Am I good enough?

So, as you can tell by the above title I am having a small existential crisis. Is my writing good enough to publish? Am I just being big-headed thinking I can write at all? Why do I even need to put it out there?

Well, I don’t know the answers but have found a glimmer of hope by reading other novels. I have read several books recently, I especially loved Miss Lily’s Lovely Ladies by Jackie French. It was an intriguing read, well written with well-drawn characters and a great sense of place. There was an interesting twist near the end (Actually, I guessed the mystery but then I love puzzles) which some of my friends tell me they didn’t see coming.

Presently Im reading a couple of Australian ones ATM Judy Nunn’s Maralinga which is especially interesting as my father was there with the Australian Army back in the day. The other is Di Morrissey’s Heart of the Dreaming. It was her first published book and has some good Aboriginal content. It’s interesting for me to see how she handles this area.

Anyhow, I am feeling a bit more sure that my books are worth the effort and must now save up to publish some hard copies. In the meantime, have you tried Kindle Scout? Did it work for you? I am thinking of putting RIP up but will need to study how’s and where’s more carefully. Drop me a line if you have any helpful hints or just a word about how it all went for you.

Okay, ciao for now,  Rosa

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Work, work, work

Well hello there again, lovely to see you!

I now have Tuesdays and Thursdays off, so I have time to get my own stuff done. I have been very lazy and not done much in the garden so am trying to get that mess sorted ready for planting season. It gets so very overgrown so quickly but still manages to be a place of recuperation and relaxation. If you are on my FB list you will have seen my spider lilies are looking a bit good, if not that is them in the header picture.

I have also been able to get a lot of editing, collating and a little writing done. I have my book of short stories just about ready to roll just going to give it to  a beta reader and try to reload photos elements on my new (to me) computer so I can make the covers one for ebook and another for print. They’re really the same but one is a full cover.

Now that I’ve made the changes suggested by my formal assessment, I’ve got Sinbad’s tale with an indigenous reader for comment (well, part 2 anyway), and Part 1 with a beta reader. Should get that back soon.

I collated my poetry into book form, tentatively – Creating Light and Dark. Because some of them are, of necessity, a bit dark…alright a couple are very dark but that’s how I roll. There are a couple of poems that I’ve done more than one iteration of and I can’t decide which to put in so am taking them to Writers’ Group tonight and see what they think. I am unsure what to put on the cover yet and should I put some pictures in the body to break things up a bit?

Which brings me to another problem, Smashwords has decided that the covers I presently have for the books up there are not suitable and I have to change them up to higher pixels. (Alright, that was couple of years ago and I still haven’t done anything about it. I blame photoshop, my broken old computer and being too busy in other spheres.) Anywho, I still need to change them and wish fervently I had Photoshop CS 3 or 4 to work with…sigh.

I have given an improved version of RIP to a beta reader and will give Fifth Era to someone tonight. Jenny’s story is re-edited and waiting. I’ve written a couple of short stories and a children’s story for comps.

On the art front I’ve done very little, but I have finished and had framed the portrait of my friend ready for the Percival Tucker Prize. It’s due in before Monday. I had to write an Artist’s CV and Artist’s Statement for that. That was easy, since I’m basically self-taught, it was very short.

Well there you are, you are up to date with my news. It is a bit weird to rabbit on about myself like that but I guess that’s what blogging is about. It helps me see more clearly that I have achieved something. How about yours? What are you doing or planning or both? Talk to me, I need your encouragement and am happy to give you mine.

Ciao for now, Rosa

 

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The New Year underway…

Well and truly underway, it is already almost mid January…yikes!

So some good news…I bought a second hand desktop so writing now is going to be easier.

I have finished re-editing ‘Sinbad’ since the Appraisal…am still looking from an indigenous reader from the Gympie area to do a read through and critique of the second half. If you know of anyone you think would be interested in being a beta-reader for me please let me know. I have changed a good deal or rather added further dimension to the first half of the book. I feel it is much better for it. Oh and I changed the title to ‘Sinbad’s Voyage to Da Nan Di (The Great South Land). It has been suggested that I get rid of the bracketed translation and just stick with the Chinese – Da Nan Di. What do you think?

I have added couple of new sub-pages to my alter-ego Percy Rose’s Page which contain some extracts. If you like Crime/Murder/Psychology check them out. Just remember, this is very adult content and if you don’t like the seamy side of life don’t go there.

I am now going to concentrate on collating my short stories and flash fiction anthology. I’ve forgotten everything on how to format for the various ebooks etc so it will be a long process again…sigh.

I hope your New Year is off to a great start…if not, just keep trying until it works for you.

Ciao for now, Rosa

 

 

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1st January 2018

1st January 2018

 

The blood-warm waters embrace me

Supporting my silent intentions

As Luna sails billowing ripples

Across a sea of ink seen in glimpses

Between wispy sighs and deeper, darker groans

Oaths that this year will be better and wetter

Than the last just past midnight.

 

Surrounded, floating in an artificial world

Under the brilliant glow of the Goddess’s pale gaze

2017 flickers across my mind’s screen

like failing black and white celluloid

already disintegrating before it can be archived

shoved by the brash New Year into the background

hum of decades of other stories

 

Full of bravado, difficulties and broken pledges

Of passionate avowals that, ‘This will be the Year.’

Of crumpled promissory notes to self

Torn from the pages of my life’s novel

Individual misremembered memoir

 

The trajectory of my quest –

Nirvana’s path

Not a smooth curve of learning…rather

A lumpy, bumpy graph of false starts

Dead ends and a pilgrim’s slow progress

 

A struggle up mountainous slopes

Of self-imposed complicated obstacles

The range looming, challenging

choices yet before me

doubt and apprehension twin companions.

 

I’ve turned back to view heavenly peaks

Of small successes but already

the mist of self-congratulatory forgetfulness

hides lows and highs alike but

I still feel the euphoria induced by

A combination of straining against the odds

And the oxygen deprivation of

Imagined ascendancy pulled from thin air.

 

I’ve already achieved so much

Succeeded despite boulders of bad choices

Ignorance stemming from an inadequate education

That I thought finished when

I left school, left home, graduated

An adult fool

 

Yea though I walk through the valley

of the shadow of death

I fear there is still evil or animal in me

Or sitting on my shoulder hissing vitriol

against my stalwart self-consciousness

My decision to continue to strive for a better me

Without which there will be no better world.

 

Soaking in the half-light of self-affirmation

Filled with the heady wine of self-applause

I face forward with a vow…

‘I can do this – I just have to believe in me.’

 

 

 

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Opening

Justy a quickie…you lucky things you…to let you know that the art exhibition opening is Fri 1st December at Amazing Floors and Finishes at 6:30pm. Please contact Curt if you would like to attend so he has some idea of numbers. Thanks, Rosa

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Appraisal

Bet you didn’t expect another one so soon,eh?

So my post is, obviously, about MSS appraisal. I recently paid for a structural appraisal of one of my novels. It cost a bit but in return I received 11 type written pages of assessment, which has helped immensely. The company was Ocean Reeve Publishing, Gold Coast Queensland. Ocean has been extremely helpful and kept in touch to make sure I was a) okay with the edit and b) continuing my efforts.

I knew there was something not quite right and the appraiser,Julian, guided me to make changes which have improved the tension and excitement and tightened the story.

I also got quite a bit of positive feedback which I shall quote below. (The negative stuff I will keep to myself and continue to work on. Come on, you didn’t think I was going to say anything bad, did you?)

“What has been done well is the overall plot pathway of the story, and the amount of research to build an artistic yet still believable world……The story has enough premise behind it, and enough research into the period to make the premise believable. (Glad he realised how much research I did; it was fascinating and exhaustive.)…The inherent allegory of the novel; respect for new culture, a love of learning, facing one’s demons, and the breakdown of friendship through circumstances and jealousy is appropriate…Overall the dialogue is one of the best aspects of the manuscript. The dialogue feels appropriate and organic….Overall the book was enjoyable for its good points – strong dialogue, believable world, strong allegory, and engaging finish. The quality of the writing requires little in the way of copy editing…

Well, you get the idea by now, I’m sure. There was, of course, a lot more in-depth analysis all of which was clear, consistent and useful.

This is where the Australian section of the novel is set – down Sunshine Coast way…

All I need now is to make contact with some members of the Gubbi Gubbi whose ancestral home this area is. I have tried to follow several leads for contact but keep coming up blank so if you or someone you know is Gubbi Gubbi please contact me as quickly as possible because with all the changes I’ve made I think I am just about ready to self publish or be published. Thank you and ciao for now, Rosa

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Other good news…

No wonder its raining! Two days in a row of blogging…told you I had some stuff to discuss.

My other good news is that a new business in town, Amazing Floors, has decided that all their empty wall space could better serve as a display for local artists while adding colour and interest to their business premises. I was the first one to sign up and some of my paintings along with many other artists’ work are hanging for all the world to see. Curt Keyes is the owner and has been very helpful and enthusiastic in his support for local artists as well as running his business, supplying great floor coverings.

So if you are in Townsville pop into his 83 Pilkington Street Showrooms and see and purchase some fabulous paintings, photographs or other works of art. You could also buy some floor coverings if you want.

We are going to have an opening celebration sometime soon. Watch this space…

These are the ones I have up at the moment…all in acrylics except ‘Koala Cuddles’ which is a watercolour.

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