Bernardine Kennedy

A chatty and newsy blog about author Bernardine Kennedy, her books, her writing career and her life. Check out the latest news, views and recommendations along with the occasional irrelevant photo.

Saturday, October 28, 2006


A brief blog here as I'm off to Barbados tomorrow at the crack of dawn. Yay! Though of course I haven't started packing yet. It is such a drag to do.... I don't mind the clothes element of packing, two minutes that takes, its the other stuff. The pills and potions; the phone chargers and adaptors; shampoo and the like. I'm not fussy but even I draw the line at hotel shampoo!

Have settled on taking books by: Harlan Coben (The Innocent) and Patricia Cornwell (Predator) as well as 'The Devil Wears Prada' . Daughter has seen the film and loved it.
Daughters both have Cecilia Ahern's latest for the plane??
I will also buy loadsa trashy magazines at the airport for an aimless flick once my brain has switched off.

So now I'm off to gaze in confusion at a wardrobe overflowing with stuff and try and find an outfit or two to take.
From now on, or rather when I get back to a newly decorated bedroom, I'm going to be minimalist..... maybe.

Enjoy your week everyone and I'll catch up when I return.

Quote of the day.

'Travel broadens the mind and the behind'.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Many thanks for all the feedback on my dining room floor. Very interesting to see how everyone perceives it!
My preferred option still has to be of a potentially financially rewarding religious iconic nature.

This morning I am self-reflecting (is that good English?) Sometimes I look back and feel as if I've spent most of my life playing 'catch-up' and never getting there.
Time Management? Que?
In my mind I have tidy cupboards, my wardrobe is cleansed twice ayear, I write my Christmas cards before December 23rd, I answer emails when I receive them and I do my accounts as I go along instead of in panic two days before they are due.
Of course if I did all these things properly I really would have time to stuff a mushroom!
I mean why on earth would anyone want to go out to lunch or go shopping with friends when they could be happily vacuuming? (Or stuffing mushrooms?)

It does make me wonder why some of us are disorganised to the point of chaos (many of my friends and fellow writers) while others sail through life in control?
I ask because as I started writing this I found myself having to be repetitive once again....
E.G. I will add live links in the mails and I will add more links to good blogs and friends websites! I will... I will... after I get back from holiday of course!

Off on hols on Sunday. YAY. I am so ready for it. Too long without going somewhere 'nice' and I start to go stir crazy. I NEED to travel. (my excuse)

Another of life's little mysteries...
How often have you said to someone, 'I'm going on holiday' and they've said 'are you going somewhere nice?'
Don't you really just itch to say......
'Nope.. I decided on somewhere truly disgusting, picked the worst place I could find, checked out Holidays From Hell and thought Yep. that'll do nicely.....'

Have decided not to rant about NatWest Bank after receiving a real apology in a personal letter. Now that's more like it and much appreciated because it doesn't often happen.
'Sorry' really is the hardest word! .
ALTHOUGH.... an ambiguous apology can upset me far more than the original incident, is the: 'I'm sorry you feel our service didn't meet up to your expectations....' or 'I'm sorry you felt offended.....'
This patronising nonsense means 'you daft old bat, did you really expect us to be polite/helpful/patient/knowledgeable?'
Not that I'm a serial complainer you understand. My closet ranting streak simply emerged at the same time as Call Centres took over the world.

PAST CHANCES has now made its way to my editor. I am so pleased to see it go, now I can do all the the things I've used it as an excuse not to do! That doesn't include stuffing mushrooms though.
Have now got the difficult but fun task of choosing holiday reading. Spoilt for choice eh?

By the way, if anyone wants to email rather than posting a comment on the blog then there is an email link on my website.

Quote of the day...

'Housework? Just sweep the floor with a glance'.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Befuddled brains and icons

For the past few days I've been meaning to post a riveting, informative, gasp inducing blog but it ain't gonna happen this week guys!
I've been so bogged down in the minutae of finishing off PAST CHANCES and pulling in the final few threads that had escaped, my brain is now in meltdown. Befuddled is what I am, but help is at hand.
I just need some soothing sun, sand and rum punches 'in the sunny Caribbean Sea'. (two weeks away)

But before that I have to downsize my wardrobe (clear out the old junk) and dismantle the bedroom ready for decorating and recarpeting. I ripped the old carpet up last year and then lost interest but I am now re-focused and the decorator is coming in while we're on hols.
So very civilised!
Sarah the decorator is brilliant. She clears up behind herself, makes her own cuppas and sometimes mine as well and doesn't suck air in through her teeth and sigh when I change my mind. Though she has been known to cuss at me on occasions!

