Spring Tides…

Clean sweep...

Clean sweep..

Great Week…

What is not to like? A four day holiday and the clocks changing to BST all in one go.

Great time to investigate some new Pod Cast resources – well new to me any way – and what a great bunch!

Quick List…

Sell More Books Show.

Self Publishing Formula – this one IS new.

UK Script Writers

Stirling and Stone – The Self Publishing Podcast.

The Creative Penn – Great web resource.

Alli – Alliance Of Independent Authors.

Writing For Life CS Lakin.

Not all of these are US based – in fact I am consciously looking for UK input these days – I enjoyed all of them and they are all pertinent to me writing fiction and are for the most part free to listen to and use – I am also considering joining Alli as an Associate Member  – as I am not yet published.

Finding these has more than helped me make the decision to leave Platform U and the saving of £22/month may well go to Alli membership and to Joanna Penn at Creative Penn for one of her courses instead to take on from Holly Lisle’s ‘How To Revise Your Novel’ which I am doing now with Hacked Off.

That Aside…

The revision remains on course and am playing with plot cards and re plotting and moving scenes etc and still ‘chatting’ to the ‘actors’ playing my characters to see what we can do better.

I ventured into the shipping container and brought out my other WIPs that have been in storage for a year now due to the house re build and started re acquainting myself with them so that I can follow the Isaac Asimov idea of working on more than one thing at a time or simultaneously rather than the hard focus on one thing that I find hard when things get tough to concentrate or just plain get to a point where I am sick of them – but has logistically been the best I could do this last 12 months.

2016-03-31 08.49.47Looking Ahead Then…

Blue sky – always good for thinking 🙂


Wr5t5ng Wee2 – exactly…:)



Tips on carrying your work A to B constantly?

Don’t ask me – that was a question.

The Writing Week then…

Starting to think about how I want to change Hacked Off so I took advantage of the dry bright weather and got outside as much as possible so I could ‘sort of’ think about it while I was working with my horses. I have a few ideas and know roughly what I want but within them there are choices to make about some of the characters and their roles – dog walking has now become an opportunity to talk to the imaginary actors playing the characters as we sit around an imaginary big table and talk about what I want them to do for me – I don’t have close neighbours so I can actually talk out loud – which is a bad habit to get into but I could drink and smoke my way though writing and I don’t do either of those so…

Having ditched Platform U last week due to their appalling automated subscription issues I awaited day 10 extermination with total disinterest – only to find an email telling me it was ‘all a mistake’  and as I am an ‘active and involved’ member my membership goes on – this made me flaming mad as to me it says – ‘drat if you were a quite sort we might have  either got rid of you or got more money out of you’ – of course I am not paranoid.:)

I had noticed that my thread there about the mistake I made with Blue Host has  not exactly been taken down but can only be got at through my profile which I reckon is the same thing – that annoyed me too as it was fair comment and other people might make the same mistake and it was expensive. Now I have the dilemma of sticking around disgruntled or putting up and shutting up  with something I pay for, is useful but mostly operates in a way that I find uncomfortable. Like the horse with the wrinkle under the saddle I expect I will explode bucking from time to time – the trick if I stay will be to keep it fair just and reasonable – and useful to any one else inclined to not see the wood for the trees on this journey. Either way it is a distraction I don’t need. So they get one more month/sub payment and then I will reassess – by then I hope husband will be back at work and my normal working hours will be resumed.

Reading This Week?

Lindsey Davies – Falco series again for the umpteenth time.


Yes – in the impending cancellation of PU I scouted writing Podcasts etc and found a fair few – my Itunes thing is now packed with them – cannot list them here or say if they are useful – I was looking for UK ones for a change – and there were some – I just haven’t sat at desk long enough to listen and comment but it seems a vibrant selection packed with view points of all kinds.

Quote Of The Week…

Goes to this link of Michael Hyatt http://michaelhyatt.com/photos/often-not-brave-means-scared-michael-hyatt Which seems so true right now.

Second Quote Of The Week…

Goes to my tiler Simon ‘Happy Days’ which is fast becoming a favourite around here 🙂






Spring Is As Spring Does …

The Writing Week…



Started and ended with some good thought provoking reading and listening around my favourite Blogs and Podcasts while starting to form a revised plot for  Hacked Off  – the ‘cast’ and I have after lunch meetings while I am walking the dogs and I am pleased with the new ideas I am having  on that score too.

One thought occupying my mind this week is the subject of goals and goal setting – on the one hand I follow the coaching from Michael Hyatt and co about having plans and ‘Living Forward’ as his new book totes but at the same time I  take a point made by Will Jonathan on the Tiny Buddha Blog that ‘Getting what you want can sabotage you http://tinybuddha.com/blog/how-getting-what-you-want-can-sabotage-you/which is well worth a look at and a deep think about.


Do you plan?

Or  – do you see goals as ‘a natural consequence or enjoying something and doing it well’? [From the article mentioned above]

Further to that this week I enjoyed Michael Hyatt and Michelle Cushatt in their weekly conversational Podcast – ths week it was about 7 pieces of advice Michael would give to ‘would be CEOs’ – Not something I initially thought would interest me –  But I quote  from the  show transcription http://this-is-your-life.s3.amazonaws.com/tiyl_s7_ep_05.pdf

‘The first one is your position is not your identity. Second, your position is temporary, not permanent. Third, your position is a privilege, not a right. Fourth, your position is about faithfulness, not achievement. Fifth, your position is about them, not you. Sixth, your position is about stewardship, not ownership. Seventh (so good), your position will require more than you think you can provide on your own, so prepare for it now. Don’t wait until you have the job to do the work you need to do. ‘

This Is Your Life Podcast Season 7, Episode 5 Transcribed by Ginger Schell. – Podcast Link –http://michaelhyatt.com/season-7-episode-5-advice-to-new-ceos-podcast.html – If you want to listen.

Why did this interest me particularly?

