Friday, 24 May 2013

Swanning About

The simplest way to describe life this last week is to say we have been swanning around. This is all part of Marcia’s search for these rather ephemeral (as yet, anyway) characters she has in the back of her mind. Still shadowy, they have been dominating what we do and where we go. It seems a crazy way to write a novel but, as I am sure you would all agree, it works.

The source of the Dart is a bit tricky. Up on the moor it divides into the East Dart and the West Dart and then there are all the streams that feed into it. Most start as an "issue" where water literally oozes out of the ground. Above is the issue that becomes the Walla Brook that becomes the West Dart that . . . well, you get the idea.

Anyway, we have been all over the place, following the River Dart from it’s source on Dartmoor to the sea at Dartmouth and along the coast from there westwards to Bigbury and Burgh Island.

No confusing the mouth of the River Dart with its castle.

As usual, as we go I have been taking photographs and the odd scrap of video. As far as the latter is concerned you will find a video called (well, it had to be) “Swanning About” on YouTube. Click here to see that. Stick with it – it gets more interesting towards the end.

This photograph was actually taken on 23 May - 2009.
A sea of bluebells on the open moor.
Meanwhile, Marcia has learned that her editor is over the moon with the last book so there will be a new one out in the autumn of 2014. I never doubted this for one moment but Marcia is always cautious. She is right to be, there is more to getting a book published these days than simply writing a good one. Behind the editor is the marketing department, sales and the accounts department. All have their say for there is no value in writing a novel that cannot be marketed well, sold well and – vitally important for all involved – make a profit.

The really sad thing (this is a personal statement) is to watch people who for other reasons are in the public eye writing poor quality novels which, nevertheless, are listed in the top ten simply because the author is a “celeb” (or, of course, a ghost writer who has done all the work and will get none of the glory even if the return in financial terms is good).

End of rant.

The problem with modern life is, as we all know, that the speed of communication makes us immediately (and, often, dramatically) aware of the bad things that happen throughout the world. We were shocked by the impact of the typhoon on Oklahoma and so glad that, as far as we know, none of Marcia’s readers suffered loss or damage as a result. That gladness is, of course, tinged with sadness when we think of those who were less fortunate. Many thanks to Jeanne for keeping us informed.

This week our blog-dog is called Scarlett.