Is It A New Story? It Surely Is!

Yes indeed, my next story has arrived! Medium Freighter Seeks Crew involves the crew of the Lady Vespertine, some of whom you may have already met in Burying Gabe. MFSC is set 12 years before BG. Why don’t I let the blurb tell you more?

“Sam Cooper has just acquired a bigger cargo ship and some lucrative asteroid mining permits. He’s gathered a first officer, an engineer and some muscle together on Mars but finding more crew is proving difficult. A chaotic old friend and a stubborn geologist are both playing hard to get but events take a sudden, perilous turn. Can the new crew members work together as a team to mount a dangerous rescue mission? “

Places to buy it:

Amazon UK
Amazon US
Google Play

With MFSC safely launched, my focus now moves to this year’s Nanowrimo (National Novel Writing Month). What am I going to write 50,000 words about in the 30 days of November? (29 for me as I always have my birthday off, mid-month.) It’s all in hand. Ideas are forming! Prep work needs to be done! Can’t wait to ride that exhilarating wave of creativity!


Dark Words has arrived!

Yes indeed, publication day has been and gone for the horror anthology that includes my ghostly story Transepts in Time! It’s now available from all the Amazons worldwide – here are the UK link and US Link for the Kindle edition. A paperback version is now available at a different Amazon link: UK and US .

It’s all very exciting! I’ve had positive feedback from several of my co-authors, most of whom are old hands at the Horror genre. I’m working my way through all the stories and really enjoying them. I’m not saying I won’t write Horror again but SF will always be my first love!

Pre-Orders Up and Publication Date Announced!

Yes indeed folks, Dark Words now has a due date – May 28th!

It will be available on Amazon worldwide but you can pre-order it now. Here are the UK Link and the US Link – other Amazons are available 😉 . You won’t have to delve far into the Kindle book to find my story as TRANSEPTS IN TIME is first up!

To whet your appetite, here is the book trailer by fellow author Alex Norcross, produced with Tristin Briggs of Backyard Insanity Productions.

I Invite You Into My Ghostly Realm!

Look out folks – I will be appearing in an anthology, this summer! I was invited to contribute a Horror story to “Dark Words: Stories of Urban Legends and Folklore” by Matt Wildasin of Dandelion Publishing. I’ve never written Horror before but I had a bash and have produced “Transepts in Time”, about a part of Ely Cathedral that no longer exists – the North-West Transept. I’ve taken some liberties with the building and the streets around it, but this is my imagined Ely, and sometimes you have to simplify the real life things to smooth out your tale.

Last I heard, it was due out in May or June. I will keep you informed!

What’s Happening With The Burying Gabe Prequel?

Dear Reader, I’m so glad you asked!

Around the time I was finishing up Burying Gabe (BG), I knew that the three characters who don’t appear in BG (because reasons) were crying out for a chance to speak for themselves.

Whilst editing Parisienne Skies, I wrote a first draft of “Vespertine Begins” (that’s the working title) where Nev, Carrie and Schroeder have their time to shine. We’re currently editing it to within an inch of its life and I hope to have it out around Christmas time.

It *might* be called “Seven Worlds Will Collide: A Vespertine And All Who Sail In Her Story” once I publish it. 7WWC is a title I’ve previously used elsewhere, as those who’ve known me for a long time will attest. I’m still vacillating over that and may yet choose something else, but I’ll tell you this much. It won’t be called “Vespertine Begins”!

I like dwelling in the Lady Vespertine universe. There’s so much more to come from there, and from Ganymede Station too. Just watch this space!


IAQ: What inspired Parisienne Skies, Full of Strangers?

It’s time for another installment of my “Infrequently Asked Questions” series! As you will have seen from the title of this post, today let’s find out “what inspired Parisienne Skies, Full of Strangers?”

I’m glad you asked. (Yes yes, I know you didn’t, but indulge me for a moment or two.)

The initial spark that lit the candle was Casablanca, which I implore you to see, if you haven’t already. The idea of Rick and Elsa’s powerful but unfulfilled love in troubled times (World War 2 in their case) fascinated me. That they had been parted but still held a torch for each other. From there, my story took on a life of its own and filled out in directions I hadn’t anticipated. My Rick had a wife, Bogart’s Rick didn’t. Monique is single but Elsa is married. Most of my action takes place away from the bar and we take in some of the sites of Paris. I have Google Streetview to thank for giving me the ability to describe the scenery as I’ve never actually been to the French capital! The closest I’ve been is sitting on the Eurostar in Lille Station en route to Bruges.

The only two direct nods I made to the original movie are that the leading man is called Rick and his drinking establishment is “Rick’s Café Américain” in Casablanca and “Le Bar Américain” in PS. There would’ve been a third but I knew I had to ditch the working title “Space Casablanca”. I’m surprised that no-one picked up on that influence but it must be more subtle than I thought.

In closing, a fervent wish. Should any passing producer director take a fancy towards televising/filming PS, I’d like them to cast Iain Glen (Ser Jorah Mormont in Game of Thrones) as Rick and Thandie Newton (Maeve in Westworld) as Monique. Not much to ask, is it? 😊


Photo by Margerretta on

Parisienne Skies, Full of Strangers is here, People!

Oh yes, yesterday (2nd June 2020) marked the publication of my second novelette, the abovementioned Parisienne Skies, Full of Strangers.

It has been a long labour, bringing this one to fruition. The earliest notes I can find for it are dated early 2016, and like Burying Gabe, it had a long fallow period when I didn’t know where to go with it. I was still adding new bits just two weeks ago!

It’s available from Amazon worldwide – click here to find it on the UK site (you can probably navigate to your own Amazon from there).


Your Pal, Leonie. 😊

At Last, The Prequel!

Wow, it has been quite a while since I last wrote.

In the mean time, I’ve done a very random Nanowrimo where I crossed the finishing line again. Although there’s not much that can be salvaged from the document that I produced last November, it has served an important purpose. I’m now writing at least every weekday, hurray!

I’ve been working on that prequel to Burying Gabe that I promised, last year. The prequel has a working title but I’m hoping to come up with something better before I bring it to light. I should mention that “Burying Gabe” was meant to be a working title but I never fell upon anything better that fitted as well, so we shall see.

I’ve also gone back to the project that I’ve been editing with he who shall be known as “Strong Silent Type” for now. “Parisienne Skies, Full of Strangers” is a completely different kettle of fish to BG, and I hope to be bringing it to you, fairly soon.

There will be more bloggage when I have further news, my friends! Until then:

/exeunt, follow by a bear

Will There Be More?

The positive reaction to Burying Gabe has been amazing. Thanks to everyone who has shelled out 99 pence (or the equivalent in their own national currency) to buy and read my modest SF confection.

A couple of readers have asked “will there be more from the crew of the Lady Vespertine?” The answer is a solid yes as I’ve already got one idea in mind for another adventure, though it won’t be my next publication, or even the one after that. Another of my stories is about to be ruthlessly edited to within an inch of its life with my long-suffering fiancé M, and in the meantime I’m writing the first draft of the story after that. As M says: I’ve got a right little conveyor belt going on here!

As to Sam and the gang on the LV: I’ve got another, less developed idea in mind. I’ll be honest, it’s only come to me since I started writing this post. I feel I would like to get to know the crew at an earlier stage, before the devastating events of BG. I’d also like to use this prequel story to explain why Sam has two scientists in his ship’s complement, which no-one has yet questioned.

Believe me. I’ve been waiting for it 😉

So once I’m done writing this post, I’ll open a fresh word file. I’ll type the words “Lady Vespertine Crew Untitled Prequel Notes” at the top of the page and add the small crop of ideas that have already taken root in my head.

Because that’s how I roll…