The first point snagged me because I am always interested in how we humans align our identity to what we do and then we struggle when we don’t do that thing any more or we can’t achieve good results – I am between phases in my life right now  – I HAVE been a Farmer and NOW I am a Writer – I ALSO ride horses and that makes me a Rider – but I haven’t ridden for months which causes doubt – if my writing never gets revised will I ever be an Author? I still own a farm but I actually have no livestock so technically I AM still a Farmer yet I don’t respond with that when asked ‘What do you do?’ Saying ‘I write…’ sounds pretentious to me – yet it just about describes my life now – I live on the page in words that I type…

Michael and Michelle’s conversation made me think hard about what would happen if I didn’t write any more, didn’t finish the books – that voice in my head said ‘What else IS there?’ 🙁 I think a rethink!! 🙂 I am already an Author – of this Blog and two others for a start 🙂  Which isn’t the point they were trying to make but demonstrates how tightly we all cling to who we are being related to what we do – and not how we do it…

Sad But True Though…

This is my last week at Platform U – Michael Hyatt’s membership site – why? Troubles with  the renewal of the sub’ every month this year for no apparent reason and a feeling that it is time to move on – taking with me a lot of interesting things I have learnt and experienced and a large dislike of ‘virtual assistants’ running Customer Service and Personality Social Media  contacts- it creates an image of  ‘Unreachables’ that is contrary to the public face  shown – and his isn’t the only larger site I have come across with this problem – again with the issue of  Time Zones for these sites which are Global not being addressed properly  for the benefit of the customer.

I still think Michael Hyatt is a great coach and would always recommend checking out his stuff – this little British female unpublished fiction writer found herself a little out of her depth at times but I have paddled ashore non the worse for wear.

Spring Cleaning Then…

Dawn On A Spring Day

Dawn On A Spring Day

If you like –  of thoughts and hang outs – and  the week still allowed me to venture into some new territory –

At https://twodropsofinkat.wordpress.com/   and http://www.thecreativepenn.com/podcasts/ seem good starting points 🙂

So I keep moving along and learning as I go…



Keeping Going…

2016-03-07 18.11.40


East or West a second apart – what is light is then dark what is blue is then an impending storm…






2016-03-07 18.11.34


Keeping going when life gets overwhelming  can be one thing or the other – suddenly distracting us and blinding us to the fact that ahead there is light.

My Writing Week…

Has been tricky – doing a first revision apparently is Hell – doing it as part of a course gives you lots of support but equally you are still alone with your worst night mare – the book you now hate. Apparently I am about half way through this process and having remembered why I wrote the book, what I wanted the book to be about and been made to question if the book I have now is remotely like that OR NOT… I am now at the part where I make it the book I set out to write. Phew. I think. No pressure there then. 🙂

So Onwards Towards The Light It Is Then!



West of West Bay  - as good a site as any to end the day at...

Or keep going towards the light…


A Hole In Time…

29 Feb  – An ‘extra’ day – our wedding day many years ago. Unusually husband is home to share it and we are taking a drive to Dartmoor – and my childhood holiday haunts – where I learnt to ride across country, to be alone in the space and to drift through into my own world where  stories began to form.



It was also the place I took husband to see when I first met him and where we returned to the day after we got married – it cloaked it’s self in a light coat of glistening white snow that day and glittered coldly for us as we visited friends and made merry.

It was the place my parents had honeymooned and went back to every chance they got. Even growing up in the countryside – as I did –  Dartmoor represented an greater freedom to roam for me and in the company of the two sisters who ran the farm we stayed on I learned a love of farming – and decided that it was something ‘girls could do’ – because they and their mother obviously did.

Tomorrow I will step into that magical extra day of this year and also though a hole in time to a place populated by memories and people – some now gone – where I was always happy and free and in good company.

Life is a tricky beast at best and I hope that those memories – good though they are – don’t stop me making new ones and enjoying the day for and of it’s self – after all when husband and I flipped a coin to see if we would go through with the ceremony I doubt either of us had much thought to our 50+ year old selves and what we would be thinking about 29 Feb 2016.






Creativity is?

I think it is in all of us – expressing it  unrepressed is often an issue.

Take me – I don’t sing as well as the rest of my family. I play do not play any instrument well – largely due to the fact I didn’t realise I hadn’t learnt to read music – and that may be related to the first point. So in with the shame of poor comparison and the inability to magically understand what others could – I stopped expressing myself musically in any way and was quickly relegated to the far section of the school band where those of us only fit to shake maracas were found. Yet I listen to music and I soar – my mood lifts if I am sad and  my creativity flows into words on a page – now.

I had the same ‘problem’ with all kinds of crafts – those not requiring glue and sprinkles – everyone else was better, more talented – what ever – and a Brown Owl christened me Tarzan when I broke the wool rather than wait for the scissors – 45 years later I still feel crushed!

The rest of the family cook – and luckily so do I – and not having any competition for the kitchen in our household I could have a go without fear. Up until I started writing regularly and working out how to put those ideas into a novel shape- I would have said my only creative outlet was cooking – an specifically cooking for other people’s enjoyment – my way of expressing love.

I was listening to a Marie Forleo video this afternoon and she was interviewing Elizabeth Gilbert  Author of Big Magic – I was expecting a cheerfully inspiring  Marie offering – but found my self really drawn into their long conversation an for what it is worth I stopped multi tasking – and just sat and listened…

I am fairly launch hardened these days after 18 months  Out And About On Line – but I bought this book ‘Big Magic ‘ and am already reading it.

Creativity is the flame of our souls – we forget to shelter it from forces beyond our control at our peril – without it we are just puppets. Don’t dance to someone else’s tune – make your own music, sing your own song, write your own story, colour your own world and feed your own soul with the foods that nourish you – feed others with love and tolerance as you will – but savour the essence of you in everything you do.

Avoid Falling Flat

Colour your own world…




The Art Of Aloneness…

I learnt this the hard way  – at 23 I thought I was facing loneliness when I took over this farm – in fact it was ‘aloneness’ I was facing.



Confidence to be alone in the crowd and not panic. Confidence to be physically alone and to engage with solitude. Confidence to move through life  ‘doing your own thing’ whilst avoiding ‘selfish self absorption’ is trickier as we seem intrinsically as a species  to favour crowds, togetherness and families  – I guess because it is indicative of survival of the species often the worst thing in the world seems to be getting the label of ‘loner’.

