“I’m going to make everything around me beautiful - that will be my life.” — Elsie de Wolfe

Saturday, 26 November 2011

Seeing what is there. . .

"You cannot find peace by avoiding life." - Virginia Woolf

When I am lost in my writing, the time seems to pass so quickly. Before I know it, another week has passed and I am here again, sharing my observations with you.

Writing has been easier this week and I am almost at my 50,000 word target. Though the story is far from complete I can begin to ease up a bit on my pace, though I am so engrossed I may not be able to!

I still made time this week to take photographs. It helps to take a step away from what I am doing, it gives perspective. So, this is what stood out for me this week. . .

It is my space, the setting in which the majority of my life takes place. A house is made a home by the souls that live within it, and the stuff of everyday life. It is easy to take for granted the things we see daily, so it pays to keep a fresh eye and to make an effort to appreciate the things that surround us.

"It is the function of art to renew our perception.
What we are familiar with we cease to see. " - Anais Nin

This week I was made happy by the purr of sleepy cats, the touch of warm soft fur, the sight of tails held high with a slight flicker of the tip, and that gentle beep they make when they greet me in the morning.

(Sammy sleeping above and Bina and Mitz below)

Camera still in hand after rushing to capture the shot above,
I snapped a few more photos as I wandered back to my computer. . .

"If you carry a camera, it helps the 'background' to become foreground - it helps you to 'see'"

Splashes of sunlight! - on my wall above and on the fruit below.

The garden has become busy with birds. I've started putting out food again now, as it is getting colder. The feeders outside my window are a real hive of activity. This week, beside the usual visitors, we had a woodpecker. His strong beak made short work of the fat balls! No photos I'm afraid.

(Blackbird and Sparrow taking a drink)
It was a damp grey day in Banbury mid week, but I was cheered by the colours of the flowers and the delights on offer at the old sweet shop in the photo below. - I didn't indulge ;-) .

"Engine running. Warm air at my feet keeps the grey day and its chill at bay.
Insulated by this travelling box on wheels, I am removed. And insider looking out."

I have noticed that lots of leaves are still on the trees. Maybe it is because we haven't had such high winds this year? In previous years the winds have taken the leaves, rather than waiting for them to fall. . .

Down by the canal, I was struck by this scene. (below) I loved the trail of yellow.
From the tree, to the bikeframe, to the scattered leaves on the pavement below.

Thank you for sharing my week. I hope all well with you all. x

Thought of the week
"Peace in ourselves, peace in the world." - Thich Nhat Hanh

I am linking this post to week 63 of I Saw Sunday

Images and words - Susannah Bec

Saturday, 19 November 2011

One Week in Autumn. . .

"There is no perfect time to write. There's only now." - Barbara Kingsolver

I have been writing. Forcing out the words when all I want to do is run from them. Last year was easier, I was consumed with it, I lived it, breathed it. This year there have been days such as today when I only managed to squeeze out 700 words.

I have been distracted, or should I say I have been finding distractions. I checked emails, joined in with writing prompts, visited blogs. I walked by the canal, I took photos, I noticed things.

Let me share some of this weeks distractions with you. . .

Sign painted on a wall in Banbury town centre -
it has been there as long as I have been visiting the place.

"Someone has drawn black ink lines on this mornings colourless sky.
On closer inspection they look like trees. I see the branches and at
the very top of each one sit birds, in pairs. Maybe they are waiting
for the colour to arrive, so that they can take to the air and fly."

A damp day down by the canal.
As you can see we are at lock 29.

"Even in the greyest sky,
the birds still fly.
Life goes on."

This caught my eye -
I love the lines, patterns, shapes and angles.

Two elderly ladies talking.
One: "I got all my washing dry."
The other: "Yes it was a lovely drying day yesterday."

The ramshackle roof of one of the buildings at Tooleys Boatyard
by the canal in Banbury - I love the hillocks of soft green moss.

"Wary jackdaws, shiny black and powerful, feeding on the bird feeder.
A little blue tit hops up on my window ledge and begins to tap the
window with his beak, he is looking straight at me as he does it."

Draped in mist, the landscape chants.

Nuts and Acorns.
Bark and Moss.

Falling Leaves.
Naked Trees.

Colours of Fire.
Mud and Mire.

Bracken and Mould.
Richer than Gold.

