Thursday, October 01, 2009

Theme Thursday - Flight

Thanks to Roy for this assignment. To see more Theme Thursday posts, click here.

It has been a long time since I last posted my favourite poem, Adrienne Rich's Vertigo. When I saw today's assignment, the first thing that popped into my head was Rich's line "The flight of wings surprises empty air." As it always does, that line made me stop, catch my breath, and say "Ah!" The world is not just a stage on which we act. Suddenly, even the air around us is sentient. Anything is possible.

I will post the poem over on the sidebar, so that it can linger awhile. There was a time, a year or more ago, when I thought I had lost my only hard copy. I have since found it, and it hangs on the wall right under the dry-erase board, where I can find it easily.

I had several plans for this post, including a photo essay about my walk - our walk - on Duke Point today. The problem with long, woodsy, watery walks, though, is that they give you plenty of time to think. What did I think about while I was walking? I thought about my story - the same story I was talking (and thinking) about yesterday.

I thought of a title - at least a working title. My WIP will be called Fly Away Home. I just googled that title, and there is a book by that name at Amazon, but it's a children's book dealing with homelessness - nothing like mine - so for the time being, at least, that's the title.

I thought about my main character, Bridget, which led me to think about her role model, her heroine, Amelia Earhart. Lady Lindy - The First Lady of Flight. Bingo.

The opening scene of Fly Away Home will take place on May 20, 1932, Bridget's twelfth birthday - and the day that Amelia Earhart takes off on her first solo flight across the Atlantic, from Newfoundland to Ireland. In preparing to write the story, I find myself drawn to read more about Earhart, who was an interesting and controversial woman. Her fascination with flight began when she was twenty-three years old. Her father and she visited an airfield in Long Beach, California. She took a ten-minute (and $10) ride in an airplane. At the end of the ride, she said "By the time I had got two or three hundred feet off the ground, I knew I had to fly." She immediately set about finding a way to realize her dream, and she took her first flying lesson on January 3, 1921.


Six months later, Earhart bought a second-hand Kinner Airster bi-plane, which she named "The Canary." The photo on the right shows Earhart and her flight instructor, Neta Snook, standing beside The Canary. By the time Earhart obtained her pilot's licence in 1923, she had already set a world record for female pilots by flying The Canary to an altitude of 14,000 feet (4,300 m). I've taken these photos and snippets of information from Wikipedia. I would encourage you to read the entire article, as it is fascinating reading. Just click here.

And/or - have a look at these videos, which will give you more insight into Amelia Earhart's life.




As you can see, flight is much on my mind. I must go now (See? I resisted the temptation to say "I must fly!" Aren't I strong, though?) to stare at my office wall and think writerly thoughts.

2 comments:

AngelMay said...

Great post on Flight. How do you ever stay so disciplined? Can't wait to hear how your story turns out. Will we see or hear from you in all of November? You go, girl! You can do it!

Sandra Leigh said...

Thanks, AM. Disciplined? Me? Nope. A little (lot) obsessed, at the moment, but terribly undisciplined. Come November, I will be saying "Geep" a lot.

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