Friday, June 27, 2008

Writing Inspiration

For some time I have not been inspired to write a new story.
I have just had a book published, another bought for publication. I have had three requests for more work from query letters (a full & two partials) and yet I feel uninspired. You would think I would be jubilant after writing and submitting for 6 years. So why do I feel like this? If this had all happened 6, even 5, even 4, perhaps even 3 years ago, I think I would have been over the moon. I guess the knock-backs do take their toll. I feel excited about very little these days. Perhaps it is a defense mechanism against the hurt but unfortunately it also dampens the joy. This has worried me for some time but then the other day my son got an excellence for an important school project he had worked really hard on and I was elated. I felt joy. So I can feel excited for others, just not for my own successes. That will have to do for the moment.
I have had a rough ride workwise recently - an office bitch in one job and unsupportive bosses in the next. Then it occurred to me today that I have to take those experiences in all their nuances good and bad and use them in a story. It is fully formed in my head - funny, sad, shocking and ultimately inspiring - a journey through adversity to a place of strength. Now I must actually write it. By the way, the photo represents my mind recently.

Monday, June 23, 2008

The Real Estate Industry

I work as Design and Marketing manager for a real estate firm and we are hurting badly. The market has stagnated and sales have all but dried up. This could adjust itself quite quickly or it might drag on for a few years. No one can see into that crystal ball.
My firm, as many others, have had to make a few decisions to ensure survival and these have not been popular. We have lost both our General Manager, (see lady with flowers in the photo - that's me on the left) a wonderful Russian immigrant, who it has been a pleasure to know and also our IT manager. He has since travelled to Australia and fortunately has found a great job there.
Fingers crossed there are no more redundancies.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

For Sale - Zambezi Fishing Lodge

Today I thought I would blog about something completely different - my uncle's fishing lodge and game farm on the Zambezi River in Zambia. He has created a paradise on earth but now ill health necessitates a change of plan and he has decided to sell it.

We visited there a few years ago and loved it. The lodge is built on a hill overlooking the Zambezi River and is situated on a privately owned Game Ranch which is fully fenced.
It is called Tiger Mile Lodge because of the Tiger fish that inhabit the river in that area. The property is 3100 + hectares (7660 acres) in size with approximately 30 kms of game fencing (2.5 metre tall with 17 strands of 2.24 mm high tensile fencing wire), including 5 kms of Zambezi River frontage.

If anyone is interested in any more information on this property, please let me know in the comments or you could go to my website and contact me directly on my email.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Beneath the Surface is released!!

The day has arrived - my book, Beneath the Surface, has been released at Wild Child Publishing. Hallelujah.

Blurb for Beneath the Surface
Jo has the darkest of secrets in her past, which drives her to seek out the most traumatic of hotspots in the world as a war correspondent so she never has the time to confront what she did. A fellow reporter, Craig, accompanies her into war-torn Sergavia to recover rolls of film from a dead colleague and along the way Jo finds love and a reason to go back to the beginning so she can move forward.

Extract from Beneath the Surface
Branko’s eyes, unseeing, gazed up to the heaven I hoped he had gone to. What freakin’ heaven, for God’s sake? Who was I fooling? Out of the black sky, a wave of hopelessness thundered over me. For an instant a cavity opened and closed, but I had seen inside, and that image of empty loneliness scratched at my sanity.
I fell forward onto my knees by his side and touched an unblemished cheek. It was cold. This was the face Ana loved. I felt her sorrow, and tears threatened. I brushed his hair into place and rubbed at the dirt on that cheek. I had seen more death than most people see in a century of life, but this was Branko. He had a name. I had talked to him. I had liked him.
I heaved my pack onto my back, snatched up the rifle, checked the magazine and put the safety on. There was nothing I could do for Branko, but I could help save his family—if I could get to them before they reached the pass.
I turned around and faced the mountains. That was where I was going. Up there into the snow.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Roman Forum

I have decided to blog more often but with much shorter posts. These are photos of the Roman Forum in Rome. This area was the centre of city life in ancient Rome. That's me and my husband in the first photo. The two with blue sky are from Wikipedia. It rained most of the way through the Forum and I liked their blue sky better than our grey one.
Walking through this place transports you to another time and the ruins take shape and become undamaged buildings in your imagination. Isn't Rome amazing?

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Five Great Italian Locations

This is a post of photos of our last trip to Italy to see the family. I couldn't bring myself to choose my five favourite locations as I have so many.
1) That's me in front of the Colosseum in what is definitely my favourite city in the world - Rome.

2) This is the view from The Republic of San Marino, a tiny country, which is completely surrounded by Italy.

3) My son's girlfriend in the fabulous city of Venice. A more romantic city you can't find anywhere. They all travelled there while I was in Egypt so I missed it this time round. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
4) The Duomo in Milan is the most fantastic cathedral in the world - at least that's my opinion. I have a passion for churches and cathedrals and have seen many all round the world but this is my favourite.
5) My husband's family all live in or near Rimini on the Adriatic coast south of Venice. Here are found wide, white sandy beaches which attract tourists from all over Europe in the summer. This photo of my son and his girlfriend was taken on a windy spring day during an amazing kite festival.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

My Book Cover & Publication Date

Thanks so much to all of you who gave your opinions on my book cover for Rough Justice. Taking into account all your answers, I sent away the first three covers and received an answer the next day that they liked all three with a preference for No. 1 but that I could choose. So I have chosen:

Yes, it's No.1. I was conflicted between No. 1 and No. 2 but in the end I went with my gut - I think No. 1 is more atmospheric and that I would pick it up in a book store before the others.

I have also received my release date for my other book, Beneath the Surface - June 17th. It's so close and I haven't updated my website yet. Aahh!