It’s been an age since I contributed to SoS, despite that I’ve always visited all the other gardens across the globe. Life’s been a bit busy and to be honest, it’s that time of year where nothing much is going on in our gardens.
When I write a novel, I always scan the screen for likely people to inspire my characters.
I will spend time watching their movements, how they speak, trying to pick up nuances that build brick upon brick.
So these are the faces/actors whose work helped me with Reliquary…
Our big garden is tired and begging for autumn to arrive. We’re in the tail end of meshed weather systems today and the humidity is tropical. Rain is falling and the waves are crashing on the beach. The garden needs a good fertilise and for the windiest summer for ages to cease. Hopefully next week I can post on how it looks but in the meantime – on Thursday I was in the city and took some pics of our little Matchbox garden…
Yesterday, I looked at the word count of Reliquary, my current manuscript, and realised I had passed the 100,000 mark. I was surprised. It seemed only a short time ago that I watched 50,000 tick over and then time just slowed and it seemed no matter how often I wrote, the numbers barely changed. Some days, I would delete a page or a paragraph. And at one point, I accidentally opened the file at the very beginning and decided I wanted to hit the readers pretty hard from the get-go and so added a kind of prologue to set the scene.
I have still to get the editor’s approval on that one but it works for me…
All writers will agree that a significant part of their time when they’re not writing, is quietly observing the human condition. The seasonal holiday gives one the greatest chance to do that as the jigsaw of characters falls across one’s path.
As Ernest Hemingway said in Death in the Afternoon:
Oh, crikey! I’ve observed the good, the bad and the downright ugly!
It’s been an horrendous couple of weeks with the seasonal equinoxial gales. We live at 42 degrees south latitude, commonly known as the Roaring Forties, so gardening has been something we’ve done only if we really really have to. Best to stay indoors or find a stretch of the coast under the shelter of cliff.
Our house painter says the winds make him melancholy, the teachers all say the pupils develop a kind of madness; our Jack Russell certainly does. I have a balance issue and so the sound-buffeting and the visual disturbance of trees waving and gyrating can bring on an attack of vertigo. But the gales are abating now and I’m in clean-up mode. Masses of whippy branches from the two willows, cossetting the gardens with as much water as possible and starting to shovel mulch all around after much water, so that summer doesn’t dry everything out.
Here’s my lot for this week: