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HAPPINESS AND SPRING

International day of happiness, are you all happy?

Considering it is the first day of Spring I am not very happy that it is blowing a gale and raining so the good thing about that is all the new plants will get a good watering over the day so I guess that makes me happy.  Do we wake up happy or does something make us happy, do you think we would get blasè about being happy if we were all the time?  Maybe then we would get miserable because we are so happy LOL

My children and grandchildren make me happy all the time everything is going to plan but when it’s not, it’s not!  That is the only fault with having ten grandchildren there always appears to be an issue somewhere but I wouldn’t change them for the world as they are what keep me going and their parents of course.

My other happiness is my garden and the sunshine and if I cannot get it in my garden then trips to Spain make me very happy, not that I do very much over there apart from sunbathing, reading and writing.

What ever makes you happy have a great day. x

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AS ANOTHER WEEK STARTS

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As fast as the snow arrived it disappeared but not before Jade had a quick ride on Samson in it, did not appear to bother either of them but I am sure it must be more fun in the sunshine.

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I acquired myself a record player and was very pleased to discover that it had a CD drive and a cassette deck, radio and aux plug, the sound is great and I am so pleased with it, even more so in that it only cost me £30 and they are selling new for £145 my bargain of the month I think.  I then spent all Saturday listening to all my old records, such good memories.  I love it when so many of the songs you can actually remember an event that happened at that time.  I don’t feel that happens now a days or am I just too old and nothing much happens any more?

I was 6 years old when that christmas song came out and I have never heard it play on TV or radio since then.  Typical teenager writing all over Donny Osmond cover for Puppy Love, you can not beat the original, then summer of my life; 14 and heartbroken.  Many more happy memories that last forever.  I am very cross with myself for chucking out all my old cassettes and I only did that about 6 months ago, gutted.

Mia and Zac came for dinner and Peaches was trying her very best to ignore them and go sleep and then hissed at me as if I was the one waking her up!   The children are all on half term for the week so I have a movie night planned with Jodie and a trip to London with Izzy.  I am not filling myself up too much as still get really tired and out of breath so a bit of reading and writing will be my lot for the week.  Have a great week what ever you are doing x

SUNDAY

I attended the morning workshop with Francesca Baker, finding it very stimulating as it made you think more about the location in your writing and many more things to describe it.  A very talented young lady who kept everyone eager for the whole two hours with also getting us to use our brains early on a Sunday morning.  By far one of the best workshops I have been too, I am now eagerly waiting for the next ones at the weekend.

Steep Street coffee shop put on a writing competition this year with the topic ‘Belonging’ they also had some wonderful stories submitted which they then made into a small newsletter.

What a busy weekend and I can say that I am now shattered so will be resting up for a few days, sleep was hard to come by last night as the winds were atrocious; I am also upset about the garden archway falling down with the bottom poles very bent.  I will need to find a man to come and sort it out, very annoying as it was a new one this year; it also had solar lights and some pretty hanging coloured glass which has all smashed.

I started to read Carol Creasey’s book The Power of Love and am on chapter 12 already and finding it very enjoyable.

Have a great week, I will be doing some writing from my bed over the next few days so hopefully will get my total looking a bit better for November.

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SATURDAYS EVENTS

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The charismatic author Guy Fraser-Sampson was in attendance at Congo coffee shop, signing his latest book Death in Paradise.  The weather was a bit against us as storm Angus was battering the coast and raining down upon us all afternoon, thank goodness for cake.

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Guy even went as far as to say it was the best he had tasted, I must remember to tell Marianne to keep up the good work and that I am more than willing to be taster of all she bakes.  We discussed his new book which will be out the 7th January titled Miss Christie Regrets, this will follow on in the Hampstead Murders with the third book which is almost finished becoming available in June.  Guy has obviously been extremely busy as he also re-located to the country side, I wonder what murders he will be dreaming up down in Sussex.  I was amazed when during our discussion about different books and authors he said he liked to read the good books again, I could think of nothing worse as there are so many that I do want to read but there is never enough time.  I was feeling proud of my total of 46 books that I have read this year until Guy informed me he read about 4 a week!  Between writing and reading he can’t have much time left but what a dedicated author and lets face it, it does show in his books as they are amazing.

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During Saturday morning I attended a workshop given by Andy Miller who wrote The Year of Reading Dangerously.  I must admit I did have a chuckle when he told us it took him 7 years to write about 1 year.  Andy also gave some very good advice about just about anything and everything to do with books, reading, writing, publishing, editing. in fact the man is a mind of knowledge.  The 3 hours passed so very quickly that we could have been there all day.  Very good events so far at The Folkestone Book Festival 2016.

WEEKEND EVENTS

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FRIDAY 18th NOVEMBER 2016

So today it is the big Christmas Lights Switch on in Folkestone, with many other events happening like meeting santa and fireworks, not sure why the need for fireworks when so many pretty lights will be on to see.  It is also the start of The Folkestone Book Festival which I really love as there are so many great events happening with it getting bigger and better every year.

The lovely Carol Creasey will be in attendance at the Congo Coffee house from 4pm for a meet the author and book signing event.  We all have that relative that has everything they need so what do you buy them for christmas?  How about a signed book from the author dedicated just to them, I know I would love something like that under my tree.  I have heard from a reliable source that the homemade cake in Congo will be out of this world!  Not to be missed and also my lovely granddaughter Kara will be rushing up from her day job to be your fantastic waitress with Marianne in Congo so please pop in and say hi.

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SATURDAY 19th NOVEMBER 2016

I will be at the Quarterhouse in the morning as attending a workshop about How not to write a book, hopefully picking up some tips about how to avoid any pitfalls and to bring out the best in your story.  I like these workshops as even if you only pick up one tip you also meet some interesting people who share your hobbies and of course a bit of networking.

There is also a great sounding interview by Sir Martin Rees about HG Wells  at 4.30 at the Quarterhouse, gutted to be missing this.

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From 4pm I will be at Congo coffee again to welcome the fantastic author Guy Fraser-Sampson.  I have read his book Death in Profile and found it extremely good, you cannot beat a good murder and the best bit is that this is the start of a series called The Hampstead Murders.  Three days it took me to read this, I also did not guess who committed the murder; I love a book that keeps you guessing.  The next book in the series is Miss Christie Regrets which is published in January so if you get book vouchers for christmas make this your first choice; hopefully I will review this for publication day.  The cake at Congo is just to ‘die’ for so get there quick and again you will meet the delightful Kara and Marianne your host’s for the afternoon.

SUNDAY 20th NOVEMBER 2016

The Book festival is well underway with some great debates, workshops and events happening in Folkestone.  I will be attending a workshop in the morning about drawing the best out of the history and environment of Folkestone for inspiration in your writing.  I love finding out facts about the area we live in and promoting our town.

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National Novel Writing Month has been a bit of a failure this year for me, mainly due to the fact that so many other things are happening.  I have written a few chapters but I know this time of year so many other things fill your diary and I am not my healthiest during the winter.  I do propose to write for the whole of January as will not be going out in the cold and all the festivities are over then, well that is the plan.

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Peaches will be staying in tonight so the fireworks do not scare her away again.  Have a great weekend everyone. x

FEEL GOOD FEELING

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What a glorious day, the sunshine is so warm in my garden; can you spot the cat?  I am loving the colours of the grape-vine this year, all I need now is a red Acer tree (think that’s right)

Lovely blooms and colours, I really like Fucias and they stay all year here as no frost and warmer temperatures.  The turf has all been pulled up and my oiled stepping-stones put down, with Camomile, spreading Thyme with pink flowers and Lilly of the valley in between them.  Will need some more fragrant ground cover in the spring; I think it will look and smell gorgeous.

I recently had a short story published in the Folkestone anthology, I can now say I have received a written review!  How wonderful does that make you feel, it not only encourages you to keep going but it also lets you know someone is reading your work.

As I was so impressed with this review I would like to say a very big thank you to Sheila for not only taking the time to read it but also to put pen to paper, it has made my year!  Here is the review.

Hi Karen, just sat and read your short story and I was really impressed! I can’t begin to imagine where you start. How excited she is at the beginning and full of love for Steve. The anticipation of the Summer Ball and then the let down and despair at the end of the love affair. It’s all there,well done!! 

Please keep it up Karen. Looking forward to reading your book when it’s finished! Xxxx. 🙂

I will now get back to writing, have a lovely day everyone. x

OCTOBER, REALLY?

Where did that come from, October I mean and where has the year gone also why does it go quicker the older you get?

img_4466   There are not many good things about winter but one of them is hot chocolate, that will always put a smile on my face.  I love sitting in a cafe watching out the window, wondering where the people are going or coming from.

The other good thing is The Folkestone Book Festival in November, I can’t wait and have booked lots of events already.  I have also set up a book signing for Guy Fraser-Sampson at Congo Coffee shop in The Old High Street, so really looking forward to that as he is such a lovely man and a brilliant author.  His book Death In Profile was great so really looking forward to the next book which is out in the new year.

I steer clear of politics on here and very rarely read any posts about it but I have got to say I feel sorry for America as I don’t think either of them are up for the job, such a shame it cannot stay the way it is.

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I am reading ROOM at the moment, what a strange story but I am very intrigued by it, I think I can figure out what is going to happen as I am now half way through it but the beginning has you thinking all sorts of things.  It has been made into a film that I have borrowed also but will wait until I have finished the book to watch that.

We have half term here at the end of October and I am taking my eldest daughter and grandson Alfie to Euro Disney for three days, I think Jodie is more excited than Alfie.  I have taken all of Jodie’s children one at a time over the years so it will be good for her to know what they are talking about.  It was careful planning on my behalf though as she can do all the running about and I can sit and watch their enjoyment.

The other super thing about November is that it is National Novel Writing Month which I plan to do again this year and hopefully finish off my current book.  I don’t sign up for it just follow along and I find it really helps in motivating me to write everyday, even if I am not feeling very well I still try to write something while in bed.

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