Very grateful to Accent Press for coming up with lovely new covers for my ebooks…they also provided the fab promotional banner. My dear pal and hugely talented writer, Philip Casey, has come up with a ‘new look’ website for the new covers. I don’t quite know how he did it. Anytime I talk at any length with a computer expert I tend to resort to words like ‘thing’, ‘stuff’ and ‘what?
It is really cold here this morning and I have the central heating on and the Dimplex and I don’t actually know how many layers of clothing. We had some snow last night but now it’s raining and I’ve brought a largish palm type plant in from the patio…it looks pleasantly tropical by the back door.
Probably should write a bit about my books ‘cos us authors are supposed to do that sort of thing…and the new covers remind me of the first cover I made for a book:
When I was about eleven I made a ‘book’ cover for two stories I typed on my dear Dad’s typewriter…I could have done with some Tipp-Ex! (Dad was a clergyman and we were living in a lovely old rambling rectory in rural County Limerick at the time.) A self-published work with a print run of one copy, it was called ‘Stories For Everyone’ and featured a glamorous woman, a horse and a puppy on the cardboard cover (the pictures were cut out carefully) and the singer John Paul Jones on the back. One of the stories was about my beloved pony Merrylegs and the other was about the joys of nature, so it didn’t quite live up to its title!
(Have made myself some Kenco cappuccino from a red sachet and have just eaten a chocolate biscuit.)
Though I still adore ponies and nature these days I have extended my subject-matter. For example women’s lives fascinate me and writing about them helps me to make sense of my own experiences. What’s more, I often make intriguing new ‘friends’ as I type and I love getting to know them more deeply. I greet them hoping that they will share their hopes and disappointments, their fears and dreams and perplexities. I love intimacy in ordinary life…people who seem to understand…people I don’t have to pretend with…and that’s what the characters in my novels ask of my friendship with them. They want to take off their masks and tell it how it truly is. Sometimes male characters do this too and I almost fall in love with them. For example I find Charlie in ‘Ordinary Miracles’ deeply fanciable. And Nathaniel in ‘The Truth Club’ would make a most wonderful confidant.
(Need to go out soon on errands…may wear blue woolly hat and bring some food for the birds in the park. The gulls tend to grab the food first so the rooks need to be pretty nifty if they want some extra grub.)
One of my biggest pleasures is when a reader says they have felt understood by one of my novels. This is often because a character has admitted to feelings they themselves have never been able to share. For example a number of readers of ‘Ordinary Miracles’ told me they felt I had somehow been spying on their marriages. Jasmine, the main character, has just turned forty and reads books like ‘No Need To Panic: Courageous Acts Of Change In Women’s Lives’. Desperation eventually sends her on a quirky journey of self-discovery and there are tears and epiphanies and adventures and, importantly, laughter. I love writing humour. I like my novels to contain many notes and contrasts, like in music. But as the saying goes, certain chords always reach the heart in the same way.
I love animals and they are also often important characters in my novels. For example ‘Ordinary Miracles’ features an adorable pig and ‘Wise Follies’ has a rather rude but impressive budgie and a cat and terrapins. ‘Ready Or Not?’ has a lovely Cocker Spaniel and ‘The Truth Club’ features a nice dog too!
(Would love to get another pet. I looked after a cute canine for a friend a while ago. Izzy…dog’s name…sometimes looks so sweet and endearingly thoughtful.)
Peeked out the back window and noticed a bit of sunshine. Glad that I went swimming with a pal on Saturday. A local hotel was offering free promotional access to their spa. Didn’t actually want to go swimming on Saturday morning. It seemed far too wintry for it and I didn’t want the bother of packing up the stuff I needed to bring etc. It was uplifting when we got there though. I loved the steam room and sauna too. Cappuccinos and scones afterwards were also cheering.
Feel I should put the link to Philip Casey’s wonderfully wise books on Kindle here…
Lots of love and sparkles,
‘She has an assured style and a wonderful insight into the separated
lady’s lot…I couldn’t put it down. I literally read it from cover to cover.’ Muriel Bolger, ‘No Jacket Required’ RTE RADIO ONE re ‘Ordinary Miracles;
‘Grace Wynne-Jones has a wicked sense of humour which enlivens every
page…Alice and her friends, and her hilarious magazine assignments, at times leave the reader rocking with laughter.’ THE IRISH TIMES re ‘Wise Follies’
‘…this is one of the best Irish novels this year…The trip to Greece is steeped in olives and jasmine, cicadas and sunshine…readers will love the local gigolo, Dimitri. Grace writes with great humour…On a more serious note, her portrayal of friendship, commitment and the complexity of relationships is very real and most enjoyable.’ Evening Herald re ‘Ready Or Not?’
‘…..Grace Wynne-Jones has written an entertaining, intelligent and genuinely funny story….this is a great read, especially for commuters…guaranteed to shorten any journey.’ The Irish Times re ‘The Truth Club’
[Woman And The Book featured image is by George Hodan]