Tag Archives: Distractions

Thanks, Gatton, Laidley … and Ipswich #LitChat

One of the pleasures of an author’s life is to have the opportunity to speak about their work and I’ve been doing that lately, at Gatton and Laidley Libraries in the Lockyer Valley on Friday 3rd November and now today at the Indie Author Expo at Ipswich Central Library.

What a great resource the public library network is in Australia …. I invariably find the libraries are run by outstanding, dedicated professionals who are conscious of serving their reading public. Top marks from me.

If you look closely at my new banner you’ll see the prominent position still to be filled in my Belleville trilogy – that’s the book that will truly make it a trilogy. So I will have to get my head down very soon to finish the writing.

I so enjoy immersing myself in the lives of the Belleville family – there is still much to write about. They are real to me and, I hope, real to my readers ….. #realwomen

 

 

Committed – no backing down now

 

BotanicGardens_Christchurch.JPG
The beautiful Botanic Gardens in Christchurch, New Zealand 

The problem when you have a busy and intellectually demanding day job is that the writing life you’ve also committed to gets scant attention at times.

Do I have the headspace to progress my writing career and steer a traditional print media magazine group through the challenging transition phase we’re currently seeing in the print media sector as well give my attention to my first love?

Frustrated and confused, I went on holidays instead of facing up to this dilemma.

Ten days in New Zealand was very nice. It’s an easy flight in an A380 – Brisbane-Auckland – picking up the Emirates Dubai-originating aircraft.

New Zealand seems more English in its culture than Australia does now – although the indigenous Maori people do have a strong stake in contemporary society, more visible I would say than the corresponding indigenous population of Australia.

We went far south in the south island to Dunedin – its Scottish heritage very obvious. It sits on the 45 degrees latitude south, which makes it a more southerly point than any point in Australia. Next stop, Antarctica – but not for us.

At this southern outpost of European settlement in the 19th century, New Zealand established its first university and today the population of the city is 25% students. The city has nurtured its early educational advantage, it seems. Students of course would include international students. New Zealand’s population is only 4.6 million.

The earthquake-ravaged city of Christchurch is still that – but trying to recover from the events of 5 years ago. The beautiful botanic gardens (in the picture) were largely untouched and acted as a haven for the distressed locals.

There were some wonderful second-hand book shops – a step back in time almost – we found them in Christchurch, Oamaru, Dunedin, Auckland and Devonport (across the harbour from Auckland). Auckland is New Zealand’s major city, but Wellington at the south end of the north island is the capital.

Bookshop_Devonport
BookMark, an excellent bookseller in Devonport, New Zealand

All this waffle of course is delaying me getting back into writing the second novel in my Belleville family series. I’ve just done a Kindle countdown deal for the next couple of weeks to make the ebook cheaper (starting at $0.99) of the first in the series. The House of Secrets: Julia’s Story – link here of Amazon

And what have I committed to?

Well, during the week the conversation went something like this between me and my other half – long suffering husband of many years’ standing.

Him: You said you wanted to go to the London Book Fair next year. Do you know it’s on in March?

Me: No, I thought it was April. It’s always April.

Him: Not in 2017 it isn’t. Oh, and Qantas have just released some discounted fares on premium economy. I’ll check the dates.

Me: OK, good idea.

Half an hour later we were booked.

So I’m off to the London Book Fair in 2017 and the realisation that I will need a lot more under my belt in the finished manuscript/published book category than I currently have, in the hope I can sell international rights.

All advice/contacts/your experience welcome. 

 

What I did today instead of writing

So, today I received this very nice email from a reader who is looking forward in anticipation to reading books 2 & 3 of my Belleville family saga.

The email came completely out of the blue, so to speak, praising The House of Secrets: Julia’s Story.

So I had great plans to settle down and get some words under my belt today.

Now, there are many distractions on the road to completing a novel, not the least of which is deciding to

  • give my website an overhaul
  • organise the disorganised files on my computer relating to the first book
  • think about all the social media I should continue to do

and of course finally

  • what will we have for dinner tonight!

Is that enough excuses to be going on with?

The next book in the series is all in my head, of course, and just has to be committed to the screen (that’s my story anyway).

But, hey, I’ve promised book 2 for 2016 and just four days in, I’m not backing away from that. It will be done.

How nice to get an email praising my fine quality writing. I just hope the next book lives up to expectations.