Monday, April 26, 2010

She's got a million things to do, but all she wants to do is blog, blog...

Hello fair friends, and welcome to the deluge. It is pouring precipitation outside and work inside, so this post will be brief. The pic is in honour of sunny days long ago.

This particular shot is of the Philidelphia skyline from my visit there last November. I have to decide in the next week whether to make the trek to New York for Book Expo America at the end of May. [Accepting votes either for or against in the comment section!] Looking at a jam-packed schedule over the next 6 months or so, so a few days in the beautiful city of New York holds a LOT of appeal right now.

But on to other business...let's begin with things of interest on the literary scene, shall we?

I'm writing mysteries with my CWC creative writing class, and I stumbled on this good advice from Ursula K. LeGuin today on the subject of plausibility in fantasy. Has this woman been given goddess status, yet? Because if she and PD James ruled the world, you KNOW it would be a better place.

Once again, Ev Bishop knocks one out of the park with HOW DOES THAT MAKE YOU FEEL? , her latest blog post. If you don't have this writer on your reader -- well, you're really missing out.

And in geek news, it seems Stephen Hawking has taken a page out of the BSG handbook and declared that any alien life in the universe might best be avoided by humans.

It's been a mere five years since the first YouTube video was uploaded. How things have changed, eh? Life before YouTube seems almost as long ago as life before cell phones.

That last link was via the amazing Gizmodo, a site I have been following since around about the time Joel Johnson left boingboing and moved over, and it's a happening place these days. I'd definitely recommend it for the interesting links, though the content occasionally arrives like the rain on my roof is right now.  But I just surf through it happily, picking out the good stuff. The past week has been chock full of good stuff, with the so-weird-it-seemed-fake lightning strike of an Apple employee losing the latest prototype iPhone at a bar, and its subsequent arrival into Gizmodo hands. Last night the editor of the site's home was raided and all his computers confiscated, on suspicion of his participating in a felony, which appears to be related to the exposure of the guts of said iPhone. A summary of events prior to the computer raid is HERE. It's fascinating stuff.

I've loved Macs for years, and would never give mine up, but watching this thing unfold is certainly giving some insight into the company cult and culture.

And finally, for my dear friend A Novel Woman, [and her beautiful, knitting-enabling daughter] I leave you with someone whose hair looks startlingly like my own RIGHT AT THIS MOMENT, but whose knitting skills ...well, you'll just have to see what happens, won't you?

More soon...


PS... Clearly less brief than I thought when I set out. Hope you enjoy, though!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Earth Day in Lions Bay via iPhone

I didn't have my good camera with me, but wanted to document the beautiful Earth Day in Lions Bay yesterday. So to and fro to yoga class, here is some visual evidence of the beauty of this planet that we all share.... Above, cherry blossoms still fresh.

One of the many streams that run down the mountain.

Japanese maples unfurling.

Dogwood just going into flower...[blooms are still bright green].

Periwinkle in the shade.

I'm so glad I got these shots -- today the rain is back!

More soon.


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Volcanos and Pythons and Eagles oh MY!

Still no new site, but my open tabs are threatening to take over my computer, so here's a catch up on all that's interesting in kc's world at the moment.

And the new website? Soon my pretties, soon....

Let's begin with a few bookish things, shall we?

I loved this article on what success means to Canadian author Joseph Boyden. Note:[for those who may not be aware of the financial realities of Canuck authors] big money is not involved.

Nonetheless, if you are among the clinically insane enough to pursue this line of work, here's a word of advice for you. I tweeted this earlier this week, and it's been picked up by the clever and sparkly Kathy Chung [that's her on the left up there, with the equally gorgeous writer Pamela Patchet at a SiWC past...]on the SiWC blog...but here is a link to an old [but valuable] article by Jenny Cruisie that has resurfaced recently; some salient advice to writers about valuing your time.

My buddy, author James McCann is offering a kids & parent writing class -- SUCH a great idea! You can find more on his blog HERE.

Speaking of James, he and his partner in crime, Lee Edward Fodi have a new episode of their Authors Like Us podcast up. This is part two of a dinner interview with amazing authors Don Calame and Meg Tilly. I have to admit to crashing the party, so you'll hear me in the background, too. The food was great, the company stellar and the insanity ratcheted high.

In volcanic news, while the planes are now returning to European airspace, here's one Python who got out of town in the world's most expensive taxi ride.

And now, a few interesting things floating about the internet...

HERE , via boingboing, you will find Adam Savage's noble address to Harvard heathen, a brief but very enjoyable read.

I'm pretty sure I've mentioned this show before, but in celebration of the new third series episodes that are now up, I suggest you check out Lisa Kudrow's Web Therapy, if you haven't already. Mostly improvised, wholly high-larious.

Let's finish with Australia's Axis of Awesome, shall we? Three less photogenic rockers you will have to search to find, but...are they funny? Judge for yourself:

More soon...


Saturday, April 17, 2010

Stalling...and Facing Fire

I've been stalling, hoping that my next blog post will be in the newly migrated section at my freshly upgraded and spookified website...

but it's not to be. Too much going on, and we've reached a little glitch. AND, speaking of migration, my web-guy has had to make a little side trip to Hawaii, so it may well be a bit before all systems are go.

In the meantime, a few things that interested me this week:

Iceland making itself heard on the international aviation stage: AMAZING photos of the eruptions HERE. And HERE is a flickr collection of more.

Breathtaking. But the ash in the air is also having an influence on the book world. The London Book Fair scheduled for this week has been disrupted by cancelled flights. I have hugely fond memories of attending this event a few years ago, and I'm sorry to see it so disrupted.

And, finally,  if the volcano pix are not enough Facing Fire for you -- check out this incredible sun surge, called an eruptive prominence, as recorded by NASA over 19 hours on April 12 and 13th. This one is estimated at 500,000 miles long.



Monday, April 12, 2010

Another teaser...

So much going on these days...

Tomorrow I have the usual Tuesday CWC creative writing class, with a bonus visit to Van Tech Secondary in the morning. This is becoming an annual event -- I think it's the third year in a row I've visited -- and I'm looking forward to a ton of fun.

In the meantime, we are working very hard behind the scenes to get the new website design up and going. This blog will migrate over there as soon as it is ready to's another sneak peak of the front page...

Make sure you check out the Surrey International Writers' Conference site blog, too, as this year's presenters are slowly making their way into the public eye. You'll love them all!

More soon...


Sunday, April 11, 2010

Copyedits Done In...and almost printed

Have spent far too long tonight trying to get my 'just-in-case' hard copy manuscript to print back to back. All it takes is for the printer to pick up two pages in the middle to ...

...well, to make for a long evening.

So, for your viewing pleasure, I bring you a little advice on novel-writing:
Apparently designed by a genius by the name of Anna Hurley, the original is HERE.


Friday, April 09, 2010

Copyedits Finished, Cha-cha-cha...

...tho' I do have a glossary to write. But who cares, tra-la! Tomorrow is another day! Ooo-da-lolly, and fa-la-la!

[Previous giddiness brought to you by Post-Copyedit-Euphoria, a condition in which writer sees light at the end of the publication tunnel, and harbours secret hopes that new book might one day be enjoyed by others...]

What else?

Well, there hasn't been much else in my life, lately. I am once again appallingly behind in email, all other projects and obligations have come to a grinding halt and so on, so I must pick up the pieces again next week. But in the meantime, something that made me laugh today:

McSweeney's take on MacBeth and MacDuff knicker-twisting over Semantics

Oh, and not funny, but interesting -- a response to the Wikileaks video travesty I referenced last week: Soldiers as Psychopaths.

More soon.


Wednesday, April 07, 2010


...rule my life at the moment. FACING FIRE approaches. That is all.


Monday, April 05, 2010

Insanity... a word I often use to describe my life. I am a chronic-over-committer, and when one doesn't leave time for things to go wrong -- well, of course they usually do. I am facing a particularly insane few months right now -- a time when work and real life have to connect in concert or all will be lost.

Will report back with the results here, of course.

But for tonight, a bit of catch-up on things that have caught my attention lately.

To begin with writerly news, the Hugo Award Nominees were announced yesterday. You can find them listed HERE on the AussieCon site. Last year the big SF convention was in Montreal, right at the height of swine flu season. Here's hoping all the Aussies stay healthy!
Moving on to the geological, I found it fascinating yesterday to watch the spread of information about the Baja earthquake on Twitter long before there was mention of it on any of the conventional news channels. Not much effect in California, but my thoughts are going out to those in Mexico who were shaken out of their normal lives by the event. I found THIS SITE to be most informative about the latest, particularly when the severity was re-calibrated from 6.9 to 7.2 -- a substantial jump in size.

And in a final reference to the title of this post, I was saddened and further disheartened by the leaked military video released today on the WikiLeaks site. Again, this story broke on-line long before it emerged anywhere in conventional media. A horrifying incident.  I marched [fruitlessly] with millions of others around the globe against this war before it started, and footage like this stands as evidence of well-founded fears. [I first read about the info on Darren Barefoot's blog -- click HERE for his thoughts.] Further analysis is all over the web now, and I'm hoping that by the time I type this, it might actually have usurped all the Tiger drivel on CNN's front page. [Or not...I just checked, and there is a single line link to it, but apparently a big basketball game trumps all]. Priorities? Insane.

Back to writing about books tomorrow...


Friday, April 02, 2010

Happy Cotton-tails....

Tryng again here, as blogger wouldn't let me on earlier. It might have something to do with the monsoon blowing outside, but I doubt it. The rest of the country basks in unseasonable sunshine and warm temperatures, and we are undersea and wind-whipped.

And so, to lighten my own day, and hopefully put a smile in yours, here's a little bloodthirsty take on the Easter Monster. [tip o' the Easter bonnet to @dbarefoot for the link].