Jackhammer Guest

Imagine having a jackhammer in your apartment; believe me until you hear it you have no idea what it sounds like. That’s the sound I’ve been listening to most of this week—concrete balcony repairs are in progress. It starts about 8:15 a.m., a short break around 10 and another break around 1 p.m., finishing at 4:30 in the afternoon; Monday to Friday as long as the weather holds; they don’t work in rain or high winds, which makes sense swinging up into the heavens on a little wooden platform is dangerous enough.  Our twenty-one story building, The Britannia, perched at the top of a hill overlooks an expanse of park and the mighty Ottawa River. Even a mild wind is gale force around The Britannia but the jackhammers continue.  Although it is a relief when the wind gets too gusty and stops the jackhammers, it also means it will take longer to finish the job.  It is difficult to work with such a noise, but not impossible, it’s a case of adapting. My morning writing time, which is before the jackhammers, continues, but recording videos for the online writing course is on hold.

Novel writing progress has been slow to none existent; my time has been spent editing, the new contemporary sweet romance Endings and Beginnings, which is now ready for the professional edit. My submission Romance at Mr. Booker’s Bookshop for the Ottawa Independent Writers anthology submitted. Many of you have asked when my next novel will be out. I expect to have the first of the new Sophie series (working title) out before Christmas. 

Sophie Romano the protagonist from Ruins in Silk and the headmaid from The Blue Pendant is the heroine for this new series. Desperately in love with a man who loves another, Sophie leaves The Sackville Hotel. The new series follows Sophie to London where she trains as a nurse and deploys to France to nurse injured soldiers in the Great War. Amid, the terrible conditions of war Sophie finds romance and even a lost love from her youth. So readers, stay tuned for regular updates.

Would you like to write? I hear this comment all the time. “I want to write a book?” But few people actually write. First Sentence to First Sale is an online writing course that helps you decide if writing is for you and gets you started on your writing journey.  Due for release at the end of April. Click here for details


Books I’m reading: No change from last week, I’m still reading Anne Perry’s latest and for non-fiction Donald Maas’s The Emotion of Character.

The Blue Pendant Book I     Anna’s Legacy Book II    Sarah’s Choice Book III

First in series The Blue Pendant  on sale on Amazon .99c

Anna’s Legacy and Sarah’s Choice E-book at all online retailers $4.99


Free e-book available Ruins in Silk prequel to the trilogy. A perfect summer afternoon read.

“Her mother’s death sets a path of tragedy; betrayal, misguided love and even murder ” 

Click to download free e-book

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Preparing for the Sun!

Hello from Ottawa, Miss Penny speaking!   My boss, Susan, is busy getting ready for a trip to visit her son and daughter-in-law, in Costa Rica. How neat is that having a relative living in the sun? Our house is in chaos, not because of packing, I don’t think that has started yet, but because it is like a revolving door with activities and visitors. Granddaughter, Annabelle, left yesterday and I’m assuming the suitcase will come out today. Of course, Susan thinks that I don’t know what’s going on but dogs have a sixth sense about these things. I’m not averse to making Susan feel guilty about leaving me. I’ll be clingy, maybe whine a bit but secretly I’m looking forward to my own holiday. I’m going to visit my mom Leila. Leila lives in a house with a backyard, now that’s a great place to have a holiday when you’re a dog who resides on the ninth floor of an apartment.
Thank you to those of you who expressed sympathy when I lost my fur coat. I’m still reeling from the shock and walks in the park even with a jacket are cold. Although, this week saw the first day of spring and the fur is getting thicker. I’m doing okay.
Writing, editing and course planning has been going on all week but with so many interruptions not much progress was made. Psst! That makes the boss a touch cranky. She definitely needs a holiday. That’s all from me today, over to the boss.
I have little to add to Miss Penny report. I am preparing to unplug and enjoy a relaxing holiday. The suitcase is coming out today and it will be a joy to pull out the summer clothes. Reading is a major part of a holiday for me so I am scanning my bookshelves for easy beach reading and getting the sunscreen out.

