About

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This new blog has a purpose, several purposes, actually. The initial purpose is to connect with people and to encourage them (you) to become interested in my new book. If you have MS (multiple sclerosis), or you know someone living with this chronic illness, you may be interested in how I’m getting on with my life, since this illness came into my life.

I’ve written a memoir about this, and hope to share my words with other people, connect with other people, and form a caring network of people who know, or want to know what living with MS can be like. It’s a strange disease. There is currently no cure, and there is no definite explanation for what causes the disease.

I was diagnosed with MS in February 2010, and I’m working to understand how I can still live a good life, even with this disease …

108 thoughts on “About

  1. j

    Though we have never met, I am very proud of you. MS is a life challenge that too many have to face everyday and hearing how you face it everyday is wonderful. Good for you.

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    1. carolyncordon Post author

      Thank you so much. My most firmly held belief is that one should live their life in the best way possible. Best for themselves best for others… My life’s challenges are there to show me what I can do, they’re not there to weigh me down.

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      1. Nancy J

        I love your courage and commitment to embrace life Carolyn .. Thank you for the inspiration. Wish you all the very best ♥♥

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  2. amazone779

    Continue your beautiful work, Carolyn; nothing is impossible if we don’t put our whole heart, mind and soul into it. Good luck to you and best wishes for continued success.

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    1. carolyncordon Post author

      Thank you Johanne, I agree with what you’ve written. Reaching out and helping others is a good and fulfilling way to spend my time. If I can give help through my words, I am glad to be able to do that. Publishing this book has helped other people, I know that because they’ve told me and thanked me for it. I have many friends, family and connections, all helping me as I help them too when I can. Life is good!

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  3. johnlmalone

    you might find ‘Green Vanilla Tea’ inspiring, Carolyn; if you do ever read it please let me know what the title means 🙂

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  4. carolyncordon Post author

    I wish I’d read this earlier today John, I spent a couple of hours at the Two Wells library, mixing with the important people in the district, the Mayor and deputy Mayor, State Library people etc.
    I may go to the Gawler Library when I’m in Gawler on Thursday, perhaps…

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  5. carolyncordon Post author

    I’ve sold all of the first print run, and now have about half of the second print run left. I really must get into this Public Speaking business! That would help with further sales!

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  6. Peter McLaughllin

    Hi Carolyn
    Enjoyed the sonnet at Jennifer and Lachlan’s wedding. Very beautifully written and delivered with love.

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    1. carolyncordon Post author

      Thank you very much Peter! I felt I’d done as good a job as I ever could, writing this sonnet for my dear niece. She’s a darling person, and deserved my super best work I was capable of doing. Iambic pentametre is all very well, but I needed to convey my deepest feelings for this gig!

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    1. carolyncordon Post author

      Yes, I know who yours was, obviously it had to be Salman Rushie. I’m very glad he is still with us, even with that horrid fatwah. My man was Bob Ellis. He sat down near me one Adelaide Writers Festival, looking like, as I indicated, a tramp!

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  7. carolyncordon Post author

    I suspect there had been same pretty heavy duty ‘schmoozing’ going on, by Mr Ellis over that particular Festival. I can’t remember now when it was, but it was before 2010.

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  8. johnlmalone

    I like that attitude — to a certain extent ; I think if one has a partner accompanying than some degree of dress sense is called for

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    1. carolyncordon Post author

      A good question, John. A new collection is certainly in the very early planning stages. I’ve been thinking about it, and spent some time sorting through my files. I have to have a session printing out possible poems and putting them kind of order …

      I’m considering approaching Ginninderra once I get the possible poems sorted out …

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  9. johnlmalone

    well, that’s a very good idea — but, as you say, first the individual poems have to be written and then pass muster

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    1. carolyncordon Post author

      I’ve printed out over 100 poems, and I’ve begun thinking about how I can put them together in ways that work.
      It’s very much a work in progress. I’m thinking maybe a grant to get someone to help with this would be a good idea, but I’ll have to get a move on if I want to do that …

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  10. johnlmalone

    MAY i SUGGEST gRAham Rowlands. He’s very good. He’s edited my current ms. Still waiting to hear if it’s passed muster

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  11. carolyncordon Post author

    Thank you John. I’m still a fair way off being at that stage, but I’ll certainly consider him. Or Ray Tyndale, who I worked with on my memoir. She and I got on well together.

