Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Americanah; Nina's Book of the Month

Story & Plot: Americanah

"Plot and story are different things, albeit sometimes difficult to pull apart. In fact, in a well-plotted novel it should be damn-near impossible to separate them, because good plotting intricately intertwines its underlying stories into an almost invisibly woven fabric..."

Nina Milton, tutor with the OPEN COLLEGE OF THE ARTS, has just reviewed Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's latest novel for their blog site. Go to  to read the full review.


Mystery Scene Magazine's Great Review of Unraveled Visions

I've had some fantastic reviews of Unraveled Visions so far, and really love the latest from fiction lover's magazine Mystery Scene.

It’s impossible to refrain from rooting for such a plucky protagonist. Sabbie is the product of of a troubled interracial couple and she grew up in foster care. Courage runs through her veins and an impassioned nature rules her heart–something that Detective Inspector Rey Buckley knows from experience with the attractive young shaman whom he finds as intractable as she is curious.
Nina Milton skillfully integrates the shamanistic elements into her mystery making in this sequel to last year’s In the Moors - an absorbing tale. The return of Sabbie Dare is awaited with interest. – Sheila M. Merritt 

Want to read the entire review? click to go to my Review Page below

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

The Author Talks; Nina Milton is interviewed on Booklikes

Please welcome Nina Milton to Author Talks!

Nina Milton is a British writer of children's books, short fiction and now crime stories. She's won many literary competitions, including the Crossroads Competition and the Wells Literary Short Story Competition. 

You can visit her blog and follow her at BookLikes: Sabbie Dare and Friends, and win her title on BookLikes.  Go straight to the interview using this link;

Monday, 6 October 2014


Well done to the two winners of my Big Giveaway.

Simon Ferris in Derby has won a copy of
The Somerset Levels where
 In the  Moors and
 Unraveled Visions are set


 Correctly answering the 3 following questions.

Q What 3 colours of silk are woven into the braid that's on the cover of    Unraveled Visions?
A White Green and Brown, which symbolise the three otherworlds – higher, lower and middle planes of existence.
Q What street in Bridgwater does Sabbie Dare live in?
A She's lives in Harold Street
Q Give me the name of any one of Sabbie's hens.
Juniper, Ginger and Melissa. The cockerel Cocky Bastard. Two hens, Saffron and Pettitgrain, were taken by the fox at the start of the story

Which hen am I?

Yvonne Lyons in Oxford has wond a copy of  IN THE MOORS

By correctly answering these 2 questions;

A What is Bake, Love, Write?

Bake, Love, Write is a cookbook by best selling crime author, Lois Winston. Her idea – to bring together a bunch of authors, have us share one of our favourite dessert recipes, along with some sage advice on both love and writing… and then put it all in a book. The book is available now from Amazon. 

A Where is the Books are my Bag event being held in Bristol on Saturday October 11th?
I'll be at Foyles Bookshop in Quaker's Friars, Bristol, on Saturday afternoon 11th October to
 launch Unraveled Visions the 2nd Shaman Mystery Novel from Midnight Ink. 
I'll be there from 2pm to 7pm at this drop-in event, signing my new book, and reading from it. I'll also be holding a short workshop for writers. So do come to meet me, check out my writing, and also meet a lots of other Bristol writers...

A Name one of my previous books written for children.
Q I've written several books for children, including Sweet'n'Sour, Tough Luck and Intergalactic Holiday.

What is this?
Well done to both winners!

I'm at Books are my Bag
 in Bristol soon

Thursday, 25 September 2014

The British Launch of Nina Milton's Unraveled Visions.

Meet me at Foyles Bookshop in Quaker's Friars, Bristol, on Saturday afternoon 11th October

 I will be launching Unraveled Visions the 2nd Shaman Mystery Novel from Midnight Ink.

I'll be there from 2pm to 7pm at this drop-in event, signing my new book, and reading from it. I'll also be holding a short workshop for writers. 

So do come to meet me, check out my writing, and also meet a lots of other Bristol writers...

 at the BOOKS ARE MY BAG Event

On Saturday October 11thBristol Women Writers are joining good friends Southville Writers for a local author showcase in Foyles Cabot Circus to celebrate the ‘Books are my Bag’ day which encourages us all to use our bookshops more.
The event will start at 2 pm and go on until 7 pm, so do pop in if you get the chance and hear some great local writers read and perform their work.
More details to follow!

Sunday, 14 September 2014

Bake, Love Write


When USA Today best selling author, Lois Winston, came up with a brilliant idea for a different kind of collaboration I jumped at the chance to take part.
Her idea – to bring together a bunch of authors, have us share one of our favourite dessert recipes, along with some sage advice on both love and writing… and then put it all in a book.
I can't wait to try the recipies and hope you like's very Welsh and rather tipsy!
When will this book be available? I hear you ask. Soon, I’m pleased to say. Very soon.
In the meantime,  I’ll whet your appetite with a sneak peak at the book cover.

