Wednesday 4 November 2015

Anna Nordeman

IWSG - Insecure Writer's Support Group for Wednesday, 4th November 2015

This is my twenty-ninth post for IWSG, written on 24th October 2015:

I continue to struggle with my schoolwork at the university and making ends meet on a low-paying job that does not cover the cost of living. 

But I am also making discoveries. I am enjoying the company of my classmates. A group of us, about three to five of us, have started eating cheap salads together when we get stuck at the university and have no time to go home between  a morning class and a late afternoon lecture. So we eat together and then sit and read together and discuss how to get through all of the asignments me must do in order to pass this term.  

It's fun. I am really enjoying this. It makes me feel young again. And I may be able to get through the work thanks to these budding friendships, my "study-buddies".We have started making jokes about our work and our teachers - and  we are laughing out loud together. I think this is something that I have been missing for many years. The feeling of being accepted for who I am without having to put on an act. They seem to like me for me

And one of our teachers has noticed that my study-buddies have started to be more daring about speaking up in class - in English. So maybe I am helping them with my jokes, in both Swedish and English.

The only problem is that these young people live in Linköping. They don't have to make a dash for the commuter-bus to Norrköping. But I discovered that one of my instructors lives in Norrköping. She's originallly from Australia and has lived the last 20 years in Sweden. We happened to meet at the bus stop after class and had great fun talking about the the books and films that we like. 

 She made me forget the time. I almost missed getting off at my stop.

Best wishes,

First Commenter:

Laura Clipson
My Baffling Brain


Wednesday 7 October 2015

IWSG - Insecure Writer's Support Group for Wednesday, 7th October 2015

Anna Nordeman

IWSG - Insecure Writer's Support Group for Wednesday, 7th October 2015

This is my twenty-eighth post for IWSG, written on 6th October 2015:

There is nothing more humbling for a wannabe writer than reading very, very good literature from the Literary Canon. I've decided to write a term paper on one of Jane Austen's novels, Northanger Abbey, and I am also doing a group presentation about  Ann Brontë's novel, The tenant of Wildfell Hall.

So much to read and write about, besides the daily struggle of making ends meet. 

My eleven year old daughter, Elisabet, had two free days from school last week and could accompany me to the university in Linköping. We rode the special campus commuter bus together and Elisabet got to meet my classmates and instructors. But Elisabet was too shy to speak English with any of them. And she almost went through the roof when we discovered that I had forgotten to pack her head phones the second day out. She used them on Thursday when we were in the group presentation class. She could look at her I-pad while the rest of us spoke English. 

But on Friday, she really needed the headphones again because it was a high-level lecture about grammar. Interesting for us students but super-boring for her. Lyckily, I could buy a pair of ear phones in a shop (Pressbyrån) that has everything from coffee to sandwiches to newspapers. (I thanked the shop-keeper profusely.)

We came early enough to stop by the office of the grammar-teacher, Emile Farmer, whom I have mentioned earlier on this blog. He's a charming, funny Brit who still only speaks just a little Swedish. When I tried to persuade my daughter to say something - ANYTHING - and in any language, to Mr Farmer, she said nothing and just looked grumpy.

(Swedish) "Han förstår svenska!" I said, " He understands Swedish."

"It's just not going to happen," replied Mr Farmer with a wry smile. 

Elisabet and I left Mr Farmer to continue his preparations for the lecture. And when it was time, we sat in the back of the classroom to not disturb others.

Afterwards, Mr Farmer said that Elisabet was "as good as gold", and that I had succeeded in making the experience as tolerable as possible for her with I-pad, ear-phones and a bag of chips.

"I've been doing this for thirteen years" was my last words to him.

Best wishes,

P.S. Sorry. No photos from our excursion to the university. I had my hands full.

First Commenter:


Monday 5 October 2015

Question of the month (5th October): Who would play you in a movie of your life?
Anna Nordeman





Who would play you in a movie of your life?

Question of the Month (5th October 2015)

Here is my answer to your question, Michael: 

I am not a famous person. If I do anything worth remembering in the future, it would  have to be an actress in the future playing me. I don't know of any contemporary actress who looks like me.

I like Reese Witherspoon, but I don't look much like her:


 Bildresultat för reese witherspoon filmer







Bildresultat för reese witherspoon filmer

 Bildresultat för reese witherspoon filmer


 Maybe Jodie Foster?



