jeudi 27 mars 2014


I don’t mind admitting it.  I’m obsessed.  I can no longer go out on a Friday night.

I know it sounds completely rubbish – a television programme that consists of watching other people watch television.  I’m almost embarrassed to explain it.

However, it is properly hilarious.  My favourites are the Brighton family and Sandra and Sandy in Brixton – but I love them all.

As well as being funny and entertaining viewing, I honestly believe that it is doing a real public service.

It’s a great leveller.  It proves that we are all pretty much the same (or at least all start going ‘da-da-da-da-da’ if ever we hear the Match of the Day theme tune).

If you were someone with an insular life, who – say – didn’t know any black people, or white people, or gay people, or posh people, or a vicar, Gogglebox would show you that it doesn’t make any difference.  We all watch TV and say the same things.

Also, it is really, really funny.  If you haven’t watched it, I suggest you do so immediately.

vendredi 21 mars 2014

A cup of coffee.

This is not the most exciting revelation.  But it is an unusual thing you may not know about me.

I don't like coffee.  I wish I did.  I have tried to.  I would love to sit about in French cafes drinking tiny cups of chic  hot caffeiney blackness.

I like a cup of tea.  I drink a lot of them.  Better than that, I really like a hot chocolate, or a chocolate milk, or a nice fizzy orange.

Yes, I am a child.  In this and oh-so-many ways.

lundi 17 mars 2014

Nobody is entitled.

Everyone on Twitter recently seemed to be going bonkers about this article.  The comments were all 'woe is me', 'it's so hard these days', 'boo hoo, we deserve so much more'.  Etcetera.

It made me so cross that I had to abandon Twitter and go and bake a cake, which hardly ever happens.

People seem to have such a sense of entitlement.  This strikes me as being most rife amongst people who seem desperate to call themselves 'writers' without doing much work or, you know, writing.

I can assure you that, historically, there are writers far greater than you who had to have a day job.  It used to be the norm.  People didn't expect to live a nice, middle-class lifestyle solely from writing books that not many people want to read.

You are not special.  You are not entitled.  Just get on with it and forget all those 80s big-bucks publishing myths.

Yes, it's harder to get published these days.  So what?  It is what it is.  As I am always telling myself - yes, the bar is high; that just means you have to  try harder to get over the bar.  This is no bad thing.  Everything worth doing is hard.

No, there is not as much money about in publishing any more.  There is not as much money around any more, full stop.  Again: so what?  Do your thing, and stop feeling so bloody entitled.

jeudi 13 mars 2014

The Cocktail Hour

I've currently been busy launching a new website!  We are called The Cocktail Hour, and we are aiming to bring the world brilliant writing, chat, glamour and culture..

We are currently looking for submissions - and obviously readers are always welcome!

Check it out here.

Hope you love it and want to get involved in some capacity.  It's gonna be fun!

lundi 10 mars 2014

The Cardigans

I always kind of forget that The Cardigans were actually a really good band.

jeudi 6 mars 2014

Top Lips

A very frivolous observation that might not be remotely interesting to any of you.


Newsflash: Topshop make-up is really good.

Really, really good, you guys!

I am currently wearing their lipsticks pretty much constantly.  Yep, I am having a temporary break from tasteful Chanel in favour of garish Topshop - sometimes a bright lipstick seems like a necessity, to me at least.

I am a big fan of 'Infrared', which is actually more like a bright orange.  I have also recently acquired a good dark/brick red called 'Hazard'.  I like that the names sound a bit dangerous.

A cream blusher called 'Head Over Heels' (less dangerous) is currently perking up my sad winter face, which generally turns a fetching yellow tone during these grim, cold months.  But it's the lipsticks that are really exciting me.

They are a perfect consistency - so much so that you can practically put them on without a mirror, even the strong colours.  Also importantly, they come in a hardy little metal tube that can withstand a lot of jumbling around at the bottom of the hell that is my handbag.

Also, duh, they are cheaper than Chanel.  Or Mac.

Public service announcement: over.

lundi 3 mars 2014


In the past week, I have:

 - missed my stop on the train.
 - shivered in a cold bath.
 - fallen asleep in bed reading, dribbling and still fully dressed.

This is because I have just finished 'Dr Sleep', which (as you know) is Stephen King's new sequel to 'The Shining'.  Danny Torrance is grown up, still shining, trying not to be like his dad...

It is magnificent.  I could not put it down.  I think it is scarier than 'The Shining'.

I love Stephen King so much.  He draws characters so well that you actually feel frightened for them.  The man is a genius.

'The Stand' is possibly in my top five favourite books of all time, and I re-read it about once every two years.  'It' scared the shit out of me as a child (serves me right for reading it secretly when I shouldn't have), and still does.  'On Writing' quite probably changed my life (or at least improved my writing).

I'm now (of course) re-reading 'The Shining'.  I had almost forgotten how good it was.  I am then planning on a binge re-read: primarily of 'Pet Sematary' (of which my memories are foggy, but I mostly remember as being very, very sad), and then an overdue revisiting of 'The Stand', which I believe is a truly great masterpiece.

I also came upon this documentary, which I very much enjoyed: