Well, the summer is finally here, and in a fit of efficiency I decided to go through my notebooks in search of inspiration for short story ideas. 

It was a double groan moment when I realised the extent of my scribbling. After half an hour spent pulling out my hair and cursing, I decidedthat the only thingto do was to go through all my notebooks and try and sort through them. And what a good thing it turned out to be.

Not only do i now have a few ideas rolling around in my head, I also have a new system that should (hopefully) save time.

I now have general notebooks that I carry around with me. However, at the end of the day I transfer my notes to 3 other specific notebooks - novel ideas, short story ideas, and another for titles, characters and snippets of dialogue and narrative I could use.

Of course, this is open to change and I'm curious as to how you guys sort through your own notes. More importantly, where do you get your inspiration? Ideas tend to come to me at the most inopportune of moments (like in the bath, or at 2 in the morning)! 

There are times when I seek out inspiration. Occasionally, I like to take a trip on the bus so that I can look at the people and listen to their conversations. Does that count as nosiness or enterprising? Curious thing being a writer. Still, if I was ever found out, I don't think I could get away with "I'm sorry, I'm not nosy, just a writer."

Or could I?
I was invited by a friend of hubby's (who is a vicar), to attend a show. Not a musical or recital, but a lighthearted look at life and Christianity.

Hmm, I went with a little misgiving. Although I'm a tolerant person, I don't particularly like having religion thrust at me. Don't get me wrong, I believe that everyone is entitled to think and have faith in whatever they choose, just as long as they do the same for me. Besides, I couldn't work out if he was trying to convert a sinner, or reassure a saint?!

Anyway, we had a lovely meal at his house and then set off....

And although I wasn't converted (yep, still a sinner!), the evening did provide some interesting ideas. So much so, that we ended up in the Wilson Hotel bar and spent almost an hour having a life and theological debate.

Basically, life is pretty much like a long distance race with 4 laps of the track. I reckon that I'm at the end of lap 2, with my trainer just squeaking into lap 3. I'm not sure that God is the answer to a more fulfilling life.... but self belief, self-confidence and self love definitely are. I don't mean that in any selfish way. It's just, if you don't believe in yourself and your writing, and don't love your writing, how can you expect others to do so?

And with that last thought, I'm now going to have a cup of caffeine, some Turkish delight, and curl up with a good novel. Ahh, the ultimate sins for a Sunday morning.

After my 7 hour writing session yesterday, today was a bit slower. It started well. Stan, who is now allowed out after a month of incarceration, brought me a lovely present...Not a mouse, bird or frog. No. Stan brought me a lovely piece of leftover pizza. He dropped it at my feet with such aplomb. That soon dissolved itno disdain when I extricated it from his paws and dropped it in the bin. I obviously have no appreciation for the finer points in life!

How do you get focussed when it comes to your writing? Once a month I try and visit a hypnotherapist. It relaxes me and gives me a much needed energy boost. Today I asked for help to shift my focus as I have a tendency to sweat the small stuff and get bogged down with all the minutiae.

How do you all keep grounded? Be good to hear your tips.

Well, my week and a half  off has begun. Not a lot of writing has been done as yet, butthat's because I ventured over to Skipton yesterday. A grand morning out. I even managed to dodge the rain!

Anyway, my muse is screaming in my ear. Lots to do: an edit to finish, 2 short stories to write for a couple of competitions, as well as another edit to start on a piece of work I'm hoping to finish and publsh later this year.

I thought you might like a wee peek at the work in progress so here's a sample. It's an erotic anthology. Ten stories featuring Eleanor, the Fantasy Girl. This is the first page from the first story. Let me know what you think...


         It was a dark coloured car. Big, sleek, and powerful. Just like the man and his cock, Eleanor thought, as she opened the door and slid inside.
         She took a deep breath and inhaled the smell of expensive leather and testosterone. Man. Turned on man. Immediately, she felt horny and wet.
         "Hi." Michael's hands flexed on the steering wheel and Eleanor smiled a smile that held a million promises.
        Of course, she had to. That was part of the fantasy. Never the less, she knew that she didn't have to fake it with Michael. This man, more than any other, made her blood zing through her veins and feel hotter than the sun.
        Oh yeah. She felt restless, edgy and needy.
         It was always the same whenever Michael arranged a meeting. He would always call four days before, and then she would spend the next four days reliving their previous encounters, often resorting to rubbing herself off just to try and alleviate her sexual frustration. It never worked.
        Only flesh on flesh could ease the constant ache. Michael's flesh.
        "Hello, Michael," she replied, her voice a sultry purr.
        They didn't touch. Not yet.
         Instead, Michael put the car in gear and pulled out into the dwindling early night time traffic.
         Eleanor's gaze dropped to his large, muscular thigh, and her hand itched to reach out and touch. To stroke the firm muscle that rippled whenever he changed gear. She swallowed a low moan as she felt a fresh pool of moisture between her thighs......
Well, I'm finally looking forward to having a week and a half off work. Not that I work too hard, mind. On saying that, the two and three quarter hours I spend doing my cleaning job a day still means less time spent writing.

I usually wield my mop whilst sending my imagination into all sorts of places. Muses inspire at any time and anywhere...usually in the early hours so that hubby feels like he's about to be interrogated when the light zaps on. Or in the bath, which is why I always take pencil and paper with me (pencils work when wet).

There are huge debates and conflicts of opinion about writers block. Does it exist? Doesn't it? Is it simply an excuse? 

What do you think?

Personally, I think that some are too quick to judge. There are times when things just don't flow. Then there are times when the ideas just keep on coming. I think that the trick is to not sweat the small stuff. Go with the flow... or ebb... and not beat yourself up about it.

And seeing as I now have a week and a half without my mop.... Come on muse