Friday, 18 December 2015

Celebrate the holidays

And so we are racing headlong towards the end of another year. It is a natural time of reflection but also the chance to consider what the year ahead may bring too. If I'm honest I didn't achieve as much as I'd hoped in 2015 but I am striving to forge ahead with my writing and am hopeful that 2016 will bring fresh opportunities.

So, I am going to celebrate my ongoing desire to write and the special place it has in my heart and I am celebrating the chance to spend time with my family over the coming days as our youngest daughter is now home from university for the holidays.

I am feeling tired and in need of a little break so this will likely be my last post of the year.  I wish each of you a happy and peaceful Christmas. Thank you all for your support, encouragement and friendship over the past year. I hope to see you all around blogland in the new year.


 

Thanks to Lexa and her lovely co-hosts
 L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge 
Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Friday, 4 December 2015

Celebrate the small things

I am definitely celebrating the fact it is Friday.  I've been suffering with a sore throat/headache and general lack of energy all week. I've managed to get through the working day but the evenings have been spent in pj's doing very little!  Therefore writing done this week equals very little! I did however edit a few paragraphs last night as I was starting to feel a bit better.

And today I am celebrating the fact that I am feeling much better!

I am going to a Christmas Fayre tomorrow so hoping for some lovely crafty stalls and foodie treats. I am hoping it will help me get in the Christmas spirit.




Thanks to Lexa and her lovely co-hosts
 L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge 
Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Happy weekend

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

IWSG (sort of!)





Thanks to Alex and this month's co-hosts Sandra Hoover,Mark Koopmans, Doreen McGettigan, Megan Morgan and Melodie Campbell

I'm sorry I don't have anything for you this month. Not that I'm not feeling insecure - I have plenty to eat away at my confidence! I've just run out of steam this week. I've not been feeling great and I don't feel capable of putting together a coherent post! 

I hope your insecurities are few and far between this month. I'll try and hop around some blogs and find out.

                                                    Happy writing.

                                            Please note I have disabled comments for this post. Thank you for visiting.

Friday, 27 November 2015

Celebrate the small things


This is going to be a round up of the last couple of weeks as I haven't managed to post for a while! The weeks are whizzing by aren't they?

Since I last posted I've been to London for a flying visit to see the Lord Mayor's Parade. We were only there for about 36 hours but it was worth the 300 mile trip. Our eldest daughter worked on the design for one of the floats so we wanted to go and see it. The weather was a bit damp but we all had a nice time. Our youngest daughter (who is at university) managed to meet up with us too. I am always happy for time spent together.

I have started my Christmas shopping! Can you believe it is December next week? Without giving too much away I spent a lot of time in the book shop so expect lots of bookish gifts!

I bought a fab pair of boots for myself. They are mainly for work but they are so comfy I am living in them at the moment. And yes they are a little bit purple!

Slowish progress on the writing/revisions. I have spent most of my writing time working on a complete re-write of chapter 2. I want to be happy with it before moving to far ahead as it will determine the way the next few chapters go so I think it will be time well spent. Trouble is I alternate between thinking I've nailed it to thinking it stinks! That's normal right?





Thanks to Lexa and her lovely co-hosts
 L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge 
Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Happy weekend

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Celebrate the small things

Time to raise a small celebration to the things that have made us smile this week. Today the UK is raising money for Children in Need. This huge annual event raises so much money for children's charities and it is heart warming to hear some of the amazing stories of some of the people involved and those who have benefited from the fundraising. I have watched tv clips this week that have made me laugh and cry in equal measure.

I have made progress with my editing/revisions. Not quite as much as I hoped, but I am happy with what I have done and I think at this stage I will take quality over quantity! I am enjoying it so will keep plodding on.

I have quite a lot going on this weekend (more on that next week) so I may not get to visit many blogs until Sunday evening or into Monday so until then I wish you all a happy weekend. Thanks for visiting.





Thanks to Lexa and her lovely co-hosts
 L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge 
Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Happy weekend

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Insecure Writer's Support Group (Nov)

Purpose: To share and encourage. 
Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kind



Thanks to Alex J. Cavanaugh and this month's super co-hosts,  Stephen Tremp, Karen Walker, Denise Covey, and Tyrean Martinson

***
With a first draft completed I will shortly enter the editing cave again. I actually enjoy this stage so I am not too worried about the process, I like improving things and fleshing out characters and plot. What I am anxious about is keeping a consistent voice. I am worried that in the middle of the story the POV character's voice goes flat, so I suspect this is where most of my work will be.

