All’s been quiet on the blogging front. I was all baked out and running out of space for new bakes so I’ve been focusing more on reading new books and writing. I’ve already had some success with my freelance writing course. For my next assignment, I’m working on an article about Ursula Bloom, the once famous novelist. Many people haven’t heard of her but it turns out she was my great grandmother’s first cousin (which makes her my first cousin three times removed). I am particularly interested in two of her books.

The first of Bloom’s books that grabbed my attention is called ‘Wanting to Write’. Bloom describes this book as ‘a complete guide for would-be writers’. Ursula Bloom lived and wrote in a very different world to the world we live in. For this reason, some of her advice is old fashioned and no longer apply. But, there is a lot of sound and relevant advice in the book so I recommend it to any ‘new writer’.

The second book which fascinated me is called ‘Mum’s Girl Was No Lady’. This book is a biographical account of Bloom’s mother’s early life, up until she gave birth to Ursula, her oldest child. Ursula Bloom’s mother was one Mary ‘Polly’ Gardner (known as Polly). Polly’s mother (and Ursula’s grandmamma) was Fanny Gardner nee Reynolds. Fanny was my 3rd great grandmother and my common ancestor with Ursula Bloom, who talks about her a lot in the book (not in a very positive way).The book is an anecdotal account of what life was like growing up in a strict Victorian Household. I find it fascinating from a personal perspective because it was written about my direct ancestors so it brings them to life.

I wish it would stop raining. I need to do some baking to cheer myself up on this rather gloomy day.

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