Saturday, 22 August 2015

Six days to go until publication!

My debut novel Five Go Glamping is published by Carina ( Harpercollins) on August 28th and I can hardly believe it but it's available to order!
Glamping Check list
Festival tickets
Double check best Instagram filter
Avoid thinking about work/Connor/five year plan!!
A four day break from her hectic life to relax in the countryside and hang out at a local festival (for free!) is just what Fiona Delaney needs. With her best friends, great tunes and a cool looking hat her Instagram shots are going to look A-Mazing!
Until suddenly glamping starts to feel a lot more like camping and Fiona’s in desperate search of a comfy chair, wi-fi and a chilled glass of wine. But when she finally makes it to the local pub she discovers this trip could be more than just a holiday, it might just change her life forever…
There's are a few places you buy from depending on what you like to read on. 
Click on the links or the images and it will take you straight to the novel.
If you have a kindle, you can buy from
 Amazon in the UK and Ireland by clicking here.
 Amazon US here
 Amazon Canada here
 and Amazon Australia.

If you don't have a kindle, you download the kindle app to read on various tablets and other devices. You can also download the kindle app for your any computer and your mobile phone.

You can buy Five Go Glamping to read on ibook  from iTunes here  too!  I know,  iTunes of all places! Imagine  being on iTunes, just like Taylor Swift!

You'll also find it on googlebooks if you have an android device by clicking here  or open up the Playstore on your phone or tablet and search for "Liz Tipping" or "Five Go Glamping"

It's also available on Nook if that's your thang.

and Kobo too if that is your ereader of choice!

And I think that's it! 
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Friday, 14 August 2015

My cover is here!

My publishers revealed the cover for my book today and I absolutely love it!

What do you think?

and it has a blurb too!

Glamping Check list
Festival tickets
Double check best Instagram filter
Avoid thinking about work/Connor/five year plan!!

A four day break from her hectic life to relax in the countryside and hang out at a local festival (for free!) is just what Fiona Delaney needs. With her best friends, great tunes and a cool looking hat her Instagram shots are going to look A-Mazing!
Until suddenly glamping starts to feel a lot more like camping and Fiona’s in desperate search of a comfy chair, wi-fi and a chilled glass of wine. But when she finally makes it to the local pub she discovers this trip could be more than just a holiday, it might just change her life forever…

I can't even begin to describe how awesome it is to share my own book cover on my blog! 

It's out on the 28th August, you can pre order it on Amazon by clicking here

Monday, 10 August 2015

The Sisters by Claire Douglas

I was lucky enough to read an advanced copy of The Sisters by Claire Douglas which is out this week.

When one sister dies, the other must go to desperate lengths to survive

After a tragic accident, still haunted by her twin sister’s death, Abi is making a fresh start in Bath. But when she meets siblings Bea and Ben, she is quickly drawn into their privileged and unsettling circle.

When one sister lies, she must protect her secret at all costs

As Abi tries to keep up with the demands of her fickle friends, strange things start to happen – precious letters go missing and threatening messages are left in her room. Is this the work of the beautiful and capricious Bea? Or is Abi willing to go to any lengths to get attention?

When the truth outs, will either sister survive?

When people review books they love, they use terms like “beautifully written” and “expertly crafted” and  while there is no doubt that these terms could be used to describe this novel, it would do it no justice because it’s a story that is felt, experienced and breathed in. It's so immersive that it's hard to believe it has been constructed at all. 

When you are reading this book, it is so real and so vivid, that as a reader, rather than feeling this novel has been “crafted” or “written” this story for the reader doesn’t seem like a story that has been “put together”. 
I don’t mean this in the sense that the author has lived this life or these characters are a part of her or is in anyway autobiographical, but in the sense that the story was already there and the author has then somehow delivered the story straight into our memories almost as though we knew this place, these characters and this  story was there all along. 

