Is it just me or is lockdown becoming really tedious?

 

The lovely Matt Bomer in White Collar.

How’s your week been? Much like last week, I’ll bet.Β  This virus stuff is getting tedious isn’t it? I know we have to stay away from other people as much as possible, but it’s hard. I daydream about going out as normal, meeting friends and family for lunch and having a laugh. However, in Scotland we’re not allowed anyone else in our houses. We can go out and meet them for lunch, but it’s just not the same. It’s not as relaxed. It’s always at the back of your mind that you could have Coronavirus and not know it and then pass it on to someone else, even though you do your best to stay two metres away.Β  I see Donald Trump and his wife have now been diagnosed with it. I really hope this is a wake-up call to him.Β  I don’t wish him or anyone to be seriously ill or killed by this disease, but he’s been so casual about it all in the past that it does feel a bit like karma that he has it. I hope he takes it more seriously now and starts listening to the experts about wearing a mask etc.

A wealth of lovely patterns and hand-knitted items at my shop.

Anyway, that is my moan for today. So, what have I been up to lately? Well, it’s much the same as always: I work on our script, I write my SOS book, I work on my social media business and my vintage knitting business, Vintage Knit Treasures (that’s got some items for sale in it now including scarves and hats, see here for more info). It’s been very much ‘Groundhog Day’ for us, as I’m sure it’s been for everyone else. I have been comforting myself with watching tv (yesterday I decided to start watching White Collar again cos I love it and Matt Bomer is just yummy). Watched Enola Holmes and really enjoyed it, although I thought the ending was a bit flat. Really hope they do another one. Millie Bobby Brown is really good in it and Henry Cavill (does that man ever smile?) and Sam Claflin play her brothers Sherlock and Mycroft beautifully. Plus they are both good to look at. πŸ˜‰Β  What? A girl needs a bit of eye candy every now and again. Widowhood can be quite dull you know!

Millie Bobby Brown leads the cast in Enola Holmes.

That about sums up my week.Β  It feels lately that we’re just sitting in limbo at the moment.Β  We can’t look forward to Halloween or Guy Fawke’s because that’s been cancelled. I had to tell the kids they couldn’t go out guising this year (guising is the Scottish word for trick or treating) and they were disappointed. Our local Guy Fawke’s Night celebration at our scout hut has been cancelled due to the Coronavirus. Tell you a laugh, my American friend, the lovely Terry Wells Brown asked me why the British celebrate Guy Fawke’s Night and I told her about the bomb plot to blow up parliament and the king in 1605 and how it was stopped and ever since then we celebrated every November 5. Then it occured to me: do we celebrate because it was stopped or because he tried to blow up parliament?? I hadn’t really thought about it before. Obviously, the celebration must be about because the plot was stopped, but if you speak to people about him they talk about the Gunpowder Plot with glee and Guy Fawke’s almost like a hero.Β  It’s almost like it’s a bit of a joke that it happened. πŸ€”Β  Β On Guy Fawke’s Night, we let off fireworks, have sparklers and have a party. There’s always a bonfire where an effigy of Guy Fawke’s is burned (the real Guy Fawke’s was tortured and hung for his part in the plot). Hmmm.

Guy Fawkes was also known as Guido Fawkes.

Moving on to Christmas and I fear we won’t be able to visit family on Christmas day.Β  It will be rubbish, but if it has to be, it has to be. The worst case scenario will be that I will set up a Zoom call with them. Anyway, we have 12 weeks (?) til then. Hopefully something good will happen and the virus will die off (miraculously) and we will be able to get together after all.

Right, enough of my musings. I am away to do some work (I’m always working, keeps me out of mischief!). Til next time.

