Tag Archives: imagination

The happy house

I don’t know what to write lately, so it has me thinking about going back to my old way of doing “Morning pages” to get myself out of this rut, writing random things for three pages; though not in long hand because writing more than half a page a time sets my arthritis off real bad.

I am getting into a rut of mindlessness.

I am becoming apathetic even with my imagination lately; because I think my emotions are literally eating me up, like a monster from the deep blue abyss as I lazily float on the water doing nothing.

I am lying to myself a lot about being productive in doing other things though, but it is lies nonetheless.

What are those supposedly productive things I have lied to myself about? 

Learning how to read the reversals and blockage positions of tarot cards and other types of spreads!

Checking out other people’s blogs or Pinterest boards, usually with the intent to find inspiration for my art or writing, but instead end up looking at the fashion pages or recipes.

Staring at homes wanted for local puppies in resentment that these people have dogs they don’t want and I don’t have a dog but want one.

Reading motivational posts and memes and resenting people being in their happy space, whilst I am still in my apathy and depression… I’m becoming a bad sport as time goes on and that’s totally not like me, I have started to see myself becoming bitter and sour whereas I used to be genuinely happy for other people.

I think I am turning into one of those bitter and sour spinsters you see in Victorian dramas and that scares me as I have never wanted to be like that!

I have even heard myself talking like them lately.  Someone tells me that they are ecstatically happy about something happening in their lives and I have heard myself say under my breath “it won’t last”.  I don’t know what’s got into me, but I am becoming mean.

When someone compliments me or is nice to me I am actually questioning why they did that and why would they want to?

I always thank them and tell them that they are sweet, but I do question their sanity at the same time and I won’t forget to tell them that they are an unusual spark in the world and that they shouldn’t let other people change them, but no doubt the world will, like they did with me.

It’s tragic but true and it’s scary!

I am still playful at times and I try to feign happiness and motivation – but it’s getting harder.  Several times this week I have said something uplifting to Paul, to find him blank and unresponsive and I wonder why I bothered at all to lighten the atmosphere, so I walk off and depression seeps in again!

It’s sad to know I have come to this, because only ten years ago I remember being complimented by a neighbour about how vibrant and happy my house is how I particularly seem to be so positive and laugh at the smallest thing and how I put a smile on their face every day they see or hear me.

How the other neighbours agree with them that this is a happy house that people like to walk past because of a beautiful wildlife garden full of life and hearing the almost constant laughter coming from the opened windows in the summer.

Paul has mentioned the neighbours are concerned about me as they don’t hear me anymore, it’s like I’ve vanished, like I am not here anymore, some have offered to pop in to see me – but Paul tells them it’s best not to – so I asked him why he did that?  He never answers.

I am so different these days and I don’t like it.

Who am I?

Indeed.

Thanks for reading…

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Filed under About Me, Home and Family

Being an authentic author

Great literature comes from the heart.  A great writer put their heart, their soul and their experience onto the paper.  They write what they love and are passionate about and they ensure to put as much emotion into their piece as they could possibly muster!

People want to read amazing literature, people want to write it too; but some people seem to think that they can’t trust themselves, their passions, their ideas because they have a low self-esteem and value for what they believe they are worth – so these sorts of people tend to be what I call “the idea stealers” and then they wonder why they aren’t as successful as Joe Blogs down the road and to me it’s purely a matter of just being you.  You weren’t being genuinely yourself when you are writing and that’s why you aren’t as good as someone who has their own path, their own ideas and put their heartfelt passions into a word format, like a book.

You’d be surprised at how many people would read a book about a character that is passionate about stamp collecting, if the author has the same passion – because the spirit of the author leaks onto the page and makes it feel genuine and fresh regardless of the subject matters general popularity in society.

I’ve read books with such a boring synopsis but were riveting reads, because I believe the author had done that – put their spirit into the pages of that book, by being themselves!  After researching the authors I find out that they do have similar lives to their characters and that’s why they are a success – even fantasy authors, though magic isn’t real, the power of belief and imagination is so strong in them as a person, they can trick you into believe it is!

Trend chasers do not tend to be very successful authors or at least not authors with readership longevity.

Don’t chase trends, don’t think that one author is doing really well on her blog or her sales that you must try and copy the frame of her work as your own in order to succeed as you think that’s a trend – you are not harming that other author, but you are harming yourself and your authenticity.  If there is nothing more that can sell better than talent it is a person’s authenticity – their brand. 

You being your authentic self is your brand.  Can you really keep up the pretence for the rest of your life that you love fairy romances when you by your very nature is a conservative person who doesn’t believe in magic and dreams coming true and love at first sight?

There is a time when it will become a grind for you and your mental health will suffer.  I have seen this happens to many authors over the time I’ve been online and befriended a few.

