Saturday, August 28, 2010
Thursday, August 26, 2010
I am looking forward to some discussion in my Writing class tomorrow, following the presentation by Donna Mulhearn today. Her story on her experiences as a peace activist and human shield in Iraq in 2003 has certainly provided lots of information and ideas for reflection and creativity, as well as the way we view ourselves and our lives. I am also keen to pick up on MLKs 'I have a dream' speech with the class now - perfect reference today - and explore its message with some new insights and ideas. And of course, I will be seeking out Mulhearn's book, 'Ordinary Courage' to read!
Monday, August 23, 2010
Sunday, August 22, 2010
Atmospheric .... the glorious Christ Church in Longford, surrounded by candles, listening to the divine music of JS Bach on flute and harpsichord. Outside, the darkness and the rain provide a soothing background, making one feel like they are in a heavenly cocoon, transported from everyday life. What a sublime experience, such a balm for the soul ... exquisite!
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Ooooh, almost finished this gripping novel! I can't wait to read the conclusion, and yet I already feel sad about finishing it ... There are still questions to be answered and plot lines to be resolved, flollowing a rather shocking turn of events - Flo, what a fiesty and determined little character you are! Can't wait ...
Monday, August 16, 2010
I am so keen to go to bed and keep reading Florence and Giles ... I am now hooked! With a mixture of dread and delight, I can't put it down. Many questions are to be answered, and I need to know if my suspicions about various elements of the plot and characters will turn out to be correct or if I am being red-herringed. Might have to hide under the doona tonight with a torch, so my husband doesn't growl at me for staying awake so late .....
Saturday, August 14, 2010
One of my Writing students sent me his genre speech draft yesterday ... but substituted it with Martin Luther King's great 'I have a dream' speech. I do thank him for giving me the chance to revisit this powerful speech, but I confess it has inspired me to write my own version in response, along the lines of ...
'I have a dream that one day Joshua will use his time wisely to fulfil his writing potential, that he will not only get his drafts done, but that he will refine, edit and polish his work so that what he submits is as worthy as that of the published greats of his era and those who have so bravely gone before.
I have a dream today!'
... that's all I have time for now, but I DO look forward to completing this piece! Juicy ...
I think I will set this as a writing stimulus next week ...
Thursday, August 12, 2010
Things are a little (no, no ... what am I saying? I mean extremely!!) hectic with marking and reports but I have finished reading The Well ... hmmm ... will elaborate (and scream) in due course. Have also finished Georgia Blain's Darkwater - loved it - and just commenced reading John Harding's Florence and Giles. Apart from the engaging names in the title, and a very unusual (very stark) visual book cover, I think this one is very 'me': elements of history (19th century), 'crumbling mansions', ghosts and mysteries .... I hope it lives up to expectations!!! It is a much anticipated escape from the drudgery and stress of teaching and reporting at this torturous end of second term ....
Saturday, August 7, 2010
I am currently reading Elizabeth Jolley's novel, The Well, and I am now desperate to finish it! While I have a rather love/hate relationship with the characters, I NEED to know what the 'deal' is with the man in the well!! I think that, in real life, I would actually intensely dislike both Hester and Katherine, but as characters, they are appealing. I enjoy the suspense of the tale, that while the 'crime' was revealed in the first chapter, the circumstances surrounding it are withheld. Both Hester and Katherine are dysfunctional, isolated and repressed, and their relationship is one of disturbing dependence. I am keen to seek the resolution to this dark story!
Wednesday, August 4, 2010
I had a lovely time last night writing a piece using the stimulus 'Why I Stole it' (a writing exercise which I gave to my English Writing students this morning).. I had so much fun creating a story of revenge on the bag Nazi ... certain writing students will know who I refer to here ... What great therapy this was, and so delicious to write a humorous, slightly absurd piece. I do look forward to reading what my students came up with in response to the task!!!!
I should start with this fantastic novel, given that it is enjoying its 50th anniversary since publication. I loved so many elements of Harper Lee's story - the childhood persective of Scout, the way it made me laugh out loud, the insights into the historical and social context, and the serious issues it explores, which are still so relevant. I also find it so intriguing that this was Lee's only novel and her life since has become one of a recluse. I am excited to have procured a copy of Mockingbird: A Portrait of Harper Lee .. it's on my 'must read' list! It is also fantastic to have one of my gifted Year 8 English students reading and studying this book; it gives me an opportunity to revisit the characters, events and ideas. I miss teaching TKM in Year 10 English ... I have many wonderful memories of students that I have taught ... notably those lovely Bound sisters x x x I love the film, which captures the characters and setting in just the way I envisioned them. And lastly ... my two cats are named Jem and Scout !!!