Meet the Editor

Me. Trying to look studious and thoughtful …

Me. Trying to look studious and thoughtful …

Hello, readers of Kev’s blog.

I’m roughseasinthemed and Kev has generously invited me to be a guest columnist here.

Why roughseasinthemed for my blog title and name? Well, because I live in Spain and Gibraltar within walking distance of the Mediterranean Sea. And although often thought of as a calm sea, it can get quite choppy at times.

My dogs enjoying the Med in Spain:

I moved here from the UK at the turn of the century, and I’ve also lived and worked/studied in France, The Netherlands, Italy, India, Australia, and New Zealand.

I’ve spent 30+ years in the printing and publishing industry, starting off as a writer for our county archaeology department, then qualifying as a newspaper journalist, working as both a reporter and editor. Subsequent jobs included government press officer, communications specialist, public relations manager, public affairs manager and all things involving writing, editing, graphic design/layout and publishing.

My great-uncle's typewriter, another journo in the family

My great-uncle’s typewriter, I taught myself to type on it; he was another journo in the family

Currently, I work as a freelance editor, and I also provide beta read reports, post publication reports and reviews. I’ll be writing about all of these in my monthly column. Most of my editing is on fiction, but I also produce corporate reports.

If you have any queries please ask them in the comments below, or contact me through the form on my About Me page on roughseas.

Looking forward to sharing tips, views, exchanging opinions about all things bookish with the readers on here (some of whom I know through your own blogs).

Hasta febrero, when, I will be writing about the contentious subject of reviews and my take on them: star ratings, whether or not to be critical, publish two or one star reviews, contact the author, or should the author respond, and if so, how?

Waves rolling in

Waves rolling in


About roughseasinthemed

I write about my life as an English person living in Spain and Gibraltar, on Roughseas, subjects range from politics and current developments in Gib to book reviews, cooking and getting on with life. My views and thoughts on a variety of topics - depending on my mood of the day - can be found over on Clouds. A few pix are over on Everypic - although it is not a photoblog. And of course my dog had his own blog, but most of you knew that anyway. Pippadogblog etc

87 comments on “Meet the Editor

  1. WHAT do you think my first three chapters of my book-
    Chapter 1
    For some time, my intuition has been nudging me to write my story. The little voice within me kept whispering, “put down on paper what you have learned from your life experiences.” To help others realize that they are not alone on their journey to finding their Authentic Self. My ego had many rationales and answers for why I should not carry through with the ideas of writing my book. Such as;
    You are not a writer You have nothing to say
    Others won’t read what you write
    You don’t have time
    You are too old
    I Have Been On A Spiritual Quest All Of My Life.
    My spiritual path has meant journeying down the road less traveled by doing my inner work for the past fifty years. A spiritual friend once told me that we choose the perfect time and environment for our spiritual growth to progress. The universe presents an environment to learn the lessons we need to learn so we can carry out our life’s purpose. As the saying goes, “when the student is ready the teacher will appear.”
    Have you ever been in a situation you found so painful and embarrassing that you told yourself, “I will never make that mistake again,” only to see yourself repeating it over and over? The people and the places may have been different, but the results were the same? Did you ever, after ending a bad relationship, swear you will never again get yourself into that same type of predicament? Have you said to yourself and your friends that you will never be like your parents? You said you would never be like your parents until the day you – yourself had a child and sound, look and acted just as they had? Isn’t that history repeating itself? Your rational mind knows better; it knows what you do not want to be, to do, or to experience and ask, “why am I doing this?”
    So, what is the answer?
    The answer is that we inherit by our parent’s beliefs and messages and have received and internalized what they brought us up to be. Their influence shaped who you are today. Our inherited abilities that shaped us from young to old forms our emotional map determines our ability to relate to who we have become and how we Now relate to others. You formed your perceptions, values, and belief system at a very young age.

