Thursday, December 29, 2011


We're taking the time this week to sleep train our son. It seems to be going well. I'm hoping that this means I will be able to do more writing soon. All the thoughts in my head will get some sort of form. My one-liners will get expanded upon. My stories will get some editing and re-working. The thought of it is exciting for me. I'm hoping to make some progress in just a couple weeks. We'll see...

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


I have so many ideas.  I worry sometimes that I will never have the time to give them all flesh and form.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

October Update

I know it’s been a while since I posted on this blog.  It’s been a while since I’ve written anything.  I’ve been busy with my infant and toddler.  They are both doing wonderfully.  Keeping them interested and entertained takes up much of my time.

I have been at least thinking about my writing.  All that thinking actually had me inspired one day.  I couldn't do too much about it but make some notes, but I thought it was still productive.  I had ideas on how to change five different short stories.  If only I had the time to apply these ideas.

I've also come to realize what the problem is with some of my stories.  I think I'm good at creating characters and I like character driven stories.  My problem is that the plot often falls to the side; the plot isn't as thought out as it should be.  A good plot is important.  In a story that focuses on characters, they still need to do something or something has to happen to them to move them and the story forward.  Without causal events, they won't grow and learn.  Plot needs to be at the same level as the characters.

That's all I have time to say for now.  I hope to get time to do more than make notes, but at least making notes still feels like progress.

Monday, September 12, 2011

At Least I've Been Thinking

I haven't been writing.  I've been reading an okay amount (reviews will be posted on, which I think is an important part of being a writer.  One thing I actually think of as progress are some notes I made on a short story that I started years ago.  It began as an examination of a relationship between a man and woman, who were just friends.  The notes I've made make the woman's evolution more important and may perhaps give the story a slight feminist slant.  We'll see whenever I get around to the rewrite that includes these notes.

I'm also unsure about what to do with my novel.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

I Had A Baby!

This is my son, born on July 5th. He’s growing well. His sister is getting used to him. She likes him, but has to get used to not having Mommy’s attention all the time. I’m trying to find the balance between the two kids. Luckily, my husband is off for the summer and has been incredibly helpful. Even with my super helpful hubby, I don’t know when I’ll get back to blogging or writing. It’s not like he can lactate. Was that too much information?

Also, I’ve been watching a lot of television, having to feed the infant and not being able to do anything else while I do it, and I see Twitter everywhere. Should I join? I don’t know… Is that just too much work? I’ve been watching the news about Margaret Atwood versus Doug Ford and it’s apparently a Twitter war? Is it too much work?

Though I haven’t been writing, my stories are not far from my mind. I’ve come up with a new twist in a short story I’ve been working on. I’ve also been thinking about what to do with my novel. I’ve been thinking of giving it up, but that would make it third or fourth novel I’ve started and not finished. Even if I don’t think it’s good enough to publish, I think I should really finish it while I work on my short stories. It’s bee a while though, before I get to focus any time on writing. Hopefully sooner than later though.

Time to get the laundry before the baby wakes up.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Comma Cuts (& an Oxford comma poll)

Apparently there's a disagreement about comma use.  Are you a serial comma user?  Click the link below for a great comic about it and the original source of the contraversy.

Writer Unboxed » Comic: Comma Cuts (& an Oxford comma poll)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

"Pregnancy discrimination is on the rise" from Feminist Philosophers

I saw this post the other day and it scared me.  In case you haven't read it here already, I'm going to have a baby, really soon.  I don't live in the UK, but I can see how this could happen anywhere.

Pregnancy discrimination is on the rise « Feminist Philosophers

Thursday, June 23, 2011

You're Fired!

I wrote this a few days ago. It’s a bit of self-indulgent fantasy. Is it terrible I wish a certain someone was fired? I hope not. Though this is not the situation I’ve had to deal with, it did give me an idea for the beginning of a story. Can I make it into something more? I don’t know. I think it has potential.

“I have to say this, you’re fired.”

“What?” Angela couldn’t believe what she was hearing. How could they be firing her from her office? She ran things. She administrated everyone’s jobs for them. She kept the knowledge flow. She did all the difficult work. They would fall apart without her.

“Angela, what do you think we’ve been talking about for the last,” The young supervisor looked up at his wall clock, “30 minutes?” He couldn’t believe it had taken him thirty minutes to get this woman to understand that he was letting her go. Did she even understand yet? He wondered.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Yay Babies!

I reached over 10 000 page views on my other blog the other day.  It felt very milestone-esque.  It's been a long time blogging over there, but not as long here.  This blog is only months old and I wonder where it's going to go.