They tend to crash and burn out and give up.

The catalyst is usually the time when they choose a prompt and they are led by that prompt and the stealing of multiple ideas of other authors which reflect similar subjects of the prompt.  This is a thing, I’ve seen it time and time again and I actually have friends who are the writers of these prompts and they’ve cheekily used some of my ideas in their prompts to prompt other writers to write.

This has caused a surge over the years of certain subjects swamping the publishing industry with the same old subject and similar storylines, which gets old for author agents very quickly and it is why many book trends come and go erratically fast!

Trend chasers exhaust the idea pot because they are frightened of their own authenticity.

They feel that others will judge them as harshly as they judge themselves and that is not the case at all.

I am not sitting here being all high and mighty, I have succumb to this kind of pressure myself and I have sat down and seen the industry exhausted by vampires, so I have chased the other trends, witches or werewolves or demons and I wasn’t as happy as I was when I was writing my vampires and it is clearly seen in my works.

The heart isn’t there.

So where is my heart?

Where is my authentic self?

That’s another post…

For now, I want you to ask yourself the same question.

Thanks for reading!

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Pierrot the paint thrower

Today’s abstract thoughts took me to these places;

I was imagining my favourite movie soundtrack “Good Omens” and in my imagination I was proficient in playing this tune on a recorder, I was sitting on the top step of a step ladder, watching a cute guy who walked a bit like Charlie Chaplin painting an abstract picture of a candy world.

He was enjoying the music I was playing and every so often he would call out a colour and I would throw it into the general direction of the canvas and he would be happy!

“Pink” he shouted and I threw the bucket of pink paint at the canvas and he wiped it down on the canvas making lovely pink foliage for the flanks of the picture and I continued playing the recorder, getting off the steps slowly and gracefully whilst doing a solo waltz around the artist.

He then shouts “white” and I dip a large paintbrush into the pot of white paint and playfully throw my left arm out to the sides splashing the artwork all in seemingly perfect choreography – again he looked happy and continued painting in the clouds.

A little white dog, a Jack Russell terrier to be precise, came and sat next to me dancing with my recorder, still playing The Good Omens tune. 

I noticed in this vision I was a sky blue and pink Pierrot style clown and the little white dog had a silver and pink ruff around him, instead of a collar.

I was soon interrupted in my imaginings by Paul, who said it was time to get Henry to bed!

But these are the things that I imagine but are never put to use in a novel or story or anything, such a shame as I love sharing my thoughts with anybody who is willing to listen! 

Thanks for reading!

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Filed under Abstract Thoughts

Abstract world

I hear the gold in your heart

It’s beating like a tin

It is thick with the taste of happiness

And it is wet with the fluid of youth and the lack of sin

Cherished by the cherry tree

By the birds and solidarity

Your voice is shrill like a mouse

Your voice is home, like a house

And I am warmed by your eyes as they burn into mine

I can smell your dreams

They flow like wine

Into a well of hope and future

Mending my wounds as the suture

And I am destined to stay with you

Because you are special too

We live in this daydream

Walking on the mist of clouded sleepwalk

How much I can hear you talk

Of all the mysterious things

Our existence is strange to the people

The earth ball round

They can’t hear the sounds we do

They are deaf and have no clue

We are different

You and I

This is why we walk on the sky

And we together we’ll be

For eternity

Alone

I have always loved the abstract in poetry, film and sometimes art.  I have also always love innovations in absurdism and surrealism in all art forms – though I have to admit I treat them all with guilty pleasure, as these things are rarely understood by the world and are often shunned as being too weird.

I often want to write whole stories and songs like this, but it’s so very niche really and I don’t like how some people will try to dissect the art and prose to try to make sense of it, or me – or worse, to presume that I have some kind of deep mental problem or something along the lines of substance abuse, simply because I can put my mind into far-out places!

A school teacher of mine in the last school I ever went to, called Mr Kingham saw how much of an abstract, absurdist thinker I was and tried to get me to take art seriously in school – but I never did.  Because it was not an encouraged thing at home; he was so proud of a statue I made in abstract of a guitar, that he insisted that he had to take it home and keep it forever for himself as it was too brilliant to just throw away at the end of the school year!

My parents never understood the excitement in him, nor why he would insist that out of all my achievements art supreme in me.  I never understood it either, I don’t reckon much of my art – my paintings and drawings that is, and even my abstract poetry.

I think it is nice to play with them – but is it really contributing to anything?

I have an over-analytical mind at times – yes I am playful, yes I can do this and the above I enjoyed doing a lot!  But I can’t help but think that other people will find it all a stupid waste of time?

There has been hundreds of poems similar to the above, I have deleted since having my blog after deciding that I might be too embarrassed to share them after all.  Hundreds might be an understatement.

There are times where I stop writing my novels, because my thought has become too abstract, that I have to put it away and rethink them for normal brains. 

Such as I am having a serious rethink about my description in project AD!

The description in project AD is based entirely on what a wild animal would perceive of things when it has been bought into the human world – how would a wild hare view newspapers strewn over a floor?  To me that is a simple idea, obviously they are the weirdest shaped leaves I ever did see with speckles of black all over them and white and snow!

The strange shaped logs that the two legged creatures sat upon groaned like some tortured squashed animal.  I mean, could you really read a novel like that?

As much as I love to write it, I worry about how it’s going to be received!

Yes I often hold back in this kind of description for a lot of my work, but it soon gets boring when I do.

Sometimes I think outside of the box so much I find it hard to get back into the box!

I love wild and out there ideas, hence my obsession with stories such as Alice in Wonderland and through the looking glass, Wizard of Oz fourteen books, the arc of the scythe series, His dark materials and such the likes.

As a child my imagination often ran away with me, I didn’t need to see scary things when the light was off, I saw them when the light was on! 

A mere pile of clothes on a chair could take on some weird shape of an abstract multi-coloured witch and the pigeon on the window ledge cooing sounded like some awful mischievous chuckle.  I often found myself over the years fantasising about making mini art movies based on those kinds of imaginings, but I don’t have the wherewithal to know what I am doing!

Last year when I made a post called “The spider’s suicide note” https://tardycreative.com/2022/07/30/a-spiders-suicide-note-or/ I actually wanted to rush off and make a mini movie about it and really make a thing about it with noir 1930s detective kind of slant to it – but I don’t know how to do these things and I don’t have anyone to help!

But it can be bizarre and spontaneous and it can be hard to hold off for a while waiting for things to be done, because by that time the inspiration would have left me!

I wanted to join Skillshare to learn the technology for all of that, but I can’t afford an annual subscription taken out in one lump sum like they are requesting nowadays!

I am really upset about that actually, because I was going to get ready to learn these things for YouTube and TikTok – but it’s going to have to wait until I save up for it.

The above poem is heavily inspired by Bjork and Aurora, I love those women!

Let me know of what you think of all the above… do you get abstract ideas like these or are they beyond you?

Thanks for reading!

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Filed under About my work, poetry

Top 10 dreams or imaginings

Top 10 of dreams or things regarding my imagination

Top 10 favourite scenes to imagine

Anything with caves or subterranean

A world made of candy

Dark street scenes

Scenes with rain

Scenes with fire

Vampires

Lost souls fighting against the odds

Spooky children

Circuses and carnival life

Ballroom and parties

Top 10 favourite movies to imagine replaying in my head but differently

Charlie and the chocolate factory with Gene Wilder

Disney’s Funny little bunnies

Rise of the guardians

Mad Max movies

Tank Girl

Hook

Batman movies

Labyrinth with David Bowie

Mr Magorium’s wonder emporium

Alice in wonderland with Martin Short as The Mad Hatter

Top 10 favourite books or stories to imagine and do differently

Gregor the overlander series by Suzanne Collins

Fool by Christopher Moore

The man in the picture by Susan Hill

Smoke and mirrors anthology by Neil Gaiman

Tales of the peculiar by Ransom Riggs

Charlie and the chocolate factory by Roald Dahl

James and the giant peach by Roald Dahl

Engelbert Sneem and His Dream Vacuum Machine by Daniel Postgate

The spider by Hanns Heinz Ewers

The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien

Top 10 repetitive dreams I have at night – whether I like them or not!

Going back to my mum’s house in London packing over and over again!

Being chased by something but all it is, is love

Reptiles protecting me from something or shepherding me into places

Swimming in clean water and being pulled out of the water by crocodiles or alligators

Walking or running through a woodland with large lake and streams that is situated behind an army barracks

Sitting in a car talking to the man in a black suit

Putting up or taking down Christmas decorations, usually Christmas is cancelled

Visiting the dentist who takes out the wrong tooth or did something wrong

My pets in the garden falling into a muddy pond or being swept away by floods

Visiting a candy stall in a market but it’s all free because a mysterious person paid for it for me

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Filed under Defining myself

The spirit of everything

The weird thing about me is that I have a lemon tree in the living room window called Cyril.

Why is he called Cyril?  Because Paul named him it, when I was thinking about what to name him?  I thought Citroen, but Paul thought Cyril was a good idea, so it stuck.

Yes, I am in the habit of naming my plants as though they are individuals, the same as I used to name any fish I can identify in an aquarium I had in the past.

There is no shame in naming animals, plants and things in general.

