BritWriters Welcomes Joanna Lambert

Author pic (371x500) (280x391)I’m late as usual just like the White Rabbit in Alice in Wonderland.  The problem is time.  I do feel I’m organised, well I am at work anyway but I guess that’s because what I do and whether I do it on time or not affects other people in their jobs – there is a knock-on effect and questions to be answered  if I’m the cause of any delay .  With writing and posting on social networks it’s totally different.  I’m the one in the driving seat and my timetables are more flexible because I control them.  However there’s a danger here – I need to be just as organised because memory alone just won’t cope.  If I’m guesting on someone’s blog or having them guest on mine then there’s a deadline.  Writing has a slightly looser timeline for me.  I know when the next book should be ready for my editor, but sometimes there are things within the writing process which can throw that completely off course.

And so with the BritWriter’s Blog, my intentions were good.  I would contribute, send in my post and join everyone else who has spent time and effort writing and opening up their lives and thoughts on writing to the other members.  I had planned to start, even managed a couple of paragraphs, but other things simply got in the way.  But I’m pleased to say that at last I’m here with an apology and to say hi and how much I have enjoyed everyone else’s’ contributions.TheOtherSideOfMorning_MEDIUM (2) (425x640)

As for me, well, I live just outside the World Heritage city of Bath. Bath was one of the settings for Jane Austen’s novel Persuasion and somewhere she is known to have lived for a time.  Bath is a magnet for writers, musicians and actors, we have more than our fair share.  There is something about the city which definitely brings out peoples’ creativity.  My writing currently vies for my time with part-time work, although I plan to hang up my keyboard and stop next year (work that is, not writing).  Although I enjoy my job I enjoy writing far more and want to spend more time on it.  I am currently on my fifth novel, The Other Side of Morning. 

002 (800x458)My first three were a trilogy, a mix of love story, family saga and the music business.  The fourth was a sequel and for book five I have returned yet again to the same family tree as it is something readers seem to want.  The trilogy featured a rock band called The Attitude, the sequel another rock band called Rosetti and in the fifth, Rosetti’s front man is now a very successful solo artist.  The core of my writing is about cause and effect – how peoples’ actions affect the lives of others, sometimes those actions are good and sometimes not so good. I love exploring the interaction between people, putting them into certain situations and seeing how they resolve their issues.  I do have main characters but in general my books tend to have quite a big cast, which has led many people to suggest my writing would make great drama.  So there you have it, a little about me.BetweenTodayAndYesterday_Cover_AVATAR

I am sorry it has taken so long to walk out onto the BritWriter’s stage and meet everyone but now I’ve arrived I can say I’m pleased to be here alongside a huge group of talented people.



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Today at Sally Lunns I would like to welcome a fellow writer  I have known since 2009 when our first books were published.

Welcome Pauline, it’s great to have you here, hope you’re not finding the weather too cold.

Not too bad, I brought a very heavy coat, scarf, boots and thick gloves knowing how chilly it is here!

Many people already know about you, but for those who don’t would you like to give us a little background on yourself?

I’m married and we live down on the lovely island of Lanzarote in the Canary’s with our two little rescue doggies. Before moving to this beautiful island we lived for several years in Holland which was a great place for one of our hobbies – rollerblading.

I know you have three published novels, would you like to tell us what brought you in to writing?

As a child I wrote songs and poems before going onto writing short stories. Later, my work took me into corporate communications and writing was a large part of my day. For years I wrote magazines, press article, web sites and much more. I loved my work, but it was only when we decided to move to the Canary’s that I took up story writing again and in the last four years I have written three novels, Magnolia House, Satchfield Hall and Sometimes It Happens…Pauline 2

All three are very different, did you deliberately set out to do this, or did the ideas for each one just happen?

Yes, the ideas for each one just happened, though the original thought behind Magnolia House was based, very loosely, on a true event. The other two books came from ideas that popped into my head. As the stories played out in my imagination and the characters became more real, the stories took off.

You set up a blog for your fictitious character Peggy Stanton.  Who did you model her on?

