Tuesday, 7 February 2017


It's amazing how much clutter I have squirrelled away over the years, stored in the loft 'just in case'. Now I am determined to be rid. Broken scales, obsolete cables, old electrical appliances which are no longer safe to use, books I shall never read again, the list goes on.

But as one person's junk can be another person's treasure, some of my rejected goods have now been sold, others have been donated to charity shops and yet more have been given away through freecycle.org.

One of the magazines I follow has a regular feature in which readers can send photographs of various items to ask Bob the expert for a free valuation. Occasionally a rare and valuable artefact will be discovered. Most however are of little or no value, such as this old button tin - £5 at the most, said Bob. On the bright side £25 was the writer's reward for having her letter published - that's a good return on a £5 piece of junk!

Ideas can be reused too. My husband's uncle once commented that, short of money for an exotic honeymoon, he had romanced his new wife in a tent. I have since used the phrase as the inspiration for my poem - 'Think Again, Dear' - which is published in the current edition of Yours magazine.

My next task is to 'declutter' my folder of rejected stories. Some I now acknowledge were no good - the editors were right to turn them down. (If only, like Bob, they had paid me £25 to soften the blow!) But not all are so bad. There are several plots that I believe can be recycled into something worth resubmitting. Here's hoping the editors agree.