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Debbie Flint

Debbie Flint

Debbie Flint

to come

https://www.debbieflint.com/read-it-write-it-sell-it/item/883-writing-as-therapy

Writing For Therapy

 

Many of us have dreamed of taking time out to write our memoirs, our first novel or a book of poetry. Perhaps we regularly fill in a journal. Somehow, the very act of writing makes us feel better. Well many health professionals are now taking that a step further and demonstrating that writing is a therapy perhaps more powerful than we might imagine. By exploring our concerns, it can help provide relief. Whether for reducing stress, helping deal with physical symptoms eg depression or merely for escapism through creative expression, we feel better after committing our gripes or innermost thoughts to paper or keyboard. Sue Reynolds in her 18 minute TEDx talk ‘Writing your way out of Trouble’ says that writing down what distresses and dismays us not only makes us feel better - it improves our resistance to physical illness, decreases the symptoms of anxiety and depression, improves our sleep patterns,.

 

For some, it’s a relaxing pastime. For others it is a treatment within itself. Olivia Dungee knows the value of writing therapy and how it’s helped many sufferers. “Addressing their innermost thoughts and concerns thereby dealing with someone’s mental, emotional, and social health is surprisingly effective and can promote healing and overall well-being,” she says. And studies back her up * Research has shown that writing in a therapeutic way is not just good for mental health; it may even improve physical health, boost the effectiveness of the immune system, and promote healing.

 

 

  1. Reducing stress and symptoms of depression, fear and anxiety.

Deepak Chopra, self-help guru often says ‘we have sixty thousand thoughts a day, and 95% of them are the same as yesterday.’ Exploring different thoughts, eg immersing ourselves in a wonderfully self-indulgent twenty minutes of writing me-time, can spur on different thought patterns. It can help change thoughts about illness, meaning a more positive outlook. Try this one: ‘In your writing, let go and explore your deepest thoughts and feelings about the issues that you feel are most important to you right now.’

 

 

  1. Overcoming trauma and events causing psychological harm

There is evidence that writing therapeutically about difficult experiences can help people learn to cope with them. “Writing helps me stand back and reflect on what has happened” said over half of the participants in one study. Our memories are subjective. How often has a dream seemed as real as a memory? We can try re-writing the events in an awful memory, or lessen the impact it has when we re-live it in our mind. For instance, by imagining an aggressor with no clothes on and re-writing a bullying episode thereby making the foe a comical figure, the act of writing it down can often make it more real, and help rival the original memory. Rather than bottling it up, especially if someone refuses to talk about it, getting it out by writing it down can help.

 

 

  1. Writing for physical health

Research has also found intense, regular writing sessions can have benefits including physical changes eg even boosting the activity of the immune system. If we laugh it affects our bodies positively. Similarly if we write about the most amazing moments of our lives, it can leave us feeling far more elated, and have tangible effects on our physiology. Patients were asked to write about stressful life events for 20 minutes per day for several days. As compared to a control group, these patients had better physical outcomes related to their illnesses. /even if experts disagree as to why, it’s worth a try.

 

  1. Writing as therapy using a guided session eg with a trained therapist or online video, may make the most of the creative process.

To explore emotions and cope with negative feelings and experiences, some people work best with a guide.

 “I felt a lot calmer and more able to move on after writing about it and being forced to think about it. I loved writing about my experience.” Said one subject in writing therapy. For illnesses like cancer it can be very useful to help deal with the feelings of fear and being powerless.  At the 3-week follow-up, over half reported that writing changed their thoughts and over a third reported that writing changed their feelings about their illness. Olivia Dungee writes on Mesothelioma website, ‘Writing as therapy is not a new idea, but it is gaining more followers as evidence continues to accumulate to prove that it can have so many positive benefits for such a wide range of patients.’

 

There are so many potential benefits of writing, and there are no reasons not to try it. Some specialists offer writing as therapy sessions. But even getting a journal and sitting for 20 minutes a day can perhaps make a therapeutic difference.

 

One of the best ways to create a window to change your writing habits is a writing retreat. Many are available where you can just escape from your surroundings and everyday life and have some concerted me-time. As they say – a change is as good as a rest and for many, often with yoga included, country walks, healthy food and other writers who may be working on novels or poetry, that change could be the start of a whole new era in dealing with stress in your life.

*Sources

 

 

 

 

 

It’s an unusual one this week, and it’s my choice because of a tweet that I received. ‘Reasons for Staying Alive’ by top author Matt Haig (‘How to Stop Time’ was his previous hit) has been a bestseller and a key recommendation for many people in dire straits and suffering from depression. Lots of info on the reviews about how this fascinating book has inspired so many people who are feeling down. Worth a read, or worth recommending to someone you know who needs it. It's been called 'a modern classic' and it really is - still in the top 500 kindle books, number one in niche mental health charts, and all that after being launched in March 2015. 

reviews on Amazon - 

'Having struggled to explain how I feel to friends and family - especially to those who say that they don't know how to help - I will be buying more copies and distributing them...Foolishly, I thought how I am / feel is unique to me. The Author has made me feel far less isolated: this in itself has helped me through a dark time. Without doubt it won't last, but I found the book has given me some hope for my future. And more of an understanding as to the storm clouds of life...Frankly, just buy it. It's well written and on that basis that other peoples' suffering makes us feel better, perhaps it'll cheer you up!'

'If you or anyone you know suffers from depression, read this book; it will help you realise that you really aren’t alone. If you know someone who clearly doesn’t understand depression, give them this book; it will help them relate and comprehend some fraction of the suffering endured by those who live with the illness. I heard on the radio today about the rise in mental illness among young people. Maybe this should be required reading in schools.'

This is possibly the most important book I ever had or ever will read (and I read a lot!). When I went through my recent spell of acute anxiety and depression I was terrified of dying but I was also living in constant fear of myself and the world around me- I think 2016 has done that to many people. Before this book I would research depression and always conclude that nobody really understood how I felt and felt frightened that nobody could possibly feel as bad as I did. I was wrong and reading this book has shown me that. Matt Haig is so good at articulating these feelings and thoughts and I related to so much of it. But most of all, he gave me hope. '

btw his follow up to Reasons..., is called NOTES ON A NERVOUS PLANET. It was launched in London on July 3rd (his birthday). Am sure it's another success, so be prepared to become a Haig convert.

 

THE NUMBER ONE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER
WINNER OF THE BOOKS ARE MY BAG READERS AWARD FOR NON-FICTION

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO FEEL TRULY ALIVE?

Aged 24, Matt Haig's world caved in. He could see no way to go on living. This is the true story of how he came through crisis, triumphed over an illness that almost destroyed him and learned to live again.

A moving, funny and joyous exploration of how to live better, love better and feel more alive, Reasons to Stay Alive is more than a memoir. It is a book about making the most of your time on earth.

"I wrote this book because the oldest clichés remain the truest. Time heals. The bottom of the valley never provides the clearest view. The tunnel does have light at the end of it, even if we haven't been able to see it . . . Words, just sometimes, really can set you free."

 

More here on Amazon or in all good book shops

 

Other news

Would you like to come to a writing retreat in North Devon? Full board, be looked after and just write? or maybe just relax? Go see our thatched 1600s place on retreatsforyou.co.uk and email us for info - many themed weeks and workshops, many other editor led weeks plus several weeks where you can just come to write and also do a yoga class to stretch out each day. Prices from just £95 per person per night - full board including hot drinks and snacks, all food and wine at dinner. email us This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 - plus Julie Cohen's date - November 28th. Here's the link to Julie Cohen's workshop to find out more about this amazing mentor's week at Retreats for You in Devon - do contact her direct or just email us for more info This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

- as far as our own retreats go, we have three other yoga weeks this year so far booked - July 2nd, August 13th, and October 22nd - how great to be able to stretch your stiff muscles before and after a full day's writing, be looked after with tasty home-cooked meals and wine at dinner, plus no chores, only me-time to get your work done! Go here to find out more about this date and others, but email us This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to book or enquire, these weeks book up fast!!

-  looking ahead to Amanda Saint from Retreat West's third workshop with us in November, how about being part of a flash fiction workshop where your story ends up in a paperback? More info here. She's also running a scriptwriting retreat in June too.

 best wishes

 debs

x

TIPS AND MY OWN FICTION - 

Beginners’ Guide And if you’re a complete beginner and want to self-publish, my basic guide can be found here - beginner's tips for self-publishing - a summary of info, sites and links to help you on your way. Including my guest blog on prestigious industry website, TheCreativePenn.com, which is also a fabulous resource for beginners. And advanced writers!  Go here to read more.

Also - launched  in 2018, Jericho press is the new name for Writers' Workshop - and their £30 a month subs will get you all sorts of free info about how to write a novel and how to self publish. MORE HERE.

Archives Don’t forget to check out the other archives (to the left) for even more fabulous hints, tips, links and blogs.

My books - For the full list of my fiction and non fiction novels, novellas, short stories - info and links to buy them just go here. or see below.

As usual, here’s the round up of my own titles! I’d appreciate a review on Amazon (go here) andGoodreads (go here)! Enjoy! x

 

eBooks - all available on Amazon – paperback or eBook (kindle or kindle app or kindle on PC or Mac)

paperbacks – five fiction titles all available in paperback – via Amazon – see below.

 

  

FICTION

 HAWAIIAN TRILOGY (2013/4) – romantic fiction in either steamy or PG options!

 Book 1 Hawaiian Escape Steamy or Hawaiian Escape PG, the prequel to Hawaiian Affair - is now available on Amazon in eBook or paperback.

