My Banned List

Following my recent ‘Spamalanche’, (Spam+Avalanche) I went back into my settings and reviewed my ‘Disallowed Comment Keys’, as recommended by some blogging friends.

This is a fancy name for words you don’t allow in comments, email addresses and urls associated with spammers, or just anything you recognise as being consistent with hundreds of Spam comments every day.

For example, this is my current list of disallowed words, numbers, and terms.
(You can find yours by looking at your most frequent Spam comments, without clicking on them.)
Muchas gracias

As you can see, it is a mixed bag, and all of this was generating something like 2,000 Spam comments every week. This meant I missed genuine comments, as I had no time to find them in all that junk

Almost overnight, I went from 300 Spam comments a day, down to 5-10 a day.
My Trash folder went from next to nothing in it, to a current total of 1,963 ‘disallowed’ comments.

I no longer have to worry about missing good comments, at least as long as someone doesn’t use any of those words or terms.

If you want to try this, it’s easy.

Settings > Discussion Settings > Disallowed Comment Keys

Type in anything you want to be disallowed, then remember to scroll down and SAVE CHANGES.

You can edit the list anytime you like, saving changes every time you do.

New Year, New Category

Many of you already know that I usually compile every episode of my fiction serials into a complete story. Thanks to a suggestion from David Miller at I have added a new category containing the longer complete stories, to make it easier for anyone to find them.

It can be found on the right hand side of any of my blog pages under ‘Serialised Fiction’. As it was not practical to add every episode of every serial, I chose to only include the complete stories. (Please note that ‘Found Footage’ is not included at the moment.)

Here is a link, for anyone interested in looking at the list today.

Guest Post: Christina From Webb Blogs

I am very happy to host the first guest post of 2022, from Christina.

So, here’s a little about me and my blog:
My name is Christina and I have suffered with severe OCD for close to 40 years. I say suffered because that’s exactly how it felt.

I grew up in the 80’s, when OCD wasn’t talked about. I didn’t know what was wrong with me, except that I did odd things and had horrible thoughts. I thought there was something terribly wrong with my brain, and I seriously thought I was going to die. I was terrified.

Nobody knew what I was going through. I kept it hidden from everyone for all those years. Hidden from every single person I knew.

A little over 10 years ago, I finally heard about OCD. Since then I have talked to many doctors, several therapist, joined many OCD groups, read as many books that I could, and spent many many hours online doing my own research. I wanted to know everything possible about this illness that caused me so much fear and stress most of my life. I then told a couple family members and my physician, but kept it a secret from everyone else.

When people ask me why I started my blog I tell them I wanted to share my story. I wanted to tell everyone, I wanted to write about all the things I went through no matter how embarrassing it was. I just needed to let it out, I no longer wanted to hide it. I also wanted to explain what it’s really like living with OCD. So many people aren’t aware of what OCD truly is. It is much more than being organized, it is much much more. It’s frightening, it’s exhausting, and it can be debilitating.

What I didn’t realize was going to happen when I started my blog, was all the positive feedback I started to get. People all over the world wrote to me. Some explained they were going through the same thing. Some wrote to say they never knew OCD was a mental illness. They thanked me and encouraged me to continue sharing my story. I even had emails from people that said they felt less alone after reading my posts. Those words touched me, and any regrets or embarrassment I had for sharing my story had disappeared. So not only do I write to help myself, I do it to spread awareness and hopefully to continue to help someone that is suffering alone like I once did.

Today I not only write about OCD, but I also write about panic attacks, addiction, depression, and whatever else happens to be on my mind. My blog is not only about mental health, I do share silly stories about life as well. I am learning how to live a happier life while having a mental illness. I am discovering who I am, what I want to do, and how to do it. Basically, at 51, I am searching for my joy.

So if any of your readers are interested in reading my blog, I would absolutely love for them to check it out. I hope something on my page they will find interesting.

Here is a link to her blog. Please visit, and welcome Christina to our wonderful blogging community.

New Year, Old Offer

2022 is upon us, and it is once again time for me to offer to host guest posts. Whether you are a regular follower, or a brand new one, as long as you follow my blog or follow me on Twitter, you can have a guest post here on my blog.

It can be about anything you want, and doesn’t have to be original. You can recycle one of your favourite posts if you wish, or perhaps just introduce yourself to this wonderful community on WordPress. It can be poetry, a short story, something about your life, or even why you decided to become a blogger.

There are a few ‘rules’, but they are easy ones.

*Feel free to promote a book or project, but NO selling goods or services.

*The post should be under 2,000 words, and any images should be reduced in size.

*I do not correct or edit any guest posts, so make sure they are exactly as you want them to be seen before sending them to me.

*Send me the guest post AS AN EMAIL- NOT A MS WORD DOCUMENT- to

*Posts will be shared on Twitter, and usually appear on my blog within 24 hours. They are never deleted by me, so will remain here as long as I am blogging.
(As in as long as I am alive)

There is no deadline or time limit on this offer, but to get 2022 off to a positive start, why not send me one before the end of the month?

The Blogging Years

If I make it to this (my 70th) summer, I will have been blogging for ten years. I know many of you have been bloggers for a lot longer than that, but it only feels like last week since I tentatively pressed ‘Publish’ on my first ever blog post.

A lot has happened since then.

I have made amazing friends, and lost quite a few of them too soon too. I have had stories/articles/blog posts published online, in paper magazines, and even in a published anthology book. Outside of my family, and Ollie of course, blogging has become ‘what I do’, and I have even been recognised in Beetley by strangers, because of the photos I have published of Ollie.

I have published 4,608 posts, including this one, and had 580,000 views of my blog from 188,000 visitors. On one day, I had over 820 views, still the best so far.

My posts have been shared almost 16,000 times on Twitter, 6,800 times on Linkedin, and 6,700 times on Facebook. I am not even on Facebook, so that’s a bonus!

I have been ‘Press This’ 42 times, and I still don’t know what that means. 🙂

16 of my posts have been shared by email, and each post has averaged 45 comments. (As I reply to all comments, you can halve that to 22)

As of today, the lovely Jennie Fitzkee at is currently my top commenter. But Jennie is American, and very polite, so always adds ‘You’re welcome’ when I thank her for her comments.

Could there be a better hobby/pastime than blogging? I don’t think so. You can do it anywhere, inside or out, and you will meet some marvellous people from all around the world, if you do it right.

So, to all you ‘New Year’ bloggers. Keep at it. Don’t give up.

It will enrich your life.

A Hole In The Blogging Community

As I was waking up on Chistmas morning, ready to make tea, and unwrap gifts, something happened that left a hole in our blogging community that will remain forever unfilled.

Three hundred miles to the north of Beetley, Mary Smith passed away peacefully, in Scotland.

Few bloggers can hope to leave behind the legacy that Mary has. An incredibly interesting life, lived to the full. Books and short stories that show us other cultures and lifestyles, as well as her love of the history of her home town of Dumfries.

Humour, wit, and warmth, even as she endured debilitating treatment for cancer and took us along with her on her final journey.

Mary was a blogger’s blogger. Engaging on posts, leaving comments, sharing on social media, always there to help and encourage anyone.

Rest in peace, dear Mary. Surrounded by the love of your family, and your many blogging friends.

Her family kindly let us know, posting the last ever post on her blog.

Sunday Before Christmas Musings

I lose track of the days at this time of year. By the time January 2nd is upon us, I will finally be able to stop having to look at my desk calendar to know what day it is. Things break my routine during the Chriistmas season. Dustbin days are changed, shops have different opening hours, many not opening at all. The kids are not at school, and new faces appear in the group of dog-walkers.


If you saw my post ‘The Bird Has Flown’, you will know the pigeon has finally left the garden, its wing healed.


We have our first seasonal visitors today. One of my stepsons and his girlfriend, travelling from Bedfordshire to deliver and collect presents. There will probably be no other visitors until the 27th, so we anticipate a very quiet Christmas.


The TV shows are appearing. Those usually dull ‘Specials’, reviews of the past year, the same old familiar films. As a rule, the TV season at this time of year provides little worth watching after the autumn drama series have all concluded until 2022.


Blogging is different at this time of year too. People are busy, some travelling on visits, many not blogging at all. On that subject, I need to mention Mary Smith. She is facing her last days in a hospice, dying of terminal cancer. She is unlikely to see Christmas 2021. So just for her, I am determined to make the best of it, as a tribute to one of the best bloggers, authors, and genuinely nicest people I ever met online. Please read her incredibly moving post. It will make you grateful for whatever you are doing this Christmas.


Catching Up

Although I was only away overnight on Saturday, and busy yesterday, I was amazed at how many posts I missed, and comments I had received.

I have done my best to answer all the comments, and will now make an effort to catch up on all your posts.

No doubt I will get there eventually. 🙂

There will be an episode of Found Footage later today.

Update! The Clearwater Anomaly Is Back!

In March this year, I posted this about the strange number of views a post was getting.

The ‘Clearwater’ Anomaly

Not long after, views dropped off again, but have remained constant at one or two a day ever since.

Then yesterday, I noticed my stats were climbing, and I checked on which posts were receiving all the views.

Yes, this original 2020 post was being viewed at an alarming rate, once again.

110 views for that day alone, and still coming in.

‘Clearwater’: A Short Science Fiction Film

I still have no idea why this happens!

Worried About A Blogger

Some time ago, Kim Barker told us she was taking a break from blogging.

Kim is one of my original followers, and one of the first I followed back.

She posted that she was ‘taking a hiatus’ in August.

But now, her emails are being returned as ‘unknown’ and I am genuinely worried about her.

If anyone has heard from Kim, please let me know. And if you have a valid email address for her, or her husband Tom, please ask her to put our minds at rest.