Sunday, 28 August 2011



With my own (Neil's) apologies to Lewis Carroll -- who’s long beyond caring now, anyway -- for so blatantly mangling his wonderful lines in the above painfully contrived headline attempt to explain what this is all about … the unpredictable. The conversation between the Walrus and the Carpenter in CARROLL'S LEGENDARY NARRATIVE POEM for Alice when she entered Wonderland via the Looking Glass, sums it up; intrigue and adventure into the unexpected at every turn.

We’re more than just a tad honoured that world-renowned Ann Crispin so generously contributed the following detailed and enlightening essay to BeWrite Books' blog. She’s nice and selflessly generous like that, is Ann ... unlike Captain Jack Sparrow.

Her latest book is the prequel to Pirates of the CaribbeanPirates of the Caribbean: The Price of Freedom. It's the first full-length Pirates of the Caribbean novel, and it tells the fascinating and captivating story of just why Cap'n Jack hoisted the Jolly Roger. It was released by Disney Editions in May. The novel chronicles how Jack Sparrow, Disney's infamous film pirate, first met Cutler Beckett while working for the East India Trading Company, and how he went on to become a pirate captain.  See the cover and excerpts from the novel on HER WEBSITE AND BLOG.

What follows, folks, is a must for writers and readers in all genres -- and even those who tend to avoid genre-writing themselves.

Ann's article is not only about communication ... it's about satisfying communication.

AC Crispin is the author of many hot-selling science fiction novels, including several additions to prominent series such as V and Star Trek. She also created her own series in 1989, StarBridge, which centers around a unique school for young diplomats, translators, and explorers, both alien and human, located on an asteroid far from Earth. And that barely scratches the surface of Ann’s spectacularly popular work.

"In my science fiction I enjoy the theme of 'first contact' between humans and aliens. Communication is vital in this universe. In one way or another, all my books are about communication," she says.

Satisfying communication, community and subtly-crafted continuity to mutual benefit Я Ann. 

As co-founder and partner of Victoria Strauss in the admirable watchdog organisation and blog WRITER BEWARE, in place to warn the against the sharks in dem dar waters they and their team courageously expose. Ann is very much in tune with the struggles and dangers faced by authors, especially those in the development (sometimes desperate) stage of their art.

In this essay she wants to share some of the sealing wax and cabbages and things that, together, turn a darned good writer into a darned fine and successful author. 

AC Crispin is the author of the bestselling 'Star Wars' novels 'The Paradise Snare', 'The Hutt Gambit', and 'Rebel Dawn'. She's also written four top-selling 'Star Trek' novels: 'Yesterday's Son', 'Time for Yesterday', 'The Eyes of the Beholders' and 'Sarek'.
Ms Crispin's most famous genre work was writing the 1984 novelization of the television miniseries 'V'. She also writes books in her own universes, including her seven-book 'Starbridge' series. (The 'StarBridge' series has recently been bought by Ridan and will be released as e-books soon [watch this space]. If sales go well, there may be NEW StarBridge books to come in the future!) Crispin and SFWA Grand Master Andre Norton collaborated on two 'Witch World' novels.
AC Crispin has been active in SFWA (Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America) since soon after joining the organization in 1983. She served as Eastern Regional Director for almost ten years, and then served as Vice President for two terms.

Ms. Crispin and Victoria Strauss created SFWA's watchdog committee, WRITER BEWARE, in 1998. As Chair of this active volunteer group, Crispin has a busy second life as a scam-hunter.  Writer Beware is the only professionally sponsored group that warns aspiring writers about the numerous scam agents and publishers that infest the internet these days. Crispin and Strauss have assisted law enforcement in bringing several infamous con artists to justice.

She entitles the essay below:


How many times have you tuned into a murder mystery television show, such as Murder, She Wrote, and within the first ten minutes, been able to ID whodunit … sometimes even before the murder occurs? I bet a lot of you are like me – you can spot the murderer right from the beginning, and your only interest in the show from then on is in watching how Jessica Fletcher figures out his/her identity.

That’s because Murder, She Wrote is predictable.

While I’m sure some viewers never guess who the murderer is, and are genuinely surprised when Jessica Fletcher accuses the guilty party, I’ll bet most writers spot him/her early on. If you have a storytelling mind, it’s easy to spot such a predictable outcome – which is why you really want to avoid being this transparent in your own writing.

