Skip to main content


Showing posts from 2019

My End of 2019 Blog Review

This was my most prolific year blogging, and as at now I have published 208 blog posts this year and I'll probably do a couple more before the year ends. At first I started writing everything day, hoping it would help me with editing my novel-in-progress, but it didn't. Then I branched out to doing blog features for everyday such as  weekly film/movie post,  places in London,  the state of my desk Editing my novel 52 week money challenge other features  Eventually, I got overwhelmed and decided to cut back, in fact I changed the schedule a few time and in the end due to a busy offline life. Towards the end, I was only doing blog topics and finally  I ended up just doing the 52-week money challenge - which I saved £1,004 in cash from, the rest in IOUs. What I learnt from Blogging To get blog hits or build an audience, a blog needs to be about what people are interested in and you get that by being specific. It's simply that. However here I blog w

52 Week Money Challenge - How Much Did We Save? A whooping £1,004

This isn't bad for a year's long challenge which has been tedious, cumbersome and boring! The final cash savings was £1,004 and the IOUs were £374. As frequently with this long term saving projects there was some double counting - I think mostly to do mixing up weeks so I had to got by the cash savings! The Details On Boxing Day,  I went down to my mother so she could assist in the counting. To help with this count down, I asked Ma who willingly obliged as she had been keenly reading my blog posts about this. Sis acted as an independent observer. Well she was on the sofa while Ma and I counted the cash and the IOUs. At first there was a debate about what surface to use, and Ma and Sis advised it was best to use red since that represented money and wealth in many cultures, so that was taken on board. As a result we used the Christmas table runner. We poured the contents of the money pot on the table and proceed to sort out the cash in diffe

WEEK 52 of the 52 week money challenge! YES! I MADE IT!!! £52 IN THE POT!!

Happy Holidays! This was touch and go because Christmas is an expensive time, and I wasn't sure if to put in a final IOU but I thought it was good to end on positive note for the year. So I get the cash together from my bank accounts.  I'm posting this earlier in the week - basically week 52 - because I have other stuff to do, like buy Christmas presents - I tend to be late.  I guess it's probably a good time to do a final review.  Review of 52 week money challenge This challenge is based on saving money 52 weeks of the year, but the caveat is you save the according to the week number. So in the first week of the year £1 or $1 is saved and this increases as the year goes on until the final week of the year - week 52. What's good about it  1. It highlights saving. So as result, I did review my 'proper savings' plan which is a regular amount each month.  2. It is fun to start with! 3. It simple to understand. What's not so

Week 51 of the 52 -week money challenge. It's Nearly Christmas!! so £51 with Santa!

So it's my festive effort. I was considering putting in an IOU but decided since it was penultimate week of the year it was best to find the cash. Also before I start spending on Christmas presents, I thought just to get some cash out and put it in the box. Happy Holidays 

Reveiwing MY 2019 GOALS

I'm reviewing goals posted on the blog nearly a year ago just to see how far I've come. I also did a quarter one review if you are interested see it here But these were the goals I posted on the 6th of January. 2019 GOALS 1. Get a new role - this is urgent and top priority  I got my role so that is one I cross off. 2. Publish Leyton and Angelica's story This is still outstanding and if you've followed my editing journey, you'll know it's been a very rocky road. 3. Do at least three CPD - for career development - I was a bit lax last year because my employer supplied them.  These are Continuous Professional Development which I need to keep up my skills. I probably have but not in formal way like going to for courses and things. 4. Romance? Maybe. We'll see. I had one in 2

Week 50 of the 52-week money challenge - no IOU this week.

There are only two weeks left to this challenge and I'm not even sure I'm going to pay the IOUs or the early weeks I missed. This is an insane challenge - like I said before the best way to save is to have a regular savings plan preferably an automatic bank transfer which goes straight to a saving accounts, preferably on your payday!!! This challenge is just stupid and blog-fodder, it's not realistic! Regular savings you can afford is better.  Why? Well, some weeks I just plainly forget or didn't have the cash or the time. Not sure what I can do to review, perhaps get my mother to help count. To be frank, I'm pretty bored already but there must be quite a bit of cash in the pot though. The only rule I kept to was not breaking into the tin so I guess we should count the takings. I'll ask Ma and we can both could the takings. I'll see. 

Week 49 of the 52 weeks money challenge: Yes! I've got cash!!!!

I've not updated my blog for a few weeks now, but I'm putting £100 to the money jar! However I owe weeks 46,47,48 and 49  all add up to £190! Next I put the cash against week 49 and 48 with three pounds to week 47. After which I prepared the IOU for £90. Anyway only three weeks left!!! So glad, and I won't be doing this next year!

3 things I've Learnt from Blogging

Have a specific purpose This really helps in getting hits and views. This blog is mostly for my relaxation and because I like writing but if you are going to be serious, you'd probably need to figure out a particular purpose and stick to it. I've had a number of blogs over the years and in my experience having a singular purpose in a blog makes a different. So my most successful blog to date was blogging about reality shows when I used to watch them but I stopped when I found them boring.  That blog was about popular culture and my hits used to average about 1000 a day, for lesser shows in was in the hundreds, on this site a good post will get about ten hits others just about two or three.  This blog is generally just me doing my thing, for myself and my writing. The review blog was me sharing my opinion about shows which other people watched. I think informational and opinion blogs do very well so blogs like fashion, TV, gaming, politics, travel, hobbies, advice, co

A picture of something that makes me happy..

Holidays! This was taken in Salou which is on the on the Costa Dorada in Spain. Ma and I normally go every year apart from this one because I got a new role, there was a learning curve. We normally go for about seven to ten days. Most of the time we stay in the resort hotel or walk to the beach or go in Tarragona which has a world protected site as an old roman colony. 

Tiring week and got an injury on a rebounder.

It's a long tiring week with deadlines at work, attending creative writing classes and showing Ma a new music app, so I haven't got much to talk about. I also pulled a muscle in the sole of my left foot while jumping on a gifted Rebounder from Sis. Yes, I was in pain, so much pain, I didn't leave the house for three days, and worked from home.  I guess I was over enthusiastic and was on it for longer than I should have been, didn't consider I wasn't used to this sort of exercise. So I had to RICE -  R est, , I ce pack- C ompressed - I used bandages and have my foot E levated. So next time, I think I'd wear proper gym shoes, I just wore grip socks and do a warm up and then just stay on it for about three to five minutes rather than thirty minutes just merrily jumping along.

Ops - Week 45 of the 52-week money challenge - but there is MONEY THIS WEEK YAY!

Ops, I actually miscounted the weeks and I missed out week 44 so here we go! I have a hundred pounds, yes a WHOLE hundred pounds fresh for the ATM machine and I actually managed not to break into it as well. Why? Well this month has been very busy at work, I also had to work from home for a few days due to a sports related injury this meant I wasn't spending as much money on lunch or other things. Basically the busier I am at work, the less time I have to spend money. This pays for weeks 45 and 44 which is £99 pounds but I have £1 change which I can use the pay off an IOU!  So from Week 41, I owed £11.00 and I've reduce that by £1 to make it £10. I guess that's it until next week.

5 Gifts from my Sister, Sis...

My sister is one of the most generous people I know, and she tends to buy things in twos - one for her and another for me. So these are five of her gifts. My MacBook Air This is was a present a few years ago and has been excellent for me. Light, hardwearing and durable. Neals Yard Aromatherapy Diffuser  She got me this for Christmas and I use it regularly to unwind and relax. Chinese Quilted Jacket Sis gifts me lots of clothes and this was one she brought back from her trip to China. NutRi Bullet - smoothie maker She's really into healthy eating, detox and all that stuff so she got me smoothie maker when she got hers. I use it once in a while, normally for fruit or veggie smoothies. It's quick and easy to clean.  Fit bounce Pro Rebounder (trampoline) The trampoline is the latest gift. She got herself one, and was super excited and impressed with it so got me one too. This is it all set up in my front room. Thank you, Sis!

Week 43 of the 52 Week Money Challenge - missed two weeks and on third. Another IOU of £126

Things have been very busy!  In the last three weeks I've gone on a short holiday break to Brighton, then had to catch up with others things. So yet another week passes and I have no funds to put in the money jar. Yes, indeed, no funds at all. So this week, I'm simply going go write another IOU to the tune of one hundred and twenty six pounds sterling . When I first took on this challenge, I thought it would be easy and plain sailing but so far, I've had to navigate some rough waves. I don't have the money pot in view but I shall put this IOU of £126 in it. I guess the real lesson here is if you want to save, DON'T HOP ON TO A BLOG CHALLENGE. Please note the below is not FINANCIAL ADVICE  - FOR FINANCIAL ADVICE PLEASE CONSULT A QUALIFIED FINANCIAL ADVISER The best way is to Work out how much you want to save - like your goal for the year. Even better work out what you want to save for. If it's rainy day savings that's fine. Work out how muc

5 things on my bucket list

This is a hard one for me because I tend to have a list and then go do it. Typical bucket list things are getting professional qualifications, sky driving, sailing, scuba driving, white water rafting etc, and I've done these things before bucket lists became trendy. I take a bucket list to mean a wishlist rather than goals. Learning to drive I need to find the time for this, I don't typically need a car in my city since there is a good transport system, parking and owning a car is expensive and I walk to most places. So this will be on my bucket list.  Complete my novel series It's been slower than I thought but I'm currently working on the first of the series. Go to Vegas I'd love to go there since one of my characters got married here. It would be interesting to see the place I've only ever imagined or seen on a movie/film. Visit LA Another place where one of my characters relocates to. It would be interesting to go on a tour around all the

Week 41 - 52 week money challenge. Life Happened so Only Have £30 and IOU for £11

Life simply happened this week with the money I had planned to bank in the money jar. I was organised this week, and took out the full sum of £40 plus I had a pound coin in my bag but then I broke in the one of the ten pounds for lunch. I had a nice vegetarian lasagne at work. It was so delicious that  I'm considering making at home. So that accounted for £4.50. My phone camera is playing up and took the money challenge in soft focus, perhaps that is hint I need a new phone. That left three ten pound sterling and one five pound notes and a one fifty pence coin. Yes change of £35.50, but I'm not sure where the rest went. I probably bought some breakfast, or chips. It's hard to remember, that's the problem with carrying money around. I probably should have withdrawn it on the day.  Anyway it just means I only have thirty pounds in cash this week for the money pot. 

