Tag Archives: Hat’s off to Love

Glam Gran’s giggle blog

Glam gran I’m not smiling, and that’s not because I’m feeling grumpy, it’s because I’m showing off the make up range Younique, that daughter Ann sells. The lipstick is ladylike, and you don’t have to be ladylike to wear it. The brows are the palest colour and it’s a pencil and then fibres that stay on all day.

She’s really brave and posts up videos and demo’s every day. It’s lovely make up but not cheap, so I get something every couple of months and now I’m waiting for a bronzer.

That picture was one of about twenty that went from bad to worse. Then a family member appeared and I asked him to take a pic. We had one with the light off, one with it on. In the window, in the garden. Then I thought maybe I’d be better sitting on a bag of chippings. He said no, because I’m up here and if you’re down there I’ve got to get down there. Then because of the sun my eyes go all squinty and make me look as if I can’t open them. So to have a photo that looks anywhere human is good. The end product was too much laughter and not anything I can put on here.

The back of the jumper is finished and now I’ve started on the front.

And at last I’ve finished editing the last chapter of the re-write. I’m sending it off tomorrow so please cross fingers toes and everything else that my lovely editor likes it. Now I can get on with another story for the same editor.

My ghost story is on Alfie dog. It’s a Christmas one, to get you in the mood. Well, if you’re writing a Christmas story, you’d need to be thinking about it now, so think of it as a prompt.

Fisherman’s rest story.

Hope to have more news on the rewriting soon. And in the meantime, I’m still going to get the original story published. It’s set in the 1970’s, and completely different to the re-written one, but there’s so much work gone into it, I’ll keep trying to find a publisher. Obviously they’ll have different titles.

Have a great week.

I won a prize

bag of woolI won this lovely bag of wool. Summerlite cotton double knitting. Tons of it, so I’m knitting a new summer jumper for myself.

All we had to do on the Simply knitting link is say what’s on our needles at the moment. It was the tea cosy, made from left over bits. I’m thrilled as I’d been thinking of buying some wool, but not sure what colour or type. Now I’ve got it all to hand and it’s really special to knit with.

On the writing front, I’m on the last chapter of a rewrite of Hats off to Love. The lovely editor I’m working with wanted the story set in the present day rather than in the 70’s. So now it’s almost complete and crossing fingers that it’s good enough and she likes it. Also I have another story accepted on the Alfie dog website. That’s out around the end of May.

More news on that soon. Have a great week, whatever you’re doing.

Writing Update

Now at last, I can say I’ve put THE END on the last chapter of Hats off to Love. Now all I need to do is prepare it in an orderly fashion for sending out.

That will take some time as I want to get it just right. This story has been kicking around since 2012, when I entered a competition and came on the shorlist. Then I did nano in 2013 with it to get it all scribbled down, and then entered the same comptetion in 2014, and came on the shorlist again.

When I got stuck half way through, I set up a yahoo group for other people writing a novel, to get some feedback. Thanks to Jan, complete with hat, and Patsy and Martin, also with hat, for your help. Not forgetting the lovely Christine, who left the group.

So you can imagine how thrilled I am to have completed it.

Jan in a hatPatsy CollinsMartin West

The story has been edited by Maureen Vincent Northam, who has her ‘Trace Your Roots’ book published on Friday. Great news that Maureen will be my guest on this blog then.

Hope you have a great week, see you on Friday, until then, hope the writing goes well. Only thing now is to find a publisher. Wonder who’s looking for a romantic story? Set in the seventies, in rural Warwickshire?

My novel…

Some of you who follow my blog may know that I’m working on a novel… Hats off to Love. A romance, set in the 1970’s.

Well, I’m proud to tell you that I’m on the shortlist of the RNA, new talent awards. Have a look here. I entered the competition a while ago, and had the email the other day.

I recognise some names, like Samantha Tonge who was a guest on my blog recently, and Sue Moorcroft of course. Also, Liz Fenwick and Linda Mitchelmore. Also, Debbie Fuller White who is in the same category as me.

So now I’m polishing up my first three chapters and synopsis to take with me to the event, where the shortlisted people are invited to an exclusive reception prior to the awards. Sounds good doesn’t it, and I’m glad I’m able to go, even though we were due to go away on that weekend, but we can go a day later.

canalI’m putting this picture in, as a canal features in the story.

Also, I’m working on another Redington story for Creative Frontiers… It’s a ghost one, but the ghost is taking it’s time to appear in the story. I’m sure it, he/she will manifest soon…..

Digital imageHere’s me and my love, to inspire the romantic writing, and you can never have enough flowers can you>? So here’s some red roses.

Digital image

Digital imageAnd a hat…. I was the only one at the wedding in a hat, but someone has to wear one don’t they? Even if our youngest son told me I looked like the person who’d turned up with the take-away…. cheeky isn’t he?

Romantic writing.

I prefer a proper book to e.books. I know we have to move forward, but for me, there’s nothing like sitting down to relax with a cup of earl grey and something good to read. Today I picked up five Mills & Boon books. Reason for that is that I’m writing my Hats off to Love and I’m going to submit my first three chapters and the synopsis sometime during the next week to M & B.

The good thing about Mills and Boon is that they like 50,000 words. Then again, I have a feeling I’ll need more words than that to fit in all I’m going on about in the synopsis. Mine is going to fit into the ‘cherish’ section. They have different sections depending on the type of story you’re writing. Have a look here.

Mills and Boon.

I’ve got in mind what I want on the cover. My star character looking up and all kinds of hats tumbling down around her… that’s my plan, but maybe it’ll turn out different.

