Anita's Haven

books, thoughts, stories, poetry, interviews, writing


My inner child becomes my outer child if you put me into a stationery shop and leave in there with some money… I was like that as a child even.

Yesterday I got into such a store and felt absolute bliss after finding toner for my printer, special-cut sheets for my writing folder, a packet of inexpensive printing paper…. sheer bliss, I’m telling you.

(Mind you, I have grown up a bit, so I refrained from spending my last pennies on extra stuff such as special cotton/metal/glass markers, glitter, jewellery beads and all sorts of knick-knacks for various creative stuff to do with kids, or just by myself.)

PS: with all the paper and writing utensils I have, you can only guess where I will be going during my vacation, even if I don’t actually leave my house;)


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GOOD KNIGHT SLEEP TIGHT by David Melling – my review no.28


Absolutely charming!

Every time we read this book, we have so much fun, whether it is at home with my children, or in class with my little students.

Lovely sense of humour, gorgeous illustrations as always, and one thing I find very important – a simple yet worthwhile message – family love, one between a brother and sister. Not to mention the unquestionable loyalty from the good knight and his steed!

Such a charming, positive story, enriching our bookshelf and hearts!

Book on amazon

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As the sunset paints
The summer sky red,
My eyes find their rest
At the steeple ahead.

It beckons the past,
Memories, tales,
As I picture the people
Who heard these church bells.

It witnessed millions,
This stone giant ghost,
People and changes,
But constants the most.

Whichever the kingdom,
Whose ever the reign,
The steeple remembers
Who lost and who gained.

It quietly guards
The truth etched in stone,
And holds its ground,
Forever alone.


(Poem inspired by Nat’s photo)

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The ‘twigs’ from The Forest of Trees

My hero, David, is at a turning point. So accustomed to being the breadwinner, his life is flipped topsy-turvy in a second.

Not an easy change to handle for anyone.


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The 3rd ‘twig’ from The Forest

Emma Stone one of my heroines, about to face a huge change in her life and the life of her family…


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And I am back!

Took a while, had some moping around to deal with, thinking of why I am even writing and if I ever should again, wallowed in self-pity a bit, complained to some loving people, read a lot of what others write (both good and bad), laughed at my kids a bit…. and then last night, out of the blue and at my usual dreamstep (just as I should fall asleep) a single word flew through my head, and I had the whole story in front of me. Wrote half of it till my eyes would serve, made notes for the rest and am going to finish now.

Just a short story, but means so much!

So take a bow, Thistle, my inspiration!


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The 2nd ‘twig’ from The Forest

Every fairytale has some horrible creature in it. Sometimes it’s a human being. Old Jackson is a man to fear, hate and abhore. Unfortunately, he is a rather firm ‘twig’ in the novel I am about to edit. Here is another sneak peek into The Forest of Trees…


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The 1st ‘twig’ from The Forest


This is a sneak peek (a’twig’) into the novel I have been working on for about 4 years. It is soon going to be edited.

I can still smell every scent from it, the good ones and the horrible ones, I can still smile over the beautiful moments and shudder at the awful scenes. It will be a painful process to edit, but I feel strongly about the story.

I hope it lives to be read wider than the circle of my beta readers…

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WHAT BUGS YOU? – by Mark

Mark Fine is another one of amazing authors I met through BGS, one whose life story could be a book in itself. Apart from many issues that bug him, here is a very important one.



By Mark Fine

Why Oh why the infernal mosquito? What constructive purpose does this cursed pest play in the checks-and-balances of our fragile ecosystem? I look at its blood-swollen abdomen (my blood!) and its pile-driver proboscis plunged into my flesh (already, I feel the onrush of relentless itches) as I shake my head with frustration (the memory of the mozzie’s incessant buzz, as it closed in on me)—and all I’m left with is questioning the futility of it all.  What is it in the mosquitos’ nature that makes it so compulsively nihilistic? The answer is simple. Blood!

It has no choice but to nourish itself on bloodstream of other living creatures. It has been programmed that way. And in recompense for the generous feeding it receives from an unwilling host, well the mosquito’s generosity knows no bounds; leaving in gratitude a welt, an itch, and a cruel dose of Malaria or West Nile virus.

But the mosquito has an excuse. It is not, by my reckoning, a sentient being.  However, a human has no such excuse.

Alas, there are humans that are equally nihilistic, and significantly more destructive. And they truly bug me. Especially as they should know better, being raised themselves upon the bounty of mother earth.  Their elders in story and song, from the cradle, expressed with great passion the necessity to respect and preserve the fragile balance of our natural world. Yet, like the selfish mosquito these pesky (too kind a word, but the pejoratives I had in mind are not for the civilized) poachers have mooched and preyed upon rhino, and elephant, and zebra, and lion et al.

This rant isn’t intended to be a rationale argument. I’m not interested in debates about medicinal demand from Asia, or the poor pecuniary lot of the poachers. It’s simply wrong!

Now, I feel I must explain myself. I was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, with the dust of Africa flowing through my veins. This happy fact has blessed me with an abiding passion—and compassion—for all living creatures. This innate love for nature has remained with me all these years that I’ve been fortunate to live in the United States.

But despite the great geographic distance from the continent of Africa, my soul aches, because I sense the cry of the voiceless. Especially those large mammals: the elephant and the rhino. Triage demands we focus on the rhino immediately as their very survival is in imminent danger. In part due to the economic might of Asia, so the appetite of superstition and libido must be satisfied in an ever growing demand. Also, the needs of terror groups to finance their deadly attacks have grown. But it’s the deadly efficacy of modern instruments of death that have accelerated the rapacious escalation of poaching in the early 21st century; whether it be mass poisoning at a drinking well or hail of fire from a helicopter gunship.

Simply stated, demand is slaughtering supply! And the stream of blood left in its wake is more than enough to satisfy a googolplex of thirsty mosquitos. So, for me the extinction of the rhino and elephant are not an option. Instead, I’d gladly volunteer the bloody mosquito as fair trade—there are certainly enough of those miserable blighters to go around. 

Mark Fine, author of THE ZEBRA AFFAIRE: An Apartheid Love Story. And #RhinoProtector.


Thank you, Mark, for taking the time to write this post. So many things bug us, but it is important to speak up and act!

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