Tag Archives: #VENGEANCEWEARSBLACK#blogging

…oh, Guest Bloggers, why do I LUV yeez?… let me count the ways… #TBSU…

…they say the minute yeez stop learning, it’s time to pack it in and move on up to the Big House in The Sky… this ol’ Jurassic jumped on the self-publishing carousel a mere few years ago… not even wet behind the ears, but soaked behind the ears, as probably one of the oldest neophytes to the quill-scraping game… and I’m LUVVIN’ every bit of it… thankfully, there’s still a freshness and frisson of excitement when I click the laptop ‘open’ button each morning and it WURKS!… I’m grateful for the plethora of Web pals who have grown from virtual acquaintances to superb buddies… too numerous to mention, but constantly there to support and have a laff with… almost by accident, the discovery of the joys of Guest Blogs… giving and receiving… has proved an enormous source of pleasure… it goes beyond the cold business element of getting yer name and yer masterpieces a broader audience… the range of subject matter fascinates me… variety is the Spice of Life… it also doesn’t do yer own blog any harm to have Guest Bloggers aboard… it helps to break up the sequence of yer own stream of blog posts… and I’ve found I’m learning more and more as I go along… it also delights me to see the comments left by third parties on the posts I carry from others (not only posts from Authors, by the way… I have an open policy on emb’dy who wants to be here… only one ROOL… no gratuitous offensive material)… in my recent wee launch, SELF-PUBLISHING STEPS TO SUCCESSFUL SALES, I make the point that Guest Blogging is an important piece of the whole matrix that goes into the ‘business’ of writing, with a blog a necessary core part of all of that… so, once more, if I need to say it… my blog is officially open to all who wish to visit… throw yer stuff this way… include whatever yeez want in the way of promo, links, pics, send me an email on seumasgallacher@yahoo.com …yeez know the drill… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!





Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff

…as the FIFA WURLD Cup progresses, a wee thought and a smile or three about football… #TBSU…

…about a hundred years ago, this ol’ Jurassic played football in Glasgow with a (then) top flight football team, Third Lanark… the LUV of the game has remained with me ever since, although it must be said I never noticed the gradual introduction on the field of so many delicate ballerinas and diving experts until it was too late… that aside, the game has always, thankfully, had its share of humour to enjoy, along with the grace and skills of players I was privileged to watch live… Georgie Best, Denis Law, Alan Gilzean, Gordon Banks, the great Bobby Moore (I also saw him play in his later career for a while in Hong Kong)… the humour has ever been a built-in element of the game… the crowd commentary, sometimes from a solo voice, often from a more concerted chanting or singing (with amended versions of the lyrics to suit the occasion)… in more recent times, a good footballer, still doing his stuff at Queens Park Rangers in London, centre forward Bobby Zamora was involved in one of the strangest goals ever seen… versus the mighty Liverpool, he shot toward goal, and the ball bounced off an encroaching beach ball (which a Liverpool fan had thrown on the pitch), deflected and fooled the goalie…a goal was awarded!… in a subsequent poll to vote for the most skilful  forward in the League, fans voted Master Zamora second… the Beach Ball was voted first!…



…the wit of the football fan is undiminished… another excellent footballer, goalkeeper Andy Goram, playing at the time for Glasgow Rangers was apparently diagnosed with a mild form of schizophrenia… I understand that schizophrenia is a serious affliction for those who suffer from it, and I would not dare make fun of that in itself, but the fun-poking was evident when Rangers played their big rivals, Celtic, and the opposition fans started to sing ‘There’s only two Andy Gorams!‘… and so it goes on… ‘way back, I remember with great wincing the times when a football struck the tender parts of this budding Scottish Maradona’s groin… it brought tears to the eyes and other parts, believe me… only to be greeted with the exhortation from my teammates… ‘don’t rub ‘em—count ‘em!’… meanwhile, I’ll just go and have a peek at what the Bolshoi Ballet lookalikes are doing on the soccer pitches in Brazil this evening… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!


Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff

…it’s when they tell yeez, ‘Yeez can’t do THAT!’ …and yeez go ahead and do it anyway… that!… #TBSU…


…being of mixed Irish/Scots heritage, I s’pose it’s in this ol’ Jurassic’s DNA to display rebellion at the drop of a tartan tammy (Scottish Highlander’s hat, Mabel)… but I’m sure it’s a trait shared by others not fortunate enough to be touched with the Celtic tinge… as far as I can gather, there’s no record of my having organised institutional warfare against the nursery school as a toddler… the maverick symptoms manifested themselves a tad later… and I can pinpoint the day and the place for yeez… my life experience had stretched to all of eleven years and a wee bit… English Literature class in Glasgow… Subject: Essay Writing… even back then, WURDS fascinated me… a Collins dictionary, well-thumbed, was one of my favourite possessions… and here’s why… every week, the English Literature Master, a humourless, spiritless, English Literature-less dominie, Professor Mackay, handed out a topic, around which we motley students were obliged to concoct some essay for the following week… and every week, the budding Steinbeck residing in my soul went searching through the Collins lexicon pages, in pursuit of WURDS to use…. preferably the stranger, longer and weirder-sounding the better… noting the meaning, and then crafting sentences around the discovered WURD treasures… ‘excellent initiative’ yeez might surmise… a surmission, unhappily, not shared by the joyless Professor Mackay… on two notable occasions he rejected my use of language as being ‘non-existent’… one WURD was/is ‘flounced’… and a phrase I recall, ‘in her mind’s eye’... like the budding Braveheart that I was, my reaction was an immediate, and p’raps a bit overzealous flourishing of the precious Collins edition, with ‘flounced’ clearly annotated, and a copy of Baroness Orczy’s, The Scarlet Pimpernel, wherein the phrase ‘in her mind’s eye’ was already underscored in red ink… I do not wish to impugn the memory of the long-since-departed-to-the-Great-Dominie’s-Retreat-In-The-Sky Professor Mackay by repeating the torrent of vocabulary he demonstrated, some of which I can assure you does not appear in the Collins version that I have… he spoke not a single WURD to me for the rest of that class year… but he has bequeathed to me one precious attitude…it’s when they tell yeez, ‘Yeez can’t do THAT!’ …and yeez go ahead and do it anyway…. that!… so off yeez go and flounce away in yer mind’s eye to yer respective hearts’ content… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!


Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff

…Reviewess Extraordinaire, Blogger, and Author, Rosie Amber nails it for us here… #TBSU…

…I feel incredibly humbled by the extent of the recent activities of my Guest Blogger today, the redoubtable, Rosie Amber… read on, and yeez’ll see what I mean… enjoy…

rosie gardening 02 facebook wp


My name is Rosie Amber, I’m an author, book reviewer and blogger. I live in the county of Hampshire in the UK. Blogging opened up a whole new world to me and I have met some lovely people. I try to publish a blog post every single day because my blog is still quite new and I need to keep readers interested. I began my blog primarily to help promote my own book, but it has become a much bigger part of my life. I’m now able to use my love of reading and my blog to help promote other people books too.

 My first published book is called “Talk of the Playground” and is a fun tale of the ins and outs of an English village school. I call it my work of love rather than my work of art because it meant so much to me at the time. I learnt a lot about writing and self-publishing and have learnt even more from blogging and reading other writers work. Now I’m working on a big edit of my book because I love evolving as a writer.

Talk of the Playground - purple 1563

 Amazon.co.uk  Amazon.com

I love reading. In the Goodreads 2013 challenge I read 154 books, this year I expect to increase that number. Nearly every book I read gets a review on Goodreads, Amazon and my blog, with links to my Facebook author page, Google+ and Twitter. I also do Guest Author Interviews and take part in book related tours.


Twitter @rosieamber1


In 2013 I was lucky enough to be invited to write a monthly book review page for a local magazine called “Fleet Life”. 5000 copies go out locally and the magazine has an online version too, I usually review 5 books of my choice per month for the magazine. In 2014 I also picked up its sister magazine Elvetham Heath Directory which has 2000 copies and an online version, I do a different set of reviews in each magazine.

