An Update On A Neglected Blog

Back in September, I couldn’t sleep. I bashed this out on my phone, saved it, went to sleep, and promptly forgot all about it.

Remember those days when I didn’t neglect my blog? Where I’d write features and take part in tags, I’d tell you all about the events I went to and what I was up to?

What the hell happened?

Um, editing, probably… I love you all, my imaginary readers, dearly; but there are only so many hours in the day, and days in the week, to squeeze it all in. And just like misjudged spanx, something is bound to get squeezed out unfortunately.

Where you find me now, in the ladies’, desperately trying to shove it back in despite the group photos already having been taken and the judgements already passed. Let me tell you about my August! Beth we’re a week away from October… Just, bear with me, it was amazing ok because

It is now November.

My best intentions to update you all clearly went flying out the window.

Which leads me to today, wondering where on earth to begin sharing with you my eventful last three months. There’s been events, books received, proofreading and editing done (and ongoing), blogger meet ups, author stalking, cabbage signings, Aussie wranglings and woeful blogging neglect.

Let’s start with the authors I’ve been stalking the events I attended; then I can tell you about what I’m reading, and what’s waiting to be read.

I was very excited back in August to go to Anna Stephen’s Darksoul launch! As I’m sure you all know by now, Godblind and Darksoul were two of my favourite reads of the year; Anna’s books have truly caught my imagination and heart, and I couldn’t wait to celebrate the release of her second book.

Anna treated us to a reading from Darksoul (wherein she actually said whore in front of her mother can you believe it), and then we went to the most amazing pub I think I’ve ever been in.

 Anna saying whore in front of her mother.

The amazing pub:

The following week, Anna came to Swansea (which did lead to questions from my poor husband who I’d dragged all the way to Birmingham the week before) along with RJ Barker, Catriona Ward and Gareth Powell for Swansea Waterstone’s first ever panel event.

I made the mistake of not recording RJ giving us a reading from Blood Of Assassins – if you ever have the opportunity to attend an RJ reading do it. It’s a performance not to be missed. He also very kindly signed my cabbage leaf! Lesson learned Hiu – if you challenge me to give an author a cabbage leaf I will give an author a cabbage leaf.

The next panel event held by Swansea stones featured some more of my favourites – Jen Williams and Anna Smith Spark! I also met for the first time Adrian Selby, whose debut Snakewood I’m now very much looking forward to starting (once Ken finishes it).

I couldn’t meet Jen Williams without of course showing my appreciation for her BFS award winning novel The Ninth Rain – the obvious thing to do seemed to be to bake bat shaped welsh cakes. So I did – and I didn’t poison anyone! Yay me! 

Mike ‘Everest’ Evans did a fantastic job modding the panel, and I even managed to record some of Anna Smith Spark’s reading (before I eventually pressed a wrong button on my phone).

Next up: BristolCon. Aka BarCon – which apparently we did very wrong. Eh? Yeah I’ll explain.

BristolCon is held in a hotel in Bristol, which happens to have a well stocked bar. We bought our tickets for the con months ago, and we weren’t disappointed: two rooms running panels and readings all day, workshops, signings, a trade room and an art room. Admittedly, some of the panels were a little hit or miss, but all was forgiven because Jasper Fforde was there. And we attended a Jasper Fforde workshop. And a Jasper Fforde reading. And a panel in which Jasper Fforde was sat next to Anna StephensCue Beth’s poor little head exploding. As well as Jasper’s reading, and Anna’s reading (wherein she said whore again), we also heard Graham Austin-King read from his upcoming novel The Lore Of Prometheus.

So, I hear you ask, what’s BarCon and how did you do it wrong? Well, that well stocked bar? Many people come to BristolCon and don’t actually bother buying a ticket to the con itself, but instead take advantage of the friendly atmosphere and use it as an opportunity to meet and catch up with friends online who they wouldn’t normally be able to. Oh, and get drunk in each other’s company until long past closing time. That’s where we sort of did BarCon wrong. We ended up knackered after two pints and retired around half eleven, having left the house at seven that morning and attended panels all day.

However I did meet so many of my wonderful friends at last; the rest of the fantasy five behind The Fantasy Hive, fellow bloggers and reviewers, and my wonderful Aussie Alicia Wanstall-Burke who was there releasing her incredible debut Blood Of Heirs.

So, we’ve talked authors and events.

Let’s talk books, shall we?

As I mentioned at the start of the post, I’ve been busy proofreading and editing; to the extent everything else (blogging and reading) has had to take a bit of a back burner. I’ve been really fortunate to work with D.P Woolliscroft, Richard Webb and Liam Perrin, as well as proofreading Blood of Heirs for Alicia Wanstall-Burke and The Lore of Prometheus for Graham Austin-King. It’s been wonderful to be as busy as this, and it’s not looking likely to ease up until around March time next year! It’s taken off in a way I couldn’t possibly imagine it would, and it’s been very exciting.

So, around juggling the editing work and parenting (why do they need holidays from school anyway?), I have still been trying to read!


I’m currently reading Jasper Fforde’s Early Riser. I was accepted for it on Netgalley, but as ever I really struggled to absorb it through a digital format. I picked up the hardcover when I was in Swansea ‘stones last week, and it has been much better; I am absolutely loving it. I love being back in the kind of quirky world that only the inestimable Jasper Fforde could possibly have dreamed up.
What’s it about?

Every Winter, the human population hibernates.

During those bitterly cold four months, the nation is a snow-draped landscape of desolate loneliness, devoid of human activity.

Well, not quite…

Read more here.

I am, of course, miserably behind on my review reading. Have a picture montage of what I’ve got coming up!

And so, my poor reader, consider yourself updated!

I will try to be more regular with my blog going forward, but I’m not going to put too much pressure on myself. I know you’re an understanding and caring bunch.

Once my current editing projects are done, keep your eyes peeled – I’m hoping to start contributing board game reviews on The Fantasy Hive, and I’m currently considering a podcast project… watch this space!

8 thoughts on “An Update On A Neglected Blog

  1. And just like misjudged spanx, something is bound to get squeezed out unfortunately.

    Actually dying 😂

    I love this update! You’ve been so busy and it looks like you had a marvelous time. I hope I get to actually meet you one of these days ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I had completely forgotten I’d written that. Midnight me needs to write more apparently, she’s hilarious 😂

      I have been busy! It’s been a bit insane? But good insane? Is that a thing?
      I don’t know but YES I DO NEED TO MEET YOOOUUU!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow, you were busy!! I’m jealous you got to meet so many great authors! (I really want to read Godblind btw – just haven’t gotten to it yet). Now I’m even more determined to go to some conferences next year. I love the signed lettuce leaf btw, that’s priceless 😂 Cool you’re going to be contributing to The Fantasy Hive too. And I totally get that your putting less pressure on on the blog front – when you’ve got a lot going on something’s gotta give. I’ve also been a bit absent recently, but my theory is as long as you come back and manage what you can, everyone understands!

    Liked by 1 person

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