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Showing posts from March, 2013

Easter Treats

Hope you’re all having a good bank holiday weekend, so far. I can’t believe the change in the weather from last week, today was positively glorious here, although it was quite cold when you were out of the sun. I’ve been out the last two nights, with family, and so am looking forward to a quiet night in tonight! Today we went to Chester’s food and drink festival at the racecourse.   It was absolutely packed but an enjoyable few hours.   It really surprised me how many enterprising people there are out there.   I didn’t realise how many little companies were busy pickling chutneys, making cheese, cupcakes, fudge and all sorts of others foods.   We came away with some great pizza making kits, the most delicious Cheshire cheese and some melt in the mouth biscuits. I did draw the line at Kangaroo burgers though! Clocks go forward tonight don’t forget – even though we’ll be losing an hour, I can’t wait for the lighter nights.   Let’s just hope the weather warms up too.

Phantom Nasties

I mentioned in an earlier blog that we had a family outing to see The Phantom of the Opera at the Liverpool Empire. Phantom is a family thing. I took my husband to see it years ago at Manchester and he fell in love with it. I must admit it was more of a slow burn for me, but when the DVD came out, after several viewings I found that I loved it too as did my boys. Three years ago, me and my husband went down to London for the weekend to celebrate our 10 th wedding anniversary (sans children). We had a wonderful weekend, stayed in a fab hotel by the Tower of London, had a champagne ride on the London Eye and revisited some of my old haunts from when I used to live in the city. But the highlight for me was going to see Phantom there. I ’ d booked seats four rows back from the front of the stalls. I had wondered whether we ’ d get neck ache like you do when you are too close to the front at the cinema, but it was completely the opposite. We were so close to the drama o

Times They Won't Be Changing

Or at least not in the near future. No, I didn’t get the job, but in many ways I’m rather glad. Yes, the money would have come in very handy, and the routine of going out to work most days of the week would be more within my normal comfort zone, but when the phonecall came, my gut instinct was, Please don’t say I’ve got the job. At the interview I realised that there was a lot of restructuring going on in the workplace, a few redundancies too, and that there would be quite a lot of ruffled feathers to smooth over. When I was made redundant I saw it as an opportunity to change my life, and going back to my original workplace would be counter productive in terms of what I want to do with my life. But the application and interview process wasn’t a waste of time either. It just made me realise that I have been procrastinating for a while. Now I need to get out there and earn some money but by doing something I want to do. That’s the hard part, so when I’m not

Old Wives' Tales

  At the beginning of March, when we were revelling in a rare show of warm spring sunshine, I remember remarking to my husband that we would be in for a sorry time weather-wise at the end of March. The old saying “In like a lion, out like a lamb” with reference to March weather also works in reverse, and as the beginning of March was lamb-like, I anticipated bad weather towards the end of the month.   But I was thinking in terms of some harsh March winds, not snow and blizzard conditions. Snow settled overnight here and although it has been snowing all day, it's rather slushy, and so everything is wet underfoot and on the roads rather than icy and frozen. Lucky us, because I know it’s so much worse in other parts of the country. Good luck to you wherever you are. Football training has been cancelled tonight and as I have nowhere else I have to go, I’ve put the fire on and am planning to settle down either in front of the TV or with a good book.   Hope you’r

Lesson 1 - Put Bum on Chair

Last weekend was a bit full on – several birthdays and of course Mother’s Day, so on Monday morning I was feeling a bit jaded (of course it had nothing to do with the wine consumed!).   So this probably wasn’t the best day to try to get to grips with my latest RNA New Writer’s Scheme submission. I’ve spent a while deliberating on what I’m going to submit this year as I have a couple of unfinished novels that I would like to whip into shape.   The one I’ve decided to work on I started several years ago (more than I care to remember to be honest) so it does need quite a lot of work, and it’s March already. Of course, on Monday I couldn’t concentrate, especially when I realised that it needs to be completely re-written. But, I need to make the most of whatever time I have left in which to write (in case I do get that job), so I’ve decided to set myself a target of spending at least one hour each day on it. And if I have more time, to spend another hour on writing and

Deja Vue

Just spent the last two hours in A&E after Calamity George fell over at school and onto the newly fixed arm.   Guess what? He's back in plaster.  They don't know if it's broken or not because of the recent injury but decided not to take any chances.   We have an appointment with the consultant next Thursday to see what's what.   I hope they will be able to remove the plaster then as the following Monday he is due to go on an outdoor school trip to Conway for three days.  If he's still in plaster I doubt they will want to take him and then he will be devasted.   He does seem to want to keep me on my toes doesn't he?   Linda

Times, They Could Be Changing

It’s been five months since my redundancy and I can’t believe how quickly the time has flown.   I send the children off to school each morning and before I know it, it’s time to pick them up again. I don’t seem to have much writing to show for this time away from work, but on the other hand I have been trying to set up a new business and have had nine year’s worth of clutter to try and dispose of (still working on that one!) Let’s just put it this way I found writing magazines which were only than my sons which just goes to show how long I’ve been at this lark. Some days I feel as though I get a lot done and then others nothing at all, but on the whole it’s been lovely being out of the rat race for a while. However, it looks as though my little sojourn might be coming to an end. Out of the other week I had a telephone call from the college I used to work at asking me to apply for a management post to cover a maternity leave. It’s four days a week and could be up t

newbooks magazine

A while ago I came across a book review website I signed up to the website and became a reviewer. They have a list of books you can choose from. You need to select three and you will receive one of them, although you don't always get your first choice. All you have to do then is read them and add your review to the website. You don't get paid but you do get a free book! I've enjoyed reading and reviewing the books, but didn't really think that my reviews were being read by anyone. Then, out of the blue, newbooks editor, Guy Pringle, emailed me to say that my recent review of Julia Gregson's Jasmine Nights was going to be published in issue 74 of the hard copy magazine. Up until that point I had thought that it was a subscription only magazine but then I found out that you could buy copies at W H Smith. In addition, Guy asked me if I would like to submit a list of questions to be put to the author in an interview - would I

Lightbulb Moments

The other day was I browsing through my favourite blogs when I came across Wendy Clarke's guest post on the wonderful Womag Writer's blog. In the two years since she was made redundant, Wendy has carved out what appears to be successful career in writing short stories for woman's magazines. You can find her blog here . When I read her blog, my initial instinct was how lucky she was to have had such success. And then I had a lightbulb moment......... Luck did have something to do with it. Getting the right manuscript in front of the right editor at the right time does have a certain amount of serendipity, but I suspect that Wendy's success has more to do with hard work, an ability to learn from mistakes and work with editors to give them what they want. And then of course numbers do come into it. When I read that Wendy had 14 short stories accepted last year, it made me wonder just how many stories she had subbed to get that many yeses. I