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.
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.
Has it really been four weeks since my last post? I used to be so much better at posting than this. I think it’s because we’re still on lockdown in Scotland and have nowhere interesting to go to just now. We can meet with another family so long as we are socially distancing, but there’s no going out for lunch or meeting friends at the pub or going to the cinema or theatre for us at the moment. Still, those things will return eventually and I can’t wait.
In case you are wondering, most of my images will be of rain this blogpost and this is because I am reflecting the weather in Scotland just now. It. Is. Pouring. We haven’t stepped over the door once today. The poor dogs are desperate for a walk, but it’s too wet outside. Even if I force them outside, they would refuse to go anyway.
So, how are you anyway? Hope you’re all fine. We’re good at Nelson Towers. The kids are a bit bored – my teenage daughter is being a stroppy mare today – but there’s not much I can do about it. We have lots of options for watching tv, there’s board games, loads of books they can read and they both have mobile phones, so there are plenty of things for them to do if they really thought about it. Me? I’ve been busy writing my series book, my history book and writing my script. In between those, I’ve been trying to keep up with the jungle that is my garden, the washing and housekeeping. I’d been feeling bad about it – I write from 9am til 6pm, so it’s a long day and I’m shattered at night so the house and garden have been slightly neglected – until I read a quote from J K Rowling who said that when she was writing the Harry Potter series, her house was a mess. She basically said she couldn’t do it all. Well, Joanne, thank you for that. You made me feel less of a failure. So what if my house isn’t spotless or the grass cut yet? It’ll get done eventually.
I’ve just finished a book by Linsey Hall called Trial by Fae which was a fantastic fantasy book and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. It was a quick read and I was sorry to finish it – always the sign of a good book with me. I may now have to buy the rest of the series! Oh no! More books! How will I cope?? 😀 What I loved about this one is that it was based around Kilmartin in Argyll, near where me and the kids holidayed last year. I knew exactly all the places she was talking about because we visited them all. I love when you know a place in a book. I think that’s why I put some many places I’ve been in my books.
What else have I been doing? Laughing a lot at the chickens. Our Yorkie, Casper (see below), is the biggest wimp out, but likes to bully other dogs. Anyway, he tried to bully the chickens, but Merriweather and Nugget were having none of it. They chased him across the garden and he raced through the open patio doors of the living room like his tail was on fire. It was the funniest thing I’d seen in a long while. That’ll teach him!
So, what have you been watching on tv lately? I watched the modern tv series of Mildred Pierce a few days ago. Kate Winslet was great as Mildred and Rachel Evan Wood played her horrible daughter, Veda, brilliantly. Really enjoyed it. Kate Winslet is always good in whatever she does and played the put-upon Mildred beautifully. Guy Pierce played Monty and Brien F O’Byrne played Bert Pierce. Recommend it. I’ve only just realised it was out in 2011 – why am I only seeing it now? Hmmm.
I have just looked out of the window and it’s still raining. Sigh. Feels like it will never stop. We had lovely weather only a couple of weeks ago. Bring it back!! 🙂
Right, on that note, I will wish you all adieu til next time. Hopefully, I’ll have something more interesting to tell you then!
I cannot believe it’s been over a month since I last posted. That is so not like me! I’m a post a week kinda gal! 🙂 I’ve been a bad blogger! Anyway, I’m going to fill you in on what’s been keeping me busy – in a nutshell, it’s been writing.
I’m still writing a series with some international authors. That’s going really well and I’m about halfway through the first of two books. I’m also writing a history book for kids with my friend and illustrator, Mandy Sinclair. We’re both desperate to get out and do some research in person, but because of Corona Virus, we’re having to do it all at home. Still, hopefully we’ll get out and about at some point.
The third thing I’m doing right now is drafting up a script for a new tv series. I can’t tell you too much about that yet, it’s too early, but I’ll let you know once I have some more to tell you.
My poor laptop has been taking some battering recently! I’ve been working on it every single day for months, my fingers flying over the keys! It has also literally taken a battering: I dropped the bag that containing it, opened the laptop the following day and discovered I’d smashed the screen. Luckily, I can still use it, but I will get it fixed once we’re out of lockdown!
So, what else have I been doing? Like most people, I’ve been stuck indoors. The weather has been nice recently so I have been out in the garden mowing the lawn. About four weeks ago I spent several back breaking hours weeding the driveway. The weeds are back and far worse than before so I’ve decided to use weed killer on them. I hate the thought of using it, but I just can’t keep weeding – I don’t have the time.
I’ve also been watching telly. My favourite TV series at the moment is a German one called Babylon Berlin. You’ll get all three series on Sky. It’s set in 1929 Berlin and is amazing.
Right, I’m away to dig some grit out of one of the dog’s eyes. My life is so glamorous!! Hahahaha! Til next time,
Well another week has gone by and the world is still on standby. We are stuck in a routine that is the same day in, day out and there’s nothing anyone can do about it. I am so thankful that no-one I know has been killed by Covid 19 and so sorry for those who have lost loved-ones. It’s a nasty, horrid disease that is still so worrying for everyone. Thank God for the key workers who are doing a fab job!