 


Books I’m Reading:    I finished First Snow, Last Light by Wayne Johnson, I enjoyed this book. A very different kind of book with multiple points of view, which the author does brilliantly. The hook at the beginning draws you in and the resolution of the hook is not revealed until the very end. Excellent 5 stars.

 

 

I have moved on to my favourite author Anne Perry and her latest Charlotte and Thomas Pitt mystery Murder on the Serpentine, just released in paperback. Thomas, head of Special Branch that looks after the country’s security, is summoned to the Buckingham Palace by Queen Victoria. He is asked to investigate a suspicious death that might involve the Prince of Wales. Secrets, mystery and intrigue that Anne Perry does so well.

My holiday reading will be composed of Anne Perry’s An Echo of Death a William Monk series and two light romances by Debbie Macomber. If I have browsing time at the airport, you never know what I might pick up.

All books available on Amazon.

 


The Blue Pendant Book I     Anna’s Legacy Book II    Sarah’s Choice Book III

First in series The Blue Pendant  on sale on Amazon .99c

Anna’s Legacy and Sarah’s Choice E-book at all online retailers $4.99


Free e-book available Ruins in Silk prequel to the trilogy. A perfect summer afternoon read.

“Her mother’s death sets a path of tragedy; betrayal, misguided love and even murder ” 

Click to download free e-book

A Great Green Day!

A great green day can only be St Patrick’s Day. CTV News interviewed an Ottawa downtown bar owner who said, St Patrick’s is his biggest day of the year, bigger than Canada Day. I often wondered why a good part of the world celebrates St Patrick’s Day with such enthusiasm. Don’t get me wrong, I love the Irish; I love Ireland and visited many times both north and south. Ireland is a truly beautiful island; the people are fun, amazing people with a hint of mystery surrounding them. Perhaps, that’s the answer, the mystery. Happy St Paddy’s Day everyone! Drink green beer, wear a green jacket and enjoy a fun day because green is still white in Ottawa from another week of snow. The boots came out again but with a week of sunshine forecast they are back in the closet. Miss Penny is sulking because the picture above is of a strange dog. Sorry, Miss Penny but you don’t have a green hat. 

A Typical day on a canal narrowboat

My writing progress is slow at the moment comprising the boring stuff of editing, Endings and Beginnings, but exciting in the sense of polishing. As I worked through this manuscript, I realized how much of me has snuck into the story. Divorced, Katie is trying to find purpose in her life. I remember feeling that way. I even wondered if the path Katie takes; running a B&B and having a romantic encounter on a narrowboat with a good-looking doctor, was my secret wish, except my doctor was the divorce part. The new historical romance series based on Sophie’s character from The Blue Pendant and Ruins in Silk is now in the outline stage. As soon as I learn more about nursing in the Great War and about Sophie, who lost her parents very young. An event that will influence her adult life, compounded by the horrors of a bloody war. How will Sophie react? After researching I will switch my brain into a creative mode and create a new series.
First Sentence to First Sale online course is on temporary hold as I get my smile fixed. The gap in my front teeth is more pirate-like and the lisp that comes with it not the impression I’m after. April 26th is the tentative release date.


Books I’m reading: I am enjoying Wayne Johnson’s book Last Snow, Last Light, he is a marvellous author for developing characters and taking you right inside their lives. But a slower read than the fanciful romances or Victorian mysteries and a nice change.

 

 

In nonfiction reading, I am still reading The Emotional Wound Thesaurus by Angela Akerman and Becca Puglisi’s. My focus is, as explained above, characters suffering psychological wounds in early life—Sophie losing her parents.

