The Land Down Under

Hello Lovelies,

Sorry I’ve been completely MIA the last couple of weeks, but things have been absolutely hectic with packing, travelling back to the other side of the world and then unpacking and everything else. I’m back online now though and hopefully will be getting things back on track again with writing.

Our overseas adventure has well and truly come to an end and what an amazing adventure it was! Our family was able to experience life in another country, to explore, to live and enjoy all four seasons! This Australian’s favourite season was of course winter and the magical beauty of a snow-covered landscape.

I could have stayed for longer, but it was time for us to say farewell to beautiful Budapest and make the long trek back to Australia. And what a long trek it was! The children were sick on the flight between London and Dubai and I’d like to make a special mention to the Qantas crew for not even batting an eyelid as I profusely apologised for the mess my daughter made, even though I was secretly happy that I didn’t have to clean it up for once. The happiness about that didn’t last though as Sydney welcomed us back in style.Before we had even really begun to unpack the kids then were sick again with a tummy bug. Hauling in the washer and dryer from the garage in the middle of the night to wash all the spew covered items was definitely a  lot of fun as well as accidentally kneeling in your kids spew as you’re trying to clean the floor. I’ve never been more thankful to have floorboards in the house.

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Not sure where this pic originated, but it’s a pretty good depiction of how I was feeling.

Then after two days everything seemed to be going back to normal, we were able to unpack a lot of our things and began to officially move ourselves back into our house, now I see how naive we were thinking it would be smooth sailing from then on. Last Monday though was just the calm before the storm, because on Tuesday it was the adults turn to be sick. You know there’s nothing like some poos and spews to kick start your weight loss, I’m being vulgar, I know, but it’s the truth.

Thankfully our sickness was relatively short-lived and we were eventually able to move all the furniture back into the house. Now though comes the task of unpacking everything else and putting in away! Now that is a task and a half, especially when we are well and truly back in the real world now with two out of three kids now at school this week and back to work for the grown-ups! (*sad face*)

Now, Land Down Under, what do you have in store for us next? Hopefully not too much of the sun burnt country stuff. I’m more of a winter girl, as you know and this year I am getting two summers, so try not to scorch me too much (I don’t like my chances though).

Over the past week or so, sometimes I wake up and wonder if it was all a dream. Did I really travel with three kids to the other side of the world and back again? Did we really spend the days exploring and reveling in the beautiful sites and rich history  and traditions of the gorgeous city that is Budapest?

Yes, we did and I’d do it again in a heartbeat. I would maybe do things a little differently if we were to do it all again, but I’d definitely go on that amazing adventure and more.

Now though, it’s time to get my writing back on track. Sydney, Australia, the Land Down Under, it’s now your turn to inspire my writing as the city of Budapest did. Let me see your beauty and explore the unknown as if I were my characters, newly arrived in a country completely unlike anything they’ve known.

I’m not going to just sit around and wait for the inspiration to find me though. I’m going to chase it down and capture it. Then keep it prisoner in one of my many notebooks and force it into submission.

Q-station Manly

Susannah Place Museum

Holsworthy Barracks

I’m coming for you!

Inspire me Land Down Under!

Enjoy,

KK

© Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within, (2013-2016). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content

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So Long, Farewell

Hello Lovelies,

Sadly the time to say goodbye to the beautiful city of Budapest is drawing near. After almost twelve months, the time has come for us to pack our suitcases and complete the long haul journey back to Sydney.

It seems like only yesterday that my husband and I were packing up our house and travelling with our three young children to the other side of the world. It was a rather daunting and somewhat scary thing to do, but it was something we needed to do.

There are many things I am going to miss in and about this city, but there are many things I definitely won’t miss, like living in a 2 bedroom apartment with a family of five and constantly telling the kids not to run or stomp for fear of pi$$ing off the neighbours below us.

I also will not miss having to travel on public transport with three children. Despite the fact that the public transport in the city is very reliable and reasonably priced and the fact that there is no way I would ever want to drive in the city of Budapest, I do miss being able to jump in my car and pop to the grocery store without worrying how I was going to get all of the groceries home.

I’m also not going to miss the dog sh!t. I mean it’s not like the city is covered in canine fecal matter, but you definitely have to watch out, especially when you don’t have a car and walk a lot of places. A lot of people live in apartments in the city, so of course when their dogs needs to… you know… they have to take it for a walk, but if you choose to have a dog and live in an apartment then for goodness sake, pick up your dog’s crap!

