Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Angel Story # 2




It was the Millennium year just before Christmas. I was on the approach to my fortieth birthday. I experienced a real mid-life crisis at that time. I don’t know why. Nothing was really wrong, but I felt like running away from my life and everything I knew.


On the 22nd of December, I went out for a family meal at a local restaurant. My mother presented me with a lovely birthday cake and had invited my brother and favourite uncle along as a surprise. Following the meal, the candles were lit and I blew them out. I remember feeling blessed that the people who meant most to me in life were there. We went home and I thought nothing much more about it.


The following day, I was watching a Christmas movie in my bedroom, one I had never seen before called ‘One Magic Christmas’.


There were so many similarities in it to my own life. The wife in the story never got the Christmas present she asked Father Christmas for as a child which was a Mr Potato Head. I had remembered writing a similar letter to him on Christmas and never got the present I asked for either, which was a Sindy Doll. So I could relate to this tale very well.


It transpired that the wife in the movie had a guardian angel named, Gideon. That was odd, I had always thought mine had the same name too.


I watched the film and enjoyed it and was about to get up to get ready to go out as we were due to deliver a Christmas present to my husband’s grandmother at her nursing home. Then I spotted it. A small Mr Potato Head on the cupboard in the bedroom. That was strange, I hadn’t remembered seeing my children play with one of those before. I knew that I certainly had not bought them one. So I asked my daughter did she know anything about it. She replied that yes, she did. A man had come up to her on the way out of the restaurant where my birthday celebration was being held and placed it in her hand. She had no idea who the man was. I assumed perhaps it was a member of staff.


Then later that day as we parked up at the nursing home and I got out of the car, I noticed a small white feather stuck to window on the passenger side where I had been sitting. That really made me wonder.


I related that tale to my daughter just last week and she found it incredible. She doesn’t remember being given that toy. I asked her if there were other times when we went to the restaurant when members of staff gave children small toys after their meals, and she said that as far as she was aware, they have never given toys to children.


Not long after that, my emotions settled down and I no longer felt as though I wanted to run away from life. Whatever happened, I can’t explain. Maybe they were all bizarre coincidences, but maybe not…

Thursday, August 06, 2009

I've got my excuse!

Okay, now I have my excuse to buy a pair of Jimmy Choos. I said, I think it was in my last but one post, that I would buy a pair for a special occasion. Well, now it's arrived. I passed my Open University A215 course! I suppose that is excuse enough.

Then maybe I will buy a bag like this to go with the shoes:
But I am only dreaming...sigh, the JCHOO bag and shoes would cost a whopping £835.50 altogether! The bag is onsale and is usually almost £1000! The shoes aren't on sale and are £358.00! Probably much more than the price of my entire shoe collection. An obscene amount of money really. Mind you, there are so many high street stores selling similar goods for a fraction of the price these days, I don't know if it is worth the bother to buy the real thing. Unless, it really would make me feel better to know I am sporting designer goods.

Knowing my luck one of the heels would get wedged in a crack in the pavement in no time!



Wednesday, August 05, 2009

What rational explanation is there?




I Googled my name earlier and found that one of my books is up on e-bay for a staggering US $107.14 plus postage of $3.49. See here:

This doesn't make any sense whatsoever to me as the book is still available at Amazon.com and my publisher's website for a more practical sum of $10.99
[6.47319 GBP]. For some reason though, I have yet to discover, it isn't available at Amazon.co.uk any more only from independent sellers at exorbitant prices.

The best place for people to buy my first two books [It Happened One Summer and Return to Winter] is from my publisher's website. See here:

http://www.thewildrosepress.com/it-happened-one-summer-paperback-p-3081.html

http://www.thewildrosepress.com/return-to-winter-paperback-p-3040.html

Yet, strangely, the third book I had published at The Wild Rose Press is still available for a reasonable price from independent publishers at Amazon.co.uk.

And why am I writing this particular post here today? To take my mind off my impending OU result for the A215 Creative Writing result. It's due out officially by post on Friday but there are signs the results will be published online shortly. I'll keep you posted!

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

New Shoes



After drooling after some of the Jimmy Choo shoes, I decided to buy this pair. No, I haven't gone mad and shelled out hundreds of pounds, I used my head and ordered them from Amazon [independent dealers] instead.

They were a snip at £16.99 and arrived within a couple of days. The heel is a little higher than I normally wear these days. But a girl has got to have a pair of killer heels. Wish I'd had the guts to purchase a pair of the red patent though!



I also purchased a pair of denim sandals. These were only a tenner and very comfortable.

As I write this I realise I have a bit of an obsession with shoes. There are seven pairs discarded on the floor beside me. I have got to stop using the computer room as a dressing/undressing room!

