Friday, 25 December 2009

Happy Christmas!

Happy Christmas everyone - hope you have a great day! I shall be posting more in the future, I promise :D I see a 2010 resolution in the making...

May your day be merry and bright!

Saturday, 31 October 2009

All Hallow's Eve? No, it's NaNo Eve.

It has begun. We're 28 minutes into NaNo '09 and I'm excited! I've writeen 550 words so far, but will not be staying up late, as I'll be meeting up with some local WriMos tomorrow!

More updates coming soon...expect them to become less and less coherent. :D

Wednesday, 28 October 2009


I have a basic idea of what my NaNo novel is going to be about. Now, I need character names! The main characters are a brother and a sister, and I think I'm going for Jesse for the brother. I'm struggling to think of a girl's name for his sister, so I'm throwing it to anyone who has any ideas...

Please?! :D

I also need a surname, ya know, if you think of any!

*Cross-Posted to 'Family Portrait' blog.*

Saturday, 24 October 2009

Disciplined Writing!

I am making this week the week I try to finish Snap Shot - probably an unrealistic goal, since I have, if it's the same as Family Portrait, just over 20,000 words to go, in the 8 days before NaNo starts. However, I am aiming to write at least 1500 words a day, and the other day I wrote 4000, so maybe it's possible. It's all good practice for NaNo! I'm aiming to have it finished by Christmas, including the month out for NaNo.

So, I am having to be disciplined. Inspired by some other blogs, I am gonna set out my rules for this week and next month:

NO: endless repeats of FRIENDS. Not only do I have them all on DVD, they're always on E4/Channel 4, and I love them. Cpnsidering I can practically quote every episode, this is a waste of time. It is. So, no more. Also, I must sit down and write something every day, even if it's rubbish.

LESS: Facebook. Seriously, I don't care that much what people are doing and who's playing FarmVille - why do I feel the need to compulsivley check? I think internet in general needs to be limited.

I won't say less AbsoluteWrite, because I've told everyone on the TWFT thread to kick me off if I'm procrastinating too much!

So, let's hope Snap Shot will get a big wordcount boost this week. :D

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

I'm a useless blogger

Okay, it's been a long time since I've blogged, and I'm sorry! Lots of things have happened since my last post, such as me passing my driving test :D and getting up to 50,000 words on Snap Shot! So, I'm going to try and blog more regularly on day-to-day stuff, but this blog post is about NaNoWriMo. If you don't know what it is, check it out here:

Anyway, the basic gist of it is that I will be (attempting) to write a 50,000 word Novel during the month of December, one which will be completely unrelated to Family Portrait/Snap Shot/Camera Shy. I'm going to attempt to blog daily about my progress - small updates, as you can imagine with 50k to write, but I'm going to try. I'll post here and maybe on my other blog, not sure as it's not Family Portrait related, but I thought I'd let you know what I'm up to!

I'm sure encouragement will be required when I'm struggling to juggle school/uni applications/writing. And hopefully some celebration too if I hit 50k!

I seem to have a label for NaNo, so maybe I've already blogged about it. Ah, memory loss at 17...

Sunday, 5 July 2009

A Tragic Day

At seventeen, the worst thing you think will happen wilst driving is smashing the car up and having to face your mother's wrath. We think we're invincible - recently passed our tests, freedom to go anywhere, do anything.

I woke up this morning to a text message informing me that a friend of ours - a guy who had been in my year, my tutor, my classes, and had hung around with a similar group of people to me for the past six years - had died in a car crash last night.

It's still sinking in: it's unfair, that someone so young, with so much ahead of him, had his life taken away. In the car there was also an eighteen year old, who I vaguely knew, and a nine-year-old. They both died too. I could not believe it when I heard; it seemed like some awful prank. Not only is it a sad loss for their parents, siblings, families and all the friends they had, but it's also a wake up call: who knows when their time is coming.

I had to post in memory of them all, but especially for the guy from my year, who will be missed by us all. I have just left flowers at the scene; RIP, to three young men whose lives were taken far too soon.

Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Veganism - Day one

I've been vegetarian for thirteen years now, and have always wanted to become vegan - that is, removing all products that come from animals from my diet - but have never had the willpower. After reading another article on the way animals are treated for eggs/milk etc, I decided yesterday to take the plunge - and so today is my first day as a vegan!

I'm starting the process slowly, as it will take a while to get used to checking all food packaging for any animal products, but I'm hoping I'll be able to stick to it - even though my friends are quite cynical! Today I've eaten completely vegan, and have bought some vegan 'butter', vegan pate, vegan 'mozarella' and vegan ice cream - which I'm going to go and try now! I think the hardest part will be going out and going to friends' houses, and so I may end up being a flexi-vegan at those times - it's quite difficult, I would imagine, to be vegan outside your own home.

Anyway, just a quick update! In other news, Snap Sho - the sequel to 'Family Portrait' - is nearing 20,000 words, which I'm very pleased with!

Saturday, 6 June 2009

A lot of reading

Lately I seem to have been having less and less time to read, chill out and blog. Unfortunately, I have completely lost my revision drive this weekend, andhave done nothing. I worked all day today, but have found that I'm caring less and less about revision, which is really quite worrying. My last exam's on Monday, and I really need to revise, but I just can't find the motivation to. I'm really exhausted all the time at the minute, and not really sleeping, and feeling quite down about going back to school. I'm not sure why, but I'm dreading it. So, I've been reading quite a lot, and taking advantage of the nice weather to sunbathe.

So, my reading list this week has been: The Other Boleyn Girl, The Luxe, The Manny, and Cradle Snatcher. I loved The Other Boleyn Girl - I'm really interested in the Tudor period, and found the book fascinating; I'd definitley recommend it. The Luxe was also interesting - it's all about high-class society in New York in the 19th century, and whilst it was quite predictable, I enjoyed it. The Manny was a light chick-lit book, but I was quite disappointed with it. I tend to feel I have to finish books as I always want to know what happens at the end, but the writing style really annoyed me. I've always bene quite critical, and since I've been writing and criticising my own work, I'm even worse. The use of '!!!!' and '??!!' really bugged me, as did the constant use of caps lock - "YOU! SUCK!" is an example of one sentence in it. Another thing was having to use repeated vowels all the time - "Pleeeease!" and "Noooooo". I just feel that if you need to use things like that (little bit of English Language showing off here - it is called replacing prosodic features) then it means your writing can't show the way it's being said without it.