Dawn xx

Resting up, Writing and the Lovely Lucifer

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So, this week has been a bit weird. I’ve been exhausted since Saturday. I either have been overdoing it lately or I have a small bug πŸ€’ that’s draining the life from me. I feel better today mainly, I think, because I’ve been slowly down over the last two days and putting my feet up a bit (well as much as you can with a house and two kids/three dogs/two chickens). On Monday night, we got a call from the NHS saying my son had been exposed to someone who tested positive for Covid-19. Truthfully, I’ve been expecting something like this. The minute the kids go back to school, bugs circulate. Anyway, the boy is currently isolating in his room. Doing the test today. He’s fine. No symptoms, so fingers crossed he doesn’t have it. He’s only been back at school for two weeks, now he’s off for another two. Sigh.Β  His school have yet to let us know about work being given home, but I’m going to chase them up today. People, including my immediate family, in certain areas in and around Glasgow have also been told not to socialise with other people inside their own homes due to outbreaks there. It’s to last for 14 days from today, but who knows if it’ll be extended? Anyway, it means I can’t visit my parents or sister (I can’t anyway due to the boy’s exposure) and my poor niece can’t have her very much longed for birthday party/sleepover this weekend. That’s such a shame. Still, needs must. I think this is how life is going to be now. I can see this lasting into next year. Apparently Spanish Flu took a full two years to die out, so Covid might be the same. We’re just all going to have to get on with it as best we can, aren’t we? I’m just hoping we will still be able to meet up for Christmas πŸŽ„πŸ€ΆπŸŽ….

So, how’s your week been? I know it’s only Wednesday, but it feels like a whole month has passed since the weekend. πŸ˜‚ I have done no writing of my novel since last week – mid last week. I just can’t get into it for some reason. Going to have to read an inspiring book by a writer to get that back πŸ“š! That always works for me. I have been scriptwriting and I have written a couple of things for Medium. You can follow me here.Β  Β I was planning to put new items up in my vintage knitting shop on Sunday, but felt too exhausted to move so I just spent the day resting. Thank God I’m starting to feel well again.

lucifer

What else has been happening? Well, as I have been telly watching a lot this week I have binge-watched the new series of Lucifer (pictured). Then got to episode 7 (or thereabouts) and there was no more. It took me a full ten minutes (due to a fuzziness in the head feeling due to aforementioned tiredness) to work out that Netflix was indeed working and that the reason why I couldn’t get the rest of the series was because they hadn’t put it up yet. Sigh. I’m shaking my head writing this. Can’t believe I was so daft. πŸ˜‚

reading

I’ve been reading Lucy Worsley’s book on πŸ‘‘ Queen Victoria. I am a big fan of Lucy’s tv programmes and her books and this one doesn’t disappoint. Lucy has a really lovely way of writing that draws you into the story of her book. She brings history alive and one day I will meet her and get her autograph. Some friends of mine (George and Raymond, love you guys❀️❀️) met her once at a book signing in London and bought a signed copy of her book for me. It was about Jane Austen and is a treasured gift. So thoughtful of them both.Β  Thank you guys.

Right, I am going to finish up now for I have two more blogs to write and some other things I want to do (including getting back into writing my SOS novel). Til next time,

Dawn xxx

 

Pining for Corfu, Fed up with Telly and Business is Good

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So, I’m feeling a bit flat today. I was alright until I started writing my SOS assassin novel. I was quite happy with my lot. I wasn’t thinking about anything other than what work I had today. And then I went and started writing the novel again. I haven’t been writing for a couple of weeks – I really needed a break from it and took it. So, I read over the previous chapter, which was fine, and then started on the new bit. And that’s when the sadness and the feeling flat began. You see, I’ve taken my characters from wonderful Italy to also wonderful Corfu, the island off the west coast of Greece. And when I started researching it, having never been but always wanted to, I began to feel a yearning to go. And when I looked at those amazing beaches and beautiful old towns and villages, that yearning grew. I WANNA GO TO CORFU RIGHT NOW!!! Wahhhhh! πŸ˜€Β  That’s one of the things I don’t like about writing: you’re often researching places you then find yourself desperate to go to. Maybe next year, for now I will have to be content with photos of Corfu, which I am rather kindly sharing with you so you’ll feel you really want to be there right now too!! You are welcome!

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So how have you been? I hope you are all well. Hello to all my new followers and welcome to my blog. Thank you for joining us.

I’ve actually had a good week this week (and it’s only Wednesday). I started back writing (with mixed results as I explained earlier). Last week I started up a new business on Etsy called Vintage Knit Treasures selling downloads of vintage knitting patterns (go here if you want to have a look at it). I love vintage fashion, I love knitting and making, and I love old patterns, so this is the perfect small business for me. I plan to add knitted items (knitted from genuine vintage patterns) to it plus more patterns. Going to add more this week. I also got three new clients for my PR and Social Media business, which is great. It’s all happening this week and last.