It is a cliche but we ARE all alone – but in my experience we will all rather call it loneliness and often blame ourselves or our situation for it…

My experience of being situationally alone on this farm a great deal has shown me that to get the most out of being alone you need to make the effort to find out why you are there – ‘lonely’ misery can make you forget – and why you are there – after all we rarely have to be anywhere but for choosing to stay – and if we choose to stay we do so because we get something out of our situation either positively or passively.

These are often hard thoughts to have with yourself.

I embraced being alone here on the farm many years ago now – in fact I struggle now I am not alone – what I wasn’t expecting – was to feel occupationally alone. In my case these two thoughts are linked – one way I dealt with being physically alone was to write first journals of the farm and then stories and now novels and blogs.

Now that my mum lives here and my husband is not away so often I am rarely physically alone – and I freely admit it is hard sometimes and I resort to headphones and closing the doors – what is challenging that in farming I am surrounded by farming neighbours but in writing that isn’t the case so although I haven’t physically moved I am once more alone.

I feel occupationally alone – so I have had to ask my self why am I HERE doing this? Why? I had to remind my self – and keep on doing so – of the interconnectedness of the two – from the one came the other…

I learned to reach out and join in on line – I have not yet found a writing group in my area close enough that I could join – but I remain open to that possibility – I use Write Words who are a brilliant bunch of writers for support and mutual critique and I use Holly Lisle for training, course work and ongoing support. I use Michael Hyatt’s Platform U as he is so technically interesting and incredibly generous with his time and free stuff, Darren Rowse and Jeff Goins ditto re blogging, periscoping and all that jazz – I still have to face the day as the only writer in the household and I have found Brendon Brushard’s free material very helpful to remind me ‘it isn’t what I do it is how I show up’.

The point is that none of this found me – in dealing with being physically alone I had to get to a place where I engaged with it – and sometimes lean over the hedge to chat to the neighbour and ask for help – or offer it – and in being occupationally alone I have to go out on line and find like minded folk who help and continue to inspire me.

None of this makes me a better person and easier to live with – it isn’t a personality transplant – but it does give me some kind of chance of seeing my creative dreams through to fruition so I don’t become the sole survivor of my own good idea – which would be lonely.

So square peg round hole?

Why are you doing this? What are you getting out of it? If you don’t like the answer – do something else.




If I could explain what I need from loved ones when I am writing and revising – I would.

If I could avoid the trip wires laid by well meant, well loved folk – I would.

If I could explain about going between thought and reality – I would.

If I could explain about getting lost in my own thoughts while doing other things – I would.

If I could explain anything to you I would.

Would you ever understand?

Well I am gonna keep trying anyway – as I can see how hard you guys are trying to help me on my way!!! 🙂

This week …

Progress has been made on the revision on Hacked Off and I sat in the middle of chaos and trusted that it would be OK.  It was  –  I finished that exercise  of HTRN reasonably confident  I had been taking in what I was doing and not just sitting there like a rabbit in the headlights – or snow blind from my world turning  white from many coats of paint… I even got the tee shirt

It must be so - got the tee shirt...

It must be so – got the tee shirt…

Forgot to tell  The Muse…

Suddenly I realise My Muse has flounced off when I sit to write this presumably because the world isn’t as IT planned.


I will get on with out it – I haven’t missed posting this year and just because my morning hasn’t been as I would have wished doesn’t mean I am not going to show up.

The Broad Band hasn’t shown up either so no picture today – yet – I will add something really cheerful later!

Spring is coming...

Spring is coming…

Happy Days!




Writing Week…

Spent week doing other things…ice horse

Put together a sound track for the novel Hacked Off that I can revise to as it helps me keep the tone and pace I want – and chose some photos to use for potential cover shots from Fotilla  as it helps to see ‘a product’ ASAP rather than a pile of paper work I think. 🙂

I also spoke to local web design engineer about the Blue Host situation and he said no – it sounds a lot of time to sort out – may be best left as it is. Mark Bede Black and White Computers is due in Friday to have a look at another issue with this machine – so I may ask him. But opting out of Blue Host may take longer than I want the sites to be down and combining the three accounts to one with Blue Host may not give me quite the result I want either apparently -but I have yet to follow that through.

Take out from this experience is…

When you don’t know what you don’t know it is hard to ask the right questions or realise your knowledge gap.

My experience with ‘Idiots Guides’ are that no matter how Idiot proof they think they are – they are not THIS Idiot proof…

Revision of Hacked Off?

Some revision done – but with husband now home for a few weeks – my working day is broken up to very small chunks of time – which I am out of the habit  of using to work in and my early morning long session now has another person shuffling about making toast in!! Like now. 🙂

My take out from this experience…

My experience has shown me that not panicking about this is the most productive way to deal with it – and accept that for a few weeks I can look at the work through a different perspective – planning a day trip to the setting of Hacked Off for a start.

I have also bought some Royalty Free stock photos from Fotilla that I am going to play with to make a place holder cover for Hacked Off so it can go on the Book Table here with ‘Coming Soon!’ tagged near by.

I will use Simon Whistler’s Rocking Self Publishing free video tutorials that he has to do this because it worked – I need to schedule a day to re watch the lessons and set it up

One thing I am still working out is the photo on the FB page issue – hence I will have to remember to post this separately tomorrow – if I bother to use FB at all this week – It may be on the list to ask when Mark comes up to sort out the setting in my Email program that is temperamental right now.

Looking ahead alreadyWater horse 4

I am thinking about what comes after revision to get Hacked Off  into book shape so I think next writing week will constist of brain storming and research and an overhaul of my wall charts that layout my To Do list and Progress chart for it. Happy Days. 🙂



Snakes And Ladders Game Of Life…

Not sure that I go much on the 2016 version –



All snakes and no ladders me thinks. Looks like husband will be home for a week or three – or four – DIY, dentists and knee ops – if it goes to 5 or 6  I am sure we will have got used to each other again.


So The Writing Week?

Has consisted – so far  – of Panic Stations and Much Grumbling about not being able to ‘get on with my revision’ SOON – while wasting a perfectly good week NOW to do so.


