I blogged about writing sex scenes back in May 2012 but here we go again. Not because I’m fixated (my partner will vouch for that!) but because I feel it’s a difficult subject to write about and have respect for authors who achieve it sensitively, without being off-putting or sounding like a biology book.
I read 99p Kindle books, selected from suggestions that come up on my Facebook news feed. Before splashing out 99p, I read the description and some reviews – and it’s surprising how opinions differ. Some of these books are so good I feel guilty that I only paid 99p. Others are crap and I either abandon them or rush through, wondering how they got such good reviews.
When reading a paperback, you see the title and the author every time you pick it up and if there’s a character that wasn’t built strongly enough to remember who they are you can easily recap to the point where they came in. With Kindle, I tend to forget the name of the author and the title of the book. I can’t recall who wrote the sex scenes in this 99p book I’m half way through (and wouldn’t name them here anyway) but the cringe-making nature of the following snippets means I’m either going to ditch this book, rush it through, or plough on out of morbid curiosity in case there are any more of these gems:
Name that tune!
Never did feel hypnotherapy would work for me.
“her actual vagina”
Update 26/07/21 – a couple of good ones from the crime fiction I’ve just finished:
Stop unfolding me!
Sounds like a bad bathroom experience!
Whilst it’s easy to take the Mickey, I’m not claiming I could do much better. I only attempt a sex scene if it’s relevant and it would be cheating the reader to simply leave the couple at it and move on to the next chapter. I find sex scenes excruciating to write and therefore I imagine not too easy to read.
The 99p book I have quoted from has lots of five-star reviews, otherwise I wouldn’t have bought it. My own 99p book (available from a link on this site) only has two reviews – both of them five-star. Hilariously, one of those reviews is from someone who hadn’t yet read it! Guessing they must’ve been taken with Dean Harkness’s cover design!
I had a lovely surprise in the post this morning from my friend and former colleague, John Sherwood:
John is a composer of ambient music. Some is for meditation – ideal for blocking out summer’s intrusive relay of lawn mowers and strimmers, whilst pieces such as The Saturn Suite send you flying through the cosmos with an ear on the response of the rocket’s engine as it propels you into infinity and beyond … Does anyone else feel slightly weird thinking about infinity? What if you had a rocket that generated its own fuel and could go on forever and ever ……?
The Lighthouse composition seems to work equally well as foreground or background sound, having the energy to help you on a journey of the imagination but without taking over. It would provide an ideal backing theme for a tarot reading, or to create atmosphere in a video or montage.
That’s probably enough pretentious twaddle from me. Let the music speak for itself!
Here’s a link to a wide range sound samples, MP3 downloads and CDs:
I have no plans for a second print run of The Lighthouse Tarot – at least not for the foreseeable future. Sales of The Lighthouse Tarot (there are still some left!) will be used to fund the printing of my current work in progress, The Light Creatures Tarot. I started working on it before The Lighthouse Tarot was published and it won’t be finished for ages yet, but a few lovely people have expressed an interest in the current project, so I am sharing a preview here.
“The Light Creatures Tarot” is a working title and might possibly change. I feel that The Lighthouse Tarot has … a lightness about the whole deck, whereas some of my creatures so far have a bit of attitude about them.
Here we have The Magician, The Hermit, Death & Rebirth, The Tower, The Moon and The Sun:
When I put a copy of the deck in the post to wing its way across the Atlantic to Jennifer, I had no idea this lovely lady has a YouTube channel, and was delighted to discover this review of The Lighthouse Tarot.
I love Jennifer’s warmth, humour and insightfulness – and the ironic connection with the Ten of Swords! I also love the interaction with Baker the cat who appears to be able to count to seventy-eight and took centre-stage right on cue 🙂
Donna was one of the first to buy The Lighthouse Tarot and it made my day when I was queueing for a Covid jab today and she sent me this link to a video of the cards in action. I am so impressed with Donna’s intuitive readings and her lovely voice!
Since my first Tarot reading as a teenager, I’ve had a fascination for the mysticism and artwork of the Tarot. I am not an intuitive Tarot reader – I simply interpret the meanings from traditional definitions, yet I am convinced that each deck of cards has its own energy. For example, if I draw the cards for myself but don’t like what I see, I might take a frivolous ‘best of three’ attitude, shuffle them thoroughly then try again and it’s uncanny how many of the same cards reappear – sometimes even in the same position in the spread.
Normally I do a Celtic Cross spread – just for an overview of past, present and future in general and the cards tend to reflect my mood. If I’m feeling low I draw cards associated with separation and misery – but this has happened often enough for me to realise nothing bad is about to happen and the spread is simply a manifestation of my own fears and negativity. I guess it must be similar for dowsers trying to remain objective to get a yes/no answer from the pendulum when the outcome is important to them.
Occasionally I ask a specific question of the cards and the answer can be surprising. For example, last weekend my son had arranged to go and look at a car advertised for sale. I was particularly hoping it would go well and he would buy the car because I worry about him riding a motorbike on country lanes in the dark when you can’t see debris on the road until the last minute – and for all the other reasons why mothers worry about sons on motorbikes. This car was more or less what he’s looking for and close to where he lives. Whilst waiting to hear how he got on, I drew the cards asking specifically how this viewing would go and got the ten of swords at the root of it and swords generally everywhere except for a couple of knights or kings. None of it made sense. I put the cards away and decided to do something useful with my time – then when I messaged to see how he got on my son said the guy had cancelled because he’d had a busy day and wanted to watch the footy so please could they rearrange for another day. So the reading did make sense after all. Whilst the cards appeared overly dramatic for something as minor as a car viewing, they were responding to my question. Whether I’m asking a trivial question or looking for guidance on a life-changing matter, it’s the same seventy-eight cards I’m playing with!
In my list of key meanings I have included the reverse meanings (i.e. if the card is drawn upside down). Personally, I don’t use reverse meanings and keep my cards all the same way up – there are enough interpretations already for my mind to handle, without the added complexity of reverse meanings. These key meanings are the ones that have grown on me over many years of shuffling and spreading. I have kept them as brief as possible for ease of reference as there are many books available that go into the meaning of each card in great depth.
If you click on the link “Tarot card meanings” on the site menu (also up above “Word on a Whim” if you’re on a computer) you will see my list of key interpretations.
Apologies for presenting the list in this weird way but I only have so many spare hours to spend trying to coax WordPress into loading a PDF document from a simple link within this post. I get the impression they want me to upgrade to the paid version that allows use of “plug-in” tools that appear to be available in this version until I click and get invited to upgrade. I’m not convinced upgrading would be the answer. Even with a fancy button to click I suspect if browsers are set to download PDFs there will be a conflict if WordPress tries to open them first. Sorry to digress, just venting my frustration 😉
My latest project, “The Lighthouse Tarot” is ready to go to print.
I had intended to print the cards myself but when I used a whole ink cartridge to print a single deck, I decided it would be cost effective to have a small print-run done next year.
Here is taster of the seventy-eight card deck – followed by some blurb.
My love of lighthouses started at an early age in Withernsea on the North East Coast of England. My auntie had a holiday chalet and we went every year. I remember that first night I noticed the huge spotlight sweeping rhythmically across the beach and reaching out to sea … eerie and compelling.
“It’s a lighthouse,” they told me. “It protects the ships and keeps them safe by warning them of rocks and other hazards along the way.”
I was drawn to seek the source of this benevolent beam and it was some surprise to find it was on an ordinary residential street with houses either side – in reality far removed from the romantic images evoked when it came to life each night – although I still gazed in awe at its solid, reassuring mass. I must have been about twelve when it was decommissioned and the seascape at night lost an important part of its magic.
As my interest in art developed, seascapes with lighthouses became a favourite theme – not just the reaching out across the sky and reflecting on the water but also the strength of these imposing structures that could withstand a battering from nature at its most unforgiving. When I decided to design tarot cards, “The Lighthouse Tarot” was a natural choice. Just as the lighthouse provides a guiding light to help sailors avoid the rocks along the way, these cards aim to unlock the reader’s insight into past present and future events in the questioner’s life and provide support in this life’s journey. Always bear in mind that we have free will, so if the reader suggests that your destiny is not what you were hoping for, you can make choices that will alter the course of events. The ship’s wheel is in your hands and you are empowered to navigate your own path.