Also, the kids went back to school full time on Monday, which is fabulous. I am loving the peace and quiet in the house. It’s so nice to have some time to myself. They went off in March due to Covid-19 and that’s them just returning now. I must admit, I had a few worries a couple of months ago when I thought they might go back, but Scotland seems to be dealing with Coronavirus really well and there are very few cases in the country at the moment (hopefully that continues), so I’m confident the kids will be perfectly safe at school. Plus, for my sanity, I needed them back!! Heeheehee.

corfu 3

Took part in my very first author takeover party. Basically, it’s where you are given permission to takeover another author’s Facebook page (or whatever) and you post lots of good things like games and giveaways and funny things. I did it last week on my friend Terry’s FB page and had a ball.Β  It was a good laugh. I thought everyone would put up saucy memes and games, but it seems there was only two of us doing that and one of them was me!! Hahaha. It was fun. So, going to do it again. A quick congratulations to Cynthia, Debbe and Kristen who were all winners of my giveaways. Hope you’ve got your books girls.

corfu 4

Finished the book I was reading . The Mistress of Mayfair by Lyndsy Spence is about Doris Delevingne (who I think was a great aunt of Cara Delevingne) who was someone who came from a working class family to join the ranks of the aristocracy in the 1920s and 1930s. She was notorious for going with men, even when she was married, and basically seemed to have used people for her own gain. She is thought to have had an affair with Winston Churchill at one point.Β  It was a fascinating insight into Doris’ life and the lives of the Bright Young Things of the 1920s. She had a sad end though, sorry for the spoiler. It was a really well written book and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

I’ve been looking around for tv shows to watch. There’s not much on the box I want to watch right now. So, I re-watched A Discovery of Witches for the third time (LOVE the books and the tv series is great too… cannot wait for the second one) and have downloaded the pilots of a few box sets to see if I can get into them. So far, The Borgias and Banshee seem promising. I did not like Curfew. I found the first episode to be a bit boring (sorry scriptwriters). Please tell me if it gets any better, because I should like this one. The premise is good, but I just couldn’t take to it.

Right, I must fly. Am off to do some scriptwriting shortly. Til next time.

Dawn xxx

Flooding, 1917 and Writing Advice News

So the rain came today. And it rained and rained.

angelou fb

I was going to use some images and quotes from authors to illustrate this post today and the above image somehow went beautifully with the torrential rain Scotland experienced today. We had flooding and everything. It was horrendous. Typical Scottish summer!

So,Β  how are you all this week? I know I haven’t posted for a few weeks, it’s the usual excuse (busy), but I really haven’t a lot of news to share. I’ve barely been anywhere that interesting to tell you about. Although Coronavirus levels in Scotland are low (apart from a few clusters last week), the country is only just starting to get back on its feet.

First, find out what your hero wants, then just follow him!” – Ray Bradbury (1)

So let me share with you some things I’ve been up. I’ve been writing for Medium. Please follow me (https://medium.com/@dawnnelson_46858) and give me claps if you like my stories. The more reads and claps I get, the more money I’ll make. I’m only just at the start of my Medium career, so hopefully I’ll make something from it. I’ve also been attempting some Haikus. Bloody hell, they are more difficult to write than you think!

quinn fb

Still writing all the things I’ve been writing. Also, finally managed to watch The Wrong Mans tv series. It’s excellent. I like both Mathew Baynton and James Corden, they are both great actors and screenwriters, and it’s a great series. Watched the second series too, it wasn’t quite as good, but still highly enjoyable.

I almost always urge people to write in the first person. … Writing is an act of ego and you might as well admit it.” – William Zinsser

Watched 1917 again recently. What a film that is. That’s the third time I’ve watched it and I’m still flinching and jumping when things go wrong. It’s beautifully shot – the scene when he runs into the ruined city and the flares go off is amazing – brilliantly written and wonderfully acted. It deserves more accolades. Here’s the official trailer if you haven’t seen it yet. I’m not going to give away any of the story. Get the movie, watch it.

