Monday, 18 February 2013

A Very British Blog Tour

Author Jenny Twist has invited me, and a group of British authors, to take part in ‘A Very British Blog Tour’ by visiting and supporting the websites of authors who are involved in the tour, and who are dedicated to turning out some of the finest books available in Britain today. Each author, named at the bottom of the page, has been asked the same questions, but their answers will obviously all be different. You merely click on the author’s link at the bottom of the page to see how they have answered the same questions.

So here are the questions from Jenny, together with my answers:
Q. Where were you born and where do you live at the moment?
A. I was born in Preston in Lancashire, and now live near Manchester.
Q. Have you always lived and worked in Britain or are you based elsewhere at the moment?
A. I’ve always lived and worked in North West England, and have actually been in the same house for 46 years now.
Q. Which is your favourite part of Britain?

A. Definitely the Lake District, especially the southern part of the area which I know very well, as I had a caravan there for about 20 years. It’s about 80 miles from where I live and I used to go up as often as I could (whatever the weather!). I love the valleys, fells and lakes, and also the small towns and villages.
I love our historical cities too, especially those which still have the castles, cathedrals and other buildings from our wonderful British heritage.
Q. Have you ‘highlighted’ or ‘showcased’ any particular part of Britain in your books? For example, a town or city; a county, a monument or some well-known place or event?
A. My novel ‘’Fragrance of Violets’ was set in the Lake District. I used a ‘real’ village, but gave it a different name and moved some of the buildings around. However, anyone who knows the Lake District will probably recognise it. Another novel was set on the edge of the Lake District, one was in London’s West End theatre world, and my most recent release was set in an imaginary small seaside town in Kent (mainly because I wanted my characters to be able to travel across to Paris fairly easily).
Q. There is an illusion - or myth if you wish - about British people that I would like you to discuss. Many see the ‘Brits’ as ‘stiff upper lip’. Is that correct?
A. I think it’s partly true, although less so than it used to be. As far as I know, it dates from Victorian times when it was considered ‘unseemly’ to display any emotion in public My father, although not born in the Victorian era, was a prime example of that. Whatever problems he might have had, he always had a ‘public face’ which precluded showing any feelings.  My own generation, growing up in the years following World War II, has seen a change taking place and I think we are less reserved than we used to be, although we may still not be as outwardly emotional as some other nationalities.
Q. Do any of the characters in your books carry the ‘stiff upper lip’? Or are they all ‘British Bulldog’ and unique in their own way?
A. I don’t think any of my British characters are the ‘stiff upper lip’ types. My heroes are modern men, a mixture of alpha and beta. They have strength of character without being domineering, self-assurance but in a non-aggressive way, and of course that indefinable charisma which makes them stand out in a crowd. On the beta side, they are sensitive and caring, and not afraid to show their feelings.
Q. Tell us about one of your recent books?
A. Here’s the blurb for my latest release, ‘Dream of Paris’.
Anna Richards has a dream of going to live and study in Paris, but when Matthew Carlton comes into her life, her dream changes direction. Attraction sparks between them, but Matt’s behaviour is strangely inconsistent. Anna is shocked when she discovers the reason and is sure there is no future for them. Can Paris work its magic and make her dream come true?
Q. What are you currently working on?
A. I’m working on a novel set in Ireland. The English heroine and the American hero meet when they discover they have jointly inherited a house in Ireland from someone neither of them have ever heard of before. Even more surprising, they are told they are ‘family’ and so they then explore the family history. They uncover some surprises and, in the process, fall in love.
Q. How do you spend your leisure time?
A. I enjoy doing trivia quizzes online, and I run a social group for over-50’s, with local visits, pub lunches and social evenings. I used to travel a lot, but unfortunately, arthritis is now restricting me from doing as much as I would like.
Q. Do you write for a local audience or a global audience?
A. I write the stories I want to write, but at the same time I write because I want other people to enjoy my stories, wherever they might live.
Q. Can you provide links to your work?
A. Here are the links to my Amazon pages, where all my books are displayed.
The following British, not necessarily British-based, authors have been invited to join in the fun. Once they’ve agreed, and set up their own answers on their respective websites/blogs, then clicking on their name will take you there. Also, if you are a British author and would like to join in, please leave a comment below with your email address.
Rosemary Gemmell
Janice Horton
Hywela Lyn
Sherry Gloag


  1. What an innovative post - I love the idea of celebrating our British books - and I will proudly fly the flag for Scotland!

    Thank you, Paula. I enjoyed reading your answers and will put a post together this week using these questions.

    Janice xx

  2. Great post, Paula. I think I know you so well and then you surprise me with more information. 46 years in the same house! Blimey!

  3. I hope to get my post up in the next couple of days. Thank you for the invitation, Paula :-)

  4. One word - Jealous. :( I love this idea AND your accents! :) I've often wondered about the whole "stiff upper lip" thing too but then I watched a documentary with Prince William and Prince Harry and they are so funny! Not a fan of Charles and Camilla but I think the Queen is quite fiesty, of course Princess Diana was my favorite.. And I suppose there you have it. When I think British, I immediately think royalty. :)

  5. Janice - keep that flag flying :-)

    LOL, Jenny - nearly 47 actually!

    Look forward to yours, Sherry.

    Mimi, most of us here don't have accents like the royal family!

  6. Paula, thanks! Here's the link to my post in case anyone interested in a Brit in Cyprus! :D

  7. Great post. Thanks for sharing! I LOVE stories set in the UK or stories with UK characters.

  8. Thanks, Alexa. All my stories are set in the UK or, in the case of 'Her Only Option', with British characters in Egypt. Hope you'll look out for them on Amazon! Thanks so much for visiting my blog!