Monday, 21 September 2009

22.09.09 and An Echo in the Bone

22 September is:

a) the Autumnal Equinox in the Northern Hemisphere and the Vernal Equinox in Southern Hemisphere;

b) the day on which 100 days are left to the end of the year;

c) Oktoberfest in Munich;

d) Bilbo and Frodo Baggins’ birthdays;

e) my Frodo (aka Chirpy)’s birthday;

f) the day in 1653 when Marguerite Bourgeoys landed at Quebec with de Maisonneuve and 100 soldiers;

g) car-free day in Montreal; and

...drumroll, please...

h) the release date for Diana Gabaldon's An Echo in the Bone!

Monday, 14 September 2009

New Year Tag!

Marsha had a recent post about how September sometimes feels more like a New Year than 1 January does - at least in the Northern Hemisphere, what with back-to-school-shopping et al. - and summarized her writing life for the past two years.

I've turned her post into a tag! Mine covers the period since I joined the Compuserve Books and Writers Community, which was almost exactly three years ago.

If you're reading this, consider yourself tagged (though it needn't be about writing, of course, but whatever project you've embarked on).

Drafts written: About 4 for The Face of A Lion (YA novel), 3 or 4 for my short story He Ain't Heavy, 2 YAs currently started

Books completed: 1 (The Face of A Lion)

Books published: Ha ha. Not even an agent yet!

Rejections received: Hmm... I think I'm at 40 (from agents). Though I did just participate in CANSCAIP's Blue Pencil contest and received some very favourable comments.

Wine consumed: No wine, and unfortunately no whisky, as my writing revolves around work life. But counting the days when I bribed myself to get up early (say, 5.30 am) to write, with the promise of a latte... Hmm, about 75 cups, at 3.33$ each... I'll have to sell my book for 250$!

Weight gained: Hmm, pretending for a moment that this is not about the weight I myself might have gained but rather the total weight of all my printed manuscripts... I would estimate a large suitcase-ful; about 30 kg (over the airlines' limit!).

Money earned: Earned? How about spent? On notepads, pens, memory sticks, CDs, coffee, contests, stamps, etc. The price of the book is rising...

Job satisfaction: 100% How could it not be? I just woke up with another new idea this morning!

Thursday, 3 September 2009

Writer Appreciation Week!

Only one and a half days left in Writer Appreciation Week, hosted by agent Nathan Bransford.
Say something nice about a writer, and make their day a little brighter (erm, cheesy rhyme, I know).
I'd like to thank Nathan for hosting such a detailed and interesting blog, and shout out to all the writers and readers on the Compuserve Books and Writers Forum!
My greatest thanks and appreciation to all the YA authors out there, past and present, as well as authors not labelled YA but whom I read regardless (starting with Tolkien and Lewis), all of whom made my childhood a little bit more magical...

Meanwhile, it's the first anniversary of Outlandish Observations!

Books I'm Reading and Finished Books

  • The Making of Outlander by Tara Bennett
  • Testament of Experience by Vera Brittain
  • Zoom sur Plainpalais by Corinne Jaquet
  • beta read! (JB)
  • ***Reading At Intervals***
  • Sophie's Choice by William Styron
  • The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins
  • Moby Dick by Herman Melville
  • The Young Lions by Irwin Shaw
  • Burning Sky by Lori Benton
  • 12 Anne and Avonlea books by L. M. Montgomery (skimming/reread (this was free on Kindle!))
  • Parade's End by Ford Madox Ford
  • Istanbul Noir (Akashic Books anthology)
  • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien manuscripts edited by J. D. Rateliff
  • The Jerusalem Bible
  • ***Finished Books***
  • The Children of Men by P. D. James
  • A Daughter's A Daughter by Mary Westmacott (Agatha Christie)
  • A Girl From Yamhill by Beverly Cleary
  • Sunlight by Margaret Rucker (poem; floating in a cocktail glass)
  • Save the Cat by Blake Snyder
  • Preface to The Hobbit, by Christopher Tolkien
  • Ilk Defa... by Beste Barki (essays)
  • Gaudy Night by Dorothy Sayers (essay)
  • The Moon and I by Betsy Byars
  • The Road to Little Dribbling by Bill Bryson
  • Rogue Warrior by Regan Walker
  • Beauty and the Beast by Villeneuve
  • Black (what was this? I don't remember!)
  • Dance of the Jakaranda by Peter Kimani
  • Thomas the Tank Engine by Rev. Awry (26 book collection)
  • beta read (Born to Run by RB)
  • The Little Turtle by Vachel Lindsay (poem; reread)
  • The Kraken by Alfred Lord Tennyson (poem)
  • Android's Dream by John Scalzi
  • The Mysterious Tadpole by Stephen Kellogg (reread)
  • Yashim Cooks Istanbul by Jason Goodwin
  • Miniatures by John Scalzi
  • Testament of Youth by Vera Brittain
  • Kitty-in-Boots by Beatrix Potter (illustrated by Quentin Blake)
  • All or Nothing by Rose Lerner (short story)
  • Merry Christmas, Emily (board book)
  • Extra Yarn by __ and Jan Klassen
  • Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
  • The Outlandish Companion II by Diana Gabaldon
  • The Outlandish Companion I, Revised by Diana Gabaldon
  • MacHinery and the Cauliflowers by Alistair MacLean (short story)
  • The Dileas by Alistair MacLean (short story)
  • The Gold Watch by Alistair MacLean (short story)
  • betty, butter, sun by Monica Byrne (short story)
  • Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them screenplay by J.K. Rowling
  • The Very Cranky Bear (Scholastic)
  • various haiku by R. Wodaski
  • ongoing rereads of most board books listed last year!
  • see the 2016 list and statistics at
  • see the 2015 list and statistics at
  • see the 2014 list and statistics at
  • see the 2013 list and statistics at
  • see the 2012 list and statistics here
  • see the 2011 statistics on
  • see the 2011 list at
  • see the 2010 list at
  • see the 2009 list at
  • also in 2009 at
  • see the 2008 list at
  • also in 2008 at
  • also in 2008 at