So what am I doing today…?

Sitting here in my dishevelled kitchen I’m briefly thinking that maybe I should be scrubbing my cupboards like a good little 1940s housewife (I’ve noticed some suspicious solidified ikky drips) . Alas my brain is not wired in that way… I can always find other things to do, usually involving food or Facebook.

Today, while I write this, I am making several 1940s recipes including lentil sausages, cheese potatoes, farls, cheese and lentil pie and preparing a bag or organic kidney beans so I can cook those up tomorrow. In the 1940s with meat being in short supply, it was vital to get protein from beans and lentils as well as dark leafy green vegetables.. Beans and lentils are protein rich and there is as much protein in  4 oz of dried kidney beans as there is in a 4 oz steak!! (I just checked the nutritional information on my organic pack of kidney beans!)

I also scrubbed out my fridge yesterday (well maybe I am a closet housewife on occasions) and filled one of my shelves with fresh organic produce such as kale, spinach, celery, apples and some non-organic veg too (I should start growing a victory garden to offset the organic vegetable bill) … people ask me about the expense of eating so much fresh veg (a fair percentage of it organic). I have to say that I may spend a little more but there are many other areas I am saving in by eating based on a 1940s ration. It evens out and the way I look at it is so far, touch wood, I take no medications of any kind, and that saves money too!

But apart from today I’ve had a great couple of weeks! I completed the “Relay for Life” walk for cancer on June 1st with my work colleagues and we walked from 7:30 pm until 3:30 am on and off. It was a great event, the first time I had been able to participate (thanks to losing weight I can now walk pain free and not get out of breath!), my son Josh came home again for a visit and …… (drum roll)

…..”a literary agent in New York, is going to sign ma blog!! Woo Hoo@!!!..”

That means I have to get my arse into gear, get the rest of that 100 lb lost by October 1st and the rest of the 100 recipes (35 lbs and 35 more recipes). Oh and of course over the summer we’ll be working on putting together a proposal to send to publishers (inc St Martin’s Press who e-mailed me initially) and then just keep our fingers crossed…

If I’m honest I’m overwhelmed with the thought of pulling this all together BUT this means so much to me, I am passionate about what I started and will finish. Am under no illusions that I’m a good writer but I know the premise of the 1940s Experiment is a good one and looking at it clinically, a marketable project. If my book gets published then I will have achieved what I wanted to do and that is to share the information and lifestyle changes I truly believe in….

Finally, Pixar has restored my faith in humanity (sorry this is not 1940s related but in a way it is)… remember those women during the war who went to work during WW2…yes those ones that picked up tools, built aircraft, worked in factories, worked on farms, worked agricultural machinery, rolled their sleeves up and did, what was perceived as a “mans job”…

They did those jobs and they did them well too…

Well PIXAR have finally brought to the front a princess character that doesn’t wear pink, or comb her hair all day under the sea, or pander to every whim of a handsome young man. She fights against societies expectations of her role, she breaks out of her confines by symbolically ripping the seams of her dress as she picks up the weapon of her choice, a long-bow, and proves her worth. She fights against what she perceives to be unfair expectations of her role as a traditional woman and a traditional princess…..

Yes, this is just a movie, but I am pleased to see a strong princess (Merida) not afraid to be herself, who realizes this importance…

I have a Merida… she is strong willed, she has strong beliefs, she is focused and determined on the things that are important to her and  I do believe she can do anything she wants to do in life… she is BRAVE

I am today, just realizing, how lucky I am…

Writing a book..

I am a great believer in whatever life throws at you, something good will eventually come from it.  Every hardship, trauma, happiness or indeed, the simple act of daily living, teaches us something valuable..

Although I tend to gravitate towards science & practicality in making everyday informed decisions, sometimes, something so unexpectedly awesome happens in your life, that despite your own personal insecurities or the enormity of the task to achieve it, you HAVE TO sit up and take notice. This has happened to me…. a veritable beacon is flashing on my horizon.

Last month, completely and totally out of the blue (or rather the virtual grey matter in cyberspace) I received an e-mail. The friendly, chatty, e-mail was from a rather large publishing house in the US, based in New York (I know that because I thought it was someone pulling my leg so I checked everything out before responding).

Part of the e-mail went like this..

QUOTE: I came across your blog via the article in THE AWL and I was wondering if you had ever considered publishing a book. I can think of a lot of women who would be interested in a book like this!

Initially I was very confused, did publishers really plant seeds in this way and actually help germinate them?  Of course I responded (I mean we all have a little dream of writing a book one day right?)…

Several e-mails later it seems so..

The publishing house (who shall remain nameless) have been very encouraging indeed. Not only that but they have taken time to answer many questions coming from myself (she who has little clue about book publishing and certainly NO CLUE about book writing!) and now I finally have a plan of action.

They have asked me to take my time and produce a well thought out proposal and have asked me to seek out representation as most major publishing houses only deal with literary agents (This protects the author and works in their best interests). Infact they say they can put me in contact with a couple of literary agents that could well be interested in my project…

As you can imagine my head is spinning somewhat akin to a certain young lady, tied to a bed in the “Exorcist”.  And then there is that nagging self-doubt…

“Do I have the dedication and commitment for such a project…”

“What if after all my efforts nothing comes of it…?”

“Would anyone actually buy a book based on the 1940s Experiment?”

But once I had spent many days trying to rationalize things I knew there was absolutely only one option and that was to give it a go!  This is my passion! I’ve been writing, living and breathing the 1940s Experiment, on and off, since 2006 and it is my way of life and I know I’ll lose that 100 lbs.

Sometimes life offers us opportunities from the most unexpected places and we should grasp these firmly..

There is always, always HOPE…

C xxxxxxxxxxxx