Writing

Tuesday Talk welcomes author Trevor Belshaw who talks about how be became a writer and showcases his new book Unspoken…

Today Tuesday Talk is hosting writer Trevor Belshaw.  I put a few questions to him about his writing journey and there’s a chance to read all about his latest book Unspoken

When did you decide you wanted to be a writer?

I’ve always wanted to write, ever since I was a kid. I used to write silly, plays that I would perform with my brothers in front of my long-suffering parents, after tea on a Sunday. I wrote a few stories back then, mainly about Spaceship munching aliens, or kid’s who get stuck in various places, like haunted castles and have to trick the ghosts into letting them out.

I didn’t really get going with it until around 2008-9 when the financial crisis struck and my one-man band, computer repair business took a major hit. I was left with a lot of time on my hands so I thought there’s never be a better time to see if I could actually turn out something readable. When the business folded, I took a part time delivery job which meant I had most afternoons and all weekends free. For once, I took advantage of the situation and to my own surprise as much as anyone else’s, I became a fully-fledged writer.

How did you go about taking those first steps?

I had a go at writing a YA novel, got three chapters in then printed it off and read it back a few days later. When I compared it to an actual published book, I could see straight away that what I had produced wasn’t going to make it to the top of the book charts. The story was good, the plot was fine, but the actual prose wasn’t much better than I had written as a child. A lot of he said, she said, he did this, she did that. There were different tenses in the same paragraph, the punctuation was awful and even though the missus smiled at me and said, keep at it, (she was always honest and would never have said it was great when it wasn’t,) I knew I needed help.

So, I joined an online writing community called, Writelink where wannabe writers could post up their latest output and get genuinely helpful and friendly, feedback. Nothing was ever torn to pieces in front of you. I met some wonderful people on that site and many are friends to this day. Their advice was invaluable and within a few months I was turning out articles and short stories that were as good as most things on the site. I met my soon to be editor, Maureen Vincent-Northam on Writelink and she still edits everything I turn out, including my new novel, Unspoken. In fact, it was Maureen that came up with the title. My Tracy’s Hot Mail novels were spawned on Writelink. I used to post a new chapter email chapter on there every other week.

Before long, with a growing confidence, I began to send out articles, poetry and short stories to magazines and anthologies. I was lucky enough to have many of them accepted. So, taking the bull firmly by the horns, I began my first novel, a children’s book which developed into an eight-title series, called Magic Molly.

Has there been any one author who has influenced your work?

I’d like to say, Roald Dahl or Enid Blyton as I’ve been favourably and somewhat, flatteringly, compared to both. If I do have an author mentor, it’s probably Leslie Thomas, author of The Virgin Soldiers amongst many other titles. Leslie could make me laugh out loud and have me sobbing into my sleeve on the same page, sometimes in the same paragraph. He was a literary genius who’s understanding of humour and pathos goes pretty much unmatched … Apart from a certain Tom Sharpe who had me doubled over with laughter every time I picked up one of his books. I could read them a dozen times and still find them funny.

Amongst children’s writers I loved Arthur Ransome, (Swallows and Amazons) And Richmal Crompton. (Just William.) Both wrote about eras before my time, but the stories were timeless so it didn’t matter.

If you weren’t a writer is there any other occupation that would interest you?

At school, I wanted to be an archaeologist or a private detective. Back then neither were a possibility for a young lad from the slums, despite a lot of Private Investigators in novels being from the wrong side of the tracks. I needed a job when I left school, university wasn’t done back then for kids like me and archaeology was a rich kid’s unpaid pursuit.

What are you reading at the moment?

Having just written a Family Saga and about to continue the series, I’m reading a couple of books in the same genre to get a proper feel for it. Pam Howes. The Liverpool Girls is on my Kindle at the side of my bed. I’m also determined to re-read The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. It became an instant favourite with me on first reading.

Have you another writing project in the pipeline?

I’m four chapters into the sequel to Unspoken. Unspoken 2. Martha, which continues the story of the fractious, Mollison family. I hope to produce a third which will be titled, The Pearl, a reference to another of the main protagonist’s children, Marjorie. The name means, pearl.

What advice would you give to would be authors?

Keep at it, don’t expect your first attempts at writing to be a blazing success, even if your friends and family tell you you’re the next Jane Austen. They are just being kind and don’t want to hurt your feelings. Get your work assessed by other writers, join a local writer’s group and read your work to them. Enter competitions for short stories. Don’t try to run before you can walk. Remember, only a tiny percentage of submitted books are taken up by traditional publishers. Don’t be scared, or ashamed of Self Publishing your work. You will need to work hard to get it noticed but if you do, you’ll earn much more than by going with a small publishing company who will pay you half of what you can make on your own, and you’ll have to do all the publicity work anyway as they won’t have the budgets to help you.

