Archive for March, 2011

Taking care of myself

I love writing.

  • That’s why I’m a writer.
  • That’s why I struggled over the last three years to finish my Master of Arts (Creative Writing).
  • That’s why I write regularly on this site (and my other two sites – see the links at the bottom of the page).
  • That’s why I write every day or so in my personal journal.
  • That’s why I write short stories.
  • That’s why I write novels.
  • That’s why I write poems.

Sometimes, however, a writer needs to take time out from writing and attend to other life matters. Over recent weeks I’ve been attending to various health issues. These have included:

  • An appointment with my optician: I needed new glasses.
  • Checking with my eye specialist to see if I need a cataract operation: I don’t.
  • A visit to my diabetes nurse educator: for some good information about diet.
  • Having a check up with my GP who suggested I have one of my regular blood tests: no problems there.
  • Having my six monthly chest x-ray for a certain condition I have: had a good result.
  • A dental appointment which resulted in a tooth extraction and a major filling job last week.

I am having few problem with the last item, so back I go to the dentist this afternoon to check on that.

It is important for everyone, not just writers, to look after their health. When I am sick, or have a continuing health issue, I can’t be giving my full attention to my writing, a focus it deserves.

Hope all goes well this afternoon.

Good writing.

A few tales to tell

I recently had some publication success. Yay!

Every year the Creative Writing department of the university where I recently completed my MA (Tabor Adelaide) publishes an anthology of poetry, short plays and short stories. The contributors are all present or former students, and a few staff members also add to the eclectic mix of writing. This anthology was the 6th edition and the quality is extremely high. The competition to be included is making it harder to be included every year, so I was pleased to have a short story and a poem in the latest issue.

I’ve read all six editions and have enjoyed all of the stories. Many of the poems could easily have found a home in any of our most prestigious literary journals. In fact, two of our regular contributors, both former students, have had stories published in a leading journal in recent months. It speaks volumes for the standard of teaching at Tabor Adelaide, and says much for the talents being nurtured.

The anthology is called Tales from the Upper Room, reflecting the theological roots of Tabor Adelaide and a direct link to the upper room where Jesus and his disciples met to celebrate the last supper. The ‘upper room’ also refers to the fact that our writers’ groups meet in The Loft, the highest room in the university.


A good day of writing

I had a good day of writing today.

It’s noteworthy because such days have been rather a rarity of late. After the rush and intensity to finish my degree last year I allowed myself some space for a few weeks to recover. An unwelcome side effect has been losing momentum with my writing. Sure, I’ve been doing a little here and there, but it has been very spasmodic and not at all intentional or planned.

Time to get on with serious writing again. I’ve actually been thinking in this way for quite a few weeks, but a few health and life issues intervened. Today was different and I have much to show for it. I was under way with a short project early this morning and haven’t let up all day. It is very satisfying when the words flow freely. I managed over 4800 words today, the most I’ve ever done in a day if my memory is correct. (My memory is increasingly failing me, but that’s another story.)

The writing project I started – and finished – today was updating my personal journal. I like to write in this journal at least once a week – more often if I can – and I hadn’t done anything in it all year. I’d recommend writing a journal if you don’t already have one. I find that journal writing gives me excellent writing practice, it clarifies my thinking on many important issues – quite often not writing related – and it records major events in my life. My journal has an audience of one: me. Someday my children or grandchildren may get to read it. That’s not why I write it.

Good writing.