MY ANNOUNCEMENT! | February 2015

Ahhhhhhhh! (that is the sound I have been making waiting to share this with you!)

Okay. So. As you know, I have a middle-grade series running this year (I revealed the details of book two just yesterday), but as exciting as that is, I felt a bit lost not doing something related to YA this year.

So, instead of waiting till 2016 where I had more time in my schedule, I sat down and….found the time to write another book.

A YA book!
A YA book that will come out this summer! On August 1st nonetheless, in 15 countries, in both paperback and ebook formats!

Yes, I’m very pleased to be able to finally announce A MALMONT SUMMER!

An official synopsis isn’t available yet, so here’s some little details:

Set in Santa Monica, A MALMONT SUMMER follows four girls who attend St. Malmont—a boarding school for the teenagers of the extremely rich, located between golden sands and sparkling waters, raving nightclubs and fast cars—as they go about enjoying their summer.

But when a difference in views arises between Heidi and Danielle, their typical summer they had been expecting is turned upside down—almost literally, as they end up flitting to the other side of the globe to Australia, where their summer truly kicks off.

With their two other friends, Lottie and Hannah, the four girls make a plan to follow two very different bucket lists, based on two very different sets of opinions, in order to be able to settle their argument once and for all.

Along the way, however, their summer becomes much more eventful than they ever anticipated—secrets are revealed, love lives are tangled, and crimes are committed…and that’s just the start.

Because, when you’re the daughters of extremely rich families, the sky is the limit when it comes to proving your points…

I’m loving working on this book! I truly, truly am. It’s proving an immense pleasure to work on, and I’m having a lot of fun with these characters, and the things that they can do.

As I said above, the book will be published on August 1st, and I’ve got a whole bunch of things planned in the run-up, including my first ever book playlist, a radio interview in a very exciting city (!!!), a blog tour, giveaways, ARCs, and more!

Meanwhile, I thought I would share a few snapshots below that gives you just a small hint of the kind of things that you can expect in A MALMONT SUMMER below, and thank you very much for reading! I can’t wait to share the book with you!

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BOOK NEWS! | The CONUNDRUM Series—Book 2!

Hello everybody!

The time has finally come where I can announce the details of Book 2 in my middle-grade CONUNDRUM series!

I’m not going to keep you waiting any longer, so here we go…

Entitled PENELOPE’S PECULIAR PROBLEM, the book will hit shelves on April 7th, 2015, in both paperback and e-book formats. The full synopsis is yet to be released, but here it what I can tell you:

Penelope is an ice-skater, and this year she is determined to win. Except another girl, Bethany, is in the way.
But when Bethany has to try on some spare boots during training, something goes wrong…it’s almost as though the boots have a mind of their own.
As curiosity gets the better of her, Penelope sneaks back to the stadium and tries out the boots for herself—and, sure enough, they really can think for themselves.
With the Golden Skater Medal looking set to be hers with the magical boots, Penelope feels as though everything is falling into place.
But things are never that simple, and as her best friend Emily is quick to point out, nothing is ever as good as it first appears…
As her world begins to fall apart around her, Penelope has the choice to make things right…but there’s one condition:
She might have to lose the chance to win the Golden Skater Medal once and for all.
So what does she choose?

I’m super excited for this book to come out, especially as it’s quite different to anything I’ve written before—and, for that reason, I’m a little nervous too. But I can’t wait to share it with you, and hear what you think about it! Hopefully you’ll enjoy it just as much as am doing working on it.

More details will be coming soon, but for now: thank you so much for reading and for your continued support, and let the countdown begin—just 44 days to go!

🙂

An Early Spring Clean!

Hello everybody!

So for today’s blog post, I thought I would talk about something a little other than books and writing. Whilst, of course, they’re both major parts of my life, I think sometimes it’s good to talk about something else every once in a while to stop the brain stagnating!

Talking of the brain, lately I’ve been feeling a little stressed. At the moment, I have a lot on my plate, and because of it I’ve found myself slipping in some areas of my life. One of the major aspects (not massively major, but I’ll explain more in a mo!) that I found myself lacking in was general organization.

Now, I’m not a massively messy person. I don’t have clothes lobbed on the floor or empty mugs littered about the place, but recently I’ve found things like paperwork etc., has got a bit out of hand. As I mentioned earlier, it’s not something major, but rather I found it was a little thing that was stressing me out a lot.

So the other day I had an early Spring Clean— both in reality and online! I sorted out all my paperwork from the last 8 months or so, every little scrap bit of paper that I had used to jot ideas down on, letters, receipts etc, and made myself be ruthless.

I then did the same for my set of drawers— I threw out lots of old clothes and products that I haven’t worn or used for a long time, because sometimes you just have to tell yourself that if you haven’t used something in a long time, then you’re not going to use it again. As my grandmother often says, as a rule, ‘If you haven’t used something in over a year, then you don’t need it, because you’ll never need it.’

After this, I moved onto tidying other bits and bobs that didn’t have anything wrong with them, but I just fancied a bit of a change. I re-organized my bookshelf, for instance. The books had been all mixed up from when I had taken them out for various reasons, such as when making booktube videos over on my YouTube channel, and hadn’t been put back in the right order (something that I admit, I can take the blame for!), but instead of putting them back the way they should be, the way in which I usually always put them back, I put them back in, in a different order— again, just something a little different and a little refreshing.

After this, I had managed to throw out 4 whole bags of stuff I no longer wanted or needed! It did take my 3 hours, but it was quite amazing— I didn’t even think I had that much clutter laying about!

Finally, I made some finishing touches. For example, on my bedside cabinet I have a Yankee candle and a lava lamp, but I also put out a #HashtagADay notebook and two patterned pens— they’re not essentials, but they look nice. 🙂 Obviously, I always have a book on the go, so I keep that on my cabinet too— I’m currently reading THE FAMILY by Martina Cole.

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The next step is to go through my emails and my other online bits and bobs, and try to tidy those up to. I’ve also started planning WAY in advance with things, so that I can try to get a little ahead with things to cut myself some slack further down the line. I do take my job very seriously, and I make sure I write nearly every day, and lately film videos and write blog posts, and I have always been organized with that, but with planning ahead, recently I’ve found myself— say— having 2 or 3 vlogs all filmed and ready to go, so when an upload day comes along I just press a button and HUZZAH— just like that, the video is up. 🙂

Obviously, you still have to put in the time beforehand, so you’re not saving time, but I feel it’s just managing your time better.

I know it can sometimes be a pain in the bottom (so to speak!) to take the time out to re-organize yourself, but trust me— you really will thank yourself afterward. I now feel as though I have a fresher environment surrounding me, in which I can both work as well as live in, and— as they say— a clean place makes for a clear mind!

So, that’s all for now, and if you’re sat reading this and you’re thinking about some things you could organize (whether online or offline, or even your time) then take the time out to do them. 🙂

Thank you for reading, I wish you all a lovely-jubely day, and I’ll see you again very soon! Bye! 🙂

&lt

Getting Off The Couch & Other Little Things

We all know that on New Year’s Day we sit there and say that we’re going to do this and do that and all that tat!

But this year? I’m not going to be one of those people. Ner-uh!

As you know, it’s now the 8th of February (how has that happened?!) and I’m still going strong with my New Year’s Resolution— running! Now, I’m not doing this to loose weight or to be slimmer or anything of the sort, but simply just because I just want to feel both fitter and healthier in myself.

It’s been a couple of years now since I last did any real exercise, if I be honest with you, and I don’t like it. I used to be able to run quite long distances, bike in the mornings, walk for a long time, and all that jazz, but lately— well, all I have to do is go the up the stairs and I’m wheezing!

Now, last year I attempted to go running several times, but I just gave up after two or three nights of doing so. That’s when I learned that I was, perhaps, doing it a little bit wrong. I was throwing myself in at the deep end! Every night, I would try to go running for two miles or so, without stopping, and I would try to do that each night, every night.

It was simply too much!

That’s when I discovered a little app called “Couch to 5k”, and it does what it says on the tin. It’s a 9-week course, which trains you up little by little over the course, so that by the end of it, you’re able to run for 5k— or the equivalent of 20 minutes straight, with the idea being that once you’ve finished up the course, you’re in a good enough position that you’re able to just continue on yourself, adding to your time and your distance.

So far, I’ve only missed a couple of days just because I’ve been so busy, but I’ve really loved it. In fact, on the days I haven’t done it, I’ve actually missed— which is not something that I thought I would ever hear myself saying!

Additionally, I’ve also just been trying to make some little changes in my life. I’ve been replacing my cup of tea in the morning with some fresh fruit juice; attempting to drink two liters of water a day (not going so well— turns out my bladder can’t contain that much and the amount of times nature calls in beyond ridiculous; TMI but it’s the truth!); or just replacing unhealthy snacks with healthier ones (such as a banana instead of a stack of biscuits, which I used to be terrible for doing!).

Yesterday I agreed to train to be able to run 8k with a relative of mine, this summer, and I’m determined to keep it up. I know it’s only early days, but I would really like to be able to do it, and by putting it in writing here, I can guilt myself later down the line if I feel like giving up— and you’ll be able to use this against me, too, if that’s the case!

Anyway. I guess what I’m trying to say is this: sometimes it’s just the little changes you make in your life that make the biggest differences, so ask yourself this: what little thing could you change in your day, or in your lifestyle, that would make a big impact to you?

It’d be interesting to hear a couple down in the comments if you feel like sharing, but if not, at least you can reflect on the answer yourself. 🙂

My sleeping pattern is the next thing to change, but— well…that be pushing things just a bit too far! Haha!

See you soon and thank you for reading. 🙂