by Melissa H North and Eleanor Hammond
This is a series of blogs introducing Authors of Tomorrow – these are the ones to keep an eye on. Each week I will deliver a blog with an interview from an author of a different genre.
I met Eleanor a long time ago and we have stayed in contact through my visits to her for spiritual guidance and over our social media pages. Eleanor, along with her fun-loving personality is a very unique writer. Read on to be inspired!
Here is Eleanor’s newsletter link.
What is your writing Kryptonite?
Netflix, sunlight, happiness.
When I’m dancing around playing with life it’s hard to hold a laptop. The iPhone and dictation helps ‘hey Siri, open notepad, new note, idea for story, blah blah blah.’
I like to write first thing in the morning; it’s currently 6am, and when I write from around 3am onwards to dawn I’m in a kind of semi-dream-space still, I seem to tap into something far more magical than I can in the waking hours. The sun comes out and real life enters, lunches and school runs, and appointments to keep.
What are common traps for aspiring writers?
A writer must do it because they love writing; when someone says “what job would you do if you never got paid for it?” They have to respond with “I’d write!”
I find that if there’s no love, then there’s no playfulness in the use of words, which to me becomes boring lines of text.
Even if you want to become a serious writer; a journalist of world events, for example… If you have no wish to play with words, then nobody will enjoy reading what you have to say.
Does a big ego help or hurt writers?
Sorry I was trying to read that backwards in my mirror.
I don’t think of the word ego like others do. I see the word ego like saying ‘self,’ and you can’t have a big self or a small self. You just have yourself from the moment you enter the planet as a baby to the day you leave the planet again.
A writer has to know their own self in order to write from their perspective.
The trap is if you’re trying to be someone else. You’re trying to fill a void in your own self because you think you’re not good enough, that makes you act like someone else, or makes you act like you think you should be. Or makes you act like you think others want you to be, or makes you act like you think you should act when… sigh.. see the trap there?
There is no big or little ego when you’re authentic. Just be you. There’s no need for ego when there’s a steady stream of flowing ever-present consciousness demonstrated through your physical body.
Just be you.
What other authors are you friends with, and how do they help you become a better writer?
Ha ha ha.. now I’m hearing Harry Potter and mission impossible music as a background to this question.
Sure I’ll write out my friends list onto a piece of paper with my PIN number and place it in a bin close to the entrance to the cafe at 2pm on Sunday. Wear a carnation.
I have a very heavy confidentiality clause over my life and it’s called my integrity.
If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?
Far out, the writing I did when I was young was just as mature and philosophical and deep as anything I’ve written.
I’ve always known that young people are just as, if not more so, aware of who they are and the perspective they wish to show themselves from, sometimes in writing, their personal filter of the world; both fictional and non-fictional.
I’d tell my young self ‘never lose the trust in your own voice.’
So.. are you telling me I look old?
What’s the most difficult thing about writing characters from the opposite sex?
Ooooo I’d want to give them all the amazing stuff that I’d wish for if I was the opposite sex.. but sometimes they have to be the bad guy.
I generally (shhhhhh) take a conglomeration of people I already know and mix them together to make a character.
What is your favourite childhood book?
Only one? Seriously? I can’t remember the names of most of them.. I went into books to escape reality and love both Charles Dickens, Jane Austin, Douglas Adams, and Terry Pratchett equally.
The use of well known authors to answer this question is deliberate.
I also love reading true stories if they’re written emotionally, for instance ‘The Arctic Grail: The Quest for the North West Passage and the North Pole, 1818-1909’ which is an account of real people dying to find a path between Greenland and Iceland.
The lounge room bookshelf has Wilber Smith, Dean Koontz, Larson, the Complete works of William Shakespeare, the same for Jane Austin, Ken Follett, Piers Anthony, and a scattering of heaps of other books..
But, My favourite books are in my office..
So anyone visiting would take one look at my visible bookshelf and form an opinion that wasn’t correct, and that’s ok
Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will find?
I drew a naughty symbol on one and it’s appropriate for the message and intent, but not appropriate enough for me to say what it is in writing. People will see it or they won’t.
Want to buy my deck?
How many hours a day do you write?
It depends on how much time I have and if I’m not currently addicted to something on Netflix: see kryptonite comment above.
I booked Monday and Thursday for writing in my calendar; commit dudette, commit! But… the dreaded but.. it never happens that way.
Tell us about your latest projects and where we can find them?
My next tarot deck is with the publisher and is due to come out in the spring catalogue; northern hemisphere time.
Like any writer I have about six books on the go. I have a book called “Journey” which is a past life story. I have “Elves and Vegemite Sandwiches” which connects to the Aussie outback and fantasy. I have a time travel story that’s a bit Dean Koontz ‘Lightning.’ I have a few others on the go…
You’d have to break in to read them, and be warned, I’m awake tip-tapping at night.