Do I have all the time in the world to find out?  No.  Why?  Because my second child is due in about 3 weeks.  I've reached the "any time now" zone.  So, if I happen to stop posting sometime soon and I don't come back for a few weeks (or a couple months), you'll know why.  Babies take up a lot of time and energy, especially in the beginning and I imagine it'll be even crazier this time since I'll have my gorgeous, energetic toddler too!

I'm going to try and get some pre-scheduled posts worked out, just so the blog isn't just sitting here.  We'll see though.

Let's Review: I'm going to have a baby sometime between now and July 6th.  I'm tired.  Good night.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Read it and weep: Couple struggles with 350,000 book collection

From The Toronto Star, there's a couple who have 350,000 books!!  They were saving the books from being burned, which is great and would have been my instinct too, but now it's overwhelming them.  If you live in Saskatchewan, please help them.  Click the link below for the full article.

TheStar Read it and weep: Couple struggles with 350,000 book collection

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

eReaders vs Books

Another great post from Brenna at Literary Musings.  (Click below for original post.)

Remember also that people are always upgrading to newest gadget.  For the Canadian readers, Kobo has a new touch screen ereader being offered at Chapters/Indigo.  So, I wonder, how much non-recyclable waste is being created.

Literary Musings: E-Reader Emissions: "Yet another reason to shop at secondhand bookstores. Via Slate"

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Keeping Your Writing From Being Repetitive

I found this blog...  It's basically making fun of the Twilight series a little every day.  It does so much of the time by using rules of grammar.  I happened to stop by today and see what I think is a useful writing tool.  If you're wondering if your writing is becoming repetitive, take a paragraph or two and turn it into a poem.  What words are your sentences starting with?  Are they all the same length.  Click the link below for the orginal post.  Below that is the very helpful illustration.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Shouldn't It All Be Exciting?

A great Thought for the Day from book agency blog, BookEnds.  You're whole manuscript should be exciting, tense, interesting, etc., right?  Click the link to see what BookEnds has to say.

BookEnds, LLC — A Literary Agency: Thought for the Day: "If you want an agent to read the middle chapters of the book because 'that's where things get exciting,' you should probably consider editin..."

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Say It Right!

I found this list at Literary Musings a few days ago.  I think it’s awesome.  I've often had my own name mispronounced, so I can see how helpful a list like this would be.  The original link is from Buzzfeed.  Enjoy!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Word Of The Week!

Two new words this week…

From In The Skin Of A Lion

Pelmanism (pg 189): A system of training to improve the memory; a memory card game where a pack of cards is spread out face down and players try to turn up pairs.

From The Dark Tower: Battle of Jericho Hill

Rictus (chpt 5): A bird’s gaping mouth; any open-mouthed expression.
It is used to describe Walter’s non-smile.

Learned any new words from your books this week?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The Battle Over Original Content

I found this while reading The Oatmeal today.  The Oatmeal is a comic blog run by a guy who makes fun of everything.  Some of it's really funny, some if is less so, it's almost all crass, but most of the time I enjoy it.  It's become so popular, there's even an Oatmeal book, which you can find on The Oatmeal site if you are so interested.

Below is a link, not just to an Oatmeal comic, but to a problem he is having.  Apparently, there's a website called Funny Junk that has Oatmeal comics all over it without any credit or link back to the original artist.  The Oatmeal is not the only comic site to have this problem.  Click the link below for more info.
What should I do about - The Oatmeal

I decided that I would check out this site before deciding anything.  On it I found a *rebuttal to The Oatmeal and any other comic that is claiming the same issue.  Essentially FunnyJunk is blaming its users , saying that they are the ones posting The Oatmeal and other comic images.  If you are so inclined to read them, some of the comments from the FunnyJunk users make The Oatmeal seem tame in comparision.

As someone who posts original work on the internet (though not comics), I found this interesting.  Of course, there's the big risk that there will be someone, somewhere, who will take your work without crediting you.  I hope that never happens, but it could.  So what should The Oatmeal do about  What would you do if someone took your work without crediting you?  Whenever I post a blurb or an idea I found on someone else's blog, I always link back to them and most times I leave a comment telling them that I've posted this link on my site.  Why pretend?  How does benefit you?

*Note: The person/people who run FunnyJunk need to proofread better.  Their letter is terribly written.

**Update:  Apparently, FJ sent a reply to Oatmeal, seen below the original comic and, of course, The Oatmeal has created a comic in response.

***Update:  Follow this link for the latest info,

Friday, May 20, 2011

A Peak at Real Life

My baby girl turned 2 on Tuesday.  (TWO!!)  She's giving a hug to her baby brother, due in early July.  The photo was taken last weekend by my brilliant friend, Kelly.  (Check out her website here.) 

Monday, May 16, 2011

Publishing and Fan Fiction

Pavarti has an interesting post over at her blog about whether or not it is okay to publish fan fiction.  I think Fan Fiction can be fun, not that I've ever written any... unless a high school assignment I vaguely remember, counts.  But it's not for professional publishing.  I think it can be a fun tool, to exercise your writing muscles.  Click below to see the original post.  What do you think?

Pavarti: Publishing and Fan Fiction - Oh My!: "In the attempt to not slam my head against the floor repeatedly I've decided to post this here. And then I'll slam my head against the floo..."

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Word Of The Week!

From In The Skin Of A Lion:

Detritus (pg 145): Pieces of rock broken off by ice, glacier or erosion; debris.
Personal Note: I don’t know if it’s just me, but this is one time where I think they author could have just used the word “debris”. “Detritus and chaos” versus “debris and chaos”, I think it might have been easier for the reader to understand. What do you think?

Sumac Bracelet (pg 146): Sumac – any variety of shrubs or small trees of the Rhus genus, including poison ivy and poison oak. Or, a sour spice popular in the Easter Mediterranean made from the berries of the plant.

Personal Note: I’m inclined to think that the bracelet was made out of poison ivy or oak, but that still seems weird.

Learned any new words from your books this week?

Sunday, May 8, 2011


I received yet another short story rejection. Here’s a sample of what I sent. If you scroll down, I sent the story in not that long ago. I think it’s the quickest response I’ve ever gotten.

Ashley held back a sigh. Her day had been going so well. Another argument was the last thing she wanted. She thought she had left that behind when she’d moved out. “I told you before, I’ve been thinking about this for a long time. We tried to make it work… For a while I thought it was going to, but you didn’t really change. You did what I asked you to do for a few weeks, then everything went back to the way it was. I can’t live like that. You shouldn’t have to either.”

“You’re wrong,” he declared, like a candidate wanting her vote.

“No, I’m not. We’re going to take some time apart…take a break. Can’t you just give it some time?” Ashley’s body language lowered, her shoulders slouched. It was time for Chad to go away.

It was as though he had expected it all to get better today. One visit. One rose. She would return with him, and everything would go back to normal. Chad clenched his jaw. His hands formed tight fists, nails digging into skin. He fumed inside, Ashley could see it, but he wanted to keep control. He wanted her to come home.

Ashley didn’t know what to do. She wanted to just walk away. Go inside her parents’ house, her home again, and forget that Chad had ever shown up. That’s all she wanted. A quiet, uneventful day.

Cautiously, she took a step back. Chad moved forward. Why couldn’t she get away? “I’m going inside now, Chad.” Why couldn’t he let her go?

Chad’s anger flared. “We’re talking!”

“No, you’re talking. I’ve said everything I have to say… Just give me my space.” Ashley half-grinned, attempting a conclusion. She shut the car door and turned to walk to the house.

Chad’s chest heaved, his jaw clenched. “You have to listen to me.”

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Word of the Week!

This week, one of the words came from an unexpected source…

From Reality Check at the Toronto Star,

Castigating (in the second of the larger paragraphs): To punish, criticize severely, to reprimand severely.

My other source, was much more expected…

From In The Skin Of A Lion,

Ablutions (pg 43): The act of washing or cleansing the body.

Supine (pg 49): To lay back, be lethargic or passive. It’s apparently an old word.

Attribution: Rob Lavinsky, – CC-BY-SA-3.0
Feldspar (pg 53): Any of a large group of rock-forming minerals that, together, make up about 60% of the earth's outer crust. The feldspars are all aluminum silicates of the alkali metals sodium, potassium, calcium and barium.
This one was a little technical.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Word Of The Week!

I started a Word Of The Week feature/event/whatever last summer on my other blog, I had been frequently coming across words I didn’t know and thought I’d share them with the blog world. I’ve decided to start cross-posting the Word Of The Week here. I think as a writer, it’s important to keep my vocabulary growing. You never know when you’ll stumbled upon the right word that sums up exactly what a character is feeling or a word that can move the plot in a whole new direction.

I’ve decided, to make things simple for myself, using Wiktionary and Wikipedia as my sources for definitions. If I can not find a definition/explanation on one of these two sites, then I’ll go out into the interwebs to find something. If that doesn’t work, then I’ll try to glean a definition from the context of the story.

From In The Skin Of A Lion:

Naphtha [Lamp] (pg 14)
• Naturally-occurring liquid petroleum.
• Any of a wide variety of aliphatic or aromatic liquid hydrocarbon mixtures distilled from petroleum or coal tar, especially as used in solvents or petrol.
• A naphtha lamp is what young Patrick used to light his home one evening.

