– I Grew Up In Merton – did you? Morden Odeon circa 1970 – where my love of cinema began
– Author of best-seller ‘No one Has Sex on a Tuesday’ – interview and comp with Tracy Bloom
– Sneaky peeks galore!
– And Alfie the spaniel from Banstead is rescued by facebook friends
POSH FROCKS AND PAUL POTTS
First – what a fab selection of garments I was tempted with from our lovely guest Ouida from Ronnie Nicole this week – here she is with me in this week’s Top Pic. This dress is the one you may have seen Claire Sutton wearing in the QVC Style channel promo!
I loved so many of the other items – you’ll see them on me over the next few months on air no doubt! (Also for those who ask – the latest top I’ve been wearing on air (Thurs 24th/ Sat 26th) – sequined and soft and gorgeous – is by my lovely pal Antthony – see below in QVC section – TSV this Sunday night!)
And … STOP PRESS! … standby for news of my special guest in Saturday Night Gifts this week – none other than Paul Potts himself! (See ‘Watch’ below).
MY TENTH QVC XMAS! – what’s yours?
Well, the extended guarantee has kicked in (any item that’s a gift opened on xmas day, has the usual 30 day try out period extended from then till 25th January!) and Xmas trees come and go in the studios and it signifies it’s time to begin the countdown! For us anyway. When do you start?
As you may guess, I love this time of year, and always loved family Christmasses, as the eldest of five kids growing up in Merton. See below for some childhood memories if you did too!
But this year it’ll be my tenth (I think!) at QVC. Six years originally, 1994-99, and the rest since I returned. Fitting then, that I helped Francesca celebrate the 10th anni of beautiful Murano Gold on Thursday! Have you ever been at a job ten years or more? Was it one you loved? Leave me a comment at the bottom if so and tell me all about why you stayed so long!
Coincidentally, this week several of my colleagues set off for the ‘ten years continuous service’ dinner and award ceremony they do for dedicated staffers, but I wasn’t invited – felt like Cinderella at the ball! Or rather, not at the ball, to be precise! Lol. Not a problem, since it’s my own fault for going away in the first place, since it has to be continuous service.
But fellow presenter Catherine looked lovely as she set off for the plush dinner with all the other ‘ten year gang’ – you may have read about other presenters attending theirs in the past – it happens at five and fifteen and now twenty years too! Anyway, read Catherine’s blog to find out more once she’s posted it! And I am marking the occasion of my 10th xmas at QVC by adding several little features to do with yuletide!
Xmas Grotto of Upcoming QVC Gift Ideas
Firstly, I went in on Tuesday to explore the little ‘grotto’ type display the lovely buyers set up in our meeting area (where viewers sometimes are taken for presentations etc – have you ever been?) called The Spectrum.
So many lovely treats to come, and some that have already been on air – what can you spot in the pic above, of the beauty table?!
These are some of my faves – a mini version of my fave Ego hairdryer gift pack, plus some cosy looking Emu Australia slippers!
For regulars who have asked to see more of the behind the scenes footage shot at our xmas promo filming day, here’s a link – to see Will’s fab little montage of what I got up to this year – well some of it!
And watch out for some of those new promos which will gradually be released in the run up to xmas – featuring other antics from that day – see which celebs you can spot in them!
[Having trouble viewing this video? See YouTube's Help page]
My Own Xmas Shopping Begins!
Ok so who’s started theirs already?! I was totally chuffed with myself ‘cos this is my first batch of pressies – and I’ve killed about 25 ‘birds’ with one ‘hipstreet-shaped-stone’! (The recent TSV – a fab mobile charger with torch built in.) I have 15 nieces and nephews, what can I say!
Plus I got a few extras for birthdays and anniversaries too – I think I took ‘buy more save more’ literally! I saved a total of £80 and 20 half price P&P’s! haha! So for anyone who ever doubts me when I say ‘I bought one of these’ – er… I really do!
Soooo many more pressies still to get though – but at least these will be wrapped nice and early! Whilst watching xmassy films! What’s your own schedule? I love seeing all the pressies under the tree.
There are plenty of gift ideas of course in our weekly Saturday Night Extravaganza of Gifts , and it’s me this week – (Dale and I take turns) – plus Flavia and Vincent teaching me to dance (item number 400532) – yes really! Lol!
Plus – oh joy! Paul Potts himself will be joining me and singing live in the studio – as we mark the release of his biopic at the big screen – One Chance – see this week’s film review in ‘Watch’ below! And selling his cd (item number 504578)– can’t wait to meet him – and the film with James Corden is fab!
