Tuesday, 10 March 2015

I've got a Versatile Blogger Award!

The Versatile Blogger Award 

My friend and fellow author, Mark Patton, has nominated me as a versatile blogger. 

It’s a way to recognise other bloggers and introduce them and their readers to new blogs. It's so true that  people blog about the most amazing and diverse subjects…as I'm about to do just now.

 So, what do I have to do?

1. Display the logo (cut and paste it from the nominating post)
2. Write a post and link back to the blogger who nominated me
3. Post seven interesting things about myself (am I that interesting?)
4. Nominate up to fifteen other bloggers (and why I’ve nominated them)
5. Inform them of their nomination

Seven things about me:

  • A walk for me now is the occasional half hour pad around my village in north-east Scotland but during the 1960s, as a schoolgirl, I did a lot more walking. This was on a day-to-day basis but also in well-planned hikes. I was a member of the Youth Hostel Association and I planned different trips with my school friends around the Loch Lomond/Stirlingshire/ Perthshire areas. My parents had also been Youth Hostellers dring the 1930s, so the influence of their happy memories was considerable.
    My maiden name has been replaced for this photo with the one I'm now known by - Nancy Jardine- but the original remains on the membership cards.
    Living in north-west Glasgow it was easy to catch a bus to a suitable start point like Fintry for Stirlingshire locations, or Luss near Loch Lomond if hostelling nearer the west coast. Some of my hiking was done during weekends. These treks were well planned to avoid Girl Guide Camps and also took place outwith the field hockey season when I played almost every Saturday morning. During the Easter week holiday from school, in 1966 and 1967, longer hostelling and camping trips were planned. We hiked the distances between the Youth hostels – in rain, hail or shine- and one year we even battled through snow. Loch Ard, Lendrick, Inverbeg, Fintry, Stirling are hostels I still have a record of staying in, though there were many others. I also went to the island of Arran for long weekends. We Youth Hostelled at Brodick, and Lochranza – though I think we may have hopped on a 'post' bus for part of the way between them. During the late 1960s, there was a very large Folk Festival on Arran which was a big draw! 
  • Continuing the nostalgia, I also climbed a few Munros. To do these hill climbs (not mountaineering) it was necessary to camp somewhere close enough the night before so that the trek to the summit and back down was ‘doable’ during the day. It was also essential that we had a little ‘down time’ at the end of the long climb - which is a euphemism for going to our favourite local pub. The Mar Lodge Estate was a popular camping area for our hill climbing forays around Braemar and very convenient in that it had a wonderful puiblic bar where impromptu folk singing was wont to break out. We'd never heard of karaoke in those days:  it was our version of community sing alongs.  Coylumbridge, and a farm named Tullochgrue near Aviemore, were overnight stay/camping favourites for climbs around the Cairngorms.
    I believe this photo was taken on a walk up Braeriach at one of the coires. The ex-army kagoul I'm wearing (third from left in the front row) was a great windbreak but got 5 times as heavy in driving rain. This photo was taken in June 1970, our aim to camp at one of the high lochans over the Summer Solstice. Heavy gear was worn even at this time of the year.
  • I’m an inveterate hoarder of randomly odd items that I can’t bear to get rid of. Not only have I kept the ticket I bought to see The Beatles perform in the Odeon Theatre in Glasgow, on December 3rd 1965, I also kept my return bus ticket which got me from home to the centre of Glasgow. Why I kept the bus ticket is a mystery now.
  • I can’t paint a picture, but I like the mindlessness of decorating a room. While teaching my primary classes it was necessary for me to learn some skills, so I did take watercolour and various other art classes. However, being able to instruct is not the same as being able to do.  
  • I’ve been dabbling in Ancestry for around 5 years now and love the excitement of finding something really meaty about my ancestors. I wasn’t popular with my sister, or with a distant cousin, when we discovered that our paternal great-grandfather was a bigamist. It might be the author in me, but I found the revelation hilarious given the fact that my grandmother seemed such an upright and eminently respectable person. I didn’t know much about her before her death when I was 12 – though it’s obvious she was very good at keeping secrets. YES- I do have a family saga as one of my current WIPs though it’s about a fictitious family using some ideas from my own background.
  • I lived in Holland for 3 years during which time my two daughters were born. It was a challenge to learn some Dutch since those around me spoke English so well, even in the rural villages that I lived in. I loved the architecture and try to revisit when I can. My last visit was in 2012 when my husband organised a surprise trip for me so that we could revisit the Keukenhof bulb displays.
    Nancy Jardine - Keukenhof Park
  • My writing spans different genres and eras. I’ve enjoyed the varied challenges which presented themselves during the writing of my historical Celtic Fervour Series and my stand-alone contemporary mysteries. My contemporary writing is more relaxing to compose since I don’t feel the need to maintain the more formal writing style that I’ve adopted for describing early Roman Britain (AD 71 -84 and beyond), and there has been less research necessary for the contemporary work. However, my next publishing venture is an amalgam of contemporary and historical. The Taexali Game, Book 1 of my Rubidium Time Travel Adventure Series, will be published in early April 2015. Writing a time travel novel for a middle grade/ early teen market gave me the opportunity to have contemporary teen protagonists time travel to another Roman era in Scotland – that of the Severan period when Emperor Severus and his son Caracalla marched northwards in Britannia in a great show of Roman strength. Blog posts about my research for this novel are planned. Book 2 of this series is also roughly outlined, the adventure taking place in Victorian Glasgow. 
Now to my nominations. I should have thought of this first since a lot of the people I would be wishing to nominate have recently been nominated by someone else already! However...

I nominate:
Yvonne Marjot  since she blogs about poetry and prose on a regular basis.

Nik Morton because he often has great tips for writers and his blog is full of pieces of his writing which spans a lot of different sub genres of fiction.
Flatcap David Robinson who blogs under many guises.

Vanessa Couchman for her information about Corsica and southern France.

Ailsa Abraham because she is a fantastic friend and funny blogger.

Sandra Robinson    because...she's a new Facebook friend.
(If I find more great bloggers who haven't been recently nominated, I'll add them to the list.)


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