It took over a year to get ‘Picked and Mixed’ from an idea for an exciting compilation of Short Stories to a book that was published in December 2012.
You can find out more about the book on the publisher’s website www.uppublications.ltd.uk
You can buy a copy direct from the publishers from their online shop UPP Books and send it anywhere in the world.
Author of the Derek Series including ‘Please… Call Me Derek,’ Mac has his own website www.macblack.info. In his own words – “I think of myself as one of the few authors included in this book lacking a suntan, which is only to be expected of someone still based in Bonnie Scotland. As a resident of the town of Cupar in Fife, I live with my wife who complains that I am always ‘playing’ on the computer: obviously untrue, I tell her – a few of my books are out there about a character called ‘Derek’ – but she is not convinced…
Having discovered the pleasure of writing only a few years ago, when I retired, the natural style for me has been humorous fiction. A simple fellow, writing simple stories, hopefully that bring a gentle smile, or on a very good day, a real laugh to the reader.
This tale, written specially for a worthy cause, is fiction, but based on a true moment in my own life – a vague memory from a time long, long, ago…” p59
Gail has been an English teacher, shopkeeper, sometime cook and a guide at Roman ruins; now retired with her husband and his camper van, she continues to be fascinated by people, whoever and wherever they are.
She invites the reader to explore beyond the narrative to share private moments with her characters. Life is rarely what it at first seems. p47, 166
Sheila settled in Spain twenty-four year ago, is married with no children. She worked latterly in London as PA to a Managing Director of sales and marketing. She loves reading, but says she is quite picky, not the bodice ripper and chicklit variety.
She writes with the Jalon Valley Writers’ Group and is encouraged by the variety of styles and the support of other members. In Sheila’s own words, “I am happy with my small Spanish village life here in this beautiful Valley.”
Her outgoing Leo personality qualifies her well for the work she does with Jalon Valley HELP Charity, to benefit local people and village projects. P11, 177
Jennifer Nesteroff-Gilmour of Scottish/ English descent, was born in 1942 in inland Queensland, Australia (where her family had a sheep property).
She met her Dutch-born husband, who was on his way to study at University in London, on the ship to England. They married in London and lived there for seven years before settling in Holland, where they lived for thirty years. After all their world travels, Jennifer and her husband settled in Moraira, Spain, in 2005. They have a daughter living in Holland and a son in Australia. p15, 36, 141, 152, 161, 164, 173, 191
Linda is a writer who lives in Spain. Twelve years ago, both statements would have amazed her, and they still cause her some surprise. Being Irish, she says that if talking was an Olympic sport, she would be in the medals, her husband concurs.
Like most women, Linda has to find time between various jobs as Mom, partner, driver, cook, femme fatale (but that’s mainly on weekends) to write anything longer than a shopping list but, now that the genie is out of the bottle, she does not intend putting it back. p22, 39, 96, 106, 128, 137
A graduate of the Royal Academy of Music and Drama, Irene was employed full-time in Secondary Education. In addition to senior school, she taught children and adults of all abilities, including physically and mentally-challenged groups. During this time she wrote mainly for school projects. As secretary of an Arts group in her local community Irene directed new groups subsequently created.
As a result of her sitting on the Clydebank Centenary committee in 1986, Irene had lunch with the Queen, whom she met again at a Holyrood Garden Party in appreciation of her work within the community. She wrote and directed a three-hour production for Glasgow City of Culture 1990. Excerpts were performed in the New Athenaeum Theatre.
Now retired, living with her husband in Spain, Irene puts her energies into writing and painting. p19, 88, 99, 119, 126, 131, 145, 159
Tony was born near London and since leaving home as a teenager has lived half his life overseas. Starting work as a reluctant accountant, he became a successful designer and implementer of computer systems.
He now lives with his wife Jo in a 150-year-old finca in Jesus Pobre, a small ‘pueblo’ in Valencia, that most of Spain has never heard of, he says.
Finding a love of researching and writing, and using his experience of living in Hong Kong for 10 years, he wrote his first novel A Circle Has No End. Having despaired of reducing his golf handicap, he is now writing a sequel The Hong Kong Circle.
See ‘The Circle Trilogy’: www.tony-henderson.com p25, 78
In 1949, as a young army Captain, Michael was fighting in Malaya, during the Emergency. He knew and loved the jungle and, in his late sixties, he wrote the story in this collection. It is the only one he ever wrote.
Successive postings took him to Hong Kong, Germany and again to Singapore from 1962 to 1965 during Confrontation.
After the Army, Michael became a senior executive in the NHS and subsequently (with Crown Agents) took his expertise to both Brunei and Qatar to commission prestigious modern hospitals for both governments.
He retired to Spain in 1989 and joined the Jávea Computer Club which, under his Presidency, grew from 40 to over 500 members.
He was also Chairman of the local Conservative Association for several years. www.mawgriffin.com p206