So where's the snow?

Muddling through in Austria; God, life and a small black dog


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Writers’ Block

So last week, I was ploughing on with the new book, the final book in my Horses and Souls series. I’ve wanted so much to crack on with this all winter. It’s set here in the Lungau, has a romance and loads of horses. I’ve managed another five thousand words.

Today I sit at my computer. I don’t want to write a word. It’s not that the story isn’t there in my head, it’s there waiting to be pulled out. But I can’t. I feel the story is boring, lacks action, just putting another word down fills me with boredom. I don’t want to do it.

Maybe it’s a final effects of the flu. It’s been a hard winter for me, physically and mentally. Then there’s this lock down. Day in day out the same, but at least I get out for work. I know I’ve got some anger boiling away inside, some things that wouldn’t have been a problem have got me really angry.

So I’ll eat some chocolate and watch the tv and try to get my head around this.


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Christmas!

This time of year is the main time for book buying, then afterwards people are using vouchers. So here is a subtle hint from me about my books and then I’ll not bug you again until the new year!

All are available as ebooks and free on Kindle unlimited. Christmas and Collection are not available as paperbacks.


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Baize door

Question for all my followers especially USA ones!

Do you know what a Baize door is? If you saw a book of that name, would you be tempted to look further? I ‘m asking as this is the name for my new book, but I’ve discovered there is already a couple of books with similar names-although they are old and out of print!  Tell me!

And here’s a spurious Swingle picture!


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Becoming a Librarian

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Home made advertising in one of the libraries!

Becoming a librarian is my latest challenge, I wanted to start a scheme in the village to get books to the old folks and Annie (the Bucherei leader) said if I wanted to do this, then I had to take over the library as she wants to retire. I had considered this before, and this time it seemed right.

So training is needed! I was booked to go to the Salzkammergut for a week shortly after we returned from the UK. At least obsessing about this stopped me feeling homesick! Luckily I got a lift from two other women from a another local library (every village in Lungau seems to have one). I so enjoyed sitting in the back of a car and being a passenger!

We were going to a village called Strobl, and when we arrived it seemed the Salzkammergut had got all our snow and it looked idyllic as we drove around St Wolfgang See. People rave about the area, but to me it looked very overdeveloped with holiday houses.

The training centre was gifted to the people  after the war, and was in a beuatiful  area. I had a room to myself and that I was looking forward to, no dog and no husband – more of this later! I had to register as Gluten free but the cook was very helpful.

We were a little early and we did the wandering around looking at people out of the corner of our eyes thinking who are they, are they on the course?? I was really freaked out at the thought of all this week just in German, and I allowed myself my pre exam freak out, of going to pieces completely inside, self pity and wanting to run away, then pulled myself together, it always works! But I did burble when asked to introduce myself, but at least they knew I wasn’t Austrian!

We did Ice breakers, and through the week learnt about  cataloging, systematizing, law, yearly reports, funding, all the government agencies, we visited an old and a new library, did role play, presented a kids book, it was full on intensive, but well run and organised. I got my certificate, and am looking forward to the next part in June, we have to plan and run a project in the village and present it on the last week next year!

Each night we had a drink in the bar, and then I took myself to bed. I found the sitting all day really difficult, as I’m used to dog walking a couple of hours each day, I wish I had used the gym- if I can’t go for a brisk walk on the next course, I will! I was also really hungry, as the GF diet meant some days I got just meat and veges, fruit (no cakes for me) no spuds, no one in the kitchen seemed to read my order, on the last day I went and demanded some some!  So I got hungry and then the wine on an empty stomach gave me both heartburn and a carbohydrate rush, so I didn’t sleep well. But it was nice having the room to myself!

I saw changes in myself, I used to rush in to be the first to do things in exercises to get it over, now I left it as long as possible to learn from the others how to do things and speak them! I was expecting people to find me different, so I got attention and I did have to tell my Austrian story a lot but by the end I just wanted to merge!

I’m 57 this year, when I write that,it’s scary, but inside I’m still me doing another challenge, which I need for my self worth. I’ve got a goal and a sense of having almost too much to do now, which is better than the post Christmas gloom. Its even been a struggle to find time to write this, but I must!!!


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The Library

p1320417I’ve now started my apprenticeship at the library and am learning my new trade. Annie is patiently showing me the filing system, how its been organised, how she orders books. She orders through the suppliers and says the books are often a bit old, so I suggested the Amazon Bestsellers list, she’d never heard even of Katie Fforde. There’s sections where a writer has got popular and she’s got lots of titles, and then people go off them. Apparently someone came in a while ago and they had a chuck of all the unused books, there is a way to sort this on the system.

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I went in on a Wednesday with Linda, to have no customers!  But we used the time with a lesson in new book covering! The playschool comes in once a month, but all along, there are very few customers.  The library is open three days a week, Monday and Wednesday mornings and Friday evenings. Something I think I will change, so long as the total time is six hours a week!  There is an uncomfortable table and chairs and my first move will be to put a small sofa there!

Oh, I’ve so many ideas, kids clubs, reading club,  taking the library to the old, housebound folks in the village,even coffee mornings!!!! I went to a regional meeting last week and for such a small area, the Lungau there is a library in all the major villages and with support form the county, reading schemes, special weeks, it couldn’t be more intensive. Some libraries even open on a Saturday!

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The library moved to its current home in the early 90s, seemingly  with a charismatic leader. There were book readings and a lot of older folks talking to kids, sleepovers for the kids, all of which must be time consuming. A lot of these folks have now passed on!I get the impression that Annie and Linda are burnt out, and it is time for a new brush. I will however, only commit to 5 years. I will need to raise the profile and find a bigger team of helpers!  Annie has warned me that it can take over your life, an for little pay.

I may be able to take my first training in January, which should be a challenge. When we go over to the UK  at Christmas I’m hoping that I can go around and shamelessy  steal ideas. But I’m loving it, even if the books are in German!


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Oh no, she’s not created yet another blog has she?

I’ve been having such a blast with reading my Kindle and book reviewing and entering new competitions and finding so much stuff to blither about, I’ve gone and re-created the Book review blog as there was such a backlog building.

This time, I’ve stuck with WordPress as it works not like some I could mention!  There will be some repeats but also updates and I’ll use both to unashamedly plug my own stuff!

Here’s the address;

http://booksandanna.wordpress.com/