The year rolls on ....

by on 03 May, 2017 with 0 Comments

And it does!  Suddenly April, that 'cruellest month' according to T.S. Eliot, is over , and we are into the first few days of May. Autumn is drawing to a close, and the winter chill is in the air. Life is busy, but there is much to enjoy, as I sit at Balhannah, which has become my writing retreat. Outside the window, leaves from the three enormous claret ashes are drifting down in the light breeze, to add to the inches deep carpet that already blankets the lawn.

The last few weeks have brought some very pleasing moments, with the best news that my eighth book, the South American poems, Of Llamas and Piranhas, is next on Ginninderra Press's publishing schedule, and should be out in July. So now come the vexed questions of the launch: to have one at all? when? where? who to launch this particular book, catering issues .... At the moment it all looks too hard, but I guess will have to be dealt with. It will be good to have the book available at last, and I'm looking forward to seeing what Stephen Matthews does with it in way of presentation.

Another interesting activity has been the invitation to write a blog contribution to the Christian Writers Downunder website -  on poetry, as part of their 'genre' series. It was challenging - such a huge topic - but the actual formulation of my thoughts, and the pleasing responses of readers has made it very worthwhile. It can be found at either of these sites if you are interested to look at my thought on poetry as a genre. I really enjoyed doing it.

On CWD      http://christianwritersdownunder.blogspot.com.au/2017/05/genre-exploring-poetry.html
On ACW      http://australasianchristianwriters.blogspot.com.au/2017/05/genre-exploring-poetry.html

Other good things have included winning the monthly W.O.W short story competition - another challenge, as specific ingredients had to be included in the story, and that's always fun to contrive, and my tale is published in their online magazine, Mirages. Three poems published in the latest Polestar, an excellent literary journal from Queensland, was also an encouragement, and again in the last month I've written more poetry, after something of a dry period while I was focussing on the novel.

That has been languishing lately. I'd reached the 55,000 point, with Anna having survived the lengthy steamship journey from Germany to Australia,but then halted, because I need much more research into the Melbourne of the 1889 period. So Anna stands frozen on the Railway Pier at Port Melbourne, with her wooden chest and bags, until later this month, when I'll spend time in Melbourne with State Library newspapers, and consulting with the very helpful officials at Richmond Historical Society and the German Club, where both have offered access to archival material. I'm looking forward to this trip, and to getting Anna moving again! Probably the month that David goes to Ireland, having won a scholarship for an Irish language immersion course, will be the time I really get to concentrate on this novel.

What else is coming up? Next major event is a shared session with David Harris for the Book Lovers club at Marion Library, where we have an hour to read poems and talk about the writing of poetry - planning this has been enjoyable and May 23 is getting close. In June, I'll have pleasure in being the speaker at the launch of Claire Bell's novel, The Golden Hour, and meanwhile, in the background of all this, are the ongoing preparations for daughter Sam's wedding in November. This is the first time I've had the fun of being Mother of the Bride  -  a foreshadowing that evoked a poem on that topic. But then, most things in life, in my life anyway, become the raw material of verse ...

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