It may or may not be quite correct to call it a gremlin, more of a disease I think. I get it on days when I have lots to do, like today, and I realize that I have no brains at all, only what feels like a large bowl of cold, congealed cereal between my ears.

For example I had a brilliant idea for my blog today, but for the life of me I can’t remember what it is. To make matters worse, I did one of those clean-out thingy programmes on my lap top which has wiped out all the cookies and links lurking in the background or behind files out of sight, along with my history and now I can’t find any files.

So to the less than brilliant blog post.

Since I would like to sell lots of books, I understand advertising is important. I’m hopeless at it, really I am. I’m just not an ‘in-your-face’, ‘look at me sort of person’. (Though I’m getting there).  So, it seemed a good idea to get pens stamped with my name on them and hand them out everywhere I go. (As if I didn’t have enough stuff in my handbag as it is!) Pens are useful things. People are generally happy to get free ones. They often leave them all over the place, to be picked up by third parties. So what could go wrong?


I collected 500 of them from the printers, in five different colours with printed clearly on the side. Type that in to the search engine and wow – you reach my web page which lists and describes all my books and has a nifty little link to this (less than) amazing blog page as well.

Now because I live in Spain, it’s a bit pointless handing them out to Spanish speakers, so I’m learning to get up close and personal with people so I can eavesdrop to see if they are conversing in English. If they are, then I pop a pen into their hands, shopping bags etc with a smile “Please have a free pen with my compliments.”

Most people are pleased, a couple looked worried, so I had to assure them the pens don’t explode, they just write.

While waiting to greet guests at the airport, I managed to part with 12, and assured a lady I had not gone there to distribute writing implements but to meet relatives.

But there is possibly a small downside to this. I’ve received another low star review, the one book the reader did not like much, and having bought all four she said she would probably not like any of the others either. I suspect the lady lives in Spain, and I also suspect she may have been the recipient of a free pen. While I can’t ask her to return the pen after giving me a lousy review, be aware there is a downside to getting noticed.

Just a last reminder that “Truth, Lies & Propaganda” is still $/£ 0.99 until midnight on 11th September if you want to grab it cheap.

I will understand if you want to read a book written by someone else and I’ll still be friends.

Amie 2 proof was delivered today, only 3 days after ordering it. That’s pretty good from the US isn’t it? So it’s proofreading time again.

I’m not sure if Charles II had to proofread anything, I expect he had people to do that for him, and he probably didn’t have the time as he was very busy partying. You can’t blame him really as he’d been shipped out of England at 16 just when it looked as if Daddy was losing the war and his head.


He’d popped back briefly to Scotland and was crowned king there, but had to rush off and hide in a tree when he lost the battle of Worcester. It was tricky hiding, as he was 6 foot tall and most other people in those days were shorter than that. Luckily he found a tall tree like this one.


He was known as the Merry Monarch as he was pleased he did not have to spend any more time hiding in oak trees and so was romantic and popular. He was also an environmentalist, keeping his pet King Charles’ Spaniards at court,


including Catherine of Braganza,


but although he married her, he was even fonder of Elinor Gwyn who unfortunately had a fetish for oranges.

The most important milestone of this reign was the first pineapple grown in England. This was such a momentous event, they painted a picture of it. The King was not too pleased at having to stand still for such a long time and the well dressed farmer suffered very badly from have to stay on his knees for days on end while the painter captured the scene. He was on the knee replacement surgery waiting list for months.


Next time, what Catherine brought to England.


  1. Lucinda, Lucinda, Lucinda! What have you been told?

    “KEYWORDS. Always remember the KEYWORDS.”

    When you have another brilliant F*L*A*S*H of inspiration write down keywords, if only one – on your hand – in lipstick!!!

    Loved Charles and his pineapple. I used to have a frock like that!


  2. A frock like a pineapple? That I must see, do you have a photo? Yes, the keywords, but why do I always have these stunningly brilliant ideas when I am taking the hairpin bends down to the village 😦


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