Monday, 19 October 2015

#Monday Moments are with Cathy Bryant & her Pride and Regicide

Good morning! 

My #Monday Moments are with the incredibly multi-talented Cathy Bryant whose professional writing skills are used to impressive advantage.  

I met Cathy this year when she became a Crooked Cat author, her first novel Pride and Regicide having been published by Crooked Cat three weeks ago - though she's not new to writing.  

Cathy's worked as a life model, civil servant and childminder before becoming a professional writer. She has won 20 literary awards, including the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Prize and the Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest, and her work has appeared in over 200 publications. Cathy's books  are 'Contains Strong Language and Scenes of a Sexual Nature' and 'Look at All the Women' (both poetry), 'How to Win Writing Competitions' (nonfiction).  and 'Pride & Regicide - a Mary Bennet Mystery' (a novel). See her listings for cash-strapped writers at, updated on the first of every month. Cathy lives in Cheshire, UK.
(Read to the end of the excerpt to find out more about Cathy's competitions and inspiring wins!)

I'll be reading my copy of Pride & Regicide soon, since I'm gradually whittling down my kindle queue. I love reading Jane Austen's books so I'm sure to enjoy Cathy's humorous murder mystery based on daily life in the Bennet- style household.

Here's what Pride and Regicide is all about:

"Regicide? Oh, heaven preserve us! Was it the French? They will kill us all, and make us eat strange sauces."

So says Mrs Bennet, but the king is not dead - Miss King is dead, and it looks like murder.
Three years after the events of Pride and Prejudice, Mary Bennet puts her formidable mind to work to solve the case, armed only with philosophy, her best friend, Cassandra Lucas, and some nifty detective techniques involving embroidery...

Cathy's very gallantly sent along a photo for us to admire- of herself and her new husband looking very swish in 'Bennet' attire! She's also included a wonderful excerpt that really whet's the appetite, especially for anyone who hasn't yet bought a copy of Pride and Regicide. I have to admit to picturing the cast of a certain BBC mini series version of Pride and Prejudice that came out in 1995 (THE Colin Firth /Jennifer Ehle one)  as I read this excerpt- and that was my most favourite film of the decade!  


“Murder!” exclaimed everyone, and then they all began to talk at once.
When the hubbub had subsided somewhat, Mr Wickham said, “Miss Bennet, can you be so sure that what you saw was the shadow of another person? Might it not have been anything on such a sunny day – the shadow of the bell itself, for instance?”
Everyone looked at me for my answer.
“No, sir, it could not,” I said, in a tone that was, I fear, cross. “It was shaped like a person, not a bell, and it moved like a person, not a bell or a tree or a cloud or anything else.”
Mr Wickham bowed and asked no more.
“A single shadow seems an awful lot upon which to base a theory of murder!” said Charlotte Collins.
“Oh, but the shadow is not all,” said Cassandra excitedly. “There is also the matter of—”
I silenced her with the angriest of looks, and she looked quite deflated.
“The matter of what, Cassandra?” Lydia asked.
“Oh – nothing – that is – nothing that signifies. I am over-excited and not certain of what I am saying,” said Cassandra, and looked at me with such misery that I forgave her on the spot.
“I still say that it is the French,” said Mother. “Who else behaves in this manner? It is quite historical. If you look at trouble and death in the history of England, I am assured that the French are entirely to blame for more than two-thirds of it. Depend upon it, they are in this somewhere.”
As Lady Lucas had one French grandmother (who was by all accounts the most genteel and charming of ladies, renowned for the sweetness and goodness of her character as much as for her beauty and noble birth), this was not tactful. Lady Lucas sprang to the defence of the French, saying (with some justice) that there was no reason to suspect that they had a hand in the current case. Mrs Bennet disagreed, and the argument fixed the attention of the table away from me, for which I was heartily thankful.
“Enough of such serious matters,” said Sir William Lucas after a while. “Fortunately you ladies do not have to deal with politics – we shall do so over our brandies, and you may rest assured that we shall find out the matter. If there is anything to be done, then I shall take steps to interest the Court in the affair.”
This was a hint that the ladies should stop meddling and giving their opinions of matters that should not concern them. The argument was curtailed. Lady Lucas set the example of withdrawing to the drawing room, and we followed.
“Mary,” said Cassandra. “I am quite disconsolate. I would never have betrayed the secret, only – only I could not let Miss King be suspected of suicide.”
“No, I understand,” I said. “Though I hope that our minister would not have jumped to such dreadful conclusions as Mr Collins did. But I do not blame you, Cassandra. I only looked at you so angrily to prevent you from telling of the glove.”
“Oh yes! Of course,” said Cassandra. “Do you know – that remark about you knowing all was the first time I have spoken out loud like that in company. I am grown quite brave. That is why I almost blurted out The Secret of the Glove.”
She said it like that, in magiscule, as if it were a chapter in a novel.
“I am glad that you are grown brave, Cassandra,” I said. “But I hope for Miss King’s sake that this courage will be mixed with discretion.”
“Oh yes,” said Cassandra, happy now that she had been understood and forgiven. “I expect that I will never dare to speak out again for five years or so.”
“I hope that you will, much sooner than that,” I said. “But not about anything concerning the murder. I wonder what the gentlemen are saying on the matter? They have probably discounted all our information, and are making themselves seem wise with political reflections about France, or on the frailty of the female sex.”
“Mary! What a dreadful thing to say!”
“I speak from experience, Cassandra, which renders my discourse allowable according to philosophical principles. Once, when I was just fifteen, I listened at the door.”

What a fantastic line to stop at...Cathy! (I need one of those **wink** emoticons here) 

And now here's some great advice from Cathy for winning competitions...and getting material benefit from it. 

As for 'How to Win Writing Competitions - and make money', I wrote it to show people how to win prizes for their writing without paying out lots in entry fees. It's the system I use myself, and I've gone from winning nothing at all to winning 20 writing competitions. My prizes have ranged from £1000 to a honeymoon in Italy! The publicity also helps to sell books.

My books are available from:

Thanks for joining me today, Cathy, and my very best wishes for great sales of your books.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for reading my blog. Please pop your thoughts about this post in the comment box. :-)