Wednesday, November 21, 2018

From a bush house to watching flowers grow

 Ten years ago I planted six Birds of Paradise plants under a tall gum tree. I envisaged a beautiful group of colourful exotic flowers shooting up in the Spring. 

Each year through cold and windy winters and hot dry summers I have weeded, watered and watched my small family of plants. 

A few new leaves emerged but that was all. I still hoped and now after all these years there are two flowers. One has opened and showed its beautiful colours and the second (look carefully at tree trunk) is still closed like a spear. Wow! I am so happy.

My husband Frank retrieved a discarded small garden glass house. 

Most of the glass was shattered and it lay around behind the barn for several years. 

Last year I had the idea to turn it into a bush house filled with the native orchids given to me by a friend. I kept the frame and covered it with green netting. And a few weeks ago I built a paved area with more of the old bricks near the entrance to the house.

My challenge now is to slow down the ‘bricks works’ – although there are still more to use and get back to my writing. 

Hopefully I’ll have something to say about that next time. I have a new idea about how my main characters move from one enchanted world to the next – of course, once again inspired by nature!

Do you know if there is an eco friendly way to boost the growth of ‘Birds of Paradise’? I’d rather not wait another ten years.

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Creating something new – from recycling bricks to imagination

About six months ago, as I shared on facebook, a tall gum tree fell on and destroyed a large section of my front garden. I was quite upset as it had taken me some years to create it. But I took a deep breath and I re-planted the garden using some of my old bricks to create another new path. I took this photo of it last weekend. You can compare the before and after.


I find that creating fictional characters is a bit like gardening. First, imagining what they are like and then watching their personalities grow as the story develops. Lots of patience is required for both. This past week or so I have been struggling to find names for some of the fictional characters in my third children’s book about the enchanted game and world of ‘The Tenth Gateway’. I can spend several hours at a time on this.

Just when I think I have found or created something different, I check ‘google’ and up pops the same name for a character in a book or film, a singer, or a computer game. It’s easier for the ‘human’ characters but much harder for the various fantasy creatures – good and bad.

I found this lovely image of a fairy-like being which reminded me of the fairy charm I included in my first book “The Tenth Gateway’. I didn’t give her a name but now I’m wondering what it would be. I am thinking ‘Clara’. It is an ancient Latin name and means ‘clear, bright’.

What would you call her?

Between Books

  Taking a Break After I sent off the third book in my planned trilogy about the magical world of The Tenth Gateway I t...