Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

and that’s a wrap! December 31, 2012

Filed under: Pondering,Writing — Shawn L. Bird @ 3:16 pm
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So! In a few hours 2012 will be history.  The hysteria of the end of the Mayan calendar passed, and now our calendar is finished, too.

My hubby was given two calendars this year, and I received one.

One of his is an inspirational one, about challenge.  He’s going to put it up in his office to inspire young clients who need all the help they can get.

The second was is Scottish scenery.  I’m hoping that one inspires him to wear his kilt more often, and perhaps take a trip to Scotland some time.

My calendar arrived in the mail today from Finland.  The photos are stunning and it makes me ‘kotiikava.’ Koti is ‘home’ and ikava is ‘melancholy’ or ‘longing.’  The term is more a propos to the circumstance than our English homesick , don’t you think?  I also received a card from the wife of my Rotary exchange counselor, asking when I’d be coming back to Finland.

I’m making plans for 2013.  I will be applying for Master programs in the next month or two.  One could see me in Finland, studying educational theory and practice.  One won’t.   I have a novel project floating in my brain that involves Finnish mythology, but I think I’d better get Grace Beguiling dealt with first.  Finland is floating in my future, but so are a lot of other things.

So the old year is wrapped, and we lead into the next.

Teaching, writing, studying, growing, reading, learning, laughing…  Those are my plans for 2013.  What are yours?


keeping track of time July 9, 2011

Filed under: Grace Awakening,Writing — Shawn L. Bird @ 2:23 pm
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When I was writing Grace Awakening, I didn’t write linearly, I wrote scenes from all over the book.  I moved from exposition to climax and into rising action in the same week.   This technique helps to keep the writing from being boring, and makes it interesting toward the end of the process when the author must take all these disparate puzzle pieces of story and manoeuvre them into a proper picture.

It creates some difficulties as well, however.  The main one is keeping references to time appropriate.  If I say “two weeks later” but the events referenced have 3 Fridays between them, I have to fix it!  Or perhaps the logical sequence puts a spring activity in December.  My biggest consideration was working around the date April 6th, when Petrarch first met Laura.  The scene that references that must occur at that time.  The last couple of days I’ve been working with an editor on finding these time anomalies and making sure it all works together.

It’s kind of interesting that in some 40+ reads I’ve had of the book, and a dozen or so beta readers, no one else has caught these concerns before.  I realise this means that not everyone is going to keep track of the calendar, but for those who do, it’s important that it matches up.  So I’ve drafted a calendar, and made sure all the events sit where they should.  Just as I researched the times for the sunset when Grace and Ben dine at the Calgary Tower, the little things need to be correct.  It’s a respectful nod to the reader.  “I care enough about you to create a world that is consistent.”

At least, I’m doing my best.


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