I love keeping my blog fresh; in April 2013 I took part in my first April A to Z Challenge and I blogged my way through the alphabet matching book titles to the letters of the alphabet. This year I took part for a second year and again promoted books using all the letters of the alphabet, it is a great way to meet lots of new bloggers from all over the world.

Never one to stand still for long I recently completed a year-long challenge that I set myself on the day I began reading a book called “A Year of Doing Good” by Judith O’Reilly.

Judith challenged herself to do Good Deeds for a whole year and wrote a truly inspirational book about what happened. Judith undertook giant acts of good, my own challenge was to do just 1 Good Deed a day for a year. Every Sunday I update my readers with my latest deeds. On April 16th 2014 I celebrated completing my challenge and am now carrying on for a second year. Do come and check it out.  My Year of Good Deeds.

My most recent addition to the blog is a page I’m building on resources for writers. It features people who offer editing services, marketing, promotion, book covers, book reviewers etc and I shall be adding more.

 I’ve just launched a Book review challenge as I’m very keen to get more people to write reviews for the books they read. Here’s a bit about it.

Book review Challenge Series

How often do you write and post a review of a book you’ve read? Ever wondered if your review would be of any use to anyone? Don’t know how to write a review?


I have a book review challenge series planned over the next few weeks. We will be hearing from several book reviewers on how they go about writing a review and from authors about the importance of reviews.

Coming up on Wednesday 25th June – Book reviewing by Rosie Amber + easy to follow tips for writing your own review.

Thursday 26th June – Book reviewing by Bodicia from A Woman’s Wisdom + How to download a PDF file of a book to your kindle.

Friday 27th June – The Importance of book reviews by author Terry Tyler + a look at Goodreads + A bad or negative review, should you write it?

Saturday 28th June – Book Reviewing by Diane Coto from Fictionzeal + Shelfari + Going in deep, talking reviews

Sunday 29th June – Book reviewing by Ionia Martin from Readfulthings + Reviewing to Amazon + Gearing up to write that review

Monday 30th June – The Importance of book reviews by Lizzie Lamb + Authors should walk to the book reviewer’s side of the fence

Come and find out more and sign up for the challenge to read a book for FREE and write a book review. More details on my blog Rosie Amber

Amber rose

…thanks for a terrific Guest Blog, m’Lady Rosie… see yeez all later … LUV YEEZ!



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…why it matters for Authors to ‘do’ SOSYAL NETWURKIN and a Blog… #TBSU…

…there’s at least a couple of dozen schools of thought on the efficacy or otherwise of Authors indulging the SOSYAL NETWURKIN whirl…this ol’ Jurassic certainly claims no monopoly on knowing what’s right or nor for other scribblers… but I can speak from my own experience… (just try and stop me, Mabel!)… I think it probably helps that I’m a relative newcomer to the self-publishing WURLD… ergo, no labels, no preconceived opinions, no prior notional luggage about how to ‘crack the writing industry’… everything I know about this gig has been brand new… and I’m LUVIN’ IT!… the immersion in the MEDYA stuff on the Web came along at the start, picking up on the solid advice from them what had been there before me… the real internet quill-scraping pioneers… and to a man and and to a woman, they all insisted that SOSYAL NETWURKIN for an Author was ‘a good thing’… taking that on good faith, I began to develop a limited range of channels … there’s only a set amount of time that can be budgeted in between the ‘other stuff’ like actually writing novels and such (remember them?)… my chosen virtual feeds initially were Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads and LinkedIn… then along came the missing piece of the jigsaw… the Blogthe Blog ties it all together for me…coz each Blog post now automatically goes out on all my channels, to which I’ve added some new ones— Stumbleupon, Digg, Pinterest, Pocket, Tumblr and Google+… let there be no misunderstanding, however… it takes time to develop and broaden these vital relationships… I tend to them daily, adding here and there… and as the Texans will tell yeez… yeez do a coupla millyyin here, a few hundred millyyin there, and before yeez know it, yeez are talking real money… the same with yer connections, followers, contacts, whatevers… my direct contacts now number over 15,000but, and this is the big but… when I launched the third Jack Calder novel a few months ago, I asked abut a hundred or so of my Twitter close buddies to ReTweet the message about the launch… I started tracking how many of their contacts notionally were reading that message… after three days, I stopped counting when it had reached 2,750,000!… so, if ever yeez wonder why it matters for Authors to ‘do’ SOSYAL NETWURKIN and a Blog… there’s the proof-reading of the proof-pudding for yeez… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!… it’s all in here:





Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff

…Author Lizzie Lamb is no meek creature… as her Guest Blog Post here clearly demonstrates… #TBSU…

…enjoy !! …


author photo - Lizzie Lamb

It’s Never Too Late to Realise a Dream


For me, my dream came true when I took early retirement from teaching after thirty four years at the chalk face and pursued my dream to become a published author. When I retired a colleague gave me a pillow embroidered with: May All Your Dreams Come True and since then I’ve done my best to make it happen.

Last Day of Teaching Career

So far, it’s been a great journey.

I joined the Romantic Novelists’ Association as a member of the New Writers’ Scheme. It took me two years to write my first novel (a romantic comedy) and to submit it to the scheme. I received a critique from a published author in my genre, and although I didn’t agree with everything she said, I went away and worked on the manuscript a bit more. After receiving lots of encouragement from other RNA members I felt the manuscript was ready to be submitted to agents. I pinned my hopes on being published by Little Black Dress (Headline) but, sadly, my timing was all wrong as, in the interim, Little Black Dress had stopped taking submissions.

The New Romantics 4 -logo

One of the harsh lessons I’ve learned about the writing world is that changes happen very quickly: submissions close, agents and editors move on, fashions alter. You have to strike while the iron is hot. (excuse the cliché)

I then submitted the completed manuscript to an editor who suggested I lengthen it from 83, 000 words to 110,000 words and develop some of the themes. I did as suggested and Tall, Dark and Kilted (with my love of my homeland written on every page) was born. Again, RNA friends came forward with lots of suggestions what to do next. I will be eternally grateful to Amanda Grange (author of Mr Darcy’s Diary) who suggested that I shouldn’t waste another two years sending out to agents etc. as ‘times were a-changing’. Taking Mandy’s advice I self-published Tall, Dark and Kilted on amazon in November 2012 – and the rest, as they say, is history. In November 2013 I published Boot Camp Bride and my readership continues to grow.


cover for Tall, Dark and Kilted

BookCover Boot Camp Bride

Believing there’s strength in numbers (!) I formed a small publishing group: The New Romantics 4 and we published our debut novels in November 2012. I didn’t know how it would all work out but I can seriously say that it’s the best thing I have ever done. Log on to our website: www.newromantics4.com to learn more about us, our journey to publication and our books.

I am currently working on my third rom com, returning to my homeland of Scotland for another encounter with men in kilts, vicious midges and an American who is not all what he seems. There’s no stopping me now.

Were all those years as a teacher and Deputy Head of a large primary school wasted? Not a bit. I’ve carried forward all my organisation skills, determination and expertise and channelled them into my writing. I’ve created a social networking presence, become a tweep and a blogger and – thanks to Amazon – my novels have been downloaded all round the world.

My advice to anyone is: Life is not a rehearsal. If you have a dream go out there and make it a reality


Lizzie’s Links

Boot Camp Bride – Romance and Intrigue on the Norfolk marshes – November 2013


Tall, Dark and Kilted – Notting Hill Meets Monarch of the Glen – 2012



Amazon page: http://tinyurl.com/mpcv6bn



website: www.lizzielamb.co.uk

blog: www.newromantics4.com

Goodreads http://tinyurl.com/cbla48d

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/lizzielamb/

twitter: @lizzie_lamb             twitter: @newromantics4


…thanks for sharing with us, Lizzie… all the every best for you and the New Romantics… LUV YA!




Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff

…a McWonderful McGuest Post from my dear friend, Author, M.T. McGuire… #TBSU…

…meet my great pal, Author, M.T. McGuire, I know yeez ‘ll enjoy her Guest Post …MTMcGuirePhoto

Oh no, it’s the M word. Yes. Marketing.

A couple of times on this blog recently, Seumas has been talking about singing and it got me thinking.

When I was a kid, I was in the church choir – not so much because I could sing as to make up the numbers. That said I liked the hymns and anthems and I could certainly make a lot of enthusiastic noise. Actually, I like singing, full stop. Preferably, at the highest volume possible, and the great thing about church is that no matter how out of tune I sing, they’re stuffed because it would be highly unchristian to tell me to shut up. But I digress… As I sang in the choir, I used to let my mind wander and daydream that the church was some kind of inter-galactic vehicle powered by sound. Yeh, well, I know but look, I write spec-fic, alright? I can’t help myself. Anyway, I don’t think it’s a new idea. Isn’t there some film, or Python sketch, with a building and a bunch of pirate accountants? Anyway… in my whimsical mind-game, volume was linked to acceleration, so, the louder the congregation sang; the faster the church would go. The priest drove but using secret hand movements and telepathy so that none of the congregation realised what was going on. We were on a special mission to collect precious minerals and holy water from the far reaches of space – except we didn’t know that, of course.

The church would automatically pick up the minerals and holy water when it landed. Both items were sucked up through special tubes and piped into two bespoke containers the wardrobe in the Vestry. Meanwhile, we sang on regardless, not realising that we were making a round trip to the outer galaxy and back in time for biscuits and coffee.

A few weeks ago, in church, McMini was beginning to flag, so I shared this idea. He liked it. We extended it to those cars that teenagers drive round and round and round. You know, 500cc engine, lowered suspension, alloy wheels, exhaust kit and a music system so loud that the whole thing vibrates like a spin dryer doing 2000 rpm. The one thing those chaps have in common, apart from being deaf, I suspect, is that they seem to hold a firm belief that the vibrations from the stereo will get them from 0 to 60 faster than the engine… and thinking about the kinds of cars they choose, they’re probably right.


This morning, during a hymn, one of our team vicars – who has a rather good voice and obviously enjoys singing – started to sing extremely loudly. McMini nudged me.

“Listen to him Mummy, I reckon we must be racing another church; trying to burn them off the lights.”

And what has this to do with writing?

Well, with two books coming out in two months, I’ve had to try and find some interesting and memorable ways to say ‘buy my book’ recently. Intriguingly, the louder I shout to be heard, the less effect it seems to have (outside my head where I’m pleased to be doing something). No inter-galactic, precious mineral and holy water collecting for me: I’m not even getting out of the garage, let alone down the street. Indeed, the most effective efforts to sell my drivel to the general public seem to be the ones where other people have talked about my books, in my absence, rather than me doing it. On the back of this revelation, I’ve hit on a new ground breaking marketing idea and it’s this:

Most of what we authors do to market our books is a waste of energy and time. People do business with people. They’ll buy books because they’ve ‘met’ us on a forum or on a blog and they like us – not that anyone has to buy my first book, luckily, because it’s free. Or they’ll buy a book because they trust the person who recommended the author to them. Maybe I’m crazy but it seems to me that the only thing that really sells an author’s books is for them to pretty much ignore them and talk about other stuff. Oh… and to write more books. So. That’s my marketing advice for writers. Let people know you’ve written a book. Once. Put it on the notice board sites and maybe take out an ad or two. Make sure they can find it if they want to. And then enjoy the social side – hanging out on forums and chatting to people on their blogs – and leave the rest to take care of itself.

There we are. That’s it from me. Seumas, thanks for letting me hijack your blog.

FACCover 300dpiFront

Who Is M T McGuire?

