Tag Archives: WHEE!

A visit to Eden

I was lucky enough to get to go to the Eden Project this weekend with two amazing friends (and their cameras). Let’s just say straight off – I spent most of the weekend being a packmule and waiting for them while they took photos of EVERYTHING. This was usually my view…

But then I knew they were going to do that, so I just found a bench and got to appreciate everything 😀 and they did get some amazingly arty shots! (The ones here are all mine – they haven’t sorted through theirs yet).

We saw birds, and a lizard (who was SUCH a poser) and lots of trees, and plants, and rocks, and sculpture…we did all spend quite a bit of time going “what’s that? It looks like an X but not. Hmmm.” And then the photographers would take a picture of it with artistic raindrops and I’d just wander along with my rucksack, appreciating the sculpture and plants and landscaping and thinking how bloody weird it was to be in the middle of the Mediterranean while someplace in a quarry in Cornwall.

I didn’t get many pictures – weirdly, I didn’t really think of it – but my favourite thing was the Rainforest Biome, because they have a rope bridge! I loved it. And I liked the secret garden too, because it had a willow arch. We got to feed a robin, and eat ice cream, and sing in an echo chamber, and see a lot of aloe plants, and just wander. I went on the zipwire (“Hell NO I am NOT going on that thing! Feet firmly on the ground, thank you!” from the photographers) so that was cool, and the food was really good too. We stayed in the YHA which has shipping containers for bedrooms – apparently people make entire houses in them? I could actually cope with that, I think. It was a lot more spacious than I’d expected, and the bed was really comfy. We were intending to do the Lost Gardens of Heligan on the Sunday, but ended up stopping early on the Saturday and having an early night with Chinese takeaway, and then going back to Eden on Sunday. I’m really glad we did, as it made everything a lot more relaxed, and we got to visit favourite spots again. It was awesome, and really quiet – and we got a nice mix of weather, so it felt nice being outside in the sun and breeze and then retreating to the rainforest when we got the proper English summertime back again! (aka. it tipped it down).

I had Monday off (hence no post – I did intend to write this one and then fell asleep) and then went to see Emma Newman at the Bristol Fringe, which was fab. I haven’t yet read Planetfall and After Atlas, but having heard an extract from After Atlas, they’re both on the top of my list!

So that was my weekend. Back to normal life now…

Blog Birthday! Writing&Coe is four!

Over the four years, I’ve published 537 posts…70 writing and 67 reviews, and the rest either blog or assorted! I’ve had 8610 views over the past year, and 3756 visitors. It’s pretty good for a small blog about me, writing, books, crafty stuff and anything else I feel like writing about – so THANK YOU FOR READING!

I’ve been so disorganised this year that I don’t have any Kate writing freebies, but I can point you in the direction of some freebies from my publisher, Kristell Ink…there’s a free copy of Amunet (steampunk Victoriana adventure with a lot of mystery, a dollop of magic and some really good characters), and also a Rafflecopter of freebies including an Amazon gift card, easter eggs (just in case you’ve run out) and paperback books. Go enter at ttps://www.facebook.com/KristellInk/?sk=app_228910107186452

Portal Cake

Also have some cake, because…

Well, cake!

By the way, the next Greensky book is out soon – I don’t have a date yet (we’re waiting on cover art) but it’s coming!

Progress: No Man’s Dawn

Writing feels like a jigsaw puzzle sometimes, except you have to make up the pieces yourself.

I start off with some of the edges, and a few bits of tree or whatever, and then realise that maybe the pattern is a kitten in a basket and that’s some of the basket, and I’ve got the kitten, plus I found a few more bits of edge, but maybe it would look good with a puppy in there too? And then the cat sits on the board and I lose a few of the pieces down the back of the sofa and the sky seems to be a weird mix of blue and cloud, and it’s all a weird mess within a few random edge pieces.

Also, I think metaphors can be taken too far. But you get what I mean.

I didn’t feel that No Man’s Dawn was quite right; I was missing something. Dee was boring. While the outline was good – someone running away from a problem, making a new life, discovering secrets, murder mystery – it didn’t have the spark I wanted.

Well, I came up with a solution.

I added Luk.

I came up with the idea in the car, and my housemate just gave me a Look when I started giggling.

This is now the start of the book:

“Fuck. Fuck, fuckitty fucking fuck. Fuck!”

That last one echoes off the rock ahead of me, and I glance over my shoulder to try to spot my pursuers.

Of course, I can’t see anything.

“Fucking invisible bastard fuckers!”

You see why I was giggling?

Adding Luk adds depth and familiarity. I’m doing alternate chapters, Luk and Dee; it means I can add an extra plotline, add an extra thread to my murder mystery, and I don’t necessarily have to explain everything to the clueless Dee as Luk is already experienced. He’s also a complete bastard, and it’s been great fun to play out some of the consequences – especially on Dee. I’d already planned for him to come into the story, but having half of it from his perspective is definitely the right thing to do.

The spark’s back. I’m loving this almost as much as No Man’s Land; it hasn’t got the same snark factor, but hopefully it’s going to have a similar Not Nice feel, along with a twist at the end.

I’m also doing some work on No Man’s Sky; I’ve got ideas for some fill-in sections thanks to my beloved alpha-reader and aunt, and it’s been through a couple of other readers who have also given me ideas and encouragement. I’m waiting on my other alpha to finish writing Suddenly Lesbians (working title) and then she can focus on it, but that’s definitely got some spark back too.

So it’s getting there! (Again). Yay!

So many books, so little time…

So therefore I obviously need more. Duh.

This is a shout-out to two of my favourite bookshops – one physical one and one online one!

The physical one is Books on the Hill in Clevedon. I went there for Sophie’s book signing, and dropped in again on my way to a wool shop with a friend a few weeks ago. Ali’s lovely and the selection is always interesting, plus they do tea – what’s not to like? If you’re in the area then they do events, too. (Also, I am reliably informed that they’re setting up an online bookstore…watch their webpage for info!)

medusa books logoAnd the online one is Medusa Books, run by one of my lovely Swindon friends. They do classic sci-fi and board games, so if you’re into cheesy 80’s pulp or vintage sci-fi, check out their stock! It changes a lot so is worth keeping an eye on – they’re on Twitter too @medusabooks.

My reading list has already grown ridiculously…so therefore, of course, I’m currently re-reading Going Postal. To give myself some leeway, I have read 102 stories in the last week and have two-and-a-half novels sitting in my inbox, waiting for beta reading or editing. I’ve started working on Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell again, plus some of the books on my Discoverability Challenge

That doesn’t mean I’m not browsing longingly, though!