Wednesday, 27 January 2021

A right or a priviledge?

We didn't have a holiday in France last year. In spite of Covid we managed a week in Scotland in October just before Nicola closed everything down. We'd had that booked since March, and it was touch and go all year as to whether we would make it!

That summer of 2020 we spent days in the garden because the weather was generally good. We did jobs that have been hanging around for ages. Yes, we missed the time in France, but I don't think we suffered. Yes, we are lucky we have a garden to lounge around in. I am aware that many don't have that. But on the other hand I can't recall my parents ever having more than one holiday during my lifetime. In the space of one generation, life has changed so much. Now we feel deprived if we don't spend two weeks somewhere other than home.

Dr Scott McCabe of Nottingham University has been exploring the impact of holidays on disadvantaged families and says one of the good things is that holidays strengthened family ties. They also recharged batteries and gave people time to think, relief from routine, work, and stress. The biggest benefit was time for fun and making happy memories for children, perhaps to experience something new and different. (I am sure some of you can recount tales of the holiday from hell, but that is a different  story!)

Well, I'm wondering if most, if not all of those good things can be achieved whilst staying at home. Many workers today don't get paid if they don't work. Perhaps what's needed is that they should have two weeks paid leave a year as used to happen in the sixties to do all those things cited by Dr McCabe. The thing is they don't need to be done in Spain or France; the garden or the local park can offer relaxation too. 

McCabe has questioned whether a holiday is a right or a privilege. “In France there is the chèques-vacances system — vouchers given out by employers and by the government which can only be spent on holidays. In Spain, the Imserso programme sends older people, who are often among the most socially-excluded in society, on holidays. In the UK, the work to get disadvantaged families on holiday is generally done by charities." 

He doesn’t discuss the modern mindset about holidays, but perhaps that is important too.  



Sunday, 24 January 2021

Free courses

 Doing one of the free courses that abound on the internet these days is not easy. 

I am required to work! At first I seemed to make no headway, but I persevered, and today the number of impressions has shot up to over 2 thousand. That means the ads were display over two thousand times. Not that anyone has bought anything yet, but it is progress in the right direction. I think it has cost me the grand total of 17 cents so far.

I shall persevere and see if things improve. After all, the goal is profit!

I am not doing any PR on Twitter or Facebook  right now, as any results I want to be able to see as due to Amazon.

We keep getting light snowfalls, but nothing  to worry about. It was -4 here overnight, and won't get warmer than 2 degrees all day today. It has been like this for a few days now and even Tim isn't keen to go out. 

Thursday, 14 January 2021

Brain work

 It's like being back at work!

Taking part in an online course on marketing and I have Homework! Some of the language is hard until someone deciphers it for me. It's rather like watching video tutorials on Layer Masks in Photoshop - some people may know their stuff but just cannot put it over in ways mere mortals can understand. Others have the knack. 

So, I don't have much time for just fooling about on Facebook, and my editing has been abandoned for a few days. Still, I have renewed the covers on my "Affair" series though they are not all loaded yet. I decided to make the titles and author the same font on each cover to give them that uniform look - and I also transferred Silver Season into the group. It seemed to belong there and  don't know why I didn't put there right away. It has a new cover.  I liked the dark cover, but it dawned on me that it didn't really convey the message "romance" and even though the story has a dark side, it is essentially a romance. So that cover may go up today. The stories have not changed; only the covers.

Oh, and Tim and I have been out already - in 3 inches of snow!

Friday, 8 January 2021

Getting to grips with the dark mornings

 Getting to grips with the dark mornings now. 

Because we have no need of alarm clocks, we sleep while it is dark, unless something intervenes to wake us. Some days we have been waking as late as nine thirty, which is not good for getting to sleep the following night. But finally, with the solstice, we seem to have turned a corner and we are now waking while it is still dark. Today, for example, I was up, dressed and at my computer by 9am. 

Not that I am rushing to go outside. The weather is having difficulty deciding what it wants to do. Is it raining, snowing or sleeting?  Or none of the three? 

Every time I look out of the window, it is doing something different, but whatever it is, the temperature is very low. Tim is curled up on his bed, and I think I agree with him - we'll wait until closer to midday before we go out for our hour's exercise. Meanwhile, it is a good opportunity to continue proof reading my second edition of Abduction. At least 12,000 words have been removed and the whole thing smartened up. 

Wednesday, 6 January 2021

We have Snow!

We have snow! A light covering, but it has started to come down in big fat flakes. As of this moment I am not tempted to take Tim for his morning constitutional, and he is snuggled up behind me on what is laughingly referred to as "his" bed. 

I have a final read through of my newly edited ABDUCTION to begin. When I reduced it by almost 12 thousand words, and wrote more graceful sentences, I may well have  taken out more words than I intended! I'm also playing about with a new cover. 

I'm working up to a big house clean. It's that time of year, isn't it? Got the beds changed yesterday, finishing off the laundry today and with the heating on it is pretty easy to dry things. Lots still to go at!

(While I have written this, the snow has turned to rain and stopped falling. So we might just go for that walk after all!)