Fun and Games…

We have been spending far too much time playing with our new arrival, but I’m not complaining as watching him play is like a breath of fresh air! I had forgotten how mischievous a young kitten can be!

This morning we were expecting a grocery delivery, so we shut him in the bathroom. (He’s not allowed outside yet)

When we went to let him out, we were greeted by the remains of a toilet roll scattered all over the floor…

Our Christmas Angel… #Poetry


Our Christmas Angel

Old Christmas memories come calling
When snow did lie all around
Snow angels, snowmen, the days delight
Children laughing, presents wrapped
Warm mince pies waiting
Custard stirring in time with Grandads snoring
Mum flapping while dad sharpens the turkey knife
Big brother calling, time to come in to help lay the table
Three of us rush the door together
Managing to squeeze through
Like the pop of a champagne cork flying across the room
We land in a giggling pile of legs and arms
Mother calling, she need help!
I know this isn’t true, she likes to give us something to do
To feel a part of our Christmas cheer
God bless, Mum… she’s our Christmas angel…


©AnitaDawes2020

Friend or Foe?

Image by Manfred Richter from Pixabay

I had just moved from the PC to my writing chair to try and get my head around a book review I was working on.

Things were going well when I happened to look up from my work to look out of the window in front of me.

Something had made me put down my pen, and I looked for the reason.

I scanned the garden and all the trees I could see without standing up; they thrashed about in violent gusts of wind. Further down the garden, almost too far for me to focus on, the row of bird feeders was doing a roaring trade with the local birdlife.

I love to watch the birds in our garden, mainly small ones like sparrows, bluetits and the odd robin. It’s like a mad rush hour as they take in turns to land on the feeders, pecking furiously at the fat balls. They seem to prefer these to the seed I also supply.

I became aware of other activities closer to my window and switched my attention to the shelf with the row of bonsai trees. A male blackbird with shiny black plumage and a vivid yellow beak was perched on one of the pots and viciously pecked at the carefully cultivated moss that snuggles around the base of each tree.

We were just a few feet from each other, and I knew he was watching me, but he carried on with his mission. By the time he had visited all the trees on the shelf, it looked like a battleground with lumps of moss scattered everywhere.

Later, I was asked why I hadn’t tapped on the window to stop the destruction, but what the bird was doing was perfectly natural, and if he had removed any insects that might have harmed my trees, I would be in his debt. Moss is so easily replaced.

Sharing those moments with Mr Blackbird was magical, and I will remember them forever…

Wishing you all a very happy Monday…

Friday Flowers… #Photography

Image by Alexa from Pixabay 

Before anyone says it, I know these are technically not flowers, but they were once…

Anatomy of a Best Seller #Review @sacha_black

                      

Do you wish you could write like your favorite authors? Do you want to improve your writing? If you want to power up your stories, write with your readers in mind, and deliver what the market wants, this book is for you.

In The Anatomy of a Best Seller, you’ll discover:

A step-by-step guide to deconstructing your favorite books so you can utilize the tools of winning authors.
Tips and tricks for breaking down everything from sentence level prose to plot, pacing, characters, story arcs, and more.
A comprehensive guide to understanding your market and what readers want.
Tactics for turning the lessons and tools you find into practical prose and stories.
The Anatomy of a Best Seller is a comprehensive guide that will help you break down the best books in your genre, understand how and why they work, and then learn how to do it yourself.

By the end of the book, you’ll be armed with the methods you need to deconstruct best sellers, understand the tools those authors are using, and how to implement them in your own work.

If you like dark humor and learning through examples, then you’ll love Sacha Black’s guide to deconstructing winning books. Read The Anatomy of a Best Seller today and start writing your best seller.
    

Our Review

I have always wanted to know why some books become best sellers and some don’t. So when I saw The Anatomy of a Best Seller by my friend and excellent writer, Sacha Blake, I knew I was about to find out.

Sacha is a wonderful writer, and her helpful, well-written books for writers everywhere should be gold-plated, as I have always found them easy to understand, totally absorbing and exceedingly helpful.

I have learned so much from Anatomy of a Best Seller, and I am convinced it will help me to get further up the ladder!

Amazon Review

“If you’ve ever wondered what catapults a title to bestseller status, then this book is for you. The Anatomy of a Bestseller had me both laughing out loud and tearfully wishing it had existed sooner. With her trademark humour, let Sacha Black take you through her step-by-step process for identifying what makes a book truly sing. A must-read for all authors who are serious about success and shaping their work into list-worthy stories from the get-go.” Helen Scheuerer, bestselling fantasy author.

Jaye’s Days…

Jaye’s Days

One way or another, a lot of things have been neglected by me this past year.

At the beginning of the year, I spent a lot of time outside in the garden, so of course, housework was the last thing on my mind. I was busy writing, too, and that was the best excuse in the world!

When the weather turned, changing from drought conditions to never-ending rain, I was back indoors, but somehow the housework wasn’t high on my list of priorities.

I tried to maintain reasonable hygiene levels in the kitchen and bathroom, but cleaning windows, dust bunnies, cobwebs and hoovering weren’t filtering through my brain. That’s when it was time to release my book, and unfortunately, the virus came calling too.

I am not firing on all cylinders yet but determined to catch up on a few things. Namely the oven and the freezer. They are two of the worst and least favourite of all jobs. Inside the oven, a meat pie had leaked most of its gravy, leaving a rapidly burning pile of goo on everything.

Then I was attacked by a huge iceberg when trying to find the ice cream in the freezer, and if it had grown any more, I wouldn’t have been able to shut the freezer door!

