Merry Christmas

Busy times keep me away from here, and most of my other internet interests as well. For now, I just want to wish everyone a…

Merry Christmas and may 2006 be a great year for all of us.

Knowing When to Move On

In August, I told you that I had joined a critique group. It was an exciting time for me because the group was small, and consisted of writers of children’s books. I imagined the feedback to be priceless, and the inspiration gained from this group to keep me on a constant writing high.

This was not the case.

Two of the members rarely posted, between them I’d say there were a total of half a dozen posts…none of them where crits, all of them were reasons why they would do the crits “tomorrow”.

Frustrating is not the word I’d use here, and I suspect these writers were actually hobby writers, who only wrote when there was nothing better to do. I never saw any of their work, so I’m only guessing. When a serious writer wants a crit, they want it yesterday, not in six months time. I know life is busy, I know that family comes first and I know that sometimes there just isn’t time, but not one crit in four months (from a crit group)…that is bad! Today, I left the group. I deleted my files, said thanks to the organiser, ignored the other two “participants”, and left.

Problem is, the Workshop I setup isn’t much better. Yes, I have received some wonderful feedback (on the first part of the story) but it’s just not happening fast enough because there are several more parts. Part 2 is sitting there, unread, and has been for far too long and I want to upload part 3, but what’s the use?

I need to find a way around this, and quickly. I could start my own crit group. That’s easily done, but I’d only want writers of children’s books as members, and I just don’t know enough people to make it work. *sigh*

Knowing when to move on is easy, knowing what to do next is the hard part.

Reaching for the Heavens

If you read my post of a few days ago, you’ll know what I’m referring to, but in case you didn’t read the post…after much procrastination, the Christmas tree is finally up.

It started out a lonely project, which is just not fun at all. However, my partner took pity on me and when I turned around and found him holding a decoration…it lit up my heart. My youngest son, appeared from nowhere (he lives at home, but we rarely see him anymore) and he helped as well. Now, this tree was not fussed over like it has been in previous years, but it’s up and glowing, and for me, that’s the important thing.

Until Christmas is over, you will not see much of me. There’s so much to do, and so little time to do it in. For that reason, I’d like to take the opportunity to wish you all the best for Christmas and may 2006 be a year filled with happiness, health, peace and publication.

Merry Christmas! 🙂

Spare Time

The way you define yourself as a writer is that you write every time you have a free minute. If you didn’t behave that way you would never do anything.
~John Irving

What’s it called?

What’s it called when 30 Lebonese beat up 1 Australian? Assault

What’s it called when 30 Australians beat up 1 Lebonese? Racism

What’s it called when the police ignore the first crime, but not the second? Discrimination

The people of Sydney know what I’m talking about. This has to stop.

Push and Shove

Yes, I had to give myself a kick up the backside in order to get started on the short story. The word count (to the right) is low but it’s better than a big, fat zero.

The recent high temperatures, and especially the high humidity, is knocking me around. All I want to do is laze around and sleep. It’s awful. Today, at work, the air conditioning is pumping (along with a ceiling fan) and I’m feeling somewhat comfortable, so I thought a good push and shove was in order. Who knows how bad it will be at home?!? Last night was so bad I couldn’t sleep – it was like 35 degrees celcius at 10pm and 27 degrees celcius at 2am. *groan*

Book Review: The Star of Kazan

The Star of KazanThe Star of Kazan by Eva Ibbotson is a young adult novel. The first chapter was excellent and pulled me right in, but I found the following few chapters a bit lacking. They all served a purpose but I felt it took too long to get to the point and my attention started to wonder. However, once the ‘set up’ was over and the real story began, I was drawn back into the characters and was held tight.

Warning: Spoilers may follow, so if you haven’t read the book but intend to do so, you may want to stop reading now.

Yet this post is to do with titles, and how they relate to the story. In the case of The Star of Kazan — which was a set of jewels left to a foundling who befriended an old, sick woman but naturally circumstances kept the girl and the jewel apart — I was greatly disappointed because the Star of Kazan played such a small role that I felt the title was misleading. Up to the very last page I expected the young foundling girl to end up with the jewel but she only ever set eyes on the thing once and she never saw it again. To me, this felt like a broken promise.

Sure, the title is catchy but I would have preferred the author to use a title that was fitted better, that didn’t leave me feeling cheated. Perhaps other readers don’t care about this type of thing, and to be perfectly honest I’ve never cared in the past, but on this occasion the title felt wrong. The title should have been connected with the foundling.

Overall, the title was misleading, but the story (after an extra long lead in) was captivating.

Christmas Wishes

If you could ask for one thing and one thing only for Christmas, what would it be?

Now, there are some rules involved:

1. It must be for you.
2. It must be an item that is wrappable; none of this “good health” stuff; we are being selfish here.
3. It must be reasonably priced; no cars or private jets allowed.

What is one thing you would love to receive as a present on Christmas Day?