Monday, May 20, 2013


A whole month has passed since I last posted. So what has this blogger been doing? Quite a lot really, but none of it related to writing.

There's been the on going renovation of our kitchen. Renovating is a first for both me and hubby and we've discovered we like it! Look out house - no walls or floors are safe! When we are finally finished I'll post some photos.

Our oldest son has moved out and the other two are in that teenage stage where they need a lot of input and running about.

I've also been sewing quite a bit. New clothes and crafts. The ideas have been bubbling over.

Of course there is one thing missing from this list: writing.

With both the novels I have been working on I have felt like I had written myself into a corner - well two corners really. So I decided to take a break. A writing sabbatical. Once I got over the guilt and the terrible feeling that my writing days were over, I began to see a way out of those corners. Whilst I'm not putting words on paper (or a computer screen) my stories are churning away in the back of my mind. New ideas and fresh approaches are presenting themselves almost daily.

I'm not sure when I'll get back to the writing. I have a feeling I'll just know when the time is right. In the mean time I'm enjoying my other creative pursuits.

Have you taken a break from writing and how did it work for you?

Here's a wee peak at my new kitchen. There was a window here that looked into our garage - not very pretty. Now I have a lovely shelf. I still have to hang the cow picture. 

Sunday, April 21, 2013


I read an interesting article in the newspaper, yesterday, about the historic buildings in Dunedin and it quoted a poem by Thomas Bracken.

Here's the poem, illustrated by a photo I took of Dunedin city from Anderson's Bay.

Dunedin from the Bay

Go Trav'ler, unto others boast
Of Venice and Rome;
Of Saintly Mark's majestic pile
And Peter's lofty dome;
Of Naples and her trellised bowers,
Of Rhinleand far away: -
These may be grand but give to me
Dunedin from the bay.

Thomas Bracken, 1843-1898

Born in Ireland in 1843 Thomas Bracken immigrated to Australia at the age of 12, then came to Dunedin, New Zealand at age 25. He worked in journalism and politics and was a notable poet of the day, but he is, perhaps, best remembered as the man who penned the words to our National Anthem: God Defend New Zealand.

I'm looking wistfully at the blue sky in the photo. Summer has finally left us on this cold rainy Sunday afternoon! Oh well, it's good for the garden.

Monday, April 8, 2013


I'm not blogging much this year as I'm trying to cut back on my internet usage and free up some much needed time to concentrate on my writing and other things. And it's working!

So what have been doing with the 'extra' hours?

I'm reading a lot more. Not just novels, but I've been catching up on some non-fiction history books too. All good research for the writing.

Here's a few books I particularly enjoyed:

The Things We Cherished by Pam Jenoff

The Mischief of the Mistletoe by Lauren Willig

Shadows on the Nile by Kate Furnivall

The Unexpected Miss Bennett by Patrice Sarath

I've also just finished reading Alison Stuart's latest release - Secrets of Time. It's a shorter novel of about 40000 words and involves time travel between the time of the English Civil War and 1995. It's light hearted and romantic and fun to read. You can find links to buy it and her other novels (all good reads) here on her Facebook page. She also has a great competition going at the moment too.

I've also been doing some sewing. Here's my latest creation:

This morning I visited our local Spotlight store and brought home a few pieces of interesting fabric. That will keep me busy for a few more weeks!

Sunday, March 24, 2013


Driving home from church today I had a great conversation with my teenage daughter about writing and we got to talking about Cecelia Ahern who had her first book, 'P.S. I Love You', published at age 21 and how it went on to become a movie. (The movie was great, but nowhere near as good as the book - but that's another story!)  My daughter had yet to see the movie and asked if we could watch it. Well, it was a cold drizzly kind of day - perfect for a mushy movie.

After lunch we searched through our stash of DVDs, only to come up empty handed. I was so sure I had a copy. A little disappointed, we settled for 'Kate and Leopold'. Time-travel, romance and Hugh Jackman, what more could you want on a rainy Sunday afternoon?

A few hours later we were checking if there was anything worth watching on the telly tonight and bingo!  'P.S. I Love You' was on!

So we've had a great day watching two of my favourite chick flicks. My other favourites would have to be Sleepless in Seattle and You've Got Mail. What are yours?

Monday, January 28, 2013


I know it's rather late in January to be talking about the New Year, but for me the year starts when hubby and kids go back to school. By the end of the week they will all be back at their various schools and it's time for me to get back into some serious writing.

We've had a long, hot, and sunny summer which looks to continue for some time to come. I've read some great books, watched some excellent movies, visited with friends and family and made some day trips into the country. It's been a wonderfully relaxing time.

There are a lot of 'new' things about this new year.

Firstly, on a sad note, I have farewelled two friends who moved north at the end of last year. One of them is my great writing buddy, Ruth.  We have this great ability to bounce ideas off of each other. When I get stuck in my writing, a long talk with Ruth almost always solves the problem and rekindles my passion for the story. So I am very thankful for telephones and the internet, although I do miss the chats over coffee. Travel to her new home in Wellington and Whangerei, where my other friend now lives, might have to become a yearly occurrence.

I do, however, have a new companion of the furry kind. Monty arrived just after Christmas. He is the cutest little kitty and follows me around like a puppy! I've never had a cat quite like him. Every time I move rooms, or even walk from one side to the other, he's there. When I stop moving he flops down on my feet. When I have the house to myself again during the day, I will not be lonely!

Here's a couple of photos of him. He's about nine months and not fully grown.

And here's our other cat, Captain, snoozing on my desk.

This year I also have a new desk to work at. Much bigger than my old one, I can use it for card making as well and all my patchwork fabrics are stored in drawers underneath. It's the central hub of all my creativity!

Here's a photo.

I'm not one for new year's resolutions, but this year I am determined to devote as much time as possible to my writing. Over the last couple of years I have let other things get in the way and my focus has been splintered. I've made a few adjustments to fix that and one of them will be that I blog less frequently - perhaps once or twice a month.

So how have your holidays, or winter if you're from way up north, been? What are you doing that's new this year? Leave me a comment, I love to hear from you.