 

 


The Blue Pendant Book I     Anna’s Legacy Book II    Sarah’s Choice Book III

First in series The Blue Pendant  on sale on Amazon .99c

Anna’s Legacy and Sarah’s Choice E-book at all online retailers $4.99


Free e-book available Ruins in Silk prequel to the trilogy. A perfect summer afternoon read.

“Her mother’s death sets a path of tragedy; betrayal, misguided love and even murder ” 

Click to download free e-book

I’m Back!

I’m back…as one gets older and I’m not admitting to getting older, I find multitasking isn’t as easy as it was in my younger days. As a single parent of five kids, believe me, I know all about multitasking. However, the kids are long gone and it seems so have my multitasking skills. I had to take a break from blogging and The Sackville News and Updates to concentrate on completing Sarah’s Choice Book III of The Sackville Hotel Trilogy.

Drum roll please drrrrrrr……Last weekend I put the last period in the last sentence of the last chapter of the manuscript. followed by a few revisions and yesterday I hit the send button and off it went to Mark, my wonderful editor. I am happy to say we are on track for a December 1st launch of Sarah’s Choice. Look out for news, previews of the cover and giveaways as the launch comes closer.

As I hit that last period I had mixed emotions. I have spent many, many hours with

Bexhill Train Station Photo courtesy of www.postcards/bexhill

Anna. We meet at The Sackville Hotel in 1913, she is a young innocent woman of nineteen, challenging societies proprieties of marrying as she seeks adventure and independence. I laugh with her, cry with her, rejoice and celebrate and fall in love; through all the ups and downs of business and love, lots of love romantic and family until she reaches her seventies and passes the hotel to others. No spoilers!


Click the titles to buy  The Blue Pendant Book I   or  Anna’s Legacy Book II    

 

More details and read the synopsis of Anna’s journey. Warning…could cause sleep deprivation.

 


Free e-book available Ruins in Silk prequel to the trilogy. A perfect summer afternoon read.

“Her mother’s death sets a path of tragedy; betrayal, misguided love and even murder ” 

Click to download e-book

Don’t miss out on The Sackville Hotel updates news. Cross my heart, I promise no spam.  I hate it too. Join here 

Don’t Miss Kobo Specials

Kobo e-books featuring… 900 pages of summer reading!

The Blue Pendant 1st in series $2.99  until July 5 (Regular price $5.99) Click to  Get your copy 

Anna’s Legacy Book II   30% off until June 26 (price varies according to country) Promo Code JUNE30  Click to Get your copy   Don’t forget the promo code


Weekly snippet from Susan’s writing desk...

Sarah’s progress – While you are reading this summer Sarah and I will be writing. I’m not crazy, well, maybe a little. After being with Anna for six years through her first journey at the Sackville Hotel as a receptionist, a feisty young woman determined to be independent, The Blue Pendant Book I. She returns to the Sackville as an owner with a new husband and daughter as partners Anna’s Legacy Book II. I know these characters, they are in my head as alive as though they are standing next to me. As Anna is aging I feel her rheumatism, her love for Bill, daughter Isabelle and her need to pass on her legacy. Now it is granddaughter Sarah’s turn, (no title yet,) I’ve been with Sarah since she was born, I know how passionate she is about art and how she loves her parents and grandparents.I understand her conflict, she has some big decisions to make. Now you understand why it is Sarah and I writing this final story.

P.S. If you have an idea for a title send me an email. A couple of suggestions so far..Sarah’s Choice, Sarah’s Inheritance



If you prefer print books go to Amazon or Chapters/Indigo

NEW! UNIVERSAL LINKS TO THE RETAILER OF YOUR CHOICE

Ruins in Silk –           https://books2read.com/u/bw8DjY

The Blue Pendant: – https://books2read.com/u/mlK7YP

Anna’s Legacy –       https://books2read.com/u/m2XAxO 


NEW! Nonfiction – 

 

 

I Decided to Self-Publish – https://books2read.com/u/bzp5r2


Join Susan’s Reader Group and receive updates, events and book releases. I promise no spam, I hate it too. Join here


 

Prose in the Park

A day in the park, Parkdale Park, with me and my books and hundreds of other books and authors. just behind Parkdale Market.

