July 28, 2013 @ 11:07 AM

Buried treasure...


Not long ago I made an extraordinary discovery. From out of the past, seemingly long forgotten and buried under the strata of the years, I came across a cache of what for any writer can only be described as treasure.

Long weekend

We'd been getting ready for a long weekend visit from the family – our daughter and little grand-daughter, Emily Kate. She's just turned four, and as they live interstate we don't see them all that often.

We go down for a fortnight three or four times a year, and we have Christmas holidays together at the beach: making up in the quality of the concentrated time we have together what we miss in quantity were Grammy and Grandpa to be  living just around the .........

Read More
July 20, 2013 @ 1:24 AM

An audience...

Say what you like about the uncertain times we live in, there are some things I wouldn't want to change with any other century.

Actually, there are many things in which our age excels above all others: but two that I'm thinking of in particular are the brilliance of modern medicine, and our magnificent audio-visual communications. For the one gives us the physical health with which to enjoy the other.

Dame Helen Mirren, 2008. By Caroline Bonarde Ucci

The thought came to me quite forcefully the other day when we had the great pleasure of attending a screening of the British National Theatre's production of The Audience, with Helen Mirren reprising her Oscar-winning role of Queen Elizabeth ... seen this time .........

Read More
July 13, 2013 @ 2:57 AM


Cooking the book....

With the first chapters of Part Two of the new book fairly under way, I've been having an amusing time teaching my heroine how to cook. In particular, this week, a delicious version of pumpkin soup.

Pumpkins, by Harald Bischoff

It's been interesting, in fact, to discover how the emphasis in this section has shifted from the soldier-settler husband Bertie, towards his wife. I hadn't knowingly intended that, but I'm glad it's happened.

The unconscious seems to work these things out before you begin the act of writing; and as I remarked in my post 'The Angle', there is a truth, a 'rightness' to every tale that the story-teller can manipulate to a certain point – but .........

Read More
July 6, 2013 @ 2:15 AM

Posthumous reputations...

There's not an artist born, I imagine, who wouldn't prefer to savour some recognition of their talents in this world, than have to live in the uncertain hope of enjoying only the dead fruits of a posthumous reputation.

Dr Johnson

You don't have to sell out completely to the lowest commercial denominator not to recognise some truth in Dr Johnson's 1776 dictum that "No man but a blockhead ever wrote except for money": money of course being the arbiter of popular success.

I bought a copy of the aphorism on a postcard once from the great lexicographer's London house in Gough Square, and kept it pinned above my desk for years until, like all human vanity, it disappeared.


Dr ..................

Read More