Dare to Remember by Susanna Beard
It’s rare that you pick up a book and find it resonates with your own experience, especially experience that is intensely personal. Just like the protagonist here, I once had an accident in which I very nearly died. Like her, my memory of the event has gone and I have no recollection of what happened: it’s a blank. I’ve also been closely involved with death and bereavement. Understandably, then, I was curious to see how other writers treat such an emotive combination. My experience has frequently resulted in disappointment as both are often treated too lightly or with little real insight.
A week with no blog entry? Forgive me. I’ve been adjusting to my medication and, whilst it has stepped up slowly to the maximum dose, I have effectively doubled it in a week and, at times, I am as high as a kite.
That said, though, I have had a few pain-free hours. Completely. No “But there is a little bit…” or anything else, but pain free.
There were some curiously intense pains later but the few hours of relief were wonderful. Control is still a big issue, and I seem to be more clumsy than normal, but to not have that pain and then have to worry just about the normal aches and pains of lack of muscle use is brilliant. If I could drink, I’d celebrate with champagne.
Over the past few months I’ve been setting things up so I can work properly on books, scripts, articles and such. A major issue with scriptwriting is the very strict formatting, whether writing for radio or screen. Course advice was extremely strong: use screenwriting software to ensure formatting compliance. I’ve had a look at a number of tools recommended by the BCU screenwriting lecturer, Andy Conway, but the major issue was compatibility with Dragon’s NaturallySpeaking (Dragon). It’s not that there was a problem with Dragon, just that change of formatting options were all in special mouse-operated pop-ups that it was impossible to control with normal voice commands. The only way to rectify it is via Dragon macros that were unsupported in my SFE-standard version of Dragon (SFE:Student Finance England through which I receive my Disabled Student Allowance (DSA)) (too many brackets!).
We’ll come back to that later.