Friday, May 22, 2015

18-50 party prep...

Helium balloons, birthday banners, table confetti and extra cake fountains - tick. So tomorrow is picking up cakes, delivering one to the hotel for our posh dinner party, and shopping for the houseful-of-teenagers bbq/cakefest. Sunday is manic baking. Oh, and I have a deadline :) Good 121 this morning but forgot to press 'stop' on my workout (and the fitbit doesn't want to edit it, sigh). Rough estimate, we're looking at about 520 calories - 6m peak, 31m cardio and the rest fatburn. Righty. I have words to put down and a shopping list to double-check. Have a nice day :)

(Also - new hair...)


Thursday, May 21, 2015

M&B #66 sold...

Yesterday was a lovely day (despite exams!) - son had a really lovely birthday. As well as giving him money, we wanted to give him something special to keep for his 18th, and it occurred to me a while back that he'd love the Isle of Lewis chess set. He was really pleased with it. And we had a nice dinner out - he enjoyed ordering his first pint, too. Thanks to everyone for the birthday wishes :) Oh, and a bit of news from me - my ed liked the revisions, so book 66 has been accepted. Medical romance - no title yet - and we think probably January next year. (Pandora bead for it will have to wait - I'm up to my eyes in party organising!)

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Happy 18th to my eldest!

Happy 18th to Eldest Teen (well - we intend to make it happy, despite the fact that he has his two toughest exam papers today!). He's brought us a lot of joy over the last 18 years and I'm very, very proud of him - he's kind, he's thoughtful, he's bright and he definitely makes the world a better place. This is one of my fave pics of him as a toddler. Happy birthday, Chris, and may the world be your oyster.


Monday, May 18, 2015

Trying something different...

Firstly, huge apologies for neglecting my blog. There just aren't enough hours in the day!

What I'm going to do from today onwards is to post my Facebook status here as well. Frankly, I'm sure that my readers and my editor would all prefer me to produce stories rather than cudgel my brain to come up with something fresh and new for every single bit of social media every day - but apologies in advance if that comes across as being arrogant, uncaring or snotty. It's not. I'm a working mum of teens in the middle of exam season and milestone birthday, there's other family stuff going on which is a major timesuck (let's just say that dealing with care homes isn't a lot of fun, particularly if you end up with one that's not great at communicating), and I need to use my time productively. Beating myself up about social media isn't productive. Neither is whining. Life is what it is. At the moment there's a surfeit of lemons, and I'm making lemon cake as well as lemonade...

So... welcome back to my blog, thank you to everyone who's stuck with me through the neglect, and hopefully from today on I'll be better :)

If you've read my posts on FB, then you'll know that I'm sticking with my goals of the gym - and I have a Fitbit Charge HR to track everything, which I'm enjoying hugely! If you haven't - then here we go!

Mad cardio today on my 121 (aka my ankle has stopped hurting so I can push it again) - 515 cals, 9m peak, 33m cardio and 10m fat burn.

On a countdown to Eldest Teen's 18th, so picked up five rolls of wrapping paper this morning (it's a BIG box!) and something else he doesn't know about (he is worse than I am for working out what the surprises are!).

Spent a lot of time yesterday going through very old photographs for DH's 'Half a century - this is your life' book and I think he's going to be pleased with the result. Righty. I'm on deadline. (This week, I am measuring out my life in deadlines and milestone birthdays...) Coffee, breakfast and GO! (That's your cue to sing MCR's 'Planetary Go' and for Youngest Teen to roll her eyes at me...) Have a nice day :)

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Ring out the old, ring in the new

The last day of 2014… on a shamefully neglected blog.

2014 has been a really tough year, starting with my husband almost being killed by a lorry right at the beginning of January and then a year full of sheer grind and stress to sort out various family situations. I’m not talking about it for the sake of other people’s privacy, but I will say that I am very unimpressed by the truly selfish and unkind behaviour of some people in my life. (I haven’t said who or what, but no doubt I’ll get flak for saying as much as I have. Which kind of says it all, really!) There were a couple of really shiny moments (i.e. winning the RoNA Rose, which I wasn’t expecting and was so thrilled about, and seeing Robert Plant play in Cambridge), but in general I’ll be very glad to see the back of 2014, and I really hope that 2015 is a lot quieter and kinder.

My resolutions last year were to keep up the good work at the gym (tick – I didn’t quite crack the assisted pull-up machine, and I decided in the end that running wasn’t the best thing for me, but I did manage the 100kg deadlift and my new ‘mad cardio’ programme by my trainer means that I’m much fitter than I was), to keep up the good work on the eating front (generally there, though my weight has stayed the same - I honestly think that stress and the resultant cortisol has wiped me there), and to work harder to write books that touch my readers’ hearts (hope I did that one but I guess I'm not the one who can judge that).

This year? Again, to keep up the good work at the gym – I have a new (and challenging) programme so I’m looking forward to working on that. I will try to keep my blog and website updated a bit better than I did in 2014. And I really want to focus on my career and get back on track. We have a couple of milestone birthdays to look forward to in our house this year (and I’m partway through planning celebrations). But most of all I want 2015 to be a quiet, happy year.

Wishing you a quiet, happy year, too.

Monday, October 06, 2014

Celebrating sixty books!

I'm celebrating the release of my 60th title for Mills and Boon with a party today (6 Oct) over at Facebook - along with lots of lovely author friends who are offering giveaways, so do go over and join the fun! (For those of you not on Facebook, look out for the Chocolate Box tomorrow...)


Monday, September 22, 2014

Glamorous author stuff…

Sorry about the gap last week – caused by some family stuff that needed sorting and by, um, being distracted by a new toy.



I can control it by voice. (Well, the stereo, anyway. It’s JUST like the ad. And it’s lovely to drive. And the petrol consumption is a massive improvement…) The pic doesn't really do the colour justice - it's not black but a dark grey with turquoise and purple sparkly bits. (Um. That doesn't do it justice, either. It's classy rather than tacky!)

I also have tickets to see Justin Currie at Epic in Norwich in November – small venue, so it will be fantastic.

Last Friday was the Mills and Boon authors’ annual lunch in London, followed by tea in Fortnum’s and the author toast by M&B. Here I am at the author party with Charlotte Mursell (left, my Rom/Cherish ed) and Sheila Hodgson (my Medicals ed).



It was a fabulous day all round, and even the train home being delayed by flash floods (which also meant it was standing room only) was fine as we chatted to some really interesting people and were entertained by some drunk people in the buffet carriage singing ‘Swing Low Sweet Chariot’ (and forgetting lots of the words…).

Current work: I’m writing M&B #64 (a medical romance), my ed has approved the outline of M&B #65 (a Harlequin Romance) and I’m also working on an indie project.

Books out this month: It Started With No Strings is available in advance from the M&B website (aka M&B #60, aka the Plague Squirrels book) – and there’s going to be a big Facebook party! Watch this space…

Music: listening to Robert Plant and Justin Currie

Reading: Elly Griffiths’ ‘Ruth Galloway’ series – fabulous and she really understands Norfolk. (If you like crime, archaeology, forensics or my part of the world, then it’ll be right up your street. Although it’s written in the present tense, which isn’t usually my cuppa tea, the writing is good enough to transcend that.)

Gym: Not so good last week – only managed two days. (Family stuff is a timesuck…)

Dance class: quickstep and cha cha cha.

Other stuff: Mainly it’s been the author lunch – fabulous stuff. More about it over on the Choc Box blog on 23 Sept.

Have a nice week! :)