Writer at work

This is the last of the latest reviews for A History of Cadbury. Another sneaked onto Amazon after I created these, which is good, and nice, particularly as it was another 5-star review. But this is the last of the review flyers – for now. Weekend As it was Valentine’s weekend, we did the shopping on Friday to get it out of the way. We didn’t go out again for a takeaway as we bought the makings for cheese burgers and fries. […]

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Publicity

I was having a bit of a rummage through NetGalley to see if there were any new reviews for The Life of Richard Cadbury. I couldn’t see any for that one, but there were a few new ones for the first book, A History of Cadbury. First job of the day for yesterday, then, was collecting 5 of these reviews and creating flyers out of them. Number 1 is above, and the other 4 will follow when I can’t find a different […]

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Quick plug: A History of Cadbury

I am still up against the clock, but I found time to do a quick plug. Ahead of publication of The Life of Richard Cadbury, which is due on 30 November, the first ebook, A History of Cadbury, is available for just £1.99, direct from the publisher. The paperback is £12.99. And the new book is available for pre-order. On the work front, I finished writing the short piece for the India client, and I completed another chapter for the ghostwriting […]

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Diary of a non-fiction book: Work at last

I’m so happy. I’ve finally found some time to write some actual words. I know my last post said that this post would cover reading and making notes, but this is such a landmark that I had to share it. I’ve not done a great deal. I’ve had a few goes at setting Scrivener up how I want it, and each time I did it something happened and I had to reinstall it all over again and go back to […]

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Diary of a non-fiction book: Setting up Scrivener

I didn’t have a lot of joy opening up my Scrivener binder for The Life of Richard Cadbury. And several times I came *this close* to just opening a new Word file. That wouldn’t do, though, as I really like working in Scrivener and therefore it needs to be working right. I couldn’t get it to take my folder titles and compile them for me. The titles were only things like “Introduction”, “Chapter x” and “About the Author”, but they just kept […]

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Diary of a non-fiction book: Initial research

As soon as I received the email go-ahead from the publisher I started to make tentative enquiries into who could help me with the research for The Life of Richard Cadbury. Telephone research I started in Birmingham, with a charitable trust I’d been told might have some pictures of him while I was researching A History of Cadbury. It took a few goes to locate the correct person, but she duly called me back and we had a long discussion about […]

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Diary of a non-fiction book #2: New beginnings

This is my second diary of a non-fiction book, although the first was never completed. It got a bit busy and I didn’t have time to update it. So I’m going to try again with this one. I’ve already done some work on The Life of Richard Cadbury, so this initial diary post will include that. The idea The idea for a biography of Richard Cadbury came to me while I was researching A History of Cadbury. He seemed such an interesting […]

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Facelift

Every so often, generally about once a year, I give the blog a bit of a facelift. This is mostly to keep it looking up to date. Recently, I changed this one to one I wasn’t 100% happy with, but it did seem to give the place a more modern feel. However, the posts were a bit choppy and it wasn’t easy to see what order they were supposed to be in. Last week, I changed the alphabet adventurers blog […]

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Back off our hols

We had a fantastic three weeks off work. We went camping for only two of them, but we were determined to have a break from everything else as well, and so we stayed away from everything for three whole weeks. We certainly needed it. When we arrived in Welsh Wales for the first leg of our trip, we had to put the tent up in a semi-gale. It wasn’t put up properly, or completely, and a lot of stuff was […]

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More lovely publicity

The Cadbury book has certainly stirred up some interest. Not only did I get a photo-splash in the Daily Mail, but after I posted last time, the Daily Telegraph also featured the book! I am absolutely over the moon. See the Daily Mail feature here. See the Daily Telegraph feature here. There are others popping up too, all over the place. It’s starting to feature on book-blogs and in other book-sellers. The other bit of good news is that the […]

