Writer’s journey – How did it all happen?

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This is  my writer’s blog about me and my crazy journey to becoming a half decent author.

Well how did I start writing? It was quite odd really. I used to write as a teenager. At the time I had a ginger tom cat called Chester, Mr. Popularity, everyone loved him. He liked to venture afar and we would often have to rescue him. I remember one occasion in particular, my brother and I ended up trudging through the woods, in Blackhall in Edinburgh, to pick him up from a house in the vicinity. He ended up at the most peculiar places. One time he chose to visit a house with thirteen cats!

Here he is looking very much like a tom cat with attitude!

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Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge – #Haiku #Tanka #Haibun: HEAT & CONFUSE

Colleen’s prompt words this week are heat and confuse.

I reckon I’ll write a passionate Tanka this week! Why? I’m feeling happy having just set up my author page on Amazon: Amazon Buying Link… for my debut novel The Curse of Time – Book 1 – Bloodstone, even though it was stressful setting it up….

Yes, formatting isn’t my favourite job. It made me confused, hot, headache prone and more than a bit irritable, so let’s have some passionate poetry to make me feel less stressed! Lol…

It's National Kissing Day!

To join in with Colleen’s wonderful weekly poetry challenge follow the link: https://colleenchesebro.com/2017/07/25/colleens-weekly-poetry-challenge-haiku-tanka-haibun-heat-confuse/

Keep an eye out for my next post – my book cover reveal!!!  Yippee!!!

Bye for now,

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Fellow Administrators of The Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club. #ABRSC, myself

Colleen Chesebro and Debby Gies
Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon
Twitter: @curseof_time

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Sittin’ On The Porch With Kelly – Author Jack Strandburg – Setting up a Macro in Microsoft Word to Target Weak Words

Reblog via Kelly Abell. Author Jack Strandburg’s tips – How to set up a macro in Microsoft Word to eliminate weak words.

Author Kelly Abell

Good Morning. I wish I could say that we were sitting on the porch today, but BRRR. So this morning I’m joined in my warm kitchen by Author/Editor Jack Strandburg. He offers some fantastic advice about targeting those useless words to make your manuscript read more smoothly. You don’t want to miss this chat session. Take it away, Jack.

I have two goals for this session today, Kelly.

One, I provide examples of how certain words, when eliminated or revised, will greatly improve the readability of a manuscript. This exercise applies to all forms of writing; novels, short stories, non-fiction, article, blogs, and essays.

Second, I provide step-by-step instructions for creating a macro in Word to highlight these words and reformat as you choose.

All authors have their own approaches to revision. Some read every word and sentence aloud in a slow and methodical fashion in hopes of hearing something…

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#SundayBlogShare MJ Interviews The Grasshopper – The Curse of Time.

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A big welcome… (If I dare!) to my next interviewee the intriguing Grasshopper, a fine bug of a creature who features in my soon to be released YA Fantasy – The Curse of Time: Book 1: Bloodstone. I have set a tentative date for the release of my e-book – 26th August, so keep a look out for further details and updates about that.

Today, I am interviewing  the Grasshopper using the initials MJ – (my author nickname and tribute to my favourite superhero Spiderman’s Mary Jane!)

MJ: Grasshopper, I’m speechless, is that really you? Have you come to eat me up?

Grasshopper: Of course not dear girl, I don’t eat humans, even though I have pincer sharp teeth.

MJ: I can see that… Oh, what a relief! Tell me all about yourself Mr. Grasshopper.

Grasshopper: I am the world’s largest grasshopper escapement. I’m crafted out of the finest materials, only the very best for me.

MJ: Could you explain a little about the Corpus Christi Chronopage?

Grasshopper: The Chronopage is a large sculptural clock, and my home. It is the brainchild of a team of two hundred talented people including sculptors, engineers, scientists, jewellers, and calligraphers. It includes not one, not two, but six new patented inventions.

MJ: How extraordinary! It is a breath-taking invention and I have always found you phenomenally intriguing Mr. Grasshopper. Not surprisingly, you draw crowds of onlookers and tourists on King’s Parade.

Grasshopper: Oh, yes, no one can resist me. I provoke a reaction, people pause, take photos, respond in horror, or delight. And all the while time marches on, in its cruel, relentless manner.

MJ: Such is life. Hence the spikey teeth?

Grasshopper: Yes, I eat away at your life, your youth, your beauty. Sadly, it is my fate.  I am at the mercy of my tragic role in this Chronopage. No one is exempt. I am its wretched servant.

MJ:  That is sad. My heart weeps for you.

Grasshopper:  Indeed, it is the worse fate. Consider how desperate my life is…. Just one long endless forever of tick tock, tick tock boredom. Well, until my mechanics eventually fail.

MJ: Poor you.  I sympathise, but you’re not alone in your suffering, are you? There are many characters in The Curse of Time who suffer great sadness.

Grasshopper:  Yes indeed, poor Mark, (Amelina’s father,) really does have a rough ride. Young Esme is a prisoner too, and so many of the characters in The Curse of Time are trapped in a time they wish to escape.

MJ: Indeed they are.

For, a moment we contemplate this thought together in a unified silence.

MJ: Could you tell me a little about the unveiling of the magnificent Chronopage?

Grasshopper: Only the finest mind could unveil such a formidable creature as myself. The Chronopage was officially unveiled to the public on the 19 September 2008 by Cambridge physicist Stephen Hawking.

MJ: How amazing. And I believe the originator of the Chronopage is inventor Dr John C Taylor, OBE.

Grasshopper: Yes, Dr Taylor, a former student at Corpus College invested five years and £1 million in the Corpus Clock project.

MJ: Wow, this venture must have meant so much to him. Where is the Corpus Christi Chronopage clock located?

Grasshopper: The Chronopage is situated outside the Taylor Library at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge University, in the United Kingdom, at the junction of Benet Street and Trumpington Street, looking out over King’s Parade.

MJ: You couldn’t get a better location.

Grasshopper: No, in my humble opinion it is the most magnificent street in Cambridge. Fit for Kings! One has only to see all the fine colleges close to my home to say that.

MJ: You call the Chronopage your home but how can a home have no means of comfortable exit?

Grasshopper: True, my home is my prison. I am a prisoner of time. The exquisite artistry in my wings showcase the most beautiful part of me – my desperate desire and longing to fly free.

He sighs.

MJ: Where would you go if you had a chance?

Grasshopper: Oh, so many places. I long to explore a quiet place untouched by time. Where every blade of grass holds a heartbeat of beautiful tranquillity.

MJ: Sounds so calm, but can such a place exist in this world of turmoil?

Grasshopper: I wonder… Perhaps I will struggle to find such perfection but I sense one day I will succeed.

MJ: Do you play a considerable role in The Curse of Time Book 1: The Bloodstone?

Grasshopper: Yes and No. I exist in dreams, visions, and peoples’ experiences. These will pique your curiosity, dear readers. But, I promise you that you’ll hear more from me in book two. I am looking forward to stirring up a considerable amount of mischief in the second book in the series.

MJ: Sounds exciting.

Grasshopper: Oh, yes it will be, I promise you. When we are young,  (or are writing a fresh new story,) hours can deceive you by ticking by slowly but don’t be fooled. Time will progress at an unnaturally rapid rate towards the end of book two but the wait will be worth it.

MJ: Thank you for your fascinating interview Grasshopper.

Grasshopper: I consider it such an honour dear MJ. I wish you every success with your book launch.

MJ: Thank you,  dear Grasshopper, you are too kind.

The Grasshopper bows, opens and closes his eyes and I swear he winks.

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Photography Credit: All images courtesy of Dr John C Taylor, OBE.

Links:

http://www.johnctaylor.com/

Wikipedia – Corpus Clock

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pHO1JTNPPOU

Isn’t the Grasshopper fabulous? He’s a favourite character of mine. Can’t wait to write more about him.

Please visit my other character interviews to find out more:

Interview with Ryder

Interview with Shadow. 

Bye for now,

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Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club

Fellow Administrators of The Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club. #ABRSC, myself

Colleen Chesebro and Debby Gies

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Twitter: @curseof_time

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My Review of Thirteen Reasons Why

20170722_193102 (2)Goodreads Synopsis:

You can’t stop the future.
You can’t rewind the past.
The only way to learn the secret . . . is to press play.

Clay Jensen returns home from school to find a strange package with his name on it lying on his porch. Inside he discovers several cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker–his classmate and crush–who committed suicide two weeks earlier. Hannah’s voice tells him that there are thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. Clay is one of them. If he listens, he’ll find out why.

Clay spends the night crisscrossing his town with Hannah as his guide. He becomes a firsthand witness to Hannah’s pain, and as he follows Hannah’s recorded words throughout his town, what he discovers changes his life forever.

My review: 

This is a difficult book to review not because of the writing brilliance or lack of, more because suicide is such an emotive and difficult subject to deal with sensitively. It’s one of those books that definitely fits in the unputdownable category. Curiosity carries you forward, and keeps you turning the pages… but, for me the tapes were a device, a method that the author used to convey the suicide’s victims feelings beyond the grave to the people who had hurt her. Wait a minute, I have an issue with this. Suicides don’t do this. This involves planning, and people considering ending their lives are unlikely to write a note, family and friends are left wondering  – Why? But, I reckon Jay Asher meant well. I believe her intention was to explain that even the smallest hurt can attach to a larger hurt to grow into a huge hurt ball of pain. I get that, and it sounds plausible, but the upshot of this is the main protagonist starts of sounding whiny, and distances the reader somewhat. I didn’t find the main protagonist Hannah a likeable character, but perhaps that’s the point? The act of suicide means that you don’t dwell on who you might  hurt by your actions – you are too immersed in your own pain – hence the significance of the rape scene. I’m not going into details in this review, no spoilers, read this yourself and make up your own mind.

Ultimately, suicide is the most terribly sad act of self destruction committed by a person who has mental health issues, or is suffering with unbearable pain. Mental health, bullying and depression are major reasons why people commit suicide and these issues should be discussed openly and with a caring attitude, particularly as they are a rising problem in our young people.

Thirteen Reasons Why isn’t a perfect book, but it does provokes discussion. It makes you consider what damage people do to each other and acknowledges that we don’t really know what is going on in other people’s lives.

Of course this debut has been an enormous success with a TV series on Netflix. Both of my daughters have watched the series.)

Rating: A very difficult one to rate, I spent a lot of time deliberating about this one. I’d say it is sitting on a 4 star read.

Have you read Thirteen Reasons Why? Or seen the series? Please join in the discussion.

Bye for now,

 

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My social media links:

Facebook: Authors/Bloggers Rainbow Support Club

Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon
Twitter: @curseof_time

Instagram

Facebook

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Fellow Administrators of our Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club #ABRSC on Facebook, myself, my good friends Colleen Chesebro and Debby Gies. Click on Colleen’s and Debby’s photos to be directed to their awesome blogs. These ladies rock!

 

Guest Post – Cat Davis – Four Quotes to Help You And Me Understand Bi-Polar

 

Hello Marje’s fans! My name is Cat, and I am a 20 year old diagnosed with Bipolar 1 disorder. Writing is one of my main coping mechanisms for accepting my diagnosis, so I am thrilled to share a part of me with you today.

Bipolar sounds like a terrifying, debilitating, life-changing disorder…and it definitely is. At times. When I was locked in my 2nd hospital, after getting out of my 1st one only 41 days earlier, I thought I had gone absolutely insane. And in a way, I had. I was misdiagnosed with depression and misprescribed an antidepressant that ended up making matters worse. Hospital-worthy worse.

But my 5th psychiatrist listened to me and changed my meds, and my 12th therapist listened to me and believed what I said, and I stabilized in six months. And here I am!

I write when I’m depressed. I write when I’m manic. Okay…I mostly write when I’m manic. And I write when I’m stable. When I sit down and open my laptop, I have no idea what to expect from my brain. I have no idea which me will come out. But today I have a theme in mind, thanks to Marje’s suggestion, and that theme is using quotes to explain what bipolar is and what it means to me. I hope you enjoy!

 

Four Quotes to Help You (and Me) Understand Bipolar Disorder:

 

“I have traveled through madness to find me.” –Danny Alexander

 

I started experiencing my first symptoms of bipolar disorder when I was 14 years old. Before long, I self-diagnosed myself as depressed. When I wasn’t depressed, I thought I was back to normal.

I didn’t know that when I felt normal, I was actually feeling manic.

It started with hypomania, which is a less intense form of mania. A patient who only experiences hypomania is by definition a patient who is never hospitalized for mania. Patients without full-blown manic episodes are diagnosed with Bipolar 2.

