isn’t one of them. I hadn’t intended to write another crime thriller, I fancied a change, something haunting or spooky perhaps.

There is another character in my head, and although this one looks harmless, all blonde and attractive, the boy next door type. But I know instinctively that he means trouble. Are these two men destined to cross swords? I am beginning to think they are…

I have a lot of thinking imagining to do and to save confusion; I will call the dark haired one David and the blonde William. I already know they are two very different people, and discovering what they are about will be very interesting…


11 Comments

This Way Madness Lies…

 

ffopl

 

I have found yet another way to drive myself mad. After the recent debacle with a mobile phone, I swore never to dabble with technology again…

But… for some peculiar reason, and I have no idea where it came from, I want a tablet or an iPad. Basically, something simple that will replace my laptop. I discover that pads cost a lot of money, and to pay out for something that I might not be able to use seems a bit silly. So I found a tablet with Windows 10 on it at a bargain price, and I was committed. Probably should be one of these days, but that is another matter!

for some peculiar reason, and I have no idea where it came from, I want a tablet or an iPad. Basically, something simple that will replace my laptop. I discover that ipads cost a lot of money, and to pay out for something that I might not be able to use seems a bit silly. So I found a tablet with Windows 10 on it at a bargain price, and I was committed. Probably should be one of these days, but that is another matter!

Now, I have heard all the flak about Windows 10, but resolved to master it. After all, if my main PC goes, I will have to anyway, right?  But I had enough fun with Windows 8 and should have known better.

The first thing you have to do is enter your Microsoft password, and everything is supposed to fall into place.

Only it didn’t.

Not at all.

Then I tried to set up my emails, but it wasn’t having a bar of that either. They just wouldn’t sync. And you never get an explanation with technology, do you?

Just a big fat nothing.

I remembered reading somewhere that the first thing that has to happen with Windows 10 is a hell of a lot of uploading. I checked this out, and there was a load there to be uploaded, but either it wasn’t ready, or didn’t really know what it was supposed to be doing. That’s when I switched the damn thing off and went back to the normality of my PC. Three days later, the upgrading did begin, indicating progress of some sort.

As to the rest of my technical world… the main PC is still buffering/crashing all the time and being generally annoying. WordPress has decided to muck about with any attempt to publish a post… What I wouldn’t give for a system that actually works!

Maybe the problem lies with the fact that my main PC is Windows 7, the laptop is 8, and the tablet is 10, maybe they don’t get on with each other? But why wouldn’t they?

There seems to be a constant battle between me and all three of them and I spend most of my days waiting for one machine or other to actually do something. Something I want them to do that is!

The men in white coats are waiting just around the corner, I just know it!

 

Several days have passed, and my desire to be more streamlined and efficient hasn’t…

I have seen an android tablet on Amazon, going for a song AND no Windows of any number! This could be the answer to my prayers, supposed to be easier to use …

I’ll let you know next week!

 

 

 


11 Comments

The Heart of the Matter…

14680485_939590722810476_7016684673910583606_n

 

After my heart attacks three years ago, and my subsequent brilliant behaviour since then, I didn’t think I would be having any further trouble in that direction. I can still remember every gruelling moment of that time, and how near I came to shuffling off this mortal coil.

For a while afterwards, though, I was very nervous. Every twinge of heartburn (for that is how it started before) was met with chewed fingernails and immense trepidation. Probably a good thing in the end, for it made me a model patient. I took my medication religiously, even though most of it had a dire effect on my asthma.

I gave up smoking that day, and I like to think it was because the cardiologist asked me to but the truth is, I didn’t want to die, so I stopped willingly. I have taken steps to improve my health and fitness too, and think I am in a much better shape now.

So when I began to notice something odd going on in my chest, my spirits hit the floor. I was experiencing little thumps and fluttering’s, and although this doesn’t sound too serious, I worried. When I checked my pulse, I noticed gaps in the rhythm. Every couple of minutes, my heart would skip a beat, and not a shred of romance or excitement anywhere near me!

I have my own blood pressure machine for regular check ups, and I seemed to be fine, so I was confused. I had recently stopped taking the daily aspirin and the beta-blocker, as they were making my asthma so much worse. Maybe I should start taking them again and see what happened. The other odd thing was that my ticker behaved itself during the day, but come the evening, it had a field day. Sleeping wasn’t easy either, more because I was worrying than anything else I think, for I can normally sleep through anything.

And of course, the usual question presented itself. Do I bother my doctor with this? I have a check-up soon, so I could mention it then…

I know at my age there is so much you just have to get on with, and I do seem to have more than my share in that department, but my instincts were not clear. I usually know what to do, whether it turns out to be a waste of everyone’s time or not.  My dilemma is this, apart from the funny goings on, I feel quite well. Apart from arthritis in every joint, failing eyesight, a painful neck and hip, the list is getting longer.

I decided to wait a few days and see what happens…

Two days later… I have reinstated the beta-blocker but not the aspirin, and the thumps and fluttering’s have now stopped. So far, so good. I wonder what will happen next?

Old age can be so much fun, don’t you think?


2 Comments

Updating the Dream…

C-QfIwiXUAASN_C

I had a major epiphany yesterday. I had just posted yet another book promotion post on our blog and found myself disliking it intensely.

I have never liked the ‘hard sell’ and conveniently  usually forget to do any, but if you want people to read (and buy) your books, you are supposed to do it well and often. But it always seems to leave a sour taste in my mouth, and I realised just how much I hate doing it.

It seems ok to do it on Twitter, probably because it’s quick and you don’t have to pretty it up. But here on our blog, it just doesn’t look right, so we have decided to stop doing it.

Our new books will get a mention, of course, plus any good news, but the constant blanket promotion will stop and be replaced with more interesting posts, something you would rather read, I’m sure.

Personally, I don’t think you need to plug away at your books anyway. The covers and links are all there in the sidebar, all you have to do if you’re interested, is click on the image and you go straight through to Amazon.

The pressures and stress of promotion have been gradually eating away at our writing time, and I am never sure if I’m doing it right, or in the right places.  Which was another reason for my decision.

Gone are the days when I could spend hours playing games or surfing the web, I just can’t do it anymore. After four or five hours my eyesight goes for a walk, and the brain starts to seize up, and I have to walk away. So my time is limited, and I have to find ways to fit everything in. If there is a way, you can bet I will find it!

Anita is now an official reviewer with Rosie Amber, something we both love doing, and we have been doing some beta reading for some of our fellow bloggers/writers, which is reviewing really, just more in depth. We will be asking for help in this direction for ourselves soon!

Revision is finally finished on our non-fiction book Lazy Days, the long awaited transcription of the logbook of a 40-year-old family holiday on the Norfolk Broads. We might have a blog tour for this one after it gets beta read.

Work has begun in earnest on our joint WIP. This is another thriller, and it will eventually be terrific once I complete the outline for the story AND all the characters.

The weather was kind for a few days, so I managed to repot some of my smaller bonsai, and it was actually brilliant to get out of my office for a while…

 

 


19 Comments

Our very First BLOG TOUR!

BL book tour

The idea of having a blog tour is really taking hold, and we want to be brave enough to give it a go. Unfortunately, it won’t have the reach of a professionally organised tour, funds just will not stretch that far, so we will be relying on all the wonderful bloggers and retweeters who follow us to help spread the word.

The general idea is to have week where lots (I’m hoping) of you offer to post reviews and promo posters and posts about my last book in the Lives series, The Broken Life.

We are looking for anyone who enjoys mystery crime thrillers and would be willing to offer your time and blog space to promote my book.

We offer #Free ebooks, promotional posters and material and of course, our eternal gratitude.

If you decide to help with a review or promotional piece about this book on your blog , Amazon, and  Goodreads, we will love you forever and return the favour when you need it.

Time plan: We were thinking of the week beginning 20th June. Please leave any comments below, or use the contact form on the website to email me.

The Broken Life is the third book in my mystery thriller series, but reads well on its own. We are also thinking of releasing them all as a box set in the near future.

Even if you cannot spare the time to read or review it, we would appreciate any retweets and reposts you can squeeze in during that week…

 

Here’s what some lovely people thought of books one and two…

 NL kindle x1

If you like the thriller genre that keeps up the momentum then The Ninth Life would be a good read for you. The pace never falters, building up the plot and characters with timely intervention. The author cleverly keeps the story centred around the main character, with the other players coming into the story and yet there are no plot holes or false timings.
Not once did I get bored reading it or find the story faltering at all – definitely one of those where ‘you need to know what happens next’ but I think the author’s gift when writing this is to keep the protagonist centre whilst keeping the reader constantly hooked. The antagonist is typically a nasty character, one whom the reader takes an instant dislike to and the edge he adds to the story is almost palpable.
Other characters are kept to a minimum but play pivotal roles in the story; the good thing here is you never know quite how they will turn out. Will your fears be unfounded? Or did you correctly guess the next step? The ending is not what you would expect (another good talent to have when writing) but you’ll have to read the book!