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Timing

I was feeling overwhelmed last week, and started to steadily work through my outstanding piles of work. One of the jobs I did was send out a book proposal on Friday. I already knew the publisher was interested in the topic because we had discussed it, and others, a few weeks ago. But they’d asked for two book proposals in follow-up to the Cadbury book, and I was still researching one of them. So last week, I sent the first […]

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Getting out of the doldrums

I was feeling a tad overwhelmed this time last week when I posted about the various piles of work I had. But sorting them out and discussing it with the poet really helped. The first thing I did was finish the big proofreading job that was already in. That was completed yesterday and I nipped to the post office to send it off. I got there just in time as the postie was just leaving (I was sending it “signed […]

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Getting organised – so many piles of work!

Today I thought it might be a good idea to get myself organised. I have so many different projects on the go, it was time to weed some out. But before doing that, I wanted to put them into their own individual piles. Here is how my current Work in Progress (WiP) is looking (sorry for the blurry pictures): I hope that gives some idea and that they’re not too messy on the device you’re viewing this on. All I […]

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NaNoWriMo comes to an end once more

Congratulations to all of my fellow NaNoWriMoErs who hit their target this year. Commiserations if you didn’t reach your target, but don’t worry. I failed for far too many years to mention before finally finding my NaNoMoJo, and now I’ve won 4 years on the trot. Well done to everyone who took part. It can be a big decision and it can take a lot out of your working week – or even your personal time. Here are my own […]

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We interrupt this broadcast …

I am delighted to announce that my book A History of Cadbury is now in stock. You can buy the hardback direct from the publishers at Pen & Sword or you can buy it from your favourite book dealer. It’s currently only available as a hardback, but the paperback will follow in the usual due course. A History of Cadbury was my project for NaNoWriMo 2017. It was scheduled for publication next year, but we did so well getting it ready […]

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NaNoWriMo 2018 – decision made

With only a week to go I finally made a decision, and I’m hoping it’s the right one … bit of a gamble, but that’s how it goes. This year I’m being a NaNoReBel – again! Last year I chose to write a non-fiction book: A History of Cadbury (to be published on 30 November 2018). This year I’m going to revise the novel I wrote for NaNoWriMo 2016: Catch the Rainbow. Above left is a picture of my NaNoWriMo reading […]

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NaNoWriMo rules, OK

About a year ago … actually, exactly a year ago, I was preparing for NaNoWriMo 2017. I had a book contract under my belt for A History of Cadbury and I’d learnt how to use Scrivener. During NaNo I wrote that book and spent the following months (between other work) editing it, polishing it, submitting it, proofreading it and – finally – indexing it. This year, on 30 November, exactly a year after finishing NaNo 2017, my book will be published. This […]

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A good writing day

Despite the recent difficulties I’ve been having regarding finding a new paperback publisher, yesterday turned out to be a good writing day. My working days are clearly split into two now, with “my work” for 3 hours in the morning and “client work” for 3 hours in the afternoon. The rest of the (working) day is spent on reading, housework, pets and meals. “My work” includes admin, writing, editing or proofreading my own material, planning work, pitching work, and publishing […]

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Organised again

I’ve been a bit overwhelmed with trying to catch up with work again, but I think I finally reached a balance once more. The past week in particular has been busy – as usual. I’ve not had a single idle day, though, and I’m looking forward to the week ahead. On Monday I caught up with new month admin. I created my word-count tracker spreadsheet for September. It has all of my live projects on too. And I created two […]

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Good start, Cosmos

Yesterday, I had a quick word with the Cosmos. Yesterday evening, this ( ←) popped up on Amazon. Yes, it’s my book on the history of Cadbury. The one I’ve been working on for the past year. No, it’s not published yet, but it is on pre-order, due out on 30 November. That was a lovely surprise, and a very nice start. But do please keep it up, Cosmos. Thank you! I managed some catching up yesterday too. I wrote two […]

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Life on the farm: all good things … (*** list alert ***)

Well, it’s been about as busy as ever here on the farm, with not a lot of actual words being produced. And it’s about to get even busier. I feel like a broken record, but it really is true. So, what have we been up to? Where do I begin? First off, the poet changed his job in January. The new job involves quite a lot of driving to get to whichever site he’s working at on a particular day, […]

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Round-up and to-do list

I’m a bit late with this, this week, but I have been busy, just not necessarily busy doing what I was supposed to be doing … I did some work on Saturday last week, at the front end of the week not the tail end. Here is how I did for the rest of the week to last Friday: write to family member for a foreword for the history book Yes! I wrote him a letter telling him he could […]

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Round-up & to-do list

I had quite a hefty to-do list last week, one that even made me gulp, and only 4½ days in which to do everything. However, I got through pretty much most of it in the end. In fact, I had quite a good week. Here’s how I did: choose illustrations for history book write captions for illustrations for history book Yes! I did both of these, and by Friday evening I was able to send the caption list to the […]

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A time-management experiment

On Sunday I pre-scheduled Monday’s blog post (round-up) and I worked on my diary for the coming week. I stuck to my original plan of having an hour for morning chores, an admin hour, three hours of writing, three hours of client work and an hour for dinner (lunch). On Tuesday and Thursday of this week, I also have an hour of yoga scheduled in, replacing 30 minutes of morning chores time and 30 minutes of the admin hour. But […]

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Round-up & to-do list

The week before Easter was a 4-day week. I had a lot to do before we broke up on Thursday, all of which was on the history book. Here’s how I did: complete the Cadbury book Yes! I worked really, really hard to get this into a finished state, and I submitted it at around 11pm on the Thursday evening. I still have a few things to do on it such as the acknowledgements page and sifting through the hundred-or-so […]

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The end is nigh

… well, I say the end is nigh when really what I mean is the end of the writing part is nigh. For the past two weeks I’ve been in the writing cave, trying to finish the history book. Last week I managed to pop up for air and come in to say hello with the odd update or two. This week I feel as though I’ve been under water the whole time. So, before I head in there once again […]

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Round-up & to-do list

Last week I had a proper ol’ blitzing of the work in progress. Here’s how I did: stitch everything together for the Cadbury book On Monday I added 2,728 words to the Cadbury book. On Tuesday I added 3,089 words. On Wednesday I added 1,617 words. On Thursday I added 1,900 words. And on Friday I added 1,702 words. I completed an entire chapter as well as filled in missing bits for earlier chapters. It’s still not finished, though. But […]

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Diary of a non-fiction book: an update

The last time the diary of a non-fiction book appeared was at the end of October 2017. I was about to embark on NaNoWriMo 2017 and the history book was going to be my project. Since then, I’ve not really done an update. So here it is. The month of November was indeed spent writing the first draft of the history book. And by the end of the project, I just snuck in with my 50,000 words. They weren’t easy. […]

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Round-up & to-do list

I had a much better week last week. I knuckled down, kept track of where I was and how much I’d done, and just got on with things . Here’s a reminder of last week’s list followed by how I did: write a blog post every day YES! Every day last week I wrote a blog post. In fact, every week day since 7 March I’ve written a blog post. They’ve all been for this blog, they’ve all been about […]

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Round-up & to-do list

Last week I “came back to work” struggling to get motivated. I had a HUGE to-do list that consisted of at least nine things I needed to be doing.  I also looked at various time-suckers that were impeding my work without adding any value. I went through both of those lists and decided what to do first (on the to-do list) and what to stop doing (on the time-sucking list). So I didn’t feel too overwhelmed, I decided to choose […]

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NaNoWriMo 2017 – so how was it for you?

For the third year running, I tackled NaNoWriMo, making it a priority instead of an also-ran. For the third year running, I tackled it using Scrivener. For the third year running, I won! Of a fashion … I’d like to say I think I’ve cracked it, but it was still very, very hard work. It was  still hard to make my own writing a priority, even though it was for a contracted book, when I have paid editing and proofreading […]

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