Wednesday, 8 December 2021

Merry Christmas 2021!

It's been another tough year, for sure, but I'd like to wish you all a




Sunday, 28 November 2021

Brr, Winter...

As per my Ah, Autumn... post, I've now changed the pictures on my walls to reflect Winter (again, these are Anne Stokes prints): 

Pretty, aren't they?

Tuesday, 12 October 2021

Can You Survive Danger & Death in the Conflict Challenge?

Do you have a bookshelf of writing guides? I do, and well, what can I say? I can never resist a good one! I'm a big fan of the Thesaurus books that Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi write, and here's their latest one: The Conflict Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Obstacles, Adversaries, and Inner Struggles (Vol. 1). 

Every time Angela and Becca release a book they do something epic and fun to celebrate, and I'm on their Street Team so I get to tell you all about it! 

But first, as you're probably curious about this book, let me reveal more. The Conflict Thesaurus is set up like the other books in their series: part how-to, part thesaurus. This guide shows writers how to maximize conflict and use it to build tension, drive the plot, reveal your character's inner layers, and most importantly, keep readers glued to the page.

It's packed with conflict scenarios like Moral Dilemmas, Ticking Clocks, Obstacles, No-Win Scenarios, Temptations and more. It can help you nail down your plot and character arc, so check it out!

Now, speaking of conflict, I have a BIG question for you:

Can You Survive Danger as Well as Your Favourite Protagonist?

You're probably pretty good at throwing problems at your characters and making life difficult for them. After all, that's part of being a writer. But do you ever think about how you'd do if you had to face the same situations? If you were the protagonist, would you hold up to the pressure? Would you make good decisions and succeed, or screw up and fail?

Let's find out.

Introducing...The Conflict Challenge 

Become the protagonist in a story Angela and Becca created using scenarios found in the Conflict Thesaurus to see if you've got what it takes to win.

The Conflict Challenge is fun, campy, and will put your wits and instincts to the test.  (I've tried it, and it's FAB!)

And if you survive, you will win some cool stuff!


While you’re checking out the Conflict Challenge at Writers Helping Writers, make sure to also enter their Conflict Thesaurus release day giveaway, too. But hurry – it ends October 15th.

So, take the Conflict Challenge…if you dare. And don’t forget to come back and let me know how you did against Camp Deadwood!

Saturday, 25 September 2021

Ah, Autumn...

To mark the changing of the seasons, I change the Anne Stokes picture I have on my wall to another lenticular 3D picture by the same artist. The autumnal glow of the season shines through in the foliage of the trees, and warmth radiates from the dragon nestled lovingly against the girl. (Basically, I have too many Anne Stokes pictures for the space on my wall, so I decided to rotate them all seasonally - that way I get a fresh look every three months!)

This year, I discovered a smaller picture by Anne Stokes that complements the autumnal theme of the other one, so I happily added it to my wall as well:

Now, I know it's Autumn, but surely it's a little too early to find one of these on display already?! This is the pumpkin I spied on my daily walk this morning:

Perhaps the residents are starting their Halloween decorations early because they have so many to put up it'll take them a good month to complete their display?

Monday, 9 August 2021

Beer Quarry Caves

Today, I'm visiting Beer Quarry Caves in Devon with some friends. I've been to several other caves and caverns in other parts of the world, as well as ones closer to home, but this is the first time I've visited 2000-year-old man-made caverns!

As you venture through the chalk limestone caves, the styles of the pillars tell you in which era the sections were quarried - Roman, Saxon and Norman all feature.

You can find Beer Stone in almost every church in East Devon, and it's also been used in Exeter, Winchester, St.Paul’s and Norwich Catholic Cathedrals, Westminster Abbey and the Tower of London.

Have you visited any caves? If not, would you like to? Which ones would you visit?

Tuesday, 27 July 2021

The Lost Gardens of Heligan

I just love the name of these gardens - what a creative title to spark inspiration!

I'm down in Cornwall to visit a friend and The Lost Gardens of Heligan beckoned to us. Here's a bit of the blurb:

The Tremayne Family have owned the 200-acre Heligan Estate for over 400 years. During the 18th and 19th centuries there was a thriving, almost self-sufficient community here. Heligan House was rented out after World War 1. In the 1970s it was converted to flats and sold off, separated from its surrounding Gardens and Estate. In 1990 this Sleeping Beauty was discovered and re-awakened, becoming Europe's largest garden restoration project.

And here are some pics of the treats in store:

Have you visited the Lost Gardens? Does the name inspire you, too?