Anita's Haven

books, thoughts, stories, poetry, interviews, writing

Keep it simple

So here come the big news…

They say ‘write what you know’, so I took that piece of advice. The Question Mark Method (in my teacher workshops we called it the wh-method) is my new book baby! I am still waiting for the paperback sample, and then you will all see it, and some will receive it, as they have deserved it.

This is a book I am particularly proud of – my first non-fiction book, a short manual about a teaching method I apply in my lessons, which has developed during the last 25 years, and it has been proven to work. The book was written last year, but some life events connected to my health prevented me from publishing it then . A massive thanks to all those who have been waiting patiently, and kept encouraging me not to give it up in the past year. The methods and ideas are applicable to most subjects, not just the one I teach – English.

I spent the past year thinking (I had to) about what matters to me, and, as far as work is concerned, I decided the only thing I could – there is no competition – I love both teaching and writing, and they are both a part of me which I do not wish to constrain. My family knows this best!

I cannot wait to get back into action, both teaching and writing, although I have been keeping alive ideas from both my areas all this time I spent recovering, and as I have been developing them, I keep hoping I will be able to add to them with a touch of a newly acquired maturity, as well as playful gratitude for being alive.

I would like to thank some people who have had impact on this, so let me thank them publicly like this, and if I have not listed someone, feel free to comment;).

To my first teacher of English, Gordana Kovač, thank you for being such a teacher that you made me immediately love learning with games and singing, and for making all my thoughts of the English language always be positive and filled with memories of her smile, song, authority and warmth!

Sadly, I am unable to tag my high-school English teacher (may she rest in peace), but I know my high-school friends will know what I mean. Branka Liebhardt Šupe was more than a teacher – she was the support and inspiration and she convinced me to find courage and become who I am, because in me, as in many of us, she was able to see and encourage what made us unique and good people.

To my (first) boss, Vesna Matulić, thank you for listening to all my beginner woes, and then placing before me challenges which made me grow and develop, both as a person and a teacher, and even as a writer. Thank you for everything. Just a little bit more and I will be back!

I can never thank enough to my family and friends for everything, but there will be plenty of hugs, talks and fun, and that is the most important thing!

Many thanks to my colleagues Dunja Črnko and Tena Jurišić who took on a tough task last year – to scan the book for any and all mistakes with merciless precision! Thank you for all your suggestions and help.

To all my former and present colleagues, both in teaching and writing, thank you for all your support, constructive criticism, patience and kindness!

Just a little bit more. And then some new magic. (And my Čarolarije (Playing with Magic)… more on that soon – I hope.)

paperback @Lulu
ebook @Lulu

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Genesis of Light by D.M. Cain

It is such a pleasure to share news of DM Cain’s new book. I’ve had the pleasure of reading and reviewing 2 of her books already and I am certain this one is just as well-written and amazing!

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The Sea

And when the wave sings out my darkness,
Soaking my night into deep silence,
Only a whisper will stay within me,
The whisper of my darkness,
A solitude, calmness,
No drama, no stress.
On top of the wave it’s me and my soul,
Pure, serene, my own.
Hence the sea.
Hence the wave.
It’s where I am the one.
It’s where I am I.

#sneakpeek into my new release Versus Verses – Imagine


Another one…

Well, there it is – I have managed to combine my two professional loves, both not really known in my life as big money-makers:) – teaching and writing. Perhaps two minuses can make a plus, huh? Just kidding.

As the note says, this is the rough draft which I will soon be typing into the plan, proofreading and sending off to some beta readers.

As for the teaching method described, it refers to a little mindset I have devised for myself and shared with colleagues. I know it works because it has served me well these last two decades, from the micro to macro lesson planning, and thinking about learning and teaching in general.

Looking forward to revisions and edits, and all the little ‘bloopers’ I probably let slip. Ta-ta for now!

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Ambushed by Anita

Author and editor Geoff Nelder has a particular sense of humour which is to be cherished. An honour to be his guest.

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“He stopped in the middle of The Forest. He took a deep breath, inhaling the energy of the nature. Feeling as if he could explode, he shouted with all his might, a gigantic yawp…”


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Take the path

​Pleasantly surprised by the interest in my new novel and questions about its content – thank you. The Forest of Trees is not a children’s book, it is quite unlike what I have written so far, and yet, those who know me and have read it (or parts of it) say it blends together all I am, even the scary bits. It gives me great pleasure, and an equal amount of anxiety, to be able to present the novel I worked on for over 7 years. 

Here is an extended blurb to get your attention;). Thank you for the support.


When a family of four faces the brutal reality of their city life, they readily embrace a complete change. Emma and David Stone, with their kids Jeremy and Dot, move to a small town with their big hopes. However, small towns have their own secrets – from urban legends about The Forest of Trees to family skeletons in closets everyone knows about.

Gradually, Jeremy and Dot make some new and unusual friends, whereas Emma and David start working again, and things seem to be going for the better. But evil never rests. The Jacksons, a bigoted and brutal family of pig farmers, however scary, are not the only ones leaning towards malice. The more new friendships grow, the more villains will struggle to retain power. Will the arrival of the newcomers tip the scales in favour of the good or the evil? And how can The Forest of Trees play its part in the solution?