If you love books, authors and fun things associated with books come and visit between 11 am and 6 pm.

Contrary to what you may or may not think, it isn’t always about selling. Authors love to talk about their books, their stories and how they became a writer. My experience has been that readers love to ask questions and learn how an author goes about writing.

I started by writing about my life as a single mother of five, I caught the writing bug. and wrote short stories about everything. And then I heard a wonderful story about my grandmother and with help from my mother on family history Nana’s story finished up as a trilogy. Who would have known? Many authors will have similar stories to tell.

Please come and join us and ask us about our writing day and if you feel inclined there will be a book or two for sale.

NEW! UNIVERSAL LINKS TO THE RETAILER OF YOUR CHOICE

Ruins in Silk –           https://books2read.com/u/bw8DjY

The Blue Pendant: – https://books2read.com/u/mlK7YP

Anna’s Legacy –       https://books2read.com/u/m2XAxO 


NEW! Nonfiction – 

 

 

I Decided to Self-Publish – https://books2read.com/u/bzp5r2


Join Susan’s Reader Group and receive updates, events and book releases. I promise no spam, I hate it too. Join here


 

Retreat to The Cove Inn

The Cove Inn is a wonderful small hotel in Westport, Ontario, situated on the shores of the Upper Rideau Lake. I was there last weekend for the Ottawa Independent Writer’s Retreat Annual Retreat, a period of peace, tranquility and a place to recharge, a perfect place for a learning workshop with facilitator Alissa York from Toronto. Mixing in the word workshop muddies the term retreat and one of our members Dr. John Last, who is still writing and publishing at the age of 90, points this out to me every year.

Curious as to the definition of retreat, I looked it up in the dictionary, always a fascinating occupation, this is what I found–military forces, pull back, retire from superior forces–Well now, not quite the tranquil event I associated with the word. But then I asked myself, Why do we go on retreats? The answer, to pull back from the daily grind and busyness of our modern lives, retire from a superior force, the superior force being our, all consuming daily life. I think it’s time we brought some of the tranquillity of The Cove Inn into our day-to-day activities, every day needs a little bit of pull-back. In all fairness to the Canadian Oxford Dictionary, a retreat is also defined as a place of seclusion, a period were co-workers or people sharing a common interest meet away from home or workplace. 

And the word workshop a place in which goods are manufactured or a meeting for concerted discussion and practical work. Looks as though John is right, but the combination works well. Perhaps it is the seclusion and the pull back from daily life that allows us to learn and perfect our craft of writing.



 NEW! UNIVERSAL LINKS TO THE RETAILER OF YOUR CHOICE

Ruins in Silk –           https://books2read.com/u/bw8DjY

The Blue Pendant: – https://books2read.com/u/mlK7YP

Anna’s Legacy –       https://books2read.com/u/m2XAxO 


NEW! Nonfiction – 

 

 

I Decided to Self-Publish – https://books2read.com/u/bzp5r2


Join Susan’s Reader Group and receive updates, events and book releases. I promise no spam, I hate it too. Join here


 

Ideas that Pop!

Ideas that pop often happen when I think my mind is barren, which is what happened this morning. My intention was to continue the 1960s research as Book III of The Sackville Hotel Trilogy progress but my brain said differently and there was nothing, nadder, blank and then this intriguing picture popped up. Perhaps it reflected my mood, a writer so small and the typewriter so large or is it the hands. The hands that do all the work.

To my amazement, this is a mural or graffiti as it was titled. I couldn’t help but wonder who had painted it, was he or she a writer and an artist, what was she/he thinking. Such talent and the photographer’s eye, catching the women sitting below giving perspective. Food for thought.