My hypomania didn’t detract from my life. Sometimes I was impulsive, but that was written off as a teenage rebellious phase. Sometimes I talked really fast and bounced off the walls with energy, but I was just labeled an extrovert, maybe with a little bit of ADHD thrown in. My experience mimics many other patients who do not get diagnosed properly, if they get diagnosed at all. Hypomania often looks like normal.

I don’t know if it was growing up or going off to boarding school or college or what else, but the full-on mania came. I was hospitalized. Twice. This was partly due to my misdiagnosis of unipolar depression and subsequent treatment with antidepressants. Antidepressants like Prozac close the mechanisms in the brain that essentially “suck up” serotonin, leaving more happy neurotransmitters for the depressed person. But more serotonin in a person with bipolar can induce a manic episode. And it did.

So when I was correctly diagnosed, I felt a wave of relief wash over me, softly pulling me into the comfort of the sand bar and telling me that the storm was over. My psychiatrist, the first person other than myself, did not only acknowledge my madness, but he accepted it. And he helped me. I figured out who I am; I understood why I felt the things I felt and did the things I did for the first time.

 

It is both a blessing and a curse to feel everything so very deeply.” –David Jones

 

Bipolar is a mood disorder. “Extreme mood swings” its simplest definition. Everyone has mood swings, right? But not everyone has depression. Not everyone has mania. And not everyone has both. Only 1% has both.

Depression is a curse. I cannot get out of bed, but I cannot sleep either. I don’t care if I fail out of school, or if I never see another human again, or if I die of starvation. I see no point in doing anything. I know I am hurting others by my illness, and I feel incredibly guilty. But I cannot fix it. I know the world would be better without me. I consider how I want to kill myself, but realize I don’t have enough energy to go through with it. I continue merely existing.

Hypomania is a blessing. Or feels like it. Feelings of euphoria, self-confidence, and high energy emerge from within me. I love everyone and everything so, so much. I feel like I can and will conquer the world. I am more important than anyone else. I have been put on this Earth to do something extreme. I will be famous. I deserve to be famous. I am intelligent and creative and hardworking and hilarious, and I will persevere until I get to the top.

Mania is a curse. Mania makes me irritable, to the point where no one wants to be around me. Racing thoughts envelope me, they take all of my energy as I fruitlessly attempt to push them away. I cannot concentrate on my studying, or anything else. My anxiety rises to full blown panic attacks, and I feel my heart will beat out of my chest, my body will shake until I have nothing left, my breath will soon fade away. I am determined to kill myself, to go through with the plans I made when I was depressed. I lose touch with reality. I am not lucid. I am hospitalized.

 

“I knew who I was this morning, but I’ve changed a few times since then.” –Lewis Carroll

 

This is a classic bipolar joke, saying that a patient experiences mood swings throughout the day everyday. Typically a person with bipolar disorder only experiences one to two mood cycles a year. Someone with rapid cycling bipolar experiences at least four mood cycles a year. But some patients do experience mood cycling throughout the course of a single day. I experienced daily rapid cycling that was induced by my antidepressant, and it was absolute hell. Up and down and up and down and mania and depression and mania and depression. A never-ending rollercoaster.

 

“I doubt sometimes whether a quiet and unagitated life would have suited me—yet I sometimes long for it.” –Byron

 

Some people crave the stability and fear the mood swings. A stable phase will inevitably give way to a manic or depressive phase, and one waits in terrified anticipation for the ball to drop, the stability to break, the walls to close in on each other.

Other people crave the mania, refusing medications, therapy, and other treatment options in favor of the literal “high life.”

Bipolar disorder cannot be cured. It is a lifelong condition, with onset on average between 15-25 years of age. Medications only attempt to manage the symptoms, hopefully making each episode less severe, if your psychiatrist perfects your drug concoction. Therapy helps patients to learn how to cope with extreme emotions, manage stress, keep up a daily routine, and in general reduce the negative effects the illness has on their lives. But someone with bipolar disorder will never reach a “quiet and unagitated life.” My life is full of changes, of fluctuating brain chemicals and emotions and reactions and anxiety and elation and fear and contentment. My racing thoughts will remain loud; they continue screaming and shouting until they are heard. I will make stupid, risky, impulsive mistakes. I will feel magnificent one day and miserable the next. These symptoms will never stop.

Whether I crave normalcy or insanity (and it does depend on the day), I do not get to choose. And that was my first revelation post-diagnosis. I am bipolar, and bipolar is me. It is not all of me, but it is part of me. And that is that.

Thank you for reading,

Cat

Cat’s social media: 

Blog    Instagram     Tumblr

Facebook    Twitter     Stumbleupon

 

Cat’s bio:

Cat Davis is a 20 year old student at the University of Virginia, and she writes a blog about her bipolar 1 disorder at highrisk1.wordpress.com. She is an Ambassador and writer for worthliving.co, a mental health awareness website based in Nova Scotia, and her articles can also be found at botid.orgalltop.comselfgrowth.com, and iam1in4.com

 

It has been such a pleasure to welcome Cat Davis to my blog to talk about mental health issues, the importance of which I cannot stress enough. Thank you to Cat for sharing her personal story and joining in my series of guest author/writer/blogger posts about writing inspiration. I discovered Cat recently via Sue Vincent’s excellent blog:  Sue Vincent – Guest Writer Cat Davis – Against Stigma

I’d love to hear your inspiring stories. Recently, I featured my daughter Natasha Mallon’s guest post about her friend’s psychedelic folk music band: Guest Post – Natasha Mallon – Music Spotlight Wax Machine

So if you love to write,  or create beautiful photographic images, art or music I’d love to hear from you. I’d also welcome stories about your art, photography and/or writing helping you to cope as a form of therapy.

If you’d like to be featured on my next guest post, please do get in touch via my email: marjma2014@gmail.com, or find out more here:

Author/Blogger Spotlights: Inspiration to write

Much love, and don’t forget to comment before you go.

Bye for now, be kind, share the love.

 

My social media links:

Facebook: Authors/Bloggers Rainbow Support Club

Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon
Twitter: @curseof_time

Instagram

Facebook

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Fellow Administrators of our Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club #ABRSC on Facebook, myself, my good friends Colleen Chesebro and Debby Gies. Click on Colleen’s and Debby’s photos to be directed to their awesome blogs. These ladies rock!

Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge – my #Tanka – Calm & Wild

I’ve been scarce on social media of late as it was my daughter Natasha’s graduation this week and we had several days in Brighton enjoying the seaside and celebrating her success.

 

It’s been a time tinged with a touch of sadness and oodles of happiness too. Sadness that she is leaving Brighton and her much-loved university – Sussex – but happiness and promise to come. I can’t believe that it has been three years. It seems like yesterday that we dropped her off at her student accommodation. Her time at Sussex University has had its up and its downs – her first year was tough, especially as she fractured her ankle early on (just before Valentine’s day!) and she lived in a third floor flat on campus, (not a good idea on crutches) at what seemed like the furthest point from her seminar and lecture theatres. More about that here: An Unusual Valentine’s Adventure!

But, she didn’t come home; she carried on, braved it out and showed great character. I admire her resilience greatly, and couldn’t be a prouder mum!

I’m so glad she studied in Brighton, as this has meant several wonderful visits there! I have a great affinity to the sea, I’m always happiest when I can walk on a beach – even the squawking sea gulls don’t faze me!

So my Tanka this week is with that in mind, and the promising future that awaits my daughter and graduates this year. Seize those opportunities guys before the seagulls snatch ’em up!

I was particularly struck by an inspiring speech that Sussex University’s chancellor, the well-known comedian Sanjeev Baskar gave. He said that he took ten long, difficult years of struggle before he became successful. More about that here:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/tvandradio/11814805/Sanjeev-Bhaskar-They-called-me-Paki-at-school-but-Goodness-Gracious-Me-was-cathartic.html

So don’t be disheartened if you are back home living with your parents, have a pile of debt or are not successful straight away.  To begin with Sanjeev Baskar @TVSanjeev wasn’t even accepted as a student at Sussex University, but look at him now. Such inspiring food for thought.

 

Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge – #Haiku #Tanka #Haibun: CALM & WILD

Do comment, has your son or daughter graduated recently? Do you love the sea too?

Bye for now… much love,

My social media links:

Facebook: Authors/Bloggers Rainbow Support Club

Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon
Twitter: @curseof_time

Instagram

Facebook

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Fellow Administrators of our Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club #ABRSC on Facebook, myself, my good friends Colleen Chesebro and Debby Gies. Click on Colleen’s and Debby’s photos to be directed to their awesome blogs. These ladies rock!

