Introducing PAPER GOLD PUBLISHING and its first author

Emma:

My friend Ella Medler has set up her own publishing company. Congratulations, Ella. I know with your talent you’ll do brilliantly.
If you have a free moment, pop over to check out Paper Gold Publishing.

Originally posted on ellamedler:

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Paper Gold Publishing is a royalty-paying publisher with international reach, where the focus is on the author.

Click on the link to see what we do, and help us spread the word. We are now open for submissions.

While I’ve got your attention, I would also like to introduce PGP’s first traditionally published author:

BRUCE BLAKE

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I first edited for Bruce in June 2012. All I can say is that he is an author of huge potential, and absolute master of the craft, and his books are a joy to read. You will not want to put them down. I wholeheartedly recommend them.

Over the years, Bruce’s writing has won him the Life Changing Read Award, and his books continue to wow fans of the fantasy genre.

Today, When Shadows Fall, the first book in the Small Gods Series, has been made available on all Amazon sites and also…

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Edinburgh: A City Steeped in History

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Photo taken by my sister Lucy from the park below Edinburgh Castle.

I’m already planning my next visit

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Sky view from our balcony the evening we arrived

I visited Edinburgh last weekend (my second time after many years) and while I can’t say I encountered anything supernatural on my trip through this Gothic town and the cobblestones of the Royal Mile, I had no trouble at all imagining this medieval city filled with ghosts. The architecture everywhere you look drops you back into the past, from the Georgian buildings of New Town to the medieval feel of Old Town where Edinburgh Castle rises tall. No wonder this city has been recognised as a World Heritage Site.

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Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh is a place to be explored at a leisurely pace. Stroll through the grand park below the castle, explore the centuries old headstones in the graveyard of St. Cuthbert’s Church at the foot of the castle, grab a whisky on the Royal Mile or opt for a walking tour. There are many to choose from. Just a few I came across included the Book Lovers Tour, Edinburgh Literary Tour and The Witchery Tour.

The castle sitting high  up on a rock in the middle of town is a jaw dropping sight. My first thought upon seeing this beautifully preserved fortress was “that must be where JK Rowling got her inspiration for Hogwarts.” Look at the photos below. Can’t you imagine Harry and his friends roaming the halls inside?

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I took a ghost tour on a freezing Saturday night. 27 people turned up despite the cold and we huddled together for warmth as our guide, Katie, led us from St. Giles’ Cathedral to the nearby Greyfriars cemetery. With the graveyard cloaked in darkness, it wasn’t difficult for her to create a spooky atmosphere as she took us through Edinburgh’s bloody and tragic past and warned us about the MacKenzie Poltergeist said to haunt one of the tombs in the locked part of the cemetery only tour guides from City of the Dead Tours had access to.

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Somehow, despite my best intentions, I ended up at the back of the group inside the tomb, fearfully wondering if the cold draft around my legs was ghostly in origin as Katie explained how poltergeists grow from fear. I linked my sisters’ arms on either side of me, only relaxing again as we left the tomb and the Covenanter’s Prison section of the cemetery behind. We went for a few pints in a local pub afterwards to ward off the chill from the late graveyard walk. One negative about the tour – Katie ruined the story of Greyfriars Bobby, the dog who sat for 14 years on his Master’s grave. I won’t go into it here, but grrr.

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Royal Mile. Top right = view from outside the castle. 

 

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Have you been to Edinburgh? Does the city appeal to you? What’s your favourite city in the world to visit?

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Sleepy Hollow – the most entertaining show I’ve seen in a while

Happy New Year.

I’m finally all caught up with Sleepy Hollow. I saw the first couple of episodes when the show began in 2013, but with so much good TV available, I found myself with way too much choice and didn’t stick with Lieutenant, ahem Leftenant Mills and Ichabod Crane. More fool me. Over Christmas, I breezed through the rest of season one and the first half of season 2.

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What an entertaining programme!

