Monday, 23 November 2015

A Little Animated!

Away from writing my latest book, I'm still enjoying playing with my Photoshop software. This weekend I fiddled with it enough to produce this little animation. So please snuggle down, keep warm and enjoy a great read.

Thank you so much for stopping by and also for being so kind and supportive.

Pauline x

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Inky Ocean, Inky Garden to bring the artist out in you!

Today I have someone very special on my Blog and I am sure when you see the amazing paintings and learn about her fabulous books, you will understand why I see Helen Elliston as a very talented and special lady. So please help yourself to a glass of bubbly and settle down to be amazed.... Take it away Helen...

I've been an artist ever since I could hold a pencil and brush. There's something very fulfilling and satisfying about turning a blank surface into something beautiful and visually engaging.  When I heard that adult colouring was becoming more popular, I knew that creating my own book was something I needed to do.  So I began sketching ideas, soon became completely absorbed by it, and from there the illustrations for my first book 'Inky Ocean' grew.  It was a great learning process too.  I learned so much about the creative process, technical issues of getting my designs on the computer, and content, which I have carried through to my second book.  I aimed to include a good variety of designs, from actual scenes to pretty designs and patterns. I didn't want the book to be full of the same types of images as it's nice to have a variety.  Plus I wanted to ensure I included images to suit varied ability and mood. Sometimes you are in the mood for a simpler, quick design with areas to loosen up your wrist and shade... Other times you might enjoy tackling something more intricate.

I have enjoyed every moment of creating these books.  It is no lie that I have pulled countless fifteen hour days and worked into the early hours on these books, gone through glee and frustration...  To create around sixty illustrations takes time, effort and passion, and so I'm delighted that my book is being well received.

Everyone colours in their own style... That's the beauty of colouring, that each person's take is different from style, medium to colour scheme.  Once I had completed the first book, I then began colouring some of the designs myself.  It is very relaxing and you can get lost for hours while busy colouring away.  But I also wanted to see what could be achieved from my illustrations.  I'm now colouring some of the illustrations from Inky Garden.  With my pens and pencils, dogs by my side, music on and some nibbles... It's a great way to spend an evening!

Inky Garden blurb... (Due for release 2nd week November)

Over 60 single-sided varied illustrations, with quests and cute garden visitors along your leafy adventure.  Including... colour and fold your very own 3D paper flower and bookmark!
Adequately sized spaces within the designs help offer you an enjoyable experience (not so small that it’s too difficult to colour, although you have the option to combine the spaces with one shade- allowing the lines to be just the texture of the leaf or flower) plus areas where you can loosen up your wrist a little to colour and shade or add your own doodles!

Large illustrations are single-sided, with smaller embellishments on the reverse (left pages)
Inky Garden is the second book in this series after Inky Ocean.  I hope you enjoy bringing them to life!

Inky Garden.... the link to Amazon to buy your copy...

 Amazon co uk

Wednesday, 11 November 2015

Haunting & Disturbing - Sarah England talks about Father of Lies

Recently, I finished reading a book that had me hooked from the moment I turned the first page. Father of Lies by Sarah England fascinated me in many ways enough that I just had to invite the author to my Blog to talk about the inspiration behind this chilling read, but before I hand centre stage to Sarah, here is my review…

An edge of your seat page turner. Father of Lies is a gripping tale that will send shivers trickling down your spine whilst you root for Ruby and the professional staff. I have recommended this book to several of my friends and cannot wait for another full length publication from Ms England. A brilliant read!  

Thank you for inviting me onto your blog, Pauline. I am so glad you enjoyed Father of Lies, and am very happy to talk about what inspired this creepy supernatural horror!

