Tag Archives: bridget jones

Did you ever write a diary?

Candice : I was thinking today as I was scribbling some notes about my new addition.  She is changing on a week by week basis and the other half and I keep saying we need to record more of what is happening with her before this time is gone.  I was bought a notebook before I left work and I’ve been using it to write down things relating to her.  Today though I started to write a diary from Erin’s view point.  It was just a few scribbles but it took me back to when I used to write one at school.

There has been alot made of diary books, the ones that stick out are ‘Adrian Mole’ and ‘Bridget Jones’.  The Mole kept me amused during my teenage years, going through angst that I could relate too but with an amusing angle that made me feel not as bad about my spots and relationship issues.  Bridget Jones hit around my late 20’s, and though she was annoying, again I could relate to her personal problems.

I wrote a diary for years when I was a teenager, starting around 11 and going right up to University.  I still have them and they are hilarious reading.  My first was just a week to one page, given to me as a Christmas present, but each year my diary got bigger so I had more space to fill, and by god did I fill it with rubbish.  However, it is great to go back to that time and read what I was feeling and doing.  The detail is incredible and one day I might give them to my daughter so she understands that everyone goes through these feelings.

But I wonder if that is where my enjoyment of writing came from.  I always liked to concoct stories but this was more, it was a combination of real and dreamed world as I tried to make the boy of my dreams notice me.  (Note to self: he did years later, we dated, I found him boring, I moved on)  I have even gone back to writing one occasionally as I find writing down my issues therapeutic and a way of getting them out of my head so I can chill.  Obviously the diary was the start of this.

So I think I’ll give Erin a diary when she is 11 and see if she can fill it with ideas too.

ps while searching for a diary image I came across other aspiring author’s blog, who writes it as a diary.  Have a look 

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Retracing your steps

Candice: Things have been busy in the Nolan household that last couple of weeks, three weddings in the space of eight days.  So after another mad weekend we took ourselves to the Lake District for a mini break (in a Bridget Jones stylie).  It was actually also an excuse to revisit the place I went to University, as I havent been back in around 15 years.

Well Friday walking around Grizedale Forest was everything I remembered, great sculptures, no-one around and beautiful scenery.  Saturday we got up and went into Lancaster to see where I used to hang out.  Old house, check, still in a state and obviously still student digs.  Lancaster Castle, having a recreationists weekend so people walking around in 17th Century uniforms.  Lancaster town centre…. well, when I went to Uni here it was a nice, middle class town, with a smart high street and lots of pubs.  (Lots of pubs, great for pub crawls from house to Student Union).  But, the more we walked around the more I thought, oh how things have changed.  The town centre is full of pound shops and just feels a bit rough.  The pubs are all still there but it’s really gone down hill.  Rich and I stayed for an hour and then said, “Time to leave.”  What a shame, I know we all remember things with rose-coloured specs but this was a real blow for my memories.  I had a great time at Lancaster University, met some nice people and learnt a bit, in between pub crawls.

The Union is still there, within stumbling distance of the town centre.  Randomly called the Sugar House, I used to DJ there, when at Uni, ah those were the days on the decks…..

Re-reading parts of our book and other writing I wondered if I had applied the same memories to them.  But no, one year on since really attacking the book I still like it, I just realise where some of the holes are and perhaps how we should rework it, no rose-coloured specs here.  The trouble is I also want to write other stuff and find it hard to keep retracing my steps through something I have done so many times now, to try and make it fresh again.  I suppose it’s the difference between walking round Stratford, something I do every week, and going back to Lancaster, a old memory but exciting again cause its different. But there wont be any pound shops in my book!

Let’s be honest, if Phil and could afford it we’d get a ghost writer in to take the meat of what we have written and make it a polished book, ’cause we just don’t have the time with all the ideas we have.

But lets be realistic, we just need to find some time and we’ll be off again, I’m sure we’d struggle to let anyone play with our little story.

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The Office – but not the Ricky Jervais one!

Tangfastic: Kate regularly visits the shop in her home village of Bucklebury, Berkshire, to buy bags of Haribo sweetsCandice: As a contractor, I work in many different environments, often more than most people will work in in a lifetime.  I have to say, particularly in some of the places I’ve worked more recently, they just don’t get the whole “contractor” thing, and wonder why anyone would want to work anywhere else other than their lovely, safe, comfortable company. The thought of going anywhere else is quite a shock! However, to me that seems to breed a complacency and attitude where it’s acceptable to surf the net, tell everyone what you have been surfing for and then ring your husband on the office phone to discuss what you have been looking at…..
Anyway, the point of this blog is not to slag off the mainly hardworking people of the UK but to discuss the bit that keeps one going when in the monotony of an office – the book writing (and acting in my case and regular bags of tangfastics).
However, the office and idiosyncrasies of working with one are the bread and butter of our book. We think we have captured some interesting nuances from different offices which will have those people reading the book chuckling to themselves thinking, “Oh yes, I know one of those types of people, oh God so and so does that everyday etc.”  The place were Phil and I met (in a writing sense) was an education quango that had a mixture of people who had worked office jobs all their lives and those from an education background – which brought together two very different mind sets.  Add in around 40% contractors, who been and seen everything, and confusion reigned and sparks would fly.  The number of times I sat in a meeting going “what” as the educational types talked pedagogy and teaching nuances and I was like, aren’t we here to talk about a leaflet to schools?  But these colourful personalities flavoured the characters in our book, in fact some of our ex colleagues may find they are a character by name or personality.  But I shall leave them to interpret when they can finally read our published book…

Roll into that about 30 years of working for different companies in to the writing team’s experience and you have a book full of slightly embellished truths, and we hope it will all ring true with our readers.
Added to that, as we have put in our new improved synopsis, a strong female lead character who is a closer approximation of what female readers want these days.  (Bridget Jones – funny then but now don’t you just want to slap her). Then we hope we are on to a winner.

But it is for you to decide – so Phil – it is time to add a chapter of the book to the site so you can see what we mean?

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