THE BLOG TOUR – starring “SPOTLIGHT” Author, Jan Hawke #RRBC #RaveReviewsBookClub

Tall ships and stars…

I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,

And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by;

Sea-fever by John Masefield


There’s a lot to be said for being self-sufficient, especially if you’re a solitary ‘seafaring’ author. 2015 was a terrific year for me in all its meanings, including the negative. For the first time in my life, and after 39 years of relatively calm marital waters, I found myself living on my own after my husband, Pete, did not survive major cardiac surgery.

We only had about 10 days to come to terms with the gravity of his condition, but, as he’d come through several other serious medical procedures in the past 5 years with flying colours, were fairly hopeful. Our luck ran out basically. The day Pete was in surgery, I was driving home from another hospital appointment, when I heard on the radio that my great literary hero, Terry Pratchett, had also died peacefully at home that morning, after a very public struggle with early onset posterior cortical atrophy dementia.

I lost both my heroes within 24 hours. I like to think that the day after, Pete and Terry met up on the newcomers’ orientation tour of the ‘better place’ I know they both went to, and had a little chinwag at the bar. They both loved a pint of ale and a good brandy. This whimsy, thankfully, set me off on a more positive terrific track, after I emerged from the usual state of numb shock that comes when the hub of your world is taken away. My family and friends were wonderful in helping me cope with the ‘arrangements’ – I know that Pete would have loved his funeral, and his final resting place, out in the garden beside the pipe fountain that he never quite found the time to move from the garage, where it had been gathering cobwebs since we bought it over 10 years ago.

That was us really – mañana; pole, pole (slowly, slowly); smell the roses… So, facing life without Pete has been a terrific challenge. For the most part I’ve come through pretty well, but of course I’ve had to make some changes. Most have been towards getting practical matters in order so I don’t have to worry about them, which includes some major changes to the house. That hopefully will be finished this summer with the installation of a new extension that will incorporate my ‘dream’ study and library.

Which is why I’m facing 2016 with lots of positive terrific feelings, because I’m so proud and confident of doing more than just surviving the last 11 months. My health isn’t great, but I’m gradually making improvements, and some of the building work will help towards that as well. I’ve kept my mind busy too – RRBC was been at the forefront in that respect, with all the different new activities that have been introduced this year, not to mention my joining the governing board, having a MoW and a BoM slot and getting my act together on my blog ( and on the social networks. As an author, I’ve grown my platform, my audience and been getting great reviews; have a solo anthology-memoir to be published in the Spring, and generally ‘got myself out there’. The one thing I haven’t done is much original writing (the anthology’s a collation of previous work) – but this is about to change! Having been beavering away at all these facets of my life, I’ve finally got to the place where I can draw a deep breath, having cleared all the decks, and walk onto my terrific new vessel to set out on an awfully big adventure. The work in progress beckons mightily, and I couldn’t be happier as I slip my moorings and set out to sea, following a star of my own making!

You’ll find out more about that later in the week!



Author Bio: I live near Launceston in Cornwall, UK with Toby and Benji the Springer Spaniels – it’s a tie between us all as to who’s maddest, but as I outrank them in being weird anyway it’s not open to debate really. I’m physically lazy with things that don’t hold much interest for me (so that’s mostly housework and, increasingly, cooking…), but I love where we live, mainly because I chose it for being so quiet and off the beaten track, very close to the moors and quite near to the sea. I also love books, both to write and to read, the latter of which can be very eclectic (I enjoy Julian Barnes, Kate Atkinson, Jeanette Winterson and will happily admit to Jilly Cooper too) but in the main I’m heavily into SF&F, particularly Tolkien, Terry Pratchett and Julian May, although I can pass on Zombie Apocalypses fairly easily… …how I’ve chosen to write about Africa for my first novel may be something of a surprise to my friends, but if you read it you may find that all of the above information manifests in there somehow!



Book Blurb: Milele Safari back blurb – Milele Safari – An Eternal Journey …twines around a single day, in an unremarkable border village that snuffs out the lives of four people and shatters many others, only to draw the survivors back to a different time and, perhaps, a hope of atonement and peace. Step out on the journey and discover an Africa that could have been, is and might one day come to be.