Always be a poet, even in prose.” – Charles Baudelaire (1)

Right, that’s all I’ve got for today. Going to start giving out writing advice in future posts. If there’s anything you’d like to know, get it touch.

Dawn xxx

 

So, I’ve been working like a Trojan this week and it’s only Tuesday

Untitled design (2)

So, I’ve been working hard for the last two days and I’ve achieved so much. I love that feeling. Yesterday, I got up early and took the dogs out, wrote 1000 words, did a week’s worth of social media posts for a client, took the boy for a haircut and then went food shopping. In the afternoon, I did a four-and-a-half hour stint scriptwriting with my scriptwriting buddies.Β  Then I made dinner. As well as all that, I did some washing and emptied and filled the dishwasher. Phew!

Today, I wrote 2000 words, did social media for my author platforms, did a three hour scriptwriting stint, did a post for Medium (click here ) and did some work for clients.

This is me now:

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Anyway, how are you today? Hope you’re all well. This week is shaping up to be yet another busy one, but that’s okay I like it that way. It’s tiring, but I feel like I’ve done something with my life rather than frittering it away watching tv. Don’t get me wrong, I love tv, but I’ve been cutting down how much I watch in order to write.

So, what’s new? ACX, the people you put audio books up on for Audible, finally came back to me about the Dusting Down Alcudia audiobook with yet another issue. I swear I could scream. It’s been such a hard slog sorting that bloody thing out. I will work on it tomorrow.

Still working on my assassin book, but at the rate I’m writing, I should have the first draft of it done by early next month. So excited to get it out. It’s part of a book series I’m writing with international authors.

My Paisley non-fiction book is trundling along. I’ve finished the first draft of it and will be editing some time this week.

I’ve also sent off a couple more short stories to online magazines. Fingers crossed they take them.

Untitled design

Just got my results back today for my OU degree course and I passed that module. Yay me! So pleased as the last couple of months of it were quite difficult – they occurred during the initial weeks of the Covid 19 outbreak. Anyway it’s done and I look forward to resuming my studies again at the beginning of October.

What else? That’s about it for today. It’s after 9.30pm and my energy levels are seriously beginning to flag. Gonna gather up the dogs and get to bed now. Til next time.

Dawn xxx

It’s been a weird kind of week

banana bread

So the week started as usual with me getting up, feeding the animals, taking the dogs out and then getting down to work. My sister visited on Wednesday with her kids and we had a lovely time. I even made banana bread, shortbread and sponge cake. It was lovely.

However, come Thursday morning I felt unwell and I’m still a bit yucky today. I don’t know what it is, but I’m exhausted and my throat is raspy and my ears ache. I suspect I’ve just been overdoing it recently and this is my body’s way of telling me to slow down. Anyway, I’ve spent the last couple of days lying on the sofa watching telly. First, I watched Operation Petticoat, one of my favourite Cary Grant/Tony Curtis movies. I LOVE that film. It’s funny and exciting and a great way to spend a Thursday afternoon when you’re feeling ill.

And then I moved on to an old favourite. I find watching familiar tv series and films comforting, so I dug True Blood out of Sky and I’ve been watching it ever since. I really LOVE this series. It’s so good and the books are great too. It feels like I’m back in the presence of an old friend.

true.blood_

I’d forgotten how good this tv series is. I’m in heaven right now. I still feel a bit yuck, but I’ll have a good night’s sleep tonight and hopefully feel better tomorrow.

Right, this was just a quick post to say hi and I’ll post again soon. Til next time.

Dawn xx

 

It’s hard to write a blog when you’ve done nothing :-)

20200420_100353

Hello, hello, how are you all? Here’s another blog from lockdown. Not that I’ve that much exciting news to tell you. Above is an image I took of the River Clyde the other day. Not only proof that we’ve been having gorgeous and unseasonably warm/dry weather lately, but that the Clyde can look blue sometimes. The tide it out in this image and that’s Port Glasgow across the way, but it gives you an idea of how nice it’s been around here. Thank goodness, because I think if the weather had been dreadful things would be a lot more depressing for all of us who are having to stay indoors at the moment. People are already complaining of boredom and feeling depressed, awful weather would have made that worse for them.