From Herman Wouk Is Still Alive:

Assignation (pg 7 – if you print it)
• An appointment for a meeting, generally of a romantic or sexual nature.
• Modern usage of the word has narrowed the meaning to an agreed upon place for illicit sex. The earlier use of the word was broader an in general more innocent.
• A reader might think that assignation is being used in reference to the two women in the van, but it’s actually referring to the elderly couple at the rest stop.

I hope I find the time and the words to post again next week. Anyone else come across a new word or two?

Monday, April 25, 2011

What Not To Write To A Potential Literary Agent

I've been traveling around the writing/publishing part of the blogosphere and came across this great blog (click link below).  From their About Me:  "BookEnds, LLC, is a literary agency focusing on fiction and nonfiction books for adult audiences. Primary agents include Jessica Faust and Kim Lionetti."
They post some great stuff that I think would be helpful to writers.  This particular post is hilarious.  I hope you enjoy. 

BookEnds, LLC — A Literary Agency: LOL: "It’s been a while since I’ve shared some of the laughter here at BookEnds, but the minute this came into my inbox I knew I had to pass it al..."

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Female Writers In Late Night

It's a sad state of affairs.  I don't have a lot of time this evening, but I had to share this.  Click the link below to find out more.
Stargazing blog by Malene Arpe

Saturday, April 16, 2011

I did some writing today…

I’ve been feeling more inspired lately.  I think it’s partly because I’m in the second half of my pregnancy.  Doctors say that dreams are more vivid in pregnant women.  I think that’s true.  I was having many nightmares during my first trimester and my husband and I realized it was because of a television show that I sometimes watched before bed.  I didn’t stop watching the show, but it stopped being the last thing I watched and I stopped watching the re-runs.

I think that dreams are often connected to the imagination.  I’ve had so many new ideas lately and thoughts on expanding old ones.  So my husband took my daughter out for a couple hours and I got to write.  Below is a sample of a short story that has been unfinished for likely around a year.  I think it’s done now.  It just needs some editing.

Dear Sarah,

It’s been weeks and still no news from you.  I need to know that you’re okay.  Please call me. My home, cell and work phone numbers are below.



These letters of yours are getting rather personal and we are not in what you think is regular correspondence.  I appreciate that you own some of my paintings and you are a fan, but you should remember that I don’t know you.  I haven’t met most people who have purchased my work.  I would ask that you remember this when you write letters to myself or any other artist.



I do know you.  I know so much about you.  Your image is reflected in every stroke of your paintbrush.  I imagine being there when you paint.  Your studio filled with light, the glow of the sun in your hair.  The way you remodeled your home to fit your needs was brilliant, even if Claude was against some of the changes.  He doesn’t know you like I do.  He doesn’t see into your soul.

I only saw a brief mention of a discussion group on your website.  The information was incomplete, then the entire thing went down.  We’re going to have to see each other some other way.  If you insist on being with Claude, I can be discreet.  Eventually, you’ll see we were made for each other.

Forever yours,


Friday, April 15, 2011

Author E-Signatures In The Works?

Jennifer at Crazy For Books posted about author e-signatures.  If ebooks are growing in popularity, this seems like a logical step.  Click the link for more information.

Sunday, April 10, 2011


I’ve just sent 3 of my stories out into the world.  Will any of them get accepted?  Is it terrible that I try not to hope?  I want them to be seen by more than just me and the handful of people I’ve let read them.  I’m just scared.  I’ve read a lot of rejection letters.  I’m also more emotional because of the pregnancy.  So I’m going to put myself out there more by posting samples of the stories I’ve sent.

The scent of the rose drifted up. Ashley sniffed the flower, but did not smile. She didn’t know what to say. Should she say thank you? Should she throw the flower back in his face? Yes, she still cared about Chad; they had been together for a long time, but it was over. He had to learn that. He had to move forward with his life as she was trying to do with hers.
Chad…” There was sympathy in her voice, sorrow for the pain.
He peered into her. The longing inside him reached her. Was she weakening? “I want you to come home, Ash.”
Ashley breathed deeply. No, she did not want to move back in with him. She no longer wanted to marry him, if she ever really had. How many times would she need to say this? How many more times would she have to hurt him with her words? Chad had never noticed them drifting apart; he never noticed much of anything.
“I’m not moving back in with you, Chad. I don’t want to have to say it again. I don’t want us to keep hurting each other.”
Chad furrowed his brow. “I’m not hurting you. You’ve hurt yourself by leaving.” His voice was low and angry, though Ashley could tell that he was trying to remain calm, trying to move beyond anger to win her back.
Ashley held back a sigh. Her day had been going so well. Another argument was the last thing she wanted. She thought she had left that behind when she’d moved out. “I told you before, I’ve been thinking about this for a long time. We tried to make it work… For a while I thought it was going to, but you didn’t really change. You did what I asked you to do for a few weeks, then everything went back to the way it was. I can’t live like that. You shouldn’t have to either.”
“You’re wrong,” he declared, like a candidate wanting her vote.
“No, I’m not. We’re going to take some time apart…take a break. Can’t you just give it some time?” Ashley’s body language lowered, her shoulders slouched. It was time for Chad to go away.
It was as though he had expected it all to get better today. One visit. One rose. She would return with him, and everything would go back to normal. Chad clenched his jaw. His hands formed tight fists, nails digging into skin. He fumed inside, Ashley could see it, but he wanted to keep control. He wanted her to come home.
Ashley didn’t know what to do. She wanted to just walk away. Go inside her parents’ house, her home again, and forget that Chad had ever shown up. That’s all she wanted. A quiet, uneventful day.
Cautiously, she took a step back. Chad moved forward. Why couldn’t she get away? “I’m going inside now, Chad.” Why couldn’t he let her go?
Chad’s anger flared. “We’re talking!”
“No, you’re talking. I’ve said everything I have to say… Just give me my space.” Ashley half-grinned, attempting a conclusion. She shut the car door and turned to walk to the house.
Chad’s chest heaved, his jaw clenched. “You have to listen to me.”

