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Helen Welsh (Fife, Scotland)
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Sheila Fleet ese0157 Silver Rowan Stud Earrings in Frost enamel
Sheila Fleet ese0157 Silver Rowan Stud Earrings in Frost enamel

5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely silver earrings, 12 Aug. 2015
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Beautiful earrings, bought for a friend's special birthday. Wish I was keeping them!


Scots Worship: Lent, Holy Week and Easter
Scots Worship: Lent, Holy Week and Easter
Price: £14.24

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Lord be wi Ye!, 10 April 2014
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This is a beautifully humane collection of inspiring memoir and liturgy, told in English and the Doric, by a man whose words in lifetime inspired many to a deeper hope.While fantastic for the north-east of Scotland, I'm not sure the Doric liturgies would translate for use elsewhere. However their rhythm and musicality make for very satisfying personal worship. David Ogston was a Presbyterian minister and as such wouldn't have subscribed to a weekly liturgy in the same way that other denominations do. Perhaps this is what makes his work so fresh - it's all his own work - his own response to the call of God. It's our privilege that he was moved to share it so generously.


A Month in the Country (Penguin Modern Classics)
A Month in the Country (Penguin Modern Classics)
by J.L. Carr
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, 23 Nov. 2013
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I and some friends decided to read some short stories/novellas, then together view the films made from them. This was our first, and by coincidence the viewing of the film took place on Armistice day - very apt, since the main character has just returned from Passchendaele and is trying to recover from his traumas while picking up the threads of making a living. The job he gets is cleaning up a wall painting in an old church; and while doing the work he sleeps next to the painting, in the bell tower, and participates in village life (hence the title). The work itself, and the relationships he develops, gradually begin a healing process.

The author has written this with a light hand and a sensitive heart. The horrors of war are barely alluded to and there are lots of funny, tender and poignant moments in the telling of the tale. It's a quick read - except that I want to read it all over again, to enjoy the prose to its max. I thoroughly recommend this novella. I hope it gets lots of attention next year, with the centenary of the beginning of WW1. It speaks of peace.

As for the film - early Colin Firth and Kenneth Branagh - what more can I say? An excellent evocation, and remains very faithful to the text.


Writing and Selling Articles - Fool's Game or Money Spinner?
Writing and Selling Articles - Fool's Game or Money Spinner?
Price: £1.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Useful for writers, 7 Oct. 2013
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In this book, Martyn Baguley reviews his article-writing career and gives an honest and balanced account of its joys and pitfalls. So many books and articles (and even writing courses) give advice which is both dated and wildly over-optimistic. Martyn on the other hand shares his real-life approaches, his submission-to-hit ratios as they evolved over the years, and the actual amount of money one can expect to earn. It is clear that even with increasing skills and knowledge of the markets, the returns for writers have diminished from a not-terribly-lucrative position some twenty years ago. Hence the sub-title - Fool's Game or Money Spinner? However this isn't a dreary glass-half-empty tome: I found it reassuring that my own experience in this genre is more or less as to be expected. And as Baguley says, it depends what you want to get out of it.

Part 2 of his book gives 27 appendices - articles the author has published in the past, with a preface about how he conceived the article in the first place, researched it, wrote it and marketed it. This part is really helpful and interesting, and a big improvement on his last book which was a collection of his previously-published articles, but without the preamble. I like Baguley's honesty and respect for other writers, in putting his own experience out there for discussion. And it has given me a few ideas on how to go about improving my own hit rate. I will, I'm sure, refer to this book on a regular basis.


Knowing Me, Knowing God: Exploring Your Spirituality with Myers-Briggs
Knowing Me, Knowing God: Exploring Your Spirituality with Myers-Briggs
Price: £4.65

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enlightening, 30 Aug. 2013
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I did Myers-Briggs many years ago when our whole college management team did a collective project on understanding ourselves better; but I'd never seen it applied to spirituality before. I liked it, and it was interesting to read about different types of spiritual expression appealing to different MBTI 'types'. I was also interested to see that my profile hasn't changed even though my life has. I find Goldsmith's style a little on the ponderous side and would prefer a slightly crisper delivery; but the content is excellent.