My favourite Super Hero and My first Faber Course Session.

Over the years, I've had many favourite super heroes. Real or fiction, I've been fortunate to come across many - at home, work, play, in newspapers, fiction, non fiction and history books.  One of my  favourite super hero is my mother aka Big Momma or Ma or Mummy. She is super and a hero. It's nice to have accessible real life heroes - you can phone and just natter for hours on end and they will listen. They will help pick up after you, follow you to places, support you, encourage you. At times also pay for you even though they don't need to. Tidy up after you. Be there for you. Help you.  Inspire you. A real hero not a fragment of the imagination. That's why Ma is my super hero, she is super and a hero.  Faber Editing Course I attended the first session last week, and it was very thoughtful and interesting. No editing as such, it was more about thinking about genres. The tutor is extremely good. I went in expecting a whole load of notes and hando

Week 40 - 52-week challenge, another £40 in the pot!

So forty pounds in the pot, and no IOU this week. 40 weeks gone and another 12 weeks to go to completion. Wow!

Show my desk - keyboard and lap top set up for working at home.

At times, I work from home so I use a dell laptop and attach it to a keyboard. 

5 things I do when I'm not writing.... I got my place on the writing course!

5 things I do when I'm not writing... Reading This is an obvious one, but I read a lot more when I'm not writing. My most recent books are  Ordinary People by Diana Evans, Milkman by Anna Burns and Normal People by Sally Rooney.  Spend time with family This is either talking on the phone, going out or visiting.  Scribophile This is an online writer's workshop where I hang out, and discussions, debates and just general social conversation take place in the forums. I do the odd critique but not so much since I'm not writing. It is well moderated site and I like it. Watching films/movies I watch DVD films now and again though I haven't been to the cinema in ages.  Unwinding with podcast or a radio talkshow Sometimes after work, I unwind to a podcast show. I plug in my phone into loudspeakers, turn off the main lights and use my lampshade, then listen.  I got my place on the writing course! I'm pleased and excited to say I got a place on

Week 39 of the 52 Week money challenge -£39 PAID IN FULL plus an extra pound! Possible Plans for Money!

Finally I had the cash to put into the money pot in FULL. Yes, it's been recently pay day so I decided it was time to be a big spender - or saver. However this was only week 39 so I had a whole extra pound to put towards an IOU! So I pulled out one of the old IOU for £2 and paid off a £1. Possible Plans for Money! My phone screen has cracked so I'm thinking of investing in an iPhone 6. I'm not sure yet. At present I have One Plus but at the time when I bought it, no one made cases and when it went wrong - with the screen it cost me about £200 to fix it. This was the same price as a new phone! So I'm thinking of getting an iPhone with proceeds of the 52 week Money Challenge, but that depends on me paying off all the IOUs and completing it. Next week will be week Forty. Whew! And in the meanwhile I shall be looking at new or reconditioned phones.

Show me your desk - books by Stylo Fantome, May Sage, London Miller and Ivy Asher

Back again after a break. So on the lower left handside of my desk is the money pot and a pen. Moving up is the stack of books I bought from the RARE 19 events. I bought books from Stylo Fantome, May Sage, London Miller and Ivy Asher - all of them gracious, beautiful and glamorously turned out.  Most of the  authors were all beautiful women - so RARE19 it could have easily been a social media meet and greet event of Youtube beauty influencers and creatives, only with authors and their books. It was a glamorous event with a good feel atmosphere so you can see why fans flock. It's a real day out! These are all new authors to me as I attended the event out of curiosity. Last year, I happened to come across an indie author's page who had a blog post on it, so I found out more details and went.  There was no real method to buying the books, I just happened to arrive, and there where so many people so it was tables that really caught my eyes. The first was beautiful a

I attended #RARE19 in London and My Favourite and Most Used Phone Apps

RARE19 London Once Upon A Time I went to this huge romance authors and readers event on Saturday and I had an excellent time. On a whim and out of curiosity, I bought the tickets about a year ago and luckily my calendar reminded me of the event about two weeks ago. It was fantastic to see all those authors and readers in one place. It was a great buzzing atmosphere. This is just a snapshot but it was bigger and busier than this.  I discovered new authors out of my typical reading genre so I decided to explore beyond the remits of what I normally read. And yes, all my books were signed. I'd probably do a blog on that.   My 5 Favourite  and Most Used Apps Amazon Kindle  I have Kindle Unlimited so I use it to read my books on subscription. I guess another blog would be showing my to be read list. I'll probably end it soon because I don't read much from it.  WhatsApp This is for connecting with family mostly. Spotify I listen mostly to podcasts o