Friday, October 28, 2011

The Little Moments

"Hi, um, my car is doing a thing."
"A thing?"
"Yeah.  It's shaking.  Or, like a wobble."
"A wobble."
"More like a shimmy, a tremor?"
He sighs.  (This is the best I can do, honest.)
"Can you feel it in the steering wheel?"
"It's not doing it right now.  Yes, I think so."
A pause.  Then:  "Pull over, I'm coming."

BamBam, talking to Pebbles at the bathroom sink: "This toothpaste is awesome. It fights cavities, sensitivity, bad breath and TAR TAR."
Pebbles, impressed: "Ooh. What's TAR TAR?"
BamBam" "I don't know. But it doesn't sound good."

The van stops in front of me on the shoulder of the highway.  A handsome man climbs out.  I hop out, kiss him, and steal his ride.  As I pull away, I see him in the rearview mirror, bending to look underneath my car.

Pebbles:  "I spelled ice cream!
BamBam: "Ice cream?"
Pebbles: "YES!  BWAH HA!  IN YOUR FACE!!!!"

"So, you made it home."
"You checked the car?"
"So? What was causing the wobble?"
"The wind."
Pause.  "Really?"
"Oh.  Well, I have to go now."

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Protest, by all means. But don't forget why you can.

In Halifax, as in many cities, we have protesters downtown taking part in the "Occupy Wall Street" movement.  I understand what the protesters are complaining about - the Beast of Corporate Greed scares the schniz out of me too.  And like the protesters, I haven't many good, clear suggestions what ought to be done about it.  It's capitalism, whatcha gonna do?  (My favourite quote about the whole thing so far is I something I heard in passing on the news, where one of the protesters borrowed a slogan from the gay community and declared "We're here, we're unclear, get used to it!)

So anyway.  All that is fine.  These questions are important.

Today in the news you'll find the mayor of the city wants the protesters to move out of the parade grounds so the place can be prepared for some city stuff - such as the Remembrance Day ceremony.  Because this is Nova Scotia and we are Really Nice People, he's even offered them space on the Commons.  No doubt the city will continue to provide porta-potties for them there, too.  But I heard some of the protesters talking on the news this morning, saying they don't think they should move.

Excuse me?  What?

Shame on you.  This is Remembrance Day.  You have the Right to Protest because people fought and died for you to have that right.  You owe those people more than just respect, but you can start there.  Pack up your stuff.  Come back later if you want to, but Remembrance Day is not about you. 

Friday, October 21, 2011

Just Jabbering

It's a beautiful Indian summer day, 15 degrees (celcius) with a breeze that smells fresh and clean.  That's probably because it really rained here yesterday - all day pouring rain that had some of the major thoroughfares closed due to being under water.  On the eastern shore they measured just over 104mm of the stuff - more than twice the record for that day.  New high score!

Climate change?  What climate change???

In other news, Jennifer Hendren's book dropped this week!  BY THE PALE MOONLIGHT is an edgy YA novel about a murder, a sexy werewolf named Ty, and a race for the truth - a race against the full moon. (Love that line!)  You can find Jen here.

I can't wait to read it.  It's the very next thing on my list! 

So as for my other word-count foolishness and hijinks, I am leaving my goal as it stands.  This is because I reviewed what I have, and my draft is very lean.  It's skinny.  I think I'll get to the end of the plot (as I know it right now) at about 40K, and that might be something I can accomplish before year's end.  After that I need to flesh it out, fill it in.  Feed it a few cheeseburgers, add some foreshadowing, extra description and slow down the pace because Iwritetoofast.

So thaaaaaat's what I'll do!

 Kait wrote a good post about YA relationships today.  So if you read my YA, don't be expecting anything steamy.  At all.  I MIGHT let them kiss (glares suspiciously at underaged characters.)  MAYBE.  If it's important.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Reality Check

So I'm being stupid.  Anyone surprised?
Shut up, you in the back!

If a typical YA is 60,000 words and there are 11 weeks left until the end of the year and I write (as I have these past few weeks) roughly 1500 words per week and a train leaves Cleveland, Ohio travelling at 145 km/h, there is no possible way for me to finish this book this year.  The truth would be closer to 29 weeks, which is more like...the spring.

In order to finish this book this year I would have to suck at everything else.  I say that like it's even an option, which of course it isn't.  So I'm going to have to change my goal. 
The thing is, if I take that long - 5 or 6 more month - to write it I'm almost certain to lose interest.  This is what happens to me every time.  Real life is first.  My kids, my husband, my job - these are my First Things.  Writing is after, and I wouldn't change that.  I just need to sort out how to get more words written.

So, while I make a plan to make a plan, Trixie (my MC) has just been poisoned.  I should go see how she's doing.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

In which I try not to be creepy.

Def Leppard!  The answer is Def Leppard.  :o)

So anyway.  The word count is coming along well, I've progressed about 1500 words this week.  My next challenge is to present Trixie's older brother Henry, who has been missing for four years.  He's a murder suspect, wanted by the police.  Trixie used to think he was innocent, but these days she's starting to see that there's more to her broken, messed-up family than meets the eye.

I have to figure out how to make him "hot," when Trixie certainly doesn't think so and I'm not supposed to think so, since he's like 21 years old and that would be a little creepy.  I don't know.  I'm new to this YA thing.  And to tell you the truth, lately I'm a little startled to find out that some of these really good-looking guys in the movies are barely grown up at all.  Hmmm.  Disconcerting.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Don't be like me

So we got to talking, here at work.  There was a Theory of a Dead Man song on the radio, and I said it sounded like Nickleback, which led us to discuss what his connection with the band was - he produced some of their stuff I think.

Anyway, I commented that there was an 80s band that had the same producer as Bryan Adams and they sounded just like him and

I think it starts with P?

So I took to the internet because I hate when I have this stuff in my head and I just can't spit it out.  Every little while I can feel it there on the tip of my tongue....anyway.  I went online.  I surfed.  I browsed.  I probably have viruses on my computer now. 

And I ended up watching Peter Cetera videos on YouTube.

Now I'm listening to Air Supply.

I hate myself but I just can't seem to stop.  Look!  Richard Marx!

Friday, October 07, 2011

A cunning plan...

I've decided to rehabilite my writer-self, and I've made a plan.  Want to hear about it?  No?  Well it's my blog, so there.

October: Write 100 words a day.  Every day if possible, and catch-up words for - let's face it, it's going to happen - the days I don't make it to the keyboard.

November - Write 200 words a day. Every day if possible, and catch-up words for the days I don't make it to the keyboard.

Scintillating, isn't it?  Brilliant!  Well, it doesn't need to be brilliant.  It just needs to make things better, and I think it will.

In other news, someone I really like has decided to self-publish her book.  You can check her out at

Today's word count so far: 700
It's a good day.

End of day: 950 words.  Wahoo!

Wednesday, October 05, 2011


Hello, October.  You've snuck up on me again.  You're clever like that.

So, here is the fall.  Summer went and winter is coming, and that is how life is.  My kids are growing.  They need me a bit less - and that's the tricksy part, that.  They need me, yes.  They love me, yes.  They no longer fill every waking moment and now that they have scampered off down the hall to make a world between only them, quiet descends...

Sort of.  There's the occasional squeal of bad temper from the little one, followed a moment later by her laughter.  And there is the sourceless, endless percussion that comes from having a healthy, happy boy in the house. 

...and in the quiet, my arms are empty, and my hands are still.  Until a finger twitches, and then another.

I reach for a pen.