I read a lot of self help, motivational and ‘productivity’ stuff  – mind you I will read a cornflake packet – and I try to be ‘mindful’ ‘disciplined’ and ‘productively self motivated’  – well it all comes down to diddly squat when my few days ‘as alone as it gets now’ are threatened…

Action Stations

Thanks to the house being in ‘recovery’ from ‘surgery’ bits of it are warm, dry and writer friendly – ie the door shuts and it has power. So today I spent the day cleaning old white picnic tables and lugging them up the stairs and reassembling them so that the MS and course work can be left spread out and husband can then enjoy peace and quiet doing the decorating etc and I can pick up where I left off without paint splatters – it may not proceed as smoothly as it was (! OK it wasn’t ever) but proceed it will.


My Take Outs this week?

I am writing this Wed and have have already had a plateful!

BUT – it isn’t HOW you proceed it is how you show up to deal with it – I never leave home without a tin hat, tissues and chocolate and a large note book and several pens and some baling string.

Be prepared!

Sitting around being mindful is one thing but DO something as well or you won’t feel good and you won’t help yourself or anyone else…

In My Peripheral Vision…

I have also had fun and games this week with automated email for an account with a big site and their lack of support over weekends etc   AGAIN!

Take out for BIG SITES –

It doesn’t matter how big you get if your customer service is shut and your customer is in a different time zone ie has been up 6 hours already – but your auto emails keep giving your customer headaches – they will leave.

Belated patronizing smiles and saying you have ‘world class’ support when the facts say otherwise also lower opinion – better to wince and grin and admit you got it wrong than make the hapless customer – I mean follower – feel small and bad. Automation is like everything else in life ‘crap input then crap output.’

‘I may be out side you core demographic BUT…’

I am getting fond of the expression ‘I am outside your core demographic’  – it seems to worry folk. Personally I am not proud  – if I am lost I will follow anyone UNTIL they take me the wrong way then they find out PDQ I like sheep but I am not one.


The One Where I Get Bitten On The Bum Twice And Don’t Want To Sit Down. OR My Writing Week…


Progression – To Conscious Incompetent…

Nothing like being a Newby to make  mistakes ‘no one has EVER done before’ which is how come I ended up with three separate accounts at three times the cost for my three websites when one account would have let me have 5 on it. Or looking at it another way I could now have 15 websites….

I discovered this only when contacting Blue Host through the ‘amazing’ chat- bubble -helpline- with -inbuilt -delay to query a price rise from about £90 to £150 each site – this was when the assistant pointed out my mistake – I can pay a fee of aprox $149 and have them amalgamate and even get a refund BUT so far I haven’t done this as the instructions to ‘back up everything’, ‘fill in cancellation forms’ and trust to thought bubbles with time lags as a means of communication – frankly terrified me as did the confusion that arose as to whether the sites would be down between times…

Emotional sort of day(!!)

But there you go ‘you can’t make omelettes without breaking eggs’ would be my take out this week – it WILL feel personal – £300 is always personal if you have spent it pointlessly.


I will use the telephone to speak to Blue Host one day soon and clarify the procedure in a way that the chat bubbles with inbuilt delay couldn’t and I will find out what ‘back up everything means’ ie content and or settings. I will ascertain the cost and then – if I feel OK to set it all in motion I will proceed – after all I would rather find mistakes now in the site than when I have books to sell here…


This brings me to the second bite in the bum

Actually it happened first technically – but there you go – there I was having a coffee break catching up with FB and 31 Day Blogger Darren Rowse and he had posted something I took a hefty  double look at- European VAT rule changes that apparently came in LAST year and something called MOSS – now I am VAT reg in my other incarnation but this had escaped me – ANY digital product sold incurs VAT at rate of the buyers EU country of residence and that requires one or two bits of proof to be kept for 10 years AND registration for VAT in Each EU country OR with MOSS AND the absolute kicker is there is no threshold of income level this applies – you sell an ebook or course or any digital thing and it applies from the first sale – go figure- as my US chums would say.

The UK Gov has said a threshold applies to sales in UK but you still have to know what you are doing and register – you can’t just sell to resident Brits that IS probably against free trade rules! AND if you are in the rest of the world selling into the EU all this still applies.


Are your eyes rolling in your head or are you rolling on the floor laughing?

What have YOU done this week that lets YOU see the hill  YOU still have to climb to live YOUR dreams? A hill is not flat – and a mountain is not a hill – when I start yodelling hit the deck because I am still going up the side of this rock face…


Have I done any revision?

A little. On both In Plain Sight and Hacked Off.

Have I done any typing of Q3?



Do I feel alive?

Oh yes – it hurts so I must be. 🙂

Is that The Sound Of Music tune I hear? 🙂



Great Fun…

‘It isn’t what you do it is how you show up…’ (Brendon Brushard)

Couldn’t agree more!

This writing week…



Busy. Having re organised my horses again so they are very happy in a new field I set about re starting the revision of’Hacked Off’ which I am using as my course material to take through Holly’s Writing School HTRN course – I have now added the first in my Quest series to that ‘In Plain Sight.’ – it is a course that is stretching me and having been through the mill of Holly’s excellent other courses before – I trust her to get me where I want to go with these two MS.

However I still have to do the work, feel the angst that what I wanted to write might not be what I wrote and then find a way to bridge the gap. Not that I am a Drama Queen – MUCH 🙂

My Take Out This Week?

Even when working alone – get on the right team.


Back At IT Then…



My commitments for the next 3 months are…

1. Continue to take Hacked Off through Holly Lisle’s revision course HTRN – 22 weeks roughly. With the view to then formatting that and working out covers etc and getting up here as an example of my writing and as an exercise in working out ‘how to’ and to prove to myself ‘I can do.’

2. Continue to type up the long hand manuscript for Q3 and Q4 at the rate of 4 sides /day / 5 days/week.


I finished the first read though and first two exercises just now – I had started before the break.


I started on the type up Sunday – so I felt I was ahead by Monday! Which was just as well as with the horses now in I was rediscovering the joys of stable duties and realised I had not ever factored in 6 hours of that in my day – even if Rescue Time logged it under ‘Fresh Air’ – Hum – not been in many stables then.


I suppose it could be described as a work out and yoga with aromatherapy thrown in, the dog’s walk now consists of checking the electric fence and scaling the muck heap.




Given how keen I was to get back to this I am finding it hard – especially the typing up – I have been leaving it to the end of the day as it is fairly mechanical – but of course I am tired – however it leaves my fresher time in the day for the reading and revision of HO which requires thought and creativity.




I have found Brendon Bruchard helpful for keeping myself focussed as he is cross denominational and up beat – he also has pertinent personal development ideas that I can learn from so he makes easy listening and good company in a phase of the year when most folk are trying to push you into goal setting/ consequences of failing to goal set or have you failed yet? Content.

My usual online mentors are still unrolling after Christmas and I have yet to catch up with Michael Hyatt or Darren Rowse, Jeff Goins course Intentional Blog Course has a busy online group so there is always something to see and do at coffee time and I did sign up for extra groups in my online writing group – Write Words.

(Not affiliated to any of these)



– When working at home it is very important to have support  outside the place of folk travelling in the same direction as you as it is easy to get fed up and put off or dismiss all the effort as ‘pointless’ especially in areas it is hard to directly correlate time and money…



– Jump in and say Hi. Google your interest spectrum and see what you can join in with  – the only way this will fail to connect you is if you don’t do it.


2015 Train Leaves Station…

What  a privilege it has been this year

Hasn’t ‘always’ seemed like it but I picked up some early architect plans when cleaning house prior to decorating that were drawn last year and as the conservatory starts to go up next week I realised that what was on the paper and then looked an impossible dream – is all around me now. WOW!

White Boarding

White Boarding


That is an aside really to what has happened with my writing during this time – suffering from displacement and all that goes with moving out of a home into a mobile home and then re discovering the silence and joy of being alone to work – only to find I over did it and let myself get unfit and stale.

Trying to deal with delivering a work flow to my own satisfaction in the face of being at the mercy of everyone else’s requirements either family or the guys working on the house.

I haven’t always got it right.


I have tried not to let it stop all work – if not typing up my main goal project then I have been thinking about websites and blogs, even if that is listening to a Podcast or joining in a webinair – there haven’t been too many days I haven’t thought or done something – and usually quite a lot – to keep me on track.


I have hitched my waggon to numerous big engines of influence and guidance and to some smaller ones to get me up the hills of frustration and delay but now as we chug in to the home stretch I have got off  the moving trains and am watching them leave the station without me – why?


I have to get out and walk a while – carry my work through to the end of the journey – no one can do that for me though some will keep me company enroute – it will be my route and not theirs – I am not a ‘good follower’ which a mentor advocated was a requirement to succeed in life the other day to me and to his ‘followers’ and he is right I am not. I would suggest that neither is he!


No one can do very much alone in this world

We all need help and encouragement and guidance  but we also need to fly free to achieve our dreams – we cannot live by committee nor do business that way nor write books that way – not if we want the satisfaction of skidding tattered and torn into the grave knowing we gave it our all and lived to the max – having the courage to stand alone and find your way between the sign posts and choose which route, and when to take it is a huge part of that – hitching my wagon to a Star and trailing in its reflected glory is not for me just to say I belong somewhere  – I belong in me. You belong in you.


Listen. Learn. Move On.


So I am on the platform of life watching the trains leave and around me are the amazing and wonderful things I have in my life in all their messy stages and it IS time now to take it all forward – get the house finished, move back in, and get my series through revision and out there…


What is it time for you to do?





First Go To Research When Freed From Type Up…

Results of research into avoiding the type up of 360600 first draft long hand words of Q3 and Q4 this next year

Photograph the page with phone ( I am so old I still think that is odd!)
Upload to lap top.
Open Evernote
New Notebook
New Note
Save photo to Evernote

ISSUE – have to make notes underneath it out of sight  and possibly hard on eventual type up.

Return to uploaded photo
Open OneNote
New Section
New page
Copy photo and paste to the page.

Can make notes at the side to be seen on type up – ISSUE -BUT so far can’t see how to make photo long hand larger so can decipher some bits of poor writing
– this may be rectified by viewing OneNote App on Iphone

Test Photo Taken For Printing...

Test Photo Taken For Printing…

– NO I have found the zoom! ISSUE sorted!
Taken to printers they handed me back a perfectly legible and revisable  A4 sheet.
This is the Planes Trains and Automobiles of writing!!!!!!!!!

HOLD ME DOWN  this still may be a faff to sort out but it secures the work
In two places off paper and is nothing like as awful as typing crap  first draft that won’t make it through revision – 7×160 side A4 note books will take a while to get on to the system but if I get this right then I have just gained a year and a major chance to get this show on back on the road!

I will be able to write my new stuff along side the revision of the Quest series if I feel like it and it will STOP that series from taking over my damn life – it is a YA series but I have other things I want to do so the thought of spending too much time on it have been giving me chills – how much life have I left anyway? It may sell a few copies, it MAY sell well but it is just one product and if I have learnt anything in life generally it is


Though this doesn’t apply to sheep who are better if they are all in one field – yours.


And Looking Ahead – As You Do….

My Thoughts On An Editorial Calendar…

Finish type up of Q2, Scrivener file plus print out. This one I completed this week 🙂

Three Manuscripts

Three Manuscripts


Typed MS Q1 + Q2 + HO


= THREE MS ready to take through HTRN which kicks off 14/12/15


22 week course



Q3+Q4 Type up – Target = 369,600 words/7 black note books


Assume 260 days (5 day week) =1421 typed up words/day/5 days OR 7105/week


OR 21 sides long hand.

I would say that equates to 5 hours/week minimum if not 7 hours.


5 hours could be one long session  5am -10 am  or 1pm -5pm  or 5pm-10pm  one day /week


If this could be achieved as a priority each week then by this time next year when the others  have been through HTRN once etc and I am in a better position to get them read and formatted then these will be ready to HTRN to follow through.



I would rather try to think of doing it this way than 1 + 1/2 hours a day for 5 days which if I am revising or writing new may be distracting.



What if you took photos of each page and saved to Evernote and onenote – printed out from that? Turned into pdf or annotated?


4 sides typed every day  x 5 days/week  is about 20/week  and that means the 360600 is doable.



###TODAY I did 5 hours ?10/3 and did 12 pages – it was a BIG intrusion on the day.###


So  4 sides/day /5days /week = 369600 IN this next 12 months.


