• War Serenade

    Writing Pangs

    WAR SERENADE, my first novel, started as a screenplay which was optioned by two different production companies over seven years. At my lowest ebb, a dear author-friend said, “To hell with them all. Write a book.” So, I did with the help of an amazing writing group called “STAR.” The transition from script to novel was at once thwarting and exhilarating. What? I could share my characters’ thoughts with my audience? Hard not to get carried away with thatliberty after worrying about expediently cramming each page with titillating plot, character and setting because as a script, one page equals one minute of screen time at a cost of $100,000 per…

  • Vignettes

    Father Christmas South African Style

    Growing up in South Africa we didn’t have Santa. We had Father Christmas who still pops in to see us every year if we’re lucky ;o) Much like the U.S.A., South Africa is a melting pot of immigrants. The only real natives of South Africa are the San or Bushman people, so over the years we South Africans have merged traditions with those around us. ‘Monkey see, monkey do’, has made us marvelously adaptable. To that point, when we lived in South West Africa (before it was Namibia) there wasn’t a German person in our broadest circle, but my family adopted the tradition of giving gifts on Christmas eve from…

  • Authors,  Interview

    Interview with Lucy Lakestone!

    You write in more than one genre. What do you get out of writing adventure, romance and funny mysteries? The truth is that I love writing in various genres, and you can see my varied passions in my tendency to bend and blend genres. I started writing adventure under another name, and those books had some romance in them. I started looking at romance as the next genre to explore, especially as I learned how smart, diverse and feminist so much romance is. So I wrote a steamy romance series, The Bohemia Beach Series. These books are hot but also have rich love stories at their heart, along with humor.…

  • War Serenade

    Code Name: War Serenade

    What started as a true story my mom told me in lieu of a fairytale when I was four, muddled around in my head for decades. I never heard a love story which touched me more. Finally, I decided to transpose it from my head and heart into a script, the most logical landing place, I felt, because these characters and their great love were larger than life and deserved to be on a movie screen. That true story became “War Serenade”—the screenplay. I pitched “War Serenade” the movie to producers in Hollywood. Miraculously I received a call and Allan, the producer, said “This is a hell of a love…

  • Drolletjies,  GMBC Moments

    Mouille Point, Cape Town

    “Drolletjies”- Afrikaans for “Little Turds” but not in a smelly, disgusting way. Well – not always! Drolletjies are sometimes like chocolate raisins: sweet, delectable and wickedly decadent and other times like little nuggets: just big enough perchance, to make an impression.     MOUILLE POINT, CAPE TOWN COURTESY OF MY FRIEND ANDREW MCINTOCH AKA LORD SNOWDON. THIS IS A STONE’S THROW FROM WHERE, IN 1950, MY PARENTS MET THEIR FRIENDS WHO INSPIRED THE STORY AND CHARACTERS OF “WAR SERENADE.”

  • Vignettes

    Happy 2020!

    I know, I know, everyone says it, I sing it “…If I die younnng…” and “Liiiiiiive like you are dying…” and guess what? They’re just words that are incredibly easy to say. Struggling to find something interesting to share with my friends after our quiet holidays, this morning on the loo (my only place for quiet contemplation) I read the words “You may die today”. I had a genuine “Ahaaaa” moment. In this world of worry, I’m guilty as hell and a step away from the gallows (too much Netflix…Wait! That’s an oxymoron!) I’m always looking forward to “my next closing” or “when my books become movies or series” or…

  • Vignettes,  Zebra

    Thanks, Gratitude And A Zebra

    Thanksgiving Day has come and gone but I’ve promised myself to at least strive to be thankful 365 days a year. We forget sometimes – when our dog’s under the weather and our clients’ roof leaks before closing and our sister’s on our case and our crown (as in tooth not tiara) popped off eating a brownie…WAIT! I can say “Thank you for rescuing my expensive crown before it disappeared down my gullet.” And how about “Thank you for sparing me the extra calories by doing the crown thing and making me forget how good the chewy brownies were.”  I reckon as long as we’re saying “Thank you” somebody up…

  • Vignettes

    London With My Besties

    We three Besties, two from South Africa and I from sunny FLA, arrived at last, in London. We’d anticipated this coming together for more than a year. Our flat in the heart of Shepherds Bush, was advertised as an “elegant one bedroom apartment.” It was cuteish, clean, and functional – for tiny people. Boy! One skilled videographer used his super-duper-wide-angle lens effectively! My friends – both organized sorts – chose corners for their stuff and stayed within that radius, while my always-open suitcase looked like a giant disemboweled rag doll spewing clothes.  Girl-stuff, like hot lava, spread from window to front door. Ridiculously rabid radiator heat forced us to keep…

  • Vignettes

    Teachers, Blows & Migraines!

    Teachers and nurses get the short end of the pointer/thermometer. Patience is their middle name. Nurturers of mind and body, they perform at optimum in spite of the abuse they take from kids, patients, headmasters, doctors, parents, and family members. They could never be paid what they’re truly worth. I know two great teachers – the youngest is my Pretty who spawned this vignette. “Pretty” is my name for the daughter of our Bestie, Kitty. A divine young woman, Pretty shines her light on all of us lucky enough to catch a ride on her shimmering wake. She lavishes unconditional love, supreme kindness, gentle guidance, and her intuitive essence onto…

  • Vignettes

    UN-Fortune-Ate Encounter

    Before marriage, my friends and I were ravenous for a peep into our futures. If I’d saved all the money I spent on fortune tellers over the years, I’d live in a home directly on the ocean. In Malibu. Though we promised never to take our visits too seriously, most of the bad stuff lingered – like when our friend Kitty was told her brother would die “shortly.” Terrifying right? Fortunately he’s reached a ripe old age. Phew! We three friends can relax after 4.2 decades! Tea leaves and Tarot cards were our staple. The general consensus from a multitude of mediums was I would travel the world, marry a…