Caroline A Raine

Monday, April 2, 2012


Happy Birthday Hans Christian Andersen - 2 April. Andersen's influence on literature and how we read and understand and tell stories has been enormous. The common nursery fairy tale, gives the framework for most of our grown up stories not to mention dreams, hopes, understandings, beliefs in the impossible...

We grow up believing the impossible: girls become princesses, ugly ducklings become swans, the wicked are punished, the good triumph, animals can talk .... such faith is instilled in us in the sometimes dark, sometimes sad, sometimes frightening world of Andersen. 

SHIRT OF FLAME: HAPPY BIRTHDAY, HANS CHRISTIAN ANDERSEN: APRIL 2, 1805-AUGUST 5, 1875 “Yes, it’s quite true, Kay is with the Snow Queen and finds everything to his liking and thinks it’s the nic...

Which is your favourite Andersen story?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Springness in my step...Oh the possibilities

Sooooo - with almost 6 months break in writing and the thrill of the Amazon Breakthrough contest a thing of the past I have ambled along and thought long and hard about writing. To be honest writing has been in my soul since as far back as I can remember. Writing for self in diaries and journals, being passionate about getting children to write, writing poetry and getting children to write poetry...the children's book which sat brewing in my head and heart for so many years which finally came to light. Yes I know that no publisher has printed my work...that's all about finances and politics....many have shown interest, but I just got tired of "pimping" my work.

I have been considering a Masters degree in the next year in the realm of children's texts. In addition I woke up this morning and thought that maybe I might start on another book (short/long/divergent/whatever). Hmmmm ideas are fluttering and rising up again. The difference this year is that I will write for the satisfaction and not for the end result of publishing and being in print. The crafting of the work and the joy of that - as much as sewing a quilt or building a model dolls house. Yes, with the syringa blossoms soaking the air, spring has breathed new inspiration. Huzzah!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Inside Outside Interweave we go...

I love conversations and watching how threads weave in and out. If we listen closely enough there are things connecting us all the time. I was just at the Hobby Shop on the corner (6 houses down from my house). I have spent the holidays working on building yet another dolls house for my children. Well actually, it's not for dolls, but for tiny rabbit families (the Sylvian Collection) which my children are enchanted with. The Best Beloved built the actual house. Finn (my big boy of 13 years old) built his own one alongside his dad. I took over the decorating and detail work (and I know that the job will never be finished because you can never have enough hand-stitched quilts and soft furnishings for you tiny houses can you...?).

Anyway, back to the idea of common threads: So I walked down to the hobby shop because I needed balsa wood to make the tiny window flower boxes. Got to chatting to the friendly proprietors and he asked the question "are any of your dolls houses ever actually finished?" So I laughed and said "no", because now that the tiny rabbit houses have been built, the children are "borrowing" the quilts and soft furnishings from their original dolls house and I will have to make more. To this he said "speaking of borrowing..." and proceeded to tell me that he is working on the latest "The Borrowers" movie set. I was amazed and so we chatted and found out that he is doing ALL the remote controlled work for the film. It is an English production, but they are using the Cape Town studios for this kind of work.

I LOVE SOUTH AFRICA!! We have so much talent and energy and there are exciting things happening all around us.

So there it is: I went from talking about "borrowing" the hand-stitched quilts to chatting someone who is working on the movie set of "The Borrowers", and I got a shot in the arm of pride and renewed confidence in this fantastic country and the people in it.

15 July - mid winter made glorious summer!

Today I read with great excitement that South Africa has launched its very own digital book publishing wing. After the journey with ABNA this last year and getting to know fellow authors who are looking at the digital publishing . This is such an exciting community and I have complete faith in this format. The possibilities are endless.  So have a look at our proudly South African option as Random House Struik goes digital .

Friday, June 3, 2011

2 June: There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven

As the seasons roll around, there is an unsettling in me - it always happens at this time of the year. In Cape Town I am conscious of the mild shift between seasons in a way that never happened in Kwa Zulu Natal. There we lived one continuous humid, lush season with spells of more or less rain. Here, we experience the dry heat of summer, into light-diffused autumn, then contemplative introspectively soaked winter, and finally the magnificence of our crisp, clear, colourful spring.

So now it is sometime towards late autumn - or perhaps it's already early winter - and that all too familiar disquiet is upon me like a shroud. I've come to accept it almost as an old friend who comes to visit each year.

                    "There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven" [Ecc 3:1]

Such a profound - and yet simple - philosophy.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Now through the looking glass we go...

The proof has been proofed and as of today "Edward Beaton and the Star in the Glass" by Caroline A.Raine is available in hard copy off

Looong sigh.... the journey is complete and the writing, submissions, printing and editing is over. It exists in the world and NOW stepping through the looking glass - from me looking in on a mysterious world of authoring - I walk in the beautiful garden of being an author in print. This is the beginning.

Join me in the garden...

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

3 May 2011: Don't you love it when the world around you narrates poetry?

Ezra Pound
Now as the winter rains begin in earnest in Cape Town, every morning on my drive to school I watch the wet trees and the last of the autumn leaves and I wish that there was a sister poem to Ezra Pounds "In a Station of the Metro" just for autumn.

In a Station of the Metro

The apparition of these faces in the crowd;
petals on a wet, black bough. 

Ezra Pound

The rich auburns of the maple and Plains Trees stand out against the black, wet bark of the trees.  Too beautiful. And then in 4 months I will be saluting the fine pink and lilac petals, poised so delicately against the wet bark. It is a beautiful, fragile world we live in, and we all need to be a little kinder to it, to each other, and to ourselves.

So be kind, to the world around you.
Be kind to others.
Be kind to yourself.