Just So

Thru Violet's Lentz

Photo courtesy of Wedding Book.com

Though Willard had always pictured himself in the subtle gray pinstripe, he decided against it at the last moment. Years of maintaining a keen edge on the trouser crease that was once the definition of a well groomed man, had weakened the fabric and left what now appeared to be a light gray chalk line running dead center down the front and back of each pant leg.

He chose instead a polished silk blend, in charcoal. He had always loved the tapered waist on the jacket and hand carved ornamental buttons on the sleeves, but felt the tri-pleat on the front of the trouser insinuated a pauchiness that distracted from the otherwise clean cut of the suit and therefore was never comfortable wearing the jacket open.

There would be no reason to wear the jacket open today.

Scrupulously shaved, and every hair oiled into place…

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Something that isn’t fiction


I have been posting a LOT of fiction lately. Thanks to everyone who is reading it, and commenting. Thanks also to all of you who sent (and are still sending) photos to prompt the current short stories. But this blog isn’t just about fiction, as regular readers will know.

So, what else is going on, in the world of beetleypete?

The short answer is ‘not much’. That said, One of Julie’s twin daughters presented us with a lovely new granddaughter on the 5th of the month.
Mother and baby (yet to be named) are doing well, I am pleased to report.

Ollie’s fur finally grew back, just in time to get a good soaking most days out on our walks in the various ‘Named Storms’ affecting Britain at the moment. He hasn’t encountered many of his furry friends lately, as many dog-walkers are avoiding the foul weather, and are wary…

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Smorgasbord Blogger Daily – Thursday February 20th 2020 – #Scams Anne R. Allen, #Afghanistan Mary Smith, #Family Pete Springer

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

The first post is from author Anne R. Allen and is something that is important to all of us who use writing services.

10 New Publishing Scams to Watch Out for in 2020 by Anne R. Allen
10 New Publishing Scams to Watch Out for in 2020

Lurking predators are always coming up with new publishing scams.

I read a quote recently from an indie author who said he felt sorry for new writers who fall for scammy vanity publishers — because they obviously have no writer friends to clue them in.

It is true that networking with other authors is the best way to stay safe from scammers in this business. You can usually get by with a little help from your friends.

Unfortunately, the latest batch of scams are calculated to turn friends’ faces and familiar names into weapons to use against you.

Here are some of the nasty ways they’re trying to con you.

Head over to…

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Winter Rain

Through The Coloured Glass

It thundered into the night

and came pouring over my soul.

Droplets of life, winter rains… galore.

Sometimes I wonder if I write because it rains or does it rain so I may write. Anyway, whether it is the weather to get drenched or it is just about sitting in a warm blanket and seeing the droplets fall through the strokes of lightning. The not so far highway glistering with a river of moving lights – a traffic jam of sorts.

The nightjar is silent and the sky roars with thunder and the earth fragrant with petrichor. Standing in a mist of raindrops I feel as if nature washes away the winter gloom and freshens us up to welcome Spring. My soul drenched in rain speaks of freedom in whispers only the heart can hear.

I walk along

the cobbled path

hoping for time

to stop,

trying to hold on…

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From the middle of insanity…



He’s still here!


My brain needs a disciplinary, as I can no longer make it behave the way I want it to.

Mind you, it must be contagious, for my laptop and tablet are exhibiting similar tendencies.

I have spent last evening, first with the laptop and then the tablet, trying to run through my emails from the comfort of my armchair.

The laptop was on a go-slow, so I switched to the tablet.

This annoying piece of crap decided not to respond at all. Patience personified, I kept trying, only for the battery to drain away faster than a chocolate teapot. Something it shouldn’t have been able to do, seeing as it wasn’t actually doing anything.


I can feel the day coming when I will take a hammer to the both of them, as I am not sure how much longer my brain can cope with these insanity-inducing contraptions.

It wouldn’t be so bad if I wasn’t aware of all the wonderful things they can do. When in a good mood, of course.

But I ask you, is it asking too much to have a piece of equipment that actually does what it says on the tin?

