Oh, What a Show!! Showboat’s Literary Online! #authors #writers #poets

On Saturday 16th January 2021 we had our first Showboat Literary Online. We had a great line up of writers, lots of fun – and lots of interviewing glitches ( for the editing team at Showboat to sort out in order to showcase the event in the next months. But, most importantly, it was interesting to listen to all those who appeared to give us the lowdown on their writing and latest books.

Thorne Moore and I shared the interviewing chair. This is what Thorne had to say about the day, “:I expect everyone is saying it, but it was so good, after a year under siege, to be able to meet up with other authors again and talk about books, writing and the joys or otherwise of publishing, just to remind ourselves that the world will be back on its axis one day.”

And, just to remind everyone, these are two of Thorne’s books, published by Honno.

Thorne’s Amazon Author page https://amzn.to/3mpu86i

The authors:

Jan Baynham:

I was very pleased to take part in Showboat TV’s first Virtual LitFest. As always, I worried about being in the limelight but interviewer Judith put us at ease straight away. It gave me an opportunity to promote my two novels published during lockdown and reading an extract from my debut was a highlight. Afterwards we went into breakout rooms with other authors to chat about our books and our writing. I enjoyed ‘meeting in person’, albeit virtually, writers I follow on social media as well as catching up with others I haven’t seen for some time. A successful day, I think. Thank you, everybody. 

Her Mother's Secret: The Summer of '69 by [Jan Baynham]

Her Mother’s Secret



Her Sister's Secret: The Summer of '66 by [Jan Baynham]

Her Sister’s Secret




Twitter – @JanBaynham https://twitter.com/JanBaynham

Facebook – Jan Baynham Writer https://www.facebook.com/JanBayLit

Blog – Jan’s Journey into Writing https://janbaynham.blogspot.com/

Jill Barry

I was thrilled to be invited to join in the Showboat TV event on 16th January, especially as Judith Barrow, who I’ve known for some years, was my interviewer. One of the joys of Zoom events is that sometimes you suddenly come face to face with people you haven’t seen for ages, even if it is via cyberspace and not in a café. I also liked how we were reassured our presence in the waiting room was noted. Also, there was a relaxed atmosphere and plenty of laughs so hopefully viewers will enjoy visiting these interviews.

Love Thirty Kindle Edition
Homefront: A moving story of love and romance during World War II Kindle Edition



Amazon Author Page:             https://preview.tinyurl.com/yy4gsoz9

Facebook Page:                       https://www.facebook.com/JillBarryBooks

Twitter:                                   https://twitter.com/barry_jill

Alex Craigie:

I just wanted to thank Judith Barrow for helping us to showcase our work at yesterday’s LitFest and to send my gratitude to Showboat TV for their time and effort in organizing it and making it happen. I had a really enjoyable time. Judith was the perfect host – friendly, reassuring and generous with her questions. Any apprehensions were quickly dispelled and the meeting up with people afterwards was a genuine pleasure. Showboat TV managed my tech ignorance without making me feel like an idiot and I’d definitely sign up to another one!

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Alex’s Amazon Author page: https://amzn.to/3pmJElK


Facebook: http://bit.ly/2KkKTkT

Author page: https://amzn.to/3phn4ur

Angela Fish:

The event was great idea. The time slot for each interview was spot on – long enough to introduce the work and answer a few questions. The chat room was great for catching up with old friends and making new ones. I found I was torn between watching the interviews and meeting up with fellow authors! All credit to everyone, it was an enjoyable event and can hopefully be repeated

The Fractured Globe by [Angela Fish]

Amazon Author page: https://tinyurl.com/y6zeyrk2

web: www.angela-fish.com


Twitter: @angelaEfish

Insta: AngelaFishAuthor

Sara Gethin

I was very excited to take part in Showboat TV’s Online Lit Fest. It was the first opportunity I’d had to talk publicly about my new novel, Emmet and Me, and it felt absolutely wonderful to discuss books and writing again – a rare delight for me during the pandemic!


Instagram – @saragethinwriter


Social Media:

Blog – saragethin.com

Twitter – @SGethinWriter


Instagram – @saragethinwriter

Writing as Wendy White: https://www.amazon.co.uk/-/e/B00JVWMDGW


Angela Johnson.

On the whole a rewarding  day. I enjoyed my interview and the opportunity to talk about my book, and meeting other writers, so rare in these strange times. As an expat living in Kent, it was good to connect with Welsh writers, and heartening to see that the grand tradition of Welsh volubility is alive and flourishing. I’m most impressed by  so much creativity and dedication . Once I realised that the tech gremlins weren’t conspiring against me I relaxed and enjoyed it. Diolch yn fawr.

Arianwen by [Angela Johnson]




Twitter:  @jyfelin

Facebook Angela Johnson Author.

Alex Martin

Fabulous opportunity to have a literary festival online and thanks to www.showboat.tv for making it happen.  Sincere thanks also to Judith Barrow and Thorne Moore for their sensitive interviews, making everyone feel at ease.  I hope there will be another one,  when perhaps the public could join in an open forum too, helping us to reach out to readers old and new. I really enjoyed getting together with other local authors again and learning more about their work.

Daffodils (The katherine Wheel series Book 1) by [Alex Martin]


Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheKatherineWheel Twitter: https://twitter.com/alex_martin8586 Author page on Amazon: https://amzn.to/39JghTM

Kate Murray:

Showboat’s Lit Fest was the first online one I had done. From the very beginning I was made to feel comfortable. I popped into room 2 before my interview and networked with a few authors, then I went on to be interviewed by Thorne Moore. It went well and I did a reading, then I was back in Room 2. I found myself discussing everything from being BAME to illustrating. It was a wonderful day and I enjoyed myself. Goodness it flew past fast. I loved every minute. I would jump at the chance again.

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Links:The Gone: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B0124IYEIE/

Here Be Dragons (children): https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01K275UU0/

How the Moon Lost the Stars (picture book): https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B06VW6Q6Z2/

Adult Tudor Colouring Book: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/1974254984/

Colin R Parsons

The event was great to be honest. The short slots for each interview was just right. Having the chat room was a good idea to catch up with old friends. The only thing I would say is if there was more notice for the audience, then maybe there may be more chance of questions. Other than that… an enjoyable LitFest.

The Gamer by [Colin R. Parsons, Nicola Peake]


Voyce.me/CRPauthor@colin.r.parsons (Instagram)facebook.com/colin.r.parsons@colinrparsons (twitter)https://www.fantasticfiction.com/p/colin-r-parsons/ (fantastic fiction)
https://bit.ly/2LDQy7e (youtube)

Cheryl Rees Price

I thought the online Litfest was a great success and I was so grateful to be included. I was a little nervous at first but you and Thorne did a great job creating a relaxing atmosphere during the interviews. It was lovely to catch up and see all the authors. Writing can be a lonely business and we’ve all missed out on the social gatherings at the book fairs. 

Blue Hollow: A thrilling mystery with a wicked twist by [Cheryl Rees-Price]

 website is: https://www.cherylrees-price.co.uk/

Gail Williams

I thought it was really well done overall. the interviews and break out sections worked fine.  The only thing I found was that when I was looking for it, I went on the showboat.tv site, but I couldn’t find a link to the event, so I had to go hunt a direct link, and that was okay because I had them to hand, but for other viewers, it might have been a bit more difficult.
Generally though, a great day.  Well done and thanks for the opportunity

Twitter:        @GBWilliams

Facebook:  @GBWilliamsCrimeWriter

Instagram:  @gbwilliamsauthor

Blog:           thewriteroute.wordpress.com Website:     www.gailbwilliams.co.uk

Helen May Williams
I really enjoyed the event; especially chatting with Thorne about my writing. There’s so much to talk about, since I write in different genres. Besides a lifetime’s worth of academic writing, I’ve published post-romantic poetry in The Princess of Vix and linked haiku in Catstrawe. In Before SilenceI translated haiku by Michel Onfray, a popular but controversial French philosopher and now I’ve published a biographical novel, June. All my writing starts with an idea but then involves a lot of research before creating the finished text. I could have talked for hours!


Helen May Williams | Facebook


And that was our line up for Showboat’s Literary Online 2021.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading the writers’ thoughts on how the day went. Please feel free to follow them on social media and check out all their brilliant books.

Judith Barrow Author MA BA (Hons) Dip Drama



judith barrow

My Review of The Rose Trail by Alex Martin



The Blurb:

Is it chance that brings Fay and Persephone together?
Or is it the restless and malevolent spirit who stalks them both?
Once rivals, they must now unite if they are to survive the mysterious trail of roses they are forced to follow into a dangerous, war torn past.

The Rose Trail is a time slip novel set in both the present day and during the English Civil War. The complex story weaves through both eras with a supernatural thread.

My Review:

Way back in 2015, I interviewed Alex Martin after I’d read her first books:  http://bit.ly/2iVUaxK. And then again in 2016,  http://bit.ly/2itOdaz   (when she was part of the Tenby book fair: now evolved into the Narberth Book Fair: (http://bit.ly/2iiW8HW ). I have enjoyed all her work and I must admit  I was looking forward to reading The Rose Trail, expecting the same genre.

