What prompts an historical fiction/fantasy writer to want to see the Dior Exhibition?
Silks, satins, embellishments of beads and gold thread. It’s that simple…
I met speculative fiction and historical fiction writer Richard Abbott through Facebook. Both of us belong to an excellent writers’ (and readers’) group called The Review.
The desert island that Richard chose charmed me straight away. He says: ‘The “desert island” is actually the north end of Bryher, one of the Scilly Isles. Since these are only 28 miles off the coast of Cornwall, calling it a desert island is perhaps stretching a point, but I would happily be stranded there! Some of the Scilly Isles are inhabited, others not, but they’re all within an easy row of each other. Each is a little different in character, but they all have splendid views of sky and sea.’
Over to you, Richard…
Time out, time away, time to breathe…
I have a personal tradition that I try to celebrate every birthday on Maria Island, not far from where we live. I’ve been doing it for years and have visited the island too many times to count. Not just for birthdays but for any boating day during the year. It has a unique air, an island away from an island. The days are always enchanted and enchanting.
This was one such.
As a writer of historical fiction, one appreciates all the grand historical times – the Greeks, Romans, Dark Age Britain, Vikings, Byzantines, Renaissance. Sweeping, glorious stories that are the stepping stones of the world as we know it today.
But sometimes, history is miniscule. And personal.
“Spin doctor (noun) (informal):
a spokesperson employed to give a favourable interpretation of events to the media…”
And so we saw Tassal’s corporate engagement chief, Barbara McGregor, doing exactly that as she conducted a media tour over the salmon farm site in Okehampton Bay.
My latest book, Michael (the final in the a historical fiction trilogy, The Triptych Chronicle) is taking me the longest to write of all eleven titles in my list. It’s not writer’s block, it’s not that I don’t like the story arc or the characters.
It’s simply life…
I first met Kelly Gardiner during the organisation of the Historical Novel Society of Australasia Conference happening in Melbourne in the first week of September.
One of the nice things for me about this conference, has been touching base with writers in Australia and New Zealand because, to date, most of my professional relationships have been with European and American hist.fict and hist.fantasy writers.
Kelly is appearing on a panel about why we authors write about far-flung shores, why we bypass our homeland in favour of other places.
Kelly accepted my invitation to appear on Desert Island Books and I leave you with she and her rather wonderful list.
Earlier this year, I was asked to join a panel of authors to discuss exploring stories beyond our national boundaries and why we chose to write about times and places far from Australasia.
I’d never really navel-gazed about my predilection for twelfth century Europe. To me, it just was. When I wrote about Venice, Lyon or Constantinople, bells rang – sounds ranging from soft tintinnabulation to reverberating tocsins, and that was all that was required.