Friday, April 26, 2013

My Old Sewing Basket

This is the sewing basket my father bought me when I was in grade seven. It is this sewing basket that gave me the idea for the fictional story I wrote that became "The Sewing Basket" which I will hold in my hands next week.I find it intriguing and encouraging that a seed of an idea can come from an object, a brief experience ,something heard , or just about anything. As a writer, that is good to know but the challenging part is to pay close attention to the seeds that have potential to grow and let some others go that seem at the time to be brilliant . The hard part is taking the idea and letting it take shape and the most exciting part is that it doesn't always take the shape you think it is going to take. If you let it the story takes over and finds its way out through you or in spite of you. The process is hard to explain or even to understand but again I must say how truly grateful I am to have the time and the inclination to let those stories come. My friend and talented photographer, Kathy Thornhill of Sparrowhawk Photography took a series of photographs of my sewing basket.She took my old sewing basket and found such beauty in it.She made several of the photos in to bookmarks that I will give out at my launch on May 9th. She also created the beautiful pansy bookmarks I gave out with Ten Thousand Truths.Thank you Kathy!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Cover For The Sewing Basket

I am only stopping here to write a short entry. I want to finish book #4 by the end of this month. Part of me feels that I am hurtling toward the finish whereas another part of me is holding back not entirely certain I know what it will take to finish this story.So those two sides are battling with each other and the rational referee that is also in me must make the determined effort to get to it. But I do want to enjoy the feeling I have this morning after receiving what I think will be the cover of The Sewing Basket. It is completely different than the one I envisioned but through the capable work of Matt Reid and his designing skills I think we have come to another perfect cover . I have been very happy with the two covers he previously designed for me and have gotten lots of positive comments about both.I have the three spread out on my office floor seeing them as a collection of my work which thrills me . Next step is to hold it as a book and launch it out in to the reading atmosphere. With all the current debate about books vs e-books, are books still relevant?, are people reading? etc. for me the important thing right now is the story that began with a small flash of idea ,has taken shape and will come together in a book. What more could I ask for at this time? Nothing! I am perfectly content in it's progression. Now get to work on the stage that the next one is in this morning and move it along.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Indian Horse

I finished reading Richard Wagamese's Indian Horse while sitting on a plane coming from Edmonton. I wanted to hold the book to my heart and cry which for me is the sign of a good book.I also wanted to shout to the plane full of people that this is a book Canada should read.I read most of the book while visiting my daughter and two little granddaughters and on more than one occasion I hollered out as I read of such cruelty and heartlessness at St. Jerome's. As a mother , grandmother and teacher I could not even imagine being witness to such evil disregard for individual value. It is really beyond grasping how a child can be stripped of everything that matters to their very being and then casually buried out back. Then I struggled through the blatant racism in small town Canada and in sport. I know this is reality and I am ashamed of it.I also know that there are layers to this racism that are age old and complicated but definitely worthy of honest reflection and debate. I listened every day to the debates of Canada Reads and I registered some of the comments made about Indian Horse but had not read the book so didn't really engage in the debate. I read February and certainly would take nothing away from Lisa Moore's win. But come on people. How could some of the comments made about Indian Horse have been made if they had really read and embraced the writing at all. I don't know how Richard kept from losing his mind upon hearing remarks like "The sport should have been lacrosse". Really! The powers at St. Jerome's stripped the residents of everything "Indian " but would have encouraged Saul to play Lacrosse? "No redeeming white character." I found one but Erv Swift didn't ride in and save the day and I would have been pissed off if he had. "No hope." That is the biggest unfair statement of all.Hope was the powerful message of this book. Saul's mere survival showed hope and the fact that he explored the horrific events of his childhood brought hope from the only real and lasting place it can come from,a place deep within that sees where the soul has been but where by choice it can find a place to reside that gives it a reason for hope. This is what made me want to sob and what will give Indian Horse a place of honor on my book shelf.