time flies when you're being a mum

What I read last month...

01 Jul, 2018

At the beginning of June I had about 8 different books on the go and I wasn’t finishing any of them. Then in a flurry, I finished 3 books in a week. That was a good week, I love the feeling of accomplishment you get when you finish a book!

June reading

Up until recently I’d been starting books but not necessarily ever finishing them. But I think that’s the nature of what I often read…books more along the self-help line and if they aren’t fully appealing to me, I’ll put them down and not finish them.

In June I switched this up a bit and to make sure I’m reading different types of books at the same time:

  • books about self-help and/or writing (such as The Miracle Morning and Show Your Work);
  • books for research (I’m working on a kids’ book which I think will be aimed at the 8-12 age bracket);
  • books with Reuben (we’ve just had an overhaul and you can see his reading list here); and,
  • books for fun (I haven’t read anything like this for months).

June Reading List

(more…)

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How and why to plot your story first

27 Jun, 2018

Up until a few weeks ago, my opinion of plotting was a snobby one. I’d read Stephen King’s fantastic book, On Writing, a few years ago (you can see my favourite quotes from On Writing in this post I did for Live Love Blog) and Stephen King doesn’t plot. So, despite never having finished a story (and barely even starting one for that matter), I didn’t plot either.

Up until I hit a wall with the story I’m writing (Frog Boy – working title!). For over a year, ideas had come to me while out walking, during chats at the pub, from books I’d read and random things that fell out of my husband’s mouth.

I’d written about 4 chapters by the seat of my pants, totalling around 5000 words, and writing what came into my head. Then I realised:

a) It was taking me ages; and

b) I was getting lost.

I knew there was an idea in there but I had no clue how it was all going to piece together nor what the point of it was going to be.

And the not knowing made me not want to write.

I realised I needed to know how to plot a story…

How to plot a story

I’ve been reading about plotting for a few weeks now but hadn’t put it into practise.

Finally, for this week’s creative writing class, it’s my homework! I’m now forced to come up with a plot for a new story. Hurrah!

And in doing so, I can use the process to plot Frog Boy. Which I had a go at yesterday…

How to plot a story

I’ve collected together some tips from a chapter on plotting from the book How to Write a Children’s Book, and have added in tips from my Creative Writing tutor. (more…)

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Ideas and inspiration

25 Jun, 2018

I’ve mentioned that we’re about to start doing the house up, so I’ve been sharing our ideas and inspiration, room by room. It’s as much about working out what we want to do (at the 11th hour) as it is sharing with you guys what we’re up to these days. So today I’m onto the master bedroom…

Master Bedroom inspiration

I’ve also blogged our ideas for the Entrance, and the Living Room and Study.

Before I get to our ideas, we now have an actual start date for the building work… 10th July!

Crap, better get ordering things. Stat. (more…)

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How to get 'unstuck'!

21 Jun, 2018

When I first found out I was pregnant, I was in the middle of a creative confidence revival.

I was working on the blog, and had ideas a plenty. I even wrote about confidence and how to cultivate it here.

This was compounded by a creative writing course, which gave me the confidence to try new things and reignite the kids’ book I had begun writing last year. Starting the Miracle Morning was the icing on the cake – it focused my mind on my goals and got me striving to achieve.

I’m certain pregnancy hormones were making me super ambitious, but I wanted to get it all done before the baby arrived!

But then… just as I was getting into the swing of things, my confidence took a holiday.

Creative Confidence (more…)

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Reuben's Reading List

13 Jun, 2018

I love stories for kids (I’m in the process of trying to write my own even) but up until recently I started to worry that Reuben (who’s turning 6 in August) wasn’t getting enough variety or challenge from the books I read to him.

With his new found confidence in reading, he had stopped wanting me to read to him (and with his school books getting longer, it certainly takes up bedtime!), and when I did read to him, it would be the old favourites over and over again!

Dixie O’Day, Moomin, and his absolute favourite Oi Frog (and friends, we have the whole selection and eagerly await Oi Duck-Billed Platypus, which comes out in September!) are all great… but every night?

I was ready to move us on to something new. Something a bit more challenging. (more…)

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