nichepoetryandprose

poetry and prose about place

Archive for the ‘myth and mystery’ Category

tweeting about writing

leave a comment »

Every day, I write. Today I worked on the story for Book Six in the Meniscus SeriesMeniscus:Encounter with the Emenpod. I also did some editing of an upcoming mystery novel I refer to as HHGG. Tomorrow I will be writing poetry for a series about abandoned communities and what happens to plants in abandoned gardens.

~

~

Working back and forth like this between projects at various stages of completion is a great strategy for me. I never get bored, I never get writers’ block and I think shifting projects keeps my writing brain refreshed.

~

~

Besides blogging, I participate in Twitter, sending a tweet almost every day to #amwriting … if you’d like to find out what my writing life is like, follow me at @TimsJane … I report on what I am doing and share a bit of writing wisdom. I’d love it if you would follow along!

~

A little about the mystery novel since I tweet most often about it. HHGG is one I wrote in 1997. I have learned a lot since then, so editing makes me laugh. HHGG is about a woman and her two kids who seek summer solace at her old family home. She never dreams she is walking into a village rife with mysteries, some of them stretching back more than a century. I have a few human antagonists, but one who is anything but human!

~

~

Hope you are enjoying your summer and your own writing life!

~

All the best,

Jane.

faerie, one wing, frowns

with 3 comments

DSCN0009 (2)

faerie, one wing

~

frowns at the hesitant

fluff of feathers

perched on her finger

~

this creature has

two wings,

can fly

~

wonders where

verdigris

and copper

wingtip

flew to ?

~

stands

in a blue and green

periwinkle sea

and, earthbound,

scowls

~

~

All my best,

Jane

 

 

Written by jane tims

June 8, 2018 at 7:00 am

creepy camera

leave a comment »

Today as I was making trips to the bird feeders, I set my camera down in the entry-way. I did fumble with it a bit as I left, trying to turn it off.

~

~

Later, as I went through my bird-feeder photos, I found this in with the rest of the files. The photo is one frame of a one minute video. Me, leaving to go outside.

Creepy camera.

~

~

Copyright Jane Tims 2018

Written by jane tims

March 12, 2018 at 7:00 am

ordinary magic

with 2 comments

Is there magic in your life? In mine, there is magic. Not the kind of magic where the course of events is influenced by mysterious forces but rather, a quality that makes something seem removed from everyday life, in a way that gives delight.

~

Although I am a biologist and understand that even the magical can usually be described in concrete terms, I prefer to not try to ‘puzzle out’ at least some of the ‘magic’ in my life. After all, what is more delightful and truly mysterious than a six-sided snowflake, the pattern of veins in a basil leaf, the smell of lavender at bedtime, the pungent, cold-busting taste of turmeric, or a line in a movie that brings tears to your eyes.

~

When I wrote the poem below, I was playing Dungeons and Dragons regularly and keeping watch for the magical in life. I still have the small blue jar with the magical false bottom.

~

 

~

ordinary magic

~

small blue jar

emptied of face cream

has a false bottom when held to the light

a bright inverted inner shell

hovers untouchable

~

the peel of an orange

spurts flammable oil

cantrips of fire

~

press a shell to your ear

murmur of ocean

~

~

~

Copyright Jane Tims 2018

Written by jane tims

January 31, 2018 at 7:22 am

ghost stories

with 10 comments

Although I hesitate to write this post, I am trying to go through my older poems and think about them a little. The next one on the list (I am working backwards through the alphabet) is called ‘visitations’. The subject matter is a bit ghostly.

~

I do not generally believe in ghosts although I do believe in phenomena if that makes sense. A phenomenon is defined as a fact or situation that is observed to exist or happen, especially one whose cause or explanation is in question.

~

I have experienced many phenomena in my life. Odd things that seem to have some particular significance at the time. My mother, who also had such experiences, called them “comforts from heaven.”

~

Here are a couple of examples from my own life:

  • After my mom died, a little yellow bird came almost every day to peck at our windows (not a goldfinch, in spite of the drawing below). After that year, I never saw it again.
  • Once I bought a handmade quilt at an auction and laid it over our upper loft railing. One night I came out to the hall in the dark, touched the quilt and heard the following words, quite distinctly: “Henry, come in to supper!” I don’t know anyone named Henry.
  • When she was alive, my aunt and I had a contest to see who could lose the most weight. My aunt told me to pick an item from her home as the ‘prize’. I know she was disappointed when I chose a little framed picture of a waterfall she had won as a prize in Sunday School in 1937. Neither of us lost any weight so the prize was never claimed. After her death, we retrieved some boxes from her estate. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I opened the box in the trunk of my car and the little picture of the waterfall was the top item.
  • Once when I was staying away from home, I heard the front door open and footsteps, crossing the tile floor. I expected to see someone else and instead a little girl with ringlets came into my view, reached up for the doorknob of the adjacent bedroom and went inside. There were no children in the house at the time and I was terrified.
  • My husband had his own weird experience on our local covered bridge. He was crossing the narrow bridge one day in our truck and was alarmed to see another car enter the bridge. He was certain there would be a crash but the other car, an older V-8 model, squeezed right by. My husband, knowing there was no way two vehicles could pass in the bridge, had to stop the truck at the other side of the bridge, he was shaking so hard.

