Quick Takes Friday about Goals, Success, and Holidays

For this week’s Quick Takes, I’m still in Scotland, but only just. Check out the rest of the hop over at This Ain’t the Lyceum.

seven quick takes friday 2


This week has been weird, in terms of weather. We had some almost torrential rain a couple of days – the kind of rain that is constant throughout the day.

However, today, for instance, we’ve had some beautiful sun, warm enough that I wore shorts for the first time this holiday!


A shot, albeit rather fountainy, of the sunset over the beach from our window

I was fortunate enough to be treated to some spa time this week. A much-needed facial on the Weds and then a neck massage and some pool time last night. I’ve not been in a pool for ages, and I realised just how weak my lung capacity is now. Ironic, considering that I should have better lung capacity from my choral singing. Nevertheless, I’m just not used to pushing myself in the pool as I did when I was swimming competitively when in Primary school and when I did lifeguarding.


One of my summer/new academic term goals was to do more exercise/eat more healthily, and yesterday’s swimming reminded me of that. I’ve got a research project to work on still, but I’m looking forward to doing more exercise in the following weeks. Or at least more walking so that I actually get tired out.


Dundrennan Abbey

Yesterday was another abbey ruin, which I love. This particularly one, at Dundrennan, was extensive, and included a graveyard with numerous graves, as well as having quite a bit still standing. I am blessed to have been able to go and see so many natural heritage sites and explore them.


Today we went to Culzean Castle and grounds, which were lovely, though we didn’t spend so much time there. No photos, unfortunately, due to the fragile nature of the house, but it was a lovely classical, Victorian house and it gave me loads more inspiration for the world-building of the Time, Stopped Trilogy, even though the abodes of the socialites and higher classes are less necessary for any novels I might self-publish in the distant future.


Writing. I’ve been gathering speed on my contemporary short story – we’ll call it Geeky Love for now, since none of the titles I’ve tried have stuck. Cait’s Beautiful People hop for this month was about friends, and I started thinking about those pairs of character friends I could use for the hop, since I’ve talked about most of my characters. I happened to think about the future of the hero and heroine in Geeky Love, and what defining features of theirs would influence their relationship. In addition, I’ve been realising more about both characters on their own – such as what degree my heroine is doing! This has helped me to be more encouraged towards writing this story, and I’ve been making progress.


In this fresh-off-the-press extract, Kazia and Joel meet for the first time…

A throat cleared behind me. The sound of somebody trying not to splutter with laughter to himself. I flushed, and peered over my shoulder.

The guy. The one I’d kind-of-but-not-really been staring at before.

“I’ve got it,” I stuttered, practically turning a shade between orange and pink better found on a colour-chart. I stretched, but my nails weren’t long enough to wiggle between the knot I’d wound.

“Oh, really?” questioned the man. He had a twang to his voice, a devious accent I couldn’t place, and hands fiddled with the clasp of my skirt. I flinched. Automatically. Because a guy was placing his hands on my coccyx.

“Chill. Your struggling isn’t going to undo you.”

I chilled. By, like, 50%.


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