Poet Progressing to Prose

Creative Writing

Plaudits to all you patient people.

It seems ages since I last wrote a post within this site. (Big Sigh)

Why?

What excuse or explanation can I offer?

Hibernation? Staying in bed for much longer than usual – often after reading until WAY after midnight.

 

 

 

 

Head cold

‘Don’t worry, I’m not death — I’m just a bad head cold.’

 

Took me longer to recover from that cold than it did when, in 2003, I was evacuated to Perth with a collapsed lung, influenza and pneumonia.

 

 

 

Lack of motivation? 

 

 

Although I have been working on the next novel, the research has put me right off and I wish I had not discovered that which I now cannot forget. Stomach turning and, while I think  strong feeling should be behind one’s writing, it feels as if I am preparing a dose of what I see is much needed caster oil. And who am I to offer potions? I recall the basis of the essay, written under exam conditions, which resulted in admission to Uni as a Mature Age Student. I adopted the persona of a small finger nail clipping from God’s hand; not claiming to BE God but staking my position as having come from God. I wrote a letter to Humanity and signed off as Keratin. Years later, at a bar,  an academic claimed to have remembered it.

I think some of my poetry – The Comet – for instance has similar echoes. 

So, napping it out is pretty well how I am handling my doubt about the current project.

 

But the major deficit is a lack of passion!

While I am passionate at one level about the theme of the project (organ transplants – particularly hearts) the level of passion has not risen to the stage/state of obsession which is when and where I can really get down and get some work done.

Once upon a time – 1980’s, I processed every item of the Australian National Accounts years 1969-1989, through a decade by decade series of Time Series Analysis. The results were not cheerful.

 

 

Why do I write? Why do I bother? I guess the truth of it is that, very early on, I found and was told I had a talent for writing. All my early efforts hit the jackpot first try. Just a knack. But little or no discipline with it. Generally, I was at a loss to think of what to write unless presented with a request or problem. As for becoming a WRITER, I thought I would need Life Experience to be credible. So at 18 I set out to garner the experience I thought I needed and got carried away with living, surviving and just generally getting on  with it.

Sixty years later, I have harnessed much of that experience within Mixed Fortunes which I have finally tackled the earlier layout of the print version, with the hope I don’t have to fiddle with uploading an amended file again. Great news today from a reader who emailed to let me know she had lent her copy to another who enjoyed the read. I KNOW word of mouth is simply the best advertising, so I can only live in hope the word get around. One thing which really gladdened my heart when I finished the manuscript – but before posting to Amazon – was laying my head down to sleep to ‘see’ a couple of old gypsy women nod with approval. (and I am goosebumping as I write this.) I know that story was written to illustrate a much misunderstood aspect of humanity.

Now long past midnight and I have a day out tomorrow. Catching up with one of my several very patient friends. You know the kind. Don’t see each other for ages, but that’s okay. My only worry now is that soon some of us will be dropping off the tree.

So, should I desist from continuing with the stomach-churning heart transplant saga? Or can you offer a project which will grab me down into a rabbit-hole of research, statistics and some topic most would find immensely boring but which will feed the energy needed to be passionate to the point of obsession?

 

 

Three FREE for THREE days August 1-3

Have been having fun with different platforms. Would be interesting to find out which is preferred!

 

https://www.izabellazwriting.com/

https://sites.google.com/izabellazbooks.com/izabellazbooks/home

Ancient lore meets modern law.
A century of saga between 1865-1965.
Four families, four generations, four countries, four cultures.

Critique by Wednesday Writers Group

This array of hexagons is my usual basis for hatching out a plot for a story. At some stage I can pull out a thread enabling the stringing of words together.

I have fully plotted an outline for the work now in progress and on Monday morning wrote the first 550+ words. Not a massive output, but within that I have pulled into the opening,  links to ideas I had mapped out for further within the story. Economy? 🙂

The really great aspect of those words is the length fits within the acceptable limits for critiquing by the group.  Their input is greatly valued and taken on board.  Next step is to read aloud to catch any errant typos – yesterday caught, but who knows – my fat fingers when amending…….? That will have nailed it. Then onto the next. I have the general gist of the next scene, but have more thinking to do. I can already see a need to reach out to a mathematician/physicist to test an idea before I commit to typing the notion onto the page.

