Last night was awesome!!!

When my sisters and I get together it’s great fun, yes there’s the little short lived squabbles, the occasional eyeball roll, and not to forget the pokes and jab sisterly code. But other than that, we get on incredibly well. 

So the middle sister has been trying to get my nose out of the books for a couple of hours, and show me her love for Swing-

Dancing guys, dancing, arr you are a dirty lot! Anywaaay, last night I did it, after 6 months or so of being nagged asked, I rocked up with my beginners ‘help me!’ gaze and tiny silver bow studded earrings and. it. was. goooood.

I had so much fun, there was a beginners class to start with, then a live band came out afterwards with brilliant singers, for a big sweaty heaving Swing patrol bash! Here’s a little bit for you to enjoy, just ignore me going mental for 5 sec’s of the film, I was so excited lol :-]

Do you remember I mentioned in my ‘Sitting next to Quentin Blake’ post that I thought it was not only important to work at crafting your craft, but also observe and live a little too, well, this was just the start of the latter.

My feet are still wiggling haaa!

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What have you been doing away from the books, that makes you happy?

Friends like these…

As some of you know it’s been a tough slog these last few months, and if I didn’t have friends like these, it would’ve been a whole lot tougher.

I mean, look what was waiting for me from one of my dearest friends, when she invited me over for brunch a few weeks back, mouth watering isn’t it?

Oh, and by the way it was as delicious as it looked!

We bathed in the sunshine and cackled like old women, laughing about nothing  imparticular- just how we like it. It was sooo much fun. [Above are the failed polaroid shots we took ;-[

Then I got a surprise visit from Spain yesterday, and boy did we have lots to catch up on, got so much love for this girl, seriously :-]

 

Then in the evening, it was out on the town to the stunning Lauren’s birthday party, at a wonderful vegan place in Oxford street. I can’t believe I ran out of the house, and forgot her present!  http://www.oxfordstreet.co.uk/dining/ethos/

To my sisters- which include Amirah and Lizzy- Pam, Grace, & Lauren love you to the max, thank you for being there. Always.

Just like Pizza lol

That’s it, bloomin ‘ell I’ve gone on a full saccharine overdrive-Someone please stop me!!! Er… Can I just say a big thank you to all the Facebook crew as well, all your positive comments likes, encouragement, have been truly lovely. I had no idea the writing community would be this supportive. :-]

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Wait-Did you notice I refrained from putting anything book related in this post. Although I was thinking, with all the stories my friends and I have between us, we could easily fill a paper back no worries. Ok, so it would probably have to have a parental guidance sticker on it, but I’d definitely be up for reading that. 

x

 

When writing is good…

Tues

I’m ecstatic!!!!!! 

After coming back from my writing class I was spinning off the ceiling, why? why? I don’t know why I just love it, I could speak about children’s books for days. I love the discussions we have even the irritable ones, the problem solving, the listening to other peoples work, the group, arrrrh the group is so lovely and yes I am happy peeps, I am well and truly stoked for that very reason.

I’ve finally found a place where I belong, and guess what they haven’t kicked me out yet. Tequila anyone???

Wed

Sat down to write an idea that came to me in the middle of crossing the road, I totally could’ve killed myself. But who care’s when I managed to plot and write that sucker down in about two hours! Inevitably it needs a good edit and clean but c’mon, that doesn’t happen often.

The words were furiously coming out of my pores and I just had to get it out of me, and the BEST thing was, even though I knew what I wanted to write, there were all these pockets of surprises popping up from nowhere, like little furry mole heads taking a peak into the outside world.

Bustle

Don’t worry Dumbledore I’ll definitely be sharing a post about the dark side too, but for now can’t I go at this thing as if I’ve eaten a unicorn of marshmallows, and don’t know any better….Pleeease.

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Where’s the strangest place you’ve ever come up with a book idea?

 

Writers: All Coffee and Turkish delight, I don’t think so…

Wednes

I’ve been at the desk all this week throwing myself into researching, jobbing, writing, soon to be submitting…..And it’s hard work. Feel a bit worse for wear today though, watching Eat Pray Love yesterday probably didn’t help matters; but yes, if you’re wondering I am enjoying it, in a weird ‘Shut off from the world’ kinda way….I really am. 

Last Thurs

The girls-my sisters- bought me this pad for Christmas, I got it out for the first time last week…Haaa Think I may have to draw in it at some point.

Right now…

Don’t you just hate plotting when it’s going wrong, and love plotting when it’s going right?  Oh the POST ITS!!!!

I wrote Three picture books last month, in total there’s now four in the series. An idea for a chapter book series has been worming around in my head, so want to get started on that tomorrow, and I’m doing the last proofread on my current book before it flies its wings. 

