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Sunday, 16 August 2020

August Sadness

Oh no! Our lovely safe bubble of no more corvid 19 virus is over. We'd been so looking forward to making our virus safe bubble extend to Australia, where many of us Kiwis go for a brief winter warm-up holiday. The Australians come to us for snow and skiing and it's been a profitable exchange. Then Melbourne was hit with a sudden outbreak of the virus, caused by slack quarantine control from just a few officials and now they are in Lockdown again and there's no bubble for us. We are trying to work one with the Pacific islands but have to be so careful as they do not have large enough hospitals or enough medical people to cope if there was an outbreak of the virus, and Pacific islanders are vulnerable to bad effects if they catch Covid 19.

However it means that I have no volunteer work so more time to write and make those book trailers. I am not  a tech  person so it's slow and cross because I've yet to find a website which works the way I think it should!

I write because writing is the only way I can say what I want to say. Try telling someone you know that they are viewing their life through rose tinted glasses. Try telling someone you have proof their prospective husband/wife is a money grubbing monster. You can’t, you are not believed and will be hated. But if I write about people facing such problems, and show how they succeed or fail at dealing with those problems, then readers are one step from their own reality and might just see enough to help themselves. Being honest with ourselves is very difficult, if not impossible. Reading about characters who are having to make choices might help readers make choices. As I finish this novel and get ready to send it out to the Beta readers and editors I have to decide which character's story I'll tell next. It is hard to begin a novel because by the time I have read, researched, walked miles muttering to myself as I try to set the characters and plot, I end up with perfection in my head which never gets down onto paper. I can plan and make character studies, plot lines and time lines, but the brilliant dialogue and scenes in my head escape my ability with words and I feel I’m failing my characters. I just have to rely on the 3Ds – dedication, determination and discipline - to get the novel finished and my own and my colleagues’ editing skills to make the book work. Will it be Adam's Story or my Quaker girl's? Perhaps I'll do some more Japanese stories. I miss Japan and it's good to visit it again in creating historical stories.

Saturday, 11 July 2020

It seems to me that:

The world's still crazy but we seem to be safe in our little bubble here in New Zealand. It’s scary listening to our medical experts who warn us that this is only  one of many pandemics we are bringing on ourselves I wonder what the world will be like in 10 years time and feel we are slipping back a few centuries to be like our ancestors who feared the various forms of plague with no knowledge of what it is or how to conquer it. Just like today really as our experts are struggling to find out how to give us a vaccine to protect us.  As a writer the experience of listening to people who have the knowledge and skills to work with this virus and yet hear their frustration as the virus slips away and does something unexpected and they have to add that into their efforts has been a learning process.

The church fiasco remains hanging around the parish’s neck. I do feel supported by the angry three quarters of the parishioners but that means they are set against the vicar and small clique. It’s all a horrible unchristian mess and hurts us all. I’ve put the problem into the Archbishop’s hand. He, at least, has his secretary reply to my letters. The bishop doesn’t, nor does his archdeacon. They’ve just been try to squash the dissent but the rumours fly. More and more parishioners are telling me they believe that the vicar deliberately organized her supported to attack me. It’s a horrific thought and depressing to think that the Anglican church now has different values from the ones I grew up with.

The ‘Tales from Japan’ anthology is now at the pre-order stage. I’ve been doing the preparation work, work which differs from paying the editor and proof reader sand cover designer to do their skilled work. This involves spending hours on websites working out algorithms and key words, sorting out the proper approach by email to my beta readers and reader pals and the most attractive offers for new readers. It’s like painting a room, all that time spent cleaning and masking and taping up, floor clothes down and then it takes a couple of hours to paint. It’s the same sort of preparation work before launching an e-book. Print copies are much easier.

The novel is still at the proof reader, cover designer stage – I’m having problems getting the right people. But it is going out on pre-order for October/November publication. I’m still not sure but the working title is now: Try To Remember  a novel about A Wild Colonial Venture. I shall be pleased to get it out to the readers who’ve been asking for it for a year.