If you would like a Guest Blog posted here please get in touch , drop me an email with your blog . email :graeme_taylor@graytoon.co.uk

14. Aug, 2017

http://www.gablecraft.com/index.asp

18. Apr, 2016

We’ve published our own book about amazing people

www.ukbookpublishing.com

 http://www.consil.co.uk

  • Having spent the last few years publishing other people’s books, we decided it was about time we published our own. And we’re very excited with the result!

101-amazing-people-reddit-book-cover

The book is inspired by true stories discovered on reddit.com of incredible people that most of us don’t know about – it’s our quirky and fascinating collection of 101 people who have changed history, performed amazing feats – or just been incredibly lucky.

Read about the guy who saved us from World War Three, the woman who performed a caesarean on herself and the man whose love literally moved mountains. Then there’s the pilot who shot down his own plane and the woman who won the lottery four times.

What we discovered, in producing a book for ourselves, was that it’s still a lot of work! The writing, the editing, the design and layout – and setting the book up for print and ebook formats. But it’s also very satisfying.

You can read an extract below from the book, about an amazing but little-known WWII double agent:

Juan Pujol Garcia

The greatest double-agent on Earth

Juan Pujol GarciaInfluenced by his experiences during his country’s civil war, Spaniard Juan Pujol Garcia was an anti-fascist with great aspirations to be a spy, but with no experience or training in espionage. In 1941, undeterred by his lack of credentials, Pujol went to the British embassy in Madrid, and offered his services as a spy. Described by a British expert on military history as a “balding, boring and unsmiling little man”, the British embassy turned him down.

Unwilling to give up his dreams of becoming a spy, Pujol swiftly changed tactics and offered his services to the Germans instead, claiming that he was a Nazi sympathizer working for the Spanish government who made frequent trips to London. The lie was outrageous: not only did he not speak a work of English, but far from working in the government, Pujol’s previous job had involved chicken farming and managing a one star hotel in Madrid. Still, he forged a diplomatic passport to support his story and the Germans were fooled. They gave him an intense course in espionage and set him to work recruiting English agents who could send dispatches back to Germany.

Since both his passport and employment were fake, Pujol carried out orders to spy in England from Lisbon in Portugal. There, he created fictional agents using a guidebook of England to make his characters’ positions and movements sound convincing. Pujol also read many books about the British Military, and English magazines in order to make the entirely made-up information he passed on to the Nazis sound believable.

So successful was he in convincing the Germans that he was a real spy that they took his reports very seriously. When they made a dramatic response to a completely imaginary Pujol lead, that British troops were active in Malta, British intelligence finally paid the ‘balding, boring’ Pujol some attention. Having started to notice Pujol’s reports and actions from little snippets picked up in radio communications, it was his Malta stunt that swayed the Brits. They found him, moved him to London, and made him an agent.

Now working alongside the British, Pujol could send real reports of unimportant troop movements back to Germany and his credibility was asserted by crucial bits of information sent, just too late to be of any use to the Nazis. These deliberately late reports included the warning that British Troops would invade North Africa in November 1942 to which the Nazis responded, “We are sorry they arrived too late but your last reports were magnificent.”

Perhaps Pujol’s greatest achievement as a double agent was his success in deceiving Hitler that the Allies would land at Pas de Calais for the D-Day landings, rather than in Normandy. As part of the ruse, the Allies stationed American General George Patton in Dover and Pujol convinced Hitler, by extensive communications from his ‘agents’ and confusing reports, that huge swathes of troops were gathering at Dover and preparing to sail for Calais. Even as the first ships began to land on the Normandy beaches, Pujol’s credibility as a loyal Nazi asset was such that his urgent reports that the attack was only to draw attentions away from the true attack which would take place at Calais led Hitler to order for troops heading to Normandy to turn back.

Even two months after the D-Day attack at Normandy, German troops remained stationed at Calais, waiting for the ‘true’ attack that Pujol had convinced them would happen.

Pujol’s success as a double agent resulted in remarkable honours from both England and Germany; receiving an MBE from King George VI and the Iron Cross from Hitler.

After the war, Pujol’s death was faked to protect him from Nazi sympathizers and he retired to Venezuela to live out the rest of his life running a small gift shop. He died in 1988, aged 76.

18. Apr, 2016

Miri Country Music Fest 2016 Yee Haa!

9th March, 2016 | Article By Lesley Tan

 
 
 

This year we celebrated Country Music from USA, Australia, Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia in our 3rd Fest. What a great success! It was such an overwhelming success that the dates for Miri Country Music Fest 2017 have been announced. It will be over two days, 25th and 26th February.

This year’s Fest was held on 29th February in the Parkcity Everly Hotel, Miri. This hotel has a large pavilion which is perfect for events like this and is also used for wedding dinners and other such events.

The Country Music Fest’s performers started arriving a few days earlier and two nights before there was a big get-together of the many who were involved, in a popular meeting place, Ming Café. The place was full of happy people eating, drinking and enjoying the live music from some of the performers.

On the night before there was a cocktail reception held in the Ruai Lounge of the hotel. The performers were all there and once again there was a great live pre show for us all to enjoy.

The actual day started with Vocal harmony workshop by OS Pombos from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Real Country Hour by 2Country4Nashville, USA (this would be played on a radio show in USA). Line Dancing at the Pavilion. At 5.30 the Concert started. We arrived at sunset and were just in time to see another magnificent sunset from the grassy area outside in the grounds of the hotel, which are set by the sea. There was a Bucking Bronco, Bouncy Castle, various stalls selling food, drinks and souvenirs, stalls selling promotional items for the performers and giant Cut Outs of the performers for a great photo opportunity! Giant screens were set up for those who wished to sit outside and enjoy the lovely breeze and happily it did not rain.

The atmosphere was great. There were people everywhere dressed in Country style and inside the Pavilion the music started with the line-up:-

The Mountain Wind Band from Sarawak, Malaysia
Jonathan Tse from Koto Kinabalu, Malaysia
Leonard And The Country Riders from Singapore
Ruby Boots from Australia
Tatowi Yahya from Indonesia
2Country4Nashville from USA
OS Pombos from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Also, Rani Tofani, Asif Pishori and Mel Ferdinands.

This fabulous line-up and the whole event was headed by Gracie V. Geikie. Gracie and her Miri Country Music Fest Team did an excellent job of making the Fest a resounding success. Everyone had a great time and there was a lot of dancing and singing from the happy audience. Many had travelled from a long distance to be there.

We are really looking forward to the next Country Music Fest set right here in Miri, Sarawak, Malaysia. If you love Country Music, it is not to be missed!

18. Apr, 2016

Let’s Be Gay in Whitley Bay

5th January, 2016 | Article By Lesley Tan

 
 
 
 

‘Let’s Be Gay in Whitley Bay’ is the old advertising slogan for Whitley Bay, but it sounds so wrong now!

Whitley Bay is a beautiful beach resort which was a hive of activity during the 1900s, but these days many people are jetting off to distant shores for their holidays, which makes it a great place to relax, walk on the beaches or sea front, have a drink, have breakfast or lunch in one of the many cafes, or saunter around the lovely shops. There is also St Mary’s Island to explore, a golf course (along the sea front), a caravan site and amusement arcades too!

The Whitley Bay Playhouse has recently been refurbished and many shows are held there. You can visit the stately Delaval Hall with its historic past or maybe you fancy ice-skating? Well, there is even an ice rink where I used to skate when I was young!

The views around the coast are stunning and there are loads of photo opportunities. There is a Whitley Bay Metro station with a loop line to Newcastle and loads of buses pass through the area so access to this lovely town is easy. Whitley Bay is walking distance to Cullercoats village which is walking distance to Tynemouth and to the north, Seaton Sluice and Delaval Hall, that’s if walking is of interest. There are loads of lovely B & B’s to stay in as well.

15. Apr, 2016