You may have seen in my story department that I’ve been publishing chapters from Conduct in Question and Final Paradox. Now I’ve started posting the first few chapters of A Trial of One. Can I entice you into buying your own copy?
In the trilogy, I’ve constructed the work a day world of law, where I spent thirty years in practice. Lots of murder and fraud in those novels! But I found other ideas creeping in, such as, the meaning of love and compassion.
And so, those themes have led to a different world—that of a British landscape artist named Alexander Wainwright, the protagonist of a fourth novel. In his world, I’ll be exploring issues of love, tolerance, forgiveness and compassion as well as raising the question Do we live in a random universe?
I came across a quote from Henrik Ibsen about writing which seems to suit my mood as I am writing this novel, particularly since this artist/protagonist starts painting trolls in his landscapes.
“To live is to battle with trolls
in the vaults of the heart and the brain
To write: That is to sit in judgment over oneself.”
In September 2007, the third novel in the trilogy was published, A Trial of One. I’m pleased that this third novel has won the award for literary fiction from Readers Views and it is a finalist in Foreword Magazine’s book of the year award. The second novel, Final Paradox, won an honorable mention at the Hollywood Book Festival 2007 and A Trial of One received honorable mention at the DIY Convention and the London Book Festival.
The completion of the trilogy represents the close of a long period in my life...the writing of three novels which trace the growth and development of Harry Jenkins. In the space of eighteen months in his life, he grows from a tentative, indecisive soul to one who can live his life with energy, passion and conviction. How does this happen? Harry's complacent, but stifling life is blown apart by the murder and fraud he encounters in his practice of law. And, I've thrown a lot of questions at Harry such as: "How much money is enough?" "What is love and how do you learn to forgive when you are surrounded by murder, fraud and deceit?" And in A Trial of One, Harry must confront his own mild homophobia.
It’s funny, but you often don’t see the patterns in your life until quite late on. Looking back on my childhood, I see someone who had lots of imaginary friends, loved to make up detective games to baffle everyone and was crazy to read. Like many young people, I had difficulty in deciding upon a direction to head in life. School made me painfully aware that my abilities were not of the mathematical or scientific variety, so that cut out a lot of areas. But I did love writing and reading.
And so, after high school, I studied English at University only to find out that the courses turned out fine critics of the language but not creative writers. After University, I decided upon law school. For a person who wanted a creative field, this seemed to be a 180-degree turn. But after graduation, I practiced for twenty- eight years along with raising three children with my husband.
In retrospect, I sometimes think that I practiced law so that I would have something to write about. I think that a lot of life experience is needed to write with any depth. I was most fortunate that, in addition to personal experience, I got a great deal of second hand experience through my clients. For example I, myself, have never personally experienced divorce, but I have worked through the ins and outs of plenty of divorce actions and know the pain people go through.
Right now, I consider this to be one of the most interesting periods in my life. Retired from law practice, I have the time to devote myself full time to writing and reading. I also have a passion for photography and travel. I took the photograph on the front cover of Final Paradox on my first night in Venice of a shop window with a Pinocchio puppet in it. It seemed just right to express the theme of fraud and deceit in the story. In addition, I have the time to study in some areas, which fascinate me such as philosophy, art and Jungian psychology and mythology [Joseph Campbell]. And so, I am fascinated to see the unfolding of the next stage of my life.
So, if you are you looking for suspense filled novels, but hoping for some psychological depth of character and exploration of fundamental themes which affect our daily lives try the Osgoode Trilogy.