Anyway, enough moaning :) I'm off to watch ER!

Thursday, 28 May 2009

Abandonment of Blog

Ah, I've been a bit useless at blogging lately! Things have been so hectic, I'm afraid i just haven't had a time to post, but I'm here now!

The reason for the chaos is mostly down to exams; so much revision to do, so little time and motivation! I've done four exams so far, and have another two to go. I hope that the first four went ok - French Speaking, French Reading/Writing/Listening, English Lit, English Lang - but the next two are the hardest, as they're for History which I hate & have the most to study for. The problem with it is that the revision is really important - with English Lit, for example, it's difficult to revise; the work you've done all year is what pays off ,if you get what I mean.

My lack of motivation is proving to be a problem too; I think it's because I've worked pretty hard this year, and so now there's no homework I just can't face doing the work. Plus, with revision you're never truly finished, there's always more that can be done, which I don't like!

My last exam is on June 8th, and although I still have another 6 weeks at school after that, I hope it will be a little more relaxed than the rest of the year has been. Other than revision, I have been focusing on my novel - something else which distracts me from revising! I have finished the first round of edits, and have some people currently reading it, although I'm looking for some more who'd like to take a look at it. Luckily people have more free time now that we're heading for summer! I have been planning a sequel, and a third book too - it seems it will be a series! - and have finally worked out the titles: Family Portrait, Snap Shot and Camera Shy. Now I just have to finish my exams so that I can get writing again! I've been trying to fit in some reading too (more distractions!) and have finally finished 'Extras' by Scott Westerfield. I then started 'The Other Boleyn Girl' by Phillipa Gregory, and was so addicted I read it all last night - I definitley recommend it!

Right now I'm on a lunch break from revision (and it is actually a deserved break - I've bene revising all morning!) but I'm gonna to get back to it soon. I promise another blog post soon!

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

A Bad Day

I knew today wasn't going to be great; I had a mock history exam scheduled for the morning, a difficult essay due in for a teacher I'm not too keen on, my French Oral exam in the afternoon, and a dentist appointment after that. Luckily, I managed to escape the History mock: I told my teacher I hadn't had a chance to revise, as I had my real exam that afternoon, and she allowed me to reschedule it for tomorrow. I got the essay done, and whilst it wasn't fantastic, I did at least have a few pages to hand in.

I felt really rough all day, because I was so nervous: I find nerves affect me really badly, and I end up feeling or being sick, and having crippling stomach pains. Because of this, I'd asked to have my exam in the morning, but she decided to put it in the afternoon.

So, after a long day of worrying, I got to the exam, and I think it went ok; I was opretty fluent, although I know I made some mistakes. I'm hoping it'll be alright. After that, we went to the dentists; now, I don't particularly mind the dentists, but it's not exactly the nicest place to be. Luckily, he said my teeth looked fine.

Then, around half an hour ago, my mum wanted to go to the garage, and I asked if I'd drive. She checked to make sure all our cats were inside, as one of them is quite deaf and so doesn't move when cars start. Then, I began to reverse of the drive - and heard a squealing. The deaf cat had come outisde, unseen by my mother or me, and I think I ran over his tail. We're waiting for the vet now. I feel terrible, and really put off driving; I'd checked, and just didn't see him at all.

Here's hoping for a better day tomorrow.

Friday, 1 May 2009

I have...

finished the book I'm writing! This is a quick post, as it's late and I have work tomorrow, but I had to post it (yes, on both my blogs. I'm happy!) The first draft of 'Family Portrait' is now complete =]

I have done a word count of everything I've written for this book, and it's ended up at over 91,000 words. However, I decided tonight that a section I wrote just didn't quite work, and ruined the book a bit, and so the first version now stands at around 86,000 words. But I already have a sequel planned out, so all the cut bits will most probably end up in there.

Right, I must sleep. Just had to post it! =]

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

New Blog

I've started a new blog (which, if you want to see, which I plan to be just about the progress of my novel, as this one is just about my life in general. I quite like having a blog just about my writing, as it means I can see what I've done when, explore new ideas and let anyone who's interest know how I'm getting on! Still, I reckon I'll still mention it here - it's taking up a lot of my time at the minute!

On that note, sorry (again!) for not posting recently - homework, revision and novel work had just been eating up all my time. First major exam is on Wednesday, so I'mn revising loads. It's my French Oral Exam, and I always find those nreally scary :S on the same day, I also have a mock history exam and a dentist appointment, so I'm guessing it's not going to be the most fun day ever!

I've found a website that I'm on quite a bit at the minute, called Absolute Write, which is great for anyone who wants to be an author - it's great for ideas and support. I've also said I'm going to join in a challenge to read 100 books this year (Alhough as it's nearly May, I'm aiming for fifty - I started late!) I know I read fast, and quite a lot, but I;ve never recorded it, so I haven't a clue how I'll get on - but I'll let you know! I'm also planning on taking part in NaNoWriMo in November. You may have heard of this - I heard about it about a year ago, but never got round to entering. It's short for National Novel Writing Month, and you basically have to write 50,000 words in November. You enter you're word count so everyone can see how you're doing. Obviously, it's not going to be perfect, but I think it'll be great for getting more ideas off the ground!

Sorry for the brevity of this post, but my driving instructor just rang to bring my lesson forward, so gotta go and wreak hell on the roads! Only joking :) I'm gonna post again soon though, and expad on the stuff I've written about in the last paragraph. Promise!

Monday, 13 April 2009

Long time no post!

Sorry for the lack of blog updates in the last couple of weeks: I've been really busy, and haven't been able to find the time! I'm on holiday from school for Easter now, which is really nice - although I'm working loads!

The first week of the holiday was really busy for me: I worked loads, and went up to Manchester for two days to see the University of Salford. It was a really interesting Open Day, and I loved the feel of the Uni and the city: the shops up there were amazing! Obviously, shopping is not what it's all about...but coming from a tiny place like I do, anywhere big with nice shops is amazing! We had a nice but busy couple of days up there: we managed to pack in two shoppoing trips and dinner out as well as the visit to the Uni! The course there sounds great, so it's defnitley somewhere I'll be considering applying to.

