Happy Halloween

WEDNESDAY 31st OCTOBER 2012

Happy Halloween!

Here’s a little poem I thought I would share with you that I wrote as part of my homework for my Creative Writing Class last year. As it’s half term, the class isn’t on tonight so I will leave you with this poem.

A  Frightful Flashback

 Gathering at our neighbour’s house

Bairns full of Excitement, Enchantment

Anticipation

Fright

 

Dancing, Chanting:

 

‘Its Halloween night,

Its Halloween night,

We’re going to dress up as ghosts and witches.’

 

Around the cauldron,

A table oozing with berry juice;

Pumpkin Pie

Apples

 

Letting loose:

 

‘Its Halloween night,

Its Halloween night,

We’re going to dress up as ghosts and witches.’

I will leave you with pictures of mine and the hubbys attempts at Pumpkin Carving.

 

Have a Spooktacular day everyone!

Love Missuswolf xxx

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The Fall of Billy Hitchings (A John Reeves Novel) – Kirkus MacGowan

SUNDAY 28th OCTOBER 2012

I finished reading The Fall of Billy Hitchings (which was a Top 5 Finalist in the Best Indie Books of 2012) yesterday morning all snug in bed whilst the rain washed away the previous nights sprinkling of snow.

Yup – for my international readers the North East of the UK was dusted with a very thin layer of snow on Friday night. Now I do love to sit all cosy with my Baileys and my Cinnamon candle lit and watch the snow fall and I love how picturesque it. However, I do not like trying to drive to work in the damn thing (luckily I didn’t have to). Maybe if one day I could work from home…..

Back to the book – here’s a synopsis for you to take a peek at:

John Reeves, an ex-Marine, drives to Myrtle Beach hoping to repair a damaged relationship with his fiancée. Instead, he finds her unconscious in the hospital, the victim of an unexplained explosion at a local restaurant.

Reeves meets Billy Hitchings, a teenager who knows more about the explosion than he should. Their questions lead to an ancient legacy best left alone.

Pulled into yet another crossfire, John Reeves fights to protect his friends and keep a primeval power from falling into the wrong hands.

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Interesting storyline, where the characters get tangled in a web of excitement and adventure, at an enjoyable pace
I loved how the book was written from different character’s viewpoints throughout; which was easily followed by the characters names used as headings.
It was made interesting by this clever technique as, particularly in the beginning of the book, the different characters and the different scenarios intertwining made for compelling reading.
 
The plot is an intriguing one surrounding an Ancient Legacy and there are some fast paced action-adventure scenes that really pull you in. The setting of the scene is clever with the character viewpoints changing and eventually connecting.
Congrats to Kirkus MacGowan as well for being a Best Indie Book Finalist.
 
 
 
 
Read  an Author Interview that was done as part of the Best Indie Book Festival over on the fabulous Sandra De Helen’s blog:
 
 
Download your copy from Amazon here
 
View his website here
 
Follow him on Twitter @KirkusMacGowan
 
Love Missuswolf xxx
 

Creative Writing Cafe – Term Three – Lesson Five

SATURDAY 27th OCTOBER 2012

I was unable to make this weeks class but in true geek style I still completed my homework and submitted it (I love a bit of homework me!).

The theme was ‘Man and Machine’ – how we cope with technology/gadgets etc.

I must admit, I really struggled with this at first. We were given a bit more freedom in the style of how we could express this; script writing, poetry or just plain old prose.

Unusually, I opted for prose (I do like to get out of my comfort zone in writing but for some reason I stuck with prose).

Here is my homework attempt:

 

Man and Machine

Wispy fog wrapped itself around Clara’s brand new bright pink Mini as she tapped away on her mobile phone. Stuck in traffic yet again en route to a painful job, she decided to broadcast her misery all over Facebook.

 Ivan, a fellow disgruntled driver stuck alongside her, glanced across just making out Clara’s silhouette and the oh so familiar gadget in her hand. He rolled his eyes and tutted; the youth of today, hands permanently attached to mobile phones. If he had the energy he would summons up the motivation to contact the police on his hands free to report her, then considered otherwise; he would be just as bad as her using his phone.

