Thursday, March 30, 2006


They say to be careful what you wish for-----!! This has been an exciting month as far as writing. I was posting some comments on a forum for royalty and some of my comments got the attention of the editor. We started talking back and forth by private message and then email, and she is located in the London area, and is very busy with this new Royal business on the internet.....well, one thing led to another and she complimented me on my writing in general and we talked further and I told her that I write about queens. She was very excited and amazed at the knowledge I was showing.....heck, I'm so used to thinking about her----them, all the Queens that I research that I never thought anything of it.....but, I kind of do know quite a bit. I never realized my hobby of reading and writing about Queens was anything.....well, maybe different----well, perhaps I have something to offer someone.

She asked me to write a piece on Frogmore----now, if you know about Frogmore than you'll know what Queen I have been referring to. I did write it and dashed it off, and she loved it---Cheerio!!! We also joked that we'd serialize my, of course, I really don't know if we will, or even if I should.

A few days later, as big as day---There is was on the front page---my own story. The editor wrote that she felt lucky to have such an "expert" writing this story for the site. Whoa! Then, out of sheer excitement I emailed all my writing groups, and there are three of them and I told everyone about the article, and gave them the link and I got lots of congrats over the email for days--it was exciting. But there were also some very nice comments written on the Royal site about my article. They were all so nice, but one said, "She wrote as if she were observing the Queen" which really flipped me out. I guess I succeeded in making her my own. What a lovely compliment for a writer.

In the last 2 weeks, things have heated up, and not only did I send her another story...on Osborne House, which was Queen Victoria's favorite home.....I've also started playing around on the internet, with the thought of starting a Queen Blog or a Queen Site.....with pictures, stories and glimpses of their lives, their jewels, their homes and palaces.....all of it. It's a little scary, but I've gone ahead and I did design a bit of a site all on my own. Now, I still have a lot to learn about doing websites----maintaining one, linking things to it.....oh, there's so much to learn, but it was very exciting for me.

The Queen I am currently writing about is, yes---Queen Victoria.

I think the perception out there is that she was an old prude, a lady in black widow's weeds who stayed away from everyone and everything, but its so, so untrue. She really was a remarkable woman in my humble opinion and the more I read about her the more I love her. But, I'll save all the good stories for later....

How am I feeling? Better. It helps to have something new and exciting that I am interested in, and when I can I just "get away"---either researching, reading, writing, follow thru with my writing groups----and now, writing articles. Its a start. I don't know if it will lead to anything and it really doesn't matter if it does or not. The main thing is that I am having a ball with it and I know---after all these years, that I can do something fun with the knowledge I've acquired---did I spell that word right? It just keeps me happy and amused and that in itself is great. Oh, enough talking about me. My son has been helping me with my new little site on the web.He's only 9 but is he smart, especially when it comes to computers. He amazes me. When I have a question, its just remarkable but the child usually says, "Oh, that's easy---" and then bing!!!! Done. Wow. So cool. I feel a little stupid sometimes, but I know I shouldn't. The kids these days are soooo bright.

Time to go to bed. Okay---another tidbit about her......they say her hands were very small and the skin, oh, so very soft.

Dreams really do come true, sometimes.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

A Breakthrough!

Yesterday I had a breakthrough in my writing and an idea came to me about point of view, and how the characters in the novel can narrate it. This is something I've been thinking about for some time because I'd like it to be different, and since its based on a true story, and there are really diaries and letters involved, in my mind I finally think I know how this story could be told. I sent my ideas to the only writer I know who will really look at it and get back to me. (I think its very hard to find a good crit partner, personally....) She wrote back that she loved it, it "works" she said....she found herself wondering about this thing and that thing and wanted answers-----she said each segment was narrated differently, but well----and best, she said, "I got a chill down my spine." What a compliment and I couldn't ask for more.

I've been spending a lot of time reading the emails and information that comes through on the various writing groups I belong to---but, I don't feel yet that I've found a nourishing home. Maybe its because I'm quiet and don't talk much on the e-mail loops. Perhaps I need a smaller group of writers to work with. Oh, I don't know. When one writer is on a roll, another may be petering out. We all work at different paces.

This weekend I really start the research phase---in so far as I'll go through the books, papers and internet and always have a pad and pen with me. When I come across something important about her life---a time line, an event, a death, birth, something cute she said---descriptions of relatives---everything gets jotted down in chronological order, by year. I'll also have files for each of her homes and each relative and major events. Although I know much of this by heart by now, sometimes the exact dates escape me and I need to check names and places and all of that. I think its going to be fun to fill up my pads and then go back to the chapters and sprinkle in dashes of this and dashes of that. I'm planning on doing it layer by layer.

