- Published 14 Feb 2014
Oh and it's Valentine's Day too.
Flowers wilt and fade,
A book creates memories that last,
Chocolates give you spots,
A book gives you words to read,
Cake gives you a belly,
A good book makes your belly shake.
Giving comes straight from the heart, and so does a story, written from the heart.
So, here is my message for Valentine's Day:
Today is full of flowers and hearts,
And everything is painted red,
There’s cupid with a bow and darts,
Shooting love at everyone’s head.
And then there’s this that I impart,
A story written and then read,
A great idea straight from the heart,
A gift of love, a book instead.
Make someone's day - give them a book!
- Published 03 Jan 2014
Do I write about animals or people?
I have been working on sorting out my writing schedule for 2014. I already have one resolution that is sitting behind my shoulder, nagging me: complete Rotten Eggs (the Mitchell Muffin and the Rotten Eggs story). I have finished the story, which is one milestone, however. The challenge comes in the actual completion of the book. I created chapter introductions and images, I have laid out the book, created a table of contents, and I have sketched the characters. There still remains the tidying up of the images in Photoshop (yawn), a page of Who's Who (I am told the story is quite character rich) and then I have to redraw the map of Crumstead. A southern English town that is crummy by name, and crummy by nature.
There we have it, a project, almost broken down into bite-sized, do-able, achievable tasks. So I am already tucked into my lists rather than resolutions.
The other writing tasks I have on my plate are growing, so I shall need to be organised - is that the secret to success? organisation? or should I just go with the flow?
Which reminds me, I got a jolt about a story I have half-planned out in my head about the Tarsier - I squealed and squeaked as I watched the BBC Earth's Tarsier Tails last night and then started worrying again about the second paradise tree snake that had visited me just before New Year, on the Fifth Day of Christmas.
This morning, just to add some icing on the cake, I heard a rustle in the garden as I was sweeping those Uncle Vernon leaves and out popped a squirrel, and then of course there is my grumpy cat who really needs her own twitter account.
Oh, goodness too many leaping and slithering animals to choose from. Better make a list.
- Published 02 Jan 2014
Could this be a resolution?
I did one of those quick sweeps in at FaceBook this afternoon. A cursory scan across what was going on in my network and a particular slice of time. I am sure that I must miss many life changing events, but I have so much fun fluff in my brain (yes, I used fluff not stuff), that I need to put on paper.
There is absolutely no excuse for not getting on with writing rather than being a Flâneur (what a wonderful French word that is).
Actually, my life probably is that of a Flâneur. After all, I fill my day, almost every day, with whats and nots.
People tell me - 'ooh you are so busy all the time.' and 'how do you have time?'.
And yet, I really don't feel busy like someone in an office. Oh, yes, wait, I am not in an office. I have my own study, I sit at my desk in shorts and sip green tea, my favourite has been some fresh JiangXi green tea, while I attempt to be creative, prepare a lesson, read a book with my lunch, do a little research, sketch a character for a book or tediously Photoshop what I drew. I did not even include the leaf sweeping, vacuuming with my new funky vacuum (no it is not an expensive Dyson), or cooking a concoction for dinner.
What a way to be busy, or not as I am telling myself.
Horribly, I have succumbed to the idea that perhaps I am busy. Too busy to go and meet friends. Too busy to stroll around and look at the nature. Whoops.
So, the only solution, is to ban the concept. What persuaded me? Life, looking at myself in the mirror, realising that I had been flâneuring around too much, which is why my next book isn't complete yet, and reading an article about how un-respectable telling everyone you are busy, really is.
- Published 01 Jan 2014
So how do I start my New Year?
The cliche is to create a long list of New Year Resolutions. All very well and they work for about a week or two and then you get tired and the list gets put in a drawer.
A list, however is exactly what you need if you are going to stick to anything! Not a list of huge world changing events, but rather bite-sized chunks of actions that you can tick off as you do complete each one. This gives you a sense of achievement and accomplishment. When you can see a load of ticks down a list, it becomes a motivator to continue. A list of bite sized activities also make it easier to embark on getting things done.
I suppose it is like climbing a mountain. Look at the mountain and your eyes grow wide. Break it down into a reasonable list of actions, to achieve the goal and you just might climb that mountain. (Boots, Equipment, Rope, Supplies, Training, Support, Map, Weather Check and the list can go on).
Even Richard Branson advocates making a list or two. Although his choice or twitter response by someone who "wants to do something worth being stressed about" leaves me wondering whether humans are stress addicts?
As for me, I've made a list and completed some already:
- reorgansied my to do book,
- set a goal to write one of my blog posts every day (ha, ha),
- resolved to finish Rotten Eggs, including the illustrations,
- embarked on a project to document my mother's childhood memories,
- decided to tidy up Artful Art and get it published, sort out my two short stories about stars (including the illustrations),
- made a Honey Dew list (and even completed a good few of them - 3 in total yesterday and one before 8am this morning!), and
- make a tin for collecting memories of 2014 (taken from a great idea I saw using a glass jar - but glass breaks).
And who knows I might even complete my next Business TESOL course.
Of course, my eldest son shoved the tin back at me with a glaring teenager look. Sigh.
My youngest son was not sure that the New Year had started, but that was my fault as I wickedly told him on New Year's Eve that there were still 3 days to go. Maybe I should resolve not to joke so much!
- Published 08 Oct 2013
A Challenge for Children's Day & Halloween!
If you would like a copy of the poster on the left, you can download it now from the Limey Downloads page or by clicking here.
Write a poem, rhyme/limerick, or 100 word story about the wonders of reading books, books and children, why books are better than gadgets, or simply, why you love books.
I will publish the top 10 shortlisted ditties on LimeyLimericks and they will each receive a copy of my scary story: Mayan Cocoa, A Halloween Tale plus an illustrated book of limericks: Animal Tails.
So, get writing!!
The challenge is open to all children, from Singapore National Children's Day, 4th October 2013, to 30th October 2013 (the day before Halloween).
Please send your entries to: writing at limeylimericks dot com
Remember to include your name, email, age and your entry.
And just to get you started, here is the poem (again), about why books are better than gadgets:
Nothing quite like a book
There is nothing quite like a book,
Turn a page, peek, take a look.
Pick it up, turn over a leaf,
Wonders inside, beyond belief!
Tucks in your pocket, really neat,
No need for a battery or heat.
Pull it out on the bus or train,
A companion come wind or rain.
No brilliant, bright backlight,
To prevent from sleep at night.
A real page to fold and uncurl,
No tap, no swipe to unfurl.
Each one has a magical cover,
On a shelf, a faithful lover.
Daring to touch, feel the page,
Falling in love, it will amaze.
Fantastic stories inside abound,
Wondrous pictures waiting to be found,
In your hand hold a work of art,
That flowed out of someone's heart.
Children's books are always the best,
A pocket sized treasure chest,
Brimming over with squeals and delight,
And the odd tale to give you a fright,
Imagination fills the air,
Oh please read your book, just give it a try,
Don't let a good story simply slip you by.
You'll be surprised, you'll laugh and smile,
Take time to sit, and read awhile.
© Sarah Froggatt 2013
International Children's Day takes place every year on 1st June. It is set out by the World Conference for the Well-Being of Children in Geneva. This International Day is celebrated in the Uk.
Universal Children's Day, on 20th November. This is the day that the United Nations, in 1989 adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child.