On the other hand, you know you have to provide the reader with enough information and clues so you don’t just drop the resolution to your conflict on the reader at the end of the story totally unheralded. If solutions to problems, and resolutions to dilemmas, come out of left field, readers feel – rightfully – cheated. It’s like watching Bobby Ewing step out of the shower. (Does anyone remember that ‘great’ moment in network television? Clumsy, contrived, and extremely annoying to the fans doesn’t even begin to cover it!)

Before we get to some practical suggestions on ways to avoid predictability, let’s discuss ‘satisfying the reader’. We’re talking about genre novels. Literary novels aren’t written to fulfill the same expectations as genre novels. In literary novels, you do have endings where everyone winds up dead, or miserable, or failing utterly. Not always, but sometimes.

"The time has come," the Walrus said,
"To talk of many things:
Of shoes -- and ships--and sealing-wax--
Of cabbages--and kings--
And why the sea is boiling hot--
And whether pigs have wings."
In a genre novel, it’s easy to avoid predictability if you have your protagonist lose and die a horrible death at the end of the story. Or to have your protagonist give up and let the antagonist be victorious in order to save his own life. But think about what that would be like for, say, a romantic suspense novel. The heroine finds her soul-mate tied up by the bad guys and being tortured. He sees her. She sees him. Then, panic-stricken, she turns around and runs out into the night, leaving him to his horrible fate, and lives the rest of her life alone and embittered.

 An ending like this is not at all satisfying to the reader … but it’s sure not predictable.And for the sub-genre of romantic suspense, it’s probably not salable, either.

And if we’re talking a mystery novel, it would certainly not be predictable to have Hercule Poirot or VI Warshawski announce, “Okay, I give up. I don’t know whodunit, and the killer will probably kill again, and I don’t care. I’m going on vacation.” Not predictable, but not satisfying, and probably not a novel you can easily sell.

Readers buy romance novels to watch the heroine wind up with her soul-mate. They buy mystery novels so they can track the clues and watch the detective solve the crime.

Romances and mystery novels are genre novels. Readers buy genre books because they have a certain element of predictability built into them. The heroine winds up with her guy, the detective figures out whodunit. The reader wants to go along for the ride to see exactly how it all happens.

Would you have enjoyed The Lord of the Rings trilogy as much if the One Ring had triumphed, Frodo had become a minion of Sauron, and all of Middle Earth had been turned into Mordor?

Okay, so now we’ve established that simply doing a totally unexpected thing in a genre novel is not the best way to avoid predictability, because that may well make the reader dissatisfied with the story.

It’s true that sometimes genre novels do end on a sad or poignant note. Science fiction and fantasy is considered a genre, and sometimes the protagonist does die. (Heck, I’ve killed off a protag myself.) When the writer does this at the end of a book, however, generally the protagonist sacrifices his or her or its life to achieve some kind of victory over evil, or the antagonist. When the reader closes the last page, he or she is sad, but satisfied, because the protagonist succeeded, even at the cost of his, her, or its life. This also happens at the end of spy novels, or thrillers … sometimes.

Editors tell me that books with happy endings sell better than books with sad endings. Personally, I often try for something along the lines of bittersweet, because it seems more realistic than having the protagonist achieve total victory. I’d call the ending of The Return of the King bittersweet, wouldn’t you?

(And then there’s A Song of Ice and Fire – which breaks all the ‘rules’. If you can write as well as George RR Martin, you can break them as you choose. And I have NO idea why you’re reading this essay!)

Okay, so I’m going to presume we’re all on the same wavelength here, and we understand the concept of ‘satisfying the reader’. So how do we avoid writing ‘predictable’ stories?

The best way I know to do this is by the rejecting the easiest solution, and effectively foreshadowing what happens.

Let’s use the ending of The Return of the King as an example again. JRR Tolkien could have had Frodo march (or crawl) through that crevasse in Mount Doom, pull the One Ring off his neck, and chuck it into the flaming lava below. Since that was the stated intent of Frodo and Sam’s long, arduous, miserable quest through Middle Earth and horrible Mordor, that would have created an end that was reasonably satisfying – but it would have been predictable. They did what they’d come there to do, ho hum, okay, good story, but not remarkable.

But instead, Tolkien was clever. He had Frodo FAIL.

Frodo succumbs to the power of the One Ring. He puts it on and is going to head back out into Mordor, presumably to sink into total evil and ally himself with Sauron. Middle Earth would be doomed if he’d actually done this. This is NOT predictable.

