Monday, 26 November 2012

In Loving Memory Of My Nan

Nanny Tess ~ Violet Habicht

19th March 1926 ~ 11th November 2012

February 2011
I just wanted to do a blog post for my nan. Today is her funeral. She will be sadly missed, but as we all know, all good things must come to an end some day. She died aged 86. She was still riding her bike until she was 81. Nan loved her holidays and her bingo. She was never one for sitting around, moping about at home. She would have gone stir crazy! She told you straight, too. Probably where I get a bit of it from. Her favourite flowers were Freesias and her favourite colour was lilac, light mauves/purples, which is my favourite colour too. She also liked Amaryllis' like in the photo above. This is one I bought and she potted from Christmas. 

I think this is early 1990s, when Katie would have been at Thorpe School. Mum and Nan manning a stall. 

A favourite picture of mine. Nan and I with our Babychams. This was Aunty Barbara's wedding in 1991 (so it says on back of the photo). That means I was 17 here! 

And this was taken by my uncle Tony. Nan, me and Mum at my 30th birthday party, October 2003. 

Rest in peace my wonderful Nan. If there isn't Bingo in heaven, give them hell! 

I have wonderful memories I will treasure forever. Love you, Nan. x x x 

Love, Teresa x x your favourite, ha ha! (Little private joke there between me and Nan). 

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Good Job I'm Not A Bad Loser

I can safely say I will not win NaNoWriMo this year. I've been failing to actually get bum on seat some days and get the writing done, and then the days that I do, I have not been hitting the 1,666 word target which is required to reach 50,000 words in 30 days.

I have written so far 15,287 words (little counter to the right should verify this too :D). Those words seriously need editing mind. But that is 14,179 words short of where I should be today.  (Becky Black will love that I have a spreadsheet to calculate this. Spread sheets are her thing. They can be my thing too. It's maybe why we get on so well.) But this is the reason why I will not win. NaNoWriMo calculates I need to write 2629 words a day for the rest of the month. It's not going to happen. Not unless I want my RSI to come and hit me in the face! (Well, the wrist actually).

So I'm a winner in that I'm writing again, with everything that real life is throwing at me I think this is a damn good achievement. After November I will need to get back to editing The Wedding Favour and being tough with myself about it. You will not make it as a writer if you do not put the work in, Teresa! 

However, as I said to my writing friends in my little writing group, I think I'm too tough on myself. I'm impatient basically, and want it to happen as soon as possible, and stress myself that it is not, because it's a vicious circle. I won't see writing achievements if I'm not writing and working at it. However, I think I need to take a step back, just keep at it, write when I can write (and not beat myself up when I can't) and eventually it will come. My desperation is because I am miserable in my job. If writing could pay the bills, I would be happier. So, I need to find something else don't I?

It doesn't mean I'm giving up my dream of writing, it just means finding something more enjoyable to do to bring in the bread and butter, and work around my children (which is priority) and my writing. I'm tired of getting up at 5.30am every Saturday morning. I want my weekends back!

I thought about becoming a teaching assistant, and I'm not striking that off, but maybe for a quicker solution, and less training required, maybe I need to find a job in a school (or college) doing admin.

In other news, I did manage to watch Skyfall last night. Obviously for research purposes. It has nothing to do with Daniel Craig being the best James Bond ever - in my opinion anyway! Very good film by the way. Okay so it has the typical James Bond traits. The girl he sleeps with dies and that sort of thing, but it's not as corny as Pierce Brosnan surfing a tidal wave on a door! I feel Mr Craig gives Mr Bond a lot more depth than his predecessors. Characterisation is important.

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Next Big Thing...

The Next Big Thing happens on a Wednesday and last week I was tagged by the charming Francis Potts, my Twitter and writing pal, for my Next Big Thing. When Francis asked me if I wanted to be tagged on his blog post the 'Next Big Thing' I did ask if it counted thatI hadn't been published. And he replied, of course, you could be the Next Big Thing. Thank you, Francis, for saying that I'm lovely.

So here goes...

What is the title of your next book?
Perfect Isn't An Option
Where did the idea for the book come from?
I've always been fascinated how Hollywood stars can marry and divorce so quickly, and not really work at it. They don't need to really, they've got plenty of money. So the idea stems from the likes of the recent Katy Perry/Russell Brand split. Were they even married a year? The idea is that Steve returns to the UK to see his sister. He's now made it big in Hollywood, but just split with his fiancĂ©e. He's feeling sorry for himself, and wonders how he will find true love now he's a celebrity. Will they love him for him, or his money and fame? Ruby comes up with the idea that he should live a normal life, under disguise, and try to find love that way.  
What genre does your book fall under?
Contemporary romance - I hope!
What actors would you choose to play the characters in the movie rendition of your novel?
Bradley Cooper is my inspiration for Steve, so yes, if I ever get this book published and the film rights sold... Bradley Cooper to be cast as Steve please! It would slightly be like Helen Fielding naming her character Mark Darcy after Colin Firth's Mr Darcy portrayal, and being thrilled that Colin then get's to play her Mark Darcy in Bridget Jones' Diary. It's on the DVD extras if you haven't seen it! I found a picture of Keira Knightley with short hair... she's my Ruby inspiration (who is Steve's sister) so they can cast her too.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
I would like it published... but probably go through a smaller publisher where I can skip the agency lol! 
How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?
I started writing Perfect Isn't An Option in 2011 as part of the May You Write Your Novel - 80,000 words in 80 days. But failed finishing it, as I started editing my first novel. So it's probably taken a year. 
What other books would you compare this story to within the genre?
Not so much books... but films. It's a little Notting Hill with lots of references to Superman and Clark Kent, because that's what Steve feels like. 
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
Bradley Cooper! lol! No seriously... he did. The name Steve comes from his character in 'All About Steve'. 
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
Oh, I don't know... that the hero looks like Bradley Cooper, isn't that enough? Well, it's turned into a bit of a relationship development for sister and brother, and as well as a love interest for Steve (that's the whole point of the story) there is a love interest for Ruby too. 
For all my raving about Bradley Cooper, we better have a picture to brighten up my blog... 

Hopefully in a book shop near you... one day... Perfect Isn't An Option. 
Next week visit Alison Runham and her Next Big Thing. She's another Twitter and writing pal of mine. 

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Book Review: Darcie's Dilemma by Sue Moorcroft

Darcie's DilemmaDarcie's Dilemma by Sue Moorcroft
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was an enjoyable short story. I love Sue's writing, and this didn't disappoint either.

Darcie's wrapped up in Ross, her younger brother, who she is guardian for. Does she have time for romance? And will her perfect date understand her commitments to her brother?

It's just as much Ross's story, with his troubles and seeking revenge, as it is Darcie's.

I liked - a lot. The only reason it took me so long to read is because I've been failing lately to make myself sit down and read. The pace is good. It was me, not the book.

View all my reviews

I really am going to fail this year in reading forty books! I promise next year I'll get back on it. 

Sunday, 4 November 2012

NaNoWriMo So Far...

To achieve the 50,000 words in one month, bearing in mind November only has 30 days, you need to write an average of 1,666 words a day. Actually, it's 1,666.66666 recurring. So if you write 1,667 a day, you'll get your 50,000 words easy.

Although I have a book that desperately needs editing to resubmit to a publisher, and another returned from the RNA NWS which also needs editing, with everything going on in my life, and dramas that keep adding to it, I couldn't face it. I find editing hard at the best of times, and find it less creative. With the writing of the words you can put anything down and tell the story the way you want to tell it, and how it comes out of your head, down your fingers and on to the screen.

I needed to get that back. I needed my writing mojo. 

I amaze myself that I can stare at the blank screen - that blank piece of electronic paper - and fill it, when I didn't even know where the story was heading. But I hadn't been doing it lately, I've even got out of the habit of reading! What a crime!

Having decided only about a week before NaNo started to actually participate, you can safely say I've done not a lot of brainstorming. But I've had a few stories floating around my head and on my 'plot bunny' list. I update my Onenote folder all the time.

I was going to write a fantasy story, but decided I needed to brainstorm this better as it does need some world building. It would stop the flow during NaNoWriMo as I'd be having to decide too much. Not ideal in writing 50,000 words in 30 days. Therefore I decided to go with a vampire idea that's been harassing me for some time. The world is Earth, just with supernatural creatures, so the world building is less. And I've got a lot of notes on it in Onenote. It doesn't have a title, and I can't work out if Margaret's (that's her name for now) human companion will be her lover in the end - she's very protective of him - or her maker, who she will try to find. He is Soctrates. A Greek vampire, about 1000 years old. He saves her from a fate that would have killed her. Well, technically it does kill her, because she's immortal in the human form, but a vampire.

Yesterday, I should have reached around the 5,000 word mark to be on target. Currently, I am at 3244 words. But to be honest, I'm not worried. The fact that I've written 3244 words in the past three days is far more important than keeping to the target. I would not have written those words if it wasn't for NaNoWriMo. 

I have written everyday, but I forgot to update my NaNoWriMo Page on the second day. Hoping, if the kids allow, for me to get some more done today - a bigger writing session. I'm only 3437 words behind.

Anyone else participating in NaNoWriMo I don't know about and how are you finding it so far?