We’ve got a healthy dose of history with the intriguing portrayal of The American Revolution (albeit it a warped, fantastical slant of that historical period), a small(ish) town setting, a charming Englishman from the 1800s baffled by the ways of our 21st century world, one of the most enjoyable partnerships to watch since Mulder & Scully, and an intelligent, cool leading lady who I really like. I should say here that often when it comes to TV shows I find myself annoyed with the female lead. Clarke from The 100 anyone? Or Liz from Roswell? To top it all off, plenty of supernatural shenanigans abound in every episode.

If you haven’t watched it yet, please give it a chance. Tom Mison as our hero, Ichabod Crane, and Nicole Beharie as the highly capable Abbie Mills are Witnesses, destined to play a major role in fending off the apocalypse. They both have personal tragedies to bear, but manage to make it through crazy situations every episode with humour. It’s also great to see a black woman in a leading role. Beharie is awesome. Her character, Mills, is smart, tough, in a position of authority, and the chemistry between her and Crane kept me glued to the screen. I hope the writers keep their relationship platonic. It’s clear they share affection and a good friendship, but let’s keep the romance at bay, at least for now.

Check out Mills and Crane in this short clip, “Democracy in Action“.

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Are you a fan of Sleepy Hollow?

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Merry Christmas

Popping in to say Merry Christmas to everyone. Hope you enjoy the rest of December and see you again in 2015!

 

And here’s a trailer for one of my favourite Christmas movies, The Family Stone. I haven’t seen it on TV yet this year, but I’m keeping my fingers crossed it will be shown at some stage.

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Season 4 of Angel. What was Joss Whedon thinking?

One of the worst seasons of a television series I have ever watched.

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Earlier this year I went back and re-watched Angel from the very start. Back in my teens I tuned in weekly to watch two hours of Buffy and Angel on a Friday night. I was at college when season 4 of Angel began. I remembering thinking it was bad. I remember thinking Cordelia’s character had been ruined. Because I didn’t enjoy season 4, I stopped watching Angel and apart from being aware that James Marsters joined the cast for season 5, I knew very little about what happened to Angel after the finale of season 4. The show got cancelled, and after what the writers did to the fourth season, I’m not sure how they even managed to get a fifth.

As a grown woman I sat down and watched seasons one to three again and loved them, for the most part anyway.  I was impressed that almost ten years later, the series didn’t look aged. The storylines were exciting, the characters felt like friends. And even though I knew I hadn’t enjoyed season 4 the first time round, I thought watching it with fresh eyes and at a different stage of my life might allow me to see something new and appealing. I was wrong.

The writers destroyed Cordelia Chase, and with the annihilation of her character, they lost my respect. I’m far from the only one who feels appalled by how the writers betrayed Cordy and feels totally grossed out by Connor and Cordelia’s relationship. “The Assassination of Cordelia Chase” by Jennifer Crusie is a great article.

Another thing that irked me was Angel removing the memories of Connor, an unforgivable act in my eyes. He took away the last year and a half of his friends’ lives, all that growth, all that change. How would viewers watching season 5 even know what to make of each character? Wesley, who for me changed the most, would be the hardest to judge how different he would be without Connor’s existence. He stole Connor, betrayed his friends, was in turn cast aside, struck up an unhealthy sexual relationship with Liliah, loved Fred, warred with Gunn, found Angel at the bottom of the sea, battled Jasmine. Who is he now, without all that pain and life experience that led him to the tough, take-no-prisoners impressive man of late season 4?

Angel violated each and every one of his friends, not to even go into what he did to his own son. The Connor sharing dinner with his fake family is not real. Connor who suffered because of one lie after the other is now a lie himself. All thanks to his own father.

The writers, as far as I could see, backed themselves into a corner that season. Next time I decide to re-watch Angel from the beginning, I’ll go to the end of season 3 and pretend the show stopped there.

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For fans of Angel, what did you think of Season 4. Did season 5 improve at all? Can you remember being utterly disappointed by a TV show you once loved?

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