    Chapter 2
    My parents got married the day after Christmas in 1960. My mother was the bookkeeper for the family owned restaurant. My father built the restaurant and ran it. He graduated from Notre Dame with a degree in Business Administration with straight A’s. Both parents were daily alcohol drinkers considered to be functioning Alcoholics. Alcohol took its toll on mom and she got phenomena and drove herself to the hospital where she died quickly in 1971 due to alcohol poisoning and the allergic reaction to penicillin. I was five years old. Growing up dad never discussed the death of my mother.

    Memories of Mom
    When I was three years old I remember having to brush my teeth before going to bed. I was then told to go to bed on my own with no supervision. But, every single night I would make my mom come in to investigate these little bugs that would be crawling on my bed and pillow. At that time, I had no idea where they were coming from or what they were but after investigating when I was older they were in the family of Rolly Polly bugs. This was a nightly ritual until one day mom just stopped coming to tuck me into bed.

     When I was four years old I remember being in the bedroom with windows on two sides of the room and my sisters crib was on the wall with no windows.  My bed was next to the big windows.  Imagine being four years old and having no curtains on any of the windows at four years old.  One night there was a big loud thunderstorm where we lived in Waukegan Illinois.  I remember the thunder being so loud and watching my sister flip out of her crib and landing on the floor.  My mom came running into the room to rescue my sister but left me screaming and never came to get me.  This gave me a sense of belief instilled at age four of abandonment and not feeling safe.
     I remember my sister and I getting ready for school at age four and having to get ready with no supervision.  We then would walk to the end of the block to wait for a bus. One day we were standing there for what seemed forever when I decided to go home and ask mom why the bus was not coming.  My sister stayed at the bus stop and the bus took her to school.  When my mom realized, she had to take me to school, I remember her being very mad and yelling at me, she told me “never do that again.” I remember feeling bad and this instilled my belief to silence my feelings and never make mommy upset.
     There was another memory of my sister and I playing and the garbage cans were next to the side of the house.  On this particular Saturday, my sister and I went outside to play with a ball.  I remember playing with it in the driveway and there were broken alcohol bottles all over the lawn next to the garbage into tiny pieces.  The ball went into the glass pieces and I remember holding my sister back telling her to stop, that I would go get the ball.  She let me take a few steps to retrieve the ball when all of the sudden glass cut my left foot and I screamed bloody murder.  My sister rushed to get my mom out of bed.  My mom had to quickly get me to the hospital and I got nine stiches on my left foot.  This memory instilled fear in me that the world was not safe.  Since I had a cast on my foot I was not allowed to play or go to the swimming pool at our friend’s house giving me the feeling of being left out and aloneness.  I created the belief that life is not fair.
     I remember that both my parents smoked cigarettes inside the house.  This created my ear infections and I was always crying in pain of my ears.  Just imagine being four years old not knowing what was wrong with you and one day you go to the hospital and come home not able to talk.  I was rewarded with toy animals as my parents had a party with their friends and I was not able to talk, eat or be noticed by anyone in the livening room.  This was another incident where my beliefs made me feel alone, left out, rejected.
     The last memory I had was when the family had to get ready for mom’s Catholic funeral.  I feel like it happened yesterday.  I remember my dad taking his three girls ages 6,5,3 to kneel at the casket, not knowing why.  It was a Catholic Mass and all I can remember is that when I went to kneel down my mom was still breathing even though she wasn’t.  She was only thirty-three years old.  I can picture her in my head right now.
     Lying in bed at night, I dare not move in fear of bugs crawling on me. I realized mom was not coming home.  I was sent to my grandma’s house every weekend and life would never be the same.   I did not understand why mom was not coming home, but I never asked dad why.  I knew there was a God but did not understand why He took away my mother.  This was my first experience of feeling so powerless.  The innocence and safety of my infancy had been replaced by thoughts of death.  The messages that I internalized was that the world is not safe, do not trust anyone, others have power over my life, no one can save me and God failed me.  I was a victim in my own circumstances life threw out at me.
     I am not exactly sure what age I was but under the age of five but my mom drove to Montgomery Wards and left thee of her children inside a Cadillac car. So an estimated ages are; two-four-five years old.  Well Mom went inside and I Remember us playing with the knobs in the car when all of the sudden the car started moving backwards.  All three of us could see the car going to the road where passing traffic was.  Out of nowhere came a man and literally stopped the car from rolling into traffic.  Talk about having the fear of “I am unsafe, I am afraid.!” 1493 words