Right, I once said this blog is a space for happiness and so I will try to cheer you all up with my goings on this week. 🙂 How has your week been? I’ve been incredibly busy writing: writing my first book for our book series (we = the international writers I’m working with on an exciting new book project series) and I’m more than 13,000 words into it (woohoo!), writing another project with a friend (6,500 words down – there’s a lot of research in it), and writing up notes on my uni course. I do it every single day and, while I enjoy it, it is tiring. However, I gave writing the boot this morning to do a bit of work in the garden and managed an hour of weeding before my back got too sore. I intend to be back out later tonight to put out my garden ornaments in the back and will continue weeding tomorrow. I am so loving this good weather we are all having – it’s so nice to have warm, dry weather in April. That almost never happens here! As I write this, the heating is off (as it has been for days now), the patio doors are open and I can hear a neighbour cutting his or her grass.
So, what else has been happening at Nelson Towers? Well, let me see! Hmmm. I have been keeping up with my Zumba class, which has been brilliant. Our teacher is doing the classes via Zoom (ironically!) and, although the connection is sometimes a bit flaky, it’s still good to be exercising.
I watched the first in the new series of the Great British Sewing Bee. I LOVE that programme. Can’t wait until next week for the next one. Talking of watching telly, have any of you been watching the new Killing Eve series? It’s already magnificent. I think this programme has got to be one of THE best things on telly, that and Fleabag (who could forget the sexy priest?). And, of course, I’m watching Outlander although I’m a bit disappointed that it’s not as exciting as previous series, but hopefully it’ll pick up. Don’t get me wrong, I still love it and I still watch it avidly, and I will love it forever.
So, that’s really what I’ve been up to. Of course, we’re all still socially distancing ourselves in Scotland, so I’ve been keeping up with friends and family via Zoom. Thank God for technology. If this had happened ten or 20 years ago, things would be so much worse in terms of keeping up with family and friends. We would only have the telephone, which is good, but it’s not as good as seeing your parents laugh or your nephew do something daft or your sister’s gorgeous home-made fairy. Well done, V. I’ve also been having conversations with friends over wine or tea or sometimes just a glass of water. And my kids pop in in the background and wave at them all or have a conversation. Well, when I say ‘kids’, I really mean my daughter. My boy is too glued to his games machine upstairs! 🙂
Talking of kids, I am lucky in that both of mine are at high school and, therefore, I don’t have to help them much with their work. They do it themselves and come to me if they are stuck and (in the case of the boy) to prove that he has done something. How are you all getting on with home schooling?
Right, that’s it for me. I’m away. I’ve got a webinar to attend with one of my all time favourite authors, Joanne Harris who wrote (amongst many excellent books) Chocolat. Until next time.
PS in case you’re wondering, all pics in this post are not of my garden. I wish my garden was as nice! Maybe one day! 🙂
Buy it here: https://geni.us/iqZ82Zf
So, I’ve been looking at the books I have up for sale at the moment and I’ve been taking advice and I’d done everything that I was advised to do, except change the book covers. So, it was with a heavy heart that I’ve finally taken the decision to change my book covers. I loved my originals, but readers just weren’t buying the books. So, with my sensible business head, I’ve taken additional advice ref the book cover design and here’s my two new ones. Above is Dusting Down Alcudia, below is The Jacobite’s Share.
These are the ebook covers, hence the odd shape. Anyway, I’m hoping these will attract more people. If they don’t, I’ll just have to accept that nobody wants them OR that I’m way ahead of my time! 🙂
So how are you all doing at this weird time? I haven’t been over the door today and it was okay, but I’ll need to get out with the dogs tomorrow. I’m lucky in that I live in the countryside so I can take them for walks without meeting many people and the people I do meet tend to keep their distance now. We dog walkers are a friendly bunch and have now taken to hailing each other over the park. It’s not the best way, but it’ll have to do just now.
Today, I spent all day redoing my book covers and tomorrow I’m going to get back into writing and my OU course. The past few days have been terrifying as everyone goes into lockdown and I just hope everyone stays well. I know that’s not going to happen, that this virus is horrible and spreads quickly, but one can hope. It’s been difficult trying to get it into my kids’ heads that they are pretty much house-bound, they don’t really understand the severity of this pandemic, but they are finally accepting it. I don’t want to scare them, but I have to make them realise how bad this situation really is.
My dogs, bless them, live on in blissful ignorance and make us laugh on a daily basis. Here are images of my fur babies to cheer you all up. The pics were taken by my friend Anne-Janine who is a great photographer. These were taken on her phone. She’s so talented. The dogs are (in order) Millie, Casper and Bonya.
Right, I am going to finish up here. I’ll be back next week. Like everyone else, I’ve been knocked for six with this Corona virus pandemic. Til next week,
To celebrate the launch of my new book, The Jacobite’s Share (on sale from March 27), I’m giving away some free copies of the first book in the series: Dusting Down Alcudia. Get your FREE book here: https://dl.bookfunnel.com/o1qu2vd2pf
Nina Esposito, archaeologist, is on a mission. She’s flying to Mallorca to locate a magnificent Roman treasure that’s been lost for centuries.
But, when a formal love and a work rival vie for her attention, Nina finds herself locked in romantic rollercoaster. Which one is truly worthy of her? And do they have ulterior motives other than winning her heart?
Added to the mix is a Spanish billionaire who will stop at nothing to get the jewels for himself.
Who will get to the treasure first? Will Nina’s heart be broken along the way? And can she really trust either of the men in her life?
Join Nina on a breath-taking journey of discovery that takes her from the dusty fields of Mallorca to the diamond brokers of Amsterdam. As she soon finds out: there’s everything to play for when you’re Dusting Down Alcudia.
“A terrific, fast paced action adventure that I couldn’t put down,” Janice Mitchell.
“This romance is full of great characters and is a fantastic story. I can’t wait until the next one is out.” Laurina Hewson