Monday, 29 July 2013
Thursday, 25 July 2013
Tuesday, 23 July 2013
Monday, 22 July 2013
Our first jonquils... there are more bulbs to flower, but I'm not quite sure what will be coming up. It's fun waiting and watching... I left these outside for a couple of weeks on the plant and they were still flowering. I figured it was time to have them inside for a few days. It's lovely to see parts of the garden becoming colonised (!) as we make our beds - a total of 4 now. We also planted out three trees last week - two double flowering peach (weeping) and one ornamental plum - hopefully they will give us all a nice show in spring...
PS Hopefully the posies will take my focus from the huge amount of capeweed that is choking out my lawn. I've resorted to pulling it up by hand as I'm not keen on chemicals being used in the back garden where the kids play... I really have my work cut out for me!
Monday, 15 July 2013
Thursday, 11 July 2013
Tuesday, 9 July 2013
Last night, I gained an unexpected insight from 'House Husbands' - have you watched that yet? Sunday nights are busy here with rival viewing commitments ('A Place to Call Home' needs to be recorded, while we watch 'The Time of Our Lives' - gosh it's riveting around here!! Oh and lovely to realise they're all quality Australian productions!), so I've been watching HH on catch-up tv... Anyway! One of the scenes showed an actor doing something so true to form, that I realised it doesn't matter what your protagonist does, as long as it's in - or out of - character and you explain it as such. Does that make sense? For me, it was a revelation - and from such an unexpected source! It's given me the confidence to further develop Emily (there you go, easier to call her by name!) and her character in whatever way I like, as long as it makes sense and what she does is explained as such.
And the television viewing - who knew what great research it would provide? Don't they say that inspiration comes from the most unexpected of places? And character resolution as well, obviously!
Thursday, 4 July 2013
Of all these past few months, there have been two rather crucial and pivotal stages - the first, to actually come out of the closet and admit that I was writing - scary! And to be talking about it both here - on my blog - and in the real world has become easier with practice.
The next really formative moment was last week when I rushed to get the first 50 pages of my manuscript ready to send away for entry to a development program. This saw me really looking at the entire structure of my story and having to ensure it was taking the correct lineal path - no easy feat when I've really been concentrating on separate scenes until now, rather than sequentially threading them together.
I've questioned characters - even culled a couple - but have been able to pull their scenes in and incorporate them into other sections of the story. And even this week - as I rework those 50 pages again (now that the deadline of the manuscript development program has been extended) - I have a firmer grip on where the story needs to go and how I will get there.
It's exciting! It really is! I'm so grateful I have the time now - until this year, our entire focus has been consumed (and I don't say that lightly) by getting in to our own home. It felt so out of reach for so long and had started to feel as though it would never happen - not without major sacrifices to our family life (which thankfully, in the end, didn't have to happen).
And now here we are - six months in our new home - and I have a manuscript of over 55,000 words. The next month is not so much going to focus on the daily word counts (which will inevitably grow), but rather focus on the storyline and sorting it properly from beginning to end. No doubt, bringing me closer to the end itself!
Until next time!
Wednesday, 3 July 2013
Now, the original image (at left) is lovely as is - but you can see the difference made by applying these filters. Whatever you think is the most successful is very much a personal opinion and as for myself - I have had some trouble making my choice! But the new narrative voice is succeeding and it's most like the Lomo - vibrant colours with deep saturation... at least, that's how I hope it appears! And for the next few weeks, I'll be working through the rest of my work and applying the Lomo - wish me luck!
Tuesday, 2 July 2013
Last week I found out about a fantastic manuscript development program and spent every spare minute sharpening and correctly ordering my first 50 pages. They were to be in Brisbane yesterday afternoon, which meant sending them by 5pm Friday afternoon (which would be in a push in itself, considering we live in regional Victoria).
I had other deadlines to meet during the week and a trip to another town that took up my valuable working time. On Friday, it was down to the wire. At 4.30pm I still had the synopsis to write, entry form to fill, plus do a final sort through and print the entire document. Of course, I ran out of paper, had to substitute some good card stock, ask mum (who had come up for afternoon tea with the kids) to take care of my entry form and then I still had to get to the post office...
This was one of many times I was grateful to live in a small country town - there was no peak hour traffic slowing me as I took the 3 minute trip to the main street and I was able to park outside, without having to look for coins to shove into a meter.
I climbed the post office steps as the doors were being closed for the day - the rather desperate look on my face enough for them to let me in and post my precious parcel... phew!
The next morning, I read through the 50 pages that had gone in the post and saw typos and other errors that made my face flush - I hadn't had time to do a final proof read due to the time factor. I was mortified and hoped the centre would see past them and just concentrate on the story.
Then, on Sunday, I was telling my older sister about the program and found that the deadline had been extended until 12 July - I don't know quite when this happened, as I'd been on the website during the week and didn't notice the date change...
... Perhaps they might allow me to resubmit? I made a rather desperate phone call yesterday, explained I'd sent things off in a hurry and would really love to make use of the extra time. Thankfully I found a sympathetic ear and I will now spend the next week or so checking and double-checking for typos and grammatical errors.
If there is a moral to the story, let it be 'always check the fine print' - it may look as though it's set in stone, but sometimes even deadlines change (and may the changes always be to your advantage!).
Monday, 1 July 2013
I fiddled around with this patten last week in a blue and yellow, but the colours weren't quite working. The yarn in these images is a Cleckheaton Bamboo and has a delightful shimmer. I haven't used it before, but it seems to work up well with a 3.5mm crochet hook.
PS Guess how I learnt to play music many years ago?!