GUEST POST: NATASHA MALLON – MUSIC SPOTLIGHT – WAX MACHINE

 

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Brighton-based, seven-person band, Wax Machine brings a new kind of psychedelic folk music to the fray. With instruments such as the flute and the saxophone, Wax Machine successfully portrays an otherworldly atmosphere to their music, while the use of bass, drums, keys and the guitar ground their style, making their sound likeable to a wider target audience. On the 23rd June 2017, I was fortunate enough to be able to watch one of their live performances at The Hope and Ruin in Brighton, a vegetarian/vegan pub which hosts live events. The first of three acts to play that night (the other bands being Psychic Lemon and headliner Kikagaku Moyo), Wax Machine set the bar high with their dream-like vocals and intriguing lyrics. Many of the songs performed were brand-new originals which were well-loved by their audience. Wax Machine’s look also complimented their sound, further enhancing that psychedelic element to their music.

As expected, I highly recommend checking their music out, or coming along to one of their shows (especially if you are ever in Brighton.)

Their next show takes place at Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar on the 15th July at 19:00PM.

You can also check out their music on Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/waxmachine

Band members: Isobel, Flute, vocals. Gigi, vocals. Freddie, sax, keys and vocals. Harry, keys. Willow, bass. Rose, drums. Lauro, guitar.

Images of the band courtesy of: © Abel Oberon.

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Guest post by Natasha Mallon.
Previous music posts by Natasha: https://mjmallon.com/2016/08/12/sayonara-hitori-by-taemin/

and: https://mjmallon.com/2016/05/05/bts-firek-pop/

 

 

COLLEEN’S WEEKLY #POETRY CHALLENGE 41 – #HAIKU #TANKA #HAIBUN: MUSIC & ART

I couldn’t have asked for better prompt words – music and art.

Both feature as a wonderful source of inspiration in my writing. In our family, there’s always music playing – my husband is a keen guitarist and loves to strum away whenever he can. He serenades me at night in our garden…. Our next door neighbours get cranky about this! We are lucky to have a room dedicated to music with many guitars and an electronic piano too.

Creativity, Photography and Art inspire my writing to such a degree that I have decided to collaborate with one or perhaps two artists/friends to showcase the character/s, and crystal cottage that feature in my book The Curse of Time – Book 1 – Bloodstone which I intend to release late this summer. More about that to come…

One of my artist friends Catherine S. Walker had her first open studies event last weekend. My friend Timea and I had a lovely time visiting her and viewing all of her awesome art. I’d love for Catherine to create a stunning art piece of the crystal cottage that features in my book…

Take a look at Catherine’s awesome artist page on Facebook: Artist Page: Catherine S. Walker, scroll down her facebook page to see her Acrylic and Watercolour paintings and line drawings: trees, rocks, flowers and landscapes. And detailed buildings too…

So, my Tanka this week… is especially for Catherine, wishing her much success. We spent the day enjoying her art, sitting in her garden, and blowing bubbles!

My good friend Timea looked so wonderfully elegant in these photos…

 

Bubbles in the sun,Playing a musical dance,Basking in our sweet friendship,Admiring her art, we praise,A special day for Catherine. (1)

 

Bye for now, time for a celebratory cocktail… No bubbles, just a parasol!

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My social media links:

Facebook: Authors/Bloggers Rainbow Support Club

Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon
Twitter: @curseof_time

Instagram

Facebook

Tumblr

Fellow Administrators of our Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club #ABRSC on Facebook, myself, my good friends Colleen Chesebro and Debby Gies. Click on Colleen’s and Debby’s photos to be directed to their awesome blogs. These ladies rock!

https://colleenchesebro.com/2017/07/11/colleens-weekly-poetry-challenge-41-haiku-tanka-haibun-music-art/#comment-43822

COLLEEN’S WEEKLY #POETRY CHALLENGE # 40 – SUGAR & SPICE

Colleen’s prompt words this week are Sugar and Spice –  after her two cute Pomeranians:

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So with Sugar and Spice in mind I’d thought I’d introduce you to …

Zog, a little friend of mine who visited us recently. I thought Sugar and Spice might like to hear about this very cute doggy true life Tanka and Tale:

Zog The Gentleman Dog

 

I’d been in London for the day but knew Zog was coming to stay. What I didn’t approve of was that three rather naughty men, (including my husband,) where going to leave him alone in our house while they went off to the pub. Talk about men behaving badly! Humph…