Isn’t it gorgeous?
So if, like many booklovers, you have a sweet tooth… wonder what our recipes for that lasting, loving relationship would be… and/or are interested in writing, then watch this space!
Or you can join in the fun of Bake, Love, Write’s road to publication by visiting its very own Facebook page.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

14th September – your opportunity to purchase Unraveled Visions before UK publication!

Early release of the second Shaman Mystery! The paperback edition of Unraveled Visions will be on sale  at Penfro Book Festival next weekend. Find me at the Book Fair on Sunday the 14th at  Rhosygilwen, Cilgerran, Pembrokeshire SA43 2TW where you can purchase UNRAVELED VISIONS at £9.00 beating the Amazon pre-order price and delivery date! 

Hear, Hear!
PENfro Book Festival 2014 is just over a week away!

This year the PENfro Book Festival is better then ever.  We start on Friday 12th in the evening with a special screening of 'La Casa di Dio' - the story of a little Catholic church in Wales, built in a plasterboard prefab, by Italian POW's during World War II. The director -  Owain Llŷr - will be there for a Q&A after too.  

On Saturday we'll have workshops for writers all day - book now for Nina Milton's 2 hour workshop on character and plot development - and then in the evening, there's a very special event - when we have the former Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, together with the Chaired and Crowned Bard, Ceri Wyn Jones, reading their poetry!  

Sunday is Festival Day itself with free entry to the Book Fair all day and a here's a great line up of authors and events at PENfro this year, including three children's events.  Check the website now for details and to buy tickets. For just £10 you can see all the events you want at PENfro Book Festival Sunday.  That's a huge saving when the price of each individual event is usually £4.50!

September 12, 13 and 14, 2014
Rhosygilwen, Cilgerran, Pembrokeshire SA43 2TW

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Hens and Chicks (and the Mystery Writer)

This week I'm guest blogging on Writers and other Animals,  writer Sheila Boneham's great blog.

Ceridwen and baby
The blog is about hens...mine and Sabbie Dare's...

It’s often said that characters in books resemble their authors. But in my case, I seem to be following in my heroine’s footsteps. Sabbie Dare has been keeping hens from the beginning of the Shaman Mystery Series. In the first book, In the Moors, we meet the hens in Chapter One, when something rather awful happens to some of them. Sabbie goes out early to collect the eggs…At the henhouse door I dropped my empty basket and cried out in raw distress. Slaughter lay at my feet. Saffron, the biggest of my hens, was gone, and Pettitgrain, my favourite, lay dead from a clean bite to the neck

read the rest of the blog at

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Record your Writing Progress; the Writing Diary

It has been said that writers are ‘born not made’, but they don’t come fully-formed from an egg – they have to practise their skills to hone them.As I write, my son is  playing the same phrase from Chopin over and over again. Perhaps he’ll perfect it and move on before I brain him! But, like musicians, writers do have to practise ‘over and over’, and it really does get better as you do that. Recording the slow improvements you make will help you see real progress.

Keeping  a diary or notebook in which you only write about your own writing can feel perverse to some new writers; they ask why on earth, when they're so busy writing their fiction or non-fiction, why they should stop to talk to themselves about the process. But doing so is invaluable - and reading it back to yourself from time to time  will really bouy you up.

The analysis you attempt will increase your ‘learning curve’ considerably –  do this for a week or two and you will quickly see the affects for yourself once you’ve begun. Reflecting on the progress of your writing life is an important aspect of starting to write.

Even though it’s possible you may think you have nothing to record at the moment, that simply isn't true. I'm not, after all suggesting you fill this diary with notes that start I got published today! Instead I'm suggesting you look at the process you use to write.

At first, you might find it hard to know what to put down. Sectionalizing your analysis may help your understanding. Try writing about:
  • What works for you as a writer, and what you find difficult
  • Your journey through each session of writing.
  • Any advice you read or are given – what you understood and what you didn’t.
  • How any witing exercises you try out went – also make a note of those you wish to extend or repeat
  • Why you’ve chosen certain genres and ways of writing, 
  • What you think about your abilities – track their improvement
  • Explore various ‘parts’ of writing; your thoughts and your preferences on:
      • Dialogue 
      • Description
      • Narrative 
      • Characterization
      • Structure and plot
  • Your understanding and clarification of concepts such as Show, don’t Tell
  • Problems of drafting, redrafting, tightening
  • Discuss themes with yourself; look at how you can add symbolism to your work by exploring themes
  • Add commentaries on the books you have read
  • You can moan about the pitfalls of the writer’s life
  • And of course you can note down anything that feels like progress.

A writing diary help you talk through your writing. It’s important to help yourself to make sense how it works for you – how your thought processes relate to your growing battery of skills and understanding. When you put all this down in words it begins to be understood on an intellectual level…whereas, when writing, you may be learning more on an intuitive level. It’s like ‘synergy’ in medicine – the idea that two separate things work okay separately, but together they work really well – more than twice as well.

Start this diary now! 

