2019 – well that came around quickly!

It’s become a ‘thing’ – every year we say that we don’t know where the year has gone and already here we are at the start of another new one – but it’s so true, isn’t it? Seriously, what happened to 2018? It flew by!

I’m not a fan of New Years Resolutions. How often we make a little list of ways we intend to improve or change or extend ourselves, only to give up by the middle of January, and then we spend the rest of the month feeling bad. I’m not going to do that. I mean, I’m very aware that I need to get fitter and lose weight – I think most of us have to do that. I need to be more productive, procrastinate less and be more disciplined. My garden looks like a patch of waste ground. And my kitchen is a mess. I need to clean more, though that’s not exactly an aspiration, more harsh reality. I also need to be a bit less of a hoarder (though it doesn’t count if you’re talking about books – that’s not hoarding, that’s saving books to enhance the future of humankind if all the other libraries and stores in the world burn down) so I need to have a bit of a clear out and declutter. Charities, please put some donation sacks through my door, I guarantee they will be full in no time.

I’ve already made a good start. Got myself a desk calendar to plan my workload efficiently. AND I’ve started filling it in! Got myself two shiny new project notebooks. No, don’t laugh, that counts as ‘planning’, and absolutely not ‘splurging’. I’ve got to that stage of a book series where I keep thinking, ‘What did I say in book 2 about…?’ So I’ve decided to develop a series bible to keep track of stuff like hair colour and living room descriptions etc. See! I’m being a grown-up. Reluctantly.

I actually love the new start feel of January. This is a new year. Anything could happen. It has all the potential to be an unbelievably wonderful year. I hope everyone who reads this will have an amazing 2019. Let’s do this!


Jingle all the way!!!

I’m taking a short break for the Christmas holidays. I’m just about to release my next novel – the fourth in the Dottie Manderson murder mystery series set in the 1930s. That’s the second book I’ve released in what has been by any standards a bloody horrible year. I am SO looking forward to seeing the end of 2018 and looking ahead to 2019. Roll on New Year’s Eve. I don’t usually drink but I’m thinking I might get hammered this year (that’s half a glass of wine!). Either that or spend the evening in bed with a book and a box of chocolates.

The highlights:

My family and friends got me through some of the toughest experiences of my life this year. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

I’ve had some seriously good royalties this year from my books – thank you lovely book-reading public.

I’ve met some wonderful people in Dalmuir, Scotland who dragged themselves away from their TVs and family to listen to me witter on about self-publishing and cosy mysteries.

I’ve enjoyed getting to know people this year who were more like acquaintances before, namely: Emma Baird, author extraordinaire, and amazing cook. Angela Lloyd, pursuing literary excellence and a sterling cheerleader! There have been others but those two outdid themselves in being amazing to me.

I succeeded, goodness knows how, in getting two more books written and published this year.

The lowlights:

My mum died at the end of November after a couple of awful years battling with dementia. I have not known anxiety like this before.

My dad has also got Alzheimers. That still racks up the anxiety points.

The admin and legal aspects involved in sorting out the lives of elderly people who can’t look after themselves and need help.

My cat had to have an (expensive) eye operation. Again. So glad cats only have two eyes and not as many eyes as they have toes.


That’s kind of all I want to say. Thanks again to all the WordPress blog readers, Twitter bods and Pinterest peeps and Facebook bods who have been so encouraging and supportive and have said (sometimes) nice things about my books. Instagram guys–I really mean it this time–I’m going to get to you soon. Maybe find a safe place to hide?

Have a lovely Christmas and a happy and safe and loving New Year. See you in 2019!