#BlogTour | #GuestPost: The Watcher by Netta Newbound (@nettanewbound) @BloodhoundBook

I’ve read a few of Netta’s thrillers and enjoyed every one of them. She has some useful tips for writers in this interview as well. Congrats on ‘The Watcher’ Netta!


the watcher cover.jpg“Life couldn’t get much better for Hannah. She accepts her dream job in Manchester, and easily makes friends with her new neighbours.

When she becomes romantically involved with her boss, she can’t believe her luck. But things are about to take a grisly turn.

As her colleagues and neighbours are killed off one by one, Hannah’s idyllic life starts to fall apart. But when her mother becomes the next victim, the connection to Hannah is all too real.

Who is watching her every move?

Will the police discover the real killer in time?

Hannah is about to learn that appearances can be deceptive.”

I am delighted to welcome you to my stop on the The Watcher blog tour.  The Watcher is written by Netta Newbound and was published by the fantastic Bloodhound Books at the end of last month (January 2017).  I have been wanting to read a novel by Netta…

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Save Money on Professional Edits—6 Easy Ways to Clean Up Your Own Manuscript

Such useful tips, thank you Kristen

Kristen Lamb's Blog


Over my career I have literally edited thousands of works, most of them written by emerging writers. My greatest frustration always was (and still is) when I couldn’t even GET to critiquing the deeper story elements because I was too distracted by these all too common oopses.

Good editors are NOT cheap. There are also many editors who charge by the hour. If they’re spending their time fixing oopses you could’ve easily repaired yourself? You’re burning cash and time. Yet, correct these problems, and editors can more easily get to the MEAT of your novel. This means you will spend less money and get far higher value.

#1 The Brutal Truth about Adverbs, Metaphors and Similes

I have never met an adverb, simile, or metaphor I didn’t LOVE. I totally dig description, but it can present problems.

First of all, adverbs are not ALL evil. Redundant adverbs are evil. If…

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Writing in First Person, Present Tense? Think Again

After reading a couple of novels written in this format, I found them a little difficult to finish and was wondering why. This blog post explains it perfectly. Well worth a read if you are an author who prefers writing in the first person – present tense.

Write or Wrong Blog

I must admit I wasn’t aware of the growing trend in fiction of authors writing stories and novels in the present tense until I read David Jauss’ chapter “Remembrance of Things Present” in his volume On Writing Fiction (Writers Digest Books, 2011).

If you’ve written something in first person present tense or are in the process of doing so, I strongly recommend you read this chapter. Jauss reviews the origins of present tense writing, suggests why it’s become popular and details seven advantages and 10 disadvantages of using this format. In my humble opinion, the disadvantages win hands down. Yet, Jauss believes it can be done well if the writer is aware of the pitfalls.

In truth, very few writers manage present tense without falling prey to more than one of the negatives. Oddly, I happen to be in the middle of a political thriller that is written in present…

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Only 10 years left? Surely not…

Musings from my notebook, while sitting in a cafe in Feilding, contemplating life…

A blank page. Why is it so hard to start?

I read online this morning that a fairly credible scientist somewhere predicts we humans have at most, ten years left on this planet before we cause our own extinction. Climate change, wild weather patterns, environmental destruction, disappearing potable water resources, overpopulation etc, etc, the depressing list goes on and on.

You would think those reasons would give me some urgency to fill up this notebook … but, I find it all a bit hard to swallow. I’m pinning my hopes on the dream that not only do we have the collective intelligence and technology, but the self-preserving passion to prevent our final performance from becoming the tragedy that scientist predicts.


Hell – ten years! I will finally have my youngest child almost independent and be ready to actually start doing the things ‘I have always wanted to do’ in ten years time. So I will be damned if I’m going to believe that the big ole Bar Manager in the sky is going to call ‘Closing Time’ on me when I’m just warming up to party!

My life thus far has been a continual process of surviving, just getting through the next day, next week, next year. Making plans, goals, dreams to motivate myself to hang in there when times are tough. To keep hoping when the nights are lonely. To believe and have faith that if I work hard and treat people nicely, one day, karma will be good to me, or at the very least cut me a little slack  and give me a turn at happiness.

But I cannot control what others do in the world. I cannot alleviate all the bad they do to this world and its creatures – no matter how hard I try. Even up-skilling and educating myself more in Politics hasn’t helped a lot. I’m just a tiny bee trying to sting our corrupt leaders in the butt. But to be effective – I know we need the whole swarm to sting them along side me, and sadly most of the swarm of humanity is so damn busy getting jolly off their own royal jelly they either don’t care what the future holds, or don’t want to know.


So I continue to write my books, to love my kids (even when they’re a bit of a pain, then I just love my wine a little more). I try to find reasons to laugh in life. I try to see the good that some humans are still capable of when disaster strikes, as it has recently with the 7.8 earthquake which decimated Kaikoura and other parts of New Zealand.

What keeps me going is my dreams. To live a simple, peaceful, responsible, happy, stress-free life in the country with those I love nearby, and to enjoy good food and a laugh now and then.

It’s not that much to expect from life, is it?