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Sorry I’m late to comment, I’ve only recently been dipping my toe back in the blogosphere for the first time in a while after a break.
    Good luck with the new guest column (not that you’ll need it). I miss your thoughts on writing and reviews of the books you’ve read so I look forward to finding new books for me to investigate. Your reviews are always entertaining as well as being straight and to the point. Please don’t change!


    • Hi Dylan
      I noticed you were MIA or AWOL or whatever you prefer 😀 New book going well?
      I’ve been writing reviews on GR rather than cluttering my blog with them. As Kev’s blog is more bookish than mine, it should be a mutually beneficial relationship to write about all things books, writing, editing, publishing.
      I do have a book review or two I’m planning to write about on my blog though. At some point.


      • Book is going slowly. I’m not happy with the story – despite loving the characters and overall concept it still feels weak, plus life is getting in the way.
        I think moving reviews and writing talk to Kevin’s blog is a good move and hopefully you’ll find a brand new readership to spar with. 🙂


        • Sorry to hear that. Put it aside and start another? Or have you already done that? Can’t be cricket in the way in winter! Unless you do indoor cricket.
          Not so much a full-scale move, rather a different outlet that is more book focused. Having said that, book/writing posts on mine have often received lotsa comments. So, I’ll still be writing the odd few on roughseas too – I’m trying to be good and moderate on here!
          Spar? Me? I take it you meant healthy invigorating discussion.


  3. Will you, be doin postts on pruff reeding and grama and stuf?
    Please tell Kev the comment hierarchy structure thing is difficult to read when it gets too tiny.


  4. I learned to type in middle school (USA) on my aunt’s manual typewriter, which looked to be a similar vintage to yours. I used this through high school. I do not believe that it is hidding in case any longer. I probably left it at my parent’s home when I wandered off to find the world and myself. Then those “portable” computers of the 1980’s came along while I was in college. I still own pens and do write letters, to the fear of family members who have to try to decipher my handwriting.
    P.S. We enjoyed those ocean views along the coast of Spain a decade or so ago. Must get back…


    • I learned after school. Post uni or uni holidays? Not sure. Bought a how to type book, covered all the keys with little stickies and went from there. Great advantage when I started in journalism. Now I type with one finger on an ipad! Unless I use the laptop. I was using typewriters through the 80s. First work computer (Apple) was 1989.

      And, I think my proficiency in typing led to my poor handwriting!

      Spain has a nice coastline. I haven’t travelled the northern one, but I have done the Med and the up to Portugal one. My favourite beaches are prob Tarifa, and elsewhere, anywhere on the west coast of Scotland/western isles, and ninety mile beach in NZ.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m looking forward to your other posts!
    As a reviewer, I’m very interested in honing my craft and getting other’s input.
    You’re dogs are beautiful!


    • Hi there, and thanks. It’s amazing how many different points of view there are about reviews! I think we all have to go with what feels right for us. My dogs. Hmmm. Tosca has been destructive again, eating a pair of socks this morning 😦

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oh, no. Such a bad dog, but so cute!
        I agree about going with what feels right, and mine have changed considerably in the years since I started. However, it is nice to get other’s thoughts and ideas.

        Liked by 1 person

        • A young dog thing. Hopefully she’ll grow out of it before she destroys our whole wardrobe. I write different reviews depending on where I am writing.

          Liked by 1 person

          • She probably will, but the wait can be frustrating!


            • And the loss of socks and underwear and T-shirts moreso! But still. Guess she had a hard life before so we give leeway.