And yet the One Ring gets tossed into the lava anyway, despite Frodo’s best efforts to make away with this. Tolkien rejected the easy solution, and chose Gollum, all unknowing and unwilling, to be the savior of Middle Earth.

Not predictable!

And yet … both Frodo’s failure, and Gollum’s actions, were so well foreshadowed that we, the readers, accept these actions on Frodo’s and Gollum’s part. We know that the One Ring is a deadly seducer. We hope Frodo won’t succumb to it, yet we believe it when he does. And we have watched Gollum’s growing obsession and madness for hundreds of pages. We, the readers, have no difficulty in believing that Gollum would attack Frodo on the brink of the chasm and try to get the ring, using any means at his disposal … including his sharp, raw-fish-eating teeth.

When you write a subplot into a book, such as Gollum’s subplot, it must have a major impact on the climax of the book. Both Gollum’s subplot and Aragorn’s subplot (learning to accept that his fate was to become King Elessar Telcontar, High King of Gondor, etc, and thus rallying and leading the armies of Middle Earth to the Gates of Mordor in order to distract Sauron from discovering Frodo and Sam), majorly influence the climax of The Return of the King.

Some writers can write stories without plotting them out in advance. Somehow, instinctively, subconsciously, they foreshadow and reject the easy solution. Two such writers I’ve known were Roger Zelazny and Andre Norton. I have no idea how they managed to do this … but they did.

Personally, I have to plot out a story, and consciously figure out all this stuff before I can write it.

You should do whatever works best for you.

I hope this has been helpful. Feedback?

Many thanks for your generosity and thoroughly professional insight, Ann. And I reckon you can count on that feedback. Now it’s time to return Ann’s favour in our own small way, folks.

Check out her newly released Price of Freedom the subtle, immaculately constructed, beautifully penned and fun prequel to the early life of Capt Jack Sparrow of Pirates of the Caribbean notoriety. You’ll love PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN; THE PRICE OF FREEDOM. And it's available pretty well anywhere you look in your local main street or online bookstores.

Happy Week. Neil et al

Thursday, 18 August 2011


Brigitte Bardot
BeWrite Books today releases internationally the first ebook editions of Colin Dunne’s Man Bites Talking Dog, in cahoots with print publisher Revel Barker Publishing.

Man Bites Talking Dog is the fourth in our ongoing ‘Hack-Lit’ series of ebooks ... penned by seasoned Old School journalists who enthralled millions of ordinary folks like thee and me ... on a daily basis, bang on deadline – and just before the pubs opened for serious business.

Dunne discovered early in his journalistic career that he was not cut out to be an ace news reporter. Just not Dunne, you know, old bean. But that fact (the destruction of many a fainter heart) didn’t deter Colin. Thankfully.

If occupation was still listed on passports, his wouldn’t read ‘journalist’ but ‘fog-plaiter’. That’s an obscure rural expression in wildest Yorkshire, England for a chap who can create something amazingly substantial from moorland mist. Some talented and original artists in other disciplines (inventive scientists, brewers and distillers, the chap who dreamed up the wheel) achieved this admirable level of making ‘summat out of nowt’.

Dunne created, the art of literary fog-plaiting (pulling outrageously funny bunny rabbits out of empty hats then magically turning the rabbits into words on a page) and captivating a deliriously happy readership of countless millions by travelling the world in search of ... well, pretty well anything that wasn’t a news story (ie: nothing at all – a wisp of fog, well plaited into sheer comic genius.

Newspaper and magazine editors snapped him up, and readers wept and shivered through tales of thoroughly depressing doom and gloom and shock-horror until they reached the story carrying Colin Dunne’s famous by-line ... then they would split their sides with uncontrollable laughter and be well set up for the day or the week ahead, or forget in chuckle-fits the rotten drudgery and dismal news of that gloomy week that was.

It will come as no surprise to friends, family, colleagues and readers that Dunne reveals, exclusively in his new book, that he had his very best and his very worst idea in a tiny and remote hill village in the middle of nowhere ... called Giggleswick. You couldn’t make it up. Giggleswick village is as real as London, New York, Las Vegas and Sydney (but, perhaps, a tad more colourful). And Giggleswick is older than three of those other super-cities and wiser than all. 

This book is a one-off lesson in laughter and how to guarantee it, making up the script as you go. It’s a book that turns workaday trivia into a one-man comedy show that has been running for more than half a century (though his email address is Dunnewriting – this new book puts the lie to that). Old-stagers in the game of words don’t die, they just improve their golf swing.

