May 2015 – The Hagstone Chronicles continues…

May brought a huge box full of copies of the newly published ‘Clickfinger’ – Book 2 of ‘The Hagstone Chronicles’ – an exciting moment and a reminder to get on with editing Book 3, ‘The Snake Wand.’

On reading through ‘The Snake Wand’ I felt the need to add a new chapter and so began a search for a different ‘magical being’. I was delighted to discover the Shellycoat, a strange creature that is associated with the Liddel Water on the border between Scotland and England. Without giving too much of the story away, he is reputed to enjoy teasing people by pretending that he is drowning.

Writing accurately about places is very important to me so I visited the Liddel Water so that my mind’s eye could see the children interacting with the Shellycoat on the bridge and banks of the river.

On the 14th we travelled down to England for a variety of reasons and stayed for a week in a cottage near Ironbridge.

It was a strange experience for me as I had been looking forward to exploring a new area. But it was half-term and the place was so busy that I spent most of the week working on the book. The only distractions were welcome ones. Two birds we don’t have on Islay – great spotted woodpeckers and magpies visited the garden several times a day. Unfortunately they were camera-shy, flying off the moment that I raised my camera.

Another piece of writing that I have enjoyed tremendously was a 7000 word chapter for a new Cinnamon book entitled ‘Meet Me There’. It is an anthology of 10 chapters describing what ‘place’ means to the 10 individual authors. Edited by Gail Ashton, details can be found at

It is now with the printer and will be ready for a launch in the first weekend of October.