M T McGuire enjoys the real world but wouldn’t want to live here full time. That’s why she writes books. She grew up, or at least, got bigger, half way up a windy down in Sussex. Her home was also the first location choice for Hogwarts, in the Harry Potter films, so maybe it’s not so strange that she’s ended up writing spec-fic. Perhaps there’s something in the water up there, apart from chalk. She now lives in Bury St Edmunds, in Suffolk, with a McOther, a McMini, a McCat and a selection of very silly cars. She hasn’t found a way to make any of the cars fly, and none of them is fitted with ordnance, but she and her team of evil scientists are working on that.

Despite being 46 now, and supposedly, an adult, she checks all unfamiliar wardrobes for a gateway to Narnia. She hasn’t found one so far but she lives in hope.

You can follow MT on Twitter: @MTMcGuireAuthor
Follow her blog at: www.mtmcguire.co.uk
And find out about her books at: www.hamgee.co.uk/books

…thanks for the great view on how it really WURKS, M.T. ,

…see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!…



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… show me yours, and—I’ll show yeez mine…Authors’ Main Character Reveal Blog Tour… #TBSU…



…welcome readers and writers…

…a wee twist on the usual Blog Tour mechanism today… good friend, Christa Wojo, the author of The Wrong David, tagged me in a little game called Meet My Main Character Blog Tour…

… so, to participate, or not to participate… would be rude not to, eh?…



…the taggee must write a post answering the same seven questions about their Main Character… then the taggee becomes the tagger and chooses five other authors… sort of like a chain letter with all the potential to become a global virus…

…so, sorry, dear characters…

…yer personal secrets are under threat of exposure… better put on your shades and prepare to go into reclusion…

…now meet my main character.

…he’s the lynch-pin of the Jack Calder series… his name, surprise, surprise… Jack Calder… (bet that didn’t fool yeez for a minute)…

1. Tell us a bit about your main character? Is he fictional or a historic person?

…entirely fictional, except for the bit where he’s from my old tramping grounds in Docklands Govan in Glasgow… six feet two, blondish hair, blue eyes, usual chiselled features ready to be transposed to the silver screen in due course… thousands of yeez good people out there think he’s a dead ringer for this ol’ Jurassic Scots author himself… well, hundreds of yeez?… dozens maybe?… okay, one or two?… Auntie Mabel?… surely sumb’dy thinks there’s a passing resemblance to yours truly?…

Calder is a former SAS officer… served with distinction in dozens of covert black operations… now partner with two former colleagues in their own specialised security firm, looking after high value merchandise and personnel around the globe…

2. When and where are the stories set?

…the stories’ geographies stretch all over the world, and many other places… Asia, Europe, the Near East, North Africa, South America… depending on which novel yeez pick up… the stories are connected only by spinning around the core principal players, but are intended as stand-alone reads…

3. What should we know about him?

…he would prefer yeez know as little as possible about him… but the pages reveal him as a hard product of a tough Glasgow childhood upbringing… ruthless in operational execution… but he does have little emotional traumas occasionally… (that’s to let yeez know he is really human)…

4. What is the main conflict? What messes up his life?

…his early memory of losing a parent in desperate circumstances (no spoilers allowed here!) and those of the atrocities he witnesses during unpublicised war zones operations play havoc with his head from time to time… most of yeez as readers can prob’ly empathise with some of it…

5. What is his personal goal?

…keeping his family’s well-being sacrosanct, including his Chinese wife, May-Ling, who is also a partner in the firm… countering threats to her and his mates is one driving force in his life… as is the security of his clients’ business…

6. What are the titles of your novels, and can we read more about them?

…all three of the current crime thrillers are already available on Amazon Kindle, where downloads and sales have already topped 75,000 (who says yeez can’t get in a wee promo plug here and there?)…  here yeez go :

wall copy 2

Amazon links:

Savage Payback :                http://bookShow.me/B00G00GZEO  

Vengeance Wears Black :   http://bookShow.me/B008H45KJC  

 The Violin Man’s Legacy:   http://bookShow.me/B005D7JNCQ 


7. When can we expect the next book to be published?

…the fourth in the series, KILLER CITY, is Work In Progress, target launch on Kindle by the end of the third quarter this year…

And now, for the next victims…

1.  …first up, a great writer, John Dolan, he of the extraordinarily good Time, Blood and Karma series…

2. …yeez can’t miss Ailsa Abraham, a fun lady, with a remarkable attitude and resilience to whatever this ol’ life throws at her…

3. …try my buddy, Stephen Edger… yarn-spinner par excellence..