 Book 2 Hawaiian Affair Steamy - now called Take a Chance on Me, with Choc Lit publisher available on Amazon. Paperback can be ordered from almost all bookshops. Reached no 79 in WHSmithsTravel charts.

 Book 3 Hawaiian Retreat - Helen's Story - Just click this link to see steamy version. Paperback also available

 

DIARY OF A WANNABE SHOPPING CHANNEL PRESENTER – a stand alone story – Bridget Jones meets Alan Partridge meets Eddie Murphy in ‘Holy Man’ –click here to buy Ebook on amazon, and click here to buy paperback.

 

SHORT STORIES

 ‘When Dreams Return’ (2014) – spooky romantic short story – when Chelle’s pal Sara gets her to conjure up her ideal man with a full moon magic spell, she gets more than she bargained for… also appears in Hocus Pocus anthology.

 The Valentine’s Surprise (2010) is a short story proving it’s never too late to find your Sir Galahad!

Also – for Hallowe’en – an anthology of short spooky stories by 13 authors including many new shorts and my When Dreams Return in paperback! Hocus Pocus ’14 – ebook or paperback.

 'Battle of the Exes', written for Valentine's Day 2015, features in 'Roses are Red' anthology of six short stories on Amazon ebook and paperback too.

 

NON-FICTION

 Till the Fat Lady Slims 2.0 – the ‘When’ Diet - is my semi-autobiographical weight loss book – originally published in 2000. It was updated for 2014 to include the latest thinking about nutrition. Learn how to eat like slim people do and published on Amazon as TTFLS 2.0

It was followed a year later by Till the Fat Lady Slims 3.0 – Tips and Tale to Inspire on amazon which introduced new concepts and latest theories on gut bacteria and the inner chimp plus six guises of Freedom Eater.

 Go here to get its predecessor (read 2.0 first) Till the Fat Lady Slims 2.0 – the When diet on amazon

Choc-Lit, UK independent publisher, gave it a revamp and put it on order in Bookshops early 2017 - published just as 'Till the Fat Lady Slims' and with a black silhouette cover, it pulls together elements of all the predecessors, and is a good place to begin if you haven't read any of it yet. Go here to get the Choc Lit 2017 Till the Fat lady Slims on Amazon or order in bookshops.

Amazon review - January 2018 - 

This is a great book and so easy to identify with the author. I have been there and reading this book was like a breath of fresh air. I took on board what was written and lost 3 pounds in the first week. I am still losing but I don't dwell on food or think about it all day which is brilliant. I feel I can get on with my life and food is in its proper place. I eat when I'm hungry and because I am hungry, I enjoy the food all the more. If you are struggling and have tried every diet known to woman - like I have - buy this book. You will not regret it. It is turning my life around and I feel so much more positive than I did.

 

 


What an amazing new place my lovely daughter will be bringing up her first baby in. My second grandchild will be in a countryside home, on a smallholding with 22 acres, where Nick / daddy will be building yurts and treehouses for rental. His parents share the place and it was a smashing trip to see it for me last week. I loved seeing my grandpogs and am very happy there's a grandsprog being brewed too!

 

They have several fields, one of which houses lovely horses - one of them decided to do a quick bum-scratch-dance for us which was very funny! see it on my vlog here on Facebook (do 'like' the page to see the updates!) They have hay ready to bale in other fields too, but the multitudes of blackberries in the hedgerows will all be theirs - er… mine! … lol. Already planning the jam-making trip this autumn! A spectacular bird was circling above too - a little Kite but also a buzzard, they thought.

 

A tasty BBQ ended the evening, and the next day after Lolly's new midwife had visited, we went into Carmarthen, her new local shopping centre, where we had a nice shopping trip and she dropped off her bloods to the hospital and got an Anti-D (?) injection before they headed back to continue packing up their Farnham home and I braved the traffic back to Devon.

First Wednesday Tea Rooms 

It was my great pleasure to hold another tea rooms day this week. We got a lot of passing trade, many cyclists - as you can imagine in this weather! And some lovely locals and friends of mine from Facebook. Julia met up with Sheila and Bernadette and others, who chatted to her about QVC whilst she was here visiting, writing her book. More about that on my QVC blog this week - see below. it was all thanks to my new lady Nicola who makes the most amazing cakes and brownies and sausage rolls. She is working locally and able to be consistent throughout the summer doing the midweek opening for me. I'd love to do more days and if I was full time in Devon I would. But not for a few years yet!

 

 

Book of the Week - recommended to me on twitter by someone whose life had turned around as a result of reading it, Reasons to Stay Alive by bestseller Matt Haig. He writes very mixed types of books, and this is more of a modern classic self-help type. Many of the reviews talk about how this helped people feel they were  not alone and is a life-saver. Worth a read - more here on my RiWiSi blog on my website this week.

