Tag Archives: reflection

Bereavement, Reflection and Moving Back into the World


There are those touched by this pandemic in a way which will live with them for the rest of their lives;

there are those who have really struggled with the isolation and it has adversely affected their mental well being,

and there are others who have sailed through and managed to ‘get on with life’ quite cheerfully throughout.

Of course there is overlap too.

Sometimes I think it is hard for each group to appreciate the other’s situation.

I have been overwhelmed by the love and sympathy from friends, family and the wider community of Kinghorn when my Mum became ill and my father died of Covid back on 10th January.

Normal life ceased.

Dad died at 93 years old. He had been retired for longer than he worked, he had enjoyed a good healthy life, dancing and travelling with Mum until two years ago…. and the end was thankfully very quick. He didn’t suffer too much so we were told.

Mum is still unwell, but she is being well cared for and we can speak to her on Zoom and phone (which we could rarely do when she was in hospital.) That’s all I can ask until, hopefully, I will see her again.


My writing life ceased, although I continued with obligations for others when I could. Certainly at a slower pace.

…but my Dad wouldn’t have wanted me to wallow.

On reflection, two days before Dad  passed away, my last conversation with him was so positive. Looking back, he was thinking of me and the wider family and not himself.

‘You are happy up in Fife?’ he asked.

‘You’ve got a good life there, haven’t you?’

As I stood looking out over the Firth of Forth, as a container ship floated into my line of vision, I remarked, ‘I wish you were standing here with me Dad.’

At the end of our conversation I told him I loved him. Not something I have said very often in my whole life.

Looking back, we were both saying goodbye, and that is a comfort.

Moving On

Neither Dad nor Mum would want me to wallow anymore though.

As well as supporting other authors, part of my psyche is to create, to write and to let the words and ideas flow, later moulding them into  a form just right for sharing.

I hope to begin to focus on my projects again.

And so, slowly but surely, I will return to a ‘real’ world. Not the ‘normal’ before lockdown, but a different normal, building my confidence to be part of the writing community once more.

  Mum and Dad with us on Guernsey only   Three Years ago


What am I going to do in my writing life in the next few months?

  • Continue writing my current project ~ another Mystery Inspired by History
  • Publish a little book of encouragement for your adults, needing support finding direction on life following this pandemic
  • Get together poems I have written in the last few months about dementia
  • Promote my two mysteries.

…and that, I think, is enough for now.

MURDER, Now and Then will be only 99p on Kindle from 22nd February to 1st March 2021

MISSING, Past and Present will be only 99p on Kindle from 1st to 8th March 2021


Filed under Memoirs, Mystery inspired by history series, Writing

Reflection, Contemplation and Anticipation for 2014

A Happy New Year to everyone, although I’m aware that in parts of the UK and USA we are struggling with unprecedented bad weather, making life difficult for many. I’ve been fortunate to enjoy Christmas and New Year with family and friends and, although we were not totally unscathed by the relentless storms, our grief was light compared to some.

It is my habit each year around this time to have a complete break from blogging, Twitter and Facebook and although some of you may have noticed me appear for a sneaky ‘retweet’ or ‘like’ here and there, I have not actively participated and thus feel refreshed for what 2014 may bring. Yesterday and today I have been clearing away the debris of the festive season and making my environment fresh and sparkling, perfect for looking forward.

All in all 2013 was a year for change for me, great leaps of change, meaning I am now writing virtually full time. It was a period of letting go, but I also learnt many  new skills in the business of writing and publishing. With ‘The Life and Demise of Norman Campbell’ published last spring and many face to face promotions for my second novel ‘Ancasta Guide me Swiftly Home’ I have been busy busy busy. Somehow I have also found time to complete my first murder mystery, an enjoyable challenge and it’s been a pleasure to return to writing creatively.

In fact, the changes to my work life have coincided in a shift in perspectives, like two sides of a coin. Firstly I have returned to writing for the sheer joy of it. The business of publishing, although exciting had become a burden while I was still teaching, but since I’ve been set free this is no longer the case. On the other side I now don’t benefit from a regular income and so my writing needs to be more than a hobby and decisions must be made in a more business-like fashion, which I will explain more fully in another post.

Now to 2014.

Firstly as we continue through the centenary of the beginning of WW1, and commemorate its impact on world history, I will continue to promote Ancasta Guide me Swiftly Home which is set through that period.  One person in an audience through the summer who had read my book asked,

‘Why did so many have to die?’

My response was,

‘I tried to reflect the stark truth of the effects of World War 1 and not glamorise it, although alongside this I also dwelt on the human aspects of love, acts of kindness and healing.

‘Life goes on for the Newton family’ as one reader wrote. It had to.

Secondly feedback for my current project, a murder mystery, has been excellent so far from my beta readers and so I aim to set a launch date soon, towards the end of March.

Thirdly whilst continuing with all of the above I am dabbling in a

Personal ~ Memoir ~ Fantasy with lots of historical elements too!

Who says cross genre isn’t live and kicking. My current circumstances inspired me in this direction and then

Finally I will be continuing with extensive research for the third of mt Riduna Series in the spring.

All of this should keep me busy. Anyway, I would like to thank you so much for sharing this journey with me. Your comments and responses are greatly appreciated whatever way they come…here, on facebook, twitter or by email.



Filed under Writing, WW1