 The harassed mother in the car behind Clara was drumming her hand impatiently on the dashboard, as her blissfully unaware seven year old played away on his Nintendo DS. Mentally replaying her list of things to do over and over in her head and panicking that she would not have enough time to do this now the traffic had ground to a halt, she swooped her ipad out of her handbag and frantically started touching in notes.

 Further down the road, Eric, an elderly male in a rusty robin reliant was at the front of the angry mob of drivers. The traffic light signals to the side and front of him fumed red, a colour that had blazed for more than thirty minutes now. He took off his glasses, peered through the windscreen again. Yep, despite the fog they were still red. He felt a sense of responsibility as the horns continued to honk behind him, despite this being no fault of his own.

Technology eh, he thought as he cast his mind back to the good old days when there were no traffic lights and fewer cars on the road. He then questioned were they really the good old days? Driving and having access to a car  was the one thing that kept him sane these days, allowing him to leave his poky flat and get out and about to enjoy his last few years.

A police car eventually pulled up. A burly Policeman and his slight female colleague got out and started setting up to direct traffic. Eric assumed someone must have rang them from their mobile, failing that it must have been flagged by someone monitoring one of the many cctv cameras that poked out of the buildings, spying on the streets.

 A cyclist came zipping past his car, almost knocking his wing mirror off. As soon as the cyclist saw the commotion, he promptly changed his right from road user to pavement user, hopped up on to the path and continued to cycle onwards. Bloody cyclists, Eric fumed, they think they rule the road yet never abide by traffic lights, it’s like at that sudden moment they become a pedestrian. What infuriated him even more was that there were plenty of cycle paths in the town why did they have to use the road? He refused to admit it was fear that his eyesight was not what it used to be and he was in danger of one day colliding with one.

He squinted to the side of him, he could just make out through the fog a business man in a suit who was wasting no time and had set his laptop up, typing furiously away on it. The brazenness of the man astounded Eric with the police parked only yards away.

 PC Aaron Shields rubbed his head as he bellowed down the radio at the controller, demanding an ETA for the Traffic Lights Engineer. He didn’t join the job to direct traffic, this wasn’t his role. He joined to catch criminals, murderers, not do a council job. He turned a blind eye at all the offences that were blatantly being committed in front of him by the bored and irritated road users. He was no jobs worth and he was not going to waste his day giving out penalty notices. Once this job was done and dusted, he was going to track down Billy Myers, who was wanted by Special Branch for infiltrating a government system. He knew he would be stepping on toes with the on-going covert investigation, but he had had a tip off that Billy was lying low at a nearby address and PC Shields arrest figures needed boosting.

The Police Officers took up their position and started directing traffic.

Back in the queue, the sound of engines coughing back into life and cars inching forward prompted the offending drivers to quickly discard their technology, particularly as they eased toward the blue flashing lights. Each driver peered curiously to see what the commotion had been about; had there been a horrendous car crash?

As the traffic started flowing, a black cab en route to the airport with an impatient passenger trundled by the Police Officers. The occupant caught a glimpse of the commotion and then quickly turned away, dabbing a bead of sweat from his forehead with his sleeve. He shook his head in frustration; Billy Myers couldn’t believe he was close to missing his getaway flight all because of some dumb traffic lights

 

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I received some good feedback on this: ‘a good panoramic sweep of frustration and misery, based on all things that are supposed to make life better for us. While gadgets should make things like traffic jams easier to bear, they somehow don’t.’

An improvement that was suggested was  along the lines of the Billy Myers character – to have in a nasty, ironic way, to end the story with him being the only character to break the mould a little and be the only one not to get frustrated. For me to show that now things are moving again, he’s still in good time for his flight and getting one over on the oblivious police; the least deserving character being the one that experiences the most happiness. Mwahaha now I do like the sound of that……

It’s half term next week so no homework (am I rather sad admitting that I am gutted about this?!)

Love Missuswolf xxx

http://www.flickr.com/photos/thomashawk/358276917/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/western4uk/5609647610/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/itspaulkelly/3052868618/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/mrpattersonsir/273079773/

A Piece of HeART

THURSDAY 25th OCTOBER 2012

Personalised heARTWORK from your heART! Made with ❤ & totally unique to you!

Looking for Halloween treats and Festive presents?