Time is precious. It cannot be bought. Don’t waste it, but don’t give up on enjoying it either. If you don’t hear from me again before December 25th, Merry Christmas to you all. Stay safe and find a little pearl of happiness where ever you can. xox



The Single Largest Secret to Success

Completely agree with Kirstin on this. Very useful advice for writers or anyone with a goal they wish to achieve.

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Steve Snodgrass Image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Steve Snodgrass

All of us start out writing for different reasons. Perhaps we have dreams of seeing New York Times Best Seller or USA Today Best Seller in front of our names. Perhaps we long to be a household name like Stephen King or even a legend like J.K Rowling.

Some of you might want to see Winner of the Pulitzer Prize on the cover of your books or see your books made into television or major motion pictures. Some writers simply want to finish that one novel and publish it so they can say they wrote a novel.

Every dream is equally noble. There are no right or wrong goals only your goals (and goals evolve as we do). Yet, I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that the level of sacrifice and self-discipline required to Write a Novel in…

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What’s been happening down here in Middle Earth?

Well, for starters, I’ve just been fluffing about tszujing up this website a little. For those who have no idea what that word I just used is, I have often heard it on programmes such as Queer Eye for the Straight Guy; Carson is a scream. I have often used it in passing conversation, but this is the first time I actually tried spelling it. Quirky wee word. Now you also know how to spell it. You’re welcome.

daisy-and-cc So what’s the gossip from New Zealand you might say?

As always, plenty my friends. Plenty.

For a starter cows are causing a bit of a stink between disappearing herds from the South Island http://bit.ly/2ddW2P1  to them crapping in our waterways and causing waterborne illnesses in our drinking water http://bit.ly/2dZc0Rh .

Water is life right? Without enough of it, we all die. Humans, animals and plants alike. Wars in the future will be fought not over oil, but the precious, dwindling, still potable resources of water on this planet.

I personally agree with Dr Mike Joy; this planet can’t sustain the level of cattle we are trying to farm, to feed people. Makes more sense to eat the grain rather than filter it through cows for two years, while they pee, poo and fart up the atmosphere and require massive amounts of fossil fuel inputs during production.

Our current government is pretty useless really. John Key religiously backs Obama’s TPPA even though no-one else in the world seems to want a bar of it. The UN has  frowned upon his lack of progress in dealing with child poverty in this country http://bit.ly/2e7mIXQ and then there’s the number of homeless people on the streets and in Auckland, forced to live in their cars at times because of the skyrocketing cost of rent up that way.

But hey at least we don’t have to choose between Trump and Clinton right?

(Although if you were all smart, you’d pick Jill Stein, just sayin’. The possibility of WW3 is a lot closer than you realize and Jill is the only one you can really trust not to shove you guys under the bus in that regard. And don’t believe those woofters telling you Jill is polling too low to have a snowballs chance in hell, because they are just trying to fool you like those old quacks who used to sell ‘Dr Feel Good’ from their wagons, claiming it would cure you of everything from toothache to herpes!)

So hey, all a bit depressing right? Now you know why I prefer to drift off into Lala land with my novels and invent a world where all this crap doesn’t exist.

xmas gnomes 074

Open Letter to John Key – Prime Minister of New Zealand

John Key, I would like to ask you a very important question? Given that WW3 is almost about to break out between Russia (and China will back them up as they are allies) and the USA, why on earth are you kissing up America’s butt? Why do you continuously try to get in bed with both USA and China when things are about to get really HOT up in the northern hemisphere? Surely you know you are going to have to choose a side, and as far as I can tell you are backing the losing team.

You are a long time participant in the world of global money and you must be well aware (if someone like me is) that America are so far in debt, trillions in debt, (and a lot of that debt is owed to China who could sink their economy with ease by using the BRICS alternative currency and destroying the petrodollar).

American military has a long history of invading countries they have no business in being in, purely in an attempt to gain control of that country’s oil resources. They are broke, desperate and trying to draw Russia into a war (that Russia really does not want by the way. And Syria ASKED Russia to help in Syria. America had no such invitation to their country). By siding with the aggressors here (and don’t kid yourself into thinking that most of the planet is not aware of the fact it is the American government who are the aggressors) you are painting a HUGE target on our country.

We know that breaking our 30 year NO NUKE stance is purely to suck up to the Americans. We know the increase in military funding (while there are children living in cars without enough to eat here that you ignore) this increase in military funding is to aid your buddies (who have been exposed to have created and fund ISIS) in illegal invasions of foreign Middle Eastern lands (such as Iraq, Libya and several others). If you gave a damn about this country you would keep us neutral and out of it all, but we know where your real loyalty lies.

The Australians have made the mistake of bombing with the Americans. Terrorism has risen notably in their country as a result. Russia is trying to keep things from overheating but if they continue to be backed into a corner, they will retaliate. Russia’s military technology and weapons could end life on this planet as we know it! A wise man would not risk pissing them off!

I truly feel for the general population of America because they too are sitting ducks, at the whim of a government who is crazy out of control in their never ending search for global domination and in truth gives them no democracy and cares little for their safety either.

John Key, best you  have a serious think about the danger you and all your other Neoliberal cronies are exposing us all to. #PeacenotWar #NoNukes #Syria #WW111 #NoTPP #stopthekilling #leavetheoilinthegroundatomic-bomb-1011738_640

I love my country, but am deeply ashamed of its Government,

Teresa Schulz.