Editing aloud

Thinking it was about time I wrote something about the writing process I asked myself what is it that helps a writer to do their own first edit?

We all try to spot spelling, punctuation and continuity errors before we send our work off but I don’t think everyone reads their written work out loud. I suppose it is easy with poetry but perhaps some folk think reading prose is boring and makes them doubt the worth of what they have written.

When we read in a familiar writing group we often find mistakes and correct them as we go along. Also, we get feed back as to whether the dialogue actually fits the character or the period, but if you do not belong to a group, what do you do? You could record yourself reading or just shut yourself away and try¬† not to feel stupid! You don’t have to be an actor – if no-one else is listening just think of it as an alternative editing method. I believe you’ll find it useful.

Of course, nothing is as helpful as another pair of eyes!bookwormclipart


Elderberries poem.

Oh, chubby wood pigeon, you fill me with glee as I watch you, alone, on the big elder tree.

Its berries are ripe and its branches hang down, yet they bend when you balance, you are such a clown!

Your weight is too heavy for each fruiting branch, your wings stretch out wide like an exotic dance,

But you wobble and rock as the twigs they give way and then spring back again as you find you can’t stay.

You land on the lawn with the berries above and pretend you don’t care that the fruit that you love

Is dangling beyond you, so juicy and black. How you wish that to reach them you just had the knack!

So you peck at the seed that is spread on the ground, that’s left when that pesky grey squirrel has found

The bird feeder, and hung upside down with his tail in the air, an expert on balance, with never a care.

But you are my favourite, ‘though some disagree, for your habits and antics are precious to me-

I smile when you splash in the garden bird bath and your sad acrobatics sure give me a laugh!

( I couldn’t get a picture as he flew away)bookwormclipart

Poem by R Arkell

A husband is the sort of man who tries to help you all he can

But, somehow, never quite succeeds in doing what the garden needs.

He likes to lie and smoke his pipe, and wonder if the peas are ripe;

Or else he’ll smell the mignonette before he lights a cigarette.

But ask him if he’ll clear the dump, or carry water from the pump,

And he will find some fine excuse- in fact, he’s not the slightest use.

diesel begs{This does not apply to my husband, thank goodness. He’s just mown the back lawn while I was checking emails!}



I had two ideas this morning, one: to make some flyers to advertise my latest novel as I haven’t had any new bookmarks printed. I can take them to talks and they will be ready for the UK Southern Book Show in October. Two – I would like ” Lane’s End” my first novel to be available in large print as it was written for my late mother who only read large print books. I have seen ways to do it on print on demand but I am hesitant to go down that route. Also, I wanted a new cover but, so far, haven’t found one that is better than the original. At least it’s keeping me busy.

Lane's End cover copy


A lesson for the Teacher cover

Tonight’s talk with the Worthing Friendship Centre is about the 1960s. an era we lived through. Married in 1966, with our first son born in 1968 it made me hunt out some old photographs. Of course they are all prints in albums. not images on a computer screen, or on a smartphone.

I won’t try to reproduce any here but I will try to recreate the fashion. I don’t suppose anyone else will, but I do have a skirt that is fairly short. The only older person who wears such short hemlines is Theresa May and I don’t think they look quite right on her, or a tubby old girl like me, but we’ll give it a go!

I’m really lost with no book on the go so I’ll clear out the airing cupboard instead. I’ve used the cover of my sixties book as an image as I know folk like pictures.