Sunday, 27 February 2011

Strange days, and a chance to share

Five days after the earthquake, even those of us not living in the quake zone (we're 200 miles south of Christchurch) find ourselves swinging to and fro, appraising our projects for relevance, wondering what else we can do to help, and generally losing focus at the drop of a hat — unless we make a real effort to be quiet and aware.

Rosa Mira Books and Dorothee have agreed that all proceeds from sales of The Glass Harmonica: A Sensualist's Tale from now until the 7th of March will go to the Christchurch Mayor's fund, donating to those in need there. This is a straightforward way to give US$11.00 — by going to Rosa Mira Books and follow the buying process.

For you who are still in Christchurch I wish courage, calm hours and moments of beauty — and the grace and opportunity to leave the city for rest and recuperation when you can.

Monday, 14 February 2011

Valentine's Day, filming and afrolicking

We're busy today, those of us who have to do with Rosa Mira Books, and The Glass Harmonica. There have been exciting goings-on in the last few weeks. Two of Dorothee's friends, Melissa Bond (her stunning website) and Joe Totten, both of Utah, collaborated with my brother Hugh Todd of Sydney (some of you might recall him as a very youthful ODT cartoonist in the '80s) to produce an electrifying animated Valentine's Day card. Do check it out — and may you experience a rich variety of love today.

And here it is on Youtube if you want to share it around.

On the same page as the card, you'll see another thrilling newcomer: the video trailer for Dorothee Kocks's novel. This has likewise been a labour of love, in this case by Dorothee's cousin, film-maker Jakob Wehrmann in Berlin. You can check it out on Youtube, too — The Glass Harmonica: A Sensualist's Taleand do cast your eye over the credits to see what a delectable collaboration it has been.

Meanwhile, Dorothee's been writing up a storm concerning sex in early America. All was not as it seems.

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

What's up?

Wow. I just previewed the film trailer for The Glass Harmonica that Dorothee's cousin Jakob has been making in Berlin, taking in the nape and hands of a beautiful young woman, and a glass harmonica they tracked down in the Musikenstrumentenmuseum in Leipzig. It's going to raise the neck hairs for sure.

So, I'm between two projects at present, but needing to keep active in both. The Glass Harmonica: A Sensualist's Tale is out in the world, being warmly received and quietly gathering readers to itself. We have to keep making its presence known by all the social and web media within our reach and budget. I hope more people will take the leap and buy the ebook, even if they don't have their e-reader yet. More sales means more time I can spend preparing the next manuscript. I believe that all the work I put in to Rosa Mira Books is worthwhile, but at this early stage, each sale gives a boost, that extra 'vote of confidence'. I've applied for funding to help with the next push — getting the Slightly Peculiar Love Stories edited, designed and marketed. This collection is going to be fun to read — quirky, intense, flighty, pensive: there will be a story for every mood.

Meanwhile, I've been reading a manuscript on the iPad's iBooks app. Because the story is well written, spell-checked, and captivating, and although it's in PDF, I might almost be reading an ebook already. Digital readers surely spell death to the slush pile, those toppling boxes of paper, wistful manuscripts that are, in the end, sent home or shredded.

I've yet to download the application Chris told me about: Docs To Go, which enables one to edit Word documents on the iPad. So many devices and applications offer to make our lives more streamlined — if only we overcome the initial resistance against yet another new task, another set of instructions, to learn by measured steps what our children tackle headlong and intuitively.