Ok, now this is getting very high-tech. I am now on twitter so you're all welcome to follow and keep up with the happenings with my writing and anything else I wish to bug you with.. Click here or look for @Hamilton_Wade1
I imagine some may wonder how I came to feel such empathy with Olivia North and the level of frustration she felt with her husband. I've known many women in similar relationships, and I really do believe it's critical for men to understand what constitutes a meaningful and intimate relationship for women. As a man, I learned lessons the hard way, and so many times it was far too late to try undoing the damage my fragile self-esteem had caused.
Andrew Walker understood. He'd made all the mistakes in his previous marriages. He'd been too busy taking care of his own work, his own life, and his own ego, to see the signs of a relationship falling apart. Andrew Walker wasn't particularly looking for another relationship.
Olivia was unlike most women he'd met, and the more he got to know her, the more he felt captivated by her honesty, her integrity, her kindness, and her sense of humor. He'd learned how to listen, learned how to be present, and learned how to show empathy. He was not the same man who'd screwed things up so many times before.
Olivia's marriage to Christopher North was unfulfilling in ways that really matter to most women. There was little respect, little if any intimacy, no passion, and no sense of being in a shared partnership of life. She had become nothing more than an attractive doormat. Having stayed in the marriage until her daughters both left home, Olivia knew she had nobody to blame for allowing herself to become so trapped. She had relinquished her freedom, she had accepted the unacceptable for way too many years. She knew it was time to take back her life, and in Andrew Walker, she found something incredibly tender, sensual, and special.
You all know how much I loved this story and characters. I can't hide that, can I?
I think a lot about the world we live in, especially the instant gratification culture I see evidence of in so many aspects of life.
I rarely watch television, yet I can't help notice the annoying rapid fire dialogue on shows such as NCIS or the many similar programs now being produced. The scripts appear to be written with an automatic weapon kind of philosophy, and I wonder how much of this is aimed at keeping viewers interested when our collective society has a constantly shrinking attention span. Seems the world doesn't want to think, the world wants to be entertained.
I guess I'm somewhat old fashioned. The BBC produces some wonderful television drama, as too does PBS, and the ABC in Australia. Commercial television has become less about real issues, and more about this kind of rapid fire entertainment I find so insulting. The sad fact is this stuff must rate, and that being the case, what does it say about society these days.
I see my own family sitting, remote control in hand, too impatient to devote the requisite time enjoying any one particular program, clicking between channels in the hope of finding something that can grab their attention. It doesn't seem to matter they may have missed the context of a potentially good story.
The joy of reading has almost disappeared, unless of course it is the attention grabbing headlines of a daily newspaper, or the picture of a celebrity on the cover of a women's magazine. Murder works. Celebrity works. All manner of guises are used to lure otherwise intelligent people into reading trashy shit, yet even then, I wonder how many actually invest the time to go beyond the headlines or the pictures.
Many kids are addicted to playing video games in which characters are slaughtered, so why should anyone be surprised when public reaction to violent mass killings tapers off so quickly, and any meaningful dialogue about gun control legislation dies equally as fast.
It is not necessarily that people don't care, it is that the vast majority are too immersed in a narcissistic world where Facebook status takes precedence over any deeper sense of community responsibility... where what celebrities are doing is of more interest than what is happening in their own neighborhoods... where instant gratification is more meaningful than whatever may be in the best interest of the planet or the survival of a particular species, including the human race.
Why must the world be like this ? Maybe less intellectual masturbation, and more collective awareness is the key. An educated and informed populace could be such a powerful force.
A memory from growing up in a country town... When I was about 8 years old, yeah I know that seems such a long time ago, I was a proud member of a Cub Scout Troop. I loved going to Cubs every Tuesday night, and one night has always stuck in my memory.
Our leader sent us out onto the dark playing fields, each Cub paired up with a buddy. The mission - half the troop was to hide as effectively as possible, and the other half to find them. Being remarkably creative, my fellow Cub (can't remember his name) and I lay in long grass alongside a small walking bridge that spanned a drain separating the playing fields. Our black socks pulled up to hide our legs, our shirts lifted to cover our necks, and our arms tucked under us. Rambo would have been proud of our efforts to blend into the dark environment.
We lay there hearing others being discovered, hearing the footsteps of others running across the small walking bridge, all oblivious to our stealthily slumber in the grass. Then, all of a sudden, a fellow Cub named George, stops on the bridge. Can he see us ? Are we the last to be discovered ? I thought we were safe.
No, the little bastard proceeds to take a pee from the bridge, and our shirts are soaked as we tried to remain still. Enough of the war games... I jumped up and screamed at George "My mum will kill you George".
We wandered back to the club house with very mixed feelings. We were the last to be discovered, yet our efforts had been rewarded with nothing more than wet shirts that clung to our backs, and the aroma of George only a warm bath could remove. Childhood is filled with all manner of adventures :-)
I wanted to share some thoughts on why I write, and how I write. This is not given as any kind of advice or recommendation, it is simply about my own (limited) experience.
I didn't read much during my school years, apart from the necessary novels I needed to read to pass English exams. I remember the first two novels I read in my 40's that started me thinking about writing something myself. Up till that point, I'd only written some simple poetry and random thoughts about life. I love reading stuff that 'moves' me emotionally. I remember trying to hide my tears on a Royal Brunei flight while reading the final chapters of Bridges of Madison County. I loved the fact someone could use words to paint pictures in my head that made me feel so emotional. I wanted to do that!
I started writing Olivia's story, Awakening Olivia North, in September 2012, following encouragement from a few people who'd read an erotic short story I wrote back in 2003. Olivia's story started out to be an erotic romance, but ended up being so much more. Often I would sit in front of my computer screen having absolutely no idea what I was doing or where the words would come from. My mind would be blank, and I questioned if I had anything at all to offer the literary world. My saving grace is that I've always been a good oral storyteller, and I figured if I could write as if I was telling the story to someone, maybe I had a chance.
Awakening Olivia North was a work of love and passion, evolving slowly to be less about sex and more about finding a far deeper emotional and physical connection between two people approaching middle age. Yes, I knew some parts would probably bore those only interested in reading sex scenes, yet I felt the tenderness and intimacy Olivia found with Andrew Walker would bring a smile to the faces of many women, and hopefully, a few men also.
I see a plethora of books written about young men with perfect Adonis bodies, doing all manner of kinky things to incredibly gorgeous young women, and I can't do that. I know many such books are very well written, and incredibly successful, but it's not me. It will never be me. I don't care how successful Olivia may be, nor anything else I write for that matter. I don't write for success. I write for me, and for the pure joy I get writing a scene that makes me want to laugh, smile, or cry...