Big thanks to Fiona and the staff at the lovely Walter Henry’s bookshop in Bideford, who marked the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death on Saturday with tea and cake and fine hospitality. The collective noun for a gathering of local readers, writers and historians should probably be ‘a gossip’ but we fell respectfully silent to … Continue reading Badly dressed for the Bard
I don’t post much on the Net about my family, partly because it’s of little interest to anyone else and partly because I like them and want them to carry on liking me. Today is an exception, because family matters have been much on my mind of late. And the question of how family matters … Continue reading Stuff
In Roman times a basic marching camp could be built in less than a day - often by men who'd already carried heavy kit for many miles through hostile territory, and now needed somewhere safe to bed down for the night. Building a Roman fort in the twenty-first century is going to take a little … Continue reading Park in the Past
Friends who followed the Blog Hop a couple of years ago will have met my writing friend Alison Morton. Alison's created a gripping alternative thriller world, where her 21st century Praetorian heroines survive kidnapping, betrayal and a vicious nemesis while using their Roman toughness and determination to save their beloved country. Unfortunately, their love lives … Continue reading Suppose a part of Ancient Rome survived?
“The Britain of today,” asserted Pliny back in the first century, “performs the rites of magic in manic fashion.” Given the piles of plastic Halloween tat in the shops here, it’s hard to see that much has changed. I’m normally as cynical as Pliny about this sort of thing, but at four o’clock this morning, … Continue reading Halloween: Strange goings-on at Downie Towers
How many people can you fit on a war chariot? What did the people Caesar called "Britons" call themselves? Since you've finished with that character in your story, can I kill him in mine? These are the kind of questions that have been bandied about over the summer by the team putting together a collection … Continue reading A grand day out with the Celts
Big news in recent weeks, as Ruso and Tilla have mentioned on their Facebook page. (They must be reading my mind.) It now seems someone's found a way to read the charcoal ink on the scrolls that were burned to a crisp by Vesuvius almost 2000 years ago. There really is a chance that Herculaneum's … Continue reading The library of illegible books
Thanks to lovely Stuart, chief shepherd at 3Sheep, for the revamp of the website. He's now handed it back to me and I've been doing my best not to break it. If anything either doesn't work or doesn't make sense please be kind enough to tell me and I'll see if I can mend it, … Continue reading New website, very old gate
Thanks to Judi Moore, multi-talented author of “Is death really necessary?” for inviting me to join the blog tour that hunts out the answers to four questions. Mercifully, "Is death really necessary?" isn't one of them. Judi’s answers can be found here. Mine are below. I'm charged with handing on the baton, and have contacted … Continue reading Blog tour: My writing process
One of the perils of combining a haphazard approach to research with a terrible memory is that I often recall useful things that I read a long time ago, but it's impossible to quote them because I no longer know where they were. Worse, I sometimes wonder whether they really existed or whether I made … Continue reading Can I try that question again, please?