Category Archives: Writing & Reading

A special birthday and looking forward

January has been a good month. It was my mum’s 80th birthday, and we celebrated by having afternoon tea with family and friends at the Roundstone Room, at our local Haskins Garden Centre. There was a projector and screen, so we were able to have a slide show running and to play home movies while we chatted, ate and played a playlist of Mum’s favourite songs.  It added a lovely touch of nostalgia for everyone there. The venue was great. It would be worth a look for anyone seeking a book launch venue as it held about fifty-five comfortably and there was a good supply of tea and cake!

On the new book front, Lyn Vernham from Choc Lit has sent me a proposed title and cover. We have spoken about a couple of tweak type things, but overall I am really excited and will keep you posted on how progress is going.

I mentioned previously that I have decided this is my year of getting out there and doing things. As a result of this, I have signed up to the Romantic Novelists’ Association conference in Leeds in July. Fellow Chindi Author, Angela Petch – who has recently had her novels, Tuscan Roots and Now and Then in Tuscany, published by Endeavour Press, is coming along too. We are going to be newbies together! For romantic novelists, the conference is said to be a lot of fun, as well as, “instructive, inspiring [and] the best networking event of the year.” I am looking forward to it.

My current work in progress is growing slowly. I got a little side-tracked with another novel I would like to write, but have decided to continue to research that and build up my notes, while working on the one I have started. My WIP (novel three) is currently at seven and a half thousand words, now you know, you can tell me off if that figure hasn’t increased the next time I post.

Size Doesn’t Matter (the new name for my little review section):

I finished Jane Lovering’s The Boys of Christmas and gave it five fabulous stars. The story has warm, likeable characters, a touch of intrigue and a gorgeous setting. A great read.

I’ve now started Milly Johnson’s The Yorkshire Pudding Club. I have read and greatly enjoyed many of Milly Johnson’s books. This one has been on my kindle for a while, and so I thought it was time it reached the top of my to-be-read pile.

Cinema:

On Friday my hubby and I snuck off to see Downsizing. It is an interesting, entertaining and at times, thought-provoking watch. I do like Matt Damon, and so I also feel the need to point out that my liking of this film had nothing to do with seeing his bum 😉

On Saturday we took our three youngest children (13, 10 and 7) to see The Greatest Showman. We all enjoyed it, and my house is now filled with songs from the soundtrack as we have all downloaded it. Hugh Jackman is very good in the role of Barnham, and of course, there is the lovely Zac Efron. It is great now my children are getting older that we can go and see films like this all together.

Next time:

My next post is already prepared, and with Valentine’s Day approaching I have a treat in store to share. I won’t give it away, but I will just say the lovely ladies at Choc Lit and Ruby Fiction have certainly been making me smile! xx

Happy New Year and we’re off!

Happy New Year everyone and thank you for checking out my blog; it has been a long time coming, but, with an exciting year ahead, I have finally decided to get organised and get posting.

I intend to focus on writing and reading, but as I have a bit of a cinema-going habit that will be added in from time to time too. As no doubt, will things about life in general; for those who don’t know, I have a husband, four children, two grandchildren, a guinea pig and a crazy Labrador puppy, so life is fun, with a bit of hectic thrown in. At a later date (when I know what I’m doing) I also hope to have guest posts and interviews with some of the lovely authors and bloggers I have met through my writing.

Writing:

January is off to a good start. I have completed the edits to my manuscript. While my previous book, Crazy Over You – self-published through Matador – had several edits, a copy edit and a proofread, editing for a publisher (who has their audience to consider) is new to me.

When I first received Jane Eastgate’s editorial report, along with the Choc Lit tasting panel feedback, being told I had to change aspects of certain characters was overwhelming. I’d spent two and a half years in the company of these characters; they had become my family and friends. It took at least a day to get my head around what was being asked and then, with Christmas approaching and my children breaking up from school, a little longer to stop panicking about when I would fit it in. Once I shut myself away in a hotel room (perks of the job) and got started, it all felt more manageable, and I found the process exciting.

Each step taken now is a step towards publication and my debut with Ruby Fiction, the new imprint of Choc Lit. I can’t wait for my book to be out, and it will be interesting to see how the title, currently Regret Me Not, is changed and what the cover will look like. As I had already commissioned a cover from Drew Bristow (who did the cover for Crazy Over You), before my new book was signed to Choc Lit, it will be interesting for me to compare our interpretation with that of the in-house cover designer. It is all a wonderful learning curve!

I have also booked onto Sue Moorcroft’s writing retreat in June. It is a week in Umbria in the company of other writers; though mostly we’ll be ignoring each other with our heads down writing. I am very much looking forward to it. At the moment, I can’t actually think about leaving my children for that long, or taking the flight by myself, without looking like the image from the scream painting. But, nevertheless, with my forty-fifth birthday approaching – next week arghhh – I am determined to embrace the adventure.

Reading:

My current read is Jane Lovering’s The Boys of Christmas, which happens to be Choc Lit title. Reviews help authors and their work get noticed, even if you only have time to leave a sentence or two, and so I always review the books I read. I’m really enjoying it at the moment, and look forward to sharing more about it next time.

Thank you for getting this far and I hope you’ll stop by again. x