Hitting a Brick Wall

Actually, I’m not hitting a brick wall at all but, given the photos below, it seemed like a good enough title! I hope you are well in this strange coming-out-of-lockdown world and enjoying the nice weather. This was the sky here today:

Do you remember a while back we had squirrels in the loft? I realised I hadn’t told you the end of that story. Blasting them day and night with bright lights and Radio One did the trick!

The pest control man confirmed that they’d left (the droppings were old, in case you’re interested…!) and so we filled in the gaps in the roof and hopefully that’s IT.

But he also told us that he’d spotted a beautiful bat in there: a brown long-eared bat, to be precise and he said not to worry, it could find its way out of the tiniest hole, so all was well.

The mess in the garden

The latest ‘disturbance’ is that we’re having a stone wall built between us and one of our neighbours. It’s being built by one man (and his dog) so it’s taking weeks (and gallons of tea).

Do you find it’s easy to forget about social distancing when you’re outside and/or faced with someone new? When our wall builder first arrived, about three weeks ago, my OH went straight up to him and SHOOK HIS HAND! And then – with a gasp – realised what he’d done.

It’s getting there

Right, a couple of writing things for you, that may be of interest:

Weald and Downland Living Museum (which is in Chichester and is re-opening on 6th July!) is running a historical fiction short story competition.

Entry is free (although you can donate the usual £7 entry fee if you so wish). ‘Historical’ in this instance, covers 900AD to 1930AD (So, no Second World War stories!)

Prizes are modest (publication and annual membership of the museum) and there are lots of rules, so read them carefully, if you’re intending to enter. It closes on 4th September 2020.

The Worried Writer
Someone recommended this website to me which claims to help you ‘overcome fear, self-doubt and procrastination, to get the work done.’ I must admit I haven’t had time to dip in and out of it very much yet but there are lots of podcasts and interviews with authors, advice and tips (and no adverts!) and Sarah Painter, who runs it, has a lovely voice! Might be worth a look.

Book Camp Mentorships

The Kate Nash Literary Agency is offering ‘Book Camp Mentorships’ to 6 aspiring un-agented authors (writing adult fiction or narrative non-fiction). Sorry there’s not a lot of time for this one – applications close on 1st July 2020.

What they’re looking for:

The first 15-20,000 words of your work-in-progress, along with a 1-2 page synopsis and introductory letter, in one Word document, by the end of 1st July 2020. In your letter, tell us about yourself, where your book would sit in a bookshop and what you hope to get out of our programme.

What they’re offering:

Over six months, from September 2020 through to the following March, our mentees will receive:

• Representation at the Kate Nash Literary Agency
• Feedback and editorial support to help you bring your manuscript to completion
• A programme of workshops and round tables sharing industry knowledge and writing craft tips
• Regular one-to-one meetings with a literary agent, to discuss progress and help shape your work
• An evaluation of your outline for film and TV potential

Sounds good, doesn’t it? Hmm, I think I might have a go myself…

Bonnie Takes a Break

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8 Responses to Hitting a Brick Wall

  1. jbettany2013 says:

    The wall looks great! It could be a metaphor for life after lockdown… a slow restoration to normality, rebuilding one bit at a time. I’m trying to carefully observe social distancing, but it’s easy to forget, especially with people you know!

  2. juliathorley says:

    Yes, there is something about being outside that feels so much safer than standing in a queue in Sainsbury’s. I think it’s because at the back of my mind I have the thought that fresh air is good for me. I’m not planning to get up close and personal with the world any time soon, though. While not in the slightest bit frightened of dying, I am ridiculously scared of illness.

    • Yes, I agree, Julia. I don’t want to be ill either! Or give it to anyone else. It’s quite frightening how many people seem to be throwing caution to the wind and acting as though the virus is gone, don’t they? I’m staying in/away as much as possible too. #Recluse

  3. pennywrite says:

    Re bats… sounds interesting! I never thought I could love a bat, but then was introduced (at Longleat, nearby) to some Egyptian Fruit bats. They resembled miniature fox cubs and were adorable.
    Must say, Bonnie looks quite the writers’ companion in that picture 🙂

    • Yes, Penny – she likes to think she’s ‘helping’ me but in fact she is a terrible distraction! If she would just lie down nicely next to me (and sleep!) it would be fine but she’s a fidget – and she wants to be stroked all the time!

  4. Kate Hogan says:

    I like the idea of the wall as a metaphor, too – very interesting. I can’t believe how many people are throwing caution to the wind, either. It’s as if everone has gone mad. I’m dreading the weekend, I, and most of those I know, aren’t planning on lifting our own lockdowns for some time – too risky. Good wishes to all. Kate Hogan.

    • Thanks for your comment, Kate. The wall is still not finished – in fact, it’s only about half way there – but perhaps that’s the metaphor continuing… we’re still a long way off rebuilding our world, aren’t we?

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