Anna and the king.jpg
Jodie Foster

Jodie Foster

Maybe if Jodie Foster dyed her hair mousie grayish-brown and put on glasses, she might look more like me than, let's say, Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman or Gwyneth Paltrow.

A headshot of Meryl Streep in the 1970s with her facing the camera with her right arm propping her head up
Meryl Streep

Nicole Kidman Berlin 2015.jpg
Nicole Kidman
Gwyneth Paltrow

Gwyneth Paltrow

I'm no beauty, but I think I have bright eyes and a winning smile.

But why would there be a film about my life? What must I do to become famous? I am not pretty or talented enough to become a famous actress. I don't want to commit a crime. Any achievement that is attainable within the remainer of my working life will hardly be awarded with a prize like an Oscar's statuette. And the third alternative is not something I want either:

UA93 path.svg
United Airlines Flight 93
Memorial to the passengers

I've just finished reading about the memorials to the passengers on flight 93 that crashed in rural Pennsylvania. (I am writing this on 11th September.) Those innocent people perished 14 years ago today, while trying to stop terrorists from crashing into the Capitol Building or the White House. 

Flight 93 was the only one of the hijacked airplanes that did not reach its goal. The other aircrafts did, the Pentagon and the World Trade Center were hit. The black box and GPS- and cellular telephone calls to loved ones from the passengers on flight 93 seem to indicate that they made an effort to stop the terrorists. The pilot, Jason Dahl, put the plane on automatic pilot to make it difficult for the hijackers just before they overtook the cockpit. The passengers got together and voted on trying to break into the cockpit with a food cart. They may have succeeded in breaking open the cockput and killing one of the terrorists, but not in time to avoid the crash. The plane plowed into an empty field in Stonycreek, Pennsylvania and all 44 on board died. But no one on the ground was hurt.

This was not the case at the Pentagon, where 125 persons in were killed besides the hostages on the airplane. And in and around the World Trade Center, 2,606 perished.

The South Tower is struck

Smoking Twin Towers

The Pentagon was partly collapsed

I don't want to be remembered for something like that. I want to live a long, happy and uneventfull life. And I am sure that all of those people trapped in tall buildings or taken as hostages on hijacked airplanes would have prefered that too.

Best wishes,






Read my comment about a young fire fighter named Stark. Here is a picture of the memorial to the fire fighters:


In a comment, Michael has suggested Anne Hathaway as a possible candidate if I succeed in becoming a memorable writer. She is such a good actress and looks good too! Yes, please! Yes, please!

Anne Hathaway i april 2014.
Anne Hathaway

Thanks so much for your input, Michael! I really like Anne Hathaway in the film roles that I have seen her, as The White Queen in Alice in Wonderland and as Andrea Sachs in The Devil wears Prada.

I want to be very clear about sonething: 

Yes, I do want to be remembered after my time is up. Even if I only live an uneventful life, I still want to be remembered by my family and friends. 

As we all do, I would have prefered all of the victims of 9/11 to have survived and been able to live out their natural lives. But nothing can change the fact that their lives were brutally ended; and I think they deserve every memorial they can get. They should be remembered. That is one of the reasons I have mentioned them in this post. I want them to be remembered as I remember my loved ones who were able to live normal lives. 

I also hope that I will at least be remembered by my own 'flock', people who once knew and loved or liked me.

First Commenter:

Lily Whalen
Notes from Innisfree

My Photo

Monday 7 September 2015

Question of the Month (7th September 2015) What's the best job you've ever had?
Anna Nordeman





What's the best job you've ever had? 

Question of the Month (7th September 2015)

Here is my answer to your question, Michael:

I wrote a long story about one of my first jobs, which made me stop and think about my career. Unfortunately, I have never had a job that I have even liked.  I cannot answer the question 'What's the best job you've ever had?' because I have never ever been happy being someone's employee. 

I had my own small firm for many years and worked as a free-lance illustrator for many different advertising agencies and some book publishers. But I don't feel very successful. The compitition was fierce and I regret even trying to make it in that branch. I wasted precious time that I could have used to do other things that have a more lasting value.

I am trying not to dwell too much on my past mistakes, because feeling like a failure drains the energy and psychic stamina that I need do what I am trying to do now, which is to just keep going.

I am trying to avoid setting up impossible goals that will only make me feel depressed when I fail, and instead, give myself small goals or 'baby-steps' to accomplish. So that I can feel good and pat myself on the back and still have enough energy to continue working.

