Loch Awe in spring - Photo courtesy of Neil Donald Photography






Monday, 15 December 2014

SO ....IT'S ALMOST CHRISTMAS AND .... by Linda Mitchelmore

....... my cards have been written and posted. Presents have been bought, although they are as yet, unwrapped. The shops are awash with Christmas trees and lights and gift ideas, and Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells. I have already eaten one 'Christmas dinner' and am booked in for two more before the 25th. There are also a couple of drinks 'dos' on the calendar. But inside my head it is summer. It is what writers do - think ahead of the game. Sun, sea, sangria - and possibly sex depending on which publication I am writing for - have been in my head for weeks. I have to say it's rather nice to have warm sun on my back, and a garden full of roses and to be building sandcastles with a small child or two inside my head when it's grey and grim and grotty out there. Visualization (spell check tells me it is a z in there, although instinct wants me to put an s!)is a gift to the writer - escapism from the reality of sometimes not very happy lives at worst, and like meditation at best. I sold a short story last week set on St Valentine's Day.and there is one set on the longest day half-completed and waiting for me to get on with it. So, all those people who have had Christmas novels and novellas and anthologies and stories printed this year were well ahead of the game, weren't they? I, too, have a little collection of Christmas stories out there in the ether, done in connection with Janey Fraser who asked me if it might be fun to do. It was. And we are already thinking ahead of the game for what next to put our heads together on.
That very excellent publication, Writing Magazine publishes, from time to time, an Editorial Calendar. The current issue tells us that 25th April 2015 is the 100th Anniver4sary of ANZAC landings at Gallipoli. Possibly a bit late for an historical novel set at that time, but there's still time for a novella, I should think. Or an article. Easter, should you be thinking of writing an Easter story, is in April in 2015, so best get your skates on with that one. Or how about something to mark the 90th Anniversary of the publication of F Scott Fitzgerald's, The Great Gatsby? 10th April is the date for that. Now then, don't say you didn't hear it here first and that you haven't had good warning. April 2016 (yes, 2016!!!) is the 200th Anniversary of Charlotte Bronte's birth. And yes, I do know there is the double-dot thing over the e but I can't get it up on this programme, so very sorry about that everyone. And Charlotte. So....get your thinking caps on everyone. How about a modern take on one of her novels?

7 comments:

  1. I wish I was as organised as you for Christmas, Linda!
    Yoiu are so right about the need to send seasonal stories and articles out well in advance. The Writers' and Artists' Yearbook, which I haven't bought for years, always had an excellent diary of notable events for the year ahead.
    Oh, I agree visualisation should have an s and not a z. Check your spell check isn't set to American.

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    1. My father used to say of me that I would have made a bl*£$dy good General! I'll take it as a compliment! Colour comes up in Brit fashion when I'm working on documents, not color as in the US ....too techie for me to work out! Happy Christmas

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  2. Oh, Linda1 How impressive! I usually think about suitable themes weeks AFTER the event not before. (I am ready for Christmas, though.)

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    1. I've had a bit of practice at it now, Jennifer! But I'm lucky in that magazine editors often ask me for things a bit in advance.....got it with icing on, haven't I?

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  3. I must look out for the special dates calendars - maybe it would make me think ahead! I did a short story for Movember this year, in the anthology Let's Hear It For The Boys - it was great fun. Well done for being so organised - I'm off out shopping now, and finally got the tree up last night.

    You've earned the respect and recognition you have, Linda, re short stories. Well done you!

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    1. Aw, thanks, Jenny. I like doing short stories......now the proofs of Emma Book 3 are done and dusted I might get on with some more....thinking Bonfire Night!

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  4. You're amazing Linda. I'm not very good at thinking ahead of the game but now you've given me some ideas maybe I will be. I've always loved the Brontes ...

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