Books by Glenda Young - click on the picture below to find out more

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Pick of the pops in Sunderland's hardback book chart #amwriting


This week I went into my local Waterstone's branch in Sunderland's Bridges shopping centre. I was there to drop off some free bookmarks, which the staff kindly put on the counter for readers to take as they please. 

"Would you like to sign some books while you're here?" the lady behind the counter asked.
I couldn't speak for smiling.
"Yes, please."

I signed three piles of books...


"Would you like to sign the books in our chart too?" she asked.
"Chart?" I squeaked.

It turns out that Belle of the Back Streets is in at No. 5 in the best-selling hardback books in the Sunderland store.  

No 1 is J K Rowling. 
No 2 is David Walliams
No 3 is George R R Martin
No 4 is Lee Child
and in at No 5 is ... yours truly


I didn't sleep much last night.



Debut novel Belle of the Back Streets
Now out in hardback and e-book 


Kindle e-book just 99p until January 1st 2019 

Website: glendayoungbooks.com

My favourite pen #amwriting


I was going to ask Santa Claus for a new pen this year. A posh pen, an expensive pen. A pen that I could use to sign my name if anyone asked for a signed copy of my book.  Well, a girl can dream.

But then I thought, what if I lose it? What if I chew the end while mulling over a tricky writing problem? What if I leave it in a cafe?

This started me thinking about the kind of pen that I really would like as a Christmas gift this year.

I thought back to the pens I used to love writing with when I was a child, the pens that I daydreamed my days away with. The pens that I made up stories, poems and tales with. The pens that I treated myself to from my pocket money each summer to take on family holidays with my mam and dad and two younger brothers.



And that's why I've asked Santa for a green Pentel this year. And from what I understand, he's been able to find three in a pack for just over six quid.

If you see me signing a book with my green Pentel pen know that I'm as happy as larry.

Plus, I can chew away to my heart's content.




Debut novel Belle of the Back Streets
Now out in hardback and e-book 


Kindle e-book just 99p until January 1st 2019 

Website: glendayoungbooks.com

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Corrie weekly update – Silly Sally in a Cell


I've been writing Coronation Street weekly updates since 1995 and this week's Coronation Street has just gone live here. 

In this week's Corrie Sally did herself no favours at all.





Debut novel Belle of the Back Streets
Now out in hardback and e-book 


Kindle e-book just 99p until January 1st 2019 

Website: glendayoungbooks.com

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Corrie weekly update – Tawdry Roberts and The Parent Trap

I've been writing Coronation Street weekly updates since 1995 and this week's Coronation Street has just gone live here.

In this week's Corrie there was a chucked bouquet of flowers as Audrey got very, very drunk.




Debut novel Belle of the Back Streets
Now out in hardback and e-book 


Kindle e-book just 99p until January 1st 2019 

Website: glendayoungbooks.com

Friday, November 16, 2018

Tears, stotty bread and a blast from the past

The old Ryhope Junior School, Ryhope, Sunderland 
It's been quite a week in my writing world this week.

MONDAY

The gorgeous Lewis & Cooper store in Northallerton
On Monday I traveled by train (always my favourite mode of transport) to the North Yorkshire town of Northallerton. It's a bit posh, is Northallerton. Anyway, I was there to meet bestselling author Margaret Graham, who also writes as Milly Adams.  We had a lovely lunch together and I learned a lot from this prolific author, who had a great deal of experience under her belt.

I also made a start on my Christmas shopping in Northallerton, it really was a good day out. Mondays are my "day off" writing which means I stay away from my computer, laptop and try my best to switch off. It's not always successful, but I try.

TUESDAY
Ryhope Community Centre, Ryhope, Sunderland
Tuesday saw me giving a talk to the Ryhope Heritage Society on my novel Belle of the Back Streets. What a turn out it was! A packed room at Ryhope Community Centre included the parents of some of my old school friends. What a catch-up session I had, it was amazing. I was asked to sign hardback copies of my book that people had bought at Sunderland Waterstones. I also met some of the people who had kindly helped me with research via email. And then a woman approached me. "You don't know who I am, do you?" she asked with a cheeky smile. I had to admit that I didn't.  She told me who she was and I saw it there immediately. We'd been to school together, and had last seen each other some 40 years ago. We hugged each other to bits.

The talk went really well although I have to say I'm still very nervous about standing up in front of people having attention focused on me. The vicar of St. Paul's church in Ryhope was in the audience and he asked me to read from Belle of the Back Streets. An amazing experience, a wonderfully warm audience and I enjoyed myself so much I'm going back to join in their monthly heritage meetings starting in January next year.

WEDNESDAY


On Wednesday, inspired by Belle of the Back Streets. I made a stottie cake, or stotty bread.  You can read all about it and see some pictures of me baking here.

The idea is to include a recipe for stottie cake in the paperback version of  Belle of the Back Streets. The recipe I've concocted is one I tried three times in the course of the week so I think it's going to be OK. I do hope so!


Also on Wednesday, I had a short story published in The People's Friend Special No. 166, it's their Christmas edition and my short story was called The Greatest Snowman.

