In The Plotting Shed

In The Plotting Shed
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Friday, 22 November 2019

Willow Published Today!

I'm proud (and nervous) to announce that Willow, the fourth book in The Katherine Wheel Series has been published today.
Here is the link to the product page: Willow




The stifling heat of a summer’s day lures four children to the cool green waters of the river running between Cheadle Manor and The Katherine Wheel Garage.
Al captains the little band of pirates as they blithely board the wooden dinghy. Headstrong Lottie vies with him to be in charge while Isobel tries to keep the peace and look after little Lily.
But it is the river that is really in control.
Lost and alone, the four children must face many dangers, but it is the unforeseen consequences of their innocent adventure that will shape their futures for years to come.


Book Four of The Katherine Wheel Series may be small in size but it packs in many surprises for the children of Katy and Jem and Douglas and Cassandra. Willow bridges the generation gap between the last three books, Daffodils, Peace Lily and Speedwell, and Book Five, Woodbine, when the four children are on the brink of both adulthood and the outbreak of the Second World War. The series will conclude with the sixth book, Ivy, in the most surprising way, as the war draws to its agonising conclusion.
For fans of historical fiction and Alex Martin's work in particular, Willow makes the most perfect stocking filler!


Willow is novella sized and is a story about children so it could be read by any age group but it sets up the group dynamic for Woodbine despite its simplicity and length. Woodbine will be published early in the new year but I've yet to complete Ivy, which is as complex as Willow is simple, due to the immense amount of research involved. By contrast, Willow was a joy and delight to write this summer in the same hot, sunny weather as Al, Lottie, Isobel and Lily enjoy on the river Cheadle. I hope readers will enjoy the innocent adventure in the long-forgotten era of the 1930s in the English countryside.

Friday, 18 October 2019

Award!

Absolutely thrilled to be able to display the award given by the New Apple Literary Services to Daffodils




Winning Category: 2016 and Older – solo ‘Medalist Winner’


http://rxe.me/BPUQAY4 Daffodils Click on this link if you want to read Daffodils for #FREE!

I'm working hard on three more sequels to the Katherine Wheel Series, of which Daffodils is the first book. Two - Willow and Woodbine - are finished but I want to complete the final book, Ivy, before I release them. That's why it's taking so long for me to publish anything since I wrote The Rose Trail. Ivy will bring the whole saga to a surprising and satisfying conclusion. Like the first book in the series, Daffodils, it involves a worldwide war and therefore a truly daunting amount of research, something that is impossible to rush. Progress is being made and hopefully, it won't be too long before I can release it.

Tuesday, 1 October 2019

Narberth Book Fair

Had a great time at the Narberth Book Fair  ( https://www.facebook.com/narberthbookfair/  ) last weekend. Sold lots of books, met fabulous readers and other authors who inspired me. The event was well attended, despite the Welsh rain, or maybe because of it! Perfect reading weather, after all. Who wouldn't want to curl up with a new book on a wet afternoon at the end of September? Lots of people bought books as Christmas presents, which was especially satisfying.
I had no new books to sell as they are all still waiting in the wings, but I can announce that Willow and Woodbine are finished and Ivy is well on the way - although it's a massive challenge.
I hope the new book cover for Willow will whet your appetite. (No pun intended!)



Willow is novella sized but will still be printed as a paperback, and will bridge the generation gap between Speedwell and Woodbine.
Katy and Cassandra's children have an adventure on a river lined with willow trees. They set off in high spirits, never realising the consequences that will unfold from their spree. The repercussions will ripple on for years and influence events in Woodbine too.


Wednesday, 11 September 2019

Daffodils has won an AWARD!



Just received this astonishing email from Apple Literary Awards!

"Your book 'Daffodils' was chosen as the solo "Medalist Winner" in the 2016 and Older category of our Summer eBook Awards!

Throughout the coming months, New Apple will roll out the prizes associated with the awards including social media announcements, digital awards certificates, press releases and digital medallions to place on your ebook covers.

We'll be sending you a winner's questionnaire in the next couple weeks.  Once we have gathered all of that information, we'll post the complete list of Medalist Winners and Official Selections on our website and begin the coming year of online promotion.  Congratulations!"


Awards Coordinator
New Apple Literary Services for Independent Authors


Helping independent authors find success

Monday, 12 August 2019

Youtube - what a resource

I'm deeply embroiled in finishing, yes finishing, Woodbine. Remember me discussing Woodbine and Ivy? Well, it's definitely going to be two books, possibly even three, to round off the Katherine Wheel Saga. I've had my head down all summer, writing and, inevitably, researching. I do pop up occasionally to greet friends and family and share a glass or two but mostly, I've been back in the 1930s.
Here's a wonderful newsreel from the pivotal year of 1939.
Luckily for me, it's a review of the entire year and is an atmospheric reminder of the build-up to World War Two. You really get a sense of propaganda in the tone of the announcer's voice, trying to make out that the impending disaster is somehow thrilling instead of terrifying, as it must have been - especially to those who had already lived through the previous great conflict.
Woodbine involves the children of Katy Phipps and Cassandra Flintock-Smythe as they face the danger and impending threat of Nazism spreading across the globe.
I've yet to pen Ivy, the final book, and it's a daunting challenge but it's a good feeling to have got halfway through this ambitious project.
Here's the newsreel:


Review of the year 1939Britain prepares for war in autumn of 1939

Wednesday, 17 July 2019

Great to chat with book blogger, Fiona Mcvie today

https://authorsinterviews.wordpress.com/2019/07/17/here-is-my-interview-with-alex-martin/

Fiona is a Mum and a Granny, though she doesn't look anywhere near old enough, and loves to get to know authors whose books she has enjoyed. Obviously, she loves to read but also enjoys baking. You can read interviews with lots of other authors on her website - see link above.

Tuesday, 18 June 2019

Woodbine

I have just completed the first draft of Woodbine - remember I've been banging on about Woodbine and Ivy for a very long time? Well, it really is going to be Woodbine...and...Ivy. Two books, instead of one, will complete the Katherine Wheel Series.
Why? It's such a huge story. I thought the research for World War One was immense but that for World War Two dwarfs it. I've found it equally fascinating but the era is so very different. What is clear though, is that WW2 was in effect part two of the same conflict - unfinished business, you might say.
My poor characters, the children of Jem and Katy, Cassandra and Douglas, whom you may have met in the sequels to Daffodils, are really put through the wringer in this second global conflict.
I have begun to write Ivy, the fifth and final book in the series, when I hope to bring the whole saga full circle.
I daren't say more at this stage but will wait, on pins, for my editor's verdict.
Did you know that woodbine is another, country, name for honeysuckle?