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Pride and prejudice…

It is a truth universally acknowledged that no one likes politicians very much, so as every other news outlet is jammed with them, I’m going to focus on the good news this week. Number one, my book, He’s Gone, went to print. Number two, in London, a rainbow map marked the path of the #Pride parade. The British parade is one of the biggest in the world, celebrating the diversity and tolerance of which we are so proud.

Having an event like this so soon after the referendum I think is our chance to show that, regardless of the message the country sent to its representatives and the EU, we are an inclusive society… (Photo from BBC News)

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Writing

Hatred is hard work…

If you had to sum up this awful week in one word, you could choose ‘hatred’. Hatred caused one man to attack the LGBT+ community in Orlando and another to murder an MP outside a library.

When you look up the word hatred, you find this:

the feeling of one who hates; intense dislike or extreme aversion or hostility.
And that is the crux of it: hatred is extreme. When I think about it, hatred is very hard to do. There are things I think are horrible (beetroot, for example) and things that make me angry (don’t get me started on discrimination and lack of curiosity) but nothing I actually hate. This is largely because to hate something takes so much effort. You have to constantly keep feeding it, firing it up, otherwise it will fade away.That leads onto the paradox that haters will have to actively seek out the things they hate, to keep reaffirming their hatred.
At this point, my head starts to hurt. I’m also left with a sense of frustration about what I as an individual can do to make a positive difference. I’m starting with channeling some of this desire to act into my local women’s network and planning to link up with our fellow network for LGBT+ and doing some joint campaigning because the first step to dealing with any problem is making it visible. So the other thing I’m going to do is keep writing my books, because there may be things we’re all doing we’re doing that make things that bit harder for other people and if we stop, then that’s a bit less hatred in the world…
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The difficult second book…

I am a member of a writing group and find this process of having others read and comment upon my work hugely helpful. That’s not to say it’s always a comfortable experience. This week, I took the first two chapters of my second book, the first time these had seen the light of day.

It’s fair to say, reactions were mixed. There were positive comments around the idea for the story and a welcome back to the characters (this is the second book featuring DI Robyn Bailley and her team) but then came the honest opinions. Suffice to say, I’ve got some editing to do, reflecting that this was a first draft.The last book went through twenty-six drafts – ’nuff said.

The point for me is that I’ve started, I know (roughly) where I’m going and, best of all, the characters seem happy to be back…

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