Guess what? My daughter popped home and in his bid for freedom poor Zog rushed out the door and refused to come back in the house. Can you blame him? He must have thought his owner had abandoned him and he was now being re-housed with a strange new family! My daughter Georgina panicked, believing that Zog would do a runner. So she called me on my mobile, expecting me to miracle a solution in typical wonder mum fashion! I know this blog is often referred to by its original title: Kyrosmagica, (crystal magic) and I still like to think I have some magical skills but this was beyond my white witch capabilities!  I couldn’t jump off the train particularly as I now had a bunch of  fellow travellers who were now pretending not to listen to my frantic instructions to rescue Zog on my mobile phone! I had no chance of physically helping in the quest to save Zog from escaping, so Georgina called her boyfriend, who popped over, reassured Zog and convinced him to come back in. What a hero! By the time I arrived home poor Zog seemed much happier, and we all had fun taking him for a walk at separate intervals to keep him occupied.

When I had the dog-walking pleasure, I realised that:

  1. Dogs go crazy excited when you pick up their leads. And leap up your leg in a spectacular fashion (even if they are pretty small.) Their enthusiasm is kind of  infectious and enchanting. 
  2. He might look small and cute but he pulls at his lead like a maniac when he sees a cat or another dog! I had to show him who’s boss! 
  3. When do they ever pee or poo? This dog refused to do either? Perhaps the trauma of being away from his owner had caused him to be constipated, and unable to pee? Poor Zog, or maybe he was just being polite. Maybe he didn’t want to do so in view of us ladies! 

 ***

Later that same evening the rascals, (three men behaving badly,) came back from the pub. In, proud Zog fashion he turned his nose up at the idea of forgiving them! Moreover, he had nothing to do with his owner.  

By now, Georgina had disappeared – after the stress of nearly losing Zog  she needed some respite – besides teenagers are never in… so I became Zog’s new best friend. He followed me all around the house – I couldn’t even take a pee, or have a shower without him coming!

The next morning I opened the patio door to let him out – he was bursting to explore (or do a pee,) I’m not sure which. Later, I realised Zog had been on a mission. A very special mission. He came back with something in his mouth that he deposited on my kitchen floor. Being used to cat’s offerings – dead mice, decapitated mice, etc… I took a step back, somewhat alarmed, but I had no need to be. Zog’s mission had been to gift me a tiny flower, (a pretty weed,) – but in his eyes it must have been the finest specimen of his appreciation that he could find. Isn’t that so lovely? So Zog is my inspiration for my tanka today.

Here he is. Zog the Gentleman dog.

 

Zog The Gentleman Dog

Isn’t Zog so cute? What a sweet dog. I’m smitten!

Hope that Sugar and Spice enjoyed my special Tanka for them, Colleen.

To join in Colleen’s weekly poetry challenge, please follow the link: https://colleenchesebro.com/2017/07/04/colleens-weekly-poetry-challenge-40-sugar-spice/

Much love,

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85978B3EEB2A2F45468E6707CEAFE70D

My social media links:

Facebook: Authors/Bloggers Rainbow Support Club

Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon
Twitter: @curseof_time

Instagram

Facebook

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Fellow Administrators of our Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club #ABRSC on Facebook, myself, my good friends Colleen Chesebro and Debby Gies. Click on Colleen’s and Debby’s photos to be directed to their awesome blogs. These ladies rock!

 

 

 

Guest writer: Cat Davis – Against stigma

Excellent guest post from author Cat Davis sharing her experiences with bipolar via Sue Vincent’s blog. A must read, for anyone struggling with a diagnosis, or wanting to discover more about this mental health condition.

Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

Hello to all of Sue’s fans! I’m thrilled to write for you. My name is Cat Davis, and I write a blog about my experiences with bipolar 1 disorder. Years before I was diagnosed with bipolar, I discovered my passion for working with people with special needs. Since then I’ve proudly advocated for people with “neural differences.” Now advocate for myself as well! Mental illnesses and disabilities are often stigmatized, so I enjoy teaching other about what exactly it means to live with something different going on in your brain. Before my diagnosis, I certainly assumed that bipolar disorder was only an illness for really crazy people, the people tucked away from society and institutionalized for their entire lives. Mental illness is an interesting topic, but also a confusing one. We just don’t know what causes mental illnesses, or how to cure them.

The article I’ve written for you today…

View original post 1,556 more words

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