Archive for September, 2013

If anyone’s wondering whether I’ve fallen off the planet…the answer is yes, but only temporarily.

Last weekend 13th to 17th Sept I decided to do a bunk and take off to glorious Dorset in the West Country to spend the entire weekend writing my latest novel. It’s a self made writers’ retreat. I sit in my tent and write while my partner makes all of the meals. Bliss. We go for a few leisurely walks together and I take lots of time to plot my novel and get all creative.

The weekend tentHere it is, the little tent we bought for our weekend getaway.

So far so good, it’s a plan. Driving down to Dorset, some hundred miles from home, was frustrating. It was raining and for some inexplicable reason the traffic was dreaful. A two and half hour journey took four and a half hours. Not to worry, we had plenty of music and snacks in the car to keep us entertained.

Arriving at the camp site the heavens broke and it chucked it down. Not to worry, it’s only a little tent and easily erected. Now, did I mention that this was a new tent? Yep, we hadn’t checked it and one of the poles was broken! Never mind, we can ask the camp site owners for help. Fortunately they know us well and had some poles they’d salvaged from the bins and one of the fitted. By nightfall our litle tent was up and we were on the phone to the Chinese takeway ordering masses of food to be delivered while we dried out.

Excellent. I sat and wrote and wrote, my novel flowing easily. We didn’t care that it rained and the wind battered the tent, insde we were safe, dry and happy.

On Tuesday we broke camp, laughing as it continued to rain and saying what an excellent weekend we’d had. We’re easily pleased.

I know the route home like the back of my hand, that is until the police close a road and we head off down country lanes to goodness knows where. Okay, so we got to see a lot of roads and towns I’d never encountered before, but some hour after being diverted I see a road I recognise and we’re back on track.

Happy, happy we stop at a Little Chef for a rest and a snack. We’ve had a great weekend and I’ve written thousands of words for my novel.

It’s the home run, only forty or so miles to go. Outside Winchester I stop at a roundabout, knowing that my car under heavy load won’t outrun the vehicle approaching on the roundabout. We appear to be the only two cars on the road. Then. Wallop! Shock! A vehicle has hit the back of my car, shunted us forwards, flipped my head backwards and forwards. I can’t believe it! Where on earth did he come from?

Stepping out of my car I do the right thing and exchange insurance details, blah, blah even though my head is reeling and I feel like I’ve been punched into the middle of next week. My car’s a little 4X4 so there’s minimal damage, the spare wheel on the back taking most of the blow.

Traffic builds up and the police cruise by to make sure we’re all okay and once the formalities are over I drive to a quiet road and go, ‘I just need to shake off the shock for a while.’ Eventually I decide I’m up to driving the rest of the way home, but I need to take several breaks.

Once home I call a friend to take me to A&E to get checked out and after many hours of waiting I’m told that I have whiplash and can expect to feel worse the following day and should rest up for at least two weeks. That is not what I intended doing with my life, trust me.

In hopital they give you a useful information leaflet about whiplash symptoms, so that you know what to expect and what creates more cause for concern. ‘Mild headache (feels like someone’s hit me with a sledge hammer), feeling sick (without vomiting), dizziness (so which way is the floor?!), irritability or bad temper (who me?!!!), problems concentrating or problems with memory (Why did I walk into this room?), tiredness (Yawn), lack of appetite or problems sleeping (Nope, I’ve eaten more than usual and slept longer).

So if anyone’s wondering why I haven’t answered their blog post, please accept my apologies. Normal service will be resumed as soon as possible once the brain redocks with the mothership!

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Weekly Horoscope 11th September to 17th September 2013

12 zodiac signs

It looks like we’ll all be having a better week this week than last as Venus nudges into Scorpio and helps us cling to our dreams. All week Venus is trine Neptune in Pisces so hold onto your seats because romance is in the air for everyone. The cautionary note is that Venus in Scorpio can create clandestine relationships while Neptune in Pisces encourages deception, so some people may find themselves resisting the temptation of starting an illicit affair. Mercury in Libra is continuing to make some pretty tricky angles, but it’ll help clear the air after last week’s confusing communications, even if some of the things we try and say end up sounding a bit woolly.

For all signs the planetary alignments are really strong for conception, so if you’re wanting to start a family this is the week to have a try.

This is Romance Week!

