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Happy Book Birthday! – THE ONE WHO GOT AWAY by LA Detwiler, THE TRUTH ABOUT MY MOTHER by Jemma Wallace and THE NANNY (PB) by Gilly Macmillan

Happy UK Publication Day to The One Who Got Away by LA Detwiler and The Truth About My Mother by Jemma Wallace. Also, Happy UK Paperback Publication Day to The Nanny by Gilly Macmillan.

It was a delight to work with all these authors on their marvellous manuscripts. I did a line edit on The One Who Got Away, a copy edit on The Truth About My Mother, and I was part of the editorial team working on the developmental edit of The Nanny whilst I was still in house. All such fantastic authors and I hope to see them do really well!

The One Who Got Away LA Detwiler

(Published (in ebook) by One More Chapter, 19 February 2020)

(Published by Arrow, 20 February 2020)

The Truth About My Mother Jemma Wallace

(Published by Trapeze, 20 February 2020)

Author Showcase

Happy Book Birthday! – THE HARLECH BEACH KILLINGS by Simon McCleave

Happy UK Publication Day to The Harlech Beach Killings by Simon McCleave!

It was a delight to work with Simon once again (developmental edit and copy edit) on the second in the DI Ruth Hunter series. It’s always so rewarding to see an author’s work get stronger with each book, and I think we’re set to see great things from Simon. Watch this space!

Simon McCleave The Harlech Beach Killings

A murdered millionaire. A violent drug operation. Can a detective with a haunted past stop the next assassination?

Detective Inspector Ruth Hunter is still struggling to deal with her stress. So when the body of a businessman washes up on a secluded North Wales shore, the former London cop is anxious to prove she can lead the local investigative team and nail the killer. But as she digs into the dead millionaire’s business affairs, DI Hunter discovers a disturbing link to an infamous Liverpudlian drug lord…

Tracking down clues alongside a hot-headed partner, she worries his private vendetta could seriously jeopardize bringing the gangster to justice. And between botched raids, tight-lipped suspects, and a slew of cold case murders, she’s sure the criminal mastermind must have corrupt players in his pocket…

Can Hunter take down the mobster before he orders a highly personal hit?

(Published by Stamford Publishing, 10 February 2020)

Author Showcase

Happy Book Birthday! – COLD KILL by Rennie Airth

Happy UK Publication Day to COLD KILL by Rennie Airth!

It was a delight to work on the copy-edit of this pacey mystery that races across the streets of London! It was quite nostalgic to work on this whilst in Adelaide – I can’t wait to get back to London Town, but hopefully with fewer deadly ninjas!

Cold Kill by Rennie Airth

An American actress arrives in London to find herself the target of a ruthless assassin in this compelling standalone thriller.

Adelaide Banks travels from New York to London to spend Christmas with her Aunt Rose. But when Addy reaches her Knightsbridge address, no one’s home. Where is Rose? Dragged into a deadly game of cat-and-mouse on the snowy streets of London, Addy finds herself navigating a dark underworld of ruthless assassins, rogue agents and international crime.

(Published by Severn House Press, 31 January 2020)

Meet the Editor

'Kia Ora!'

It is terrifying really how quickly time passes, isn’t it? This time last year I’d just arrived in Australia and now our Ozzie adventure is over and I’m already partway through the next chapter: New Zealand.

I arrived in Auckland a couple of days ago now and, although it’s only been a couple of days, I have fallen a little bit in love with this city. I have loved exploring and finding all the cool indie shops, trying all the food and investigating the green spaces. And there is still so much more to see!

I can’t wait to make the most of these weeks and catch up on some me-time – which means lots of reading! The place I’m staying in has the biggest windows so I’m revelling in all the natural light and curling up with a good book!

I am officially out of the office but I will continue to answer emails for the next week or so before we head to the South Island. If you have a question, need some advice or want a quotation for an editorial service, don’t hesitate to get in touch via the contact page or the quotation request form. I can’t wait to hear from you!

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Author Q&A: Simon McCleave

The most rewarding aspect of my job as an editor is getting to work with talented writers to make their manuscripts the best they can be. This year I wanted to shout about some of the fabulous authors I’ve had the pleasure of working with, so I’ve invited them into sit down and chat about their work, what it’s like being a writer and their tips for those who also want to pick up the pen.

First to grace my metaphorical chair is Simon McCleave, the debut author of THE SNOWDONIA KILLINGS – out today. It’s a tense and action-packed crime novel set in the beating heart of Snowdonia. DI Ruth Hunter is an experienced but tired London copper, ready to embrace a more relaxed life in the country, but when she is faced with a gruesome, unexplained murder within hours of arriving on her new beat, she realises that this wasn’t the peaceful step back she bargained for.

Read an extract after the interview with the author.

Continue reading “Author Q&A: Simon McCleave”
Meet the Editor

2020, We're Coming at Ya!

It’s that time of year again when we bring out the new diary, the new diets, the new lifestyles and say to ourselves, ‘This is going to be my year!’ And although there is a lot of fluff surrounding new year’s resolutions, this year, mine is simple. To have a go.

2019 was a year of much adjustment for me. I left the job that I had dreamed of since I was young. I packed up my bags and travelled thousands of miles across the world to live in a country I’d never set foot in before. Oh, and I started a business.

2020, on the other hand, doesn’t look like it’s going to be any more stable. I have only two weeks left before our Australian adventure comes to an end and we begin our journey back home via New Zealand, where we’ll be holidays for over a month, exploring the gorgeous vistas and just taking some time out. However, when we get back to the UK after the excitement of seeing all our friends and family again, what remains is a bit of a question mark. (We don’t even really know where we’re going to live!)

I started my business a little out of necessity. The other half was offered an amazing opportunity in Australia, and I wasn’t going to let this opportunity to live abroad go. However, he happened to choose one of the few cities in the country that doesn’t have a publishing hub. So rather than hunting for a job myself, I decided to take up the scary mantle of ‘Self-employed’.

So, the question is, do I keep going? My plan so far is yes. I love what I do, and why shouldn’t I have a go at seeing whether I can make it work long term? It’ll be different being back in the UK, working with my previous colleagues but in a different capacity. And oh, boy am I looking forward to being on the same time zone as everyone for once! However, there is a nagging feeling at the back of my head. Can I actually do this?

It’s a question that many people ask themselves when they are starting out or about to embark on something risky. This includes a number of my authors, not just indie first-timers but also those who have a few books under their belts, wondering if this is all just a dream. (I personally think it’ll be a question I’ll ask myself every year).

My answer to this? You’ll never know unless you try. Sometimes you’ve got to take that gamble and just go with it. Be brave. Whatever you set out to do may not be perfect to begin with, but you’ve just got to work at it. Work hard, and it’ll pay off. Whether that’s starting your own business, aiming for a personal best at the gym (this year, I’m aiming to tackle the handstand!), or finally putting pen to paper and writing that novel. All you have to do is begin, the rest will take care of itself.

So, say it loud. ‘This year, 2020, is going to be my year.’ Go on, you can do it!

Book Review, Meet the Editor, Uncategorized

Merry Christmas!

It is already 25 December 2019 here in Australia. This year, Christmas feels a little different as we’ll be celebrating in the sunshine of Adelaide’s summer. I seem to have a mental block over this, with the warm weather and festive spirit not really computing. To be honest, I don’t feel Christmassy – even though I really want to! I’m sure eating my weight in mince pies this evening will sort that out in no time. However, what is also different is that because my boyfriend is working throughout the day, I’ll also be working at my desk too – maybe with a Celebrations tin to ease the pain. However, it will feel weird knowing that my family and friends are on the other side of the planet celebrating without me.

Now as I pack away the world’s smallest violin, I am aware that I have it comparitively easy. There will be many people who will be spending their Christmas not munching on far too much food and other indulgences, but will be busy looking after us. I’m talking about our emergency service workers. I say this every year because it is a cause close to my heart but it feels especially potent this year with our adoptive country battling some of the worst wildfires on record. There will be those actively fighting the blazes, those treating the injured as well as those helping those affected get to safety.

But also back home, the emergency services will still be up and running, helping those affected by the flooding that is hitting the country at the moment but also dealing with the accidents, mishaps and emergencies that the festive period can bring. With the NHS in particular being a much talked about topic at the moment (no politics – it’s Christmas), it’s just as important to acknowledge the fundamental role that our healthcare and emergency services do during the holiday season and not take it for granted.

So what I’m trying to say is whilst you’re eating your Christmas turkey or your Christmas barbeque, extend a thought to the lifeblood of our emergency services, ensuring we’re safe this Christmas.

