Monthly Archives: July 2010

On… my internet diet

I’ve been going over my copyedits.

Copyediting is when a person with supposed eagle eyes goes over the manuscript and spots things like, oh, I don’t know, someone getting a drink twice in a page, for example (my characters make that mistake a lot, the little boozehounds).

I’m not sure that the copyeditor really gets my writing, though. One character said ‘ballache’ and the comment said ‘is this French?’

Recently I’ve been thinking about my internet diet and wondering what other people look at regularly. What blogs do you love? What sites can’t you live without (or, let’s be honest, you could live without but would much rather not)? For me, these sites are all creative diversions. I browse to clear my mind after or, actually, between writing. Kind of like recess at school. – amen – don’t knock it till you’ve tried it – lovely, warm, thoughtful (but not self-indulgent in the least, unlike so many) blog – and she loves Jilly Cooper so is clearly a kindred - consistently awesome fashion styling – yes I live in London not New York but there’s something delightfully inclusive and happy about this site, and I love their newsy bites in The Cut, Grub Street and Vulture – london debut chicklit author who blogs brilliantly – funny as hell and – someone in publishing needs to employ these girls; their knowledge of the chicklit market is truly awesome and their reviews are ace (not just saying that cos they were nice about The Dating Detox, I pinkie-swear it) – stimulates the creative juices – smart, in-the-know news-n-diversions – first port of call for any birthday / christening / christmas shopping – for pretend boutique holiday planning – just a brilliant read, and the VF Daily blog featured moi so obviouslah is especially awesome - I love her, so there - like having a clued-up (albeit obsessed-with-the-cool-kids) friend who tells you everything everyone else will be doing this weekend - kind of a daily candy for boys – i never buy any makeup without checking the reviews here first – interesting/odd/important/fascinating letters that always make me sigh and think, in a good way

What about you? What are your favourite sites for playtime?

On…. summer playlists

Don’t you find that iPods are such needy things?

They need constant attention, especially if you’re like me, and replay songs over and over and over again and thus tire of them stupidly quickly. Then I have to wait to find a new song obsession and set aside an hour, usually on a Sunday, to make a themed playlist for said obsession. (Do you do this, too? How else does one keep one’s iPod fresh and juicy? I don’t know. I am probably going about it all wrong, I know.)

So. This is my new Hot And Sunny Summer playlist. Now, before the slating starts: I know my taste in music isn’t for everyone, in fact, one of the biggest fights Fox and I ever had was when he accused me of being an iPod Nazi at parties*. But these are my favourite songs…. for at least the next 10 days.

Shout It Out Loud – KISS
Here I Go Again – Whitesnake
The Boys Of Summer – Don Henley
Love Bites – Def Leppard
Tweedle Dee – LaVern Baker
Thunderbird – it says ‘Various Artists’ so who knows
Jukebox Baby – Perry Como
California Gurls – Katy Perry
Saturday In The Park – Chicago
Animal – Def Leppard
Jenny / 867 -5309 – Tommy Tutone
Oogum Boogum – Brenton Wood
Cruel Summer – Bananarama
Gimme Little Sign – Brenton Wood

Any ideas for more summery songs?

*I actually think people at parties welcome an iPod Nazi (though I’d call myself more of an iPod Enabler), as otherwise they might forget that gems like Express Yourself by NWA or Wild Thing by Tone Loc even exist, and that would be a tragedy, n’est-ce pas? Fox’s point was that sometimes people want to listen to their own iPods. My replying point was: but my iPod is better than theirs. He then said: see, that’s what I mean, you are an iPod Nazi.

On… a new dress

I think you should all know that I am in love.

You know when you find a dress you love? Like, really love? It happens rarely, for me. I very much like most of my clothes, only tolerate some of them, and outright hate a handful. But never mind all that, they are past flings, forgotten: I have found the one.

That’s right: I love this Maje dress so much that I can’t stop talking about it. It completes me. I am the man who will fight for its honour. Hold me closer, tiny Maje dress.

So I have to share it with you, even though it has nothing to do with writing or reading or uh, anything. I would write more but I have to go now and kiss it and see if it wants anything for lunch and then maybe wash its hem with my hair.


I don’t post about books that often, for many reasons. There are much better book reviewers than me in the blogiverse, I read purely for pleasure and it would feel like a job if I reviewed them, and um, I’m lazy.

But sometimes I read a book that makes me want to lie in bed and gaze into its eyes lovingly. A soulmate of a book. A kindred spirit, a bosom friend, Diana to my Anne of Green Gables. (Okay enough with the analogies.)

The Best Of Everything by Rona Jaffe.

The basic premise: five women working in publishing in the 50s in New York, trying to figure out who they are and where they’re going. It’s like Sex And The City meets Mad Men (I know, I hate those ‘x’ meets ‘x’ comparisons too, but they do save time). It was written in the late 50s, expressly to become a film, but as a book it’s standalone awesome.

It was a bit like being in love. When I wasn’t reading it, I was thinking about it, and when I was reading it, nothing else mattered. I found myself underlining passages throughout, saying out loud ‘I feel EXACTLY like that!’. Naturally, some bits are un peu outdated (I don’t actually know any girls holding onto their virginity like some diamond-studded albatross, for example) but on the whole, sentence after sentence gave me chills. It’s smart, observant and empathetic. I wish I could go back and read it again.


Dave or Harry? Who would be your bastard of choice?

Hurry! Vote now or forever hold your peace.

Just add it as an anonymous comment or email me

Want to read ALL the bastard entries? Check out