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Tuesday, September 27, 2005


The Differences Between Us.

I was over reading Paperback Writer's blog when this line leapt out at me, "It was in the literature section, and I was in no state to read something plotless and depressing."

This sums up in many ways my feelings toward modern 'literature'. I've read a great many of the classics because I felt I wasn't a well rounded reader if I didn't. A lot I enjoyed, but many also fell into the above category. I've tried, time and again to read what my friends deem 'suitable reading'--literature. The thing is, I find most of it valium for the eyes. I mean, please, I ask you, Angela's Ashes, Bridges of Madison County? I've clipped toe nails that were more interesting and dramatic.

Which makes me wonder about my friends. Seriously.

These are intelligent, funny people. We laugh at stupid movies, hell we laugh at just about everything. Our one liners are legendary. How can we be so far apart when it comes to reading enjoyment. Are they (like I used to), reading these because they feel they should? Eternally hoping that just one of them will be everything the NYT critic said it would be. Or is it so that when they go to dinner parties they can all discuss, intellectually of course, the same book and impress each other with their insights. (wow, that was catty.) and on another side note, the only thing these friends I'm talking about have in common is me.

A friend, on seeing several romances strewn about my house, (although I think she was most horrified by the Harlequins), asked me, with great concern, if I weren't embarrassed to have them in plain view for everyone to see. Which of course, I wasn't. An askance look, a raised eyebrow prompted me to quote my grade 11 english teacher (oh how I loved that woman). "All reading is knowledge."

She said a lot more on the subject. Coming into a very large, mostly lower income high school. Reading wasn't exactly big for us cool punks. But she made it fun, "I don't care what you read. Read a book, comic or magazine. heck read the cereal box. Just tell me what you learned this week, even if it is only a new word. Just read."

So this is where I'm coming from with my love of reading, and why I feel so good about my reading habits. All reading is knowledge, and you can read what you like.

I'm still puzzled where my friends are coming from.


Monday, September 26, 2005


I Get Around

Gads! It's been ages since I've blogged.

Lemme see, what have I been doing. Mostly blog whoring, flitting from bookmarked blog to bookmarked blog, commenting at will and having a grand time.

I've been working on my excerpts for The Belfry Author Day. I finally selected scenes and whittled them down to a smallish amount. Gosh that was hard. maybe even harder than a synopsis.(shudder). I'll be talking a lot about Author Day, and letting everyone know where you can find my wonderful critique group as the day draws closer.

Author Day is consuming most of my time lately. I'll be a moderator for part of the day and I want to show off MY authors well. Plus I also get to pimp my work. You never know, there may be a bored editor just popping in for a looksee during coffee break and spot my stuff and the next thing you know I'm receiving an advance like Elizabeth Kostova (hey, a girl can dream).

In other news, two of my favourite Belfrites (members of my critique group), have new books out. Lyn Cash, and Ann Wesley Hardin. Go check them out. Apart from being enormously talented writers, they're also a laugh riot and I love spending time in their company. Smart, funny women are the best.

Goals for this week include: Cleaning the barn, editing submissions 1 and or 2, more comprehensive outlining of books 4 and 5 (and decide which one I want to work on next), blog more... and of course, world peace.



Tuesday, September 20, 2005


The Big League

or, playing with the grownups.

The last two weeks I've been receiving a crash course in promotion. It's big and scary but it has also helped to refocus my writer's brain to, well, writing.

As one of the few unpublished authors left in our critique group, The Belfry Collective, I volunteered to moderate part of our upcoming Author Day. The behind the scenes organisation for this event has been a real eye opener for me and has brought home, once again, that writing the damn book is perhaps the easiest part of being a writer, (and we all know how easy that is, right?). Getting it published, then once published, getting good sales are even more nerve wracking. However, doing it this way (as moderator), I get to see how it's all done without the added pressure of having my babies out there for consumption. Hopefully when it's really my turn to attempt something like this I'll know the ropes--what works, what doesn't etc.

On the writing front, the slugfest is over. It's time to get back into it. I'm even eager (and about time). My hiatus though, isn't entirely by choice. Summer is simply too hectic for me. My house turns into an hotel from late June to, well, I just waved off the last influx... or is that outflux? last week. After they left I begged dearest husband of mine not to invite anyone else to stay until at least Christmas time. Here's hoping.

One good thing that came out of my not-writing period however, was my reading-like-a-madwoman period. My TBR pile is now non existent. None of my favourite authors have new releases for me to read and so I'm kind of floundering. Need something to read. Need it, need it, need it! It's very very quiet in the house....

Yet with the quiet comes that wonderful urge to bond once more with my word program. The initial rush of formatting the document for The Manuscript. Inserting the header with those magical lines Title and Author. Hurriedly jotting down the scene outlines (that although raw, I've already come up with), and then, magically, typing Chapter One... sigh.

