A brief excerpt from After the Scrum


~ A brief excerpt from After the Scrum ~

“No, Sherlock, stop it. You uncivilized mongrel!” Francis Keen, interior decorator extraordinaire, tripped over his own feet and his dog’s leash.  He landed in a heap on the walk outside his home. “Damnation, you obstinate creature, heel. Do you even know what the word means?”

“Having trouble, love?”

“No, Gran.” Francis straightened himself up, running his fingers through his now thoroughly mussed-up mass of light brown hair.  He ignored his beloved grandmother’s tittering giggles while attempting to glare balefully at his Shetland sheepdog, Sherlock, his beloved and the bane of his existence. “Have a good day, Gran.”

“Try to stay on your feet, love.” She waved at him with another laugh then headed up the walk to their shared home.

Oh, the humiliation.

He’d gotten a smaller dog to go with his own more slender frame.  He didn’t fancy being dragged off by a monster of a mutt.  Sherlock didn’t appear to understand his purpose in life.  Even for a smaller dog, he managed to yank his owner off his feet quite frequently.

The sheltie served other purposes, besides companion and best friend.  Francis simply didn’t advertise what Sherlock’s training actually entailed.  He didn’t want the sympathetic stares.

“One morning, Sherlock, just one would be nice.  I’d give you the largest beef bone in the world if you could allow me to preserve my dignity once.” Francis fumbled with the keys to his only prized possession—a turquoise Fiat 500 from the seventies that had been painstakingly and lovingly refurbished. He patted the dashboard reverently once he’d situated himself and his insane canine. “Well, Watson, time to take the world by storm.  Are you ready?”


Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2fYVvHa
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2nzCI5Z
Amazon AU: http://amzn.to/2rZW89E
Amazon CA: http://amzn.to/2GAqClD

Book Review: After the Scrum

76062-after_scrum_frontcover “This is one of the books I keep coming back to. It’s an easy story with just enough tension to have a plot, humor and fun banter. After a hard day or sloughing through one of those emotional angsty reads, this is one of those books that sets my world to rights again.” 4 stars on Amazon

The Most Difficult Character I’ve Written.


I thought I’d share five things about the most difficult character I’ve ever written—Looe, Cornwall.


It’s a village, not a person, but in After the Scrum, it felt like one. It’s not easy as it seems to bring a place to life.  So here we go:

  1. Colourful villagers. It takes villagers to raise a village. That’s not right, but it does take interesting individuals to make a place stand out.
  2. Plausibility. If my readers can’t believe a town exists the way I write it, they won’t buy into the story.
  3. Making it likeable. I wanted people to not only believe Looe existed, but want to visit.
  4. Research. Self-explanatory, right?
  5. Bringing it to life without turning it into a caricature of itself. I wanted readers to laugh with the people of Looe in After the Scrum, but not necessarily at them.

Do you think a place can be as critical to a story as the characters themselves?


Five Things about Francis.

Elegant young handsome man in grey costume.

As one of the main characters in After the Scrum, Francis Keen holds a special place in my heart.  Eccentric to a fault, he sprung to life in my mind and took over his own story like a whirlwind.  I thought I’d share a few things I love about him.

  1. He loves his dog more than he loves people.
  2. His beloved Fiat 500 not only has a name, but a personality.
  3. One word: Eccentric.
  4. The amazing courage that he doesn’t even realize he possesses.
  5. An unhealthy love of custard tarts.

I mean honestly, what’s not to love?

Reviews: After the Scrum


“This is my first Donovan book and if she continues on this path, I will support her and her writing. Simply scrumptious.” ~ 5 stars – Cheleaur, Amazon

“I could gush all day, I really could, but I won’t.  READ.THE.DAMN.BOOK. 5 egg custard and peanut butter biscuit stars” ~ 5 stars ~ Debbie A, Amazon 

“I love it! A very cute light hearted story of love and the support of a little village. Francis and Caddock are so funny good. Thoroughly enjoyed it.” ~ 5 Stars ~ Hope, Amazon