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Cold rain falls from the nights abyss,

airborne tear shapes drawn to my skin.

My cheeks burn raw from their saturating bite

then my teeth clatter, like a spoon on a china plate

or supermarket baskets.

Cold wind whips up a carpet of orange

and green and brown speckled leaves and

throws them into a frantic frenzy. They land

on my coat, pointy and veins and arms and death.

Then become my crispy crunchy carpet.

Cold night, no stars or moon to light the park,

just street lamps.


And the Winner is…

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The winner of the ‘Interview the Author’ competition is Miriam Bee. Well done Miriam and I hope you enjoy ‘Loved settled and Understood’. Below I’ve answered the questions she asked (great questions by the way!):

Question 1. What are you best at?
This is a difficult question to answer without sounding big headed or on the other hand undervaluing myself. I’m good at motivating myself to study, to learn and to encourage other people to learn. I’m good at motivating people at work, I work with unpaid volunteers and I think it is important to make them feel valued as they do such a fantastic job. So I guess the answer to this question is motivation. 
2. What are you scared of?
Sink holes, without a doubt. You could be standing outside having a chat to your neighbour and suddenly be falling into a massive sink hole. The idea of a sink hole is terrifying. I also hate clip shears (earwigs) because I was once in registration at secondary school and I felt something crawling on my leg and when I stamped my foot a hamster-sized clip shear fell out. I have roses, clip shears love roses, its a problem. 
3. What makes your heart sing?
My Fiancee Helen, she is an amazingly brilliant, intelligent, funny and brave person and I love her to bits, she is also my best friend.
4. Describe how you picture your life in 10 years time.
Living on a farm (our own farm), in Scotland. Helen and I will be married and we will have goats and highland cows and pigs and hens and we will grow and eat our own veg. We will have out-buildings where friends and family can move in and we can all live off the land and avoid as much of the capitalist bullshit (that we are socialised into believing is normal) as possible. Oh and I will be writing bigger and better novels and Helen will be fit and well and I will have a degree. 
5. If I could grant you one wish, what would it be? 
Find a cure for NMO (Neuromyelitis Optica). It is a rare neurological condition that my girlfriend suffers from and recently caused paralysis from the chest down. She was in hospital for two months learning to walk again. 
6. If you could go back to one moment in your history and give yourself some advice, what would it be and when?
Spend more time with your mum and look after her because you never know when it’s her time to go. 
7. Top 5 words to describe your personality.
Creative, thoughtful, loving, funny, giving.
8. What aspect of your personality would you like to change?
None, if you were to ask me this question ten years ago I could have given you a much better and longer answer but the truth is, losing my mum gave me a mighty kick up the bum and the events that followed allowed me to change, mature and look at life differently. I returned to education and moved from my home town. I feel more ‘me’ than I ever have.
9. Which 3 people (alive or dead) would you like to invite over for dinner, and why?
I would love to invite Karl Marx because I think his views on society and capitalism were on the button, plus he had an incredible beard. I would invite my mum to dinner so that she could meet Helen because I think they would have got on like a house on fire. And finally Enid Blyton. Enid filled my childhood head with mystery, excitement and fantasy which made my growing up magical.  
10. What’s your favourite memory?
Lying on the sofa at my mum and step-dad’s house on Christmas day. Me and mum had drank two bottles of Sherry and were in no fit state to even make dinner. I cuddled up to her while she scratched my head and we both fell asleep. I miss those moments dearly. I have so many answers to this question though, this particular answer is good for today.
Thank you to everyone else that entered, you all posed some great questions. Loved Settled and Understood is available at Amazon UKAmazon USA, Amazon AU (available from Amazon all over the world) LULU.Com, Melange books.com
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Reviews for Loved Settled and Understood and COMPETITION

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Reviews for Loved Settled and Understood and COMPETITION.

Last 2 days people

“Get out the way of that wheelchair.”

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Check out this post by my Fiance and the experience we had yesterday when out in Glasgow

Originally posted on At Least I'm Writing:

Funnily enough, I am not a wheelchair. I am a 27-year-old woman that has an interest in politics and current affairs. I write, I cook (and eat); I enjoy travel and doing nice things for people. I recently got engaged. I work for a charity. Currently I wear a lot of headscarves (not all at the same time) and I’m obsessed with taking tomato plant cuttings. But yesterday in Glasgow, I was reduced to a metal contraption with wheels that gets in the way. I’ve no doubt that the lady uttering the words “Get out the way of that wheelchair” had no intention of making me feel that way, she was just hoping to avoid a collision between myself and her son. Yet she taught her son that I am a wheelchair. She taught him to ignore the person patiently waiting for room to pass and to see only a…

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When there is a helecopter sized seagull with red eyes about to drop a load on your head, look up and dare the bastard to shit!


It has been one hell of a year and I’m sure many of the people who know myself or Helen personally or through the various social network sites that we frequent will agree that we needed a little break.


In January this year I had an abdominal hysterectomy due to years of painful endometriosis, cysts, fatigue and generally feeling shit. It appears that once you reach the ripe old age of 42 that the doctors are happy to cut you womb away. No one prepares you however, for how rotten you feel afterwards. Tired, weepy, BORED and bloody sore. You get zero follow ups and zero physio, they take your bits and send you home in two days.


I was barely recovered when Helen took ill and was taken into hospital. What we thought was a bladder infection turned quickly into paralysis from the chest down, she was diagnosed with NMO (Neuromyelitis optica). My baby was really poorly sick with a rare neurological condition and to top it off got some scary super bug in hospital.



So I was recovering from my operation, Helen was learning to walk again, I had university essays looming over me like a giant red eyed sea gull ready to drop its massive load on my head but we looked the evil seagull in the eye and dared it to shit its load on us!!!!!!

Slowly but surely Helen showed signed of improvement. First in her big toe (we willed that toe to wiggle), then she could sit up and with a little tickle therapy we got those legs moving (I’m taking a tiny piece of credit here). With an amazing physio team, lots of love from my dear self, her amazing moo mah who was living two lives between Stirling and Hull, her brother for keeping us both sane, the delightful Stacey for keeping me sane and entertaining me with wee Ella, my friend (and much missed ex boss) who gave me time off, my friend Andy for delivering an Indian takeaway to the hospital and giving me lifts from work, my wee buddy Kelly for being my hugs and Katriona and Claire for being my sanity and many others who offered us support, she got on those partially numb legs and walked.

Two months later she came home. We knew it was going to be a struggle. That big fat seagull was circling above our wee flat in Friars street waiting…. Then the magical council lady called to tell us we had a new home thanks to the help and support from a casual acquaintance Maureen (who I am sure will become a dear friend to both Helen and I).

All we wanted was a ground floor flat with a little garden to sit in and we got a field!!!!


To top this I passed ALL of my University modules with good grades.

Since leaving the hospital we have done so many wonderful things. Helen’s dad came to visit and we went to the safari park for the first time.

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Helen asked me to marry her and I said Yes.


We decorated the new flat


Helen learned how to ride a bike again




and we ran away in Irene Lear’s car all the way to Hull for a week


Oh and I became an aunty for the third time


Its been an eventful year to say the least. I can still hear the seagull lurking in the distance but we are armed now with a massive umbrella of friends and family and they are all the protection that we need.

Reviews for Loved Settled and Understood and COMPETITION

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Hey everyone

It has been a crazy month since releasing my first novel – Loved, Settled and Understood – and I have received some pretty awesome reviews. I wanted to share some with you all as well as say a massive thank you for all your help and support. 


Closing date 1st September 2014. Ebook will be sent as a PDF to the winner by 7th September 2014 and published the same day.

Here are my reviews from Amazon

Gosh! This was good on so many levels. The blurb gives the gist of the story so no need to repeat it here. It was about love and loss, desire, heart-rending grief and anger – passion, I suppose, in all it’s guises. The book is well written and the author understands these passions well, especially that of grief. My eyes were watering many times.
I wasn’t so keen on the poetry. It was all a bit samey, though meant to have be written by different people. Fantastic to have a Scottish author on the scene. Makes a change! Most lesfic books are written by Americans. Not that there is anything wrong with that. Sometimes it is just nice to feel at home! *****

Just finished reading Loved, Settled and Understood. What a great read. I enjoyed the plot (I wont spoil it for you) and natural conclusion. This is a great first book, it is well paced and flows beautifully. I enjoyed the poetry interspersed through the book to illustrate emotions and thoughts. Really recommend it to all you naughty people out there :-D I look forward to your next book! ****

I smiled , I cried, I laughed what a great book !!! Enjoyed the book all the way through hope to read more of your books soon Kirsty !!! Thank you !!!! *****

This story totally moved me to tears! As someone that’s come out recently I can relate a lot to the main character (and in my head she’s totally hot!) *****

What a read couldn’t put it down, just wish it was like that in the real world…A girl can dream *****

A superb compelling read, did not put the book down till I finished. Would thoroughly recommend and look forward to more from this author. *****

fabulous story, so many mixed emotions, didnt want it to end *****


This novel is a fairly quick read. I was able to finish it in a single evening. It’s reasonably fast-paced with a cohesive plotline that moves along without sidetracking and unnecessary elements.

There were some things I liked and some things I think could have been improved upon. I was drawn in by the part of the plot involving the death of Laura, the main character’s best friend. Having lost a good friend to breast cancer a few years ago, I felt a sense of solidarity with Sophie in her grief.

Second, I enjoyed the sex scenes between Sophie and her love interest, Jane. They are steamy and descriptive, but not over-the-top with either flowery language or graphic vocabulary. They were nicely sensual. I also appreciated the realism of mild experimenting between Sophie and her friend Val without them suddenly developing lust or love for each other.

As far as things that could have been improved: I think the book as a whole could have benefited from higher quality editing. At times, the style was excellent, particularly at its most romantic. However, the rest of the story often felt like lower-quality filler in order to advance to the next romantic interlude. The entire first chapter had errors in punctuation and verb tense which were somewhat distracting.
I was disappointed that Sophie assured us multiple times that she was “not gay” as she came to terms with her sexuality. She seemed to have the common mistaken belief that there are no bisexual people or that she could not be one. This might have been all right if it weren’t overused multiple times each chapter before Sophie finally accepted her identity.
Finally, I was uncomfortable with some of the plot elements, particularly those that seemed like or actually were domestic violence. It’s difficult to believe, for example, that a woman who had been attacked by an intimate partner would eventually develop a warm friendship with that person. I was also bothered by the way Jane came across as a bit of a stalker, yet the reader was supposed to hope she and Sophie made things work.
Overall, this was an all right story. It was mildly entertaining, but I don’t feel as though I’ve come away from it changed in any way. On the other hand, I believe this author has potential, and I would enjoy reading her other work as she grows in her writing.
I give it 3 stars.

This is a quick read, but it took me awhile to get into it. The writing is not great. The novel is written in first person, but the main character is lacking in personality until more than halfway through the novel. The plot is what helped move this piece.

I did, however, have some issues with the plot. Jeff, Sophie’s boyfriend, seems to have three or four different personalities. He goes from being a douche who just wants sex and cares only about his pleasure, to a total gentleman who will do anything for his girlfriend in the span of two chapters. Later on, he becomes violent to the point of almost raping Sophie, and then he’s perfectly normal and cute again at the end of the piece. The violence is what shocked me the most. For a relationship that has lasted either 2 or 4 years, unknown as it was a continuity error, Sophie should have known whether he was an abuser or not. If he was, that should have come through before halfway through the novel. I also did not like the fact that Sophie let him back into her life after something like that

The relationship between Jane and Sophie was the driving force for the first half of the novel, and it was great to see a budding relationship that had a lot of issues to overcome and seemed to overcome them. I think this is where the story was best woven and written. The anticipation was built, the struggles Sophie faced were felt, and the scenes were most vivid and well- written in this section.

By the end of the novel, I didn’t want Jane and Sophie to be together because Jane had sufficiently creeped me out. It was hard for me to want them to be together even though I knew that was what the author had intended. I have high hopes for this author and the stories she has in her head, the characters she has created. She just needs a bit more time to let the writing technique get better to match the plots she has.

I rate this novel a 3 because the plotline is developed and the basic of the story is there. This novel could have used help from a few more edits and beta readers to flesh out the writing and make it seem more alive. I look forward to seeing where this author will go in the next few years and seeing if her writing improves.


Available now on Amazon or LULU.com

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Thank you for your support


The P-word

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This is a blog by my fiance. Still makes me cry.

Originally posted on At Least I'm Writing:

It was a while until I – or anyone for that matter – used the word. My legs didn’t work. I was numb from the chest down. Phrases like ‘severe weakness’, ‘loss of sensation’ and ‘loss of movement’ were thrown over and around my hospital bed. I can distinctly recall the first time I heard the word used in reference to me. A nurse stood either side of my bed and as they were preparing to roll me onto my side one introduced me to the other, “So, here’s Helen. She’s paralysed from the chest down.” Paralysed. The nurses continued to speak but I didn’t hear any of it. They pushed and pulled the heavy, inanimate mound of flesh and bones that pinned me down, rearranged some wires, and left. They left the word hanging in the air above me, staring down at me. Paralysed. Of course, I was paralysed…

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