Writing Thoughts

I’ve been writing a few things over the last few weeks but haven’t really written here lately.  And not much is finished.

I’ve come to the conclusion that March is just going to be quiet for blogging and then I’ll be back with a bang in April because it’s the A to Z challenge and I’m looking forward to doing that again this year.  Last year I did the A to Z of Emma.  This year I think I’m going to do an A to Z of books and authors I love.  More details when I’ve figured them out.

Yesterday I finished reading The One We Fell In Love With by Paige Toon which I picked up at the Spring Blogger Evening. I will post a review of that in a day or two. I had planned to read another book cover to cover today but I’m now not sure I will as I have quite the book hangover from it.

I’m currently working on (although not yet writing) a blog about death for the Kicking the Bucket Festival.  That’s part of the journalism course I’m doing and we’re all going to write one.  It’s not a topic I would have thought of writing about but we had a lot of great discussion about it and I think there is potential there for some interesting pieces.  It is tricky though.

Next up has to be fiction.  I’m pretty inspired at the moment but have been finding motivation to actual write tricky.  I had an interesting conversation with one of the publishing people at the Spring Blogger Evening about that and I think it’s helped. Just need to put it into practice!

Safe Space is somewhere where I have finished pieces and I think I have two new ones since I last posted the links here.

Two weeks ago I posted about Feel Good Music.  It was pretty tough to just narrow it down to five songs that make me feel good and I may revisit the subject either here or there relatively soon.  I’m always up for suggestions if people want to give them!

And yesterday I wrote about taking some Me Time.


Geek Girl: Head Over Heels by Holly Smale

I love love love the Geek Girl series by Holly Smale. I adore them.  On Tuesday I received a free eARC of the fifth full book in the series – Head Over Heels which is being published 7th April 2016. I just about managed to avoid starting it till I was on the train to London the next day.  But it was tough, I was excited about this book!

“My name is Harriet Manners, and I will always be a geek.”

The fifth book in the bestselling, award-winning GEEK GIRL series.

Harriet Manners knows almost every fact there is.

She knows duck-billed platypuses don’t have stomachs.
She knows that fourteen squirrels were once detained as spies.
She knows only one flag in the world features a building.

And for once, Harriet knows exactly how her life should go. She’s got it ALL planned out. So when love is in the air, Harriet is determined to Make Things Happen!
If only everyone else would stick to the script…

Has GEEK GIRL overstepped the mark, and is following the rules going to break hearts all over again?

It’s so tempting just to gush about this book and how much I enjoyed it.  I have reviews of three of the previous books on here already (Geek Girl, Model Misfit and All That Glitters – I didn’t review book 3 Picture Perfect or the two shorter add on books) and I don’t want to cover the same ground in this.

Holly Smale smashes it once again with this book and Geek Girl remains an amazing series that just gets better with every new book. Harriet is growing as a character but has the same madcap adventures and flaws that make her one of my favourite fictional characters.  And at times even after five plus books she can surprise me.

These books are well written, full of great characters and funny.  They’re realistic but feel good reads and they always make me smile. I think these are better than I remember the books for teens being when I was a teenager.

Buy them right now. If you’re not a YA reader it would be a great series to try YA out for the first time. Or if I can’t convince you to do that, buy them for a teenager in your life.

Books and the City Spring Blogger Evening

One of my vague goals for this year is to have either a day out or a day doing something different to my usual every month. Basically so far it’s meant I’ve been to Birmingham a couple of times. But on Wednesday it was time to go to London.

I went for the Books and The City Spring Blogger evening at Simon and Schuster.  And I’m really glad I did.

We had yummy nibbles, champagne and lots of time to chat to other bloggers (some old friends and some new) and publishing staff. And a goody bag and lots and lots of free books. I went to the same event last year and brought loads of books back – I swore blind I’d be more restrained this year. I ended up with 10 books which was restrained for me although I know it doesn’t sound it!.

Four of their authors were there reading from and discussing their newest books proofs of which were in our goody bags. Afterwards they signed books for us.

Every single time someone started reading from their book I thought “I want to read that next.” and then the next author would start and I’d change my mind “No… I need to read this first.” It’s two days later and I finished the book I was reading on the train home yesterday but  I still can’t decide what I want to read first!

Juliet Ashton read from These Days of Ours. I liked the idea that this is told through a series of moments – parties, weddings, funerals etc and follows the two main characters over many years. I’m very intrigued by it.

Holly Hepburn read from Summer at the Star and Sixpence – It’s being seralised in ebook and I’ve read the first two installments of that (my review of the first part is here) so I’m looking forward to reading this soon. We got special VIP printed proofs of this which was really exciting!

Paige Toon read from The One We Fell In Love With.  I’ve read quite a few of her books and really like them. This sounds like an amazing read – it’s about sisters – and the section she read made me laugh. We got special proofs of that too and they are gorgeous.

Penny Parkes read from Out of Practice. Now if I’m being completely honest I’d heard a tiny tiny bit about this book before the event. And what little I’d heard had me suspecting it wouldn’t be for me. Having since heard Penny talk about it and read from it I’ve completely changed my mind and it sounds like exactly my sort of read. It has a feisty old lady and a dishy doctor amongst other things.  In fact out of all of the books I picked up at the event Out of Practice is the one I keep coming back to as the one I want to read first.

Georgia Clark was also there for part of the time (coming straight off a plane) and she signed chapter samplers of her novel The Regulars.

authors signingMe getting my books signed (authors L-R Georgia Clark, Penny Parkes, Paige Toon, Holly Hepburn and Juliet Ashton)


I’ve been so quiet on here and on facebook (and probably quieter than usual but not totally quiet on twitter) that a friend actually text me this morning to check I was OK because she was worried. It probably doesn’t help that I’ve also not been reading so Goodreads updates haven’t been auto posting. (Pro tip: it’s only when I go totally quiet on twitter that you need to worry. My heart belongs to twitter more than any other social network except maybe instagram)

I’m OK.

I just haven’t had a lot I feel like sharing lately.  I’m pretty stressed about a few things and I’ve had several pieces of bad news about other people which has hit me a bit. I don’t think depressed is the right word but it almost feels like I’ve had a persistent low level depression for a week or two.

But I’m hanging in and I’m OK.

I was at CAB this morning and now I’m not there again for nearly two weeks. I’ve also told some other people I do voluntary stuff with that I won’t be too available. It’s time to recharge my batteries.

I have a few fun things planned (and there’s a lot of time on trains involved so hopefully that’ll make me read again). And in the between times I plan to spend a lot of time watching DVDs, knitting, doing decopatch, lying on the sofa and reading.