All entries for December 2010

December 19, 2010

Birdsong and Piano Music

Writing about web page

Chopin's Études: Opus 10 No. 1 "Waterfall" is played in the background by my lovely talented son, competing with the slow trickle of water as my hubby washes the meat ready for tonight's meal, which in turn competes with the sound of the judges on Master Chef India who make Gregg Wallace and John Torode sound like big softies. 

Outside, the snow is thick and virginal.  Barely a soul has ventured out in it, and I can't say I blame them.  A flame-red breasted Robin feeds hungrily on the sunflower seeds in one of the feeders hanging from the mock orange tree in the garden.  As he leaves, a Blue Tit flies in to take his place on the perch, while another goes for the peanuts in the feeder nearby.  Then a Coal Tit appears.  In the background, I think I spy a sparrow.  The dark shade in the interior branches makes it difficult to make out exactly what it is.  I wonder where the colourful Bullfinches and Green Woodpecker have gone, and think that maybe I should know more about the wildlife that visits my garden. 

From the Sparrows, Robins and Tits I need to transport myself to the land of Koyals and Bulbuls and Peacocks, the colourful Mor and his beloved Morni.  I wonder how I'll transport myself from this snowladen England to the warmth of India in September, decades ago.  I'd better get into the mood somehow.  It's been a while since I worked on my novel and the next chapter needs to be ready for submission on 5th January.  Better get writing then...      

December 16, 2010

Call for Book Donations for raise money for Anthology of Student Writing, MA in Writing, Warwick Uni

Writing about web page

The Ma in Writing students are producing an Anthology of their writing.  In order to do so, we need to raise enough money to cover all costs incurred.  If we don't raise enough, we can't ahead.  Simple as that.  So we need lots of fundraising ideas and activities.

One idea is to contact writers and publishers and see if they would be able to donate any books - especially signed ones - to help us raise some money. 

These are some examples of how the books may be used to raise money:

1) help sell pre-order vouchers - at each event where vouchers are sold, a book will be offered as a prize in a prize draw

2) if possible, and if we manage to get some big names involved, we may be able to auction books

3) books may be offered as raffle prizes

4) any excess books may be sold at launch or other fundraising events

Are there any writers and publishing houses out there willing to donate some books to us?  Please help us if you can! 

We will try to credit everyone who's made donations even if it's a general 'thank you' rather than a specific mention (which we'll do if there's enough space!). 

Many thanks to the generosity of those who have donated already.

December 06, 2010

What I've Learned So Far

Writing about web page

Well, I've written about the weather, the snow, the travel delays and the early starts but only a little about what I've learned. 

There have been writing exercises, tips, lots of things learned from my fellow students, among them internet rules and suggestions of books to read and films to watch, and peer feedback - some constructive and some not.  And with it all, lots of laughter along the way, and cakes and mince pies and cup cakes, lunches eaten together and discussions and singing over late lunches and cups of tea and on the buses.

I'll try to share some of these.

Winter Wonderland and more Monday Morning Blues

The wicked Snow Queen was out today ensnaring the world with her frosty glare, sending shivers through all the land. What wouldn't I have given to be wrapped up warm in her fur-lined sleigh and a drink of the melted Turkish Delight? 

Especially when my car broke down at -6.6 centigrade on the busy ring road and had to ring 999 to request assistance from the Police to move my car out of the 'live traffic' to a safe location.  Needless to say, I felt like the woman who dialled 999 because her snowman had been stolen.  I had to tell the operative that I'd been told to ring them by the AA, just in case they thought I was some clueless nutter who thought they had nothing better to do than move broken down cars out of the way of oncoming traffic. 

It was surreal to have a policeman push my car while a policewoman drove the police car behind me, across the traffic, lights flashing, blocking the traffic to protect me from being hit.  Then they left me parked on double yellow lines - that's got to be a first, I'm sure.  

During the forty minute wait for the AA I could feel my fingers and toes go from tingling with cold to feeling like I'd put them in the freezer.  I couldn't tell if I imagined, or could actually feel, ice chrystals starting to form in the blood in my fingers and toes.  I breathed warm breath into my gloves to try to slow down the freeze.  As though to mirror what was happening to me, the car was starting to be covered in white.  Until now, having been parked under the car port overnight, it had escaped the blanket of overnight frost.  Now the frost seemed to be bent on reclaiming the victim that had escaped its clutches.  Like Death claiming its victims in Final Destination.   

The vision of the yellow AA van was like a desert oasis - or the fur-lined sleigh in the deepest Narnian snow.  Only there was not much snow.  Just frost that was so thick it looked like snow. 

Frost so thick it didn't melt even by my journey home from uni about six hours later.  That's apparently not destined to melt for a while because we're in the clutches of an Arctic freeze according to the news headlines.  So maybe the Snow Queen's mode of transport will be the best for a little while yet.       

December 2010

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  • Email me in regard to this I may be able to help with a couple of donations. Thanks by Rebecca on this entry
  • I will also share a few thoughts. For the first time I have realised how similar "laughter" and "dau… by Sue on this entry
  • Hi David, Thanks for your comment. Dad's loss continues to be hard for all of us. It's his birthday … by Raj on this entry
  • This is a beautifully written account of scattering your father's ashes. I'm very sorry this has hap… by David Morley on this entry

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