Colin’s is fog-plaiting at its finest by a gifted giggle-grinder – an artful dodger of all that’s serious – and who turned his dubious trade into an art form. And, try as he might, he still can’t play golf for toffee. Want a sure bet on a lawnmower race, though ... Dunne’s your man.

From a modest start on a country weekly newspaper in the Yorkshire Dales, Colin Dunne staggered, via Leeds and Halifax, London, Leamington Spa, Newcastle upon Tyne and Manchester to Fleet Street in its heyday. For half a century he delighted readers of local, regional and national newspapers and magazines with his uncanny ability to spot the strange, the odd, the unlikely and the just plain daft elements of human life. Things ‘serious journalists’ wouldn’t let their pint go flat over. And Man Bites Talking Dog tells you the hilarious story of how intense journalism was not his chosen specialisation  ... and why fog-plaiting was.

Whether enjoying a lingering 'French' kiss and cuddle with sexy movie superstar Brigitte Bardot, interviewing poet Basil Bunting, or even taking a shorthand note of the sayings of Corky the Talking Dog, discovering the sexy, red-lit nightlife of Hamburg, the man-hungry ice maidens of Reykjavik, sharing life on a beach with the models for a Pirelli calendar, watching BBC TV’s Antiques Roadshow being filmed in a ramshackle town in Jamaica (where anything over a fortnight old was considered ‘antique’), even winning the world’s first lawnmower race, Colin Dunne was the man for any assignment that was identifiably barmy and unidentifiably newsworthy. And that no ‘real’ reporter would give the time of day.

Editorial conferences might go something like this … Editor: ‘This idea is a heap of (explicative redacted by prudish BeWrite blog editor).’ News Editor: ‘Complete (explicative redacted by same prudish BeWrite blog editor) balderdash.’ Smart features editor: ‘It surely is, Your Graces. Let’s put Dunne on the job.’

And always, back in the office, were the reckless and the feckless, outrageous, disgraceful, immoral, completely unreliable, but also the richly talented, wildly inventive and, above all, endlessly amusing.

This is a near-incredible (but 100% true) account of the Great Days, the Glory Days of journalism in the buzzing world hub of the international press that was Fleet Street, London and by one of its rare stars and legends.

If tireless and obsessive animal rights campaigner Brigitte Bardot ever finds out she’d kissed the man who'd just put the bite on Corky the Talking Dog, she’d gargle with neat Eau de Javel French bleach three times a day for a month.

And if you don't believe that, ask Corky!

I didn’t get where I am today by laughing out loud at other people’s books, but I’ve had to make an exception for Colin Dunne’s ‘Man Bites Talking Dog’. My involuntary chortles roused many travellers from sleep on the East Coast mainline. A useful tip – don't read this in the Quiet Coach. David Nobbs creator and author of the blockbusting book and TV series ‘The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin’

A reminder of a better, happier, funnier journalistic era. Alistair Campbell. Journalist, broadcaster, award-winning best-selling author and Director of Communications and Strategy for former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair

'Man Bites Talking Dog' is an unashamed celebration of the decades when newspapers had ludicrously deep pockets, valued mischief and celebrated scallywags. In truth, many of those who skipped through the silliness were fine operators, Colin Dunne among them. Penny Ward. The Oldie Magazine

It is hilariously funny and crammed with witticisms and delicious anecdotes. As a writer Colin Dunne is right up there with Evelyn Waugh, PG Wodehouse and Tom Sharpe as a comic genius. John Kay. Journalist, columnist and author

From Friday Aug 19 (whatever your international time zone) Man Bites Talking Dog ebook editions are available from all online ebook stores in all digital formats for use on all electronic reading platforms from PCs and laptops, through the entire range of ebook-dedicated reading devices (Kindle, Nook, Sony, Kobo, iPad, etc) and tablets to iPods and smartphones.

Or you can buy in any format direct from the BeWrite Books BOOKSTORE, where you can also read more about author Colin Dunne, see full reviews and read free extracts. Price $5.95 (much less than a couple of pints in any currency equivalent).

Paperback is available from REVEL BARKER PUBLISHING (RBP), all major online bookstores or on order from your local brick-and-mortar bookshop if it's not in stock.

