Detox

I have embarked on this new weight loss plan that required me to detox for 7 days before you can move up a step. This detox involved cutting out caffeine. I always thought I am not addicted to anything, but OMG did I suffer. The first day was fairly ok until the evening when the headache started. The second day was like hell. I actually felt so ill. I felt sick and I was sweating and my heat felt like it was going to explode. Nothing made the pain better. I took Paracetamol and Ibuprofen in 2hr rhythms just to be able to get out of bed. I could not eat much as I seriously felt so ill. recently I have not drunk much coffee. Only a cup in the morning and then maybe one in the afternoon but not every afternoon. When I worked in a school I used to drink coffee every break about 6 cups a day, but since I have left teaching I have cut down a lot on my coffee consumption. That’s why I was so surprised about how much I was suffering. The third day I had to actually leave the house and meet an old friend of mine and attend a workshop in the morning beforehand. Getting out of bed was so hard. I then drove an hour to where the workshop was. The people leading the workshop both held their coffee mugs in their hands and kept sipping on them whilst talking. It seemed like torture to me. I was very agitated by that fact. I left after an hour to see my friend. We had lunch but to be honest I felt like I wasn’t really there. All I wanted to do is lie down. She had coffee after the meal and I had berry tea. Even my food choice was so healthy and I was totally sticking to the detox plan. When I got home I went straight to bed, with two Paracetamol. I woke up two hours later with a raging headache again, so I ate a little bit and took two Ibuprofen. Day four was yesterday and I only had to take two paracetamol in the morning. Today I have taken no pain killers so far. I think I am ok. The only thing that is worrying me is the complete lack of energy, but the leaflet says that once I am moving on to the next step of the program I will have lots of energy. I can’t wait 😊 

Book Review: The Break by Mariane Keyes

I actually listened to this book on audible. I did review a book by this author earlier in the year but wasn’t too keen, but this book is different and it has a point.

Amy seems to have it all. three lovely girls, a husband and a career in marketing. But that is about to change when her husband Hugh asks to have a ‘break’ for six months. He has been very distant and depressed. His father died of cancer and a few months later his best friend and he is questioning life itself. When Hugh leaves for Thailand her whole world has collapsed, but eventually she begins an ‘adventure’ of her own.

I really liked this book and I was feeling for Amy. Her whole life she has put others first. When her first marriage broke up to a famous football player she was bringing up a little girl by herself. She then met Hugh and although she was convinced never to marry again, did marry him. They had a girl together called Kiera and they took on another little girl called Sophie, whose parents seemed unable to care for her. Amy always gave and put her family first and working a full time job, so when Hugh announces he wants to have a break, I could really feel her anger. I hated him too at that moment. Her mother too seems to be on a very selfish trip and often calls on Amy to mind her Dad who suffers form Dementia. To escape Amy starts a thing with a publisher called Josh. They have a hot steamy affair. When Hugh returns early from his Thailand trip and Josh is asking for them to live together, she realises something very important. I don’t want to give anything away here.

This book has surprisingly more substance than I thought and actually made me think. It falls heavily in the chick lit category. It was a light read/listen and I enjoyed it.

Book Review: The New Woman by Charity Norman

When I picked up this book I didn’t know anything else about it. I hadn’t even read the text on the back of the book, so I was very surprised that when it turned out to be a transgender disorder story.

The book starts of as a mystery. Luke is traveling on a train and is planning to end his life. He has been happily married for 30years, with two children and grand children. He is traveling on a train to London where he ha as flat and he wants to end his life because he has a secret. The reader is kept guessing but a few chapters in the secret is revealed. When Luke arrived in London he realised he forgot the keys to the flat and decides to travel home and tell his wife Eilish the truth about himself. All his life he feels he has been living in the wrong body and he really feels more like a woman than a man. Of course his wife Eilish is shocked and hurt. Has Luke been living a lie all his life? Was the love between them just pretence?

The book describes his struggles to turn from Luke Livingstone into Lucia Livingstone. It describes how his wife and children are dealing with the change. His two children deal with this in very different ways, but will there be understanding in the end? This book is not for everyone. It is a compelling read. The author has managed to get the reader very emotionally involved and I really cared about what happens to Luke/Lucia. It is a very difficult topic to handle but Charity Norman manages to bring across the emotional upheavals of everybody involved, in a very caring and careful manner. It certainly helps to raise awareness of the disorder and helps people to maybe understand it a little but better. Like I said I picked the book up as it was part of the Simon Mayo book club without actually knowing what it was all about and I was pleasantly surprised. 

Gut feeling

About four weeks ago, on a Saturday, I was told by my employer: “If I was in your shoes, I would be looking for another job!”             Yes he used those exact words. My contract was coming to an end on the 7th November and I have been asking several times if it will get renewed and I got that reply, so I got the hint. I applied for a job straight away through an agency and they arranged a first interview straight away for the Tuesday. I was impressed things were moving fast. The initial interview was a presentation of the company and to see if we could imagine working there. The next step was to write a letter of motivation which would lead to a second step of the interview process. Immediately there was a hitch. The agency thought that there were too many qualifications and jobs on my C.V and asked me to cut out things or combine, plus they wanted a reason why I left every single job I ever had. My gut was telling me then to leave it and walk away. I never had to do this before and why cut out some of my hard earned qualifications? Well I did it anyway. A week later I was called for the second step, also on a Tuesday at 15:00. That was the final time originally I was meant to be there at 13:00, but the night before the agency changed it to 15:00, which made my tummy turn again, as I thought it was odd to change an arranged time at 20:00 at night. Anyway, I drove the 1hr15min to the town where the job was going to be. Yes I was prepared to drive a daily 1hr15min to do this job. I got there at 14:45 and the lady from HR came down to reception and told me that my interview was at 13:00 and that the German specialist was out of the office now. I told her that I was told by the agency to be there at 15:00 and the time was changed very late the previous evening. I was gutted. It was as if the Universe was ending me a loud and clear message to just leave it, it’s not meant to be. My second interview was then on the Thursday and yes I drove the 1hr 15 min again. Everything went well and they assured me to let me know the following day. I heard nothing on the Friday, nor anything after the weekend. On Tuesday night during my evening class at 20:00 the agency lady rang again and said that the company wanted to do one last telephone interview to make absolutely sure. It was arranged for the day after at 16:00. The next morning I get a call where that call for the afternoon was cancelled and they are now calling me on the Friday at 16:00. Another sign from the Universe? Low and behold they rang me on the Friday at 16:00, and they asked me to stay by the phone to tell me if I got the job or not. I waited that night until 19:00 until I finally gave up hope. 

My flight to Germany was on the Monday at 18:00. I just got through security when my phone rang and the agency was telling me that I got the job, but at £4000 less annually then previously agreed. I was gutted. I had to decline the offer as for that money I could not travel that distance every day. I felt let down and lied to all the way. Do those people know what they have been doing to me? On the other hand my gut feeling was telling me all along that this isn’t the right thing, but I was so desperate to get another job I wasn’t listening. The long drive was off putting straight away but I thought I can handle it if the money is right, but in all honesty the job wasn’t me anyway I just didn’t want to see it. I wanted to have the security of any other job to go to. I am now hoping that there is something out there I can do to suit my skills and I am also hoping the Universe will point me in the right direction.

I know some people belittle the gut feeling or say that there is no such thing. I think there is and every now and again we should listen to it. Trust your instincts!

How to Become a Passionate Full-Time Writer!

Creative Writers' Blog

A previous article, How To Become a Full-Time Writer, inspired some (including myself) to stop procrastinating and begin publishing my stories through Amazon. However, there were concerned that they wouldn’t be able to write effectively if they didn’t care deeply for what they were writing.

