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.

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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.

What is grief?

H Is For Hawk by Helen MacDonaldA recent reading of Helen Macdonald’s H is for Hawk prompts the question: What is grief?

Macdonald’s grief at the sudden death of her father is overwhelming and all encompassing. “For weeks I felt I was made of dully burning metal. That’s what it was like; so much so that I was convinced, despite all evidence to the contrary, that if you’d put me on a bed or a chair I would have burned right through.” She explains that bereavement, “from the Old English bereafian” means “to deprive of, take away, seize, rob. Robbed. Seized. It happens to everyone. But you feel it alone.”

Helen MacDonald works through her grief by training a young hawk she calls Mabel to hunt, to fly away and return to her. Strangely, almost mystically, MacDonald becomes one with her hawk, ultimately soothing and coming to terms with her loss and returning to the land of the living.

This article is not intended to debate the merits or failings of Helen Macdonald’s memoir, rather it is intended to explore grief as an emotion . . . continued at The Inflectionist.

 

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.

The Inflectionist – First edition of the magazine

The Inflectionist MagazineThe Inflectionist goes by the banner – challenge, debate and report on the expressive world. The website publishes daily articles covering Lifestyle/Culture, Literature, History, Language/Education, Music, Politics and The Arts. I am a regular columnist with topics ranging from keeping a journal to the power of fiction.

The first edition of The Inflectionist Magazine came out recently and it features articles on Tinder’s dating app, the link between ‘the black dog’ and successful authors, how we connect through music, are we destroying the English language, and fantasy fiction. Each article will stimulate your thinking.

I encourage you to check out the magazine and purchase a copy. And if you haven’t already done so, sign up for the daily articles and like our Facebook page.

 

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.