Book Jacket

 

rank 369
word count 26416
date submitted 04.04.2010
date updated 27.06.2011
genres: Chick Lit, Popular Culture, Harper ...
classification: adult
incomplete

The Mental Pause

Rusty Bernard

The door closes and it's just me, my madness, Tam and his clipboard. Tilt your head and listen in till my heart is content!

 

I see myself as a bit of a chickliterer, or maybe henliterer, who drops bits of fluff and debris all over this site!

Rusty Bernard lives in Glasgow and pretends it is NYC. She has been abandoned by her libido, hormones and children but still has her own teeth and a hint of ginger hair!

In writing The Mental Pause I have deliberately and cynically rejected the idea of form and structure to create something so damaged and purposeless that I myself have been restored in the process.

The profound and sometimes hilarious absurdities of Rusty's rantings paint a collage of mocking and often twisted views which reject any rational belief in herself and the establishment.

How do we recognise someone who is suffering from depression and find a way to repair them before they resort to the ultimate relief?

Suicide!

 
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tags

angst, betrayal, chick lit, comedy, coming of age, drink, drugs, family, funny, glasgow, humour, menopause, mental health, mentalpause, reflective, wo...

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447 comments

 

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LuvingSolitude wrote 1114 days ago

Rusty
Love your book! It's hilarious and really quite easy to relate to.
Chapter one is a very good introduction, filled with humour that urges you to read on and find what other jems are hidden within, at first I was confused about the paragraph at the very end regarding how Tam was 'thinking' of her, but then I realised it was just the MC's interpretation of what she thought Tam was thinking...very clever.

The reference you made to Keats cracked me up, and when you think of it, was the MC says could very well be true...I've never considered linking a 'droop-headed flower' of 'strenuous tongue' pr a 'wealth of globed peopnies' to erective dysfunction....but I think you may very well be on to something here..

Chapter three: This is an excellent chapter, you've done a wonderful job of conveying depression and how it affects not only the person suffering from it, but those around them, as well as how it can make even the easiest things seem like an impossible task (making tea)..this chapter is one of my all time favourites!

My imagination was a means of escape and I would drift away into a world where I DID not have to share my knickers.... Missing the Did, I love this sentence, it shows the desperation of her thoughts in regards to her situation (s), the imagination can be a great tool in dealing with troublesome thoughts, but still doesn't help deal, which I think is what is great about this chapter.

Chapter 4: Having A shower became a monstrous issue.... missing the A. Once more, this simple sentence further enhances the weight of the MC's helplessness in chapter three, not only is it impossible to make tea, but doing everyday chores seems to suck the life out of you, and taking a shower seems to be an effort that isn't really worth it, your insight into creating such a plausible, well rounded story is incredible.

Chapter 5: Another of my favourite chapters, I could picture Tams' expression so clearly when the MC started talking about her period...classic.
Where was I? Oh yes, my periods have recently become/ been a bit of a problem. You don't really need both of these words here, it takes away from the excellent flow you have going with the rest of the book.

Chapter 7:
"Mood Swings"
Fuck Off
Haha, I love it! Two simple words and I cracked up....brilliant.

I love your MC, she's witty, clever, sarcastic, slightly crazy and has a way with words, as do you.
The plot, and POV of this is very insightful, if it had been done any other way I think it would have lost the humour, truth and importance of what the MC is/has been going through, you have an excellent ear for flow and great insight into how people can think, I've loved this up until the seven chapters I've read and am sure I will love the rest, will read more at a later date:)

Bron
The Endless Awakening

CMTStibbe wrote 1091 days ago

I enjoyed chapter 1 of The Mental Pause enormously. Tam Mullaney, with a hint of an Irish accent, evaluates a patient. His thoughts are geared towards benefits and the likelihood of pretence and the patient, apparently feminine, mentally estimates his clothes and demeanor. Chapter 2 takes us on an extremely interesting journey of a calculating patient’s thoughts on procreation, Keats and his erectile dysfunction, (although I can’t help wondering if she has a black-bag fetish) and her sentimental detachment during sex. Tam’s wide-eyed reaction to most of this one-sided conversation is well structured and humorous. There are some extremely clever examples of word play in this section and I enjoyed reading it. Great flow and fast pace. Highly starred. Claire ~ Chasing Pharaohs.

Nanty wrote 1143 days ago

The Mental Pause.
Chapter 1 - I read this passage twice, not because I didn't understand a reader has been given full access to the MC's thoughts, but because of Tam's responses. I wasn't sure if he was actually speaking or if he in turn is thinking, but then realised his responses are the MC's interpretations, I think. Tam's perceived cynicism regarding the MC's motivations on how she'll play the game sound very real.
'then' used twice in two consecutive sentences in the second paragraph - I really don't think you need 'then' at all, the prose is more fluid without.
Chapter 2 - So much to love in this chapter, eg: 'I read that in Wikipedia so it must be true.'Very amusing. I wasn't sure if the MC was being ironic or if she really believed it, but reading on discovered this is an intelligent woman with more than a touch of irony in her observations. The wry comments about Keats and the response that could have, perhaps should have been made, entitled 'Owed an Orgasm' was not only funny, it was clever. The exchange of sexual favours as currency to be spent when needed and Tam's eyes popping out of his head - maybe he's not the giver, are wickedly funny examples.
Chapter 3 - Despair, beautifully laid out in the prose, 'I could hear the sound of someone crying in another room' etc, encapsulates the awful depths of deep depression. The catalyst that began the slalam isn't mentioned at this stage, though I have no doubt this will be forthcoming in future chapters.
't' missing from transform.
Wit and truth, shine from fluid prose in the chapters read, which I have no doubt is continued throughout the book. A difficult subject, one not truly understood by those of us fortunate enough not to have suffered such a condition, is made accessible to the point one learns while being entertained by the cracking pace and sometimes acerbic humour of an accomplished author.

Nanty - Chrys!

Mark Kirkbride wrote 1133 days ago

Lovely opening. Made me laugh out loud. Brilliant voice. And lots and lots of spot-on observations.

MC Storm wrote 349 days ago

Hi Rusty:
Read through the first couple of chapters and what a hoot. It appears you use humor to cover the pain. I couldn't wait to turn the pages. The way you convey depression is brilliant!
I haven't a negative word about the book; it is emotional and very well written.
High stars.
MC
Exposed

Seringapatam wrote 375 days ago

Rusty, Its a great shame you are not on this site pushing your book. Its a very well thought out piece of literature that only needs some pushing now. Great use of the emotions and excellent mix of the books premise with them. You have a good descriptive voice and its clear to see you have put so much into this book. So well done and I think its a cracker and with a bit of tweaking it could go far.
Sean Connolly. British Army on the Rampage. (B.A.O.R) Please consider me for a read or watch list wont you?? Many thanks. Sean

superostah wrote 450 days ago

This is a very interesting idea you have here, it almost reads as a blog, but with some real substance hiding behind the lack of structure and narrative. I'm really enjoying what I've read so far, but am not entirely certain how to comment on it.
All the same, I'll need to read more. Adding you to my watchlist and will be back to read more as time permits. High stars!

Bea Sinclair wrote 685 days ago

Funny, entertaining and a real tonic. High stars and backed.

rikasworld wrote 691 days ago

I really enjoyed dipping into this. Reading the first chapter I wasn't sure what I felt, except that you're probably right about the soppy Keats. It didn't seem to need reading chronologically so I dipped in here and there (it gets boring when the beginning gets reviewed all the time, I reckon). Particularly enjoyed the childhood bits, shoes and schools and dad's appalling ritual of lining up the kids, the old reptile and the escape from being taken to live with her. Love grabbed by the pixie - very Terry Pratchett as a joke. I got a real sense of the place and time. Then I dipped back into other chapters, enjoyed the bloody nuisance joke. I think I share the hair problems! Incidently, there's a 'never' missing when you say you never felt the dad's behaviour was your fault. Wish I had time to read the whole thing. It's fun to mock bad things, mine was written after lots of friends and relatives having their wing pulled off by senility! Really enjoyable read. I will dip in again, so keeping it on my watchlist for the future. Six stars.

Karamak wrote 702 days ago

Hi Rusty, laid up in bed recovering from a recent hysterectomy your title caught my eye!! This is a great curl up and read book really loved it. Highly stared,all the best Karen x Hope you will take a look at my book Faking it in France.

A G Chaudhuri wrote 793 days ago

Dear Rusty,

My eyes actually popped out at the end of chapter 1 and I had to get down on my knees and grope around in the dark before I finally found the squishy little things. But then, I had trouble putting them back in again because I was laughing hysterically.
Poor Keats… God rest his soul.

