Keep on truckin’! Or writing…when we’re not baking, reading or a myriad of other excuses…

Following on from last week’s post and our learnings from Nalini’s book launch and talk, we have come to the sad realisation that if we don’t meet weekly, our writing production tends to slump. We know we need to write every day but somehow life intervenes and we just don’t make the time for it.

Toddlers and Tiaras is my favourite activity when I get home from work (my new temporary contract with a fabulous company – sadly with a 7am start which means by writing time I’m about to head off to bed…) car crash TV I know but it helps me unwind, DON’T JUDGE ME! Lisa has many activities before, during and after work which all take away from our collective writing time. In fact, she has so many responsibilities that I’m amazed she even has time to sleep, let alone write!

However, we have undertaken to aim to write at least half an hour each day – which means that once we actually get going, at least an hour or two, so we hope to have the last book in our ‘siblings trilogy’ done and dusted in quick order. Or by the end of the year anyway…

So this is our aim, but we thought we would show you some of the other creative things that we do.

10 year old birthday cakes:


9 year old chocolate chippie initiative (with unbelievably good berry chocolate brownies in the background):


We also actually read actual books written by other people…Lisa has been reading three different books this week, Allegiance of Honour (by our Nalini of course), The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August (by Claire North) and The Boys in the Boat (by Daniel James Brown). She’s just finished listening to the audiobooks of “Rivers of London” by Ben Aaronovitch for the second time. She mainly reads or listens on the train on the way to work and occasionally in the fifteen minutes before going to sleep at night.

As for me, my only reading time is when I drag my lazy arse to the gym – have to have some distraction on the treadmill! So I tend to stick to light reading – although I have been enjoying Undraland (by Mary E. Twomey) and How to Be Dead, Books 1 and 2 (by Dave Turner). When I do manage to get to the gym I also listen to podcasts from, particularly Stuff You Missed in History Class,Stuff You Should Know and of course, Stuff they Don’t Want You to Know and Stuff You Should Know.

All in all, our conclusion is that we need to actually make writing our own stories our priority, rather than reading someone else’s creation (although that’s always fun, for both of us!), or getting distracted by other projects.

What we’d love to know is, what do you read? What other things do you do to distract yourself from the things you know you should be doing? If you confess to the shame of Toddlers and Tiaras, then I think I might just love you forever…

We look forward to hearing from you 🙂 x



Fan girls aka we meet Nalini Singh

It was a cold, wet, rainy night as our speedy Fun Cargo zipped its way into a very tiny park outside the Remuera Library. It’s not unusual for us to use a library, but it is unusual for us to be in Remuera and on a Tuesday night. We had our fan geek girl on, and had ventured to the other side of Auckland in search of a real bestselling author experience.

Nalini really
Nalini signing my book. Well, her book, but the copy I bought!!

Nalini Singh was launching her 15th book in the Psy Changeling series and we’d signed up to go along. Partly, we were keen to hear how she’d become a best selling author. Partly, we wanted to take a selfie with her and shamelessly use her fame to promote our blog. But mostly, it’s always cool to hear an author speak about their books and their motivations. We’ve seen some big name authors together – Roger Zelazny, Greg Bear, Tad Williams and even bought Terry Pratchett fish and chips and coronas for dinner once! Separately, we’ve also met the cast of Red Dwarf, David Gemmell, Cody Young and sundry other well-known authors, including, of course, Nalini.

Nalkini crowds
I was sadly at the back of the queue for the book signing. Nalini was still smiling and gracious when we eventually got to her!

I (Lisa) was lucky enough to read Nalini’s first published novel while it was still a competition entry for the Clendon Romance Writer’s Award. I was a little concerned as it was called something to do with a Sheikh and I had just read another desert sheikh entry which I hadn’t enjoyed much. Nalini’s manuscript was fabulous and became the Silhouette release Desert Warrior.

We’d both met Nalini before at various Romance Writers of NZ conferences as well as RWNZ regular meetings, where Nalini often showed up to celebrate other people’s successes and offer encouragement. So we thought that a short drive to Remuera would be quite a fun thing!Nalini 1

So what did we learn? We learnt that Nalini is really nice. And funny. And very patient with her fans.We learnt that she is a prolific writer (we kind of knew that already to be honest) and that she has many more obsessed fan girly fans than us.We also learnt that she is a fan girl for Nora Roberts, and frankly, who can blame her?  We learnt that we should just keep writing and never give up and that if we’re actually writers, it won’t matter if we’re never published.

So we came away with a signed copy of Allegiance of Honour, an increased fan girl admiration for Nalini, two Guild Hunter badges and a renewed drive to write. Thanks Nalini for all the hours of enjoyable reading and the encouragement.

Nalini Caro Lisa