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    All Aboard the NaNoWriMo Charter


    2011 - 11.30

    In a strangely similar vein to Santa Claus the NaNoWriMo Charter has just left Vancouver with Karin aboard, it’s a convenient supersonic writing jet which propels you through time zones until you reach your 50,000 words or hit the international date line…

    Hopefully Karin will cross the finish line in enough time for the jet to get her back before morning…  Fingers crossed!

    Inversely Proportional


    2011 - 11.21

    This is actually probably a good thing, but the amount of room remaining on our PVR seems to be inversely proportional to how many projects Karin has on the go… with NaNoWriMo and GISHWHES very little TV is being watched.  Which might mean that we’ll still have something new to watch when we start running into the holiday reruns…

    Welcome to Canada @BrandonSanderson #youreoutofexcuses


    2011 - 11.12

    Thanks to Twitter @randomsynapses (that would be Karin for those of you who don’t refer to people by their handles) we found out that Brandon Sanderson was doing a signing today at Chapter’s Metrotown.  We decided to head on up.  There was a brief Q&A, and then a lot of signing, we were in line for about 2 hours, but we got our books signed and met the man.

    There’s more to be told to this story, but I’d like to give Karin the opportunity to tell most of the rest of it.

    For those of you who may not have heard of Brandon Sanderson he’s one of the hosts of Writing Excuses, the author of the Mistborn Trilogy (and the new novel for which the signing was being held is a Mistborn novel, but not part of the trilogy), the Alcatraz novels (which starts with Alcatraz versus the Evil Librarians), oh and he was selected to finish of Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time (he didn’t apply, he was chosen).

    He first came to my attention because of the Wheel of Time thing*, subsequently I came across Writing Excuses and we started to listen to that.  Unfortunately, at times they assume that you’re fans and that you’ve read their books.  I hadn’t.  So I had to pause listening to Writing Excuses and go and read both Brandon’s and Dan Wells’ books so as to avoid potential spoilers in the podcasts.

    I’ve now read most of Brandon’s stuff, although none of the Wheel of Time books, as I am waiting until the final book is out and I can just finish the series before I start in on it again.  But what I have read, I quite enjoyed, and I’m looking forward to his future novels and the one’s that he’s written which I haven’t yet read (Elantris and Allow of Law).

    * note: years separated these two events.

    Hallowe’en Aftermath


    2011 - 11.01

    Scientists say that sugar doesn’t cause hyper children.  As a teacher, I have strong anecdotal evidence that it DOES.  The day after Hallowe’en is a good example.  Granted, there are other reasons: lack of sleep, excitement, lack of breakfast in lieu of candy, caffeine in chocolate etc.  But man, I’m totally blaming the candy.  My first day in a kindergarten/grade one class for my teaching practicum was on November 1st.  I sometimes am amazed that I managed to stay in the profession. :)

    We live in a condo with very few children, and so have never gotten trick or treaters.  That doesn’t stop me from buying a giant Costco box of candy, just in case.  What??  IT’S FOR THE CHILDREN!  No wonder most people gain 5-10 lbs between Hallowe’en and Christmas.

    I love Hallowe’en.  It’s my favourite holiday…even over Christmas.  I love dressing up in costume and I love the smell of burnt pumpkins.  I love seeing Jack o’ Lanterns, and toddlers and babies dressed up.  I love fireworks and crunching leaves (although it’s more like squishing leaves in Vancouver…details, details) and hot chocolate and misty evenings.  I love October in general: my birthday, the Surrey Writer’s Conference, Canadian Thanksgiving, the anticipatory build up to NaNoWriMo, those last few hot days before a Wet Coast winter comes in…yeahhhh…

    Welcome, November.  Welcome to darker skies and the insane buildup to Christmas.  Welcome to the frantic joy of creating a 50,000 word masterpiece in 30 days.  Welcome to hot chocolate and stale marshmallows.  Welcome to the first dustings of snow on the coast mountains (although that actually happened in October…shush.  I’m being all poetical.) and the point at which Christmas chocolate can be purchased for “emergency gifts” and the buyer won’t be looked at funny by her spouse. (Ummm…totally not talking about me…lalala…)

    Welcome to the next month flying around this little old star we call the sun.

    Did NaNo come early?


    2011 - 10.31

    It feels strangely as though NaNoWriMo came early this year.  Karin and I went out to the library shortly after she got home, grabbed some food, and she then proceeded to spend the next 4 hours writing on the couch with her laptop.  It’s not even November yet!

    Heat Rises


    2011 - 10.30

    The third and latest Castle tie-in novel.  I think of the three that the second one is the strongest so far.  The books are campy and a little fun, and entertaining at times.  They clearly aren’t intended to be “good”, which is perhaps a little at odds with the show itself.  The show is definitely good, and Castle is quirky, but I’ve never gotten the impression while watching the show that he wasn’t actually a good writer.  So I’d say that the books themselves are below the level of writing and quality that you would have expected from the character themselves, which tarnishes the fiction that we’re trying to maintain as the credit for the novel is ascribed to the fictional character, and not the ghost writer.

    If you enjoy the show, you’ll probably enjoy the occasional reference to things from the series, but they don’t happen frequently enough to make it worth your effort.  Also in this particular book there seemed to be a bunch of jargon for no apparent reason (I don’t recall that from the previous books).

    On the merit of the books, I can’t imagine that someone would actually read the books and decide based on the books that they needed to check out the TV show.  The books just aren’t that good (although again, it seems as though that’s on purpose, although I don’t know why they’d do that intentionally).

    New Business Cards


    2011 - 10.19

    So despite ordering the cards on Friday and having to settle for the 7 day shipping option (no 3 day rush shipping to our postal code), Karin’s new business cards which she needs for the Surrey International Writers’ Conference arrived today.  Which is awesome, because she didn’t need them until tomorrow.  Yay!  It’s nice when things work out.

    Rebuilding a website


    2011 - 10.17

    Karin’s got a new project, or maybe it’s not a project and more of a program as it may not have a real end.  Part of it involves a lot of website updates which I’ve been a little buried under… expect more details in the coming days, but maybe not until after SiWC.

    Countdowns…


    2011 - 10.11

    Nine more days until I’m at the Surrey International Writer’s Conference!  SO EXCITED!!

    Thanks to my birthday gifts, I’ve paid for the conference.  I feel so incredibly supported in my writing endeavor…so much love to everyone.  By luck of dates, my birthday lands right near Thanksgiving…some years right on Thanksgiving, like this year.  I am definitely super thankful for all of the support that I received, financial, emotional and physical (I don’t think I’ve cooked anything more complicated than cold cereal for the last month, at least…)

    Typewriter?


    2011 - 10.08

    Anyone out there got a nice looking typewriter?  Karin’s wanting to do some author pictures, and I thought it might be fun to do also do a photo shoot that used a typewriter.  Just a thought.  If you have other suggestions for authory props, or author photos that you thought were particularly good or effective, please share them.