*           *           *

Paul and Nikki exchanged a brief glance. Their father seemed to be in a pleasant mood. Maybe today will be a good day. Henry is in a good way. We can all have an enjoyable breakfast. Maybe I’ll have a whole week without anything bad happening.
Nikki watched firmly as her father began to take the food she had prepared. As he finished, she nodded to her brother to begin taking the food he wanted. Paul seemed to force himself not to ravage his breakfast. He placed as much food as he could on his plate without his father taking notice. Once it was there, Paul looked at his father, who remained captivated by his daughter’s culinary delights. Paul restrained himself and managed not to inhale the meal. Nikki noticed that he did eat quickly though.
            “Nikole?” Henry was suddenly staring at his daughter.
            “Yes, Henry?” she answered immediately.
            “Aren’t you hungry for this wonderful food you were so kind as to prepare for us?”
            Kindness had nothing to do with it. She glared down at her plate and saw only half a slice of bread and one sausage. Nikki did not feel particularly hungry. “Sorry, I guess I don’t have much of an appetite this morning.”
            Quiet fell over the table. Henry contentedly ate his breakfast. Nikki could sense his thoughts. He enjoyed every succulent bite, as he had so many times before. He felt no need to raise his voice or punish his children. He watched them so fixedly, every bite they ate under his scrutiny. Paul consumed his food with great care, appreciating every bite. Nikole nibbled at her breakfast. What a polite lady he had made her. Perhaps her appetite would return later in the day. Each child was so disciplined; Henry fell deeper into his calmness. There was nothing to interrupt his mood. All Nikki wanted was to let her father finish his food, clean the kitchen and go to her room.
            When Nikki put the last bite of her food in her mouth, the phone rang. Henry angered immediately. “Who could be calling us this early in the morning?” A discernible annoyance appeared in his voice; Nikki quickly rose out of her seat.
            Before picking up the phone, she glanced down at the digital display; it read 11:27 a.m. She took a deep breath and spoke to the caller. “Hello, Kritisch residence.”
            “Nikki, is that you?” A familiar voice was on the other end. Blood rushed to her face.
            “Yes, may I ask who is calling?” Nikki knew who was on the line; she knew everything that was about to happen.
            “Nik? It’s me, Danny.”
            Danny.” A whisper, Nikki allowed herself a momentary tingle. Danny was actually calling her house. It’s Danny! Why is he calling? Did I do something stupid last night? Did I embarrass myself? Is he calling because he doesn’t want to ever see me again? Nikki’s thoughts were jumbled, interrupted by Henry.
            “Nikole?” Her eyes met her father’s intense stare. “I would like to know who’s on the phone.”
            Adolescent excitement crashed down around her. Fear took over. Nikki stated a half-truth she hoped her father would accept, “It’s just someone from school, Henry. No big deal.” She attempted a dismissive though respectful tone.
            “Nikole, what have I told you about having your friends call at this time in the morning on Sunday!” Henry gritted his teeth, and Paul slid down further into his chair. Henry spoke through clenched teeth. “Get off the phone now. We haven’t finished our meal.”
            Nikki turned herself away from her father as a tear welled, but she held it back. She breathed deeply, hearing the caring voice of her friend, “Nikki, are you okay? Was that your father? Can you talk?”
            She had to end it swiftly, “Look, Danny, I’m kind of busy right now. I can’t talk to anyone. I’ll see you at school tomorrow… Bye.”
            “But Nikki . . .” She hung up. Nikki took a difficult breath and turned to face her father.
            He now stood out of his seat, his eyes focused sharply on his daughter. Without thinking, Nikki strode back to the table and cleared the dishes. Everything was cleaned. Paul had eaten all that could fit inside his stomach. Nikki felt her father’s eyes on her back as she moved around the kitchen. She opened up the dishwasher and put in the plates, cutlery and whatever else was dishwasher-safe. As Nikki worked, Henry stared harder at her. Her anxiety had returned, the day of peace gone. She stole a glimpse of her brother. She could see the tears filling his eyes. Eyes at that age should still be innocent, not full of dread.

