Lily Iona MacKenzie's Blog for Writers & Readers

MY BLOG POSTS COMMENT ON SOME ASPECT OF WRITING & READING.

The Ripening
The Ripening:
A Canadian Girl Grows Up

" A wildly inventive, consistently engaging, and amusing comic novel, but under its bright exterior lurk darker undertones and truths.... "

" A wildly inventive, consistently engaging, and amusing comic novel, but under its bright exterior lurk darker undertones and truths.... "

" Tillie’s grit and ability to face life’s challenges are inspiring, the seeds for later discovering her artist self. Tillie takes readers on a wild ride. Join her if you dare! "

Lily Iona MacKenzie Books
Curva Peligrosa
Curva Peligrosa

" A wildly inventive, consistently engaging, and amusing comic novel, but under its bright exterior lurk darker undertones and truths.... "

" A wildly inventive, consistently engaging, and amusing comic novel, but under its bright exterior lurk darker undertones and truths.... "

" A wildly inventive, consistently engaging, and amusing comic novel, but under its bright exterior lurk darker undertones and truths.... "

Image is not available
FLING!
Fling!

" A wildly inventive, consistently engaging, and amusing comic novel, but under its bright exterior lurk darker undertones and truths.... "

" A wildly inventive, consistently engaging, and amusing comic novel, but under its bright exterior lurk darker undertones and truths.... "

"Fling! is both hilarious and touching. Every page is a surprise, and the characters! I especially loved Bubbles, one of the most endearing mothers in recent fiction. A scintillating read."

Lily Iona MacKenzie Books
Freefall
Freefall :
A Divine Comedy

" A wildly inventive, consistently engaging, and amusing comic novel, but under its bright exterior lurk darker undertones and truths.... "

" A wildly inventive, consistently engaging, and amusing comic novel, but under its bright exterior lurk darker undertones and truths.... "

" These fascinating characters will fill your imagination, defying expectations about aging, art, and what truly matters in life. "

Lily Iona MacKenzie Books
All This
All This

" A wildly inventive, consistently engaging, and amusing comic novel, but under its bright exterior lurk darker undertones and truths.... "

" A wildly inventive, consistently engaging, and amusing comic novel, but under its bright exterior lurk darker undertones and truths.... "

" Indicative of the title, the poems in All This range from the conventional lyric/narrative that captures an intense moment of emotion, an epiphany glimpsed briefly out of the corner of the eye, to the more experimental. "

Lily Iona MacKenzie Books
No More Kings
No More Kings

" A wildly inventive, consistently engaging, and amusing comic novel, but under its bright exterior lurk darker undertones and truths.... "

" A wildly inventive, consistently engaging, and amusing comic novel, but under its bright exterior lurk darker undertones and truths.... "

Each finely crafted poem in this powerful collection comes alive on the page while she traces the days’ journeys with a painter’s eye, a musician’s ear, and the deft pen of a poet.

Lily Iona MacKenzie Books
previous arrow
next arrow

Tag: narrative structure

Is linearity important in narrative?

When I picked up Marguerite Duras’ The Lover, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I knew she was considered one of France’s most important literary figures, but The Lover was the first work of hers that I had read.

Discovering Narrative Structure in the Dordogne

During our recent month-long vacation in France, we spent a week at an Airbnb rental in the Dordogne area. You, dear reader, may be wondering what this post has to do with writing or reading. But bear with me. You’ll eventually see the connection.

Located near the village of Pellegrue, our accommodations originally were constructed 700 years ago. At that time, the farmer lived in the upper level with his family, and his animals were housed below.

 

Having spent some years on a farm myself as a girl, I have some idea of what the smells and sounds may have been like! Fortunately for us, they hadn’t lingered.

But the external structure has retained its original shape, though its interior has been remodeled. My husband and I were impressed with how the owners, Jane and Mike, originally dairy farmers in Australia, transformed this ancient stone building essentially themselves, calculating how to move beams and hoist them into place, stripping the roof tiles and replacing their under layer before resetting the tile, merging the original stone walls and beams with modern trappings. Modern Italian tile floors meet the authentic stone enclosures on the ground floor, while hardwood floors graces the upper level. The four bathrooms and kitchen all have modern appliances. It’s the ideal blending of old and new, filled with character and charm.

It occurred to me that Jane and Mike’s work was similar to how a novelist constructs a narrative. Sometimes we start out with a basic structure in mind that might not even be conscious yet, but in the process of writing we uncover it, our words like the items needed to construct a building. We link them together until they eventually take shape and tell a coherent story. The story that the Dordogne Airbnb tells is many layered, still resonating with echoes of its past, just as our novels also have multiple levels, the images our words create transporting readers (and writers) into a new (novel) place. And while readers might not be aware of the work that goes into writing long fiction, it involves a lot of heavy lifting!

%d bloggers like this: