2017 Annual Bloggers Bash Awards VOTING OPEN @bloggersbash #BloggersBash – SACHA BLACK

It is that time of year again – voting for the ABBAs is now LIVE!

Congratulations to all the nominees!

Thank you so much to those who nominated the Daily Echo in FOUR categories this year! That really is an honour in itself and I am both touched and grateful to those who did so. In the interests of fairness, however, there can be only one category per blog… so head on over, spread the love and vote for ALL your favourite bloggers!

This is it. The waiting is finally over.

The THIRD Annual Bloggers Bash Awards 2017 are now OPEN FOR VOTING.

We had a HUGE number of nominations. Hundreds of them in fact! So thank you to everyone who took the time to nominate your fave bloggers.

Voting Closes June 2nd at 12pm. The winners will be announced on June 10th at the Bash in London. But if you can’t make it physically a winners post will go live at 5:15pm (BST) on the same day. Winners will have pingbacks to their blogs, but we all know how unreliable that is. So please make sure you check back to see if you won.

If you haven’t bought your ticket for the meet up yet, you can do so here.

TO THE VOTERS – Choose carefully, you can only vote ONCE per award. There are 10 awards, (so this is a long post). Yes, you can vote in each category, but only once in every one.

TO THE NOMINEES – Good luck to you all. Every nomination is really well deserved and as a result, this year we are doing things a little differently. Winners will have their prizes and certificates shipped to them as well as their winner’s badges emailed. However, all nominees will be entitled to a Bloggers Bash nominee badge once the voting is over. 

Don’t forget to follow all the fun in our Facebook group, on Twitter, or using the Hashtag #BloggersBash. We also have a mailing list which ALWAYS gives you the most up to date info before anyone else.

Register your votes here: 2017 Annual Bloggers Bash Awards VOTING OPEN @bloggersbash #BloggersBash – SACHA BLACK

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Inside Out #WritePhoto

Lemon Shark Reef

A woman stood by the wall, gazing out the castle window.

“Excuse me. Are you part of the tour?” He asked. “I seem to have lost my way. Would you mind directing me?”

She didn’t move. “What is your name?”

“Sorry,” he extended his hand, “I’m Kenneth.”

“The rain speaks to us, Kenneth. It sends messages from the clouds when they have become too full of thoughts.” She leaned her forehead against a pane. “Kenneth. Kenny. Ken.”

“Yes, erm, right.” He dropped his hand. “Do you happen to know which of these doors might be an exit?”

She dipped her third finger in a bit of water that had leaked inside and pooled in the corner of the stone sill. “I knew it began with a ‘k’. A bit of wisdom from the rainwater, Kenneth. You want to return to your family? Any door in this room apart from that…

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#Writephoto – Inside Out

The Bag Lady

I’m standing here, tiptoes on the chair, looking out at another rainy day. It’s cloudy and difficult to see, but the drops coming in under the edges have me worried. If the water continues it shouldn’t cause any harm, for the window is quite a few feet above the floor. My bed of straw and linen should remain dry but just in case, I drop down from the window ledge and secure it in the farthest corner.

They bring drinking water almost every day, but I put my metal cup under the sill, hoping to catch some fresh rainwater to cleanse my hair. I think that is what I miss most. The simple washing of my body in a free running stream or waterfall, but I can’t dwell on it. Thinking of what may never be attained is not good.

I’ve scratched a mark for each of the eighty-six days…

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Inside-out #writephoto

But I Smile Anyway...

Sue’s #writephoto prompt this week. We’ve been spoiled with two photos today!

Ginny looked at the window sill.
Drat! Another leak!
It was strange.
There hadn’t been any rain the last few days, in fact it had been surprisingly pleasant for a February.
She went off to go and tend to the guests they had staying at the Manor House this week.
A rather rowdy, but well off group of gentlemen, footballers, she thought they said they were. Well, you would have to be well off to rent out a Manor House like this for a whole week!
It was a ‘stag do’ they said, celebrating the last few nights of bachelorhood of one of their number.
Youngsters nowadays, Ginny thought. Back in her day, the men popped to the local for a quick pint to ward off the nerves of the Groom-to-be. Now they celebrated with days of…

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Welcome Awakening – #writephoto


Welcome AwakeningWelcome Awakening

Barring light,
none else should
enter my dreams
at the break of day,

but your moist lips
tempt me
from my slumbers,
and they are most

The photo is provided in Thursday photo prompt – Inside-out #writephoto at Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo.


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Inside-out #WritePhoto

Of Glass & Paper

Inspired by Sue Vincent’s Thursday photo prompt


At the end of the tunnel was the entrance of a stone stairway, the steps polished by age, and the ancient walls covered by luminescent lichen and drops of water, heavy in the dim light. She thought she’d heard a flutter of wings, and remembered the small bat that had shown her the way.

Soon, she knew she was climbing the height of an old tower, and, after what felt like an hour of climbing, she could see some daylight, from a high window above her. It had rained and water was pouring from a gargoyle higher up, perhaps near the top of the tower. Yet the stairway continued. She’d seen some blue sky in the clouds, a sign that the storm was going away.

In the tunnel she’d walked for a couple of hours, the ground slowly rising, until she found the steps. Through the…

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The Feathered Seer – Part 3 (No. Really. The Feathered Seer!)

Shamanic Paths

Nine Ladies Stone Circle, Stanton Moor
Copyright: Graham Dunn

During the exploration session on Spirit Animals, presented during The Silent Eye (a modern mystery school) “Leaf and Flame: the Foliate Man” weekend in 2016, one of the companions enquired about “Shape-shifting”. Since this was outside the scope of the discussion, the concept was briefly addressed without going into any real detail. It was, therefore, with some surprise, that I found myself agreeing to present an exploration session on the topic during “The Feathered Seer” weekend in 2017.

As April approached, the usual buzz of anticipation built towards the day that the work-book was released, and roles revealed. Most surprised, therefore, when an email arrived indicating the “costume” arrangements for the weekend. Other than the, at this stage, mysterious “Weaver” and “Spinner”, only I would be required to be costumed: in the role of Shaman…

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Snakes and peacocks

There was still a little time before my son had to be at the station… time enough simply to drive, showing him some of the places I love, places that call me home to a place I have yet to live. I am a Yorkshire lass, but the hills know no border, no boundary line. They are older than such divisions and will outlast them.

We drove the length of the Snake Pass from the dams to Glossop and back again, stopping in almost every possible place to take in the changing beauty of the landscape.

The skeletons of last year’s heather are a dark promise against spring’s green and a late snowfall still clung to the heights. I hope Nick will come back when the heather is in bloom and I can share this landscape with him in its glory.

For the first time he could see what I meant when I spoke of clouds coming down to play and the intimacy of northern skies. The southerns skies are wider, more remote… distant from both land and man. Here you can almost touch them.

It is odd to think than none of this landscape is far from the industrialised cities that seem to have rejected Nature, covering her in concrete and bitumen. Yet it is never far away. Even in the heart of the valleys, tall chimneys vie with the trees for supremacy… until a snowstorm obliterates them from view. We drove out to Strines too to see the unlikely residents. The ardour of the peacocks, intent on courtship and display, was cooled by a sudden heavy snowfall that drove us indoors to warm frozen fingers with coffee by the fire.

There was so little time and so many places I wanted to share…but we managed at least a glimpse of many of the sites and vistas that lift my heart every time I see them. It is good to know that my son will now know the places of which I speak.

There is something special in that…a sharing that goes beyond knowledge to experience. It is not the same as sharing a photograph; all your senses are involved in creating memories. Feeling the wind on your face, the bite of the air,  knowing the smell of the earth and the call of birds… all these things come together with a shared experience and sense of wonder.

“Now I know what Heaven looks like,” my son had said when I had showed him the Yorkshire Dales. Derbyshire and the borders of my home county are no less beautiful.

From the majestic heights to the green valleys, from the rocks to the clear, amber streams that run from the hillsides, there is beauty at every turn… and it was a joy to be able to share it for a little while.

By the time we took leave of each other, he to catch the train and I to drive south alone, we were both smiling.  It had been a beautiful day.

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