• Fiona McIntosh: Voyager Author of the Month

    Fiona McIntosh was born and raised in Sussex in the UK, but also spent early childhood years in West Africa. She left a PR career in London to travel and settled in Australia in 1980. She has since roamed the world working for her own travel publishing company, which she runs with her husband. She lives in Adelaide with her husband and twin sons. Her website is at www.fionamcintosh.com.

    Her latest book, The Scrivener's Tale, is a stand-alone and takes us back to the world of Morgravia from her very first series, The Quickening:

    About The Scrivener's Tale:

    In the bookshops and cafes of present-day Paris, ex-psychologist Gabe Figaret is trying to put his shattered life back together. When another doctor, Reynard, asks him to help with a delusional female patient, Gabe is reluctant... until he meets her. At first Gabe thinks the woman, Angelina, is merely terrified of Reynard, but he quickly discovers she is not quite what she seems.

    As his relationship with Angelina deepens, Gabe's life in Paris becomes increasingly unstable. He senses a presence watching and following every move he makes, and yet he finds Angelina increasingly irresistible.

    When Angelina tells Gabe he must kill her and flee to a place she calls Morgravia, he is horrified. But then Angelina shows him that the cathedral he has dreamt about since childhood is real and exists in Morgravia.

    A special 10th Anniversary edition of her first fantasy book, Myrren's Gift, will be released in December!



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The Ideas Shop.

The Seventh Wave“Where do you get your ideas from?”

I heard this for the first time at a spec-fic conference a few years back. It was a question from the floor after a panel discussion. Without missing a beat the author replied, ‘ I buy them from the ideas shop.’ 

The panel member beside him suppressed a snicker (sadly, the audience member asked where that shop might be) signalling that this was a question they were both used to fielding.

But it prompted me to ask myself: where do ideas come from?

Characters, plots, settings, the wonderful and the downright weird — speaking personally I don’t have space inside my thought dome pegged out for all that, yet ideas (thankfully) continue to appear with consistent regularity.

One intriguing concept is that perhaps it is not we that “have” the ideas at all.

Recently I watched a DVD that had an absolute pearler of a line. The protagonist was on a train and he asked someone across the aisle “what time does this train arrive at Oxford?” To which an elderly gent replied — eyes a-twinkle — “I think the question would be rather more interesting if you’d asked what time does Oxford arrive at this train.’

Maybe the ideas, the greater creative, seeks expression of itself rather than the other way around?

The Emerald TabletsMany writers, composers and visual artists are familiar with the feeling of the timeless. When, after entering “the zone,” time ceases to have the same relevance so that what seemed like only minutes, actually chewed through hours on the station clock.

I recall the curious circumstances of when I wrote “The Seventh Wave.” At the time I was “between jobs” and was frantically sending off c.v’s. I’d just finished the fifth application for the day when a line of text floated through my head. I jotted it down more to get rid of it than anything else. Then another one came so I wrote that down as well. Soon any thought of commencing job application number six had simply vanished. Much to the consternation of my former wife the story, the yarn, the flow took over. Three months later the first draft was done. Yet that first morning, prior to application number five, I’d had absolutely no intention of starting a novel.

Perhaps the magic lies within the timeless space and it entices us into it with intriguing crumbs? Perhaps this then is  — “the ideas shop?”

Paul Garrety is the author of The Seventh Wave and the just released follow up The Emerald Tablets.


One Response

  1. Nice article!
    I used to say that I bid for my ideas on eBay, which I thought was a suitably amusing answer. Nowadays, though, I just say that ideas come of their own accord, like cats, and never when you’re trying to make them come. They come when you’re daydreaming or busy doing something else. I’ve *never* had an idea by sitting down and thinking “I’m going to come up with an idea!”

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