I’m up to 27.000 words, and to get back into the gist of the story, I’ve had to go back to the beginning and over the first three chapters to get back to what it’s all about. I’d gone up a bit of a one way street, but hopefully back on track now.

Digital imageDigital image

Red roses for love, and there’s Mum and Dad at my Niece’s wedding last year. They’re always romantic.

Here’s how Harper Collins go about finding the design for a book.


How a book cover is designed

Questions on writing and life.

Thanks to blog friend Lynne for passing on these questions –  What me and Lynne have in common is that we both started with a letter in Woman’s Realm. Lynne’s was about two seagulls flying up the motorway; mine was about drying thistles to use in flower arranging from the garden. I have quite a bit of catching up to do, but I’m always writing and promoting, though I spend too much time promoting and not enough time writing. Sometimes I think I link from this to that and that to the other, I’m sending my readers round in circles. It’s all good though, so here we go…

Q. Where were you born and where do you live at the moment?

A. Born in hilly Staffordshire, where you will find Cannock Chase and there’s lots of horses grazing in the fields and sometimes on the roadsides. Our family lived in a bungalow built by my Grandad; an old Gypsy called Sam lived down the road in one of those bow topped caravans. I found it fascinating to see him cooking and washing up outdoors. Now I live in leafy Warwickshire; home of Shakespeare and George Eliot and Susan Jones.

Q. Have you always lived and worked in Britain or have you been based anywhere else?

A. I love England, there’s nowhere I’d rather be. We spent a year in West Africa when I was younger with Dad’s work in a gold mine. I moaned a lot asking Mom to send word back to England for ham and cheese cobs. I didn’t settle too well. I loved climbing fruit trees and hurling the guavas to the little children who were half-starved. They ran like ants to gobble them up. It taught me to be grateful for basics like food… On the way back we stayed at Las Palmas which seemed a sophisticated place back in the 60’s.

Q. Which is your favorite part of Britain?

A. I love Torbay, especially Brixham. It’s such an unassuming place and I love the multi-coloured houses and fresh fish.

Q. Does your favorite place feature in your writing?

A. I wrote a short story set there, a ghost one, but it hasn’t been published yet.

Q. Do you agree about the British stiff upper lip?

A. Absolutely; most definitely; oh gosh, tally ho – yes, what?

Q. Do any of your characters have the stiff upper lip?

A. I have such a lot of characters, but mine tend to be working class types. They usually wear a pinny, work in a factory or worry about money.

Q. Tell us about one of your recent books.

A. I have a short story in an e.book. It’s on Amazon ‘Growing up in the 70’s’  There are four stories in the book. My story is called ‘High School Blues.’ A work of fiction about three girls who’re not sure what they’re doing, except playing around and listening to music.

Q. What are you currently working on?

A. A romantic story ‘Hats off to Love.’ This came on the shortlist of the Romantic Novelist’s New Talent Award for 2012.  I panicked a bit and because I couldn’t make the award ceremony, I began wondering who could collect my award if I won!!! You have to be positive don’t you? No need to panic, I didn’t win, but it’s given me the confidence to complete it. It’s at around 30,000 words now, needs lots of editing, but I’m having fun with it.

Q. How do you spend your leisure time?

A. Gym, swimming, gardening, knitting, walking, talking, laughing, eating sweets, selling, oh…..writing…

Q. Do you write for a local audience or a global one?

A. Anybody who’s interested in reading.

Q. Can you provide links to your work.

A. Yes, of course I can. Here’s the e.book with my story in.

Here’s my author page on Amazon. My story is in each of these books of short stories.

I have four stories on Alfie dog.

Entering competitions is also a hobby of mine. Thanks Lynne for nominating me, now I’ll put a couple of names of people who’s writing I like. I do realize that Lynne nominated Teresa, but she’s such a great story writer.

Teresa Ashby.

Patsy Collins.

Amanda Brittany.

Digital imageBuddha says tickle my tummy and you’ll get rich…

A review at last.

cover artIt’s taken a while, but at last ‘Growing up in the 70’s’ has had a review. It’s not as brilliant as I’d like it to be, and the reviewer has read story one and two, and is about to start on the third, which is mine. Obviously I don’t agree that the stories don’t set the feel of the seventies. The second story about the Welsh rugby is about that year of the grand slam. I’m married to a Welsh man, and I bought him the dvd of the same which is quite funny. That was around the time we met, so I do associate it strongly with the seventies. Also story number one was quite funny I thought. Oh dear, I wanted to review it myself, but I’m not a glove puppet, so thought I’d better not.

The reviewer also says that we don’t mention music and fasion. Obviously hasn’t read my story. I suppose we have to be open minded and take what people say as ‘their opinion’ though I still think they’re wrong, and it’s a lovely collection. Can’t win them all though can we?

I’m up to 19,500 wds of the novel, and it’s getting exciting. Along with other books I’m reading, like Middlemarch, by George Eliot, Paint me a Picture by Patsy Collins, and Careless in Red by Elizabeth George, my Hats off to Love story is brewing up lovely. I’ve got, a hero, boy next door,lovely old lady, neighbour who’s boy next door’s Gran. Main character who’s fabulous. A gang of factory workers who are extras. Possibly too many characters, but I’ll chuck them out if need be later, at the moment, they’re in the story.

Exciting news.

I recently entered the Romantic Novelist’s competition for new talent.  Take a look here and see who’s on the shortlist.  So now though I’m not doing nanowrimo as I’ve been busy telling Debz and Vanessa I am busy writing more of the story which is all in plan, now needs to be on paper.  It’s quite exciting as there were over 120 entries I believe.

Now as the title is Hat’s off to Love, here’s some red roses and me in a hat.