I’m not going to ask you what you’ve been up to because, let’s face it, no matter where you are in the world, you are more than likely staying indoors to help stop the spread of Corona Virus. Instead, I’ll just ask you what you’ve been up to. Have you been watching copious amounts of telly? Started a new hobby? Baked until your fingers bled? Gardened until there’s barely a green bit of the garden left? πŸ˜‰

I’ve been watching tv, but in small amounts. I’ve taken to watching Carnival Row again. Yes, again, for the fourth time. I love it that much. I’m also considering watching Game of Thrones again too. You see, apart from Killing Eve (which is bloody brilliant), there’s not much on the telly I want to watch right now. There haven’t been any decent history programmes or documentaries, I find a lot of comedies dire and I don’t watch soaps. So, it’s back to old favourites. I’m loving Carnival Row all over again and seeing things I didn’t notice before on the three other times I watched it.

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Here’s a pic of two of my dogs on a local beach. It’s a riverside beach and not the nicest of beaches, but it’s great for dog walking and the dogs don’t seem to mind the stones and detritus thrown there by the river.

What else have I been doing? I am writing, writing, writing. Just finished 2000 words of my assassin book plus did another few pages of my non fiction book. I’ve sent a tv programme I wrote to a scriptwriting competition. Not sure if it’s good enough, but we’ll see what happens. I’ve also been doing bits and pieces around the house – you know, the wee things that need done but never get done because you’re so busy. I have a whole list of those to do. Sigh. Well, I’m not going anywhere soon so I’d best be getting on with them! πŸ™‚

A big hello to any newbies who are following this blog. Welcome and thanks for joining us. I’m please to say I have 831 subscribers to this blog and a few more subscribing to my newsletter. If you want to receive the newsletter,Β  add your email address to the Mailchimp signup form to the right of the page.

Right, depressingly, I have nothing else to tell you. I dream of going out for lunch some time soon with friends or taking the dogs and kids up to Oban for the day or going to my parents’ house for dinner. And I keep telling myself ‘It’s not forever, we will get back to normality soon.” I hope that’s true!

On that note, I wish you all a good week ahead. Stay safe and stay sane. Til next time

Dawn xx

PS big shout out to my aunt who turns 70 this coming week and to my friend Mark who has a birthday too. Happy birthday to you both.

 

I’m so behind with everything

dick and angel

Jeezo this week has flown by and I feel like I’ve not really achieved much! I have been working hard at various things, but I still feel not much has been achieved – and I hate that.

Anyway, next week will be more productive, you can bet on that.

So how’s your week been? Hopefully it’s been good. I’ve had a good week despite feeling I haven’t achieved and here’s why…

On Monday night, my friend Tracy and I went to Glasgow’s Royal Concert Hall to see Dick and Angela Strawbridge on their tour. If you don’t know them, they are the couple who do Escape to the Chateau, a programme I LOVE. Anyway, they both came across just like you see them on telly: warm, nice, approachable. They were great and I thoroughly enjoyed the show. However, being out past my bedtime knocked me off my stride for a couple of days after – I was yawning and feeling tired. Such are the perils of growing older! I’m 50 at the end of this year!!! Scream!!! πŸ™‚

google

On Tuesday, I attended training on how to decipher Google analytics, which was great. It was run by a lovely Dutch man called Rene and he really knew his stuff (although all the contractors who do this kind of work for Business Gateway all seem to). Anyway, now I feel much more confident in working out what’s what when I look at my analytics so that I can formulate what works best social media-wise and for my website. Exciting times!!

shopping

On Wednesday, I visited the new Lidl that’s opened in Dumbarton and it’s a lovely shop. It opened the week before and apparently people were queuing to get in on the morning of its opening. Well, they were giving out goodie bags! Anyway, it’s a nice shop and I look forward to getting my groceries there again. You know, when you’re a teenager or in your 20s you never think it would be possible for you to look forward to a supermarket opening. But you do and I did! πŸ™‚

fridge

And once again here’s how exciting my life really is because yesterday afternoon I cleaned out the fridge. It needed done, but I am very pleased with it because I put down fridge protectors which will help me to keep it clean – got the idea from Mrs Hinch and it’s a good one. You can get them from Amazon. Basically, it means all you have to do is remove the dirty protector, wash it and return it to your shelving. It means you won’t have to be constantly pulling out shelving and drawers to clean them. Anything that makes my life easier is to be celebrated!!

