Sunday, March 29, 2009

The Final(?) Draft.....

.....is completed and printing as I blog.

Can this really be the last edit? Well until an agent, editor or publisher requests more, then I intend for this to be the final draft. I'm going to try and print off two copies (oh! a laser printer would be wonderful right now!) so that Pam and I will each have our own working copy for our get together next Saturday.

The word count never went much beyond 77,000 words all the way through this last draft. I would take a re-count at the end of each completed chapter and was amazed to see so little variation, even with small additions and revisions along the way. I may still need to do some general fomatting, but that will be just before we decide to send to a printer for the bound copies which Pam mentioned in her comments earlier today.

Now that this draft is done, I must turn my attention to that much-dreaded rite of the spring season - filing income tax papers....grrrr...ugh....drat... I'm sure you get the picture!

The day started quite drearily, cold, grey and rainy. However the sun has returned and even though it is cool, it certainly feels like spring. I saw a red-winged blackbird today, another harbinger that winter's grip is fast fading.

Monday looms once again, with work's deadlines and volumes.

I'm quite pleased with the new business cards and for the next order will remember to include this blog address! After all its an important part of who Jamie Tremain is.

Have a good week.

Cheers!

Morphing

It's a dark,dreich morning and the forecast is for rain all day. After this endless winter we need the rain to clean up the last of the dirty snow and get the bulbs popping. The trees are starting to bud and that's a sure sign of Spring.

The plan today is to answer all those emails in my in-box with red flags and get organized. I have been trying to get my printer and camera working and if I would only take the time to read the instructions...

Liz is planning to spent next w/e with me as we wrap up our baby Madelaine. We will bind two copies for ourselves and have copies made for the agents that are beating down our doors!. I am all for promoting but once we have an agent we will be in a better position to push for publication. We have new business cards that look like bookmarks that are very neat. Our other expenditure is our plan to go to our first conference in June. We will see what the income-tax man says.

My reading on the subject of self promoting is to get out there and let agents and publishers know who you are. We have picked "Bloody Words" , a conference for Mystery readers and writers. This is a genre we both love and one of our favourite authors, Louise Penny is the guest speaker. Networking is the name of the game and to listen and learn. Agents will be on hand to read manuscripts.
Now "Madelaine" is not what you would call a Mystery as we have pegged the genre Mainstream/ fiction or Commercial/fiction. We are still evolving as writers and as our query letter says we are emerging writers . I feel like a butterfly morphing.

I am in discussions with my daughter-in-law Leanne to help with the marketing.
She is on maternity leave from her job and has had a very successful career in Sales and Marketing. Leanne has been busy making contact with people she knows who have published, albeit self publish, and I know she is always full of great ideas.

The conference we plan on attending is in Ottawa at the beginning of June. It will take a chunk of money but I think it is an investment in Jamie Tremain and hopefully we can claim it back on income tax next year. My other justification is that we deserve a treat after two years of writing our Masterpiece!

Work, the one we get paid for, is extremely busy. We moan about it and complain as there are a million other things we would like to be doing. On the other hand so many people are losing their jobs and my heart goes out to them. I have been there and it is demoralizing to be laid off or downsized.

The rain is still hammering on the windows and I am glad I did not wash the windows as I planned yesterday. You don't believe me?The thought crossed my mind for about two seconds as I was scouring out the toilet bowl. Once I sat down for a cup of java and a well deserved rest the thought was gone.

Write later,
Pam


**** The word DREICH is the Scottish vernacular for a dreary wet and miserable day.



Sunday, March 15, 2009

A quacking we will go!

It has taken me about an hour or more to finally get this picture on the blog. Technology is grand when it works but I am exhausted just doing this. Are they not a good looking bunch of grandsons.?
Riley is 13 ,Westyn is 10 and Aidan is six. They all have siblings. Riley's brother Damian is three, Westyn has a sister Penelope who is 5 months and Aidan has the new guy Ryan who is 3 months.
The boys have been with me since Friday evening and when they were not eating they were playing video games until I sent them out for some fresh air. A hectic game of sword fighting and a hike around the ravine tired them out for a bit. They all enjoy drawing and reading. I asked them to critique Madelaine but I did not get any offers .
Sunday afternoon and the boys have gone so I have some much needed down time before going back to the fray tomorrow. Liz and I gave ourselves some homework this w/e so I must get it done. Will give you the results of that later. It's all about the "Genres".

