As a big believer in the power of positivity I have been listening to some fantastic audio books by Esther, Jerry, and Abraham Hicks. Click HERE if you’d like to check them out (turns out their books are what The Secret was inspired by!). The downright basics of the idea is that, if you feel good and think good, life will be good. I realise that may seem horribly simple to many, but for me, I love it. So to remind myself to keep my head in the right “space” I created this lovely printable. If you can print it in colour then you’ll see the Sacred Geometry design is actually overlaid with a universe design. It’s subtle but beautiful 🙂 Grab this lovely printable HERE at Book Geek Chic, and I hope it helps you to remember all the good things in life, especially the small stuff!
After posting photos on Instagram of all the beautiful lemons I’ve picked from my nana’s lemon tree (which she’d thought was on its last legs – it must have heard that ’cause it’s gone NUTS this season!) I finally got around to recreating the delicious iced lemon tea we drank daily while on holiday in Singapore this year. It took a few attempts before I got the balance quite right. Just normal “gumboot” tea (as my Kassie refers to it as) is too strong, while I didn’t want to use Earl Grey because I know too much of that can give you a tummy ache. (Earl Grey tea contains the essential oil Bergamot, which is very strong acting while not tasting too overwhelming). After much examining of the tea area at the local supermarket, I spotted Lady Grey tea, which is flavoured with real lemon and orange peel. It sounded ideal, and it really is! The next step was getting the balance of sweetness right. Singaporeans love sweet drinks, and given the steamy heat they live in I honestly believe their drinks act like electrolytes. I know the day I ended up with sunstroke (one of those days where the distance on the map looked easy, the reality – not so much…) the two glasses of Bandung (rose syrup & milk/soy milk) Glenn managed to convince me to drink actually pulled me around quicker than I expected. Which was much appreciated!
Here in NZ, however, we don’t have that steamy heat. We have sharp, vivid (you’ll never see skies as blue as NZ/Aussie skies) heat that BURNS, so excessive sweetness in a drink can be unpleasant (or so I find). I started with a cup of sugar, and we’ve whittled it down to 1/2 cup, although I did think 2/3 cup was that nice level of “treat”. The most important part though? The glorious fresh lemon juice! I can’t get over how delicious it smells, and the gorgeous yellow colour. 1 cup per 2 litre jug makes this iced tea just sing. We did quickly discover that this tea only tastes good cold. So if you are crazy impatient to taste it, fill your glass with ice cubes and pour it over then let it sit for 5 mins. Otherwise do what I do and make it up the night before so the jug has plenty of time to chill.
Grab your own beautiful printable of this recipe HERE at my Book Geek Chic store. Just use the code FREEBIE at the checkout. And please let me know if you try it! Or if you have your own favourite recipe of iced tea do share it!
NaNoWriMo… For those not in the know, it stands for National November Writing Month. Really it is very much an international movement now, but the name is rather catchy just the way it is *grin*. The basic idea of this harebrained scheme is to knuckle down and write a novel in a month. Let’s keep in mind that this is the first draft of a novel. Not a perfect, publishable novel. That’s a pretty important detail!
Can it be done? Well I’ve written three first drafts in a month (each in one month, not all three in one month – are you insane!?!): Awakening, AfterBurn, and Prometheus. So I do know first hand that it can be done. But the actual process of doing it – well I’m not going to lie, it takes some serious determination and knuckling down. Below is my list of helpful things for those tackling this year’s NaNoWriMo – whether it be your first time, or tenth, these are all things you occasionally need to remind yourself of when you get into the thick of it all. I’ve also popped a fantastic printable of this list (shortened so it’s quicker to read/glance at) on Book Geek Chic that you can grab for free right HERE.
- Don’t overthink it. Remember this is all about writing a first draft not a perfectly, polished, publishable, piece. So ignore the little hick-ups and just keep writing
- Oh it is just so much fun to be a pantser, especially when the almost paralysing, inevitable writers-block hits. The best way to avoid this? Plot. It doesn’t need to be big, it doesn’t need major, but if you know where your characters are in Chapter One, where they are in the middle of your book, and what the end result is, you’re going to find it a heck of a lot easier to just keep writing
- Writers-block. It’s more about a lack of inspiration, or brain burn out. For both the easiest thing is to take a walk, look at Pinterest, watch a documentary, basically just get your brain off it and give yourself a chance to reboot. Make sure to limit this to 20mins or less, otherwise you’ll lose out on precious writing time. Oh, and just keep writing
- Talk to your characters. When you’re not writing (doing the dishes maybe, or walking to catch the bus, making the bed, doing anything where it’s not likely people are going to be directly listening to you) talk to your characters. Ask them how they feel about where they are in the story, what they’re worried about, what are their likes/dislikes. It sounds outright weird, but this is one of the most helpful exercises to help you just keep writing
- Take inspiration from those around you. Stuck for a quirky protagonist? Take a snippet of a personality of someone near you and shape it into a fully blown character. Say your mother hates the sensation of tennis balls (true story…). Let that create a character who is sharply aware of textures, and how would that influence their thoughts/feelings/actions. With the multiple characters in your life, be they real/literary/screen, you can use this technique to create endless more characters. Which will help you just keep writing
- Turn a cliché on its head. Take a story that makes you roll your eyes in irritation. Rewrite it. Write it the way YOU want to read it. Burn away the irritation by writing the story in a way you’ll love, and just keep writing
- Above all, no matter what, no matter how little, JUST KEEP WRITING
You got this!
Do you have a suggestion you’d add to your own list? Let me know in the comments, after-all, we crazy writers need all the help we can get!