My excuses and I do have several

Reasons why I have not yet posted on book reviewing:

1. I’ve been procrastinating
2. I’ve been writing (which is better, yes?)*
3. I’ve been teaching (a little bit)
4. I’ve been re-watching West Wing (a lot)
5. I’ve been reading heaps. Just finished abotu three in a row that didn’t do it for me, and then just now am half-way through Ian McEwan’s The Comfort of Strangers. Wow. And before that, finished Mateship With Birds (also, wow). These might get a reviewing, peutêtre. We shall see. And I shan’t talk about the ones I didn’t like so don’t push me.
6. I’ve been preparing mentally for our trip to Hong Kong on Thursday (practical preparations will take place Wednesday night). Just a little getaway which somehow involves extensive research of pearls and martini bars. My mum is coming here to provide Stability and an Adult Presence for the teenagers lest they start wandering the back lane with bottles in brown paper bags OR don’t feed the dog.
7. I’ve been excited about my teaching, had a couple of really great sessions and they are occurring so frequently (like EVERY TIME) so I’m loving whenever I have to go out and do it
8. I went to a bookish evening – a launch – of my writing teacher Andrea Goldsmith’s book THE MEMORY TRAP. Bought a second copy, got it signed, cause I’m a bit fan-girly like that. I’ll give the first unsigned copy to my mum, partly cause I think she’ll enjoy it and partly cause she heard Andrea being interviewed on the radio and Andrea was making lots of references to the music in the book (one of the main CHs is a world-class pianist) and my mum is a classical music buff.
9. Been cooking and cleaning and all that boring mother stuff.
10. And sleeping. A bit of that going on too, but not too much.

So, I intend, tomorrow, to put up the next post on book reviewing, and thus continue my journey through self-doubt towards some sort of mad skillz (this is the hope, whether it eventuates…)

* Today I had great progress with my second thing (novel). I decided to sit down and read over my learnings and notes on how to make a story more compelling. While I write a more character-driven, literary fiction, one that is sparsely populated with exclamation marks** (and don’t want to sell my soul to formulaic, predictable, template-derived stories) I DO want to see whether I can blend (within reason, within limits – my limits) the elements that drive a story forward and keep a reader turning the pages and invested, AND the beauty and lyricism and creativity of more free-form, less commercial writing.

** I have a quotation somewhere, is it Faulkner? I’ll check, where the person says one exclamation mark per 100K words if at all. Love it.

See you tomorrow.

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