Rich Black Earth.
Dreams of Birth.

Subtle and beautiful. An aria of decay.

All of the fungi was found poking through the fallen leaves under the
lilac bush in my garden.
This is the first year I've ever noticed them.


"A gust of wind and a flurry of yellow gold leaves
take to the air and soar over my fence like birds."

In my garden this fallen red leaf stopped me in my tracks -
its vivid colour singing out again its green grass back drop.

Also this week I had the pleasure to interview Robb Lloyd the founder of Poets United
(for the real toads.) - You can read the interview here - Interview with Robb Lloyd

I hope all well with you all. x

“I turned silences and nights into words. What was unutterable, I wrote down.
I made the whirling world stand still.” - Arthur Rimbaud

Thought of the week
Think of the world you carry within you. - Rainer Maria Rilke

I am linking this post to week 62 of I Saw Sunday

Images and words - Susannah Bec

Saturday, 12 November 2011

Still Finding The Time. . .

I've spent a lot of time struggling to find the words to meet my nanowrimo daily wordcount this week. But I still found time to note the things that stood out for me, here's a collage of those things. . .

I SAW . . .
Red berries through my window.

Leaves and reflections in the bird bath.

The colour contrast of this fallen leaf against the bright green of the ivy.

The Sun that hangs inside my front window, a welcome shot of colour on a grey day.

I HEARD . . .
The Miles Davis CD, Kind of Blue - Playing in the background as I wrote, its notes a landscape for my thoughts.

My Mum as she looked at the fallen leaves everywhere - saying that she loves the colours of autumn, but thinks it's very untidy. ;-)

The soft tap of my fingers on the keyboard as I wrote.

I TASTED . . .
Fresh Figs.

Homemade Vegetable Soup.

The gorgeous combination of marmite and crunchy peanut butter!

I FELT . . .
Overwhelmed by the thought that I had started nanowrimo with no plot....again!

Exhilarated as words began to pour out of my fingers and onto the screen.

The weight of Bina my cat in my arms and the comfort of her soft warm fur.

The dampness of the mist hanging in the air.

ALSO . . .
I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Jinksy for The Real Toads 'a spotlight on' series. The link to the interview is at the top of my side bar. :-)

I hope all well with you all. x

Thought of the week
Whether your life is a blossom pink or a gloomy hue
depends on the filters you choose.'' - Ivan Kally

I am linking this post to week 61 of I Saw Sunday

Images and words - Susannah Bec

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Nanowrimo, & November In My Garden

"Blank pages and unwilling fingers.
Words waiting to be written, queueing to be first out of my pen.
But sentences need a structure to inhabit, a stage they can dance upon.
So, while the story temporarily eludes me, there is nothing I can do but wait."

It is November again and time for another Nanowrimo.

People all over the planet taking up the challenge to write 50,000 words in 30 days. Last year was my first year and what a roller coaster ride it was. I had never written anything longer than a blog post before, but I plunged in with no plot and plenty of enthusiasm. I managed to complete the challenge and come away with the bare bones of my first novel Learning How to Fly a Kite.

I promised myself that if I took part again this year, that I would prepare. No more flying by the seat of my pants, why make it difficult for myself? I would have a plot, characters, and a storyline sketched out, ready to start writing on November the first.

I had such good intentions. . .

But here it is again, another November, another Nanowrimo, another year of me sitting and waiting for the story to come. I didn't prepare. And I am once again at the beginning of that wild scary ride, and four days in I recognise the terrain. The quote from my name is zing at the top of the page was written on last years nanowrimo day four.

So it seems I am on track and all is going as it should. :-) . . .

Meanwhile, in my garden....

Red berries against deep green leaves, their colour so vibrant through the curtain of falling rain. The lilac branches a landing strip for small eager birds who don't seem to notice the weather.
- my name is zing
From where I am doing my nanowrimo writing (on my laptop, sitting on the sofa in my computer room - no internet on my laptop, so no distractions!) - I can see this rose out of my window.
November and it is still sending out buds, new and beautiful against the grey sky.

I hope all well with you all. x

Thought of the week
"Writing is like driving at night in the fog.
You can only see as far as your headlights,
but you can make the whole trip that way." - Doctorow

I am linking this post to week 60 of I Saw Sunday

Images and words - Susannah Bec


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