Book linksAmazon (print & eBook) –

Barnes & Noble (print only) –

Milele Safari blog

Social Media links

Twitter – @JanHawke

Facebook Author page –

LinkedIn –

Author blog – Jan Hawke INKorporated


51 thoughts on “THE BLOG TOUR – starring “SPOTLIGHT” Author, Jan Hawke #RRBC #RaveReviewsBookClub

  1. Hats off to you, Jan. You are a very courageous woman to have dealt with such an enormous loss and bounced right back to remake your own life as well as make such a positive impact on Rave Reviews Book Club. Thanks for all that you do for the club and I hope you have a wonderful “SPOTLIGHT” Author week! Thanks for hosting, Jason!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. So sorry to hear of your loss. I hadn’t realized. 😦 But every adversity opens a new door of possibility. I’m glad you have survived, and although changed, have come out a stronger person who can still take hold of life. Best to you.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jan, you are an inspiration to us all. Congratulations on the Spotlight Author honor. None better qualified in my book. You must make Pete very happy knowing you are carrying on with life as he would have wanted you to do. I am enjoying Millele Safari and think of you as I read each night. A prayer for you. Thanks Jason for hosting

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you John! 🙂 I miss Pete in so many small ways, but he’s still with me in some respects and, yes, he’d be happy that I’ve gone on positively. 😀 Glad you’re enjoying my first literary journey that Pete was an essential part of, if only by making me tons of tea and keeping the pups amused and out of my hair! lol

      Liked by 1 person

    • ROFL 😀 Thanks so much Micki! It’s been a bit too interesting at times, but that’s OK as well isn’t it – as I’ve got plenty to write about still… 😉


    • The best thing about RRBC is just meeting people like yourself and everyone coming in here, Rebecca. 🙂 I’ve been ‘quiet’ about the personal side of things this year as that was something separate I had to process .What I’ve been doing online has been ‘business as usual’ and in the line of therapy to let my mind roam in less painful areas, so RRBC has continued to be my ‘playground’ and helped all the background aspects fade and heal.
      Thank YOU for making all this possible – I’m having a ball! 😉


  4. What words can I add to the comments so far? I know the hard road you’ve travelled this past year, and you are one of those who help me on my own trek down the same road. Great writer, great woman! That’s you.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I can say the same of you m’dear PLUS you’re a great friend and a wonderful editor – without you to keep an eye on the -ly words, Milele would be much longer and far more ‘woffly’! 😉 ‘The road goes ever on and on’ and I couldn’t be happier with the people I meet, and who walk with me along the path 😀


  6. My heart goes out to you, Jan. What a year — of sadness and miracles. So often they seem to travel together, don’t they. I look forward to each entry of your Tour and can’t wait to read your books. Congratulations for being chosen as the Spotlight author–much deserved!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi, Gwen! 😀 Thanks for saying nice things – I’ll be reciprocating shortly as I finished ‘Letting Go Into Perfect Love’ at the weekend. I used to work in the divorce courts and it brought back many memories of so many brave souls with similar experiences to yours – you’re an inspiration, and consolation to others on how to do more than survive the bad times. 🙂


  7. Thank God Jan, you are a survivor! The loss of a better half can be quite devastating, but you have taken things in your stride. Good for you. No need to sit around and moan. I am sure Pete would have wanted it that way- that you move on. :D. Thank God for God given skills. They keep you busy, especially when you need it most. Thank God too for our wonderful #RRBC. You can’t be bored or alone. Just make sure you take care of your health. As they say… all is well. :). Thank you Jason for profiling her.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Joy – you have me hearing Gloria Gaynor now! (I will Survive) 😉
      Most of the things I’ve been up to this year were things that we’d started to plan for when Pete retired, which would have been this year if he’d been spared. Knowing that he’d approve of what I’ve done helped a lot in dealing with things and I’m really looking forward to my super-duper new study where I can see his fountain in the garden and the dogs playing beside it – he’ll be with us still 🙂


  8. Thank you, Jan! You help me to realize not only that I’m often a wimp for whining about my own negative-terrific things but also that I have the strength to climb out of them & be stronger for having done it. I’m very, very glad to have met you!


    • Hi, Mary! Thanks for coming over! 😀 Never apologise for whining – it’s a legitimate safety valve and it helps to talk with others about what’s going on. Not wimpish at all! 😉


  9. Trials and triumphs. You’ve come through your with an abundance of positivity. Good for you.

    Congratulations on being chosen Spotlight Author. Enjoy your time in the light.

    Thank you, Jason, for hosting.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Jan Hawke thank you so much for sharing your loss and grief with us. Its nice that you have this platform to express your thoughts and that has to be a soothing, healing experience for you. Your tour has been very interesting so far. Good luck on the rest of it. Jason we member’s appreciate your support of Jan and wish you all the best as well.

    Liked by 1 person

    • (((Beem))) – thank you so much for your support and wise words Beem 😀 As you say loss is part of life and something we all must face sooner or later – it forms us and makes us stronger if we accept it, like change, as our own rich tapestry and legacy.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s