THURSDAY

As the week drew to a close, another blast from the past had me in tears...

Ryhope Junior School, Ryhope, Sunderland (before it was knocked down!)
I received an email from a teacher at Ryhope Junior School. Along with another teacher and a teaching assistant, she'd attended one of my talks on Belle of the Back Streets. at Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens as part of Sunderland Libraries Literature Festival.

I've been asked to give a talk on my books to the children at the junior school. Not only that, the school are having their library renovated and have asked me to officially open the library.  I was so touched by this request when I read the email that I burst into tears. I've replied to say yes, of course.

Ryhope Junior School is the school I attended, although it's not the same building or in the same place. The original Junior School, pictured above, is the one I went to, but it's a housing estate now. The new Junior School is just a short walk away.

In other news this week, I wrote another episode of my weekly soap opera Riverside for The People's Friend magazine.


FRIDAY

Friday saw me tinkering with our digital camera and computer special effects  to produce a competition for my Facebook page. You can enter to win a signed hardback of Belle of the Back Streets along with chocolate, bookmarks and postcards. Enter the competition here.

Oh... and also in my writing week I managed to complete my target 2,000 words per day for three days. That's one more draft chapter completed, just five more to go.  This is my third novel I'm writing now and it's coming on very well indeed.  I'll soon be able to reveal the title but until then there's a bit of a teaser here.

It's been a busy week, a wonderful week, and I wouldn't have it any other way. I absolutely LOVE what I'm doing right now.



Debut novel Belle of the Back Streets
Now out in hardback and e-book 


Kindle e-book just 99p until January 1st 2019 

Website: glendayoungbooks.com

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

My Recipe and Pics: The Joy of Stottie Cake


This week I've been trying to perfect the art of making a stottie cake. Stottie cake, or stotty, is a bread from the north-east of England. It's a round, flat bread (think frisbee shape) and it features a great deal in my novel Belle of the Back Streets

After writing about the women of Ryhope baking stottie cakes in my novels so far, I thought I'd actually have a go at making some myself. I love baking bread but have never made my own stottie cake before. And so, with a recipe I've come up with and using my grandma Emily's secret ingredient, here we go with my own recipe for Stottie Cake / Stotty Bread.   

Here I am at the planning stage. Have apron, will bake, but should not be left alone with scissors.


INGREDIENTS: Makes 1 large stottie cake

400g strong white bread flour
Half a teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of sugar
Half a teaspoon of ground white pepper (this is my grandma’s secret ingredient, she used to add to just about everything!)
1 sachet of dried yeast, 7g
1 tablespoon of softened butter
2 teaspoons of sunflower oil
90ml milk
180ml tepid water

1. In a large bowl stir the flour, salt and pepper, sugar together.
2. Add the yeast and give it another stir
3. Add butter and oil and rub in with fingertips for a minute or so until everything is crumbly.
4. Put the milk and warm water into a jug and then pour around the sides of the bowl to distribute the liquid evenly.
5. Stir it so that the liquid combines with the dry ingredients.  Turn it out to a floured board and work it all together by hand for about 5 minutes into a good dough. Don’t worry if it’s still wet and sticky.
6. Cover the bowl with cling film and leave in a warm place for an hour.

Here's mine before I covered it with clingfilm and left it for an hour.


And here it is at the end of the hour.


Have a cup of tea.

7. When the dough has doubled in size, turn it onto a floured board and form into a flat, round disc shape - like a frisbee!


8. Squash it gently with a floured bread board, not too much, it needs to be roughly 2.5cm thick.
9. Place on a greased baking tray and cover with a bonny tea-towel.  I chose my Coronation Street / Hilda Ogden tea-towel.


10. Leave it in a warm place for 30 minutes.
11. Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 6 / 200 degrees C / 400 degrees F

Have another cuppa.

12. Squash it gently again with the floured bread board, down to approx. 1cm thick.
13. Using your finger, press down to make a hole in the centre of the stottie

Here I am putting it into the oven.  Note: This was attempt 1 of 3, so that's why the shape looks slightly different from the finished stottie at the bottom of the page. I wanted to keep trying so that the recipe was as good as it could be. The first attempt was a bit doughy, but here's a photo anyway! Another chance to show off my snazzy ladybird apron if nothing else.


14. Put in the oven and bake for just 6 minutes
15. Carefully turn the stotty over, return to the oven and bake for a further 6 minutes
16. Cool on a cooling rack
17. Cut into pie-shaped pieces and slice each one in half. Eat and enjoy. Perfect with soup.


With thanks to Barry Smith, my husband and chief cook in our house, for his help!




Debut novel Belle of the Back Streets
Now out in hardback and e-book 


Kindle e-book just 99p until January 1st 2019 

Website: glendayoungbooks.com

The Greatest Snowman


I've a short story called The Greatest Snowman in The People's Friend Fiction Special No. 166 which is in the shops today, Wednesday 14 November 2018.

It's a bit of a tear-jerker, this one and I do hope you enjoy reading it.




