The Joy of Reinventing Yourself

Hong Kong dragon danceEleven years ago, I moved to Hong Kong with my husband who had taken on a three-year international assignment. The early weeks were of the world-is-my-oyster variety as I explored a new city and culture so far away from everything I had known. Sights, sounds, smells, and colours blended into an exotic kaleidoscope that prompted feelings of adventure and possibility. Four months later, the bite of reality hit.

After years in a full time career, I had no way to define myself in this new environment, nor did I know how to go about being unoccupied. Time for myself had always been a luxury seldom indulged. Suddenly I had nothing but time and initial feelings of euphoria were replaced by loneliness and dislocation. Survival became the question.

To read more of this post, visit The Inflectionist.

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M.K. Tod writes historical fiction and blogs about all aspects of the genre at A Writer of History. Her latest novel, LIES TOLD IN SILENCE is set in WWI France and is available from Amazon, NookKoboGoogle Play and iTunes. Her debut novel, UNRAVELLED: Two wars. Two affairs. One marriage. is also available from these retailers.

Mary can be contacted on Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads.

Hermit or Cocooning?

 

HK JournalDuring a three-year expat assignment in Hong Kong, I had a lot of time to myself. Time to discover not only the completely foreign world I then lived in, but also to discover myself. A friend gave me a notebook before we left with a cover title of Better to Wine than to Whine and I filled its pages on random occasions while overseas. Surprisingly, many entries feel equally meaningful now that I am writing full time.

March 2005

Today our apartment was totally in the fog – which felt like being in a cocoon, wrapped in a cloud. It wasn’t scary but instead comforting, as though I had an excuse to stay in the apartment rather than embrace the world. The cocoon held me trapped but cosy inside our four walls.

Lethargy can set in under such circumstances, encouraging one to indulge oneself, to remain introverted. It’s easy to be introverted, much more difficult to be out there, open to failure, rejection, judgment.

A critic might call me a hermit – who me, I would say, I’m just taking pleasure in my own company. After years of being busy, it’s rather nice to surround myself with me.

Do you think of yourself as a hermit when you are writing? Or are you wrapped in a cocoon getting to know yourself better?

FOR MORE ON READING & WRITING HISTORICAL FICTION follow A WRITER OF HISTORY (using the widget on the left sidebar)

M.K. Tod writes historical fiction and blogs about all aspects of the genre at A Writer of History. Her latest novel, LIES TOLD IN SILENCE is set in WWI France and is available from Amazon, NookKoboGoogle Play and iTunes. Her debut novel, UNRAVELLED: Two wars. Two affairs. One marriage. is also available from these retailers.

Mary can be contacted on Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads.

Unravelled Blog Tour – Let Them Read Books

Unravelled Blog TourI’m delighted to be at Jenny Quinlan‘s book blog today – Let Them Read Books – with a giveaway and my story of becoming a writer. Jenny is the wonderful woman who edited Unravelled and designed the cover. So many people have said they LOVE the cover that I have lost count! It will come as no surprise that I have already asked her to edit my next novel which I hope to have out in March 2014.

Here’s the opening few sentences:

Summer 2004 changed my life. In July of that year, my husband’s firm asked him to consider a three-year assignment to Hong Kong. We hesitated only long enough to consult with our children and mothers, then plunged into planning a move, riding the waves of euphoria for the next few months. Everything seemed full of possibilities…