I was very quiet around here last month. That’s thanks to NanoWriMo taking up most of my writing time, and the fact that the silly season seemed to start earlier this year.
First, a quick NanoWriMo wrap up. I started off strong, getting well ahead of my daily target, and then a couple of really busy days meant I did little to no writing and I was put totally off my game. It took me a while to catch back up, and I only really managed it after a mammoth effort over a day or two in the middle of November. Once I did, I made sure to keep to my writing goal and hit that target every day, or as close to it as I could get. If I missed the target the previous day, I’d try and make up for it the day after. Continue reading The Silly Season (including NanoWriMo)
Story-teller Charlotte-Rose de la Force has been banished from the court of Versailles in 1697 following a series of scandalous love affairs. She is sent to the Abbey of Gercy-en-Brie, where she is comforted by an old nun, Sœur Seraphina, who tells her a one hundred year old tale. It is the story of a young girl, Margherita, who is kidnapped and locked in an isolated tower. Margherita is kept hidden for years, but her beautiful singing voice draw the attention of a young man, and eventually she works up the courage to escape. But the story told isn’t only Margherita’s story, it is also the story of her kidnapper, a Venetian courtesan and sorceress, Selena Leonelli. Throughout the storytelling in the Abbey gardens, Charlotte-Rose’s story is also revealed in its similarities and differences. Continue reading Book Review: Bitter Greens
As the year 1900 comes to an end, Berylda Jones reluctantly leaves her life and friends at university in Sydney for Bathurst where she finds her sister Greta’s situation is far worse than she ever imagined. Facing an uncertain future of her own thanks to her sadistic Uncle Alec, Berylda concocts a plan to free herself and Greta once and for all.
Ben Wilberry is on his way west in search of a native wild flower, keeping a final promise he made to his mother. Travelling with his friend Cosmo, Ben happens upon the Jones sisters and their smarmy uncle by chance on New Years Eve. Thanks to Ben’s well-known last name, he and Cosmo are invited to dinner. Ben becomes enchanted by Berylda and the two travellers agree to accompany the sisters on a short trip out of Bathurst.
Hill End is a former gold mine town, now quickly becoming a ghost town, with its own dark secrets. It is here Berylda will find the means to cure evil and a solution to what seems an impossible situation. But what she didn’t count on, was finding so much more in Ben Wilberry.
“My apologies for the intrusion, but I was hoping I might take a look at the shrub, ah. The daisies, over by the…”
Last week, Chuck Wendig asked writers to create 1,000 words of part one of a scary story. I intended to take part but life got in the way. This week you can choose one of those story beginnings and create a part two. Next week will be part three.
This is a non-writing/reading post, simply because I wanted to share some of this amazing country that I live in. I’ve spent a lot of time in the Blue Mountains this year thanks to my husband’s running adventures, and have learnt my way around. There are so many walking tracks I don’t think I’d ever discover them all, even if we lived locally.
Last weekend, we set out to do the the Valley of the Waters Track, but extended it down the ladders path which meant weended up doing the Wentworth Pass track in reverse. It took us roughly two hours to complete the seven kilometre loop with the kids and was quite steep in places. Lucky we took plenty of food and water because we needed the energy to climb back out of the valley.
I never realised there were so many waterfalls. Recent rains meant they were all flowing too which made for some very pretty pictures.
The above is just a small sample. I have so many photos I could have chosen from.
Funnily enough, the book I was reading at the time of this trip, Paper Daisies by Kim Kelly, is set partly in the Blue Mountains. I will be reviewing it next on my blog. Stay tuned…