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Showing posts from 2013

Remembrance Sunday 2013 - Remember the People

November is a cold and dreary month for people living in the UK.  Sensible people have already at least started their Christmas shopping, and there are always the Christmas light switch-ons to look forward to.  

But, most importantly of all, November marks Armistice Day, which commemorates the end of the First World War, and Remembrance Sunday, which is the day reserved to remember the fallen.  November 11th and the second Sunday of the month (sometimes this can be the same day) is pretty easy to remember, but  it would be difficult to forget when it is heralded with little paper poppies pinned to the chest of everyone on the television.  People not on television will start wearing poppies shortly after, some of  which are fancier than the traditional paper poppy.

Personally I always dutifully buy my poppy after Halloween (a holiday I don't personally celebrate) and then spend the next eleven days trying not to lose the wretched thing before the 11th!  It's usually a good idea…

Nomes Revisited!

There are very few events that can brighten up a Monday when you work weekdays, but this particular lunchtime I fell upon a little nugget of information that plastered a ridiculously huge grin on my face for the rest of the day!I liked the Terry Pratchett fan-page on Facebook some time ago - to the point that I can't remember doing it!  I mostly use it to keep an eye on new releases and other such things.  It is through this page that my Monday was brightened up considerably.Towards the end of my lunch break, I was scrolling down my Facebook feed when my attention was grabbed by a photo of the grill of a lorry, or a truck if you will prefer.  Readers can be assured that I have no real interest in lorries, nor indeed any kind of modern road-based vehicles.  I'm strictly a steam train fan, if anyone would like to know.What really attracted my attention was the sight of two little figures who were seated in the grill of the lorry.   Closer inspection identified them to be none ot…

Chronicles of a Cosmic Warlord - A new Fantasy series

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During my absence from blogging, as I mentioned when I returned, I did a lot of reading.  I got a lot of books downloaded on Kindle, but I bought even more print books.  So much for the Kindle saving me money....

I love going into a bookshop - be it Waterstones or The Works - but my favourite place to go is the Waterstones in my home city of Wakefield.  I've been visiting the shop since it was an Ottakars years before, and I visit at least once a week.

Martin and I also walk past the shop regularly, giving me a good chance to look at the signs by the door and keep an eye on the store's 'news.'  It was last spring when I walked past and saw a poster heralding a book-signing.  I'd never attended a book signing before (the ones I was interested in being too far away in the past) so I stopped for a proper read.  The book was called Empire of the Saviours, by an author called A J Dalton.  I'd never heard of the man - I'll put my hands up to that straight away - b…

Does it REALLY matter?

Some elements of my work give me the opportunity to let my thoughts wander off on their own for a while.  Sometimes this isn't a good thing, as they have a tendency to go down routes that leave me feeling bitter and angry.  But sometimes it can come back with some interesting results.  (Just in case my boss is reading this - I was still working hard!!!)

I have been thinking a lot about respect, and even more about forgiveness, over the last year.  Forgiveness, as I consider myself to be Christian, is something I am supposed to do regardless of the wrongdoing, but I have found that I am particularly bad at forgiving people.  Probably because I have a long memory for grudges, and have a habit of picking things back up.  One of my favourite phrases is 'always forgive your enemies - it's the last thing they'll expect.'  It would be nice if I could practice that a little more.

Respect is a little easier.  I have always maintained that respect should only be given if it i…

Competition Time for Novelists!

We interrupt our scheduled blog posting (involving a fantasy series) to bring news of a new competition from Mslexia for budding female novelists.

Whilst on the way home from work today I received an email from women's writing magazine Mslexia.  This is usually a nice surprise, more often than not containing some thought-provoking survey about how some aspect of life (mental state, viewpoints on adult material, etc) affect my writing.  Oddly enough, they are fun to do when I have a few minutes free, and like I said, they can be thought-provoking. As a bonus, participants in the survey will have the satisfaction of knowing they contributed to the next issue of the magazine.

But this was a different email.  Like all good writing publications, Mslexia regularly holds good writing competitions for its readers to participate in.  This time they are holding a Novel-writing competition, offering a first prize of £5,000.  Three finalists will also be offered free professional feedback on th…

A different kind of expertise

I haven't bought a television guide for years.  I always found that there was never anything of interest in the terrestrial and free-view listings, I never found a layout for the sky listings that didn't leave me confused, and there was always one answer on the bloody crossword that I just couldn't get!

So it was a complete stroke of luck that I turned on the bedroom television after my bath on Thursday, and flicked across to BBC Two in time to catch a fascinating documentary called The Last Days of Anne Boleyn.

Tudor history has always been a subject of great interest to me, long before my nose started burying itself into CJ Sansom's addictive Shardlake series, and even people with little interest in that period if history have heard of Anne Boleyn.  The first Queen of England to be officially executed (although I doubt she was the first - and we know she wasn't the last - Queen to be killed off by her husband) was also the cause of Henry VII's forming the Chu…

When's the film coming out? I was hoping the game comes out first!

Being married to a gamer - and being with aforementioned gamer for ten years before marrying him - it was unavoidable that I would learn a thing or two about video games!  Happily for both of us, I developed a tiny interest in some of the games that appeared on our screens.

The really nice thing about some of the game series is that they remember the reader and publish a book or two.  My favourites at the moment are the very excellent Assassins Creed series by Oliver Bowden, which I have read with as much enthusiasm as any other series.  Oliver Bowden is a very talented author with a very comfortable writing style, which is not hampered in the slightest by his novel's need to tie in with the video game it was published alongside.  Another author of note, John Shirley, enjoyed a little more freedom by writing Bioshock: Rapture as a fascinating prequel to the hugely popular game series.  This proved to be a bit of a slow starter, but a patient reader was quickly rewarded as the stor…

Spring Cleaning!

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Because apparently it's spring now!  With its icy rain and dismal grey clouds (yep, still spring), a weary traveller returns to her blog after eighteen months of silence...

I can only apologise for leaving everybody and just vanishing for what is now eighteen months.  A lot of things have happened, some of them were good, but I've been under a self-imposed silence for coming up to a year now, thanks to a particularly unexpected - but thankfully not literal - back-stabbing that left me feeling lost, confused, and with no clue whatsoever who I could trust.  Not that I thought any of my patient and lovely blog followers would be contributing to my new troubles, but I do share this blog on my Facebook and Twitter accounts where anyone can see them.  For that reason I just stopped talking on either account completely, thinking that nobody could use anything I said against me if I ever said anything.  On principle this is fairly sound, provided you don't have a volatile temper w…