Notebook

Official Website of S L Francis

Writer. Author. Thinker. Storyteller.

Welcome to my website. As a professional Author, I aim to create a better understanding of the world and our place in it — a mission which has cast me in many different roles: author, artist, and creative innovator. Read some of my work below, ranging from published articles and books to more informal blog posts.

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I’ve always been passionate about storytelling and impressed by the influence it has on people and the decisions they make in life. I would love you to take a journey with me...

Storyteller at Heart

Justice for the Dead


Human remains are found in a remote field in Nottinghamshire, it appears to be a previously unknown victim of a serial killer already locked up for several murders but evidence shows that he can’t be the killer – or can he? Detective Inspector Gideon Carr is taken on a journey halfway around the world to piece together a series of puzzles, making even more gruesome discoveries along the way, putting himself in grave danger in order to bring justice for the dead.

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About Me

Who I Am

Even as a young child I would conjure up stories with my imagination, sharing them with anyone who was around to listen. I’ve developed my storytelling and writing quite a bit since then, but the essence of creativity and entertainment I began with as a kid has remained a major influence on my work. I’ve been writing professionally since 2000 and have no intention of slowing down anytime soon. Get in touch with me if you’ve got any comments, questions, suggestions, or just want to say hello. I’d be more than happy to hear from you.

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"Writing is the geometry of the soul"

Plato

Recent Books

Expand Your Bookshelf

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Childhood and Death in Victorian England

2017

Written under my married name, a vivid and graphic survey of the casualties of childhood during the Victorian Era through detailed and never-before-seen firsthand accounts.
 
Take a fascinating journey into the real lives of Victorian children—how they lived, worked, played, and far too often, died before reaching adulthood. These true accounts, many of which had been hidden for more than a century, reveal the hardship and cruel conditions endured by young people living through the tumult of the Industrial Revolution. Here are the lives of a traveling fair child, an apprentice at sea, and a young trapper, as well as the children of prostitutes, servant girls, debutantes, and married women, all unified in the tragedy of early death.
 
Drawing on actual cases of infanticide and baby farming, historian Sarah Seaton uncovers the dismal realities of the Victorian Era’s unwed mothers, whose shame at being pregnant drove them to carry out horrendous crimes. With the introduction of the New Poor Law in 1834, the future for some poor children changed—but not for the better. Yet it was the tragic loss of these many young lives that lead to essential reforms, and eventually to today’s more enlightened views on childhood. Check it out at Amazon

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Derby Book of Days

2013

Written under my married name, taking you through the year day by day, The Derby Book of Days contains quirky, eccentric, shocking, amusing and important events and facts from different periods in the history of the city.

Ideal for dipping into, this addictive little book will keep you entertained and informed. Featuring hundreds of snippets of information gleaned from the vaults of Derby’s archives and covering the social, criminal, political, religious, agricultural, industrial and sporting history of the region, it will delight residents and visitors alike. You can buy it at Amazon

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War Time Memories from Amber Valley

2000

Whilst working as a Project Manager for a combined project between the BBC and Derbyshire County Council's Adult Community Education Service I traveled the length and breadth of the Amber Valley District in Derbyshire meeting a host of wonderful people who had amazing stories to tell. 

I interviewed many of the areas residents about their memories of WWII, they were sometimes heartwarming, other times harrowing and all recorded in this book published by Derbyshire County Council.

One of the entries was also featured in a BBC television programme. This was a limited edition print and is now unavailable see Amazon

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The story of Greasley Parish Church Nottinghamshire

2008

A beautifully written history of the church, its incumbents and parishioners written in collaboration with Colin Pendleton.  Being visited by locals for over a millennia every church has its own story to tell and Greasley has a very interesting tale of its own with rich connections to D H Lawrence. Available directly from the parish church office or get in touch with me for a signed copy.

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Magazine and Newspaper Articles

Current

I have been the editor of The Nottinghamshire Historian magazine for a number of years which includes many articles written by me.  Please view separate page with some images of my articles and also a couple of articles written about me.

Contact me for more information about my full writing collection.

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