‘Loved Me Back to Life’ is free P&P and delivery/charging date is the release date 11th November (two choices, items 504583 and 504584) the regular and the deluxe CD’s. And what a fab taster of the interview with Dale, who had the honour and privilege, he says, of meeting Celine when he jetted out to Florida two weeks ago.
She was lovely, and he was ever so slightly star struck, it seems! Hehe! I'll have the short interview soon, which went out in Dale’s show last week if you missed it, but for now here is some footage of Celine in the studio! Talk about star studded Saturday nights! Whoop!
P.S. – also on this week’s show, Lee Hohbein will be answering some of your burning hi-tech questions. I love it when Lee’s on ‘cos he’s so knowledgeable! And for his fans, here’s a fab piccie of him in the phone room on BCC night with the lovely Andrea McLean and our own Kipling guest Marie Francoise Wolff too!
So there you go! A lovely Christmassy round up of some fun events!
Still to come – double-blooper… What’s the Yankee TSV Sunday?… Tracy Bloom bestselling author comp… and raising funds for Pirate’s poorly leg…
I GREW UP IN MERTON
Did you? I’ve been reminiscing big time courtesy of a fab little facebook group called just that. My high school (1975-80), Willows, is now a housing estate in Central Road, Morden; Disc records where I bought my first 45rpm record, Hey Girl Don’t Bother Me by the Tams, in 1970 is now a café or some such, and after much discussion about the old cinema, someone posted this pic for me – lovely! It even had the film I saw – three times – on the billboard – Jungle Book!
Must have been about 1970 then. The site of the old Odeon in Morden town centre opposite the station is now a Lidl or some such. Boo! Does anyone else have any pics of the area?
But I do believe my love of cinema began back then. We had such wonderful outings to the cinema – including to see The Amazing Mr Blunden. Inspired, I ordered the DVD from Amazon to watch with my brother’s kids Lara, 7, and Izzy, 5, and I just hope they enjoy the magic of the ‘even ghosts need help’ byline – here’s the promo – if you’re interested. If you have young kids to entertain I heartily recommend this film, featuring a stellar performance from Diana Dors in her older years!
How wonderful that you can access such niche products so easily nowadays. The internet is a wonderful thing – as proved by up to 15000 wonderful things on qvcuk.com!
Without the internet, how could I show you these bloopers?! It’s a ‘selfie’ this week – partly inspired by Alison Young’s reaction afterwards. Here is ‘disappearing model and teetering presenter’! Ooer!
RiWiSi – READ IT WRITE IT SELL IT – My Weekly Look at All Things Book!
OMG am I excited about this week’s feature – since Tracy Bloom herself has agreed to be author of the week! With a fab competition to win her first two ground-breaking novels, here’s a must-read chat with the writer who has a novel approach to becoming a best-seller! Here’s a taster, the rest is on my own website – link below.
Tracy Bloom started writing when she moved temporarily to the USA for her husband's job, leaving behind a dream career shopping for rollercoasters for the UK's leading theme parks. She enrolled in a Creative Writing evening class in Connecticut and began work on her romantic comedy, NO-ONE EVER HAS SEX ON A TUESDAY, writing mostly during her son's afternoon nap.
She acquired an agent who secured several foreign rights deals but never managed to get a deal with a major publisher in the UK. Returning back to live in England, Tracy decided the time was right to try self-publishing. After much research, including attending the 2012 Writers and Artists Self- Publishing in The Digital Age conference, her novel was released on Amazon via the White Glove programme in April 2013.
During June, it achieved #1 Best Selling e-book status for three weeks, gaining over a thousand reviews. Tracy has since released her second book, SINGLE WOMAN SEEKS REVENGE, which so far has achieved the #2 ranking.
“Never has a one-night stand led to such chaos! Childhood sweethearts Matthew and Katy agree they must never see each other again after they end up in bed together following a school re-union. So all is forgotten… until eight months later…”
Fab reviews and still riding high at the top of the charts, Tracy has been asked to talk at this year’s Writers and Artists Self-Publishing conference on November 2nd in central London. (more info below)
Here’s a snippet of the interview I did with Tracey.
Q. What’s the White Glove programme on Amazon?
A – Only for writers with agents, you’re then eligible for a special service, involving greater promotion for your titles – the idea being that having an agent is naturally a filter for good writing! This is exclusive to agents and provides support to self-published authors in the form of preparing manuscripts ready for publication and the possibility of inclusion in Kindle promotions.
Q.How did PR coverage and social media help?
A. – At some point during my journey I’d read a book proclaiming social media was not essential for the successful self-publisher. Indeed Joanna Penn had said at the conference that, despite her love of Twitter, it is only to be embarked on if you take it to heart and enjoy it. With this in mind I set about forming my marketing plan which included plenty of local marketing, targeting of book bloggers and a toe in the water of social media since, prior to February, I had no presence on Twitter or Facebook, nor did I have my own website.
I also had my sights set on a national PR campaign off the back of running a survey that would indeed prove that Tuesday was the least popular day of the week to have sex! The marketing was painstaking and time-consuming as I tailored everything individually to whoever I was trying to convince to talk about my book.
As boring as it was at times, it worked. Four local papers covered my story, I appeared on four radio stations, my book was reviewed by some of the best book blogging website for my genre and my survey got me in The Sun, The Star and several major websites.
That helped Tracy's sales, and slowly the book climbed from being in the 6000’s (where my Hawaiian Affair is at the moment, having reached around 900 highest in the summer) in the charts, to in the top 1000, to in the magical top 100, and then to the heady heights of the top ten – Tracy said she cried when it hit number one and the success that followed has been a surprise and a delight.
Find out what it felt like to achieve that dream by clicking throught the full interview on my website – to read more go to my website, the ‘Read It Write It Sell it –Go Large!’ page.
That’s also where you’ll find out all about the November 2nd Self-Publishing one day seminar in London!
To enter the random draw to win two signed copies of Tracy’s first titles, Noone Has Sex on a Tuesday and Single Girls’ Revenge, just leave me a comment on my QVC Blog below – just post it in the comments section at the bottom, saying you’d like to be entered.
Full T&C’s here. Entries close midday on Thursday 1st November, winner announced in 2nd Nov blog and notified individually.
Connect with Tracy on Twitter @TracyBBloom and take a look at her website here.
Other RIWISI news –
**Countdown to the prequel to my steamy romance Hawaiian Affair continues –
– COMING SOON – Hawaiian Prize – paperback/eBook – 5 WEEKS (Nov 28th 2013)
– COVER REVEAL – November 22nd – 4 weeks!
PLUS, THIS WEEK On RiWiSi Go-Large – more for fans of fiction on my website’s weekly Read It Write It Sell It update – the info and recommendations continue…
– More info on the Writers & Artists Self-Publishing Seminar
– a preview of a sneaky peek of my new romance novel’s cover!
– and stand by for next week’s Book of the Week – Mary Jane Hallowell’s charming romance, ‘To Touch a Rainbow’ – on special offer only next weekend! (1-3 Nov).
Go here to read the RIWISI page on my website – www.debbieflint.com
– Poggy play date! OMG how funny it was when little Baloo came to stay last week! My daughter’s spaniel is only 2 and she runs rings round mine – they all had to go for a long lie down after! Love my ‘grandpog’! hehe!
– Raising Funds for Pirate’s Poorly Leg Op – OMG how sad lovely little Pirate lost his paw accidentally at birth and now manages with just one back leg. Regulars will know I’ve been giving you updates each week, well it’s almost decision time about the op how much of his little stump to remove to help him balance and walk better.
But they do need to raise funds – about another £500 apparently – having already got £300 from the bracelets I featured on here last week. Anyone wanting to donate, you can do so via paypal using email email@example.com.
Pirate update – Yvette – Pirate’s foster mum, tells me – “He has learnt to groom himself over the last week and spends ages doing it! So cute to watch. We went to the vet yesterday and he has picked up so much weight!
He was also much nicer to the vet this time haha – not nearly as much hissing as last time. We will be going back to the vet in December to check his weight and health and will decide on a date for his operation. Still have to raise lots of funds!”
More next week – meanwhile, Follow him on Facebook!
Well, a pal told me about a little spaniel called Alfie who’s owner Tony (my pal Suzanne’s ex boss) had to appeal for help via Facebook to raise £4500 for a doggy pacemaker – otherwise poor Alfie was so exhausted he would be in danger of dying.
Well I’m thrilled to announce, having donated a little contribution and forwarded it on, knowing it was genuine, that within just a week or so, the full amount was raised and lovely Alfie from Banstead in Surrey had his op a few days later. He’s now well on the way to making a speedy recovery and Tony would like to thank everyone from the bottom of his – and Alfie’s heart. Full story go here! Warm’s your cockles doesn’t it!
– Booked, Danno! Well, ‘booked, Debbo’ – seven of us are now definitely going to Catherine’s play (she’s one of the stars treading the boards!) in the intimate Baron’s Court Theatre. The date is definite – Tuesday 5th November, 7.15pm doors open for 7.30pm start, £12, just call to reserve tickets and we’ll see you there – come say hi in the interval! 0208 932 4747.
Meanwhile, here's more from Will, chatting to Catherine about 'The Memory Of Water'.
– Socialising – and my determination to have balance and not just work , see family and write, continues with a lovely evening out this week with Anna Cookson and Craigy and Tina who is guest manager – in Moot, the bar opposite QVC! Lovely evening!
– This Tuesday – FAB Research Maternity and Infant Nutrition seminar –sounds a bit stuffy, but you know what I’m like with my nutrition – I’ve been invited to attend the one day seminar (next Tuesday 29th in London) and all being well I will go along! More info here.
– Mr and Mrs Carter return from honeymoon! My boy returned this week following an idyllic honeymoon in The Cook Islands! Lots of pics being shown this Sunday when I go round for a catch up before work – can’t wait to find out more! Suffice it to say the newlyweds had an amazing time – they just needed a holiday to recover! Lol.
– P.S. -Clocks go back – spring forward, fall back, so this Saturday night the clocks go back an hour at 2am and give us an extra sixty minutes of snoozing on Sunday! Yay!
WATCH – ‘One Chance’ – the Paul Potts life story.
Well, how could I possibly resist making this new biopic my film of the week, since Paul Potts himself is my guest on Saturday Night Gifts (8-10pm Saturday 26th) and we’ll be touching upon the film in my interview.
Starring James Corden, Julie Walters, ‘One Chance’ tells Potts’s story up to that moment in 2007 when the mobile phone salesman stunned Britain’s Got Talent judges Simon Cowell, Amanda Holden and Piers Morgan with the power, clarity and beauty of his voice.
It tells one tale of wounded pride, as the great Pavarotti and Potts’s own father rubbished his dream of becoming an opera singer, and another of wounded body parts as accident probne, bully-prone Potts lurches from one crisis to another but triumphs in the end. As we know! One of those where you know the end, you just don’t know how he got there in the first place!
It’s always great to see the background to such an unlikely success story – and similar to SuBo, who is back on QVC again shortly, Paul Potts’ first steps onto the stage on that fated night raises titters, not hopes. But that only means the all important moment of truth is even more spine-tingling and goosebump raising when it happens! I LOVE so many of this cast it had to be my film of the week – and it’s likely to get a high mark – I’m hoping!
HERE IT IS! 'One Chance' Review
I LOVE so many of this cast it had to be my film of the week – and it’s very enjoyable indeed. Yes, we know the ending, but that's not the point – 'it's all about his journey' – as the hackneyed reality tv saying goes. And it's a funny film too – but I do wonder how factual the roller coaster is.
Loved the cameo performances and the real footage from Britain's Got Talent interwoven with the acting. BUT the main reason it's worth going is James Corden – he's excellent. The right amount of pathos, comic turns not over-egged, and enough emotional bite to get me a bit teary at the end. Liked it – a lot!
As with all biopics, knowing the ending means as a film it's not quite so gripping as some, but a very healthy 7.75 out of ten nonetheless. Do go see it if you like Paul Potts – or James Corden – or BGT for that matter!
QVC – SHHHHH!
Join me and Lee Hohbein at midnight on wednesday 30th for an exciting Electronics Todays Special Value, when we will be launching a brand new tablet. The official global launch is on the 30th at 3am, UK time, so this is hot off the press. Can't even mention the brand or say why this is so groundbreakingly exciting yet! But if you love your technology or need a new tablet, this could be the one!'
So join me and Lee Hohbein on Wednesday night 30th, and all will be revealed! Exciting!
QVC – SNEAKY PEEKS!
Xmas Nails – with Leighton Denny – loooovely colour blue! Put it in your diary for around Sunday week. (And he’s also bringing some glow to Saturday Night Gifts this week too with his Sunbelievable range of self tan!)
QVC – THIS WEEK – as well as all the info above about Saturday Night Gifts…
– It’s back! On Tuesday night 29th at midnight Craig will also launch the latest hand-held from Dyson – it’s fab! Here’s my dog mat, freshly shaken, then vacuumed with this nifty powerful machine – just look at what came out of a once-over! Don’t miss it all day Wednesday – or whilst stocks last!
– Then of course, the secret is out with the hi-tech launch on Wednesday night at midnight with myself and Lee Hohbein – if you like your gadgets, you must join us!
Next week – a fabulous new charming romance as book of the week – and more pics from the weekend antics!
P.P.S. – Keep in touch! Do follow me on Twitter for behind the scenes updates about upcoming bargains etc!
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