A sneak preview of a little book that is to be released later this week called

I Decided to Self-publish – A little bit serious, mostly tongue in cheek. a novice author’s experience of the self-publishing process.

My personal experience of trying and succeeding to self-publish my books.

 

 

Book News!  this month Free on Kobo Susan’s Singles

 NEW! UNIVERSAL LINKS TO THE RETAILER OF YOUR CHOICE

Ruins in Silk –           https://books2read.com/u/bw8DjY

The Blue Pendant: – https://books2read.com/u/mlK7YP

Anna’s Legacy –       https://books2read.com/u/m2XAxO

Launching Anna Specials

Tomorrow Sunday, April 30th is Launch Day

YOU’RE INVITED

Anna continues her journey in Book II Anna’s Legacy and to celebrate I’m having a party at 2 pm 415 Greenview Av Ottawa with refreshments, door prizes and special deals on books. Don’t live in Ottawa or can’t make the party e-books are 2.99 or less on both Amazon and Kobo until May 3rd. Links below. Party details here

My blog will be brief today as I toil over a hot stove making squares, and cookies, cutting cheese for the cheese tray and frying potato chips. I’m thinking I got you at frying potato chips–who does that? I lied my favourite 300 dollar store COSTCO provided the goodies. Have you ever noticed that when you walk into COSTCO you plan to spend maybe, $100 and with a blink of an eye the cashier says, $350 please? How did that happen?

Joking aside, I hope you can make the party, good food, good company and a few teasers from Anna’s Legacy and lots of books.


My email address and comment box can be found on my websites: Book Clubs: A Reader’s Guide and Questions for Discussion can be found at the www.susanajennings.com under Book Clubs.

Book News! Free e-book – Prequel to The Sackville Hotel Trilogy – Ruins in Silk is available from KOBO.Book I – The Blue Pendant and Book II – Anna’s Legacy book II is currently featured on Kobo.

NEW! UNIVERSAL LINKS TO THE RETAILER OF YOUR CHOICE

Ruins in Silk –           https://books2read.com/u/bw8DjY

The Blue Pendant: – https://books2read.com/u/mlK7YP

Anna’s Legacy –       https://books2read.com/u/m2XAxO

All things 1950

Happy Easter!

I’m blaming the Easter bunny for my tardiness, late delivery.

 

 



One of the most interesting tasks an author does is research, and for me, it is retro research. The Blue Pendant and Ruins in Silk both started in the early 1900s and Anna’s legacy is set in 1948 -1950.

Baking, ironing, cleaning and being glamorous — spells happiness!

 

Scrolling through pictures and adverts of 1950 I thought about the mindset and expectation, which were not only naïve but misleading, whether the ad described a vacuüm cleaner, a washing machine, a new dress or face cream the message was the same–‘it’ any of the above would make, not just you, but your family happy.

 


 

 

This ad for a catalogue intrigued me for two reasons, one I thought it a bit risqué for the times and the size range. The smallest size is 9/10 and the largest is 20. Not a hint of tiny, ever diminishing  0 -8 sizes or ever-expanding 22 and up plus sizes.

 

 

 

I don’t recall my mother ever vacuuming in a party dress but I do remember her wearing earrings and makeup, no matter what the chore.

 

 

 


My email address and comment box can be found on my websites: Book Clubs: A Reader’s Guide and Questions for Discussion can be found at the www.susanajennings.com under Book Clubs.

Book News! Free e-book – Prequel to The Sackville Hotel Trilogy – Ruins in Silk is available from KOBO.Book I – The Blue Pendant and Book II – Anna’s Legacy book II is currently featured on Kobo.

NEW! UNIVERSAL LINKS TO THE RETAILER OF YOUR CHOICE

Ruins in Silk –           https://books2read.com/u/bw8DjY

The Blue Pendant: – https://books2read.com/u/mlK7YP

Anna’s Legacy –       https://books2read.com/u/m2XAxO