Aries star signAries might well end up luckiest in love this week, especially when meeting new people around sports and social events.  Whether you’re the mature adult at home or someone else is there could be a few harsh words spoken, mainly because you want to get on and don’t like being held up. Work is full of wonderful opportunities and anyone who’s their own boss could be offered to purchase someone else’s flagging business for a song. Go for it.

Taurus birth signTaureans can find themselves highly attracted to work colleagues this week and end up very tongue tied around them in the middle of a serious meeting. Don’t panic, show them how professional you are and you could be invited to join their sports club or tag along with everyone else and go for a drive and have a meal together. There’s lots of fun to be had. It’s also a great week for prosperity and getting your finances in order.

Gemini star signRomance for Geminians is likely to take the form of one great big flirt. You’ll find yourself attracted to people who have the same interests in travel and debate as yourself and spend loads of time putting the world to rights. Work will require a little extra effort, mainly because you want it finished so that you can run off and play. If you’re young, and single, this is not the week to stay at home and chat to your flat mates or parents, because they’ll frustrate you and appear to be from a completely different planet.

Cancer Star signCancerians are still tied up with the joys of creating a beautiful home. Anything you buy to go in your home right now will make you feel proud to own it and you’ll want to show it off for years to come. Difficulties with older people are still tiring, but plans are made for exciting trips overseas and extra money can appear from unexpected sources. Hard work is paying off and you’re putting down roots for the future. Anyone connected to architecture and building can do really well right now.

Leo star signLeos will be working their romantic charm through soft words and candle-lit dinners this week. There’s serious talk going on and marriage proposals are in the air. Work takes a back seat so be careful that you don’t spend hours at home catching up because you were too distracted during the day. Older people and authority figures can irritate so escape to a good book in your bedroom or sneak off and chit-chat on the internet to a romantic partner.

Virgo star signVirgos can be offered that lucky break at work or in their career, receiving lots of praise. Romance for you comes as showing off and wooing new partners or regular partners, but it does mean slightly abandoning your friends as this is such a one-to-one week. Fit in your regular sports but keep the session brief. People in the same field of work really understand you while relatives just don’t get what you’re going on about, so the best conversations are going to be had when you’re away from home.

Libra star signLibrans are just bursting to meet new people and flirt. There are new business/career contacts to be made and lots of promises given that offer advancement in the future. Travelling long distance to visit the sick or the elderly makes you feel good, and you’ll enjoy the experience more than you might expect. Take your partner with you and spend the evenings talking quietly while gazing into each other’s eyes. Soppy, but very meaningful.

Scorpio star signDelicious Venus in Scorpio makes you lose some of your inhibitions and gush romantic words, especially on the phone and by email. Money ploughed into business ventures, education and career is well spent. A desire to travel and explore unknown areas gets you taking your partner to lots of exciting locations and there are plans to renovate property. Your children will irritate because all you want to do is snuggle up to your partner and be all grown-up, but a trip to the park and some vigorous running around should wear them out enough for you to get back to those smoochy conversations.

Sagittarius star signSagittarians will find romance in everyday life. Social groups, shops and social networking can all be places where that special someone might appear. Sagittarians like to be free, and this week the call is to be free from clutter. It’s hasty clearing out, with household items you no longer need being off-loaded onto friends whether they’d like them or not. Job done, they can take them to the charity shop. Work can be intense and the only part that will interest you is original research and delving to the root of a problem. Best relaxation is to read a spy thriller.

Capricorn star signsCapricorns may find themselves highly attracted and fascinated by anyone from overseas or a different culture this week. Lots of interesting conversations to be had. There’s the possibility of promotion at work, but do be careful if someone secretly asks you to lend them money as you may never see it again. Fast cars, speed and the desire for an adrenalin rush might get you in trouble with the law, so be careful and keep safe; maybe stick to the big-dipper at the fun-fair.

Aquarius star signAquarians don’t always trust deep romantic feelings and this week they’ll be challenging their partners to elaborate on what they mean. They appear to want to escape the bother of feeling all this ‘stuff’ because for cool Aquarians it’s all a bit too intense. Practical efforts put into work projects can ease the way, as well as debating what love is and whether the mind is greater than the emotions. Relaxing with a group of philosophers would suit you best as well as walks by the sea, lakes or rivers.

Pisces star signPisces don’t mind wallowing in romance and this week it can get so erotic and steamy that they’ll be thinking of very little else. New romances will flourish and stale romances will be rekindled with passion. Food will be you’re other passion this week and you’ll invite friends round to share delicious meals. Work/career, should you get round to doing any, can have some contentious points, but you’ll put on your solid, ‘I know what I’m talking about’ hat, take control and solve all those irritating problems for everyone.

