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charliecochrane [userpic]

Special offer on Best Corpse for the Job!

October 10th, 2017 (01:09 pm)

You can currently pick up the first Lindenshaw book for less than a quid (or whatever that is in your local currency.)

Go to your local amazon to take advantage of the offer.

BestCorpseForTheJob_200x300

charliecochrane [userpic]

I couldn't have been more wrong!

October 10th, 2017 (11:42 am)

When we had the planning meeting for UK Meet 2018, I had concerns that we'd peaked. We sold out in 24 hours for the 2016 event and what with the two year gap - and other events cropping up - I was worried that our numbers would go down and suggested we plan around that eventuality.
Was I right? Was I fairy cakes. Yesterday we sold out in 6 hours 30 minutes, and that would have been a shorter time if the mailshot hadn't arsed about. I feel so sorry for people who didn't get a ticket and had to go on the mailing list, but demand is now hugely outstripping supply.
Roll on 2020?

charliecochrane [userpic]

Count the Shells Blog tour

October 6th, 2017 (07:49 pm)

I'm very excited about the tour for Count the Shells - looks like an epic one. When it starts to go live, you can comment at any stop to win a bag of goodies. The more times you comment the more chances you have.

charliecochrane [userpic]

WWI commemoration - a tribute to Hedd Wyn

October 5th, 2017 (03:53 pm)
Tags:

Apologies that this is a day later than usual, but yesterday got eaten up with a board meeting and meeting a school inspector.

I love the way that so many of the commemorative events for WWI beautifully combine the old and the new. This video installation in Wales to remember Hedd Wyn looks stunning. It reminds me of the terribly moving Passchendaele events.

charliecochrane [userpic]

First review for Count the Shells - and it's in Publisher's Weekly!

October 3rd, 2017 (11:12 am)

That's me grinning from ear to ear!

Cochrane’s ear for historical idioms and sensitivity to the secrecy of gay life in early-20th-century Britain create a powerful impression of accuracy. This deeply felt work is sure to please fans of historical romance.

Read the whole thing at Publisher's Weekly.

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charliecochrane [userpic]

Rainbow snippet - Better to Die

October 1st, 2017 (03:42 pm)

Am delighted to see that the anthology A Call to Arms is up for pre-order, for November 1st release. My offering is set in the 1970's, but shows how the effects of war last long after the fighting stops.

Frank was the black sheep of the family. He'd lived in our village until I was five and my fondest memories of the man were the stories he regaled us with. Snakes in the jungle so thin they'd slip through the eyelets of your boots, Gurkha soldiers as hard as adamant that you thanked God were on your side and not the other. Never anything about the fighting, though; he kept that close to his chest.
I'll never forget the dirty great Gurkha kukri Frank kept on his wall. Mum had kittens when he got it down and let me hold it, but I treated it with respect. Didn't so much as nick my fingers.
"Jamie," Frank used to say, "when you take a kukri out of its scabbard, it has to taste blood before it can go back again. That's why I took this out and keep it out, so it doesn't need satisfying again. My fighting days are long gone. You can have it when I'm gone."
"You'll never go," I'd said, secretly delighted that I'd get the thing one day.
"Better to die than to be a coward," he'd replied, enigmatically. Later I found that had been the motto of the Gurkha Rifles, but I was sure there was more to what he was saying than just that.

Many more excerpts linked at the Rainbow snippets group.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B075ZTP785/

charliecochrane [userpic]

Charlie's latest newsletter

September 29th, 2017 (08:46 pm)

Summer 2017 has finally gone. Nothing to do with the equinox, or even the weather—which has been glorious on and off this week—but the end of the cricket season. Yes, cricket is the sport in which you can have a single game that lasts five days and in which there isn’t necessarily a winner. How quintessentially English can you get?

News

There has been a flurry of reviews. (Better than a slurry of reviews!) First of all for Lessons in Loving thy Murderous Neighbour,  in the Mystery People e-zine, reposted at Promoting Crime Blogspot.

There are many deft touches of humour, as when Orlando and Jonty individually experience the salutary realisation that the members of ‘the college next door’ are, in the main, pleasant and intelligent people, and that many of them regard St Bride’s with the same degree of disdain as the St Brides’ Fellows have always felt for them.

Jury of One got a 4.25 star review at Joyfully Jay.

I’d highly recommend this series to readers who love both mysteries and British colloquial English

I’ve set up a page for The Right Chair Press, which is my imprint for my new and re-released self-published stories. I’ve got three titles so far, although that represents five stories, as I’m putting out the older titles as double-ups, to provide best value for my readers.

Here’s a snippet from Wild Bells,  my first foray into “DIY”.

Benjamin Swann couldn’t sleep at all. Dinner, excellent as it had been, lay heavy on his stomach, while thoughts oppressed his mind. He looked out over the fields, their thick coating of frost resembling snow in the moonlight. He loved winter, the white and grey tones, the clear light and sharp air all helping to bring his life into a clearer focus. Not that it needed to be brought much further into focus after tonight. He wandered down to the library, where a fire was always kept burning low on cold nights. He coaxed it into life, laying another log on, then found his favourite pack of cards, dealing out hands without thinking.
Queen of hearts. He considered the ladies sleeping in houses and cottages all over the parish, lost in dreams of suitors and admirers, then held the pack to his head in an attempt to cool his restless, guilty thoughts.
Queen of clubs. His sister too, not thirty yards up the stairs and along the corridor of the big house, asleep and no doubt dreaming, like the other maids who frequented St. Archibald’s, of a pair of blue eyes and a flashing smile.
Jack of hearts. The only decision William Church could make which wouldn’t disappoint any of them would be the offer of his hand.
disappoint any of them would be the offer of his hand.
Jack of spades. Well, whatever the man chose to do, there would be many a long face in the parish. Everyone with any sense had seen the risk of that eventuality from the moment the curate had arrived and swept the spinsters off their feet, and the likely number of potentially broken hearts seemed to increase weekly.
King of hearts. Only one person could win the man’s lasting affection—Benjamin was sure William was no cad and wouldn’t seek to play the field. Whether he’d be brave enough to go where Benjamin felt his conscience might lead him was another thing.
Joker. Why did life have to be so ridiculously complicated?

And finally, thinking of autumn days ahead



 

charliecochrane [userpic]

National poetry day - Wilfred Owen

September 28th, 2017 (01:32 pm)

I'm not choosing one of Wilfred's war poems, but two of his lesser known works. When we were at school nobody mentioned that he'd written a number of homoerotic poems, and certainly some of the biographies of him seem to want to airbrush this part of his nature out of the picture. Let's put it back in!

"Who is the god of Canongate" was probably written at Scarborough in the winter of 1917/18.

Who is the god of Canongate?
I, for I trifle with men and fate.

Art thou high in the heart of London?
Yea, for I do what is done and undone.

What is thy throne, thou barefoot god?
All pavements where my feet have trod.

Where is thy shrine, then, little god?
Up secret stairs men mount unshod.

Say what libation such men fill?
There lift their lusts and let them spill.

Why do you smell of the moss in Arden?
If I told you, Sir, your look would harden.

What are you called, I ask your pardon?
I am called the Flower of Covent Garden.

What shall I pay for you, lily-lad?
Not all the gold King Solomon had.

How can I buy you, London Flower?
Buy me for ever, but not for an hour.

When shall I pay you, Violet Eyes?
With laughter first, and after with sighs.

But you will fade, my delicate bud?
No, there is too much sap in my blood.

Will you not shrink in my shut room?
No, there I’ll break into fullest bloom.

You can find scans of Owen's original notes for this and other poems at the First World War Digital Poetry Archive.

"To-" was drafted in May 1916, probably for Johnny de la Touche. It was later revised.

Three rompers run together, hand in hand.
The middle boy stops short, the others hurtle:
What bumps, what shrieks, what laughter turning turtle.

Love, racing between us two, has planned
A sudden mischief: shortly he will stand
And we shall shock. We cannot help but fall;
What matter? Why, it will not hurt at all,
Our youth is supple, and the world is sand.

Better our lips should bruise our eyes, than He,
Rude Love, out-run our breath; you pant, and I,
I cannot run much farther, mind that we
Both laugh with Love; and having tumbled, try
To go forever children, hand in hand.
The sea is rising … and the world is sand.

charliecochrane [userpic]

Don't forget to get involved in the conversation

September 25th, 2017 (04:48 pm)

Over at The International Thriller Writers' Big Thrill site, where all this week we're discussing humour in thrillers. To joke or not to joke, that is the question...

I'll be sharing my wisdom (?!) on and off during the week, including replying to the comments already cropping up. Very thought provoking.

charliecochrane [userpic]

Rainbow snippet - Promises Made Under Fire

September 24th, 2017 (03:31 pm)

Keeping up the recent historical theme with a bit of Promises Made Under Fire. This was the first bit I ever drafted of the story and it remained exactly the same all the way to publication!

First light. A distant sound of something heavy being moved. A thin curtain of rain—the sort of misty, drizzly rain that soaked us through to the skin. Prospect of something for breakfast that might just pretend to be bacon and bread.
Good morning, France. An identical morning to yesterday and bound to be the same tomorrow. Tomorrow and tomorrow, world without end, amen.
I looked up and down the trench. The small world I’d become bound in was now starting to rouse, stretching and facing a grey dawn. The men were stirring, so I had to get out my best stiff upper lip. If I showed how forlorn I felt, then what chance had I of inspiring them?
“Morning, sir.” Bentham, nominally my officer’s servant but in reality a cross between a nursemaid and a housemaster, popped up, smiling. “Breakfast won’t be that long. You and Lieutenant Foden need something solid in your stomachs on a day like this.”
“Aye.” I nodded, not trusting myself to say anything else until I’d got my head on straight.
“Tea’s ready, though.” He thrust a steaming mug into my hands. Add telepathist to the list of his qualities. Maybe when I’d got some hot tea into me then the world might seem a slightly better place. “Quiet, last night.”
“It was.” I was going to have to enter into conversation whether I wanted to or not. “I don’t like it when they’re quiet. Always feel that Jerry’s plotting something.”

More excerpts at the Rainbow Snippet Group.