I've been working a lot, with cafe work as well as babysitting, which is good as I need money for my America trip, driving lessons, car insurance and to do a little bit of shopping for some summer clothes! I have a laugh at work, so I don't mind doing it. Today I was meant to be working all day, but it was so quiet I offered to go home early. Unfortunately I seemed to miss all the sun! I enjoyed it yesterday though, and sat out in the sun doing homework (although not enough :S) and working on my novel.

On the novel front, I'm now up to 75,000 words, which I'm very pleased with! I think I'll have finished it within the next couple of months, as I've realised that to fit all my ideas in, it's gonna have to be more than one book - so book one will hopefully done soon! Then I plan to go through it all and edit it, and then maybe attempt to send it to some agents/publishers. If I manage to finish it, I figure I may as well have a go at getting it published!

If you haven't already, take a look at Holly's Blog and Molly's Blog for how Donor Day went: I'm so impressed with what Holly's managed to achieve! It's a great cause.

Anyway, I'm off to work on my novel a little more (I should be doing homework, but I just can't face it!) and then I have a driving lesson at 5.30. I'll try and update again soon this time! Happy Easter to everyone :)

Sunday, 5 April 2009

Donor Day

Ok, so my links in the post below don't work - if anyone could tell me how they do it, I'd be really grateful! Also the picture I wanted didn't come up, so let me just add this now!

Post Pals =
Sarah's Blog =
Molly's Blog =
Holly's Blog =

I can't get the flyer to work...I'll try and sort it tomorrow, I just don't understand blogger sometimes!

Donor Day - April 7th

I know it's been a while since I updated, and I plan to do a proper updating post at the end of the week, but I wanted to blog now about Donor Day. It;s on the 7th of April, and as I'll be away on that day, I wanted to do something to help - So I'm going to blog and put it on my facebook status.

I haven't personally had much contact with organ donation - up until last year it had never particularly crossed my mind: as it had never affected me, I didn't think about it - something I've blogged about before. However, I came across a site called Post Pals, and the stories of children waiting for, recieving and, unfortunately in some cases, not recieving transplants in time, made me really think about it. Once I'm dead, I would really like someone to be able to benefit from my organs if they can. Then I stared following Sarah's blog on her son William, and Molly's blog, and I really started thinking. I've signed up to the organ donor register now - and I think everyone should at least consider it. So, if you stumble across this blog and haven't considered it, please do. There's more info on Holly's blog: please consider signing the register, and if you're in London, support the campaign there! Also, please think about reposting this, to spread the word.

Be a hero: Put the kettle on.

Tuesday, 24 March 2009

Allergic to Tuesdays?!

I am off school again, and coincidentally it is once more on a Tuesday! I go all school year without a day off, then take two Tuesdays off in a row. I woke up Sunday morning feeling as though I had a cold coming on, and had a sore throat by the end of the day. Then, yesterday I started getting a blocked and runny nose, and my eyes started streaming. This morning I woke up feeling the same, and decided it made no sense to push myself to go into school, as I can't concentrate anyway - my head is pounding. So, another day in bed - so far I have watched Everybody Loves Raymond, Frasier, Will & Grace, Jeremy Kyle, and now I'm watching This Morning. There's not a lot of choice on weekdays, and I don't feel up to reading or doing homework at the minute.

Thank-you to Molly and Jess for the kind messages on my blog from last Tuesday. I'm still feeling quite stressed - I have a feeling that I'm feeling so rough with this cold because I'm stressed, although there is a flu bug going around here at the minute - with schoolwork, but I'm trying to stress myself out less. My step-grandad had his scan, and it revealed the cancer hasn't spread, which is relieving: the cancer is localised, and although it will require a major operation to remove it, hopefully the fact that it hasn't spread so far is a good sign.

I finsihed sorting out a visit to an open day of Salford University two days ago, and the tickets arrived today: it's quite an early open day, but as the course there is my top choice at the minute (English Language with Linguistics) I've decided it's worth the money. I'm going up with my mum, as my dad and sister will be in Germany visiting my family, and I'm looking forward to it!

Wow, I managed a relatively short post - probably because my eyes are stremaing alot, and it's taken a while to write this much! - and I will update more soon. Right now, I'm going to close my eyes and hope to get some more sleep!

Tuesday, 17 March 2009

A tough week

The last few days have been quite stressful, and as I have a free five minutes, I thought I'd blog about them now. As you may have noticed, I'm blogging in the middle of a week day - I just couldn't face school today. I've not really just taken a day of before, without being quite ill, but after very little sleep, and waking up with stomach cramps and what felt like the beginnings of a migraine, I decided to have a day at home. I'd been stressed last night, and hadn't had a chance to finish all my homework due in today, so I thought I could catch up on my sleep and my homework today. I've spent the morning so far in bed, reading a book I have to read for school (Lies of Silence) and then had a bath; I'm about to start some history homework now.

On Friday I took part an a three legged race for Comic Relief, and ended up falling over, ripping my expensive jeans and hurting my knee. It's still hurting quite a bit, and keeps starting bleeding again - all in all, quite bad end to what was already a very long & dragging week!

Yesterday was not a great day: as seems to be quite normal for me, I didn't have a good nights sleep Sunday, and then yesterday was the anniversary of my Grandad's death. We were extremely close, and so yesterday was quite an emotionally difficult day - I still can't believe he's gone, or that it was a year ago he left us, and miss him every day. It's hard too because my mum finds it very difficult now he's gone, and so we were all quite upset yesterday. On top of that, I found out that my step-grandad's cancer has returned, and he has to have another scan on Thursday to see if it's spread: if not, they will remove the lymph nodes in an operation soon; if it has, then they have to consider chemo. It really wasn't a good day, and I was in a poor mood all day. When I realised that my teachers for my afternoon lessons weren't there, I was quite annoyed: I'd only had two lessons in the morning, and had I known earlier I could have gone home.

Last night I started to get quite stressed about my step-grandad, and then about school-work, and when I get stressed I tend to start feeling ill. Sure enough, I started getting a migraine and chest pains. I tried to get all my homework done, but gave up at ten and decided to try and sleep. I then ended up waking up about ten times throughout the night - and woke up exhausted this morning. I got up, and then decided I'd probably do better to have a day off.

Well, I'd best get going and do some homework - I have to go to the opticians in an hour or so, as my glasses have decided to be a pain, and the lenses have twisted slightly, making them very uncomfortable!

