Saturday, 27 April 2013

Walt Disney, Mary Pickford, Henry Thoreau and Motivation for Writers.

Last week Laura E James blogged about Disney and Dreams.
At the RNA Conference last year, she was given a fortune cookie right after a brilliant presentation by Julie Cohen about Disney and Pixar. To her amazement, the fortune cookie slip actually quoted Walt Disney saying: All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them. What a coincidence! This gave Laura the courage to pursue her dream of taking her family to Disney World which she did and had a magical time!
Whilst I was there a few years ago, I saw a T shirt with this quote: Failure is not falling down, it's staying down. 
After a bit of research, I've found out that it was said by Mary Pickford, the Canadian silent movie star who set up United Artists with Douglas Fairbanks and Charlie Chaplin. After the advent of 'talkies', her acting career was over, but that didn't stop her investing time and money in United Artists and selling her share in 1956 for three million dollars!
I've just found my fortune cookie quote. It's by Henry David Thoreau and says: Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.
To concentrate on his writing, Thoreau built himself a simple house and lived alone by Walden Pond in Massachusetts for two years, two months and two days. Here he produced Walden, or a Life in the Woods which went on to be considered a classic American work.
I think for me this means that I should work hard at being a writer and not just dream about it (or follow too much social media!)
Which is your favourite motivational quote? (I have lots stuck on the wall above my desk!)

Thursday, 25 April 2013

50 Shades of Grey returned to Tauranga Library with Teeth Marks gives me a Mini Byline in Writers' Forum!

On a recent trip to New Zealand, I read an article in the Herald on Sunday about a copy of 50 Shades of Grey being returned to Tauranga Library with teeth marks! I sent a report of it to Writers' Forum for their 'newsFRONT' page, and it was printed in the latest issue!

Just a short piece, but it's great to see my name in the magazine!

If would like to hear more about my trip, watch out for my blog over the May Day Bank Holiday weekend, when I will be posting more about the places I visited and offering a FREE DOWNLOAD of my book of summery short stories, Postcards and Suntan Cream!

Monday, 15 April 2013

Snuggle Down with Happily Ever After by Harriet Evans

As I've said before on my blog, my claim to fame with Harriet Evans was meeting her one year at The London Book Fair Get Published seminar. She was there as a publisher and an author promoting her first novel, Going Home and when she signed it for me, I told her that my first novel was called Going Away!
She had originally submitted hers under a pseudonym so no one would know it was her, but it was accepted and so successful that so far she has written five more.
 (Going Away was reborn as Gipsy Moth when I found out about Haldon Aerodrome near Teignmouth and Amy Johnson flying to Australia in 1930.)
I enjoyed Happily Ever After. The story is about about Eleanor, or Elle, Bee and her career in publishing (which I guess was based on Harriet's own experiences in the industry); Elle's love life, i.e. a succession of gorgeous men; and her dysfunctional family. It also deals with the problem of alcoholism, and the troubles caused by trying to ignore it in yourself and in other people.
Harriet draws a vivid picture of the traditional publishing house where Elle goes for her first job, and the characters who work there, especially Felicity Sassoon, who owns it, and her son, Rory.
Elle so wants her life to turn out 'happily ever after' like in the romances she reads, especially the books which Harriet explains in her Note from the Author are her own favourites e.g. Georgette Heyer and Dodie Smith.
I thought it was altogether a well-written, great read, and I was rooting for Elle to sort out her life all the way.
Which is your favourite Harriet Evans book?