I was bored four years ago and found a nice ghost shaped rock; I painted the said rock blue and white, attached googly eyes on it and named it Rocco.

Rocco sits on a bookshelf in my bedroom, amongst perfume and little gnome ornaments.

When I walk into furniture or walls I apologise to it, sometimes if I am in a bad mood, I will slap it and say how inconvenient it was to move just then! 

I am the sort of person that sits watching TV and talks to it like the people in the TV can hear me – no don’t do that you stupid person!  Or, yes, I just read that in this book over there called “what not”, Paul has grown used to me talking to anything; it’s what we call our normality. 

Paul laughs when he hears me accuse the furniture of moving to block me, but I am still not so sure that they don’t move occasionally… because sometimes, it’s like they see a danger I wasn’t aware of, because usually when things like this happen to me, there is someone else charging around the corner of a door or other things. 

I still can’t help but remember what my grandma said about the fairy ancestry in Ireland she claims we have.

Paul was a complete atheist before meeting me, but he admits since knowing me and seeing the strange things that go on in this house since I moved in with him – he can’t deny there is something else.  He has said, since I have moved in, this is definitely a fairy house!

Why did he say that?  I asked him – he said well, since I moved in there is a new energy in the house, he sees shadows and coloured lights occasionally, hears strange mutters in the dark corners of the kitchen at night and food goes missing! 

Although I am a fantasist, I am also quite analytical.  So I said to him, how do you know that I haven’t sleep walked downstairs in the night and ate things?  He said, because when you were in hospital for a week having Henry, it still happened and the mutterings got worse.

I said, did you forget to feed the house spirit?  It was this time that Paul didn’t realise I left offerings every night for it, and so, he didn’t leave things for the house spirits whilst I was away.

Paul heard a crash downstairs one night, after I gave leftover beer as an offering in the kitchen, when we came downstairs we saw saucepans everywhere and Paul claimed he heard a woman mutter about “giving blooming alcohol to him, never leaves him alcohol”!  Then we heard what sounded like a cat fight outside.  So now we never leave alcohol, because the female house spirit doesn’t like her man to drink it!

My grandmother told me that the house spirit always follows the family, they don’t belong to the house – they belong with the family as they are family too!

Whether they’d follow me when I move out or stay with Henry, I am unsure, maybe they’d split the family, some will stay and some will come with me?

We’ve discovered there are seven fairy occupants living here, with lots of occasional overnight visitors.

As much as Paul used to be a sceptic, even he has claimed at the corner of his eye he has seen what they look like and he describes them exactly as I know them to look – because I am clairvoyant; or mad, whatever the case may be.

Dora Lilac-Switch is the head of the house and she does use a lilac cane as a switch to keep the others in line and Paul has complained he felt a sting across his calves when he spilled something in the kitchen and couldn’t be bothered to wipe up after him!

Paul has talked me into eventually writing a book about the brownie goings on in this house, but it might not be done for a while yet.  I have about seven other projects to do first.

Ray our house rabbit used to get tired regularly to the extent he wouldn’t move the next day, Paul started to worry about him, but I drew up a diary about when it happens to see if maybe he was allergic to fruit and veg we gave him.  It turned out the tiredness coincided with common fairy and pagan party dates, which made me consider – has the faeries took him to the party with them?  Fairies do get along with their animal housemates according to legend.  So, it seems they do.

Especially as his fur it usually roughed up and after he is over the exhaustion of it all, almost like a hangover and he goes into a bad mood for three days, like he missed the freedom!

My brother was also a sceptic when I lived in London, but claimed one night he saw a little man in his bedroom eating the leftover pizza on the floor – though my brother was drunk, he still saw it and that little man visits here from time to time, I think he follows my dad, so he doesn’t live here with me anymore; though dad has never said he has seen him, I knew his name to be O’Hara.

There is another little fairy called Lara who is childlike and she has the habit of knocking my drinks over if I have forgotten to water my houseplants for a while.

Dora helps me remember not to burn things on days I forget to put on timers, by chinking glasses in the kitchen loudly together.

Dora also helped me with the bad neighbour by talking to the magpies and they swooped down to attack him one day, but one nearly got knocked to the ground as he managed to swipe at it.

If it is mental illness and not reality all of this, then it is something I don’t want cured as it is excellent story material if nothing else.

But Paul and my brother were hard-core sceptics, scientists and physicists and they won’t let me think that it’s just my imagination – because how could they see my imaginings? 

Being analytical myself and also a former student of psychology and social science, I said this; “it’s quite simple, it is a form of mass hysteria”.  They won’t have it!

I never finished my degree in psychology and social science, I wished I had, it was fun.

The meaning behind this post?  None specifically, just something I wanted to share and something a bit fun about me and my home.

Happy reading!