Thursday, 12 March 2009

Keane Pictures!

The whole band, at the end of the show.
The lead singer holding the microphone + stand over the crowd so we could sing the lyrics for him!

The whole band near the front of the stage

'Perfect Symmetry' - during this song, the screen was split into two

The album art from 'Perfect Symmetry'

I want to see them again!

You can see how close we were, here's the lead singer Tom.

I just realised I never got round to putting up photos from the Keane concert I went to, so I thought I'd do it now - I'll never get round to it otherwise, and I'd quite like them up here =] They're in a bit of a backwards order, but they're there!

Hairpin bends and tiredness

It has been a very long week - and it's not even over yet! Unfortunately, this week has been one of those that just seems to drag, and today it feels as though I have been counting the minutes, waiting for my lessons to finish. I'm really not enjoying History, and it seems to drag terribly - I'm definitley considering giving it up at the end of the year. I don't really understand why I don't like it, as I absolutely loved History last year, and am finding it difficult deciding whether to give it up - but at the minute, it seems more sensible to do 3 A Levels next year, rather than four, so I can focus on the other three and hopefully have a little more free time when I'm at home, without stressing over homework!I'm not sleeping at the minute either, which doesn't help - my French teacher asked me in French today if I was tired, and then informed me that I looked it (which took me a moment to translate, given my tiredness!). I'm hoping to get an early night tonight (and actually sleep!) as I went with my mum last night to pick up my sister and her friend from a concert about 40minutes drive away, as she didn't want to go on her own, and we didn't get back til late. I should probably be getting homework done, but none of it's due tomorrow, and I'm so tired, so I'm going to have a night off. I don't think I can face any essays or notes tonight!

I had a driving lesson a couple of hours ago - not the easiest thing when you're tired! - and we went to a local village, doing lots of hair pin bends, which I was getting quite confident at by the end! I'm loving driving, and can't wait for my next lesson on Monday =] I decided to go shopping last week, which probably wasn't sensible as I am saving for America, but as I worked a day and did two babysitting jobs, and haven't been shopping in ages, I decided to go. I wisely steered myself away from Waterstones, as I know I would end up spending a fortune on books I don't actually have time to read, but I did treat myself to some new clothes, and ended up with a new phone, as mine is packing up. I've gone for a contract, something which I've avoided before, but as I seem to spend so much on my mobile, have decided is worth it. It's nice to not to have to think about how much money I'm spending, as it's feixed at £20 a month, which is less that I was spending on pay-as-you-go. And I get a nice new phone =]

As I'm not doing any homework, I'm going to write some more of my novel, which I've been forced to neglect recently as I have had so much homework, and have a nice early night. Hopefully no teachers will be commenting I look tired tomorrow! Hope anyone reading this has a nice weekend =]

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Birthday Remembrance

Where does all the time go! March already, and more than a week since I last updated my blog! Still, I'm updating now - and it's been a busy week again. Today would have been my grandad's 66th birthday, but he died just under a year ago, and so all my family are thinking of him today. It was very hard losing my gran, as we were so close, but when my grandad died I was so much older, and so much more aware, that it was even harder. I honestly cannot believe that it'll be a year on the 16th since he died: it seems like just last week. Last Friday (the 27th - my birthday!) would have been my gran's 66th birthday too, and so this time of year is always a hard one for everyone, especially my mum (as they were both her parents). It's hard all the time, but so much harder when it's a momentous occasion that those who are gone have missed: I was feeling this the other day when I had my first driving lesson, and wishing that my grandparents could have been here to see me.

Anyway, onto happier topics, it was my birthday on Friday - and I had a great day. My friends were all really generous and thoughtful with gifts, which included series one of the Tudors, and two collages of photos of all our friends, with a couple of images of cute famous guys who I like thrown in for good measure :) My friend J made me a collage full of things that she felt were linked to me and here, which was really nice - and funny! It included references to the novel I'm writing, to things we had growing up (I've known her since I was two) and odd phrases that we both come out with. Then, straight after school I had my first driving lesson. I was extremely nervous, but once I was in the car I absolutely loved it! It was straight onto the road, and we did lots of looping round residential roads, practicing things like hill starts and gear changes. Then I was onto roads with more cars, and ended up doing 2 roundabouts! I really loved it, and i now have L plates and insurance sorted on my mum's car, so I'm practicing every chance I get! Then, in the evening, my mum, sister, dad and I went to see 'He's just not that into you'. I have to say I was a little disappointed with it: it was pleasant enough viewing, but not as good as I'd hoped. Still, we had a nice night. Unfortunately I had to cancel my night out on Saturday with my friends from work as two of them had come down with this sickness bug that seems to be going around (as have most of my other friends - fingers crossed I'm not next!) but I'm just postponing it for a couple of weeks.

If you've read my blog before, you'll be shocked at what I did Saturday night: got up to date with all my homework! :O I know, amazing. For once I didn't procrastinate, I just got it done - and it was nice to have a free day Sunday, which I spent reading and then helped my mum with the shopping at Tesco. I then bought 2 new books at Tesco, which is a mistake as I already have so many to read! (My current one is "A great and terrible beauty" by Libba Bray - it was a little slow starting, but I'm getting into it now!)

I then had my second driving lesson on Monday during my free periods, where we did more of the same, and I've been practicing in car parks and small roads with my mum too. I was driven home by one of my friends for the first time today, and it feels odd - for years we've all been reliant on our parents (the public transport down here is terrible!) and it's nice to have some freedom, although it feels weird knowing you're allowed to be driving!

Off to practice some driving now, then just a little homework to do tonight =] I will try and update soon, else otherwise I end up writing loads and loads when I finally get to update! I hope the sun comes back soon, I only got to see it for a day, and now the rain's back ... =[

Sunday, 22 February 2009

A very busy week and 12.5 hours of work!

