Getting A Bit Christmassy..

Advent calendars I’m starting to get in a Christmas mood.

The snow has started on the blog (as if by magic) and in our house we have 3 advent calendars on the go: ‘Peppa Pig’ and ‘Cinderella’ (mine) and a dog’s Advent Calendar, full of tasty treats (Bonnie’s).

You may remember that last Saturday I was going to a ‘writing day’ and I had ‘The Fear’. Well, I survived it and actually ‘the first chapter of my novel’ got some really positive and encouraging feedback. Hurrah and phew! I just need to get on with the rest of it now.

Story In Woman’s Weekly

I had a Christmas story in last week’s Woman’s Weekly (this is something I wouldn’t tell them on the ‘Writing Day’ by the way, as I’d imagine them being a bit ‘sniffy’ about writing for women’s magazines. You know what I mean).

Anyway, sorry that you can’t read the story – it’s been and gone – but, to summarise, it’s about a woman whose son is trying to convince her to have a dishwasher, so that, when she has the whole family over for dinner on Christmas day, it will make things a little easier.

The heroine of the story refuses because a) she has other plans for that little gap in her kitchen and b) she likes the shared confidences and chit-chat that goes on over washing up and drying – and there’s a flashback to the Christmas dinner the previous year when she learned lots about various members of her family, as they did the washing-up together.

So what is all this leading up to, you are wondering? Well, I got the idea for that story from a letter in Woman’s Weekly. A woman had written in, saying she’d never have a dishwasher because.. well, you get the drift. And because WW had published the letter, I knew it was a sentiment that they felt their readers would share. And therefore, a story along the same lines, would probably go down well.

So, those of you submitting to Woman’s Weekly, when you buy the magazine every week – as I’m sure you do, if you want to read the stories they publish – don’t forget to look at the readers’ letters page. You might well get an idea or two for a story!

A Hair-Raising Experience

You may remember that a while ago I admitted to being (temporarily, as it turned out) addicted to ‘Amazon Local’ and I’d booked myself a haircut at a posh salon for the bargain price of £15.

The voucher expired on 3rd Dec (today!) and luckily I got an appointment today (otherwise it wouldn’t have been such a bargain after all!).

The (young) girl who cut my hair did it very well and ahem, convinced me to buy some anti-frizz/blow dry ‘product’ for £14 BUT she blew it when she asked me, ”Do you have any grandchildren to buy Christmas presents for?”


That is not the thing to say to someone who a) has recently celebrated a significant birthday and b) is sitting in the bright glare of those lights in hairdressers, that make everyone looked washed out and about 105.. and, well!! I was speechless for about 5 seconds (which is quite a long time for me).

Do I really look like a GRANDMOTHER?!! (don’t answer that!)

This entry was posted in Bonnie, Magazines, Short Stories, Successes and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to Getting A Bit Christmassy..

  1. Jackie Sayle says:

    My lips are sealed (except for the odd giggle escaping from them). xx

  2. Debbie W says:

    Hee, hee. Just dismiss it with a roll of the eyes, a tut and a Victor Meldew grunt ‘youth of today’.

    Thanks for the idea about Woman’s Weekly and well done for getting your story in there.

  3. thomasjford says:

    My son has this very same Peppa Pig advent calender! Snowman yesterday, right?!!

  4. Julia says:

    Wished I’d seen the story, sounds great. Thanks for the tip about readers’ letters.

  5. Downith says:

    Not much you could say when she was armed with scissors, but clearly she was delusional.

  6. The thing is, Helen, that she’s probably used to sixteen year old mothers and thirty-two year old grandmothers.

  7. Wendy says:

    Helen, you have offended me! ! By the time I celebrated my ‘big’ birthday two years ago, I already had three grandchildren (now aged 3, 5 and 9). Us grandmothers are not all grey with zimmers!

  8. Wendy says:

    Creeping works for me, Helen!

  9. kathmcgurl says:

    Helen, be proud of your WW sale! One thing I can’t stand is literary snobs. This is a very good article on the subject.

  10. I read your story Helen. It flowed well, and rang quite true. I also wouldn’t want a dishwasher. My hubby finds washing up therapeutic, and escapes to the kitchen for a ciggie, and a beer after washing up; and funnily enough, when each of our grown up children wants a private chat with ‘dad’ they go and spend some time with him, so lovely story and well done gran…. How rude. In my recent phone job, which I got made redundant from, one of the young thing’s said ‘oh, it’s lovely to have a nanna of the group. I laughed of course, but rushed out for a bottle of hair colour next day.

  11. Linda says:

    Anyone who’s sniffy about writing for women’s magazines has never tried it and discovered how difficult it is. Easy to read doesn’t mean easy to write!
    Congrats on your WW story.

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