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About 

Manda Scott

Welcome to the website of MC Scott, aka Manda Scott: novelist, columnist and broadcaster. Mostly the former, it has to
be said, but that’s always what takes up the most time. It takes a year to write a book and a week to read it and this is what keeps us on the lookout always for better, more engaging, more
inspiring books.

Because books are about inspiration. They’re about letting small parts of ourselves free into the dreams of other worlds to explore other ways of being.

As George RR Martin so neatly puts it: ‘A man who reads lives a thousand lives before he dies. A man who never reads, lives only one.’ Extending that to the whole of humanity, welcome, to the world of many lives: what I write, and what you read will always be different, but somewhere in the middle is a meeting of minds where together, we create new ways of being - and some of them, may help us navigate our route through the dream we call reality.

Biography

I was a veterinary surgeon before I became a writer: I grew up in the James Herriot era and naively thought it was possible to do both well. It took me ten years of veterinary work before I began to write properly and another five before I gave up the day job for good. And it has been good: whatever anyone else tells you, writing is the best job in the world. Where else would it be possible to sit at a desk imagining the world as it might have been, could have been – occasionally as I would like it to have been – and be paid for those imaginings. Language is the core of what makes us human and the freedom to play with it, to mould it, to make new sentences that have never been formed before: it’s sheer heaven. And yes, you can remind me of that when I’m sweating a deadline and thinking life was simpler when I had random strangers phoning me at four in the morning and telling me to get out of bed.

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In the beginning, I wrote crime thrillers: what else do you do if you’re in a veterinary clinic and haven’t got time for research. The first three made a series, the fourth stood alone and both went down well: I had a career as a crime writer, and a lot of friends in the Crime Writers’ Association. Then I had a nudge to write the Boudica series. Originally conceived as a trilogy, it became a tetralogy (or a quartet, if you prefer) and the rest, as they say, is history. Four Boudica: Dreaming, translated worldwide, four ROME espionage thrillers – there’s something utterly captivating about ancient world spies – and now Jeanne d’Arc: I think I know who she was and it definitely wasn’t a peasant girl from Bar who happened to have skills with a lance. There’s a thriller in the pipelines and ideas for short stories, plays, films, television series and a mini radio operetta: that wasn’t my idea, I was just asked to help write it – you see? Writing is the very best job in the world.

Interviews

Armed with pens

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Manda Scott on Writing

The History Girls

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An interview with Manda Scott by Louise Berridge

Sir-Read-A-Lot

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Roman Empress - An interview with Manda Scott

Today I’m Reading

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An interview with Manda Scott by blogger Today I’m Reading

Readers Digest NZ

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An interview with author Manda Scott

Dreaming Courses

Welcome to the world of shamanic dreaming.

This is where reality diverges, the one you have been used to, and the one that actually exists. This is where boundaries shift, and keep on shifting. This is where we find out that Douglas Adams was right, and the Total Perspective Vortex is generally a pretty scary thing. But there’s help. Which is rather the point. Shamanic practice is about asking for help and what sets the trained apart from the untrained is that the former know who to ask, how to ask, how to get to there, how to get back, and how to integrate the results into their everyday lives. Because living *this* life, fully, is what it’s all about. That and learning to die with full awareness.

In early October 2010, a group of writers got together and formed the Historical Writers’ Association – the HWA.

This grew from the belief that we as historical writers need to have the same kind of professional body run by professional writers for professional writers (and their agents and publishers) to sustain, promote and support each other and our work in the way that the Crime Writers’ Association supports writers of crime fiction and non-fiction.

Our initial plans involve a Festival of Historical Writing to be held in conjunction with Historic England’s Festival of History at Kelmarsh.

We will move towards finding sponsorship for historical prizes, and organise social events similar to the CWA, plus alternatives as our members see fit: in the era of electronic networking, a great deal is being achieved already online.

If you have a question for M. C. Scott or would like to get in touch with us, please complete this form.

Rome: The Art of War

OUT NOW IN PAPERBACK

AD69: The Year of the Four Emperors.  Since Nero's suicide, three emperors have ruled in Rome and a fourth, Vespasian, has been named in the east.

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@hare_wood

@hare_wood RT @gemini2359: Vicky Pollard alert? Yeah but, no but, if but. RT @ShippersUnbound Amusingly, Cameron's speech contains 35 ifs & 44 buts...…

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Posted: 28th November 2014 @ 2:12 pm

@hare_wood RT @Jumphoops2voice: pics of why #CameronMustGo http://t.co/nuPBI2forn

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Posted: 28th November 2014 @ 2:01 pm

@hare_wood RT @fleetstreetfox: Today's column: crashing immigration and movies together to make some kind of sub-atomic relevance #CameronMustGo http:…

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Posted: 28th November 2014 @ 2:00 pm

@hare_wood RT @notocoalition: I said a couple of years back that #CameronMustGo is taking UK back to good old Victorian values like this one http://t.…

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Posted: 28th November 2014 @ 2:00 pm

@hare_wood RT @Pal2Badgers: #CameronMustGo because he's 'ALL OUT' for Fracking even against advice of his Chief Scientific Advisor http://t.co/j0YFM…

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Posted: 28th November 2014 @ 2:00 pm

@hare_wood RT @LabourEoin: #CameronMustGo cos he made this signed promise (on the left) and shut 66 A&E/Maternity Wards (on the right) http://t.co/usl…

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Posted: 28th November 2014 @ 1:59 pm

@hare_wood @quintonjournals It's good, isn't it? I loved KING HEREAFTER more than all the rest put together, but the Lymond series was the start.