By the time I read the opening question of the third chapter, I began to suspect the identity of Tam. I must say that this is a very novel way of story telling. You’ve earned my respect with your quirky sense of humour. It is said that the world’s a better place when you smile. And that when in misery, one should look at others who are even less fortunate.
Your story captures the very essence of these timeless thoughts.

I look forward to reading the rest of this remarkable account.
Till then, here are six shining stars to brighten the day, my friend.

Best regards,
AGC


Dianna Lanser wrote 817 days ago

Rusty,

You do have a gift to pull words together to entertain and you are incredibly funny. Experiences from life are told with a very personal descriptiveness that compel the reader on. Bear in mind, most reviews are very subjective and mine is not any different - this is only my opinion. I wonder if chapter one is the right chapter to start with… I know you want to grab your reader, and sex is an always an instant attention getter, but to tell you the truth, that’s exactly what it came off as to me - a ploy to get me to read. I was actually more impressed by what you had to say in chapters two and three. In those chapters you were able to get to the heart of the matter - that despite all you have been through, you still have your wonderful sense of humor. However, I hope you are not using your “comic relief” to mask the pain of your past. I only read through chapter three, so I don’t know if you have come full circle to healing. I hope you have.

You are a wonderful writer. I am impressed how you are able to voice your observations of life with clarity, truth, and wit. I believe you are a very strong and special person. Highly starred. Best wishes with this work!

Dianna Lanser
Nothing But The Blood

JD Regan wrote 1059 days ago

Hi Rusty

This is your BHG review based on 2 chapters. This is merely my opinion so please feel free to discard or use at will.

Pitch: Uninteresting. It leaves me confused and offers no insight into the story. What do you mean by Baby Boomer? Needs to tell me more about the story and be catchier.

Chapter 1: Love the voice of the piece, her humour and pragmatic approach to her condition. I have a few major problems with it though. Who is she, where is she and what is she doing? More importantly, does she have a name? Lose the "hello" and the OMG at the beginning and go in with the Imagine. The first bit is merely a distraction. First part is her and what she thinks of herself. Derogatory and gives a keen sense of her negative side with a bit of 'I'm not really worth the effort'. Then we introduce Tam. So he is Irish with a keen dress sense but who is he? We know that he is there to evaluate her but for what? A tax return, a medical condition or even a bank loan. The next bit confuses me completely. Previously the Italics indicated that Tam was speaking but the second time around it was her thoughts. It made me think that this is what Tam was saying to her and left me very confused. You need to choose a style and stick to it. The writing itself is brilliant but you are rushing to get to the action. Slow down and draw us through the story.

Chapter 2: Again, very confused. We have no clue as to why this woman is talking about sex. You've gone from having her evaluated to talking about sex? Am I reading about a mental health issue or an interview for a porno? There's no continuaty here. No interaction between the characters either. It's very disjointed. Do shrinks ask people about sex when they are completing a psychiatric evaluation? I wouldn't think so unless they were being assessed for nymphomania. There isn't much of an evaluation either. We have no sense of purpose or time. Again, you're in too much of a rush to say something and I've got to tell you, having some speak about sex for no reason tends to put me off. It screams 'I don't really know what to write so I'll go for the shock value'. What a waste of talent. And you have that in spades. The observations are hilarious and really made me laugh.

opening - does it draw us in, does it set the scene, does it make us want to read further?
Left me very confused and uninterested. I have no idea where, who or how or even what. Needs to be expanded on more to give a better demographic.

Point of view -has the right view been used, continuation of the POV thoughout, does each character have it's own POV?
1st Person is so intimate and focused. I love how you write from her point of view but you do so with no purpose. Even if this is the intention, we need to know more about the other parts of the scene. It sounds as though you are writing purely from inside her head which is fine but then don't bring in another character. I think that this style would be better suited to a diary style which is completely one person driven. Asking a patient to keep a diary is a basic technique for a shrink.

narration - Description of location, scene, characters actions, indication of characters thoughts, backstory.
None of the above. All I have his her thoughts and nothing else. For all I know she could be in the moon.

Plot - Is the story believable, does it flow from one point to another nicely, exposition, clarity?
If there's a plot it is hidden because I can't see it. There's just a few hints at a subtext and the ramblings of a nutter. Or is she a nutter?

genre - does the story conform to the genre, ie, if it's billed as a thriller does it read like a thriller?
No idea what genre this is. It needs more work before it can be properly tagged.