So we asked around to see if other successful writers would like to offer their own advice and provide hope for those of us that would prefer to write what we know. Our very own Annie Grace wrote a great article about How To Become A Ghostwriter, and Storm Constantine replied to my email request with this little gem:

7 Tips for Aspiring Writers

Storm Constantine

I was asked for my thoughts on whether it’s possible to be successful as a writer while preserving your integrity. After all, the demands of the market can be extremely narrow and subject to fads. If you…

View original post 1,533 more words

Book Review: Did You See Melody by Sophie Hannah

Cara Burrows packs her bags and runs away o a five star resort in Arizona. She is upset with her family, her husband and her two children Oli and Jess. Cara is pregnant but her family is against a new baby, but nobody asked what she really wants. So she books herself into a luxurious hotel in Arizona to put some distance between her and her family and to have some thinking time. When she arrives at the hotel the receptionist hands her the wrong room key, which kicks off a whole series of events. Let’s just say Cara’s break is not like she expected it to go. Cara uncovers the mystery about the missing Melody Chappa.

The book is great. It is fast paced and a real page turner. I love the way the author has set the scene in this five star luxury holiday resort. It sounds great, like I wanted to be there as well. The book is full of twists and turns right to the last sentence even. Very unexpected outcome. Highly recommended. 

Notebooks

I just started an evening class in creative writing. The tutor stresses every week how important it is to carry a notebook around with you. I agree with her. Despite being a very technological  person, making notes in a notebook is important. I make notes of ideas or snippets of conversations I pick up, which later on lead to stories or even a novel.

I came across the below article on notebooks, which I would like to share with you:

http://lithub.com/why-digital-note-taking-will-never-replace-the-physical-journal/

Book Review: Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch

My best friend and her husband are massive fans of Ben Aaronovitch‘s books, so I thought I‘ll give them a go as well. Rivers of London is the first book in a series of these detective novels. When I heard detective novels my ears pricked up as I love detective stories, but this one is kind of different. 

Peter Grant is a trainee police officer. He is very close to his co-worker Lesley. After an unexpected encounter with a ghost, Peter gets recruited by the ‘special branch’ of the Metropolitan Police. There he meets his new mentor Thomas Nightingale. He moves into his mansion where he is teaching him the beginnings of magic or wizardry. When Nightingale gets shot, Peter is left to solve the case by himself. The ghost inhabits different people and uses their bodies to enact a Punch and Julie story. In the end the people he inhabits, die. When the ghosts inhabits his co-worker Leslie’s body things starting to heat up.

The book is called Rivers of Lonodn as Peter has to ask the different rivers of London for help. The rivers can have a human form and by the end of the book it is also his task to help to make peace between the rivers of the two sides of London.

I didn’t find this story easy to follow. A ghosts as a murderer is one side which I may have been able to follow on it’s own, but then the river side of the story I found very confusing. This may be just me, as I prefer a straight forward murder story and like I said the ghost bit and the magic bit on it’s own would have been great, but to throw in the river stuff almost spoiled it for me. Of course the rivers help him to solve the müderes, but he would have done it on his own 😉 

I got the second book as well and will read it, but I am somewhat reluctant about this book. 

Blue

Blue is water. It‘s the sea. Blue is the sky above the sea. Blue is fresh and calming. When I sit by the shore watching the endless sea, it reminds me that there is a whole different world at the other side of the ocean. People that speak a different language and eat different food. Is there maybe a person sitting by the shore wondering about their live?

The waves crashing on the shore, breaking on the pebbly beach. The noise is calming. The rhythm soothes the busy mind. I take deep breaths to open my lungs. My lips taste the salty water. I like it. It makes me feel free. I love the open space. The fresh air is clearing my mind. All the rubbish out and fresh air in.

So,times my mood is blue. More often than not it feels dark blue. I often wonder where that comes from.

Blue isn‘t my favourite colour. That would be purple. I often feel more comfortable with black, but I was told once that black is not a proper colour.

Blue is a good colour to rely on. Very middle of the road. Very traditional in a way. Blue is a solid colour. It‘s a prime colour. It is used to make other colours out of it. Purple is made out of blue. 

Everybody in my family has blue eyes. That‘s how I know we belong together. Blue unites us. 

Blue is meant to be a positive colour. That‘s why I chose it over black. Black would have led me down a whole different path.