Welcome to this week’s Creative Artist Interview and to my guest Kim Blades. I am sure that once you have enjoyed reading more about Kim and her work you will have some questions for her.. This is intended to be an interactive interview and your participation is really appreciated.
First I asked Kim to tell us a little bit more about herself.
Hello, my name is Kim Blades and I have lived in Durban, South Africa, since I was three years old. I was born in England. I am married, with two sons aged 18 and 20. We have five dogs and two cats.
Since my early childhood I have loved to read and write – poems and stories. English and History were my favourite subjects at school and I was encouraged to take up Journalism as a career by my high school teachers and parents (more about that later when I answer the questions).
My favourite poets are the Romantics, especially those who wrote about the beauty of Nature like William Wordsworth in his poems: To A Butterfly, I Wandered Lonely as A Cloud, and many others.
As can be seen from my blog, I also like to write poems about the natural world and am inspired by simple everyday things that we all take for granted, like sunsets, flowers, birds and bugs.
I enjoy reading most genres but especially adventure, romance, family sagas, crime and detective stories. Maeve Binchy, Ruth Rendell, Martha Grimes, Elizabeth George and lately, Lee Child, are amongst my favourite authors. I have also read and thoroughly enjoyed all the Harry Potter books and I have reread Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings and C. S. Lewis’s Narnia series, many times since first becoming enthralled with them as a child.
I enjoy writing romantic, adventure and family sagas and also want to try my hand at crime writing.
I have chosen an excerpt from a romance that Kim is currently writing which has recently been retitled Bushveld Dawn.
Scarlett spent three glorious days and nights at Berg en Dal. She took drives out into the veld early in the morning, arriving back at camp at lunch time. The hot afternoons she spent planning a route for the next morning’s drive. Aiming to explore as much of the surrounding area as possible. After examing the Park map in detail and making her route choice, she snoozed in the delicious coolness of the air-conditioned chalet.
In the late afternoons she went on ‘sunset’ game drives with half a dozen other tourists and two rangers. One was a driver and spoor spotter and the other the actual ‘guide’ and a font of useful and interesting information regarding the animals, plants, geology and history of the region.
The lone diner that Alfred had wanted her to befriend the first night in Berg en Dal, was absent on all three evening game drives and the tall, dark haired ranger that had piqued her interest that first night, was not one of the rangers on any of the drives either. She was surprised that she felt a little let down by the ranger’s absence.
But Scarlett did see the lone diner as she exited the camp at on two of her three early morning drives. He was ahead of her in a dark green mud-spaterred Range-Rover. The first time she had not known it was him until he had pulled over to the side of the road and stopped. When she passed him she noticed that he was talking on his cell phone. His window was open and she heard his angry tone but not what he was saying. He had been staring, unseeing out of the window and she knew that he was totally involved in his phone conversation and oblivious to her and the three other cars that passed him by behind her.
His eyes were very pale, grey or pale blue and his hair light brown. He would have been good-looking if he hadn’t been so irate. She wondered for a few seconds what the problem was that had made him so angry, but quickly forgot all about him and his troubles when a large bachelor herd of impala trotted across the tarmac in front of her and then stopped on the verge to browse and drink from muddy puddles. She had stopped and admired their statuesque handsomeness and taken some photos before they had receded deeper into the bush.
Read the rest of this episode: https://kim153.wordpress.com/2017/03/04/4th-instalment-of-short-story-now-with-the-title-bushveld-dawn/
Links to the previous episodes
Kim is looking for feedback on her story so far and so it would be great if you could read the story to date and share your comments.
Now it is time to hand over to Kim to and please leave your questions for her in the comments section of the post.
What are your plans for 2017 for your work and blog?
Quite simply my plans for 2017 for my work and my blog are to finish the romantic story that I am currently busy on entitled A Not so Short Short Story, which I think I am going to call Bushveld Dawn when I finished writing it; and to write more flash fiction, poetry and essays for my blog. Of course, like all bloggers, I hope to increase the number of followers my blog has.
What would I tell your 16 year old self that might benefit people reading this post?
I would tell my 16 year old self to not be so obdurate and to listen to and follow advice given to me by my teachers and parents regarding my study choices and career (amongst other advice). Because of my writing skills at school, I was advised by teachers and encouraged by my parents to take up a career in Journalism and study this at University.
But I had other and in retrospect, unrealistic ambitions of becoming an archaeologist. I had not taken into consideration the fact that studying to become an archaeologist required good mathematics and science grades. I did not have these and although I was accepted at University to study towards a degree in Archaeology, I failed miserably at the Math and Chemistry components of Geology
This failure destroyed my self- confidence and I couldn’t and didn’t write a word for years. I ended up with a BA degree and teaching Diploma but never succeeded as a teacher either. It was not until last year when I started my writing blog that my confidence in my writing ability and love of creative writing were resurrected.
Do you have a dream that is waiting to be fulfilled?
This personal resurrection has gone hand in hand with the resurrection of the dream of writing and publishing a book of poetry about Nature and the Natural World, as well as books of fiction, that I have had since I was a child. Together with this dream of being a published writer is one of living in the bushveld – an environment far from the madding crowd and one in which I am at my most inspired and creative.
When did you become interested in photography and what are your preferred subjects?
Well I am very much an amateur photographer and use the camera on my cell phone to take photographs. I became really interested in photography in my twenties when I dated a professional photographer for seven years. We used to visit the Kruger National Park and the Drakensburg mountains often as we were both hugely interested in wildlife and beautiful natural scenery. Wild animals and birds as well as flowers and scenery remain my favourite photographic subjects. Unfortunately I have not seen my old boyfriend for years and have none of his photographs, so I mostly use photos from the free images and photo sites on the internet in my blog posts.
My favourite photos at the moment are ones of different sunrises and sunsets that I have discovered on http://bin.com/sunrises/sunsets and http://wallpaper.com/sunrises/sunsets from which the photo below is taken.
The stunning, surreal beauty of these photos are overwhelming. Every sunrise and sunset is unique.
Can you share one of my poems or pieces of flash- fiction?
A poem which received a good response from readers is: A Summer Garden
The summer garden is a mix of colours and shades
lots of different greens, golds, yellows and reds
with scatterings of white alyssum in shady glades
and yellow roses sunning in brown earth beds
Read the rest of the poem: https://kim153.wordpress.com/2017/01/28/the-summer-garden/
This summer garden is my own and I love it. It is a very natural and sometimes overgrown garden, but very inspiring in spite of or perhaps because of this.
Can you tell us more about where you live and some of the highlights of the area?
Durban is a busy port city on the east coast of South Africa. It is South Africa’s third largest city and a very popular tourist resort because of its beaches and warm ocean. I live near the University of KwaZulu Natal and because of its proximity, there is a large number of young people living both in the varsity residences and renting rooms in the nearby houses. We have the normal take-away pizza, KFC, Nandos and Fish and Chip restaurants as well as more formal eating places in shopping centres close to where I live.
The city centre is about ten minutes drive away as are the closest beaches. One of my favourite places is the Pigeon Park that I visit often and which I wrote about in my post, An Inspirational Place. https://kim153.wordpress.com/2016/11/04/an-inspirational-place/
Even though it borders the University grounds it is very quiet and peaceful as it is rarely frequented by students who prefer more exciting venues. It is home to a few red duiker (antelope), vervet monkeys and a plethora of bird species. Because of this it is frequently visited by photographers, both amateur and professional.
Thank you Sally for this interview and I wish all readers of this post inspiration and happiness and success in their writing.
You can connect to Kim at these links:
If you are a poet, visit http://poetscornerblog.wordpress.com where Kim has several poems published.
Blog and Website: https://kim153.wordpress.com/
Thank you for dropping in today and please leave your questions in the comments section of the post and Kim will come back to you in the next couple of days.
If you are a poet, short story teller, musician, photographer or blogger who would like to take part in the Creative Artist interview then please take a look at this link:
Thank you Sally.