Well look no further than the fabulous A Piece of HeART! A very good friend of mine, who has a special way with words, has created this magical business making personalised  frames and keyrings with messages from the heart. They are amazing and make ideal gifts.

She currently has a Halloween theme ongoing so if you would love a special reminder of your very own halloween party…why not order a cute little piece of heart.

For ANY HALLOWEEN Keyrings Ordered…Proceeds will be donated to the Halloween Charity night that she attends & split between their chosen charities!

Another project that she has just started work on are her Christmas designs, so if you are looking for a stocking filler, why don’t you get a cute little keyring? Or an annual keepsake frame that you can display year after year (I know I’m putting my order in!)

A Little Snippet into A Piece Of Heart’s Heart….

You currently have some fabulous Halloween pieces displayed on your Facebook page – what’s your favourite time of year?

CHRISTMAS!!

If you could be a Disney Princess which one would you be and why?
I’d be SNOW WHITE or Belle….belle or snow white??? Or tink if she was a Disney princess. Or aerial I want to be a different one each day of the week!! Ahhhhh toooo hard!!

What is your favourite book that you have read?

To Kill A Mockingbird

What is your favourite movie?

Tooooo hard!! Tooooo many!!
Peter Pan, Stardust, Dirty Dancing, Pretty Woman the list is endless

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A Piece of HeART recently featured at the engagement party to Geordie Shore’s Vicky and Ricci, involved in the design of the dessert table alongside Symphonyin Sugar and a personalised Frame to the happy couple. Congrats A Piece of HeART!

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And guess what? She does international orders too! Delivering a print to none other than AUSTRALIA today!!

Take a peek at these fab frames she has made for me; a TimeLine for my flat and a personalised frame on the birth of my nephew as a present to my sister.

Check out the website here. www.apieceofheart.bigcartel.com

Like her on Facebook

Follow her on Twitter @APieceOfHeartNE

Love Missuswolf xxx

Reader Appreciation Award

TUESDAY 23rd OCTOBER 2012

 

I have been nominated by the fabulous Gina Adams over at The Life I Live …So You Don’t Have To who is currently running a Spooky Spectacular Halloween Themed Blog during the month of October. Hop on over there to get your daily fix of fright argh!

This is how the Award works:

* I have to nominate 10-15 blogs that I love to read (or just the one’s I read the most) and give them this award.

* 10 questions were given to me to answer from Gina and then I am to ask alternate questions to those I nominate.

Here we go!

Who is your favorite author, and why?

My all round favourite is Marian Keyes. She is such a clever writer; her books are full of humour and are so easy to read, yet they always have a serious topic that does reel you in and make you think. She tackles what are sensitive and sometimes tragic circumstances in such a way that you not only cry tears of sorrow, you cry tears of joy through some of the humourous encounters her character’s go through. Her novels are always well balanced.

What is one book that you would recommend to someone else, and why?

The Hunger Games. It’s the first in a trilogy but it is the one book that really captured me and will always stand out. The concept of the story really opened my mind – the fight for survival as a child as part of an annual ritual you have no control over. I was absorbed completely in the story, feeling those overwhelming emotions that the characters do of  anxiety, panic, feeling threatened and the fight to survive. It is so well written and I read it in just over a day. That’s a sign of a great writer; someone who captures your imagination so much and intrigues you to the point you can’t put the book down. 

What is your favorite movie, and why?

Hmmm I struggled with this but I would have to say Bridesmaids  – I laughed from start to finish at that film and I love humour. Plus, I really fancy the cop in it.

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Beautiful Santa Barbara Harbour

Santa Barbara. I stayed there as part of our honeymoon trip to the West Coast of America and I loved it. It was idyllic; the pier where we would have breakfast in the morning and watch the dolphins swim by, the lovely harbour we walked around, the zoo, the shops,the restaurants – just everything was perfect! The laid back lifestyle suited me and if my writing career ever took off I would love to retire there 😉

If you could have dinner with anyone (dead or alive) who would it be, and why?

Audrey Hepburn, she’s such a glamourpuss and it would be fascinating to get some tips.  

If today was the last day of your life, how would you choose to spend it?

