Friday, January 30, 2009

One Month Gone...

.....eleven more to go in 2009. Hard to believe the end of January is already here (yes I know its tomorrow, but what’s in a technicality?)

Have I mentioned before how much the winters wear me down? This week has been a real drain…earlier this week, the morning commute was affected by yet another strong snow storm, but even though the traffic crawled, it was good to see an absence of ditched vehicles, and a safe arrival at my destination was accomplished. Today however, was another story…traffic was flowing quite nicely, no precipitation and the thoughts of arriving at the office a little earlier had the day off to a good start. Not for long! A mere 5 kms ahead, lay a jack-knifed tractor trailer, across all three lanes of the highway! Almost at the same time as I heard the news on the radio traffic report, blinking red tail lights dominated the road ahead. No time to take the next exit, and so for the next 90 minutes I was able to travel the astounding distance of 2 kilometres and then join the throng of traffic managing to squeeze by on the shoulder. Not an easy task for the multitude of transport trucks either as the space was quite limited. Hopefully the driver of the disabled 18-wheeler was unhurt.

However, that was almost 12 hours ago and now its that most favourite time of the work week – Friday evening! A time to wind down, maybe think about the chores which need dealing with over the next couple of days…or not!

Pam has been industriously drafting mock up letters to agents and publishers…and I have been making my way through the 4th draft of our Madelaine. She and I plan a writing weekend next week here and it would be wonderful if we can actually finish up the draft and get it ready to send out!

No word yet on the “query holidy” submission we sent in earlier this month, although the publisher has extended the date they promise to contact a writer if interested.

We shall see!

Enjoy your weekend, stay warm, stay dry and never take the day for granted.

Cheers!

Liz

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Dropped on the head!!

I am struggling with my hearing and my eyesight and if you find lots of mistakes in this blog you will know the reason why. Not that I need my hearing to type but I certainly need my eyesight as I am not a natural typist evn after three years typing class when I was at school. But that was many years ago.
I managed to write one synopsis for an agents letter today with the help of Microsoft. I was able to make the screen black and the writing white to cut the glare. I also have my new wrapapround glasses that are I suppose for those who like to brave the ski slopes and dont light the sun and snow blinding them. Wonder if I can parade around in them at work tomorrow?

It wont be long before I can hear again as I was fitted yesterday for new hearing Aids and a personal microphone and receiver. That should make a big difference. It will certainly make communicateing easier for me but also my family and friends. Liz has always been my interpreter at work especially in meeting and now that she has moved on I miss her stepping in to help me.

I was asked recently if my mother had dropped me on my head as a baby!!!! Wheeese. well she may have but my hearing loss is hereditory and I just have weak eyes. I will be good as new very soon.

Thank goodness I can still write and could always dictate into my tape recorder if necessary. The desire to tell a story is all thats needed and with Madelaine I hope we have accomplished that. Liz is knocking off the chapters and is nearing completion. When it is ready we will send to the printers to have it bound just for us and then I will send queries to hand picked agents.

If my eyes permit I will start reading and revising Body Perfect. We have not done the finishing chapter but it is so long since we looked at it I need to reaccquaint myself and get into the skin of Dorothy and Paul once more. Need to get a few ideas down for the next in the series as well. Will use my tape recorder for that.

With all this technology I use I think shares in a battery company is th way to go.

Slainte,
Pam

Sunday, January 18, 2009

What a differnce a day makes!

What a difference a day makes. Temperature wise that is. The Canadian pre-occupation with the weather seems to escalate in the winter. We have to pay more attention to survive and to go about our daily routines. None more so than in our household.

Last week we were experiencing -20 degrees and bitter winds and then more snow to cap it off. Settling in to watch a movie Friday night after a busy week at work we tried to keep warm as the Arctic blast that was howling outside was making our TV room freezing. This room is situated above the garage and is always cold and in summer stifling. I think the builders must have bricked over the vents. Well.....the resident handyman went to the garage to bring in an industrialized sized heater that I had never seen before. "I always knew it would come in handy" says the junk collector of all time.

It came in handy for about five minutes.As Lovely warm air wafted into the room so did all the lights ,tv and computer go out. We sat there in silence thinking it must be a neighborhood thing. It was a fuse of course and it had been overloaded so my "handyman" went to the basement to sort it out. Should be back in a moment and I will move the heater to another plug!!!!

Fortunately only one side of the house was affected and I could still use the kitchen.
While I was waiting on my electrician/husband performing a miracle I made a big pot of Chili and did the chores usually relegated to Saturday morning.

Lots of running up and down stairs to find out if things were working again resulted in a call to a friend who would make it sometime on Saturday to sort us out.

What does one do when the house is cold,(the furnace was struggling as well) no television, no computer, well you just go to bed.

Back in operation by Saturday afternoon I decided to leave the writing until today as we were off for dinner and a 50th birthday for an old friend. I am not a "party girl " any more.I would have been happy to have sat by the fire with a good book or watched an old movie but I always enjoy meeting up with old friends.
Two different venues were planned. After Peter cleared the driveway and the car of the accumulated snow we drove in horrible and messy conditions to a Greek restaurant that was enormous. We had table 94!!. Obviously very popular and new with very nice decor. The two couples we met there had made the reservations and had made it into a celebration for my birthday . The wait staff sang Happy Birthday. Very nice.

Then it was off to our next party. It was nearly 9.30 and it was still snowing. Peter did his" duty"
and cleaned the car again and drove very carefully as the roads had not been plowed yet.
Talk about culture shock. We went from the latest in dining and decor to something out of the sixties. My friend Alice is a pool/snooker aficionado and plays in tournaments. I was surprised there was no sawdust on the floor. A large bouncer met us at the door and stamped our hands for entrance. A live band was so loud I knew it was an evening of just smiles as hearing what anyone was saying was out of the question. It was a beer kinda place and I made the mistake of ordering a red wine.

My handyman/electrician/editor's eyes lit up as he saw at least 12 tables for pool. There was a table of cheese and crackers and a large cake with a small pool table on it for the birthday girl.
Peter is not a handyman/ electrician but is an excellent editor and has done a fine job on Madelaine. His other talents apart from his Art is he plays a mean game of darts and is an excellent pool player so I knew I had lost him for the rest of the evening. Yes he cleaned up.
I danced with a friend and listened to these old rockers play and they were excellent...but loud.

I have had diarrhea of the mouth this afternoon but I find all experiences where I can soak up the atmosphere are great for a future story so I will store away my night at the pool hall.

The editing is done and Liz is busy making the chapters into a finished manuscript. I am tweaking the epilogue and adding a bit more. February should see us start on Body Perfect.

Talk soon,

Slainte,
Pam

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Fluffy white snow!

Freezing cold but sun shining on great fluffy mounds of snow. They look fluffy but as I don't shovel it is probably big ice chunks!! This was not forecast and it snowed all day and into the evening. Let's hope the roads have been plowed as we are making a trip to Toronto for a birthday dinner at my son and daughter-in-laws. That is my birthaydinner and I am not telling you which one!

The added bonus is spending time with two Grandsons. Aidan who is six and his new brother the 5lb 4oz Ryan.

Our in house Editor, Peter is finishing the last chapter and epilogue as we speak. Liz has been busy setting up and revising and tweeking and polishing the finished manuscript ready for printing and then...........

Now ,you might be wondering what I am doing as everyone is busy but me. Well I won't tell you how long this blog has taken me as I can't see very well. Even had to give up driving for now and that does not sit well with me. Tomorrow I hope tmy appointment with the eye doctor is fruitful and he will book a cataract operation soon.

Tried to fix mistakes so forgive me for any errors.
Enjoy the rest of the week and hope to be writing again soon.

Slainte,
Pam

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Timing is Everything

Good morning :-)

What a great day to not have to drive to work! Another snowfall has been heaped upon us, and although it seems to have stopped for now, the forecast is for more throughout the day. My car is in the shop for $$$$ repairs today and so my first ‘vacation’ day of 2009 (booked before Christmas!) has allowed me to miss another snowy commute!

As well, I’ve arranged for delivery of a new sofa today.

BUT, more importantly! The time at home today allows me a chance to polish off Chapter One of Madelaine – Shadows and Light, as Pam and I plan to submit it to a publisher next week. There is a contest of sorts and the deadline is January 15! As far as submissions go, this one is probably the easiest we may ever come across, so first impressions are critical as I’m sure there will be a multitude of submissions.

Exciting and frightening all at the same time! The publisher promises a response by February 1 if they are interested. Realistically we both know that we are bound to receive our share of rejections, but you have to start somewhere right?

Onwards and upwards!

Cheers!

Liz

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Slainte for 2009

Happy New year to all.

Read our horoscopes this morning and by all accounts 2009 is a banner year for both Liz and I. We will certainly be working hard to get Madelaine published in the very near future.
Bitterly cold today,-15 but sunny and dry. Great day to hibernate and do some reading and rest before I go back to work tomorrow. Liz is moving to the 6th floor tomorrow to start her new position. I don't know who will bail me out when I get stuck with the computer now! I will still see her every day but she will not be popping over to sort me out. Oh, woe is me!

Peter has started editing the end of the third draft and should not take him any time. I have pinned down a couple of agents to query so working on drafts of our query letter.

Saturday we are off to Cambridge to a combined beginning of year and birthday party. The group of friends we see a few times a year have birthdays in January and the rest are in May That works out well as then we can have a barbecue with them for the other half.

Most are feeling a little uncertain this year financially, so along with my wishes for good health...the most important and happiness , I wish you all financial health as well. A winning lottery ticket would help.l!!!

Hope no hangovers plague you and don't start your resolutions at least until the middle of January. I personally will be glad when all the shortbread is gone.

Only good things for 2009.

Slainte,
Pam