Frustration and Halloween…

 

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Halloween

Pumpkin pie is a must

Along with cobwebs and dust

With lanterns alight, bowls of sweets you cannot eat.

Children come, their faces aglow

Doorbells ring, sweets to go

Painted witches, ghosts and ghouls

Could be your nightmare has come to call.

Strange entities look back at you

Or has your mother-in-law arrived at last?

Doorbell rings, don’t let them in

They’re not just children, disguised within.

A night when ghosts roam the land

Who can tell what stands without?

Is it sweets they want, or your soul to take?

Don’t let them in, blow your lantern out…

 

When Anita wrote this stunning Halloween poem, I just knew I had to do something special with it. When I read it aloud, it sounded so dramatic and creepy, the idea of creating a video trailer with it seemed a really good idea.

Now, I have made a few trailers in my time, but I am not an expert by any means. Most of the ones I made for our books are pretty basic, as understanding all the complicated instructions sometimes had me running screaming from the building!

So, knowing how much fun I have had in the past, I really threw myself a curve ball by wanting to make this video more stunningly complicated than anything I tried before, with moving images, spooky music and narration.

This is how I have achieved some really wonderful things in my life. I get an idea, and in no time at all, I can see the finished item in my head and I will move Heaven and high water to bring whatever it is, to life. This is what was happening right then with my idea for a trailer.

I discovered that Pixaby.com has free video clips, so I collected a good selection of suitably dark and spooky ones. Then I visited YouTube and their audio library. I found some very similar music to the Halloween film. My dream was taking shape!

With my first trailer efforts, I used Movie Maker and as my teachers used to say, “Could do better!” So I knew there was nothing else for it, I would have to learn how to master the finer points if I hoped to create a masterpiece.

I watched so many tutorials on YouTube and wrote copious amounts of notes and bit by bit, I learned the basics.

This was a month ago. I knew I needed time to practice, as nothing happens in much of a hurry around here, but wasn’t prepared for just how long it would take. Time and again, I tried to get it right and time and again I failed miserably.

Trouble was, it didn’t look that hard. But, and this is what always happens to me and anything to do with technology, it never quite seems to work for me. I get lots of nearly’s and almost’s, but like most people, this would never be good enough for me.

I learned how to shorten the clips and move them about. I added a title page and one for the credits at the end. I had my music and knew what to do with it. All that was left to do was plug in my microphone and narrate the poem.

This took several attempts as something kept stopping my voice from registering.  Much later, I managed it, but when I played it back, parts of my voice were missing.

I was on the verge of pulling my hair out by then, so I closed everything down and walked away. This procedure seemed to go on for days and I was no nearer perfection than I was at the beginning.

I don’t compromise easily, but in desperation, I tried Photo Story.  This system only allows static images, not exactly what I wanted, but I tried anyway.

I also tried Movie Maker again, but the result was the same.

My dream was fading.

In the end, I conceded a temporary defeat and posted the poem on our blog.

My determination has not dimmed though. I will keep trying to conquer Movie Maker or something similar, and future trailers will be better, and you can take that to the Bank!

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The Hour… a Halloween Poem…

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The Hour

The hour has come, it is midnight.

Light the lanterns

But don’t let your world come undone.

You have heard the tales of Halloween

When doors are open, they slip in

The dead now walk this land

Revenge they seek

Not all will leave a spell behind

Yet there is one who comes in peace

For her lost love, she will sit and weep.

Her time on Earth went by too fast

Love’s kiss still upon her lips.

Each year she comes to find her way

The house she finds by lanterns shine

This time she knows what she will find

With raven hair, her lips of red

Holding hands with a love that is hers

With children’s laughter, the door will be undone

To enter now, to bewitch, to take her form

The raven-haired witch she must dispel

This night feels right for loves return

Will all be well?

©Anita Dawes

 

Here’s one I found on Youtube!

It Is Scarlet Ribbon Day Today!

Today is a very special day for Anita’s book, The Scarlet Ribbon!

We have already posted the wonderful interview with #LisaBurtonRadio today, and just had to go a bit mad…

To celebrate this madness, we are posting all things Scarlet Ribbon related, starting with a new poster, featuring new 3D cover image.

In the off chance that someone might want to read The Scarlet Ribbon, and /or leave a review, here is the Amazon Book Link:  http://myBook.to/SRIBS

And the Books2Read Link: https://www.Books2Read.com/u/b5rvY7

 

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Then we thought we would run the trailer, just for the fun of it!


Of course, we had to include a review…

 
It’s rare these days to find an original concept in fiction but Anita Dawes has created an unusual story here. Maggie has been knocked down by a car and is in a coma, aware of her surroundings but unable to communicate. While in the coma, she also occupies an alternate world somewhere between life and death. Here she meets David and Annie, two characters who will continue to haunt her when she emerges from her coma. The novel is beautifully written and the characterization is strong; the reader is rooting for Maggie from the start. It took me a little while to get into this story but from the point Maggie comes out of her coma I couldn’t put it down. The whole premise is thought provoking and I’d particularly recommend it to people who are interested in concepts of the afterlife. In particular, the ending will stay with me for a long time…

 

Next we have a new poem from Anita, called The Wishing Tree…

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The wishing tree stood alone by the still, white water,

Festooned with ribbons of every colour

A fallen rainbow reflected there.

I could see one scarlet ribbon hanging low

Its ragged edge touching the water

As if wanting to be washed clean.

I run my fingers down this lonely ribbon

Feeling the weight of sadness

Within the strand of red.

My tears fall, tiny ripples spread across the water

My tears mingled with those of the child

Who had placed the scarlet ribbon here?

My fingers are numb from having touched it

I left, feeling as if someone had touched me

Calling for help…

Anita Dawes

 

Black Velvet…

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Image by Pixabay.com

 

When I was seven, my mother bought me a black velvet dress for my birthday. It had a white collar with white cuffs on the small puff sleeves.

I felt like a princess, and couldn’t stop rubbing my hands over it. Mother told me to stop doing it, as I would ruin it.

My stepfather Joe said he would take me and my brothers to the park. As we left the house, my mother said not to give me any ice cream.

We played on the swings for a bit and then Joe brought my brother’s some ice cream.

I walked away, wondering if he would do as he was told. I didn’t go far, for I hoped I knew better than that and I was right.  Joe handed me an ice cream, telling me to please be careful.

I said I would, but what child can eat an ice cream without getting it down themselves?  Not me anyway. I kept rubbing at it, making it worse. The velvet was sticking up where I had rubbed it and there was no way to hide it.

All the way home, I wished Joe would run away with us, but he told me not to worry. He would say it was his fault, which in a way it was for buying it for me. I know that’s an unkind thought, but when we got home before he could say a word, mother ripped the dress from my body,  leaving her nail marks on my back because the fabric was too hard to tear.

Joe got both barrels of her temper and I thought his ears would swell and drop off.

This memory has returned, because my daughter who lives next door, was playing a song I haven’t heard for a long time. It was one of my favourites, called Black Velvet.

It’s a funny old life isn’t it, the way old memories come back?

Anita Dawes 2018

Anita’s Journey to the Planets ~The Spiral Galaxy

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We live on the edge of a wonderful spiral galaxy.

The Milky Way, a remarkable sight, a special band of light.

But beware, there are dark regions within the bands of light where interstellar dust blocks the light of distant stars.

The area of sky that the Milky Way obscures is called the Zone of Avoidance. A place I have no wish to visit. Neither do I wish to get close to the black hole in the centre of our spiral galaxy. I have no wish to touch upon the dark matter that hides from our sunlight either.

The dark matter halo does appeal to my sense of wonder, but I cannot go there for it is time to move on.

I would have liked to visit Andromeda, for that name has long fascinated me. Alas, it is time to go home and Andromeda will have to wait until next time.

It is time to go back to our Blue Planet.

I look back towards our galaxy, the Milky Way, high enough to see the pregnant bulge, her arms moving through space, gathering more stars to her heart. I feel giddy as I watch this amazing galaxy with its giant halo spinning wild like a giant cowboys lasso.

Here my journey ends, I am back on Terra Firma, wondering what adventure I can choose next…

Thank you to everyone who journeyed with me! 

 

 

Anita’s Journey to the Planets ~ Saturn

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Saturn

 

 

Saturn is said to be the Titan, the old God, and father of Jupiter who took over as the King of the Gods, leaving his son, the Bringer of Old Age, almost forgotten.

Maybe it was just time for a new King.

Many old Kings work from behind, unseen. Pushing the new King onward.

Saturn lives within its wondrous rings of ice and rocks. From a distance, they look so much like diamonds in the night sky. A wonderfully jewelled ring, much too large for my finger.

I wish I could take a small piece of Saturn’s rock with me on my journey, to put on my mantelpiece, a constant reminder of this wonderful Universe.

Time for me to move on, but I can hardly bear to look back at Saturn and its moons. To leave such wonder breaks my heart, but it is time to meet Uranus…

Join me tomorrow on my journey to Uranus, the magician?

Anita’s Journey to the Planets ~ Jupiter

 

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Jupiter

 

Jupiter, the Bringer of Joy.

This majestic Planet is the largest in our Solar System. To protect our Earth he constantly suffers collisions from large debris, leaving great wounds on its surface. A father figure looking out for his children, keeping us safe from those giant rocks that like to run amok around the Universe. Reminds me of a Grandfather, but at the same time, it has a beautiful orange spot, a massive angry storm. Can we really blame Jupiter for showing us his emotions?

I remember watching a television programme about when Jupiter took one more wound on our behalf. That poignant moment stayed with me for weeks…

As I leave Jupiter, I am reminded that beauty comes in many forms as I watch the rotational orange storm. I feel a chill, yet I am leaving with a great sense of awe as I head towards Saturn…

Join me tomorrow for the next stop on my Journey, Saturn?

 

 

Anita’s Journey to the Planets ~ Venus

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Venus

 

 

Our cool blue sister Planet, our Morning Star.

Her true face hidden by opaque layers of cloud and sulphuric acid.

This doesn’t sound too pleasant for the Goddess of Love.

What lies beneath her shimmering clouds?

What secrets does she hide?

So often, the true face of love goes unrecognised in the daily grind.

How many of us have let go of that one person that should have stayed in our lives? What of those small acts of love we so often brush aside in our hurry to get on with our day.

Would that we could put love in a bottle and keep it with us. Spray it on our wrists in times of stress.  A new kind of Rescue Remedy?

Times up, Mercury is calling me…

As I look back towards Venus, our closet Planet, I feel her blue shimmer reach for me, reminding me that love is a lot closer than we think…

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Join me tomorrow on my journey to Mercury?

 

 

 

Anita’s Journey to the Planets ~ Mars

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Mars

 

 

I was born under the star sign of Mars, our Red Planet.

My firstborn, a daughter, my husband too, all born under the Planet of War.

Three hotheads in one family, can you imagine the heat?

Yet when I think of Mars, I am reminded of Rome and the Gladiators. The giant arena, the Tigers and the blood spilling red. So many people baying for more death, more bloodshed. The sand on the arena floor now the same colour as the dusty red surface of Mars.

I am reminded of the saying, “As above, so below…”

It is hardly surprising that some people think we originally came from Mars, as we all have a war-like tendency from time to time, no matter what star we were born under.

It is almost time for me to move on, but I will linger a few minutes longer, bathing in the warm red glow of Mars.

I look back at the red Planet receding behind me and head towards Venus…

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Join me tomorrow for my journey to Venus?