How I spent it last Tuesday night; at my mum and dad’s house with my two sisters and their partners, the ‘rents, my hubby and my brand new squishy nephew who was brought home from hospital that night following his grand entrance to the world. Accompanied- with Asda Pizza’s, bottles of cava watching Celebrity Juice. Bliss.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

Not to be so conscious of what people think all the time and to relax.

What impact do you want to leave on the world?

I would love for the imprint of my imagination to be visualised by generations to come. Especially for my family, so that they can be proud of the work that I do and for it to be passed on. I’m hoping that my determination will show them to reach for your dreams no matter how far away they feel they may be. You are only here once so make the most of it. 

What is one fear that is holding you back?

That no-one will like (or read!) what I write. Daft really, but when I write I feel like I’m baring my soul and opening people to the inner workings of my mind and it’s the fear of rejection. But I have learned some useful advice along my little journey so far and that is to always write what you want to write – not what people want you to write or what you think might sell. Also, that not everyone will like what you write – you can’t please everyone.

If someone wrote a book about your life, what would the title be

Haha well funnily enough I have pinched it for my work in progress at the moment; Miss Pooshoe. Its my nickname and is as a result of a series of unfortunate incidents!

 

 

Now here’s my ten questions:

What book have you read that effected you the most?

What do you do  to relax?

Do you listen to music whilst reading/writing – if so – what type of music?

Which person has inspired you the most in life and why?

What is your favourite season of the year?

If you could spend a day in the life of someone else, who would it be and why?

What is your favourite holiday destination and why?

If a film was made of your life, what would it be called and why?

I love thinking of names for character’s in my books. What are your favourite male and female names and why?

And finally …are you a coffee or tea drinker?

I now nominate

Michelle Betham

Kerry Richardson What To Write

A Fabulous Mom’s Guide

A Mummysview

Fresh Pot Of  Tea

PurpleBooky

Lee-Ann Graff-Vinson – Writing Commando

Love Missuswolf xxx

Creative Writing Cafe – Term Three – Lesson Four

FRIDAY 19th OCTOBER 2012

Well what a whirlwind of a few days I’ve had! Not only did my Facebook Page hit 100 likes, I went to see Chery Cole in concert, did the day job plus overtime inbetween and (best of all) I became an Auntie for the first time to a beautiful baby boy!

So sadly my writing and blogging have been neglected and I am now giving it some well deserved TLC.

I was actually absent from Wednesday’s lesson due to said Cheryl Cole concert (she was amazing! fab dance moves, beautiful costumes and she was so sincere, overwhelmed by the support by shedding a tear or two, unable to thank her fans enough.) Something she said stuck in my mind during an emotional speech she made; she said never give up on your dreams as this was hers (to play at Newcaslel Metro Radio Arena) and there she was, living it.

Despite my absence, I was a good girl though and I still submitted by homework, which was based on a description in the first person of another character, revealing traits about that first person.

Here’s my attempt:

Aficionado

My scissors slipped as I frantically cut around the glossy photograph in the magazine, narrowly missing my thumb on the other hand.

It was worth it though. The picture staring back was exquisite; strawberry blonde hair bouffant, coiffed and glossy, sweeping wispily over willowy shoulders; shoulders that I longed to run my finger along. Aquatic blue eyes reflected an alluring smile that radiated from perfectly formed rose bud lips; blood-red against porcelain skin, inviting and longing to be brushed with my own.

Still the picture did not do her splendour justice. I had met her in person before, once, many months ago, at a book signing in town. I still remember the heart palpitations, the excited sweat trickling down my back as I stepped forward into the light, placed my book down and held my hand out for her to shake. She was even more slender in the flesh and her 5’9 frame had folded perfectly on the chair in front, her long bare legs stretched out in front narrowly peeking out the front of the desk, teasingly revealing those Black Louboutin’s.

She had cast her eyes over me and then nervously stared at my overly groomed hand, glimpsing the clipped cuticles, before abruptly ignoring it. She had hastily scribbled her name in the front with her own perfectly manicured hand, her svelte fingers gripping tensely to the pen as she fought the shakes, before I could say ‘It’s Michael.’ I wanted my name in there. I wanted this book to be personally made out to me. However, the beaming eyes in the magazine picture I now held were not replicated during that encounter. If anything, they had seemed bored, almost irritant and I’m sure I saw a glimpse of disgust in them. There was no small talk, no ‘It’s so nice to meet you Michael, thanks for buying my book and sending me those flowers and letters, I’m sorry I haven’t had a chance to reply, what with the busy schedule’. My response would have been hands flapping In front of me, waving off the apology and suggesting she make it up by accompanying me to dinner. This was not going as planned at all.

The sound of her clearing her throat had brought me to attention as she flung the book back, before turning to the young girl behind me. I was unable to move. Was this it? After all those letters I had written, all the times I had followed her everywhere, to make sure she was safe, to get another glimpse of that beautiful face, this was how she repaid me?

I had been ushered discreetly by a security guard to move along the line. As I’d walked off, I turned to look back; nothing. The dazzling smile had reappeared for the young girl, but only briefly. She had treated me like every other person in the world.

It was then I believed if I couldn’t have her, no-one could.

As I decided what frame would suit this wonderful portrait that now lay before me, I wiped the blood clean off the sharp knife and discarded it in the bottom drawer.  I hadn’t ruined that beautiful face; I had not touched that beautiful face. Wounds that never heal are better left unseen….

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I received some good feedback regarding this. The critique was a change in the title; it was originally ‘Strike A Pose’  however the teacher couldn’t help but picture Madonna throughout. I became stuck as to what I could possibly change this to before posting on here, so I decided to type the word ‘Obsessive’ into a Word Document and bring up the thesaurus.  Aficionado  immediately caught my eye; snappy, simple, effective and relevant. 

I was also emailed next weeks homework (eeek-geek!)  Man and Machine (or gender-neutral character and machine) – how we cope with gadgets, cars, computers, robots etc. It can be done in any genre, and either as a poem, script or prose.

Hmmmm what to write.,…

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

Project Moses – Robert B. Lowe

SUNDAY 14th OCTOBER 2012

Good Morning Ladies and Gents! I finished reading this book, by a Best Indie Author Finalist, last Sunday.

Synopsis

Enzo Lee, 37, a burned out reporter, has forsaken investigative reporting on the East Coast to churn out feature fluff in San Francisco. He likes his North Beach apartment, steps away from his Chinatown roots. Running, tai chi, great food, women who are attracted to his exotic looks. Life is good.

Then, Lee’s comfortable life is shaken when he is ordered to cover the unexplained deaths of a local judge and prosecutor. Intrigued by the connection, and the judge’s attractive niece, Sarah Armstrong,  Lee begins to uncover a bioterrorism scandal whose perpetrators – including government officials and Silicon Valley titans – will kill to conceal.

When Lee and Sarah become targets, the question becomes whether the pair can evade their hunters and piece together the story before their time runs out. Project Moses is set in San Francisco, New York and Silicon Valley. By a Pulitzer Prize-winnng author.

I loved the introduction to this book and the direction it takes you in, from the intriguing courtroom intro to the deaths and then the investigation that follows. It instantly grabs your attention and already clogs start ticking in your mind; why is that happening? How are things connected? Where is this going to go? A great way to open a book.
I liked the use of every other chapter slotted in italics, from some mystery character’s point of view, about what’s going on somewhere behind the scenes – great little teases dropped in that keeps up the suspense and intrigue into the story. I loved the technique of dropping them in every few chapters to deviate from Enzo Lee’s exciting escapade; just as you get swept up in the action, you’re pushed back into another character’s story and it puts the brakes on the pace and makes you stop and think. Very clever. I really enjoyed this book and I thought the theme of biotechnology conspiracies was a great one to tackle

You can read an interview with Robert. B Lowe that was done as part of the Best Indie Author Book Festival right here.

Get your copy of Project Moses here

Check out Robert B Lowe’s website here.

Take a peek at Goodreads here

Follow him on Twitter @AuthorRobBLowe

Love Missuswolf xxx

Creative Writing Cafe – Term Three of Creative Writing Class – Lesson’s Two and Three

Two posts in one for you tonight you lucky lovelies as in the chaos of last weeks Author Interviews/short story projects/homework I didn’t get a chance to update (well publish – I actually found it in draft format) Lesson Two’s post.

