Browsing for Books

Over ten years ago, I stumbled across Meg Bogin’s book, The Female Troubadours, in the library of University of Wales Trinity Saint David’s where I was studying for an MA in Creative Writing. I was working on my first novel at the time, based on the real woman, Almodis de La Marche, the countess of…

Going Underground

Extensive medieval tunnels have just been found near Tintern Abbey. Many medieval castles had escape tunnels for when the castle was under siege. Manorbier Castle in Wales has an escape tunnel entered through the well. I used this detail from Manorbier and my experience of spending 12 hours in an old lead mine in Cumbria…

The Anarchy out now in paperback

It is available to order at last!  The e-book of my latest novel, The Anarchy, was published in June, but due to coronavirus disruptions for printers, distributors, and publishers, the paperback edition is only just now reaching many online retailers. The Anarchy is the final book in the Conquest series focused on Nest ferch Rhys, the daughter of…

The Sound of the Middle Ages

I look at the now deserted and stagnant lavoirs, the communal washing places, in the Lot Valley in France and can almost hear women singing, gossiping about mistresses and neighbours, and slapping wet laundry against the stone papillon slabs. My article, ‘The Sound of the Middle Ages‘, has just been published in Historical Novels Review.

Female Lords

The eleventh-century countess of Barcelona, Almodis de La Marche, was accused by the monk historian, William of Malmesbury, of being driven by ‘a furious and godless female itch’, which immediately struck me as a good reason to write her biography.  I’m working on that biography now and have expanded it to incorporate the lives of…

Tracking stories through time and across landscapes

Sarah Gray’s interview with me on Soundart Radio discussing my medieval fiction, my watery future fiction, and new arts postgrad courses at Dartington Arts School – MA Poetics of Imagination and MA Arts and Place. Listen in:

Norman silver bird brooch

Writing on a Norman silver mine in the final stages of editing my next novel, The Anarchy. Found this exquisite Norman silver bird brooch to help with writing the scene.

Welsh goldmine

Researching royal bastards, medieval Welsh noblewomen and Welsh gold at the British Library this week for the final book in my Welsh Conquest trilogy. The Anarchy – coming soon. See Impress Books.

Conquest I briefly available for 99p

Kobo is currently offering Conquest I: Daughter of the Last King for a mere 99p. Conquest I is the first book in my trilogy about Nest ferch Rhys and the struggle between the Welsh and the Normans in the 12th century. It’s available at this price for a limited time in the 99 books for 99p…

Second-career writer

This medieval village and castle in the Tarn Valley in southern France was where I was first prompted to start writing historical fiction. A guest post by me charting my mid-life switch from academic to novelist has been published today on M.K. Tod’s A Writer of History blog.