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What do you reckon have I earned a coffee and a chalky piece of delight yet?

HELP! He didn’t tell me what was INSIDE the sandwich

FRI
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As a sign of appreciation for me waiting in a long line of Horrid Henry fans *If you don’t stop tugging me I’ll- How many times I AM NOT YOUR MOTHER* Sorry, erm…For a signed copy of his favourite book. My nephew decided to say thank you in various ways, y’know, to show me how much he loooves me. It all started with…. 

Spongebob square pants

….Completely ignoring me when I went to pick him up from school last week, next, he practically bubble snot laughed at me when I ate the pancake which was left on the side in the kitchen, only to later find out it had fallen on the floor. Nice…

The slightly warped website

‘Auntie you’re gonna get soooo sick!’ he’s now holding his sides in hysterics.

And last but not least he shares his latest Masterchef concoction, jam a la scrambled egg sandwich which I know, you’ll all want to run home and try. Yep, Any second now…

No, he’s definitely not at all Horrid like Henry himself, but I’ll bet money on them going to the same cheffing school!

SUN

It’s time to not Homer Simpson read, but ACTUAL read Lol

The Simpsons Giphy

And Two YA books later I’ve zipped through ‘Brock’ by Antony Mcgowan and ‘All my secrets’ by Sophie Mckenzie. Check them out below!

http://www.barringtonstoke.co.uk/books/brock/

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24323043-all-my-secrets

Both very different books, but definitely a good decent grip of a read for their age groups. If you’ve read either of them I’d love to hear your thoughts. 

Anyone else hungry?

Peanuts

‘Hello, yes can I get a a chicken shish please…What do you mean you’re all out, but you can make a mean egg and marmite sandwich instead.

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Which books will you get stuck into this weekend?

 

Part two: World book day 2017!

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‘It was the most embarrassing day of my life…’ grumbled Hagrid Sorry my nephew when I went to him pick up from school today, yep you heard right, and in addition to that he apparently kept his coat on for most of it after having *ahem* a slight wardobe malfunction- which was a too big at waist trouser, trouser not staying up, trouser slipping down trouser leg type of thing.

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Hmm This type of behaviour doesn’t bode well for taking part next year, unbeknown to his fanatical border line crazy competitive mother- my sister, who I can easily say that about as I’m pretty much the same bracket. Yes ‘Best dressed costume’ is up for grabs and we have had high hopes! Lol   

 

 

 

 

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These pictures posted are some that we took before he had a chance to pull off his costume, and play a game in the hallway he liked to call ‘Burn, fire burn’. 

He’s growing up what can I say, I mean I’m totally fine with it… Totally

Actually can you leave me now…..I need to go bawl in a corner.

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In keeping with the wizardy witchy theme, here’s the book that I read at his school today beware one and all ‘Winne The Witch’ by the brilliant Valerie Thomas and Korky Paul is on the loose!

Hope you had a fab world book day peeps!

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Winnie-Witch-Valerie-Thomas-x/dp/0192726439

Did you dress up if so who did you go as, I’d love to know, pop a comment in the show off box below ;-]

Part 1: Whoopee World book day has arrived!

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This morning was a mad rush to get things sorted for the lots of fun World book day, shirt, hair, lantern, animal fur-Hagrids not mine, and a box of raisins which I was going to use to blacken my front teeth with, because as you know the famous ‘Amazing Grace’ has lost a few of hers. 

So yes boys and girls I couldn’t review that book this week and not want to jump at the chance to be in it, even if it was just for the day. How do you think I did? Not bad for a *CLASHING SYMBOLS* year old ladee lol.

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But the real star of the show was my nephew who went from small boy to the GINORMOUS Hagrid on a…… 

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SCOOTER!

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I’m off to read at his school today, it’s a theme of magic and wizards, I hope I don’t embarrass him….Paaa ha ha! I can’t even keep a straight face when I say that.

Rock Bands & Pancakes

Sat

So here I am lulling away the day being made to feel extra special with a plateful of pancakes, and god they were good pancakes! This has made me think of how I’m gonna rock out my own batter this upcoming pancake day, perhaps with blueberries, or cream or jam…. 

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Sun

Selfie madness ensues -this pic was one of at least 20!- it was for the awesome hypothetical rock band we were trying to create, still trying to figure out whether to play bass or drums even though I’m proficient in neither. What do you think we should be called?

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Mon

No time for throwing the flat screen out the window, going to the cave to finish reading this once upon a time banned bad boy….See you soon phonies! lol 

Etsy: Oak bookmark

https://www.waterstones.com/book/the-catcher-in-the-rye/j-d-salinger/9780241950432

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:-]

Out of interest what’s the most rock n roll thing you’ve done? I once jumped the gates of the Phoenix festival and met Paul Weller…

 

 

 

Chilling out with David Hockney

Sat

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img_20170220_213041I love it when a mates got spare tickets to go and see one of the best British artists in town *pats fro* It just makes a girl feel so spesh, y’know whot I mean???

Thanks babe! 

Ok so my accent maybe a horrible Towie fake lol, but this exhibition sure as hell wasn’t, seriously it was nothing short of amazing, from the moment we walked in we were captivated.

Pinterest

If you want to be inspired, please go and see this, yes the tickets are a little bit pricey and I understand not everyone has a mate with a freebie, but if you can you have to GO.

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 They display some of his best work over a period of 60 years with seamless ease; you’ll see his development throughout time come to life, from abstraction, portraits, photography to those famous LA swimming pools, and his embrace of new technology. Urgh, I wanna go back just thinking about it.

Hockney is showing at the Tate Britain until 29 May 2017

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http://www.hockneypictures.com/#

Who in the art world is inspiring you at the moment? Would love to hear from you!

 

 

Who are these friends anyway?

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There is no more elaboration than that when you buy a ticket to see Chris Riddell and friends, and in actually fact it clashed with another event I wanted to see. But I thought just get it, I’ve heard SO many good things about the current childrens laureate, it’s bound to be fun! But jeez was that an understatement.img_20170215_162603

Riddell starts by introducing each member of his panel with a quirky anecdote and the audience gasp with hand on mouth as they emerge. I’m so stoked right now I cant contain myself. So I promised to tell you who I had the pleasure of seeing yesterday DRUM ROLL please!!! ONLY Liz Pichon, Posey Simmons, Cressida Cowell and AND….

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Mr Neil Gaiman, Oh dear lord!!! Can you believe it, I couldn’t and I was there lol. So here’s a snipet I managed to film of him reading an excerp from his book ‘Unfortunately for the milk’ -which I’ll review soon!- While Chris Riddell the illustrator draws in the background. Apologies, I couldn’t manage to pick up any of what he’d drawn which was a beautiful, angelic ‘pony’ and if you’re familiar with the story it will make complete sense. But I figured something was better than nothing. 

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Enjoy!

Today I am here, and tomorrow I’ll tell you who I met!

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Surrounded by a heap of small children and their tired families at the South Bank, I’m forced to weave through the crowd. I head over to buy a ticket from a slightly irritated cashier but once she realises I’m able to make a quick decision, its amazing how the irritable crease falls from her forehead and slips down to her mouth, I’m a relieved to see her smile, I’m NOT so relieved to find out that the money on my card is dropping exceedingly lower, and I will have to face the real world soon.  

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NO more books, and No more events I say to myself as I walk around Jasmin Anoschkins bold and beautiful sculptures.

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I really should listen to that part of my brain I think, while whacking the side of my head with an imaginary wooden spoon.

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Please come back tomorrow so I can tell you the fabulous surprise I got today!

 

Great weekend!

Sat 

It’s huge isn’t it?? A proper English breakfast. Went dancing for the first time in ages the night before so I reckon I deserve it *Ouch toes still hurt* lol

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Got invited to watch the Goya film awards on telly with some lovely Spanish friends of mine. I have no idea what I’m laughing about in this photo, but it seems I may just explode any second, oh dear…

 

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Hooking up with friends makes me miss old friends too!

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Sun

Oh and there was even cake, no not this one, a friend baked a lemon drizzle for us to share. This is the cake my amazing sister made for a friends birthday party isn’t it cool my teeth are hurting just looking at it!

What are you getting up to this weekend?

I’ve finally joined SCWBI

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Last week -ish…

I don’t know why it’s taken me so long to do this, but I finally have yay!!! So if you don’t know what SCBWI is, it’s an HUGE non profit organisation which can help to focus your children’s writing and or illustration journey in the right direction, they provide conferences, articles, and meet ups all with invaluable advice with those in the know. 

They have lots of authors at hand who have been there done that got the t-shirt so to speak, with a host of agents, publishers and awards of their own, it really is worth a look in if you want to get on in the industry.

Check them out!

http://www.scbwi.org/about/

Yesterday

I went to the British Library, and sat for a very looong time for at least the first 30 mins I’d say…What? Nothing was coming out, no words, zilch…But after a while my fingers began to jump over the keys, and I wrote about two pages of useless gibberish.

I’ll be there tomorrow with bells on of course…How depressing, lol.

Today

Today is my second writing class I’ve taken since signing up for a couple of terms with author & television writer Neil Arksey. It’s also the first ever writing course I’ve done and am super nervous, there is a lot of homework, and, well I may just cry. 

Do you know of any organisations us Childrens writers should know about?

Use the Welcome box below and tell us all x

Last week in London baby!

Weds

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After an absolute mental Summer it was time to go home to London, I didn’t really have the cash, the head-space or the time to do it, but when I heard it was Ben and Drews wedding I just had to be there.

Thurs                                                Wedding bells!!!

Celebrations got underway in beautiful Bath, and the happy couple couldn’t have been happier! They both looked stunning in sharp tailored suits and matching pocket watches, and left not a dry eye in the house as they said their vows- I needed a tissue even before the music started!

So while the boys were smothered with attention from loved ones, and smiled for a million and one well poised photos, some friends and I went and took some shots of our own.

[Oh you’re so funny, no you are, no you are…Lol I love these girls x]

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Fri

Then Friday came, I tried to do the rounds with friends and family but it wasn’t happening, I mean don’t get it twisted- I did get time to go BOOK shopping, but, and its a big BUT I was promptly dragged out of WH Smith by my party book pooper sister, god I can always count on HER.

So I’d bought 24 books SO WHAT?

Sat

My brother finally moved into his new place, and my sisters and I helped out with arranging the furniture, putting together his new bed, and folding his clothes. I’m so excited for him, it’ll be the first time he’s lived away from home so this will definitely be a new chapter in his life….and somehow I can’t help but think that it’ll be a new chapter in mine too- What?? I’m due for one haaa!

O.k I’d like you to all raise you’re glasses for my brother Joel…*Sobs*

‘Welcome to bills, parties, wearing the same pants for multiple days, and no more mum telling you to ‘Do this or do that’ and yes, oh yes,to FREEDOM.

Hip Hip Hooray, Hip Hip Hooray

and one for luck, hip hip hooray!!!

Love you Joe x

 

I think I’m in love with Mr Nicholls

Sat

Reading…

Sun

Sorry still reading….

Mon

Finished ‘Starter for ten’ no time to breath I have to read the ‘Understudy’!

 and so I did…

I’ve never read so quickly, seriously I’m a slow reader, and to those of you who have read them, of which there are many-sorry I came late to the party lol.

I just kept on thinking… I wonder what David, sorry Mr Nicholls is like, you know as a person, as an author… I imagine him smoking and tapping at his laptop, tap, tap, tap and a lot of smoke, everywhere… and more tapping. I dunno maybe he doesn’t smoke at all.

He must be round my age the references are well, I totally get it, his books are so vivid and funny and poignant, and gritty, and there’s a lot of laugh out loud nooo don’t do it moments too, like a really good film, then suddenly the credits are rolling and… Oh yes, I’m in love, there’s no doubt about it.

I’m half way through ‘The spool of blue thread’ by Anne Tyler. I think I may have fallen all over again.

What books are gripping you at the moment?

Catching up with friends!

Sometimes work can take over EVERYTHING, I should know, as right now I feel like I’m doing everything lol! But at the beginning of the year I made a promise to myself that I wanted to bulk up my social calender-trying to maintain the balance between work and play, and I’m glad I did because I enjoy it so much. It can be such a challenge in London, but it MUST be done! 

Mon

imageBank holiday was great, no rain, great food in Covent garden, and snappy happy conversation, perfick!

Friday

imageIt was the lovely Vee’s birthday, haven’t seen her for a while so it was great to catch up!

I love getting together with friends, how do you cope with the work life balance? Would love to hear from you!

The Irish vote gives club Kali, even more reason to party!!!!

Can I just start by saying I haven’t been out clubbing like this is AGES! So dancing all night in sparkly heelies, downing copious amounts of water, and being checked out by both men and women was feeling a little alien to me. I soon got over that though, because this was SUCH A GOOD NIGHT!!!

With the recent Pro gay marriage vote in Ireland, there’s was and still is a great deal to party about, this club celebrates a beautiful mix of gay, straight, and transgender people, we had a blast!image

 Me, my sis and her best mate exploring selfie-ology…deep

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The club was heaving, and the dance floor was never empty, Bhangralicious!

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 Fun, Fun, fun, got to be repeated!

Birthdays, shopping and good old karaoke!

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Sat: Day

So here I am prepping my hair before a night out on the town, it’s been a pretty good day, so I decide to go out shopping, I haven’t done ‘Clothes shopping’ in a while and I’m super excited.

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New jeans purchased, Love them!

Sat: Eve….

imageOff to meet the birthday girl for a spot of Karaoke. I plucked up the courage to sing  Bon Jovi’s ‘Living on a prayer’ Oh my god, sooooh much fun!

Can’t wait to do it again! Tomorrow its a spot of book shopping at Daunt’s Whoop Whoop!

Got any new book recommendations? Would love to hear from you!