So without further ado this is what went down last week….

WEDNESDAY 03rd OCTOBER 2012

Tonight’s lesson was a hoot! There seemed to be fewer of us in attendance than the first week, but it made for more cosy intimate surroundings and it was a nice number to sit and chat together.

This week, we all had to take it in turns to read out our bullet points for a plot outline that was semi-autobiographical. I particularly enjoy this part of the lesson as it is always great to see what other’s interpretation of the homework is and what ideas they come up with.

It also gave a little insight into people’s lives and learn things about them, making this session a bit extra special.

We had a laugh together at some of the stories and the elaborations that were being made (or not as some were genuine events that had occurred!)

Mine was loosely based on a call I had encountered within my work in a control room regarding a strange object in the sky. Although we threw about all sorts of ideas within the class as to what it could have been, I picked out the UFO option.

This lead to the discussion about my old obsession with UFOs and an April Fool that my dad played on me when I was younger.

I won’t give too much away though …you will have to wait til next read to see what i come up with….

WEDNESDAY 10th OCTOBER 2012

Luckily you don’t get to wait that long! Tonight’s class focused on the second part of the homework that we had been set in Lesson One and was where we got to hear everyone’s ideas strung together from their plotlines and read out their short story.

I really enjoy this part as I love hearing what other people have written and the direction they have taken; it’s great how we all get the same briefing and it’s amazing to hear what different creativity is borne out of this.

Please find below my effort:

Eyes On The Skies

The Eagle’s Hotel California rocked its way through the car stereo as we sailed through the streets of Nottingham. It was a bright summers evening, not a cloud in the sky and we were returning from a family visit to my grandma’s flat back to my other grandparent’s house, where we were staying for the week.

Dad was the designated driver, face impassive as he concentrated against the heavy evening traffic and through the raised voices of my two younger sisters that were squashed in beside me, arguing over a Barbie Doll. My mum sat quietly in the passenger seat staring ahead in a world of her own. I leaned away from the squabbling siblings, pressing my face against the cool sheet of glass window, gazing into the blue sky.

My eyes caught something glistening in the sunlight, high up where the light blue merges with the darker shade. I followed it curiously, the sun bouncing brightly off the object, preventing my young eyes from diagnosing and concluding that it was too big to be plane. At one point, it appeared to slow right down and hover; my heart did a handstand in fright and slowly keeled back over into its beat, “Have you seen that in the sky!” I exclaimed, pointing anxiously at the object.

My sisters stopped what was now a frantic struggle over the said Barbie doll, which was now in danger of decapitation, and leaned over me to catch a glimpse.

“I can’t see nothing,” announced Lori, the middle one who had self-diagnosed herself as having middle child syndrome. She squashed me further against the window as she used all her strength to lean against me, craning her neck.

“That’s a plane silly,” said the youngest, Sarah, so matter of factly and with a tone that insinuated I was the thickest person on the planet.

I turned my attention to my parents, “Mum! Dad! Can you see that in the sky? What is it?”

“Your dad’s driving, he can’t look,” was my mother’s curt reply. Dad said nothing for a while, before agreeing with Sarah, “It will just be a plane.”

I sunk back in my seat. I knew what I had seen and it was no plane.

Since the age of seven, I had had a morbid fascination with UFO’s. Ever since I was made to listen to Orson Well’s ‘War of The World’s at school, I had been terrified yet intrigued by the possibility of life on another planet. I remember that day so vividly; we sat on the rough classroom carpet, compressed against the tables and chairs and other pupils – and listened. Our topic was the solar system and the teacher thought it would be a great idea to listen to this as part of the studies.

How wrong she could have been. My imagination let loose at the words that cascaded from the player; mixed up with the images from the sleeve of the cassette tape and I had managed to freak myself out. I walked home from school with my friends and upon passing a play park, I will never forget turning around behind me imagining being chased by one of those spaceships. I ran home.

Straight away my parents knew something was up; I had managed to wind myself up so much that hysterical sobs escaped from my chest as I ran off to bed. When my parents scuttled in, it got worse. My mum was trying to soothe me as my dad proudly produced a vinyl record from behind his back, “Do you mean this?” he smiled.