Putting on my prognosticating hat, I can see a fair bit of confusion ahead – which I have already signposted with the word ‘spooky’ within the text of the 500.

Too late to go to bed. I might fall asleep and miss the photography workshop at 9:30. Can catch up with a nap before eye specialist appointment at 4:50. Both eyes today so won’t be feeling up to much later. Takes a bit to relax after gearing up to the procedure, but better than the alternative.  Luckily I managed to catch the right eye before much damage happened. With regular treatment my left eye is now better than see here – more the distortion than the grey spot. Prevents driving at night, but as I have no need of a car while living in the centre of a city with excellent public transport, that is problem. Enough for now. Remember, I have deactivated Facebook until the first draft is completed so any comment? 

 

Priority Post Print Copy arrived today

https://steemit.com/australia/@isabeldorastorey/priority-post-print-copy-arrived-today

First I need to get some idea of how many print copies will find a home in Australia. Once I have a ball-park figure I can order a batch of author copies to sell at AUD$25.00 plus postage within Australia for those not living in Adelaide. Once such an order has been placed and the shipment despatched, then I will transfer the print version from Createspace into the Amazon domain where it can sit beside the e-book version available to those within the US and elsewhere.

But first, to describe what is on offer.

Ancient lore meets modern law.
Century long saga between 1865 – 1965
Four families, four generations, four countries, four cultures.

An early reader tells “that it moves forward through eras and locations, with events playing out in the UK, Australia, South Africa, and upon the high seas.
A rich compelling tale of dynasty, dispossession, and changing times, it concerns noblemen and wanderers; it touches pioneers, soldiers, and lawyers. It lives in history, framed by trusts and family legend.”

If you are in Australia and would like a signed copy please check the postage from your region https://auspost.com.au/business/shipping/check-postage-costs/downloadable-price-guides
add the cost of posting 600gm to $25, email an order to (http://mixedfortunes363@gmail.com) with your contact details. I will then place a bulk order; let you know when it arrives and, on receipt of the amount due sent to
paypal.me/IsabelStorey/xx (xx = $25+postage), I will post the book to you and advise that it is on the way.

I can’t leave this open for too long as I want to make the book available to the American market at their postage rates. There are two extremely supportive people living in the US to whom I wish to gift a copy as soon as the book moves into the Amazon sphere. My thinking is that I would welcome signs of interest by people in Australia by no later than April 30.

(One thing I will never attempt is to write a book on marketing as I am sure this is an off-beat process I am suggesting.)

Heirloom featured within my novel

https://steemit.com/writing/@isabeldorastorey/heirloom-featuring-within-my-novel

During the note-making years before I started writing the first draft, I sought an item which would be valuable at the time (18th century) and rare later on. In an encyclopedia of antiques I came across a photo of a piece of Lomonsov porcelain. Friends of mine who are familiar with antiques had not then heard the name.

Within my novel, a young bride takes into her marriage to a Scottish ducal family, a dowry which included a full set of all serving items of Lomonsov porcelain – the Forget-me-not pattern as this seemed appropriate for the purpose within my novel. Over the years the Duchess gifts cups and saucers to close friends and these are handed down over each of the generations within my novel. At that time, the name was not found by Google.

Well under way in the writing, I went on-line to track down an on-line version of my original source and found to my pleased amazement that the factory Lomonsov was back in business and the same pattern as was available in the middle of the eighteenth century is available today.

 

heirloom ˈɛːluːm/noun a valuable object that has belonged to a family for several generations.

I doubt I will ever have the space for a full set, but am hoping to purchase at least one cup and saucer out of my royalties which I hope will flow once I publish MIXED FORTUNES.

Am just waiting for a tick of approval from a tutor who has my great respect before I upload to Createspace.

Mixed Fortunes.jpg

Progress on my novel “MIXED FORTUNES”


Within a few days I will have the files I need to upload the novel to Createspace and, when done, it will be available on Amazon as either print or ebook.
Why am I waiting for these when the original proofread file sits in my computer?
Well, I have a friend who is a graphics whiz and she is about to put the finishing touches to the covers – print and ebook.
As the story is told in present tense all the way through I have not given a title on chapters.  These would be a dead giveaway to that which follows. As such requires its own style of formatting.
As I have mentioned before, I hope to launch the novel on April 21st, this being what would have been my mother’s 100th birthday. This is in rather belated recognition of a persistent dream of hers during which she walked down a corridor of doors closed against her. But at the end there was a book. The way she talked led me to understand she thought the book made it all worth while.
I know there was little within “Life Before Lithium” which gave her any pleasure.

I like to think this one – MIXED FORTUNES – would have resonated with her given she gave me many snippets of the material it contains.

Clearing the desk uncovers a forgotten poem.

Tearing leaves from an old notebook, putting together a folder for the research necessary for the next book – the plot of which is REALLY shaping up – I came across a sheet used within a workshop run by David Chapple for Eyre Writers, Port Lincoln.

Against the prompts on the left side of the page I had filled the dotted lines, resorting to verse when under pressure. Here goes:

I grew up in…. Mount Helena

Where the weather was always….fresh and the air was cleaner.

And the sound of that time…. is the Jane Brook running

Friends ….taught me the Kellys were always punning

Family …. taught me that’s ow we were perceived

And…. now I live to be believed

Today ….I am as truthful as I ever can be

Tomorrow …. is when I deceive only me.

I wish …. I had not seen the vision of my future self

I’ve become accustomed to ….leaving the ream on the shelf

I know ….that my hope is that when I am dead

and ….you read my writing in the years ahead.

Mock up of cover

Any ideas about fonts? The picture itself is so close to my description to Mary of the rare image I actually see that she might be standing behind my eyes.

 

New(ish) Year. Old Thinking.

For a while I have been stuck on progressing next novel. (Breaking Hearts) Partly because I had plotted from beginning to end which left me no surprises to enjoy when writing. I tried adopting the approach I have seen/heard others use – pegging away at Aristotle’s Incline. It does not connect with me where it matters – it does not set my thinking alight. Whereas playing around with hexagons while working out “Mixed Fortunes” worked for me. That was an array of six hexagons forming the seventh in the centre. I was able to think in straight lines from there – which explains the straight line of present tense from beginning to end. The ideas to explore within (?) “This is My Body” OR “Perilous Plunder” (?) require more complex interactions between characters than in “Mixed Fortunes”. Did an Image Search on Google, playing around with concentric circles when I came across this labyrinth within the hexagon. EUREKA!

Another stumbling block to productivity has been holding my breath for a competition result due on February 3. A  matter of IfThisThenThat which has resolved itself after an action and conversation yesterday. The action was to apply for an advance on my pension to cover the cost of publication IF it needs to come out of my pocket. The conversation was with Mary G. who helped in working out costs of potential publication comparisons. Upshot is, if necessary, I will leave it in her proven and capable hands with even greater confidence as she created a mock-up cover which has  blown me away. As soon as I can work out how to load a pdf file here and show you, I will.

Now, to get out the coloured pencils and play with copies of the maze.

(But if the heavens shine on me on February 7th, and the pension advance stashed away is not needed for publication,  then I will take myself to Canberra for the Seven Sisters exhibition at the Museum and, with time and cash to spare also visit the National Gallery and Library while there.)

 

 

Were you born between 1973 and 1975?

If so,  I need your help. Badly! Reason being I have a 14 year old character who has turned up within my current project. I really do need her to carry the story (set in 1987) forward. My own children were about that age then, but my experience is that of a parent and I don’t want to try and second-guess how they may have thought about this or that plus the fact they had me and my problems to deal with so their experiences may well differ from my character.

Were I talking about 1953, I could use my own experience – left school age 14 and full time work force, but by 1973 I rather think laws about school leaving age and full time employment have somewhat changed.

What sort of issues played on your mind? Which memories from that time stand out for you? Would you have been baby-sitting back then? What are your memories of other people’s babies?

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