Categories
family anecdotes

8/52 On sadness…

Hubby and I have had dogs for many years now. Late last year, we lost our beautiful Aksel, our 14 year old German Shepherd. Like most shepherds, it was his back hips.

Last Sunday, we lost Rocky, our 14 year old Australian Cattle dog. He had cancer 🙁

Meaning we have one dog left, our kelpie puppy Kiya.

It’s been a hard week on all of us…

See you next week, dear Reader. I hope it’s a good one for you!

  • KRidwyn

 

 

Categories
Random thoughts Scribblings Work Writing

7/52 On Writing

My blog descriptor says ‘Educator, Librarian, Writer’. It’s difficult to write – the hardest thing in the world, some writers would say… and yet the easiest task to do as well, just sitting and writing. But it’s the writing of GOOD words which is difficult. The editing that goes on in the head as you write, the ‘boy oh boy this sentence is awful’ echo chamber that persists in whispering no matter how many times you mentally silence it, ask it to politely shut up, yell at it, ad infinitum.

And it’s crucial to do so. It’s not possible to edit as you draft, not effectively, anyway. You have to get the ideas out first, all of them down on paper or onto the screen, before you can decide which is good and which not so good, which needs refnining and which need discarding.

And then editing! That spectrum between the raptures of joy and the awfulness of drudgery, from the excitement of crafting your words into something amazing to the growing horror of realisation that there’s no way this thought should ever see the light of day. ‘What will people think of me?” “What does this say about the person that I am?” “They’ll see how pathetic this is and won’t like me anymore!” “Will they like this as much as I do?” “What if it’s awful and I just don’t know it?” “Will they tell me? DO I even want them to?”

Well, that’s my rant for today. My writer’s group started back this week, and I drafted it during our writing time. And a good use fo time it was!

Categories
Blogging challenges family anecdotes Writing

1/52 Memories, from Melbourne, with hope

And so it begins; my first blogpost of the New Year. And I’m in Melbourne, which apparently used to be called Batmania prior to being renamed back in 1837.

(And no, although it’s amusing to think of a black-winged crime fighter controlling the convicts in this area of Down Under, apparently it was named after John Batman, a leading member of the Port Philip Association and the person who negotiated a treaty with the Aboriginal elders to purchase 600,000 acres… so nothing to do with DC Comics, Inc.)

But discovering this fact the other day got me thinking about the past, and how so much of history gets forgotten, both intentionally and accidentally.

I met a lovely lady last night – my cousin’s mother-in-law. It was her 76th birthday party and our conversation had moved onto the topic of tattoos. I related the story of one of my family member’s, who’d faithfully kept a diary – until the day his girlfriend at the time found it, read it, and used it against him. Unsurprisingly, he’d decided to stop journaling, and ink his memorable events onto his skin instead. I’ve always wondered if this second method resulted in lost memories. And this saddens me.

2023 was one of those years which I’m glad has ended. And although I could blithely say “I could happily forget whole chunks of it” I know that, should I *actually* do so? Sure I’d be more free-from-pain than I am right now, but I’d also no longer be me. Our memories are what makes us who are we – and there’s lessons I learned through those painful 2023 experiences that I’m glad I won’t have to re-learn.

So here I am, starting 2024 more despondent than I can ever remember being, but intentionally trying to look for snatches of hope for a brighter year. (They *do* say when you’re down, the only way is up, right?) And hope, after all, is all we need, yes? Aren’t there a plethora of films out there whose entire premise is that hope is stronger than hate, or fear, loneliness or depression?

So that’s how I’m looking at 2024. One day at a time, one hour at a time. Trying to see the good, rather than focusing on the less-than-good of the recent past. Moving on, moving upwards. And recording it in words here on this blog, which I’m grateful to be able to do. Not everyone feels they have the luxury to record their thoughts in text, after all.

So. Here’s to a hope-full week ahead for us all, dear Reader, and I’ll see you next week 🙂
⁃ KRidwyn

PS Just cos I can: the doubledecker bus I rode from Tullarine aitport to Melbourne CBD. The last time I rode on a doubledecker was in 1980 in London!

Categories
my novel-in-progress Reading Work Writing

Happy New Year!

Yes, I know, it’s been 7 days already. But hey; I’ve been having a good holiday, okay?

Speaking of holidays, it’s been more of a ‘hiatus’ from this blog, hasn’t it (insert sheepish expression here). What a lovely word that is too, by the way. According to my Apple dictionary:

Hiatus, as in a ‘physical gap’, or ‘to gape’. Well, there certainly is a gaping hole in the timeline of posts on this blog! But as much as I’d like there not to be, I can’t change the past, so here’s hoping 2023 fares better for blogposts. Once a month even, perhaps?

