Aha moments

Well, this blog has already paid for itself. By forcing my brain to think of other things, I actually got a bit of distance on my novel. And then I realised why the pacing was skewiff.

Most importantly, I’ve given Lyn allies too early in the story. I hate conflict in real life, and tend to be too nice to the characters I create. But Lyn is pathologically independent. No way would she be relying on someone in the first third of the book.

And as I lay awake last night unravelling where my story wandered off track into allydom, I realised it was a fundamental error. I’d made Lyn a lawyer (she has hang-ups about justice), but the problem with that is she can’t drop her current life to deal with new issues, and the story can’t wait for her to hand over cases, and she is too conscientious to neglect her clients. Oh hell, I’d fallen into the trap of giving her an obvious profession.

So last night I really considered her choices and really, she wouldn’t have chosen to be a lawyer. She’d have gone with her talents to make herself independent. Her talent is numbers and patterns. Obviously she’d put that to use in finance, work from home, stand or fall alone.

Ha. I’m really pleased to have put my finger on the problem, but not so happy that 30,000 words have to be pushed aside. Draft 2, here I come.

Books for Christmas

I have six books set aside to read over Christmas weekend. Three by Phoebe Atwood Taylor and one each from Donna Andrews, Carolyn Hart and Dorothy Cannell. Favourite authors all.

I was also meant to set aside Jessica Hart’s “Under the Boss’s Mistletoe”, but shamefully read it in one gulp on the day I bought it. I do like Hart’s category romances.

I read a lot of romances, mostly contemporary, some urban fantasy/paranormal, a few regencies. Finished Joan Smith’s “Aunt Sophie’s Diamonds” at lunchtime. Such a gorgeous touch of humour, and a likeable hero.

Australia. Continent, but no longer a single country

I’m 34. Will it be in my lifetime that climate change, demographic reality, shifting identities and loyalties change Australia from a single nation to a continent of nations?

When I look at the size of our landmass and the precarious land use in other countries–Pacific islands, Bangladesh, the Maldives–I wonder how seriously they look at us and think of emigration. And how seriously must we consider opening our borders?

There are problems. Do we let whole nations or ethnic groups move to Australia, and if we do, will they, should they, assimilate or do we carve off a portion of land to be theirs? And if we start dishing out land, other nations will come looking. China, Indonesia, India. The world is interested in our mineral and energy resources, and also in the food security of owning our land. Could our generosity start a war? Would we be generous?


She dreams she is a boat
afloat on a people sea,
rocked by the waves of eternity.
Weather forecast uncertain.


Here’s Wikipedia’s useful intro to the numinous. It’s about the confronting, fascinating encounter with otherness. Sounds like urban fantasy, hmm? A world linked to, but beyond, everyday human experience.