Ruthann Zooms from her stunning southern gothic home set within her Texas Ranch, surrounded by all manner of beautiful beasts and me (Natasha) from my wee home in a Lanarkshire village surrounded by green hills and my own menagerie of bairns, furry and feathered.
“There she is!” I yell as my monitor fills with this radiant redhead. She smiles and speaks her warm greeting. It’s been a few weeks since we could face to face without coughing and wheezing at one another!
Lips move. We’re both pointing at our ears like badly trained mimes—an impromptu game of charades. No sound. Well, there has to be something.
We go back to messaging and reboot the tech.
Voila!! This time there is picture and sound! Her infectious, warm metropolitan New York accent and my mixed Scottish dialect. I’m Glaswegian, but my accent has always been described as ‘posh’, a strange mutation since I’m from the roughest side of the city. She used to tilt her head in our earlier calls. I could see her translating my words in her mind. In the U.K., the domination of American movies and such, Ruthann’s is more familiar to my ears.
We do the friend catch-up and then get down to business. And it’s not long before we’re setting each other off in a frenzy of excitement as we share development ideas, new research, and talk of our muses. What are the characters of Delevan House telling us when their stories wake us up at night? It’s crazy how in tune that has become. Pieces alone, then suddenly we chat, and the other has the other piece, and it fits!
I was nervous about co-writing something as grand as we both envisioned. It’s so intimate to share the rhythms of a creative brain when it takes time to make sense of itself. Well, these two cerebral lumps seem to have some sort of creative line that neither Ruthann or I realised until we chatted more! Being both crafty knitters, that can be a tangle when merging patterns. But our ideas have been in sync. Funny how that can happen with someone you’ve never met, who was a stranger not so long ago. The roots of Delevan House are deepening.