This Writer's Life...

Colour me amazed!

I know it's only The Radio Times and I know there were less than 3,000 votes, but the favourite Christmas movies of all time list has been published and it's left me (almost) lost for words.

Hitting the top spot is It's a Wonderful Life. No surprise there and a great film. Love Actually, another brilliant film, is in third place. Die Hard (Die Hard?) is in eighth place.

What I struggle to believe is that the wonderful

One for Monday

I need to rewrite a chapter in the novella I'm working on. So what am I doing? Watching this. It makes me laugh every time I see it. 


Black Friday

Today is Black Friday and, like most other things, I can see this horrifying idea coming to the UK. Americans are expected to spend eight billion dollars today. Stores have been open all night, long, long queues are everywhere and chaos reigns. It sounds like the stuff of nightmares to me. There are some great photos here.

I hate shopping. I like buying things, but I hate shopping (if you know what I mean). …

Just write

I've just answered an email from an aspiring writer who asked me if there were days when I wasn't in the right frame of mind to write and, if so, how I overcame that.

There are days when I want to do nothing but write. There are also days when I want to do anything but write. And I mean anything. Ironing anyone? I will clean windows, floors, kitchen cupboards…

So what do I do on those awful days when I'd rather have my fingernails removed without anaesthetic than glue my bum to the chair and write? …

The War of the Roses

If I mention the War of the Roses, I expect you immediately think of the civil wars fought for the throne of England between around 1450 and 1485. For those who don't know, the battles were fought between rival supporters of the House of Plantagenet - the houses of Lancaster (red rose) and York (white rose). In the end, Henry Tudor (Lancastrian) defeated Richard III and married Elizabeth of York to unite the two houses. …


Sometimes, people's kindness astounds me. I have a friend, one who'd better remain nameless (I know she reads this blogs and I don't want to embarrass her), whose thoughtfulness and generosity has made me almost speechless.

She was reading a book and said: "I think you'll enjoy this. I'll put it in the post…"

The book in question is Murphy's Revenge by Colin Bateman. I hadn't heard of the book, I hadn't even heard of the author, and I'm ashamed to say that the TV series,

For the Fallen

With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children, 

England mourns for her dead across the sea. 

Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit, 

Fallen in the cause of the free. 

Solemn the drums thrill; Death august and royal 

Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres, 

There is music in the midst of desolation 

And a glory that shines upon our tears. 

They went with songs to the battle, they were young, 

Smelling of roses - not!

Chaos will rule next week when our kitchen gets knocked about big style. I shall end up with more room to move and less room to shove all the junk that accumulates. I'll have to be more organised. (Ha! Some hope.)

Meanwhile, the ground floor of our house has been taken over by several metres of oak worktop that has to be oiled before Monday. Danish oil, anyone? 

Last night, despite plenty of ventilation, the smell was making me feel so nauseous I went to bed really early. …

NaNoWriMo anyone?

Is anyone doing NaNoWriMo this year? 

For anyone who doesn't know, NaNoWriMo is National Novel Writing Month. It's billed as Thirty days and nights of literary abandon. The idea is that you write a novel during the month of November. Scary, eh?

I think it's a brilliant idea. You have a deadline and you even have a forum where like minds inspire, complain and sympathise. 

Having said that, I've never been tempted to try it. …

It's a small world

Yesterday was the meeting of the RNA's northern chapter and I was looking forward to meeting fellow crime writer, Avril Field-Taylor. Avril and I have been cyber buddies for a year or more, but we'd never met in person until yesterday. So we were busy chatting away and Avril guessed that I'm not Lancashire born and raised. I explained how I'm originally from Chipping Campden. Avril said she knew that part of the world because she used to live and work in Worcester. …

Social butterfly

I spend most of my days chained to the desk. I surface for meals (usually) and that's about all. Not that I'm complaining. I consider myself extremely lucky to be able to do the job I love most.

Having said that, it's lovely to get out. On Monday I met up with an old friend for lunch. (When I say 'old friend', I mean a friend I've had for a long time. I don't mean she's old, obviously, because she's only the same age as me. …

© Shirley Wells 2016