But while  the novel feels almost instantly like a place we know,   there is barely a page in the novel when you can fully know for sure what is going on. 
There are characters we fall in and out of love with throughout the book. There is the broken vunerable Abi, the mesmerising Beatrice and there is Ben, Beatrice’s brother who Abi begins a relationship with. 

As a reader we experience a kind of suffocating, claustrophobic ugliness in amongst the aesthetically pleasing and stunning visual world of Beatrice and her arty friends. 
The book feels very visual, very filmic. We experience every breath of this story without ever being able to say for certain that what we are experiencing is true. 
It’s simply incredible and I really, really want everyone to read it so we can all talk about it. 

You can order it on amazon here 
and you can listen to the first chapter here 

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

How I got an agent and a publishing deal by using a magical publishing chair and a magical publishing tent

Basically what happened was my good pal / arch nemesis Neal Doran saw this tweet and messaged me to say  Juliet Mushens is looking for a rom-com, send her yours.

And then Neal said she does really nice rejections, so I thought that's nice isn't it!
So I sent my novel off to Juliet and about twenty minutes later, Juliet said
"Liz! This is hilarious!!!! Full manuscript please!"

But because I didn't know how all the things worked,  I didn't read submissions guidelines . I didn't know you were meant to write a whole book. And I didn't have a whole book. Yet.  But I told Juliet this and she was very nice and did not call me a div or throw sticks at me for being stupid and  said to send it when I was done.

So then I wrote my book  and send it off and now I have got a literary agent and  we all live happily ever after.

Except there are other bits to this as well, like how I have found a magical publishing chair where I heard lots of publishing news.
When I heard back from Juliet about reading the full, I was sitting with my husband and one of my writery friends Paul Freeman  in a bar in a faraway land called Ireland. Just minutes after hearing from Juliet I also received  an  offered of publishing contract. I had discovered a magical publishing chair!

As it happens, that contract wasn't the one I took, and the next few months I carried on working on my books.
It was when I was in my magical tent in another faraway land called Wales that  I heard from another editor who also wanted to publish my book Five Go Glamping- like, while I was in a tent. It must have been a magical publishing tent! The publishers were Carina who are releasing my book Five Go Glamping in August.

In fact every single time I have been on holiday, I have had some kind of publishing news.
So that's the secret to getting published, find yourself a magical publishing chair and a magical tent and go on lots of holidays.
That's all you have to do.

There are some things you shouldn't do when trying to get a publishing deal.

So, like, totally, hypothetically, say if you put your work publicly on a website and have a message from someone saying they would like to read your manuscript and have read all 10,000 words, do not assume, even if they have a hotmail address that is someone winding you up or trying to sell you editing services and the like.
And don't say "Have you really read all of my manuscript, perhaps you have a flux capictor and can see into the future, could you tell me how it ends?" and things like that.
Because it might be a nice, genuine publishing lady who really wants to read your work and then you will have to write to that lady and apologise and  explain how you thought it was someone messing about.

And then if you go a party and you are talking to a friend and you think the nice publishing lady might be there, then don't say really loudly  "I really don't want to see X because I am still completely mortified. Is she here? " because then the nice publishing lady might be standing right behind your friend and she will have to make shakey head movements and you will have to run away and hide in the loos.

I am not saying that this happened. Just that it could. So be aware.
Stick with finding yourself a magical publishing chair.
Or to start off with, send off to some publishers and agents, that seems to work too.

Monday, 3 August 2015

Two Go To a Fungi Infested Chalet But Have A Nice Time Anyway.

Pontin's is like a Gulag camp but without the glamour. It's pretty grim.
But every time I look for accommodation in Somerset, Pontins always pops up. It works out at about £5 a night each, so I forget all about the frying pan which  had the previous guest's bacon left in it.  I am too busy saying "A fiver! You can't even go camping for that! What a bargain!" to remember how post apocalyptic the facilities are. I become so completely blinded by the price tag, I forget all about the torture contraptions they like to call beds.
Even so, I was a little taken aback by this growing out of the door frame.

