Friday, July 26, 2013

Blogger Book Fair Day 5

For todays Blogger Book Fair I have Alberta Ross. All of Alberta's books are available for free on smashwords this week for the Blogger Book Fair. Today we have Alberta's 10 things that have surprised her most about becoming an author. Also I am featured on Alberta's blog talking about the 10 things people don't know about me. Check it out here!

Here is Alberta's 10 things that have surprised her the most about becoming an author:

1:  What fun it is.  All my life I had assumed that writing was a serious business – well of course it is to some extent but. . .but. . . only a part of it the rest is so enjoyable.  Maybe it is the advent of cyberspace that has made it so.  We are no longer alone in a garret.

2: How much time it takes from conception to actuality.   As a child it seemed easy to write a book.  I did, 5 pages long with illustrations :)  In reality, there’s thinking time (or dreaming if you prefer) translating imagination into words, balancing and preening those words,  finding each and every mistake,  finding a cover,  finding a means of publishing, and then marketing.  Really, maybe we should stick to 5 page books with illustrations!

3: When I ventured up here in cyberspace to self publish I was terrified.  I am old and computers came late in my life.  The internet was slow to take off here in the UK, my software skills were minimal. It appeared to be a very lonely place.  Were the natives friendly?  Yes, Yes and Yes again. So many of them offering, with great generosity, help and support.

4: The nitty gritty of it all is a downside for me, I have lived my many decades in a glorious state of disarray, caused in the main by having Dyspraxia, it never mattered.  Now I grapple with the nitty gritty.  Order, rules, specifics all try to rule my rebellious heart. Editing is the tyrant.

5: Isn’t a computer a wondrous beastie? When I think of authors such as Dickens writing by pen and ink I know I am alive at the right time.  I introduced my father at the end of his life to one of the earlier machines (no internet, he would have loved that)– he was still writing but with shaking hands and was finding the task increasingly difficult, esp. the edits.  Cut and paste was his golden moment. Enabled him to write until the end.

Me I love all the software which enables me to edit better, design covers, trailers etc, can invent music with an instrument– the list goes on into 6)

6: I have to mention Dragon here – the voice recognition software which enables me to dictate when my wrists will not work anymore- love it:) Because there are days that arthritis says ‘not playing today’.  When one has a tale to tell this is frustrating in the extreme.  Putting it off for another day does not feel like an option.  Now I can dictate – it was very strange at the beginning and I felt self conscious even when along but now – well I can’t tell you. Great. The next try will have to be audio books.

7: I’m not keen on the marketing, being an elderly middle class Brit, touting my wares is contrary to every aspect of up-bringing I have had over the decades. I feel uncomfortable doing it, and so it doesn’t get done well.  I am improving, slowly.

8:  I love delving into hidden depths and taking little side turns.  Writing allows me to do this. It is called Research.   Actually it’s an excuse to nosey out fascinating facts and whimsy:) I have to be careful that whole days are not wasted following links to yet another site.  It’s this cyberspace thing again. If I had been an old time author I would have had to work hard to accumulate all these facts, borrowing endless books.  I do still buy research books but the internet means I can gather quicker and have a lot of fun on side paths, all in the name of ‘writing’ (it is my job after all, someone has to do it – right?:)

9:  Deadlines are a mixed experience for me. I self publish so deadlines are in fact self imposed.  Without them it is easy for time to vanish.  With them the increasing stress when time slips, when writing dries up, when illness/life interferes, can threaten happiness big time. The early hours of the morning become the norm, backs that threaten to break, and eyes gummed and desperate to close all indications the deadline is fast approaching.  This last year I have learnt (because of illness not common sense:) to say it doesn’t matter – relax.  Shh don’t tell my head, I still have deadlines but they are much flexible now.

10:  The day I received that first box of books with my name on them was a day I will never forget but maybe the best was the day the county library took the first two of my books and put them on the book group lists for reading.  As a child I haunted four libraries, piles of books wended their way to my home and a great deal of pocket money wended back to pay the overdue fines! They were Aladdin’s caves full of excitement and treasure and that day when my books joined in was amazing.

Below are the codes to get Alberta's books on Smashwords if you read a blurb you like:
2111:  Ellen Wellfit, innocent and naive child of the safe,peaceful and sterile cities.  Bix Sefune, genetically modified as a child to fight with the Sefuty Comrades (popularly known as Ferals), now dangerously charming.
They meet when she seeks his help to fulfil the dying request of an old lady.  Terrified of life outside the city walls Ellen, in venturing out into the countryside, is forced to cling to Bix and he, responding, finds his interest in her growing. 
They both dare to think of a future together but he cannot live within walls and they have to part.  It is Ellen who seeks to find a way to achieve their dreams.  She takes a dangerous path but the results of her actions hold out hope for them and also for the dwindling survivors of mankind.
Ellen's Tale is an historical romance set in the future, with three time periods and two love stories set against a background of climate change, child soldiers, landmines, genetic engineering and eugenics.
2116:  Ellen, Bix and Jack have moved away from the city and settled at Blaisemill to try and gain enough skills to survive in the wilderness.  They are to start opening up the beleaguered settlements and establish Trade Routes.  In Ellen's Tale Jack had rescued Keira Baha from death, and despite her being Blaisemill's black sheep, the comrades elect her their guide.  Some in Blaisemill say she is mad, they all say she is bad and consider it a mistake to take her on.  Jack believes she can be rescued from her own demons.  Can he do so in time, for her, for them.
2164:  Karina Morgan, friend and colleague of Maia Linne who, with archivist Ris Menai, has gone missing, presumed dead on a field trip, has taken up the uncompleted work on the Sefuty Chronicles.  Working with Keria Baha's recording of events during the three years Ellen and Bix resided in the settlement and some letters from Maia,  Karina tries to continue her friends work.
2120Away from the City and imprisoned behind rings of mines, deprived of resources, settlements battle famine, natural disasters and despair. The companions of Ellen’s Tale and The Storyteller’s Tale have moved south to settle in Belacot and to open new trade routes. This land to the west and north of the City has been untouched by any form of law and order for over 50 years and soon our companions face new conflict and danger. As they begin to liberate mined settlements they discover some of the survivors of the Great Wars live by violence banding together to exist by means of terror and murder.  Undermanned and lacking the resources of the City Bix’s Comrade is almost overwhelmed. Disasters threaten the close knit comrades and relationships begin to founder under the stresses of war. 
2165:  Karina Morgan continuing her friends research has the task of sorting letters and journal entries into some  semblance of order.  It is not work she is suited to and soon comes into conflict with Clemens the new head of department.

Short Stories
A Patchwork of Perspectives
From innocent childhood to old age alberta weaves her tales. From playtime to murder, with a side dish of the fantastical.  Enjoy the experience.
Can a mother's love save her boy? Will the monsters catch the children? How effective are our talismans?
Talking cats, nightmares on the moon, murder most foul, children's imagination running wild and old ladies losing contact with the world. All these and more in this first volume of A Patchwork of Perspectives. Alberta ranges from the ordinary to the quietly fantastical. Enjoy the experience.
More tales which will lead you along perilous paths from exotic locations to the dark shadows of the night.
Alberta continues the mad journey through life. Here you will learn to beware of the shadows in the night, to avoid exotic carpets. Love and life  contained in a shoe box? Where can you find the best plate of fish and chips? Take a cruise with unexpected delights and keep an eye on the strange antics of your neighbours. Alberta's world is all a little barmy so settle back and enjoy the experience.
16 very short stories. From the ordinary everyday events to the fantastical, all the familiar elements are here. Childhood, old age and all between Alberta plays with all.
A photo album charts a life, modern day rage in the workplace, what happens after the fairy tales end and would that tin provide the clue needed?
Blackmail, revenge and sweet love all jostle with the madness of minds and the strange alien worlds we know nothing about. Sit back, relax and enjoy Alberta's slightly off kilter imagination
Alberta has taken fairytale and myth, shifted each a little sideways and wrapped them in a modern setting. Here are talking animals, shape shifters, the greedy and the vain. Among the pages can be found the poor and rich. The teenager, the old woman, a little revenge and a demand for justice. Settle down with an open mind and enjoy the travel to  past times and in between times.
Purchase Alberta's books here
 About Alberta Ross
Alberta Ross is the author of the Sefuty Chronicles - a dystopian tale taking place in 2100s after extreme climate change has changed everything, except human nature.
Alberta spent the first part of her adult life travelling the world, the middle years studying and now has  settled down to write. From the first part she has endless photographs, memories and friends. From the second she has a BSc Hons, an MA and friends. Now in this part everything comes together.

Over the years her interests have expanded, as has her book and music collection:) A short list would include reading (almost anything) science, opera, folk, gardening, philosophy, crazy patchwork, freeform crochet, ethics, social history, cooking (and eating of course) gardening, anthropology, climate change and sustainability.

Alberta says
‘My parents gave me, apart from a love of reading and music, an interest and curiosity in everything which, in itself, has become a total inability to be bored and for this I am always grateful.’
She considers that she is a half full glass type of person, ready for fun and laughter and that this world, this life, is so full of ‘magic’ there is hardly a need to ‘make anything up’
You can find more information about Alberta on these websites:
also found at


  1. Thank you very much for the books spot:)

  2. Lovely interview!
    As much as I love drafting with paper and pen, I do agree that computers are wonderful when it comes to editing. It's soooo much easier to cut and paste and move scenes around!