Hopeful

It’s the last day of 2016 and it has been one of highs and lows. I have been so happy that I felt like I could float and at the same time I have been so down and fearful that the world has almost crushed me. It has been a year of extremes.

I guess you can’t truly understand the highs without the lows but I have found that my life is more than a way to get older. It is shaping me into who I am. Sometimes brutally so. But with ever knock back I get up and with every happiness I laugh louder. Because you really do appreciate the good when you have the bad.

Tonight I won’t be going out and getting drunk. I won’t be standing in a pub at midnight waiting for a stranger to kiss me. Instead I will be with my family. We will laugh in the next year and have a drink. maybe play a silly game, maybe not. Maybe we will talk about the future but maybe we will just watch a movie. All I know is that I will be in an environment of love.

And that is enough for anyone.

I am hopeful about next year. Not for it being easier or better than this one, but because I am not the same person who sat at her computer and wrote about 2015. This woman is stronger, faster to laugh and more than willing to love. Yes, my year is packed with work… Yes, i have booked myself into literary festivals that are going to be hugely scary, but it will all be fine.

When I fall I will get up and when I succeed I will accept it. Hopefully…

birds

Inspired by the daily prompt – Hopeful

 

Mope

I try not to. I hate to mope. But I am a perfectionist. And the result is that I can do a drawing and then mope about it for ages because I think it isn’t good enough. It happens with the writing as well. I have over 50 unfinished blogs because I thought they weren’t good enough.

But the thing I have found is that it is all in my imagination. The drawings and the writings are good but at the time I was so fixated on attaining what I thought was perfection that I missed the point. You don’t need perfection. You just need it to be the best you can do.

At the beginning of last year I partially illustrated a picture book but I decided that it wasn’t good enough. I have had a look at the drawings. They are beautiful. Okay, they need a bit of work, but they are exactly what I wanted them to be.

So, why couldn’t I see it?

I don’t know but I have decided that I am not going to throw anything away, just in case I get it out later and find that it is better than I thought possible.

My new year’s resolution?

No moping…

Inspired by the daily prompt – mope

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bounty

It has just turned into Christmas Day here, and at last I am relaxed. The mincemeat slices are made and the Christmas presents are wrapped and finished. I have just had a glass of Baileys and have ushered in the day with a grin. Really this last month has been hell but I am finding that I can still smile.

What is this Christmas about though?

For me it has always been about the giving. The making of gifts. I sit and pour over patterns and ideas trying to match the present to the person. Trying to find the thing that will make them smile. And my Christmas starts early. I will start making around September time, earlier if there are jumpers involved. This year was an early start.

I just hope everyone likes their gifts. I’ll find out in the morning…

For me though the bounty isn’t the gifts I get back but the smiles, and the scowls. The laughter and the sharing of a meal. My family being around me and the bad game we always play after we have all eaten too much. That is the Christmas I enjoy.

Merry Christmas to all my readers and I hope you have a wonderful couple of days…

Inspired by the daily prompt – Bounty

 

Conundrum

Two sides to a story, two people stood opposite each other yelling their truth. Which do you believe?

In the eyes of the law you are innocent until proven guilty, but what does that actually mean? What if the person in question is guilty but is found innocent? Does the victim immediately stop being a victim?

Does the perpetrator become the victim?

How can you tell who is right?

It is a conundrum…

I have made a decision and for some it will be the wrong one, but I can see the problem developing into a sort of dance that will have no conclusion. Instead we would move around each other in endlessly. So, I decided to let the situation slide.

A little like water running through my fingers. I held up my hands and showed others but ultimately I have wiped them dry so I can move on, make a cup of tea and smile again.

The dance is over because I have walked away from the hall. Yes, it was a tough decision to make but this way I get to walk away. I get to remember how to smile. I can look at the sunrise and the sunset with eyes that are not afraid. I survived and the conundrum can go jump off a cliff.

I have no desire to continue the dance. I can hear another type of music and this one is warming my soul, not trying to cage it.

Inspired from the daily prompt – Conundrum

Flee

Have you ever had something happen to you that makes you so scared that you ignore the situation? I mean, so bad that it just can’t be analysed. You can’t think about it. Even though you are still in the situation it is as if your whole being shuts down.

Perhaps if you look in the mirror you might see the lines around your eyes. Not the laughter ones you expect but small fissures that show stress and make you look hunted. They can appear slowly but once there they can take an awful long time to go. You start to look tired and your smile becomes somehow strained. Not that you are forcing it but that you are digging deep in order to find something to smile about.

That has happened to me.

You get a look in your eye and those that know you will stop and ask the question…

“Are you alright?”

And normally you answer with a…

“I’m fine.”

…when really you want to say that you need to run, you need to get away. That the situation you are in has got you so scared that there is only one thing to do – flee.

But do you let people know?

If you are physically hurt does it show? If it doesn’t then what do you do. Tell them of a hidden hurt. What if the people in front of you don’t understand or blame you…

Because if you are ready to flee that is the one thing you believe. That you are in some way at fault. Even if you aren’t. It is so much easier to blame yourself than the one who you were with. And they, of course, will lay blame on anything and anyone but themselves. You are in the firing line, as are friends and family.

When that happens you have to flee otherwise you will lose yourself.

Eventually when you are free you will look around and sigh. You will be thankful that you escaped and are safe. You will see your friends and family and realise you are loved. But that first step has to be done by yourself. It is the hardest step. It is further than the moon and as close as your hand. But from that moment you flee is the moment that you take back your life and yell at the sky you are stronger than you ever thought imaginable.

Inspired by the daily prompt – flee

Mystical

I write about dragons and magic… And yet the most mystical thing that happened this weekend was at a book fair.

As usual the weather was filthy yesterday. I mean really tipping it down. I always seem to do a book fair in a rain storm.

So the day was almost over and I have to admit that I was feeling a little tired. I must have been there for over four hours. I like book fairs, I get to meet people and other authors. For an author it is like a huge social gathering. We get to chat about projects that are on-going and others that are in the pipeline. But by the time we had hit the last hour I was starting to flag.

Then a guy stops in front of the stall. He picks up the last copy of ‘Here Be Dragons’.

“My boy read this, and he loved it. He sent me for the next one.”

For a minute I was stunned.

“I’m sorry,” I said. “I haven’t finished it…”

In truth the second book is planned out but in a queue to be written.

“Oh…” He looked so sad and then he spied another book, ‘Fey’. “Would he like this?”

Now, I don’t know… It is about fairytales, but saying that it is written in my style. “He should,” I said.

He smiled and brought the book. It was then that I realised something magical had happened. I have a fan. Out there in South Wales is a child waiting for the next book for my dragon series and for my fey series…

And I am an author. Just like that.

I was also told on a few separate occasions just how good the stories were. It surprised me, scared me and made me want to dance all at the same time. Now I have to admit I have a little anxiety about the next books… Will they be as good? But if I push that aside all I feel is happiness.

So something mystical happened this weekend… I got a fan.

Inspired by the daily prompt – mystical

Abide

There are rules in life. They litter our space like a ton of confetti.

Be nice

Don’t hurt anyone,

Love others

Smile

Always be polite

Rules… A lot of them and we have to abide by them all.

What if one rule is broken then? What if you get hurt in the process? Does that mean you forget all the others?

I have a rule that I always answer a message… That I’m always polite. But at some point my simple:

hi and fine thanks

becomes an open invitation to abuse. Why?

I understand the want of trolls but surely trolling a writer is a spectacularly bad thing. I mean, we can write anything into a book, including characters based on real life people. It does break an awful lot of rules though…

To write a character out of vindictiveness would be a bad thing, and I hate not abiding by the rules, even those imposed by myself. But the temptation is so great…

Perhaps I will, but then again, perhaps I will be good and let the trolls and bullies lie in their respective ditches, where I have put them. Somewhere I know they are there but at the same time I can ignore them. They will have to be dealt with at some point but right at the moment I will follow the rules and be polite.

For the time being…

Inspired by the daily prompt – abide