Jan 28, 2010

Storytelling: The Gruffalo

Posted by AJ Blythe at Thursday, January 28, 2010 2 comments

A mouse took a stroll through the deep, dark wood...

My kids love the book The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson. Okay, I confess, I do to. The storytelling is superb. When I found out it was now a stage production, I got a little excited. When I found out it had sell out seasons on West End and Broadway, had become a musical and was still aimed at children, I was very excited.

So the kids and I went and saw The Gruffalo.

Tamlyn Henderson, Stephen Anderson and Crystal Hegedis in The Gruffalo

Oh... my... gosh... I LOVED it. It was brilliant. There were 3 actors in total, sharing the roles of mouse, fox, owl, snake, the gruffalo and story teller.

It was funny (for both adults and the littlies), clever, simple (not scary) and just plain charmed the socks off everyone in the audience.

Oh, and my kids had a ball - they want to see it again.

Now the Winner 2009 Sydney Theatre Award: Best Production for Children, my recommendation is take the kids and see it when it's in your area. And if you don't have kids? Beg, borrow or steal some. It's worth it!

Jan 25, 2010

Is my BUT too big?

Posted by AJ Blythe at Monday, January 25, 2010 2 comments

I had planned to blog about something completely different today. But you know what they say about the best laid plans and all that.

What changed my mind was reading Nathan Bransford's blog on January 21st. His guest blogger, Jon Gibbs told the story of his Gran:

Never shy about giving people the benefit of her opinion (whether it was asked for or not) my old gran was always telling someone their ‘but’ was too big.

On the face of it, that seems a little rude, even for my old gran, but she wasn’t talking about pants’ sizes. She was referring to those built-in excuses we like to keep handy, in case our sub-conscious starts prompting us to chase our dreams

It got me thinking about my big but (and not the one I sit on *grin*).
But I don't have time.

A new goal for 2010... to lose my but!!!

To this end, I'm going to start a "My Excuse Monday" column, poking fun at the but in all of us. To get "My Excuse Monday" started here are the first two excuses:Reprinted with permission from Sam Morrison

Jan 18, 2010

Writing Emotion

Posted by AJ Blythe at Monday, January 18, 2010 10 comments

I love that saying. When I think of books that I hold dear, the ones I read and read again, they are the ones that make me feel I'm part of the story. They draw me in until I'm laughing or crying with them.

It's this emotion I want to bring into my stories. But how do I do it? And how do I know that I've done it?

In the next few weeks I'll be hearing back from judges (and possibly editors) from various places I've sent my manuscript. I guess how much they loved or hated my writing will reflect how much I drew them into my story. Fingers crossed they read with emotion. If not, then I will follow the words of the other saying and hope next time I fail better ;)

Jan 11, 2010

Staying Positive

Posted by AJ Blythe at Monday, January 11, 2010 8 comments

It can be hard to stay positive about your own writing when you read the work of others. I sometimes think I should abstain from reading while in the depths of writing my ms. Even during the first, second or fifth rounds of edits ;)

I've just read 3 Aussie authors (Melissa James, Marion Lennox & Claire Baxter) who write for M&B Sweet - the line I'm targetting. Now, while I'm sitting at my desk trying to edit and rewrite my current ms I shudder when I read my words. How could I possibly think my work is at their standard? What am I thinking? *Cringe* Oh my gosh, I've subbed to Mills and Boon - are they going to laugh at me?

It's hard to step back and look at my work with perspective.

I just have to remember that at some point these ladies were in my shoes, writing their first manuscript, wanting to be published - they got there.

The most painful thing to experience is not defeat but regret. If I don't keep trying, doing what I love, I'll regret it to the tips of my toes. So I'll just keep faith in myself, and maybe one day I'll get their too.

Jan 7, 2010

Morning dramas + Firemen

Posted by AJ Blythe at Thursday, January 07, 2010 4 comments

What a morning! Our fire alarm went off this morning for no reason, and every time we tried to stop it, it would just start again - with our renovations we have to have them hard wired into the electricity grid by law, so not as simple as removing a battery.

We couldn't see or smell anything, but didn't know if it was in the roof or somewhere out of sight, so had to call the firies! So there we are, standing on the footpath with sirens and lights flashing, and the whole street coming out to stare at us *blush*. Firies couldn't find anything - they think it was dust in the fire alarm system itself.

My day has been thrown, so not sure I'll squeeze my writing time in. Sigh.

Jan 5, 2010

Just a few points

Posted by AJ Blythe at Tuesday, January 05, 2010 1 comments
A little update...

WooHoo. Yesterday I crossed off another of my 09/10 goals. I've sent in my application for RWA's inaugral 5DI program. This puts me half way at the half way mark :) Oh, and my fingers are now crossed I get a place *grin*.

This coming Friday (8th Jan) I'm putting myself in the spotlight and revealing a few secrets about myself in my RWA Blog Bite column. Please visit on the day and leave a comment so I don't feel lonely.

Am doing a January edit challenge at the moment with my Nanowrimo buddies. So far am running a little behind (trying for 5 pages per day), but hope to catch up before the week is out.

Bought new bookshelves today. Very excited. Unfortunately they are still flat packed (lol), but will fix that tomorrow. Am currently rearranging a few things in the office to fit them in. But am sooo looking forward to filling the shelves.

That's all for now. But I will share some photos of my bookshelves once they are assembled and filled :)

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