Hello again!


Spring is sprung, the pink jasmine is starting to wilt a touch but the wisteria, the Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow and the syringa are just heavenly and yes, I’m back! I have handed in the shitty first draft of my #sobercurious memoir and I now await feedback. A lot of people hate being edited, I crave it. Possibly because that’s the way I’m used to working? I dunno, but as a TV writer we get feedback on everything we write, and we spend our lives rewriting. Also, non-fiction is HARD, dear reader. I spent an awful lot of time wailing to the awesome foursome whilst I was writing, saying things like:

  • Will anyone even be interested in this?
  • Is this even the tiniest bit funny?
  • Oh no, I feel so EXPOSED writing about all of this stuff.
Spring 01

But they were soooooo encouraging and reminded me that I can actually write and seeing as I write a blog about my life every week (well, I used to before I took this break), writing a memoir is hardly that much of a stretch.



(that’s me running screaming)

It is scary. But someone famous said that we ought to do things that scare us.

“Do one thing every day that scares you.” I think is the exact quote and it’s been attributed to Eleanor Roosevelt and Kurt Vonnegut and a whole bunch of Tiktokkers and Instagrammers.

Not sure about every day, but okay, let’s see how it goes.

I have warned my publisher, Annie Olivier that I am the queen of rewriting and I will keep doing it until she pries the manuscript out of my clammy hands (or rather gets me to send the ABSOLUTE F*CKING FINAL DRAFT.)

I also met lovely commissioning editor, Sibongile Machika.

  • Me: thanks god you’re going to be reading it, you can tell me if I sound too much like a whiny white princess.
  • Sibongile: *giggles awkwardly*
  • Me: *penny drops* Ah, I AM a whiny white princess.
  • Sibongile: *reassuringly* Doesn’t mean your struggles aren’t real to you.

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!! I like her enormously already.

Talking covers with my publishers
Talking covers with my publishers

Speaking of being a whiny princess, we headed off to Scotland for the nephew’s wedding these hols. The plane and train tickets were so damn expensive, we practically had to sell half our worldly possessions and a couple of body parts to get there.

We were also very anxious about whether our luggage would arrive or not so took mainly hand luggage with one bag in the hold between the three of us. As we saw the bag off at each end, we closed our eyes and manifested that we would see it again (I learnt this on Tiktok) and it seems to have worked as it didn’t go astray.

The whole famdam
The whole famdam

It was THE MOST FABULOUS week, I met my great nephew and two great nieces that were born during Covid plus I saw my Firstborn who is working as an assistant at a school in Norfolk and frankly, living his best life (after the wedding he headed off for a two week break in Greece. Shem.) It was utterly wonderful to spend time with the family – the last time we were all together was for my niece’s wedding in Vic Falls in 2019 – and yes, I took along a healthy supply of waterproof mascara cause there was a lot of blubbing.

It was insanely hot while we were there, we even went swimming in a river. Yes. In Scotland. All very Enid Blyton.

Aside: did the Famous Five ever hit Scotland? Or was it just Devon and Cornwall??

The wedding reception was in the grounds of a Castle and was just lovely. It was proudly Scots which I adored, the boys were in kilts or trews, the bride and groom were piped out of the Church and into the marquee. We danced a few reels and sang Loch Lomond to end the evening which I haven’t sung since my parents were alive. I wore a hat from Art Africa in Parkview that was a big hit and was passed around like a crown.

With the groom...and the hat
With the groom…and the hat!

FYI: you can get hold of the lovely people at Art Africa here: https://www.facebook.com/Artafricajohannesburg/  

Also, thank you to the lovely person at Woolworths, Rosebank Mall who gave me the bubble wrap to wrap the hat in so it didn’t get crushed during our travels.

Heathrow was an absolute nightmare, on the way home we stood in the queue to check in for well over an hour and then the security people treated the Lastborn like she was up to no good. There was a lot of me hissing ‘just be polite!’ as she got more and more dog’s-bum-mouthed with them, but eventually we got through though sadly with no time to shop as we had to board the plane immediately.

Really enjoyed flying Virgin Atlantic who, even when you’re at the back of the bus, give you Bombay Sapphire gin and really decent red vino to enjoy. Food also was not bad at all, plus on the way back the plane was empty-ish so we could spread out. The Husband commandeered three seats and snored his head off for the whole night whilst we pretended not to know him.

It was utterly lovely to get home to OR Tambo where everyone greeted us and passport control was very cazh. Of course, I was busy waxing lyrical about how friendly everyone was compared to Heathrow and then some official came and shouted at our uber driver and quite ruined it. But after I tweeted furiously about it, they did reply and apologise.

What wasn’t so lovely was getting home to a power cut that lasted the better part of the day, the sooner we all move to solar the better.

TV/film recommendations: Good Luck to you, Leo Grande. We watched this at our fave spot, Cinema Nouveau at Rosebank Mall and it totally lived up to all the hype. Both Emma Thompson and Daryl McCormack were fabulous. And Emma’s bravery in dealing with the subject matter – female sexuality, plus the way she got her kit off left me totally in awe.

Spring 02

Book recommendations: The Favour by Nora Murphy which falls into the domestic noir genre and is a real page-turner, but really makes important points about coercive control and GBV within the well-to-do set in American suburbia – illustrating that domestic violence can happen to anyone. Thank you to the lovelies at Pan Macmillan SA for my copy.

I have started reading A Home On Vorster Street by Razina Theba (and am loving it!) in preparation for the Literary Festival formerly known as Parkwords on September 24th.

Parkview Heritage Festival
Parkview Heritage Festival

This year it is bigger and better, it is now called the Parkview Heritage Festival and it’s to raise funds for the Parkview Library. I will be in conversation with Craig Higginson, Razina and Terry Kurgan and you can get your tickets for the whole day here. Do come and join us, it’s going to be fabulous.

That’s it for this week. Enjoy the lovely warm weather and happy reading! xxx

Hello banner