OR 20 sides /week BUT if that is 2 x 10 that is two whole  sessions each time you try


OR 80 sides/month over say 4 or 5 days in one week with a break from everything else. I am not drawn to that I think it gives the highest chance of giving up as once missed it is a huge cock up – one 4 side day missed is easily caught up.


Can you write 4 sides in one hour?








I still need to be around on social media, I need to maintain my blog and keep searching out new ideas and techniques /how to etc


Friday blog post needs to be maintained  as well as outposts -Make a list of topics you could talk on or each blog. But YOU must show up and do – that means Thursday or Friday am latest.


What about batch writing? I don’t think I have enough advance stuff to do that – tends to be journalistic personal experience or reaction or breakthrough find. I can drop mention the books as I go.


2016 needs to be focussed on getting the books out to market Nov onwards with marketing and development strategy in place and formatting and website shop etc organised -VAT and Tax checked out and sales cart in place.


Advertising etc needs thinking about  if advertising in mags/radio etc


2017 Q2 needs to be released just before Easter and HO


Q3 summer half term


Q4  in time for summer holls


If these segments are broken into more books than 4 then that wants adjusting.



Evergreens and We rode For series ought to be in production by then and HA finished and under HTRN to release Easter 2018


Aim is to have  1 evergreen and one YA out each year – standalone Ancestrous needs writing…

And then there are those who say you cannot hit a target you can not see and that looking more than three months ahead is pointless….

I think it is good to plan but foolish to write it in stone.




A Good Week to Give up…

If I had a mind too and I don’t.



The long awaited Broad Band and land line phone were finally set up by BT and so we got our WiFi back at the exact same moment as my new Lap Top declared it’s hard drive had died.

It hadn’t – but that needed several trips to the shop to find that out, meanwhile it was obvious that while the iPhone 6  has been a God send this last few weeks – nothing has backed up via the Warm Patch – all the machinery needed to back up and catch up many weeks worth and I think I made  our own Black Hole over Dorset in the Internet.

It also made me see how vulnerable Scrivener projects are between older machines and operating systems and new machines and soft ware and the fact that some back up  suggestions I had followed only backed up partially which meant had my hard drive had to be replaced I would have been in the mire…

I signed up for One Drive but realised Scrivener didn’t travel well to it so I cancelled that and enlarged my Drop Box facility for a year aprox £106 and if I make a new folder and copy a scriv. project to it and then drag that to the Drop Box it travels just fine – can’t open it on the iPhone as Scrivener isn’t fully mobile – yet.

I have done all I can do right now – given husband home with bad tooth and bad knee and house project hitting frustration it has been a tricky week to keep spirits up.

I have a feeling next week will be all but impossible to maintain my blog schedule – I see Brendan Brushard is partnering with Oprah with a motivational product and that Geoff Goins may be doing his Intentional Blogging course again – I feel I need some ‘Oomph’ in the back ground while I paint the house – I might give them both a go…


I have been typing when I can I still want to finish the current WIP type up quickly as Holly Lisle is firing up to launch her brilliant course How To Revise Your Novel on 8th Dec and I am looking forward to rejoining the group there and  seeing new faces  galore.

So it WOULD have been a good week to give up – but I am NOT going to – I’l just go on slowly and keep scanning the horizon as I inch towards the destination.

What ever it is that YOU are struggling with – keep going slowly- you can only fail if you stop.


Doing Best…



Typed on today on my active project – Yea! As they say  – and got myself out to Chapter 9. Dropped back into the story better than I hoped I would – which always feels nice.

Spent week trying to find space to work either mentally or physically  – have moved  back into the house to write this today.

and  feel I have become a back packer again –

2015-11-03 08.16.39


Destination still being constructed

Destination still being constructed

No sign of new phone connection BT and Open Reach are diabolical to deal with but Mark Bede at Black and White Computers has set up my iPhone to act as a hub to include husband’s lap top as well as mine which is brilliant as so much of the official side of life is on line now – Vat, Tachograph records etc it is  very worrying to be off line for any reason – and their incompetence being the cause of this is particularly galling!

Doing best I can this week to do something on the writing every day – I have ‘shown up’  everyday and that is about all I can say…:)





Typing On…



I got on with some typing up of the YA series – it was a bit awkward in 27 as I prefer to stand and type and generally it is easier in here if everyone sits still but I managed 2000 and my time management tool Rescue Time told me I had hit my 2 hour goal in my 8 hour day – which I was pleased with as I don’t type fast and deciphering my long hand scrawl is a pain – typing up huge gaffs like ‘head hopping’ also need spotting at this stage and either a note left to self to rewrite or re write it then and there…though I try not to do that and I also only do a cursory spell check etc before it is added to Scrivener and then printed off – that is the bit I most like -seeing a manuscript start to appear – reading it on paper is when the major bloops really stand out and also when I stop feeling embarrassed about the thing as if it is now an entity in it’s own right – no pun intended – and I can rip it apart and revise it without feeling a ‘failure’ or that it is ‘a waste of time.’ !!
BT say they are due here on Friday morning – an actual person !!!!! – and that the phone and BB WILL be fixed – we can’t have our old number – by midnight Fri – I have to get our electrician to swap the lines over as Mum’s line comes into our sockets and my IT engineer may also have to come if the BB extender has been compromised that shunts the BB out to 27 – I am not letting self think that it will plug and play on Friday as then I won’t be disappointed – it has cost 100’s of £ to sort this out and doing stuff like VAT which is all on line now has been made impossible – it has been a real eye opener of an experience all around!
I was sooo lucky Gordon was able to get me this Iphone to at least give us some connection this last 4 weeks – I had no idea they would run a laptop BB as well as them selves – so that is a big HUG for him dragging me to the phone shop that morning as soon as we discovered what had happened.





