Blog Hoppin’ with Lily Malone, golf and giveaways…

One of the joys of being a writer is meeting other writers – partly because it introduces me to new books and partly because many of them are just lovely.

LilyM_lowresToday I would like to introduce you to one of the lovely ones, who also happens to write great, fun romances.  Her name is Lily Malone, she has a new book out, called Fairway to Heaven and to celebrate, she is having a blog hop, with piles of giveaways.  There’s more about the giveaways (and the book) at the bottom of this post, but for now, here’s a picture of the main prize, just to keep you going:

PrizesSee, you like her already, don’t you?  (To be clear, the prizes are on the right.  That’s Lily on the left.  Just in case…)

But before we get to the giveaways, I have to live up to my part of the blog hop.  I have to write a post about golf.

You see, as the title would suggest, the book has a fair bit (see what I did there?) of golf in it.  So there’s a bit of a golfy theme to this here hop.

The problem is that, while I can just about tell one end of a golf club from the other, that’s about as close an acquaintance as I have with the game.  I am very willing to believe that it makes a wonderful backdrop for romance (surely those bunkers must be good for SOMETHING other than testing the swearing ability of hapless golfers?) but beyond that, sadly, I have nothing.

fairway to heavenHowever, never one to back down from a challenge, I decided that, in the grand tradition of high-school history students, I would tell you about something tangentially related to the subject at hand and hope you will be so blinded by my prose that you won’t notice. Especially since my tangentially related subject is alcohol. Continue reading

Wine and Word-Wranglers

It’s Wednesday!  And therefore, time for my update on my next set of goals for this year.

I want to talk about other writers more.

When I started the blog, I intended to have regular reviews on a Wednesday (had a title for the segment and all, Wednesday Review).  But I quickly realised – actually, remembered – that I’m really not very good at reviews.  I always hated doing them at school and I hadn’t done one since, so I’m not sure why I thought it’s something I’d want to do on a regular basis.

I also ran into the problems that come with being a writer and talking about other writers.  Can I talk about people who are my friends without people thinking that it’s all just blarney?  What about if their work isn’t quite my cup of tea but I think it’s good and that other people will like it – how do I handle that?  And the rest.

The upshot of all of this was that I stopped talking about books pretty much altogether.  I wasn’t entirely happy about this as a principle, but it seemed easiest.

But this is a new year, and one in which I am determined not to succumb to ridiculous fears.  A life lived in fear is a life half-lived, as Fran says, in Strictly Ballroom.   So I determined to find a way to manage to talk about writing friends.

At the same time, I realised that I had been sadly neglecting the ‘Wine’ part of ‘Wine, Women and Wordplay’.

So… drumroll please… Wine and Word Wranglers was born!

From now on, on a regular basis, Wednesdays will feature a word-wrangler of my choice talking about their work, their lives and what form of beverage  they think best represents them and their work.

I am very taken with this notion, not least because it is alliterative and we all know how much I love alliteration.  But it also gave me an excuse to think about how I would describe my own writing through the medium of alcohol.

I have decided that I am (or rather, I hope my books are) like a sparkling red wine.

Fun, sparkling, spritzig on the palate and a teeny bit frivolous, but with deeper notes that linger after the fizz is gone.  Unusual, a little surprising, but very tasty. 😉

I hope we’ll all have fun with it!

I will also be continuing and expanding my Wednesday Work in Progress posts. I seem always to be researching, and I’d love to share a bit more of that with you.

When I can cajole people who are better at it into reviews, we’ll have them too, and I’ll still keep up the Wednesday Whatever category for when things get freeform (as they are wont to do, chez Evans).

What do you think?  If you were a drink, what would you be?

Sunday Salon = Sunday Surprise. Again

So, my much-anticipated (by me, anyway) Sunday Salon program has hit another snag.  My invitee this week was indisposed.  I’m thinking I might have to rename this segment as Sunday Surprise.

However, not to be downcast, and in honour of the date today, I have cast in her place the quite fascinating Tom Lehrer. A mathematician, academic and soldier, he was also, for a relatively brief period of his life, the writer and performer of some of the cheekiest, funniest, most irreverent satirical songs of the 20th Century.

Songs like this one,

Continue reading

Friday Favourite Drinks: Bartender! Cocktails for all!

Okay, I know the title of the blog says wine, but I’m an equal-opportunity drinker and I dearly love a cocktail.  I love their glamour: the pretty colours and fancy trimmings, the tropical fruit and teeny umbrellas, the elegant glasses and the cute bartenders who make them.

Oh, whoops, did I type that last bit out loud?

Seriously, though, cocktails have always been a bit naughty.  They were invented during Prohibition in the US to cover up the taste of the dreadful illegal alcohol which was all that people could get.  And even now, they whisper of speakeasies and bootleg hooch, of flappers and gangsters and of Phryne Fisher, fabulous in her 1928 sea-green parlour.  Or maybe that’s just me…

Continue reading