May Report

At the beginning of this month, I pledged to:

  • Read 1 book
  • Write 2 short stories
  • Write 3 poems
  • Do 4 submissions
  • Write 5 blog posts

How did I do with that?

I read more than one book. In fact I read two whole books (although one was very short). I also finished the one I’d been reading before May, I gave up on one book part of the way through because I wasn’t enjoying it, and I started another that’s interesting but heavy-going. Not bad!

I wrote one short story and two poems.

If you count two submissions to the same competition separately, then I managed four submissions.

And this is my fifth blog post this month.

I also did quite a lot of work on my WIP. And I gave my first ever author talk, which went well and led to a lively discussion. So altogether I’m very pleased with what I’ve achieved this month. I think, in general, goals are good, as long as they are realistic and you allow yourself some leeway.

Next month I will mostly be preparing for an exciting time ahead.

Flyer for author talk


Launch Day


As today is the launch day for my novel, Neither Here Nor There, I’m posting my reading of chapter one.

Neither Here Nor There is now available as an ebook or in paperback at Amazon, Smashwords, Crooked Cat and elsewhere.

To win a copy, answer the question that will appear shortly on the launch page.


A-Z Challenge: L is for…

List of good memoirs

Memoir Writing

This post is one of 26 I am writing for the A-Z Challenge on the subject of writing a memoir. I’m not an expert in writing memoirs, but I’m exploring the topic with thoughts about writing one, and am happy to share the fruits of my exploration.


How many times have I read that to be a good writer you have to read in your genre?


These are some great memoirs, which I have read, listed in no particular order. Do you want to add any?

  • Frank McCourt: Angela’s Ashes
  • Jeannette Walls: The Glass Castle
  • Elizabeth Gilbert: Eat, Pray, Love
  • Alice Kaplan: French Lessons: A Memoir
  • Stephen King: On Writing
  • Barack Obama: Dreams from My Father
  • Jean Davison: The Dark Threads
  • Reva Mann: The Rabbi’s Daughter
  • John Grogan: Marley & Me
  • Jo Carroll: Hidden Tiger Raging Mountain (a travel memoir)

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Fifty-five hours

I knew it was possible. If others could do it, why not me? It wasn’t as if we’d never separated before, but it had always been when I was away from home. This time I determined to do it when the temptation was right there.

And I did it! Yes, I managed to stop myself from turning on my computer for fifty-five hours. It wasn’t easy – especially when I went into my office and saw it sitting innocently on my desk. It was as if it had a sign attached to it: OPEN ME.

I resisted all temptation. When I wasn’t at the supermarket or my daughter’s concert or cleaning or cooking, I sat in the garden and read.

It was lovely. I should do it more often.

You know what? Since we got back together I haven’t cursed my computer at all. Well… hardly.