Monday, 25 February 2013

These High Heels Are Made For Talking

       'International Women's Day 2013,' will be celebrated throughout the world on the 8th March. There are many events that women of faith and non-faith can get involved in. Either by attending an event in their own country, or on line.

    'Confidence is Beautiful' is one such item that those wanting to enter into the fun on line can do. It asks for ladies, to post photos of their high heels, on Facebook and Twitter. Partners are also encouraged to take part.

    This event according to the website is, 'To inspire youth and adults to be confident and use confidence to achieve personal goals by accepting, seeing and loving each other as beautiful people.' Because, we all are beautiful.

    As various tales such as, Beauty and the Beast, The Frog Princess and The Princess and the Frog demonstrate, everyone of us can be someone's Prince, or Princess.

    So, whatever your interested in let's do it for the girls and support 'International Women's Day 2013.'
@womensday #ConfidenceIsBeautiful,NewYork

Thursday, 21 February 2013

What a Difference a 100 Years Can Make

    I was looking through some old books the other day and the one that really stimulated my little grey cells was printed in the early 20th century. The section of the book that caught my attention, provided an author with handy hints in preparing their MS to be sent to the printers.

    The list of useful tips includes, how to fold the paper, the numbering of the pages, the use of ruled paper with the lines wide apart and also advises the author to write plainly.

   A hundred years on, some of the advice is still relevant in submitting our MS. But, with the correct software, many of the annoyances as they were referred to in the book have been eradicated. It makes me wonder, what will authors have at their fingertips in another hundred years?

Book referred to : The Woman's Book by Florence Jack Printed 1911. 734 Pages and by The History Press in  2006. 215 Pages.

The fantastic software I use is available from : Apache Open Office.

Monday, 18 February 2013

It Happens to Teenagers Too

    Every day when we switch on our TV, listen to news items on the radio and read the Internet, we are constantly reminded of the violence and abuse that exists in adult relationships.

    This abuse in what ever form it takes doesn't just exist in relationships between adults though, abuse is something that is a concern within teenage relationships too. That's why the UK government is running a campaign between the 14th February 2013 and the end of April 2013 to stop teenagers from becoming victims, or perpetrators of abuse.

    The website provides facts, guidance, help for all those concerned, or have concerns about someone they know who is in need of help. One thing that it does well, is it highlights all the forms in which abuse can take place. Whether an individual is pressurised into having sex, subject to physical violence, told what to wear, or not as the case may be, help is out there.

    One thing it also points out is that teenage abuse isn't limited to boyfriend/girlfriend situations, but those in same sex relationships may also find themselves in an abusive situation.

    So, if you live in the UK, and you need further information on teenage relationship abuse, check out


Friday, 15 February 2013

Say It With Handwritten Words

    So, yesterday was Saint Valentine's Day, a day when lovers exchange gifts, cards and flowers.The occasion is a huge money spinner for stationers, florists and lingerie shops. But, do we actually need an overpriced gift, or card to tell someone how much we love them?

    What about just putting pen to paper and writing down how we feel about our lover. Forget the gaudy cards, text messages and the emails, heart felt handwritten words can express much more.

    Here are some words that were sent to my Aunt by her husband over 50 years ago. Following their deaths I was lucky enough to be entrusted with all of the hand-written notes they exchanged in their sixty years together. These letters I will treasure forever, just as they did. I hope you enjoy this little glimpse of a man's love for his wife.

    I saw her as an angel, fair with sparkling eyes of blue,
    With cheeks like blossomed roses, and lips of reddish hue,
    Her body formed like Venus, as graceful as a Queen,
    I never thought I'd find a girl, like the angel of my dream.


Monday, 11 February 2013

Can You Judge A Book By Its' Cover?

    When it's cold outside, there's nothing like sitting down to a warm meal. With the busy lives many of us lead, it isn't always convenient for us to stand over a hot stove all day preparing the evening meal for our families. Therefore many of us find ourselves reliant on the ready-made meals that fill the deep freezers in our supermarket.

