Mandy Eve-Barnett's Official Blog

Inspiration for Writers & Building A Community ©

Ask a Question Thursday

August 1, 2019
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For those of you with school age children/grandchildren – are you celebrating having the house to yourself after the summer holiday/vacation? Do you plunge right back into your current manuscript or have some downtime to refresh?

back to school

Last week’s question: Do you incorporate politics and/or religion into your stories? What is the reason?

Mandy Eve-Barnett

 

I have used a matriarchal society in my novel, Life in Slake Patch as the background to a young man’s life in that regime. It was interesting to write about the influences and attitudes of a different society. In contrast my novel, The Twesome Loop, which covers two time periods, shows the patriarchal suppression in the 1800’s.

 

Join the conversation and leave your comment below.

If you have a suggestion for a question please let me know.

Seasons Greetings from Mandy Eve-Barnett

December 22, 2018
mandyevebarnett


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I wish all my followers a wonderful festive time with family, friends and loved ones. No matter what ‘tag’ you wish to put on the season:

  1. Merry Christmas
  2. Happy Hanukkah
  3. Joyous Kwanzaa
  4. Yuletide Greetings
  5. Happy holidays
  6. Joyeux Noël
  7. Feliz Navidad
  8. Seasons Greetings

It is a time for everyone to connect with and enjoy the company of those people who are special to us.

I would also like to note that it is not always a ‘special’ time for some people and we should be conscious of their needs at this time of year (as at any other time). So if a friend or family member is grieving, allow them the ability to join in the celebrations if they wish but understand if they only want a one-on-one time. A full house of happy people might be too difficult to handle. Ask them what they would like or are comfortable with – that is your gift to them.

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Lackadaisical Days – A Good Thing…

August 15, 2013
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Lackadaisical – definition: careless; without interest; lazy; listless

Lazy lion

On a visit to Longleat Safari Park in England, when I was visiting family this past July, we drove through the lion enclosure. The whole pride was sleeping in the shade, looking like big pussy cats rather than the ferocious beasts we know them to be. If you have ever watched any wildlife programs a pride hunting is a marvelous sight. The teamwork superb.

Seeing them slumbering so peacefully it occurred to me that sometimes we have days when we feel like that. Our motivation deserts us and everything is just too much to bare. No matter how you describe it – unhappy, sad, depressed, down, despondent, dejected, wretched, glum, dismal, low, jaded, discontented, disgruntled, dissatisfied, sick & tired, exasperated, hacked off, cheesed off, had it – we feel mentally lethargic. Nothing sparks inspiration, ideas are non-existent and the blank page mocks us.

However, it may be our minds enforcing a ‘vacation from writing’. Constant use of our creativity must be draining, such as the physical and mental drain from full time work of any kind. Vacations refresh us. Take a look at this post : http://changeitupediting.com/2013/08/15/vacation-embracing-the-pause-that-refreshes/

Knowing other writers have similar ‘guilt’ helps lessen the impact of our own. It is good to have down time. We can not constantly produce without ‘feeding’ our font of inventiveness.

How do you refresh your muse?

Love-to-Spook Blog Hop

February 3, 2013
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I asked permission to be involved in this blog hop mainly because my monster isn’t that scary! Rumble was inspired by a Halloween prompt run by my writers circle. I could have gone down the route of scaring the ‘you know what’ out of my readers but decided to flip the idea around. What if the view point was from the monster’s perspective? Thus Rumble was born, living in his dark, moist underground  and root adorned home.
In the story we follow Rumble as he is taken by his mother on his very first scaring expedition. He had been told of All Hallows Eve, of course but until now had not been old enough to participate. Rumble emerges into the upper world to find a shockingly bright and a hard surfaced environment. With his mother’s guidance he scares several children and has a very enjoyable time.

Whether read to a child or given as a gift – children love little Rumble and his bag of pets.

Rumble's First Scare

I actually made a Rumble for promotional purposes and everyone is drawn to him – he behaves very well and loves all the cuddles.

Rumble

Rumble is available at http://www.dreamwritepublishing.ca/retail/books/rumbles-first-scare

The thrill of being scared with adrenaline rushing through our veins has been theorised as a primitive need. In our modern daily lives there is little to fear, in the most part. Obviously there are exceptions to this related to location and family environment but to be so scared our ‘fight or flight‘ instinct comes into play is rare. Emotional extremes are suppressed now-a-days and the ‘normal’ mechanics of our bodies dampened. In the definition of fight or flight, it is the body’s response to perceived threat or danger.  During this reaction, certain hormones like adrenalin and cortisol are released, speeding the heart rate, slowing digestion, shunting blood flow to major muscle groups, and changing various other autonomic nervous functions, giving the body a burst of energy and strength.  Originally named for its ability to enable us to physically fight or run away when faced with danger, it’s now activated in situations where neither response is appropriate, like in traffic or during a stressful day at work.  When the perceived threat is gone, systems are designed to return to normal function via the relaxation response, but in our times of chronic stress, this often doesn’t happen enough, causing damage to the body.

When we watch a scary movie or read an intense thriller, our bodies react giving us the rush we crave but in a safe environment.

Enjoy the fright.

A foot note – I define a word each day on my blog and today’s was – Infatuated – definition: to be filled with a foolish or excessive love or admiration. Surely we can all recall several creepy and menacing characters in our favorite horror movies that had this particular trait.

A Different Life Path…..

August 12, 2010
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The last few years of secondary school were filled with ‘O’ and ‘A’ level exam courses, including – just for fun – Greek and Roman Mythology, which was a real eye opener. All those Gods and Goddess’ interfering with the humble humans in more ways than one! I still enjoy mythology and have used similar themes in pieces of prose.

I also finished my GSE Art exam and volunteered to be a model for the higher level exam artists. On my breaks I ‘doodled’ a sketch of a brace of stuffed pheasants, just for something to do. It wasn’t what I was good at to my way of thinking – I drew abstracts not ‘real’ things. However, when Miss. Randall saw my sketch she immediately entered me into the higher exams. I pleaded “But I can’t draw.” The answer was “What do you call that then – it’s beautifully scaled and you have captured the textures.” So that is how I passed my ‘O’ and ‘A’ level art exams.

My idea of life ‘after school’ was to attend Art College, getting a job as a window dresser for the holidays and using this as a platform for my own unique style. However, I was guided to get a ‘real’ job and entered into State Registered nurse training on Valentine’s Day 1977. I really enjoyed the nursing but as I progressed there was more and more paperwork, much less actual nursing. To cut a long story short – I left and went into a couple of administration jobs. It was really sink or swim as I have never learnt typing or short hand but I am best under pressure and succeeded. Within 3 years I had gone into partnership to start a business – I had a natural talent for organization and ran the office solo until my work load was too heavy.

Unfortunately my art work suffered as my main drive was the creation of the business and being young, free and single – socializing! It would be sometime before my ‘creative’ side emerged. Although I did ‘create’ a thriving business for many years, which enabled me to enjoy life.

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