Today I did my talk and workshop at the South African Writers’ Circle.
On Wednesday I received my paperback copies of AfroSF – one for me and one for my local library. I would love to be all professional and pretend like I was only slightly impressed but I think I’m going to be real about things for a moment:
When I saw my name on the table of contents page, on paper, in a book I could put on my bookshelf, I squealed like a little girl.
Sometimes I’ve looked at a story for so long I can no longer see if it’s any good. All I see is the mechanics – I see the way a particular word colours the sentence with the right tone, I see the way a character has an imperceptible quirk that makes them stand out, I see how scene one foreshadows the scene at the end of the chapter, I see the character motivation and the pacing.
It’s been one of those months (already) that are so busy I feel like I’m in a perpetual tailspin. I don’t like the feeling but I’m learning to let it pass and, like a twirling ballerina spotting her destination, try to keep my eyes on the goal.
What is the goal? To finish my latest novel, to finish some short stories, to keep writing.
And here is the one thing about the writing industry that pains me... you have to be patient. Writing a story takes time. Editing a story takes even more time. Sending it out to agents and waiting for a reply takes time.
I’ve been quiet of late but for good reasons. A few great opportunities have come about, pushing all my buttons and keeping me really busy. Between extra-murals I am frantically typing up my next novel (and a couple of short stories due soon) but when I have time to really sit down and work, I am planning my talk for the South African Writers’ Circle meeting on the 18th of May. I’m also putting together a Creative Writing workshop for five grade seven classes in June.
I was recently given and iPad by a dear friend of mine. As a busy, working mom who has to cart kids between school and extra-mural while trying to writing, the iPad has been a revolutionary tool for me. It's small enough to carry with me everywhere and thanks to Dropbox it syncs everything I write on between my laptop, phone and iPad.
I find it a little strange to see my name in the context of BooksLive, ‘The Next Big Thing’ interview series... but here I am, doing an interview. Thank you to Sally Ann Murray who tagged me in her interview
I am on leave at the moment (which means I plan to get a lot of writing done – ‘plan’ being the operative word) and I’ve managed to do fair amount but it always astounds me how many things creep in to steal this precious time.
This weekend was our annual Easter camping trip to the mountains. As usual, it was a great reunion of people we see too little of. We soaked up the fresh mountain air and the grandeur of the mountains. I am always inspired there and come back with loads of ideas.
This year, during all the fun and relaxation, I met another writer. This writer was having a hard time producing anything because she wondered if she would ever get it perfect. I remember feeling that – that overwhelming fear that you will never get it right.
After spending a few years exercising nothing but my fingers, and watching my other muscles atrophy into flapping masses, I decided to start exercising again. I’m only three weeks in but I already feel better... or if not better, different.