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Motto In Life

Can you be over prepared?

On a Sunday evening I have a whole host of rituals I go through to make my week ahead more positive and more creative. I write out my to do lists, I tidy, set alarms and check out my clothes for the day ahead. All these little things help give me a restful sleep and by extension a good start to Monday morning filled with coffee, brilliant ideas and a strength that is ready to take on anything.

I have a motto in life. Knowing the little things are taken care of makes you ready for all the big things that might strike. It’s not the prettiest or hard hitting of mottos but it’s one that usually steers me well.

Life gets in the way.

it seems no matter how much you prepare there are natural anxieties that are always get in the way. As the quiet of night set in there were those doubting voices.

“What good are you?”

“Who cares anyway?

“You are nowhere near where you hope to be.”

When you are alone in the dark these voices ring really loudly. You can’t sleep for them because they have caused your adrenaline to rush and your heart won’t slow. You can deny all these doubts but they don’t go away because they are your own doubts and you have to believe them, right?

With the result you finally drift off in the small hours resulting in very little sleep and waking the next morning not only feeling miserable, having battled yourself all night but feeling tired.

It’s okay to doubt.

Everyone faces those self doubts. It is true that we can be our own worst critic. What is most important is how we handle them. Personally, I have had some real self destructive episodes over the years as a result of this. I have also seen loved ones fall foul to it as well. So, now when those niggling voices start to get louder I note to myself three things I am looking forward to doing that day. These don’t have have to be any major events. They can be something simple like taking a walk in the park, or reading a few chapters of a good book or having a chat with a partcular someone.

Knowing the little things are taken care of makes you ready for all the big things that might strike. That is my motto and knowing there are little things to enjoy throughout the day goes a long way to easing the stress.

So I urge you to enjoy the little things. I urge you to ignore those doubts and I hope you all have the best week ahead.


If you have been suffering from anxiety or depression visit mind.org.uk for more information on the support available.


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As a cult deprogrammer, John Reynolds has brought many a lost soul home. When someone close to him joins the Church of St Wigan, every skill he has ever garnered will be called upon to face its zealous leader.  

Am I the A**hole?

Recently I’ve found a hobby of the ‘Am I the asshole?’ subreddit. If you’re not familiar it’s where people put scenarios they’ve found themselves in and they ask the internet whether they are the asshole or not for whatever it is they’ve done. We all know how much of a forgiving place internet forum comment sections can be but there are those rare gems that actually offer some real insight. That’s not the reason I’m addicted to it though. The addiction comes from getting the popcorn and reading the mightier than thou responses.

Either way it got me thinking of some scenarios in my own life where I may have been the asshole and not realised it. One particular event in mind happened some time back. Someone mentioned his disapproval of James Bond being played by a black woman to me. I explained that 007 was a codename anyway and it didn’t really matter all that much how the character was portrayed as long as the writing was good and the actor fulfilled their role. Sounds reasonable, right? Where I might be the asshole was how I responded. I was already in a foul mood about something else (what that is is irrelevant) and so I snapped. I had no patience for listening to what was no doubt going to be a racist, misogynistic argument against ‘ruining the classics.’ This person had never watched or read anything James Bond so their opinion either way was kind of moot.

So there you have it. I felt I was just making my point. Internet strangers may say I was nipping someone’s head off when they were just offering an opinion.

So what do you think, folks? Was I the asshole? Do you have any instances you would like to put to the court of public internet forum opinion?


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time to kill

“All roads lead to the same place in the end.”

A question was posed to me the other day from a friend. If you were told that you only had until the end of the week to live the rest of your life, what would you do?

This isn’t a new question. What we would do with the hypothetical time we have left is something humans have pondered for a long time. However, given just a week, what would I choose do?

First and foremost I would obviously want to see my loved ones. I would want to do everything that makes me happy. Usually I find these are the simple things like my favourite books, movies, walks. A week is not a lot of time and although the big bucket list experiences like sky diving or bungee jumping are great for considering, I believe to make that week the best ever it wouldn’t be spent rushing around trying to find some last minute thrill. It would be found by doing the things that I’ve always done that made me smile.

You don’t have to look far outwith your own surroundings to find those things that are worthwhile. The truth is there isn’t just a week. There is a lifetime. If you want to seek those big thrill bucket list items then now’s your time. Now’s your time to do the things that you’ve always wanted to do. Given the current lock down situation obviously things are limited but you can plan those experiences. You can do all those things you always wanted to do. In the meantime, take a look around yourself. If you had the week how much of what you do now would you still do? Look for the things in your daily life, the small things, that make you smile. They are the most important.


Coming Spring 2021

How far must a man fall before the climb back up becomes too steep?

responsibility to others

Turner’s Syndrome occurs in 1 in about 2500 live female births across the globe.”

I count myself blessed in life. It is a pleasure to be able to do what I love most. With those blessings comes a responsibility. I believe it is my responsibility to play my part and support my TS sisters in achieving their full potential. When I was a little girl, heading into hospital for my second surgery I was terrified. My gran knitted me a rag doll to cheer me up and keep me company. So it was the charity Ragdolls UK was born from this same sense of comfort and support we are hoping to bring to as many TS girls and their families.

As a small charity Ragdolls UK has raised awareness and provided support groups across the UK but there is still much to be done. 2020 provided its challenges to say the least and 2021 is still going tough. However, it has made us more determined than ever to extend our reach, expand the support we can offer and do our part in assuring girls with TS receive the friendship and advice they need. With your help we can fight against the restrictions caused by COVID19 and be there for any and all who need us.

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Despite occurring in 1 in about 2500 girls and women across the world there are still so many who have never heard of the condition. The doctor’s waiting room can be a terrifying place when you have been diagnosed. There are so many questions to ask. There may be so many things you are told you can’t or won’t be able to do. Ragdolls UK aims to be a friendly environment away from that where we look at what you can do because one thing I’ve learned over the years is that my TS sisters are some of the most resilient people there are.

“Turner’s Syndrome is caused by the partial or complete loss (monosomy) of the second sex chromosome.”

So whilst I am blessed I have a responsibility. I can’t do much but I can certainly do my part and be there for the TS sisters and family members who need me.


For more information visit www.ragdollsuk.com

My Life Changing Event

We all have those moments in life where we are taken on a completely different path. Some life events have the potential to change our points of view and some have the opportunity to wipe us out completely.

With everything going on in the world at the moment it makes me nostalgic. Thinking back I take time to consider those life changing moments. For me it was when I was aged twelve and I was just starting my second year of high school. As per usual I had arrived late and the first session was P.E. Across the road from my high school were playing fields where most of the outdoor classes were held. The few other stragglers and I got dressed into our kits and headed across. Between the school and the playing fields is a very busy road. Already a little shaken by the speed of the traffic and anxious that I was already late I crossed the road and was (perhaps inevitably) knocked down.

I spent months in the hospital recovering from the injuries, watching the opening game of the 1998 World Cup from my bed. Even to this day I don’t remember what happened. All I can go on was the stories told by my family as they were given the news and my school mates who were there to witness the event. The point is that when I came round some weeks later I was in a strange hospital with absolutely no clue as to how I got there. It was strange to not recognise the hospital because as a youngster I had pretty much toured all the medical facilities of the city.

As I recovered I was reminded by the physical pain I was in, the reactions of my loved ones and by the gifts and well wishes I was inundated with that I had come so close to no longer being around. To this day I would have been but a memory of some little girl who had once been part of the family. This sounds really morbid and I do have a morbid fascination with death but In times of trouble or when things get me down I think upon that moment and remind myself that there is still much life left to live. I am still here and as such I can still contribute. It stops me from wasting time and it helps me gain the confidence to reach out when I need help.

So I put it to you to think about those moments that changed you or changed the world around you. Let’s use those moments to push ourselves to do better and to remind us to make the world around us a better place in whatever ways we can.

Inspiring words

“And you ask

What if I fall?

oh but my darling

What if you fly?

Erin Hanson

Words are powerful things, aren’t they? They have the power to put down but they also have the immense potential to lift up. The above quote from a poem by Erin Hanson is one of my absolute favourites. The words are powerful and the message is one that speaks to me. We all have those missed opportunities and to be encouraged to pursue your dreams no matter how scary it seems or how vulnerable it makes you feel is something I will always champion.

“No one is useless in this world that lightens the burden of another.”

Charles Dickens

Not only is Dickens one of the great masters of literature, he is also a passionate speaker for those with little voice. With his masterful story telling techniques he challenged the Victorian elite and opened their eyes to social problems. Knowing this about him makes all of his words more powerful to me and the above quote in particular. Even over two centuries after since his birth the world still needs to be reminded that success in your own pursuits but the importance should lie in what we can do for others. A charitable man, a tremendously talented wordsmith and his words stand the test of time.

“If you can dream it, you can do it.”

Walt Disney

Imagination is such a powerful tool. This is evident when I spend time with my niece and nephew and enjoy how they lose themselves in their imaginations. The world around us can be whatever we want it to be. Our imagination is what would make long lasting and positive changes to our own world and to the greater world too. For the young this is an important reminder but I also think it is just as relevant to those older too. Use your imagination and let a better world fall into place.

“Even the darkest nights will end and the sun will rise.”

Victor Hugo

These words are simple yet capture a sentiment that can be put to so many different things in life. When you struggle or when you are facing tough challenges personally or professionally these words have the power to help you push though. It is a reminder that the world may seem like a scary place sometimes but never forget the sun does eventually return to the skies.

So those are just some of my favourite inspiring quotes. Thanks to the internet there are a whole host of beautiful words out there and with the power to compose, share and inspire let’s use the power of words to help others, imagine the positive impact we can have on the world around us and remember tomorrow brings a new day.

What are some of your favourite quotes?


Vivika Widow is an author of thriller books and graphic novels. Her latest novel HARBOUR HOUSE is available now. The complete season 1 of the Knock Knock graphic novel series is free to read here on Vivika Widow online or download for Kindle Unlimited.

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Letter to My Younger Self.

“If only I knew then what I know now.”

This is one of my absolute favourite platitudes simply because it is so true. If I had the knowledge I have now as a woman in my thirties when I was a young teenager setting off for medical school things would have been so much different. I don’t doubt I would have made mistakes, no one’s perfect, and even as I get older and (hopefully wiser) I will still continue to make mistakes but the journey would most certainly be different.

With that in mind I decided to address my younger self. If I could go ahead and advise my teenaged self from my current perspective I would firstly want to urge that fire within.

Things will get difficult, that there can be no avoiding, but with the right frame of mind there isn’t anything you can’t handle. Don’t let the opinions, emotions or selfish needs of others dictate to what you are doing. Do right and good by others as much as possible but remember you are not responsible for their happiness. It is important to take a step back every now and again and examine your life. Know what you want and remember you’re a little fire cracker and can achieve anything you set your mind to.

I am pleased to say you will achieve your dreams but that will only come from a lot of hard work and sacrifice. Those sacrifices will be worth it but you won’t always feel that way and you will have your days of regret. However, just remember all the little glimpses of the future you always hoped for are there for the taking.

Look after your health. It is more important than anything. Without a healthy body and mind the rest is moot. Exercise and eat right. Pay attention to mental health too. You can find yourself slipping into your own head so easily. Don’t let yourself miss what is going on around you.

Finally, know that you are loved. If you forget that or don’t realise that just hug one of the little ones. They’ll soon remind you!

We have things we’d like to say to our younger selves, to warn them against or even encourage them into. What would you say? Would you do things differently if you had the knowledge?


Vivika is the author of various thriller books, graphic novels and short stories. Proceeds from her novels support Ragdolls UK who are helping Turner’s Syndrome girls achieve their full potential.

Her latest novel Harbour House is available now.

“Bring me your sick. Bring me your troubled. Bring me those society can no longer cope with for they will always have a home here at Harbour House.”

Community Spirit

This week I’ve been thinking a lot about community. Because of quarantine I realised we take being able to see our neighbours and speak for granted. It isn’t until we are advised to keep a distance from each other that we realise just how much we need that all important human touch. Even for a introvert like myself it’s been tough going. I can only imagine how hard it has been for people who enjoy surrounding themselves with company all the time.

It’s been three months now I’ve been in isolation and (with fingers crossed) it looks as though things may start easing off a little in the coming weeks. Don’t quote me on that, I can only go by what my own news and sources are telling me. When things do open back up the first thing I will be doing (apart from sorting this mop of a hairdo) will be to grab a cuppa in my local café and having a chat with friends I haven’t seen in such a long time. I’ve been luckier than most in that some of my family isolated with me. This meant I was able to see my niece and nephew which after three months I would have been missing like crazy!

But the good thing about quarantine is that it has given me a lot of time to thing about priorities and that all important word ‘community’. I have been thinking a lot about the work of Ragdolls UK. When I first set out with the charity I had visions of helping some local girls with Turner’s Syndrome. As the years went by the reach became bigger and suddenly we were able to offer support and advice to girls across the world! So that’s what brought me to community. Now, more than ever before, we need to act as a global family. They say the world is a small place and when we are all forced indoors and each and every country is affected that becomes more apparent. So with that in mind to my TS sisters, my readers and supporters and to the global community let’s take what we can from this horrific past few months and bring some positivity moving forward. Let’s remember our neighbours and what is really important.

So what will you be doing when lockdown is lifted in your area?
What lessons have you learnt from this?
Has lockdown been lifted? Has it made a difference?

#amreading a #thriller by @VivikaWidow


The latest novel by Vivika Widow is now available. In need of rehab? Come visit the best clinic in the Shady City.

Setting the Stage

Good evening folks! The Knock Knock club proudly presents … TRAUMA.

Trauma may make an enticing spectacle for others but what about those who are lost in their heads?

Tawny here had been on top of the world and her name was in lights but sometimes light can attract the bugs.

A native of Hathfield Bay island Tawny travelled to the Shady City for a new life.

When the bombs rained in and the shooting began the scene was set for a very dark night.

The name of The Baroness was in lights no more. What she saw that evening caused the curtains to draw closed.

Tawny’s protests drew the attention of the city.

So bring me your sick. Bring me your troubled. Bring me resident 0109 for she will always have a home here at HARBOUR HOUSE.

#amreading #harbourhouse2020 by @VivikaWidow

The Baroness was a much loved figure. An attack on her club would split the city in two.

Available now.

A cure guaranteed for all your ailments. Not to worry. The Baroness is in good hands.

My Bucket List

Being on lockdown has given me a lot to think about. Mostly I’ve been thinking about what I would love to do when we are able to move about freely again. So let me introduce you to my bucket list. The ideal situation would be to strike all of these off before I reach the age of forty.


SWIM THE ENGLISH CHANNEL
This is something I’ve had in mind for a long time. Despite being a strong swimmer I do realise that in order to do it safely I have some training and preparation to do. One day will be greasing on the pig fat and running into the sea with the aim of reaching France. It seems lucky that I’ve never minded cold water then, doesn’t it?


VISIT PARIS
Of all the places in the world with all the fascinating histories, sights and draws, Paris is one city I would love to visit. Again this is something I have been aiming to do for along time. In the course of a short flight I could be ready to experience the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre and a whole host of other things. Over so many other places in the world, Paris has just had a draw for me.


VOICE A CARTOON
This sounds like a strange one. I’m not an actor by any stroke of the imagination but ever since I was a little girl I have always wanted to provide a voice for a cartoon, especially a musical one like a Disney flick. I’m not saying I have the talent for it (speaking or singing) but I know I would be a very happy woman if I was given the opportunity to be part of an animated movie. Perhaps one day …


GET A DRIVING LICENCE
This isn’t so much a bucket list item as it a necessity that my family keep begging me to do. It’s not that I have an aversion to driving I’ve just always managed to get wherever I need through public transport so I’ve never felt I need it that much. I’m a bit of a clumsy B at the best of times so I can only imagine what kind of menace I would be on the road. Besides, I do love just lying back on the train with my headphones on and losing myself in my own head. Can’t do that when driving. Can you? Ok mum and dad, I’ve added to my list.


BUY A BOAT
Who needs a car when you can have an boat, right? This one is cheating a little because I did have a boat before but cutting a long story short it sunk (see above clumsiness). On my bucket list is to have one again, perhaps bigger, prettier and it would be named the Cooper Mare (see KNOCK KNOCK). The adventures I would have! The places I would sail to!


HAVE A PLAY PERFORMED
I’ve been a writer/ author pretty much my entire life in greater and lesser extents. I have had written plays and I have been in discussion with the productions of plays and I have had performances but I am still yet to see an entire stage performance. I love the theatre and I would love the opportunity to see an entire play of mine performed.

So that is my list. What about yours? As you are held at home have you been thinking about what you plan on doing afterwards? What things do you miss the most? What are your dreams and ambitions?

#amreading a #thriller by @VivikaWidow


The latest novel from Vivika Widow is available now!

05:02 is the slaughter time. Welcome to Harbour House.