rowan tree blossom

NOVEMBER 2020

I don't remember a year I'll be so pleased to see the back of, and I know I don’t have many left!
The virus has messed up my travel plans, totally wrecked my offsprings’ marvellous year of the world tour, stopped me visiting my grandson, trapped my daughter in law in the UK and all that on top of the farce at the church. What a year.


Still and all – that’s a lovely old expression I picked up researching for my next novel – when I see what’s happening to the rest of the world I give thanks loudly for being tucked away in N.Z.


On the topic of words, as a writer of historical novels I’ve been collecting words for each new novel, hunting up some unused expression or single word which would be fun to use and yet easy to use in such a way that my readers will understand what it means. As the next novel revolves round the beginnings of the Quakers in the17thC I’ve found some great words not used much, if at all, today. How about hot-brain for hot head, or a sprusado for a spruced up smart young man?


I’m sad to leave Melisande and her colonial adventures behind but there’s another lass calling to have her story told. The specifics for ‘A Wild Colonial Girl’ cover are off to the artist. The proof readers are getting back to me with their quotes and IngramSpark are still quibbling over the children’s book cover size! Sigh! There’s also Adam’s story to sort out. Do I try to update it with mobiles and tablets and social media or do I leave it in the 1980s and make it a YA historical novel? It’s about growing up and being out of it, not an outsider but just a boy with old fashioned moral ideas. He becomes a bit of knight as a teenager. He believes in honesty and honour and keeping your word, which of course lands him in trouble and leaves him with a broken heart - which is what first loves are all about really I suppose. Somehow I’m veering towards no mobiles. I just can’t see Adam taking to them!


If only I had a housekeeper I’d get all this writing done. There’s so much call on my time too, to help out and this month is the glorious Victorian festival in Oamaru. That’s when we’ve got most of a week of trotting around in costume and enjoying heaps of Victorian events. Alas many are expensive – no balls for this Cinderella – but there are talks and a garden party and I get to sneak around taking photos of the lovely costumed people because I can use them in my Youtube Victorian book trailers. No wonder I never have enough time for doing all the writing I want to finish.

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