BOOKS

The Readings Prize for New Australian Fiction shortlist 2017 by Gabrielle Williams


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The Readings Prize for New Australian Fiction considers first and second books from Australian authors, with the aim of recognising exciting and exceptional new contributions to local literature.

Over the past year, the judges have read their way through over 70 Australian titles and were impressed by the number of edgy voices who didn’t shy away from starkly original concepts. The task of filtering the terrific longlist down to a shortlist of just six books was difficult, but in the end they considered the following books to be their top picks… Continue reading “The Readings Prize for New Australian Fiction shortlist 2017 by Gabrielle Williams”

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BOOKS, History, writing

“How to start writing your novel” – with writer, Gabrielle Emmons


Recently I have been talking and collaborating with my very good friend, (a novelist and history enthusiast), an intelligent, studious and amicable lady who strives for greatness in her writing, Gabrielle Emmons. We have been talking a lot about writing in general and I came up with the idea of her doing a guest post on how she begins to write a novel. This is fantastic for those who are budding authors, ready for a new breathe of fresh air or something to their writing life.
I am proud to introduce her to my blog and with the upmost sincere thanks and gratefulness to have her feature on here.
You will find the full article here on her blog, Gabrielle M Emmons and you will also find that she works and keeps up with her own numerous blogs showcasing her work and authorship.
My absolute favourite blog of hers is Tea, Books and Britain because well, you know me! I have become the bit of an Anglophile! And the title is just Oh so perfect! And sums up my life basically. A cup of tea while watching “Escape to the country” or “60 Minute Makeover” has truly been the highlight of my afternoons.
Before I post her article I totally recommend for you to check out her excellent Book Review on “The Mark of the King”. This description on the back cover definitely makes me want to delve into it.

After being imprisoned and branded for the death of her client, twenty-five-year-old midwife Julianne Chevalier trades her life sentence for exile to the fledgling 1720s French colony of Louisiana, where she hopes to be reunited with her brother, serving there as a soldier. To make the journey, though, women must be married, and Julianne is forced to wed a fellow convict.

When they arrive in New Orleans, there is no news of Benjamin, Julianne’s brother, and searching for answers proves dangerous. What is behind the mystery, and does military officer Marc-Paul Girard know more than he is letting on?

With her dreams of a new life shattered, Julianne must find her way in this dangerous, rugged land, despite never being able to escape the king’s mark on her shoulder that brands her a criminal beyond redemption.

So, even if you haven’t clicked on that review, bookmark it or save it on your internet and make sure you get that little glimpse of a story of great and hopeful history. It truly has made me want to read it very soon!
In her Writing 101 – a new series blog post she states how we specifically have been discussing the idea on HOW to BEGIN writing a novel. It has truly been amazing talking with her about ideas and brainstorming and starting that novel in particular.
Now, let’s get started with her article which was published on September 12th 2017 on her History with Flair website. Grab yourself a drink (tea or water) and a notebook & pen or laptop. There is an activity at the end!

Many people have asked me how do I start the process for writing a novel. They have also asked me how do I find inspiration/ideas. So I thought I would do a blog series featuring writing. This is the first in the series and you can find more about it here.
So pull up a chair, grab your favorite beverage (mine is tea), and let’s get started. (Just a heads up there will be an assignment at the end of this post. But it shouldn’t be too bad).
First off, there is no one way to start the process of writing a novel. Each author has their own way of how to start that is unique to them. The key is to find one that works for you.
For example, some have a vague idea right away. Others have pictured a character or characters. Again, others have a couple of scenes already figured out.
It is all up to you.
For me, it varies. For my WWII novel set in England (which I have put on hold for now), I already had a vague understanding the plot.
For my Autumn themed story that is currently in the very early stages, I knew I wanted to have setting of the novel be during the Autumn months in MA because I love the Fall. I also knew who my main characters were.
Okay, homework time.
I want you to grab your favorite notebook and writing utensil. You can use your laptop if you prefer to type. I usually for this stage write it in a notebook and then transfer it to the computer later on.
Now, I want you to write down five ideas that could be potential stories. Don’t feel bad if you can only come up with one and two. It is a start.
The most important thing to remember is to have fun. Writing a novel should be fun.

How did you go with the activity?
I thought I would share one idea I came up with. Here is what I wrote:
Idea 5. Professor Wickman travels to London to start a new job at the City University of London. Committing his time and energy to his work and study is his priority and is all work, but through a period of time he learns to apply his work to excellence and focus on a project with his enchanting partner Lady Grosvenor from the affluent suburb of Mayfair. They eventually fall in love whilst working together and get married at St George Hanover Square.
It is not a complete idea but that is an example of ideas. First off starting with the main character, then a setting, place or particular location, the body and then the minor character fixed in there somewhere.
I skipped a whole part of what “could be” (a long plot) There could be so much more I could add to it and I am excited at the thought of creating a story again!
but I liked the idea of this so much I am thinking I am giving away a good story already! Well, that can be my next project!
Emmalisa
BOOKS, History, Lady, poetry, TRAVEL, writing

Oh, to be in England!


This title is the first Chapter of “The Way to St. Werburgh’s”, and oh! Is it just the perfect title.

“It was 1819, perhaps a year of destiny. George III’s long reign was drawing to a close; his granddaughter Victoria was born, later to be one of the greatest rulers of the British empire; and soon the self-indulgent, sentimental reign of his son George IV would lower the past prestige of the royal family, despite the fact that he had served as Regent for some years.”

“The Northern spring was fast approaching, to gladden the hearts of all Englishmen Grand old oaks and spreading yew trees, majestic chestnuts and elegant birches vied with shy wood violets and bursting daffodils to greet the new season.

Blackbirds and sky larks, sparrows and finches, swallows and thrush, wrens and nightingales plied the air with ceaseless song, and the whole English landscape breathed new life with the melting snow” Continue reading “Oh, to be in England!”

BOOKS, Celebrities, Lady, personal development, self help

A look into “Proverbs 31 Ministries”


Lysa Terkest

Lysa TerKeurst is the leader of Proverbs 31 Ministries and the New York Times best-selling author of Uninvited, The Best Yes, Made to Crave, and 17 other books.
As the founder of Proverbs 31 Ministries, Lysa and her team have led thousands to make their walk with God an energising and faithful journey by doing daily online devotionals, radio programs, online Bible studies, speaker/writing training, and MUCH more.

Continue reading “A look into “Proverbs 31 Ministries””

BOOKS, Lady

The Royal Collection Treasures


Introduction – The Royal Collection

One of the worlds greatest picture collections is found in this book, “The Royal Collection Treasures” involving masterpieces, splendours of the decorative arts, for example, I will touch on different sections such as furniture, or sculptures. It is not just only a collection, but a collection on collections which contain works of art.

I love the categories that I am going to share with you. It involves drawings, paintings, books, gems, tapestries, silver, porcelain, etc.

Surprisingly, the book says it is wholly unlike a museum collection which I thought that I would! But the British National Collections selectively provide a wide-ranging depiction of the arts and sciences with a specific purpose of showing the public what there is in an educating way.
Continue reading “The Royal Collection Treasures”

BOOKS, Lady, personal development, self help

“ENJOY” BY TRILLIA NEWBELL – REVIEW as featured on Taylor Magazine


 

 

The following article I did is featured on Taylor Magazine, an online London magazine that is a minimalistic guide to life, which is “Taylored for you”. From articles that speak about the matters of the heart, celebrity interviews, Life, conversations, culture, and they also include favourite books! Which is the category that I chose! According to their About page, Taylor was born out of the need to have something that combines EVERYTHING that consumes our world. Something that is taylored specifically for you.

