It’s been a little while since I posted! Four of my family of five have been sick, and I went down sick with the kids a month ago. We also had a holiday in sunny Queensland during the school break (everyone was well), and then we were back home with a sick daughter. So I thought I’d do a little catch-up post.
- Workshops – I’ve presented two workshops over the last fortnight – a school holiday writing one for kids and an editing one for a marketing team. The kids’ workshop was fabulous and fun – 20 kids drawing characters, planning their stories and reading them aloud. The editing workshop was also fun – well, for me anyway! I hope the marketing team enjoyed it. We had discussed tools for brainstorming, planning and writing blog posts in an earlier workshop, and so I spent time with each participant, editing their blog post.
- Editing – I’ve been collaborating with a pair of talented new writers who are writing their first book – a cross between a self-help guide and story for 9-12 year-old girls. Their manuscript has gone backwards and forwards between us, polishing and developing the story each time. I’m looking forward to checking the final draft next week.
- Holidays – of course, holidays are lovely. But as well as the things you do on holidays, it’s also the things you don’t do that really make it. Things like driving your kids to all the activities, cooking dinner every night, making sure the sports uniforms are clean, answering text messages about sharing lifts, vacuuming etc. So that left plenty of time to sleep, read, eat and drink well, laze at the pool, have lovely conversations with my family and walk on the beach.
- Reading – I’ve read an eclectic mix, everything from middle-grade fiction to adult non-fiction and fiction. Loved Jaclyn Moriarty’s Gravity is the thing, Angie Thomas’ On the come up and Sharon Kernot’s The art of taxidermy. Fascinated by Martha Beck’s Leaving the saints, her account of leaving her Mormon community. Enchanted by Roger Housden’s Ten poems to change your life, a selection of life-changing poems with a commentary on each one. (Note to self – read more poetry, not just on holidays!)
- New website – friends of mine, Michael Hanrahan and Anna Clemman, launched their new website, Publish Central, yesterday. It’s a one-stop shop for anyone who is thinking about self-publishing a non-fiction or business book. There’s plenty of free resources and lots of information about the process of writing and publishing a book. It’s definitely worth having a look and passing on the details to any friends or family members who are thinking of self-publishing.
- Eating – I’m eating more vegetarian dishes since Miss 12 is eating less meat. My favourite quick lunches to eat at home are chargrilled broccoli with smashed chickpeas, spicy eggplant with soba noodles and sweet potato salad with lentils. And then there was the lovely Thai restaurant on holidays, plus the delicious pizza, plus the wine, plus the ice-cream after dinner. Lots of pluses on holidays!
- An anecdote – Mr 10 usually asks me for a puppy story when I pick him up from school – he’s interested to know if our ten-month golden retriever, Cleo, has been up to any adventures. This week, I had set out with her for a walk but we just turned the corner when she started sniffing frantically in the nature strip. Before I could stop her, she had gulped a bit of milk chocolate, still in its shiny foil wrapper. As you may or may not know, dogs are not supposed to have chocolate and often end up having their stomachs pumped. I called the vet, and they seemed to take forever to confer while I waited on the phone. They decided that because the amount of chocolate was so small – mini Easter egg size – and Cleo was large enough, she would be ok. And she was ok – phew! (Cleo’s photo taken by Miss 12.)
Let me know what you’ve been reading or eating or whether your dogs have been eating chocolate.