I told a passing Pontin's employees who used some loo roll to pick it up and put it in the bin. She said she'd report it, but I didn't hear any more about it. 

But as the spoiler ridden blog post title suggests, we had a nice time anyway. 

We went off to the beach. 

And then to Cheddar Gorge which was incredible. 

This one below isn't a great photo, but it's the only one I managed to get of the sheep that live on the gorge. I think they are Soay sheep  but there's also feral goats which live there. 

We met this dog, he reminded me of the dog in my novel Five Go Glamping

The dog in my novel is called Brian Harvey because he looks like Brain Harvey. Yes, that Brian Harvey.  I didn't get to learn this dog's name. His owner's were Northern European, I think, what do you think his name is? 

We went to Weston again. 

After that we went back to Brean and had a pint of Banks' Bitter in The Best Beer Garden in the world.

Then we had a  pint of this in  another pub and watched the fireworks.

We had one for the road back at Pontins where we watched the "Glamerous Granny" competition.

After all this, I managed to sleep quite well on the torture contraption pokey springs bed. 

The next day there were no mushrooms and we left for home. We had a brief stop in Clevedon. We were there only for a few minutes, I'd like to stay longer next time. 

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Two Go Glamping

I finally went Glamping!

It was Friday afternoon and I was packing for a weekend trip to Somerset when I spotted on Worcester Glamping's twitter they had a last minute yurt for the evening.
I've wanted to go for ages  that's actually why I started writing my novel  Five Go Glamping in the first place. I never imagined when I started it would be published but now that  it's available to  pre-order so I thought it was about time I went glamping myself!
And with Worcester Glamping offering a stay in one of their yurts for the bargain price of only £25 for the night*, I decided to snap it up and start our holiday a day early!

* It's usually a little more than that at around £85 per night but it's the most reasonably priced glampsite I've found and they have offers at the moment- three nights for the price of two.

 It took hardly anytime to get to Worcester from Birmingham. We met one of the owners, Stef when we arrived who was friendly and welcoming and  took us to our yurt which was named "Sugar Hill"

There was a lovely relaxed atmosphere and even though we were just at the edge of the city, it felt like we were miles away from anywhere. One of the lovely things about glamping is I didn't have to worry about bringing linen or sleeping bags or the tent itself. I love camping and my tent goes up in less than a minute, but I was looking forward not to have to go through all the airbed fuss like inflating it/not being sure if you have inflated it enough/worried you will over inflate it/ think it's fine and then get into bed to find all the air has leaked out etc.

This is the interior. It was so nice.  There were even chocolates on the pillows and the bed was comfy.

There are only five yurts altogether so that made for a tranquil glampsite. Below is a photo of the seating area which overlooks the river and you relax with a drink or a picnic. There's also an indoor room just opposite with a kettle and a fridge. 

The fridge was handy to keep my lashings of ginger beer cool! 

And then  there were these guys. These three little lambs were my absolute favourite part of the whole stay. They were so cute. 

There's also a  herd of dairy cows  right next to the site. It was a great location, just on the edge of Worcester and you can walk into the city centre in about fifteen minutes.We chose to wander just outside of the site and have a couple of drinks in the nearby pub. ( It's also a restaurant and they do breakfast here too)

Afterwards we wandered back  to enjoy the yurt which, complete with fairy lights was even more cosy in the dark . 

There's a wood stove, so it's nice and warm. 

When I woke up, I felt like I'd been on holiday for AGES and really refreshed. In  the morning before heading to Somerset, we had tea by the river and our new woolly friends came to visit us again. 

We had a look in the visitor book before we (sadly) had to leave and nearly everyone had written the same thing. It was "magical". It was such a peaceful and relaxing break and I started the day recharged and rejuvenated. You can say hello to Worcester Glamping here on twitter, They have a facebook page here where they often post offers so it's well worth a like!