Here is the link to “Enjoy” by Trillia Newbell – Review on Taylor Magazine, and I have put the article up so you can read it on my blog. I also did an article on “Feminism” on Taylor Magazines website, which you can find HERE. It is probably one of my best work, ever!

ENJOY BOOK

I am currently reading a book called “Enjoy – Finding the freedom to delight in God’s good gifts” by Trillia Newbell. I received this book from ‘Blogging for books’. I have done two book reviews so far, “How to own it” by Sallie Krawcheck, and “The Women of Easter” by Liz Curtis Higgs. I thoroughly enjoyed writing these, and have been looking forward to doing a different book. “Enjoy” is a faith-filled illustrative, scriptural based book on experiencing the fullness of life, and truly learning how to enjoy life in general. They cover the basis with scripture such as 1 Thessalonians that says to “rejoice always”.

They also reveal that joy is a fruit of the spirit – something that is developed and nurtured within us. I was a little unsure of doing a review on a Christian book, because some people aren’t religious, and it caters to people who believe in the Holy Bible. I was brought up in a Christian home, so I find this kind of reading therapeutic for me personally. I like how they talk about gifts, gifts He intends for our enjoyment. We have been given gifts in life. For example, I am truly learning the gift of writing. Growing up, I did love my books, and relished in an Enid Blyton story, but I honestly never thought I would create my own website, and write personal stories on my blog. This happened during my late twenties, when living in a small country town called Merredin, so it became a creative outlet for me to break out, and just write.

We can experience the fullness of enjoyment as we use our gifts daily. We can and should ‘enjoy, delight and rejoice’!

EnjoyMeme_02

Have you struggled with enjoying things in life, such as gardening, or just sitting down in your lounge and reading a good novel, or listening to classical music?

Sometimes we feel confused about the significance and purpose of leisure, but it is really quite simple. Turn on the radio, and dance your heart out, or sing to your hearts content. It is with learning to enjoy, recognize and appreciating things like leisure that you learn to see more clearly, and more passionately.

I particularly like how they say in the first chapter that there must be purpose in order for us to make sense of the world, and that we can easily fall into the snare of discontentment. It would make life hard to live if you are not feeling content with yourself. Life was created for us to enjoy, so, do things for yourself that would truly make you feel a sense of joy.

Through this book you can gain a deeper understanding of what it means to delight in good things, and to simply, enjoy your life. I also like how they created an “Enjoy Project” as a tool where there is a list of suggestions at the end of each chapter, and you can decide which suggestions you would like to do, such as journalling and you can write down if it was effective or enjoyable. For example, they put ‘start a blog series’, when I started blogging I felt a sense of joy and achievement from typing and it was out of pure joy that I started doing it.

If you do something similar to this, or just writing anything down in a journal, you will feel challenged, encouraged and inspired. We are not called to do life on our own, we are created to also work together and have relationships where we can sit down and talk to one another sharing our goals and dreams and aspirations for the future. That is one of the best things you could ever do, is get with people and talk about what you want to do with your life, and then truly embrace your god given talents. Our goal can also be to learn what it truly means to enjoy. Maybe create a random encouragement card to someone that you admire – investing in other people is worthwhile.

I love how at the end of every chapter there is a section/list on what you can do to create that joy, for example, scheduling a coffee date with a friend, making a meal for someone, or making certain lists. And each chapter starts out with an inspirational quote, which is pleasant to start off with.

I particularly liked Chapter Nine, which is called “The Art of Life” opening up with the sentence, “It’s interesting how something can be so central to your everyday life and then gradually fade away”. I have had this in the area of friendship specifically, and also when playing an instrument. My life was focused on piano playing for about eight years, but over the past few years I have forgotten what its like to sit down, and let my fingers tap away with such joy in my heart, and I miss those days. Sometimes life gets in the way of enjoyment and it is important for us to delight in everything that we do. If certain obstacles prevent us from fulfilling our dreams it is easy to fall into the trap of self-pity, we need to put our hope into pursuing and cultivating a great life for ourselves. This chapter really stood out to me because it’s so easy to get lost along the way that you forget to truly enjoy life.