It’s a terrific week for romance, and I’d love to hear who finds love this week. If you’re feeling brave post your romantic encounters in the comments.

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’50 Shades of Grey’ movie: How will it work on the big screen? – Movies News – Digital Spy.

I kept trying to ‘Press This’ and include the article but I was errored out with a message saying the file was too large. But hey, we all know by now what I’m talking about. Don’t we?

Yes, they are going to make 50 Shades of Grey into a movie. The big question is, would you have cast Charlie Hunnam as Christian Grey? It’s the question that’s tripping from everyone’s lips and Google is hot with the search term, ‘who is Charlie Hunnam?’ Ahh! It’s him, the blonde boy Nathan from Queer as Folk…never much fancied him then and I, personally, can’t see that his sex appeal has grown much since he was a faye eighteen year old.

I have to be absolutely honest and admit that I haven’t read 50 Shades of Grey. Yes folks, I am out of the loop here. I have, however, dutifuly used Amazon’s search inside to read the opening chapter and discover what it’s all about. In that first introductory piece I met Mr Christian Grey and developed a picture in my head of what he looked like. He wore an expensive suit and was very suave. My interest was piqued. I could envisage him as sexy…according to my own parameters of sexual attractiveness.

So, now they’ve cast Charlie Hunnam in the role, and apologies to all Charlie Hunnam fans out there, but he isn’t a guy who gives me the hots. Disappointing. I often watch a really good movie and say, ‘pity the lead wasn’t sexy,’ or on a  bad day, ‘oh my god that guy’s really ugly, who chose him to play super smooth romantic lead?!’

This is the fundamental difference between a book and a movie. With a book, regardless of the author’s physical description of the sexy man, we are free to elaborate and embellish according to our own ideals…and desires. With our imagination we make him the hottest man in town. He is divine, he is ours, he is perfect. In a movie we are dealt up a so called ‘ideal’ and encouraged to believe that this is a sexy man, because that is what the producers would like us to believe, because that is what will sell their film.

It’s the same old connundrum. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

I write novels and one day after my friend had finished proof reading a few chapters for me I said, “I have to be a little in love with all of my main male characters. I have to find them attractive enough to take to bed, or I really can’t connect with them.” She grinned and said, “I noticed. They are very sexy men.” She picked that up from my writing style, even though these are not romantic leads, they are just strong male protagonists. I’m teasing and alluring my audience with the promise that there might be more.

This is the power of the imagination, our ability to fullfill our desires by dreaming up the perfect man…or woman. Can a film satisfy that desire by telling us to find this man or woman sexy? Not for me. Will the 50 Shades of Grey film work? Will they create enough hype pre-release to have us storming to the cinemas? We wait, we see.

In the meantime enjoy your fantasies, nobody can create a movie as perfect as you can on your own internal screen.

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Weekly Horoscope 4th September to 10th September 2013

12 zodiac signsMercury, the planet of communication, is in Virgo all week, suggesting that we analyse every situation and take times to think things through. That all sounds very inspiring until we see that it makes only weak aspects, and on the 9th, when it moves into Libra, doesn’t make any aspects at all. On 6th Sept the Moon snuggles up to go conjunct, but with only a flaky semi-sextile to Venus in Libra lots of heart-felt talk might end in tears; especially as Venus is out on a limb too, making it near enough impossible to get our personal desires met. This will make it a tough time for communication, and result in lots of internal processing and difficulty getting your point across. Yes folks, this goes for EVERY star sign, not just Virgo.

For the entire week the Sun in Virgo is opposite Chiron in Pisces stirring up old hurts, and with Venus weakly aspected throughout it doesn’t look like a very happy time ahead, especially for anyone looking for romance.

6th September 2013 showing Mercury conjunct Moon and Venus semi-sextile

6th September 2013 showing Mercury conjunct Moon and Venus semi-sextile

This is definitely a duvet week where for many of us it will all be a whole lot easier if we simply don’t bother to climb out of bed in the morning.

If you do get out of bed I’m back on Susyradio on Wednesday between 1pm and 2pm BST with Paul Tizzard

Aries star signAries will find the 7th an excellent day to push forwards in both business ventures and the buying and selling of property, or moving house. It’s an excellent time to borrow money, and success can be achieved overseas, or with foreign partners. Everything’s revolving around work and duty, so please, if you’re out with friends, try hard to switch the conversation away from all things related to business.

