Why write (part 1) and giveaway kick off
An aside before I get down to business. Jimmy Lewis sent me this photo. It's the first time I've seen Night Beach in the wild. (Hardcore Saltwater Vampires fans might recognise Jimmy Lewis as being Audiocommand's drummer. It's nice that he took time out from his busy touring schedule to go into a bookstore and snap the book.)
Okay, enough asiding (I was born to zigzag).
Why do I write? There are three reasons, and I'm only going into the first one today, not least because it neatly ties into what you'll have to do if you want to join in the GIVEAWAY.
The first reason is because it gives me a way of holding onto some of the amazing, beautiful and surreal moments that life throws at you. Sometimes I think I write simply because I love being alive. But that might sound weird, so I'll give you some more concrete examples.
The sky is a feverish yellow and completely clear except for six small purple clouds just above the horizon. They look like fish. When I see them I say 'Oh' out loud. They've surprised it out of me.
Not far from me there's an old guy resting on his elbows on an old wooden malibu. He's really old, maybe eighty. He looks over at me and raises his bushy eyebrows. 'How are you going?'' I ask. 'Well, I'm still alive, aren't I?' he says.
Those extracts are both from Raw Blue and they both really happened. In that way, that book is a bit of a scrapbook.
Of course the other thing about using things from real life is that you can alter them and springboard into the imaginary, which is what I do with writing most of the time. And that leads me to the GIVEAWAY. (It's for a copy of Night Beach by the way, and I happen to have some sexy stamps, so I will not only sign it for you, but I'll decorate it as well.)
Here's another thing that happened in real life, and what I'd like you to do is use it. I'll put it in a different font because it's the important bit.
It was late in the afternoon, down at the beach. I was walking back to my car after a surf, when I noticed that the car parked beside mine had a note pushed beneath its drivers' side door handle. At first I thought the note might have been to explain an accident - maybe someone had scraped the car while they were parking. But the car, a white hatchback, looked undamaged. So, because I am completely nosy, I looked around to make sure I wasn't being watched, and read the note.
Your challenge is to springboard. If you were to use that in a story, what would the note say?
You've got all month to think about it, and you can enter as many times as you like - provided you come up with different things each time, of course. The way to enter is by commenting, and it'd help me if you started your comment with: GIVEAWAY CHALLENGE. You can comment on any of my posts for the month - I'll keep an eye out for them.
Okay? Get thinking. Can't wait to see what you come up with.
Yours in zigzagging,
PS I forgot to say - I'll tell you what the note really said at the end of the month.