Thursday, December 13, 2012

Writing Into The Wee Hours

I'm so very busy these days.
Guess it's good that I have the balancing act
figured out.

Today's featured guest is
 Shirley Ouw
 Why do I write?  And why do I  write science fiction or speculative fiction (fantasy), whatever you call it.  Is there such a thing as enjoy doing it?  People look at me kind of funny when they ask how was your weekend, by which they usually mean to ask what have you been doing in your spare time away from the office and I tell them,oh, I spent the time writing and making amazing journeys through the sight of my mind. Always that quick look of disbelief and condescension that can be interpreted as "you must be joking" or "what the heck is she talking about?" or "she must have a few screws loose".

Yes, people, I write because I enjoy it. Being presumptuous or not, I enjoy dreaming up new worlds and impossible situations to put my characters in. I'm thrilled the way that in the course of the story process, heroes and villains take a life of their own, and choose a path different from that I have plotted in the beginning. Of course I am not a scientist and my stories mostly are planetary romance and deal with social issues. 

Even so, the hard reality is that simply loving to write doesn't put bread on the table. Not for this author anyway.  Thus, I have to stick to my daytime, full-time, job and it is a busy one in a law firm. After wrestling with legalese all day, 5 days a week, my brain is mush. Still I write maybe a few lines each night, while multi-tasking and connecting with my online buddies.  The best time to write is when everyone is asleep in the house, including the dogs, writing into the wee hours.  I love the nights because of the quietude, but I have to get up early to go to work, so night writing is not a habit I can stick to, except on weekends and holidays. 

Still, to write you need a certain peace of mind, even while you're plotting death and destruction of worlds, and of people and creatures. The situation at home as it is, on which I won't go into details, has upsetting moments, that throws your focus off balance. 

But write I shall, and write I have tried in face of distress, keeping watch over a dying mother, in hospitals and in the nursing home, with my laptop on my knees, wedged on a hospital chair of discomfort between the sickbed and the wall. Write I continue  while somewhere in the house someone breaks things, drunkenly amok.

I am not in any relationship but my sister is, a relationship that I wish had never, never come about. 

But so I persist, and write I shall and Jessie, my dog, is my favourite companion while I, propped up with pillows on my bed, spin my stories on the Netbook and she lies beside me snoring, and twitching as she goes on her own adventures in the canine dreamworld. And I wish I can see into her dreams and what a story that would be. 

Shirley currently writes under the pseudonym of Sterren, under which pen name she has written RESONANCE and ENGELINKYN: THE WINGED HEMISPHERE (both available at Amazon).  THE WINGED HEMISPHERE is the first part of a trilogy that will be concluded with ENGELINKYN:  THE JEWELS OF HUEMANCY and THE TOWERED HEMISPHERE. The series are finished except for some further editing for the last two books

She is currently on a new series DIM STARS IN THE BRIGHT of which the first two books, A PRIDE OF GEMS and DEMES OF THE WREATH are in the first rough drafts.  She currently lives in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

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