By

Wendy Hughes

After almost four years of tumbling from one health issue to another, I had almost come to expect nothing to change, but on 30th December a package arrived containing copies of my long awaited new book, A –Z of Curious Sussex.  Was this a good omen heralding a better year for me?  I do hope so.  Interestingly, I still get a tremendous thrill on seeing a new book for the first time, and I hope I will never lose  that excitement, and although I say it myself I am delighted with the book, which I feel has turned out far better than I had dared to hope. The contact had been signed for publication in 2014, but when illness struck, but my publishers, The History Press were most understanding, and have done me proud yet again and are now busy helping with the promotion, a rare treat these days.

They say a cover makes a book and I feel this is certainly true of this one. In the book I take the reader by the hand on a grand tour of the curious and bizarre, the strange and the unusual from Sussex’s past.  Some stories are well known, others may be new to the reader. For example read about the Alfriston Star Inn, once a hostelry for medieval package tours sporting a most unusual ship figurehead, or why is there a Russian memorial to Finnish soldiers sitting in Sussex?  Read about crazy Jack who simply could not stop building and decided to be buried in a pyramid in the middle of Sussex   Along the way the reader will meet some scandalous residents, inventors and smugglers which I guarantee will fascinate both residents and visitors alike.  I will be doing a number of book signings in Sussex, so watch this space, but if you can’t wait you can order a copy from Amazon https://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=The+A-Z+of+Sussex.  There is also a  kindle version too.

With two other writers from Sea Scribes in Worthing we will be doing a book launch at Heene Road Community Centre on 17th February and do come along, browse out books and share a glass of prosecco and a slice of launch cake with us.

As you can imagine I enjoyed celebrating the New Year and with renewed energy and already making plans for writing projects this year.

Today I was interviewed by Phil Hewitt, Arts Editor of the local groups of newspapers, which is the first of several interviews in the pipeline.  It was a pleasure to meet Phil for the first time, although we had spoken on the telephone a number of times, and if you are interesting article will appear the local papers next week. I have also signed 12 copies of the book and returned to The History Press and these will be used as competition prizes in local magazines. Who knows what next week will bring, but the year has started well and is just the tonic I needed to begin the year.

Eastbourne book signing

About Wendy Hughes

Wendy turned to writing, in 1989, when ill-health and poor vision forced her into early medical retirement. Since then she has published 26 nonfiction books, and over 2000 articles. Her work has appeared in magazines as diverse as The Lady, Funeral Service Journal, On the Road, 3rd Stone, Celtic Connections, Best of British, and Guiding magazine. She has a column in an America/Welsh newspaper for ex-pats on old traditions and customs in Wales. Her books include many on her native Wales, Anglesey Past and Present, The Story of Brecknock, Brecon, a pictorial History of the Town, Carmarthen, a History and Celebration and Tales of Old Glamorgan, and a book on Walton on Thames in the Images of England series, a company history and two books on the charity Hope Romania. She has also co-authored two story/activity books for children. Her latest books are: Haunted Worthing published in October 2010, a new colour edition of The Story of Pembrokeshire published in March 2011, and Shipwrecks of Sussex in June 2011 and Not a Guide to Worthing in 2014. She is working on a book entitled A-Z of Curious Sussex which will be published in 2016 Wendy also works with clients to bring their work up to publishable standard and is currently working on an autobiography with a lady that was married to a very famous 1940’s travel writer. Wendy has spent many years campaigning and writing on behalf of people affected by Stickler Syndrome, a progressive genetic connective tissue disorder from which she herself suffers. She founded the Stickler Syndrome Support Group and raises awareness of the condition amongst the medical profession, and produces the group’s literature, and has written the only book on the condition, Stickler The Elusive Syndrome, and has also contributed to a DVD on the condition, Stickler syndrome: Learning the Facts. She has also writing three novels, Sanctimonious Sin, a three generation saga set in Wales at the turn of the century, Power That Heal set in the Neolithic period entitled Powers that Heal, and a semi biographical book entitled New Beginnings which deals with two generations coping with blindness and a genetic condition. She has also had a handful of short stories published, and in her spare time is working on several at the moment. She also gives talks on a variety of subjects including Writing and Placing Articles, Writing Local History, Writing as Therapy, Writing your first novel, etc, and runs workshops on the craft of writing – both fiction and non-fiction. She is a member of the Society of Women Writers and Journalists, and a member of the Society of Authors.