You can find out more and book at their website.

I had such a fab time and it was great to get a bit of last minute research in for my novel. It was certainly was a lot of more peaceful and uneventful glamping experience compared to what I had put through my characters in Five Go Glamping and I was glad I didn't bump into any odd characters like Fiona and the gang do in my book! My novel is published by Carina, Harpercollins  on August 14th and it's available to pre-order now in all of these places.

You can also download a kindle app for your pc or your tablet or your android tablets and smartphones and read it like that. 
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Monday, 29 June 2015

My Favourite Vintage Thing with Glenn Haybittle

 Today's guest blogger is Glenn Haybittle.
Glenn  is a translator and freelance writer from London who lives in Florence. He currently translates academic books for the Florence University and Italian history books for a Florentine publisher. 

His debut novel,The Way Back to Florence is out now. 

Writing, among other things, is the best excuse I’ve been able to find not to leave my room. To be a writer you’ve got to like not going out much. You’ve got to secretly enjoy saying no to social invites. I think it was Subbuteo that first taught me that I didn’t have to go out the front door to find excitement. 

You’re down on your knees (bit like proper gardening in that sense), you set up the pitch, you bring the teams out onto the pitch, you turn on the floodlights, you set the timer and off you go. The next ninety minutes will have a satisfying order but they will also throw up unpredictability – just like writing. 

I’ve since realised there were many parallels between those days of enacting football matches with miniature plastic men and writing novels:

1) The full-blooded embracing of solitude. (Anyone who entered my room when I was in the middle of a game got the evil eye.)
2) Immersing myself in a self-enclosed world.(The floodlights helped here, creating a Lion, the Witch and the Warbrobe atmosphere)
3) Talking to myself without restraint. (I always did commentaries on the matches I played; now and again I did crowd noises and singing too)
4) Endowing imaginary people with personality. (During the commentary I would offer stats and anecdotes about the individual players to my imaginary audience.)
5) Ordering my thoughts. (To commentate you have to transpose subjective ideas into a narrative that makes objective sense.)
6) Parcelling up my day into obsessive routines. (Kick off times were scheduled and upheld with military precision)
7) Transcribing events into notebooks. (I wrote down the details of every game in a notebook – the line-up, yellow and red cards, goalscorers, substitutions, how the result affected the overall league table.)

So I thank the makers of Subbuteo for their sizeable contribution in turning me into a writer.

Thanks for sharing, Glenn! Glenn's book  Way Back To Florence is out now. 

Praise for The Way Back to Florence:
"Vivid, compelling and hauntingly beautiful." Judith Kinghorn, author of The Last Summer
"A great novel - at once stylish, clever, exciting and deeply moving." Tim Binding, author of Island Madness
"A quite brilliant novel of art, love and war told with extraordinary delicacy and poise." Alex Preston, author of In Love and War

In 1937 Freddie (English), Isabella (Italian) and Oskar (a German Jew) become friends at an art school in Florence where they are taught by the dictatorial but magus-like Maestro and his sinister fascist assistant Fosco. When war arrives Freddie returns to England to become the pilot of a Lancaster bomber. Oskar, now a dancer, has moved to Paris where he escapes the 1942 roundup of Jews and arrives in Italy with his young daughter Esme. Isabella remains in Florence where she continues to paint. Until she is called upon by Maestro to forge an old master painting, apparently at the behest of the F├╝hrerhimself, and as a result is seen as a Nazi collaborator by her neighbours.
The murderous skies over Germany and a war-torn Italy in the grip of Nazi occupation provide the setting for this novel about the love of a separated husband and his wife and the love of a man for his young daughter. Freddie and Oskar both hope to find their way back to Florence. But Florence's heritage of preserving the identity and continuity of the past has never before been so under threat.

Read the first chapter by clicking here

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