Flow/pace - Is it too fast or too slow, does it have the right impact in the correct places, where has it gone wrong?
Too fast. So in fact, that I can't even see it move. We need more exposition and whole lot more introduction.

characters - are they real, do they react in a realistic way, do they have their own voice, style?
For all her problems comes across as strong, independant and feisty. She may not be able to control what's happening to her but she is sure as hell going to fight it. She is aslo sarcastic and observant. She is a well rounded character with a clear and strong voice. Can't say much about Tam though.

Sentence level - grammar, repetitive structure, wordiness, unneeded phrases, punctuation, spelling,
Impeccable. Love the style of writing, the tone and the structure. There are a few words missed out here and there but the wording itself needs no work. You just need to add more for the back story.

Dialogue - does this make sense, is it real, is it necessary, can we understand a character?
There is no real dialogue which reinforces the diary style.

Originality - Have I read something similar before, is it unique, is it a new take on a current theme?
Completely original. An excellent take on mental health. Something that very few people would do and I applaud you for it.

Publishability - is there a genre, is it polished enough, how much work does it need?
There is a market for it but it's no where near ready. However, once the flaws are ironed out this has very chance of being published, for the humour if nothing else.

overall - This story has bags of potential. You have a witty and fun yet seriously deluded individual. I need to know about her before I can really care about her and definitely need to be given some form of time and space. Makes me wonder if Tam is another figment of her imagination. An imaginary companion.

I'm sorry if my review has been negative but you have a fantastic story that is hidden away. I equate it to a diamond. At first all you have is a lump of rock. You need to study and understand the rock's flaws before you can cut a perfect diamond worth millions. One wrong cut and the rock is worthless. I would love to see this story polished up. I have great hopes for it.

Kind regards
JD


ClaireLyman wrote 1060 days ago

Hi Rusty,

This is your BHCG review - please feel free to take anything that's helpful from my comments, and ditch the rest!

Title: I love it! I presume it's a play on "the menopause" - which works even better with an American accent!

Pitch: I think this needs some work - I like the first sentence of the short pitch, but "Tilt your head and listen in" may be all you need rather than "till your heart is content". (I assume you mean your heart, rather than my heart - easy to make these mistakes!) The longer pitch is good, though - I like the phrases "precipice of insanity" and "abandoned by their hormones" I would get rid of the exclamation mark, too - sorry if that's too nit picky!

Voice: I really like the voice - I can hear this woman chatting, it's really natural, not at all pretentious, great characterisation through voice.

Spelling/punctuation: There are a few bits to tidy up here. There are not always as many commas as I would use, but then again I think that sort of works with this kind of voice. Typos I picked up were, page 1 nowhere should be one word. somewhere in the first or second chapter (can't find it now) there is a comma after "about" that shouldn't be there, and towards the end of chapter 2 "you look as if you your eyes" I think you need to delete "you"?

Plot – opening, narrative flow/momentum

I'd personally delete the first sentence and go straight in with "imagine..." Straight away we get to know here, we know where she is, though not necessarily why (which in my opinion is a good thing). You had me chuckling a couple of times with your observations

"Sex - female, oh I see what you mean" - that's funny because it flips the very unfunny usual joke on its head - "sex, yes please, oh I see then female".

I think the narrative flow is good. It kept me reading. When you mentioned being sectioned, it made me wonder if this was really a possibility or just in her head - and if so, why would she be in danger of being sectioned? what has she done? Wondering about this kind of thing is what keeps me reading.

I'm not sure about "plot" as such, though - I think this is more what is says on the tin - a series of reflections. Which can definitely work, although I do wonder if you could have some kind of thread where it's all leading. Kind of like the TV series Friends - every episode can be watched on its own and it's funny, but it has a storyline running through the whole thing too. (Maybe you do that and I haven't read enough to notice, in which case ignore me!)

Characters/Characterization

This is great, well achieved through monologue. It also means she can describe herself and throw in backstory.


Style
this isn't what I usually read, but it does work!

Originality
I've never read anything like this before, and I like it. I'm not sure much is being published about this stage of life - but then again I don't usually look for it... The format and tone makes it quite original.

Publishability
I think it works, and I can see it as a fun birthday present for the right person!