The story is already out there but I have to choose whats interesting and whats not, what to leave out, whats exciting and what I can play with and how far I can stretch the truth, or, do I even want to?

I think its kind of cool to keep a diary of how I am thinking----when the book comes out and I have a website of my own and another book on the way and others ask, "How did you think it all up? What gave you this idea?"----well, they won't have to look very far. I'm going to try to be as truthful as I can. I feel pretty up and the writing is helping me. It feels like a special, secret thing at this point.....that I wake up to....and go to sleep with. I still feel funny talking about this with anyone----Why do I feel so protective of her? Do I think someone would steal her from me? I suppose I shouldn't worry about that---no one can steal my own creation of her. Another writer would see it all differently, and some writers would think I'm crazy to have my head in books about her all the time. Sometimes I don't even know why I do it. One thing I do know....I feel safe in her world. It stays where it is, it never changes and I know what to expect. There's no surprises and that's nice. I've studied the ups and the downs....and things are familiar. I guess I need to be safe in this world----Oh, I hope I can leave something nice behind for others to enjoy, something that will pierce them through and through----in a good way.

Got the pads and papers and pens and books and, I'm on my way. I've finally figured it out, I think. It's odd---these ideas need to ferment for a long time in your brain before you can see it all clearly and it feels comfortable. If it doesn't feel real to me, it won't be real to anyone else, and that's something important in writing---and I think, maybe, that I've caught on to her real essence as I see it and it seems to be coming out on paper---at last!

It's getting late. Hmmm, a tidbit.....Let me see..... She loved brisk weather and preferred candles to gaslight---and hated the heat.

Do you think you know?

This is fun to do. It keeps me sharp and on my toes.

Stay cozy....

Tuesday, March 07, 2006


Its time to blog again.


I've made a decision. While I begin this blog about writing about a queen, I will also be doing a lot of research---and so---someone told me I should start a queen blog, about her and her family, and share tidbits about their lives and other royal information about them. I was told there's no other blog like it and no group about her. So, I am going to do it. For right now it's going to be my own secret, but eventually---who knows. The novel will be published--- Oh, it will! It might take 5 years, or 10, but it will happen.

I joined a new writing group today--- I think its a reputable one. I'm already a member of another that I like, but why not be in two? I have my writer friends, some published and some not. Somebody told me to get in touch with historians, other authors and other people who are interested in the queen, or similar things. This weekend I found another stack of old books from the used bookstore....lots of big, thick memoirs that will help me with her life, her thoughts and the time period....also, the language used at the time. I love books as you can tell.

Today, a feeling came to me, about how the novel should be written.....kind of the voice of the novel----the tone. There are so many times I feel her almost alive, saying something. You have to understand I've been studying her and her family for well over 15 years. So, I know her. And I think I know at times what she might say. Supposedly, this sometimes happens to authors. Sometimes I feel like I have to let it out, and so I just sit here and let her talk.....and write down the dialogue. Little by little, I'm getting the voice and the tone that might be best for me----after all, I am writing this for me..... I do hope though, that someday a reader will take the book and curl up in a chair, start to read a few pages and think, "This is gonna be good...I feel like I'm there....and its such a long book, too." Isn't it great to retreat into another world for awhile? There's nothing like it.

I feel a little better and the writing is helping me. You can't give in and so, for me this helps quite a bit. I'm also getting older and how long will I be on this planet? Maybe another twenty to thirty years at best? I'd like to leave something behind....a wonderfully, researched book, about something real. What can we really leave behind? There are memories, and they are real and deep and last forever. You can leave behind mementos of your life, money, a home, a legacy, you can impart your morals to someone or you can leave behind something beautiful, like a piece of wonderful art. Of course, its the children we leave behind and what we leave them with that's the most important. And love....without love and caring, and memories, what is there really?

It's time to get my spiritual house in order, try and stay healthy and make sure that I show love. If, in the process, I manage to stay sane and get that book done too----well, that's just an added bonus! ....But, you know what? I really do think I can do it.

Its time to go.....Please excuse me if I am missing an apostrophe or comma....its late....My sweet husband just took out my son and my sons' (two friends) and bought them all game boys and games----they are thrilled and jumping around the house. His friends have never had one before. Its so satisfying to be kind to a child.

The first tidbit: She was very close with her eldest child, but couldn't live without her youngest.

Night....Stay Cozy