The Ghosts are almost ready!

SandraBookCoverGhostsOnTheSand
Ghosts on the Sand is almost ready to publish. Its been in the works for four years because its hard to be a part-time author. Do you like the book cover? I love it and I hope it’s the first of many from Kara Boulden! This book is a collection of four stories.

Ghosts on the Sand is the first story in my new collection. It’s about a young girl (Sheila)  and her mother on holiday in Blackpool. They’re spending time together to heal after escaping a violent, angry man, Sheila’s dad. Things don’t work out quite as planned.
I Love you Neil is a super short story about two brothers. Can’t reveal anymore or I’d spoil the plot.
Guy at the Bar is actually the first story I wrote (in my adult years anyway), and is based on an experience I had in the King William IV pub in Brompton on Swale. I have fond memories of this pub, but this isn’t one of them. It’s a story about a nasty drunk who had no respect for women. (There is a bit of a twist of course)
Camera starts on the road from Richmond to Brompton on Swale (near the turn off to Easby Abbey). A broken down car and a camera swinging on the fence. What could go wrong? You’d be surprised. One of my hobbies is photography, but I hope I never come across a camera like this one.

I really want you to enjoy these stories, and review them on Amazon for me. I’m and “old gal” but I feel my writing career has just begun.

Thank you!

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Let me die along with my friends!

BodyLindsay hung onto the branch for dear life waiting for the mayhem to stop. Her ears were ringing as though someone had sounded a tuning fork in her head. She was hit in the face by an object she didn’t see coming. Blood dripped into her eyes but she felt no pain. Dear God let this be over. She thought about letting go, ending it all. The sole survivor of the hellish fire, she wanted to die. Death must be better than this!

“Who’s there?” Lindsay asked, feeling she wasn’t alone. The hairs on the back of her neck bristled and she felt a chill running down her spine. Her hands slipped a little and her toes hit the cold water.

Just let go Lindsay, join your friends. You deserve to be with them. You’re as guilty as they are. You bloody English thing you own the world.”

“What?” Lindsay looked up and saw a shadowy figure standing above her on the path. It was Colleen. Her terrible beautiful face was contorted in pain and anger, her dress red with blood. A shadowy figure formed by her side.

“Come on Patrick, let’s go now. There’s nothing for us here!”

Patrick? The shadows faded, merged with the breeze. Back on the water, shapes appeared, a shoe floated past, part of a backpack, a plastic bag, a glove with something trailing out of it.

Oh God, there’s a hand in there.

“Help, can somebody help me.” Lindsay shouted.

She was surrounded by silence, but not for long. Voices approached, shouting in panic, followed by footsteps.

“Lindsay, hang on. Bill, Steve, make a human chain get her off that branch, it’s not going to hold much longer.”

She looked up to see Barbara and two other police officers. They were reaching down to her.

“Take my hand love.”

Lindsay obeyed, but daren’t let go of the branch.

“I’ve got you. You can trust me.”

She did as she was told and felt herself being pulled to safety.  She collapsed weakly to the ground and looked back towards the river. The glove had floated out of sight. A human shape had taken its place. It floated lifelessly, face down in the deep dark water.

Patrick? Could that be him? Is he with his sister now? For a moment no one moved.

One of the Police Officers sprung into action, pulling off his shoes and jacket. “I’m going in, I’m a strong swimmer.” He plunged into the cold water and made short work of reaching the shape, pulling it easily to dry land. Lindsay was aware of a gathering crowd, some of whom helped pull the lifeless body out of the river.

A woman pushed her way through the crowd. “I’m a nurse”, she said and tried in vain to resuscitate the man. Someone else bound the stump of his arm, where his hand used to be.

Lindsay knew it was too late. Patrick had joined his sister.

“Who is this, do you know him?” Barbara asked.

Lindsay opened her mouth to speak, but screamed instead. A second shape appeared in the water. It was Michael!

Oh the stories that rattle around in my brain. Check out my first novel Dead of July is available on Amazon for $0.99. Give it a try. 

Dead of July by Sandra Thompson

 

 

 

Family Feud Cookies

My mum was a great cook and incredible baker. The things she produced from her little electric stove were delicious. She was renowned in the small village we called home. Neighbors (and the local Vicar) loved to pop in for a cuppa, in the hopes that she had baked.

When her grand kids visited, the first thing the did was open the biscuit barrel (cookie jar), to see what she had made.

One of their favorite recipes is included in this blog, with a slight adjustment, as I can’t give away a family recipe. Everyone called these cookies ‘Aunty Hilda Biscuits’, which irritated my mum intensely. Aunty Hilda lived on a farm, so we loved to visit her, and although she always gave us these cookies, my mum claimed the recipe originated from her, and not Aunty Hilda. Of course this made us laugh and the name ‘Aunty Hilda Biscuits’ stuck. It didn’t cause a real family feud, but my mum never ate these cookies at my Aunty Hilda’s house ever again in protest. The recipe is included below. Remember these are ‘English Style’ so they are a little crunchy rather than soft.

Why am I putting a recipe on my blog? It’s part of the tapestry of my life, and who I am, just like my stories.

Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Family Feud Cookies (Aunty Hilda Biscuits)

4 0zs Sugar

1 oz shredded coconut

1/2 tablespoon light corn syrup (or one tablespoon golden syrup if you are lucky enough to have some)

1/2 tablespoon dark corn syrup

5 ozs self rising flour

4 0zs oats (I prefer to uses Coaches Oats)

Scant handful of broken pecans or sliced almonds.

