Wednesday 27 January 2010

May Gibbs residency,planning.

I am working through the process of the start of a novel- one I've been mulling about for awhile. I have written character sketches in verse novel style, but I'm not sure that I want this novel to be in that style.

So yesterday looking through a file of cuttings articles, advice; I came across a link to the snowflake method of planning. So I had a go. It is making me see and work through nebulous ideas I've had about my three lead characters, their setting and their problems. I wrote, I expanded, I came closer to the lives of these characters, but more work has to be done yet before I begin writing in earnest.

I have been awarded a May Gibbs residency which I will take up next month- what a blessing. And I know that the minute I dive into a new story, other stories start clambouring for attention also as well as poems, snatches of ideas. A blessing indeed.

Monday 18 January 2010

Feedback is always welcome

A writer loves feedback, well I should modify this by saving positive feedback- it's good for that fragile ego. Recently I was alerted to the fact that my book 'Star Jumps' made the 50 top New Zealand children's reads for 2009.

This week I am preparing for my residency at Adelaide with the May Gibbs fellowship.
I will be teaching , workshopping and writing- what a delicious mix of ingredients.

Friday 1 January 2010

poem a week for the New Year

It's that tingly all possible, New Year resolutions' time, as well as reflection on the past year- all poetic scraps to be melded into a poem.

Here's an idea to gather lines for a New Year poem:

- take a peek out the window- is there a gift of nature left overnight, a feather, a raindrop, a new insect hatched?
- is there someone or something you can't take into the New Year with you?
- what current news topic really strikes a chord, locally or nationally?
- what new insight have you gathered over the Christmas period about your family or a friend?

Jot down lines, let ideas take you in new directions, give specific details... Write, write, write.

I use cheap exercise books that are currently on special in places like K Mart and Big W. I like to write my poems freehand, label them with the date and a year or two later, I trawl my note books for ideas. New inspiration. Every fragment counts.
Christmas is over and was a long haul this year - three Christmas dinners to prepare, one after the other! Exhausting but a great time to see all the family together.

Pictured here is my newest grandson, Quinn, with his uncle Jared - Jared and his wife Chayanie are expecting their first child in the next couple of weeks. Next Christmas will be even more special!