Monday, November 27, 2006

Lakeside Cottage - JD


I'm interupting the pics of guys with babies to bring you BILL PULLMAN. Primarily because my hormones are making me particularly susceptible to old Billy Boy right now. But also because I'm a hair's breadth from finishing Lakeside Cottage by Susan Wiggs (cue wistful sigh). It's a truly MARVELLOUS book. And starring in the role of JD, the sexy hero to die for, I've mentally cast Bill.
I'm going to be gutted to finish this book!

Friday, November 24, 2006

I Promised You Another One


Hunky man and baby TWO! Jude takes a big bow for this rather wonderful one - drooool!

P.S. Just had to say - finished reading Catherine Spencer's Modern Romance - The French Count's Pregnant Bride (brillo!) and currently got Susan Wiggs' Lakeside Cottage glued to my hand. It's so dashed good a read I can't even begin to tell you. I'm going to be gutted when I reach The End.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Hunky Men With Babies...


Okay...in honour of my newly outed as pregnant state...here's my new mission. To post as many pics of hunky men with babies as I can find. I know...call it hormones. But I have to take my pleasures simply at the moment.

Yesterday was worst day of morning sickness EVER!

Enjoy the pic. Watch this space for another one coming soooooon.

jx

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

MY ANNOUNCEMENT: LIFE CHANGING NEWSFLASH!

  • I'VE NEWS!

    Okay. Here it is. I’ve been waiting for this day for a whiley now…and it’s finally come. My news is…(nope I haven’t sold a book – still waiting for news on that one). I’M PREGNANT! And today I had my 12 week scan.

    Yep, I know, I can still hardly believe it and I have to keep pinching myself. My conception was through IVF in September (through those wonderful amazing people at Dundee ACU). It was our very first try at the procedure and the baby's due date is 30 May 2007.

    My road to pregnancy has been a long one with oodles of obstacles and bramble bushes to weather along the way. But we’re here – and we never thought we’d make it:

    We first tried for a baby seven years ago – there were never any successful conceptions. We read loads of fertility books and were pretty philosophical believing it would just take time and patience…after the years passed we started to realise it may not actually happen at all.

    We went through infertility investigations after year two of nothing – no reason was found, unexplained infertility was given as the answer. We decided not to go for IVF at this point because we were shattered with it all.

    In the middle of all this harrowing investigative stuff lots of bad things happened – I lost my Grandma, my Aunt, my Great Aunt and my husband lost his father unexpectedly on Christmas Eve. The following year our wee boy puss cat died day after Boxing Day of a ‘cat stroke’ which felt like the final devastating blow in a long line of ‘bad stuff’. I took it all really badly. This was truly a wilderness part of my life when we honestly thought nothing we were doing could possibly go right – negative cycle city!

    Through it all my writing kept me sane. Great therapy – and that’s why I’ll never give up! SO there.

    We actually came to terms with the fact we might never have a child naturally after four years – we started the long process of adoption preparation groups and went on to adopt a daughter. She finally came to stay with us at age two – life would never be the same (in a good way). She’s been our little piece of salvation!

    Our daughter has been with us over two years and we decided to opt for a last ‘what if’ try at private IVF. I’d always felt too emotionally spent to try this procedure and so had shied away initially. At the time this was the right decision for us but after adopting and getting through its own trials and ‘legal minefield’ we felt a lot stronger and wanted to try so that we could finally put it all behind us. Move on, close the chapter of baby trying for good.

    When we embarked on IVF we truly didn’t expect it to work. I was told I had a diminished chance of success because I have a condition they found called fibroids. We shrugged and were disappointed but had gotten halfway through so decided to just go for it. We were told as well as a diminished chance of success (one in ten, compared to one couple in four) if we wanted another attempt I’d have to have surgery which could further impair my fertility! But luckily – it worked first time (I know – pinch me now! Still can hardly believe it’s true.)

    I’m still on cloud nine, so is hubby because we never thought this could happen after all this time. We can’t wait to welcome another unforeseen addition into our family – and are delighted our dream’s come true.

