Can’t say too much; indeed I don’t know too much but have just found out I’ve been highly commended in a national short story competition for my story the Bone Queen. I am so delighted – I find short stories very hard to write and this tale about a rag and bone queen is probably my favourite of all the stories I’ve written. I believe this now means it will be published.

Most of my recent posts have been private; sadly this world just sometimes knocks me sideways and the proverbial black dog needs her outlet. The commendation has given me a much needed confidence boost to continue with the writing – I may never be able to make a living from it but it is an absolute joy to know that other people value your words.

Part of the inspiration for the story was the poem The Circus’ Animals Desertion by Yeats, particularly the final verse:

Those masterful images because complete
Grew in pure mind, but out of what began?
A mound of refuse or the sweepings of a street,
Old kettles, old bottles, and a broken can,
Old iron, old bones, old rags, that raving slut
Who keeps the till. Now that my ladder’s gone,
I must lie down where all the ladders start
In the foul rag and bone shop of the heart.

So worth reading the full text. ┬áThe other poem that wove it’s way in was The Vampire by Kipling – ‘…to a rag and a bone and a hank of hair, (we called her the woman who did not care)…’.

So on this happy note my Whitby preparation is now in full swing – wardrobe contents analysed, button stability on certain items checked (Spin Doctor – wonderfully pleasing clothes; woeful button attachment). I even have the cutest little steampunky boots, below, from Hush Puppies children’s range of all places (the joy of tiny feet). Flat that opens out onto East Cliff beach. Chips and wine from the Hatless Heron. Cake and books at Becketts. Breakfast at Java. A giant Saturday afternoon drink fest with some fair minded friends in the Elsinore. And all the fun and wonder of the Spa on Friday night, where I can’t wait to see Bad Pollyanna.

Steampunk booties

Steampunk booties

Heaven indeed.

(Just 3 weeks of work to ignore then…!)