   But, within the last two weeks in the UK we have been horrified to find out that many of our frozen beef products, definitely aren't what it states on the label. It all started when it was reported that several of our leading brands found horse DNA in the beefburgers they were selling.

    As they tried to get to the bottom of what was believed to be accidental beef contamination, the true extent of the unscrupulous practises within our food chain unravelled like the plot of a crime best seller.

    Firstly, it was found that meat pies supplied to our prisons and hospitals for consumption by Muslim prisoners and patients alike, contained pork. Then supermarket chains found that their ready made meals not only contained horse DNA, but the contents instead of being beef were actually horses meat.

    Whilst, some UK and many European residents have no objection to consuming horse meat, they do expect to eat the food of their choice and not be tricked into eating something that they don't want to.A full investigation is now underway and the source of the meat is said to be exported from Romania. One thing it does show is that you can't judge a book by its' cover, or believe what it states on the box, as it is in this case.

Friday, 8 February 2013

Music To My Ears

    I don't know about you guys out there, but I have to have music playing in the background when I'm working. I love listening to the radio, although there are times the conversation can get a bit annoying and that's when I decide to rummage through my old CDs.

    So, as an exercise yesterday I went through my collection and picked out ten tracks that would be suitable as a soundtrack to my forthcoming book. I've deliberately chosen dated tracks, I'll save the up to date ones for another day.

   Soundtrack for Salvation, No Kissing Required:

  • New Kid in Town            The Eagles
  • Angel Eyes                    Wet,Wet,Wet
  • Yah Mo Be There           James Ingram/ 
                                               Michael McDonald
  • Daniel                              Elton John
  • Into Temptation                Crowded House
  • Living on A Prayer           Jon Bon Jovi
  • Close to You                   The Carpenters
  • Hey God                         Vince Gill
  • Mary's Prayer                  Danny Wilson
  • Set Fire to the Rain          Adele 
    Have you picked out a soundtrack for your project/novel?

Monday, 4 February 2013

Character Building

    The first day I ever met my protagonist in my forthcoming debut novel, Dan, he walked straight into my life and introduced himself to me. When I told a relative this the other day, she instantly jumped to the conclusion that my fictional character was based on a person I had actually met.

    At that point, I had to explain that he is and always has been a figment of my imagination. That one day, well it was one night, he popped in my head and I new he was the one to take on the role of a lead man straight away. She was surprised to hear as to how I know him very well, warts and all. I told her that I love him to bits, although there are times he can be a real pain and I can get really annoyed with him. Especially, when I can't get him to do precisely what I want him to do in my books, .

   The look of astonishment on her face told me that she was questioning  my sanity, as I sometimes do myself. Therefore, I thought that some further explanation was needed as to how I go about building my characters, as I will now.

    They don't all enter my head in quite the same way and I certainly don't always take to them straight away. Some, surprisingly grow on me gradually, whilst others although they have parts to play within my story, I may never actually find them endearing. Just as in real life, we don't always take to everyone we meet first off, no matter how hard we try. It's also difficult for me to give all my players endearing qualities as demons are involved.

    She said that she now understands where I'm coming from, although there was a twinkle of suspicion in her eye. This is how my characters come about. How did you meet you protagonist and your other characters ? Do you love them all?


Friday, 1 February 2013

Push the Button

        Is being a writer a risky business? There is no possibility of us injuring ourselves, but we do run the chance of us losing face, or sustaining a badly bruised ego along the way. Therefore, there is a little risk attached.

    Especially now that we are expected to become involved in social networking. In theses days of blogs, Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr, to name but a few, our souls' are bared to all and sundry.

    At the push of a button our stories, communications and personalities' are judged by people all over the world. At first by a few, then as the rolling stone gathers moss, the numbers multiply, resulting into hundreds and thousands.

    This is the reason why there are so many wonderful writers out there who file their finished manuscripts in a drawer to never see the light of day again.

    As my blog increases in viewing numbers, week on week and I await the release of my debut novel, that feeling of angst rears it's ugly head from time to time. So, if you were to ask me, if it's worth taking the risk to push the button? My answer is, yeah, most definitely.