Posts Tagged ‘Christmas’

To those who celebrate it – Merry Christmas!
For those who don’t – have a happy few days, whatever you are doing.

Here’s a little Mariah to keep you company for a few minutes!

See you in a few days,

Happy writing,




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I am off on my Christmas break now, so instead of telling you what I am reading, I wanted to share a famous story with you: A Christmas Carol

Unfortunately, being a Dickens novel I have never got into it (see also: Great Expectations; Bleak House; Oliver Twist).  Maybe I’ll try again next year!

Instead, and because most of us have seen at least one film or tv version of the story, I give you a brief synopsis by Chris Pirillo:


Happy reading,



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…and all through the house
Were the remnants of wrapping
And bags to fill a warehouse!

I can’t believe it’s only a week until Christmas.

Normally I spend some time around now thinking about the strengths of my writing year and areas I can develop in the next, but this year went way off plan and never got back on track.  I don’t see the point in reviewing a year in which all my intentions went awry!

So I will focus on two specific positives of the year…

The first is the crime writing convention back in April. I found it thought-provoking and it made me want to go to more events like it. We all know that the year didn’t work that way, but I still want to go to more, and I am intending to go to the 2017 Classic Crime event in June 2017.  Hopefully more than just the one, in fact!  I don’t think I realised at the time quite how useful the day would be going forward.

The second is getting back into writing after my rubbish summer.  I may not be where I want to be but it would have been so easy to admit defeat some of those days, and I got back on the horse.  Yes, the horse is a bit of a scraggly old thing but it’s moving, and that is important.  I always say you can’t edit a blank page, and that is particularly relevant when things are going badly.  Any writing, however rough and ready, is better than none.

Two things don’t seem much of an outcome for 12 months, but both represent something important in my year: the first, a change in direction and in perception; the second a challenge I won.  It might not be reflected in word counts or books read but I’m still here, still writing, still being inspired. That’s a major success in my book!

I don’t expect to have any time to pop back before Christmas but I will prepare a suitably cheery post for Thursday, at least.

Whatever you are doing for the next fortnight, I hope it’s a happy, healthy and peaceful time for you all.

And I promise 2017 will be a more energised year on here.  I did ask Father Christmas for my mojo back, after all…!!

Happy Writing,







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It’s the first of December already!  I haven’t got to grips with this year yet, and it’s nearly over.   In the next few weeks there’ll be a rush of events – and then it’ll be 2017.

We have an advent candle this year, something I’ve never had before.  I am going to use the time it is burning to take a break and reflect, because if I don’t December truly will pass by in a blur.

It’ll be my own mindful moment, allowing me to mark the passing of each day.

The Christmas period is to me a time of love, of friends and family, of sharing special moments.  But I have to be honest and say the meaning and purpose can be lost in the preparations and the pressure of trying to fit everything in, so the focus goes from the positive to the negative.


As I count down to the celebrations and mark each passing day, I will try my hardest to keep the focus not on the rushing and the pressure, but on the many ways I am truly lucky to have the life I do.

This year has been a weird one for me in many ways, not least of all because of my health – but I can still end it looking forward with positivity and hope.

Happy 1st December!



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So this is how Christmas week went:

21 December: work/out
22 December: work/out
23 December: work/out/wrapping
Christmas Eve: work/friends over/out
Christmas day: out
Boxing Day: out
27 December: stayed in pyjamas/did some writing.

I’m not complaining, it was a lovely week – but the whodunnit didn’t get much attention.  Even in the gaps I was too tired to get on with it to any great extent, and generally read instead.

My planned writing in the car was not super-successful either, although I did get a bit done.

Happily I got a chunk completed on the 27th, even if I spent much of the day in what felt like suspended animation. Well, that may be an exaggeration, but you get the idea!

I’m not going to worry though. Tomorrow is another day, as Scarlett O’Hara would say, and it’s one where I don’t have to go out if I don’t want to, and certainly not for long if I do!

So tomorrow I will carry on and just keep writing. That’s all anyone can do when they want to get the words from their head onto a page after all…

Just keep writing,

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Well, it’s Christmas Eve, and I’ve finished work for a few days.

I’m hoping to have time to post on Sunday when the first tranche of celebrations are over but in the meantime I hope you have a peaceful, happy and healthy few days wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, and whether you are celebrating or not.

Wishing you all joy,

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Well, you didn’t really think I’d complete one this week, did you?

No, it’s another week of not reading enough. I am getting some reading done, a chapter here and a chapter there, but not enough to actually finish anything.

So instead I thought I’d highlight some famously Christmassy stories which have a significance to me for one reason or another:

1. A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens.  Pretty much every year, a version of this is on TV.  We probably all know the story, whether we have read the book or not; it has to be one of the most adapted stories I can think of!  This is on my to-read pile but I don’t generally enjoy Dickens so it keeps slipping to next year, and next year, and next year… Maybe I’ll read it between Christmas and New Year. Next year!

2. The Little Match Girl, by Hans Christian Andersen. I read this when I was a child and re-reading the synopsis for today brought back the chills it sent down my spine. This is a story to remind people to be kind to each other, and is particularly relevant at a time when more and more people are homeless, without basic necessities, without a place of safety to stay.

3. The Snowman, by Raymond Briggs. This isn’t a reading book; it’s a picture book – and probably more famous for its animated film than its original incarnation now. I love the film, it’s really part of Christmas here in the UK now, I think, along with the song made famous from the soundtrack!

4. The Dark is Rising, by Susan Cooper. This is a book set from midwinter through Christmas, so it snuck in 🙂  I loved, loved, loved the Dark is Rising series as a child. When I lent my battered copies to my niece, she and my sister could see how they had shaped my thinking on certain aspects of myth and legend, so they obviously had a profound impact on me!  I think everyone should read them because they are fabulous!

Well, that’s a few that have meaning to me – what about you?

Happy reading,

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