My eyes bulged and panic swept me, “It’s-it’s in the house?!” I stammered. From that moment on I teased myself by occasionally pulling the vinyl out the cupboard to look at the pictures, freaking myself out, and my eyes remained firmly on the skies.

The morning after said UFO sighting, I skipped into my grandma’s kitchen, my encounter forgotten, and soothing sounds of Radio 2 coming from the stereo. As my grandma fixed up my breakfast, my dad put down his paper that he was reading at the kitchen table, “you know that object you saw last night?”

Fear returned with a pounding as if I had just been rammed by a bull. All I could manage was a slow nod.

“Well, it was on the news before that it’s landed, at Wollaton Park.”

I froze. My mouth had dried to that of the bottom of a desert lake, one I wanted to pool with my tears.

“They have it surrounded,” my dad continued, “The army and their tanks are guarding it. They are saying nothing has come out yet, but they say it’s only a matter of time.”

All sorts of images swirled around my mind; from what this spaceship looked like to the armoured grey and green army tanks to what lay deep inside this UFO.

I don’t think my dad could take the look of sheer panic on my face any longer as his face crumpled into a smile and he laughed, “April Fools Day!”

I slumped relieved onto the chair opposite him, as my grandma placed my breakfast in front of me. She just smiled and went back to the dishes.

As I shovelled a mouth full of corn flakes in, the news broadcaster came onto the radio.

“An Unidentified Flying Object has landed at Wollaton Hall, the army currently have it surrounded…” my eyes shot up from my breakfast to my dad’s face. Only this time, it was his turn for his eyes to be the size of saucers,…. to be full of panic….

 Lessons Learnt Tonight

* Avoid clichés (this seems to rear its head every term)

* OCD – one of the classmates described one of her character’s as having this and a discussion ensued over that annoying situation where you leave your house and your mind pipes up ‘did you lock the door/blow the candle out/turn straighteners off? One solution of this was to take pictures of things like this that you do on autopilot so you can look at them and reassure yourself that you did indeed turn those straighteners off….

Homework

* First person writing: I did this/I did that

* Describing another character written in the first person by your character

* Description to reveal as much about the character as it does about the person they are talking about

* Emotional response in the first person to reveal a character trait such as jealousy/in love

* Minimum 500 words

I am super excited about this homework! I can’t wait to get stuck in.

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/santarosa/30049586/”>SantaRosa OLD SKOOL</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”>cc</a>

photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/jamie-uk/554260961/”>Jamie Durrant</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>cc</a>

photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/notionscapital/6786598301/”>Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”>cc</a>

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Cuppa and a Catch up…Author Interview with Tia Souders

MONDAY 08th OCTOBER 2012

Put the kettle, grab a biscuit and settle in for our catch up with the lovely Tia Souders.

Bio

T.M. Souders was born in Johnstown, PA and grew up in the suburbs outside of Pittsburgh.  She graduated in 2004, from Youngstown State University, with a degree in Psychology and minor in Women’s Studies.  She is the author of bestselling women’s fiction novel, Waiting on Hope, as well as the novelette Dashing Through The Snow, and the newly released YA/crossover, Freedom Road . She is the founder of The Cheap Kindle Daily, a site dedicated to introducing readers to new, affordable, ebooks. She currently lives in rural Ohio with her husband and children. When she is not writing or spending time with her family, T.M. volunteers for the World Literary Cafe, a site dedicated to helping authors and uniting authors and readers.

Synopsis for Freedom Road

Since the tender age of eight, music served as Samantha Becker’s source of solace against her father’s tyranny and her mother’s alcoholism. Now at eighteen, her only dream is to study classical guitar at Juilliard. But when her father’s careless actions lead to an “accident,” which threatens her ability to play the guitar, Sam becomes despondent. Losing all confidence in her future, Sam hides behind the emotional barriers that have protected her for years.

Just when Sam has given up, two unexpected people enter her life, giving her the confidence she needs, and forcing her to evaluate all she’s ever known. Battling her father’s plans for her future, band mates using her for personal gain, and a permanent injury, the odds are stacked against her. With auditions approaching and time running out, Sam must relearn to play the guitar, or be destined to give up her dreams forever.

Hi Tia and welcome today, thanks for stopping by.

First of all, congratulations on publishing your new book, a YA crossover novel Freedom Road (released Monday 17th September) Where did the inspiration come from for this book?

Honestly, this book was a long time coming. The published version is actually the third complete rewrite. The initial plot was different than the current one. But the spark really came from the vision of Sam, the main character and a bond she had with her elderly neighbour.

How did you start writing? Was there a particular book or moment in your life that spurred you on?

My interest in writing as a career started my last year in college. I wrote on and off for a couple years, but became more serious about writing after the birth of my first child. For some reason, once he was born, I became determined to make writing my career.

You have also published ‘Waiting on Hope’ and ‘Dashing through the snow’. Which of these books was the most challenging to write?

Waiting On Hope. It’s my first published novel and the subject matter alone (rape) made it a more delicate one to tread. I wanted to be realistic in my portrayal for victim’s sake while making it an enjoyable novel and not too dark.

I see that you studied Psychology and Women’s Studies; have these studies had a major influence on your writing?

I think Psychology gave me a better understanding of the human psyche and human behaviour, which for character driven novels, like I write, is helpful.

How do you organize your writing time?

Ha! There’s no such thing for me. I wish there were, but I have two young kids, 4 and 2, that require a lot of attention. Basically, I sneak in writing whenever I can get it, during naps, for 30 minutes in the morning, and mostly after bed.

 Which Authors have influenced your writing?

That’s a good question and one that’s hard to pinpoint. I think as authors, a lot of times, the people who influence us the most are the ones we read the most. But I tend to read an eclectic mix of books/authors. If I had to choose one though, it would be Kristin Hannah.

Where is your best ‘writing space’; the place where you feel comfortably locked away from the world and able to let your creative juices flow?

Ha, again! I do have an office, but rarely get to actually go there to work. I take my trusty laptop wherever I go though, and write anywhere and everywhere. At the kitchen table, on the couch, in the basement, at a café, in the car—you name it, I’ve probably written there.

Do you have any wise words of advice to pass onto aspiring authors in relation to Self Publishing?

Absolutely. Patience, patience,  patience, and work, work, work.

Tell us an interesting fact about yourself that not many people know

At one time, I was a total city girl, and a sworn bachelorette. I never wanted to get married and wanted to live in the city. Yet, here I am, years later, married in the country with two kids, two horses and a dog. Lol. Still love the city, but things sure have changed!

And finally, with Freedom Road being the title of your novel, what do you think the word ‘Freedom’ would mean to your main character, Samantha Becker

I love this question! Freedom would mean escaping the bonds of her dysfunctional family and pursuing her dream of studying classical guitar at Juilliard.

 And on that note, you can download some fantastic FREE Ebooks….

Thanks again for your time today Tia, I have really enjoyed having you here.

Visit Tia’s website here

Follow her on Twitter @tmsouders

Like her Facebook Page here

Love Missuswolf xxx

I Am Woman Campaign – Anthology – Volume 2

FRIDAY 05th OCTOBER 2012

What is the ‘I Am Woman’ Campaign I hear you ask?

THE MISSION STATEMENT:

The ‘I Am Woman’ Campaign is about using our voices to help other women. To raise awareness of women across the planet who have in effect ‘lost their voice’ or had it taken away…either through, fear, abuse, illness or war. We all have a voice, whether that be through our blogs, social networks or talking to people in our daily lives. We must speak for them until they can do it for themselves.

The campaign has a blog, which you can follow here, that is ran by three women; Margot Bloom, Victoria Watson and Louise Stark.

This week they launched their second anthology, a collection of fictional short stories, flash fiction and poetry that have been  written and submitted by women who have a voice in support of women who have lost theirs.

I am delighted and honoured that my submission Breaking The Rules was chosen for inclusion in this anthology! After seeing the request for submissions back in April, I jumped at the chance to be involved.

You can download I Am Woman Campaign Anthology – Volume 2 from Amazon for £3.99 here.

All proceeds (no deductions) are donated to their three charities, which are:

Breakthrough

Women For Women

Women’s Aid

So download your copy now! Not only are you supporting these charities, you get to sit and cosy up with some fab stories from women in support of a great campaign.

 Love Missuswolf xxx

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