Posts by Tania Roxborogh

  • Busytown: Holiday reading lust,

    I just finished Access Road this arvo and was, by the end, fed up although I loved page 53. There was a predictability about the story and I got tired of wallowing around in another complication head.

    I want STORY!

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2009 • 5 posts Report Reply

  • Busytown: Holiday reading lust,

    How the hell am I supposed to get my novel done when you write such great 'essays' and put such wonderful comments on here? Meh. And, such fantastic company you keep with wise and witty and winsome responses.

    I had EVERY intension of revising the first 45,000 of my novel today to send to agent and editor but it's after lunch and I haven't even started yet!!!

    I blame you Jolisa for my distraction *grin*
    For the record - Shakespeare rocks hard out in my classroom. And, kids DO get Lear if you take them through it with their child of a father lense (aren't parents stupid?) and I'm with the others re Macbeth and Polanski (why else did I every consider writing the sequel which has spawned into a trilogy? I want Shakespeare sitting next to Christ when I get to heaven - great company.

    And, whoever it was who reacquainted me with the classic 'Rinse the Blood off my Toga' - ahh memories. Great. Great.

    Now, I shall delete you from my favourites so that I'm not so easily tempted to get off task.

    Back to Scotland

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2009 • 5 posts Report Reply

  • Busytown: A turn-up for the books,

    Okay, just reading a book called 'Medieval Scotland' by Peter Yeoman which is mainly a summary of all the archaeological information gathered over the past twenty years. Have written at the top of my note book the title and author of the book, the ISBN and date. Am copying notes as I read such as what the latrines in the monstrey's were like (and what they have discovered in some of them!)

    Am glad the author is boringly dry and factual with only a wee bit of personal conjecture. Less likely for me to graft a tidbit into my memory.

    As others have said, it's about the power of the story and I don't want anyone reading what I've written to 'see the seams' as Jolisa said in her interview. I want people to be carried away by the thrill and passion and arc of the narrative but at the same time completely trust me that the colours I've painted in the background ring true.

    Jolisa, I think it would be useful to post an article about what are the key ingredients to great historical fiction. See, though I love Gabaldon, I'm finding her latest hard going because it has SO MUCH detail.

    Anyway, I need to get off this forum, my blog, Beattie's blog and facebook and get back to writing - I have a deadline!

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2009 • 5 posts Report Reply

  • Busytown: A turn-up for the books,

    Horrible and unforgiving comment directed mainly at the tenor/tone of some national radio reports and 'the panel' and the word of mouth gossip I'm hearing in the staffroom and reading - not this forum which I joined precisely because I find the discussion helpful, measured, intelligent.

    Yeh, and I think it would have helped to have declined the award.

    I always find it a tad scary (despite being highly opinionated) having my say on things like this, afterall, I'm not an academic - just a high school English teacher - and not an award wining writer (hell, hardly anyone knows the names of NZ Children writers except for Margaret and Joy). But my latest novel is my 23rd published book.

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2009 • 5 posts Report Reply

  • Busytown: A turn-up for the books,

    Dianne Brown, in her Here Comes Another Vital Moment, says something along of the lines of this (and I'm too lazy to go find her book and find the passage) 'Such is our predatory nature...we are word thieves; scene stealers' or something like that. Our job as writers is to turn it inside out and filter it back to the world through our own unique lens.

    This whole situation with Witi has given me much pause for thought because right now I'm having to do a shite lot of reading about really tedious things to do with 11th Century shipping and battles and religious ceremonies. I need to do this. And, I need to find out a whole lot of stuff about the times and attitudes of the peoples.

    On the one hand, I don't want people criticising me for being historically inaccurate. (A few have already tried but they are wrong, not me, so I'm nonplussed about their erroneous assumptions) but that I might INADVERTENTLY incorporate someone else's phrase into my narrative without realising that it had become part of my psyche, is a huge stress.

    People criticise me for using words not used in 11th Century even though I said I was using 17th Century words. They said some of the phrases are ‘too modern’ yet the ones they’ve quoted have come directly from Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, Julius Caesar and 12th Night.

    What I’m saying here, I think, and as I said on Beattie’s Blog, I am disinclined to join the others who have so quickly rallied to throw stones at a man who’s novel Whanau was the first ever non children’s book I read as a child. (My step-brother won it as a school prize). Here was a narrative which told my story with all it’s glory and heartache and laughter and tears and violence.

    Sad for him. And sad that people have been so horrible and unforgiving. Whoops – stuff up. Could happen to any of us. All writers of historical fiction could get caught out. Me. Or Jones. McCullum. Or Alterio. Could. Shouldn’t but it might so we all have to be careful.

    But. But. My words, though universal to all who use English, are my own when I speak them. My images, though not unique – never could be – are special to me because they are seen through my imagination. And, the stories I tell, (which could never be considered original) are owned by me because I tell them and, I’d like to think, there is only one of me.

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2009 • 5 posts Report Reply