I'm off for now, ciao bellas


Monday, September 19, 2005


Who Am I?

Found this fun Quiz courtesy of Jenne's blog.

Oh dear, you are Bookish, aren't you? You are a
highly intelligent and witty bluestocking,
whose beauty is hidden behind spectacles. Your
dress sense is eccentric and a little
unfashionable, and you consider yourself plain.
You have very little use for men, who find your
knowledge of Shakespeare, interest in politics
and forthright speech formidable. You are
undoubtedly well-off. The only reason for your
presence in a novel of this kind (which, I
might add, you would not dream of reading,
although you have occasionally enjoyed the
works of Miss Austen), is your mother, who is
absolutely determined that you will make a good
marriage. Rather than defying her directly,
you are quietly subversive, dancing with anyone
who asks you, but making no attempt to hide
your intellectual interests. The only person
who can get past your facade is the man who is
witty enough to spar with you, and be amused at
your blatant attempts to scare your suitors
away. While you will, no doubt, subject him to
a gruelling cross-examination to find out
whether his respect for your intelligence is
real or mere flattery, you may be sure that he
is your match, and that you, he AND your mother
will all live happily ever after

The Regency Romance Quiz: What kind of Romance Heroine are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Saturday, September 17, 2005


It's My Turn

Three times a month it's my duty to post over at our author blog The Belfry Collective. Today was my day.

For the weekendly brain dead it was a struggle but I managed it. I'm really very tired now, which means no ramblings here. Go read that other blog.

Go on.



Wednesday, September 14, 2005


What A Feeling

Over at Anna Lucia's blog, she wrote about a watching a co-worker from her office window as they beat the crap out of several computers. The response of her commentors is unanimously joyous at this action.

Now some might look on this in much the same way the Romans enjoyed the offerings at the colleseum, I on the other hand took a gentler, kinder view... it simply filled me with quiet contentment.

In visualising the scene I got the same feeling I get on those early spring mornings, those rare ones, where I'm up before everyone else. The sun is already bright but not yet hot, I grab a coffee and go out onto the deck. The air is cool but still, and promises a lovely day. The lake is like glass and mirrors the surrounding trees and hills. I sip my coffee and smile. For just this snapshot in time, my world is perfect.

Now go back and picture the destrction of those hard drives.. can ya feel it? Lovely int it?



Do You Hear What I hear?

Oh my gooness, I'm not a liberal or a conservative, but this cracked me up sideways considering all the name calling that is going on in the US of late.

Purloined from The Daily Show website.

Kurt Vonnegut's List


Give us this day our daily bread. Oh sure.

Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those wh trespass against us.
Nobody better trespass against me. I'll tell you that.

Blessed are the meek.

Blessed are the merciful. You mean we can't use torture?

Blessed are the peacemakers. Jane Fonda?

Love your enemies - Arabs?

Ye cannot serve God and Mammon. The hell I can't! Look at the Reverand Pat Robertson. And He is as happy as a pig in s**t.


Monday, September 12, 2005


I Like Coffee

Just a little sumpin to get over the gloom of the last post.


Sunday, September 11, 2005


Two Faces Have I

I've been stewing on this all weekend and bad feelings don't sit well with me. I have to verbalise them in some way to let them go... with any luck this will do the trick.

Just a bit of background before I launch into what I'm sure will be a long rant. Last Wednesday a party of men arrived (as they do every year) for a fishing trip out to our camp. They're assholes the lot of them. Older men, free of the shackles of the 9-5 grind, bonding together to grunt, fart and generally be gross in the wilderness to prove their manhood. This isn't really the problem (them being assholes) as a rule I get on very well with assholes. Two of the men are affable enough but the other... lordy, he grates on my last nerve. And on Thursday night I totally lost it.

I rarely lose my temper. I can get pissy, annoyed, grumpy... but none of those come close. I don't think I've ever lost my temper with a guest in our home, but on Thursday night I did, and I feel bad about it... weird thing is, I'm not sure why I feel bad, cause he really deserved it.

It doesn't really matter, and I won't go into details, suffice to say that I was talking about astronomy, phenomenon and visibility. He picked up on one comment I made (totally disregarded the context of the rest of my point) and took great delight in pointing out where and how I was wrong. It was the sheer delight that set me off.

As I said earlier, I like assholes, I usually get on very well with them. And the other two are charming in their way. When they tell stories of their exploits they never fail to throw in one or two anecdotes of their fuck ups. They tease each other, they tease me, but because they can admit to these failings of perfection it's all good natured fun. We know, because we've been there and done that. There's something wonderful about looking someone in the eye and laughing with the shared knowledge that yep, I was that stupid too.

But the other one... grrr, he joins in the teasing, oftentimes initiating it, but he will never admit to a failure. And there's the rub. He watches and waits during conversations always listening for the phrase that isn't exact in its preciseness and then he pounces. There is no emotional sharing with this man. It isn't possible when one is so fixated on being right (perfect).

When he pulled this stunt on me I began to argue thinking he was simply disputing my claim, but once I realised what he was really doing--The smug smile on his face as he condescendingly cited my own words back at me--wow! How I didn't leap across the table and rip his face off is the only testament to my control. By the time I'd finished going up one side of him and down the other, agreeing that, 'yes, he was indeed right and how kind it was of him to disregard what I meant. To point that out, in the most belittling way, to everyone.' He was left in no doubt of my opinion of him, his manner, and his worth as a human being.

My hands shook for about thirty minutes after I let him have it. Even now, recalling it, my hands are shaking. In one way I felt liberated, I'd wanted to say something like that to him for years, but in another I felt totally trapped. It's not like I can sever this relationship so I have to find a way to deal with him. A better way than having my blood pressure shoot so high I think my head may explode, every time he opens his mouth.

Any suggestions?


Friday, September 09, 2005


Am I Not Pretty Enough

Holy Crap On Eggs.

I just realised something. Everything I do in my blog (technique-wise) speaks to my voice/style/whatever and is in complete opposition to all the writing rules.
Beginning sentences with gerunds, conjunctions and {{{{horrors}}}} adverbs... liberal, fucking liberating use of parenthesis (god I love these suckers)... the ability to insert an aside freely, unrestrainedly...(also, making up words???)) oops there's another faux pas. Overuse of punctuation marks for eyebrow wiggling emphasis.

So squidgy I figured this out. I love blogging! oh, what the hell !!!!!!!!!


Thursday, September 08, 2005


A Hard Rains A-Gonna Fall

Some Katrina Heroes

Was directed to this site by Cameron of Vancouver, via Haloscan

My sadness/rage/despair/rage/outrage/rage/anger has no words that can be expressed with any eloquance... please read the above link. If you do, please start at the first entry.

Hopefully this is all I'll blog about this tragedy. I fear if I start my rage will spew forth without end. My heart aches for everyone devastated by this multiple disaster.


Edit: 09/09/05
Actually, this fine rant encapsulates everything beautifully for me. Thanks and Kudos to Miss Alli over at This Is Not Over

Wednesday, September 07, 2005


What's My Name?

Here's the scoop.

Many people over the years have asked me the story behind the X moniker. Today all will be revealed.

A gazillion years ago Dearest Husband of mine made some weird ass Y chromosome connection between my given name Christine and the abreviated version of Christmas being Xmas. With a self satisfied amusement at his own cleverness in brevity, he started leaving memos for me when he'd have to go flying.
Xtine, gone to Aklavik. be back around 7.
Xtine, run to the airport B back soon.

It wasn't long before Xtine got shortened simply to, X, and others of our aquaintance began to use the new version of my name. Been that way for over 20 years now. So there ya go. The origins of X.

Not much of a story admittedly. I probably could have drawn it out waaaaaaay longer. embellished it here and there but it's late and I'm tired and I've already blogged over at The Belfry Collective


PS: If that HTML works first time (from memory), I'll be stunned and amazed.

Monday, September 05, 2005


Life In The Fast Lane

Sometimes it rocks being me.

Disregarding the occasional urge to run up a clock tower and pick off, one by one, the men 'working' on my house, life is good.

Despite my many foibles and 'f'obias I have friends who love me. Case in point: we arrived home last night around 9:30 pm. As soon as we walked in the house we were greeted by the envy inducing aroma of the meal enjoyed by Gadget Man (who was noticably absent). Without enthusiasm, we unloaded the car then trudged upstairs to embrace the comfort of our house. On the dining room table was a note left-- not by Gadget Man, but by another friend whom had helped our guest move whilst we were gone, it read:

Thought you might be hungry when you got in. Spaghetti Sauce on the stove, pasta just needs to be nuked. There's a salad in the fridge and fresh bread ready to make garlic toast. Enjoy.

How cool is that?

I've said it before and I'll say it again. I have the BEST friends.


Sunday, September 04, 2005


Our House

Is a very very very fine house.

Gosh it's good to be home.

Thanks everyone for your good wishes whilst I was sick and again braving the Dempster Highway, and the perils of Whitehorse traffic. I survived all. That's the good news.

The bad news is the credit card didn't take the beating I was hoping. Even though Whitehorse is a much larger community than I'm used too, with many many more stores, they are still a remote northern clime... so still no furniture for the house although I did buy some area rugs (whoop-de-doo). I didn't even buy any gadgetry, or sparklies (as I'm wont to do when I'm desperate to spend)... ah well, there's still the catalogues, and shopping online. I better hurry up though because christmas will be here before I know it and it sure would be nice to fill this barn before then.

In writing news... well there is no writing news. Doofus here forgot her notepad didn't she... so she spent the trip there and back doing puzzles.

Bah! Tomorrow. I'll write tomorrow.



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