2k to 10k: Writing Faster, Writing Better, and Writing More of What You Love
2k to 10k: Writing Faster, Writing Better, and Writing More of What You Love
Price: £0.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, thorough, enjoyable, 30 Aug. 2013
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This is a great book for someone like me who has toiled through the writing of three or four novels, not managed to sell any of them, and determined but somewhat overwhelmed at trying yet again. Aaron's style is very engaging - she explains it comes from her blog so I now intend to look that one up and sign on. She is practical and down-to-earth and also, clearly, a good writer (her genre is not to my taste so I can't say what I think of her novels). I have already put some of her advice into action, with good results, and I'll be going back to her book again and again for new ideas. Definitely worth buying.


How to Write a Travel Article - The 30-minute guide that will make you a better travel writer
How to Write a Travel Article - The 30-minute guide that will make you a better travel writer
Price: £1.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Good book, but missing an important element, 30 Aug. 2013
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I have actually read this book twice because I really want to improve my travel writing. It's a nice book, and I'm definitely going to search out the author's own website. I really liked his introduction - a quote from 'Blood River' by Tim Butcher - partly because I'd read it, and partly because I love the message - great writing is great writing whatever the genre, and travel writing shouldn't just be a list of train times and places to eat. For me however the book would have been significantly improved by a section on 'markets', and how to find good markets for your work - always the challenge. A discussion of the various market segments would be very helpful (maybe he'll write Vol 2?) and he's probably in a good place to write such a piece, having been so widely published himself. Especially, of course, a section on online markets would be great. Otherwise it's a good, helpful read - possibly a bit over-reliant i places on long quotes from his own work. I'd like to give it an extra half star but can't figure out how to.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 3, 2013 12:28 PM BST


Trains and Lovers: The Heart's Journey
Trains and Lovers: The Heart's Journey
Price: £1.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It's not Precious, 16 July 2013
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I love Alexander McCall-Smith's Botswana stories, but I've never been smitten by his Scottish tales. This one is about four strangers who meet round a table on the train from Edinburgh to London (a journey I know well). But the way one character launches into the baring of his soul just isn't believable. If he wasn't famous, he'd be urged to 'show not tell'. Sorry. I know others will love it. But I don't.


Secrets of the Six Figure Author: Mastering the Inner Game of Writing, Publishing and Marketing Books (Six-Figure Author Series Book 1)
Secrets of the Six Figure Author: Mastering the Inner Game of Writing, Publishing and Marketing Books (Six-Figure Author Series Book 1)
Price: £2.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Phew!, 16 July 2013
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My inner sceptic lost out when I clicked to buy this book - I've spent so long reassuring myself that it isn't possible to earn a living as a writer except for the lucky few... However this book has turned me round and shown me how to do it. Corson-Knowles employs a firm, no-nonsense coaching style, with a fair bit of sales-speak along the way - both of which make me a bit wary. However he has lots to say about how to make a living as a writer, seizing the e-book revolution, and I am heartily impressed. One short phrase particularly spoke to me - 'Being a writer is running a business'. Not LIKE running a business, but actually running a business. Now I find that reassuring - it takes things out of the realm of mind-over-matter and into the real world of learning new skills and applying them. Definitely worth reading. One note - it's American and the figures are all in dollars and the style a bit alien for Brits like me. But the lessons apply nevertheless.


Professional Plot Outline Mini-Course
Professional Plot Outline Mini-Course
Price: £0.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Energising!, 16 July 2013
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I loved the no-nonsense, bracing enthusiasm of Holly Lisle's style. She poses some straightforward questions which help you frame your plot, and shows you her own worked example. That doesn't sound particularly exciting, but she manages it. I came away with several aha! revelations. I'll be looking out for other examples of her work.


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