I will have a pair of Jimmy Choos one day, probably in the sale or maybe to reward myself for achieving something special...

Monday, August 03, 2009

Noise Pollution



Why are some people so disrespectful of others' feelings? I went to bed late and thought I would have a bit of a lie in the following morning as I didn't have to go into work until lunchtime. So I thought I'd get up around 9 am or thereabouts.

However, I was woken at 7.45 by an horrendous noise sounding like some sort of disc cutter. I jumped out of bed and ran to the window but could see nothing. It sounded very nearby and I thought: "Who the heck is doing work at this time of the morning?" Then I noticed my neighbour up the road walking down the street and talking to some men. It appeared that they were working on the large house next to him and were using his private car park without his permission.

My neighbour must have okayed them using his car park to gain access to the house next door and dump some of the rubble there. The disc cutter noise and something sounding akin to a pneumatic drill sounded intermittently all morning. It looked as if they were digging up paving stones and tearing down a side wall. The best of it was it looks as if the family who live in the house have gone on holiday, so they have no problem with the noise.

I don't think I would have minded so much if the workmen had started work a little later, I just hate being woken up. It puts me in a bad mood for the rest of the day.

Although where I live looks as though it would be a quiet little area, there is often a lot of noise going on somewhere. As someone once told me, "It's the age of the power tool." So if someone isn't have their house updated hammering from dawn till dusk they are making other forms of noise.

I was once woken by two neighbours chatting outside at 6 am! What's the matter with people? The men are around retirement age and don't have to get up to go to work. So why are they outside chatting at that time of the morning? One of the men regularly used to wake us up when he came home following a night out with his wife and another couple. That went on for years until the club they visited closed down.

People don't seem to have so much respect for their neighbours any more. Maybe it's just me. Perhaps I have been unlucky this time, I don't remember having this problem where I lived before. Or maybe I am just a bit of a grump!

Saturday, August 01, 2009

The World of Mills and Boon




Whenever the phrase 'romance writer' is used I bet you conjure up a particular image? For a lot of people it might be a picture of someone not unlike Barbara Cartland, reclining on a chaise lounge in a floaty pink outfit, churning out novels each and every day.

So it might come as a bit of a surprise to know that some romance writers are quite beefy men. I met a couple at an RNA writing conference a few years ago. This morning I found an online article about one called Roger Sanderson who writes as Gill Sanderson. I haven't read any of his books yet, but I recognise the name.

Read full article here:

A snippet from the article implies that Roger is not alone in his pursuit as a male in a female dominated world. Who could image a former SAS man penning novels as 'Molly Jackson'? Or even that the author of The Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum, penned stories for girls as 'Edith Van Dyne'?

You might be wondering why I am writing about such things this morning? I accidentally stumbled upon an online extract from a book which I think is 'The Story of Mills and Boon'. If interested, you can view it here:

One of the things mentioned is that the firm confirms an important point for would-be authors in their guidelines that they are in the business of entertainment and that escapism needs to be based on reality.

That's why I am often puzzled when people speak of a Mills and Boon World as if it is some super duper haven where everything goes exceedingly well.

Anyone who has read a Mills and Boon book will know that that's not the case at all. For from it. For a start for a romance story to work there needs to be some sort of conflict and quite often the hero and heroine don't hit it off to begin with. And even if they do, there tends to be a period of time towards the end of the book when the Black Moment occurs. This is the moment when all appears lost. The reader may get the impression that the couple will go their separate ways but wills them to stay together. Of course, all is not lost. It never is in a Mills and Boon book. That's the beauty of it. The reader needs the Happy Ever After Ending or else will feel cheated. It's even been said in its time that reading one of these books was better than taking a Valium. I can well believe it.

But to get back to what people say of this Mills and Boon World. Even on the TV programme, Loose Women, this week it was mentioned in such a way as if to imply that one of these novels is a long way from reality. I disagree. More so now than ever do they reflect the modern world of romance. Some of them have mentioned terrorism, drugs and murder. They aren't all safe little stories for gullible little women. The heroines these days are often independent types with careers and know what they want from a man, not content to just lie back and think of England.

I say to these people who have a hazy vision of this genre, read a Mills and Boon book to find out what they're really like. Apparently 4 in 10 women read them [although I suspect many don't admit to it] and 11 million M&B novels are sold in this country.

It's strange though, why do I appear to be the only person who browses that particular shelf at my local WHS? Do women sidle along in disguise, looking both ways to ensure they aren't being watched, then sneak one from the shelf hiding it under a copy of Gardener's Weekly as they slink to the counter to pay for it?

Let's be up front about it. I'm coming out of the closet.

"My name is Lynette and I'm a Mills and Boon Junkie..."