I haven't blogged the past week, as it's been an extremely packed half-term, so I'll try and fill you in on everything I've been doing! On Monday I worked from 10.30 - 4.30, and we were extremely busy: the dishwasher had broken down, which was a nightmare, and we ended up having to ask my sister to come in and do some washing up for a few hours, as the four of us couldn't get everything done: at one point I was making food, taking it out and attempting to clear tables, not easy when you have lots of orders waiting! Still, I much prefer it to be like that: Wednesday I was in from 10 - 3.30, and it was so quiet, time really dragged. I worked again Friday, which was another hectic day (yay!) and ended up doing 9 - 5, so I was pretty tired. Then, yesterday (Saturday) was vey busy again - and I did 8.30 - 4.30, and was exhausted when I got home: I really enjoy working, but I'm used to doing five days of sitting around at school, and only one physical day, so I tend to get tired by the end of it. However, that wasn't nthe end of my day: the night before, the lady I babysit for had rung me and asked me to do three more dates - one of which was the Saturday night! So, I got home by 5, and went to bed for a bit (re-read a bit of Twilight; yes, I've succumbed again!) and then went to sleep for a little bit. At 7.45, I was babysitting, and I stayed there 'til 12.15: all in all, twelve and half hours work in a day! I slept in until eleven today, to make up for it =]

Babysitting didn't go as well as last time: boh the kids were in bed by nine, but by quarter past on of them was downstairs, feeling ill. I went back upstairs with her, hoping that she would fall to sleep, but she didn't. I tried everything I could think of: offering her drinks, reading to her, sitting with her, but she just kept asking me to ring her parents. After forty minutes, I didn't have a choice, and she was getting quite anxious. I didn't want to spoil their evening, but I had to ring -as it happened, they had no signal. So, I left a message, and had to tell her that I'd rung but there was no answer. So, I sat in her room and, finally, after half an hour she fell asleep. I sat outside her bedroom til midnight anyway, just in case something was wrong, and filled her parents in when they got home at quarter past, so luckily everything turned out alright. I also managed to get some homework done, and re-read the entirity of Twilight...I'm so addicted, it's worrying!

So, onto the rest of my week - the non-work related stuff. Monday night I stayed at J's, and we had a really nice night - her little brother and sister and very sweet, and after they'd gone to bed we stayed up playing silly games like boggle, which ended up being very funny. In the end, we didn't go to sleep until around 4.30 - and for once, her brother and sister didn't wake us up the next morning! After a lie-in until around 10.30, we got up and had a lazy morning around the house - mostly playing with the kids, and we both worked a little on my novel (more update on it's progress in a bit!) Then we spent the afternoon on the beach - it was the first sunny day for a while! - where the wind actually wasn't too cold, and we went looking in rock pools and played with a bat and ball. If you've seen Twilight, then I'm sure you can imagine J trying to recreate the baseball scene: she was doing the bowling, I was humming the muse song 'Supermassive Black Hole' that accompanies the scene in the film, whilst twirling the bat. Lots of laughing ensued! Later, we all cpollapsed on the sofa, exhausted from a late night and a busy day. J went up to the shop to buy something for dinner, and I ended up watching CBeebies (Mr Maker, Grandpa in My Pocket and Chuggington!) with her two year old brother asleep on top of me. I couldn't be bothered to find the remote to turn it off!

I got back home at around eight-ish, and then had to go shopping - I had fifteen friends coming round to celebrate my birthday the next day (although my birthday's not until next Friday!) and had to go buy the food. Then, I went off to bed, for an early night! After work Wednesday, I tidied up, prepared the food with mum (Pizza, pasta and garlic bread!) and then my friends started to arrive. We had a really good night - lots of food, including chocolate profiteroles and a delicious birthday cake made by my friend D, and ended up watching two films between 6.30 and 11: Wild Child (very little in the way of a plot, but we all have a thing for the gorgeous Alex Pettyfer!) and the Holiday (such a sweet film!). Then, once everyone had gone, three of my friends stayed over, and we chatted and watched What Happens In Vegas (possibly the funniest film I've ever seen) until around 2am. They all had to go pretty early the next day, so I had a free day - I went back to bed for a bit, started on an essay, read a little of Twilight, and work on the novel - I'm only a couple of hundred words of 60,000 now!! It was nice to have free day, although I did get quite a bit done. Then I finished the essay Friday night.

So, now it's Sunday, and I'm in bed with my laptop, watching Hollyoaks and eating chocolate :P I will start on the mountain of homework in a little while, but for now I cannot face getting out of bed - and as it's my last dsay of freedom before school, I don't feel overly guilty :P Best be off, lots to do, and if you've made it through this essay of a blog post without falling asleep, congratulations! =p

P.S: If you're reading this and aren't following/commenting on my posts, maybe say hi =] I'm interested to know if anyone other than the two I know about are actually reading this!

Sunday, 15 February 2009

Keane & Roses

Sorry it's been a few days, I always go to look at who has updated their blogs, think 'I must update mine!' and then get distracted reading everyone else's! But I'm updating now.

The Keane concert I mentioned was absolutely amazing: they are the best band I've seen live, and they're so good I've seen them twice! Whilst I love their albums, I have to say they are at least ten times better live - not something you often find - and their albums are actually a slight come-down once you've seen them live. I wasn't too sure about their latest album, Perfect Symmetry, the first couple of times I listened to it, but after listening to it repeatedly, and hearing it live, I'm as hooked as I am on the rest! If Keane come anywhere near you, I would thoroughly recommend going: their shows are so energetic, lively, atmospheric and so good!! We were only 2 people away from the stage, so we got a great view - and some great pictures, which I'll put on here as soon as my friends get round to uploading them onto the computer!

It's been a pretty busy week, hence why I haven't blogged, and Keane was just the start. On the same day (Monday) as Keane, weather warnings actually effected us, and we had torrential rain - so bad we thought we might not get to the concert. The town where I live was flooded all over the place, but luckily we got through before the worst hit, and were back after it had finished. Snow, we don't get, but rain is always plentiful! Then I had a hair appointment on Wednesday, and after 2 1/2 hours (:O) I am now technically blonde :) very happy with the result. Homework's been occupying the rest of my time, although I did get round to seeing a film called 'The Pursuit of Happyness' which a friend of mine lent me. Very good film, although I did cry a couple of times! Now, thankfully, it's half-term - although the teachers have gotten very homework-happy, and have piled on the work. I'm also working 4 days of the holiday, staying at a friends tomorrow night, and having loads of friends round on Wednesday night to celebrate my birthday (it's not til the 27th, but it's so much easier to organise things in the holidays!) so it's gonna be a busy one!

I babysat Friday night, from 8 until 12.30, which went really well - the kids were really good, and there were no problems. Hopefully it'll lead to more work! Then, yesterday my mum, dad, sister and I went to the crematorium to leave a rose for my gran. We've done this every year since she died on Valentine's Day, 2000. It's still an emotional day, despite it being 9 years, as she was such a huge part of our lives when me and my sister were younger. We left a rose, along with a little card each from my mum, my sister and I. Mine read 'Always in our hearts and thoughts'. I still can't believe she's gone - and that it will be the first anniversary of my grandad's death next month. That's the really difficult one at the minute - I honestly cannot believe it was a year ago. It doesn't feel that long. So, not the most cheery Valentine's day, but that's what it means to us. It feels good to be able to write this stuff, as I don't really tell anyone - it's not the sort of thing that's easy to discuss, and I think a lot of people would think I was strange for still commemorating my gran's death, 9 years later.

Anyway, a friend of my sister's stayed last night, and we had a 'games night' (they've been having themed nights for weeks: Australian night, chili night, Irish night, shark night...they're crazy!) and I joined in, we ended up having quite a laugh. Now, I'm still in my pajamas (despite it being nearly 2!) and am enjoying probably the only lazy day I'll get this week. Still, I need the money for my America Trip fund! My novel-writing has been put on hold for the last few days, the same as my blog writing, but I'm hoping to get another chapter finished today! J (the friend who's editing it) is bugging me for the next chapter!

Sunday, 8 February 2009

Whisky-related publishing and another chapter

An odd title, I know, but all will be revealed in this blog post! =] I've had a nice weekend: spent Friday night reading (another Meg Cabot, called 'She Went All The Way' - another romance, but I'm a sucker for them!) and then worked on Saturday. We were surprisingly busy, but I prefer it that way - at least the time goes faster! Plus, all the extra money I can get to go into my America fund helps! I then had a friend of mine (J) who is the one who edits chapters of my novel for me. J was quite down, as a big walking event she's meant to be doing has been cancelled because of the snow (we don't have a lot, but on the moors where she was meant to be walking, it was pretty heavy) so I invited her round to stay the night. We had profiteroles and Ben N Jerry's ice cream (cookie dough, my favourite!) and had a real laugh. We worked on my novel again, and I ended up getting another chapter done, which she then edited. My word count's rising steadily, reaching 55,000 now.

The whisky related publishing ties in with this: I bought a copy of the 'Writers' and Artists' Year Book 2009' from Amazon, as it has a lot of good advice for people who are writing books, and has the addresses and requirements for loads and loads of publishers. I don't know what's going to happen with this book, but when (I refuse to say if!) I finish it, I think I'd like to attempt to have it published, after all the hard work I've put into it. Anyway, I was reading through all these publishers, marking off the publishers who are looking for fiction, teen fiction etc., and I kept finding publishers with very odd and restricted requirements - one of them being 'whisky-related fiction and non-fiction.' (!) what an odd type of manuscript to request! That got me and J laughing, and we didn't stop for most of the evening, which was nice. We took her home at around eleven this morning, after a nice lie-in, as we both have homework to be getting on with - although as you can see, I'm not doing much now! I'm hoping my dad's going to put some shelves up for me today, as my books are piling up by the side of bookshelf, and it's getting a bit ridiculous now! Perhaps I read too much...I do just keep buying them, and I seem to run out of room very quickly!

As usual, I've got a couple of books that I'm waiting to read - one of them is 'Ransom My Heart', a historical romance by Meg Cabot (yes, I accept it, I have a problem!) and another is called The Luxe, which looks good. I also have another couple on order, so I need to be trying to focus on my homework rather than reading all the time! Today I have a lot of dull history notes to make, so I'm going to get them done before I start reading again. Tomorrow I'm off to see the band Keane, which I'm very excited about, so I need to get all my homework that's due Tuesday done today too, as I'll be out late tomorrow!

I've got one more week at school, then it's February half term, which I'm looking forward to. I'm not working next Saturday, as it's the anniversary of my gran's death, and I like to visit the crematorium and leave flowers each year. I have, however, got my first babysitting job on Friday the 13th - good job I'm not suspicious! Then during half-term I'm working most days, and I'm having a movie-night with all my friends coming round to watch DVDs to celebrate my birthday. My birthday's not until the 27th, but it's much easier to get everyone together during the half term than it is during term time.

Well, I guess I'd better get moving, and get something done! =]

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

Snow: What a let down!

I think where I live must be the only place in England (and most of the UK!) which has not had any serious snow this week. Woke up this morning to find some snow, but it wasn't long before it was gone, and it was nowhere near enough to even consider getting a day off school - and when snow began to fall later, it didn't settle. I think I will have to accept that there won't be a weather-related day off school for me!

I've just got back from a friend's house, and she has a lovely little brother and sister, who are so sweet - we had a real laugh, and got some homework done too, which is always good: I have finished hnomework for this eveing, so have spent half an hour on my book, then read for a little bit (my latest is 'She went all the way' by Meg Cabot - although only a chapter in!) and then thought I'd update on here. I'm planning on an early night as well!

Sunday night I was extremely annoyed; I went to bed at ten, turned my TV, laptop and light off and and tried to go to sleep at around quarter to eleven. By three in trhe morning I was still lying there, not sleeping - I really hate it when that happens! So, having finally fallen asleep some time after three, I was pretty tired the next day. Luckily, last night's sleep was better! Still, I'm a little tired, so I will try to get to bed early.

I now have another job, which I'm very happy about - babysitting for a local woman, both for her kids and for those who come and stay at the holiday homes she has surrounding her house. It's going to be greta, both for experience with kids (and I love babysitting, which is an added bonus!) which will look good on my CV, and the money towards my trip to America. Have I mentioned that? Not sure I have: next February, I'm off to New York and Washington DC for a week with the school - so now I'm saving up so that I can afford the trip! At the minute, I'm working quite a bit, but I enjoy it all, so I have nothing to complain about =]

A little update on the novel: over 50,000 words now, and 150 pages!! Glad you like the sound of the blurb, Molly. I'm going to write some more tonight I think - I'm emailing it off chapter by chapter to my friend who's going through and editing it. She's enjoying it, which gives some hope that it's ok!

I'm off to see Twilight again tomorrow - there's a whole group of us going, and most of us are seeing it for the second time, so I'm looking forward to that. I'm also going to see the band Keane on Monday, which I'm very excited about! So it's a busy week coming up, with homework and then a babysitting job coming up! I'm also planning what I'm going to do for my birthday: it's my seventeenth on the twenty-seventh of Feb, so I think I'm going to do something to celebrate during February half-term. Now, I think I'll try and finish another chapter of the novel... =]

Thursday, 29 January 2009

A little break...

After devoting my entire evening to writing an essay on Much Ado About Nothing, and then analysing a Tennyson poem called 'Mariana', I decided on having a (I think it's well deserved!) break, to write a blog post, as it's been a few days since I've done one.

After the comments left on my last blog post (I love reading your comments, and now your blogs, Molly and Jessica!) I thought I'd tell you a little bit about my novel. Basically, I've been working on it on and off for the last couple of years, and I guess it's sort of a romance novel - romance is key, but there's also a lot more too it. It's called 'Family Portrait' I've actually written the blurb, so I thought I'd post it here, so it can give you an idea of what it's about!

Two very different families are about to collide, and no-one knows what the consequences are going to be. Mary-Ann Mendora has a past shrouded in mystery, and she couldn’t be less suited to the sweet, squeaky-clean Ella Kingsley and her family if she tried. As she tries to make the best of her new life, will her past return to haunt her, and ruin the life she’s beginning to build? And will she find out that the Kingsleys aren’t all quite as squeaky-clean as they appear? One thing’s for sure – the Mendoras’ and Kingsleys’ lives will never be quite the same again…

It's now up to 40,000 words, which I'm very happy with - although I'm worried about how long it's going to take me to finish, I'm less than a quarter of the way through all the things I want to happen! Never mind, I enjoy doing it. :) I hope that it won't be a pointless endeavour, but as I do enjoy it so much, I guess I wouldn't be too worried if only me and a few friends ever read it! My ideas come from all over the place: some of it's inspired by things I've 'roleplayed' on roleplay game sites - you may not have ever come across these, they're usually related to some sort of book or movie franchise, and you play different characters in their world. It's great for writing and imagination practice, and I used to do it quite a lot - now I find I just don't have the time! Other ideas come from my friends and me: scenes where the main character is with her friends tend to mirror things that happen when I'm with mine! I really love writing, always have done, and I've found I still love it now - even though I'm having to write quite a lot in school now, with English Lit and Lang - my only problem is not having enough time!

I have a very odd playlist on Youtube entitled 'Writing Music' - and I find that I have an extremely strange mix of music that I like to play whilst I'm writing. Most of it is songs, but there are a couple of pieces which are just piano pieces. One I have to recommend is 'River Flows in You' by Yiruma. I don't often listen to piano pieces repeatedly, but this is one I listen to daily, and it almost makes me cry every time I do, it's so beautiful. I'd really recommend listening to it!

Jessica - I'm really not too sure what I want to do at Uni yet: I think I want to do English Language/Lingustics, but it could all change! I'm not planning on doing creative writing at the minute, but like I said, who knows! I've been looking into Salford Uni, as it seems to have really good English courses, and also on the advice of teachers, I'm possibly going to apply to Oxford or Cambridge.

Molly - I'm glad you enjoyed the Virgin Suicides - I was really surprised that I did, but glad I'd read it! Middlesex is good: it's stranger than The Virgin Suicides (if you can believe that!), and although I'm not enjoying it as much as I did The Virgin Suicides, I am enjoying it. You'll have to let me know what you think!

Right, I'm off to do a bit more writing of my novel; thanks for the comments, I really do love reading them! =]

Sunday, 25 January 2009

Birthdays and a little more writing

Time seems to pass so fast - I didn't even notice it's been a good couple of weeks since I last posted on here! It's mostly been school work taking up my time, as usual, but I've also been really getting into writing my novel - I get a bit obsessed when I get into something, and so I;ve been spending a lot of time on it! I've just finished chapter eleven, and am emailing it to a friend of mine every couple of chapters. I find this a little scary; whilst I like my story, someone else is an entirely different matter! But I figured it ought to be read! Both she and I are quite picky about spelling, punctuation and grammar, but I find I don't notice it so much with my own work, so it's really great having her read through it: she finds a lot more mistakes than I can when I read it! I'm now up to 35,000 words (I use microsoft word's word counter regularly!) which is over 100 A5 pages! I'm quite pleased I've stuck with it: it's surprising how much you can write when you set your mind to it! Molly, I used to write short stories all the time too - I loved doing them. Contrasting you, I have probably been using my creativity more since I started Sixth Form - but that's because I chose to English Lit and Language, and dropped all science-y and maths subjects!

After Molly's comment, I figured I'd tell you a little about my family, as I'll probably refer to them at some point or another on here! I have a sister, who's 15 - we don't get on too well a lot of the time, and she does my head in, but I'm pretty sure that's standard for many sisters! I have a half-brother too, who's 26, but he moved away recently so I don't get to see him too much at the minute. I live with my mum and sister, but my dad lives in the same town. That's all the family I really have where I live: the majority of my family live in Germany, so I don't know them all too well!

It was my friend's little sister's birthday last week, and I couldn't believe that she was turning six: I remember the day she was born! I'm really close to their whole family, and so was invited round for a family evening on her birthday. It was really nice, and she loved her birthday present - a cute tartan check dress and a necklace - and wrote me a very sweet thank-you card! She also said that I was one of her best friends; she's so sweet, and always has to speak to me on the phone when I ring my friend!

I'm going to get back to writing my novel now, as I'm enjoying it so much at the minute: the homework's all done for this evening, so I have some free time to be creative before an early night - which hopefully won't be disturbed with gales of wind and loud rain and hail as it was last night!

Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Finally a balance!

It seems that, for now, I have figured the secret to success at A-Level - organisation. Unfortunately it's not something I'm great at, but over the last week I've managed to stay organised and focused, and have found I can cope with my homework - which is great, as the teacher's are piling more on than ever. I'm glad I don't have exams this week, as all my friends do - not sure I could cope with revision on top of it all!

I watched the film of 'The Virgin Suicides' on Friday night, and was really impressed by it - I wasn't sure if they could make a good film out of such an odd but amazing book, but it really worked: Molly, you really should take a look at the book! In reply to your comment, I've heard of most of the books you've mentioned, but never read any of them - my sister's always reading Jodie Picoult, and they never appealed to me - but then I said exactly the same about Twilight when she was reading them, and I certainly don't agree with that anymore! On that note, I'!ve given in once more, and am rereading the Twilight books again - I finished the first one again this afternoon. They really are the most romantic books I've ever read!

I've just finished reading a very dull chapter on Russian Collectivisation (for school - I wouldn't recommend it as a bit of light reading!) and so thought I'd come and post on here, as a bit of a break before I pick up whatever book I decide to read tonight, and because I haven't posted on here for a few days! This organisation thing is great (while it lasts!) - I have much more time for reading, and for writing the novel I'm attempting to write, which has reached 30,000 words!!

Other than that, there's not all that much new going on at the minute; I'm looking forward to next month, when I turn seventeen, and will be able to have driving lessons! I was thinking today - for some reason, I was wondering around thinking deeply! - about how I look forward to things. People always say that school is the best time of your life - something I really cannot believe is true (especially not when my parents, who'd both dropped out of school by the time they were 16 tell me it is!) - but I am certainly guilty of wishing it away. I'm always waiting for the next weekend, the next school holiday, and ultimately the end of sixth form. I'm thinking I should perhaps be enjoying what's going on at the minute, rather than always waiting for what's going to come's hard when the current events are just school and homework!

I have work experience tomorrow, which I'm looking forward to as usual - I work with all ages, as it's a very small school (only 47 pupils!) and so I switch between classes, which is nice. I really don't know what age group I'd like to work with - it seems to change depending on which ones I'm with! I love the little ones, but I think I'd be worried I would 'baby' them too much - but we'll see how it all turns out, I guess I don't need any firm decisions yet!

Well, I'm off to read some more - and enjoy the results of me being organised while it lasts! - but I'll post again soon. By the way, really great you've got a blog Molly - love reading other people's blogs!

Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Routine once more...

Shockingly, I am posting on here...and have finished all my homework for the evening! It's a nice feeling - luckily I didn't have too much tonight, as I got an awful l ot of it done last night - although last night I ended up staying uo till gone midnight in order to get it finished, which I hate doing. Still, now I have a nice free evening to relax, which is lovely!

I hope you had a good first day back, Molly - I'm finding it hard to get back into the routine myself! I seem to have turned practically nocturnal over the Christmas Holidays, so the getting up isn't great, as I only had to be up early for a few days that I was working in the holiday. I'm into another book at the minute - Middlesex, by Jeffrey Eugenides. It's an extremely weird book, but I read another by him, 'The Virgin Suicides', and thought it was really well written, and very good - so I'm trying this one out. I honestly can't say what my favourite book is - I've always loved Harry Potter, and recently have fallen in love with the Twilight series too. I'm a hig fan of Meg Cabot, and seem to own most of her books, but I read a lot of classics like the Brontes and Jane Austen too. A very varied taste! haha what I can say is that my bookshelves are literally full to burst - I have books piled up by the side of my bookcase, so I'm hoping I can persuade my dad to build me a big bookcase soon!

The holiday seems to have played havoc with my appetite - I have never really eaten breakfast since I was a really young child, but days of waking up at twelve and then eating immediately means that I'm now hungry when I get up at half seven! (Well, supposedly half seven - it seems to end up being later and later each day!) Very strange - I'm eating loads, so maybe it's a growth spurt - maybe I'll make it past 5"2! Although I doubt it!

The routine of school makes me feel like I've never been off - but at least I can be thankful I don't have any exams (yet) as many of my friends seem to at the moment. Still, the coursework essays are being piled on! I have work experience tomorrow afternoon, which I do every Wednesday, at the local primary school - it's probably the highlight of my school week, as I really look forward to it. It's really encouraging to see kids learning, and to help them out with things and think 'wow, they get that because I explained it', or see them spell a word they couldn't the week previously. Every week just further cements my plans to become a teacher.

Well, I'm off to enjoy my free evening - I hope anyone who's back to school isn't too snowed under with work!

Sunday, 4 January 2009

New Year, not so New me!

Happy New Year everyone! I know we're five days in, but this is first chance I've had to write a blog entry. So, Happy New Year to anyone reading this, and especially those who comment on my blog - it's lovely to know people have read it! =]

So, the not so new me part - well, surprisingly, I'm on here because my homework's doing my head in, the essays don't make any sense, and I need some form of escape! I'll just say this is warming up my fingers for the few pages I'm gonna have to finish up tonight. I have started both essays, one of which is just time consuming, but the other is pure evil - Russia History - and is possibly the worst thing I've ever written - it's quite clear I don't know what I'm talking about :s ! So, a quick update on here, then I'll be getting back to it - both are due in tomorrow, which is my first day back.

I really cannot believe how fast this holiday has gone - does anyone else feel like this? One minute I was looking at the two weeks off, stretching in front of me - the next it's time to go back! I guess I've just got to be grateful that we get a week off next month...although at the minute, that seems all too far away!

I've been preoccupying myself with lots of things this holiday -homework not being the prominent thing! I've been working on a novel I've been attempting to write for an awfully long time - I'm up to chapter 9, have written about 70 A5 pages, which is about 20,000 words. I seem to have been working on it forever, and every now and again I have writing sprees, then I leave it for a bit. I enjoy it - even if I really should be doing homework instead of working on it! I've been up late working on it for the past few nights (except New Years Eve, when I went out =] ) and it's getting somewhere - even though it'll be a few years before it's finished! I've also been doing an awful lot of reading and re-reading of my favourite books - I think I;ve read about 25 this holiday - although unsurprisingly none of them have been the ones I was assigned to read over the holiday!

I think that it went so quick because I was ill for the first week of the holiday - but then don't holidays always go quick? All in all, it's not been too bad a break - and I definitely needed a break from school. To be honest, I'm getting fed up of Sixth Form. I'm not sure what it is: there's a lot of work, but I can cope with it, and I am doing so; I don't hate any of my lessons really, well, not as much as I hated some of the ones I had to do last year; and I have good friends. I think I'm feeling like I've grown out of it - I'm ready for Uni (which is still another year and a half to go!) and ready for different people. I remember feeling the same way at the end of Primary School - but none of my friends seem to be feeling the same way.

I hope you all had a good New Years, and here's to a great 2009! My New Years Resolutions: to get quite a lot of my book done, and to be a little more organised. I think I have more hope with the former than the latter!