Inspiration for the new year

Revisiting some old favourites, these links have all improved my mood at some point or another and I recommend them for ways to get into thinking more positively.

Still love this video of Louis CK Everything’s amazing and nobody’s happy

How to make 2009 (or 10…) yourbest year ever.

A fantastic little visualisation exercise that will help you re-evaluate what’s important.

My resolutions are more of the same from last year and some goal setting more than anything like ‘visit the gym more’. I want to continue to work hard on my writing and continue in my quest to get published. I have a ‘to do’ list of short stories, etc and a plan for tackling the two books I wrote last year. I’m feeling good about that.

Also, continue to live the best life I can, be open to new things, focus on those people in my life who encourage and support me and above all, have fun!

Happy new year everyone!

Gorgeous things for today

My best friend Giffy had her baby yesterday. So excited to meet the new wee thing.

This stunning video of the known universe, linked to by the QI elves.

Baby cotton top tamarin is so happy!

Also check out my friend Margie’s new blog fake delicious which is all about cute things that look like food. My cupcake wall hanging is in there somewhere….

T shirt quilt

Combining two of my favourite things: chocolate friends! OK, so I haven’t managed that one, but I have combined T shirts and patchwork successfully.

Check it, a bunch of old T shirts of mine, many of them worn until they’re stained, the graphic starts cracking, they’re out of fashion style wise, I grow out of them or I simply have a *better* shirt for that kind of mood….Recycled into a super-funky quilt top. Some are Lee’s old shirts too, The Milo Boro one for example, that Giffy bought him in Thailand. All of these shirts have stories behind them, which makes this quilt more special than one made with random fabrics.

I bought new batting for it, because we don’t have any suitable blankets, but I did recycle an old flannelette sheet for the backing. Here is is, assembled.

So, the oldest shirt in there is the weird landscape one, it depicts a bunch of mods hipster hanging out in a house. A workmate gave me that one, having bought it for herself in the 70’s. In the bottom left hand you can see the Midsummer Night’s Dream shirt from the school production of 1994, Wellington Girl’s College. I was a member of the dancing fairy chorus, we did the Charleston. My WGC supporter’s club shirt is in there too in pieces.

Two Kapcon shirts are in there, and I just found another today but it’s too late to add it. There’s a Jenni’s Angels shirt I had left over from the Destination Earth order and the pink ‘big F little f’ was the one I wore in my director’s cameo the first year we did the 48.

Oh the memories. And it came out really really big too, so it will be extra snuggly and useful. I am kind of looking forward to making my next one….OK, so I still have to hand quilt and bind this one, and that will take a while, but whatevs. This was awesome fun.

Writing whatever the day is

I had an awesome amount of sleep yesterday and last night and woke up feeling refreshed and happy. I am thanking my awesome new Peter Alexander PJs for that. They’re super comfy and the fabric’s real soft and although there’s a little bit of riding up, the pants are so cute and frilly that I don’t even care. OK, now you know way more than you needed to about my new PJs. In conclusion: Peter Alexander 25% off everything sale is totally worth it and I’m likely heading back in for more PJs.

The point of this entry is not PJs though (I love PJs!) it’s writing. I woke up feeling good and managed to not just open the file, but actually edit the first chapter of WtWTCH? I have a couple of days left to get it into Dragon Moon’s open submission month.

I didn’t want to do it, but the combination of inspiring articles and things like twitter being *really dead* because everyone’s on holiday changed my mind. Just like everything in this whole writing malarkey, once you’ve started it got quite easy and fun.

I got a much better first sentence out of the rewrite, paced it up a bit and deleted out some chaff. I made the voice match what it does later in the MS a bit more, (thanks to Dan for bringing this to my attention). I’ve sent the two chapters out to some writerly friends to take a gander at and give me feedback.

I’m going to take another look at it in a couple of days for final refining, spruce up my query letter and send it on in. The response time is 4-6 months so I’ll keep on querying agents with it in the mean time.


Bad first sentence choices.

This Northern Californian agency has a lovely article on how to make yourself Irresistable to agents (part one of three).

Things I Love Christmas

Well, Obviously I love Christmas, but this is a good time to sit back and be thankful for other stuff as well.

This year is the first year *in my whole life* when I will not be seeing my parents, or any of my family, on Christmas Day. It has been a weirdly emotional time for me. I am especially thankful for my friends this year, especially everyone who managed to come round to my Christmas party yesterday. I love sharing this time of year with friends, because I can show them how much I love them. We had fun, chillaxing in the sun, playing Apples to Apples, eating, playing Rock Band and talking. I know awesome people. I feel blessed.

Of course, my immediate family is my darling Lee. I have to be thankful for him because he’s such a honey, always there for cuddles, ready to take me to see Where the Wild Things Are at a moment’s notice and cooking. Mustn’t forget the cooking. I got the roast dinner started yesterday but he checked its progress and took it from oven to served. He gave me the Absolute Sandman vol 3 for Christmas, which means I only need one more and then the Compleat Death 🙂

My extended family.
Just because my family are mostly in Gisborne doesn’t mean there’s no celebrating. My Lee-side family are all here and we’re having a big old party at their place tonight. Catching up with the nieces and eating of the gigantic feast will be awesome fun, plus present swapping!

I love presents. I especially love giving and receiving carefully considered presents. Nothing like knowing someone knows you well, has chosen something that you love, specially for you. Awww, Christmas rocks.

Honourable Mentions: group photos, roast chicken, looking forward to Christmas dinner, knowing that I have only *one* giant meal today so I don’t have to worry about overeating, having a second Christmas in a week, picking people up from the airport, hugs, dancing, sharing my baking and have people being excited about it, youtube, napping, good books, internet shopping, Boxing Day sales, awesome movies and love.

And last, but certainly not least, the best Christmas special ever, made while Jim Henson was still alive and packed with funny….

When you have time, why don’t you share what’s making you happy right now?


I haven’t really done much writing since Happy Christmas Morning. I had grand plans for this afternoon, but after a morning doing chores and having a lovely long lunch with Amphigori I just really wanted to relax. I basked in the sun, read a bunch and snoozed on and off. Great way to start the holidays!

I really need to do some editing, but I guess it can wait. In the mean time I’m agonising over a good title for Rain…

I had a late night brain wave that I should call it The Suburban book of the dead, but it turns out that Robert Rankin already used that name, so I’m playing around with variations on the theme. None of these have jumped out at me as perfect yet, but here’s the list, lemme know if any of these grab you….

Book of the dead for teenagers

Teenage book of the dead

The young person’s guide to the dead

Book of the dead for the recently aggrieved

Modern book of the dead

Suburban guide to hunting monsters

Suburban guide to hunting demons

Bleh. Anyway, have some linky:

This is a fantastic article gathering the best tips from writers. 54 tips for writers from writers, lots to read, lots to digest.

This instruction manual from Holly Lisle on how to do one pass revision on a manuscript is scary and exciting. I might try this method with Rain.