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Filed under About Me, Home and Family

Writers that influenced me Part 3

Roald Dahl was one of the first two authors I first discovered and loved throughout my childhood and got me into the habit of reading because of how much I enjoyed their works; the other author was Eric Hill, I was a major fan of Spot the dog.  But Roald Dahl really knew how to identify with children and think like them.

Roald Dahl was one of the first authors I experienced who actually understood how children think and how children might behave in certain circumstances and I enjoyed and respected that about him.

All too easily adult authors try to avoid the snotty nose kids covered in mud aspect of childhood and try to portray children as mini adults and it isn’t accurate!  Many people try to show that children can be brave too, but Roald Dahl fully understands that a growing person often feels fear; especially when they are alone in the world dealing with some pretty big stuff going on around them, how often children are disregarded and ignored by their elders, often in reality children are made to feel inconvenient even by those that care and love them.

He did all of this whilst never deviating from the fact that although some children can rebel and do nasty things to their elders, they still have a certain amount of innocence about them and I admire the balance he had in his stories.

Christopher Moore’s books are hilarious and I read them whenever I am having a hard time, because he is just so funny!  I love how he plays with ideas and makes fun of the aspects of society which seem to be the most serious.

Although most of his books is all about humour he never deviates from excellent high quality storytelling and never forgets the real seriousness of the lives he is writing about, because although he is a light hearted absurdist he is also very dark. 

Again I believe his books have shown me how to write in a balanced kind of way.

Ransom Riggs books are absolutely wonderful, when I first read “Tales of the peculiar” my first book I ever read from him, I actually thought he was an old European storyteller from the times of the brothers Grimm or something and was actually genuinely surprised to find out he is a contemporary writer. 

Reading his books gave me the confidence to realise that the way he wrote the stories is not outdated and it has a certain charm that contemporary readers still enjoy, I always liked this style of storytelling. 

Again I loved the darkness in his books and he sometimes portray the ickiest things with light-heartedness, he has an excellent imagination which shows me that anything you can dream up can be accepted by readers, because he has done it.  There has been times where I felt my own works were too light about the dark aspects of my own stories, where I felt I should think about reader sensitivities, but in doing so I lose myself and my readers will lose too as there are many out there who likes this kind of stuff – I am not alone.

Ransom Riggs is very good at showing how different cultures view things, that not everybody thinks and feels the same and that if magic was part of our reality there are many things we must consider about how magical cultures will be so much different to our own, in such fantastic ways.

Happy reading.

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Filed under About my work

The speed of thought

I wish my brain could make my body work in the same pace as its imaginations; I’d be prolific, drowning in art work and stories and it would be amazing – but no, it is never going to happen!

I think about too much and so little actually gets physically manifested because my daydreams are lightning fast.

I really meant it when I have said in previous posts, I don’t suffer from artist or writers block, I suffer from artist and writers overload!

You have no idea that in every poem I write and post on the blog, there are three or more pieces of art that are not being produced to go with it, because I can’t paint that fast!

Every painting I have done in the past takes an average of three hours, but anywhere between ninety minutes and six maybe even seven hours a time!  That’s just one piece of art!

You have no idea how much I wish everything I think of would physically manifest, the exacting art ideas I have, the exact stories, the exact movies, the exact music and the exact songs – but I manage to physically manifest so little of it, because of lack of time and speed ability, in fact I don’t even believe I produce a whole 1%.

You have no idea how I am obsessed with my imagination and how it consumes my daily life to the extent that I often forget to live in reality!

Paul is both a blessing and a curse for this, because he will happily allow me to be consumed by it all, whilst feeding me and keeping me as comfortable as he can – but he doesn’t like to interfere with my daydreams AT ALL!  It scares me when he dies someday, it scares me because I am so consumed by it all that if he were to die tomorrow, I might die a few weeks later because I will forget to feed myself, I will forget to live and he doesn’t shake me out of it, like others have done in the past and I have told him – that could be dangerous, but he doesn’t take it seriously.

I wish he would, because I am quite serious – I would forget to live when he dies, especially when he dies, because the more I grieve or the more stressed I am, the more I lock myself away and go into what I call an “astral travelling adventure” where I am quite literally channelling through my body to write or paint, and often I don’t hear or feel anything in that state, once in it. 

It is hard to get into that state initially if there is discord around the house, but if I go into it before the arguments and ructions start, I can’t hear it… its weird and I doubt I am making sense to those who don’t experience the same as I do.

There are times when Paul wants to feed me, where he knows I can’t hear him or see him, no matter what he does, but he touches me and like a sleepwalker I am literally shocked back into reality and have a little panic attack and calm down and then he tells me that dinner is ready.

It really is like that for me.

Sometimes I thought I should cheat.  I should write my poems and then explain what the art should have been, but probably would never get done by me.  Just so I can show you more.  But then I thought; you wouldn’t understand what I am trying to achieve or understand why I would do that, so should I bother?

I’d really like to paint at least one poem a week, for my YouTube channel that will start at the end of the year.  I could paint a picture a day, anything up to seven pictures in time for the vlog, but that is probably all I could do.  I couldn’t do anymore art, if I did that without it affecting my stories and sleep time.

Paul likes the idea but also he is a realist and he believes that it would hugely affect how much writing I will produce.

He knows I love art more than writing, but he loves my writing more than my art.  He hasn’t experienced much of my music, so he has no opinion on that.

 I really do wish that I could physically produce all that I think about at the same speed as my thoughts.

Happy reading!

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Filed under About my work

What do I do?

What do I like to do when I am not writing or doing art?  Strange to say, that creativity is such a big part of my life it is actually really hard for me not to be in creative mode in one way or another.

Outside of actually physically writing, I do think about things to write almost on a constant basis I am a chronic daydreamer!  I can’t hold conversations very much travelling in a car because I zone out to daydream and for me, it’s just as well because it is my coping mechanism for car travel sickness – hence why, I have never learned to drive.  I am actually going to try next summer to have my first ever driving lesson, but I don’t think I’ll have more than three before deciding that driving isn’t for me!

I like to talk about sceneries when travelling on trains, I love trains, but again I daydream a lot on trains.  Unless the conversation isn’t specifically towards the scenery I tend to zone out on people.

It’s easy for me to zone out completely and sometimes it takes a person shaking me by the shoulders to come back to reality again!

But outside of this one big daydream of mine, what do I do?

I like tending to the garden, but I am never without my creative quirks there either as I imagine faeries or trolls peeping out at me from behind bushes and dark corners and so forth.  Whenever I garden, I garden with nature and unseen forces in mind; I have to have fruits, herbs and vegetables every few feet, because it helps the fair folk, animals and birds.  It’s either my active imagination or my witchy roots and shamanic past that allows me to see things that others say aren’t there.  I have never decided which is true…

But whatever I grow in the garden to eat, I always ensure that at least a quarter of what I grow is never harvest as because I don’t want to be seen as greedy and because I feel that you should leave things for nature, to go to seed or for the fair folk.  Did you know in actual fact that ancient humans used to always farm and garden like this until humans developed more of the greed gene? 

I am not a tidy gardener, I am a cut and drop type and I have the healthiest soil for miles around because of it; I know that some diseases and weeds should not be cut and dropped and I am wise to those things and they go either in a bucket of water to rot down or they go into a bonfire at the end of the month.  I have a special area for the bad stuff.

I grow with companion planting in mind and bio warfare – I am completely 100% organic and chemical free, what I do is I learn about nature and what feeds on what and I try to mimic the natural balance in my garden by trying to encourage pest killers into a problematic area.  If I grow nasturtiums the nasturtiums tend to encourage caterpillars and they generally leave my cabbages and other things alone, if I have an influx of aphids on my peas I grow sweet peas that are inedible nearby and umbellifers such as dill, fennel and yarrow to attract ladybirds and lacewings which eat aphids, as well as calendulas… no calendulas don’t eat aphids, they attract the things that do!

I am loved by frogs and toads and it used to freak my mother out every summer about how they’d hop or crawl after me if I was near the pond, because I had nurtured them since tadpoles and they became tame enough to be touched (make sure your hands are wet before you touch them as your skin can burn theirs).

I try to ensure a lot of mini ponds around the garden or makeshift ponds in the forms of buckets and ponds half inserted into the ground for them, because they kill slugs and snails and also we have a family of five hedgehogs in our garden most of the time, we’re quite lucky because our garden is small really – but we have so much life here!

My back garden is only 30ft wide and 50ft long, my front garden is 20ft wide and 20ft long, so it really is quite small for what it gives us!  We get a lot of food out of it and there is plenty of nature here – we always get comments from people in our neighbourhood about how we’ve bewitched wildlife and stolen it from their gardens because they don’t get all the bees and butterflies we have and they’ve never seen hedgehogs or woodpeckers in their gardens!  I just simply smile, shrug and say – plant more, get rid of your horrendous decking and fake plastic lawn and grow wildflowers, and then they’ll come to you.  Most snobbily sneer at the idea and look disgusted at my suggestion, but there has been one or two who have listened and nature is spreading, as it does and as it wants to and as it should!

When not gardening, I am bonding with animals, either in the form of pets or those in my garden; I am known to be quite mad by some neighbours because I click at magpies to call them down from the trees and some eat out of my hand and give me presents of egg shell and the prettiest stones they can find!

