I have a tendency to run away from arguments, especially when emotionally involved. Does that make me a weak person?
When I closed my eyes, there was chaos. A whirlpool of my life flashing like a technicoloured LED advertising board, down to what was on my shopping list and what I was going to cook for supper.
Portugal, for me, is sensory overload; whatever the time of year and after visiting for twenty-six years, it is time to make it my home.
A crackling log fire reminds me of many things. Loved-up evenings on the sofa in front of a crackling fire binge watching box sets and eating a ridiculous amount of chocolate, without realising it. My childhood, growing up in an age before Social Media, playing cards in front of the fire during long winter evenings; my big brother and parents always let me win. As someone who functions much better during the summer months, a burning fire makes the winter bearable, it is the pumping heart of a home.
I'm biased when it comes to The Algarve. It is my personal, European haven, the place I would like to spend more time. It's not just a passing phase, I've been in love with the place for twenty-six years... and who can blame me? I have waxed lyrical about it since I was blown away on my first visit.
I don't think my mother read any of my literary contributions since I had poetry published at eleven when she had high hopes that I would become Gloucestershire's answer to William Wordsworth. Oh, and helping my step-father piece together his aeronautical autobiography, of course.
I was gutted yesterday to hear that one of my oldest friends had lost her battle with Cancer. This afternoon, I wrote this short story in her memory. I would stress that this is a work of fiction and the only similarity to our relationship, is the humour we always shared together. We should all do our bit to Stand Up To Cancer so, if this story touches your heart, please donate to https://www.standuptocancer.org.uk/ways-to-donate. Thank you. There are around 164,000 cancer deaths in the UK every year, that's around 450 every day (2014-2016). ‘Join our kick-ass rebellion against Cancer.’ cancerresearch.org
I haven't submitted to a publisher since 1998. This week was a first for me because I have never approached a scary agent before and some of them weren't even born in 1998. Now, barely out of University, with dynamic wish lists, eager to discover the next J. K. Rowling and an enduring character, such as Harry Potter... who they've grown up with. As a much-older-than-I-would-like debut novelist, my bittersweet story is about the life of a forty-year-old woman born in 1959, who grew up with the non-PC tales of Noddy and Big Ears. So, many baby-faced agents might consider that my first foray into Women's Fiction would be better suited under the heading Historical Fiction.