Right, Time To Get Things Moving Around Here #WeekendCoffeeShare

So it’s been a while since I wrote a chatty, update post. So long in fact that the original ‘If We Were Having Coffee’ seems to have fizzled into non-existence. But anyway, what have I been up to since August.

Well I’m still working on Shadow Dawn. The draft is now past the 70,000 words mark and I’ve had to go back to the start as I feel like I’ve completely lost track of what I intended to do with the book when I started writing it. On the plus side, I reread a chapter from about half way through and didn’t hate it so there might be hope for this story yet. IMG_0966

For the past week I’ve managed to churn out more poetry than I have done over the last three months. If you follow the site you’ve probably noticed the upturn in the activity and I’m trying to keep things that way. I’ve started posting more flash fiction based on writing prompts from Story Shack and I’m trying to put up something for most, if not all of the Daily Prompts. Part of this is to do with trying to get into a routine of sitting down and writing each evening when I get home. If it becomes habit then I have no excuse for not finishing Shadow Dawn or for leaving this blog untouched for three/four months at a time.

Speaking of poetry, NaPoWriMo and Camp NaNoWriMo are just around the corner. In 2016 I managed to complete NaPoWriMo, but last year I didn’t even manage to complete the first day. For 2018 I’m hoping to not only finish NaPoWriMo but to also hit a few other poetry goals. So far I’ve not been doing too bad. In January I entered my first Poetry Slam, I didn’t get past the first round but I had a lot of fun and got some fantastic feedback from the other poets competing. In February I entered The International Book and Pamphlet Competition hosted by The Poetry Business. This will be the first of the six competitions I’ve challenged myself to submit to this year. I don’t know if I’ll manage to get anywhere with any of them but I won’t know if I don’t try.

As I’m now re-working Shadow Dawn more than writing from scratch, I also want to get back to my Headquarters series, and more specifically the Safe Haven branch that I started writing a couple of years ago. Since I’m also studying for my Level 3 AAT accountancy qualification my target is one update a month for the series. That might become two for March as the first update will be the redraft of part one.

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Unfortunately I’m not looking to have any Guest Posts this year. I’ve done them in the past and while they are a great way of getting to know fellow bloggers, they take a huge amount of organizing. Finding willing participants is also difficult and time consuming. I am going to try a link-up series in April for fellow NaPoWriMo participants but that will be once a week and be incorporated into a weekly update post about how the challenge is going.

However, I am looking for fellow bloggers who are willing to share their poems and thought this Thursday as part of International Women’s Day. A week or so ago I posted a piece called Legs Eleven about the pressures of people judging you based on how you dress. This Thursday I want to put up a post for anyone to comment on and link to that looks at the biggest challenge they feel they have had to face as a woman, either in life or in the last year. If this is something you’d like to get involved with then you can email me at caroljforrester@hotmail.com.

Finally, I’ve also started experimenting with audio recordings of my poems. I added one to today’s poem When The Words Fall Out and I’ve also done one for my piece Legs Eleven which is included below. Let me know what you think in the comments below. I’ve tried recording videos of poems before but never liked watching myself very much so this seemed like a nice in between. Do you think they work or is it better to leave to poems as they are and let the readers just read them.

Quite Possibly

Eloise placed the wine glass down on the table untouched. ‘You didn’t seriously…?’


‘You just…?’


‘Does that mean…?’

‘Quite possibly.’

‘Well shit.’ Eloise shook her head. ‘We’ll be needing something stronger than this then.’ She stood and skirted around the armchair that Mandy occupied, squeezing her friend’s shoulder as she passed. ‘Have you told Lim yet?’

Mandy shook her head.

‘Right, of course,’ Eloise nodded. ‘You can’t.’

‘You know the rules. I’m not really supposed to be telling you any of this, it’s only because your clearance allows for a bit of leeway that I’m even here.’

‘Not this much leeway Mand, we both know you’re only telling me this so you have some sort of net if everything goes wrong.’

Mandy grimaced.

‘It won’t go wrong though, will it? You’re the best and you’re going to come home.’ She handed Mandy a tumbler of whisky and returned to the settee. ‘Drink up before my Grandfather’s ghost turns up to tell us off for wasting his best bottle on such a gloomy night. He was always such a stick in the mud when it came to his collection.’

Mandy nodded and the pair sank into silence for a few minutes, the rain thumping on the wall of glass overlooking London and the Thames. Eventually the silence broke.

‘I couldn’t say no El, I’ve never been able to say no to him.’

El snorted. ‘You said that last time. Tell me, does it matter what he asks? If he says jump you jump, I get that, but does it make a difference if he’s asking you to jump into his bed or if he’s asking you to jump into the middle of a volatile conflict zone and take out an entire enemy operation?’ She pursed her lips and tapped the edged of her glass while she waited for an answer. ‘Never mind then. I guess it’s none of my business.’

Sensing it was time to leave Mandy stood when Eloise did, the coffee table sitting awkwardly between them.

‘I’ll be seeing you then,’ said Mandy, she went to go right and Eloise shifted the other way. She tried to correct and again they seemed to go in opposite directions. She laughed it off and stepped back. ‘Save me a glass for when I get back,’ she said.

‘Yeah,’ said Eloise. ‘I’ll do that.’


Over on Steph’s Scribe there are three writing prompts for 300-400 word stories. This uses the first prompt and I’m going to have a go at tackling the next two over the rest of the week.

Let me know what you think and if you’d like to read more of my writing make sure to check out some of my other stories here on Writing and Works, including my series Solitary Creatures in the Long Reads section.

Thanks for reading!


Blogging 201: Give Them What They Want! Where to chaps?

I have a tendency to ramble on. I know it as well as the next person and I like to think I’m okay with that part of my personality. It makes me, me. It might be a slightly bumbling, tongue tied ‘oh god did I just say that’ sort of me, but I still think she’s an okay person.

Today’s challenge for Blogging 201 [and yes I am aware that I’ve been a little lax on the previous assignments] was to ask our audience what they wanted to see on our blogs.

So I did two polls. One for the assignment, and one for me.

The option for a monthly feature on different creative writing bloggers is something I’m actually quite keen to do, so if you want to get involved or have any suggestions please leave a comment below.


“So this is why you moved to France?”

I nod and hand over one of the glasses brought out from the kitchen.

“Harry wanted to focus on his artwork.” I tell him, taking care to stand in the centre of the old barn. The paintings line up against the walls, my face staring in at me over and over, never looking quite the same.


“Unusual?” I prompt, smiling over the rim of my glass. He grins back sheepishly.

“Yer, I suppose.”

We don’t say anything else. I watch him drink and wonder why I didn’t choose him.


Those Who Know Us By Name

“Well if it isn’t little Miss Swinnerton.” Jack chuckled, scrubbing a rag over his hands as he walked out of the workshop. “I thought you’re working away in the city somewhere.”

Sarah smiled and let the car door fall shut behind her. It was always the city with Jack, never a name.

“How’d you recognise me.” she asked. “What was I, five last time I came here?”

“Six if I remember rightly. You made a point of tellin’ me as soon as your Granddad lifted you out the car.”

Sarah nodded.

“And of course I recognised ya.” Jack grinned. “You Swinnerton women were always the prettiest faces to come and visit me.”