4. …include Alex Shaw, he’s seen a bit of stuff, let me tell me yeez… better still, let him tell yeez…

5. …not least, but lastly, Eric J.Gates… magnificent story-teller… what more do yeez need?…

…many thanks to Christa Wojo for press-ganging me aboard the Tour… check out her blog : http://christawojo.com/about/

…see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!





Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff

…1950’s Dockland Govan, Glasgow slums’ equivalent of naming yer son, ‘Sue’…




…this ol’ Jurassic is not one of those who subscribe to labelling a childhood growing up in the slums of Glasgow as ‘the bad old days’… they were simply ‘the old days’… post-War Britain held the majority of its population in working-class city environments, all over the country… we were aware of only two ‘classes’… people with money, living in a stratosphere completely foreign and unreachable to the rest of us… and us… families existing on or around the bread line… the old saw refers to a person from our side of the tracks as ‘balanced—a chip on each shoulder’… I disagree with that tag 100%… the majority of fine people I grew up among were a grand mixture of native Scots, immigrant Irish (our lot swam across the Irish Channel about three generations prior to my birth), Poles, and a large community of Pakistanis… little in the way of vehicle traffic bothered our streets…gangs of children played with huge skipping ropes, snared from old washing-line rope, thirty to a side, with rhymes we sang as we dived in and out and under the swinging cord… football games, with inexpensive plastic balls, street against street, varied in team size from twenty-a-side-and-upward… nobody kept scores… but we were all surrogate World Cup superstars in our own heads… part of my own character-building was the gauntlet I ran every Tuesday and Thursday… I had won a scholarship to one of the ‘posher’ learning institutes, which meant going every day by bus to somewhere in the middle of the City… my mother was the ninth of nine children in her family, all of whom had been encouraged (read ’forced’) by her parents to learn some sort of instrument… in the event, most instruments had been taken by the time her turn came around, and she instead became a ballerina/country-dance competitor… however, she insisted that at the posh school I should learn to play, wait for it, the viola… togged out in a school uniform (in Dockland Govan!) I was very much an eleven-year-old ‘marked man’… I traipsed to the bus stop daily, but twice a week carrying the viola case… I won’t list the number of fights it attracted, but I had to learn swiftly how to retaliate first!… yeez can’t run away, coz then yeez would miss yer bus… so stand and deliver it had to be… so, if yeez live in Govan, and yeez want to toughen up yer offspring, give them a viola case and a fancy school uniform… best pre-military training ever… the 1950’s Dockland Govan, Glasgow slums’ equivalent of naming yer son, ‘Sue’…  see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!



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The Author Hot Seat: Second round

The wonderful Author and Poetess Wordsmith Supreme, Jane Dougherty, carries an interview with yours truly today… thank you, m’Lady 🙂


Jane Dougherty Writes

My first guest in this second round of The Author Hot Seat is an old (in blogging terms) friend, Seumas Gallacher.


We all know you as the Scottish crime writer who wears a kilt even when he’s trolling about among the dunes of Abu Dhabi. What we might like to know is what he did before he became a camel driver that inspired him to write international crime novels. So, to satisfy the morbid curiosity of the red top readers among us, I’ve shoved said Scot into the hot seat, manacled him and got the irons nice and hot just in case he wants to hold something back.

J : Do your early years in Glasgow influence your writing?

SG : Undoubtedly. They say you can take the boy out of Glasgow, but you can’t take Glasgow out of the boy. Much of the grit and values that I’ve instilled…

View original post 1,202 more words


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