The life between the legendary Forest of Trees and the small town of Tillsworth is separated only by a road. All it takes to reconnect is to take that path.


Rich does not equal money

“Good manners and books never made anyone rich, now did they?” 

And yet – I write. The Forest of Trees is out.

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In Times of Violence

Karina Kantas never stops – helping push other author’s books, she also writes her own gritty, sizzling, energetic thrillers. What a treat featuring new books for the weekend. Here is another release by Karina Kantas…

In Times of Violence

MC Romance Young Adult Edition

Jade had been sheltered most of her life. Living in an isolated village with only sex and drugs to entertain. Her mother is an alcoholic and her father doesn’t give a damn.

Her only way out is to beg her Aunt to allow her to stay as a guest in their London house.

Jade meets fate head on in the form of Marcus, president of the Tyrants MC. She finally finds a family that loves and respects her and they are not BLOOD. Nothing comes easy to Jade and she is forced to fight to keep her title and status. Then just when life starts to go right, one-night changes everything.

A raw emotional story about love, betrayal and sacrifice.

&In Times of Violence had an addictive storyline. I actually got up in the middle of the night to finish reading it. I loved Jade, although I don’t fully understand her or her motives.&

&Do not miss this book. Jade, Marcus and Dylan will bring out the feels.&

&Remember it’s not always blood relatives that make a family!&

˃˃˃ From the Author

In Times of Violence is very special to me.  Some parts of the book are taken from my own experiences as a young adult. This coming of age story needed to be told. It was thanks to S.E.Hinton’s The Outsiders, that In Times Of Violence was written.

I hope you enjoy the book.
Order and start reading now

I had to settle things with my parents. I had to sit them both down and tell them my plans, hoping it would be the last I saw of them. I needed to pack up my belongings and say goodbye to my horrid past, once-and-for-all.

Marcus wanted to come along with me, but I talked him out of it. He wanted to see the cursed life I’d lived, and wanted to meet my mother. I had painted such a black picture of her I knew he wouldn’t be civil and I wanted to leave on good terms, despite everything. Even though she’d abused me, she was still my mother. I managed to convince Marcus to stay home and went alone.

What a nightmare! My first mistake was not having Marcus for moral support. Secondly, I’d chickened out and hadn’t told my dad I was coming. I thought I could cope with just seeing Mum, rather than both of them ganging up on me.

Third mistake, I wore my leathers. I think she would have gone easier on me if I had dressed down. Except that wasn’t who I was anymore. I wasn’t ashamed of who I’d become. I was proud to be a member of the Tyrants. I wasn’t going to shout it from the rooftops. I didn’t come home to show off and give the villagers something else to gossip about. I wanted to get in and out without anyone seeing me.

Mum wasn’t home when I arrived, so I used my key and let myself in. The house smelt of stale cigarettes, and damp. No change there, I thought. I’d only been in the room for a few seconds and already wanted to leave. Memories flooded like a wave, trying to drown my good spirits. I didn’t want to remember the unhappiest moments of my childhood. Literally shaking myself from the past, I cursed aloud for putting up with her shit for so long.

I expected her home soon, so I ran upstairs and started packing. I couldn’t take everything, just my treasured possessions. I’d been so busy, I didn’t realise how quickly the time passed. A door slammed shut, making me jump.

“Mum, it’s Jade. I’m up here.”

I didn’t want her to think I was a burglar. Maybe I should have phoned first.

Any loving mother would have run up the stairs and hugged her long-lost daughter, but not my mother. I timed her. It took her a full ten minutes before she came up. I heard the familiar tinkle of ice hitting the bottom of a glass, and the cabinet door being shut. Dutch courage, I wished I had some.

“Well, look what the cat’s dragged in. Decided to come home have you?”

Leaning against the doorframe, she held a glass in her right hand, a cigarette in her left. She looked a sight. Her hair needed cutting and dyeing, and I hate to think how long she’d been wearing the same clothes. She looked thin and haggard and had really let herself go. I turned away, unable to look at her in that state.

“I’ve come for a few things. I’m leaving, but is it okay if I stay the night?” I asked, pretending to be too busy to look at her.

She didn’t answer. Her stare burnt into my back, and I knew she was going to start.

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Stewart Bint rises the book charts again!

A very intriguing author and wonderful person, Stewart Bint, has another book out! It hadn’t really taken a proper stroll into the publishing world, but it is already making its way up on all the book charts. Give it a go -Stewart’s writing never disappoints. 

Here is what the book is about and where to find it…

The Marquand family fled their home on Jersey, in the Channel Islands, just before the German occupation during World War II, and never returned. 

Now, it’s the summer of 1983, and the once opulent Idlewild mansion is crumbling and derelict. The mansion holds a mysterious lure for 18-year-old David Simeon, who dreams of Idlewild years past, as it used to be. But who is the young girl he sees, endlessly wandering through its corridors?

As the nerve-shattering link between David, the girl, and the mysterious Idlewild comes to light, is it too late to stop the seeds of destruction and world domination planted there long ago, during Adolf Hitler’s last desperate throw of the dice in World War II?

Fantasy, science fiction, horror and paranormal mingle in To Rise Again, as the threads of 1945 and 1983 slowly intertwine to reveal a world on the brink of destruction.

Previous hits by Stewart Bint:


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