• More Women aged 60 plus are continuing to work

    Women 60+ not giving up!

    For the first time in the UK, there are more women aged 60 to 64 in work than not, according to the Office for National Statistics. In fact there has been an increase of 51% since 2010. I know that there were changes to the state pension age for women in 2010 but is that the only reason? I can’t see myself ever retiring I’ve just had to work out how old I am. Is that a sign of old age? Anyway I’m 56 but have a birthday coming soon. But it’s just a number. Who cares? It’s all about your everyday experience. Perhaps I’m not old enough, but I…

  • August Newsletter

    August was a surprisingly lovely month for me. Visiting my mother in Seaford – the first time we had come face to face since before lockdown – was a lot of fun and it was so great to take her out to enjoy the fresh air. She lives in a lovely part of Sussex and my favourite place, that I always make a point of visiting, is the beautiful village of Alfriston which sits in the Cuckmere Valley. My best loved shop is Objet Trouvé, where you can find all sorts of brilliant and unusual things: usually of no practical value but guaranteed to be a talking point. And, this…

  • July Newsletter

    Reflections of a Writer July – the month we were set free from our homes Embed Twitter YouTube Facebook Instagram WordPress SoundCloud Spotify Flickr Vimeo Animoto Cloudup Crowdsignal Dailymotion Imgur Issuu On 4th July – our release date – I floated dreamily through Bury St Edmunds going into shops, socially distancing myself from other libertarians. Many people smiled at me and I smiled back. We had a shared understanding of what we were feeling. Free. It was legal to go shopping other than for food. We were able to go to a café for the first time in months and dear reader, probably the most significant change for me, the…

  • Over fifties to self-isolate – huh!

    On Sunday morning I had a very rude awakening! I was listening, bleary eyed to my go-to radio station, Times Radio, when the female presenter airily commented that over 50s were going to have to shield. I suspect she was under 50 and not bothered about who she upset. But believe me I was suddenly wide awake and angry! This government have got a lot wrong but I’ve refrained from criticising them because this pandemic is an unprecedented situation and presents very difficult challenges. But when I heard this ageist announcement, I was ready to write to Boris! To decide that all over fifties are more likely to get and…

  • Domestic Goddess or Fed up with cooking?

    Did you enjoy cooking in lockdown?

    Or did it become a daily chore? I enjoy cooking. I like trying new recipes, as those of you who know me, are already aware. Every now and then I produce a meal and The Grey asks, worthy of a photo? And it ends up on Facebook and Instagram. I often end up sending the recipe to one of my followers. But during lockdown the whole eating thing started to become a chore It was day after day, evening after evening, the question, what shall we have for dinner? became eternal and prompted a long sigh. I began sharing ideas with friends: local restaurants doing take-aways (including Friday night curry);…

  • Work shoes or barefoot on the beach?

    Is part-time work a good idea?

    Getting a balance between work and play becomes more important as we reach midlife. We value our time more and might want to pursue new interests. Some decide to go from full-time to part-time work as a stepping stone to retirement In my latest novel, The Long Marriage, Roger is thrown out of a high- powered job at 60 and is all at sea – he has no clue what he wants to do. His immediate reaction is to get back into insurance where he was before and his attempts prove unsuccessful forcing him to re-think.To To go straight from a busy full-time job into retirement can be a bit…

  • When do you want to retire?

    When’s the right time to retire?

    Do you dream of retiring and having an easy life, or do you want to just keep going? I don’t see myself as ever retiring. I’m lucky in that being a writer and working from home I can just keep going. At least until the brain cells seize up! In my new novel, The Long Marriage, we meet Roger in the first chapter and he has unexpectedly been made redundant at the age of sixty. He had a high-powered job in insurance and was pushed out to make way for a younger man leaving his ego bruised. He certainly wasn’t ready to relax and go fishing! Sixty is a difficult…

  • Mid-life Women: Masters of Reinvention

    Mid-life women often get significant change thrust upon them. Whether it’s divorce, the menopause, losing a job, financial difficulties or losing a loved one. And there’s a sense that time is running out. What impresses me, is how many women deal with it, reinventing themselves and creating a new life. Perhaps they need to build their confidence first before they can move on. Happily, there is help out there and most women will be willing to find it. Then they can start to make positive changes and to select what they desire. As a fifty plus woman and having lived a little, you are likely to have a clearer idea…

  • Lockdown – great news for a writer?

    As the norm for me is working from home in my room with a river view, the idea of being confined to barracks shouldn’t faze me. So I told myself. Lots of time to get on with work. My weekly pilates class at Kersey Mill with coffee after is reduced to an hour on Zoom. (Plus fiddling about a bit beforehand and trying to get the camera facing me or the mat.) So much more time for writing! What I quickly came to realise is that having the freedom to roam is all part of the creative experience. A walk round the village every now and then was nice but…

  • Rom-coms: so much better now they feature oldies!

    I found myself watching the American Rom-Com – You’ve Got Mail with Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan the other day. That’s lock-down for you. It wasn’t bad. Kept me interested – amused even. If you haven’t seen it, or, you watched it when it came out in 1998 read on.. A quick reminder of the plot Meg Ryan owns the cute little Shop Around The Corner in New York offering personal service and children’s story telling. Tom Hanks is a member of the Fox family who own the large chain store Fox Books – and guess what they are building a mega store just up the street from little shop.Meanwhile…