|It's Sulphite Free!|
What I've Been Thinking
Three months ago a dear writing friend passed away, and it's been hard to come to terms with her death, and the knowledge that I won't see her again has made me terribly sad. Sometimes, when I go to the writers group, I look around for her in the coffee bar. I know, that's just plain crazy.
Apart from our mutual love of writing we had much more in common. Photography, walking, history and cake tasting featured a lot during our friendship. We'd spend time chatting about our novels, supping tea and eating cake. We'd discuss ways to deal with errant characters, wayward plots and other writerly topics. And I fondly recall those times now, never quite realising how precious my memories would become.
I attended her funeral, and spoke publicly about her writing life to those gathered, her family and friends, it was very hard. I can't describe how heartsore I felt, as I realised then that I'd never see her again. We weren't going to have another conversation, and I wouldn't hear her read her novel, and there'd be no more time in her company.
In the last year of our friendship, she became ill, and I had mobility problems, but even so we both made the effort to meet up and see each other, although it was much less than before. I'm so, so glad we made the effort.
It's made me realise the obvious. Life is short. It's not like I didn't know this truth before, but like most of us, I lose sight of it from time to time. Then something happens, and it highlights the need to live life to the full. What I'm trying to say - is that sometimes, you never know the value of the moment, until it becomes a memory.
If you've been putting something off that you really want to do - like taking that holiday for writers, self-publishing your novel, or even finishing it! Starting a writers' group, or getting up on stage to perform your work - get on with it!
Follow your dream, and don't neglect your family or friends.
If there's someone you haven't heard from in a while, reach out, contact them and arrange a date to get together. You'll be glad you did.
I've had a head cold all week, so all exercise was off, as was writing. I've learnt it can't be done with a nose like a dripping tap, and a head that feels like it's about to explode.
By Wednesday it had eased enough for me to take part in #writingchat on Twitter, and things progressed in the right direction from then onwards.
I attended my first Playshuffle this week, which is an event where a bunch of writers, actors and 'voyeurs' turn up over at Derby Theatre, and basically the actors perform scripts they have just been handed by the writers. There is no read through, no rehearsal etc It is simply script in hand and off you go! It was very good, and showed the talents of both actors and writers. I was classed as a 'voyeur', as I went as a guest of another writer who had a script he wanted to hear performed.
As a writer, it's interesting to see, for example if anyone stumbled over their words, in which case you know you need to tweak things, or in the case of the comedy scripts, you could see where people laughed, and where they didn't, and how spaced the laughs were coming.
There were breaks, and you were encouraged to mingle and discuss the acting, writing and anything else you wanted to know. It was an enjoyable evening.
As soon as the bell went to signal the end of the working week on Friday, I zoomed off to the steam room, followed by the jacuzzi and swimming pool. It was very relaxing, and I really enjoyed the silence of being on my own. Afterwards I dined alone too, and it felt good to be in my own company.
#3 Reasons I was grateful last week
- Friendship - Doesn't matter if they are online via Twitter, or standing in front of you. Surround yourself with people that make you happy.
- Wine - My favourite eatery put a sulphite free wine on their list. Hurrah! They listened, and followed through, and now I can enjoy a glass of wine when I want one. And if you're not aware then yes, I'm sulphite sensitive, and you might be too. Read more about this sensitivity HERE .
- Warm Clothes - The big fluffy purple dressing gown my son gifted me for Christmas, my fleecy bed socks, and my big warm coat and gloves. Don't know if it's because I've had a cold, but it's been freezing around these parts in the last week. Roll on Springtime!
The week ahead is going to be busy at work. I'm still getting over the dregs of the cold, so I'm going to take it easy where I can. I've got a pilates session booked, which I'm looking forward to, but anything else will simply be a bonus.
There will be writing in some form, but I'll have to pace myself, as I want to be on top form for Saturday when I'll be attending a writers workshop in Birmingham organised by the RNA (Romantic Novelist's Association). I'll report back and let you know all about it in my next blog post.
How was your week? And what lies ahead?