One way I’ve been doing this is reading Adam Kay’s – author of the downright amazing This is Going to Hurt – new book, Twas the Nightshift Before Christmas. It’s another hilarious and heartbreaking account of life on the wards of the NHS, but all based around the Christmas shifts that Kay seemed to have the bad luck to draw almost every year in his medical career! A short but entertaining read, it reminds us of those at the frontline of the emergency services, but Kay’s unbridled wit can’t fail to bring some festive cheer!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Rebecca x

(Thanks to my other half for posing for this photograph before his Christmas shift!)
Book Review, Meet the Editor

Book Review: Going Under – Sonia Henry

IMG_6034One of my – nay – my *favourite* book of recent years, and perhaps of all time, is Adam Kay’s THIS IS GOING TO HURT, a humorous and heartbreaking account of the life of a doctor on the NHS. It details, in no uncertain terms, why doctors are leaving a seemingly crumbling yet pivotal organisation because of a system that seems to have a finger permanently on a self-destruct button, running itself but more importantly its medical staff into the ground. (But I shall not talk politics here…)

It’s one of the reasons I’m in Australia at this very moment, having come out with my medic boyfriend, who is taking some time out before his specialist training back in the NHS, to experience life in the medical profession down under. So, it is with interest that I picked up Sonia Henry’s GOING UNDER, which I assumed to be an Australian version.

And although unexpectedly written in the format of the novel, I would say that Henry is saying much the same thing. Medics are seen – and treated – as superhuman, not just on the NHS, but across the world. But they simply aren’t. And although there are moments of recognition and hilarity – reading out loud brilliant anecdotes from Dr Kitty’s hectic life as an intern at Holy Innocents hospital to my boyfriend – it highlights a real issue. The pressures of a profession that not only asks of its members to hold the very life of their patients in their hands, but also juggle the circus of professional development, hospital politics, endless exams and abuse, all whilst running solely on caffeine, a crust of a sandwich eaten twelve hours ago and a running total of about five hours sleep that week, can unsurprisingly be too much. Adam Kay felt he had to leave a profession he worked so hard to enter and Sonia Henry’s whistleblower article a few years ago about the number of suicides in junior doctors is testament to this.

Saying all this, those going into medicine know it isn’t going to be a walk in the park, but in the darkest moments, 3 a.m. on a night shift, where it seems that every patient is crashing, you’re the only doctor on the ward and you’ve had no sleep, just having someone ask if you’re okay, or the smallest of kind words or gestures is enough to help you see the light at the end of the tunnel. As I’m not a medic myself, I can’t speak for the medical colleagues out there, but as a member of the public, I have never seen the point of those who think shouting or abusing our healthcare staff is going to help. Admittedly, when you’re in a hospital A&E department at 3 a.m. in the morning as a patient, the situation isn’t likely to be good for you either, but perhaps taking a moment to think about those who are toiling to look after you wouldn’t hurt (and if it does, you’re probably in a lot of pain anyway to be in A&E at that time of night!)

As a book, Henry’s novel is both a hilarious example of contemporary fiction with a strong heroine and a brilliant supporting cast, but it’s also an eye-opening expose at what life in our hospitals is really like. The writing is fun and quick-witted, making it an easy read to begin with but as the harsh reality starts to hit, the tone changes and I found myself moved by the events of the novel. But the thing is, this may be fictionalised, but, for many, it is real life. Although not quite as broadly appealing as THIS IS GOING TO HURT – my boyfriend started to read GOING UNDER, intrigued by the subject but then put-off a little bit by the slightly women’s fiction vibe – this is well worth a read.

This issue is personal to me, having two medics in my family who I have seen struggle with the strains of the profession, so I apologise for waffling on, but also revoke that apology because it needs to be talked about and it needs to be discussed.

In my opinion, not all heroes wear capes – sometimes they wear scrubs.

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BOOK REVIEW: The Perfect Wife by JP Delaney

9781786488527I was very excited upon receiving an unexpected package from @hachetteaus a few weeks ago. Opening it up, and inside was an evidence bag along with a number of clues. With this setup and the gorgeous proof packaging, I thought I was in for a gripping psychological thriller but I was in for so much more!

THE PERFECT WIFE introduces us to Abbie. Awaking from a daze to see her husband sitting with her, she doesn’t have any recollections of what happened before she woke up. Tim, her husband, reveals that five years ago she had a terrible accident and that, through a huge technological breakthrough researched by his company, she has been brought back from the abyss. Except all is not what it seems.

A psychological thriller for the age of AI, JP Delaney explores the concept of what it means to be human, the idea of reality and artifice all while plotting an emotional suspense with bite. Although the beginning feels a little slow, the necessary build-up soon speeds off into the immersive world that appears all too close for comfort. Technological breakthrough, or messing with the very idea of humanity…

Meet the Editor, What Does an Editor Do?

What Does an Editor Do? – The Copy Edit

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I can edit to a number of styles including Standard British, Australian and well as Chicago.

Welcome, avid reader, to the second instalment in the What Does an Editor Do? series. Today, I’ll be talking about the most pernickety of edits: the Copy Edit. 

Continue reading “What Does an Editor Do? – The Copy Edit”