I’m planning a couple day trips, largely influenced by where I want to go take pictures LOL We’ll be doing that as a family (Calgary Zoo, Drumheller, etc.). In addition to that though, my daughter is taking her first solo flight and going to visit her grandparents for a couple weeks. She will have a wonderful time; they live near the beach, which she loves, and will take great care of her. Jo and I have been trying to decide what we will be doing while she’s away. So far I’m coming up with nothing.
We have pets that would make it complicated to do something that involved leaving the house overnight or what not, but as much as we love Danica and will miss her, we’d like to do something special when she’s gone. No idea what that might be though.
One thing I plan to do a lot of is reading. Do you use a summer reading list? I never have, but I’m thinking about changing that this year…or maybe doing a book bingo thing. Our local library had it last year, if they aren’t continuing it this year I can make up my own card LOL Basically you got a bingo card with squares on it like ‘Read a book by a Canadian author’, ‘Read a book with a color in the title’ or ‘Read an autobiography’. That sort of thing. It could be fun.
So, summer reading. Do you do it? Wanna play bingo? I’m seriously thinking about it…in addition to trying to figure out what to do with two weeks while Danica is away.
For people who are subscribed to my newsletter this update post will have some news that you’ve read already. Bare with me (or is it bear with me?) though, there will be some stuff you’ve not read before too 🙂
First of all, Clarion West sent me their spiffy form rejection letter last week. I was disappointed, of course, but far less than I would have guessed. Truthfully, as much as I wanted to go to Clarion West (or Clarion), the idea of being away from my life and family for six weeks was a difficult one. It would have been tough on them, Danica especially, and I wasn’t sure I was actually willing to be that selfish, or what the cost for the people I love would be. Still, yes, disappointed. Maybe next year — Dani will be more independant then. We’ll see. We’ll see.
In the meantime, I keep writing. I entered the Whittaker Prize this year in an effort to give myself deadlines and also receive completely unbiased feedback on my work (since judging is anonymous and I don’t know the judges so they can’t recognise my style). I shared the story and poem I was submitting for the first round in my newsletter. The scores are in and I did better than I expected (74/100 on the poem and 85/100 on the story — surprising, I would have never guessed I’d score higher on the story than the poem.), now I’m looking forward to receiving my written feedback. I’m also working on my submissions for round two.
One of the prompts reminded me of a story I’d long wanted to write about Michael and Margaret. It’s set a long time before Sister Margaret but when it’s done I hope that you’ll be able to see the seeds of their future in its pages. It’s also meant to stand alone. Progress is going well on it, and it will make me happy to be able to submit an Aphanasian story for unbiased scoring and feedback. As for the poem…I’ve only a vague idea. We’ll see what comes of it. It is, of course, zombie related 🙂
Speaking of zombies, I will be doing the poem-a-day challenge in April. Sorta. My plan is to follow his prompts and write a poem a day, then after revision combine those poems (all zombie, of course) with the zombie poems I wrote based on Robert Brewer’s prompts in November and see if I can’t come up with a chapbook. I don’t know that I’ll do the ‘enter-the-contest’ part though. I doubt it.
Let me leave you with a short story about the kind of book I want to write. I was talking with my daughter about a book* she was reading and loving. We were discussing the storyline and one of the mysteries within. Danica said, “Well, that’s possible, but we think *insert spoilerific theory here*”. I said, “Oh, are some of your friends reading this series too?” she said no and asked why I’d think that. I said “Well, you said we think. That implies that you’ve been discussing this with other people.” Danica laughed and explained that no, when she said ‘we’ she meant she and the other characters in the book.
Think about that for a moment.
Those are the kinds of characters I want to write, the sorts of connections I want to make with my readers. Bravo Kelley.
*The Awakening by Kelley Armstrong. Danica loves what she’s read of the series so far. I, personally, enjoyed the first book in the series, The Summoning, until I realised there wasn’t going to be any resolution at all. I don’t like book series in which none of the books can stand alone.
Lastly, that picture? I just love it, and with the snow that has decided to return and cover my world with its beautiful but decidedly cold goodness I am truly longing for warmer weather and flowers.
This morning I had the following conversation with Danica:
Me: What do you want to do this afternoon? I’d like to do something together because pretty soon you’re not going to want to hang out with me anymore.
Danica: Aw Mom, I will always love you.
Me: I know, but that doesn’t mean you’ll always want to hang out with me.
Danica: Of course I will, silly.
This afternoon I had this conversation with her:
Me: Danica, want to go out for lunch?
Danica: No thank you, I’m playing Warcraft with my new friends
Sometimes it sucks to be right :-p
In other news, I have a newsletter done and sent out. It spills the beans about two of my pseudo-secret projects. If you’re not subscribed you’ll have to wait until they become a bit more official to find out about them. If you want to subscribe so you don’t miss out next time, click here 🙂
Now I’m going to go wrestle Danica off the computer and make her come walk the dog with me. Sunlight and fresh air are good things.
I am very addicted to Tim Horton’s coffee. Almost as addicted as I am to World of Warcraft. I always said I should take a camera with me on the walk to Tims (which I make at least once a day). There are three Tim’s within walking distance from my house, but my favorite is on 118th Avenue. It’s not that long a walk, about 20 minutes each way, but it takes me through the playground of the school I volunteer in, near the abandoned hospital that intrigues me (and is where Deadmonton starts) and through a small wooded park. I always see something interesting on my travels, but never have the camera to record any of it. Until this time.
I took the camera with me the other day, and managed to get a picture of this blue jay. I got a few other great pictures, including one of a squirrel who really didn’t want me near his tree and a magpie that was sitting at the very top of a giant pine tree, looking quite majestic.
This story, by the way, has nothing to do with the news I wanted to share today, but I wanted an excuse to post the picture, so there you go 🙂
So right, news. I’ve got some 🙂
Firstly, my poem, Fae, is in this month’s issue of Lorelei Signal. I love the illustration that Holly Eddy did for it. It’s very nice 🙂
Also, there has been a new review of Sister Margaret that I’m very excited about 🙂 Anna, of Genre Reviews said:
Is it possible for a story to be simultaneously grim and fun? Because this one pretty much is. In the spirit of urban fantasy, there’s equal parts intrigue and action, the battle against an evil vampire, and a plethora of folks living in a gritty reality. I loved Bayne, who isn’t really a sidekick but fills the quirky content nicely, and the plot twist at the end is a great one, unexpected but logical.
My last bit of news for today is that I’m going on vacation to San Francisco. Yay! We are leaving on Sunday and will be gone for a week. While I’m away I will be completely offline, I’m not even taking my laptop in order to force myself to not work, at least for a little while. I will see you when I get back though 🙂
I’ll leave you with a picture of Danica finishing up her ice cap from the aforementioned trip to Tims. Why? Because I think she’s awesome.