Scent of Corsica: the Maquis

Vanessa Couchman

Rosemary, a typical maquis plant

Can you name some famous Corsicans? There’s the obvious one, Napoleon Bonaparte. Slightly less obvious ones are the singer Tino Rossi, and Pasquale di Paoli, who headed the short-lived independent Corsican republic in the 18th century. But did you know that François Coty, who founded the famous Coty perfume empire, was also Corsican? 

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Peculiar History

Kathy Sharp

The port of Rye, in East Sussex, is an interesting town with a strong medieval ambiance. I spent a few days there last month thinking it might make an interesting background for a future novel. It’s a fascinating place, and I’ll have more to say about it later, but for now here is a decidedly odd story I came across during my researches.

From early medieval times onwards Rye, as part of the Cinque Portsconfederation, enjoyed various privileges in return for services to the crown. One of these was the right of the town mayor to preside over his own local courts.

In 1743 a local butcher with a grievance attempted to assassinate the then mayor. Unfortunately he made a mess of it and accidentally killed the mayor’s brother-in-law instead. The lIMG_7493ocal court was able to try the murderer and sentence him to death, too – presided over…

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Double Anniversary

An' de walls came tumblin' down

Sorry about the recent quiet from within the walls. I’ve been editing and writing and thinking about a new cover and…

But I couldn’t let yesterday’s double anniversary go unnoticed.

Three years ago, my first novel, NEITHER HERE NOR THERE, was published by Crooked Cat. Seven years ago, my metastory, called NO MIDDLE, was published online. Here it is:

Strawberries

No Middle

His eyes lit up. “You’ve made soup. And strawberries. Mmm. What’s the main course?”

“Sorry, I didn’t get round to making a main course.”

“No main course? You wouldn’t write a story like that, with a beginning and an end but no middle.”

When they finally broke in, the smell drew them to the kitchen. On the table, beside two empty soup bowls, lay two dishes of rotting strawberries.

***

The novel is here.

Neither Here Nor There

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Life Imitates Art

Tim's Blog

Readers of this blog will know that over the past year I have been writing a novel about a woman’s relationship with her elderly father, who moves into a Care Home during the course of the book.  I am in the process of editing a draft now – watch this space for further news.

My own life has been echoing the plot of the novel during the last few weeks, as I have been helping my Mum move into Greenacres Residential Care Home, just down the road from my own home in Meltham, West Yorks.  Greenacres seems to be a very good place of its kind, as far as we can tell – it’s clean and pleasant, the staff seem competent and caring and we’ve heard good reports about it.  Mum seems to be settling in reasonably well so far, touch wood, though of course it’s a big upheaval for her.  She has got to know some…

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So… why Treacle?

This gallery contains 4 photos.

Originally posted on The Knitted Curiosity Cabinet:
Treacle  ˈtriːk(ə)l noun: treacle; plural noun: treacles a. British: a thick, sticky dark syrup made from partly refined sugar; molasses.          b. syrup of a golden-yellow colour; golden syrup.  cloying sentimentality or flattery.…

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