New Steps

So here we are 2014, and as the year get closer I still can’t come to terms that next year I won’t be on my hoverboard…yes Back to the Future really lied to me!

In a year of new promise, my physiotherapy is going brilliantly and I can now finally take a few more steps, still on flat surfaces though, and ok I still cannot climb the stairs, but I hope to be back at work very soon.

Right now I’m drafting out the first of the nine stories* which will eventually become part of the anthology, and because it’s the hardest one because it’s set in Korea, a country until this point I know almost nothing about, and because I want to be authentic it requires a lot of research.

I do appreciate the irony that two of my four names can be found on a map and it’s a county that is only 576 miles (according to google) from my beloved Japan…and until this moment I’ve lived my whole life in total ignorance of it. Although I have always been terrible at Geography!

So researching South Korea, a fascinating place with a timeless history, and finally my sense of travel is being reignited, a small flame that I cannot temper no matter how much I try.

However all this research is also giving me some trouble…because I’m an advanced reader and I’m not trying to sound egotistical, but I was! I was reading from the age of four, via osmosis since my siblings R and T (my sister and brother if anyone is interested!) were three and four the moment I came into this world.

My parents taught them to read whilst I was crawling on the floor and I must have subconsciously picked up the majority of what they were saying, as even though they read to me I picked it up with so much ease I was reading above my level at an early age, to the point I read “Flowers in the Attic”, by Virginia Andrews when I was only eight!

Admittedly the incest subtext did pass me by, mercifully. So I have no idea what the right reading level really is for a teenager, of course I’ve read teen fiction, from the “Sweet Valley” novels, and who doesn’t love sociopathic identical twins** to much better stuff like “The Hunger Games”, but this is more to do with my own narrative voice and how I want to write, and not imitate someone else’s.

Additionally I’m aging most of the girls to their teenage years, since it will be more interesting and I really don’t want the girls to come across like “Sophia the First”, so in one of those moments that have to be a sign, the first day I ever looked at groupon (I’m totally a time out offers fan), I came across a “14 Module Online Children’s Story Writing Course for £14 (96% Off)”. So in a serendipitous move, well how could I not!

So I hope the course will push me in the right direction and since as I mentioned above that my love of travel is being rekindled, I’ve also signed up for a TEFL course in London in March. Even though I already have TEFL qualifications it was several years ago, and even though I love my job…and always have (if anyone from my firm is reading this!), but it would be a good addition to my CV, and it’s going to be held in the British Museum. This has to mean something, though speaking of travel yesterday I also managed to get my name into Space! ***. Though I’m not being too egotistical but my name is already on the Discovery Rover on Mars, which I did about a decade ago…so my body is still on the planet, but my name is in the stars. Quite awesome really!

*When I say nine stories, my youngest nephew is miffed that he doesn’t get a story…so he wants one as well. Though I did point out that there are enough boys in stories, because to quote the great Ursula K. Le Guin in an article I cannot source, but had enough of an impact to form the basis of my dissertation, “Authority is male, it is a fact”, so I’ve already told him, if he wants to be in it, then he has to come up with the idea, and even though I’ll help him with the development it (and write it, since I’m a speed typist), he has to be the one to do all the work.

 

** If anyone wants to read more about the sociopathic twins Jessica and Elizabeth Wakefield, or loads more about the Babysitters club and more great stuff from the 1990’s. Can I please direct you all to http://90sflashback.wordpress.com/

 

*** If you also want to go to space (like me), its http://www.planetary.org/get-involved/messages/bennu/

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