*           *           *

Frail hands reached into the musty closet.  It was dark.  She had forgotten the light.  Stupid.  The thick wool jacket was rough against thin skin.  The heavy coat emerged and she stepped back.  This was once light as a feather.  Slowly, the jacket covered her small frame.  She breathed deeply.  One hurdle crossed.
            Socked feet shuffled to a wooden bench by the closed door.  She shook her head, looking down.  Her socks always managed to fall, though new.  Did ankles shrink?  Weight traveling to the torso.  Another failure of age.  Another un-improvement.
            Bones creaked as she bent, sitting slowly.  No more plopping down on a bench.  She carefully slid on comfortable loafers.  The thick soles cushioned against harsh tile and bone.  She wiggled her toes.  A sneer curled as she pulled up the socks.  Too old to mutter curses.  Rising, a hand quickly reached to her back, bracing herself.  She was a little stunned at how fast her hand moved.  Small favours.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Literary Musings: A Room of One's Own by Viriginia Woolf

A Room Of One's Own is an important read not just for Woolf fans, but for aspiring writiers.  This essay/book is especially for female writers who are still struggling to gain the acclaim that men do.  Literary Musings has a great review and I encourage everyone to check it out.

Literary Musings: A Room of One's Own by Viriginia Woolf: "and I thought how unpleasant it is to be locked out; and I thought how it is worse perhaps to be locked in... Virginia Woolf died 60 years a..."

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Chains versus Independant bookstores from Ward Six

An interesting argument on whether writers should support chain bookstores or only independants.  Is it selling out when a chain store hosts your book-signings?  A great blog post.

Ward Six: Backstabbin'

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Writers' Union of Canada : Writing for Children Competition

This is a children's writing contest from the Writer's Union of Canada.  I don't know if I'm talented enough to write for children.  (mean, am I even talented enough to write for grown-ups?)  But I wanted to spread the word about this opportunity.  Click the link below.

The Writers' Union of Canada : Writing for Children Competition

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Out with the old…

For those who didn’t know, my husband and I are expecting baby number 2.  We’re very excited and have a lot to do to prepare.  One of those things is dismantling our old office and turning it into our toddler’s room so the baby will get the nursery.  Apparently I had a lot of stuff in the closet in that room.  My husband just brought me a collection of floppy disks to show me before he threw them out.  That’s right, floppy disks, from when I was in high school and I think first year university.  Once I saw them, I didn’t want to let them go.  One of them had some of my writing from way back then… stuff I’m sure I continued to transfer onto my computers through the years.  I wouldn’t be missing anything if that floppy disk went, right?  The collection also included some disks with school work on it.  I’m not going to want that right?  I’m so terrible.  How is it I still had that stuff?  I didn’t even realize it, then when I saw it, I wanted to keep it.  I’m not crazy, right?

Okay, so I told my husband I was writing this post.  He read it and either felt bad or wanted to lessen my craziness, so I got to take the floppy out with my old writing on it.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Feeling Without The Words

Has it ever happened to you that you feel like writing, but you don’t know what to write?  Everything I have on the go seems unappealing right now.  The blank page remains blank.  I even looked at a writing prompt and was uninspired by it all.  I want to write, but no words are coming out. 

For most of the day I’m not home, so the things I picture are my ongoing projects.  I longed for my hard drive with my ideas and beginnings and middles.  These are ideas I already know I like, but haven’t expanded on.  I want to expand, in a writerly way, of course.

I’ve looked at blogs.  I’ve worked.  I’m at my day job, after all.  But none of it is holding my interest.  Is it the baby brain talking?  I don’t know.  I just know I want to write something, but I don’t know what.

Also, should I start adding pictures to some of these posts?  Or is that just something to distract me from my lack of writing?

Thursday, February 24, 2011

What Happens When I Don’t Pay Attention.

I didn’t read a certain Short Story Contest rules clearly enough.  The submission date they have is a received by date not a postmarked one.  Most contests say postmarked and this one used to, but not this year.  I knew they changed some of the rules, but I just skimmed it instead of reading it properly.  It means I’m too late.  There is no way the mail will get there in time.  I’ve had the story completed for a while, but I just didn’t get around to mailing it.  Why did I procrastinate?  Not that I think I would have won, but maybe…  Ugh.

I thought that I’d include a sample of what I was going to send.  Just so someone out there in the world can read it.  The title of the story is Blink.

We exchanged a few more words, lost in the ether. The song of conversation, a sublime moment shared between friends. Yes, Julian could be my friend in time. The future is unknown, paths before us constantly changing.
Buckley turned and began walking away from the water, swaggering, the way only teenage boys can. He stopped, picked up his discarded footwear and continued on to join us.
We stood talking with the boys. The water was nice. The stars were bright and tomorrow would be a beautiful day. The conversation was enjoyable. Another unexpected moment, though of a different kind.
I found their joyful youth interesting. I was only about seven or eight years older, but it felt like decades. Had I ever been that young? I was certainly not a happy teenager. Most of my friends really were a bad influence. I was really depressed. I needed to find myself. Not the best adolescent years. For a few seconds, I envied the boys. They really were happy.
The laughter continued, and the echo of our voices spread down the beach. Three of us were smiling when Julian’s face changed. Laughter left his voice, then all smiles vanished. Another change in the scene occurred, though I was not sure why.
“Oh my God…” Julian was barely audible.
The three of us turned, our eyes guided by his gaze. Several metres down the beach, something was lying in the sand. Someone, rather. A round of deep breaths.
Instinctively, we began to move towards him. At least it looked like a ‘him’ from this distance. As we approached, I could see why we had not noticed him sooner. He was the colour of sand. His shorts, his sweatshirt, the hair on his legs. Sand covered the soles of his shoes. His back was to us, and the hood of his sweatshirt was pulled up over his head. I wondered how Julian had even seen him.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Martin Amis: Only brain injury could make me write for children | Books |

I first saw this article through Broomeshtick yesterday.  I'm offended.  How could Martin Amis think that and then say those things?  I think writing for children is very difficult.  That's why I've never tried it.  I bet he's getting tons of hate-mail.  Take a look at the orignal article from The Guardian's website.

Martin Amis: Only brain injury could make me write for children Books

Monday, February 7, 2011

How to Ask Your Mother Rude Questions:

An interesting article in The New Yorker by Tina Fey. A quick quote:

"She has observed that women, at least in comedy, are labeled “crazy” after a certain age. The writer has the suspicion that the definition of “crazy” in show business is a woman who keeps talking even after no one wants to fuck her anymore. "

Read more:
How to Ask Your Mother Rude Questions:

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Write On!

I found this picture at write meg!  I followed the link back to a cute Etsy page.  I think I’m going to keep it up on my blog, for all the writers who need a little encouragement.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

I'm not sure how I feel about this.

What is Stephen King doing?  A Kindle only story?  What about the other eReaders?

I understand an author doing this early in their career to help get their name out there, but King doesn't need too.  Does he really think eBooks are the way of the future?

I first saw this at Ward Six:
Ward Six: Really, Steve? Really?: "Oh, for Pete's sake. Wesley Smith buys an Amazon Kindle to keep his mind off his recent nasty breakup, but he finds that his version is no o..."

Monday, January 31, 2011

The Final Book From: What Is Stephen Harper Reading?

It's the end of an era! Yann Martel will no longer be sending Stephen Harper books. Martel's final letter is an interesting one.  Will Harper actually reply?  I've wondered if he even realizes this is happening or does one of his staff just deal with it. 

Book Number 100: Scorched, by Wajdi Mouawad, translated from the French by Linda Gaboriau

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Article from The Sharp Angle

Lydia from the Sharp Angle writes a great post on writer rejection by paralleling it to rejection on American Idol. It makes for a funny, interesting and realistic article. Thanks for great words again!

The Sharp Angle: More About Rejection a la American Idol: "Why do the contestants on American Idol get so upset when the judges say, 'You're good, you've got the potential, but you're not quite ready..."

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Short Story Sample

I sumbmitted a short story to one of the contests I previously mentioned.  This is just a sample of what I sent.  I like it...

There was a honking outside below the window. The couple ignored the sound as they attempted to shed themselves of the day. It must have nothing to do with them, yet it persisted. They could hear people yelling. Who would be honking like that? Kiandra wiped her face and looked up at Ethan. Curiosity now led their actions.
            Kiandra reached the window first. “Son of a bitch!”
            Ethan looked over her shoulder. The day wasn’t as over as he’d thought it was. “What is he doing back here?”
            Below their window, in the circle of a streetlight, Vincent stood outside his bright yellow car, which glowed in the darkness. He honked the horn again. Someone, a neighbour, had already come out of the building and was trying to talk to the angry young man. His words were being ignored. He began shouting. Vincent stopped honking to yell at the older gentleman. There were few people in the street, but they had all stopped to stare.
            “I’m going to need to go downstairs,” Kiandra whispered tiredly.
            “This time I’m coming.” Ethan motioned to follow and Kiandra did not stop him.
            They walked out of their building and onto the sidewalk. Kiandra whispered, “Sorry,” as she passed her neighbour. The man backed away but stopped at the front door. Ethan stood on Kiandra’s left, waiting for her to begin. Vincent stopped, waiting for the same thing.
            “Why are you here?” Kiandra’s voice was low.
            “I wasn’t done talking to you.” Vincent glanced at Kiandra, then glared at Ethan. He moved around the car to stand just a few feet from the couple.
            They didn’t move, just returned his stare. Kiandra breathed deeply. “I’m done talking to you. I don’t know how many times I need to say that I don’t want to see you again. Ever.”
            “You don’t mean it.”
            “I’m done repeating myself. Leave… or I’ll call the police.” She felt her voice shaking but hoped no one heard it.
            “The cops? For what? I haven’t done anything.” Vincent was growing more enraged.
            Ethan decided he had stood silently long enough. “You’re harassing my girlfriend. You’re disturbing us and our neighbours.”
            “Oh, you talk?” Vincent was growing more antagonizing.
            “Leave.” Ethan stepped forward, putting Kiandra behind him.
            Vincent matched that step. “Kiki, doesn’t want me to.”
            “You don’t listen! You never did. This is the last time I’m telling you to leave.” Kiandra felt in her pocket for her mobile.
            Vincent rushed forward to grab Kiandra’s hand, but Ethan blocked him.
“Don’t touch me!” Vincent shrieked.
            “Don’t touch her!”

Friday, January 21, 2011

15 Authors in 15 Minutes

I found this exercise at Whatcha Readin’, Books? (and decided to put up my results on both my blogs). The instructions are pretty simple and I enjoy the results. So:

• List fifteen authors (poets included) who've influenced you or who stick with you.
• Select the first fifteen you can recall in no more than 15 minutes. No particular order required.
• Don't take too long to think about it.

Here is what who I thought of:

1. Stephen King
2. Margaret Atwood
3. Michael Ondaatje
4. William Shakespeare
5. Douglas Coupland
6. William Wordsworth
7. Samuel Taylor Coleridge
8. Virginia Woolf
9. Mary Shelley
10. R.A. Salvatore
11. Gwendolyn MacEwan
12. H.G. Wells
13. Hanan Al-Shaykh
14. J.K. Rowling
15. Khaled Hosseini

This didn’t take me as long as I expected it too, only about two minutes. I actually had more than 15 for when I finished, but then I looked at the list and saw that I was reaching, trying to be too intellectual about my choices. Of the authors I have here, some of them I’ve read quite a few of their works, others I’ve only read one or two. Each of the authors have influenced me as a reader and a writer.

That was the official (?) exercise. However, instead of just giving you a list of authors, I thought that I’d also give you a title by each of them, if you’re so inclined to try one of them out and are not sure where to start I have a suggestion.

1. The Dark Tower 1: The Gunslinger
2. A Handmaid’s Tale
3. In The Skin Of A Lion
4. A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream
5. The Gum Thief
6. A Slumber Did My Spirit Seal
7. Rhyme Of The Ancient Mariner
8. Flush
9. Frankenstein
10. The Crystal Shard
11. Trojan Women
12. The Time Machine
13. Only In London
14. Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone
15. A Thousand Splendid Suns

What authors have influenced you? Leave a link below if you make your own list and I’ll stop by.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Ward Six: Are You a Double-Spacer?

An interesting post from Ward Six about double-spacing after periods.  Do you do it?  I admit I do.  It was a habit from high school keyboarding class, now it's a requirement as part of my duties at my job.  I know that here on blogger, the software automatically takes out the extra space.  I know that printed material doesn't include it.  I expect that eventually it will be the all-around standard, but for right now, I do it. 

Ward Six: Are You a Double-Spacer?: "image lifted from You've probably seen this article in Slate: the author works up quite a lather about people who stil..."

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Scoop

I know it’s been a while since I posted.  It’s been a while since I’ve really written anything.  This can be attributed to two words.  Morning Sickness.  That’s right, I’m expecting my second baby early this summer.  My husband and I are really excited. 

I’m hoping that since I’ve hit the second trimester, I’ll be writing and blogging back at my normal pace.  We’ll see how well that works out, but I’m optimistic.  I miss writing.  I think about the stories I could be working on, I think about the novel that hasn’t moved in months.  I want to get reacquainted with the characters I’ve created.

In this new hopeful mindframe, there are a few contests I’m looking to enter:

Will I be able to do all of these by their due dates?  I hope so.  I have plans in my head; it’s just about finding the time to get them out on paper.