    But through it all I’ll never forget the journey and the lessons I’ve learned, the great people I’ve met whose lives have been impacted by infertility, adoption – it’s been a long journey but a life changing one.

    I’ll never take this baby lightly. It’s truly precious.

    Fingers crossed from now on that it all goes okay.

    Jude – skipping with delight.
    P.S. Miracles do happen!!! They really do, even when you’ve given up hope like we had! It just takes faith to try and move forward when you’re ready.
P.P.S. Baby's nickname has bizarrely become jellybean (cos that's what he/she looked like when just a wee bub).

Friday, November 10, 2006

Movin' On Up


Check out my wordcount. It's not far off 8k. I'm moving again. Here's another surfer boy to celebrate.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Julie Cohen's First Page Challenge...Count Me In!

Amazing Modern Extra writer Julie Cohen recently blogged about her "first page challenge".

She posted the first page of one of her novels and indicated the 'reveals' about her characters, their issues etc right from the off.

Loads of other amazing writers have gone for it and taken part.

So I figured I'd have a try. Here's the first page of Daredevil Doctor...don't know if it measures up but I thought I'd step up and give the dice a throw...

ANYA FRASER picked up the magazine and shuddered at the parachute jump picture. It looked exhilarating – kind of – but a part of her suspected it was terror hell in freefall form. (Why is Anya so wary?)
The girl in the picture sported vast orange aviator overalls that billowed in the wind. Hardly a look her wardrobe had been waiting to emulate. And g-force cheeks weren’t something she was too keen to experience first hand anytime soon either. (What’s she being asked to do? Jump out of a plane a la the magazine girl?)
“That could be you,” said Katie’s voice on the other end of the line. “Wind hurtling past your ears, adrenaline pumping through your veins like you’re powered by pistons. And a rugged instructor strapped to you for added security. Now that’s what I call exciting. We could christen you the parachuting practice nurse!” (Why would a nurse jump out of a plane if she didn’t want to? What's she got to prove that matters so much she finds it hard to turn down her biggest scary prospect?)
Anya gulped.
That’s what she called a personal room one o one.
More like her breakfast whooshing through her system to make a prompt reappearance in mid air. No thanks. (And yet she's actually mulling it over - why would she risk the nerve-tussle?)
The wild haired female extreme sports enthusiast grinned out of the picture, arms across her chest in mid air descent. Her parachute firmly fixed to her back, her goggles framing a grimace style smile. Were her jaws wired to make it look appealing as opposed to revealing her abject terror? (Anya clearly can’t bear the thought of doing this – to her it’s her worst nightmare. So what will she do? How will she decline?)
“How many miles up did you say it would be?”
“Ten thousand feet, in tandem with an instructor.”
Hello ‘Red Arrows’. Goodbye bladder control.
Could there be enough chocolate in the world to persuade her stomach it could withstand a charity parachute jump? Anya doubted it. She pushed the magazine aside.
“I’m not convinced Katie. I’ll think it over. I wish you all the best with your efforts but…”
“I’ll work on you, you can’t decline yet. We’ll raise lots of cash. You can get the staff at the practice on board – a team of us, all raising much needed money for Adoption Support. Maybe we’ll fund an extra social work post? And we’ll get press coverage into the bargain. The support of your practice would be immeasurably valuable.”
There it was – Katie’s clever persuasive ploy. And that’s what made her so good at her job as co-ordinator for East Scotland Adoption Support charity. The organisation badly needed funds and the parachute jump would make a big difference. Plus East Scotland Adoption Support held a special place in Anya’s heart, because it had helped her through the early days, after placement of her own adopted son Callum. The boy who’d made her infertility and lost relationship battles bearable – the golden haired child of her dreams, her own little slice of treasure. Ahhh Anya's special cause is her son. We empathise with what she's been through because she's prepared to go the extra tough mile because she feels she's the lucky one. Voila character snapshot.

Back...but only just!

See my wordcount ticker. It's moving again - hurrah! Cue mexican wave for one!
Only a thousand words but it's progress. And after reading my wee novella through I love this story...so it's time to get back to it and produce!

And tonight I aim to scribble some more in the notebook just to prove that the pic of surfman and his dog worked. I'm coming up to a scene I'm looking forward to - sparring on the beach at sunset!!