Been playing with the the goal setting department on Parrelli Connect again – keeping it low key – system goal to be safe etc (!) and a custom goal to get Bud off the farm twice a week and extended the time on the working through the level 1 on line stuff. Everything here has ground to a halt the last month especially as we tried and failed to get at least my mum back in the house by the 2nd week of Oct. The fact is now at SOME point in the next four weeks that house will be liveable but I still have to paint the entire place from bare plaster up and do soft furniture and furniture etc – haven’t been setting my writing goals and daily word counts on my typing due to having to clear the table for meals now Mum is in 27 with me – I am doing web based promo and blogging and attending learning experiences when the BB allows but my whole ‘goal centric life’ has crashed.
I cannot set goals for the house because they are not mine to control and even with the horse goal I have just set I have to prioritise the needs of the workmen on the house and facilitate them getting in when they need to and despite them being very good I still need to be here at – there has been no stage in this whole project where I could be away from it actually which has been very tiring and hasn’t even guaranteed that jobs haven’t sometimes still had to be done again!
I had a second A4 note book to type Aug – Now which hasn’t been done for one of the Q series  books – I have already moved the deadline on that – I would like to get it typed by new year but it needs undisturbed space to leave it out and me turning up to do it for several hours a day and head space to stay ‘with it’ when I am interrupted as bumping in and out of ‘story mode’ is actually painful. I have to be ready to stop everything and suddenly do something to get us back in the house – what ever it is and when ever an opportunity arises – that has to be priority but the horse goals and writing goals are not going to sit with that very well – horse goals will be weather bound as well – though that frees me to write.

IT may end up being house – write OR ride depending on weather. But from Bud’s POV that isn’t what he needs to be safe out and about…. hard one this am to think through. 🙂 

It IS a bit lighter in the mornings which means working on my fitness by going for a run early when doing hay IS possible without be tripping over  in the dark and that would help everything else  – it just doesn’t appeal! I know once I get back into it  I will get a buzz from it which will make motivation but right now the ‘taking action’ bit is evading me…

Obviously I am a Work In Progress on all fronts today! :0



Once You Are In The Mixture -You Are Someone Else’s Cake…



Once you are in the mixture you are someone else’s cake…

This applies to membership sites and advice to find ‘outposts’ to blog on . However tempting it is because it feels companionable  and you might learn something…

Beware there is conflicting advice…

‘Hang out where your future customers dangle’  – this can backfire if the membership site becomes unsuitable and when other members also feel aggrieved and ripped off by them – you  have to either speak up or say nowt – and live with the consequences for you and your work/product of which ever choice you make.

‘Don’t build your house on a rented lot’ – this generally means self host your blog – a must if you aim to be commercial. Even if no one reads it for years…

‘Make your self useful on other people’s platforms’ – this one is a tricky one – we all want to belong and be useful – on someone else’s site – it can only be with their permission and not used as an excuse to blog about your product on their platform or against their ethics. You can also end up feeling used and fed up if your unsought efforts are unappreciated or feeling you are in the ‘hot seat’ if they cock up.

This Weeks Take Out…

Keep your best work on your own site and always link back to it.


The Courage Of Your Convictions…

Sometimes it is necessary to say things to folk we admire when we think they are wrong – however Great And Good they may be – they have feet of clay just like the rest of us and constantly agreeing with folk doesn’t lead to the development of good relationships nor future strategies.

Advice on doing this –


Keep eyes on the horizon over rough country.

Courage comes with action.

Be brave – nothing ventured nothing gained.

Be respectful – after all no one is always right not even you and certainly not me.

Agree to disagree and move on to the things you do share.

Be prepared to leave if necessary.

All relationships are give and take  –

Customers and Service Providers,

Mentors and Mentees ,

Group Members and Group Leaders,

and even Business Owners …

Just because you ‘follow’ some one or join in doesn’t mean you have no view – especially if you have parted with cash.

As Business Owners, Service Providers or Group Creators it is wise to remember that the customer is always right and can always leave if your message isn’t one they want to hear and you ignore them too long or demand money back if your content is worthless or becomes useless to them.

A mentor of mine when asked what a definition of authorial success was said

‘When you sell a book on line and they don’t want their money back…’ ( para phrase Holly Lisle) It seems to me this applies to most things.

As customers we need to be able to give constructive feed back and be brave enough to do it.

If it falls on closed ears, closed minds or automated software – so be it – but have courage – it isn’t always that way. Most of us need each other – dialogue is always best.



‘Mommie’s Ho – ome…’

I have no doubt that this will be so!

I suspect my Writing Week will consist of little more than endless rewrites of To Do lists and To Do To lists which obviously may involve wax and pins if we haven’t managed to get The House out of Recovery and it isn’t breathing on it’s own – or She Who Is Returning doesn’t have floor boards in her room still.

I am taking the cowards way out and writing this a head of time  – despite my dislike of all things automated – because then I will be looking forward to the next week and getting back to work.

I am always optimistic – and I have seen a bean bag chair that will ‘just go’ in my new writing cell and may by the time this posts I will have recovered from the white paint ‘snow blindness’ I suspect I am about to be inflicted with.


Mixed Bag Of Take Out…

I read a lot of what might be called Happy Clappy Mumbo Jumbo  – it keeps me semi sane and stops me boring the backsides off my neighbours and friends when I am having a Bad Day.
The joy of the internet is now that you can sign up for all kinds of Mumbo Jumbo stuff  free  or other wise – Yummy – It is better than chocolate and cheers me up and isn’t fattening – sometimes it even gets me off my arse and back to the writing or out side to run or ride.

There are some lovely kind people Out There.

They are often incredibly generous with their ‘Free Stuff’ and in exchange for an email contact usually provide a magazine of delight to pass the coffee break with or to get me running with gusto after my obligatory 2 x treble shots of caffeine on rising  – so I don’t smoke – but I am not a saint.
I have read stuff from folks all over the world, chatted to them and joined their groups for a few hours or a few days – or taken up residence and rented space.

I am quite happy joining in and Having A Go.

But  I wish The Marketeers on line would work out that the common type of launch process is getting boring and that automated and outsourced stuff and staff and over delegation deadens the user experience.
When I need a shoulder to lean on and I pick up a Happy Clappy Book I know it is a book – if you choose an on line source of inspiration, kindness and friendship – community even – it is fairly rough when you work out it is an auto responder that just called you a ‘Gorgeous Chick’ and that your series of welcoming and warm emails are pre programmed to draw you deeper, depending on your preferences, whilst rifling your wallet and trading on your misery.
If I am starting to notice this then it IS time for a change…

Hot Rox or C Weed?

It is a bit like lying on a massage table blindfold and wondering  … because with coaching, support, mentoring and spiritual guidance you are baring more than your back side – you may even be baring your soul – to all and some of that may come back and bite you.

My Take Out Recipe?

Stick to the free stuff and put your credit card out of reach before you start to get drawn in by the seduction of a launch you may not notice is aiming for you – when you are vulnerable spending money on rubbish is worse than eating too much chocolate and can do you a great deal more harm.
Any thing that makes you feel good can be addictive – even things you don’t ingest.

Trust me

 You can do this if you just take the next step – just do something towards your dream – think how much you can achieve without spending another penny or wasting another second…I could even finish the series I am writing.

Research Week Or The Best Of The Rest…

Thought provoking week this week – been researching and setting up a practise ebook down load to exchange for starting an email list.

When I do this ‘for real’ it will likely be based about the fiction I am writing but just for a change I thought I would go for a non fiction – I researched on line and following the collective advice I chose a subject that people ask me about – how do I cope with change? Probably as badly as most other folk TBH but according to Guru’s, Mentors and Coaches, Course Providors collectively that doesn’t matter because it doesn’t have to be perfect it just has to be Out There…

I have watched and read blogs and Pod casts, Periscopes and Blabs and free give away 54 Easy Steps To Get Your X Out There material all week.

I signed up for a lot of ‘Good Stuff’ and now I feel I was led by the key board into the back allies of Information and Knowledge as far from the highway of Education as I ever want to go….

My Take Away?

  1. Did these people train in Peckham Market with Totter’s Independent Traders? It is the impression they give.
  2. A money back guarantee is not a guarantee of standards or quality – or qualification – either on behalf of the provider or for the student to take away.
  3. I felt I was in a wagon train, having paid to be taken where few have successfully been and that the glint of their easy won gold was pulling me in.

    What happened to my practise  e book?

    Not a lot. I decided I didn’t want to set the thing up half researched and poorly formatted and that my experiences of change are just that – at best funny and worst painful – but egged on by all in sundry I was sorely tempted to stick it Out There, as proof what happens when you flock to other folk’s calls and don’t heed your own mind. I haven’t spent any money on this – that I haven’t had refunded.

    My Advice should you need it…

    Gang warily! There are solid folk Out There.

    Stick to a subject you know or the work in hand and do your best to make the product worth having or you will be asked for money back and your News Letters will hit the Junk box.

    Another Idea?

    This doesn’t help me at all with my own E Marketing that I will need at some point in the future but then by then I might have had another idea…



Little Bit Of Heaven.

Amidst the craziness of living next to a building site – my once and future home – while now living and working in a mobile home – is the fact that the situation is pure Heaven – perched in my orchard next to the horses’ summer field and yesterday I took my desk out side and worked with the horses all day- me writing and them getting on with being horses.

The sky was intensely blue and the’ greens’ this side of the farm still intensely green – the bleached out tips of long grass on the old fort on the horizon cannot be seen from here, neither can the ripening wheat and the start of harvest. Here it is green and blue.

Husband prepared Ghost for the show this weekend – washing and polishing and all the usual pre show stuff – only advantage of showing trucks is no plaiting! Hoof oil is replaced by ‘Tyre Black’ – really:) But they still park in lines and sit next to them and then go for a trot up before the judge in the main ring. It is all huge fun and I kinda wish I was going – but I don’t like ‘visiting’ – go for whole weekend and join in is one thing but to ‘drop in’ feels naff…

They left and the stock, horses, dogs and I settled down to what I HOPE will be a peaceful weekend to write – and between you guys and I – I might get Buddy in tomorrow and ride. I will get the tack out for a check over today and if it doesn’t get too hot  give his mane and tail a brush and get him out on a rope to play- then see what tomorrow brings…

It is probably Buddy’s and mine anniversary weekend come to think of it, I must have had him a year exactly – having said I wouldn’t get another one – and he and I are the most unlikely pairing of the small writer and the tall racehorse who hack alone for miles – we get on very well – well we did till he had to have a tooth out and refitted and then I hit lambing and the house project kicked off in April – so I think we have had three rides since New Year…. But he is right there – here – now head and lips resting on the mobile home window giving me that  ‘Get up and let’s go somewhere!’ look or it could be ‘Where’s my hay?’

I hope Husband and lorry have a great time polishing at the show but I think on balance I have my prizes here and I very much hope this weekend I can chill out a bit and enjoy them.


Busy week.

Change is good – just tiring…

Busy week  checking out and or moving to new writing groups that seem to have more bells and more whistles than I will ever discover and also new blogging sites and one I have been meaning to check out for a while.

At the moment it looks like Scribophile for the new writing group and Haynet as a new blogging space as I have enjoyed reading that one for years but not added to it.

As usual when doing something new I have to pretty much hold nose and jump in – however many bloops  I make – often the fear of changing things is so much worse than actually doing it. I am not sure that you can ever get so used to change it ceases to bother you though the great thing about the internet is friends and colleagues need not be left behind nor lost touch with.

I have managed to hit my typing up of the MS targets for the week and was amused to see another Author informing her followers via email that by publication she could virtually recite her novels – I am with her on that one – though sadly this skill in me doesn’t extend to dictation via Dragon as this week late one night I fired it up only to have my text turn red and be highlighted in green – when this happens I check the room for hidden cameras 🙂

On the horse front this week my farrier re shod a fully rugged Buddy while we braced ourselves against in horizontal July rain. Rufus and Flax used the mud creatively to decorate the fly rugs and style their mane dooz

I escaped to my bolt hole this am – the pier at West Bay.

It is nice that some things never change.

West Bay looking east

West Bay looking east


Knackered Tonight!

Knackered tonight! Yesterdays research and activity surrounded interesting blogging sites and today’s has been all about researching  on line writing groups – many of whom I have joined over the years and not used in favour of one I very much enjoyed – but sometimes wings need to be spread and so I am checking out these others – what a selection too!

Horses have come up and stared at me through the office window a couple of times and I took my tea out and sat on the trough scoffing cheese on toast while they snuffled about me, inhaling mozzarella and pulling funny faces.

Tonight I need to be back in the office typing up for my two hours of ‘daily typing up’ I will get this draft ready to revise by the end if the summer – I hope.