 It’s not! But the strong writing style that makes this author’s book instantly recognisable is there throughout. And just as fascinating. This is a story that moves through two time zones, starting off in the present day and then woven into the period of the English Civil War. It’s dark, haunting and riveting and moves a a good steady place with the occasional revelation that shocks the reader.

As usual Alex Martin has researched well; the settings, the descriptions give an evocative sense of place

The characters are well rounded and believable. Fay could be a protagonist that elicits pity, yet her courage and fortitude soon become evident. And Percy; for me it was dislike on sight but then an unwilling sympathy. Until, I admitted to myself that she was actually a decent person. See? I’m talking about them as thought they’re real. Which, to me is a sign of empathetic writing. And the two brothers, Will and Ralph in the juxtaposed historical story become just as believable with the wrangling in both their political and personal lives.  

The dialogue, both as spoken and as internal thoughts, of all the characters reads naturally. There are no irritating lines where I wasn’t sure who was speaking.

If there was one small constructive criticism I’d have it would be with some of  those parts of the book that deal with the civil war combat scenes. I found myself skipping through them.  Though I have to confess, some of the dark ‘ghostly’ scenes, I stopped to re-read again. perhaps this says more about me as a reader than anything else! 

So, as with all the other books that Alex Martin has written, I really enjoyed The Rose Trail and have no hesitation in recommending this novel.

Buying Links:

Amazon.co.uk: http://amzn.to/2iWoRTE

Amazon.com: http://amzn.to/2izkpMV










The Three Day Quote Challenge:

The Three Day Quote Challenge:

My thanks go to the wonderful Sally Cronin, blogger and writer extraordinaire,  who tagged me in this challenging (for me anyway!) challenge:

Sally G Cronin

Sally’s  blog is https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com
And for more information on her books listed here at Amazon please visit

Okay, the deal is, you share your favourite quote (even if written by you) and also inspire people.
The Rules:

As always these challenges come with a few provisos and here they are.

Thank the person who nominated you. Share your favourite quotes (even if written by you)  that inspire you and could inspire other people   Pass it on by tagging some poor unsuspecting person  that you admire (bearing in mind you’ll want them to be your friend afterwards. Hah!)  Do we have to post three quotes, or one quote every day for three days? Not sure but mine are all here today…

My Quotes:

“Ideas are like rabbits. You get a couple and learn how to handle them, and pretty soon you have a dozen.”

— John Steinbeck

download (7)

“If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.’

— Toni Morrison

download (8)

And finally: – a list of quotes – just to prove I know who I am, where I belong – and that I’m always right.


Now I’m tagging the following three lovely ladies – only if they fancy doing this – no pressure – really!!:
Thorne Moore: http://www.thornemoore.co.uk/: Author of the brilliant Honno novels: Time for Silence: http://amzn.to/1TkRFll and Motherlove: http://amzn.to/1gnpnsc. Also available at  http://www.honno.co.uk/

Alex Martin: http://amzn.to/1Co3ItD:  Author of  the excellent Katherine Wheel Books:  Daffodils  http://amzn.to/1JTFdUZ  and Peace Lilt: http://amzn.to/1Mebk26

 Sharon Tregenza: http://bit.ly/1dLEsSf: Author of the superb children’s’ middle grade books: Shiver Stone,  http://amzn.to/1COq01b – also available at http://www.fireflypress.co.uk/ – author of Tarrantula Tide: http://amzn.to/1HfqYpC

And if too busy to accept the challenge, ladies here’s something else for you to take as a thank you. Have a drink on me



My Interview with the Talented and Successful Indie Author Alex Martin

  1. Please introduce yourself:

Hi, my name is Alex Martin and I’m an independently published author of three novels – and loving it! I’ve lived in lots of places but have settled in south Wales on the Gower peninsula. It was a long-held ambition to live by the sea and an even longer one to write for my living. Here I am (dressed in 1920s racing gear at Brooklands Motor Racing Museum on a research trip), living those dreams. I feel very lucky.




  1. What first inspired you to start writing?

Learning to read opened up an escape hatch into worlds that lit up my imagination and it was but a short leap into writing. Nothing ever excited me so much as creating a story out of nothing, and that’s still true. I loved writing essays at school and summer holidays were spent either skinning my knees up a tree or tapping away at an ancient black and gold typewriter. I’ve written professionally for magazines since and I have a lot of unfinished manuscripts littering the place!



  1. Tell us about your new book.

My new book is called Speedwell. It will be the third book in ‘The Katherine Wheel’ series.



An image posted by the author.














The first two are Daffodils, set in WW1 and Peace Lily, set in the immediate aftermath of 1919. Speedwell covers the entire decade of the roaring twenties and takes the characters back to America and on to various race tracks, particularly Brooklands in Weybridge, near London.

Katy Phipps is running a garage with her husband Jem, trying to raise a family, make innovations on cars and be a race mechanic all at the same time. She is co-driver to Douglas, an American who married her best friend and ex-employer Cassandra Smythe, the heiress of the local estate, Cheadle Manor in rural Wiltshire. Douglas has underwritten the garage and hopes to attract sponsorship and car sales to help support both the garage and his growing family.

His father, who lives in Boston, doesn’t approve, and Douglas relies on his rich mother for financial backing. When she dies, everything is put in jeopardy and Douglas risks his life trying to beat all his competitors to secure the future. Katy invents a vital car component to get the edge on their rivals and this has a profound effect on the future of Peacehaven Garage. In order to put the component into production without Douglas’s support, she and Jem have to put themselves deep into debt.

Will Douglas secure sponsorship? Will Katy and Jem be able to sell her invention? The suspense as the characters struggle with these pressures builds to an unusual climax and chimes with the innovation and excitement of this post-war decade when the modern age was born.


  1. Why do you write?

Good question, as it’s often more like exquisite torture! People say anyone can write, and of course that’s true, but I think not everyone feels it’s their vocation.

I do. It has been my bliss and passion. If I don’t write, I’m no fun to be around.

On the other hand, I can be pretty awful when the writing isn’t going well. I’m also pretty impossible when it is and I’m in what I call a ‘writing vortex’ and can’t stop. So, I’m either antsy because life is getting in the way of the creative process, fed up because it won’t flow, or over-excited and irritable because I can’t stop.

I’m heaven to live with. I suppose it could be described as a compulsion.


  1. Do you have to plan to write or are you constantly jotting ideas and lines down?

Usually the initial idea comes to me in a dream. It’ll be a different sort of dream to the norm; clear and memorable with visual scenes in sharp focus. I scribble it down and, even if I can’t, it tends to stay in my head, refusing to be ignored, remaining crystal clear until I can. Of  course it can be years before I settle down to the planning, the outlining, the synopses, the character profile breakdowns and the plot. I have many, many ideas I can’t wait to bring to life. I just don’t have enough hours in the day or energy to concentrate to finish all the projects sitting on the back-burner at the back of my head. Wish I had eyes and a computer memory stick in there!


  1. What do you think it takes to stand out from the indie author crowd?

It takes time, perseverance but above all, quality. There’s lots of fiction out there and probably if I wrote erotica or gory thrillers it would be easier but I can’t. So, I can only answer for me, and that means really good research, hopefully good prose, a well crafted sentence (they tend to get re-written many, many times), many drafts, lots and lots of editing. I edit as I go and then re-draft half a dozen times at least. Good formatting helps and great beta-readers – whose opinion you trust and you know will tell you the brutal truth, before letting your vulnerable, naked manuscript out into the real world.


  1. What is the ultimate goal you hope to achieve with your writing?

To earn my living by creating stories readers can escape into.


  1. Do you only write one specific genre or are you multi-talented?

So far it’s been historical fiction set around the First World War, with Speedwell and a further book planned, Woodbine and Ivy, which takes the characters into the second generation as they face the challenge of WWII.

But my first book, The Twisted Vine, was set in France in the 1980’s and is more of a mystery/suspense type of story.

The Twisted Vine

I’ve also written quite of lot of poetry, some short stories and I have other projects which include contemporary novels, a ghost story or two and many others.


  1. Give us a random fact about yourself.

I write in a shed I built (with help from my dear spouse) from a kit. From my writing desk I can see the Brecon Beacons.

See http://www.alexxx8586.blogspot.com where tales from The Plotting Shed can be found about my writing projects. I’m still applying the paint here, if you look closely!





My Blog: http://bit.ly/1H5OtqT http://www.alexxx8586.blogspot.com – tales from the Plotting Shed

My first novel: http://amzn.to/XHVZeD The Twisted Vine – a sensuous and mysterious journey through the vineyards of France in the 1980s


The Katherine Wheel Books:

1) http://amzn.to/141yEIG Daffodils – emotional and tender love story set in WW1

2) http://amzn.to/1zxG8aL Peace Lily – the sequel to Daffodils


Facebook author page: http://on.fb.me/16NHzpw

Find me on Twitter: http://bit.ly/16NI1E6