“Sarah Johns walked into the room with a cameraman shouldering his equipment. Karin noticed how Sarah stood with her shoulders back, walking with a casual, confident stride, her legs long and slim, seeming to lead the way for her upper body. Her presence in the room, strangely, was both unassuming and commanding at the same time. Her frame did, however, slump forward somewhat in a posture of weariness.
Her hair was short and dark like a raven’s; her eyes were a green Karin had rarely seen, deep in color, with light inflections towards the pupil and framed by long, black eyelashes. She was not wearing makeup and wore khaki pants and a black t-shirt that hung over her pants.”
Where the Sun Rises, Suzanne Strong, 2019
Hey guys, this is the character for my new novel that I am writing. The novel follows Sarah’s story, from her point of view and is set in Australia and Syria. 🙂 I am enjoying exploring her story. I will post more about this new novel as I go. It has been a very different process to my first book which was heavily based on research, this book is much closer to my own life, though it is not my life.
Thanks for reading, guys. Let me know if you are interested in my next book. Have a lovely day. 🙂 Suz
This morning for the first time in a while I decided to write and rewrite some sections of my next novel. I have not had much time with all of my teaching I have been doing. I focused on some images, and memories between characters, as well as creating some nicknames. Nicknames say a lot about a character, as do names.
I had decided to call my main characters brother Tommy, for no real reason, I liked the name. This main character Sarah and her brother Tommy were always described as twins when they were young, always together and they looked alike as well. So, I was looking up the name Tommy for some nicknames and I saw that this name means “Twin” in Aramaic. What?! 🙂
This has happened to me before with a character out of my first novel that her name meant “burning and fiery explosion” and this character is blown up. I had not looked up the meaning of her name before I named her.
Amazing. I am struggling at the moment with how much of my real brother and my story I should put in this novel. I am tossing backward and forward in the strong wave undercurrent of whether to present it as it happened, my life with him, or a modified version as there is not much space in this current book. Then again maybe there is. Or do I keep our story for another book? This is what I am wondering at the moment. Maybe I modify for this book, then write in more detail my own experience with him.
I am reading Trent Dalton’s book, Boy Swallows Universe, and I know he wrote about his life in this book. It is inspiring me to brave and simply write what I need to. I am conscious of the significance of writing about my life, with how it could effect people but Trent Dalton said, “don’t worry about that, just write it.” That was my plan originally but I didn’t think I would become paralysed by how much to include and what details and how much do I put in of the hospital visits and struggles etc…It is all very interesting. I am really seeking guidance from within about it. I know where it ends, but how much of my own life will I include? This is the unknown at the moment.
Today, I am pondering on this, and meeting up with some writing friends so it should be good. Thanks guys for reading, feel free to comment if you like down the bottom. Have a lovely day! Stay well. 🙂 Suz
“No one is useless in this world who lightens the burden of another.”
I love this quote. I believe to give your life to help others, is the ultimate purpose and no matter what we do in our jobs etc, wherever you find yourself, serving others is so important in this world.
“May God bless and keep you always May your wishes all come true May you always do for others And let others do for you May you build a ladder to the stars And climb on every rung May you stay forever young May you stay forever young
May you grow up to be righteous May you grow up to be true May you always know the truth And see the light surrounding you May you always be courageous Stand upright and be strong May you stay forever young May you stay forever young
May your hands always be busy May your feet always be swift May you have a strong foundation When the winds of changes shift May your heart always be joyful May your song always be sung And may you stay forever young May you stay forever young
How good is this song? It was written for his children, but I think it is an excellent summary of the kind of life I would and probably most of us would like to live. 🙂 I hope you are having a great day. 🙂
I just wanted to write about my writing process at the moment. I have reached as I said a deeply personal section of my novel. I am still in two minds as to whether I will include it in the final novel. This morning I was writing about a personal experience of mine in life, and most of this novel is not directly related to my life, though it is to some degree as always.
Where I am right now – there is a dilemma, and I am faced with an experience, I can’t put my full experience in the novel as it is not appropriate and the question is, am I satisfied with that? Or do I keep that narrative as part of another novel or a non fiction work?
Today, I wrote this experience into the novel modified through the eyes of my main character, Sarah Johns. I am satisfied with it at the moment, but I will keep exploring. I could possibly change the ending slightly, if I want to remove this plot, but on the other hand it is also all the way through. I think I am slowly forming a modified version of w hat really happened.
