Tuesday, 22 May 2018

Sorry - Am I Boring You?

Have you ever been caught by one of those people who insist on shoving an album of their holiday photos in front of your nose and then rambling on for the next hour about how wonderful their trip was?

Well, I might be in danger of becoming one of those very people. I can't help it - I just can't! When I discover somewhere I love, I want to tell everyone about it, share my photos and say, "But why haven't you been there?"

In the interest of keeping the readers of this blog happy, I shall try to keep it short but there might just be a touch of over-enthusiasm from time to time. Sorry!

So where am I? Yes, you've guessed it. I'm back in my beloved Lake District - the setting of many of my People's Friend stories and also the setting of my second novel. One day, I hope you will get to read it. Actually, you will definitely get to read it as, come hell or high water, and whether it be through a traditional publisher or self-published, I will get this novel out into the wide world.

Whenever we stay in The Lakes, we take our dog, Bonnie, with us. Apart from one year, we've always stayed in one of the little miner's cottages in the village of Chapel Stile (this is where the family in my novel live too). This year, we were a bit concerned that Bonnie (who is twelve and a little arthritic) might not be able to manage the 8 or 9 miles of walking we were planning to do each day. We needn't have worried though as she appeared completely rejuvenated by the Lakeland air. Always in the lead, she splashed in rivers, scrambled over boulders and probably would have herded up the sheep if we hadn't stopped her! Cue cute photo of lambs.

We have a list of our favourite walks, and every time we holiday in the Lake District, we like to revisit four of these and then add on two new ones. We don't do high level walks but beautiful low or medium level ones with stunning views such as this one at Buttermere. I must admit, I'm pretty proud of this photo.

One place I've been wanting to visit for ages is Cathedral Quarry. It features a lot in the novel but I've never actually been there - just researched it online. Once inside, it made me realise that nothing can ever beat seeing the real thing. The quarry is reached through a tunnel which opens up into a forty foot chamber called 'the Cathedral'. Those more adventurous than me can take a torch and explore the other tunnels... but I prefer to see a bit of daylight.

As usual, when we weren't exploring, we were eating. We discovered a wonderful vegetarian restaurant in Ambleside, called Fellinis, whose dishes looked as if they should grace an art book. It was linked to the local cinema so we took advantage of their combined meal and cinema offer and followed our delicious meal with a viewing of the film The Literary Potato Peel Pie Society. I'd been interested in seeing is at my People's Friend serial, Charlotte's War was also set during WW2 in Guernsey. I'm ashamed to say our long walk that day, a big meal and a glass of wine got the better of me and I might just have closed my eyes once or twice.

We also liked to stop off somewhere on our walk for afternoon tea. Well, it would be rude not to wouldn't it. This might be the reason we always come back the same weight as we leave, despite all the exercise!

My husband and I hated saying goodbye to The Lakes at the end of our holiday but I know it won't be long until we return. In the meantime, I have already written and submitted my latest Lake District inspired story to my editor at the People's Friend and hope he enjoys reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Which leads me onto writing news. Since I last posted, my stories have been published in these three magazines.

Also, I am The People's Friends 'Writer of the Week' and have been interviewed for their website. If you'd like to read it, you can find it here.


  1. Enjoyed the interview, Wendy!

    I don't think the Lake District could ever be boring. But the only time we camped there we were a good distance away from Derwentwater when we went to bed... but only inches away from the waves when we woke! It got better after that...

    1. Oh, my goodness! This must be why I prefer bricks and mortar to canvas!

  2. I envy you, Wendy! We went there often when our children were younger, and it was the one place where they would happily walk, whatever the weather. Rainy picnics, wet jeans round the radiators...happy days. Well done on the interview!

    1. We’ve been about eight times in April or May and have always been lucky with the weather.

  3. I don't blame you for wanting to talk about the Lake District, Wendy - love it there! Great photos and I always need to stop for tea/coffee/cakes wherever I go.

  4. I love the Lake District and I also love holiday photos! What a glorious time you had, Wendy - your pictures and descriptions take me back to happy times there when the children were younger. What a magical place it is. Huge congratulations on all your story successes too XXX

  5. Your photos of the Lake District are beautiful. It is such a wonderful part of England. I don't blame you at all for wanting to share your pictures and giving us a glimpse of your holiday. So glad too that Bonnie did so well with the long walks.

  6. I recently walked around the Langdale Pikes for the first time. What a beautiful place.