I’m not going to miss the smell that almost every city has, I’m not going to miss the loud rumbling noise of the tram going past and I’m definitely not going to miss the dirt and dust that seems to permeate absolutely everything in the old building!

Yet, there many things I am going to miss from this city like the gorgeous view of the Danube River, Parliament and the Chain Bridge I have right outside the window! I’m going to miss the amazing food (but my pants will be thankful) and I’m going to miss the history. Australia is such a young country when compared to Europe and I revel in the rich and long history of this country. Each building, each street, even the trees tell a story, a piece of history to be marveled at and admired.

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I’m going to miss the castles, the manor houses and all the amazing architecture. I’m going to miss having front row seats for any fireworks or special events on the river Danube.

I’m going to  miss the way the lights of the Parliament shine on the feathers of the birds flying above at night, making them look magical like the glowing wings of fairies.

I am looking forward to seeing everyone at home again and sleeping on a mattress that is actually on a bed instead of on the floor (I’m hoping my back will thank me for that one). I’m not looking forward to returning to the “real world” though and having to hold down a day job and do school drop-off and everything else!  I’m going to miss being able to stay up until some ridiculous hour of the morning writing, without having to worry about having to get up and work or get children ready for school the next day.

It’s time to start a new adventure, please be kind to me, world.

Budapest, you gorgeous city, I am going to miss you dearly. I will miss your beauty, your history, your inspiration.

I give thanks to the city of Budapest, for inspiring me to keep writing and to start József’s story. Being surrounding by the world of my characters has truly been an amazing experience, allowing me to immerse myself in their history and time and inspiring  my writing. My goal was to write a draft of József’s story in the form of a novel of 80,000 words. I am almost at the 80,000 word mark and their story is far from over, but I have finished the part of the story that is set in this beautiful city, now it’s time to explore the next setting of Sydney, luckily that’s where I’m heading.

And so now I say so long, farewell beautiful Budapest, I hope to experience your beauty again some day.

Enjoy,

KK

 

© Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within, (2013-2016). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content

 

Heat Wave

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Image courtesy of Flickr CC user Micolo J

Hello Lovelies,

As I sit here melting in what is considered a “heat wave” in Europe (temperatures of over 30 degrees Celsius since Wednesday), I begin to think about how weather and weather conditions influence the setting of a scene.

Of course compared to an Australian summer, this summer “heat wave” is actually like a cool spring day, but with no air-conditioning I’m sitting in a puddle of my own sweat which actually does nothing to cool me down. Perhaps I’ve been spoiled in my life, having had air-conditioning in the house since I was seven years old. However when much of the Australian summer consists of days over 40 degrees Celsius, I see air-conditioning as pretty much a necessity rather than the luxury it seems to be here. I guess heating is a necessity in Hungary, to survive the winter but in much of Australia it is the opposite.

I know I shouldn’t complain, it could be worse, but there’s nothing like melting in a pool of your own sweat to put you in a cranky mood. I have found a positive though, I have experienced the “wrath” of summer as my characters would have experienced it in the 1910s.

Small fans were in use during this time for residential purposes, often used in bedrooms, but that was all they had – and all I have at the moment.

I decided to write József’s story, or at least start it, while in Hungary, surrounded by the same (or similar) environment he would have been. Little did I realise just how closely surrounded I would be, despite being decades apart. Yes the world is very different now, I sit her surrounded by technology that never existed during József and Anna’s time, however many things remain the same. The apartment building is from their time, the furniture probably is too and whilst I’m sure the building would have looked quite different all those years ago, I can still sense the spirit of days long gone and catch a glimpse into the way things were.

The external world influences our writing, whether we want it to or not, this is something that cannot be avoided. We can though attempt to ensure that the influence is a positive one by surrounded ourselves with their story and seeking the write inspiration and influence, like myself writing this story in Hungary. Not everyone can go to the actual location and I consider myself to be extremely fortunate on this account, despite the fact that I’m soggy and cranky in this heat.

So now I head off to write about a fellow with a sever hangover and a nauseated pregnant woman on a sweltering summer’s day (both are characters, not myself, I assure you!) and encourage you to immerse yourself in the story, experience it as much as you can and describe it in detail.

Enjoy,

KK

 

© Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within, (2013-2016). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Don’t Be Afraid to Open the Door

“I feel very adventurous. There are so many doors to be opened, and I’m not afraid to look behind them.”
― Elizabeth Taylor

Hello Lovelies,

Over the past week, I’ve started to notice just how many beautifully amazing doors there are on the different buildings here in Budapest. Of course the buildings themselves are beautiful as well and you can see and explore many different styles of architecture within the city. Yet people always see and notice the buildings themselves, so naturally a considerable amount of effort and detail has been put into many of them. However, the same time, effort and detail as also been put into the many doors and doorways of the city. Even some of the more basic ones will have beautiful carved stone doorways and some of the doors themselves are pieces of art in themselves.

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Image copyright of Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within 2016
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Image copyright of Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within 2016
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Image copyright of Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within 2016
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Image copyright of Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within 2016

A door can allow people to enter or perhaps to leave. We can close it to shut out the outside world, to close ourselves off from the weather perhaps. We must try, however, to not be afraid of opening the door, for if we spend our lives living in fear of what is on the other side of a closed door, then we are not really living at all.

Sometimes when we open a door it is for a goodbye, other times it is hello.. Whatever the reason and whether it is a person, a job or something else we are greeting or saying farewell too, we must stand tall, open the door and step through the doorway, because we will never know what is on the other side if we don’t have the courage to open the door and see.In my relatively short life-time, I have opened quite a few of these metaphorical doors and I’m not going to pretend that I was never afraid, I was petrified at time, but eventually I pushed the fear aside, deciding that I was more afraid of never knowing what lay on the other side of the door.

Not all doors will lead us to where we want to be, but sometimes it might be where we need to be until we are ready to open the next door.

So push your fear aside and go forth and open up some doors!*

Enjoy,

KK

*metaphorical doors, I mean. I’m not encouraging anyone to commit the crime of break and enter.

© Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within, (2013-2016). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

© Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within, (2013-2016). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Chilly Travelling

Hello Lovelies,

I’m the kind of girl who prefers winter over summer, especially if there is snow involved! Just think about it, in winter it’s cold, this is true, but it’s nothing that a good jacket won’t fix or perhaps a jacket, jumper, two pairs of pants, beanie, gloves and scarf won’t fix. However, in Summer there are only so many clothes you can remove, before you’re arrested for indecent exposure. Especially in the Australian summers that I am used to, it wouldn’t matter if you were completely naked, you would still be sweating your arse off every time you step out of an air-conditioned building.

Most people think of the Australian summer is all beachy and beautiful, this is not the reality. Summer in Australia is usually like this: Sweat everywhere as soon as you step outside, getting third degree burns on the soles of your feet if you try to run in bare foot on concrete, trying to cool down by going for a swim only then to realise that the pool water is the same temperature as a bath after a week of 40+ degrees Celsius days. I know winter isn’t all fun in the snow, but I still prefer it over summer.

However, something needs to be said about going out-and-about with three kids in winter time, it’s not an easy feat, let me tell you that, especially when using public transport.

Some of you may know that I am the mother of three children, my daughter is 8 and my boys are aged 5 and 3. Before coming to Budapest, they had never been on public transport before, not only is public transport in Australia expensive and unreliable, unless you really have to. It is actually easier to drive and even pay for parking, especially with three kids. In Australia I drive an SUV, because we needed something large enough to fit in three children’s car seats at the time, but I live in the suburbs and am not a fan of driving in the city, only doing it when necessary. When deciding to relocate to Budapest for an extended time though, I came to accept the fact that I probably would not be driving here. Even though I love my car and the convenience of simply putting the kids in and off we go, I was totally OK with not driving in Budapest. Not only is it a capital city, but they also drive on the opposite side of the road to Australia, something that still confuses the heck out of me after being here for four months and petrol is ridiculously expensive, especially considering the average wages here. So, with public transport being so reliable and cheap (less than $50AUD for unlimited public transport within Budapest for the month), it was no competition.

The children love going on all the trams, buses, subways, trains and boats, it still excites them after four months of public transport. There is a downside to this in winter though.

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It’s not that cold, really. Image Copyright Katherine A. Kovàcs.