              Liked by 1 person

              • Oh, my, I hadn’t even considered how much more would be lost! It takes a lot of patience with puppies and kids!
                My daughter runs a rescue and some of the stories are so heartbreaking. You’re doing a wonderful thing, caring for her, and I’m sure in her own doggy way, she’ll reward you in many ways in the years to come.


                • I think she’s living the puppyhood she never had. All our dogs have been rescues, the last three from the street. Snowy probably had it easier, thrown in a rubbish bin at a few days old, rescued and fostered and we took him at five weeks. Been spoiled ever since. I admire your daughter. If only we had the space and the money …


  6. New to meet you. Will surely looking forward your posts as it will help to an aspiring writer in every way,isn’t it?


  7. Good to see you! Looking forward to hearing more from you!


  8. Thanks, Kev! I look forward to reading future posts by roughseas.


  9. I cannot believe you have been around long enough to have spent 30 years in this field! You look great! I am a mother and grandmother, who likes to give compliments when I think they are due.
    I would not think publishing one or two star reviews appropriate. I would decline or give private reason to the book author. I loved my two weeks in Spain and went to Mallorca while in high school Spanish Club. You are lucky and deserving of this home you have chosen. Smiles, Robin
    Kev, this was very cool idea to have the Editor be a guest here. 🙂


    • Thanks Robin! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you. I suspect it’s due to my mother’s side of the family who didn’t seem to get any grey hair, so at a quick glance long brown hair isn’t the norm on a fifty-odd-year-old woman. My partner was accused of cradle-snatching a few years back, but then she admitted when she looked more closely at me that I wasn’t as young as she’d thought!

      I’ll be putting the pros and cons of low star reviews/contacting the author, with some specific examples, in my next post. So it will be good to read what you think when I’ve written the full post.

      I’ve not been to the Balearics, although managed three of the Canaries which I loved. For holidays, we’ve managed to travel the full Spanish Med coastline and round the corner (?!) point/tip, up the Atlantic one too and on into Portugal. It’s a beautiful part of the world, everywhere has flaws, but the good outweighs the bad for us.

      Again, thanks for the comment Robin 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • I will look forward to reading you here on Kev’s blog and will check yours out now. Good to know you will be talking about whether or not to post low book ratings, among many things. Smiles Robin


        • Talking about is correct, I certainly won’t be saying there is a right and wrong way to do anything (not in this instance). I’ll be citing examples from different review groups, and individuals, so it won’t be just ‘roughseas does this’, it will be very much a round-up, with links if people want to follow them. So I hope people find it interesting and have something to contribute. 🙂


  10. Happy Week Kev 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I’m looking forward to whatever you have to share! Great new feature 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Great to see you here, and thanks to Kev for organising this 😀

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Welcome to KC Books & Music and thanks for the great intro, roughseas. We’re all looking forward to your monthly posts! Thanks so very much for agreeing to do this. 🙂


  14. Hi MC. I know, reviews are soooo controversial. It was well different when I was a junior reporter writing reviews! Now everyone can write anything or nothing on Am or GR. there are some great reviews out there, and some very unfair ones.

    I don’t think there is a right or wrong stance, apart from, don’t slag off the author or reviewer personally, and sadly, I will be touching on personal vilification 😦 amongst the other aspects.

    S&T came off the street. They love life. And my sofa. And my bed.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Fabulous! I look forward to reading your posts, especially the one on reviews. I have strong opinions about some of items you mentioned and look forward to your take on them.
    You’re dogs look like they love where they live 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi MC. I know, reviews are soooo controversial. It was well different when I was a junior reporter writing reviews! Now everyone can write anything or nothing on Am or GR. there are some great reviews out there, and some very unfair ones.

      I don’t think there is a right or wrong stance, apart from, don’t slag off the author or reviewer personally, and sadly, I will be touching on personal vilification 😦 amongst the other aspects.

      S&T came off the street. They love life. And my sofa. And my bed.

      Liked by 2 people

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