Progress

Monday went by in a bit of a whirl. In case you didn’t notice, my book The Life of Richard Cadbury was finally published. There then followed a frenzy of marketing activity that mostly consisted of creating flyers and mockups in Canva and Photopea respectively. Then I went through Facebook, Twitter and MeWe and added links and images to all the groups and pages I belong to on those. I also made sure to respond to every single person who wished […]

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Book review: The Forgotten Gift

This feature is in association with NetGalley. The Forgotten Gift,  Kathleen McGurl Thanks to NetGalley and to HQ Digital for an advance copy of this book. The Forgotten Gift by Kathleen McGurl is a dual timeline story. While I did enjoy the two different timelines, I’m not sure that I like that they alternate. I’d much sooner have a bigger chunk set in each time, several times if necessary. But the constant flicking backwards and forwards interrupted the flow, for me. […]

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Book review: Fall Down Dead

This feature is in association with NetGalley. Fall Down Dead,  Stephen Booth Thanks to NetGalley and to Little, Brown Book Group UK for an advance copy of Fall Down Dead by Stephen Booth. I’m a massive Stephen Booth fan and I know that this book was completed while the author was recovering from surgery. However, that doesn’t detract from the storyline or the character development. And I do think there is some character development in this story, particularly in the […]

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Using a murder board

The murder board My murder board isn’t up yet, but every time I open this tin of bits that go with the murder board, it cheers me up no end. I think it’s all the colours. The murder board is a large whiteboard that goes on every wall in every office I ever have. Whenever we plan an office, we always choose a place for the murder board. It’s called a murder board because I write crime and mystery stories, […]

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Hello, Finningley!

For the past two weeks we’ve been moving house (again!), and now we’re in the village of Finningley, which used to be in Nottinghamshire but is now in South Yorkshire. It’s amazing how borders can change like that. There’s an airfield here that used to be RAF Finningley and for 35 years the airfield hosted a famous air show. During the Second World War, Finningley was briefly associated with RAF Bomber Command where the air crews finished their combat training. […]

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Squeezing the work in

This morning I finally started the next book for NetGalley. Well, actually, I re-started it as I’d already read a couple of chapters and I wanted to refresh my memory. The work came in from Hong Kong. The publisher has worked so hard to get this material to me this week rather than next week. He sent across 11 articles for his next magazine, which I saved and printed. I’m going to do those in between other jobs. The other […]

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Clearing the decks

I realised that we get the keys to the new house next Wednesday. That’s just over a week away. So I’ve decided to close the office on Tuesday. I won’t be able to concentrate properly after then anyway, so I may as well. The first thing I did was notify all of my regular clients that my last day of business will be next Tuesday and to tell them when I expect to be back up and running again, which […]

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Lockdown easing

For more than 3 months, this country has allegedly been on lockdown. Although, if you see how many people have been walking past our remote bungalow and how they walk right at you when you’re out, it’s understandably difficult to believe that anything changed. My work didn’t change. If anything, I became more busy. But wages did slow down in some areas. Fortunately, the poet was furloughed and has been doing all of the household chores, allowing me to just […]

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Book review: The Christmas Lights

This feature is in association with NetGalley. The Christmas Lights, Karen Swan Thanks to NetGalley and to Pan Macmillan for an advance copy of The Christmas Lights by Karen Swan. This story begins in 1930s rural Norway, then skips to the present-day South Pacific. It jumps back to the fjords, and then we’re in present-day Norway. It follows two sets of characters: a bunch of milkmaids and goatherds in the Norwegian countryside; and a trio of vloggers dashing from one […]

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Thursday 14 November 2019

Hmm. Not only is the old classic WordPress interface much easier and quicker to use, it also posts when I schedule it to. The new editor isn’t exactly on a winning streak at the moment … Yesterday was a good working day. I got up on time, was at my desk on time, and I finished all of my daily admin jobs and household chores early. If ever I don’t have any client work in, mornings are now spent doing […]

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Wednesday 13 November 2019

As it happened, I did remember to schedule yesterday’s post for 8 o’clock in the morning, but for some reason, it didn’t. I have today checked the settings, and the only thing that was incorrect was the local time. But that was an hour earlier than what it actually is, so it still should have posted by 8am at least. How curious. Anyway, it posted in the end – well, I forced it to via the mobile app. But I will […]

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Tuesday 12 November 2019 (list alert!)

I had a busy week last week removing most of my self-published books – ebooks and paperbacks – from Amazon KDP. I’m setting up a proper publishing schedule and re-releasing them all on Draft2Digital, initially just as ebooks for now.  I’ve heard so many horror stories about Amazon and how they display their authors’ books (or not) and about them removing reviews. They also want exclusivity, and I don’t like that either. If I decide to publish hardback books again, […]

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Book review: Snowflakes at the Little Christmas Tree Farm

This feature is in association with NetGalley. Snowflakes at the Little Christmas Tree Farm, Jaimie Admans Thanks to NetGalley and to HQ digital for an advance copy of Snowflakes at the Little Christmas Tree Farm by Jaimie Admans. Leah’s drunken rebound isn’t what you’d normally expect. No, Leah’s drunken rebound is a neglected little Christmas tree farm in the northern reaches of Scotland … Fast-forward four weeks and she’s arriving with excited anticipation at both her new business and her […]

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Book review: Let it Snow

This feature is in association with NetGalley. Let it Snow, Sue Moorcroft Thanks to NetGalley and to Avon Books UK for an advance copy of Let it Snow by Sue Moorcroft. I thoroughly enjoyed this story. I love Christmas anyway, and this book had snow too. Lots of snow. And a spotty dog. Lily wants to meet her brothers. Her sister is against the idea and her parents aren’t completely on board. But that doesn’t stop Lily moving to the […]

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I’ve been busy, honest!

I’ve not been completely idle since 17 October (that’s more than two whole weeks ago!). But I have been tied up with stuff I’d sooner not be tied up with. Actually, I’d rather not be tied up at all, but you get the drift. As a result of losing two whole weeks of work, along with another two weeks of plain old crap, I came back to my desk feeling a bit overwhelmed and not knowing where to start. I […]

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Monday 7 October 2019

Friday morning began with some Pomodoro admin and a jigging about of each one, resulting in one Pomodoro less per day and a shorter dinner break, but longer Pomodoro breaks. I certainly didn’t feel quite so rushed by the end of the day and had more time to breathe. I wrote my daily blog post, tidied up my Twitter feed, was approved for two more NetGalley books, and did some work on the Cadbury book. In the afternoon, I scheduled […]

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Thursday 3 October 2019

I was very pleased with my output yesterday, and I didn’t even need to switch over to the focused (i.e. not connected to the internet) laptop.  The day started with my daily blog post, for which I wrote 459 words. Then I moved on to the Cadbury book. I only had the morning scheduled in for this as I was expecting a new client job. I managed to write a very respectable 2,411 words. Not quite my half-day target, but […]

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Wednesday 2 October 2019

October suddenly got busier late yesterday afternoon. But it’s okay, I was half-expecting it.  It’s the new writing job I was in discussion about towards the end of last week. And it’s only 10,000 words max. I can do this … Yesterday started with me writing up the day’s Pomodoros, as I hadn’t had chance to do them the day before. Then I wrote a 465-word blog post. And then I completed the screen edit for the Hong Kong client […]

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Tuesday 1 October 2019

October already. How did that happen? I have a deadline this month, and then it’s NaNoWriMo next month. Looks like I have some work to do and less faffing. Yesterday morning I did the hard copy edit of the job from Hong Kong. I emailed the client to let him know, and to tell him I’ll do the screen edit today. He already replied and told me to send in my invoice. In the afternoon I drove over to the […]

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