First of all let me describe to you how it is to get three children ready to venture outside in the middle of winter. It takes us about two hours to even get out the door, by the time everyone has had breakfast, gotten dressed (in the basics to start) and brushed their teeth. Then it’s time to gauge how cold it is by looking out the window and seeing what other people are wearing or simply sticking your head out the window. This way we can decide how many pairs of pants to put on the children, which jackets to wear and if they need an extra jumper and their beanies, scarves and gloves.  Then it is time for everyone to put on their boots and to put on the children’s beanies, jackets, scarves and gloves one-by-one. I learnt the hard way to dress my youngest last, otherwise by the time we are finished, he has already taken everything off because he is hot inside. Then it’s time to head on out the door and then begins the ultimate battle of wills as we try to keep the children from stripping off because they are hot on whatever form of public transport we happen to be on. I completely understand how the children feel, sometimes the heater on the bus or tram is cranked so high, you would still be warm and toasty in a singlet and shorts, but it takes so long to get each of them dressed that taking off their beanies, scarves and things for the few moments we are on there is simply not an option, no matter how much of a cranky face my three-year-old pulls.

Another thing you don’t consider is going shopping with three children, again the heater in the shopping centres is cranked to the max and given the time it takes to shop with three children, this is the time when they are allowed to take off their “winter woolies”. However, with my husband and I included, that equates to a trolley full of jackets, scarves and the rest and we end up getting two trolleys just to do a little shopping.

So, unless it is raining or blowing gale forced winds, our chilly travels as a family of five usually consist of a minimal amount of travel combined with outdoor activities that all can enjoy with our “winter woolies” to keep us warm.

Despite the difficulties of travelling in winter with three children, I can say that if I had to choose between winter and summer, I would still choose winter every time.

On another note, we are already 7 days into this month and I have only written 1,000 words out of the 8,000 I am supposed to write by the end of the month. I’m procrastinating again, somebody please come and kick my arse and tell me to write this bloody story!

Enjoy,

KK

 

 

© Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within, (2013-2016). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Déjà vu – I’ve Been Here Before

Hello Lovelies,

Have any of you ever had the feeling that you have been somewhere before, but there is no way that you could have?

This is the feeling I get in our new amazing apartment we moved to on Tuesday. After a busy day packing, cleaning and moving, my husband and I sat down at the antique dining table in our new apartment, feeling thoroughly exhausted but happy and content. My husband turned to me and asked me, “I have this feeling like I have been here before, I mean, I feel like I have lived here before, but I’ve never lived in this district before.” I guess he was describing a feeling of déjà vu and what is even more strange is I was having the exact same feeling, I felt it the first time we walked through the door to view the apartment and I felt it even more sitting at the table that night.

Antique Detail. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
Antique Detail. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
Antique Detail. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
Antique Detail. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
Antique Detail. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
Antique Detail. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.

I know it can’t possibly be true, but I feel as though I have lived in this apartment before, not now though, not even a short time ago. I feel as though I lived here, a very long time ago. The building was new then, the view still amazing.

The view by night. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
The view by night, Parliament House. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
The view by night. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
The view by night, Széchenyi “Chain” Bridge . Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.

I know this can’t be possible, perhaps I feel this way because this is where we are supposed to be, but perhaps there is also another reason, one that I possibly shouldn’t even consider as I was raised as Catholic (reincarnation perhaps).

I spoke last week of the way that the apartment inspired me and how I began forming József’s story without even consciously trying. (If you missed it, you can read last week’s post here.) Perhaps this apartment is more than just inspiring for my writing, perhaps there is some sort of connection.

I know the feeling of déjà vu, is not particularly uncommon and it is something that people often describe, however when two people have the same feeling, there has to be something to it right? I can’t help but believe that I have been here before or perhaps I am connected with the people who came before in some way.

Whatever the connection might be, I’m not going to question it, I’m just going to embrace it. Whatever it is, it is doing wonders for the writer within, I am thinking and imagining more clearly than I have in months. I have even began writing and researching for my latest WIP. Those of you who right, will know and appreciate the simply amazing feeling of writing again and of making progress with something you’ve had to put on hold for quite some time.

Whilst I’m not writing thousands of words each day (hopefully that will come later), I am making progress each day either researching or finding out some of the finer details about the character. It truly is a wonderful feeling to be writing again.

So now I head off to enjoy my view a little more.

Enjoy your week and write when you can.

-KK

© Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within, (2013-2015). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Back in Touch

Hello Lovelies,

Well, so much has happened this past week. I don’t really know where to begin, because not only is it a long list but I’m still in a slightly confused frame of mind with the different time zones and I probably wouldn’t be able to tell you what happened on what day anyway.

So in no particular order here is an annotated list of some of what has happened over this past week:

  • I had the pleasure (or not really) of experiencing the Hungarian health care system first hand – After trying to do everything myself the last 6 or 7 months and with all the craziness of packing and dragging ourselves halfway across the world, I got a little run down once things started to slow down. I guess everything just caught up with me at once. What started as a bit of a sore throat got even more serious quite quickly. I woke up the other morning feeling like I was being choked and my throat was so swollen I could only just swallow and also had a bit of trouble breathing. I honestly felt like something was stuck in my throat and had these horrible visions of some big blood clot or something that had taken up residence in my throat overnight. When I went to try and cough out whatever I was chocking on, it seemed to be stuck on the back of my tongue which made me choke even more and totally freak out too! After a trip to the GP clinic at the local hospital, it turns out it is *just* a throat infection. I say *just* but there’s a little more to it than that. My throat was so badly swollen that the thing I thought I was choking on was actually my uvula (you know the dangly thing at the back of your throat) that was so swollen that it was touching the back of my tongue and when I tried to cough it out it flipped forward and was lying along my tongue, choking me further until I had to forcibly (a very  painfully) swallow it back down. The good news is that I am feeling much better today (after some pretty hefty antibiotics and painkillers, these Hungarian doctors don’t mess around). The doctors at the hospital were very efficient, I only waited around ten minutes before seeing a doctor, they were also very kind and comforting as well, which I’ve found is often a rare combination. They took the time to explain and reassure me, they also spoke English to me reassuring me that everything was Okay and explain to me what had happened, even though my husband was there ready to translate if needed. Despite the delights of the Hungarian health system, it’s not something I would like to experience again, the feeling of choking on my own throat bits is not one I would like to repeat in the near future.
  • Just finished unpacking, now we’re moving again – Yes, annoying as it sounds, it will be for the best. Even though we have only been in this apartment for 2 weeks and had only recently finished unpacking, we are moving again starting from tomorrow. So when I am finished writing this blog post and also started and finished my assignment (yes, I still haven’t done that, but I think choking on your uvula is a pretty good excuse this time), I will be packing up our 65 square metre apartment and moving our family of five to an apartment that is nearly 100 square metres. There are many reasons that we are leaving this apartment and not just because it is very small for a family of five. At first we saw the apartment as retro and quaint, it was built in the sixties and very much looks like it despite the near new Ikea furniture. This retro and quaint notion grew old rather quickly. We then began to see the apartment for what it really was: a small, old apartment with outdated appliances (the gas stove nearly blew up in my face), the tiniest washing machine that has a weird smell even after cleaning it, a bath that you have to wash before each use (as the washing machine drains into the bath), that gets stifling hot even though it’s cold outside (the central heating units can’t be adjusted as the tap handle things are either missing or don’t turn), that is constantly dirty and dusty due to the dirt and dust from the elevator shaft constantly finding its way in through every crack and vent in the place (seriously, I mop, dust and clean the whole apartment and by the time I’m done it’s filthy again), this constant influx of dust and dirt has also caused allergies in myself and the kids and finally lets not forget my favourite peeve about this apartment…. the toilet has a “poop deck”. Yes, you have read correctly, the toilet has what I like to refer to as a “poop deck”.  Let me take a moment to explain this intriguing and disgusting notion a little further.  After Googling, “My toilet has a poop deck wtf” the results explained that this toilet bowl (which is not the shape of toilet bowl I am used to seeing) is in fact an “inspection shelf” toilet bowl, which allows you to… well inspect your…. well you can guess what you might be inspecting, hence the reason why I refer to it as a “poop deck”. During my Google research in an attempt to explain the aforementioned “poop deck”, I did find an interesting post from a UK uni student studying in Europe, which clearly and humourously sums of what the purpose of “inspection shelf” toilet actually is —– Inspection Shelf Toilet WTF!
  • Inspecting the new apartment – We traveled to the first district of Budapest, aptly referred to as Castle Hill, because, yup you guessed it, Buda Castle sits on top of the hill. This is very much a tourist district as it is home to not only Buda Castle but also many other tourist attraction such as the Citadel and the many vantage points up on the hills of this district provide stunning views across the Danube of the many bridges that cross the river and one of my sons favourite buildings – Parliament House. When we found the address we were meeting the real estate agent at, we were surprised to see that it is right in front of the Danube, when entering the apartment though we were even more surprised, pleasantly this time. Even though the building is old, it is not asbestos dust wielding elevator shaft old, it is much, much older than this. The building is made of stone, stone stairs, stone walls and super high ceilings, the apartment is furnished, mostly with gorgeous antique furniture and perhaps best of all, it has a full-sized bathroom and the toilet DOES NOT have a “poop deck”. Oh and one more small thing, this is the view….
    View of Parliament House. Image copyright The Writer Within 2015.
    View of Parliament House. Image copyright The Writer Within 2015.