BOOK NEWS – nearly there for the cover of A Jacobite’s Share. Watch this space for more details.

Not heard from ACX ref my audiobook so am going to try and contact them today. That’s been well over a month.

SCRIPT NEWS – have finished writing my script and have laid it aside for a week or so to ‘marinate’. I’m going to start going over it next week.

UNI NEWS – was so excited this week (and this is one of the things I was working on), we finally got to do some creative writing, so have submitted that for my next assignment. Am now worrying it’s not good enough, but I worked on it a lot, it’s the best I can do. Now worrying I’m not a good writer! πŸ™‚

Right, that’s it for this week. Oh, the other thing I did (and I did it because it was taking up a lot of time for little return) was to shut down my book formatting and editing website. I will still do it, if anyone wants me to, but I’m going to concentrate on my author and PR/Social Media businesses. That makes sense to me. Til next time.

Dawn xx

Exciting news and a small loss

Okay, so I’ve got some news I’m dying to tell you about, but I can’t tell you details yet. The first is that I am collaborating with a very dear friend of mine on a new book for kids. She’s a great illustrator and we work well together, so I am looking forward to doing that one.

The second is international. I’ve teamed up with a group of authors from the US, Australia and the UK to do a whole series of books, romantic thrillers. We’re just working out the details now, but we’re hoping to have the first book launched by the end of the year. I cannot wait to get started. I have already begun planning.

(Takes deep breath to calm down) Sorry I can’t tell you any more, but I will give you details as we go along.

So, back to reality, how are you? What’s been happening in your world? Apart from signing up for two projects, the rest of the week has been pretty mundane. The weather has been terrible, we lost a chicken (she died – I think it was the weather that did it, it’s been wet and miserable for weeks now), but on the plus side we still have three healthy chooks left. The dogs have been loving trailing through the mud on their wet and windy walks. Sorry, let me re-phrase that, the Yorkie and Jack/Chi have been loving the mud, the pug (who hates going out for walks and I have to force her to go) does not like getting her wee tippy toes wet. So we’ve been getting a fair bit of grumbling from her this week! πŸ™‚

Millie – our Jack Russell/Chihuahua cross loves water and getting muddy. That’s her ‘crazy eyes’ look because I am holding up a ball – she’s ball mad – in order to make her look at the camera!
Casper – our Yorkshire terrier doesn’t like getting wet, but will happily put up with wet and mud in order to go a walk. He spends a lot of time sleeping and pacing between the living room and kitchen. I don’t know why.
Bonya – our pug, hates going walks, hates getting wet and spends her life sleeping on the sofa. She’s a lazy dog.

I’ve been beavering away at my uni course and have an assignment to hand in next week, but it’s a creative writing one and I am just loving doing it!

What else have I been up to? I attended a tarot reading at our local pub on Monday night. Let’s just say I was a bit sceptical when I went and I remain sceptical now. The guy doing the reading was nice, but the stuff he was telling me was way too general and I felt he kept looking at me for signs of information so he could add to it. Do you know what I mean? I think there are people who are genuinely psychic or something – and I’ve only met one who was so accurate it was scary – but most are just reading off their client. Anyway, we’ll see.

I am still making my way through M C Beaton’s Agatha Raisin books. They are a fab way of relaxing at night. I like to go to my bed at 9pm and read for an hour (sometimes two) before lights out. These are great books – I love the characters, I love the humour and the stories are great. It is murder and mayhem, but not so you can’t sleep at night (I don’t read dark murder stories or horror at bedtime because my mind goes into freefall with imagining things that go bump in the night and I can’t sleep).

Oh, I see it’s now raining again. It’s the type of rain that’s almost snow… you know the kind I mean? The type that when you look out you think ‘Is that snow?’ but it’s not settling. It’s not hail cos it’s too soft and too easy for the wind to blow about. Anyway, it’s bloody cold and miserable outside. I had to bring the chickens in last night and I kept them in a large cardboard box in the living room. They’d got soaked yesterday and were in their coop shivering. I was worried they’d get hypothermia, so I brought them in. Looks like they’ll be spending another night indoors tonight.

