I'm back from my mini tour of the West Midlands and have to confess I committed a terrible sin while there

Yes, I’m back from a very pleasant visit to two libraries in the West Midlands where I met some very interesting people and had a good chat with them about how I write my marine mystery detective crime novels and thrillers, but I have to tell you that I committed a great sin while there. No, I didn’t rum amok naked and wailing through the centre of Burton-Upon-Trent or Perry Common in Birmingham – though that might have been interesting or sad, depending on your point of view, and it might well have got me in the newspaper headlines, although I did make it into the Staffordshire and local press – but I failed to visit the Marmite factory!

Yes, I know, how, as a life-long lover of Marmite could I have possibly missed out on such a wonderful opportunity? (I need to have my fix every day on toast otherwise I suffer withdrawal symptoms). So, while I was in the actual town where the wonder product is produced you’d have thought I would have spared some time to worship its hallowed ground. But no, and neither did I get to visit the three breweries in the town and sample the beer, because I was in the Reading Café in the Library explaining how I write my marine mystery crime novels, answering questions about them, supping coffee and signing copies with some lovely local people and one lady who, as coincidence would have it, used to live and work in Portsmouth, where my novels are set (and where I am from). I was also delighted to meet a gentleman who told me how much he loved my crime novels and had read them all; it’s always a great delight to an author to get such positive feedback.

The Reading Cafe display at Burton-upon-Trent Library  

Pauline Rowson reading from one of her thrillers at Burton-Upon-Trent Library

And I also have to confess to another sin while in Burton-upon-Trent, I said no to the lady in the library café who offered me Branston pickle on my cheese baguette. Sorry, sorry, I forgot that Burton-upon-Trent also contains a suburb by the name of Branston, known for inventing Branston Pickle. If I am ever invited back I promise I will sup ale and eat Branston pickle until I am well and truly sozzled and most probably sick. And I will bow down and gives thanks for Marmite at its very door because all those lovely vitamins are so perfect for stimulating the little grey cells of this crime author. Keep up the good work, Marmite! I will be back.

P.S. Many thanks to Perry Common Library and Burton-Upon-Trent Library for hosting these events and to all the people who turned up to hear me talk.


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