Friday, August 31, 2012


Tourist reading Nuestro Diario from Guatemala

After you've finished reading, stop! If you want to remember what you were reading, that is; apparently a ten minute break after reading allows your memory to consolidate and you remember what you've read much better - even a week later.

You can read about it on PsyBlog.

I wonder if eating chocolate enhances the effect. I'm willing to test out the theory - for the benefit of science, obviously. Does anyone else want to test the chocolate theory with me?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

What women have been waiting for

Do you sometimes write with a pen? Maybe not your novel, screenplay, blog post or
pornmagazine article, but perhaps a shopping list or love letter?

Up till now, women have had to struggle with heavy, clunky pens made for men's tough, calloused hands. But no longer! Say hello to the BIC for her pen, made specially for a woman's - Agh! Sorry. I can only stand so much of this drivel, even if it is me writing it.

Do go and look at the pens on amazon, though. The reviews, as always, are hysterical. And thank you to Sociological Images for drawing my attention to it. Their article has more examples (some NSFW) of unnecessary gendering in advertising.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Things to do when you're bored

1. Crochet a Happy Bunny

(Much more fun than clearing out the spare room. Or any of the other rooms where the clutter nearly reaches the ceiling!)

Friday, August 24, 2012

Flash fiction competition

There's a new flash fiction contest starting in September, run by Stephen Parrish who wrote the Tavernier Stones. Word limit is 250 words; nice and short! The competition opens on 8th September and closes on 22nd September, and the picture above is the prompt.

Is anyone else thinking about going in for it?

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Adding sex appeal

Given that sex in novels is currently selling so well (and if you haven't heard of  Fifty Shades of Grey  where have you been?) maybe we should all be adding sex scenes into our stories. That's assuming you write stories. It's hard to add sex to crochet although it has been done (NSFW); if your hobby is photography then the answer is obvious; if it's astronomy or quantum physics then I have no advice for you here.

It might be hard to find an angle that hasn't been tried yet. Indie Reader has an amusing (and NSFW) article on current erotic bestsellers, many of which apparently started life as Indie books.

So sex is clearly the way to go if you want to make money from writing. My problem? I just can't do it. I was going to write a spoof of Fifty Shades but when it came to it, I was cringing and laughing too much to get words on the page.

What about you?

Monday, August 20, 2012

Pain relief internet-style

Yesterday My Beloved and I took our bikes for a wonderful ride in Surrey, and when we got too hot we stopped by a cricket match and bought diet Coke at their bar and sat and watched. It was an idyllic English scene.

Then we got back on our bikes. Only I had a basket on the back of mine making it top heavy, so while I was faffing about with putting stuff away the bike fell over. I was holding the bike and didn’t let go in time, so as it fell it pushed my ankle back and pulled me over and I fell on top of it. Ouch!
By evening, the scrape on my wrist was very sore. So, in the spirit of pure scientific research, I tried out pain relief as endorsed by friends on Twitter.

Test results for pain relief out of 5

Wine: 2
Chocolate: 0
Ibuprofen: 5

Either wine isn’t as good at pain relief as some people suggest, or I needed more of it. The trouble is, if I’d had any more I’d have fallen over again!

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