I've had a go at writing under two different genres - I'll let you know that so there is no confusion. THE FAT BAG stuck between a rock cake & a hard plaice (yes, 'plaice' spelt like the fish) I wrote under the pseudonym Pearl Barley for a bit of fun (while The AL-EX Project is written under my real name). It was my first writing attempt. I never intended to be an author initially - it kind of happened by accident. I've always kept diaries since my teens (many years ago) and ended up with a collection of true stories about life, mainly my love of food, dieting efforts, relationships, clothes shopping, shoes and chocolate - the usual type of women's issues, many of which, in particular, were pertinent to THE FAT BAG stuck between a rock cake & a hard plaice (I simply love the play on words).
When this book came together, on advice from friends, I decided to publish it and writing became a worthy and enjoyable pastime. The title of the book has a double-meaning, which all gets explained at the end.
I've rarely seen a dieting book that is written from the prospective of the struggling dieter, so I wrote one myself. All the experts say "eat less and move more. Obviously it's not rocket science but might as well be for those of us in "the real world". As it happens, the story continues in the sequel (such has the writing bug got hold of me) and it should be complete and published by early summer, so look out for Waist Not; Want Not for more moans and groans about my lot, diet and weight-wise.
Then I go and end up writing something completely different...
The AL-EX Project (Alternative Existence) Testing the limits of dream control is a story that I confess was inspired by my guardian angel. That's right, and no I'm not nuts; I have to tell the truth and believe me, I confess to being the biggest sceptic. Then after reading an article by a lady who believes in guardian angels (that I found incidentally quite plausible) I tapped into my personal guardian angel (no word of a lie) and asked specifically for the kind of imagination that would allow me to write an entertaining and believable fun read. I even dared to hope it would be a best seller. That, my friends, is the truth about how The AL-EX Project came about.
First I got the title and it bugged me because I didn't know what it meant or even why the name Alex had to have a hyphen between the AL and the EX, but once written down, the 'Alternative' and 'Existence' bit explained everything, and I decided to listen to my inner angel (or whomever was putting ideas in my head) and I wrote what I was told.
Then I was prompted to start writing about Alex, the main character. Again I felt a little reluctant, wondering what this story was about and where it was leading. The thing that was most genuine was my personal interest in dreams. I've always been interested in dreams, why we dream and why we only remember the tail-end of quite vivid dreams that appear like epic movies sometimes. And I felt sure many folk felt the same way.
The first chapter became 18 chapters very quickly and I was on a roll. I even confessed to friends that I had a story rolling out of my subconscious, the plot of which I had no idea of until I started writing. And it was fascinating the more words poured out of me, down my fingers and through the keyboard. I became obsessed. I spent many a night till early morning tapping away, developing the story and the characters, still none the wiser as to where the story was going but loving it just the same.
And thus started my foray into the science fiction world. Of course it's not hardcore science fiction. There are no aliens or world invasion, no time travel (as such), no intergallactic battles to save the world or indeed unmentionable monsters. But a novel about dreams is still likely to be a bit out-of-the-ordinary, and I'm very pleased with the result. It has been described as very entertaining with additional humour. One of my reviews states:
"...If you have ever been curious about the power of the subconscious mind, how it works and how it plays a part in our dreams, this is the book for you. CM Donaldson is the author of a new way of seeing the existence of an alternate world in this story of a man who made his life’s work an investigation of the meanings of dreams and how they can serve him no matter how weird or impossible his visions became while in a dream state..."
I started The AL-EX project at Christmas and finished it by March. Less than a month after that I got inspiration for a sequel and I'm working on that now. It seems a natural coninuation of the AL-EX Project story, at the moment entitled Mind Reader. This, my friendly readers, I hope to have complete and published by Christmas.
Where to find C.M. Donaldson online
Where to buy in print
The Fat Bag stuck between a rock cake & a hard plaice
by C.M. Donaldson
Approx. 40,290 words.
Published on February 5, 2012.
Have you ever fought and lost the battle of the bulge? Have you ever gone to 'pinch-an-inch' and found yourself with a generous handful? If so you will quickly relate to this individual who's only wish is to lose the weight...and keep it off! After 25 years of yo-yo dieting, it's never been a walk in the park. Roll your eyes or roll on the floor laughing at my moans, groans, puns and clichés.
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