Friday, 30 November 2012

Winner of last week's prize draw

I am pleased to say Kate Jackson's name was the one drawn out of the bag to receive a free download of all three parts of The Laird of Lochandee.Congratulations Kate. I hope you enjoy the story.

For all other followers please keep a look out for other prize draws from time to time

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

The Next Big Thing

Note: comments left on this and the previous blog will be eligible for a free prize draw download of The Laird of Lochandee. 

Kate Jackson, author of Secrets and Promises, a two novel series, has invited me to take part in the blog event THE NEXT BIG THING – a series of questions and answers relating to my next book. You can read more about Kate’s own success at

What is the title of your book?
It is called Darkest Before The Dawn
How did you come by the idea?
It is the fifth and last novel in the Home Series which follows the fortunes of the Caraford family from the finish of World War ll to present day, so this is a natural follow on with the third generation.
What genre does your book fall under?
It is a family saga even though it is modern. It could almost be a Young Adult in that it has all the joys and uncertainties of two young people growing up and getting to know each other, but it also has an older love affair which I didn’t expect but which I have really enjoyed writing.
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
The beauty of a new dawn often follows the darkest of nights as the joy of true love overcomes doubts and fears.
Will your book be self-published or traditional?
Darkest Before The Dawn is my twenty second novel and it will be published in hardback by Robert Hale Ltd in May 2013 and later in the year as an E-reader for downloading. It’s predecessor Another Home-Another Love is now available as an E-book.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
The first draft takes longest and is the hardest for me as I am not a plotter so I like to take time to get to know my characters. I would say about three months for a first draft if it is part of a series and longer if it is a new series or a single novel. At least two drafts follow.
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Although the background and settings are very different the exploring of the different generations and relationships is similar to some of the novels written by Anna Jacobs and Freda Lightfoot but they are both more prolific than I am
Who or What inspired you to write this book?
It is the first time I have written a novel right up to present day, complete with mobile phones and even a hint of drugs but I wanted to bring farming up to date as well as my characters. My son has recently installed robots for milking cows in his own herd and my characters have similar debates and discussions before the youngest member gets his way with modernisation.
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
People who follow the Archers may be interested in the series. Even though my novels are fiction they can learn about robots for milking cows, and my descriptions of farming and country life are completely authentic because it is my own background. In this particular novel - Darkest Before The Dawn - there are also the problems of coping with a leg amputation and we hear a lot about these with so many injured young soldiers and the triumph of the recent Paralympics.

Thank you to Kate Jackson for asking me to take part in this blog event.
The following authors will pick up THE NEXT BIG THING baton next Tuesday, 27th November when you can visit their blogs.

Jean Bull   'self-published writer of one historical romance, Gypsy Moth, with another on the way

Paula Stanley writing as Christina Hollis author of 17 novels for Harlequin Mills & Boon  

Linda Hooper writing as Sarah Mallory historical romantic adventures for Harlequin Mills & Boon



Sunday, 18 November 2012


The Laird of Lochandee by Gwen Kirkwood is now published by Accent Press in three parts available to download from Amazon.

Part One - A Maxwell Maligned.

FREE downloads of A Maxwell Maigned are available

Part One of an historical romance saga set in the Scottish Borders between the two World Wars. A Maxwell Maligned.
At sixteen, Rachel O’Brian finds herself alone in the world and accepts a home with an old friend of her father’s, but she is unprepared for his wife’s malice and cannot guess at the secret which feeds the woman’s hatred.
The younger Maxwells welcome Rachel to their Ayrshire farm, especially Ross, but he too has earned Gertrude Maxwell’s spite. When Ross disappears Rachel is dismayed to find herself destitute and expecting his child. Not until past secrets are revealed can the two find each other again.

Prize Draw
On Tuesday 20th November it is my turn to pick up the baton for the blog chain:-
The Next Big Thing  when you can read about my new book to be published in May 2013
The names of those leaving comments on either, or both, of these blogs will be put into a hat and one name picked at random. The prize is a free download of all three parts of The Laird of Lochandee.