In which I write a blog post

I’m taking part in Nanowrimo this year, which I did for the first time eight years ago. That book became Sealed with a Kiss. I used to love blogging until it felt like – I don’t know, like it wasn’t my space any more. Like I was supposed to be on my best behaviour because I was A Proper Writer with books in the shops and stuff. So I tweeted and rambled on Instagram instead, but those little snippets got lost, and so when I saw T, aka Mummy Barrow, and Jax, aka Liveotherwise, were taking part in a project called BEDN (blog every day in November, run by Elizabeth Dhokia) I thought ooh, I could do that. So here I am.

I’m midway through a massive clear out of my study, because I’ve moved my workspace back home from the little attic above a gallery where I used to write. Theoretically now the children are teenagers (apart from the smallest, who is twelve, unbelievably) I should be able to work here in peace. I’ve bought two different kinds of noise cancelling headphones and downloaded an app that makes pink noise. I can still hear people shouting at Fortnite right now though, so I’m not sure they’re working all that well.

(that’s a note to self I just found on my phone camera)

Once I get the study chaos sorted (have a look over on instagram to see my work in progress) I’m going to sit down at my desk and open up the MacBook and see if I can get some words written… come back tomorrow to find out if I did it. At this rate I might still be here tomorrow morning.

resolutions

I’ve never been much good at resolutions. I’ve done “keep a diary” (fizzles out every February) and “join the gym” (I’d be better off sending the direct debit to charity) and all the usual stuff, but I’m hopeless at all that New Year New You stuff (plus I quite like the old me).

So instead of writing a list of things that will remind me of all my terrible failings, I’m going to write one that cheers me up.

I resolve to:

Use my new camera and share my photographs here. Here’s a funny thing – I stopped years ago, pretty much as soon as my blog won an award for best photography. Why? Because I felt like I wasn’t a Proper Photographer because all I did was look at the world through a lens and share the things I saw and I didn’t really understand all the twiddly bits (still don’t) and that’s ridiculous. So: more photographs.

And more baking. Because I’m determined to perfect the art of the cinnamon roll (so determined that I’m off on an, er, research trip to Copenhagen in February).

More writing. That might sound bonkers when I have two books out this year, but last year was a really tricky one for writing – not just for me, I’ve discovered, but for lots of other people too. So less time worrying about what happens to the books once they’re done (that’s not my job, after all) and more time concentrating on what I love, which is telling stories. And I have SO many stories to tell this year.

More reading. Because that’s never a bad thing. Last year I got lost in the Game of Thrones books and it was such a wonderful feeling to escape into another world when so much awful stuff was going on in our own one.

More: time with friends. Laughing. Even more sitting on the front step drinking tea and watching the world go by in spring.

And most of all: spending time with these four. As I explained to one of them (who is now, amazingly, 6’2″) they might be turning 18, 16, 14 and 12 this year, but in my head they’re this size. I suspect they always will be, in a way.

Weeping Angels – a Doctor Who day out

Living in a Victorian seaside resort has benefits for Doctor Who fans. We sneaked off to the huge Victorian cemetery to take some photographs of weeping angels. (We didn’t blink.)

weeping angels doctor who

It was gorgeous sunshine when we took the pictures but that doesn’t stop them being eerie. We’re all massive Doctor Who geeks in this house, so having a collection of angels here in town is a bit unnerving.

weeping angel

victorian graveyard angels

weeping angels doctor who

weeping angel victorian

victorian graveyard

weeping angel on grass

 

I don’t know which of the last two Weeping Angels we found the spookiest. All I know is we won’t be watching Doctor Who again for a while until our imaginations have calmed down a bit. And don’t even think of creeping up behind me while I’m sitting here in this chair…

Sealed with a Kiss, my romantic comedy set on a Scottish island is released by Pan Macmillan on May 8th. Keep up to date with my writing, get extracts from my next books and be first to hear about signings, free book giveaways and more –  Just sign up for my newsletter here

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