Writing 101: Day 6 – The Space to Write

This is not me, or my bath tub

Writing 101 – Day 6 (Monday 14th September 2015) – The space to write

I have terrible writing habits. There’s no cute corner desk with Cath Kidston stationery and a pretty flamingo shaped lamp to cast me in the best possible light, I’m afraid. I write on my lap with my laptop while I’m watching TV, and I usually have a cup of tea resting on the arm of the sofa, which 9 times out of 10, gets spilt. In more dramatic times it has toppled over completely, soaking me and the upholstery.

I should probably try and forge myself a little spot by the window, but then where would the rescued arm-chair from the street go? What would we throw all our clean washing upon?

I’m no domestic queen, you may have noted. Nor do I have a writing process per se, or even a routine. I write when I want and when I can, or when the mood takes me and I simply have to. Sometimes I write in my lunch hour at work, sometimes I start typing an outline when I should be doing something more pressing. Generally I’m too busy at work, but one can always find a window.

The only think I do regularly is the Sunday/Monday film review with Jillian, or an assignment (see: today’s).

In an ideal world I would have a quiet writing nook, but quiet only in the sense that there’d be nobody asking for my attention. I can’t bear being pulled out of the zone when I get going. Background noise is fine, preferably Netflix or some music.

Honestly though, I’m pretty sure, just like sleeping, I could write anywhere.

Writing 101: Day 5 – Let Social Media Inspire You

By Kate Ducker and Rachellou_h

Writing 101 – Day 5 (Friday 11th September 2015) – Let social media inspire you 

I’m not doing today’s assignment because frankly, I haven’t the time nor the inclination. It’s a bad attitude to have perhaps, but *shrug*.

I’ve chosen instead to post a picture of some local graffiti that I love, that I have shared on social media. There is a tenuous link there somewhere and I’m sticking to it.

How bloody good is this piece (above)? Not only it is bold and beautiful, it’s also incorporated the lyrics of one of the greatest songs of the eighties. More than that it just has a lot of heart.

I mean, is the woman biting her fingers out of pure frustration? I’ve certainly been there in the throes of rejection and heartache before. When you just want to hurt yourself to stop the real pain in your heart. To momentarily distract yourself from the biggest, more painful picture.

Maybe I’m reading too much into it, after all only the artist’s can possibly know what they’re saying. But that’s the beauty of art, innit? It can be whatever you want it to be and give you whatever you need at the time.

So today I’m not inspired by a quote on Twitter, I am inspired by a real life image from round my way. I think that’s better somehow.

Writing 101: Day 4 – A Story in a Single Image


Writing 101 – Day 4 (Thursday 10th September 2015) – A story in a single image

Don’t tell me what to do, WordPress!

Kidding. Obviously WordPress has been given free reign to boss me around as it sees fit for the next four weeks. However, I didn’t like any of the pictures showcased in the assignment so I chose my own. What of it?

I like this picture above because it makes me smile. Look at my silly husband with his eyelashes, so long that they brush against the lenses of his glasses. Look at him grinning like a loon. Look at me caught unawares by the flash, trying to comb the dreadlocks out of my bird’s nest.

We had a series of old school pictures taken in an Automatic booth in the open market last week and to say I was unimpressed with how old and chubby cheeked I looked in the finished articles is an understatement. It was not a good discovery for me, to learn that vintage B&W makes me look twenty years older than I am (I was envisaging a more Liz Taylor aesthetic, if I’m honest) but it was also a shock that I cared so much.

I try not to be vain, especially when I’m goofing around with my loved one. I mean, who cares if you look like shit when you’ve laughing your tits off? It couldn’t matter less in the grand scheme of things. I’m not militant about being tagged in Facebook pictures, and if I take 88 shit selfies before I land on the perfect one, I tend to blame my surroundings. Obvs.

But this made me want to cry. “I’m an ancient moon face!” I wanted to shout into the face of anyone who walked past me. I didn’t but that was the general mood. For about a second.

Glynn told me to pull myself together and we got on with our day. I destroyed the evidence of course, but on second viewing I rescued this one. It’s great because he’s laughing at me being a twat in front of the camera. I’m combing out my hair because I do care how I look sometimes and my tattoo looks freaking great.

What else really matters, eh?

Writing 101: Day 3 – One Word Inspiration

Writing 101 – Day 3 (Wednesday 9th September 2015) – One word inspiration

Today I am so loosely basing my post on this Writing 101 assignment that you could almost say I haven’t really done it at all. But I’m hoping it will all come together in the end.

Anyway, as so often is my defense, this is my blog and I’ll go off on a tangent and spout shit if I want to.

The word I picked is “Love”.

But rather than waffle on about my adorable husband and how perfect married life is, how photogenic the two of us are and how we never fight, I never fall over his shoes, he never gets annoyed with me forgetting the important details of almost everything he’s ever told me: I thought I’d focus on Love of Self, because I think it’s one of the most important fucking things in life tbh. So when I say “Love” in the context of this post, I mean me.

I ❤ Me.

New sneaks

Now I’ve got these babies (above) and the temperature has dropped (praise Jesus), I’m thinking of trying to run again. How’s that for self-love?

I recently heard about The Fat Girl’s Guide to Running and I thought it sounded pretty good. I’ve also downloaded the NHS Couch to 5K app to my phone to see if I can’t get to grips with slowly pushing myself a little further. I’m definitely in the market to exercise more, whatever my core activity ends up being, beyond hooping in the yard.

Alas, I’ve been in masses of pain for a fortnight with a bad arm. Self diagnosis has ruled it an RSI but I’m going to have that confirmed/denied by the doctor tomorrow before I make my moves too energetic (and award myself a doctorate). I’ll be somewhat annoyed if I come out of there without at least a small bandage.

So watch this space. My new regime is purely about core strength and over all self-care. If I start talking about weight, you have my permission to slap me. I’m so sick of weight and calorie talk, food being assigned moral values and fat shaming (or body shaming of any kind).

My body is bloody glorious now, it just needs to be taken outside and exercised, like a horse. Or a panther.

So today I am feeling all the love for myself.

I hope you do too, because take it from me, you’re freaking beautiful ❤

Writing 101: Days 1 & 2 – I Write Because… and Write a List

I decided to sign up for Writing 101 because Jillian mentioned she would be doing it and I’m a dreadful copy cat.tumblr_mqlndk0Tlp1r2an97o1_1280

I must admit that I thought I’d already done this series of prompts before and not handled it very well time wise, but looking back and into my own archive, it looks as though that was Writing 201 (Poetry addition). So this is all new and exciting. No wonder I was crap at 201 (poetry!) when I hadn’t got to grips with the first part – running before I’ve learnt to properly walk, obviously.

I’m already a day behind because of this weekend’s film assignment, so I’m combining Day 1 and 2 to catch up. I hope that’s cool with everyone?

Let us begin.

Writing 101 – Day 1 (Monday 7th September 2015) – I write because…

I write because I love to. I like to mould an image out of words if I can, share my day, make someone I love smile. I write because it’s all I’ve ever wanted to do with my time, that and read books.

So easily I could become a hermit, shut out the world and build my own cave out of blankets and books. Something stops me but one day maybe that will be me.

I write because my mum likes to read what I’ve written. I write because I want to get better, more skilled. I write with a view to digging deeper, scratching the surface before I dive below. I write because I want to see what lurks beneath.

I write because I need to, whether it’s good or not. It’s therapy. It’s my mark on the world, however small. I write because sometimes I just need to get things out.

Writing 101 – Day 2 (Tuesday 8th September 2015) – Write a list

The assignment suggested to try a list such as Things I Like but I want to tackle Things I’ve Learnt instead. There must be something at the grand old age of 37, innit?

Things I’ve Learnt

  • Don’t waste your time on people who can’t make eye contact
  • Similarly, don’t trust people who can’t break it while they’re promising you the world (they’re lying)
  • Never read The Daily Mail
  • Don’t read internet comments, on anything, particularly anything political, religious or about women and their bodies. You’ll never speak to another human being again, outside your immediate circle
  • It’s okay to be who you are if what you are isn’t what you see in adverts
  • Men will likely still sleep with you (Delightedly! Freely! In abundance!) if you’re a fatty – see also: any perceived flaw you think you have (hook nose/crab hands/thin lips)
  • Cheap boots never last beyond a season, if that
  • Credit cards are the devil and do not equate to free money (sadly)
  • Not having kids is as acceptable as having 20 of the little fuckers, to each their own (and no, it doesn’t mean you’re a cold fish)
  • You’ll never win the lottery if you don’t buy a ticket…
  • …and nothing worth having ever came easy (just like Mama says)
  • Following your heart might not always work out but 60% of the time, it works every time
  • Oh, and all men are not bastards but a lot of them are serious shit heads.


I’ve been inspired by Hayley Margaret of A Stitch to Scratch to take on Photography 101, starting today. Poetry 201 was fun to begin with but I couldn’t keep up and felt a bit silly in the end. I think my future career as a beatnik poet is now firmly on hold. Sorry, world.

Photography 101 looks like lots of fun though and having seen Hayley M mention it on her blog last night, I hopped firmly on the bandwagon too. I’m very original like that.

Today’s theme is Home (and Getting Orientated). This is about taking the concept of what ‘home’ means and running with it, in whichever direction I see fit. The Orientation is more about getting to grips with my equipment (not a euphemism).

Since I am going to simply point and click my trusty Samsung Galaxy S4 whenever the mood takes me, I’m already pretty comfortable. However, there are a few features I’m sure I haven’t explored yet, and this might well be the opportunity I’ve been waiting for!

To the theme!



I’ve taken the word home and gone quite literal for my first assignment. This is my front door. I’ve always liked it despite it’s slight shabbiness and ugly wiring up the side of the building.

This morning’s light was gorgeous and although there is a subtle filter on this image, I still think it captures the small stab of joy I felt when I got to the bottom of the stairs and looked back up towards that baby blue door.

Home to me is wherever I am with my love. That sounds incredibly cliché but it’s honest. We have a good deal on a nice place now, having had varying degrees of luck with our previous living situations, both together and apart. But I could live anywhere with him, if I had to.

When I think about joy and love and living together, I think of the lyrics in Cell Block Tango from Chicago (stay with me):

So, we started living together.
He’d go to work, he’d come home, I’d
mix him a drink, We’d have dinner.
It was like heaven in two and a half rooms.

Sure, the relationship takes a turn for the worse when she finds out she’s just one of his wives and poisons him with Arsenic but until then, I know exactly how she feels.

Our home is heaven to me, even when the washing up is piled high, there’s nowhere to hang my knickers and I’ve tripped over his shoes for the seventh time that afternoon. But it’s wherever he is.

Photography 101

Still I Rise

This weekend, share with us a poem that you love (by someone who isn’t you,Maya_Angelou please). Via Writing 201: Poetry Potluck (21st February 2015)

This may not be the most surprising choice from me but this is without question my favourite poem.

It works on every level and is essentially perfect.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don’t you take it awful hard
‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own back yard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I’ve got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history’s shame
I rise
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I rise
I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.

~ Maya Angelou

Imagine if you could encapsulate the sentiment behind this and give it to every woman in the world?

Miss you, girl.

image via Google.