Stay a while..

Beautifully put – how fleeting are those precious moments with our little ones. Our greatest gift is to to raise them to enable them to touch the moon.

Notes from a busy Mum...

Stay a while my little one, my arms will hold you tight.

Stay a while my little one, I’ll watch you sleep all night.

Let’s talk some more about your plans, an Astronaut you say?

Let’s walk some more, across the fields, let’s watch the lambs at play.

Wait a while my precious one, this life moves all too fast.

Wait a while my precious one, how can this moment last?

Give me a moment , one more day, we’ll read your book of Space,

Give me a moment, one more night to kiss your sleeping face.

Stop a while my Angel boy, a story I will read,

Stop a while my Angel boy, you go at such a speed.

Let me have a moment more, before you take your path,

Let me have a moment more to listen to you laugh.

Sit a while, my little boy, tell me…

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A Birthday

My beautiful Grandson. He came to us after a long dark winter of the heart and brought light, love and laughter into our broken hearts. Thank you Amelie, darling child, for this dear boy; your legacy. God bless my brave daughter and her partner for their strength in overcoming one of life’s toughest challenges. You are an inspiration.

an angel mummy

IMG_0974 I Am Max!

This week we prepare for a Birthday. A very special day in the calendar for this family. A day where we not only celebrate a ‘new number’, but a day where we will be forever grateful to be given the privilege to celebrate.

Perhaps a Birthday in your house is all about presents, cake, balloons and ice cream? Well in our house it is indeed about all of these things, but also about a silent ‘thanks’. A silent prayer that we make another happy year. That our dreams aren’t shattered, that our hopes can be realised.

It is on this day, in particular, that I have to give special thanks to our Angel who gave us this gift. Without her we’d never be able to celebrate our Rainbow.

We are nearing four years since our dreams were realised in the shape of our precious Boy. I remember…

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How To Turn Anger On Its Head.


Image courtesy of jesadaphorn at





…and just a teensy bit cross.

Normally I am pretty easy going; tolerant of others and non-judgemental, a good listener, blah-de blah-de blah … I hope.

But not right now.


She’s gone out for a while.  She’ll probably be back later but right now she’s not at home.

Just like the Incredible Hulk, I am, figuratively speaking, you understand, bursting out with raging emotional muscles, a strange, tooth baring grimace (Not pretty.  Please look away now), and sporting a rather odd, sickly complexion.  I feel sick.  I look sick. I need a little lie-down.

I hate these feelings that are rampaging around inside me.  They make me uncomfortable, irrational, upset and a bit sorry for myself.  I can’t focus on anything except my hurt, indignation and fury. Can’t sleep either.

And on top of all that, there are those angry mental conversations and rants that fill my head, to the exclusion of everything else.

You know the ones.  When those clever, pithy remarks and Churchillian put-downs that you never manage to think of during a real confrontation, are tripping off your tongue with scintillating brilliance. You are stunned by your own grandiloquence. Those empowering fantasies where you get to do all the talking and the object of your wrath is struck dumb by your eloquence, command of language and pure righteousness.  He/she/it – I don’t want to appear discriminatory in this – doesn’t stand a chance against you.  He/she/it  quakes; trembling in a pathetic, whimpering heap on the floor of your mental dungeon; a single unforgiving spotlight trained upon him/her/etc…

He/she/it- you know the rest – is nothing.

A lowly worm.

He etc. accepts without argument that his is a lowly place in this world and you are Queen – or King – and what you say goes.

Oh! The power! You are indefatigable in justified fury.  You are victorious.

OK.  So that’s the fantasy, but you know what I mean.

I am in the right.  Of course, I am.  (Actually, in this particular instance, I am. Obviously).

Kind, forgiving thoughts can keep out.  There’s no room for forgiveness here.  I will not soften.  Well, not yet, anyway.

But I haven’t, in this particular instance, had a confrontation with anyone.  Thank goodness.  And I don’t intend to because family harmony will be put to the test in a big way if it does come to that.  And I can’t afford for that to happen.  There’s too much to loose.  So I have to bite my tongue.  And that hurts.