Right, I am off. Got another two blog posts to write and then I’m going to finish my assignment and then I’m going to start researching my kids book project. Til next time.

Dawn xx

Is it February already?

rain

Jeezo, January went fast this year. One minute we were celebrating the new year and the next it’s February! And it’s been a pretty soggy month already – although today is sunny, which is a welcome change from the torrential rain we’ve been having lately.

So, how have you all been? I hope you’re well. We’ve had the lurgy in the house again. The boy was off with it on Friday and I’m feeling dodgy today. It’s a nasty stomach bug which a lot of people around this area have been experiencing, if the amount of kids who have had to take time off school is anything to go by. Anyway, it’s short lived, so hopefully I’ll be over it soon.

So, what’s been happening in your world? Anything exciting happened lately? Please tell me, I need a bit of excitement. My life lately has been one long round of working, housework with the odd bit of fun things thrown in.

toastie

Talking of which, I lunched with my friend from next door last Tuesday. We went to a lovely farm shop type complex called Ardardan, which is a five minute drive from where we live. My friend loves their lentil soup, so Ardardan has now become our place to go. I had a cheese toastie (grilled cheese sandwich) and we sat and had tea after. Ardardan offer a range of fab cakes, so I “forced” myself to have one. Okay, I couldn’t resist, it was a caramel apple granny cake and I just love it.

I also met up with an old (in the sense we have known each other for years) friend from work. We went to Rose and Grant’s at the Trongate in Glasgow. We both worked in that area before, so it was our local when we were there. Anyway, it’s a great place if you eat meat, are vegetarian or vegan. They do a great range of really nice food for everyone and their vegan food and cakes is delicious. I’m not vegan, in fact I am the total opposite, but I do love vegan food. I opted for the vegan square sausageΒ  (a square sausage is a Scottish thing – it’s a beef sausage, without a skin, pressed into a loaf shape and then cut up into sort of square shapes before cooking. Square sausage – also called Lorne sausage – is fabulous in a crusty roll). Anyway, their vegan square sausage is very like the meat version, so you don’t feel like you are missing out. I can recommend their vegan and full Scottish breakfast too. Yum.

tea

I also attended a women’s business event in Helensburgh on Friday night. It was just a couple of hours and there were ten of us in total. Set up by Lesley, who owns the Beachcomber CafΓ© at Kidston Park in the town, the night’s aim was to bring local business women together to chat, support each other and share experience. It was really good. There was a great atmosphere and everyone got on. I was there not as an author but as a PR/Social Media business owner and I volunteered to set up their Facebook page, which I’ve done, and I hope to have that go live soon.

What else? I’ve heard no word back regarding the audiobook of Dusting Down Alcudia. Fingers crossed I hear back from ACX, the production company linked to Audible, soon. Regarding The Jacobite’s Share, Dusting’s sequel, I’m awaiting some proofs of the cover for that. I hope to launch that towards the end of March. Once I have some artwork, I’m going to start promoting it, so watch this space.

I’ve also been working hard on my draft script for a production company I have contact with. Don’t know if it’s going to be any good, but I am so loving writing it. Maybe this is my next career!! Anyway, we shall see.

This coming week will consist of working on my uni course, the script and some short stories. I’m also going to meet an old work friend who now teaches English in China (nowhere near poor Wuhan), but has been back in Blighty for a month now. We’re going for lunch and I’m looking forward to a catch up. Remember my Austrian trip? Well, my friend from there is coming back to Scotland next weekend and she’s going to be staying for a few days at my house. I cannot wait to catch up with both of them.

chooks

My chickens (see above peering in my patio door – they are so nosey) continue to produce lots of eggs, so I’m going to do a bit of baking later. A nice wee Victoria sponge I think! Yum. The hens are doing really, really well and love being able to wander about my back garden, scratching and eating grubs and bugs. I love watching them, they look so happy, especially when they take dirt baths. The dogs pretty much leave them alone, except Millie who just wants to play with them. They soon see her off, though. On Christmas day, our chicken Nugget (the big one second from right, above) chased her right across the garden. It was hilarious!

Anyway, I will leave you on that happy note and say adieu until next time! Have a great week.

Dawn xxx