I have been a writer for many  years, mostly short stories and serials for magazines; but also had a collection of thrillers – ‘3am and Wide Awake’ – and a comedy novel, ‘Expected’ out with relatively small publishers. However, a couple of years ago several factors came together – I met a lady who had what used to be called Multiple Personality Disorder (now known as Disassociative Identity Disorder) and was deeply affected by her story. I also had a background as a nurse followed by many years in medical sales, specialising in psychiatry. My job entailed setting up conferences for psychiatrists, and I became very interested in schizophrenia and psychosis in particular. You get to hear the most breath-taking stories! Nothing though, absolutely nothing, as shocking and disturbing as the life of a person living with DID. Many of these people are also mediums or clairvoyants too, which is how I began to think up my character, Ruby.

I guess if you add to this my unhealthy interest in the occult and tarot readings, you can imagine how the story started to take shape! On top of that, Father of Lies is set in the bleak Derbyshire moors, near to where I spent most of my life, and where I lived for many years in an old blacksmith’s cottage next to a water mill, which was quite definitely haunted. So now I had my backdrop. I knew how it felt to lie in a bedroom with thousands of gallons of fresh water rushing past from the moors above me. Knew how dark the forest was at night, and how the light could be extinguished in an instant. And I also knew how it felt to hear tapping in the walls and whispering in the corners…

At that point I decided to make the book as frightening as possible. And so then came the research – books on demonology by Ed and Lorraine Warren, exorcisms by a Catholic priest, and pioneering psychiatry. Some of these books were so terrifying I could really only read them a little at a time and always in daylight. You might ask why I wanted Father of Lies to be so scary? Well, I’d read so many horrors and been left thinking, so what? I suppose I wanted to pack a punch. And more than that, these survivors – without giving the game away too much    like Ruby, who manage to come through their experiences, have endured far more than we can ever imagine, and in my view deserve their story being told. I hope, in some small way it does some good, because there’s an element of truth in here, which only goes to make it all the more horrifying.

Twitter: @sarahengland16

Photos attached! **
Synopsis and extract if wanted….


With no known identity or family, Ruby is the most aggressive and unresponsive psychiatric patient ever to be treated at Drummersgate forensic hospital, after attempting murder in a desolate northern mining village on the bleak Derbyshire moors.
            After nearly two years with no improvement, Psychiatrist Jack McGowan, decides to try something radical in order to discover the root of her trauma. The staff are exhausted and agree to his idea - using hypnosis in conjunction with LSD.
            The results are catastrophic. For Jack. His team. And his family.
            However, Ruby makes a miraculous recovery - now displaying clear symptoms of Dissociative Identity Disorder, which involves switching from one deeply disturbing character to another. Jack had planned to be able to treat her at this stage. Instead, he’s suffering from a bizarre type of mental breakdown - rushing around giggling to himself, cancelling his own appointments before turning up for them, and having horrific nightmares. At least he thought they were nightmares - but as the darkness takes on a pulsating, breathing life of its own, hes no longer sure.
            Meanwhile, DID expert in Leeds, Dr. Kristy Silver, has a client with an almost identical profile to Ruby – a boy who grew up in Woodsend, the same mining village in which Ruby attempted murder. Perhaps there is a connection? Kristy decides to investigate further with a proposed visit to Ruby; and on the way home that evening she decides to visit Woodsend. 
            From that point on, unnerving events escalate: Kristy has an unwanted, gruesome passenger in her car; back at the hospital Jack has barricaded himself inside his office; and Becky the ward sister, has a sudden and violent accident.
            Every mental health professional involved in the case then goes on to experience some kind of inexplicable and de-stabilising incident, and soon a terrifying picture begins to unfold. One which challenges the very fabric of society, and those in whom we put our trust. One which leads us directly back to the heart of darkness, and the Father of Lies. 

Extract from ‘Father of Lies’:

The treatment room had been designed for both relaxation and safety. From the large, double glazed window there was a breathtaking view of wild moorland, painted that day in a glory of purple heather. Clouds scudded across the sky, a weak winter sun chasing shadows over jutting rocks, a kestrel hovering with fluttering, shrouded wings.
            Jack pulled the blinds, and slats of crystal light filtered onto the walls. Next to his armchair there was a panic button; and high on the walls, tiny blue lights inside the cameras signified he and his client would be observed by security staff. 
            Overhead, fluorescent tubes fizzed and bulky radiators thumped out suffocating heat. There were no other sounds, save for the wind buffering the solid walls and occasionally rattling the windows.
            A small comfortable sofa had been placed beside the window, and in the far corner of the room there was a desk and another chair. A couple of Monets broke the monotony of magnolia paintwork. And the whole room smelled of floor polish.   
            Ruby sat curled up on the sofa like a small child with her knees drawn up to her chest, holding tightly onto Becky’s hand. Only the slight judder of her legs and the occasional tic in her jaw, gave away the use of anti-psychotic drugs. 
            Jack sat down. “Are you feeling okay, Ruby?”
            Barely perceptibly, she nodded.
            He raised an eyebrow. Exchanged a look with Becky. This was not her usual behaviour. Normally Ruby would be eyeing him suspiciously, recoiling visibly, and kicking if he got too close.
            Today though, she appeared to be almost inhumanly calm, gazing at the far wall with her pale blue eyes unfocused and glassy. Not really there, Jack thought. Far, far away…
            Who knew when the monster would leap out of that tranquility, though? They’d all been caught out before. She could switch in a heartbeat.
            “Ruby, you know we want to help you, don’t you?” 
            No response.
            “Thing is - I have something new I’d like to try. Is that okay with you?”
            No response.
            Then faintly, oh so faintly…Jack strained his ears… there came the silvery humming of an old nursery rhyme, as if it had arrived on a mystical breeze from a time long, long ago…‘Four and twenty blackbirds…’
            Fairy-like, he recalled later, a tinkling, ethereal tune, which gradually increased in strength and volume as he explained about the tiny dose of LSD and the gentle hypnosis technique he’d like to try. Anytime she wanted to stop or if she became too distressed, he would bring her out of it. And Becky would be with her the whole time.
            The humming grew ever louder. He glanced at Becky. This wasn’t going to work, was it? She was blocking him out.
            Then suddenly it stopped. Ruby turned and looked at him with a clear, somewhat challenging expression. Snatched and swallowed the proffered tablet with a glass of water. Folded her arms across her chest and waited.
            A sharp gust of wind shook the window.


Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!

A HUGE thank you from the bottom of my heart to everyone who kindly tweeted, shared and downloaded, In The Cold Light of Day on last weekend's promotion. You are amazing! For those of you who are now reading this emotional story filled with love, lies and deception, I hope you are enjoying. Today it is back to £1.99. Once again, thank you, thank you,  I am overwhelmed at your kindness.


Thanks for stopping by today and all your wonderful support

Pauline x

Sunday, 8 November 2015

Last Day at 99p / 99c

The last day of this special promotion for In The Cold Light of Day at just 99p / 99c.
Love, lies and addiction , but can there really be a winner? 

Amazon co uk

Amazon com 

Friday, 6 November 2015

Just 99p / 99c for the Weekend!

"Set in London during the sixties, the novel has an authentic feel for those times and Barclay digs deep into her characters; their motivations and emotions are always clear, and understood."

"And gambling is a hard habit to kick. Will he always be a chancer? Do we want him to take one final chance? As with previous books of Pauline Barclay’s, In The Cold Light of Day, is one I would highly recommend you pick up and lose yourself in. Loved it."

"This story had me gripped and intrigued from the very start. I was hanging on every word due to the excellent way the story is written it really pulls you in emotionally, and you feel like the story is so real that you are actually in the room with the characters, a silent and invisible observer of a compelling drama, watching all the event of the story unravel before your eyes, and powerless to reach out and stop what you know Bertie is heading for, as both the leading characters in this book are extremely likeable and I so willed on for this story to have a happy- ever after."

The Blurb!
Bertie Costain has worked hard all his life in the building trade and now owns his own London-based company. In 1967, approaching fifty and still unmarried he enjoys a playboy lifestyle, but when he meets Kitty, an attractive, wealthy widow ten years his senior, he swiftly proposes. 

Swept off her feet, Kitty adores him. The happy couple seem to have it all, but Bertie has a secret. Kitty has no idea their home is mortgaged to the hilt, or that the many expensive gifts he brings her come out of his winnings at roulette. Proud of his apparent success and ignorant of his gambling addiction, she happily loans him large sums of money, ostensibly for his business. 

Convinced with each spin of the wheel that his run of bad luck will change, Bertie gambles for increasingly high stakes, falling deeper and deeper into debt until, facing financial ruin and with nowhere to turn, he resorts to fraud. As their lives begin to unravel, Kitty learns the horrifying truth. 

In the cold light of day can their love survive the pain and destruction Bertie’s addiction has wrought? 


99p from Amazon co uk

99c from Amazon com

Monday, 2 November 2015

The secret behind Walking in the Rain

I have recently finished reading Walking in the Rain by Julia Ibbotson and what a beautiful read it is. It is heartbreaking and uplifting in equal measures, a love story that is not everything you'd expect or want, but tests your strength of love to breaking point. Today I have Julia here on my Blog talking about the secret behind writing Walking in the Rain, but before Julia takes centre stage, here is my review...

This is an emotional read in every way. It will have you screaming at Jess and at the same time begging her to listen. A book filled with many issues that are not readily addressed even in our modern society. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and found I could not put it down. I am now waiting impatiently for book 3. A beautiful read and for me it deserves the full 5 stars.

The secret behind Walking in the Rain and the Drumbeats trilogy

The title of Walking in the Rain, my latest novel, comes from the old 10cc song, “The Things we do for Love”. Remember it? So at one level, it’s about the crazy stupid things you might do with a new lover – not being bothered about getting wet in the rain because all you’re wanting is to hold his hand and saunter close together in a haze of passion. You don’t care about discomfort of soaking strands of hair, squelching shoes, and a wet skirt slapping against your thighs. You probably don’t even notice the rain. Like at the end of the film “Four Weddings and a Funeral” – clichéd, I know, and many of us cringed when we heard That Line, with Kristin Scott-Thomas and Hugh Grant, but the sentiment is one we’ve all felt.

At the other level, it’s about trying to carry on walking when your eyes are full of tears, trying to carry on walking through life when all about you is dissolving and washing away. Like when your partner is not the person you thought they were, when they’re difficult and increasingly impossible and you don’t understand why, when they’re wanting a life without you, maybe with someone else. That feeling of betrayal, and a shattered life, broken dreams.

I wanted the trilogy to explore both these aspects of the same woman’s life. How might one woman cope with different issues, good and bad, and remain true to herself?

I wrote the prequel to Walking in the Rain which was the first in the trilogy, Drumbeats, about Jess as a 19 year old, escaping from a strict family to travel to Ghana to find herself.  I chose that setting because I myself had a gap year in West Africa, and it was a place that I found enthralling and could still feel and describe vividly. I love the 60s so that was the time location. Some of the events were built up from those in the “real world”, some were imagined. A lot of political stuff was going on at that time in Africa: danger, war, suspicion. Jess was naïve maybe, an innocent with dreams, but by the end of the book, she had escaped, had found herself to some extent …
But what if Jess escaped, only to find tragedy?

Walking in the Rain picks up Jess’s story when she returns to England, and moves it on to marriage, family and relationships. I came across an issue about debilitating illness, mental illness, which affected a number of people I knew, and I wanted to investigate it. How might something like bipolar disorder/manic depression affect a close relationship with a partner? What if Jess had to face that, how would she cope with it and what might it do to her family? Mental health is a big issue at the moment and people often deal with the sufferer but ignore the partner and family who are so affected by it.

The last book of the trilogy, now provisionally titled Finding Jess, brings her story to a climax. It’ll hopefully be out next year. The main focal points of her life were her marriage, her children, her best friend, and her work. Two of these are lost. How can her life find its focus again without them?

So I started thinking: what if you couldn’t tell anyone about a secret that threatened to destroy your world?  What if you walked in the rain with the love of your life – then suddenly you were walking in the rain with eyes blinded by tears? What if you had to find out how to live your life again?

What would you do to find yourself again?