I’ve heard about it before, that those suffering the loss of close family members are often isolated in their grief, ostracised by those closest to them, those who could offer the support and comfort they need. The courses and study on pastoral care for those that grieve point out the issue and stress the need for those offering such care to reach out to those who are suffering such a loss. For many, perhaps embarrassed, it is all to easy to just offer a perfunctionary ‘if you need me’ and disappear, not contacting the bereaved for weeks.
This completely ignores the fact that it is extraordinarily difficult to reach out when you are in so much pain. I know – we know – for we have just lost our child and we are experiencing the problem, to an extreme. And we have become isolated from all but a few friends, and ostracized by most (though not all) of our family. Continue reading
An odd thing happened the other day that I thought was worth sharing, for it isn’t something I’d either been told about, or read about or seen.
As mentioned before, I’m a fan of the big red/pink pen and always give my proofreaders and first readers one so it’s easy to see what they find or where they struggle. Though that requires a hardcopy, still nothing beats it – read through material on the screen and it’s easy to skip over errors.
But what if someone radically changes the format?
Lately, I’ve been thinking about ideas and how they link into imagination and, ultimately, into the process we call ‘creativity’. It was kicked off when I bumped into an acquaintance who claimed that they had no (or few) ideas compared to others.
It’s a common question for writers: ‘Where do your ideas come from?’ The answer is, almost always, ‘Everywhere and anything’. In fact, it’s difficult to stop having ideas and the real problem is being able to focus on one (or a few) to turn them into a coherent work. There si just so much around us: all you have to do is look, touch, listen, taste… and wonder.
So what happens? Even if we struggle, we all read about where ‘ideas’ come from, how they arise, and how to feed them, but what are the processes around them? How can we have more ideas? How can we turn those ideas into something tangible?
2017 started off with a bang. I haven’t blogged on this site for a month or two, mainly because I’ve been busy on my other blog focused on the game Beyond the Gates of Antares as well as writing loads of articles. It hasn’t helped, of course, that I was tidying up another book following first reader feedback, finishing Shards in Exile (published sometime this year, hopefully), writing some short stories and also putting together a proposal for another project – for which the signs are hopeful!
That’s three novels finished in 2016, plus loads of articles, plus completing my MA. It’s an encouraging achievement.
I was asked recently how I felt about writing having just finished a novel. I was asked whether I had lost focus? Whether getting the novel out meant I wasn’t focused on writing as much? The immediate answer was a no: why would I? Then puzzlement set in…
I never thought I’d be able to write that title. During my UG studies, I’d been fascinated by the Frankenstein, by the other, partially-not-human, and the bioethical considerations that arise from artificially modifying humans. And now, after cataract surgery, I find I am carrying round two implants that restore to me my lost vision.