    So, now onto the reason for the title of today’s post. A wonderful thing happened to me this past week and it wasn’t finding a bigger apartment with an amazing view, although I think that had something to do with it. The night after we found the apartment, I settled down to try and get some sleep and my mind started racing. Yet it wasn’t the kind of thoughts that have filled my mind these past few months, it wasn’t “will everything be ok?” “I have so much to do?” “How will I get everything done?” and other thoughts that are more worries and concerns than anything else. No, this night the thoughts that filled my mind were imagining the apartment we are moving to, how it would have been long ago. Perhaps the original inhabitants liked to entertain friends, perhaps not. Perhaps they were a young couple, who dreamed of having one of the bedrooms as a baby’s nursery, cooing and doting over their little one dressed in clothes from a by-gone era. Then another thought entered my mind, perhaps it was indeed a young couple, perhaps that couple was József and his wife. Perhaps the main room had a small piano in the corner that his wife liked to play. Next to the piano, perhaps there was an old but well-loved violin, something that was passed down from father to son. Perhaps József dreamed of one day passing this treasured instrument on to his own child, teaching them to love music as he did. Then it struck me, I was well and truly back in touch with The Writer Within and it happened without consciously trying to do so. That night I went to sleep happy and content, knowing that whatever worries and problems would come next, that something in my life was now right again.

And now I must leave, because despite being back in touch with The Writer Within, I still have that last pesky assignment to get out of the way.

So until next week, enjoy,

-KK

© Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within, (2013-2015). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

In it for the Long Haul

Hello Lovelies,

Well it has been quite a while since my mashed up words have been on your screens, but now we have begun to settle here in our little apartment in Budapest, you’ll hopefully be seeing more and more of my writing here on The Writer Within. Even though I still have one last assignment to do before I complete my Master of Education degree, I’ve decided it would be best to use these few minutes of peace to procrastinate from said assignment and update you all with what been happening the last few weeks.

We have been in Budapest for almost a week now, but to travel here with three young children was one of the most difficult things I have done with my children. Firstly packing up our entire house was quite an ordeal in itself, then packing five large suitcases, five carry-on bags, two backpacks, two laptop bags and a handbag with all the important things like passports and tickets and so on was quite a feat. Especially considering I didn’t really start packing until two days before our departure from Sydney.

Waiting to board our first flight.
Waiting to board our first flight.                       Image Copyright The Writer Within 2015

The came the fun part (can you sense the sarcasm?), checking-in at the airport, while trying not to lose a bag or a child (thank goodness my parents tagged along for this part). Once this vital part was over with, we had to go through customs in Sydney. This meant taking the laptops out of the laptop bags, placing all bags (five carry-on, two backpacks, a handbag and a couple of plush toys) up to be screened and making sure we didn’t lose any children as we went through the metal detector one person at a time, always interesting to get a two-year old to walk through that one by himself without him wandering off.

Farewell Sydney. Image Copyright The Writer Within
Farewell Sydney.
Image Copyright The Writer Within
A little in-flight entertainment.
A little in-flight entertainment.

This ordeal was carried out several times over the next 30 hours as we traveled from Sydney to Singapore, then on to Zurich and finally to Budapest. The good news is that we survived the traveling with all children and bags present and accounted for.

So, now here we are in the mild autumn weather of Budapest and here I sit coming to the realisation that we did it, we actually did it. I’ve always been the kind of person that when I set my mind to something, I will get there, I will do it, no matter how long it takes. So when we decided to pack up the house and travel to the other side of the world, with three young children, I knew it would come to fruition. It wasn’t just a pipe-dream or an idea, it was something we would do. We were in it for the long haul, even the long haul flights, although I wish there was a better way to travel long distances.