Has anyone else come across this problem? Do you have any tips for ensuring consistency of voice?

Friday, 30 October 2015

Celebrate first drafts

You may recall I set myself a target of finishing a first draft by the end of October. Well, I am happy to report that I have just achieved this target. Woohoo! Lots of work still to be done in editing stages but I am always relieved when the bones of the story are there in a first draft. I am looking forward to what comes next.

I have spent a good part of this week working on the first draft but I have managed to slip in a couple of other things as well for my week off!

Hubby and I went to Dartmoor last weekend. I love the scenery there, so dramatic and inspiring (when you can see it through the rain and fog!). Sunday was a beautiful day and we managed a walk. Also got to see daughter number two for a couple of hours which was the icing on the cake! She is at university only about 30 mins away so the opportunity was too good to miss.

I recently read Crow Moon by Anna McKerrow a lot of which was set around this area (and Tintagel in Cornwall which is another favourite place of mine). This is a great Halloween YA read. When you read stories set in places you know, I think it brings a special connection.




Looking over Chagford/Gidleigh


Fernworthy Resevoir


Back home I found time to slip off to a book signing and met the lovely Lara Williamson. Author of A Boy Called Hope and The Boy Who Sailed The Ocean In An Armchair. I read her first book earlier this year and loved the voice and I have just started the new one which is equally great. I can recommend if you are looking for an MG read.


Lara even did one of her special doodles inside for me. 


And, because I was in a book shop and it would have been rude not to, I bought a couple more books as well. My reading list is ever growing but I can live with that!




Thanks to Lexa and her lovely co-hosts
 L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge 
Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Happy weekend



Friday, 23 October 2015

Celebrate the small things


Happy Friday!

This week I am celebrating the start of half term week. A break from the day job and the chance to finish the first draft of my WIP. I think I am still on target! But before I forge ahead with that I have two days away with hubs to look forward to.

We have some apple trees in our garden. We planted them a few years ago and they have done really well. This year we have had lots of fruit from them and so I am celebrating yummy apple crumble!

My daughter made me some of my very own business cards. Maybe one day soon I might get a chance to hand some out! Look they match the header she made for my blog. You don't think it's too unicorny do you? No course not, there's no such thing!








Thanks to Lexa and her lovely co-hosts
 L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge 
Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Happy weekend

Monday, 19 October 2015

Autumn sunshine


Sorry I missed the Celebrate the Small Things post on Friday. My internet connection has been a little slow for a day or two. I'm not sure why; things were taking ages to load and I just sort of gave up waiting! Anyway, things seem to have settled down again, the internet fairies have their sparkle back, so I thought I would share a couple of photos from a walk I took on Sunday afternoon. It was so warm walking along the cliffs it could have been August. In fact it was actually warmer than a lot of our August! Autumn walks don't all have to be trees and fallen leaves - although I love that too.

Have a good week all . . .




Friday, 9 October 2015

Celebrate the small things

Welcome Friday, nice to see you again. Last weekend I attended an author event and came home with a stash of new books to read. It was great to chat to a couple of the authors about their books and writing in general. It was a beautiful sunny day and I came home feeling energised.

I managed some writing on Sunday morning (the leaves are still there if you read the earlier post!). The whole WIP is progressing nicely and I have set myself a target of finishing a first draft by the end of October. I think this is a realistic time frame as I have a few days off from the day job in a couple of weeks which should give me time for the final push.

Finally thanks to all who visited on Wednesday for IWSG. It is always a busy and interesting day and I still have a few posts to visit over the weekend.





Thanks to Lexa and her lovely co-hosts
 L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge 
Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Happy weekend

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Embrace the insecurity

Welcome to the October gathering of the Insecure Writer's Support Group. The place to discuss our thoughts or worries without fear of judgement and the opportunity to offer a few words of support and encouragement to others. 




Thanks to our host Alex J. Cavanaugh and this month's co-hosts TB Markinson,Tamara Narayan, Shannon Lawrence, Stephanie Faris, and Eva E. Solar  

I have been thinking about the different reasons for insecurity this month. What is it exactly that makes me feel insecure? Is it fear of failure or the nagging voice that makes me doubt myself? Maybe it's to do with the anxiety that comes along with putting your work out there for others to judge. The truth is it's all these things and more! But will this make me give up? NEVER because that would be the biggest failure of all.