                        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 LL kindle x2

I enjoyed reading Jaye Marie’s first book, The Ninth Life, and although the story was fast paced and gripping, the ending disappointed me a little. I was left wondering if the main character had really died or if the killer had managed to get away scot free. Perfect cliffhangers for a series though, and I looked forward to the next instalment.

The Last Life is, I thought, a much stronger story than the first. I fell in love with the new character, DI David Snow.  He brings a new dimension to an interesting plot, making the story far more of a crime thriller.

I love the attention to detail the author gives to all of her characters. They are like old friends and you instantly feel you know them well. The Last Life is a well written thoroughly enjoyable read, good plot and well- paced suspense. There is one more book in this series and I can’t wait to read what happens next.

 

 


6 Comments

Cover Trouble…

help

We were looking at our website the other day, as you do… and it was decided that the small sliding show of all our book covers looked a bit puny. We decided to remove the offending article and reinstate our book covers down the sidebar, complete with clickable links to Amazon.
Should be easy, I thought. I had done it before and remembered how to do it. A little fiddly, but not too difficult. We have eleven books between us so it would take me a while.
I managed to upload four of the covers before the trouble started. The fifth cover uploaded okay, but somehow it removed cover number four. How was this even possible, I thought?
I tried again, and the same thing happened. I kept on trying, because I’m stubborn, but couldn’t get it to work. I swear something happens whenever I try to do the simplest of jobs but thought I would retreat and see what happens tomorrow, before I lost it completely.
The following day, it seemed worse, so I decided to have a word with WP ‘happiness engineers’, and it makes interesting reading!

Me: “I am trying to add some images to my sidebar, but they just don’t appear…is there a limit to how many images you can have?”

WP: “Hi there, let me take a look…”

WP: “Is this the site you’re referring to? https://jenanita01.com/”

Me: “Yes.” (we only have the one…)

WP: “And you are trying to customise it here, is that correct?” https://wordpress.com/customise/jenanita01.com

Me: “I get an image from media and then go to widgets and images, I fill in the boxes and save, but then they just vanish…”

WP: “I see that one of the images is not displaying. The URL appears to be incorrect.”

Me: “but I get the URL from the media screen…”

WP: “Is this the image?” https://jenanita01.files.wordpress.com/2017/01/nl-kindle-x1.jpg

Me: “That one was successful, so was the Simple cover, and Bad Moon. I would like to add more.”

WP: “I don’t think ‘The Ninth Life’ is added correctly. I don’t see it on your page. Do you see it at https://jenanita01.com/ ?”

Me: “Yes.”

WP: “I see a broken image, like this: https://cloudup.com/cLWUMnMMqRV

Me: “I don’t understand, it looks all right to me. Why am I having a problem adding new images? I just clicked on the previous link and the image is not there. This happened a lot yesterday too.”

WP: “You should be able to add more images. I’m unaware of a limit. I’m testing right now and don’t see any problems. Can you tell me the steps you’re going through when you have problems?”

Me: “Something is wrong. Images that do appear suddenly vanish and others won’t upload at all. I choose an image from media (haven’t I said this already?) then I go to widgets and image, add the URL from the media page, fill in the boxes and save. Sometimes this works, sometimes it doesn’t, and sometimes it works but removes an image already there in the sidebar.”

WP: “Are you using the media browser at https://wordpress.com/media/jenanita01.com ?”

Me: “Yes.” (Slowly losing the will to live round about now…)

WP: “It’s important that you open the image and by selecting the image and clicking ‘Edit’. From the image editor, you can copy the URL (gosh I would never have thought of that…) Is this the process you follow?”

Me: (trying very hard to keep my patience and my sense of humour) “I don’t usually have to click on ‘edit’ as the URL is in the box already, so I just copy and paste. Is this wrong?”

WP: “The image for ‘The Last Life’ didn’t have the correct URL. You may need to change how you get the URL. This is how I get the correct URL: https://cloudup.com/clX8WY03S8V

Me: “That one didn’t upload at all. I will try this, and thank you for your help. Going now…”

WP: “Ok. If you have any more difficulty, we’re here to help. Have a great day!”

I love using these new ‘live chat’ thingies, so much better than an email, especially for a thick head like me. You see, not only do I hate technology (because I swear it hated me first) I have trouble understanding it too, even when someone tries to explain it to me. So having someone on the end of the line is usually better. I can keep asking the same question until something clicks into place.

I have to add, that WP is normally very helpful, often hitting the nail on the head when I have made a stupid mistake, so not exactly sure why it was different this time. But if anyone knows what I am doing wrong, or has a better way of explaining it, I am all ears!