~

Now every one of these experiences could be explained. Probably a vivid imagination is part of that explanation. But I do believe in the phenomenon. Have you had any experiences of your own?

~

~

visitations

~

moonlight on birch

stark shadows

words precise on the page

~

her tread heavy

she reaches for the door

opens, ringlets close as a spring

~

lengthen, what else is possible?

hand touches a quilt, a voice asks

a practical question, distilled in velvet

~

a small yellow bird

at the window

every morning for a year

~

~

 

~

Copyright Jane Tims 2018

 

 

Written by jane tims

January 26, 2018 at 7:00 am

the joy of writing

with 6 comments

I have been absent from my blog for a week. Tied up in the sheer enjoyment of writing my fantasy tale.

~

dock-winder-inspects-odymn

an illustration of the interaction between the main character of my story and a Dock-winder alien

~

I have discovered that there are two main parts to writing: the writing itself and the ‘administration’. The administration includes the editing, the creation of other materials associated with the writing (for me, drawings, maps and covers), the search for publication, the preparatory work toward publication, and the marketing (readings, selling books, making sure the cat doesn’t destroy your boxes of books).

~

Although some of the administration is fun, it is the writing I love to do. This includes the research and the joy of creating the characters, the story, the plot, the various drafts.

~

This project has been particularly involving. Perhaps it is the creation of an entirely new world. Perhaps the freedom of building characters I have not known before. Perhaps the thrill of writing in a genre I have always enjoyed reading but felt hesitant to write.

~

odymn

the main character in the book – a practitioner of parkour and a woman who has hung on to hope in spite of adversity

~

My story is simple. It is about a young woman who wants freedom and sets out on a search for that freedom. The plot is a little more complicated. In her search she encounters a man who seems to share her purpose. Adventures and romance ensue.

~

So far I have

  • the first in what I hope will be a series of three stories
  • most of the first draft of the second story because it informs the first … in the writing of the second story I discover needed elements of the world I’ve created
  • a cover design … one of the tasks ahead is to create a painting from my design
  • a description of the planet Meniscus
  • a map of the part of Meniscus in my story
  • a glossary since some of the words in the story are unique to the created world – units of measurement, plants and animals, and so on
  • a condensed guide to the main language used on the planet  (everything in the text is translated but having a dictionary is just fun)
  • drawings to illustrate some of the action in the story

~

a map to go with the story

a map to go with the story

~

My plans are to pull this all together and venture into the world of self-publishing. I have a friend who has lots of experience with Amazon publishing and is willing to share his ability.

~

I have also hired an editor to work with me on the project so my book will be the best it can be.

~

book-cover

~

I will be looking for some beta-readers, so if you are a regular reader, like sci-fi, fantasy, romance, and adventure, and enjoy reading accessible poetry, let me know by leaving a request in the comments, including a little about your reading life and genre preferences, and whether you have been a beta-reader before.

From this I will choose a few beta-readers and I will exchange what I hope is a great read for some feedback.

A beta-reader provides general comments on readability, identifies parts of the story not easily understood, points out any ‘bugs’, and lets me know what they enjoyed/disliked about the book.

The book will be short (9,500 words) and about 100 pages (stretched out since it is written in poetic lines and includes illustrations and a map). There is some violent content, sexual content and alien profanity, so beware.

~

Back to writing. And ‘administrative’ duties!

~

~

Copyright 2016 Jane Tims

 

Written by jane tims

November 28, 2016 at 7:46 am

two alien characters

with 7 comments

In my fantasy tale I have included several alien species. Two of these are in the category of ‘bad guys’. Neither species is sympathetic to human ideals and concerns.

  1. The Dock-winders are intelligent aliens, natives of the planet Meniscus and primarily interested in the economics of buying and selling other sentient beings. They are called Dock-winders because, when they invaded Earth, their long necks reminded people of the big tie-ups at ships’ wharves.
  2. The Gel-heads are also aliens of the planet Meniscus. No one would call them intelligent. They are mostly interested in enjoying themselves and letting others do their work for them. Through the eons they have settled into a trading relationship with the Dock-winders. They are called Gel-heads because their skin is green, transparent and gelatinous, allowing their skulls and musculature to show through.

~

Drawing these aliens was fun, but I realise I am in the trap of copying humanoid characteristics such as bi-symmetry, bi-pedalism and head-near-the-top. Two eyes, a nose and a mouth. Oh well, all in fun.

~

scan0033

Dock-winders try to look benign and naïve. They blink a lot.

~

scan0034

Gel-heads cannot hide the cavities in their teeth.

~

I am glad I will never have to meet up with either species.

~

Copyright 2016 Jane Tims  

Written by jane tims

November 18, 2016 at 7:49 am

%d bloggers like this: