Guest post: My Favourite Things About Spring by Cathy Woodman

23 Mar

Today I’m celebrating the start of Spring with Cathy Woodman! Cathy was a small-animal vet before turning to writing fiction. She won the Harry Bowling First Novel Award in 2002 and is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association. Cathy has written ten novels set in the fictional market town of Talyton St George in beautiful East Devon, where Cathy lived as a child. Cathy now lives with her two children, a cat and two Border Terriers in a village near Winchester, Hampshire.

Cathy WoodmanThank you very much for welcoming me to your brilliant blog as I continue on my tour with my new book, Springtime at Cherry Tree Cottage.

I’ve been thinking about my favourite things about spring and I’ve come up with my top five.

Number one is that this spring sees the publication of my latest novel, Springtime at Cherry Tree Cottage, the tenth in the Talyton St George series. It tells the story of female farrier, Flick, whose first job is in the hamlet of Furzeworthy just outside Talyton St George. She is horse-mad, a fact that leads me on to the second great thing about spring, the onset of the lighter evenings.

If you have ever had anything to do with looking after horses, you will understand how the lengthening days seem like a miracle after the short days of winter. It’s a welcome respite from stumbling about in the dark with nothing but the light of a head torch to unlock the combination lock on the gate to the blossom cathyyard with numb fingers in the mornings, and mucking out by the light of a single electric bulb before turning the horses out in a muddy field. As for riding, unless you’re lucky enough to have access to a floodlit arena, you can be pretty stuck. But when spring comes and the horses start to shed their winter coats, you know that you have a good few months to make the most of your horse.

Number three in my top five favourite things about spring is the appearance of the spring blooms. When writing my books, I include a mention of the different flowers growing in the cottage gardens, hedgerows and Devon banks to give a sense of the season, so in Springtime at Cherry Tree Cottage, you will spot blackthorn and primroses, for example, and later on, daffodils and tulips.

cathy birthdayFourth in my springtime countdown is my birthday in March and I’ll be able to have a rainbow cake with candles, but I’m not telling you how many this year. I love the fact that I’ve had birthdays where I’ve been paddling around in the river in warm sunshine, and others where it’s snowed.

And finally, my fifth favourite thing in spring is casting off the hat, gloves and scarf, and choosing new clothes to wear into the summer. By setting Springtime at Cherry Tree Cottage at this time of year, I was able to let Robbie, the handsome stunt rider and local celebrity, wear a flowing shirt while swimming with his horse. Think Poldark!

I hope you enjoy reading Springtime at Cherry Tree Cottage as much as I enjoyed writing about Flick and Robbie, and their horses.

x Cathy

Thank you Cathy and very happy Spring Birthday too!

Springtime At Cherry Cottage springtime coveris published on 24th March 2016 in paperback original by Arrow, priced £6.99

After years of training, horse-mad Flick has finally achieved her dream of becoming one of the few female blacksmiths in the country.

Her first job is in Talyton St George. The little cottage on the green where she is staying is idyllic, and it feels like the fresh start she needs. But she soon finds she is having to work overtime to prove her abilities to the not-so-welcoming locals.

One person very much on her side though is Robbie Salterton. He’s a bit of a local celebrity – a handsome stunt rider who does charity work in his spare time – and he seems to be going out of his way to look out for Flick. But is he just being friendly or does he see Flick as something more?

Despite swearing off men, Flick can’t help wanting to find out . . .

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