Last Sunday I asked a favor of all of you who read this blog: I needed more reviews for A Cat’s Life: Dulcy’s Story and A Cat’s Legacy and asked if you’d help me get them.
While asking for reviews, I also reflected on my lack of a platform—at least one dependent on page views of my two blogs.
The fourteen encouraging comments you left on last week’s posting have been so helpful. You complimented both books, which many of you have already read and reviewed. You stood behind reviews you’d written for them, offered to write a posting about how one of the books had helped you in a time of grief, and in general offered me your continued support as I try to get both books into the hands of readers.
In addition, one of you ordered copies of both books, two of you have already left reviews on Amazon, and three of you offered suggestions for how to increase my page views. It’s now time to consider what direction to take. I’ll share my decision with you when I’ve made it, but for now I simply want to say to all of you a heartfelt “Thank you” for responding with such good will and creativity to my request for help.
Today I’m posting about the new manuscript on which I’m now working: Three Roads Diverged. It explores questions about definition: Why do we let others define us? What happens when we cast aside those definitions? Does our integrity depend on resisting being defined by others? And finally how old does someone have to be to walk away from the definitions families impose?
The novel, which takes place in Bronze Age Greece circa 1250 BCE, demands research on my part. I began this research back in the late 1980s with the study of classical Greek.
That was not the language spoken during Greece’s Bronze Age, but it would, I thought, introduce me to the language in which the great plays of Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides had been written and to their cadence and syntax. I hoped both would lodge themselves in my unconsciousness and influence the way I wrote.
Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides
Those renowned Greek dramatists used the ancient myths of their land as subject matter for their plays. I’d decided to use those myths also. So exploring the plays of these classical dramatists in the original language seemed appropriate to me.
The ancient theater of Delphi.
To begin, I studied classical Greek for two quarters at the University of Minnesota and then continued my studies through correspondence courses from the University of Wisconsin.
I never became proficient in speaking the language because of my auditory learning disability, but I did begin to understand syntax as I translated from Greek to English and English to Greek. Moreover I began to appreciate the way classical Greek writers approached their subject in both histories and plays. To write authentically, I needed to learn how those early Greeks thought.
Beginning in the late 1980s, I have purchased many books on Greece’s Bronze Age and on the city/states of the time like Mycenae, Tiryns, Pylos, Athens, and Thebes; the flora and fauna of Greece; religion; typography; law; arts and crafts; the role of women and men; mythology, and any other subject matter that explored the world at the time. I now have a library of over a hundred scholarly works on Bronze Age Greece.
The Lion Gate at Mycenae.
I’ll be working on this manuscript for at least two years. My postings on this blog will reflect my progress. Next week I’ll share with you how I began to write back in the early 1990s. Have a good week. Peace.