My plan is to go for a walk in the very welcome sunshine, have a nap,dinner and then spend the evening writing.
It's mating time with the ducks at the pond at the back of our house. Peter was wakened with lots of quacking and fighting amongst the ducks. A conquest was made. Later in the morning he pointed out Mr Duck walking behind Mrs Duck going for a walk. Just as it should be! No idea where they were going. Perhaps looking for a bit of privacy.

Talk soon. I will let you know if we get any baby ducklings.

Slainte,
Pam

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

March Moanings

The entire month of February flew by and I didn't post once! Not that I didn't have anything to say mind you - but this is a public site after all! I come home absolutely drained mentally most days, but now that the days are getting longer and (hopefully!) spring is in the air, perhaps it will serve as a good tonic for this weary soul.

It's good to have Pam back at work, and even better to know that her vision is much improved...our eyesight is worth so much and to have it impaired doesn't bear thinking about...one of my greatest fears, so let's not go there right now!

Although I haven't been blogging, I have been chipping away at the fourth draft and am into the home stretch. We have decided on no more submissions until we have that polished draft printed and ready to send at a moment's notice! That way we can also more fully concentrate on Body Perfect, which I am missing very much and long to get back to. Ideally the time we have spent on revising Madelaine will serve as good experience when we finally get back to Paul and Dorothy, and may save us at least one draft revision.

Numerous lottery groups at work, and individual ticket purchases, have so far netted us $0 - the result being that we continue our daily trek to our desks and bide our time until we have publishing success.

My oldest grandson turned 6 last week! Seems like only yesterday I was anxiously pacing the hospital corridor with other family members waiting for Michael's arrival. And now Michael has a younger brother and two cousins. A joint birthday party is planned this Saturday for Michael & Noah as their birthdays are only days apart. It's always fun to see them altogether and hope the four of them will continue to grow up as close friends.

Well today is my one day a week late shift...that means working from 11 to 7 pm...which for me is unbelievably hard to adjust to. I have been an early riser for 30 years and so continue to wake at my usual time. By 4 pm I have no more mental energy left and wonder at the value I can really contribute during those last three L O N G hours. I'm not home till almost 8 pm, and in bed less than an hour later, only to be back at work within 12 hours. Wednesdays likewise are almost totally spent in a fog trying to recover from Tuesday's late hour!

This morning, just to add to the fun of the day, I have scheduled a regular dentist appointment. So after being picked, flossed, and polished I'll make my way down the highway to begin my day's work - and more than ready for a good cup of coffee!

So let the day begin - may you have a good one.

Cheers!

Liz

Friday, March 6, 2009

It's looking very shiny!

It has been a long time between posts but we are still here slogging away with the manuscript. Every time Liz and I read a chapter we find something else to correct or change. I read a great deal about submitting. Revise, revise, revise,they tell you until it is polished within an inch of it's life. Well it's looking very shiny now so....... upward and onward.

I have been home from my paid job all week as I had a cataract operation Tuesday. The last six months have been a trial with my hearing and then my eyesight. Now I have the new aids that I am enjoying and being able to see is a great feeling. Treated myself to a new hairdo so I am good to go!!

The weather here has turned positively balmy at 16 degrees. The sun has been shining all day and the large lumps of grey snow are gradually melting. It suits my mood and maybe, I said maybe, I will start walking again tomorrow. Start slow and see how I get on.

Liz has been having car problems but its all fixed now. We will have to sell lots of books if our cars keep costing us the money that they do. They are a necessary evil in Canada and taking public transit, if you don't live downtown is next to impossible. Liz lives nearly an hours drive from work and I have about 30 mins on a good day.

Many years ago when my mother was on a visit from Scotlandand we picked her up at the Airport. We were driving on a sixteen lane highway on the way to our home. Out of the blue my mother asked us where the bike lanes were!! Now, this is one of the busiest highways with a speed limit of 100km an hour. We were speechless as it had never occured to us that most places in the world used bikes. It took many years for bike lanes to be added to the roadways here, but not to that 16 laner.

Hope the w/e weather holds and of course we loose and hours sleep with "Spring Back". I intend to start reading Body Perfect to get into the skin of Delicious Dorothy and the handsome Paul Barrone. I have some ideas for their next adventure but have to finish this one first.

Talk soon.
Slainte,
Pam