But that’s the thing with anger isn’t it?  It can come at a terrible cost, sometimes, if you let it.  And I’m not prepared to pay the price of wreaking my wrath on the object of my anger.  I have to keep it bottled up.  And I know I’ll calm down in time and it will all blow over.  But right now I have to deal with it. Somehow.

Which led me to consider how I could direct this uncomfortable emotion which scratches like a hair shirt, to some more positive use.  OK. So I have never actually worn a hair shirt, but I can’t imagine it sits softly on the skin.  It’s fine that I am stomping around the house, eating less and burning up unwanted calories with white hot fury.  I can’t object to that.  But there has to be something more constructive to be gained from this highly uncomfortable emotion.

Which is what brought me here.  To these pages where I can let off steam and hopefully turn it into something more constructive.

And now that I am focussing on my anger in a more analytical light the solution becomes obvious.  I can write it out.  I can use these feelings to better effect in my novel.  When my protagonist gets angry, and I know she will – she already has when The Wild Hunt wrenched her from all that was familiar and kidnapped someone she loved – I now know exactly how to write it out for her and she’ll feel so much better for my understanding exactly how she feels, and how she should react.

I now find myself directing my attention to exactly what I am feeling in a more analytical way. Trying to take the ‘personal’ out of it.  Watching it as if from a distance.  Feeling the heat of anger and drawing from it; controlling and not letting it own me.

I’m taking note in a more dispassionate way, of those hot rage-fuelled impotent tears that are ever close to spilling down my face.  Objectively noting the sensation of the cold sweat breaking out on my skin and the sickly churning in my stomach;  my trembling hands and tightening, dry mouth and clenched jaw;  the headache, and the tension across my shoulders.  That feeling of wanting to run and hide.

Strange how it feels a lot like fear.

I can write a scene that uses these emotions and physical feelings with much more understanding now that I am channelling my fury in a positive way, instead of just letting it take me over and cause me heartburn and sleepless nights and a whole range of other uncomfortable feelings.

So here we are, and I do, actually, feel a whole lot better for that, in a strange sort of way.

And maybe that’s a useful thing to remember;  if you can take the personal out of a negative emotion like anger; turn off the rant and switch on the analyst, you can turn a huge negativity into a lesson in creativity and use it to constructive effect.

Which brings me on to all the other more positive emotions:  love, passion, tenderness, kindness, compassion, sympathy…

The same can be applied here. They’ll be a lot more comfortable to explore in a more dispassionate fashion – for a little while. We wouldn’t want to get too distant from the warmer side of life, after all.  Take a quick peek at how they make you feel, then get back to enjoying them.

I don’t want to be constantly analysing things.  I’m no psychoanalyst, psychologist,  or any other armchair ‘ologist’.  That would put a cold scientific spin on things, which is not what I want at all.  I’m simply a normal person like any other, who feels deeply and often painfully.

But as a writer, I want to be able to redirect these feelings in a constructive way.  I want to get something positive out of the anger.  It can only improve my writing, surely?

And that tight knot in my stomach has eased at last.


I feel better already.

Ah, look!  That’s good.

Mrs Nice Person’s coming back home.

#Writing a Novel: Planning

Alison Williams Writing

jim writing

A little while ago I wrote a blog post about preparing to write a novel. Those of us who write generally approach writing either as a plotter or a pantster. Plotters like to plan out their novel before they write, while pantsters prefer to sit down and just get writing, without a plan – writing by the seat of their pants.

I’m a plotter. I like to plan my novels out. I don’t always end up following the plan, but I like to kind of know where I’m going. And I find that planning helps me to get into the writing – it’s not quite so scary if I have an outline for a chapter, or for a scene. I feel like I’m just filling in the blanks then rather than starting from scratch.

If you, like me, are a plotter, then you might find these tips helpful.

  • Have a…

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Bulls Eye (well, nearly)

At last. I have finally overtaken (just) my self-imposed target of 80,000 words. And what a journey that has been, full of uncertainties, dithering, procrastination (I am particularly skilled in that area), self-doubt, self-loathing, utter terror and blushing embarrassment at the very idea that I should aspire to becoming a proper novelist.