We wouldn’t stand for such substandard performance from any other electrical object, so for all that’s Holy, do we put up with it?


The main desktop PC is not immune to such shenanigans, it’s just sneakier. Its favourite trick at the moment is ignoring whole sentences while I am busy typing them.

I get no warning, no sign that something has gone awry. The first I know about it is when I try to read the work back, only to find yawning great holes where parts of my story are missing.

I tell you, it is beginning to feel like a conspiracy…


On the bright side, and I do try to find this even on those grey days, nothing affects my pen and paper. Sometimes I am so glad that I can write, blissfully, as far away from technology as I can get. As happy as Larry, knowing that I am in total charge of the creative process.

So, to end on a much happier note, I must report that the mindset for the new WIP is firmly in place. I have enjoyed being away from all the technobabble so much, that I shall be doing a lot more of it!


©Jaye Marie 2020

Of Some Concern

Stevie Turner

I read an article on my BBC News app this morning which is concerning for us all, I think.  A chap asked that rather large company we know so well  for a Data Subject Access Request to find out how much data about him had been stored.  Granted, he has various electronic gadgets dotted about the house, for example an Alexa listening device, a Fire TV set-top box, Echo speakers, Ring cameras, and a Kindle e-reader.

He discovered the results were ‘mind-bending’.  A file contained all 31,082 interactions which had taken place via Alexa and also all the audio clips.  Another file contained all the 2,670 product searches he had carried out since he started in 2017, including separate files for which device he had been using and also his location.  A third file contained details of all 83, 657 Kindle interactions, including the time of day for each tap. …

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#ThrowbackThursday ~ The Life of a Writer… with advice from @AriMeghlen


The life of a writer is not what I thought it would be in the beginning.

Maybe years ago it was what I imagined, but in these digital times, it has changed so radically from that idyllic, if rather a romantic notion of what being a writer would be like.

These days, we all wear so many different hats, it’s a wonder we get around to writing anything.

What with the constant struggle to come up with interesting posts; reviewing all the books we read; trying to find new and effective promotional ideas.

Not to mention all the thinking, worrying, emails and planning, there are not enough hours in the day!

So when I read Ari Meghlen’s post on organising your life better, my interest was aroused! In this post, she recommends assigning different days for specific jobs and not deviating from this agenda. This could work, but not sure about using an alarm clock to keep me on track!

I have long attempted to devise a routine that would help me to get more done, but the harder I try, the more complicated and slower I seem to get.

I have always had a problem with rules and restrictions. Or rather, fate seems to, on my behalf. The minute I decide on a certain idea, a timetable or schedule, you can just bet something or someone will come along and wreck it!

I try to be more productive, especially with my writing, and one of the ways I have found that actually works is to try and write 1000 words every day. As I am up long before anyone else in my family, I can usually manage this with ease. So in one area at least, I have it covered!

Ari has some good ideas HERE on her post; does anyone else have anything to suggest that would improve the lives of us desperate to be better organised writers?

Braving the Elements

Rambling in the Garden

Thank you all for your good wishes on our first early opening for the National Garden Scheme. After storm Ciara had passed over people said we were lucky it wasn’t that weekend we were opening – we knew nothing at that point about Dennis nipping at her tail! It was always going to be a risk opening the garden to visitors in February, but access around our garden is relatively easy whatever the weather, and we would only have cancelled the opening if we were covered in snow. One thing we have learned from the event, however, is that there will always be people who want to visit a garden, even in inclement weather.

Like our first opening, back in June 2017, potential visitor numbers was the Big Unknown, although we can say in hindsight that for all our June openings numbers, although variable, have been in the same sort…

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#Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge

Colleen’s 2019 Weekly #Tanka Tuesday #Poetry Challenge No. 165 #PhotoPrompt




Image Credit: © Ritu Bhathal




Midnight sky

Dark thin branches

An old sentinel

Safeguarding the portal

Forgotten time, another world

Bright lights, hidden moon disguising

Daring to enter where angels won’t

Bring back new magic to a world waiting…

©anitadawes 2020
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