What is this I found in the grain of the wood on my dining room floor? Is it a message from above? My hopes are obviously pinned on it being a religious iconic message after the piece of toast that earned its owner $150,000.
Memo to self: Must try ebay!

Suggestions so far though: Shakespeare. Leonardo da Vinci. Chewbacca.

Though I can't imagine why any of the above should choose to send me a message!

More suggestions please!

Quote of the week (can't beat the oldies)

Lif'es too short to stuff a mushroom!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Holidays Brickbats and Bouquets

Oh Yay. Oh Yay. I've managed to book a holiday that's agreeable to everyone so at the end of October we're off to Barbados for a week of sun, sea, reggae and reading. A small hotel on the beach that sounds fine for all of us. It was a challenge and hb locked the knife drawer so I couldn't get access, but we got there in the end with no damage to anyone. Just.

Booked again with British Airways Holidays whose staff deserve a bouquet for their patience and politeness in the face of a party of four all wanting different things and arguing about dates.
The past few holidays/flights I've tried to stick with BA for that very reason. Love em!!

Also a bouquet to Carphone Warehouse in Southend. Infinite patience and no raised eyebrows because we couldn't transfer data to a new phone and couldn't put the memory card in. (not bought from the shop). Happy young men!! I now have the achingly trendy 'Red Phone' that supports the fight against Aids in Africa. Each call you make contributes to charity.

Brickbat for rubbish service to NTL who, despite dozens of phone calls, can't take on board that my brother has died and still keep sending bills/debt collectors to him over six months later for money that isn't owed anyway!

Short and sweet today as we're off to a party. Sister-in-laws big birthday (same as I've just had), she chose to have a party, I chose to have a tantrum.

Next week I really will get to grips with live links and proper connections.

Quote for the day.

If God had meant us to touch our toes he would have put chocolates on the floor.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Writing and Hols and Age

I've decided that it would be good to commit to this blog regularly rather than often. So from now on I shall try and stick to a couple of times a week, unless I have a strong urge to comment on something irrelevant or the need to avoid other things I should be doing.
BLogging is such fun. It's like a one way conversation with no-one to cut in and tell you stop talking drivel.
I can drivel to my hearts content. And of course you can read it or not read it!

Still trying to arrange a holiday for four diverse adults. This is where we're at.....
I like Florida for doing nothing and for Walmart but daughters don't want to go there. (done it) They fancy Mexico but hb doesn't just for a week. (too far) He fancies Egypt. (we've all done that) or Camping in Devon. (Yeah right)
Guess it'll have to be the shortest flight Caribbean destination and one I can write a feature on later. Or rather add on the list of features on my to do list!
Organisation is sadly not one of my skills.
I am however very skilled at travelling and holidays and still enjoy it pretty much wherever I go.
I was whisked off to Singapore before I was a year old and haven't really stopped zooming off to various place since. I still love the whole experience of travel.
I even enjoy the airport lounges, a fantastic place for character spotting, I like the flights for guilt free reading and then there's the excitement of exploring of a new destination.

But before I can get too carried away on hols I'm still editing/altering PAST CHANCES like crazy. A writers mind is a strange thing that never wants to stay on the right storyline path..... that's why I don't go in for any in-depth plotting beforehand because it doesn't work for me. Suddenly my brain's gone off somewhere with a new and (to my mind) a wonderful plot that simply HAS to be included.
I'm sure if I had an open ended date for submission I'd just keep adding and adding. New plots, new characters etc.
But hey! Now I'm focused, the threads are all together and it'll soon be gone and I can start afresh on the new one.

Have just had a big birthday (memo to friends, do not post which big birthday or you die).
Big birthdays as very thought provoking and depression inducing although after a certain age they seem to become a badge of pride. My mother would never speak of her age until she reached about 75 and from then on it was mentioned and boasted about at every opportunity. Especially in supermarket queues that she wanted to jump.
I not at the boasting stage, I'm at the, if I ignore it it might go away stage..

Anyway, back to the coal-face.

Quote for the day:

When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot in it and hang on.