Blog Archives

As November meets December …

A new month and the health and wellbeing road to recovery marches on with continued¬† appreciation of how lovely, kind and supportive people can be. It saddens me that I’ve been unable to complete my second novel as yet, but that little inner spark of creativity and passion remains, and reading back through what I’ve so far produced of my sequel to As Weekends Go, keeps the flow and gives me great heart that my confidence will return and it’ll all come good.

2017-10-16 19.33.14

Now, I’m not even going to attempt to disguise the fact that I adore Christmas. I equally appreciate and respect that it can be a sad time for some people so I hope you’ll forgive me for indulging my love of all things festive. The moment I turned over the calendar and saw this gorgeous feline face staring back at me, I remembered the 1st of the month also meant that I could unveil a calendar of an altogether different type ūüėČ

Big kid? Who me?

 

 

November brought lots of family and friend catch-ups which was lovely. As much as I value these get-togethers, I also think it’s important to have 1-2-1 chats as you can more fully discuss topics and news and sometimes open up a bit more.

As Weekends Go featured in a couple of promotions mid-month which resulted in a welcome mini-spike in sales and some wonderful feedback. I also donated a paperback copy in aid of Children in Need via Paddy Heron (known as Fundraiser Paddy on Twitter) who, for the third year running, kindly organised a fabulous author auction showcasing books of all genres for people to bid on. I was proud to support such a worthy cause.

 

 

It was a joy to appear again on the brilliantly supportive Jessie Cahalin’s blog. If you’ve not yet visited Jessie’s blog, you’re in for a real treat. She has fun and factual posts and features of all varieties¬† –¬† a real mixture to suit all readers’ tastes.¬† I thoroughly enjoyed creating this piece and a special postcard to present to the readers along with a short extract from As Weekends Go which you can read here ~¬†BOOKS IN MY HANDBAG BLOG¬† Many thanks to Jessie.

23794953_10212350383008313_4501319744792603082_n

My Postcard!

 

November blooms came courtesy of a dear friend who sent me a stunning festive display of lilies and winter berries. My gem of a sister also bought me a glorious Poinsettia which has pride of place on my Christmas sideboard display. I also wanted to post some gorgeous snaps I took whilst out walking. Nature really is a thing of beauty, eh?!

 

I mentioned in my previous¬† post that I’d been reading Rose McClelland’s¬†THE YEAR OF NO RULES¬†¬†which I’ve now finished and can report is a sparkling read which very much portrays the joy and importance of recognising and appreciating your self-worth. I loved main character Sasha and rooted for her throughout especially given how manipulative and controlling her boyfriend Kirk could be. Enter lovely, sweet-natured, dependable¬† Sam, a million miles away, personality-wise, from Kirk, who seems the perfect love match for Sasha, but … life’s never quite that simple is it? This book touched my every emotion and deals with some raw, deep and delicate issues but also made me smile and laugh out loud at times. It’s so well written and expressive. I look forward to reading more from this talented author. Enjoy!

ROSE M

 

I’m currently reading Sue Fortin’s latest thriller¬†THE BIRTHDAY GIRL¬†¬†and a thriller it is too.¬† Halfway through and loving it. More to follow in my next post.

SUE BIRTHDAY GIRL

 

If you love your festive reads I must say Choc Lit  have some super choices available. Look at these beauties!

23517928_10155798452292482_1773873670909933608_n

 

Much love,

Jan X

Advertisements

August Round-up ~ News, views & Reviews

Pondering.¬†I love that word. August saw me doing my fair share of it too; thinking about what’s really important to me, how I’ve changed and about certain things I’ve shied away from facing up to. All sounds a bit deep, I know, but it’s put a few things into perspective.

DSC_0278

It’s been a real family & friends month which has helped – various celebrations from birthdays to anniversaries to retirement cheer.

We had a lovely Mum & daughters lunch – ¬†my two sisters and I took Mum to a local carvery (cracking roast potatoes!) and laughed and chatted about things you might not otherwise get around to discussing in a bigger gathering. I’ve always been more of a 1-2-1 or small groups person, so really treasure these times. We have Dad/daughters lunches too (in case you thought we leave him out – bless him!).

I also met up with my youngest niece for a bite to eat and a chat which was lovely. Again, it brought home how fast the years have flown. I still think of Jess as being the age in the photo on the left. Instead of that she’s about to head off to college.

 

A family gardening day at Mum and Dad’s mid-month was a roaring success (if I do say so myself!) although my marathon weeding stint did leave me walking like a robot for two days. My chest muscles just about recovered for the Bank Holiday weekend, which saw us all gather together once again, along with some family friends, at my older sister’s house. Blue sky and sunshine meant we could spill out into the garden. With food aplenty and Sangria on tap, a good time was had by all.

I featured on two fab blogs in August, firstly as a guest of Louise Ross (L.J. Ross) author of the international bestselling series of  DCI Ryan mystery novels, who, via her LoveSuspense blog,  introduces authors in various genres. Here I am ~ LJ Ross Q&A 

Secondly, I’m proud to say I now also appear in the ¬†Books in Handbags Gallery¬†¬†which is one of several superb features on Jessie Cahalin’s gem of a website ~ JessieCahalin¬†¬† Jessie is super-supportive of other authors and I’m delighted to be included.

 

BOOK IN HANDBAG

Still badgering away with my sequel/standalone. I’ve had a bit of a love/hate relationship with it and have been sad and disappointed with myself that it’s taking me this long, but I feel re-connected with it and really want to finish it and submit it. I’m enjoying spending time with my characters again and meeting some new ones (good and naughty!). I’m also really excited as Dave and I are off to York for the day in December (promo train tickets – absolute bargain!) As you know, York’s the main setting in As Weekends Go and a city I adore, so I can’t wait to get back there – especially as all the Christmas lights will be up and twinkling. ¬†VISIT YORK

Blooms of the month continue with the gladioli theme (or glads as I call them!) I think I’ve bought them in every colour this year.

Get a look at these beauties.

 

The month ended on a high note when I found out I’d won a bundle of Edinburgh book festival goodies put together by Kelly of ¬†LoveBooksGroupBlog¬†and Joanne of ¬†PortobelloBookBlog¬†¬†Needless to say there will be photos to follow. ¬†Thank you, ladies. So thrilled to have won. ūüôā

I only managed to read one book this month but boy was it well-timed. Shelley Wilson’s¬†How I Changed My Life in a Year –¬†¬†is an inspiring, motivational, entertaining, sometimes poignant, sometimes comical, month-by-month account of how, having reached a crossroads in her life where she knew she had to make some changes, ¬†Shelley set herself twelve challenges over a year. This variety of challenges included everything from getting fitter to learning new creative tasks to facing her fears. I dipped in and out of the book with ease and it certainly left an impression on me. Well written and thoroughly engaging. An absolute pleasure to read.

SHELLEY WILSON

 

 

Before I go, look at this gorgeous sunset I snapped earlier this week …

DSC_0275

Much love,

Jan  X