37 per cent is good going. I'm holding on to that and that my lovely CP Nat (New Zealand's new MillsnBoon Mod X supmremo girl gave me a good kick up the writing butt today and urged me onwards!) I've even emailed the US Editor gone AWOL in a polite friendly way to check she got my revisions of several weeks past. Amazing what you can do when your nose is no longer scarlet and fugged up.

I'm out for progress. And my dreary dumps are behind me. I'm back. Now watch my dust!

Jx

Monday, November 06, 2006

I CAVED!

Okay. I haven't reached my 8k goal. I've had the cold, my nose is so sore it's turned bright red and is rivalling Rudolph and I've had ZILCHO writing time.

So instead of punishing myself by holding back on the scrummy man in a wetsuit pic...I've decided to post it now! As inspiration.

Lovely isn't it...
It's really working for me and my story. I particularly like the key on his back...hmmm...and the little touch of beard just visible (never realised I was a beards bird before!!!)

So for now...enjoy Mr ONeil surfer guy and his dog. And keep your fingers crossed it does the business and I start ploughing on with my beach story soon.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Hanging On!


I'm just about hanging on to sanity right now.

This picture shows how I feel.



Here's my reasons:
Haven't heard from US editor who's looking at my revisions - angst, angst, angst! Mental head pixie screams - 'she hates 'em'. Go hide in bunker so crows can't get at me!
I am full of a dire head cold - so is dear daughter, poor lamb. Both of us just need hot drinks and cuddles! With Mrs Doubtfire/Nanny McPhee on hand to deliver TLC.
I had a meeting with little one's school yesterday - and whilst very productive about my wee one's future development and the many issues this raises - I came away with a truckload of jobs all to be done imminently! Sheesh! I think they have sussed I'm rather good at writing scathing/sort it out letters so are giving me all the jobs!
I've HAD NO WRITING TIME! Boo hoo!
I'm waiting for two very important pieces of mail (of the very very urgent variety) and neither show signs of appearing.

Hey ho - just keep hanging on in there! Jx

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Things About Me

I am not permitting myself any further time talking about my Surfman in a Wetsuit story until I have reached at least 8,000 words. Sadly my wee daughter has a bad cold and isn't well so I can't get any writing done until she's recovered. In the meantime:

Thirteen Things about JUDY
1. After a lengthy Pans People obsession, at primary school my friends and I used to volunteer to do a dance for the class every Friday (!) We did everything from The Nolan Sisters to imitating our version of the can can wearing silky shorts. Strange.
2. In my youth the thing I wanted more than ANYTHING in the world and never ever got – was a pair of skin tight satin disco pants (like Sandy in Grease). Gutted but maybe there’s still time?
3. At primary school I was heralded as something of a genius poet. Sadly reading the poems back – I realise this was largely a hyped achievement because of my youth i.e. the poems stink.
4. At age four I did a ballet routine to a crowded concert hall whilst picking my nose.
5. I met Canadian singer Bryan Adams and gave him an easter egg when I was sixteen. It was early in his career and he was very pleased at the adoration.
6. I played the part of JOSEPH in the school nativity when the real boy Joseph backed out, wearing my dad’s dressing gown and a t towel on my head. Oh and I had a big stick too.
7. I was in intensive care in Belgium, during a school history trip, when I was thirteen. I got to fly home FIRST CLASS.
8. I’m afraid of spiders and once murdered a large one with a mop in the dark.
9. The only things I’ve ever won was a revolting lump of wood necklace encrusted with gaudy mother of pearl at a jewellery party. We parted ways swiftly. And a certificate for making a batik bag at school (second prize)!?
10. When I was in primary school I had two small toys – a turtle and a wooden elephant – that used to go everywhere in my pocket and I talked to them at break time.
11. I once had a spooky encounter from the spirit world involving my pet cat doing strange things.
12. I once auditioned for and was rejected by the dating tv quiz show Blind Date (my two best buddies were rejected also so my ego didn’t crumble too badly!)
13. I used to be in love with Donny Osmond and even had socks with his face on (I was only very young at the time).