Blog: Mel's Muse

Showing posts categorised as 'Dairy'

Uv Book Group: God On Mute


Thursday 14th April at 7.30pm


To be advised


God on Mute by Pete Greig

Questions and Discussion Summary will be posted on Mel's Muse a few days after the meeting (and listed under Book Reviews) and Mel's Online Book Club - which has an open membership - are invited to...

Posted at 06:29am on 2nd March 2011

Online Book Club: Born On A Blue Day By Daniel Tammet

My real-time Book Club will be meeting on 17th February, 2011, to discuss the book, Born on a Blue Day by Daniel Tammet.  It's an amazing autobiography, written by a young man who is both autistic and has Asperges.  If you haven't read the book yet, I would urge you...

Posted at 22:56pm on 24th January 2011

Author's Interview With Writers' Remorse

Posted at 01:08am on 2nd August 2010

Interview With Christian Bookshops Blog

Only a months late with this diary event! A month ago today, I had the privilege of writing an article for Phil Groom who, in addition to managing the bookshop at London School of Theology, also runs the excellent Christian Bookshops Blog.

I'd been asked to write about "Who I Am, and What I Do?" and...

Posted at 01:06am on 2nd August 2010

Review Of The Torn Veil By Gulshen Esther For July Book Club Meeting

I was asked if I would take this book on for Readers’ Group, and I have to say that, although I agreed, I wasn’t wildly enthusiastic. How wrong can you be! It was what someone once dubbed one of my earliest books: a one-bath-book. You don’t notice that the water’s getting cold because you...

Posted at 00:47am on 30th July 2010

Uv Readers' Group & Online Book Club July 2010


Thursday 29th July, 2010
At 7.30pm


The Torn Veil
By Gulshan Esther


At my house.

Posted at 03:26am on 6th July 2010

Guest Blog For Uk Christian Bookshops

An invitation to write a guest blog for the UK Christian Bookshop website is not to be sneezed at! So I was delighted when Phil Groom asked me to do just that.


Just say who you are and what you do, he suggested. It got me thinking! Can who I am be...

Posted at 03:09am on 6th July 2010

Wise Writing Words


Asked what advice I would give aspiring authors in an interview I was recently asked to do, I parodied Winston Churchill's famous Fight Them On The Beaches speech. Writing, in other words, requires hard labour and endurance!

I also shared how I nearly turned down a commission from a major publisher for...

Posted at 05:20am on 5th July 2010

Writers' Interview

As the published author of a number of books, I'm often targeted with mail wanting me to subscribe to all sorts of things. Most of them end up in my Spam box or Recycling Bin.

But a couple of weeks ago I received an e-mail asking me if I was willing to be interviewed...

Posted at 05:09am on 5th July 2010

Open To Hope Radio Show: Thursday 10th June, 2010

I shall be speaking to Gloria and Heidi Horsley on the Open To Hope radio show tomorrow about the merit of creative writing when dealing with grief and loss. If you've suffered a bereavement, or know someone who has, don't miss the show.
Posted at 06:54am on 10th June 2010

Uv Readers' Group - Next Meeting 6th May 2010

UV Readers' Group meet at 7.30 p.m. on 6th May (after polling) to discuss Jodi Picoult's Plain Truth - story of an unmarried Amish girl who gives birth secretly to a baby who then dies. Lots of issues raised as she is put on trial.

ONLINE BOOK CLUB will follow, with questions and discussion...

Posted at 04:30am on 7th May 2010

Internet Radio Show Voice America - 3rd May 2010


As the author of the novel A Painful Post Mortem, I will be speaking to Dr Gloria Horsley about my personal experiences of grief and loss. Looking at the way in which divorce, my daughter's teenage drug abuse, and bereavement have all taken their toll, I'll be demonstrating how victory in adversity...

Posted at 06:21am on 23rd April 2010

Uv Readers' Group & Online Book Club Questions: The Return Of The Prodigal Son By Henri Nouwen

MEETING: 4th March, 2010

Without exception, members of my real-time Readers’ Group found this an AMAZING book, and couldn’t believe how much they got out of it.

You can find all the questions for this book here.

To read their Discussion on these Questions, go to:

Return Of The Prodigal Son – Rembrandt Painting Inspires Author Henri...

Posted at 00:25am on 5th March 2010

Uv Readers' Group - Next Meeting 4th March 2010


Please note that we are no longer meeting at The Grand because of the cost of the room. Please ring me for details of our current venue.


Please note, also, that a typo occurred in the last bulletin. We have not met at 7pm for some time - we now meet at 7.30pm


Return of...

Posted at 18:00pm on 9th February 2010

New Online Book Club: Begins Thursday 21st January 2010.


The book we're studying is The Reluctant Fundamentalist (international bestseller, shortlisted for the Booker Prize 2007) by Mohsin Hamid

Thursday 14th January, 2010, I shall be posting a Precis and Discussion Questions on Mel’s Muse, details here tomorrow.

NEW ONLINE BOOKCLUB: Read the book look at the discussion questions leave your comments debate with...
Posted at 06:21am on 14th January 2010

Mel On Bbc Radio 5 Live: The Matthew Bannister Show

6th January, 2010
At Midnight

Mel on BBC Radio 5 Live: The Matthew Bannister Show

Debate: Are Christians made to feel awkward, or diffident, about openly declaring aspects of their faith.

The conclusions of this discussion will appear as an event within a day or two of the show.

Posted at 08:00am on 5th January 2010

Uv Book Club Meeting January 2010

DETAILS OF MEETING JANUARY 2010 Date: 21st January Time: 7.30pm Venue: To Be Advised - See Notices Book: The Reluctant Fundamentalist Author: Mohsin Hamid

NB: We will no longer be meeting at The Grand because of the cost of hiring rooms.

Posted at 01:28am on 7th December 2009

Chocolat By Joanne Harris: Uv Book Club Book Review, Questions & Discussion Summary


Themes: Bigotry, self-righteousness, exclusivity, conformity, authoritarianism, deference and submission, self-denial, ageism and class-ism versus: generosity, open-heartedness, acceptance and inclusiveness across class and age.


A single parent, Vianne, arrives in a small French village at the beginning of Lent with her young daughter, Anouk, and sets up...

Posted at 02:36am on 3rd December 2009

Mel Menzies On Bbc Radio Wm: Should Cannabis Be Downgraded Per David Nutt's Advice?

The resignation of David Nutt, the UK government's drugs adviser, sparked controversy over the classification and downgrading of cannabis. Mel Menzies comments on BBC Radio WM on Sunday 8th November at 08.50, in the light of her daughter's teenage drug abuse, and ultimate death.

Read the story here: Addicts Like Kate Walsh Show That The...

Posted at 18:54pm on 6th November 2009

Can You Hear Me? By Brad Jersak - Uv Book Group Questions & Summary

The Book Club met on Thursday 15th October, as usual, in the Library at The Grand. As I was nursing a hacking cough and swollen glands I had to cry off, so the group was admirably led by Pippa, who had reviewed the book, Can You Hear Me? and also compiled the following questions, below...

Posted at 01:51am on 18th October 2009

Bbc Radio Birmingham: Topic - Stepfamilies

BBC Radio Birmingham broadcast this morning - a phone in on stepfamilies. Ozzie Osborne kicked it off talking about how his kids from two marriages sometimes get on and sometimes don't. Read the interview here and join in the debate.

Posted at 18:47pm on 8th October 2009

Book Review: Can You Hear Me - By Brad Jersak

BOOK REVIEW: CAN YOU HEAR ME BY BRAD JERSAK - This will be the next study book for UV Book Group on 15th October, 2009

Reading this book, which was written just a few years ago, was a refreshing reminder that God speaks to ordinary people like you and me every day. It’s about...

Posted at 23:51pm on 7th September 2009

My Sister's Keeper - Readers' Group Summary


One of the intriguing aspects of Jodi Picoult’s novel, My Sister’s Keeper is that the reader is invited to read the Prologue before starting the book, and then to re-read it on finishing. The purpose was to determine in whose Viewpoint the piece had...

Posted at 03:39am on 7th September 2009

Readers' Group Questions - My Sister's Keeper - By Jodi Picoult 03/09/09

Readers’ Group Questions – My Sister’s Keeper By Jodi Picoult DISCUSSION QUESTIONS Summarise the plot: this is a story about two sisters . . . OR this is a story about two parents . . . OR . . . Who, in your opinion, is the central character in the book? e.g. Sara, the mother; Kate,...
Posted at 17:35pm on 3rd September 2009

Bbc Radio Newcastle - Interview For Discussion On Stepfamilies

Tomorrow, 18th August, 2009, at 8 a.m. BBC Radio Newcastle is broadcasting a discussion and phone-in on the topic of stepfamilies. The feeling is that successful stepfamilies are a rarity. So, as my book, Stepfamilies, depicts case studies of a number of happily blended families, and as I am a member of a happy stepfamily,...

Posted at 01:34am on 18th August 2009

What Is The Role Of Godparents: Are They Really Relevant Today?

The Richard Bacon Show on BBC 5 Live airs a debate between midnight and one in the morning. The topic, last night, was Godparents. I was asked to be one of the panellists, to explain the role, and to argue the case that Godparents were still relevant in this day and age.


Posted at 22:59pm on 14th August 2009

Readers' Group Meeting - My Sister's Keeper By Jodi Picoult

Date of next meeting: Thursday 3rd September, 2009

Time: 7.30 p.m.

Venue: The Library, at The Grand

Book: My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult

I look forward to seeing as many of you as can make it. Mel

Posted at 17:26pm on 11th August 2009

Readers' Group Discussion Conclusions - Intelligent Church By Steve Chalke

I'm so sorry I'm late in getting the discussion report out. The group met on 9th July and was led by a friend, Anne, as I had to be in London for a meeting. Anne says: “We were a very small group last Thursday (but) in many ways (that) was good, and it was...

Posted at 19:39pm on 10th August 2009

Readers Group Questions: Intelligent Church By Steve Chalke - 9.7.2009

What exactly do you believe about God? (in a nutshell) What are the non-negotiables of church – what are the things that make a church a church? Is there a difference between how we ‘do’ church at and how we should/could do it eg. should we discard the building and get a more modern one...
Posted at 04:05am on 4th July 2009

Enlarge My Vision

GENERATE 2009: SALVATION ARMY: Adult & Family Ministries Conference

At The Hayes Conference Centre, Swanwick

26th – 28th June


Mel will be Keynote Speaker at this Event, beginning on Friday evening with the Keynote Address, titled: Five Tent Pegs & A Central Pole.

Workshops led by Mel on Saturday will examine what it means...

Posted at 15:57pm on 16th June 2009

Book Review: Intelligent Church By Steve Chalke


AT 7.30pm ON 9th JULY, 2009

Intelligent Church by Steve Chalke

Intelligent Church by Steve Chalke is the book under discussion at the next meeting of the UV Readers’ Group. The following review, written by Simon, should whet your appetite. Unfortunately, I shall be at a...

Posted at 09:00am on 16th June 2009

Book Review: The Lost Message Of Jesus, By Steve Chalke & Alan Mann

At the heart of this book is the message of hope the Church can offer the world. The message that God’s Kingdom is here, that it’s open to absolutely everyone through Jesus and that it’s good.

The book explores how Jesus’ life exemplified His message of hope that we need to both grasp for ourselves...

Posted at 17:13pm on 2nd June 2009

Uv Book Group Questions - The Shack By William P Young

UV READERS’ GROUP 7.30pm Thursday 23rd April 2009 The Shack By William P Young PART ONE: GENERAL IMPRESSIONS What do you think of the style in which the book is written? Can you identify the theme of the book? The book was originally self-published and, it has been said, would have benefited from editing. Do you agree? Following is...
Posted at 02:43am on 22nd April 2009

April 2009 Meeting Of Uv Readers' Group


We meet on: Thursday 23rd April
At: 7.30pm
Where: The Library, Grand Hotel
Book: The Shack by William P Young

Posted at 23:30pm on 5th April 2009

Uv Book Group - Why Trust The Bible By Amy Orr-ewing

The Library at The Grand is such a comfortable venue, and so conducive to feeling comfortable in every sense of the word. Seventeen of us met on this occasion and a lively discussion followed. We all agreed it was a most enjoyable evening, with everyone making a valuable contribution. This time the questions were compiled...

Posted at 06:50am on 4th March 2009

Free, Prize Draw On New Christian Book Website

A new Christian website is celebrating its launch by offering a Draw, with a prize of several Christian books. Worth checking out! Mel

Posted at 01:26am on 17th January 2009


Book Reviews; Speaking Engagements

Posted at 02:42am on 1st January 2009

Book Launch Generosity Nets Profits For Charities

What a brilliant event the book launch on Friday was! It had been laid on by a couple who had recently ‘downsized’ to a sumptuous apartment, which comprised the whole of the ground floor of a huge Victorian mansion. Professional people, they had invited guests from all walks of life for a wine and...

Posted at 00:16am on 7th December 2008

A Painful Post Mortem - Book Launch

5TH December, 2008 BOOK LAUNCH in Torquay This is to take the form of a Wine & Cheese Party By invitation only

Mel will be speaking about her career as an author

Posted at 02:32am on 6th December 2008

Debate On Bbc Radio 5 Live

I’ve been asked to take part in the Richard Bacon programme on BBC Radio 5 Live on Tuesday 2nd December from midnight until 1 a.m. The debate is: "Can step parents replace real parents?" Because I’ve written a book titled Stepfamilies, I’ve been asked to take the ‘yes’ side. Listen in if you want to put...

Posted at 02:04am on 3rd December 2008

Uv Readers' Group - Soul Survivor By Philip Yancey

Following a number of apologies, nine of us met in The Library, including three men this time! Celia (who was unable to be with us on this occasion) had, at my request, compiled a list of questions pertaining to the book – partly because I was tied up with work / being unwell /...

Posted at 21:39pm on 10th November 2008

Soul Survivor - Uv Readers' Group Meeting


will be meeting in THE LIBRARY atTHE GRAND HOTEL at

7pm on THURSDAY 23rd OCTOBER 2008

Please bring your book with you: Soul Survivor by Philip Yancey
Refreshments will be available from the bar

Posted at 05:54am on 5th October 2008

Creative Writing Blog; Uv's Readers' Group

I hope you've noticed! I've redesigned, and revised some of the content, on a number of my pages – mainly to give visitors greater access, and ease in navigating. Take a look at the following pages: Home; About Me; My Books; Mel's Muse. I’d love to hear from you to...

Posted at 05:01am on 12th September 2008

Magazine Articles, Bereavement Poem & Readers' Feedback


Sorry I haven’t had time to update my diary lately. It’s been a bit hectic. Besides, what is there to say about this sodden summer? Several interviews and articles featuring my novel, A Painful Post Mortem have appeared in various publications: Activate, The Christian Writer, Devon Today among them, with more to follow.


My bereavement poem, Death...

Posted at 04:44am on 1st September 2008

Long Crendon Ladies Breakfast


What an interesting and enjoyable couple of days we've had, my Better Half and I, away from home and away from our respective computers. For me, it was a rare opportunity to exchange the solitary slog of the...

Posted at 09:00am on 21st June 2008

Uv Readers' Group Meeting


Study books: The Family, Jack & Judith Balswick; Bringing Home the Prodigals, and Teenagers, Rob Parsons

Do you remember, any of you, the TV advert of the little girl weighing up the pros and cons of ‘Daddy or chips?’ Well, we had something of a Daddy or chips evening on Wednesday.

A new venue for...

Posted at 04:00am on 22nd May 2008

A Painful Post Mortem Publication

Publication of my novel A Painful Post Mortem. Launch dates to be confirmed.

Posted at 09:00am on 15th May 2008

Iraq: Searching For Hope

UV Readers’ Group met to talk about Andrew White’s book Iraq: Searching For Hope published by Continuum Publishing Ltd. It was a lively evening! Lots of cake, coffee and chat. The topic, naturally, attracted a fair few men, and the Readers’ Notes I had devised – although inconclusive – were deemed by all to be quite...

Posted at 08:00am on 10th January 2008

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