Marion L Eaton ~ Author Guest Post #TheSnakingRiver @MarionEaton


Marion Eaton, who writes as M.L. Eaton, qualified as a Solicitor way back in the 1970s. The legal firm which she started soon afterwards is now incorporated into one of the largest solicitors’ practices in England.

She is a professional aromatherapist and Reiki Master/Teacher and for several years ran a Complementary Health Centre alongside her legal work. Now retired from legal practice, she still teaches Reiki but her abiding passion is for writing. She has so many stories to tell that she has to write very fast.

Marion lives in the beautiful Sussex countryside with an understanding husband, a lazy saluki and a large rambling garden, all of which she attempts to keep in some semblance of order.

The 3 books in the Faraway Lands Series are fictional memoirs based on the childhood experiences of her brother and herself.

She has also written 3 legal mystery/thrillers with a touch of the supernatural (the Mysterious Marsh Series) and is working on a fourth.

A book of meditations, one on Reiki, a James Herriot style memoir of her early days as a solicitor, and a ghost story make up her other writings.

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Book Jacket
BURMA 1934-41 Teeming with the joy and abundance of life, the great Irrawaddy river is the life-blood of Myanmar, the country once known as Burma. From its myriad of sources high in the jungle-clad slopes of the mountainous hills bordering China, the ‘River of Blessings’ winds a thousand miles South to its fertile delta that opens into the Bay of Bengal. To a little boy conceived in the Kachin Hills and living by the great river for his first five years, the country’s fascinating wildness, creatures, culture and essence burn deep into his character, shaping the whole of his life.


My brother smiled. Leaning on his stick, he seemed diminished somehow. His lion-like ebullience and strength just a shadow of what they used to be. In that moment, I knew that this was the last time I would see him alive and in the flesh. We hugged. Feeling the reality of him, and the warmth, I put the premonition behind me.

What, you may think, has this to do with writing and books? Please bear with me and you will see.

My only sibling, Richard was twelve years older than I. He had made his home in Australia while I stayed in England. Now after nearly 50 years apart, save for the occasional visit to the other’s country, we were about to realise a dream. We were taking a cruise to the South Seas from Sydney. Just Richard and me. No spouses. No children. Just us.

Sailing in a large ship took us back to our respective childhoods. Father was a civil engineer and his work took him all over the world. We children would follow, with our mother, once he had established a home for us. We always travelled by sea in those days, to and from England and school, although the age difference meant that we seldom travelled together. Both of us had grown to love the sea, its movement and moods, the smell of ports and seaboard life.

Once we were on board our cruise ship and underway, the premonition tugged at me. Gently, I talked to him about making a bucket list. In my heart, I felt that he had perhaps two or three years to live, and I wanted him to do all the things he had put on hold. With much laughter, we noted down everything he wanted to do, but there was nothing that involved me. Until he mentioned his book.

He’d written it a couple of years previously in response to requests from his clients. Not only was Richard a well-known and respected veterinary surgeon, he was also a maverick, using complementary and bush medicine as well as ‘traditional’ veterinary science and drugs. His particular blend of compassion, intuition and knowledge was rare then, and still is. The book, a manual entitled Do I call the Vet? and what to do in the meantime, had long languished on the hard drive of someone’s computer. Now, this was something with which I could help.

There was one other thing, he said. I’d written a novella, at the request of two Indian friends, about my time as a child in what was then Bombay. My brother loved the book. Would I write the story of his childhood in Burma? I said I would.

We had a wonderful time together sailing the South Seas and when the time came for me to fly back to England, we parted without too many tears.

Three months later Richard was suddenly taken seriously ill. After two major operations, he was diagnosed with four types of cancer and told that he had approximately two months to live.

I received the news just before Christmas, shortly after he’d sent me the manuscript of his book and a collection of photographs to insert in appropriate places. I spent the whole of the Christmas period formatting his book, designing the cover, and putting it up on Createspace and Lulu. I also made him a website. Of course, that was just the beginning, the whole process took a few months.

Once his clients heard about it, his book became a considerable success, selling more than a thousand copies. Much to his doctors’ amazement, my brother slowly recovered. He gave veterinary advice over the phone, gave interviews and took several short holidays, mostly by the sea. And he received many accolades that are normally only given in obituaries. When Richard died in May this year, more than seventeen months from that dreadful diagnosis, he was in no doubt about how much he was loved and respected.

In the meantime, I’d been researching Burma in the 1930s. I’d never been there, but my research made me fall in love with the country and the people. I wove my understanding of the country, memories of my brother, and what I remembered of my parents’ anecdotes, into a short book entitled The Snaking River. I had a hardback copy produced for each member of our families. My brother loved it, and so did his children — so much so that my eldest nephew decided to take his family for a voyage along Burma’s sacred mother river, the Irrawaddy.

Both these projects brought me joy, as well as being incredibly rewarding.

I loved the whole process, which made me remember the main reason that we writers write. We write for the joy of the creative process, we write to inform, and to entertain. And yet we can become so bogged down in the selling process that writing itself loses its gloss, becomes a chore. We spend money on courses, on advertisements, on publicity, on editing, making covers, learning. We give all these things the time that we could be writing. More than that we literally give our books away for publicity and reviews. And we blame ourselves if our books don’t sell enough copies. We lose ourselves: the joy that makes us tick. We feel the rub of failure.

And yet what can be more joyous than helping others by using our gifts and skills?

My brother’s book is a treasure trove of information and good sense that will benefit both people and pets for years to come. I am proud to have been part of bringing it into being.

And the Snaking River tells a story of times long gone. It’s a story of love and adventure, of loss, and delight in Nature. It’s a real his-story and it’s brought pleasure to those I love most.

Best of all, I feel as though I have done something for my brother that no-one else could do, for through these two books his grandchildren have a memory of him that will not fade.

I wonder how many wonderful stories are hiding in the history of your family? Perhaps it’s time to write about them.

Just for the joy of it!

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Book Jacket 


This treasury of information, reassurance, tips, and first aid techniques for horses, dogs and cats is an invaluable resource for all who care for animals.

 Dr Chapman practises veterinary medicine in the old-fashioned way: feeling with his fingertips, using his eyes, ears, sense of smell and a large dose of intuition. He mixes experience with wisdom, combining old and new practices, techniques and technologies.

 In addition to cures and remedies for animal maladies, Do I Call the Vet? and what to do in the meantime also contains many well-proven and simple health-promoting practices for otherwise healthy animals, for those seeking preventative measures which help to maintain sustained animal well-being.

Do I Call the Vet? and what to do in the meantime was written in response to requests from many of his clients who have come to rely on his knowledge and understanding of animals and the illnesses, accidents and ailments which beset them.

 Maintaining the tone of the chatty and informal way he speaks to his clients, this book ensures that Dr Chapman’s words of wisdom are now accessible to all people in need of animal care advice.

You can purchase your copy here ~ Amazon UK

Connect with Marion ~


Website is


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4 thoughts on “Marion L Eaton ~ Author Guest Post #TheSnakingRiver @MarionEaton

  1. Dear Marion, a lovely and inspiring blog. I am up to date with all your books and enjoyed the Snaking River, you bring Burma and the Irrawaddy alive and although like you I have never been there but feel I know it. Keep delighting us with your writing


  2. Dear Marion, so glad your supportive husband sent me the link. I’ve just embarked on a family tree project myself. I’ve traced back to 1832 thus far. It’s been an amazing journey with new connections with relatives I never even knew existed. Enjoyed the post. Thank you.


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