Peggy is modelled on several people taken from real life and TV, but the voice I hear in my imagination is the one of Hyacinth Bucket (Patricia Routledge) from Keeping Up Appearances. Peggy is not a snob, but she likes to know what is going on. She as a real talent for interviewing characters on her chat show and always puts them at ease, but insists on getting down to the nitty gritty about their lives! She is a feisty woman and I love her! You can find her at

Pauline 3I know that you’ve created the writers’ website, Famous Five Plus to showcase fellow authors from around the world but tell us about your new project Strictly Sagas.

Strictly Sagas is a new web site and is designed to be a one stop place for readers who love family sagas. The web site will only showcase sagas, so readers know when they browse the Books page they will find only great family saga reads. To populate the web site, authors who write family sagas are invited to have their novels added to the site.

What are your plans for the future?

To continue writing, it’s always been part of my life and I can’t imagine not being immersed in a new story or surrounded by characters who in their own way tell me their story.Pauline 1

Thank you Pauline for taking time to call in and indulge in Tea and Talk at Sally Lunn’s

Thank you for the invite and the delicious afternoon tea, I hadn’t realised how much I missed the wonderful British tradition of afternoon tea and at Sally Lunn’s it is perfect.

Pauline is the author of three novels – Magnolia House, Satchfield Hall and Sometimes It Happens…

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Sometimes It Happens… in 2012 received a B.R.A.G. Medallion award

You can find Pauline on the following websites: and

Catch up with her on Facebook

Follow her on Twitter @paulinembarclay

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The Green Green Grass of Home…

DSCF1331 (640x480)On Thursday last week I visited Devizes in Wiltshire, the town where I was born and grew up.  I had not been back for at least four years but whenever I do I still feel the connection.  Devizes is a market town, which serves a large farming community.  Within minutes of leaving the town in any direction there are rolling hills and fields as far as the eye can see.  Even today,  urbanisation has not really intruded much into the landscape.  When I was a child, Thursday was market day and in the centre of town there would be a farmers market – not the sort you get today with meat and dairy products being sold, but one with pens containing sheep and calves for sale.  These days it is the site of the Thursday market, where you can buy anything from car cleaner to the Sunday joint – it’s a large event which brings a huge amount of shoppers in looking for bargains.

The picture above is of Ivy House, although I’m not sure what is is called now.  It used to be a private nursing home back in the late forties/early fifties and it’s where I was born.  It looks a little sad now and am not sure what happens within its walls but before we had the benefit of hospital maternity wards, it’s the sort of place where most babies (including both me and my brother) popped into the world, unless they were home births of course.  How far we have come since then!

Devizes has always been a bustling town with lots of small, independent shops.  On Thursday, however, it was clear to see how the recession had taken its toll.  In one of the main streets there was a wonderful kitchen shop which sold absolutely anything and everything and also a good quality interiors and soft furnishing store – both sadly are now empty.  It’s scary when you realise after so many years managing to keep going that suddenly these shops aren’t there any more.  Bath, where I live, is a commercial bubble which had not taken the same kind of hit other cities and towns have.  Having two universities and a thriving tourist trade has meant  while there have been casualties there too, there always seems to be someone new who will take over the lease and reopen so there are very few empty stores.  So when you visit outside Bath and find long established shops are no more, it really brings home to you exactly what effect the recession is having on this country.

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Opposite Ivy House is The Green, a large open grassy area which hosts visiting fairs and circuses.  To its left is The Crammer.  this is a very large pond and supposedly the site of The Moonraker legend.   This refers to a folk story set in the time when  smuggling was a significant industry in rural England, with Wiltshire lying on the smugglers’ secret routes between the south coast and customers in the centre of the country. The story goes that some local people had hidden barrels of French brandy from customs officers in a village pond. While trying to retrieve it at night, they were caught by the revenue men, but explained themselves by pointing to the moon’s reflection and saying they were trying to rake in a round cheese. The excise men, thinking they were simple yokels, laughed at them and went on their way.  The village pond in the legend was always believed to have been The Crammer.

Devizes is also home of Wadworths, an independent brewery dating back to the 1700s and beyond.  Even today the tradition of delivering beer to pubs in the town  by waggon and horses still takes place.

You can find more about Devizes and the surrounding area on

So there you have it, my town, my birthplace and a little bit of nostalgia.

Next week I will be back with Tea and Talk at Sally Lunn’s when fellow author Pauline Barclay will be my guest.