Rosina and Her Calf (Post 71)
Rosina and Her Calf (1983), is the first in the three-book Rosina Paul cycle. It also marks a demarcation line in my writing POV. Prior to this, my sympathies were always squarely in the court of my child characters. If they were forbidden from doing something, I saw it from their point of view. Their parents were being unreasonable. Those kids could manage. When I came to write the first Rosina book, though, my attitude had undergone a sea-change. For the first time, I saw it from the parents' point of view because I had become a parent. I don't think this change of feeling shows in the story. In fact, I remember changing mental and emotional gear quite deliberately. The thing was, it was the first time I'd ever had to do so.
Rosina and Her Calf is based on things of my childhood. Rosina is a farm child, raising and caring for her own Jersey calf, Star, and trying to balance this absorbing interest with the wishes of her less-than-committed best friend Kate who would rather spend more time on other activities. To some extent this strand echoes my experiences, as my interests diverged from those most of my friends had, but it's not a copy of my life. For one thing, I am the younger of two girls, while Rosina has a baby brother, and undergoes a sea-change herself from being an only child for ten years to becoming an elder sister.
The original title was Rosina's Calf, but the editor preferred the longer title. Rosina and Her Calf was followed by Rosina and the Show and Rosina and Kate. Rosina herself is named after an acquaintance whose name I thought unusual, and liked. Her calf, Star, is named after a calf I had as a child. This wasn't the first time I used the name Star for a story-calf. When I was in Grade Four we had a class activity in which we each had to write and illustrate a book with chapters. Mine was called Under a Lucky Star and the teacher entered it in a state-wide competition. It won. I think the prize was $20.00.
About the Blog
Sally is Sally Odgers; author, manuscript assessor, editor, anthologist and reader. (Sally is me, by the way, and I am lots of other things too, but these are the relevant ones for now.)
The goal for 2017 is to write a post a day profiling the background behind one of my books; how it came to be written, what it's about, and any things of note that happened along the way. If you're an author, an aspiring author, a reader or just someone who enjoys windows into worlds, you might find this fun. This preamble will be pasted to the top of each post, so feel free to skip it in future.