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    1. carolyncordon Post author

      The poetry collection project isn’t moving along at all, at the moment. I’ll have to shuffle it up a little higher on the list if it’s going to happen this year. But the Gawler Festival of Words is my highest ranking writing thing at the moment. I’m thinking maybe I can launch my next poetry collection at the 2016 Festival of Words!

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  12. johnlmalone

    yes. that is a good and realistic goal. I would be honoured if I could play a small part in it. I love your poetry — and your championing of local literature

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    1. carolyncordon Post author

      Thank you John – I’m thinking about my poetry collection in waiting, and I’m also thinking about the Festival, both the 2015 one that is well on its way, and the 2016 one which is still an amorphous thing, floating around my head and perhaps the heads of others too.

      Maybe it’s floating around your head too now John …

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  13. carolyncordon Post author

    Well, we’re having the Flash Fiction workshop with Matt Potter of Pure Slush this month, you may wish to run your own version of a Flash Fiction for the Festival next year? Or Poetry workshops are always relevant, maybe something a little different along that line?

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  14. johnlmalone

    could run something along the lines of how to increase your chances of publication as a solo collection; or a Flash Fiction workshop as I have been published in 3 of the last 4 ‘Short & Twisted’ anthologies

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    1. carolyncordon Post author

      Thanks John, I think either of those ideas would be good – I’ll put it to the group later on, and see what happens. Of course, we have to get the inaugural Festival done and dusted before we get too much done for the 2016 Festival. I do think this Gawler Festival idea is going to be a winner though, with lots of the relevant groups in Gawler and beyond excited about it…

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  15. johnlmalone

    you are a dynamo, Carolyn. Keep at it. The success of many Festivals, I’m sure, rely on the efforts and enthusiasms of such as yourself. I admire you

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    1. carolyncordon Post author

      I have a great team, John! Janette and Alex and I work well together, and beween us, and the other members of the writing group, we know this will work! This first year is only the beginning! We’re like the ants, toiling on and getting the job done!

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  16. Terri Ogburn

    I also have MS and read what you wrote about going to read poetry at a library. It sounded all too familiar!
    I was on Tecfidera for about 4 years and tried to make the neurologist understand that it was harming me. I got hospitalized for an exacerbation and the neurologist on call informed me that I was adversely affected in many ways and took me off immediately. Thursday, I finally get to see a neurologist that I’ve wanted to see for four years and couldn’t because he was located somewhere that was too difficult to access when disabled and using a walker.
    Please feel free to contact me to commiserate. There’s a good group on Facebook, msunplugged. Have a great weekend!

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    1. carolyncordon Post author

      I’ve been lucky enough to get onto the best medication for me for my MS. One
      Gilenya tablet in the morning and I’m set for the day. Having a neuro you can talk to and feel listened to is important, if you don’t have that, it won’t go well.

      I’ll check out that Facebook group – I’m involved in a couple of different ones there – the local MS one is great – I know some of the people in person, and feel I know others, because it’s such a supportive and honest group.

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  17. Terri Ogburn

    I read your post on another site about your falls and poetry “crash and burn”. It sounded all too familiar! I too have MS and am finding that these occurrences are far too often lately. People don’t understand that while we “don’t LOOK sick”, much of our lives is spent both wishing and pretending that we are doing okay

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    1. carolyncordon Post author

      I’m glad to be able to say that I don’t trip anywhere near as much now, but the falls haven’t completely disappeared.

      Not looking sick can be a good thing, but a bad thing too. When you don’t look sick, people forget that you do in fact have a chronic illness that causes problems. When you have MS, you can forget it yourself, briefly, but then the cognitive issues, the clumsy fingers or the fatigue hit you and you sure remember then. Other people can’t see what you can feel. Others with the disease though, they understand. That’s why it’s great to be able to talk with other people with MS, that ‘being understood’ thing, it’s great!

      Cheers to you Terri!

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    1. carolyncordon Post author

      That is so true John. I attend the Gawler MS Peer Support group. A friendly group where we get together and talk about MS with people who truly understand us because they’re living with the same issues.
      I have lovely friends, fellow writers and so on, but they don’t really know about that side of my life, as the MS group people may not understand the importance I place on writing in my life. I’m so glad to live where I do, where the various groups in my life are close enough that I can attend events and have coffee etc as desired.
      We have a new fun place to go to in Gawler now John. It’s called Poetic Justice cafe and gallery and it’s the most delightful place I’ve ever attended, I think. Meetings and meals, chats and chowing down all take place there, with a glorious back drop of art. Wonderful. You’d love it I’m sure!
      I hope you’re keeing cosy and warm in this arctic weather that’s hitting us at the moment!

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  18. johnlmalone

    🙂 we have a nice log fire at Aldinga and,of course, we are cosy in each other’s arms 🙂 Poetic Justice Cafe sounds a great place. Hope to make it one day

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    1. carolyncordon Post author

      Hi John, at the moment, I’m mourning the loss of my new and favourite cafe/gallery. The Poetic Justice Cafe Gallery began in Gawler less than a year ago, but they really caught the attention of creative people in the district, and became the best place to go for an inspiring space to be! Good coffee, great food, lots of art and room for many creative things to happen. I was the writer/poet in residence there right up until yesterday, when their landlord evicted them.

      It was a dastardly act done by a man with lots of power and no heart or imagination. Or maybe he was just looking after his own wallet, and was scared of this new shop taking away his own customers … There is a protest planned for tomorrow morning at 10am, and “Today Tonight” are going to be there, apparently.

      Thinking about potential sites for the people evicted has been taking some of my attention. And the radio station – PBAFM 89.7, where I’m involved in a half hour program with other writer friends. Possibly more importantly, I now have an introduction to go with my next poetry collection – “Critters”. Jo Baker has had the manuscript and done some editing of it, and written a lovely intro for me. I’ll catch up with Jo tomorrow and we’ll have a look at what she’s done, and once I’ve re-edited the manuscript, I’ll send it to Ginninderra, and hopefully they’ll publish it!

      The weekly writing group is still going well, a we’ve begun planning for the Gawler Festival of Words next year, lots of fun!

      That’s about it. My novel isn’t happening at all at the moment, a smaller work attracted my attention – a further book by ‘Buster’, the dog who wrote “Dig It! Gardening Tips for Dogs” with me. The new book is a look at Mindfulness from a dog’s point of view. I’m waiting for the shearing season to be over so my illustrator becomes available again.

      And now I have a podcast out of me reading from Dig It!, this is the link, there will be more to come. http://www.gawlercba.org/dig-it/

      Cheers!

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  19. johnlmalone

    I’m glad you’re still busy on the creative front, Carolyn and not taking setbacks lying down. It is important to have a creative base and an exchange between fellow writers. My novel is also at a standstill.’m glad you have a new dog book in the pipeline and wish you well with your new poetry collection .

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  20. carolyncordon Post author

    I’m having a book launch next year – Ginninderra Press accepted the poetry collection formerly known as Critters. Yay! It will probably be called Delicious Tension, and will be out around the middle of the year. I’m hoping for a launch at TTG Library, and probably one in Gawler too. The people at the Poetic Justice Cafe Gallery which is having it’s grand opening of it’s new premises would love me to launch my book there, I did a lot of editing and poetry writing in their old premises.

    The Poetic Justice Cafe Gallery is now at 3 Walker Place in Gawler, in a bright and cheerful place, just off Murray Street.

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  21. carolyncordon Post author

    We’re looking at having the book ready for a launch at the Gawler Festival of Words 2016, which is around the beginning of July. So your book should be out before mine, I’d think. I have another book on it’s way, Doggone It! – the follow up to Dig It!

    I handed over a copy of the manuscript to the illustrator on Thursday, we’ll see how that all goes … That one is self-published, I have to get together the money for printing it.

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