For nosy parkers: Author, Colin Dunne. Editor: Revel Barker. Text design and preparation of print and digital editions: Tony Szmuk. Additional editorial input: BeWrite Books’ editorial team. Cover cartoon: David Banks.

Happy weekend, folks. Neil et al at BB (and Corky)

Thursday, 11 August 2011



For our money, largely undiscovered master wordsmith Howard Waldman is the author who justifies the word ‘literary’ in the dubiously titled genre, ‘Literary Fiction’.

His works, touching on other genres like Science Fiction, Fantasy, Romance, Thriller, Mystery, Political, and even Comedy, sparkle with the rare and precious genius that colours the pages of the cream of classic novels over the centuries; but all these were first released exclusively by BeWrite Books within the past ten years. Classics in the making..

Now BeWrite Books offers The Complete Works of Howard Waldman in a unique, single and light ebook Omnibus of all four unabridged novels: over 1,300 pages at $9.95, which represents more than 60% off the combined cover price of the quartet of unabridged books included. Each individual title remains on sale everywhere in paperback and in all digital format editions ($5.95 or local equivalent).

Waldman – who spent a working life teaching European Literature at American universities and American Literature at European universities – started to pen his own works only in retirement. The novels in this collection represent his entire full-length output. Because each took so many years to write, he now – in his later and rose-growing years – concentrates on brilliant short stories, a full collection of which BeWrite Books hopes to publish in paperback and all ebook digital formats as soon as sufficient material is gathered. He sadly declared: "No more novels."

Each ebook included here is a stand-alone, completely self-contained novel in its own right. Read in sequence, they are even more fulfilling as star characters in one book play different roles in others to a greater or  lesser degree, the whole weaving together like a finely-spun web.

Included in this BeWrite Books e-omnibus (each introduced with its original cover) are ...

*BACK THERE: Harry Grossman sees his world through the viewfinder of a battered camera. And he photographs it all, from the peeling posters and graffiti on grubby city walls to the most intimate moments of his mysterious French sweetheart.

He becomes a permanent guest at her family's ramshackle country cottage, thirty miles and more than half a century away from modern Paris. Harry, the New York outsider, calls it paradise and photographs the Model T Ford on the roof, the archaic well and scythe, the top-secret wild mushroom spots, and the reluctant Lauriers themselves.

They assume that outsider Harry will soon be a member of the family, but the strange photographer with his growing mountain of prints and negatives and imperfect French is not a man for snap decisions. Aren’t things already perfect in this paradise? Someone once said that the only paradises are lost paradises.

'Back There' is a touching and powerfully nostalgic transatlantic love story, sometimes verging on the comic, sometimes on the tragic. France and the French, too often caricatures of their own special reality, are presented with absolute authenticity.

With soft-focus subtlety, Howard Waldman shows that Europe and America are two continents divided by a perceived common culture of art and love – but that light-years separate Paris and Manhattan and the lives and values of the Lauriers and the Grossmans. NM

*TIME TRAVAIL: Harvey Morgenstern promises a way to beat time, but the cranky genius' time-machine is anything but impressive – a dusty old black-and-white TV in the basement, stuck on one channel and showing a table-leg from the 1930s, the ghostly image of a conversation between two long-dead women, a pair of dogs in ancient and endless copulation.

Harvey promises better things to his penniless assistant, Jerry Weizman: a way to slow down time and project himself back to loved ones ... above all back to Rachel Rosen, dead in mysterious circumstances half a century earlier, and loved by both men in their youth.

Jerry is sucked into Harvey's obsession and visits the past. But how many of their visions are subjective distortions brought on by drugs, alcohol, yearning or growing mental unbalance?

And why has Harvey hired Jerry after decades of estrangement following Rachel's death? Is it to vengefully expose him to the time machine's lethal rays ... the same radiation that is killing its inventor?

*THE SEVENTH CANDIDATE: In an age of plummeting morals and urban chaos verging on civil war, businessman Edmond Lorz makes a precarious living by removing obscene graffiti from underground railway advertising hoardings.

It’s during a recruitment aptitude test for extra porn-purging staff that a terrorist bomb rips through Ideal Posters’ grubby headquarters, leaving Lorz and one candidate – the seventh – fighting for life in hospital.

Lorz recovers completely, but the strikingly handsome young job-seeker wakens from his coma a blank-faced, unspeaking automaton with total amnesia and a blind obsession with his new employer’s clean-up campaign.

