Friday, March 20, 2015

Exciting Eclipse

There was a partial eclipse here today and I was all ready to look at it with my pinhole camera, aka two pieces of paper one of them with a hole in it. I didn't get the chance to use it because of the cloud cover but there was other excitement instead!

It was just getting really dark outside when there was a terrible loud noise like a hundred rain sticks all being used at once. I rushed to investigate what it was and in the kitchen I found heaps of rice all over the draining board and the side, with a few grains still trickling down.

Rufus had tried to climb up to his high place on top of one of the cupboards but someone had stored a large bag of rice there. (This was a deliberate ploy to stop him from hiding on top of a cupboard that is far too near the kettle for our liking.) Efficient use of his claws led to a rain of rice, or more like a monsoon of rice, all over the kitchen side and draining board and floor. Thank you, Rufus.

With a cat in the house, life is never boring.

Friday, March 13, 2015

We shall not see his like again...

Sir Terry Pratchett 1948 - 2015

I've read all his books, many of them several times. I was at a local library where he spoke about his life and work, maybe twenty years ago now. He signed a book for me. He was very engaging.

When my father died at age 62, Pratchett's books were one of the things that helped me to get through. I knew his take on Death was pure wish fulfilment but I needed some of that at the time, together with his willingness to even talk about death when too many people found the subject uncomfortable and shied away from it. You can't avoid thinking about it when someone you love dies.

It seems strange that he didn't even know I existed and yet I have a real sense of personal loss at his death. The world is a poorer place for his passing.


Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Crochet Party

March is International Crochet Month and Ravelry is celebrating with a party. There's a Scavenger Hunt and a Mystery Crochet A Long and lots of other fun and games. Maybe I'll see you over there.

One challenge is to "write your name in crochet" and I got as far as "fairy" and gave up. In my defence, I'm still getting over the flu. It's the first year I've had flu in a long time and after nearly three weeks of being ill in bed I can't say I recommend it.

I feel like I want to wish you all "Live long and prosper!" but that seems almost too poignant right now.

Monday, February 09, 2015

I'm Not A Robot

Sometimes Blogger gets the message. Sometimes it doesn't recognise me and I have to type in words to prove my humanity. Who knew that one day we'd all be proving we're not AIs by copy typing nonsense letters that appear on a screen? I always thought a Turing test would be more interesting than that.

Every time it happens on this blog I want to scream.
  1. Blogger is supposed to recognise me so as to not count my page hits, and
  2. It shouldn't be asking anyone to verify they're not a robot, because I've turned word verification off.
Has anyone got any ideas as to how to get rid of it?

Friday, February 06, 2015

Could you read this book?

It's not as easy as it seems. The book will only open if you approach it with a neutral face. It won't open if you're looking sceptical - or even if you're excited! That's me done for then.

I'm not entirely sure that I can see a use for it except as an idea for a science fiction story. Now that would be something I'd really like to read!

Wednesday, February 04, 2015

You can't say that!

I've joined a book club. It's only small at the moment: three or four of us meeting in a pub. It's local though and it's nice to meet other people to talk about books.

This month we read How to Build a Girl by Caitlin Moran and it was a challenging read. Not that the book is hard or literary, or even very long. The trouble is, it's all about sex and as I read I kept thinking "We can't talk about this at book club!"

If you go to amazon, you can read the beginning for free. It starts like this:
I am lying in bed next to my brother Lupin.
He is six years old. He is asleep.
I am fourteen. I am not asleep. I am masturbating.
The whole time I was reading I kept thinking, "how can we talk about this?" And yet it was actually quite easy in the end.

I started by saying how I'd felt about reading it and we all had a good laugh. And then we talked about how honest Caitlin is in her depiction of what it's like to be a young girl, and how refreshing to read about a young girl who is so keen on sex, and about how she invents and reinvents herself, and what we liked and what we didn't. 

It brought back lots of memories of my own childhood as I found myself looking for similarities and differences. One thing it brought home to me is that I wouldn't want to write a book like that. Not because of what other people might think but because I don't want to look back on my growing years with that crystal clarity and tell it as it really was, even if I was the only person in the world to ever read it.

Monday, February 02, 2015

Slightly Stunned

Rufus has just got back from the vet after having the wire removed which was keeping his broken jaw in place. He had it removed under anaesthetic, so he's still a bit woozy.

For the last six weeks he's been unable to go outside. For five of those weeks he's been almost unbearable. He should be able to go out again on Wednesday, so fingers crossed.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Going Backwards

I am the proud owner of 23,000 words of original writing. (Well, not very original writing but I wrote it all myself!) That makes me 10,000 words behind my goal for today.

Yesterday I cut 7,000 words from my story. It was going in the wrong direction and I wasn't liking it. I could see where I'd taken a wrong turning, so I went back to that point and put the 7k words that came next into an "out takes" document. That was less painful than screwing them up and putting them in the bin.

I need to write 2,500 words a day now if I want to get to 50k by the end of November. I don't think I'm going to make it, but at least what I'll have written will be something I'll like. Or I can hope so anyway.

Sunday, November 09, 2014

Yesterday I went skating at Somerset House with My Beloved, then we took Boris Bikes to Tate Britain and saw the Late Turner Exhibition.

There's something about seeing famous paintings in real life that you just can't beat. Some of them seem less wonderful (I'm thinking of Manet here). Most of them are more impressive. I loved the picture of a ship in a snow storm and yet the reproduction here really doesn't do it justice.

Friday, November 07, 2014


I'm eleven thousand words into NaNoWriMo and only a few hundred words behind. Which is just as well seeing that tomorrow we're going up to London to skate at Somerset House and then visit the Turner Exhibition at Tate Britain.

I started out writing in third person but after only a few paragraphs I changed to first. I can see where it happened. There was some dialogue which included the character saying "I", and after that it was "I" all the way! So I nipped back and changed the first few paragraphs to match.

It's Nano. If I'm going to write fifty thousand words this month I have to go with whatever works!
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