Grab any bit of paper (you can always paste it into a nice book you later buy) and try to answer some of the bullet points above. Don't think too much about what you write. You're writing this to yourself, for you and only you to read back later. Even as you write, you might notice how you're putting your thoughts in order through the things you're jotting down.

Monday, 4 August 2014

Time for Summer Reading

In the Moors by Nina Milton
The 1st Shaman Mystery from Midnight Ink Books
£11.11p paperback with free delivery
 £8.02p Kindle
 buy now from at my author page

  “A real page-turner, In the Moors cost me several hours of sleep because it was so un-put-downable! An engaging heroine, a landscape at once so real and so menacing, and an intriguing mystery had me enthralled into the wee hours!”   Mara Freeman, author of Kindling the Celtic Spirit & Grail Alchemy

Sabbie Dare is the most compelling protagonist I’ve met this year…Milton’s tale is riveting.”—Library Journal (starred review) 

Unraveled Visions by Nina Milton
The 2nd Shaman Mystery from Midnight Ink Books
£10.52p paperback with free delivery is available now for pre-order
buy now from at my author page

Story arcs that run parallel get an inquisitive
Sabbie in and out of danger in this exciting 
In the Shaman Mystery series–
Donna M Brown 

RT Book Reviews

Visit my Author Page at Midnight Ink Books

Poet and Writer Theolyn Cortens

This week, while I'm guest blogging for the CRIME READSERS ASSOCIATION,  we have a guest blogger here on Kitchen Table Writers. Theolyn Cortens is a writer, specializing in Angel spirituality. Theolyn's books about Angels have been translated into many languages and she also writes and runs  spiritual classes by post, internet and face-to-face, which  have been enjoyed by students around the world. Theolyn's teaching organisation, SoulSchool, was founded in 2000 and her courses are based on many years of personal mystical experience, as well as scholarly research. Theolyn also writes the most exquisite poetry. She is about to bring out a full collection of her works, so I asked her to tell us something about herself;

When my parents met – and had a brief war-time relationship – it was their love of Romantic poetry that helped fuel their romance. When my father returned to Canada to be de-mobbed he sent my mother A Treasury of Great Poems edited by Louis Untermeyer
Theolyn in Pembrokeshire
– a large blue book, rather like a bible, covering the earliest poetry up to the 1940’s when it was published. I read this book of obsessively from the age of nine and often heard my mother quoting from the great poets when she was washing up:
When I was small my mother quoted from the great poets
While standing at the kitchen sink:
‘There was a sound of revelry by night’, she said,
Or ‘Oh Wild West Wind, thou breath of Autumn’s being.’
She gave me the Golden Treasury of Verse
And nurtured me on Endymion
And ‘Balder the Beautiful is dead is dead.’
So the rhythm and musicality of poetry when it is spoken aloud, seems to be in my DNA! I find it comes naturally to me and after I learned to meditate in the 70’s I began to write poems that seemed to arise in my mind effortlessly. The topics that call to me are mystical, magical and mythological – stories that deal with deep passions and human dramas.
My mother still has her copy of the Treasury, now seventy years old, battered and stuck up with gaffa tape! Thanks to Amazon I was recently able to find my own copy of the very same edition, in excellent condition. Perhaps I have written one or two gems that can contribute to the store of treasures.
To celebrate my seventieth birthday I am publishing three collections of my poetry, written over the last forty years or so. Some of the poems were previously in print as pamphlets, but I have added more poems to Flowers from the Galaxy and Bone Woman – previously published as Baba YagaJason has not been published before. If you would like to be part of the kickstart project for the poems, click on the link; where you can listen to Theolyn reading from the works.
You can also go to to read about the collections.

Thursday, 24 July 2014

Unraveled Visions RT Book Review

Unraveled Visions, the second novel in my Shaman Mystery Series, has had a great review from RT Book Reviews.

Mystery, Amateur Sleuth
Nina Milton
Story arcs that run parallel get an inquisitive
Sabbie in and out of danger in this exciting 
Shaman Mystery series. Eerie visions 
that appear during one of her sessions
continue to haunt as the thrilling tale
progresses, even though some lead her in
The wrong direction

On a lark, shaman Sabbie Dare has her 
fortune read by a seer at a local carnival. 
There are some frightening images and
shortly thereafter, The clairvoyant vanishes. 
At the request of the woman’s sister, 
Sabbie looks into the disappearance – much 
to the dismay of Detective Inspector Rey Buckley.
She’s also heading the pleas of her neighbor, 
whose wife has been swept into a cult where the 
leader has several wives and even more secrets. 
When the seer is found, there’s a
 link to a body, with startling results.
(MIDNIGHT INK Sep, 456pp $14.99)
Donna M Brown

Saturday, 12 July 2014

Why I Write about Shamanism; from the Crime Readers' Association

The Crime Readers' Association is the reading arm of the Crime Writers'  Association, of which I'm a member. They have just published a blog post by me about the subject matter of my novels; 

You can read the full article at;