My latest novel, Baked with Love, is now available for pre-order. The book features a fictionalised version of a well-known and loved baking show, so there are a lot of descriptions of cakes in it.
In general, there are a lot of descriptions of all kinds of foods in all my books, reflecting my other passions in life, cooking and eating. If I were any good at food styling and photography and filming, I’d run a food blog for sure. I toyed with the idea at one point and came up with the snappy (not) title, Emma Cooks the Books! along with fancy-schmancy graphics too, see above.
Anyway, as that did not happen (food blogs and vlogs look like a tonne of work – and many of them take place in immaculate kitchens, using state-of-the-art equipment that seems as if it’s being used for the first time), I’ve rounded up a collection of foodie pics and quotes from my books…
Well… the end of Happy Valley! What did you think?
The series writer Sally Wainwright receives a lot of well-deserved praise for her depiction of strong female characters, her ability to create conflict and ramp up tension and her characterisation and dialogue (“I might have singed one of your crochet blankets”).
I would be grateful for teeny-tiny percentage of her writing talent.
Oh, and did you know that George Costigan (Happy Valley’s Nev Gallagher) and Siobhan Finneran (Clare Cartwright) have acted together before? In a certain 80s comedy-drama also set in the north.
Click the button below if you want to see the NSFW clip.
Do you use the premium or business versions of WordPress, and what are the benefits and drawbacks?
Many of you who are reading this are also bloggers. I use WordPress’s bog-standard free version because it meets the majority of my needs, however I pay an annual price for the domain name.
WordPress for business is expensive—£240 per year (about $292)—for a lot of features I won’t use or need, though signing up for some of the premium services would also mean that the adverts and WordPress branding would be removed, giving the site a more professional appearance. I can also upload videos directly if I want to.
If I want to sell books straight from this site, which I do, the only option via WordPress is the business because you can install the required plug-in.
For the time being, I can link folks to my Payhip store, but best practise dictates that if you’re attempting to sell something online, you should make the transaction as simple as possible, i.e. one click.
Amazon will always account for most of my sales. Will this site generate £240 in book sales per year? Doubtful…
Can lifelong baker Lissie turn down a last-minute invitation to appear on the popular TV show Best Baker UK, even though her ex-boyfriend is one of the contestants?
Not a chance…
Her current boyfriend isn’t thrilled, and Lissie’s decision to put herself under the intense pressure of a reality TV show while spending so much time with the man who broke her heart six years ago appears to be a recipe for disaster…
But could Lissie uncover the truth about what happened all those years ago, prove herself to her grandmother, keep her boyfriend happy, and win Best Baker UK, forever changing her life?
A spellbinding, warm-hearted read for romance and Great British Bake Off junkies, Baked with Love is a thoughtful, unforgettable story with characters you will love about second chances, forgiveness, and the search for true love.
How’s your year been? Twenty-twenty two had a blink and you miss it quality—the year dashing past so fast it is difficult to believe the end is almost upon us.
In 2022, I hit a milestone birthday, travelled all over the UK relishing that freedom after the pandemic restrictions of the past few years, joined in a national book group reading challenge*, signed a contract for one of my books, received payment for the retention of the audio/visual rights for another, and caught up with a lot of people I hadn’t seen for years.
I fell off the blogging horse in 2021 and didn’t remount it in 2022 (that is one HORRIFIC analogy, sorry) BUT I plan to address that in 2023.
The best bloggers are consistent and single-minded about what they write about. I follow a good few of them. Alas, my scatter-brained approach has never lent itself to consistency or single-mindedness.
Great for writing fiction as it allows for flights of fancy, but not so good when trying to come up with a consistent theme for a blog. And the life of this writer doesn’t lend itself to thrilling blog content.
Got up early. Bashed out 1,231 words before grinding to a halt when I realised that I’d created a ginormous plot hole. Mulled it over for the rest of the day without coming up with a solution. Wasted time on Twitter working myself up into a righteous rage over the behaviour of terrible politicians. Did the paid job. Exercised. Wrote a little bit more. Ate dinner. Collapsed in front of the TV…**
Many of the platforms that later supplanted blogging did not exist in 2012. And yet given the choice between reading blogs or scrolling my way through Instagram/TikTok feeds? No contest.
There is also plenty of evidence that scrolling through social media does little, if anything, for you.*** Creatives tend to suffer extensively from comparison-itis. There is always someone popping up in your feed, excitedly detailing their book/TV/film deal/number of reads/commissioning for a script, etc.
I can’t think of a single blog I follow that makes me feel dissatisfied, envious, helpless, furious or any of the other emotions I routinely associate with social media.
So, to the future! Back to blogging… every week I plan to write about my week and find some way of making it interesting, funny and engaging.
A tall order, yes, but nothing wrong with starting the year with a lofty ambition or two. And talking of lofty ambitions, I plan on publishing not one, not two but three books this year, starting with the one in the illustration below: