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Gang Roundup – March 2020

So, everyone, how are things going fighting Covid 19 in your part of the world?

You’ll have heard that Italy is one of the most shunned countries on Earth at this moment, and my region was the first where the virus appeared.

Weird things have been happening here. 

The alarm was raised two Sundays ago. On Monday, when I went to work, you might have thought an atomic bomb had gone off. The city was empty. I’ve never seen her like that. 
The main plaza was crowded with pigeons. No people around. Behind the Arena, I could hear my footsteps and bell tolling far away. It was eerie. 
The bookshop where I work never closed, but the university in front of us did. The street was so silent that it almost scared me. It was unnatural. 

Trains were almost empty too, even at hours when they are usually crowded.

I’ve heard from friends that people got into fights in the supermarkets over canned food and the police had to intervene.

It was craziness. 

Now things are snailing back to normal, mostly because people need normalcy. We are still under restriction on all social activities, and a lot of public places are still closed, but we are trying to react. 

The virus appears to be under control, and personally, I’m not too worried about it. What really worries me is the stop (which was total for a few days) in all activities, which is hurting a lot of business.

Let’s hope this will be solved soon. And I hope you’re faring better anywhere you live. 

Anyway! Let us go back to normal too!

Women in the 1920s

A quick, but quite thorough article about what it meant to be a woman in the US in the 1920s.
More of a reference than a true article, it is nonetheless a nice and quite varied point to start exploring the role of women int he 1920s, a subject that is often far more complex and faceted than we think.

The inter-war years: 1918-1939

Working women of the 1920s

Women had covered any kind of jobs during WWI, which had enhanced their ability to work and to provide for themselves and their family. But when the war was over, and men went home, they started to demand their jobs back, and any women who wanted to work was seen as a kind of enemy who robed men of their lawful jobs.
This article looks at the situation in Great Britain. As everywhere else in the Western World, women were dissuaded from working once they got married. Some laws effectively barred them from any kind of job once they had a man who could provide from them.

11 Things Women Couldn’t Do In The 1920s

Women of the 1920s

Although the 1920s were a time of great advancement for women, a lot of restrictions were still in place when the decade ended – and in some cases, these restrictions stayed long afterwards.
This is an illuminating list of things women still couldn’t expect to do in the 1920s, from serving on a jury to have access to public ladies’ restrooms.

I’ve heard and seen a few people on the net who wear vintage clothing in their everyday life. Some of them call themselves ‘Life Stylers’.
I don’t know whether I’d ever been able to wear 1920s clothing on a daily basis… though, why not? I’m quite fascinated with the idea.
As one of these people said, it’s about how you feel. He said, once you start, you’ll never go back.

Karolina Żebrowska is a Polish enthusiastic of fashion history. Her favourite period appears to be the late 1800 and the 1910s, but she’s knowledgable about most of female fashion history.

I stumbled upon her YouTube Channel by chance. I don’t even know how it happened now. Her humour and serious knowledge immediately conquered me. I also like that she’s very much involved into supporting historical accuracy in all fields. 

This video summarises what she often sustains. It is, quite sadly, a very realistic video. This is an attitude that I often see in novels too. And seriously, I laughed out loud when I first watched it. 

Here is also a new video she posted a few days ago to celebrate Women’s History Month

Sarah Plagues Her Stuff

March is always a very busy month for me because it comes right before April. and April means AtoZ Challenge. And there are a lot of other challenges I’d be sad to miss. So, this month ends up being one of the busiest of the year for me. 

Here’s what I’m planning to do.

The Frozen Maze

THE FROZEN MAZE by Sarah Zama - A Snow White retelling set in 1920s Germany - Ingeborg never thought she was losing anything. But when she goes back to the family estate, years after the end of the Great War, and she enters her father’s Maze, she starts to see paths she never imagined existed. One of those paths might lead her to a version of herself she never saw in the exciting but dazzling lights of Berlin.

First of all, my darling The Frozen Maze. I’d like to thank all of you for the support and the interest you’ve shown in my story. It means a lot to me. I’m not sure I can express how much. 

I wasn’t sure it was a good idea to start publishing when it is technically not finished yet, but your support tells me it was the right thing to do. It makes it more alive. More worth it. 

Yet, I’m planning to suspend the publication in April, for the simple reason that the AtoZ Challenge will be going on then. I’ll be already posting every day for the Challenge, and I think it might be a bit overwhelming if I kept publishing the serial too. 

But don’t worry, I’ll be back once the challenge is over – and maybe I’ll also have a chance to solve a few thorny issues I have with the plot. 

The AtoZ Challenge

AtoZ Challenge 2020 (badge)

So the AtoZ Challenge. Yes, I’m doing it again. No, I’m not at all confident I’ll be able to sustain it. My working schedule is becoming so crazy and unpredictable that handling a continuous commitment is becoming problematic. But I am going to try.

Besides, I have the challenge all planned up (which is more than I had last year) and I am writing the first drafts right now. My dream would be to have all the drafts ready before April starts, which I only managed once, but boy, was it fantastic!

Can you guess my theme? What do you think? 

Reading Ireland Month

Reading Ireland Month (Begorrathon) 2020 - Celebrating th eculture of Ireland

Reading Ireland Month is another tradition of my blog. I think I started it the same year as the AtoZ. Or many a year later. 

I haven’t been to Ireland for almost five years now and I really miss Dublin. So, reading about it makes me a bit less melancholy. But you can bet that as soon as things get better at work, I’m taking that flight!

In the meantime, if you’d like to join, head over to Cathy Brown‘s blog and start to jig!

Middle-earth March

In the last couple of years, March for me has also meant Tolkien’s month. Since I joined the Litsy reading community, and I went back to Instagram, I’ve been involved in a lot of activity related to Tolkien. And being March the month of the International Tolkien Reading Day, a lot of readers are eager to celebrate for far longer than one day. Me? I just can’t resist a challenge. What can I do?

So, I’m attempting a few photo challenges on Instagram, and I’m brainstorming ideas for a fitting celebration with a couple of different reading groups. I’m not sure how I’ll survive this.

Before the First Line

And lastly, there’s a project I’ve been thinking about for a while.

I’ve been writing fiction for the past 38 years. I can say that I’ve started writing stories right after I learned to write. Recently, I’ve begun to feel I want to share what I’ve learned. I’m trying to organise creative writing courses. Small things, mind you. Still, I want to do it. It’s something I feel. 

It is not proving to be easy, and certainly, it isn’t fast, so in the meantime, I’ve started writing about creative writing on my Medium space. You can read my articles here if you feel so inclined. I’ve worked in particular on a series of articles about the few things we should consider before we start writing a new project. I really enjoyed it, and I think it turned out quite well. So much so that I’m thinking about turning it into an ebook. 

Not immediately, though. The AtoZ is looming. But after that, I’m planning to publish this small guide. 

And talking about writing, I’ll soon be able to offer a new story. Short one, but one very close to my heart. 

Stay tuned!!!!

This is all for this month too. Take care! And have fun!


  • Kristin
    Posted March 9, 2020 at 01:43

    In my neighborhood things seem pretty calm. Last time I went to the nearby store there were no crowds grabbing stuff. They may be at big item stores. I usually stay home anyway, and the street is pretty empty with just a few people passing the house a day. I am not confident that whatever needs to be done, is being done as far as government response. I guess we’ll see eventually, one way or the other.

    • Post Author
      Posted March 9, 2020 at 22:53

      Staying at home is the best thing to do, for ourseves, our family and everyone.
      All of Italy will be red zone from tomorrow. Let us see…

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