1/2 teaspoon baking soda dissolved in a tablespoon of milk (bicarbonate of soda if you are in Europe)

If you live at altitude like me, heat oven to 355 degrees and allow approx 15 minutes to cook. They are cooked when the top is golden brown, and the underside slightly darker.

If you are at sea level, these can be cooked in 8 – 10 minutes at 350

Melt butter, syrup and sugar in a pan slowly, do not boil.

Add coconut.

Add baking soda and milk.

Mix together flour, oats and pecans/almond slices and add to the mixture in the pan.

Form into walnut sized balls on a greased baking tray.

Flatten slightly with a fork and bake for required amount of time, until golden in color.

Delicious family feud cookies to enjoy with (or without) a cup of tea.

 

For a short while longer, my short stories (see links below) will be available on Amazon. When I finish my first novel (Preview) Dead of July I will remove the short stories for re-editing. As I grow as a writer, I realize the stories were enjoyable, but I need to do a better job  of editing them.

Hope you enjoy the cookies. It is with thanks to my niece Adele, that I still have this recipe. I lost my little green handwritten recipe book during my move to the US in 1995. Luckily she still had a copy. 

Munch a biscuit and read about my mum in the short stories which are still available.

Girl on the Beach (UK)

Girl on the Beach (US)

Guy at the Bar Amazon

Guy at the Bar Amazon UK

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Dark, Deep and Dangerous – Rock and Roll Suicide – Is there Life on Mars?

River Swale

Like most teens, I was troubled. Why is it growing up so difficult? I thought about taking my life on more than one occasion, feeling like no one understood me, or cared about me. I’m lucky to still be here, believe me. I was a teen in the late sixties, early seventies, when temptation was abundant, drugs, rock concerts, free love. So many things to temp a teenager to take the wrong path. I strayed to the dark side a couple of times, but always came back.

One chilly September evening I had the biggest row with my mother and I ran out of the house, slamming the back door behind me. The sun was setting as I walked down the back lane to the banks of the River Swale. My intention was to walk into the cold water and end my misery.

I found a comfortable rock to sit on, pulled out a pack of cigarettes (players no. 6) and inhaled the killer smoke deeply. It felt good. I sat and smoked what I thought may be my last cigarette as I watched the dark deep waters of the Swale beckon to me as they slid by. I finished my cigarette and looked at the smooth surface of the river as though hypnotized. It looked like oil, dark and smooth. I imagined myself walking slowly into the darkness. I would disappear without a trace. I didn’t think of the bloated body that may turn up a few miles downstream after a couple of days. I didn’t think of how it would hurt my parents.

I lit another cigarette and thought of the David Bowie song ‘Rock and Roll Suicide’. I could hear him singing it in my head. The words SUICIDE echoed loudly.

Time takes a cigarette, puts it in your mouth
You pull on your finger, then another finger, then your cigarette
The wall-to-wall is calling, it lingers, then you forget
Ohhh how how how, you’re a rock n roll suicide

I stood up and walked to the edge of the water. It beckoned me.

‘It’s a god awful small affair, to the girl with the mousey hair’

Another Bowie song, my song, but this time it wasn’t playing in my head. It was real. I looked around. “Hello” I shouted “Who’s out there?”

No one answered, but a new song started.

“Will you stay in my lovers story? If you stay you won’t be sorry, cos we believe in you”

“Hello”. I shouted again. “I know you are there. I like David Bowie too. You are playing all of my favorite songs”

I saw a light in the bushes behind me. Should I be scared? All thoughts of suicide were forgotten. My head was full of David Bowie and the light in the bushes. I walked towards it. It was a flashlight. I couldn’t see who was holding it because it was shining in my eyes. I prepared to turn and run when a voice said “Sandra, come home, lets talk”

It was my mum. I was glad to see her. “Sorry mum” I said “I didn’t want to fight”

“I know honey” she replied “It’s what families do”

We walked back up the dark unlit lane together, glad of the flashlight.

“Mum, did you hear music?” I asked.

“Yes it was that awful Bowie noise. Your friend Bobbie was sitting on a stone by the river with his transistor radio. Is he Okay? Do you want to bring him home?”

I stopped and looked at her “Mum, Bobbie’s is dead, he jumped out of a window last week, it can’t have been Bobbie” I said.

She looked at me, shining the flashlight in my face almost blinding me. “Why did he jump out of a window, he was such a nice boy. It certainly looked like him.”

“LSD” I answered.

We carried on walking. I am not sure if she knew what LSD was.

“With your long blonde hair and your eyes of blue, the only thing I ever got from you was sorrow……sorrow”

I looked at my mum to see if she heard this, she didn’t. 

Sitting on the stone wall, in the shadows was Bobbie, transistor radio in his hand. He had a sad look on his face. I was still alive. I survived another traumatic teenage episode. Bobbie had saved me. It was too late for him though. 

Life is never so bad that you should end it, especially when you are young.

 

Watch out for my upcoming novel ‘Dead of July’, which will be released later this year.  (Preview) Dead of July

My first short stories are available on Amazon. I believe you can get them for free. They aren’t perfect, but have received enough good reviews to encourage me to continue writing…..’Dead of July’ is currently with my editor and will be my debut novel. I am extremely excited about this one. 

Follow me on Facebook for updates

Girl on the Beach (UK)

Girl on the Beach (US)

Guy at the Bar Amazon

Guy at the Bar Amazon UK