Best Laid Plans

Yes, the ominous title says it all. My publishing plans for 2019 have been put on hold. In the last 2 to 3 months I’ve been struggling to bring a flare up of my Lupus under control. This mainly consisted of migraines on a daily basis. Unfortunately I haven’t quite succeeded. Together with my homeopath I’ve more or less managed to get the migraines under control. Visits to the doctor have been endless. Not to mention all the blood tests I’ve had to endure - my favourite thing.
I’ve tried to keep my writing and other plans going as per usual but after 5 hours in A&E one evening earlier this month I’ve finally had to admit I need some time away from the laptop. I will still be working on my writing projects but at a much slower pace than usual. This does however mean that the promised release of several books will probably only happen towards the middle of 2020 and beyond.
I apologise for this as I know several people were keen to read The Witch Adoption Project (the follow up to The L…

Not Another Hero

In the UK October is Black History Month and inevitably has me thinking about who I admire most. I usually write a related post but in principal I disagree with the idea of only one month to celebrate what should be an ongoing acknowledgement. Invariably though, it’s during this month that I think about the people who inspire me because the question is asked of so many children in classrooms during this time. But heroes needn’t be living beings. It’s entirely possible to have literary heroes too. Recently I’ve been thinking a lot about those heroes in books and films I admire despite their race, gender or obvious unheroic flaws. And since I’m currently participating in an e-book giveaway about atypical heroes it seems fitting to be writing about this particular topic now.
So firstly, here is a list of my favourite books containing atypical heroes and heroines. It is fairly long but I will only subject you to a few of them. If you haven’t read any of these books as yet then I sincerely …

The Book’s Better

I recently found out that Phillip Pullman’s Dark Materials is being done as a series by the Beeb (that’s UK speak for the BBC). I certainly hope they do a better job of it than the Hollywood version starring Nichole Kidman and Daniel Craig, which chickened out on dealing with provocative issues raised by Pullman’s series.
Not too long ago I was fairly impressed with the way Amazon Prime handled one of my favourite novels of all time – Good Omens. In my opinion they were spot on when they picked David Tennant and Michael Sheen to play the demon and angel. Then their script writers did a bang up job (sorry I’ve been watching a lot of Life on Mars and I’ve got Gene Hunt’s turn of phrase stuck in my head). At any rate, they did a great job with the script, updating it for a modern, younger audience and adding in the odd inspired outcome too. What I loved most of all was that they didn’t stray too far away from the Gaiman and Pratchett novel. I’ve reread it so many times that I was keeping …


I’ve always been proud of the fact I read anything and everything. There are however certain books which have stumped me. 3 in particular. These are books which have worldwide acclaim yet have failed to make my top ten. Is it me or are these books simply unreadable?
“So which books are these exactly?” I hear you ask.
Well, book the 1st: In the Name of the Rose by Umberto Ecco
I’d heard from several people, whose reading instincts I trust, how absolutely fabulous this book is. So naturally with such recommendations it had to be done. I mean, who can argue with a book which has sold over 50 million copies since its publication in 1980. Besides, the author’s name sounded so absolutely cool. Yes, things like that occupy my weird brain. But I struggled my way through it. I ended up wishing I had the Cliff Notes . So I abandoned it and watched the Sean Connery film instead.
Book the 2nd: The Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie
What a furore this one caused when it was released. I figured that alo…

School’s Out

Hello to my regular subscribers and a very warm welcome to any newbies.
Here in the UK it’s the start of the summer holidays and usually I’m looking forward to it as much as the students I teach. This year however I find myself feeling restless, wanting another project to take on. I’ve been trawling through college courses but am still to settle on the right one. I guess the last 11 weeks spent on my stained and fused glass course has awoken the dormant artist. But top of my list of things to do still remains read read read. Both the balcony and garden are up for the task so it’s down to me to do the rest. That’s if I can get my local library authority to keep all my reservations headed my way in a timely fashion.
Some of you may well be heading into your summer break too and I thought I’d offer up some suggestions for excellent summer reads. My top 3 so far this year are:
Fledgling – Octavia Butler Sister Mine – Nalo Hopkinson Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine – Gail Honeyman
My favourit…

Multi-coloured Creativity

Hello again to the regulars and a very warm welcome to the latest followers. It's a pleasure to have you here.

Ever wondered what writers get up to when they’re not writing? Well my passions have always centred round reading and dancing. But I have several others I indulge on occasion. I’ve always loved drawing and painting. I took an Art GCSE and my very first holiday in the UK was a painting one in Scotland. It was the first time I’d ever used any other medium besides pencil and watercolour. And it was liberating.
For many years, whenever I went on holiday I’d take a travel set of watercolours and paint postcards for people. I haven’t done that in far too long and am thinking of starting again. I take endless photos though and spend ages deleting and editing till I’m happy they’re worthy to post on Facebook which has been my online photo album for years now.
On one trip back to South Africa to visit dad, his girlfriend taught me the rudiments of jewellery making. I made several pie…

Best Laid Plans

First of all, a very warm welcome to all new subscribers. It's great to have you here and I look forward to sharing the many facets of my #indie journey with you.
Now, this may come as a surprise to some but just because I’m self-published doesn’t mean I’m not working to a publishing programme, self-imposed though it is. Long before I went on a course which encourages creative types to develop a business plan I always had a publishing schedule. I love colourful charts so it was inevitable. My guilty secret is out. I have always completed an annual chart, marking out Work In Progress, Future Projects and prospective blog posts for up to 4 months into the future.
Giving myself deadlines helps me achieve goals and I rarely shift the timelines unless something unforeseen happens. Just last year I rearranged my teaching timetable so that I have two full writing days a week and on those days I write from 7am to 5pm, only breaking for meals. I treat my writing as a job as I’m hoping that i…