And lastly, the fun question. Name three things you would like to take with you if you were planning to spend a year on a desert island.

My collection of Maria Callas CDs, so I would need electrical power to plug in the Hifi that I’d have to take with me. Failing that, my mobile phone and a wireless, Bluetooth speaker. I’d also take my book-stuffed, Kindle and a solar charger for both kindle, speaker, and phone.

Thank you for hosting me Jo.

Thank you coming along to chat Trevor…

Unspoken Cover 3D

A dramatic family saga, Unspoken is a tale of secrets, love, betrayal and revenge.

Unspoken means something that cannot be uttered aloud. Unspoken is the dark secret a woman must keep, for life.

Alice is fast approaching her one hundredth birthday and she is dying. Graphic dreams of ghostly figures pulling her into a tunnel of blinding light become more vivid and more terrifying. Alice has only a short time left and is desperate to unburden herself of a dark secret, one she has lived with for eighty years.

Jessica, a journalist, is her great granddaughter and a mirror image of the young Alice. They share dreadful luck in the types of men that come into their lives.

Alice shares her terrible secret with Jessica through a set of handwritten notebooks detailing her young life during the late 1930s. Following the death of her invalid mother and her father’s decline, she is forced, at 18, to run the farm. On her birthday, she meets Frank, a man with a drink problem and a violent temper.
When Frank’s abusive behaviour steps up a level. Alice seeks solace in the company of her smooth, ‘gangster lawyer’ Godfrey, and when Frank finds Alice in another man’s arms, he vows to get his revenge.

Unspoken. A tale that spans two eras and binds two women born eighty years apart.

Unspoken is available in Kindle format at both Amazon UK and Amazon Com

The UK version is linked below.  The paperback version will follow soon…

Amazon UK

 

About the Author

me white shirtT A Belshaw is from Nottingham in the United Kingdom. Trevor writes for both children and adults. He is the author of Tracy’s Hot Mail, Tracy’s Celebrity Hot Mail and the noir, suspense novella, Out of Control. His new novel, the family saga, Unspoken, was released in July, 2020

His short stories have been published in various anthologies including 100 Stories for Haiti, 50 Stories for Pakistan, Another Haircut, Shambelurkling and Other Stories, Deck the Halls, 100 Stories for Queensland and The Cafe Lit anthology 2011, 2012 and 2013. He also has two pieces in Shambelurklers Return. 2014

Trevor is also the author of 15 children’s books written under the name of Trevor Forest. The latest. Magic Molly: The Curse of Cranberry Cottage, was released in August 2016

His children’s poem, Clicking Gran, was long listed for the Plough prize (children’s section) in 2009 and his short poem, My Mistake, was rated Highly Commended and published in an anthology of the best entries in the Farringdon Poetry Competition.

Trevor’s articles have been published in magazines as diverse as Ireland’s Own, The Best of British and First Edition.

Trevor is currently working on the sequel to Unspoken and the third book in the Tracy series; Tracy’s Euro Hot Mail.

Social Media Links:

http://www.trevorbelshaw.com

@tabelshaw. Twitter

https://www.facebook.com/trevor.belshaw   Facebook

https://trevorbelshaw.com/  Website

https://www.instagram.com/trevor.belshaw/   Instagram

 

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PROMOTE YOUR BOOK OR JUST COME ALONG FOR A TUESDAY TALK CHAT THEN SIMPLY DROP ME AN E-MAIL AT  taurusgirl185@gmail.com

 

 

Writing

ALMOST THERE….

There are only a few hours to go now until Shadows on the Water is published in e-book format on Amazon.  The paperback version will follow in August.  The e-book is currently on pre-order (links below) at a special price of 99p/$1.24 until tomorrow.

 

 

UK:  https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B08CF3G9BL/

US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08CF3G9BL/

 Earlier this week Rebecca, my formatter, sent me the final file to check through before loading it onto Amazon. As I looked through it the thought struck me what an amazing journey this book has made since I had that very first germ of an idea for a romance set in the fictitious Cornish estuary town of Kingswater.  And how different it looks from the typed manuscript.

Dartmouth, Devon and Fowey, Cornwall (slideshows below)  have been the inspiration for my fictitious estuary town of Kingswater.  It will be a place I’m planning to take up residence for the next two chapters of this Cornish trilogy. At the moment I’m still at the planning stage for book two but I’m hoping it will be ready for publication some time in the New Year.

In the meantime there’s the first story to tell….

