Friday, 30 April 2010

oh, and that hamster

My name is Hamilton, my new book Ahoy There Hammy the Wonder Hamster is published in May it's by Poppy Harris who is really Margi, it's all about when I went on the beach please read all my stories I have such a exciting life oh whoops I think I'm about to fall off the compu...........

He's all right, just a bit over-excited. Too many sunflower seeds. Bethany is taking good care of him.

I had a working break this week, which meant two days at st deiniol's research library. Lots of reading and writing got done, and there was still time for long walks in the woods - huge trees with grainy, twisty roots, fallen tree giants, a ruined castle, hanging white blossom, butterflies, violets, anemones, finches, and such happy dogs! I met a little spaniel so like the late lamented Daniel that she made my heart turn over. She even put her paws up to me.

There have been lots of contacts from Mistmantle readers lately, many of them asking why I write about animals. It's hard to say exactly, but somehow it's so much more liberating than writing about people.

Saturday, 24 April 2010


The principles of Tiggywinkles at Haddenham are very simple.

If an injured or sick wild animal is brought to them, they will do their utmost best to bring it back to full health without giving it the idea that it belongs with humans, so that it can go back to the wild.

If it's not well enough to survive in the wild but can enjoy a good quality of life, it stays at Tiggywinkles in a natural environment with whatever care it needs.

If it's beyond hope of a decent future, they will euthanase. Remarkably, this is something they hardly ever have to do.

It's expensive to run, and depends on donations. The staff and volunteers are constantly working with animals who don't understand that they're being helped, and will scratch, bite, kick, and, of course, prickle. If you've ever looked after an animal, you know that there is a lot of cleaning of poo, bedding, and other things that you'd rather approach with rubber gloves and a nose peg. At Tiggywinkles they do all that because as far as they are concerned, the life of a hedgehog/deer/fox/badger/otter/blackbird/ is worth it.

Monday, 19 April 2010

thank you!

Thank you for your patience. I'm still not up to full strength, but considerably better than I was.

We had a few days away last week - already booked before I keeled over, so we went anyway, firstly to Cardiff to see daughter. She was in full singing, fluting and choir-directing mode, and we basked quietly in reflected glory. And in sunshine - we had lots of that. We also got together with the god-family. You can keep your hi-tech games, nothing beats an old-fashioned painted horses carousel, especially when you've got a three year old sitting in front of you and it's her first time on a roundabout.

Next stop was St Tiggywinkles. I'll tell you about Tiggywinkles later, but not now, because I want you to look at their site, and because St Tiggywinkles is a life-changing place that needs a post to itself. (With an owl sitting on it.) Google St Tiggywinkles. Now!

Saturday, 10 April 2010


Two little announcements today -

for all those who want to know what sort of book I'm going to do next - I can't possibly say a thing, because I never know what will work and what won't, and whether someone will actually publish it or not. So no new leads, I'm afraid.

And the other thing I should have said ages ago is that my three children are the best and most wonderful kids in the world and I love them to bits. (And their dad's a bit special, too.) I've not been too well lately, and they have been so supportive.

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

much the gnome

'er didn't mean to repeat herself, she said, she just didn't know which blog had blogged and which blog had got lost somewhere and of course she needed sonny to sort it out for 'er. Don't know what she did when he weren't living at home.

She got 'er garden fire going, took her half a tree full of matches, I nearly split me sides laughing and I'm made of stone, so it would 'ave been serious. Managed to do it without calling out the fire engines. Went around smelling like a well-smoked kipper after that.

And Newcastle United have been promoted. As a Yorkshire gnome I can take or leave 'em, but this house is black and white, blimey, no wonder we've got a magpie's nest in the 'olly tree. (What sort of stupid bird builds in a 'olly tree, eh?) Would have been better if Newcastle hadn't gone down a league in the first place, but I don't like to say that in this house. Come to think of it, I live in a house full of Geordies and they're not doing badly, so haway the lads.

Monday, 5 April 2010

Happy Easter!

I tried to say Happy Easter to you yesterday, but the blog wouldn't post and I don't understand why not. A wonderful day yesterday, church was good, the sons were both here, so were Lady Sunshine and Lady Sunshine's housemate. We had a lovely lunch, though I shouldn't say so because I cooked it - though the greatest hit was something I didn't cook at all, it was Ben and Jerry's Phish Food ice cream which is Lady Sunshine's favourite. She'd given up sweet things for Lent, so it was a big success.

There's a flower festival in church, a duck race in town, and a heap of dead stuff in the garden (not you, Much), so I may burn the rubbish if it doesn't teem down with rain and if I can work out how to do it without setting the whole village on fire (and on a Bank Holiday too.) Oh, and the new dragon is called Samaranth. Thank you, Nels. She now gazes at herself in the mirror and murmurs 'Samaranth'. Get on and do some work, dragon, books don't write themselves.

Sunday, 4 April 2010

Happy Easter

Happy Easter and all about it to everyone in blogland. This week's April Fool began on Wednesday when the computer went completely out to lunch due to problems with the server. It stayed AWOL until some time late on Friday, when a hundred and something messages came in at once.

And, by the way, it's been bitterly cold. But on this day of Resurrection, I went out and found green shoots in the garden. (First time in a week it's been warm enough to find anything in the garden, said Much.) A lot of my poor little plants didn't survive the winter and neither did a very dead mouse, or perhaps it fell foul of one of the neighbouring cats. Either way, I wish I could have rescued it.

However, the daffodils will soon be through and the sun will come out. I may have a garden bonfire tomorrow, if it doesn't rain and if I can do so without setting the house on fire or frightening the ducks. The new little writing dragon is to be called Samaranth (thank you, Nels) and is now looking in her mirror saying 'do I look like a Samaranth?' Stop it, girl, and do some work. Books don't write themselves.

And now the computer is refusing to post this blog. What is it with you this weekend?

By the way, while we're waiting for a computer to get out of a strop - what do you think of the new Dr Who?