What am I working on?
Etruscan hunters believed they could lure wild game into their nets with music. I like to imagine the Tuscan hills echoing with notes of flute and lyre while deer emerged from thickets, wolves from dens, while turtles slow-waltzed with their partners towards an unforeseen end….
It’s not easy.
I miss that fictional landscape; I miss those characters -- even the worst of them. Actually I miss the worst of them the most. I miss the elaborate architecture of their off-kilter aims, their self-deceptions, and, especially, their lies. And now -- though my focus has done a continental shift, to the Canadian west -- it seems that a preoccupation with the sweet balm of deception has followed.
Of course it’s also really fun just to tell a story.
How does my writing process work?
Did I catch Matilda Magtree saying something about a hammock? No idea where that got started.
Okay. I confess that during my initial stay at the Molino di Metelliano, long afternoons in the hammock did play a certain part in dreaming The Whirling Girl into being.
Gazing up Cortona’s massive Etruscan walls -- lulled by the millstream, the rustling leaves, the flowering limes sending their Arabian Nights fragrance -- Why do I ever have to leave? I asked, and asked again.
Then – bingo! The answer on the scented breeze. You don’t have to leave, ever, if you don’t want to. You are a writer, after all.
Those were the glory days, before the Etruscans came barging in and persuaded me I needed to know all about them. The days when I still thought I knew what I was doing….
This was so long ago that when the penny dropped
it was actually some denomination of the lira.