Debut novel Belle of the Back Streets
Now out in hardback and e-book 


Kindle e-book just 99p until January 1st 2019 

Website: glendayoungbooks.com

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Never give up. A talk to Scarborough Writers' Circle


Scarborough is a very special place to me. It's the place where we went as a family, for many years, on our summer holidays. It's the place where I was married, and also where one of my brothers was married too. It holds a very special place in our hearts, not least because of this.

And so you can imagine how absolutely over the moon I was to be asked to speak to Scarborough Writers' Circle.  And not only that, but I was given a write up in the Scarborough News.

If you click on the image below you can enlarge the picture and read the write up under WRITERS CIRCLE and that's my picture beside the pit pony statue in Ryhope too.


 



Debut novel Belle of the Back Streets
Now out in hardback and e-book 


Kindle e-book just 99p until January 1st 2019 

Website: glendayoungbooks.com


Saturday, November 10, 2018

Title of my novel number three #amwriting

The current view above my writing desk
This week the publisher Headline has confirmed the title of my third novel.  

I can't reveal it yet, but I will soon, as soon as it starts feeding out to sites such as Amazon and on to the publisher's website at Headline too.

It's a good title, a strong one. 

And it's one I suggested, so I'm over the moon.

My working title for book three has always been The Girl in the Red Feather Hat but I've always known that would be changed to fit the saga genre.  

I couldn't be happier with the title for novel three and can't wait to share it - very soon indeed.  

It'll be out in hardback in November 2019.

Meanwhile, my debut novel Belle of the Back Streets is now out in hardback and ebook.
 



Debut novel Belle of the Back Streets
Now out in hardback and e-book 


Kindle e-book just 99p until January 1st 2019 

Website: glendayoungbooks.com

Corrie weekly update – Corrie is for life, not just for Instagram

I've been writing Coronation Street weekly updates since 1995 and this week's Coronation Street has just gone live here.   



In this week's Corrie there was a double proposal. Double diamond works wonders.


Debut novel Belle of the Back Streets
Now out in hardback and e-book. 


Kindle e-book just 99p until January 1st 2019 


Website: glendayoungbooks.com

Friday, November 09, 2018

Rave Reviews in a Whirl of a Week



It's been a week and a day since my debut novel Belle of the Back Streets was released in hardback and as an ebook. And in that time, there have been eight 5* reviews on Amazon and seven 5* reviews on NetGalley too.

It's been a whirl of a week. I gave a talk at The Word in South Shields, one of my favourite buildings in the north-east. It's the national centre for the written word. There was even a pretty good turn out too. For someone who wouldn't have said boo to a goose in the past, I'm slowly getting to grips with public speaking. Mind you, I've got a long way to go before I perfect my patter.  

At The Word someone asked how I create my characters. My honest answer - for why lie? - is that I don't know. Characters come to me in my head, unformed, waiting behind my ears for their turn on the page. Only then do they speak, wear a hat, smoke a pipe, break bread and eat soup, be grumpy, be happy, be young, old... well, the list goes on.

"I'm sorry," I said to the person who asked the question. "I'm not evading your question but I truly don't know."

I need to work on that.. not to bluff my way through it, not to create something that isn't there, but to try to figure out for myself my own creative process. And in doing so, hopefully help others who want to write, or those who (like me!) just want to know.




Thursday, November 08, 2018

Talking a walk around Ryhope with Belle of the Back Streets


If anyone is interested in finding out more about Ryhope village after reading my novel Belle of the Back Streets, then this might be of interest.

It's a leaflet produced by Durham Heritage Trust and it takes you on a walk around the conservation area of Ryhope village in the northeast of England.

You can download the walk as a PDF here.




Debut novel Belle of the Back Streets 

Tuesday, November 06, 2018

Tall. Northern. Daydreamer - my Q&A


With the launch of my debut novel Belle of the Back Streets I'm interviewed by author Katie Ginger on her blog this week.  


It's a fun Q&A but with a serious undertone too.

Katie asks what success feels like. I reply that it's filling in her Q&A.  

I hope you enjoy reading it, it's here.




Debut novel Belle of the Back Streets
Now out in hardback and e-book. 


Kindle e-book just 99p until January 1st 2019 


Website: glendayoungbooks.com




Sunday, November 04, 2018

Corrie weekly update - Bit of bother for the Barlows

I've been writing Coronation Street weekly updates since 1995 and this week's Coronation Street has just gone live here.  



In this week's Coronation Street, there was a bit of bother for the Barlows.


Debut novel Belle of the Back Streets
Now out in hardback and e-book. 


Kindle e-book just 99p until January 1st 2019 


Website: glendayoungbooks.com

Friday, November 02, 2018

My BBC Radio Newcastle interview


I was interviewed this morning on BBC Radio Newcastle for a segment they did on people who follow their dreams.

They asked me to take part. I was chuffed. I was nervous.

But here I am, live on the wireless.

You can hear my bit at 2 hours here.



Find out more about me and my books at: Glenda Young Books

I'm on Twitter @flaming_nora and Instagram @flaming_nora

bellebottom

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