I feel pretty certain there isn't a published author out there who hasn't experienced the exact same feelings at one time or another. And that gives me hope. So embrace the insecurities I say, it's part of the process and we can learn from it and grow stronger.

Sunday, 4 October 2015

A thought for a Sunday


While waiting for my laptop to whirr into life this morning, I gazed out of the window and this is the view that greeted me. I think today might be a good writing day. (Please don't tell me I should go and rake up those leaves instead!)

A happy and peaceful Sunday to you all.

Friday, 2 October 2015

Reflection and Celebration

This has not been the easiest of weeks. I have been struggling to cope with a few issues that have left me emotionally drained. Some old memories have been stirred and they have not been easy to revisit. I love happy memories, those wonderful moments you can dip into and enjoy all over again, but those that are filled with heartache are not so welcome companions. Therefore my post this week is more one of reflection than outward celebration. I am reflecting on my ability to cope, to try and see the positives and the good as much as possible and I am thankful for having my writing as an outlet to help me channel some of that emotion.

I am looking forward to spending a few hours this weekend enjoying something I love and pushing ahead with my WIP. I am also planning a trip to buy new books tomorrow and hopefully meet a couple of authors doing some signings in the process.  So I shall celebrate a reading and writing end to the week.






Thanks to Lexa and her lovely co-hosts
 L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge 
Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Happy weekend

Friday, 25 September 2015

Celebrate the small things

Hello Friday, so nice to see you again! Sorry I didn't post last week. I got struck down with some sort of bug over the weekend and I think I have been fighting it off most of the week. I think (hope!) I am over the worst so that is really my first celebration of the week!

Spending most of last Sunday in bed did have its advantages though as I took my laptop with me and knocked out a couple of thousand words on my WIP. Every cloud and all that .....

I am going to a Abba night on Saturday with some girlfriends. It should be fun and I can get in my Dancing Queen groove!

The weather is getting very autumnal. Time to get out some warmer clothes. I love snuggling in my comfy sweaters. Trying to hold off on the central heating as long as possible though!





Thanks to Lexa and her lovely co-hosts
 L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge 
Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Happy weekend

Friday, 11 September 2015

Celebrate the small things

My main celebration this week is a big one, well for our family anyway. Our eldest had her official university graduation yesterday. It was a lovely afternoon and even the sun decided to come out for a few hours! There were tears (mine obviously!), a couple of glasses of fizz and lots of laughter. My feet ached today from wearing too high heels (but they were awesome shoes!). Anyway, she now has a First Class BA Hons in Creative Advertising - congratulations Alice. So pleased and proud. I am hoping to be using your talents in the future!




With Dawn French Chancellor of the University who presented the certificates.

In other news, I managed a few hundred words of writing. Not quite as much as I hoped to do but it ended up being a busy week!




Thanks to Lexa and her lovely co-hosts
 L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge 
Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Happy weekend

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

IWSG (September)

Wow, can you believe it's September already? Seriously, where did the summer holidays go? And really that's where my insecurities lie at the moment.  The last couple of weeks I have been working really hard on my writing and achieving a word count far in excess of my  usual amount. It's been great, I've enjoyed being able to make writing my priority for a while, I've felt like a true writer in every sense.  If you read my celebrations post last week you will know I have even set up a special writing area in the spare bedroom. So, why the insecurity?  

I start back at my regular day job tomorrow and I'm not sure I'm ready to let go of the full time writer in me! I know I will still write and have even thought hard about setting aside specific times to maintain the momentum. But it will be different and I know that sometimes it is hard to write in an evening when you're tired. So I'll see how the next month goes and hopefully I'll be back next IWSG to tell you I was worrying over nothing!




Thanks as ever to Alex J. Cavanaugh and this months co-hosts;
Heather M. Gardner  http://hmgardner.blogspot.com/   
Dolorah at Book Lover  donnahole@gmail.com 
Murees DupĂ©  http://www.mureesdupe.com/   




Friday, 28 August 2015

Celebrate the small things ...


I'm celebrating a busy and productive writing week. 

  • I have outlined and planned a new writing project.
  • Written about 10,000 words of said project
  • And set up a new writing space in the spare bedroom. I think this is going to really help me over the coming weeks as I return to the day job after the summer holidays. I can leave all my things out and know they are going to be there when I return! It is quieter and away from the general hustle and bustle of the rest of the house and with a nice view from the window. Only problem now is what to do when guests want to stay!


