Sunday, 6 September 2015

#getajob




Sometimes it is necessary to revisit the past in order to make strides forward. I have been stuck in a never ending circle for the last decade, probably longer – a real life Groundhog Day! I have done my best to bite my tongue and keep the peace for the sake of others which has resulted in inner chaos for me. What got me thinking about the past, was a member of my own family posted a comment on twitter recently suggesting #getajob. 

Writing and motherhood are not jobs apparently. It did make me smile coming from someone who has barely lived a life yet.  What hurt the most was the original comments came from someone I held in deepest confidence. Another lesson learned the hard way.  Needless to say I didn’t get an apology from either party but I’m kind of used to that now. Surely if you're big enough to insult someone then you're big enough to apologise when you get found out. Sorry is easy to say, really it is.

Menieres


If only life was as simple as #getajob.  Although Menieres gave me the freedom to start a new career in writing, it came at a huge cost – financially, psychologically and physically. I don’t mind being honest, the last ten years have been an absolute nightmare. Going from a five figure salary, company car to virtual bankruptcy and doing it all my own brought me almost to the brink of wondering whether life was worth it anymore.  

I apply for jobs and have to disclose this ridiculously unpredictable illness and guess what? Employers won’t take the risk even though I am an incredibly hard worker. I would gladly work on top of the hours writing and managing the pain, sickness, dizziness, fluctuations in hearing, tinnitus, exhaustion, instability on my feet, the frustration and the loss of self- confidence. I avoid social gatherings now because I find it so hard to hear what everyone is saying and I hate asking people to repeat themselves. I then chastise myself because I love being with people who stimulate my mind but until there is a tolerance and acceptance of invisible illnesses, I face an uphill battle to be accepted back into a workforce.

So tell me, #getajob, what do I do? Sit around, claim disability, milk the system I paid into long before some were born? NO. I do a degree, take part time work when I can get it, write until my hands are numb AND bring two boys up, supporting them in their career and life choices. Is it ideal? NO. I didn’t choose to become ill, to have this intruder but I certainly don’t sit back and ask for sympathy and wallow in self-pity. I make the very best of a bad situation. A situation made much worse by people around me who neither understand, nor appreciate the struggle of life but yet feel they are in a position to judge. I accept what life has given me and trust me, I absolutely know things could be a lot worse. I hope I at least inspire my boys to know, whatever life throws at them, however hopeless it seems, there is always a way out.

Keep an open mind and an open heart


Like most people with a heart and a sense of humanity, I have been deeply moved over the last few months at the plight of the world’s refugees. At the end of the day, putting fictional labels aside, we are all human beings. Let’s just hope for a new safe beginning for everyone involved. What horrors they must have seen and experienced in their lives are unimaginable to us. 

It really saddens me to witness people being racist and bigoted but then ignorance breeds ill-informed judgments.

A new hope


I don’t know what it is at the moment but I am feeling pretty nostalgic, especially when it comes to my music choices whilst working – Beautiful South, Lionel Richie (yes, I still want to marry him!), Bob Marley, BareNaked Ladies and many more. I blame Jeremy Corbyn but in a good way! He has restored my faith in the Labour Party, some human beings and life. I feel young again. Or, it could be that Lucas is totally into Star Wars and I feel like a child when I see all the new merchandise in the shops. I certainly am NOT complaining.
There is hope after life’s curve balls, I promise you.

Writing


If you are still with me, I love you all. I am involved in a number of projects at the moment but think I am going to have to ditch the PhD idea due to lack of funding – it always comes down to money! Anyway, hopefully when my writing is successful I can fund my own Doctorate.

Streetwise


The story is set in Leeds (surprise, surprise!) and tells the tale of fate bringing people together under extraordinary circumstances:

            Life’s path can change in the blink of an eye or the detonation of a bomb. Rob Kennedy should have been planning a wedding not a funeral. Consumed with guilt and grief, suicide seemed his only escape from his perpetual nightmare until a single act of kindness by a real life guardian angel, saves him from himself.
Twelve months on, unable to trace each other, Rob and Kate’s paths are about to cross once more in extraordinarily circumstances.”

The Nanny


Sixteen hours one Sunday I sat and wrote the full draft Treatment for this script. I struggle with my memory sometimes so if I have an idea, I have to write it down immediately. This script idea initially came to me about eighteen months ago but never went much further than a one page scribble, until now. Wow! I love building suspense and twists into my work and quite often add some of them in during the edit. This is the first time I have planned each scene before writing the dialogue. We’ll see how much it changes during writing.

“Sometimes the past cannot be laid to rest without direct intervention. John and Martha O’Grady were victims of the conflict in Ireland. They may have survived but witnessing the death of their parents and grandparents at the hands of the IRA had left indelible horror on their young minds. Orphaned, they were split up. Martha was sent to a convent and John adopted and moved to Manchester.
Thirty years on they are about to be reunited only to find the horrors of their past re-appear with potentially fatal consequences.”

Beyond the Past





Have you had the chance to read it yet? Would you like to review it for me?

Read the first three chapters FREE on my website
Available from:
Pegasus Publishers
Amazon UK
Kindle
Amazon US
Or you can order from your local bookshop. The ISBN number is : 978-1-84386-789-0



Rugby League


We had the very last game of this season yesterday and won 71 points to 4. What a team they have developed to be and it is a great shame that they won’t be together next season – the squad is splitting into Under 19s and Under 23s, we think. I am immensely proud of Wes and ALL his team mates. It has been a real privilege to be a part of it and watch the development of all them, not just as players. 

Sheffield Eagles is a great club. Hopefully Wes will be moving to the Under 19s and he is already preparing for it now, so fingers crossed. Whatever the outcome, it has been a great year and I am glad I was around to be a part of it. Roll on the new season…

Well, it is certainly time to look forward to new hope and new beginnings. Autumn is my favourite time of year. Whilst writing this, there is a chill in the air yet bright sunshine is bursting through the trees into the dining room. I have a really good feeling about the last few months of this year, a really great feeling.

Have a fabulous week. 





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