Going back to my writing roots

Since the home invasion (if you haven’t yet, you can read about it here), I’ve been battling with my writing. I can’t seem to immerse myself as fully into my make-believe worlds as I used to. This is problematic, because if I can’t see, hear, smell and feel my characters, I can’t write about them. The robbery changed me in a fundamental way, and things I used to do I can’t do anymore, which means I also have to adjust my writing routines and rituals. I used to listen to music while I wrote – headphones on, music blasting my eardrums to an early death. I can’t do that anymore. I need to hear what’s going on around me, and if I can’t hear, I get panicky, and when I get panicky, I can’t write.

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Part of my process involved a few weeks of ‘daydreaming’ about the new story and characters. It required me sinking deep into my imagination, shutting out the rest of the world, and just concentrating on the people in my head. But now, unwelcome thoughts intrude, and the story falls apart. I have to keep my mind constantly active to keep out obsessive thoughts – that means reading a lot of cracked.com, or watching a lot of really bad television, but nothing creative, because even reading fiction cuts off the outside world, and that drives me fucking nuts.

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Remember When Sunday – The things men do

Okay, okay I know it’s early Monday morning, not quite Sunday anymore (on this side of the world at any rate).

So where to begin with today’s little trip down memory lane? Since #YesAllWomen is still trending on Twitter this week, let me take you back to my very first gynecological exam.

I have had ‘woman troubles’ all my life, but as I grew older, these problems became worrisome and much more severe.

I was twenty, suffering from severe anemia (frequent blood loss will do that to ya) and always, always in pain. Back then, our insurance insisted that we had to get a referral from a GP first, and off I went to see my regular family practice doctor, who decided I needed to see XYZ gynecologist that very day. I didn’t get to have a choice in the matter, since this was the only specialist my GP would recommend. Continue reading

Reconsider South Africa

This video reminds me why I choose to live in South Africa. It reminds me that this country and her people are good, and kind and beautiful and there is simply no other place like it.

When I say, “I love my country,” it’s not empty words. I love this country with almost tangible emotion. This is universally true of all South Africans (even those who have left). We love South Africa to the very core of our beings. She is a part of us. She’s in our blood, in our DNA. We are South Africa and South Africa is us.

This is my country, this is my home.

Remember When Sunday – The wolves on the wall

When I was a child, I usually spent my school vacations with one of my grandparents’. It was a time to be spoiled, a time for fun and a change of scenery. I always looked forward to those visits.

My maternal grandparents lived in a very old town called Parys in the Free State. I love all things ‘old and magical’, thus Parys still holds a very special place in my heart. It is close to the river, which meant we’d take long walks with our elderly, but still spry, grandfather along the banks of the river, looking for treasure as we went. I always came home with bags full of smooth rocks, glass, interesting little bits and pieces people dropped along the way and God knows how many other things my mother secretly had to throw away. Continue reading