- About the Author
- On Active Service
Another Year Over…
This is the time of year when I write a review of everything I have achieved in the last twelve months.
I’m not going to concentrate on the difficulties we have all had and the challenges we have faced with the pandemic because these have all been well documented.
Instead I shall deal with my own personal positives, starting with the publishing of my two historical novels about Coleridge , which were published by Blue Poppy Publishing in March. These two novels were quite a departure for me, I have never written historical fiction before but I like to write about relationships and family life and I am interested in women’s position in society. Even before I began my voluntary work at National Trust Coleridge Cottage I was fascinated by Coleridge and Wordsworth and their relationships with each other and with the women who made up their immediate family circle. The poetry they wrote was influenced not only by the beauty of their natural surroundings but by their relationship with the women who shared their lives, particularly Dorothy Wordsworth and Sara Coleridge. Like all relationships they had their ups and downs, arguments and misunderstandings. The marital difficulties that Coleridge had, with disagreements about money, work and childcare, are no different from any other couple of today.
My second success this year was the publication of my women’s fiction novel “I Know You, Don’t I?” This story was inspired by an incident that happened to me one day. I was sitting in a cafe when a woman came up to me and said “I know you, don’t I? You’re Catherine. We went to school together.”
I told her she was mistaken and we laughed but afterwards I thought “What if I had said I was Catherine? I could have invented a whole new life for myself, pretended I was someone else.”
The idea grew on me and this book was the result. I already had a couple of stories in my mind that I wanted to tell, one based on my own life, the other made up. This book enabled me to tell both using two quite different female protagonists, both of whom think other people have better lives than they do. I set the book in my home town, Taunton, rather than a fictional town, to give it the reality I felt the story needed.
With three books being published this year I hadn’t planned on writing another novel but with the advent of lockdown and subsequent cancellation of my book launches I found myself with time on my hands. “You Must Remember This…” is my first suspense novel, quite a different style from anything I have written before. It’s a story full of twists and turns that will keep you guessing.
Rachel and Nick Marriott count themselves lucky to live in The White House, half of a period town house in a small West Country town. The other half, The Yellow House, and the one-storey annexe attached to it are rented out but few people stay long enough for them to become friendly with.
Until the Newman family move in. There’s something strange about them right from the start. How can they afford to live there when they look like they have no money? Who are the strange people who come and stay, sometimes for weeks at a time? And what is this ‘business’ they both work in?
Twenty years later a new neighbour moves in. Who is she? And what is her connection to The Yellow House?
Let’s hope that 2021 brings us health and happiness and a return of something near the normality of the past.
Thanking you all for your support this year and wishing you all the very best for the New Year
Bethany Askew is the author of eight novels:
The Time Before, The World Within, Out of Step, Counting the Days, Poppy’s Seed, Three Extraordinary Years,The Two Saras and I know you, Don’t I?
She has also written a short story, The Night of the Storm, and she writes poetry.
Two more women’s fiction books have been accepted for publication in 2020 and 2021 respectively and she is currently working on a new novel.
In her spare time she enjoys reading, music, theatre, walking, Pilates, dancing and voluntary work.
Bethany is married and lives in Somerset.