An Eventful Week

After my first visit to the doctor in January regarding my stomach pains, I finally went back to the hospital to find that my results all came back clear.  However, I am now being referred for more tests because they believe that my stomach pains are caused by the very thing that the doctors convinced me were nothing to do with it!

This was the result of an unexpected phone call on Monday morning, when I was asked to go to see the consultant on Thursday.  Like any self-respecting 25 year old I chose the most mature option and panicked like a long tailed cat in a rocking chair factory.  Luckily my mum was on hand to come with me and stop me from mewling like a damp kitten whilst I waited to be seen.  One thing that I am very, very good at is panicking for no real reason.  As it happened I had nothing to worry about, but by the time I got to the doctors I had diagnosed myself with everything!

Fortunately I was wrong, and now have more tests to look forward to in the future.  But for now, I've got another thing crossed of my list.

On Saturday, I went shopping with my fiance and mother-in-law to be around Wakefield and took a trip to the old shopping centre.  The one thing about our new shopping centre that I dislike, it being a modern and exciting thing, is that it lacks a proper bookshop.  However the old one has three: Waterstones, WH Smiths and The Works.

The Works has always been a lucky dip when it comes to good finds, and they very rarely have the books that you want for very long, so it's always a good idea to grab something you want whilst you can.  There are very few occasions, if any, where I have regretted my purchases.

It was my fiance who found the books I wound up buying this time.  I was nosing through the paperbacks and had just found several copies of S.J Parris' Heresy when I heard Martin call my name.  I turned to see him walking towards me with a pretty box in his hands...

Simply Beautiful! <3
Anyone who has spent even the smallest amount of time reading this blog will know that I have a weakness (not a soft spot, a weakness) for well-written fantasy novels, especially when they are as beautiful as the ones you see above.  It is my opinion that, even with the wealth of talent in the genre today, the number of fantasy writers who even come close to C.S.Lewis can be counted on one hand, and I can only think of two who are better.  So to find that such a respected author's greatest works, so beautifully presented, for the grand sum of  £ was a miracle my fiance didn't find his hands ripped off whilst I made a beeline for the tills.  Needless to say, I left the store feeling very happy, and am making my way through the books quite merrily.

Of course, there has been all the rioting in London and other cities - thoughts and prayers go out to those who have died been injured or had their homes and/or businesses damaged by the mindless thugs and looters that have run rife over the past week.  We can only hope and pray that this is now coming to an end and that lessons are learned where they need to be, and that justice is dealt to those who deserve it.  Fortunately my own city of Wakefield, the heart of which is a short walk from my flat, was spared the riots, although two local teenagers have been arrested after being caught trying to incite a riot via social networking (I'm certain it was Facebook, but not 100%).  I'm also very happy to say that none of my friends and loved ones were harmed in the riots, and I hope all of my lovely readers can say the same.

One final thing to point out is that I have put a sample of my latest writing project in a separate page on my blog.  Anyone who would like to read it can do so by travelling to this page.  I did post the link on twitter briefly a few days ago, but not through Facebook or this blog.  I wrote this extract using the office application on my phone, to keep me occupied on the bus journeys to and from the office.  It was a lot of fun to write, particularly because the plotline changed completely from the original one I had planned.  I had intended to describe the ceremony used by the priestesses of Baal to activate an ancient artefact's ability to see into the future.  But two characters decided to turn a brief encounter into their own little scene, which turned out to be much sweeter than expected.  It must be said that Gast does have a much more serious side, which I hope to bring up later.  Currently I am writing another, more serious scene during my travels, but I have every intention of writing the actual ceremony after that - it has dancing in it!

For reference, I was inspired by listening to Amaranth by Nightwish whilst letting my mind wander.  How did I come to a scrying ceremony from that song?  I'm not actually sure....

Happy reading, and stay safe!



  1. I just read that extract :) I thought it was good - I like the way you describe the cat especially, it made me smile. I don't really know anything about the genre as it's not really one I read so any comments I have may well be irrelevant, but I noticed one or two tiny things...

    There are one or two instances where you use the same word or point out the same thing twice which interrupted the flow a little for me. The ones I noticed where the way you described her freckles twice (which made me stop short as I couldn't imagine ivory freckles!) and when you describe Valkyrie as both a "vain and spoilt creature" and a "pretty creature" in the same paragraph.

    As a matter of personal taste I would start with a shorter sentence for more impact/intrigue. Maybe just "It wasn't an altar so much as a stage." But that's just personal taste I expect. Other than that I thought it was good - you have a talent for creating a clear picture of a alien scene!

  2. Chloe! I could kiss you!! (I won't, but I could)

    Your comment was exactly what I was hoping for, and I agree 100% with your advice. The extract is an unedited piece that I moved straight from my phone. I think I had intended to delete one of the remarks about the freckles and forgot. It's a very wobbly bus journey. I have heard of people who have freckles, but they are so pale that only blushing or some other colouring of the skin shows them. I imagined that Eyerie is one of these people and her freckles are ivory to match her skin.

    In the case of Valkyrie, I can't find an excuse. I have a tendency to do that from time to time subconsciously. I was thinking that whilst Valkyrie is vain and spoilt, she is also justified because she is beautiful. Considering Eyerie is more important than her sister, I shouldn't have worried so much about Valkyrie.

    When I come to "slot" the extract into the plotline, I will probably tinker with it some more. Shortening the beginning is something I will think about.

    I'm glad you like Gast - he was the reason the whole dynamic of the plot has changed!

    And I think that praise from someone who is not a crazy fan of the genre you are writing is much more worthwhile than that from a fan. The praise has been more difficult to earn.

  3. Hi HC, sorry to hear you still don't have solid answers, but at least they are still testing. Sounds like they might be getting closer.

    I will read your extract in my break from service planning and let you know what I think. Unlike Chloe, I adore fantasy, but I'll try my best not to be biased.

    Also wanted to say, excellent choice of inspiration material - what a gorgeous song. Tuomas is a remarkable lyricist :)In fact, I'm going to dig out the album to listen to today - you've inspired me.

    Nari X

  4. Hi Nari,

    I would be very grateful to know what you think. Do let me know :)

    I'm just keeping my fingers crossed that I will actually get an answer at the end of it all. Happily I'm able to keep it under control for the moment.

    I resisted the Nightwish songs featuring Annetta at first, being a huge fan of her predecessor Tarja. But since I have listened to several of their newer songs and enjoyed them immensely. In fact, Amaranth has had the positive impact on my writing.

  5. Thanks again Chloe. I have been very lucky with my blog, in that the majority of comments I received are helpful and positive. :)

  6. Hi HC, I hope you are in better health. I read with interest how you have been using your Office app on your phone for your writing. I have down loaded an app 'My Writing Spot' which stores my password protected work on the web, which can be accessed on laptop or even my computer at work.Really useful for those inspired moments that are quickly erased from you memory because you're not near a keyboard.

    Take care J x

  7. Hi John, I am feeling much better, thank you very much for asking.
    "My Writing Spot" sounds very interesting, although I can't seem to find it :(
    I will have another look later on :)


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