My review on Thomas Keneally’s The People’s Train (he also wrote Schindler’s Ark) is now up at Vulpes Libris. A challenging journey indeed …
In other writing news, I’m pleased to say that the lovely people on my online writing course seemed to have enjoyed my attempt at the sonnet form, though I fear it carries a hint of desperation in its innards. Here it is:
The Struggling Sonneteer
All through breakfast I try to rhyme
but cereals are not known for verse.
The sonnet mountain’s too hard to climb
and this first stanza could not be worse.
At lunch a sandwich fires the brain –
there’s much that is soothing in tuna and bread
but nothing inspires this second quatrain
and my poetic heart is full of dread.
Finally dinner arrives on the table;
pizza and ice cream’s a culinary bliss.
But the poem befits neither fact nor fable
and a glug of wine simply tells me this:
that the sonnet form is not my friend,
but look! At last we’ve reached the end.
Ah well. I fear it’s not Shakespeare, but then nothing ever is, eh. I also see that the Poetry School are doing another online course starting in January which looks very interesting, so I might well sign up for that if there’s space, even though it’s on a Monday. And, as you know, Mondays are Not My Best Day.
I’m also pleased to say that my contract for A Stranger’s Touch from Amber Quill Press arrived yesterday, so I’ve signed a copy and sent it back to them today (or at least Lord H is doing the actual sending, Gawd bless him). And I’ve even remembered to include a copy of my US tax form details in the package – Lordy, how efficient I am, ho ho. I must also say I’m hugely impressed with their professionalism and efficiency – they even included an addressed envelope for me to use, which has never happened before. I felt bizarrely touched by that. Which probably just goes to show what a Sad Desperate Writer I really am. But, hell, you knew that.
Other hot news is that I’ve written the first 1000 words of The Executioner’s Cane (Part Three in the Gathandrian Trilogy, for those at the back not paying attention) and am happy with the current direction it’s travelling in. So far. I think this one’s going to have a fair amount about fathers in it – both Ralph and Simon have difficult relationships with their absent fathers. Of course I can sympathise with that issue (though one cannot blame one’s parent for dying, I suppose), which is why I imagine quite a few of my novels have fathers in them. There you go. I am just writing myself over and over again. Dammit.
Oh, and the big excitement of the day is that I scored 10 out of 10 in the Strictly Come Dancing quiz. 10 out of 10!!! I can’t believe how very very happy I am about it. It’s the best thing that’s happened all week! Lordy but I’m sad.