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Posted: 28th November 2014 @ 1:58 pm

@hare_wood @wrathofgod Yep - me too... actually, I think I was in love with Marthe - I wanted to *be* Lymond, tho' moreso Thorfinn. My ever-hero... :)

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Posted: 28th November 2014 @ 11:34 am

@hare_wood Dunnett sees off Rankin and Rowling in Scottish poll • 28 November 2014 Francis Crawford of Lymond, the central... http://t.co/LuLgSH11Jh

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Posted: 28th November 2014 @ 11:26 am

@hare_wood RT @iJ0rd8n: #CameronMustGo is more than a hash tag It's an affirmation that the way politics is done in Britain must change or else we ar…

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Posted: 28th November 2014 @ 10:11 am

MC Scott

FROM: Manda Scott

Dunnett sees off Rankin and Rowling in Scottish poll
• 28 November 2014
Francis Crawford of Lymond, the central figure in the Lymond Chronicles by Scottish historical novelist Dorothy Dunnett, has been voted the favourite character from a Scottish book.
The poll, carried out as part of Book Week Scotland 2014, attracted over 3,150 votes. Book-lovers from around the globe got involved, with votes coming in from 28 different countries including Argentina, Singapore and Qatar.

The poll revealed that the 10 favourite characters were:

Francis Crawford of Lymond (Dorothy Dunnett) - 458
Begbie (Irvine Welsh) - 339
Rebus (Ian Rankin) - 338
Sherlock Holmes (Arthur Conan Doyle) - 300
Chris Guthrie (Lewis Grassic Gibbon) - 282
Hermione Granger (J K Rowling) - 268
Katie Morag (Mairi Hedderwick) - 264
Jean Brodie (Muriel Spark) - 257

Tying in ninth and 10th place were Oor Wullie (D C Thomson) and Harry Potter (J K Rowling), each with 223 votes.

Marc Lambert, Director of Scottish Book Trust, said that while Francis Crawford of Lymond might be an unknown name to many, "Dorothy Dunnett's enduring popularity, sustained over the years by her legions of devoted fans, is testament to the strength of writing talent that we enjoy in Scotland. Literature is one of the best ways of really inhabiting another person's thoughts, and is the reason why people have such strong feelings about their favourite character. It isn't always a traditionally ‘nice' character who gets under people's skin either, as is proven by Begbie and Miss Jean Brodie's positions in the top 10."

Members of the public were invited to choose from a shortlist of 50 titles compiled by a panel of experts in collaboration with Scottish Book Trust staff. The books were selected in an attempt to reflect the depth and breadth of Scottish writing. Voters also had the option to nominate another character if their favourite wasn't on the shortlist, and the most popular wildcard vote went to Jocky Scott, a character from the cult comedy novel The Tartan Special One by Dundee-born Barry Phillips. His fans, who launched a campaign for Jocky to win the competition, boosted the character to 14th position in the poll.

Posted: 28th November 2014 @ 11:26 am

Link posted by: Manda Scott

Reading this and wondering if his like exists any more: View Link

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/news/sir-thomas-macpherson-soldier-who-with-his-guile-imagination-and-talent-for-bluffing-played-a-crucial-role-for-the-allies-after-dday-9882758.html

Posted: 27th November 2014 @ 11:05 am

Link posted by: Manda Scott

WWII films *not* to watch. This is probably the worst film I have ever seen in my life. I left 1/2 way through. Avoid it. View Link

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0105391/

Posted: 26th November 2014 @ 10:49 pm

Link posted by: Manda Scott

In the midst of this, and the wartime reminiscences, is the nugget about the continent being so much more advanced than the UK in the '40s. Well worth a read. View Link

http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/nov/24/harry-leslie-smith-nhs-great-depression-ed-miliband-advice?CMP=fb_gu

Posted: 26th November 2014 @ 3:51 pm

Link posted by: Manda Scott

We just watched the third episode of 'Generation War' - moving, thought-provoking, ghastly in places... misses out a lot, but then any film on WWII is going to miss out a lot - but it was definitely a brilliant piece of television: View Link

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1883092/

Posted: 25th November 2014 @ 10:56 pm

Link posted by: Manda Scott

"Meditation is about freedom"

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2014/11/24/religion-in-prisons-buddhism-monk-ajahn-khemadhammo_n_6212664.html

Posted: 25th November 2014 @ 5:03 pm

Link posted by: Manda Scott

Parts of history we don't usually see...

http://www.livescience.com/48857-silk-road-cemetery-photos.html

Posted: 25th November 2014 @ 1:29 pm

FROM: Manda Scott

Manda Scott commented on their own link.