Katherine Edwards wrote 1069 days ago

I'm still chuckling-Keats reference - priceless! Well done and good luck. Katherine Strata

J.Kinkade wrote 1090 days ago

Rusty, you kill me. I don't think I've ever laughed so hard reading a book. Soon after the laughter, you bring me back with some tidbit of sobering reality. Waves of emotion spill through me as I read your book. Brilliantly paced with a unique presentation, this is BOUND to be a huge hit. Not to mention a movie. SIX stars and will back in 24 hours. How could I not?

A fruitcake without the alcohol? Still a fruitcake.
I imagine you must know lots of heavy unattractive people.
I just thought she must be talking about the laundry.

So many gems here. A real winner, Rusty!

CMTStibbe wrote 1091 days ago

I enjoyed chapter 1 of The Mental Pause enormously. Tam Mullaney, with a hint of an Irish accent, evaluates a patient. His thoughts are geared towards benefits and the likelihood of pretence and the patient, apparently feminine, mentally estimates his clothes and demeanor. Chapter 2 takes us on an extremely interesting journey of a calculating patient’s thoughts on procreation, Keats and his erectile dysfunction, (although I can’t help wondering if she has a black-bag fetish) and her sentimental detachment during sex. Tam’s wide-eyed reaction to most of this one-sided conversation is well structured and humorous. There are some extremely clever examples of word play in this section and I enjoyed reading it. Great flow and fast pace. Highly starred. Claire ~ Chasing Pharaohs.

David D. Vrotney,sr wrote 1093 days ago

I told you I'd look @ your work, and I did. But I must tell you that I'm only interested in no-fiction. Of course, I guess there is a lot of non-fiction in your book, but I just can't do 39 Chapters. I hope to make some comments next time. God bless you!!!

GriffinsMustFly wrote 1102 days ago

The first chapter was very confusing to me...I suggest you define clearly who's talking in each paragraph, whether it be the MC or Tam. However, even though it's difficult to determine who's talking, the voice is very compelling and very clear, and I sense humor here :D Keep that, because comedy can be the most difficult of all genres to write, and if you have skill in that area, you have potential to go far.

Eunice Attwood wrote 1104 days ago

I have placed your book on my WL until I get a free spot. Eunice

Aurora87 wrote 1108 days ago

Wonderfully creative idea and a fabulously witty, very funny narrative voice. I have read chapter one, am eager to read more, though have definitely backed in the meantime.Simply superb! Best wishes, Emily (Traps and Topaz)

John Hartig wrote 1109 days ago

3rd paragraph: "I can just imaging them running..." probably "I can just imagine them running..."
I do that kind of stuff too, especially when I change a sentence and forget to change a previous part of it.
_________________________________
As to my reading so far: interesting perspective from a woman's "mental window". Good commentaries on social values and mores. Your character questions everything, a sure sign of an active and intelligent mind. I'll put you on my shelf! I used to read melancholy poets like Keats and Shelley. Sigh! Life is too short ot be morose though.

Doctor Reading wrote 1110 days ago

Chapter 3

What a true representation of hitting the big 40. I think it may have been a little more convincing if you would have added a mirror and some dialogue. Kind of like talking to oneself and then answering back. Still, I love the flow and you nailed it about transitioning from one age to another.

Mark

Doctor Reading wrote 1110 days ago

Chapter 3

What a true representation of hitting the big 40. I think it may have been a little more convincing if you would have added a mirror and some dialogue. Kind of like talking to oneself and then answering back. Still, I love the flow and you nailed it about transitioning from one age to another.

Mark

Jannypeacock wrote 1110 days ago

This is brilliant. The title is great and it continues on the up from there. I was laughing out loud at just three sentences in and I continued to giggle the whole way through.
I don't quite know how you did it...it reads like a blog but has the finesse of a polished novel...whatever your secret it certainly works.

Love it!

Ariel Du Plume wrote 1110 days ago

I like this!

Verse_Artiste wrote 1111 days ago

Well, this is certainly different. I am the right sort of age to relate to your MC and on certain levels I do relate to her. I suppose we've all had moments of rambling reflection such as this and you have put it into context well. You write well and although there are a few typos, they don't interfere with the reading and will be easily fixed when you edit. I've nothing new to add to the comments you've already received from others. I'll give this a good star-rating and will read more later. I will also give it some shelf-time whwen I next change my selections. (Probably in a day or so. If I forget, feel free to remind me.) Good luck with this.
LIlian.

Rachael Cox wrote 1112 days ago

Very entertaining and thought provoking philosophy! I loved your flow and voice, it was very easy to read and kept me intrigued.
I really enjoyed what I read
Best of luck
Rachael
Dreamscape

mrsdfwt wrote 1114 days ago

Rusty,
I enjoyed your narrative and had a few chuckles.:) It takes courage and wit to divulge one's life in such detail, and you did very well.
Best of luck.
Maria
"Dark of the Moon"

LuvingSolitude wrote 1114 days ago

Rusty
Love your book! It's hilarious and really quite easy to relate to.
Chapter one is a very good introduction, filled with humour that urges you to read on and find what other jems are hidden within, at first I was confused about the paragraph at the very end regarding how Tam was 'thinking' of her, but then I realised it was just the MC's interpretation of what she thought Tam was thinking...very clever.

The reference you made to Keats cracked me up, and when you think of it, was the MC says could very well be true...I've never considered linking a 'droop-headed flower' of 'strenuous tongue' pr a 'wealth of globed peopnies' to erective dysfunction....but I think you may very well be on to something here..

Chapter three: This is an excellent chapter, you've done a wonderful job of conveying depression and how it affects not only the person suffering from it, but those around them, as well as how it can make even the easiest things seem like an impossible task (making tea)..this chapter is one of my all time favourites!

My imagination was a means of escape and I would drift away into a world where I DID not have to share my knickers.... Missing the Did, I love this sentence, it shows the desperation of her thoughts in regards to her situation (s), the imagination can be a great tool in dealing with troublesome thoughts, but still doesn't help deal, which I think is what is great about this chapter.

Chapter 4: Having A shower became a monstrous issue.... missing the A. Once more, this simple sentence further enhances the weight of the MC's helplessness in chapter three, not only is it impossible to make tea, but doing everyday chores seems to suck the life out of you, and taking a shower seems to be an effort that isn't really worth it, your insight into creating such a plausible, well rounded story is incredible.

Chapter 5: Another of my favourite chapters, I could picture Tams' expression so clearly when the MC started talking about her period...classic.
Where was I? Oh yes, my periods have recently become/ been a bit of a problem. You don't really need both of these words here, it takes away from the excellent flow you have going with the rest of the book.

Chapter 7:
"Mood Swings"
Fuck Off
Haha, I love it! Two simple words and I cracked up....brilliant.

I love your MC, she's witty, clever, sarcastic, slightly crazy and has a way with words, as do you.
The plot, and POV of this is very insightful, if it had been done any other way I think it would have lost the humour, truth and importance of what the MC is/has been going through, you have an excellent ear for flow and great insight into how people can think, I've loved this up until the seven chapters I've read and am sure I will love the rest, will read more at a later date:)

Bron
The Endless Awakening

kenny hill wrote 1114 days ago

Hi,

I have to confess, when I read your pitch, I wasn't instantly enthused. However, I floated through the first two chapters, as easy as slicing soft butter. I read the first chapter twice, and marvelled at the rawness, the candour. Ostensibly, the tone is humorous, but what an undercurrent ! Gritty, almost dark.

The second chapter is glorious in its truth. And as a reader, the truth can be painful ! I read it, and I thought - you've captured it, and conveyed it. I am impressed.

One point - in the first chapter, you launched suddenly into another perspective, I think, when you described the thoughts of the interviewer, though this is not clear. This seems to be at odds witht the flow, and though well written, may be superfluous.

I'm no literary critic, but I think you're a fine writer. You've written an observational book, and those observations are witty, sharp, and above all else, carry a fundamental truth, which, through masterful story telling, is tinged with deep sadness. But that's just my opinion, for what it's worth.

I have six starred this, and shall back it shortly, without fail. Also, I shall read on, and comment more, if I may.

Take care,

kenny Hill

Ruth Hannah wrote 1115 days ago

I have added to my WL - will be back to comment further.
Ruth
A New Day

silvachilla wrote 1120 days ago

Hi Rusty

The Mental Pause, good title. Like the cover too :)

This is, in my opinion, well written. I like introspective writing, so it suited me down to the ground. I read up to chapter 4, and I liked the way that the chapters were headed. I didn't get it at first until I got to the end of chapter 2, when I realised she was talking to Tam. They were questions from him right?

Like the humour, the whole thing about sex...so true!

I got from the end of chapter 1 that she had obviously done something to warrant her being there from Tam's observations, so I'll read on to find out what!

Starred and will back soon

Silva

Old Knowledge wrote 1121 days ago

It's on my watchlist. Please bear with me as time is limited.

Crispy wrote 1122 days ago

Hi

This is a brilliantly observed piece of writing, with a wry opinion of life. Very enjoyable and amusing to read, but I would have to agree, also very clever. I was also impressed with the metaphors in Keats poems and potency, or lack thereof.

I look forward to reading your comments on Marking Time.

Good luck
Crispy

Andrew Keeton wrote 1123 days ago

This is very funny and comical, I was very pleased with what I have read so far. It shows that you really thought about what you were going to say before saying it as this is wonderufl and very well thought out

Freya Pickard wrote 1123 days ago

This really made me laugh. I got inside the woman's head straightaway - oh dear, is that a bad reflection on me? The way you've captured the stream of consciousness is perfect. I've only had time to read 2 chapters but I will come back and read some more as soon as I can. Backed and rated.

HemArvind wrote 1124 days ago

YAY, managed to get round to reading this. I've read the first three chapters and I've got to say, that the biggest strength in this is your narrative voice. It's light, breezy and cheeky - it sounds so natural and flows wonderfully. I've read books where authors try too hard with this style of voice and it just comes across as 'Urgh!'. But here, it has a natural charisma about it.
I also loved the humour in this - it's the sort of humour I like to read. I loved the 'I read it in Wikipedia' bit, At first I thought we were supposed to be laughing at her, in the same way we laugh at a daft person in a sitcom when they say something stupid and not realise it. But I've realised now that she was being ironic, for she comes across as an intellectual.
I also loved the play on words like 'I decided to call the priest daddy instead of father' - I laughed out loud when I read this. I also thought the comment regarding the 'droop-headed flowers' was hilarious.
I'm going to bookself this, as I really liked it. If you get the time, you can look at my novel. I know it's a little difficult to find time for each request, so if you decide it's not your cup of tea, then I totally understand.
I wish you all the best with this!
Hemisha

Cat091971 wrote 1125 days ago

People's thought processes are always easier to read in hardcopy. Entertaining nonetheless. Backed and rated.

Cat
Twisted
Lies & Love

Textual Ribbons wrote 1128 days ago

Hi Rusty,

I think this is hilarious! Normally I don't like to read things that seem pointless, but it is such fun to listen to your narrator-- her view of the world is highly entertaining. The only thing that gave me pause was a slight error in the 2nd to last paragraph of Chapter One: "Are you ok, you look as if you your eyes are about to pop out?" I think you can figure out what's wrong there. ;)

Backed, and will come back later to read more sometime. Hope you can return the favor!

Jasmine
To Catch A Falling Angel

Chris Barraclough wrote 1128 days ago

Hey Rusty, just finished your first two chapters, very original and funny stuff! Don't think I'll ever be able to take Keats seriously again! No idea at all where this is going but looking forward to finding out :)

Cheers,
Chris

A. Zoomer wrote 1128 days ago

THE MENTAL PAUSE

There are plenty of insights here to appreciate. I hope Zoomers will read it. I would like a bit more structure to the first chapter. And the word "just" bothered me. The second chapter had an arc that i appreciated.
I will read on.
BTW I love the title.
Many stars assigned to the book and i will re-shelve it.
A Zoomer

C. W. Peickert wrote 1129 days ago

Good read! It was funny, entertaining, and witty! I like how spontaneous Tam seems to be but also intelligent as well. You reflected this well through your writing style. I couldn't help but read on! The things that were being said were so true and reflected how a lot of people think under different circumstances. Its always a good thing when a book interacts with the reader and touches on more 'touchy' of subjects. Not a ton of writers do this and when they attempt to, most of them fail miserably. BUT, I think you nailed it.

Overall, good job with this one! Very entertaining.

When you get a free moment, please READ, COMMENT, RATE my book as well. It would be much appreciated!

Thanks,

-- C.W. Peickert (Darwinian Haste novel)

traciella wrote 1130 days ago

Very interesting! It took me a chapter to realize what was happening and who Tam was. Once I was into it, it was fun - but also touched on deeper emotions that I wanted to explore further! Good job!

Jrestabrook wrote 1130 days ago

Sorry, I am a man and cannot help with the wallow in self pity- or whatever it is you are trying to portray.

Mark Kirkbride wrote 1133 days ago

Lovely opening. Made me laugh out loud. Brilliant voice. And lots and lots of spot-on observations.

bikerjob wrote 1134 days ago

- not a big fan of ‘that & had & has’... ruins the flow...eg

It really is remarkable that it has been about for so long...
It really is remarkable, it’s been about for so long...

...who think that the absolute purpose
...who think the absolute purpose

Every single person – thought you meant ‘single’ people

...without doing at least a bit of research first – too wordy the impact of the punchline is lost
...without doing a bit of research first

Again

People start having sex and all of a sudden it’s all drama and consequences
People start having sex and right away it’s all drama and consequences

...friends of mine being turned into
...friends of mine turning into

...astonishing to witness
...astonishing. – you’ve already ‘told’ the reader ‘ Watching...’

Sometimes ‘it is’ it is & other times ‘it’s’ it’s – pick one and use it throughout – I prefer ‘it’s’ – this is a monologue – you want the reader to believe you are literally ‘telling’ them the story – write is as you would ‘say it – I’ve – there’s – no one in Glasgow ever says ‘it is’ or “I have”

...why is it that so many people fall apart after participating in it. – lost your ‘voice’ here – how would you ‘say’ this to a pal ???
...why is it so many people fall apart after doing it.

The best thing about your writing is the ‘voice’ – it’s intimate – straightforward & TRUE – keep it natural – the odd clumsy sentence – rips the reader away – the ‘line; has been ‘written’ – the reader has ost the ‘conversation’ they were having with you.

Hope this helps.

A few lines on The Strathbungo Cellists would be nice.

All the best.

nana wrote 1134 days ago

Read 9 chapters; easy, funny and addictive reading!

bikerjob wrote 1136 days ago

I’m a fan of – it’s – not - it is – there’s – not – there is. You start this with ‘I’ve’ then drift... – pick one method then stick with it – it’s – it’s how people ‘speak’.

Your opening paragraph... 2 x all day – 4 x day(s) – & the reader is given the same information twice.

Oh My God! Imagine if your job was to listen to head cases like me. I’ve been with me every day for fifty-two years, it’s exhausting. When I need to get away, there’s nowhere to turn. If you happen to have me thrust upon you, you’d want to kill yourself. Poor bloke.

I hope you get what I mean... make every word earn its place in a sentence.

Stumbled over the odd word missing – nothing a good read thru won’t catch.

The take on ‘Ode to melancholy’ is brilliant.

When you discuss ‘sex’ – you get your ‘voice’ – the first two chapters are good but, not very original, read it all many times.

This is sharp, erudite and funny – the pace is unrelenting and this is the biggest problem for me. This is not a book for the fireside – more something to read on the train into work where you can catch a breath when you arrive at Glasgow Central.

I’ll come back to it.

silvachilla wrote 1137 days ago

watchlisted :)

Red2u wrote 1138 days ago

only read the first three chapters and love it! the hilarious way you describe sex ie garlic strange i am generally a humorous person yet i have written a dark book...go figure best of luck and will place on my self very shortly...

Pat Black wrote 1140 days ago

Hey Rusty! Enjoying the Mental Pause so far. This is all about voice, and it's a very strong one. I liked the bit of chat about the doctor having his trainies on to get away from the narrator. Strong theme of madness about this one - hopefully it explores the previous worlds of Pre-Mental Tension, too! Excellent stuff - I'll be back for more soon.

berseba wrote 1140 days ago

Rusty, I have read six chapters so far and oh I love this. It reminds me of Alan Bennett's Talking Heads, I can just see Maggie Smith or Patricia Routledge sitting opposite someone like, well, Alan Bennett and reading this script. It's sad yet witty and very funny. I can find absolutely nothing wrong with this piece and can't praise it enough. I hope there's a smart publisher out there who will take this on. Good luck. Marnie.
P.S. I was so carried away with praising your work I forgot mention two small errors. You wrote, "One of the first books I read Anne of Green Gables, you missed out the "was." In ch4. you missed out the "a" from "having a shower." Just small things but I thought you should know.

karamina wrote 1141 days ago

I love this. I'm Scottish (although have been in England for 15 years) so it's a wee taste of home - and it makes me laugh. I could pick this up in a bookshop and get lost for hours. As it is, I've been drawn in and I'll be coming back for more later. Your voice is fab. Love it!
Rachael xx