Over the next few months I am going to be blogging about my gradual quest/ metamorphosis/ search to leading a life that is more ‘me’. It’s a result of beginning to write with intent since 2012 and I seem to be headed somewhere with this; not sure where yet, but watching and studying my own evolution has been enlightening for me. Yep, that’s the writer in me who seems to take perverse pleasure in watching and studying my own reactions. Sounds weird but I am sure many of us observers of human nature do this a lot. And I often find myself talking and thinking about this, so I figured I might blog about it too. Especially because I spent much of my gold dust hours this morning when I write best, vacillating between writing this blog post or writing my current novel, I figured I’d better bash this post out, so I can get on with the other story.
And this by the way is my barometer for an idea that has legs aka a theme which sticks in your gut and which you then cannot get rid off for days, weeks or months on end and then you know you just have to get it out. And therein lie the makings of a novel or a story or a post. That thing which will not rest till it has been poured out and painted into a semblance of a vision for the world to see.
A few days ago I met another Jule Owen, who’s just released her first novel, an excellent climate change themed science fiction story. We got to talking about those ‘aha’ moments in our individual lives that had made us want to reach out for more. Largely those times when you re-discover that you are real, and your feelings exist and you have this weird, so real-it’s-surreal sense of connection, painful sometimes, euphoric at others, with the world around you. Perhaps it’s a bit like being born or reborn?
I often equal these moments to landing on Earth after a trip through space when you have been weightless, and then gravity pulls at you and you hit the cold, hard, ground and feel every single ache and pain in your body. It’s all too real then, and there can be no mistake that you are alive. And you are grateful you are still here and back on Earth, and know you have to embrace it fully; that you can’t shy away from the good and the bad, the ups and the downs. And you ask yourself why you’ve been afraid? What are you really afraid of? And that’s just the start. You ask how you’ve lived so far and realise your own mortality and that there are but a few precious years left. And that’s when you make that first conscious decision about how you want to spend the rest of your life. And for me this isn’t just about the writing. Yes writing is a very important aspect of how I want to use up many of the hours in the rest of my mortal life, but it’s really just a tool, a bridge to living a more authentic life.
Now does that mean I have been living a lie all these years? No, but definitely I have been influenced by my past, my conditioning to live in a certain way (and I am still living as per those rules in many ways today.) But once I started really writing from the gut, I realised I was plumbing my own sub-conscience to tap into a sea of the unsaid and unexpressed. Both due to the kind of person I am and due to the society where I grew up, where expressing what’s really in your mind is not something that you take for granted. Perhaps this is why when I write and through no conscious decision I seem to want to reflect the socio-economic-political realities of my origins and of the place where I live in today. It’s permission to have and express an opinion. Something I have never felt I have had (or have even today) in real life.
And so the more I write I become what I am and feel and think and believe. A more authentic version or rather a person who is authentic and real more of the time than not. And by this I mean someone who is able to express and see and feel and think and be on the outside as I am on the inside. Is that a bit of a mind-bender or am I making sense?
Here’s a little more on Jule Owen’s The Boy Who Fell from the Sky, the first of a mind-twisting new YA dystopian series
The world is falling apart in 2055. Another flood has devastated London and it’s the eve of the First Space War. With the city locked down, sixteen-year-old Mathew Erlang is confined to his house with only his cat, his robot and his holographic dragons for company.
Desperate for a distraction from the chaos around him, Mathew becomes fascinated by his peculiar and reclusive neighbour, August Lestrange. Mathew begins to investigate Mr. Lestrange, turning to the virtual world of the Nexus and Blackweb for answers. But as he digs deeper, Mathew realises that Mr. Lestrange doesn’t seem quite human.
When Mathew accidentally finds himself trapped in Lestrange’s house, he opens a door and falls four hundred years into the future. Unwittingly, he starts to destabilise the course of human history.
A 1984 for a new generation, The Boy Who Fell from the Sky delves into a future where climate change and technology have transformed the world. It is the first book in The House Next Door trilogy, a young adult dystopian science fiction action adventure. Mathew’s story continues in Silverwood.
The stakes are raised for Mathew. His mother’s life is on the line. He must break into his own future to try and find an answer.