My magpies are my biggest influence in my writing, they are the main characters of a particular book series I am writing and they are based entirely on magpies I have befriended in reality.

I know it sounds nuts, but my life has been saved by a crow I cared for when it got heat stroke, this crow has long since died, but its family remember me and watches out for me.  I am profoundly deaf with inner ear auto-immune disease, which means a lot of the time because of ear infections I can’t wear my hearing aids at all, so I become completely deaf regularly – but one day I didn’t hear a car coming after I thought the coast was clear, it was one of those young teenage drivers who were racing down the long road and they nearly ran me down, but my crow, the one I saved earlier that year swooped down knocking me off balance just as the car nearly hit me, making me fall out of the way of the hit!

This crow and its family gets upset if they don’t see me for more than three days at a time and will shout their caws loudly and fly around the house until I either open the window so they can see me or go outside for a few minutes just to let them know I am OK – Paul is fascinated by this, but to me it’s normal!  They quieten down once they see me!

See it’s hard to have a “normal life” when I live the life I do.  My life is certainly not normal for everyone out there (points to the world) but it is normal for our ancestors and tribal people.  I consider myself an ancient human trapped in modern times.

I find it hard to have a “normal life” and talk about “normal” things.  I think normal is very suggestible, different to everyone and it hurts me when people feel they have the right to judge someone like me!  Because, in reality, had humans maintained their tribal existence and had maintained living as nature intended, then based on that, my way of life would be considered normal and conservative… it would be strange, not to be like me!

Other than having my head in the clouds and playing with nature like some kind of Disney princess, I do like movies and I do like doing puzzles.  I love 1000 piece puzzles and have a big collection of them and I have a love for word games, scrabble and codebreakers, that sort of thing.

I love feeding people too, I love to cook and I am often accused of making people fat when they stay here for more than a week!  Most people have to go on diets after visiting me, because they grow an addiction to my food!

I make as much as possible from scratch, including various jams, chutneys and sauces.  I am not scared of making pastry and I often cook too much deliberately, just to freeze them for later.  That’s how a home cook can manage their life better, cook and freeze – it’s safe, probably a lot safer than bought produce.

It’s funny but I get comments from people about how unsafe it is to put my lasagne in the freezer if nobody eats it all, but then they go out and buy microwavable frozen lasagne meals… the irony is both sad and laughable.

I find it hard to make friends with regular people; it’s easy for me to make friends with witches and creative people though.  Unfortunately I live in an area that is famed for its culture, but most of the people who live around me are science based workers, unemployed or in catering.  For the creative folk I have to be in the centre of town or a village five miles south from here, that’s where the creative folk are.

Paul is a scientist, he is a little bit creative because he used to be a photographer and he did once become a lecturer for art history in a university; but he is really a doctor of geology and that’s what he has been most of his life.  So he fits in here in our village, because a lot of people who live around us are doctors or nurses.

But he admits, though he loves some of my work he doesn’t love it all and it is hard for him to be enthusiastic in partaking an active role in being creative with me and brainstorming with me or even encouraging me beyond his scientific “get on with it” kind of way.  He is rather picky about what he likes and what he doesn’t like.

It is hard for me, because I am the type of writer that when she writes her stuff for the day she wants to share it with the person she is living with, immediately, because I am a person who likes to brainstorm with others – I like to talk about what I have done, because I am emotionally shallow and needy.    I am easily knocked off my perch if I think someone is disinterested, this is the hardest thing about me being a writer, since moving in with Paul.

My mother on the other hand was very good at feigning interest to buck a person’s creative confidence up, but Paul doesn’t like to even pretend and I appreciate him for that – but it is also frustrating for me.

So, what do I do outside of writing?  Basically play with animals, do puzzles, gardening, fatten people up and just generally connect to my inner being and nature.  I think that’s entirely me… I do love music, I love art, I love practising on my various musical instruments, but when I do that – I tend to go back into creative play again, then write songs and compose music!

So that’s me!  A creative child of nature; surrounded by a multitude of other species; that is spiritually connected to her little world and loves to entertain people with food, story and poetry.

Hope you enjoyed an insight to my weird little life!

Thanks for reading! 

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Tropes and scenes loved and hated

Some writer friends have asked me to list what I definitely will not include in my stories and what I am likely to include in my stories in regards to themes and tropes and just general stuff.

Apparently it is a thing that’s going around where writers are starting to share that sort of thing?  Ok, here goes…

Too many romance scenes (sex scenes in my adult works possibly but not romance, gooey eye rolling load of old trollop nah huh ) – this is not for me and won’t be in my stories much if at all!  But do expect sex scenes frequenting some of my adult works! 

Unless the story has historical scenes, it is unlikely there will be silly gossiping women, I hate gossip!  The only time this is acceptable in my works is at the ladies cream tea afternoons in a Victoriana setting, but I do find writing these things cringe worthy, being a gossip is generally cringe worthy as it is! 

Technological explanations and scientific terminologies – I don’t have the brain for it – it will be basic stuff!  Oh this big blue square button does that and this round yellow one does this, character pushes said button and hey presto, that’s as nerdy as I get! 

Helpless women who lose their mind over men and forget to defend themselves because their love is in danger – the women in my stories generally have their heads together!  I mean I know for sure if I was a character in some of these books I have read, my reaction would be “I have my own problems, wait you wuss”!

Stereotypical monsters that just do evil because… hey… they’re monsters!  So overdone and totally unfair!  Not to mention, highly discriminating and endorsing discrimination… just saying! 

Emotionally bland or emotionally devoid scripts – I have read hundreds of pages of emotionally dead characters who keep on telling me about why they need to do something and get somewhere, but there is no real descriptive emotional output at all – it’s like, it’s their duty to have to think this way because it is expected, but generally there is no real feeling behind the words… you get me?  If you get me, you’ll see that I mean to say, that the character makes you feel like they are lying to both themselves and you as a reader! 

Mindless barbarians bonking heads for no other reason than they’re simply bored or want to be barbaric.  There is always a motive behind an action, tell me about it… not just the mindless violence! 

Slow paced stories, there has been books I have read where nothing at all moves the plot forward more than six pages at a time and that’s being optimistic!  I need something to happen on every page, it’s not hard to do!  No one wants the second scene to happen fifteen minutes later!

Repeating scenes already seen in the story or having characters lull over past memories again and again – yawns, boring!

Constantly reminding the readers how emotionally affected the person is about so and so, it is OK to mention it around three maybe four times in the whole book but please don’t take us back there in every single chapter!  We know, we read and understood it – doing this makes your readers feel like you think they are idiots who just do not understand – don’t do that to them!

Other than generalising height as short, tall etc and the build of the person as well as the colour of the hair or skin, please leave other things to the imagination unless those other features deeply affect the story in some way – like an eye patch or a scar on the chin which is why there is a revenge plot or something – but generally, let people use their own imaginations about who they want to play the part in their heads based on who they know with general outlines.

I love to write very descriptive body horror scenes because I love grossing people out, I understand this is not everyone’s cup of tea – but it’s what I do in my adult horror stories!

I love found family tropes and close family tropes, I love tropes where there is a small team working together towards the same goal!

I like write historical scenes and be descriptive about the environment and landscape around the character!

I write a lot about isolation and abuse, because it is something I have experienced a lot over the years, therefore I feel it is easy to write in a believable way.

I am very good at understanding the hidden aspects of society, the things that people can hide from others, the secrets, the lies, the behind closed doors of Mr and Mrs Ideal-Citizen, the underground stuff, the dirty nitty gritty aspects of life.

I am very good at writing different points of view because I have had a very rich life regards to socialising with different classes and types of people just by being moved from relative to relative.  I have lived with rich aunts and certain members of the aristocracy because on one side of my family we have a very old family – on another side of my family they are gypsies and farmers – another side were refugees, lots of different religions and class systems.  The list goes on! 

I find it easy to write from the perspective of a social worker and a teacher who is worried about their abused pupil/client and then write from the perspective of a junkie about to lose their child – I have seen these things unfold right before my eyes time and time again growing up!

One thing I have experienced time and time again from lots of different people and classes is suicide and sudden loss due to murder.

I have a huge interest in environmentalism, so pollution and innovation is something I like to put in most of my books.

Because I love comedy and prefer books and movies with comedy aspects, I do tend to like to throw in humour whenever I can, including in my darkest horror stories – I can’t help it; it always gets in there somehow!

I do love vampires and I have to say at least a third of my work will have some kind of vampire in there!

I love animal companions and so that will be a thing – particularly fond of anthropomorphic animals pretending to be human or whatever.

I like over the top comic hero and villain tropes, so that is another thing that will be seen a bit in my works.

There is likely to be someone who is rather off key in my stories, a batty old aunt, a batty young aunt, the green juice hippy weirdo and the generally bonkers type of person – or the harsh out of touch with their emotions type who is learning to soften themselves down a bit.

There will be women who save themselves and maybe even male characters! 

There will be lots of free range children living independently and causing chaos or massive changes in their communities.

There will be a lot of subterranean places too; in fact this is something that is seen in half of my stories so far!

People who are incredibly lucky when things aren’t really going for them!

Also, I will always end up being just ever so slightly corny…

So that’s what you can expect from me… I won’t say anything else on the matter, so please stop poking around…

Thanks for reading! 

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