Thursday, December 31, 2009

In Praise Of Robert Burns



In a few short hours people all over the world will link hands and sing a traditional song/poem written by a humble Scots ploughman.Now that's great writing...and here's his best. It makes the hairs on my arms stir every time I hear it and I have it as a plaque on the wall.

So tonight. Link hands and remember. Honest writing, deeply felt speaks to people. And lasts.

The Only Way is Up!


Do you remember that dancefloor filler from the 80s by Yazz? I'm thinking it could be my new motto. The end of 2009 delivered another rejection badge to add to my writing blazer. But don't gasp, it's okay. Crazy Nanny will ride again - in fact she came back with a set of pretty good accomplishments so that Nanny done good.

It was a nice rejection. The publisher in question is a lovely one I'd have loved to work with. They praised my writing, my book and my hero. The word irresistible was used (always good ggg!) So colour me happy. They also gave me specific advice why they won't take it further - advice I can use to improve and take it on elsewhere. To widen the scope. My writing mentor last year told me this is one of the benefits of getting it out there - feedback to help you improve it and find it a home. Thanks to wonderful writing friends for telling me my next steps so much better than I could see them!

Okay I'm admittedly R punched.
But Gloria Gaynor springs to mind. And Yazz.
It's going to be alright. And in 2010 I now know what I need to do! Already I'm scribbling. Happy Hogmanay and Auld Lang Syne to you all. jx

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

OCD Preps For Hogmanay

Hope your Christmas was hearty and happy!

Mine was nice with lots of laughter. Namely at doing MC Hammer contests on the Wii and watching toddler girl disguised as Elton John playing new pink keyboard. Who needs TV soaps for entertainment when you have crazy children who like to perform?

Anyway since Christmas I've been having an 'organising' fest. Not good.

Cupboards got cleaned without meaning to. My computer housekeeping and backup suddenly became a priority when my brother ordained it would be so on Boxing Day (!!) Bless him, he gave me a wireless router (what a sweetie) and insisted I housekeep all my I.T. while he gave everything a thorough service! Sigh. But it's done and my system is now zippety zip fast.

Even the fishtank got a pro clean (without intending to) because of the algae decending back on the tank as uninvited Xmas guests. We think we've finally sorted out the problem (fingers crossed!)

So. I've cleared. Tidied. Organised. OCD in action as displacement activity supreme. I've even made a resolution to resist the urge to blog-time-waste quite so much in 2010!

As my Scottish Granny would say - I'm set for Hogmanay!

Now all I have to do is figure out my writing goals...and stop angsting about the lack of submission news.

2010 is going to be about waiting to see what happens next with the sub. With a plan B short story contest entry in reserve. Then finally getting to the bottom of that bad boy in the highlands that I've been toying with in a commitment phobic manner.

What about you?

Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas Present - A Review!

A surprise review popped in my inbox today. Here. Thanks Romance Studio (5 stars yowzer!)

Actually even though the book is no longer in print and it seems like a long time ago I subbed for a review - I'm very grateful because I needed this validation/reminder that sometimes I can write okay.

I love every minute of my writing life. It keeps me sane. But we all reach rough spots where we think...can I keep trying and failing? Can I keep putting the effort in and subbing and getting knock backs? Maybe I'm kidding myself?

And after this review...the answer to the above is yes I can keep at it. It's given me a boost at a much needed time. I'll keep trying as long as the stories call to me and I'm getting better. As long as I'm feeling the love. And I still do. Nobody said the road would be easy...

So thanks for a surprise Christmas Present Review. Thanks for the vote I didn't expect.

And now...back to the important stuff. A very Merry Christmas to you all! Every good wish is sent your way!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Waiting With George


Since I'm waiting...
Waiting for Christmas (fa la la la la la la la la!)
Waiting for the Postman with the sexy Sony Pocket package (vroom vroom)
And waiting to hear about the submission that must not be mentioned...

Here's George.
I can happily wait when he's around to stare at. Bring on the mince pies m'lord.

E By Gum!

Xmas...busy busy...xmas!
Will it ever end? Answer no. Cos after today the kids are off!

So are you ready for it? Needless to say my tasks are done but writing progress is nada, grumph humph!

And just incase you haven't already seen it...check this brilliant MnB Pocket Reader out now! Snap em up while you can. It is INCREDIBLY cute! 350 books storage and music files too! Fabbo. (Happily I have a birthday in January so if I squeeze my eyes shut and add my presents together it's not so very indulgent. Honest guv! I have a very understanding husband. And a piggy bank...) That's my excuses and I'm sticking to 'em.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Baubles In Motion

The toddler is going crazy for the Christmas tree. Not just regular crazy - OCCTD. Obsessive Compulsive Christmas Tree Devious.

She has worked out (she's clever that way) how to turn on the flashing baubles herself (yes we have two flashing baubles!) Everytime I switch one off, moments later it's back on. I swear if she could whistle innocently she would.

In addition she keeps moving all the baubles. Constantly. And stuffing them into bizarre places...I swear I'm going to wake up next to a bauble on the pillow soon. It's spooky.

My tree goes through fifty different Xmas Gok Wan looks in a day. From top heavy to bottom bedecked...sigh.

It's her Christmas party at toddler group tomorrow. Expect even more nonsense to follow. And the big one's school party is also on.

So it'll be sequin dresses overload. Oh the joys of Xmas Kid Mania.

P.S. I won a book from Harlequin - Mira's RNA Anthology of short stories, Loves Me, Loves Me Not! Fabulous. I'm already stalking the postman! But he's nice so that's okay.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Just Call Me Superfan

Nina Harrington's second Mills and Boon Romance will soon hit the shelves...it's delicious! So well worth getting your order in soonish...I LOVED it. And here's some post-read ponderings...

For some years the word Kyle (isn't that a gorgeous name?) has held a special place in my heart…Kyle of Lochalsh of course. Hey, I’m a Scot who digs going north.

Only now there’s a gorgeous Kyle who’s stolen my heart away! Nina Harrington’s latest (second) novel with MnB Romance, Hired: Sassy Assistant brings a jaw-dropper hero called Kyle who’s rugged, exciting and very contemporary. He’s a medic, an adventurer and a man to simply swoon over. With a smile that makes you melt and a wonderfully unconventional style he’s hard to resist. Guy next door but with stellar hero credentials tucked away in his combat trousers’ back pockets.

Lulu is the perfect woman for him too. Mr Adventurer meets Ms Sassy in a fun and touching romantic ride to love. With poingnant and touching moments too - these two really deserve to be together.

So if you want a romance book that has you smiling from the first page and tripping over the pages wanting more, more, more THIS is it. Heart-warming and sassy; buy Nina’s book or regret that you missed a treat. C’mon Nina, write some more! Just for me!

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

The Kid Loves Gym...

My toddler loves gymnastics class
It sends her into orbit
A forward roll, a swing on bars
She mimicks Olga Corbett
As mother gasps behind her
Like a steam train belching puff
The small one dismounts like a pro
Her chaperone is duff
I wish I were a yummy mum
With graceful limbs and ease
Instead I lumber after her
Then end up with bumped knees
And as she springs gazelle like
With speed like skis on snow
I forget my lack of prowess
And just holler 'Go Kid Go!'

P.S. Yes. I always wanted to be Pam Ayres (seventies UK diva of ditties that rhymed!)

Monday, December 07, 2009

The Power of Positive Affirmation...

A writing pal of mine who has gone onto great published success once said to me...you have to imagine the call, visualise it happening when you're lying in bed at night! Stay positive and know that it can happen! Well. I'm trying really hard...and I wholly admire her words...

But I have a fly in my subbing ointment. Because no matter how hard I squeeze my eyes shut and IMAGINE (believe, believe)! The realist in me keeps chattering - harsh economic times, publishers cutting back etc etc...

Furthermore, when I was going through IVF treatment for our lovely DD2 a friend who'd been through it similarly advised - believe, believe, feel the conviction that it can work!

And er...although I kept upbeat and firm in my conviction to just give it my best, half my mind still said - ah well, this is my big try. Having a go so that I won't look back in regret and say 'what if!' A girl's gotta do with no guarantees. Joy of joys, it did work. And I pinch myself at this major life miracle every single day when I look at her beaming little smile. I was very lucky. However, I still boggle at the statistical chances...

So amid my subbing angst (yes, it's set in). I am doing what I do best. One minute upbeat and motivated, the next level-headed and realistic.

Trying to believe. But keeping an eye on the climate. Tough times means you have to get even tougher. So...let's just wait and see.

And yes. My nails are scuppered.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

New Love...

I have fallen for a new guy on the block...

Cranberry and Vanilla candles. I know...must get out more. But they really are divine. Cards posted, check. Gifts sorted into piles for wrapping, check.

New smelly candle purchased. Mince pies on horizon. Tickety boo.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Gerry....Or Clive...?








Please help me pick ladeeez.





My hero Angus needs you!

















Should he be Gerry (Butler). Dirty good looks, hot eye to eye contact (and they're green!). Muscles galore. Wry grin a go go.
Or Clive. (Owen).




Clive is the chosen par amour of my best friend who will be named here 'Lovely'. Lovely has loved Clive for decades, yus decades!! That's dedication for ya. I have to admit he is kinda cute. Dark hair, nice eyes. Cheeky smile and great sombre mean and moody expressions. But can I really forsake Gerry for Clive??






So who is my badboy hell raiser rocker Angus?
Outsider Clive...or Gorgeous Gerry...?

Oooooooooh decisions!