Thursday, December 31, 2009

Ring out the old...

The end of the year already and the end of a decade.This last year seems to have gone by so quickly I think I blinked somewhere and missed three months. This year we lost two family members, and my much loved Clown loaches. On the good side, we're all fairly fit and healthy. Mr Nell's Rheumatoid arthritis remains under control, my hip is managable and the belles are well and happy. Prospects look promising for my job contract being extended for another year (fingers crossed).
Writing wise I saw the release of Animal Instincts and His Darling Nurse. Plus, the thrill of seeing a short story in Loves Me, Loves Me Not. That was so exciting and I guess meant that I'd kind of achieved my ambition of having something published by Harlequin after all lol.
On the whole then not a bad year - I'm doing two jobs that I love - I have wonderful friends, writerly and non-writerly, a supportive family, my mobility is the best it's been for four years or so and next year I have so much to look forward to.
Wishing all my visitors here a very Happy and healthy New Year.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

No snow show

The promised snow mountain never appeared although it is horrid and wet. It keeps trying to snow so we may yet get some. I made it in to work and started the annual office clean up. The boards are done, most of the shelves are at least free of some of the rubbish, next task is the stuff we keep pushing under the desks hoping the dust bunnies will carry it away.
I really need to do the same with my office here. I think when I finish Just Look at Me Now that'll be my next task. For now though I'm wearing my fluffy Christmas socks, snuggling into my chair and cracking on with the writing.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Sale shopping

We braved Merry Hell today to do some sale shopping. A new suit for Mr Nell, new work shoes and PJ's for me. An ipod cover for Miss La and a top and a new bag for Miss Boo. Appararently heavy snow is forcast for tonight and I'm supposed to be back in work tomorrow and Thursday - hmm, guess I'll have to see what it's like in the morning. Fortunately I'd planned to do two short days - mostly cleaning up the office and getting everything ready for the New Year as we're going to be super busy. If I can't get in I'm owed lots of time still anyway. I suppose I can get more writing done. I've nine and a half chapters to go roughly on Just Look at Me Now before the first draft is done and the really hard work of making it make sense starts.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

How was it for you?

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas and Boxing day? We had a fab time. The belles thought Santa did a great job this year as they all got things they really wanted. Some of them small like a Sylvanian family item for Miss La and some a bit larger like a camera for Miss Boo. The hit present appears to be a shared one which was Raving Rabbids go shopping for the Wii. This is fab fun, totally bonkers and as hilarious to watch as it is to play. A cartoon bunny wearing a thong and getting a spray tan? fab.
We spent lots of time with family just eating, drinking, pulling crackers and chatting.I got some of my favourite perfume and a gift voucher from Mr Nell and some yummy chocolate from Hotel Chocolate. I got some fab things from the belles and lots of my fave presents - socks!
So, what did you all get? Was it what you wanted or did you get some surprises?

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Santa Claus is coming to town

Last night we went to the pantomime to see the wonderful Joe Pasquale and Ray Quinn in Sleeping Beauty. The special effects were as always breathtaking, the dame had the best costumes I'd seen since we saw the late, great Danny La Rue and as always the bits where things went wrong were hilarious.
At the moment I have frozen meats thawing in the kitchen, Mr Nell has gone to the farm shop to collect the fruit and veg and I've fresh baked bread sending lovely aromas around the kitchen. Later the eldest belle is helping me make cauliflower cheese and prepare pigs in blankets for tomorrow and Mr Nell has threatened er promised to make sausage rolls.
This evening we're off to Chapel for the Christingle service and supper with family then home to watch the Muppets Christmas Carol before the big man arrives down the chimney.
Wishing all of my friends, readers, fellow authors and anyone who regularly follows this blog a Happy and Joyful Christmastime whatever your celebration may be. Take care in the ice, remember to be nice and if you are naughty don't get caught!
Love Nell, Mr Nell and the belles XXX

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Writerly advice

I was delighted to be asked a while back to add a snippet to a book for writers. The author is the fabulous Sue Moorcroft and the book is called Love Writing: How to make moneywriting Romantic or Erotic Fiction. It's now on sale so to grab your copy goHERE You won't regret it!

Monday, December 21, 2009

In stock

Amazon is showing Crystal Clear as being in stock!
I guess I should get a move on with writing Just Look at Me Now as it looks as if some lovely, lovely readers have already placed orders. Pressure? what pressure?? lol

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Dashing through the snow...

Well, I don't dash anywhere these days but we did get snow last night. Luckily my friend made it to my house this morning and we had a lovely catch up. Hopefully it won't be as long before we do it again. I've just a few parcels left to deliver now and a couple of cards. Fruit and veg are ordered from the farm shop for the big day so that will just leave bread to get and a couple of bitty things - other than that I'm pretty well set I think. On Wednesday we're going en famille to the Hippodrome in Brum to see Sleeping Beauty with Ray Quinn and Joe Pasquale. I don't know who is more excited, the belles or Mr Nell's Mum as she has a bit of a thing for Ray.
Then Christmas Eve it's the Christingle at Chapel and home to watch A Muppet's Christmas Carol. Although I am very, very disappointed with the DVD version as they've cut the scene that is in the original film where Scrooge and his old love sing the most beautiful song. Bah Humbug on Disney for doing that as it spoils the film. GO HERE and watch it

Friday, December 18, 2009

Home for the holiday

I'm off from the day job now till after Christmas so hopefully I'll be able to catch up on my writing deadlines in between the festivities and Christmas preparations. I'm almost into the final third of Just Look at me now and I've a good idea what I need to rewrite in the first third to make the book much stronger. Not as much as I'd first feared - just the realisation that I'd revealed some information too early and that it weakened the plot. I'm also hoping to tackle a nice big chunk of You, Me and Him.
I've the final lot of cleaning and tidying to do in the house - cleaning out the family room and the belles bedrooms. I've also got all my local cards and parcels to deliver to various destinations. I'm hoping to do some nice things with the belles too and see some of my oldest friends. Of course if we get snow then I'll be in front of the fire watching old films on the telly!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

The Cinderella Substitute - audio book

Coming in March/April next year from AudioLark the audio version of The Cinderella Substitute. I am such a lucky girl when it comes to covers!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Tree is up

Just the garland on the fireplace to do and the lights. Then of course we need to dig out the family room so people can actually get in there, deliver the rest of our cards and parcels and we're all set. Yesterday was lovely actually. The belles and I decorated the tree while Mr Nell was at work, got more cleaning jobs done, cooked a delicious roast pork dinner and sat and watched Elf. I love that film, Will Ferrell is hilarious in it and you always feel so Christmassy. We then watched Delia's Christmas and Christmas at the victorian farm - lovely!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Gearing up

I'm getting ready for another mad weekend and week. Next week is another four day week at the day job and I've tons of things I want to get done. At home the tree still isn't up or the house anywhere near ready. I have wrapped all my presents and I need to do one more post office run for the last couple of things. My main shop is done and I just need to do my fruit and veg order for Christmas and take it to my friends farm shop. I also want to write at least three more chapters on Just Look at Me Now to keep me on my schedule - this is by the end of the month - even I'm not that mad! and if I can get another couple of chapters done on my other story that will be fab too. I've just completed the cover art form for the audio book version of The Cinderella Substitute and it's pencilled in for release on April 1st. I'm not sure when the site is launching - I'll let you know as soon as I find out. Very exciting though. Also many thanks to those of you who bought a copy of His darling Nurse and told me how much you like it. Hugs to all of you.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Day job fun

Regular readers here will know I have a really cool day job which lets me do all kinds of fab and fun stuff. Today My jobshare partner and I were out and about talking to the public again about physical activity. We talked to staff at a huge Tesco and also the lovely people at Ikea. Both stores were brilliant, with friendly helpful staff and everyone talked to us. I'm just really tired now and I've learned so much. I also miss my old colleagues from when I worked at Asda - sniff!
To top off my nice day I got a lovely email from my agent to say she loves You, Me and Him!!! So I'd better get a shake on with writing both my books.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Crystal Clear

My copy arrived today - an early Christmas prezzy from my lovely editor - so nice to see my book baby in print. Not long till it's out in the big wide world!

Monday, December 07, 2009

Shopping day

Today is my big shop day - I save all year on an Asda card and Mr Nell and I go off today to buy the essentials for Christmas - you know like Turkey. I also get some bits and pieces for a few parcels although most of my buying is done - I just have to do the wrapping. I have a wreath on the front door but that's as far as I've got with decorating the house. I still feel lousy with this head/sinus thing. Last night I hardly slept as I kept feeling as if my ear was running even though it wasn't. Two of the belles have parties tonight so Mom's taxi will be in full swing and then I'm back at work so if they aren't careful the wreath will be all the decorating I'm doing.
In other news Happy Birthday to my mil!

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Jungle fever

Well, Captain Bertorelli won I'm a celebrity get me out of here and so my TV viewing draws to a halt. I'm just glad that ghastly monster with the oversized boobs and ego didn't win - no not Katie Price - Kim Woodburn! Gino was definitely for me and the belles the outright champion from early on although we did love George.
Yesterday I had my first day off sick in two years. I still feel pretty rubbish today, my ears and sinuses feel blocked and I have an irritating cough. My gloom was lifted slightly by news of the sale of The Cinderella Substitute to an audio book company. It's a little start up venture I think but they seem professional and I didn't plan on doing anything else with the story so if it goes well I may offer them some of my other out of print novellas as they seem to be looking for sweeter stories.
I'm also trying to think of a venue for a book launch for Crystal Clear in Jan/Feb time. So if anyone has any good ideas let me know!

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Lies have pretty legs

Well, thats what Babelfish has said the translation is of Blue Remembered Heels in German! The cover popped up today on Amazon and it says it'll be out in Germany in July next year. The cover is lovely but the shoes are red?

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Is it me?

So today, one of the large envelopes that I posted yesterday, stamped with an airmail sticker and clearly addressed in large letters on the front to go to CANADA arrived back at my house! Sigh
Tonight was the Christmas Party at my local writers group, it's always a joy to spend time with so many talented and lovely people and tonight was great fun. We performed a pantomime, read some flash fiction and generally had a lovely lot of nibbles and drinks.
I think I may be able to work around the bump in the road I hit with Just Look at Me Now - I still need to rewrite big chunks but less than I thought and I think I can knock it into shape when it's done. I do like the story - it makes me smile when I'm writing it so I hope readers will feel the same.