This post is part of the weekly celebrations hop.


Thanks to Lexa and her lovely co-hosts
 L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge 
Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Happy weekend

Friday, 21 August 2015

Celebrate the small things ...

Hello lovely followers. Sorry I disappeared again for a while, it's that time of year for family, friends and of course writing!

I have also spent a fabulous few days in Oxford with hubby. It was a bit of a spur of the moment thing after we had been visiting family and we decided to detour for a couple of days. I have only visited this lovely city once before, and that was for about two hours in the freezing cold, so I have been wanting to go back for a longer visit for ages.

It is full of all sorts of history, and some amazing building and architecture . . .

A couple of pictures taken around the Bodleian Library, one of the oldest libraries in Europe. The eagle eyed amongst you may recognise just a glimpse of a Harry Potter movie set. Whilst some filming did take place here, the films were so successful, purpose built sets were later used as it was much less restrictive.




Hertford Bridge (often referred to as the Bridge of Sighs due to its similarity to the Venetian bridge).


Blenheim Palace (just a few miles outside Oxford). Home of the 12th Duke and Duchess of Marlborough and the birthplace of Sir Winstan Churchill. 

And some famous literary haunts . . . 


The Eagle and Child public house was a frequent meeting place for an Oxford writing group called The Inklings, whose members included none other than C.S Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien! We had lunch here so I could soak up some writerly vibes!



Not the best photo but the quote reads :
"My happiest hours are spent with 3 or 4 old friends in old clothes tramping together and putting up in small pubs." C.S. Lewis

A couple of other notable literary connections include, Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (1832-1898) better known as Lewis Carroll author of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (1865) and the sequel, Through the Looking-Glass (1872). He came to Oxford as an undergraduate student and later became a tutor. He remained there for the rest of his life.

Philip Pullman, award wining author of the His Dark Materials Trilogy, (The Northern Lights, The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass) studied and made his home in the area. The Northern Lights was made into the film, The Golden Compass. 

Just a few names here, but I could go on!

I have recently treated myself to this . . . 




 I fell in love with this cute bag!


This post is part of the weekly celebrations hop.


Thanks to Lexa and her lovely co-hosts
 L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge 
Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Happy weekend



Monday, 10 August 2015

A mid summer check in .....

Thought I would drop by the blog and let you know what I've been up to recently.  I'm still likely to be a bit sporadic around these parts for another week or so as I am taking every opportunity to focus on my writing at the moment. I even have the germ of a new idea fizzing about my head and a new character that just won't go away! I want to sit down and make some notes and see if it can lead somewhere. I think it could be interesting.

Anyway, outside of writing and continuing with some submissions what else have I been doing on my summer break so far?

Well, I went away for a week with the family to Menorca. We had a great week, relaxing, sightseeing and generally re-charging the batteries. Here are a few pics.



The little cove was beautiful and the sea so clear it was almost like swimming in an aquarium. The down side was that there were about 180 steps back up! In the heat we certainly got some exercise, which was probably a good job as we fell in love with this delicious local cake and ate far too much of it!


 Ensaimada is a traditional product of the Balearic Islands. A dough mixture of flour, eggs, sugar, yeast, milk and lard. We particularly liked the one filled with a creamy custard. It is surprising light and easy to eat! My daughter is actually trying to recreate this in the kitchen as I type! I wonder what it will taste like?


I am looking forward to catching up with some old friends at the weekend. Old in the sense I have known them like .... forever not that they are past it or anything! (Just in case any of you happen to read this!)


Finally for today, I would just like to officially wish my blog buddy Helen Maslin huge congratulations and lots of luck on the recent release of her debut novel Darkmere. A YA ghost story published by Chicken House. Helen is a wonderfully supportive lady and her success is well deserved. I'm sure she is headed for great things. Check it out on Amazon or goodreads


A Castle. A Curse. A dangerous summer...





Friday, 24 July 2015

Celebrate the holidays!

I'm definitely celebrating making it to the end of another busy school term! I now have a few weeks away from the day job which will allow me the chance to reconnect with my writing schedule, which has sadly slipped a bit this last month.

I have decided a short blog break is in order, probably a couple of weeks. I will be back in August to let you know what I have been up to and how the writing is going.


Thanks to Lexa and her lovely co-hosts
 L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge 

Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Happy weekend