Caves And A Bit of Hokey-Cokey

Yuck. What a horrible, cold rainy day it is out there! Hope you don’t have to venture out far, if you’ve got the same weather as me!

We bought ourselves a Hokey Cokey sign today and hung it up on the wall facing you as you go down the stairs. It cheered us up a bit, anyway!

It’s the perfect day for staying cosy indoors and reading about writing (the next best thing to actually writing, in my humble opinion).

If that’s your idea of fun too, then you might be interested in this. With thanks to Womag’s blog for the tip-off – FREE – for this weekend only on Kindle – you can download Della Galton’s ‘Short Story Writer’s Toolshed’ (‘Your Quick Read, Straight-To-The-Point Guide To Writing and Selling Short Fiction’).

It’s a handy little book, based on a series of articles that Della – the undisputed Queen of short stories for women’s magazines – originally wrote for Writers Forum magazine. So, if you missed them in WF – or even if you read them the first time round – it’s worth a look.

“But I haven’t got a Kindle!” I hear you cry. Well, neither have I but if you click on the book on Amazon here and then try to ‘buy’ it, it will magically spot your lack of a Kindle and will kindly take you through the very simple process of uploading Kindle onto your PC – also for free. I’ve managed it, so it can’t be too difficult!

I’ve had a funny week.

I was RELIEVED not to get a part-time job that I’d had an interview for. (That must be a sign that it wasn’t for me, right?!)

I was INCREDULOUS (OK, JEALOUS) that the winner of the Sainsburys’ Munch Bunch children’s short story (she won £1000 of Sainsburys vouchers, just in time for Christmas!) said the story “only took me about an hour to write.” Aaagh – I slaved over mine and it still didn’t even make the shortlist 😦

And I was BEMUSED (for want of a better word) by the letter in the latest issue of Writers Forum, in which ‘Jan Cook’ took me to task for daring to suggest that ‘professional writers’ (her words) should refrain from entering small writing competitions. I won’t bore you with the details here but if you get a chance to have a look, it’s on page 11 …

Oh and I’ve changed the name of my ‘room-where-I-write’. So much for ‘office’ or ‘study’. It seems to have become my ‘cave’ (as in ‘I’m going over to the cave now!’cup of tea in hand). I think I must have been watching too much ‘I’m A Celeb..’ I’m even sharing the space with the odd spider and fly….

This entry was posted in Books, Magazine Madness, Short Stories and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Caves And A Bit of Hokey-Cokey

  1. I really LOVE the sign! And I think Cave is a great name, especially during this season…when all we want to do is hibernate!

  2. Cave is excellent Helen, and you could have a few inspiring crystals in there and it could be your ‘Crystal Cave’ then you’d be like a magic writer conjouring up fantastic stories. Thanks for the Della link. I too went for a job once, and they phoned to say we’re down to 3 and you could be the one. I was dreading it. I had to e.bay stuff for an old man and his wife, and the job inclued walking the great dane’s, feeding them and seeing to the builders who were working on the house. The relief when they phoned to say ‘not you’ was quite funny.

  3. Carneika W says:

    Thanks for passing on on the tip about the free book 🙂

  4. Helen M Smith says:

    Hi Helen, your comment about someone saying professional writers shouldn’t enter writing competitions reminded me of a famous woman writer I went to see talking about her new book. She stated that unpublished writers should not be allowed to teach creative writing. I promptly went off this famous writer and continue to teach a creative writing class that has been successful for nearly five years! So much for taking notice of what people say! Why do they say these things without thinking? (rant over). Best wishes,


  5. KH says:

    Hi Helen – thanks for all the info.I love the Hokey Cokey sign too – great fun. As for the job you didn’t get you probably only applied because you felt a duty to put yourself out there. I’ve put myself up for lots of things that I’d really rather not have and when the rejection came, like you I breathed a big sigh of relief. When it’s right you’ll want it whatever it is rather than just thinking you should. Good wishes KH

  6. Marie Madigan says:

    Thanks for the link to Della’s book, Helen, really useful. And Cave is a great name for the study – I hope it’s a warm and cosy cave rather than dark and chilly with dripping walls!

  7. hagueline says:

    Sometimes, “cave” is the best way to describe your writing area. Especially when you put so much time into it! You barely recognize the outside world, and nobody dares venture in. This is our writing cave!
    Your frustration with the other writer winning after only spending a half hour is understandable. These books we work on take forever! Recognition will never be turned away.

  8. Debbie W says:

    I love the hokey cokey sign.

    What a shame David is out.

    Debbie W

  9. Yes, that was a bit of a surprise, wasn’t it? I think he – and everyone else – thought he was going to win!!

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