Adopted by Lorz and his wildly unpredictable secretary, Dorothea – each driven by pity, love and stark fear – the mysterious Seventh Candidate wages a private and manic war on disorder in a subterranean maze of tunnels beneath a city gone mad.

Howard Waldman’s novel, set against a backdrop of social disintegration that’s almost too close for comfort, swings from lunatic hilarity to heartrending tragedy ... and often the reader may struggle to tell the difference between the two in a story with more twists and turns than a subway map. NM

Howard Waldman
*GOOD AMERICANS GO TO PARIS WHEN THEY DIE: The Kingdom of Heaven has been downsized to a single city. And to save overcrowding, God has a new chosen race and set of entry qualifications. In the modern hereafter only good Americans go to Paris when they die!

But not even a divinely ordered bureaucracy is infallible and five not-so-good Americans find themselves posthumously thrown together and trapped in a surreal limbo:

Randy 1900s marine Louis Forster; Maggie Thompson, an over-sexed 1930s fan dancer; neurotic 1940s New York intellectual Seymour Stein; Helen Ricchi, the mysterious and bookish wallflower suspected of foul play after her husband’s unexplained disappearance in the 1950s; modern-day Las Vegas boor, truck driver Max Pilsudski.

And the ill-assorted desperate departed will stop at nothing in a seemingly impossible quest to return to the land of the living and repair flawed lives and fractured loves.

Heaven and an Orwellian Hell share a fragile frontier in Howard Waldman’s masterfully woven last novel of profound humanity and lethally-honed humor. NM

Each novel is also available individually in paperback and ebook formats from all online stores or on order from your local brick-and-mortar bookshop. And you can read more about Howard Waldman, his books, reviews and free full-chapter extracts of the novels by visiting the BeWrite Books' OUR AUTHORS section. Just scroll down to Howard Waldman’s listing there to find all you need for comfortable and satisfying browsing.

The ebook Omnibus collection is available at all major online ebook stores and in all popular digital formats, also at the BeWrite Books BOOKSTORE as of Friday August 12. It can be read on all electronic reading platforms from PCs and laptops, through the full range of ebook-dedicated devices (including Kindle, Nook, Sony, iPad and Kobo) to all tablets, iPods and smart phones.

Author: Howard Waldman. Editor: Neil Marr. Design and technical preparation of the e-omnibus: Tony Szmuk.

Best Wishes. Neil et al

Thursday, 4 August 2011


Today's latest sole-author exclusive poetry anthology from BeWrite Books is Peninsula by Peter Loney.

For the poetically inclined and the geographically interested, a very slightly redacted version of the definition of a 'peninsula' is this: an area almost completely surrounded by water except for an isthmus connecting it with the mainland.

Those cold dictionary words sum up Loney's work perfectly: A work that bravely sticks out from the landmass and can weather the tantrums of an indifferent sea.

But Peninsula is not so much poetry of place, more place as poetic lens. The place is north west England's rugged Cumbrian southern promotory.

Born in Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria, Loney spent a working life teaching in Bosnia, lived in the US, worked for the BBC World Service, and washed up near home in Cumbria's Lake District small-town of Ulverston.

His wide-angle lens takes in many of his journey's experiences - the only poet he knew in Bosnia is now on trial in The Hague for war crimes. Loney reconciles those experiences with a lifetime's reading.

Peninsula 9

In the Co-op earlier the tills broke down.
While staff tutted and fiddled I heard
Currency tumble by the hour, dishevelled
Girls at our Koševo checkouts break down,
Yoy! Yoy! Helpless to keep up
With the unhinging spiral. Quitting the shops
For the dewy tomb-choked churchyard
On the outskirts, the bench where I sit moored
In stagnant smaragdine light, snaps flooded back
From that pot-holed road-trip before we got out
And roads closed. Our visit to the Patriarchate
In Peć, Vesna uneasy as we looked
At the venerable mulberry-tree in the grounds,
Berries splattered red on the flagstones.

is ... ambitious, well-crafted, learned and wonderfully bleak.
                                                                             Andy Croft. Poetry columnist for the Morning Star, head of Smokestack Books, and ‘The unofficial poet laureate of the North.’ Northern Echo.

Available now in paperback and all ebook formats from all online bookstores or direct from BeWrite Books BOOKSTORE.

Poet: Peter Loney. Editor: Sam Smith. Cover design, internal text design and technological preparation for print and ebook editions: Tony Szmuk. Publisher: BeWrite Books.