The same sentiment also applies to my writing, I will finish the many novels and novellas I have started and planned, no matter how long it takes. For when it comes to being a writer, you need to be in it for the long haul. Writing a novel is not something that happens overnight, it is something that takes a significant amount of time to shape and mold, to perfectly form the characters and to tell their story. Once I have my final assignment out of the way (if I can stop procrastinating long enough), my attention for writing will be focused on telling József’s story. Hopefully being surrounded by the history and culture of the city that once was the home of this character, will provide me with a source of inspiration. I only hope that I can do his story justice and convey the difficulties of the time in which he lived.

One of the many views from our apartment. Image Copyright The Writer Within.
One of the many views from our apartment. Image Copyright The Writer Within.

So, stay tuned over the coming weeks for updates and little snippets of what I’ll working on.

Enjoy,

KK

© Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within, (2013-2015). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content

Disappearing Act

Hello Lovelies,

Just letting you all know that I’ll be pretty much MIA over the next few weeks as things are crazy busy around here trying to pack and get organised for our Hungarian adventure!

I’ll try and post a few things either on here or on fb or twitter if I get a chance, but posts will be pretty scarce until we are settled in Budapest.

I promise I’ll make it up to you all with some awesome posts and sneak peeks once we are settled.

Enjoy,
KK

 

© Katherine A. Kovacs and The Writer Within, (2013-2015). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovacs and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content

Sidetracked

Hello Lovelies,

Well this week has been another whirlwind type of week, with so many things to organise before we set of on our adventure. So unfortunately it’s been another no writing week for me. Even though I am not really having time for writing at the moment (except for my weekly blog posts), thoughts and ideas to do with writing are constantly popping up in my thoughts, especially when I least expect it. In fact, I’ve gotten rather sidetracked and I am finding that my thoughts to do with writing and the characters I’ve been creating are actually becoming more to do with one of the secondary characters in Lonely Hearts, so much so that I’m now thinking that this particular character also has a story to tell in the form of a novel or at least a novella.

Image courtesy of Flickr CC user- photolibrarian
Image courtesy of Flickr CC user- photolibrarian

The character that is occupying my thoughts lately is Rose’s adoptive father, József SzabóI am quite sure that the reason this character keeps making his way into my thoughts is due to the fact that quite soon I will be exploring his country of origin. The more I think about it, the more I;m considering the possibility that perhaps I am supposed to become sidetracked from completing Lonely Hearts and that perhaps now is not the time to finish Thomas and Rose’s story. Maybe I’m not ready to finish Thomas and Rose’s story just yet. Perhaps I cannot do their story justice if I were to finish now. I’m actually coming to realise this as I type (so I apologise in advance for my incoherent ramblings).

You see, when Thomas and Rose’s story begins, József is the adoptive father of Rose, but he is more than that. He is an Hungarian Jew, who left his country of birth during World War I in hope of finding a better life for himself along with his young wife and unborn child. József has been through love, loss and complete and utter devastation and comes out the other side to find some sort of happiness again. Perhaps I need to experience József’s story, before I can do justice to Thomas and Rose’s story. Perhaps things really do happen for a reason. If I am going to focus on writing József’s story, what better place to write about an Hungarian Jew than in Hungary itself! Maybe everything that has happened this year is the universe’s way of telling me to get a little sidetracked and to focus my attention on telling the story of József Szabó and how he came to a tailor in The Rocks, Sydney in the 1930s with an adopted fair-haired daughter and an investment interest of the one and only Thomas Heath.

Unfortunately, with my moment of realisation, I think I’ve just set myself up for a tonne of research. Whilst I’ve started to become fairly familiar with Sydney in the 1930s, now I need to start looking at Hungary during the outbreak of World War I and the treatment of the Jewish people during this time. Whilst I have researched this a little, in order to get a bit of a backstory for József, there’s a huge difference between researching a backstory and writing the actual story of such a character.

So it seems I am now purposefully becoming sidetracked from my original goal and am now going to focus on getting everything organised for our family adventure in Hungary and the start of a new WIP, the story of József Szabó, humble Jewish tailor living in Hungary during the outbreak of WWI.

Wow, exciting (and scary!) times are ahead!

Enjoy,

KK

© Katherine A. Kovacs and The Writer Within, (2013-2015). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovacs and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.