Reader’s Choice Awards

Readers Choice Award The Silver Locket by Holly Atkins

I’m not very good at self-promotion but, deep breath, here goes…

I submitted my debut novel, The Silver Locket which I wrote under the pen name Holly Atkins, for the 2020 Reader’s Choice Awards, hosted by TCK Publishing. 

The novel is part mystery, part romance and includes various other themes. Romance is such a popular and over-crowded market that I decided to enter it into the mystery category. I’m pleased to say it’s been accepted.

I’d be honoured and delighted if you’d vote for me.

Voting continues until 13th November, so there’s plenty of time to cast your vote and I’ll leave the voting link up on the sidebar.

You don’t have to read the book to vote for it – you can just show your support. However, I will be running a short promotional offer for ‘The Silver Locket’, starting on 7th February. It’s also available to borrow on Kindle Unlimited.

Paying it forward
If you’re an author too, it’s not too late to submit your book for the award. Entry is free for the first book you enter. 2020 Reader’s Choice Awards Submissions

The Silver Locket by Holly Atkins read it anywhere
The Silver Locket by Holly Atkins – read it anywhere!
The Silver Locket by Holly Atkins
Also available in paperback

Black Friday and Beyond

Goodreads ratings for Chris Hall's books

Offers are about to abound on my novels as we approach the holiday season. They’ve all been well-received so far, so stay tuned to grab your freebie ebook or reduced price paperback.

The Inspiring Muse Award – Mar 2019

I’d just like to thank Jenn (J.I.Rogers) for bestowing her award upon me. What a wonderful gesture from a fellow author!
Now then, happy readers and writers, you will take a little peek at her work, won’t you?

J. I. Rogers - Author

#JIRogers #IndieAuthor #Inspiration #Muse #Award #Blog #Poet #Share #Motivation #Writing #Art #AwesomeAuthor @ ChrissyH_07

The Brief History of ‘The Inspiring Muse Award’

I’ve been ‘Shamelessly Promoting Someone Else’ for as many years as I’ve been online and I decided to take it one-step further. Despite the internet’s reputation for trolls, I’ve found that I interact with a brilliant collection of people on a daily basis. Each offers a gift whether it’s art, knowledge, a story, or just a well-timed joke. I wanted a way to thank them for inspiring me that was more permanent than a typed ‘thank you’.

This is a personal award that I bestow on people who I feel are excellent examples of different aspects of the creative community, or of humanity in general. Anyone I interact with is eligible to receive it, and it is awarded once each month.

The Inspiring Muse Award - lg size

March’s winner is Chris Hall for her…

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What a wonderful morning!

a lovely morning lunasonline chris hall

I woke up this morning and, as usual, I went to open my trusty laptop (still in my PJs, of course). I was surprised and delighted by two things particularly:

A lovely review by Ellie Scott of ‘A Sextet of Shorts’, my little short story collection. It’s so uplifting and encouraging to read a review like this. Thanks, Ellie.
Incidentally, ‘Sextet’ is currently available on Kindle priced at $1.14 and on Kindle Unlimited.

An new award: ‘The Writer’s Soul Award’, from Teresa Grabs, The Haunted Wordsmith, which made my soul sing! Thank you, Teresa.
Go check out the other recipients, fellow writers and readers!

And have a smashing Saturday!

…making my soul sing


The Mystery Blogger Award


A big thank you to Tanya, Salted Caramel, for this nomination!

If you haven’t done so already, check out her blog here:  It’s a real “bloggers’ blog”!


What is the Mystery Blogger Award?

The “Mystery Blogger Award” is an award for amazing bloggers with ingenious posts. Their blog not only captivates; it inspires and motivates. They are one of the best out there, and they deserve every recognition they get. This award is also for bloggers who find fun and inspiration in blogging, and they do it with so much love and passion.

Okoto Enigma, Award Creator.


The Rules

  1. Put the award logo/image on your blog.
  2. List the rules.
  3. Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  4. Mention the creator of the award and provide a link as well
    (note: the link is there, but doesn’t seem to be working)
  5. Tell your readers 3 things about yourself.
  6. Answer the questions provided by your nominator.
  7. Nominate 10- 20 people.
  8. Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog.
  9. Ask your nominees any 5 questions of your choice; with one weird or funny question (specify).
  10. Share a link to your best post(s).


Three things about me:

  1. I worked in risk management for more than twenty years (how exciting is that?).
  2. I’ve seen three ghosts in different houses.
  3. I collect sea shells (not many, I promise).


My answers to Tanya’s questions:

  1. What do you enjoy most about blogging?

The interaction and encouragement of other writers and bloggers.

  1. What is the idea behind your blog name?

There wasn’t really an idea; I just used a version of my cat’s name. When I originally set up the site I was a bit nervous of putting my writing ‘out there’. That’s also why my debut novel was published under a pen name.

  1. How do you see your blog growing in 2019?

I’m a writer and author primarily and my blog site was really intended to be an author platform. I’ve been a bit side tracked during November, with these challenges, gifts and awards, which has been really interesting and fun. However, as I’ve said elsewhere recently (and below), I need to draw back a bit and concentrate on writing and editing above all else.

  1. What proportion of your blogging time do you spend on blog promotion?

Not much. I’ve set up my posts to automatically share to my Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook accounts; sometimes I’ll tweak the shares bit. Otherwise, I guess engagement also equals promotion and I try to keep up with all the blogs with which I connect. That’s maybe an hour a day.

  1. Relate one funny anecdote about blogging.

I’m not sure is this is funny or just weird, but I’ve been pulled up by ‘real’ people (in the sense of people I go for coffee with) for talking about the characters from my work in progress novels as if they are real people. I see worried looks in their eyes…


My nominees (with no obligation to participate!)

Gristle Mill, Alice Gristle’s Writing Blog –

Thea by Me –

Hitandrun1964, Rethinkinglife –

JP the Wide-eyed Wanderer –

Lilly Eves World –

Natalie Swift, The Midnight Ember –

Laleh Chini –

Sarah, The Abject Muse –

Desi Videsh, Indians Abroad –

Demi Mitchell, The Lupie Momma –

I’ll be letting them know in the next few days…


My questions – should you choose to answer

  1. What song will always get you on the dance floor?
  2. What’s your signature dish?
  3. If you could meet any author throughout the whole of history, who would it be and why?
  4. If you could only read one book genre for the rest of your life, what would it be and why?
  5. Which do you prefer: jelly beans or fish fingers with custard (this is the silly question!!)


The link to my ‘best’ post

Okay, it’s a link to my work-in-progress novel  which I spent most of this year writing. I’m in edit mode now, and so this is going to have to be my last Award participation for a while.

I need to concentrate on my writing in 2019. So, if it doesn’t involve actual creative writing: something I’ve written or a response to an inspiration or writing challenge (short, very short or even medium-sized), I’m going to be a bystander. But it doesn’t mean I won’t be following and commenting on all your lovely blogs!


0happy hols

Liebster Award (take two)

Liebster award nom from Sadje

I was nominated for this award by Sadje of lifeafter50forwomen at the end of October.
Then I was busy with NaNoWriMo, but I promised I go back to it.

There has been a bit of debate about the relative merits of awards in my little corner of the blogosphere, but to me it’s a ‘take it or leave it thing’ and I’m taking this one. Thanks for the opportunity, Sadje!

So, on with the award.

What is Liebster Award?
This award was created to discover and encourage new bloggers in their creative journey. A welcome gesture for the people new to the blogging world.

As always, the award comes with rules, which I’ll be bending a little, because it’s the thought that counts.

liebster rules

The Questions

  1. What is your biggest pet peeve?
    Misplaced apostrophe’s (sic)
  2. Where did you get the name for your blog?
    Luna, my cat (named after Luna Lovegood from the Harry Potter books since you ask).
  3. If you could change your blog’s name, what would it be?
    Maybe to a title using my own name (for the search engines, yawn).
  4. What was your favourite TV show as a kid?
    The Double Deckers. I guarantee no-one reading this will have heard of it.
  5. Do you have any weird habits?
    I wouldn’t say so, but I’m sure others might. I do have a weird sense of humour.
  6. Do you like fall scents /tastes?
    Fallen leaves, both crisp and damp, the slight smell of decomposition, bonfires and damp air.
  7. What is your favourite holiday and why?
    The school holidays in our winter (Cliff’s a teacher). The weather is damp and cold (cold by South African standards, anyway). It gives us an excuse to travel somewhere warmer. We went to Botswana last year which was amazing.
  8. Do you prefer writing it down or typing it up?
    Typing. Hand written notes are fine, but typing for everything else. It’s just so much easier; I can type as quickly as I think (maybe I don’t think that quickly).
  9. Netflix or cable?
    We have satellite. I record stuff. Sometimes I get around to watching.
  10. If money didn’t matter, what would you do with your life?
    Write more, travel more and set up a publishing house which would print, market and distribute all my favourite Indie Authors’ books.
  11. What is your favourite thing about yourself?
    My imagination.

11 random thoughts about myself

  1. I studied, lived and worked in Liverpool (UK) for almost 30 years.
  2. I emigrated to South Africa with my husband (Cliff) and cat (Luna) in 2010.
  3. I once worked as a packer in a gripe water manufacturer’s.
  4. I have an A level in Latin.
  5. I knitted 30 squares (badly) for blankets for Bosnian refugees while on jury service.
  6. I keep chickens.
  7. I like eggs.
  8. Luna knows not to try to eat family (the chickens).
  9. I would never eat family (the chickens).
  10. I have a growing repertoire of egg recipes.
  11. If you come to my house, you are likely to leave with some eggs.

The Nominations

These are my nominations: a handful of new bloggers; a smattering of artists, a chef whose site I just came across (with super-tasty recipes) and a blatant plug for one of my clients.

Newer bloggers:
Amartya,The Jumbled Letters –
The Patchwork Fox –
935SANAH –

Other goodies:
Kathy Wivell is a good friend of mine who lives just up the road from me. Kathy is an artist and a writer. We have done a few little projects together over the years, including an on-line magazine for our local art society and hosting a writing group.

Take a look at her art site –

Suzanne Starr is an artist from whom I’ve taken inspiration for a few written pieces, so you may have already seen some of her work.
There’s more on her artist’s site –

J.I. Rogers (she of the 6 Word Story fame) is also an artist, but not so well known as such, I think. Take a look:

Sebby Holmes – chef and writer – I made his easy and delicious kale recipe the other night (there’s a lot of kale in my organic veg bag):

Viv Garside writes motivational pieces and is just starting out in the blogosphere, to support her collection of self-help books.
Help yourself to a better life –

Further participation in any element of the award by any of the above is, of course, entirely optional.

The White Elephant

white elephants

Teresa, The Haunted Wordsmith, is holding a ‘White Elephant’ party throughout December and since Teresa very kindly gifted a beautiful time-turner to me yesterday, I’m continuing with three gifts of my own.

The first gift goes to Sadje of Keep it Alive and I’m giving her a display cabinet in which to keep all her well-deserved blogger awards:

Display Cabinet

Now, I actually got two of these in a Black Friday sale, so the second gift of a display cabinet goes to Salted Caramel for exactly the same reason. She also gets a second silly gift of a bowl of salted caramel flavour popcorn because I know she likes it and you can’t have too much of a good thing!

Salted Caramel Popcorn

And finally, my third gift goes  to The Dark Netizen  and I have chosen to give a him a lightsaber as I’m excited to know what he’ll do with it!