Archive for September, 2007

The Adventures of Nancy – my Great Grandma

Nancy on Great Grandma's lap

Nancy on Great Grandma's lap

Hi there.

Nancy here again.

Today I want to tell you about my Great Grandma Connie. Great Grandma often comes to visit Grandpa Trevor and Grandma Corinne. I then get lots of pats and rubs on the back. Oooooh I do like that. I also like to sit on her very comfortable lap. She rubs me all the time and it feels really nice.

Sometimes Great Grandma comes to visit my mum Rose in Clare. Then I can play with her all day and sit on her lap whenever I like. When Rose goes off to school to teach she leaves me home by myself, so I like having visitors like my Great Grandma. She’s cool – but her lap is warm, and I like that.

Great Grandma spoils me too. She sometimes slips me a piece of meat or a bit of biscuit from her plate. I try not to eat too much because that will make me fat. So when I eat too many treats I like to take Great Grandma for a walk. She needs the exercise.

Talk to you soon.


Writing while away from home

With the vast majority of jobs you actually have to turn up at your place of employment in order to complete your work for the day. I experienced that scene for over 35 years in another life – when I was an elementary school teacher. Increasingly people are working from home which I believe is a very positive move.

The good thing about writing is that you can basically do it anywhere. I am constantly aware that everything I do and everywhere I go there is potential writing material staring me in the face. I usually carry with me a small notebook mainly to write down lists of birds that I see. But this little notebook also doubles as a writing notebook. Sometimes I just jot down ideas, impressions of a place, experiences and so on. Sometimes I will jot down ideas for stories and even the occasional poem or haiku slips its way into my notebook.

The good thing about holidays is that your writing goes with you. I am currently on holiday visiting my son and daughter-in-law in Sydney. We see them about once a year so it is a precious time. My faithful little notebook came along for the ride (actually I have a supply of them with me). But I also brought along my laptop. It usually travels with me and in the evenings I can get on with recording the day’s events and I can be working on writing projects as well.

The importance of taking a break from writing cannot be emphasized too much. While I take the means of writing with me when I travel I find that it is important to take time out from it frequently. This gives me fresh insights, renewed enthusiasm, new ideas, inspiration – especially when in the Australian bush which I love so much – and renewal for the body, mind and soul.

So – take time out to smell the roses, go for a walk, look at the clouds, watch the birds or sit in the sun. Your writing will benefit from the short break.

Good writing.

The Adventures of Nancy – my friend Butch

Nancy - a portrait

Nancy - a portrait

Hi there readers.

This is Nancy again – the dog with attitude.

A few days ago I mentioned my good friend Butch. Let me tell you about him.

First – we are just good friends – nothing more. I like to visit his home and he comes to visit Grandpa Trevor’s home. When I go to visit Butch we play games in the garden. Sometimes he gets jealous if I play with his toys. He can be very possessive.

I must be careful to eat from my food bowl. He growls at me if I try to eat from his bowl. That’s a bit mean but I guess it is only fair. It might be more polite to share but that’s the way he is. Sometimes he has a visit from his cousin Charlie. Charlie is a strange dog. I don’t feel like telling you about him; he’s odd.

Here is a photo of Butch in his lovely comfortable bed. He won’t let me share his bed, but then I have my own bed.

Nancy's  friend Butch

Nancy's friend Butch

Sometime I will tell you more about Butch, my best friend.

Talk to you soon.


More Short Story Starters

Sometimes writers want to write but they just don’t know what to write about. Sometimes the brain goes into neutral and you just can’t think up a topic. Over the last year or so I’ve written a series of articles listing some short story starters. These are designed to help other writers get going again with their writing. Feel free to use these ideas in your own writing.

Short Story Starters:

  1. Mary stopped suddenly. On the path not five metres from he was a curled up snake. She stifled a scream. Her first impulse was to….
  2. Neville strode confidently on to the stage. He was ready for anything. Just as he was about to open his mouth, a…..
  3. Olivia never like James. His habit of….
  4. Peter came unexpectedly around the corner. Both Amy and Bob stared in disbelief. Where….
  5. Roberta knew she was going to be late for the meeting. She hurried from the lift, down the corridor and then paused at the door. She took a deep breath, composed her thoughts and opened the door. She…
  6. Sam was at it again. Steve never quite knew what to do but it annoyed him intensely. Sam’s habit of…
  7. Teresa felt fear creeping through her body. This could not be happening. She took a hesitant step towards…

Conditions of use:

  • Feel free to use any of the story starters listed above. Change anything to suit your needs.
  • Give it your best shot.
  • Edit your work carefully before sending it off to a publisher or posting it on your blog.
  • Let me know in the comments section how it went.
  • If you publish your story on your web site or on your blog let me know so I can make a link to it for others to read.

More story ideas:

There are many more ideas in my archives similar to these. Click here to read them.

The Adventures of Nancy – my mum the teacher

Nancy - a portrait

Nancy - a portrait

Hi there,

Nancy – the dog with attitude here again.

How are all of my readers going? I’d like to hear about you in the comments section.

Today I am going to tell you about my Mum. Her name is Rose. She is a high school teacher. She works very hard. When she goes away from home for a holiday she always takes a pile of books to read. This is so she can teach her students about books. You should see her library – she has heaps of books. Below is a photo of her reading while on a holiday earlier this year. Grandpa Trevor took the photo of her relaxing in the sunshine reading a book.

I feel a little sad looking at this photo. She didn’t take me with her. She went to a little town called Robe in South Australia. Grandpa Trevor wrote about that holiday on his travel blog. I suppose it was alright though. I had a holiday too. I stayed with my friend Butch.

Now before you start thinking sneaky thoughts, Butch and I are just good friends.

That’s all.


I will write about him in a few days time.

Talk to you then.