A blog in several parts…

My intention had been to document One Saturday in the life of SS, BUT I soon realised – round about breakfast time – that this would require a War and Peace length Blog. And you defo wouldn’t want to accompany me when I had my flu jab – though coffee with the Sailor and lunch in the sublime surroundings of a friend’s house, would only make me miss the Sailor and spend the rest of the weekend trying and failing to smarten up my house!

So here’s a couple of pics to take you through the first couple of hours – walking Betty in my PJ’s at dawn – I thought you could be spared, so we’ll start right in with breakfast and some of the other living things I share my home with.

Yep. i really do love ‘bird seed’ as DH calls is, and natural yoguhurt with whatever fruit I have to hand chopped up and thrown in with a handful of walnuts. I’m a big fruit and veg person. And cheese. And chocolate. And cake – but that’s another story…especially as my friend gave me a sack – yep – quite literally a sack – of the most fabulous baking apples. Look out for recipes coming soon 🙂

Is there anyone else out there who can never bear to throw out a plant?

The one in the background of this shot was about 8 inches high when I took charge of it. Now it’s more like ‘Day of the Triffids’!

Here are some more of my non-vocal companions…

   

 I have another row of orphans in the utility room.

* And here’s my tip for keeping your plants alive and happy while you’re away. Fill a bowl or a sink with newspaper that is completely soaked through. Then rest your plants on this. (make sure there is a hole in the bottom of the pot so they can suck up water.) Make sure they are not in direct sunlight while you’re away. They can take some shade.*

Join me tomorrow for the, um, beauty props SS cannot do without! Don’t raise your hopes too high – bed-socks and flanelette pajamas figure large 😜

Enjoy your weekend everyone!

Love Susan xx

 

 

Sorry we’ve been Blogless!!!!

Huge apologies for absence! I’ve been battling a stinking cold (*see above* red watery eyes ugh) and going to bed early feeling sorry for myself – which is a fantastic excuse for catching up on my TBR pile 📚📚📚

Even Mr Monkey in the background looks a bit droopy…

Thought you might like to see this – it always puts a smile on my face – and was painstakingly stitched for me by the multi-talented and quite fabulous, exceedingly good friend, Carole Mortimer – And, btw, never was a truer word spoken – or in this instance, stitched!

 

Love to everyone, and thank you for your patience 😘😘😘

love

Susanxx

 

It’s a kind of magic

What is?

‘Why, the magic book, Toto.’

(don’t even ask how my brain works!)

Anyway, as Dorothy would know, with or without her magic 👠’s, SS can’t work without the magic book.

 

What is this miraculous tome, you may ask

Let’s take a closer look… but not too close, because that might frighten both of us!

The hieroglyphics on the left show my progress through the day, while the right hand page shows my chapter length.

I need this to know which of several documents I’m working on, and to reassure me that I start work on the correct one each day.

if my ed should be reading this, I hope she’s reassured that I should hit deadline- if I don’t hit a wall first 😜

Thats my – maybe not so unexpected- fact for today. What’s yours?

Love to all

Susan xx

Motivation Monday

Don’t let life and duties pile on top of you until you’re tearing your hair out🤦🏼‍♀️. Make a list. (I always say that)  (a desk diary helps too – I find it really helps me to check the written word, rather than believing I will actually read my online calendar.) Ticking things off my list or in my desk diary really helps me and it might help you.  A sense of achievement never hurt anyone.

Unplug. That’s my advice.

Spend time with family and friends. Relax and don’t feel guilty. Then, by the time you gird your loins – or in my case, sink into a glorious romance with a red-hot man, you will feel refreshed and ready to take on whatever life hurls at you. If I take a weekend off and refuse to feel guilty about it, I guarantee I’ll write twice as many words on Monday and on every day thereafter. Come Saturday, I’m ready to to explore what else life has to offer. How else could I come up with new ideas? Relish your free time. Make it count. Show the people you love how precious they are to you, and how spending time with them is the most important thing to you.

Back tomorrow with an unexpected fact. Hmm…at the moment i have no idea what that might be. Could be that I don’t eat offal, unless it’s chopped liver, or maybe the fact that I get my eyebrows dyed because I’m a redhead and they’re blonde, which makes me look like an alien if I leave them untreated. Darn it. Now I’ve spent two facts without coming up with a real goody, and I could have used those. Will have to try and find something really juicy…

Off to mine a fact. 🛵🔎

Love to all 😘😘

Susan x

 

Singing in the rain!

 

‘WELL! *Scandalised faces* I don’t call that motivating!’

Ah, but being a ‘glass half full’ type, I do 😀

I got home just in time to miss the worst of the rain, and now I can settle down with that large gin we talked about, to plan the week ahead🔮which I intend to spend with a very hot man in his Bedouin tent. Need I say more❣️

The pics I took on my walk today remind me of another series I want to write. 

The countryside isn’t always what we expect it to be, and there are endless possibilities for romance wrapped up in that thought. At the moment we are experiencing a plague of pigeons, and although I may love to see clouds of birds in flight I know they are a real problem for the local farmers. Guns are going off left and right as I speak, meaning poor Betty, who hates the bangs, won’t leave the house.

Hoping to bring you some brighter pics from Wuthering Heights soon!

But if we can’t have sunshine, we can lose ourselves within the cover of a book, or in our imagination with some scorching hot men 💃

Here’s my suggestion for today ❤️❤️❤️

Enjoy❣️❣️❣️

Love to all

Susan xx

 

Now then!

It used to be a glass of lager with a curry on a Friday night. How things have changed!

And while Vodka used to be all the rage, now it’s gin. And not just one type of gin.

I chose Brockmans, a slightly sweet, fruity gin served with frozen fruit. Yum!

Fever Tree tonic water seems to have annihilated the great and once ubiquitous Schweppes. Time for an exciting re-vamp me-thinks, Schweppes!

And the curry was fantastic 😉

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend with those you love.

Susan xx

Yorkshire breathing

Ay’ ‘oop!

Greetings one and all 😀

I can’t shift this cold (if i were a man it would be a bad case of ‘flu) so, adding to my host of ‘cold’ cures, I am now clearing my lungs in the most effective way I know. (this may not work for you if you live in a heavily polluted area – but ‘oop here where it’s just me and the cows, it works a treat.

When I was a professional singer and breath control was all-important I would breathe in for a slow count of 3 through my nose, then hold – though not at the back of the throat – use that diaphragm – for a slow count of 3, and then exhale for a slow count of 3 through my mouth. Repeat for a good few minutes. Now because I’m a romantic novelist, I feel gestures are required…😜

Seriously, this is an accepted way of improving health in some parts of the world (now including the Yorkshire moors!)

Here I go, pushing all the bad stuff out for a slow count of three

And here I am, bringing in all that bracing air for a slow count of three

Does it work?

So far, so sneezeless!

Love to all❣️

Susan xx

PS – my hair only looks decent because I’m off to the hairdressers – I don’t want Rachael thinking I don’t appreciate her stirling efforts to keep me looking spic and span.

I look like this every morning when I sit down to work at my computer, Rachael. Honest!!!!

Um, things appear to have gone severely downhill where the hair situ is concerned…

 

💨☔️💨

😘😘

 

 

 

 

 

❤️🇮🇹Italy 🇮🇹❤️

I’ve come home with so many happy memories of Italy!  One of my favourite occupations is browsing the shops- not the big branded stores, but the small, unique emporiums where you are bound to find something different, quirky and new.

I adored this cuckoo clock, for instance, though resisted the urge to buy it and then have to work out how to pack it in to my squishy hand luggage!


I can’t resist showing you another pic of my special friend 😉 he was just so unbelievably cute

And I couldn’t finish up without at least one more pic of that fabulous beach!

Late September is a fantastic time to visit Italy, as the crowds have left and the resorts are winding down at the end of the season, but whatever time of year Italy will always be special for me.

Wishing you happy times in your special place wherever that might be.

Love Susan xx

 

Tame ‘it’ and ‘that’!

That man!

Curb the use of ‘that‘ unless you need the word to make sense. My ‘that‘ count is always horrendous, and the word is amongst the first things to go when I’m editing.

What is ‘that‘? I always want to know when I’m reading.  Describe your ‘that!!!! Take every chance you get to enhance your descriptions a little more each time.

And as for ‘it’… what is ‘it‘???? Describe!!!! I want to know what ‘it‘ is when I read a book -find a new way to describe ‘it‘. Add some additional facets to your ‘it‘ and watch your story leap into vivid colour. Don’t waste a word. Illuminate and describe, especially in series fiction where the word count is tight, and every word must carry the story along, or it doesn’t belong. Choose your words with care. Remember each word carries its own particular weight.

DON’T WASTE A WORD

Having said that – write bold and free – and only pick up your ‘its‘ and expand your prose, if and when you feel the need in the final edit. Don’t fuss about wasting time that could be better used finishing the book and starting another.

And that’s my lecture over for today!

It’s free! 😉

Christmas Tsar

Grab a Tsar

Love you all. Now get writing!

Susan xx

 

Monday Motivation!

Life looks better with a sheikh in the picture…

It’s actually just so good to be back writing. I left my hero and heroine in a compromising position for several days. Did they blame me, or complain? No. They were amazing, though glad I was back to finish what they’d started 😉

 

Hang-over holiday hat

If you get stuck with your writing, have you tried changing POV? Or bullet-pointing the fabulous scenes you’d like to feature? When you’ve done that, try writing one of them and let the joy of story-telling come flooding back. Failing that, wear a silly hat and swear viciously.

And if that hasn’t motivated you, I don’t know what will 😉

Love to all,

Susan xx