I decided that in this post we all need a bit of cheering up, so I’m filling it with sunlight and flowers. Well, the images will be that. How are you all? Hope you’re all fine.
So, first things first, let’s talk about Ukraine. I’ve felt so horrified about what’s been happening and have been giving to charities helping people on the ground as much as I can. A friend of mine basically spent her entire life savings helping four families escape. They are the families of people she has been working with and they are currently in the Netherlands. They’re hoping to get them to the UK at some point. When I say life savings, I’m talking five figures, nearly six. My friend is amazing. I don’t have that kind of money, but I have been involved in a fundraising anthology to raise funds for Ukranian children in need.
Here’s the details (they were in the last post, but here you are again):
I’ve already submitted my short story and I’m looking forward to seeing this fly off the shelves (metaphorically speaking). Well done to the ladies of the Romance Cafe who organised this, including my friend Sofia Aves (who is a superb author).
Right, moving on. What else has been happening? I managed to actually go out last weekend. I met up with three friends who were up from London. We had dinner at Babs (really nice Mediterranean food) in Glasgow and then drinks at The Anchor Line. I had a fab night. I’ve known the three of them for more than 20 years and being with them again was like no time had passed. Yes, we’ve all gotten older, but our sense of humour stays the same. Thanks for a great night guys.
Over the weekend, I also caught up with my parents and visited my niece and her wee boy who is around five months old and totally gorgeous. So, busy weekend.
What I’ve been watching: I am totally loving the new series of The Marvellous Mrs Maisel. It’s superb. So funny, so stylish, so beautifully written. I’ve also been watching the newer version of Das Boot (I remember the original series) and it’s also really, really good. Gripping storyline, brilliant characters and just all round excellent series. It’s mostly in German with some French and English. Talking of German programmes, I cannot wait until the new series of Babylon Berlin comes out. I believe they are working on it now. Cannot wait! Also cannot wait for the new series of Outlander and I’m hoping there will be a second series of Carnival Row, which is in my top three all time amazing tv series along with Babylon Berlin.
Films – I watched the majority of Marley & Me the other night, but had to switch it off when Marley got old. If you know the film, you know the outcome and I couldn’t bear watching it again, especially as we have an elderly pug, Bonya, whose legs are starting to go and who has issues with incontinence. She’s an old girl, we love her and it’s unbearable to think she might not be around soon. I’m hoping we’ve got another year with her. Keep everything crossed for us!
Yes it’s another image of tulips, but they are my favourite flowers – equal billing with peonies. Ooh can’t wait til peony season!
Right, so that’s us up-to-date so far. Please preorder the anthology and, if you’d like more information about Sisters of Sin, other authors and freebies, please sign up to my newsletter. Til next time,
Hello everyone, how are you all? Hope you are well. Welcome to the new subscribers who have joined up since Christmas. Hope you enjoy my posts. Can’t promise scintillating conversation as my life is pretty mundane most of the time, but I’ll do my best to entertain you and the folk who have been subscribers for a while. Hello to you all too!
Right, onwards and upwards. Firstly, I’m just letting you know I am officially launching Everything She Wants next month. I’d like to do something online… like a question and answer session or something like that. Would that be something you guys would be interested in? I could do a live session. Fill in your comments below and if enough of you want it, I’ll do it. I’m just worried that if I set something up on, say Facebook, no one will want to chat to me and I’ll sit there like Billy No Mates, drinking my tea and feeling sorry for myself! 😉 I may even have to bribe a few friends to come on just to make me feel better. 😀
So, what have you all been doing over the past week? I have been very busy getting back into writing. I am just going through the agonies of editing the sequel to Dusting Down Alcudia. I say “agonies” because this is part of the process that I don’t like. It’s hard work and I always think the book is rubbish. Then there will be at least another three edits before I pluck up the courage to send the manuscript to my editor. Then, for a number of days, I will wait, chewing my fingernails with anxiety, whilst awaiting his verdict. Actually, the sequel isn’t too bad, but needs a bit of work on it. What I am editing is the rough story. That’s how I write. I get down the rough story and then go back and edit and re-edit it until I can look at it no more (all my author friends know exactly what I mean here). Eventually, I get a book I can be proud to publish.
I have also been getting back to proper, made-from-scratch cooking. After Ian died, my ability to cook seemed to fly out of the window. I always find my cooking suffers if my mood isn’t good so it’s not surprising that I: a) haven’t felt like cooking, b) didn’t cook much (ie properly) in the first year after he died – we lived on bung-in-the-oven stuff and takeaways (hey, at least my weans were fed! We’re all still alive thanks to that!), and c) tried to get back to my cooking last year, but failed a lot… I think I was still trying to get back on my feet properly. That’s what happens when a loved one died, especially your soul mate. The rug is completely pulled from under you and you spend a helluva long time trying to get back to some sort of normal self. Anyway, I am wittering on again. The point of this post is that I felt like making pizza the other night. So, I made pizza, with a recipe courtesy of my mum (for the base) and the pizzas I made were delicious. Here is proof of how professional they looked (this one is mine):
Can I just say – it was delicious and I thoroughly enjoyed every bite. I feel happier now I have made something good (like I used to). Next up, tonight we are having home-made burgers. Will let you know how I get on.
Talking of cooking, I recently bought a half price panini grill from Aldi (love that shop) so me and the boy have been happily making toasted sandwiches in it – not paninis. That will change tomorrow, for I plan to make my own panini rolls using a recipe from the excellent Mortgage Free in Three blog (once it is back up and running properly). If it’s not, I may need to contact Elaine who runs the blog and ask her for the aforementioned recipe. No matter, I will make my boy a proper panini tomorrow. No doubt, he’ll just want cheese as the filling, but that’s okay. That’s my favourite filling too!
The book I am reading just now is Perdido Street Station by China Mieville, which is an odd, but enjoyable urban fantasy, sci-fi, Steampunk novel.
Will let you know how I get on with it, but so far so good. I’m only at the beginning of it, but enjoying it so far.
Oh my God, but I have wasted a helluva lot of hours watching my latest obsession. The Marvellous Mrs Maisel is fab. I love it. If you have Prime, I would really recommend you watch this. It’s about a 1950s New York housewife who decides to become a stand-up comedian. It’s really funny. Her family are nuts, she’s nuts and it’s just all round great entertainment. Unfortunately, because I have been binge watching both series, I have now finished them. I am now bereft. Thank God I have today’s Outlander (also Prime) to watch tonight.
Okay, I am going to finish up here, but I will be back again with you soon… promise! In the meantime, here’s another wee bite from series 2 of Mrs Maisel:
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