Looking ahead, I’m also looking forward to querying again, probably around mid-March. It’s been years since dipping my toes in the querying waters, so I’m apprehensive. Well… downright terrified, truth be told. But now I’ve posted this – even if only on a sporadic blog such as this! – my brain is telling me it’s a commitment I’ll be unwilling to break. I hope…

On the reading front, I’ve challenged myself to anther 104 books this year. I absolutely LOVE that Goodreads has their ‘Reading Challenge’ function, where I can track my reading year by year. I recorded just over 110 in 2022, which I was pretty happy with. In 2023, I’m planning on the majority of those being YA, followed by MG and a smattering of adult and also non-fiction in there. Not only because those are my faves, in order, but also that’s where I’m at with the Library collection I’m trying to forge my way through at work. I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned how BRILLIANT my job is, yes? Teacher Librarian for a K – 12 private school, where I get to spend the school’s money on books I know the kids will love? What can be better than that? (Well, writing full time perhaps, but that’s a scary thought right there…)

Anyway, here’s hoping all this reading I’ll be doing will help the writing some. And between the writing, the reading and the job, plus a newly-graduated daughter to help negotiate the big wide world of work and university, and two younger children completing Year 11 and Year 9 in 2023… this year’s ending will probably come around quicker than even I’m expecting! I wonder what my life will look like by then?

Well, that’s it from me, dear Reader. Have a great January and “see” you in a month!

– KRidwyn

Categories
Life More about me

Holiday happenings…

So it would appear that the last three weeks of December slipped by without my blogging. Whoops! And we’re at January 4th already, and the holidays are waning quickly. Sigh.

I’ve spent a bit of time at the beach / out in the sun in my garden over the past several weeks. I’m browner as a result (I had photos of both these but for some strange reason WordPress is declining to upload them.) and I also found out from my hairdresser that I should part my hair on the other side. One: it covers the greys and faded hair in my normal part, and two: it still has colour on that side, so I’m looking younger! On the down-side though, it feels REALLY weird and I’m not liking it much at all.

Well, that’s me. I’m off to work out why photos aren’t uploading, because I was planning on using them a LOT this year.

Wish me luck, dear Reader!

  • KRidwyn

 

Categories
places to visit

52/52

Happiness! Breakfast and this view 🙂

What a blessed way to finish blogging for 2020, am I right?

See you in the New Year, dear Reader. And may God shower you with His richest blessings today 😀

– KRidwyn

Categories
Writing

12/52

Meet Xaf.

She’s the dragon keeping me company while I write.

Cute, yes? I think so! She always makes me smile 🙂

Have a smile-y week yourself, dear Reader!

– KRidwyn

Categories
my novel-in-progress Random thoughts Writing

1/52

I’ve decided, instead of New Year’s resolutions for 2019, to try implementing two pieces of advice I’ve been given in the past several years.

The first was from a nurse helping me through depression following the birth of child number 2. Her piece of advice (among many others, most of which I use regularly) was to have realistic expectations – for myself, as well as for others. That’s a tricky one for me – but one I’m going to try to remember in 2019.

The second was a few years ago, from New York literary agent extraordinaire, Janet Reid. She wrote a blogpost responding to a question I’d sent her; the gist of her answer was for me ‘to focus’. Again, something which is going to require more than a little training, for those of you who know me IRL… but something that’s worthwhile, I think.

So in 2019 I plan to ‘focus’ on my writing. The novel-in-progress, that is, not my blog. Hence the plan to post photos each week. Starting with this:

 

The view from one of my early-morning writing spots. Peaceful. Quiet.

Amazing, hey!

Anyway, here’s wishing you a wonderful week, dear Reader 🙂

– KRidwyn

Categories
Life places to visit teaching Work

[This post is a cheat]

Well – kinda.

It’s still me writing, at my desk, putting words onto the little white rectangle on the computer screen in front of me.

But it’s not Monday morning, the 17th of September, 9am.

It’s last week (well, it will be last week, by the time you read this – and I know that this sentence isn’t grammatically correct from when I write this, but it’ll make sense when you read this later… I hope!) and yes, there *is* indeed a very valid reason for this cheating post, which I’ve written and scheduled ahead of time.

I’m in Canberra right now. Or Sydney. Or en route to one of those places. At this point in the planning of the event (because it hasn’t happened yet) I’m still a little fuzzy on the details.

But Hubby is at home with Miss10 and Master9 and my mum, keeping the house fire burning (although maybe not, because the weather’s starting to warm up nicely and it might be too hot by the time this post is published, to need a nightly fire) because Miss13 and I are with sixty-nine other 12- and 13-year olds, enjoying (ha! hopefully ‘surviving’, at least) a week-long camp to our nation’s capital and other ‘worthwhile to visit for educational purposes’ places.

Hence the need to post ahead of time. I have absolutely no idea where I’ll be at 9am on Monday 17th September, but I *do* know that multiple kids will be there. All with pre-teen and early-teen needs, which is to say MULTITUDES!

Sigh. I’m tired now, even just thinking about it. And I haven’t even started packing yet.

So. That’s what my week’s going to be like. How about you?

– KRidwyn

Categories
More about me teaching Work

in which I get pragmatic…

I’m directing a musical at the moment. Performance dates Thursday 9th and Saturday 11th August. That’s pretty close! And it’s a pretty huge undertaking – over half the student population of my school is involved, in one way or another.

So because everything’s ramping up and I’m getting even less time to blog than I usually would, I’m going to make this post short and just say, YAY! We’re alive and have the chance for happiness, both for ourselves and to bring happiness to those we interact with every day 🙂

Here’s praying you have a wonderful week, dear Reader – a blessed week, a happy one!
– KRidwyn