Day One

I staggered the work, as I still felt fragile and started on the oven. I warmed the oven in the faint hope that it would help with the cleaning process, then removed all the shelves and sprayed cleaner all over the interior. I shut the oven door and put the kettle on for a much-needed cuppa. Yes, I know I haven’t done much yet, but still.

The rest of the morning, the kitchen became a battleground as the dirt was removed from the oven and transferred to every available surface in my kitchen.

This is what I hate about housework. You do one simple job and then have to spend ages cleaning up. Mind you, the oven did look lovely.

Day Two

Time to tackle the iceberg!

I had already frozen the ice packs, ready for the defrost. We are not one of those families who can run the freezer down to nothing; it will never happen! So I have devised a method that works for me and keeps the food frozen. It usually takes an hour to transfer all the frozen food to the fridge, accompanied by multiple ice packs, and to defrost the freezer. At this point, you are banned from opening the fridge door.

I turned off the power and inspected the accumulated ice. There did seem to be a lot more of it than I thought. Would one hour be enough?

I started spraying the de-icer, only to run out halfway through. Then I added several trays of hot water and waited for the big melt to begin.

After an hour, the lump of ice looked as big as ever.  I had no choice but to continue the process and pray it wouldn’t take much longer.

When two hours had passed, I assessed the progress. The ice had retreated but not by much. If I waited any longer, I risked losing the food, which was probably having serious thoughts about defrosting by now.

Out came the hairdryer, and on my knees, I gave the ice one last assault. I even bashed it with a wooden spatula in my desperation. But I had to concede defeat.

Maybe after Christmas, I could have another go?

I know housework can be boring, and normally I wouldn’t go on about it, but honestly, this is the most fun I have had in months…

©JayeMarie2022

Anita Writes… #True Story

A Day Remembered

A few years ago now, Jaye and I decided to visit a zoo; it was more like a safari park without the need for a car. Jaye read that there would be a display by an orca, a black and white whale. The Ying and yang of the ocean, I call them.

When we arrived, we found that this would take place at 2 o clock that afternoon.

We walked around for a while. Jaye found a group of people listening to a man talking about one of her favourites. He was holding an arachnid, a huge orange and black spider. Of course, she wanted to be able to hold it right after he had said that it could shoot stuff from its black bulbous backside that would irritate the skin. Plus, it had a venomous bite.

Jaye tried to get me to take it from her hand. No chance, I thought. What if it is fed up being poked, prodded, and decided that I was the one to take a bite out of?

I watched her cooing over it like a fluffy white rabbit. Finally, I told her I had to find something with fewer legs. Walking around with 2 o clock in mind, we found one of my favourite animals. The sloth.

I thought cats were laid back and knew how to relax. This beautiful creature takes the biscuit. They live life in the slow lane, plus they only need to pee once a week. These days I could do with that skill.

A few paces along, we found the pandas lying on their backs as though sunbathing. We stood watching, and I swear they didn’t even blink.

I walked away, thinking they looked like stuffed toys and were not very entertaining. Whenever I see them on TV, they roll around and practice play fighting. Maybe they were tired.

Next, we found the giraffes, magnificent animals. I wouldn’t want to get on their bad side. I kept my distance while Jaye fed one, remembering when they get fed up being stared at, they spit at you. I didn’t fancy walking around for the rest of the day with gloop all over me.

Further along, we found a moth-eaten gorilla. Nothing like the one I fell in love with while visiting Regents Park Zoo with my husband. His name was Guy. People would throw their cigarettes at him; he would place it between his fingers and pretend to smoke it. After a while, he would turn to his audience and let out a stream of hot water, letting them know what he thought of the faces staring at him.

He sadly died while having a tooth removed. A short while later, I heard he had been stuffed and displayed in a glass cage at the History Museum. Something told me I had to say goodbye to the beautiful creature I had fallen in love with, and standing there, lost in his eyes, I was in a world that only he could explain.

Next, we came to the snake house, something else I am fond of. Skipping past the bats, not one of my favourites, I made my way outside.

We found the camels. Desert taxis, I call them. Snooty-looking devils that can spit for the fun of it.

It was time to make our way back to the small pool. The first three rows were full of people. Fools, I told myself. Steering Jaye to the sixth row, I had no intention of getting soaked when the whale dove in and out of the water.

When the display was over, the whale would hug the poolside, and we were encouraged to touch it. Its skin felt like a rubber tyre. Jaye was at the mouth end, her hand in its mouth, touching its tongue between a magnificent row of white teeth. God, what if she made it gag, and it snapped his mouth shut on her hand?

Before persuading her that it was almost time to go home, there was one more stop. I’d heard they had an elephant. King of the jungle in my book.

We found him alone on a small island, chained to the wall, swaying back and forth. I knew this meant he was very unhappy as they are pack animals and need company. Why was he chained to a wall by himself? I couldn’t stop my tears. I wanted to pull the chain from the wall and set him free. But I knew it would take more than that. He would need care for a long time if he were to recover. This is proof that all creatures should live in their own environment.

I drove home, compiling a letter of complaint in my head, hoping that someone would see the error of their ways and get him the help and companionship that he needed.

My day out remembered…

©AnitaDawes2022 All Rights Reserved

A Magical Moment…

Keeping the magical theme going today, I thought I would share a magical moment we had yesterday…

Autumn is in full swing, and the wind is having a lot of fun with the leaves outside, especially the ones that come from my bonsai…

This one was floating in mid-air…

We stood and watched for ages!

A Halloween Meme…

We picked this Halloween meme, because after the year we just had, it made us laugh!

Happy Halloween, Folks!