Photo by sattva. Image courtesy of Freedigitalphotos.netAt last.  I have finally overtaken (just) my self-imposed target of 80,000 words.  And what a journey that has been, full of uncertainties, dithering, procrastination (I am particularly skilled in that area), self-doubt, self-loathing, utter terror and blushing embarrassment at the very idea that I should aspire to becoming a proper novelist.  Just who do I think I am? There was a whole bunch of other defeatist stumblings along the way, but I won’t bore you with those.  However, I’ve made it, well nearly, but with only a chapter, at most, two, to go I feel the need to celebrate and pat myself on the back.

Now the real hard work begins.  Re-writing, editing, re-re-writing, scratching my head and wondering what on earth made me want to do this in the first place. Still, it’s a start and who knows, maybe one day I WILL step out of the door as a published author. Wish me luck.

(Photo by sattva. Image courtesy of

An Ancient ‘New Forest’

After struggling to find my way with’ The Earthlights Saga’  (working title, as ever, subject to change), I was looking for inspiration;  a kick or a nudge that would set the creative juices flowing again, and I found it in the ancient woods and heaths of The New Forest, in Hampshire.

There is a magic there that pre-dates IMG_1022its near thousand-year history as a royal hunting ground.  King William 1st, called the Conqueror, declared these wild acres to be his hunting preserve and woe betide anyone who would presume to take a deer, pheasant or even a wild rabbit.  To be caught was a crime punishable by mutilation.  A harsh price to pay for trying to stay alive. The days when a peasant could be hanged for the taking of the King’s deer, and could only gather fallen wood for their fires, risking punishment should they chop down a tree for fuel, are long since over and the animals and people who now inhabit this lovely place can live in peace, their rights protected by a more benevolent law.

But the magic from pagan times when elementals held sway and the  folks of myth danced in the dappled glades and played in silvery brooks, still lingers for those who would take the time to be still and listen and open their eyes to see the wonders.

Spooky tree in The NEw Forest
Spooky tree in The New Forest

Seek out the mysteries in those dark forest pools, where the swaying trees are reflected in the shivering waters, cradling the dreams of naiads;  in the sleeping ancient trees where dryads sway and delicate deer and their dappled fauns tremble in the shadows as you pass.  Wander the broad sunlit heathlands, dotted with golden gorse and home to wild ponies, and sleek wandering cattle and hear the songs of the Fae in the whispering breeze.  A sensitive soul will soon become aware of the ancient magical folks of legend who dream in another older plane that drifts alongside our rushing, hurrying times.  They are heedless of the tarmacked roads, cars and noisy lives.  They have no need of cell phones, power lines and the trappings of the 21st Century.  They just wait for the curious questing soul to sit quietly and listen, and they will whisper their tales and tease and beguile, and, if they deem you to be worthy, you will be blessed and inspired and gifted with their magic.


I pray that I have been so blessed.

As I was saying . . .

Ok.  So I’ve done it again.  Another year on and still no published book and pitifully few blog posts.  Why?


That’s why.

Wretched thing.

It creeps up on me every time I sit down to write and whips the keyboard out from under my eager fingers.  I do want to write.  Honestly, I really do.  But suddenly there’s something else far more pressing, that needs my full attention.  Like emptying the bins, cleaning the sink and folding the tea towels.  You know how it is . . .

You know how it is . . .

Having said all that, regardless of whatever it may be that takes me away from my desk, the tale is continuing to unfold in my head and this ‘procrastination’ can actually work to my advantage – sometimes.

I have found that on occasion some mindless task which does not require my brain to be in attendance,  gives me the mind space to sort out my protagonists’ rather pressing problems.  Or better yet, my busy brain cranks up a gear and creates a crisis for her/him to get themselves out of.  Now that can be a whole lot of fun, for me anyway, even if my weary characters throw dark looks and even darker curses at me.  They just want to go home and lead a quiet life.  But I can’t allow them to do that just yet.  There’s stuff to do out there in fantasy land, and they’re the only ones who can sort out the mess I’ve made of their lives.

Either way, when I do manage to wrestle the ‘p’ word to the ground, I go back to my keyboard with renewed enthusiasm and happily tap away again.

That is until Procrastination gets up off the floor and creeps up behind me again.


It just doesn’t know when to give up.