THIS WRITING LIFE: A little bit of me…

I was thinking yesterday, as I was working on my next book, how little scraps of  personal memory can seep into a story. As much as I try to make each story and character individual, leakage from my own life seems to always occur. In my current work-in-progress, it’s cooking (hardly a surprise for anyone that knows me) and the heroine’s gorgeous fluffy-coated collie, who is a reincarnation of my beautiful dog Cooch. In Heartland, there were many things, but what struck me most yesterday was the inclusion of the sewing machine my grandparents bought me when I was very young. So young that this is the machine on which Nanny taught me how to make trousers for my teddy bear – pink and purple tartan ones from left over fabric she’d used to make a pair for me (hey, it was the 70s and I LOVED those tartan duds).

I still have that sewing machine. It’s followed me all over Australia and it still works. Even though I have a modern Janome I don’t think I’ll ever get rid of the Singer. It’s too pretty for starters, and as Callie muses in Heartland, it’ll sew anything. But I guess it’s the memories. Papa passed away when I was very young but Nanny’s still kicking along in her nursing home at age 97. Kicking along so well in fact, that just the other week she staged an escape on her walker and frightened the hell out of everyone, including, I suspect, herself.

It’s nice these little things survive outside my mind. I think there’s some sort of peace in that.





0 thoughts on “THIS WRITING LIFE: A little bit of me…

  1. Avatarchristinestinson

    The old Singer. My nan had a treadle version and I loved it. No wonder you won’t’ part with yours. We lost nan nearly forty years ago and I still miss her. For anyone from my critique group, she’s the one who taught me to make peanut biscuits, among other things, and I still use her recipe. One large teacup of flour, one small teacup of sugar…

    1. AvatarCathryn Hein

      I’d love to own a treadle version, Christine. Even the tables and cast treadles are beautifully ornate. Not sure one would have survived all our moving around though. I was really annoyed this morning to discover all the splinters that have flaked off my Singer’s timber case. At least the machine itself is still intact.

      Peanut biscuits? Mmmm. Those things are very moreish. I love old recipes like that. Except the ones that say “a glass of”. What sized glass? But then guessing is half the fun.

  2. Avatarkerriepaterson

    I have an old Singer treadle machine in the gorgeous cabinet. It’s used as my phone table – because that’s what *my* mother used it as!

    1. AvatarCathryn Hein

      The treadles were beautiful things, Kerrie. I was very jealous of a girlfriend who had one in her bedroom as a desk. All that ornate ironwork!

      A phone table sounds a nice second life though. At least it still sees plenty of use.

      Thanks so much for dropping by and commenting.