- Celtic Fervour Series
- The Rubidium Time Travel Series
- Historical Writers' Forum Blog Hop 2019
- Ocelot Press
- Roman / Celtic Research
- About Me
- NEWS Diary Dates 2019
- A little sampler
- Art in Topaz Eyes
- Contemporary Romantic Mystery Thrillers
- Friday blog series 2018 "#Aye. Ken it wis like this..." links
Saturday, 15 June 2019
It's time for the next post in the Historical Writers' Forum 'Meet My Character' Blog Hop. Today Lynn Bryant interviews Matho Spirston, a man who has risen in prominence over the series of books written by Jen Black. He's a very resourceful young man who has a real way with him!
I first met Matho in Fair Border Bride, but some years have passed since then and he has acquired a very impressive position with Mary of Guise. You can read the interview HERE.
I'll keep you posted about new posts as soon as they're published. If you need to catch up with the previous interviews, click the links on the top tab of this blog named 'Historical Writers' Forum Blog Hop 2019'.
Happy Reading and Happy Weekend!
Monday, 10 June 2019
Sunday, 9 June 2019
The Historical Writers' Forum 'Interview My Character' Blog Hop has started this week. There will be a fabulous selection of characters for you to meet over the coming weeks and to make it easier for you to dip into the interviews, I'll be adding a tab at the top of this blog.
So far there are 2 interviews available on the #BlogHop.
- On Wednesday 5th June 2019 , it was Byrthnoth's (Author Christine Hancock) turn to be interviewed on Jen Black's Blog - What a fine young warrior for you to meet and to decide where his loyalties lie most! Catch that interview HERE
- On Sat 8th June 2019, it was the turn of Lady Eleanor Elder (Author Derek Birks) to feature on Sharon Bennett Connolly's Blog. Eleanor's quite a force to be reckoned with. You'll enjoy meeting here HERE
Sunday, 2 June 2019
Here's the impressive line up of historical fiction authors who are taking part in this 'June into July' special Blog Hop. At each Blog Hop stop, a scintillating character from the pen of one of the authors listed below will be interviewed.
I've read the work of some of the participants and will look forward to reading the work of more of them in due time! I hope you will, too.
If you haven't dipped into the work of the participating authors then this is a fantastic way to get an idea of how the main characters of the featured novels 'tick'! Find out lots more by following each post. There are likely to be #FREE #Giveaways that only need a comment in the comments box to enter to #WIN.
More details to follow...
HINT: You'll need to keep checking each blog to find out where these #Free books may be offered.
Monday, 6 May 2019
I had about 4200 views during April. That's a little bit more than average and.... naturally the more the merrier!
Wednesday, 1 May 2019
Tuesday, 30 April 2019
|Cornelius Tacitus Wikimedia Commons|
Monday, 29 April 2019
|Galba - Wikimedia Commons|
New Emperor 1 - Servius Sulpicius Galba (lasted 7 months June 68-Jan 69)
Sulpicius Galba only had tenuous support from some of the legions for a short while. His fragile health – maybe gout – and a weakness in decision-making, i.e. a tendency to let others sway his judgement, made him a poor emperor. After about 7 months, January A.D. 69, he was assassinated by the Praetorian Guard who bore a grudge against Galba for not being paid for services rendered when creating him emperor.
|Otho - Wikimedia Commons|
|(possible) Vitellius - Wikimedia Commons|
New Emperor 3 - Aulus Vitellius (lasted 8 months Apr 69- Dec 69)
Aulus Vitellius only lasted 8 months before being murdered by the troops of Titus Flavius Vespasianus, the man who commanded the eastern legions.
I love looking at this painting of poor Vitellius being dragged through Rome before his assassination.
|Vespasian- Wikimedia Commons|
Details for his emperorship are a bit hazy but he seems to have gradually gained the support of virtually everyone he needed to keep a firm control of the whole empire, including all of the 30ish legions. He began a programme of filling
When the cat's away...the mice will play!
This the period when my Celtic Fervour Clan Saga begins. The Beltane Choice (Book 1) introduces my warrior clan from the Brigante Hillfort of Garrigill and throughout the book there is the threat of war in Brigantia with Rome. At the end of The Beltane Choice my warriors go to battle against the armies of Rome at a place named Whorl.
The Year of the 4 Emperors was crucial to what eventually happened in northern Britannia because there’s no way of knowing if one of the first three emperors (Galba, Otho, Vitellius) would have condoned the continued expansion of the north. Since the positions of authority in Rome and across the Roman Empire’s legions depended a lot on ‘who you knew’ there’s no guarantee that someone like General Gnaeus Iulius Agricola would have been in a position to march his troops all the way to central Scotland under someone who wasn’t Vespasian. I believe it was important that both Vespasian and Agricola had prior military campaign experience in Britannia long before the expansion of Roman troops into Caledonia.
Sunday, 28 April 2019
An upstairs bookcase has many other Celtic research books; general Scottish and British history references; and ones used during my Open University studies (my degree is history/ culture & literature studies) which went from 17th Century England through to the Victorian era. And there are World War II books, as well as other periods which I taught to my pupils when I was a primary teacher- Vikings, Egyptians, Elizabethans, Jacobite.... Yes, History is and has always been a passion of mine!
One of these days I'll amalgamate all of my history research into one room!
The reference book that I'm probably using most just now for my new writing is this very heavy text on the Roman fort of Trimontium/ Newstead. At the beginning of Book 5, my current WIP Beathan the Brigante (probable final title), 13 year old Beathan is presently enslaved in Trimontium fort.
Skipping backwards in my series, in the final pages of Book 3 there is a battle at Beinn na Ciche between the Roman Armies of General Agricola and the amassed Celtic warrior force led by a Caledon leader named Calgach (Tacitus' Calgacus). My battle is loosely based on the information of the battle as given by Cornelius Tacitus in his Agricola, the one historians refer to as Mons Graupius.
As the author of my series, I was unable to name the battle Mons Graupius because the site of the battle has never been positively identified but many recent historians favour the site currently named Bennachie in Aberdeenshire. I have used local Gaelic names for many of my locations in my series so my battle site is Beinn na Ciche (Bennachie).
The last text shown here is an English Heritage copy of Hadrian's wall. the messy pages cluttering it are print-outs from my Futurelearn course on Hadrian's Wall. This was a really good course on what is known about Hadrian's Wall from it's beginnings c. A.D. 120 to it's end of Roman use c. very early A.D 400s- though some of the Wall forts continued to be used for longer than that. I absolutely recommend the Futurelearn course for anyone who wants to dip into the history of Hadrian's Wall, or Virtual Rome, without doing a demanding degree course.
Have you read any of the above reference books, or heard of them?
Till tomorrow and my penultimate #A2ZChallenge post...
Saturday, 27 April 2019
|Reconstructed villa in Pompei Wikimedia Commons|
And this virtual reconstruction video also gives some insights as to what the xystum areas might have been like in permanent and important forts in Caledonia - even if they weren't built in stone till during the Antonine or Severan phases of reconstruction.
Friday, 26 April 2019
|Wattled hurdle - Wikimedia Commons|
|Nancy Jardine - Trimontium Museum|
|Nancy Jardine- Trimontium Museum|
|Wattle and Daub- Wikimedia Commons|