Wednesday, July 23, 2014


I’ve kept a list of what I’ve been reading since March. I wanted to see what I pick up and spend time on in the world of books.

I'm working my way through The Unwinding, by George Packer and at 430 pages it's not a quick read - but I'm really enjoying it. 

I often have more than one book on the go - big books, like The Unwinding, I read at home in fits and starts. I have a few books on my Kindle, and I take books out of the library; there is always something I'm reading. 

I took a page from Stephen King's 'On Writing' (thanks to Bushman for recommending this SK book) whereby he encourages reading in every spare moment, and learning to read in "sips and swallows".

I downloaded my recent book from Amazon onto my Kindle. I will admit to guzzling… it was such a good read.

Lighting Candles in the Snow, by Karen Jones Gowen

Here’s my review on Amazon:

This was, in my view, a page turner.

I was quickly drawn into wanting to know more about the characters. The writing was smooth, transitions from character to character easy to follow, as was the portions devoted to backstory (on Jeremy via his mother).

I was surprised at how my emotions were triggered throughout this story, on many levels.

I'm giving this a 5 star because it really is a well told story - I do want to add, though, that I did skim a few sections were the story was rehashing earlier parts and for me it wasn't necessary - that said - at no time was I interested in stopping - I really wanted to know what happened to these characters.

Oh - and the recipes (which really work as part of the story) offered at the end of most chapters are great! Easy and really tasty. (A bonus, for sure.)

This download was free - it really is worth paying for.


Bear this in mind:

I’m not a fan of reviews where I am given a synopsis of the story by the reviewer.
I don’t want to know what the stories about. What’s the point of me reading it if you’ve just told me what it’s all about.
I want to know if you liked it - and would recommend it. I’ll do the reading after that.

So, that’s how I review. You want the story - read the book. 


I’ve had the pleasure of following Karen’s blog: Coming Down the Mountain: Expat Writer Living Abroad. for some time now, and had fun co-hosting the 2012 Blogging from A-Z Challenge with her. 

Karen has several books under her belt - they can be seen on her Website or on Amazon.

Many of the talented bloggers I follow have written and published their works. Some have self-published, others have gone the route of finding an agent/publisher. Either way, there is a lot of talent out here which deserves a read.

So, that’s what I’m going to do, I'm going to start reading YOUR work. I will add one, or two, books a month to my regular reading list. I’ll let you know here which I’ve read and how I’ve liked them.


Are you reading works by your fellow bloggers?

If so, what are you reading, and how are you liking it?

What kind of reviews do you like? A synopsis or something else?

Cheers, Jenny

Sunday, July 20, 2014



I love free writing - and flash fiction.

I want to share this passion with you! 

                                           Do you free write? 

                                                              Have you written any flash fiction?

Well - here’s a place you might like to visit.

Share your free writing and flash fiction by leaving your blog info in the comment area over at WRITE BRAIN CHALLENGE.  I’ll add your blog to the Blogroll where others can visit you.

Come check it out.

Are you part of the growing number of writers that are enjoying the spontaneous side of writing? 

Cheers, Jenny

Monday, July 14, 2014

PROUST questionnaire - WONDER no longer - TICK tick

In my quest to join a Writers Group I was asked to fill out the following Proust Questionnaire. 
I did wonder if my answers would determine whether I would make a worthy addition to the group.
In years past, I have read the Proust Questionnaire at the back of Vanity Fair; on occasion I have read it elsewhere. 

I have often wondered what my answers would be - well, I wonder no longer.

For your amusement, here's what makes me TICK.

My assistant - ring in nose, or nose in ring…
either way - Wee Dog is contemplating her own answers.

1. What is your idea of perfect happiness?
. My idea of perfect happiness is reading in bed, Wee Dog snuggled close by, and rain playing on the roof and decks. Bliss!

2. What is your greatest fear?
. I can’t say I have a ‘greatest fear’ - at least not yet.

3. What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
. Procrastination

4. What is the trait you most deplore in others?
. Procrastination

5. Which living person do you most admire?
. I admire three - Me, Myself and I - they have never let me down.

6. What is your greatest extravagance?
.  Living vicariously through the lives that have graced my space.

7. What is your current state of mind?
. Determined

8. What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
.  I didn’t know virtues could be overrated - if anything I think many are underrated. 

9. On what occasion do you lie?
. When asked a question were the truth would hurt.

10.   What do you most dislike about your appearance?
. Nothing - I like what looks back at me in the mirror, always have.

11.   Which living person do you most despise?
. I prefer not to despise people.

12.   What is the quality you most like in a man?
. Humour

13.   What is the quality you most like in a woman?
. Humour

14.   Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
. “Hmmm, really…”

15.   What or who is the greatest love of your life?
. My daughter and Wee Dog - they both get top billing.

16.   When and where were you happiest?
. I am happiest in the NOW.

17.   Which talent would you most like to have?
. The ability to carry a tune. 

18.   If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
. Preferring my own company when I have been privileged to have friends that would like my company. Bless them!

19.   What do you consider your greatest achievement?
. Getting this far in life without doing life.

20.   If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be?
. I’d come back as me - better the devil I know...

21.   Where would you most like to live?
. With grandfather in the Alps.

22.   What is your most treasured possession?
. A childhood doll.

23.   What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
. The state of unhappiness.

24.   What is your favourite occupation?
. The one I’ve done for 31 years - being my own boss.

25.   What is your most marked characteristic?
. My sense of humour tied for first place with my optimistic outlook on life.

26.   What do you most value in your friends?
. Loyalty, compassion, and patience - mostly patience; I can be a trying friend! 

27.   Who are your favourite writers?
. J M Barrie, Jane Austen

28.   Who is your hero of fiction?
. I don’t have a particular hero of fiction.

29.   Which historical figure do you most identify with?
. Cleopatra 

30.   Who are your heroes in real life?
. In real life my mom and dad are my heroes; they taught me to work hard, pay my dues, show gratitude, and to value integrity.

31.   What are your favourite names?
. Moo-tastic and Lucky Lucky Pow Pow

32.   What is it that you most dislike?
. Questions that are vague - and dishonesty.

33.   How would you like to die?
. In a fit of laughter.

34.   What is your motto?
. “She who helps herself is in good hands.”-JW Pearson

My closing question to you - 

Have you ever answered these questions?

If not, do so now and post them! 

I’d like to know what makes you tick!

Cheers, Jenny