Instead of writing about the best job I've ever had, meaning a glamourous and well-paying job, I'd like to say something about the very best 'job', meaning the very best 'role' in life that I have ever had or ever will have: being the mother of my children, Erik and Elisabet. Nothing at the employment office will ever top that.

Here is a photo from a visit with our dear friend, artist and designer, Forse Gnista, on 20th June 2015.

Pictured from left to right are: my son, Erik, Forse Gnista, Elisabet's friend Moa who lives next door at the farm, and my daughter, Elisabet. 

On the wall behind these four clowning friends hang the paintings of Forse's father, Erik Gnista. Just above Forse slightly to the left is Forse himself at age four or five, painted by his father when Forse was asleep. 

We had fun that day.

Erik, Forse, Moa and Elisabet

Best wishes,





First Commenter:
Mary Aalgaard 
Play off the Page 

Wednesday 2 September 2015

IWSG - Insecure Writer's Support Group for Wednesday, 2nd September 2015

Anna Nordeman

IWSG - Insecure Writer's Support Group for Wednesday, 2nd September 2015

This is my twenty-seventh post for IWSG, written on 30th August 2015:

I have already started my course-work at the university of Linköping, which means that I have spent the past week taking the free campus shuttle-bus to neighbouring town, Linköping. 

As I have mentioned before I am taking English 2 this term. I like my teachers. They are excellent. So far, I have met three of them, a very thorough and serious Englishman, named Nigel, who is an old aquaintance from earlier courses in English; and a new face, a very, very, very funny, strawberry-blond, bearded Brit, named Emile, for English Grammar and Language Studies. I first met Emile in the spring for my incompletes. (He could have been a stand-up comedian. He keeps us in stitches.) And then there's a very pretty Swedish woman, named Anna (who speaks better English than I do) for English Literature and History. For Anna, we are reading Shakespeare's tragedy, MacBeth. I may write my term-paper for her. If I choose a literary topic. Or for Nigel, if I choose a linguistic subject.

I am enjoying the lectures and seminars, but there is so much reading to do, so much work to keep up with.

And I am still working on my term paper for History 2. [Sigh].

And working part time as a telephone-interviewer. I will be working with that, this evening.

And I am also working slowly on restocking my jewellery-shops. My creative writing is on the back-burner this term. I need this teaching degree. I need a job. TIme is running out for me. Money too.

But I still want to keep in touch with Alex and all of you lovely people at IWSG. I still have hopes to finish a translation and send it off to a publisher here in Sweden. I still have hopes of writing something of my own, but it will take time.

Best wishes,

First Commenter:
Julie Flanders

My Photo

Wednesday 5 August 2015

IWSG - Insecure Writer's Support Group for 5th August 2015

Anna Nordeman

IWSG - Insecure Writer's Support Group for Wednesday, 5th August 2015

This is my twenty-sixth post for IWSG. 

Cajsa, born, 29th May 1999, died 9th July 2015

This is the very last photo of my first cat, Cajsa. My daughter, Elisabet, and her father, took Cajsa to the vet's, where she was put to sleep.

Cajsa was suffering from cancer tumors and, being already 16 years old, she did not have much strength to fight it. 

Cajsa was the mother of thirteen kittens in three litters. She was my dear friend, companion, inspiration and comfort. May she rest in peace.

Cajsa is buried on the farm in a grave next to her daughter, Sara, who died 6th February 2013.

Cajsa's daughter, Matilda (born 5th April 2011) is now my sole, cat-companion. 

Matilda, lounging on the windowed balcony

Matilda's daughter, Rosetta, spent three weeks with us this summer (4th-26th July).

Rosetta hugging and napping with her mother, Matilda.


Mostly, mother and daughter got along well:

with some bickering...

and making up afterwards.

Is this alright?

Eventually, in September, we will have a new cat, as Elisabet's own, little Vanessa, born in June. (She is the grandchild of the cat Anna-Lisa, Rosetta's paternal grandmother. Vanessa is Rosetta's cousin):

In spite of Elisabet's cat-fur-allergy, we are not quite finished with cats. I am not getting much writing done. Maybe I could write a cat story or two? Some day. 

Right now I really need to write an essay for my History course first.

Best wishes,

First Commenter:

Crystal Collier
Crystal Collier: Young Adult Author

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