On my QVC blog - great news! If you LOVE Elemis, go here to read how to get tomorrow's (Sun 8th) Elemis pro-collagen set for over £100 off! Plus pics of Devon and when Julia came to stay - some cool pics! And of next week's sneaky peeks of course - do I ever let you down?!

We also watched the Colombia match, (yay) so I have just watched the quarter final Sweden match too - on my own! (Even bigger YAY for the result of that one!) So good luck England for Wednesday! I'm not on air, I'm going for a yearly medical so I'll be able to watch it in the evening!

Anyway I'm back on QVC after my Devon week, Sunday 8th at 3 with Elemis - and 5 with Radley. Looking forward to it!

Hope you're enjoying the weather!

best wishes

debs

ps Go here to see last week's blog  if you missed it!

ps My guest house in North Devon has spaces for non-writers (and writers in July. We are mainly a writing retreat but that doesn't mean we don't occasionally have non-writers. I have two full weeks booked of non writers, actually, including some spaces for July 23rd Mon-Fri (£95pppn inc full board and wine at dinner!) Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to enquire about dates, and have a little look here - by the way - we have spaces currently on our yoga week on August 13th if you fancy doing one or two classes each day!

- stay in touch with me via my social media - go here to see it all

- find out about all my novels and my own books, some in bookshops, some on amazon - check out all my paperbacks together! Very proud. More about my writing is here

What a fabulous BBq weekend we had. Look at this group shot - can you imagine what little Blake's face was like given all these reactions from the group around the picnic table at my sister's last weekend? She was making everyone laugh. Such a nice time we had. Then I went off to work and whizzed down to Devon for a free week with no guests, deliberately so I can have some me-time, including sleeping till 11am one morning! lol.

And how hot has it been! I've had a lovely week so far enjoying the heat at my place in Devon and the flowers are looking amazing. I got the most incredible bunch of blooms from my garden too - including fragrant sweet peas - some of my favourites, and the pinks have done really well too. Hope yours is doing well!

Book of the Week  - I can't help it - I love finding new authors and saturating myself in their work! Well it's another Liane Moriarty this week - and a brilliant one again. Go here to read my RiWiSi blog on my website all about 'Truly Madly Guilty'. Fab summer read. If you fancy reading any of mine, there are several on Amazon, and a couple you can buy via bookshops! See below.

There's a fab Sneaky Peek going to be on my new QVC blog on Thursday (28th) - for the  The blog  will appear here late Thursday. And a fab Early Bird order link for Saturday's (29th) #TSV Tarte makeup set including their famous 'shape tape' concealer/foundation. (it wasn't last Saturday, it is this weekend.) And some lovely pics from my week.

Also here's a little look at one of this week's Vlogs - this week I included a tour around my garden and a little peek from inside my 'girl-shed' in the back garden - lol. 

Much love

debs

x

ps My guest house in North Devon has spaces for non-writers (and writers in July. We are mainly a writing retreat but that doesn't mean we don't occasionally have non-writers. I have two full weeks booked of non writers, actually, including some spaces for July 23rd Mon-Fri (£95pppn inc full board and wine at dinner!) Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to enquire about dates, and have a little look here - by the way - we have spaces currently on our yoga week on August 13th if you fancy doing one or two classes each day!

- stay in touch with me via my social media - go here to see it all

- find out about all my novels and my own books, some in bookshops, some on amazon - check out all my paperbacks together! Very proud. More about my writing is here

Well having just finished The Husband's Secret and having loved every page of it, my next choice had to be another from Liane Moriarty. I often do this – where I discover an author and love their work so much I want more immediately. Therefore it is a pleasure to feature Truly Madly Guilty.

Once again Liane Moriarty uses her unique razor sharp observational skills to sift through the emerging fault lines of seemingly happy families.

It was just a backyard barbecue. They didn’t know the hosts that well. They were friends of friends. If only they’d said no. But Clementine and her husband Sam said yes and they say that now they can never change what they did and didn’t do that beautiful winters day. I normal weekend in the suburbs what could possibly go wrong.

There are five books after this that I can read and I cannot wait. Very highly reviewed as well, People mention 'suspense and secrets, straight from life characters, brilliantly accomplished, dark, twisty and compulsive.' A perfect summer read says with Reese Witherspoon. Keeps you guessing till the end. Brilliant.

What is most important for me is that she holds you in from the beginning and you do not need to work too hard to want to keep reading her books.

Genius.

Go here to see more on Amazon.

 

Other news

Would you like to come to a writing retreat in North Devon? Full board, be looked after and just write? or maybe just relax? Go see our thatched 1600s place on retreatsforyou.co.uk and email us for info - many themed weeks and workshops, many other editor led weeks plus several weeks where you can just come to write and also do a yoga class to stretch out each day. Prices from just £95 per person per night - full board including hot drinks and snacks, all food and wine at dinner. email us This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 - plus Julie Cohen's date - November 28th. Here's the link to Julie Cohen's workshop to find out more about this amazing mentor's week at Retreats for You in Devon - do contact her direct or just email us for more info This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

- as far as our own retreats go, we have three other yoga weeks this year so far booked - July 2nd, August 13th, and October 22nd - how great to be able to stretch your stiff muscles before and after a full day's writing, be looked after with tasty home-cooked meals and wine at dinner, plus no chores, only me-time to get your work done! Go here to find out more about this date and others, but email us This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to book or enquire, these weeks book up fast!!

-  looking ahead to Amanda Saint from Retreat West's third workshop with us in November, how about being part of a flash fiction workshop where your story ends up in a paperback? More info here. She's also running a scriptwriting retreat in June too.

 best wishes

 debs

x

TIPS AND MY OWN FICTION - 

Beginners’ Guide And if you’re a complete beginner and want to self-publish, my basic guide can be found here - beginner's tips for self-publishing - a summary of info, sites and links to help you on your way. Including my guest blog on prestigious industry website, TheCreativePenn.com, which is also a fabulous resource for beginners. And advanced writers!  Go here to read more.

Also - launched  in 2018, Jericho press is the new name for Writers' Workshop - and their £30 a month subs will get you all sorts of free info about how to write a novel and how to self publish. MORE HERE.

Archives Don’t forget to check out the other archives (to the left) for even more fabulous hints, tips, links and blogs.

My books - For the full list of my fiction and non fiction novels, novellas, short stories - info and links to buy them just go here. or see below.

As usual, here’s the round up of my own titles! I’d appreciate a review on Amazon (go here) andGoodreads (go here)! Enjoy! x

 

eBooks - all available on Amazon – paperback or eBook (kindle or kindle app or kindle on PC or Mac)

paperbacks – five fiction titles all available in paperback – via Amazon – see below.

 

  

FICTION

 HAWAIIAN TRILOGY (2013/4) – romantic fiction in either steamy or PG options!

 Book 1 Hawaiian Escape Steamy or Hawaiian Escape PG, the prequel to Hawaiian Affair - is now available on Amazon in eBook or paperback.

 Book 2 Hawaiian Affair Steamy - now called Take a Chance on Me, with Choc Lit publisher available on Amazon. Paperback can be ordered from almost all bookshops. Reached no 79 in WHSmithsTravel charts.

 Book 3 Hawaiian Retreat - Helen's Story - Just click this link to see steamy version. Paperback also available

 

DIARY OF A WANNABE SHOPPING CHANNEL PRESENTER – a stand alone story – Bridget Jones meets Alan Partridge meets Eddie Murphy in ‘Holy Man’ –click here to buy Ebook on amazon, and click here to buy paperback.

 

SHORT STORIES

 ‘When Dreams Return’ (2014) – spooky romantic short story – when Chelle’s pal Sara gets her to conjure up her ideal man with a full moon magic spell, she gets more than she bargained for… also appears in Hocus Pocus anthology.

 The Valentine’s Surprise (2010) is a short story proving it’s never too late to find your Sir Galahad!

Also – for Hallowe’en – an anthology of short spooky stories by 13 authors including many new shorts and my When Dreams Return in paperback! Hocus Pocus ’14 – ebook or paperback.

 'Battle of the Exes', written for Valentine's Day 2015, features in 'Roses are Red' anthology of six short stories on Amazon ebook and paperback too.

 

NON-FICTION

 Till the Fat Lady Slims 2.0 – the ‘When’ Diet - is my semi-autobiographical weight loss book – originally published in 2000. It was updated for 2014 to include the latest thinking about nutrition. Learn how to eat like slim people do and published on Amazon as TTFLS 2.0

It was followed a year later by Till the Fat Lady Slims 3.0 – Tips and Tale to Inspire on amazon which introduced new concepts and latest theories on gut bacteria and the inner chimp plus six guises of Freedom Eater.

 Go here to get its predecessor (read 2.0 first) Till the Fat Lady Slims 2.0 – the When diet on amazon

Choc-Lit, UK independent publisher, gave it a revamp and put it on order in Bookshops early 2017 - published just as 'Till the Fat Lady Slims' and with a black silhouette cover, it pulls together elements of all the predecessors, and is a good place to begin if you haven't read any of it yet. Go here to get the Choc Lit 2017 Till the Fat lady Slims on Amazon or order in bookshops.

Amazon review - January 2018 - 

This is a great book and so easy to identify with the author. I have been there and reading this book was like a breath of fresh air. I took on board what was written and lost 3 pounds in the first week. I am still losing but I don't dwell on food or think about it all day which is brilliant. I feel I can get on with my life and food is in its proper place. I eat when I'm hungry and because I am hungry, I enjoy the food all the more. If you are struggling and have tried every diet known to woman - like I have - buy this book. You will not regret it. It is turning my life around and I feel so much more positive than I did.

 

Look at this adorable little girl! What a fabulous pic and it's now my screen saver! I'm going to be looking after her most Fridays through the summer - in the run up to my daughter having her first baby as well, in September. I don't know - no grandchildren last Christmas, and two by next Christmas! Yay! She is so funny and loves being 'poggered' up - such a gorgeous baby. I'm only allowed to post one update a month, as she's not a social media baby. So hope you like this pic! I had the most lovely lunch with my son in Chelsea Harbour at the Waterside, where they have some super outside couches and tables, and little Blake Catherine was able to bounce around on the sofa backs. She's strong enough to stand if you pull her hands up, and loves it. She's got a little 'jumperoo' (I think it's called - formerly known as baby bouncer I think!) My kids had one of those doorway ones and loved them! Anyway it was amazing to see her and I'm so proud of my boy and the way he has adapted to being a dad. 

Father's Day meant more this year only because i was able to wish someone close to me a Happy Father's Day! It's been years! And Brad looks so much like my own late dad, doesn't he?! What a fab pic! Dad was about 22 in this pic, and died in 1992. Brad is now 31. Such a strong resemblance isn't there!

 

Book of the Week - is another absolutely brilliant book for summer! I loved Big Little Lies and this is by the same author - Lianne Moriarty. The Husband's Secret has over 5000 reviews on Amazon so is well-loved. It was recommended to me by a good pal in my writing group so I'm thrilled to pay it forward and give it a big thumbs up!  Go here to read more on my book of the week blog RiWiSi.

Finally as ever if you'd like to get a sneaky peek or two for the next week's QVC deals, go to my latest blog which will appear here late Thursday. It will include some funny pics - a pig, a dog, a cat and a chocolate brownie amongst others! And a fab Early Bird order link for Saturday's (22nd) #TSV Tarte makeup set including their famous 'shape tape' concealer/foundation. I've got some brilliant shows this weekend so do join me - I'm usually on Thurs-Sun evenings - usually!

Want to get away? How about a little trip down to Devon this summer - we are mainly a writing retreat but that doesn't mean we don't occasionally have non-writers. I have two full weeks booked of non writers, actually, including some spaces for July 23rd Mon-Fri (£95pppn inc full board and wine at dinner!) so always worth asking us! Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to enquire about dates, and have a little look here - by the way - we have spaces currently on our yoga week on August 13th if you fancy doing one or two classes each day!

Also here's a little look at one of this week's Vlogs - many people love the little daily updates when I'm down in Devon - do you? click here to see it (even if you're not on Facebook). And do follow me below! I'm just getting to grips with Instagram - my little niece Lara showed me up the other day with some nifty fingerwork on the app, she puts me to shame! I know Facebook inside out, like Twitter, and use What's app a lot. But Instagram - still getting there!

Much love

debs

x

- stay in touch with me via my social media - go here to see it all

- find out about all my novels and my own books, some in bookshops, some on amazon - check out all my paperbacks together! Very proud. More about my writing is here

Book of the Week – Omg it’s a smashing one! I don’t know about you but I loved – LOVED – Big Little Lies. Well it’s based on a book by Lianne Moriarty. She also wrote this week’s Book of the Week – called ‘The Husband’s Secret.’ And if you loved BLL, you’ll love this! Based in an Australian domestic setting, covering secrets and lies within several families, it’s got a similar format to Big Little Lies, which was such an amazing success and an award winner. The best thing is Lianne pulls you in almost immediately into the tale – or tales in this case – and I love the way it all intertwines as you see behind the smiles and the social lives of the characters she brings to life so well. Both books are highly recommended, and the audiobook is brilliantly narrated as well.

Amazon write up - 

To be opened in the event of my death." With one swift, vicious movement, she sliced the envelope open, and pulled out a handwritten letter. "Love you and the girls...so sorry to leave you with this...cannot bear...."

The Husband's Secret is a funny, heartbreaking novel of marriage, grief, love, and secrets. When her husband announces he's in love with her best friend, painfully shy Tess picks up her young son and returns to her mother's house. There she begins an unexpected affair with an old flame.

Rachel is a woman in her 60s consumed by grief and anger at the loss of her daughter 20 years earlier. When her son announces he is taking her beloved grandson overseas, Rachel begins a descent into deeper bitterness and pain.

Cecilia is the quintessential "I don't know how she does it" woman. A devoted mother to three daughters, she runs her household like clockwork, is President of the P&C, owns an extremely successful Tupperware business and is happy in her 15-year marriage. Until she discovers a letter in their attic labeled: "To my wife Cecilia, to be opened in the event of my death".

Her husband's secret is a bombshell beyond all imagining with repercussions across the lives of all three women.

 

The Husband's Secret has over 5000 reviews on Amazon so is well-loved. It was recommended to me by a good pal in my writing group so I'm thrilled to pay it forward and give it a big thumbs up!  

more here on Amazon

 

Other news

Would you like to come to a writing retreat in North Devon? Full board, be looked after and just write? or maybe just relax? Go see our thatched 1600s place on retreatsforyou.co.uk and email us for info - many themed weeks and workshops, many other editor led weeks plus several weeks where you can just come to write and also do a yoga class to stretch out each day. Prices from just £95 per person per night - full board including hot drinks and snacks, all food and wine at dinner. email us This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 - plus Julie Cohen's date - November 28th. Here's the link to Julie Cohen's workshop to find out more about this amazing mentor's week at Retreats for You in Devon - do contact her direct or just email us for more info This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

- as far as our own retreats go, we have three other yoga weeks this year so far booked - July 2nd, August 13th, and October 22nd - how great to be able to stretch your stiff muscles before and after a full day's writing, be looked after with tasty home-cooked meals and wine at dinner, plus no chores, only me-time to get your work done! Go here to find out more about this date and others, but email us This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to book or enquire, these weeks book up fast!!

-  looking ahead to Amanda Saint from Retreat West's third workshop with us in November, how about being part of a flash fiction workshop where your story ends up in a paperback? More info here. She's also running a scriptwriting retreat in June too.

 best wishes

 debs

x

TIPS AND MY OWN FICTION - 

Beginners’ Guide And if you’re a complete beginner and want to self-publish, my basic guide can be found here - beginner's tips for self-publishing - a summary of info, sites and links to help you on your way. Including my guest blog on prestigious industry website, TheCreativePenn.com, which is also a fabulous resource for beginners. And advanced writers!  Go here to read more.

Also - launched  in 2018, Jericho press is the new name for Writers' Workshop - and their £30 a month subs will get you all sorts of free info about how to write a novel and how to self publish. MORE HERE.

Archives Don’t forget to check out the other archives (to the left) for even more fabulous hints, tips, links and blogs.

My books - For the full list of my fiction and non fiction novels, novellas, short stories - info and links to buy them just go here. or see below.

As usual, here’s the round up of my own titles! I’d appreciate a review on Amazon (go here) andGoodreads (go here)! Enjoy! x

 

eBooks - all available on Amazon – paperback or eBook (kindle or kindle app or kindle on PC or Mac)

paperbacks – five fiction titles all available in paperback – via Amazon – see below.

 

  

FICTION

 HAWAIIAN TRILOGY (2013/4) – romantic fiction in either steamy or PG options!

 Book 1 Hawaiian Escape Steamy or Hawaiian Escape PG, the prequel to Hawaiian Affair - is now available on Amazon in eBook or paperback.

 Book 2 Hawaiian Affair Steamy - now called Take a Chance on Me, with Choc Lit publisher available on Amazon. Paperback can be ordered from almost all bookshops. Reached no 79 in WHSmithsTravel charts.

 Book 3 Hawaiian Retreat - Helen's Story - Just click this link to see steamy version. Paperback also available

 

DIARY OF A WANNABE SHOPPING CHANNEL PRESENTER – a stand alone story – Bridget Jones meets Alan Partridge meets Eddie Murphy in ‘Holy Man’ –click here to buy Ebook on amazon, and click here to buy paperback.

 

SHORT STORIES

 ‘When Dreams Return’ (2014) – spooky romantic short story – when Chelle’s pal Sara gets her to conjure up her ideal man with a full moon magic spell, she gets more than she bargained for… also appears in Hocus Pocus anthology.

 The Valentine’s Surprise (2010) is a short story proving it’s never too late to find your Sir Galahad!

Also – for Hallowe’en – an anthology of short spooky stories by 13 authors including many new shorts and my When Dreams Return in paperback! Hocus Pocus ’14 – ebook or paperback.

 'Battle of the Exes', written for Valentine's Day 2015, features in 'Roses are Red' anthology of six short stories on Amazon ebook and paperback too.

 

NON-FICTION

 Till the Fat Lady Slims 2.0 – the ‘When’ Diet - is my semi-autobiographical weight loss book – originally published in 2000. It was updated for 2014 to include the latest thinking about nutrition. Learn how to eat like slim people do and published on Amazon as TTFLS 2.0

It was followed a year later by Till the Fat Lady Slims 3.0 – Tips and Tale to Inspire on amazon which introduced new concepts and latest theories on gut bacteria and the inner chimp plus six guises of Freedom Eater.

 Go here to get its predecessor (read 2.0 first) Till the Fat Lady Slims 2.0 – the When diet on amazon

Choc-Lit, UK independent publisher, gave it a revamp and put it on order in Bookshops early 2017 - published just as 'Till the Fat Lady Slims' and with a black silhouette cover, it pulls together elements of all the predecessors, and is a good place to begin if you haven't read any of it yet. Go here to get the Choc Lit 2017 Till the Fat lady Slims on Amazon or order in bookshops.

Amazon review - January 2018 - 

This is a great book and so easy to identify with the author. I have been there and reading this book was like a breath of fresh air. I took on board what was written and lost 3 pounds in the first week. I am still losing but I don't dwell on food or think about it all day which is brilliant. I feel I can get on with my life and food is in its proper place. I eat when I'm hungry and because I am hungry, I enjoy the food all the more. If you are struggling and have tried every diet known to woman - like I have - buy this book. You will not regret it. It is turning my life around and I feel so much more positive than I did.

I'm currently writing this from my hotel room overlooking Protaras beach in sunny Cyprus- according to the thermometer on the hotel wall it's 33 degrees sunny, to be exact! So I thought I'd mention a few things that I've loved about my annual summer holiday this year.

Firstly - when the sun went in! As you'll know from previous blogs, including this one from last June all about my rare genetic 'thing' called EPP, I can't stay in the sun. So when a rare overcast afternoon meant I could go in the see and not worry about the sunshine, I took advantage! (see pic in montage)

Otherwise it was a regular evening swim in the hotel pool, where the sun dipped low enough to provide some shade yet the water was lovely and warm.

We've had some wonderful food, my sis and mum and their partners, and I've relaxed loads. Yoga has been on the menu every morning at ten. As was a smashing massage in the Elemis spa in the nearby Sunshine Pearl hotel. And lots of brain games like doing the daily crossword and Sudoku with mum, and the daily poolside quiz. Also had a good couple of nights out including cocktails with the management and karaoke at the Zodiac up the strip! And I've written a lot - not just catching up on all the social media and emails, including for Retreats for You bookings (latest dates on the post here) but also getting on with my next novel, French or Dutch. I'm well over 62000 words now. Getting there. the room is comfy and the views are fab. It's right on the beach so the sea features in many picturesque shots! 

Have loved being away and being able to get time to do all the things I wanted to do - even did some bodyblade! Trouble is there's never enough time is there! And I fly back to a very busy retreat week in Devon at my place this Monday. It's nearly full! But I'm looking forward to it! Hope you have a nice June too - whatever you do?

 

Medical Detection Dogs meet Royalty

Puppydog puppydog where have you been- they've been to London to visit the Queen! Well what an amazing achievement to not only be celebrating ten years anniversary but also to be invited to meet the Queen herself and HRH Camilla the Duchess of Cornwall, who has been a patron since 2015. Here's my latest report on it - including link to a video! Very proud of the charity for which I am an ambassador.

 

Book of the Week - is a super suspense/drama/crime/thriller - Cross Her Heart - by one of my top authors Sarah Pinborough. She had my 2017 Book of the Year 'Behind Her Eyes' and this new one is fab too! Go here to read more on my book of the week blog RiWiSi.

Plus if you're after a little list of top tips for great summer reads, do go to my latest QVC blog here - which also includes a couple of sneaky peeks for the week ahead on QVC - and the Early Bird order link for the new Nails Inc deal is here! Apologies for not emailing my newsletter last week - ran out of time ahead of hols!

 

Want to get away? How about a little trip down to Devon this summer - we are mainly a writing retreat but that doesn't mean we don't occasionally have non-writers. I have two full weeks booked of non writers, actually, so always worth asking us! Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to enquire about dates, and have a little look here - by the way - we have spaces currently on our yoga week on August 13th if you fancy doing one or two classes each day!

Ok so I'd better get back to writing my book - one day I'll get it finished!

Much love

debs

x

- stay in touch with me via my social media - go here to see it all

- find out about all my novels and my own books, some in bookshops, some on amazon - check out all my paperbacks together! Very proud. More about my writing is here

Oh my goodness! What excitement at MDD HQ when they were invited by patron HRH Camilla Duchess of Cornwall to see HRH the Queen in June and to do one of their famous demos.

  • These dogs are able to sniff out Parkinson's disease, and bladder and prostate cancer amongst other illnesses. They have been proven to be up to 93% accurate - far far more precise than most other forms of detection.

The Queen has been told how dogs are so far ahead of humans when it comes to detecting cancer, scientists are developing a digital dog’s nose.

If successful, she was told, it will save lives.

Dogs which sniff out cancers are trained by the charity Medical Detection Dogs.

And in the Royal Mews, the stables at the back of Buckingham Palace earlier, the Queen watched Kizzy – a cocker spaniel – discover which of the eight urine samples placed in front of her came from a human with bladder cancer.

See the ITV coverage here and read all about it on the Prince of Wales' website here!

I am a Very proud ambassador!

d

x

 

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