You can delight in a variety of things, and I particularly liked that chapter because it talks about the arts. I delight in painting and music, and theatre, so it really stood out to me.

EnjoyMeme_01

 

Last, but not least, the last chapter called “Everlasting Enjoyment” focuses on the spiritual side of things, delighting in not only the here and now, but looking forward to the future, and it talks about faith and hope. To be truly complete, you must have hope. I particularly like how they use scripture such as Romans 5:35 how it says that ‘suffering produces endurance, endurance produces character, and character produces hope’, and especially it ends with a C. S. Lewis quote: “For the present is the point at which time touches eternity.

So, I hope that even if you don’t read this book, that you have learnt something to truly learn to enjoy your life by doing things that you love.

“Enjoy!”

LOVE

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BOOKS, Celebrities, History, Lady, royal life

Duchess of Cornwall hosts ‘Duchess’s Bookshelves’ Garden Party


 

In tribute to Camilla’s 70th birthday I thought I would do a post on her, regardless of anything, I never thought of doing a post on her, but she is still part of the royal family! Please note that I used words from Royal Central which I absolutely loved because it is to do with reading and writing. It is such a good “read”! I would love to have elaborated  more, but Royal Centrals post was quite concise and succinct, so I hope you love reading this and of course, with both the word “bookshelf” and “garden party”, I’m in!

The Duchess has always been supportive of encouraging reading and writing in young children, and last year hosted a writing competition run by the BBC. This year she was been working with a project run by the National Literacy Trust, and in honour of her seventieth birthday later this month. The project has seen seventy books selected as the most popular books chosen by primary school children across the country. These seventy books complete with the Duchess’s bookshelves will be given to seventy selected primary schools across the country.

This Tuesday, Camilla welcomed a party of schoolchildren to Clarence House. Partly to launch the project, now the seventy books have been selected; and partly as an early birthday party. The children were brought to Clarence House in an iconic red bus driven by the comedian, Britain’s Got Talent judge, and children’s author David Walliams. David was probably quite please his own talent had been recognised – two of his books, Gangsta Granny and The Boy in the Dress were included in the seventy! A set of the books was also presented to the Duchess, who assured those gathered that the bookcase would be placed in a central place so that all five of her grandchildren could borrow them without fighting over them.

There is a wide selection of books on the list, which includes non-fiction books on coding and the solar-system together with fiction books that have been classics for children throughout the generations. These include classics by Road Dahl and Michael Bond who sadly died earlier this month, and more modern books like the first of the Harry Potter novels by JK Rowling, the books by David Walliams and the Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney.

The Duchess loves reading and sharing children’s books, and is the patron of several organisations which promote and support literacy, including the National Literacy Trust, Beanstalk, BookTrust, First Story, Roald Dahl and the Wicked Young Writer Awards.

She is also the Royal Patron of the National Literacy Trust who are behind this project.

Note: This is all copied from Royal Central, it is not my own words, but I loved it so much I had to share and particularly loved the reading/writing/literacy side of things.
 

  ❤️

BOOKS, Celebrities, Lady

Sophie Kinsella’s Literary Heroines


A blog post on my favourite author. So, Boil the kettle, make a tea (or coffee if it’s the morning!) and be inspired by Sophie’s favourite books to read. 📚

Penguin Blog

Sophie Kinsella, best-selling author of the universally loved Shopaholic series, tells Women on the Page about her literary heroines, including, for a time, being Harriet the Spy.

I grew up with them. I think of them often. I refer to them when I’m unsure in life. I love them, admire them, cringe with them and weep with them. They’re my literary heroines. And the fact that they’re imaginary doesn’t make them any less influential on my life than if they were real. In fact, it makes them more influential.

Whom have I known in real life as long as I have known Milly-Molly-Mandy? Not many people, that’s for sure. But her adventures are etched in my brain as surely as if she were a family member. There was the day she unselfishly gave up the one remaining length of flowered dress fabric for another girl. There was the time she made…

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BOOKS, Celebrities, Lady

4 Brilliant British Books to buy


The following books that I recommend won’t be an entire book review, but merely just enough information for you to peruse, to see if you would like it, or if you want to read it. I have read the books thoroughly, and have decided to write down bits and pieces that I like, and what you might find interesting, or have just written enough information for you to decide whether you would like to buy it or not!

Here are four brilliant british books to buy:

1. Our Queen by Robert Hardman

In Britain, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II is not just the longest reigning monarch in history, but is a red-double decker bus with two legs, and Prince William says ‘she’s incredible’. She works hard professionally and this book is an in-depth study and portrait of our Queen today.

“It is a study of a thoroughly modern monarch.” – (Introduction, page 3)

Chapter 1 talks about her achievements  – It opens up with this statement – “She’s really determined to finish everything she started”. I honestly thought that is an excellent statement to describe the working life of a monarch.

She is the most popular figure in British public life and is emblematic about the ‘Old Britain’ and the New Britain, and being devoted to the Church of England, and the Commonwealth, historians see it as one of her greatest achievements.

I particularly liked how it said about her taking her ‘nation’ role very seriously, just as her coronation vow to preserve the settlement of the church of England. Consider this statement:

“The Sovereign acts as a focus for national identity, unity and pride; gives a sense of stability and continuity; officially recognises success and excellence, and supports the ideal of voluntary service.”

William Shawcross of the Evening Standard says about the book “Hardler is the best chronicler of the monarchy writing in the British press today, superbly well-informed, witty and wise.”

One thing I didn’t know was that when she visited the British Office of Google in 2008, her private secretary came up with an idea of using her head on their website. So, for one day only, the second G on google’s website was replaced with the Sovereign’s head. How cool is that? I wish I had’ve seen that back then!

 


With some Queen Victoria green tea, which I am trying to drink more of instead of Lipton tea, which is apparently not as good for you than chamomile or any other herbal tea, it is completely invigorating for the senses. ☕️ but I have become obsessed with PG Tips, especially after knowing it is Julie Andrews favourite tea. I bought it to try it out, and I can see why she loves it!

Continue reading “4 Brilliant British Books to buy”

Beauty, BOOKS, Lady, Lifestyle

Luxurious Lifestyle


I couldn’t help but share my new bag collection…… okay, well, I’ve had it for about a month, but I love the theme, the idea of a 3 in 1 bag, large, medium and small items that are so handy! For a nice evening Occassion I can just take out the third one, and everyday I can use all of them! I am so impressed with my set, and I completely love my collection.

I got it from a vintage shop in Westfield Whitford City Shopping Mall with 30 percent OFF  and it was the last one, so I HAD to have them! I have to apologise because I can not remember the name of the actual store.When I find out I will update this page with the information. I felt desperate for a nice London Bag! It was a desperately needed item! Haha and Just more to add to my “London theme collection”!

I got a beautiful gift most recently, that I will absolutely treasure forever. A friend recently went to England and came back with a set of 30 postcards from the Buckingham Palace Shop or it may have been at Windsor Castle! It is a set of classically printed black and white cards of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and I was astonished and quite awe-struck by the lovely gift. I am not sure what I am going to do with them, I have sent two postcards already to some pen pals, but I would love to create a collage/board with all of them on it.

You can buy the postcards at the Royal Collection Shop website here for ten pounds which is only 16 dollars in Australian currency, although delivery may be expensive, it normally depends on what item you buy.

These are a few of my favourite ones! Just completely stunning…….

and isn’t this one just gorgeous…???

Continue reading “Luxurious Lifestyle”