Taurus birth signTaureans can find work pretty confusing this week, thinking they’ve done a lot and not reaped much reward. Watch out for road rage, trolley rage and any other type of rage with older people who are strangers. Keep calm and walk away. Sports are a great stress buster and see you achieving success, while social life revolves around the home and helping other people sort out their problems.

Gemini star signMercury rules Gemini and its weak aspects create stalemates at home and awkward periods of long silence. New business ventures start to take out and this is a great time to consolidate financial transactions, with a hand-shake, leave reading and signing the paperwork for a week or so. If you have children, or are looking to study, you may well be offered a place at the school, college or university that you’ve been waiting to have confirmed. Romance is confusing but house hunting brings results.

Cancer Star signFor Cancerians money and property issues still cause concern. Responsibilities weigh heavy in connection with elders, siblings and spouses, so just remember that there’s only one of you and you can’t be all things to all people. Pleasure is to be found on long journeys taken on your own and socialising with close neighbours and friends. As much as you love your home this week it’s best to stay out and about as much as possible because as soon as you’re indoors again other people will make demands on your time.

Leo star signLeos can feel very tetchy this week, especially when driving or on public transport. Promises of future prosperity and offered because people in authority have acknowledged how hard you work. Children will squabble when you try and rearrange the living space, and grown-ups will squabble like children. They all know think they know better than you. Anyone involved in motor-sports or sports involving strength can achieve success. If you have any on-going legal battles they are nearing a resolution and some of you may discover that you benefit from a will.

Virgo star signVirgos will overcome this week’s problems by overspending. Nothing wrong with a bit of retail therapy. Uniforms and team equipment will be on the shopping list, and, for both men and women, something really sleek and snazzy to show off to others when out wining and dining. Your social life revolves around formal dinner invitations, so dress to impress. Difficulties at home, especially with things like the plumbing really irritate, but this is when you discover who your friends because they’ll rush to your rescue, make you a cuppa and invite you to stay for supper. The muck turns into gold.

Libra star signWith your ruling planet Venus acting all distant Librans will feel especially unrewarded. However, Saturn is exalted in your sign and this week it makes excellent aspects in the areas of romance, especially if one of you is slightly older, property and laying down plans for long trips and visits overseas. Business relationships may feel tense, but as difficult as communication is this week, push ahead and make your boundaries clear. You’re ready for new beginnings and this is time to sweep the decks.

Scorpio star signScorpios are still feeling the burden of responsibility, but there are positive breakthroughs this week, especially if buying property. Restlessness is creeping up and many of you will be looking to change career. If you’ve already put in your job application you may well hear positive news, because luck is on your side as far as gaining prestige. This is a time to shine and be seen by others as someone who is strong and powerful.

Sagittarius star signSagittarians never do like sitting still for long and this week you’re fidgeting all over the place. People want to tie you down to being group captain or team leader, but you’d rather go for long walks, play tennis and stretch your body. Conflicts with others about who they think you are and what you should do, versus who you know you are and what you like to do, will make you stressed. Best advice is to run away and hide because while Mercury is weakly aspected nobody is listening to your point of view.

Capricorn star signsCapricorns will find all relationships difficult to handle this week, and might even bring tears, so it’s best to be stubborn and make out that you know best, even if you don’t feel that you do. Bluff is the way forwards. Retail therapy is in the stars for you as well, but unlike Virgo you’re not out to shop for lasting goodies, this is all about instant gratification, so expect to find chocolate leaping into your shopping basket, as well as sweets and biscuits. There’ll be a surprise person asking to share it with you, someone you didn’t think cared, which cheers you up.

Aquarius star signAquarians appear to be skimming through this complex week and unearthing its good points. All work brings good financial rewards, probably more than anticipated. Friendships are tested but news ideas evolve through heated discussions, and Aquarians are never ones to let a tiff break a friendship. Some people will think you’re seeing the world sideways and not taking life seriously enough, but you’ll laugh and wonder why everyone around you is so het up.

Pisces star signPisces are the others sign who appear to be dodging the stones thrown by this week’s planetary alignments. Luck is on your side in connection with relationships and property, so for you it’s smiling all the way. If you work in education or are teaching children of your own taking breaks for exercise will see everyone working better. Professional and personal politics threaten to mar your week, so take refuge in a good book or movie and forget it even exists.

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