DEVON

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CORNWALL

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Writing

AUTHOR GILLI ALLAN HAS RELAUNCHED BURIED TREASURE WITH A BRAND NEW COVER…AND THERE’S A BOOK TOUR

 

About Buried Treasure

 “I found Buried Treasure a compelling read. It was so many things: a love story, a hunt for clues to lost secrets, and a fascinating look at how our past experiences shape us, and how we can heal even after damage. The characters were wonderfully well drawn. ”

Jane thinks he sees her as shallow and ill-educated. Theo thinks she sees him as a snob, stuffy and out of touch.
Within the ancient precincts of the university the first encounter between the conference planner and the academic is accidental and unpromising. Just as well there’s no reason for them ever to meet again. But behind the armour they’ve each constructed from old scars, they’ve more in common than divides them. Both have an archaeological puzzle they are driven to solve. As their stories intertwine, their quest to uncover the past unearths more than expected.

PURCHASE LINKS FOR BURIED TREASURE

mybook.to/BURIEDTREASURE

 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

 

Gilli Allan began to write in childhood – a hobby pursued throughout her teenage. Writing was only abandoned when she left home, and real life supplanted the imaginary kind.  

After a few false starts she worked longest and most happily as an illustrator in advertising and only began writing again when she became a mother. 

Living in Gloucestershire with her husband Geoff, Gilli is still a keen artist. She draws and paints and has now moved into book illustration.

All of her recent books TORN, LIFE CLASS, FLY or FALL and BURIED TREASURE have gained ‘Chill with a Book’ awards.

Following in the family tradition, her son, historian Thomas Williams, is now also a writer.

Contact Gilli at

 http://gilliallan.blogspot.com/

https://www.facebook.com/gilli.allan.1

https://twitter.com/gilliallan

 

 

Find Gilli’s other books TORN, LIFE CLASS and FLY or FALL at

author.to/GILLIALLAN

Contemporary Romance, Cornwall, Writing

SHADOWS ON THE WATER: BOOK ONE OF MY NEW CORNISH COASTAL ROMANCE SERIES

 

 

Yes it’s here at last. The cover reveal for my latest book which is now available for pre-order.  It’s been a long journey since I typed the first words of this story and there were times when I doubted this book would ever be published.  I guess every writer has these moments of uncertainty but mine came off the back of a life changing diagnosis earlier this year. Everything had to be put on hold in the run up to surgery, and that included writing.  And what about afterwards?  How would I be then? What if I required further treatment? How would that impact on my writing life? Not wanting to overthink the situation, I decided to put my writing on the back burner, get the procedure out of the way and then review the whole situation.

Luckily no further treatment was required so post op I spent a lot of time reading and reviewing. At the time I didn’t feel like doing any more than that. Healing takes time and I’d had major surgery so it was only sensible to take things slowly. The ms was on a file in my computer but opening up and starting the writing process again was something for manaña – tomorrow.  The only trouble was, tomorrow soon became today and days gradually turned into weeks.  Then one morning I woke up and decided it was time to bite the bullet.  I needed to find out whether my writing mojo had completely abandoned me. Would I look at what I’d written and tell myself I didn’t want to do this any longer; that I’d just stick to reading and reviewing?  Happily as soon as I read the first few chapters, I knew I couldn’t leave this story. I had to publish…but first there were changes to be made.

Now here we are in July with publication due on the 26th.  Not only that, Shadows on the Water will now be followed by two other books in a new Cornish coastal romance series. Because during my rewrites it became clear that two supporting characters had their own stories to tell. So just as the tag line on the cover says ‘Sometimes the end is really just the beginning’.

 

SHADOWS ON THE WATER – synopsis

 

After the tragic death of her fiancé, Ava Warren is slowly rebuilding her life.  She has a supportive family, great friends and a job she loves, managing holiday letting company Estuary Escapes in her home town of Kingswater. Another relationship is the last thing she wants or needs. Until one evening she meets Alex Penhaligon.

 Alex’s father Sam owns Heron’s Gate Vineyard and Alex has recently returned from California, where he has been working for the past five years.  A case of mistaken identity gets them off to a bad start. But discovering his error, Alex is anxious to make amends and soon persuades Ava that he’s not quite as arrogant as she thinks he is. As their friendship begins to turn into something much deeper, Ava wonders whether she can at last put the past behind her and make a new future with Alex.

But someone is watching.  A man who not only thinks Ava should be his but also holds a long term grudge against Alex.  And he’s determined to get his own way irrespective of the lengths he has to go to or who gets hurt in the process.

Set on the south coast of Cornwall Shadows on the Water is a story of family ties, lost love and tangled loyalties.

 

Available at a special pre-order price of 99p/99c on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk