There is this competition, you see – short stories, historical setting… I really, really want to submit. I’ve known about it for quite some time – and, in fact, for some reason, at first I thought the deadline was in late April. So I began brainstorming ideas back in March, and went through old notebooks, mining for those little Could This Be A Story notes, or hastily sketched half-page notions, and wrote down lists of promising ideas… and then hit on something I liked. Something that was tied to my work in progress. Something promising. Continue reading
And today for something different – as in no theatre and no Elizabethana…
Hope and Glory is a role-playing game setting for Savage Worlds – but also a collection of stories set in what will be the game’s world.
What world, you ask? Continue reading
SHE is not Folly — that I know.
Her steadfast eyelids tell me so
When, at the hour the lights divide.
She steals as summonsed to my side.
When, finger on the pursèd lip;
In secret, mirthful fellowship
She, heralding new framed delights.
Breathes, ‘This shall be a Night of Nights!’
Then out of Time and out of Space.
Is built an Hour and a Place
Where all an earnest, baffled Earth
Blunders and trips to make us mirth;
Where, from the trivial flux of Things.
Rise unconceived miscarryings
Outrageous but immortal, shown.
Of Her great love, to me alone . . .
She is not Wisdom but, may be.
Wiser than all the Norms is She
And more than Wisdom I prefer
To wait on Her — to wait on Her!
Quite who “she” is, is open to debate. I have always liked to see in this charming lady either an imaginary companion or a child’s quirky and playful imagination…
Anyway, here you can find the story – and it is of the laugh-out-loud variety. One has to wonder at the sharp contrast with another, similarly named aunt, Helen Turrell, in The Gardener…
Ah well, we’ll come to that one too, sooner or later. For now, have fun with Aunt Ellen, and the eiderdown quilt, and cars that bound marsupially with a noise of ironmongery in revolt.
Yes well, by now it is the middle of December again, but the fact remains.
And I love December – I really do, but all the same I must admit that writing-wise it is a downright dreadful time. You know how it is. Work crowds, because it seems They cannot live unless you give them one more translation, one more piece of editing, one more whatsit before Christmas. And then there are Christmas preparations – which we take very seriously – and shopping trips to town, and Christmas concerts, and Dickens and Tchaikowskij, and then guests begin to arrive…
And yes, it is partly my fault for embarking every year on ludicrously intricate decorating projects, stubbornly baking my own lebkucken cookies and Christmas pudding, trimming two large trees… but the thing is, writing time is in short supply.
And if the shortage weren’t enough, Christmassy ideas keep hitting me smack in the eye: it’s not as if I hadn’t plenty of projects going and deadlines looming, and yet, what do you think I do when I can snatch an hour? Work on my new play? Tweak my almost-completed three-act thing? Make up lines for my opera libretto?
But no – not on my life: there is this little new play set around Christmas Eve, and then, late at night, while I cut and pasted cardboard ornaments for the tree, a notion for a short story blossomed out of an old play, and how can one disregard a new notion for a short story?
And last night, while dining out with friends, a casual piece of conversation sparked off something like a very wintery ghost story – and I just had to sit up very, very late jotting down at least a shadow of an outline…
Which is why I’m hard put not to laugh whenever someone wonders where I find ideas to write, and why I have learned, over the years, to give up December writing-wise, and roll with the cinnamon-scented current. December is December, after all, and another January will be here all too soon.