Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Release... the snuggie

Here it is, the last day of Summer and I'm breaking out the Snuggie. It's a leopard print and I'm not ashamed to use it - in the privacy of my own home, of course.

It's raining and there's more coming, including flood warnings. Nothing I can do about that except watch the wet stuff come down. Queensland is still trying to dry out and the Outback is getting a soaking - that's La Nina for you: wet one day, damp the next.

Still no writing done... yes, okay, I have a new cable channel to watch which has The Walking Dead, Hell on Wheels and Justified; then there's Fringe, Alphas, Sanctuary and Warehouse 13 - so much stuff. And the TBR pile isn't shrinking at all.

I need to prioritise, get organised, carve out some time (somewhere) to curl up in my favourite chair, put some mellow music on, grab some chocolate and a glass o' vino and just... read.

And since it's going to rain this weekend, me and the snuggie are going to get comfortable. All I need do, is pick an author.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

A Year of Reading

This week saw the launch of the National Year of Reading. 

According to the website, "Nearly half the population struggles without the literacy skills to meet the most basic demands of everyday life and work. There are 46% of Australians who can't read newspapers; follow a recipe; make sense of timetables, or understand the instructions on a medicine bottle." On the face of it, 46 per cent is a staggering number for a sophisticated Western Democracy, until you consider the migrant population.

Government, libraries, media, bookstores, schools and community groups are banding together for events to encourage children to read, and to share their passion for the written word.

Australian author, P.D. Martin blogs about it over on Murderati

The Australian Women Writers website has a twelve month reading and reviewing  challenge

Elizabeth Lhuede steps into controversy on gender bias in the decision-making process of Love2Read's (host of the NYR) "Our Story"shortlist.

Mrs Mac's Library  has a list of events and ideas.

And then there's this: The Joy of Books, an animated sequence on You Tube - a lot of work and a lovely ending.

Monday, February 06, 2012

Not so Patriotic

Sigh. I was so hoping the New England Patriots would stop fooling around and win the Super Bowl. Apparently not.

I feel for Wes Welker missing that catch, but... the Patriots had plenty of opportunities. One missed play by one player does not a loss make. It's a team sport. And I will admit - grudgingly - that the Giants worked hard for the win. (Scuffs foot.)

Okay. I really don't like the New York Giants; they keep knocking my Cowboys around.

In the end, it was the last football game for a while and I'm going to miss it. September is a long way off.

Still, I have the cricket and the rugby union isn't far off; but cricket will soon end.

Guess I'll be off to write for the Winter; and I'm all for that.

Sunday, February 05, 2012

Dazed and confused and out of sorts

And here it is, February already.

A month has passed since my last post but it doesn't seem that long. I suspect it has something to do with working (long hours in a secured location on secure things, so I have no real internet access) and trying to get the house and parent in order. I've succeeded with the latter, but not necessarily the former.

It's been a long time since I've worked in a scheduled environment - meaning, every duty is required and has a short deadline, as in by the end of the day; no slacking off here.

Writing fiction - for me - is a butt in the chair and write, or research, or edit; that's it. I don't need benchmarking, or report status, or a number of other things I can't talk about. (Which is weird, since I'm working in a public affairs area.)

I'm looking at this time of turmoil - and it is when you're yanked out of a nice, safe, comfortable environment - as a break from all things writing and reading. I doubt I'll be back at it until March.

It could be sooner, given the story ideas floating around, rather than the lists of things to do. Some days, it feels like a day off to do something... that doesn't involve others and their needs, seems like a long way off. Obligations come first.

It's not all bad: I heard a small child today, in the book section of a department store. He sighed heavily, and then said: "Mum, I so need a book!"

Made me smile and my world settled down a little bit more.