In which I Clean All The Things

I’m not known for my house-keeping skills.

Truth be told, I will choose pretty much any activity over wiping things which will be covered in dust and mud and Lego moments later.

However, every so often (when I’m expecting visitors, oddly enough), I get a strange Urge to Clean. And today is one of those days, people.

I’m overly optimistic when the Urge to Clean takes over. I begin by wiping down the skirting boards with a damp cloth, sewing tie-backs for the cheap IKEA curtains and polishing my candlesticks with Brasso, despite the fact that the bin needed emptying sometime in the 1980’s and the bathroom sink is harboring sentient life.

Also, the Urge to Clean is followed, fairly swiftly, with a stronger urge to drink wine and sit down with a good book, so I must seize the moment and Hoover the cat hair off the sofa before the madness passes…

The picture – which could so easily be a self portrait right about now – is by the fantastic Hyperbole and a Half and is from one of my favourites This is Why I’ll Never Be an Adult. Do check out her alternative pain chart, too. It’s genius.

50,000 words

Despite a weekend filled with work, butter cream icing, and a trip to the cinema to see Paul*, I managed to pass the 50,000 word mark on my WIP.

I *love* passing the 50,000 word mark. Not because it is over half way through the draft (because that, of course, is nowhere near the halfway point of the actual work needed), but because it is something substantial. The book is now a tangible thing and I’ve spent enough time with my characters to believe they’re real and alive (in a completely sane way, honest).

Ultimately, I now know that, for better or worse, I will finish the damn book.


* No, it doesn’t approach the brilliance of Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz or Spaced and yes, the humour is broader (and cruder) than the usual Frost/Pegg outings, but it’s still a fun way to spend a couple of hours.

Cake or death *

Happy Friday, all!

I thought it was time for a writing update. This week has been mixed. I’m still managing to write every day (which is good), but the word counts are pretty low (which is frustrating). My writing time has been limited, too, as the children have been on holiday since Wednesday.

The book has got to the unwieldy stage and it takes a good chunk of my writing time to find my place in the story, and remember what I was thinking of doing with the various plot strands. I’m craving a couple of days of peace in which I could bury myself in the thing, only emerging for tea and crisps. However, my so-called ‘real’ life is steadfastly refusing to oblige, so I shall soldier on in dribs and drabs and snatched moments.

I need to make every minute at the keyboard count and with that thought, I shall stop writing this blog entry and bally well get back to it.

I leave you with this handy aid to productivity: Write or Die.

And there is no cake. Sorry.

* Not really and, also, totally nicked from Eddie Izzard.

[Picture credit – Cutest Food]


I expected to love Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World. I mean, it’s directed by Edgar Wright (Hot Fuzz, Shaun of the Dead, Spaced) and stars Michael Cera (Arrested Development, Juno), how could I not? Right?

So. Very. Right.

It’s stuffed full of comic book and gaming references (and references make my geeky heart beat faster), has great dialogue, characterisation, and humour, and a genuinely sweet romantic story at its centre.

I loved Kieran Culkin’s character, too. They managed ‘the gay best friend’ trope without being cutesy or resorting to stereotypes.

Anyhoo. Just in case you’re as much of a geek as me. Here’s a brilliant reproduction of the bag that Ramona Flowers carries in the film. I think it’s rather lovely – whether you’re a fan or not.

Last-Minute Valentine

In case you hadn’t noticed, it’s Valentine’s Day.

Forgot all about it? Don’t worry, I’ve got your back… Quick! Print a card from Cruel Tea’s Etsy shop. I love the Letterpress-style one pictured above, although the robots are pretty adorable, too.

Need an emergency gift? How about a crochet heart? The talented and generous Bella Dia offers a free pattern and tutorial here.

Can’t crochet to save your life? How about an apple with a sticker. Cute, no?

Naturally sweet DIY Valentine from Twig and Thistle.

You’re welcome.

A little Friday colour…

It’s Friday after a very long and busy week and its dark and cold outside, I have a stinking cold, a talk to write (for a local writing group) and a meeting at the school to brainstorm fundraising ideas. The house is a tip, and both the duvet and the WIP are calling to me with equal volume and insistence.

All of which is to say sorry for the poor blogging effort and here are some colourful pictures (from the ‘inspiration’ section of fabric designer Amy Butler).

Have a colourful Friday!

Thank you to Laini’s blog for alerting me to this section of Amy’s site.