For someone who writes creatively, and often with a humorous theme, picking a 'fun and engaging' title like the blog template says is more difficult than ever at the moment. Rather than beat about the bush and pretend everything is wonderful I'm doing the same as everyone else affected by the Covid-19 and adjusting to a new way of doing things. First off, I hope that everyone is safe and healthy. For some this easier than others and it's not just physical health affecting people right now. Writing is something I love to do but with the sad news and restrictions imposed to keep everyone safe I know my concentration has certainly been challenged at times.
I was also particularly struck by a post that I shared on social media. The response and comments left by my subscribers really caught my attention. In some ways it was comforting to know that I wasn't the only one struggling to make sense of the situation but also sad to see how affected people are.
By now there are lots more of these images about and for anyone who is finding this situation difficult - you're not alone, there are groups and services available and don't be afraid to reach out to them. I talk a lot to my friends and my partner about how I feel but I also know that sometimes it's not easy to talk to those we're closest to.
One place I love to visit where people are generally cheerful and up to all sorts of amusing antics is Polwenna Bay! With the start of the tourist season life in Polwenna changes up a level as the locals get ready to welcome back the visitors old and new. The rise in temperatures brings the usual migrating species, swallows in the skies, basking sharks in the bay and city folk ready to shake off their winter plumage of shirt and tie for a fresh pair of deck shoes and shorts. As you will have seen in my March blog post, Catching Hearts was nearing the final stages of editing and #7 in the Polwenna Series was launched back in April.
Normally there would have been the usual fanfare but this was a bit more subdued for obvious reasons. My editor was incredible doing a brilliant job of turning the book around despite the restrictions and an increase in her volunteer workload and local support work.
If you've read Catching Hearts then you'll know who left her glasses on the beach...
We've all heard the guidelines over recent weeks (some clearer than others...) but one these was daily exercise and I've been so fortunate as my daily walking route takes me around the bay that provides the inspiration for Polwenna's Adriatic Bay in Catching Hearts. Below is a time lapse of my walk down to the beach and you can find more film of the bay on my YouTube Channel
Someone once said 'loss is loss no matter what' but I can't begin to imagine the thousands of families whose lives will never be the same as they come to terms with the loss of a loved one. I'd never be able to put into words other peoples' feelings but three weeks ago we had to say goodbye to our beloved little blind and deaf rescue cat. Much loved and much missed.
Any animal lover will know how hard this was for us but a big thanks to our brilliant vet who made a very difficult decision at a difficult time easier to bear. Our little friend is missed everyday but it wasn't long before we had another animal to look after. We spotted an injured crow on one of our walks and after a few days we managed to catch him and bring him home. Max the crow has now been collected by a specialist who is helping him with his recovery.
In the last few weeks whenever I open my emails I'm frequently greeted by another refund or cancelation message from a show or event. Missing a few events is a small price to pay right now, and most of these will run again in the future, but remembering VE Day 75 years on wasn't going to be missed whatever challenges came along. I had been scheduled to do a book signing with one of my retailers but as they were subject to the shutdown I was able to quietly revisit some of the stories from my research for my WWII books The Promise and The Last Card. Seeing the various pictures and reading the stories posted from those who remember their relatives working on the preparation for D-Day was fascinating and some quite amusing when they turned up to find all the boats gone along with their own tools and belongings!
As I've been putting this post together we've just had the update on easing the lockdown. This news is most welcome but, as my family members on the front line of the NHS have all just called to tell me, that doesn't mean we're out of the woods yet - so please take care.
Stay safe and well,