Thursday, 15 May 2014


Writer's block...

Daniela Pesconi-Arthur
                                                                     (cartoon from "The Pajama Diaries")

Oh my... 
Ok, I'm suffering from writer's block. Argh!!! It's just a horrible thing. I'm usually ok with writing and always have loads of ideas. Sometimes the ideas are for my book, sometimes they are just about anything else. But, still, they are there - or here, with me.

I've been quite busy in the last two weeks, and have been a bit absent from the blog. Now that things have gone back to "normal", I've been trying to carry on with writing my book. 

It hasn't been easy. It really hasn't. I need help. Desperately. 

You know when you're writing a story and you have that character that you "don't like"? How do Iyou carry on writing the story when you know that the jerk will be there, messing everything up with the heroine's life, treating her like an object while promising her the world... when he's a total asshole? 

And the worst thing is that the love of her life is just around the corner (literally), but she has to spend time with the bad guy first in order to get to the one who'll save her and sweep her off her feet.... 


Hard, really hard. I'm sure that as soon as I get through with this, the story will just go on so much easier! I've already got bits of the nice part of the story ready, but there is a massive gap in between....  

What do I do? I don't want to just write rubbish, just so I can finish this part quickly...


Any advice, please?

Thanks a million. You're the best! :)

Saturday, 10 May 2014

"Early retirement"... :P

Daniela Pesconi-Arthur

      I haven't been here for a while... I've been exhausted with my "secondary school teaching job", and most of the days I would just come home around 5pm (had left to catch the train at 6am!), have some food, a shower and go straight to bed.
      First, about this cartoon... I used this cartoon a looooong time ago for a Classroom Management workshop in Brasil. I'm not sure where it comes from, but I found it again today on this website. I wish I'd come across it sooner though, and remembered that things in the classroom can actually be like that.
      Well, I have to tell you that I've "retired" from being a high school teacher. I know, I know... I was so excited on my first day (read here) and I really thought I'd enjoy it forever. I couldn't be more wrong. 
      We had a bank holiday last Monday, so my week was one day shorter. I was so glad for that. I was dreading seeing some classes for a second week... (not a very good thing for a teacher to say, right?). After  the encounters with my first, second and third periods again this week (years 10, 9 and 11), I've concluded that I must keep on getting "Young Tough Teachers" on demand and look for "Educating Essex" (which has an option for setting up a "parent control PIN"!?) on YouTube. 
      The school I've been going to is one of the best ones in the area, so I thought I'd be in Heaven with very well behaved pupils. I've always thought/experienced that boys often tend to be more disruptive and naughty than girls; but gosh, when girls decide to play up... Boys will mostly chat loudly and hit each other playfully (hopefully), being more immature than girls. 
      However, girls have an infinity of gadgets to keep them distracted. During the last two weeks, these are some examples of what they "entertained themselves" with in the classroom:
      - a nail file;
      - "thousands" of coloured pens;
      - mirrors, all sizes and types;
      - hair brushes (same variety as above);
     - mobile phones (of course, because taking pictures of one's eye is soooo educational and appropriate for an English lesson... I have to admit that the result is quite cool, though...);
      - Fifty Shades of Grey (yep, a 14-year-old girl! Shocking.);
      - super long and pointy fake nails;
      - a bag of sliced strawberries;
      - sending my direction: rolling eyes, nasty looks, sighs, mumbles and swear words which they thought I couldn't hear/understand.
       Effects these two weeks in class had on me:
      - many times I felt my face red and burning at the end of the lesson, so angry and frustrated I was;
      - have I mentioned that I was drained of my energy, and that I was going to bed before 8pm?
      - one day, right at the end of a stressful lesson with a year 11 class, I just walked to one boy, who was "doing yoga" (or whatever stupid thing he was doing stretched on the classroom floor) and say: "Now, are you taking the piss?"
       I don't need to tell you all about the commotion that it caused... "Miss, you said a swear word!"; "Miss, you are not allowed to swear in class, do you know that?"; "Miss, can I use this word in my essay?"... Aaaaarrrgggghhhhh....
Daniela Pesconi-Arhur
                                                                                (picture from Wikipedia)
       After two whole weeks I had enough. My so desired secondary school teaching career ended two weeks after it started. Luckily, my private student is coming back. I really missed her. An adult, super nice woman to teach and to talk to. I won't be teaching her any literature or any punctuation rules. I'll be teaching her my mother tongue, Portuguese. And the best thing: from the comfort of my home!  And THAT will be cool.... ;)

Monday, 5 May 2014

One more day

                                                                           (Photo by Hans Von Rittern)

      "One more day..." 
     You know that type of thing, right? It's the perfect phrase to start an excuse. An excuse for anything; for everything.
     One more day....
     ... of stuffing my face and then tomorrow I'll start the diet (for the hundredth time)
     ... of slouching on the settee all day and then tomorrow I'll start working out
     ... of putting off the spring clean
     ... and I'll call (insert the name of the person here) my dad/sisters/friend(s) 
     ... and I'll tell (again, insert the name of the person here) my dad/sisters/husband that I love them
     ... and I'll book to have my hair done/nails done/a waxing

     Well, you know what? Let me tell you something... One day, all you'll want will be one more day. And guess what... you won't have it. Your body may just give up; you may never be able to walk again; your clothes will be smelly and eaten by moths; (insert the name of the person here) your dad, sisters/friend(s)/husband won't be around anymore for you to call them or tell them you love them; there will be no point in booking a hair/nail/waxing appointment because you've already missed the party/the weather has gone horrible again.

      I've used the one more day phrase so many times in my life. And still do. And more often than not it is too late. 
      Mother, I wish you were still here. Emoji
       Dani. x


Sunday, 4 May 2014

Bye bye, Facebook app

Daniela Pesconi-Arthur

      Drastic? Yeah, you can say that. Why? Well, let's say I want to avoid all the Mother's Day messages and poems and posts, just so I don't hurt more. It's the second Mother's Day without my mum (Letter's to my mother). Well, at least a Brazilian Mother's Day, cause if you also count the ones in the UK, then that will be the 4th for me. No, thank you very much.
      I'll be using Facebook from my laptop only now, and just to post my blog(s) updates. I'll do my best to keep up with birthdays as well, and I already apologise if I miss yours. I really didn't mean to.
      I won't disappear entirely, though. You can always come and visit the Potter's Shed anytime and leave me messages here. You can also contact me on Twitter. It's just Facebook that I'm "running away" from. I will continue to express my opinion about loads of stuff, and will continue to share stories, bits of life and and love (as my dear friend Fran wrote to me, about reading my blog! Thanks, Fran!). I found out that I express my opinions much better in writing long texts or articles, and not participating in "conversations" over Facebook posts and comments. 
      Aos meus amigos que nao falam ingles, deixei ao lado um widget "Translate this page". Ate que funciona legal pra traduzir do ingles pro portugues. E voces podem ler qualquer texto em portugues. Olhem soh:

I hope you like it and keep on visiting.
Thanks a million!

Dani. x