A writer friend of mine said I was very brave to be sharing this deep experience into the world, I hadn’t really thought about it like that. Art should share the deep experiences of the human condition, I believe. Of course some art is also for entertainment, pleasure and enjoyment and I am not against that. In fact I really want to write a humourous novel next. 🙂
So, anyway, I am still plugging along and if you are writers or if not, maybe you will understand that things develop as we go. But I didn’t want to be paralysed by this point in my book. So, I am still writing, cause it makes me feel good and brings me into a spiritual connection with myself and the Divine.
Hey guys, this week has been tough. The whole world is in turmoil at the moment, and personally there are quite a few things that are difficult for me at the moment. Family things with siblings health and personal things in my own life as well. I find people are often harsher than I think they will be, which shocks me. I know I am not perfect either to other people but I try to be sensitive to people’s feelings. This week I was shocked by harshness and it was painful. I feel like I am more optimistic or idealistic than other people, and then the reality of this sets in for me when other people are not the same. I am shocked back into the reality that people don’t think the way I do. Some do, and some don’t.
Anyway, let’s move on to my writing, I found this week with my novel I have hit a road block. The part of my novel I thought I would find the most straight forward to write – I am finding the hardest. This part of my novel is the part that is somewhat representative of my own life and experience. I am finding it hard as I have to choose what parts of my life to include, the characters that I write about as well and what not to include.
My novel writing is the thing that makes me feel alive and doing what I am meant to, (my faith in God makes me feel hopeful,) and this week it has stalled. I need to just keep going. I need to find my way back into the novel and what is happening. I will seek to do that today. Soon, I will be teaching more and my energy will be focused on this. I wanted to have a whole draft completed before then but this does not look realistic now. It is close though.
Anyway, it is a beautiful day and there is much to be thankful about. I am thankful for family, sunshine, health, flowers, the ocean and the beach and the mountains. One day I hope to be travelling again, because that is when I feel most alive and engaged. But then again I value being in one place as well, especially as I am able to create. Life is balance.
I hope you are finding joy in the little things. Feel free to comment if you wish. Have a peaceful day. Love Suz.
It is a disturbing time in many ways right now, but also there are positives coming out of this horrendous worldwide situation. I think on the whole people are appreciating their relationships more, and, for some, they are expressing things they haven’t before. It has made me realise a lot of things. Made me see certain relationships that are important to me, that I didn’t realise the significance of until they were taken away, for a brief time.
It is interesting. I feel a lot of things will change through this pandemic. In some ways, I hope and pray that we realise the essential things in life and how this short life should be lived to the full.
My brother died at age 37 and I was very close to him. After he died I realised that I didn’t want to waste my life doing things I was meant to do, instead of things I felt called to do, or had a passion for.
I have always known I was a writer since I was a young child. I fell in love with words from the moment I learnt to read and write them. I fell in love with story as well. I wrote and drew comic books and drew pictures, wrote stories and made pop up books. So for me, I knew following the death of my brother that I needed to write every day of my life .That is my purpose, I know that for certain. I must admit it took me a couple of years to really embrace this, and I enrolled in my masters to focus on writing. I had wanted to do that since I had graduated from my first degree. Doing a masters allowed me to focus on writing, which my life had only partially allowed me to do. Since then I have written and published my first novel, Where the Sun Rises which took me 3.5 years and thousands of hours of research to write, even travelling to the Israeli and Syrian border.
That was an amazing experience and it is a novel I really believe in. Check it out if you’re interested. 🙂 It is about the real life phenomenal women who fought in Syria.
Anyway, in the past months I have written 54,000 words of my new novel working title, Sarah Johns. It is about a foreign correspondent from Sydney who is in my first novel. Now that I have written 75% of the novel and I am at a certain point where I know what is going to happen but the details are not set in stone. This is how I prefer to write, I know how it will end but not all of the details. It helps me to be inspired to keep going and exploring the idea, characters and where it is going.
I am thankful in this COVID time that I have had the time to write a first draft of this novel, as often we don’t have the time do we? I am extremely grateful for this. I am grateful for my family and friends as well and for health. I hope you are all keeping safe and staying well! Love to you all.