Two poems by Tracey Scott-Townsend

Thank you to Kirsten Luckins, for including two of my “Postcards from the Van” on the Celebrating Change Blog.

Celebrating Change

In the wake of our short season of ‘changing home’ poems as selected by Clive Birnie, we’re making the executive decision to feature just a handful more poems that were mentioned honourably in dispatches! Here are two from Hull-based poet, author and publisher Tracey Scott-Townsend, which contrast living in a van with the lure of bricks-and-mortar.

Marsh Tide

When we parked the van it was beside salt marshes.
Later, on our return, the sea had flowed onto the land,
Obscuring ditched slices of green.
Where before, sheep had grazed,
Restless water now raced so close to our van it appeared, from the window
That we were on a boat.
As darkness fell I knelt with my arms on the sill,
Fixated on the rushing tide.
The dogs dozed on the bench beside me,
While gentle snores rose from the bed behind.

House Viewing

History’s croft lines are visible on…

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‘As free as a caged bird…’

I just wanted to share this wonderful review on @books_b_t_story’s blog of And the Swans Began to Sing, by Icelandic author Thora Karitas.

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Good morning all, I am on another Random Things blog tour today! And The Swans Began To Sing by Thora Karitas Arnadottir is out January 10th 2019!

Blurb

Gudbjorg Thorisdottir is born into a happy Icelandic family in 1952, the second child of loving parents and followed by three further siblings. They live upstairs in Mörk, a painted corrugated iron house in Reykjavik that has been in the family for generations. Their home is dominated by Gudgjorg’s grandfather, who lives in the ground-floor apartment with her aunt, uncle and cousins. Next door to Mörk is Little-Farm, the original old stone house with a coal cellar that Gudbjorg calls the Black Hole.
Gudbjorg is frightened of the Black Hole because horrible things happen down there. She lives with a secret that she can’t tell anybody, because Grandpa says that her family will lose their home if she does. Grandpa buys her…

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Staying in with Tracey Scott-Townsend

Thank you to Linda Hill for hosting Bex, Rebecca and I for a lovely evening in at hers (with Vol au vents).

Linda's Book Bag

another rebecca

About 18 months ago I went to a fabulous event, Oceans of Words, at which Tracey Scott-Townsend was speaking and you can see my write up here. Since then I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Tracey properly and she’s so lovely that I had to invite her onto Linda’s Book Bag to tell me about one of her books. I have also had the pleasure of reviewing some of Tracey’s poetry in So Fast and you can read that review here.

Staying in with Tracey Scott-Townsend

I absolutely loved reading So Fast, Tracey so it gives me very great pleasure to welcome you to Linda’s Book Bag today. Tell me, which of your books have you brought along to share this evening and why have you chosen it? 

another rebecca

I’ve brought Another Rebecca along today since this is my most recently published work. Actually it’s a second edition: it…

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#CoverReveal for And the Swans Began to Sing by Thora Karitas Arnadottir @Wildpressed

Thank you to Donna for her part in the cover reveal of Thora Karitas‘ #AndtheSwansBegantoSing, publication date 10th January 2019.

donnasbookblog

swans coverreveal banner.jpg

Today I am delighted to be one of the bloggers taking part in the cover reveal for And The Swans Began to Sing by Thora Karitas Arnadottir and I think it is gorgeous!

I can share with you the blurb below – the book releases on the 10th January 2019 and I, for one am definitely looking forward to reading it!!

The swans on the pond began to sing. It was a singing so loud they were almost screaming, as if they were encouraging me to release what I had kept inside for so long.

Gudbjorg Thorisdottir has been hiding from the ghost of an ugly secret for most of her life. When she finally faces the truth of what happened in her childhood, the ghost floats away. Painting an evocative picture of life in Iceland, this is the story of a little girl who didn’t know how unnatural it…

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Living on a building site: behind Day Three on #AnotherRebecca blog tour

Wednesday 5th September saw two bloggers posting on the #AnotherRebecca #blogtour! The first was renowned and beloved blogger Anne Williams. She published my #guestpost about living on a building site as a teenager, while my dad single-handedly built the family a new home. You can read it here: Being Anne ~ Guest Post by Tracey Scott-Townsend 

Here are some photos from my mum’s photo album, showing the progress of the build.

The Land

‘The Land’ just after we acquired it

Start the build

The foundations are laid and Dad begins to build the walls. You can see one of the caravans we lived in, and the old railway carriage in the left-hand background. Both of these appear in #AnotherRebecca 

added windows

We have window frames!

almost up

Almost at second-floor level

veg garden on the land

My sister Pip and me in Mum’s vegetable garden with our pets. (I’m wearing the yellow shirt)

The house took four years to build, with Dad laying bricks evenings and weekends while he was still also working for a local building firm. Looking back at the photos, I now understand what a brave and amazing thing my parents did. They sold the family home (in which I’d spent almost the entirety of my then sixteen years of life); moved into two rickety old caravans with the five of their children still living at home – onto a scrap of bare, cold land in the November of 1978. Read more about the experience here

That period of my life is influential in Rebecca’s circumstances in Another Rebecca. Due to poverty and her mum’s unreliability, the two of them are forced to move into a caravan on a similar piece of land, in a similar village to the real-life one that I lived in.

***

The second Blog Tour post from Wednesday 5th September is Laura Morningstar’s wonderful review of Another Rebecca, which you can read on her blog here

I’ve posted a small sample (because it’s so good!) below:

This book deals with issues that many families may find themselves experiencing and for that reason parts can be hard to read. The book explores themes such as separated families, single parenting, money misuse and alcoholism as well as others. There is a starkness to the narrative of these situations that is blended skilfully with almost poetic imagery, neither negating the other instead the contrast of the two amplifying what you are reading.
This is a book that would be ideal for a book club as it leaves you with so much to discuss, it is one of those books that although the ending leaves you satisfied you are not quite ready to leave.
This is a hauntingly thought provoking tale that has the ability to be both heartbreaking and uplifting. It is beautifully crafted and cleverly combines a story of family conflict with elements of fantasy and the supernatural.

Thank you @LJMorningstar!

Follow the rest of the blog tour…

full poster AN

You can pre-order the kindle version of #AnotherRebecca for only 99p!

 

Another Rebecca Blog Tour

DAY TWO: Portable Magic (@bantambookworm) Read my Q&A about #AnotherRebecca here

Here’s a little sample: What was your inspiration for Another Rebecca?

“The inspiration for Another Rebecca was There is No Night, a painting by Jack B. Yeats. My tutor directed me towards it during my Art Degree in the 1980s. On its own, the title was a massive inspiration to me; I find those words so evocative. But the oil painting is equally beautiful. The image is figurative-abstract. Brush-strokes suggest a white horse galloping towards the viewer in a richly-painted blue, green and violet landscape. In the foreground, a figure leans on one elbow as if about to rise to their feet. I wrote a short story based on There is No Night when I was a student, and twenty years later I rewrote it as the novel that finally became Another Rebecca.”

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Today marks the beginning of my first ever blog tour so I’m excited to see what the response will be. Since becoming a member of Book Connectors and The Book Club (TBC), amongst other reader-writer-and-blogger-connecting groups on social media I’ve been fascinated by and envious of these tours, and now it’s my turn!

You can read the first Blog Tour review from @BookishChat  Here

Here’s a little sample: “I have to admit that this book took me a little by surprise. The cover looks like you could be in for a nice gentle read. Well lemme tell you that the cover is deceiving. And boy am I glad it was! … If you enjoy a great family drama told from more than one perspective then this book is right up your street. With themes of grief, loss, addiction and family ties, this story is hard hitting and doesn’t get tied up in a pretty parcel of a conclusion. My favourite kind of ending.”

Look out for the rest of the review and posts on the tour!

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