1.My full, real name is Rose Yuille Bishop. I go by Rose, or occassionally Petal (hence the username.)
2.My writing experience, eh? Well, it happened like this: in late 2003 I found myself trapped in a house in a tiny village near Paris, caring for my cousin’s two children while she was in the city sorting out a divorce. I was 18, and very far from home (I’m an Australian.) With only the internet for company (children don’t count) and having quickly read my way through every book my cousin owned, I found myself reading lots of fanfiction online. When I got back to Australia the next year, I had an impulse to write something, but no clear ideas or direction. I tried my hand at some fanfiction, and lo and behold, I got great reviews! I immedieately changed out of a boring history unit imhad enrolled in at university and into a creative writing course. Since then I’ve done three creative writing units (each running for 13 weeks) and never been marked lower than a distinction (sort of like a ‘B’.) Due to the limitations of the course, though, I’ve only written short stories, mainly in the realist - or occsaionally magical realist – genre. At the moment I’m on a hiatus from uni and brewing something which could be a novel. Or it could just be indigestion. We’ll see.
I’ve never been published, but it’s one of my greatest aims. I love, love, love writing, and can’t imagine my life without it any more. I’ve taken this year off mainly to spend some time writing intensively,as a test for myself. If I come out of it confident that I have the ability and dedication to pursue writing as a career, then that’s what I’ll do. I want to join this community so I can stay in touch with other writers now that I’m away from home (in England, this time), and also to help me with focus and motivation.
3.Defining characteristics? I’m a born politician (read: stretcher-of-the-truth/general wanker), bright, cheerful, flighty, ambitious, creative, friendly, thoughtful, and spontaneous. Um, what else? I like beer, learning new things, coffee, sleeping in, boys, earrings and other people’s cats. And since you asked, some of my many flaws (no, being a wanker is not a flaw!) include arrogance, pride, laziness, being emotionally detached and logical at innappropriate moments, and being just a bit greedy (especially when it comes to chips or alcohol.) Also, using too many parantheses. (As you may have noticed.) (Maybe.)
4.Ahh, the difficult question. (Tell a story.) I had to think about this one for a while, and eventually even had to refer to my journal for a memory – that’s my paper journal, by the way, not LJ. But in the end, here’s what I came up with:
I remember when I was about nine, sitting in the paddock burning stuff with my dad, he explained the theory of relativity to me. As he spoke he looked seriously into the fire, red glow reflected onto his face, chewing his beard, and told me about Einstein. He told me how Einstein had said that if you took a spaceship and flew it fast enough, you could make time go backwards. At least, that’s how he paraphrased it for my nine-year-old mind. And I was absolutely stunned. Amazed. It made my fingers tingle and my tummy clench.
I don’t remember what the fire we were sitting around was. We made a lot of fires when I was a kid – bonfires, fires to burn up garden rubbish, controlled burns to thin out the undergrowth in the bush by the river, tiny fires on the bend in the driveway to cook marshmallows or potatoes in tinfoil. And my dad was there for all of them, with holes in the knees of his tracky pants and ash in his hair. If I was lucky I got to help him out. I’d scamper through the bush, picking up twigs and bark and gumnuts for kindling and bringing them back to him, to lay in proud piles at his feet.
But the best thing was the talking, and the learning new things. Dad was a thinker. If you snuck up on him while he sat on the verandah with his coffee, you could see him in action. He’d sit very still and gaze into middle distance. To a twitchy child with the attention span of a kangaroo (you’ll have to take my word on that one) such inaction was a sure sign of very weighty thoughts floating around my dad’s hairy head. And if I asked a question, he’d always answer it. He’d answer it carefully and sensibly, but throw in little anecdotes and did-you-knows and memories to keep it interesting. If he didn’t actually know the answer, he’d make up something convincing, and I’d believe him until he smiled and tugged on his moustache, when I’d know I’d been fooled.
I learned a lot about storytelling from my dad. And a lot more besides that. So if you ever need help setting something on fire and keeping it burning, I’m your girl.
and that's the end. hope the sappiness of my last answer didn't kill anybody - i wrote it after i'd spoken to my parents on the phone for the first time in a while, and i sort of couldn't help the hopeless slide into nostalgia!
anyhow, looking forward to getting to know you all.