Posted: 24th November 2014 @ 10:55 pm

Link posted by: Manda Scott

Honour them while we can, too few are left: View Link

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/history/world-war-two/11248032/Wartime-spy-finally-accepts-she-is-a-French-heroine.html

Posted: 24th November 2014 @ 5:37 pm

FROM: Manda Scott

Manda Scott commented on their own link.

Posted: 23rd November 2014 @ 10:36 pm

Link posted by: Manda Scott

So - thinking that this novel has 3 threads and it might be useful to use #Scrivener to fit it together and wondering if any of my facebook friends actually uses it - and why? (coming off Twitter because 140 chars isn't enough.... View Link

https://www.literatureandlatte.com/index.php

Posted: 23rd November 2014 @ 3:55 pm

FROM: Manda Scott

Manda Scott commented on their own photo.

Posted: 22nd November 2014 @ 6:32 pm

FROM: Vijailakshmi Vibha

Jagdish Kinjalk
31 mins ·
Worth-thinking View : Woman is best in the role of a " Mother "....!
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I think, a woman is best in performing the role of a Mother. She is better, when she performs the role of a Sister and She is good in the role of a Wife.
A woman, if She is annoyed, is worst in the role of a Wife, Better as a Sister and Best as a Mother.Her role of Mother in Best in both the situations.
Question is, why a woman is not so good in the role of a Wife..? As many women, so many answers may be..People say that in the role of a Wife, She is a competitor, and equal to her Husband.If She is heart , and if She thinks that her equality and ego is challenged, She becomes arrogant and unusual.
All these three roles of woman are natural, or created by her self. The clarification should come from the side of woman . This is fact that Woman is respected in our Society, because we the educated persons understand her value and utility of them. Their life time sacrifice, can not be ignored. @ Jagdish Kinjalk @

Posted: 22nd November 2014 @ 4:10 pm

FROM: Manda Scott

Manda Scott commented on their own photo.

Posted: 21st November 2014 @ 5:36 pm

Link posted by: Manda Scott

Ursula le Guin - one of my writing heroes: "We will need writers who can remember freedom" View Link #occupy

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2014/nov/20/ursula-le-guin-award-freedom-honour-literature-profiteering-publishers

Posted: 20th November 2014 @ 11:17 pm

FROM: Manda Scott

Manda Scott likes a photo.

Posted: 20th November 2014 @ 3:28 pm

Link posted by: Manda Scott

I think my head might be about to explode... Apparently when Barbie gets to be a software engineer, she needs someone else to write the code. A man. Two men, in fact... The good thing is - there's a website that helps set the record straight. View Link

https://computer-engineer-barbie.herokuapp.com/

Posted: 20th November 2014 @ 2:50 pm

FROM: Manda Scott

Manda Scott commented on their own photo.

Posted: 20th November 2014 @ 2:24 pm

FROM: Manda Scott

Manda Scott commented on their own link.

Posted: 18th November 2014 @ 5:43 pm

FROM: Manda Scott

Just had *such* an interesting discussion with a forensic archaeologist about bones and knights and peasants and how you can tell (or not) what people have been doing by their skeletons...

Posted: 18th November 2014 @ 5:42 pm

Link posted by: Manda Scott

This could be the start of a whole new novel (feel free. I #amwriting for years of books stacking up). View Link Shared with thanks to Nicola Didsbury

http://www.islandnewsandadvertiser.co.uk/2014/11/rare-pre-historic-basket-found-in-north-uist-set-for-imminent-excavation/

Posted: 18th November 2014 @ 12:29 pm

FROM: Manda Scott

Manda Scott commented on their own photo.

Posted: 13th November 2014 @ 11:37 pm

No events found - please check back later.

Truth or Fantasy: clinging to the notions of the past

A strange thing happened to me on the way to writing this blog… Not quite, obviously, it’s a rhetorical device, but in its way it’s accura …

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Posted: 5th June 2013 @ 3:38 pm

The Art of War review on the (unofficial) British Army Website

The Art of War is set in AD 69, the 'year of the four Emperors' and is the fourth in the Rome series by MC Scott.  I hadn't heard of the author prior to …

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Posted: 5th June 2013 @ 3:37 pm

Hare Dreamer - audiobook short story now available to download

Hare Dreamer – episode 3 of the Radio 4's Moments Past series is available now to download from

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Posted: 5th June 2013 @ 3:36 pm

Scott’s Miscellany 

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