Tuesday, 7 July 2009

Reasons to be Cheerful

1. Good Things happening to Great People: Tania Hershman won the Grand Prize at the Binnacle Contest - huge congratulations, Tania! Editor's Choice went to Vanessa Gebbie, and honourable mentions to Nik Perring and Anne Brooke, among others.

2. The Weather breaking to Rain: this makes me very happy. It meant we were able to extend our riverside walk to two hours on Friday evening, with a pit-stop for bread and olives (and a chocolate mousse for the child) in a lovely riverside venue.

3. Things for Free in our New City: two very different but equally splendid houses to visit, right on our doorstep, giving us a genuine idea of how our 1760 place would have looked in its day. Then, walking home and finding the child hungry, popping into the riverside venue and being handed a huge loaf of ciabatta 'on the house', as they were about to close for the day. As the child put it: "A whole ARMFUL of free bread!"

4. Shutters and wallpaper: the bedrooms in our place still have the original shutters with iron bars, which is wonderful enough, but even better are the variegated layers of peeling wallpaper in the recessed portions of the wall where the shutters fold when open. There are at least four different layers of paper, floral, colourful, very old. I must write a story about the four generations that chose the papers and hung them here.

5. Reading: Patricia Highsmith's Ripley Under Water. Dry as tinder is Tom Ripley, and Highsmith's prose to match. Of course this makes it all the more explosive when it Goes Up. I'm still trying to work out how such very dry writing can grip the reader so thoroughly. Really, it's not the sort of writing I enjoy, at all. But I keep reading her books, for the craft as much as anything.

6. Writing: It's coming, slowly. I have a handful of flashes coming out over the next few weeks, at venues including Wigleaf, LITnIMAGE, Word Riot and Big Pulp. Oh and a guest blog over at Strictly Writing at the end of the month. Best of all, I'm working on the new novel, at last.


Madeline said...

Sarah, your wallpaper story idea sounds wonderful!

And people wonder where writers get their ideas... :)

Sarah Hilary said...

At the moment it's only an idea, Madeline, but what writer could resist a thing like this..?

Gay Degani said...

Reasons I'm cheerful.

1) More Sarah Hilary to read on line in the near future.

2)Sarah Hilary is making strides on her new novel.

3)Even Sarah Hilary's blog posts are lyrical.

Sarah Hilary said...

Another reason: I have a great writing buddy. Thanks for reminding me, Gay.

Nik Perring said...

Glad you're cheerful! And congrats to you for your publications and to all the others who've reasons to be cheerful too. :)

Sarah Hilary said...

Thanks, Nik, you too!