Monday, 30 May 2011

I've been sweetened...

The amazingly sweet (though she writes spicy romantic fiction) Maree Anderson has nominated me for The Irresistibly Sweet Blog Award.

Thank you Maree!

But to accept, I have to follow the rules (what? rules? Yep, rules):

  • Thank and Link To the Person who Nominated You ~ check
  • Share Seven Random Facts About Yourself ~ oh, oh.
  • Pass the Award on to 10 deserving blog buddies ~ rubbing my hands with glee...
  • Contact those buddies to let them know ~ will do that as soon as I have posted this. 

Now we come to the Seven Random Facts About Me:
  1. I love playing Solitaire on my iPhone.
  2. I recently started taking a Tai Chi class.
  3. I talk with my hands - a lot.
  4. I drink too much Coke Zero (according to my physician, any soda is too much)
  5. I have failed at every attempt to clean up my study. It's like everything breeds when I'm not looking. 
  6. I used to do ceramics, and have done a whole heap of fantasy related pieces.
  7. I can't travel light. My suitcase is always on the heavy side, and yes, I've paid excess luggage. On the way back from Greece many years ago, I even had a Greek airport attendant in disbelief (these were the days before the stricter excess luggage codes were put into place. No way could I get away with it now).

Now to name the buddies. (Maree actually called us victims - LOL!). You know this is hard. 

But after careful consideration, I here by bestow The Irresistibly Sweet Blog Award to:

Sunday, 29 May 2011

Super Sunday

Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.
~Albert Einstein

Saturday, 28 May 2011

Flash fiction online

The Magician, my flash fiction story (all 100 words of it), has been published on the Flashes In The Dark fiction site.

Hop on over and have a read. Let me know what you think.


Stunning Saturday

Here are some images from the dark side of fantasy art. They can be found at Fantasy Art Designs.

And the really creepy one... urgh, zombies. But what fantastic work.


Thursday, 26 May 2011

June challange

Well it is nearly that time of the year again - the June writing challenge. I join fellow RWAus members as we undertake the 50ks in 30 Days writing challenge. Check out the blog for details.

There is a record 75 (and climbing) members joining in this year. I wish everyone all the best in reaching their goals.

This year I'm aiming for 30ks writing and 20ks editing. Lately, I have been doing very little actual writing, but I hope to change that with this challenge.

So if I'm not around in June, you know where I've gone....

sourced from here


Monday, 23 May 2011

Wickedly good fun

Last week, on the wicked date of Friday the 13th, I went to watch the production of Wicked.

It was fabulous. The acting, the music, the costumes, the stage. I just fell in love with the land of Oz all over again.

I have grown up watching and loving The Wizard of Oz. The technicolor of the 1939 movie. So going to see the stage show appealed to my inner child, and my inner writer.

Basically, it was magic.

So what is Wicked?

This is from the Aussie website

"Long before Dorothy dropped in, two other girls meet in the Land of Oz.
One, born with emerald-green skin, is smart, fiery and misunderstood. The other is beautiful, ambitious and very popular. How these two unlikely friends end up as the Wicked Witch of the West and Glinda the Good makes for the most spellbinding new musical in years.
WICKED, the untold story of the witches of Oz, features music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz (Godspell, Pippin, Academy Award® winner for Pocahontas and The Prince of Egypt) and book by Winnie Holzman (My So Called Life, Once And Again and thirtysomething), and is based on the best-selling novel by Gregory Maguire."

 The two principles gave a wonderful performance. I'm never going to look the same at the character, Glinda (played by Lucy Durack)*. Lucy actually added the Glinda attitude to the singing and voice, which is a mark of a talented performer.  I thought Elphaba (the Wicked Witch) was played to perfection by Jemma Rix. She managed to still look stunning with green skin, and a pointy hat, and initially a pretty shapeless outfit. Her voice was amazing. Not many would be able to pull that off.

Aussie favourite Bert Newton was cute as The Wizard, and Maggie Kirkpatrick (as Madame Morrible) was a presence to be reckoned with onstage.

While I do watch musical movies, and can appreciate them, they are something I have to be in the mood for (and that's not often). But I love watching musicals live. There is something about the theatre that brings it the story to another, magical level.

The musical was based on the book of the same name, by Gregory Macguire. I do have it at home, but have get to read it. You know me and my TBR pile.

* Though I have watched a spoof before on The Wizard of Oz, and the ditziness of Glinda. Oh, yes, and there's an alternative ending.

Have a wickedly good week.


Sunday, 22 May 2011

Super Sunday

I'm back this week with a Super Sunday post.

"Easy reading is damn hard writing." 
                                                        ~Nathaniel Hawthorne

And here are some photos caught at the right time.

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Stunning Saturday

It's been awhile since I have done a Stunning Saturday.

I don't have attributions for the first two.

The following two are by Donato Giancola.

The following are by Tony Mauro.

The following are by Andreas Rocha.


Disclaimer: No claim is made on copyright for any artworks in the Stunning Saturday posts. I stumble across art works and save them for inspiration but can not always find the artist's name.


It's my nameday today. The day those named after Saint Eleni (Helen) celebrate the naming. It's also St Konstantine's day (so Kosta, Costa, Constantine, Con, Kon, Konstantina, Constantina, Constance, Connie.....).

So Happy Nameday to us all.

Thursday, 19 May 2011

TV Land and the DVD revolution

I watch TV - there are times when it's a lot, and others when I hardly watch anything. It's a combination of what is one when I'm free and how busy I am. I've just upgraded to iQ2 (funnily enough, the reason is the new bundle is actually about the same amount I'm paying now, with more features. So it was a no brainer). I can already see potential for the 'series link'  to record all the episodes of a particular series.

Starting tomorrow night on SciFi TV is Sanctuary, season 3.5. I really enjoy this series with Amanda Tapping (SG-1 fame) at the helm. It is one of those shows that improves as time goes on. Fridays is also my busy night, so click, thank you recorder. Not so easy pre-iQ.

One thing I have mentioned before and I'll mention again, is when channels cut shows. Recently I watched the last episode of Stargate Universe (SGU). Sad face.

Again, while I have enjoyed this show from the beginning, it really got into it's stride at the end of season 1 and during season 2. It was a character driven space drama, where the characters didn't have black or white hats. One episode you are agreeing with one character, and the next you are shaking your head at the same character.  I really do think this show had so much more to offer, as was shown in episodes like Twin Destinies, Hope, Common Descent, and Epilogue. And now, we will not know the ending of the story. The last episode was not meant to be the end of the series, but of season 2. I knew it was coming, but I felt cheated. I invested time, grew attached to the characters, followed their journey, and then at the end, 'SyFy' decided to cut it. I just can't understand their reasoning.

Scene from final episode of SGU, Gauntlet.

Well firstly, let me say, I hate 'SyFy' as the name of the station. I'm so glad the Australian station has kept it Sci Fi TV, and that the Australian channel has kept programming of a speculative nature, and hasn't introduced wrestling into the line up.

Yes, you read correctly. Wrestling. On the SCI FI channel. Or I should say, SyFy (shudder) channel. Um...yeah, that is a marketing booboo. I mean whichever way it is spelt, science fiction (and all other speculative fiction) should be the focus of this channel, right? It doesn't look like that. I found a blog post exploring the de-scifi-ing of the SciFi channel. Interestingly enough, in the US, the tag line is 'imagine greater'. I don't relate that to wrestling, but to shows like SGU and Battlestar Galactica (also axed), who asked all sorts of questions, and had the audience thinking.  Basically, like MTV, SyFy has left its roots behind.

So after over 17 years of the franchise, there is no Stargate being made in any of its incarnations. I just find that terribly sad. Each was different, each had a place, and just made the Stargate world all the more richer. So thank you to a franchise that started with RDA as Jack O'Neill (well, technically it stared with the movie, but I'm referring to the TV show). It has been a hell of a ride.

So, it's no wonder, that I am now turning more and more to DVDs. I hate the channel stop-start-change times. Take for example Alias. I lost some of the last season, because of this stopping, changing times. And then the end of the SERIES comes along, and while the first three seasons had this big hoo-ha, the last episode was shown on very late at night, with absolutely not advertising of the fact. At least it was shown, I suppose.


Farscape, had been one of my favourite shows. Channel 9 swapped times all over the place, and then they cut it on a cliffhanger. Sound familiar, SGU fans? Luckily Hallmark stepped in and a two-part mini series was made, with some of the loose ends being tied.

Firefly was another series that was axed. I believed it aired in Australia after this had occured. Dollhouse, another  Joss Whedon show, hit its stride in season 2. I think most good shows do.  I shake my head. Luckily Buffy and Angel kept going. But I think they had almost been cut at certain times, as well.



I know, ratings is the reason. But I wonder if shows are not changed way before anyone gets a chance to actually 'watch' the show. You love an episode, but if you go to the same time-slot the week after, and the show isn't there. Well, most people will not search for it.

Instead, programs are changed to an awful time-slot to make room for 'newer' shows (which doesn't mean they are better). Of course, viewers are going to drop off. And when they change the time slot yet again, more of a drop off. I know that I'm hesitant to start watching a new series, in case it is cut.

Hence DVDs are so attractive.

Recently, I watched Supernatural, season 5, over 3 days. (Yes, I took time out). It was great to see the story arc of the season play out, and to see the adventures of the Winchester boys. I didn't watch any of the episodes on TV. This is the biggest draw card with DVDs, is that I don't miss an episode because of programing change. Even if it's the 'Supernatural will return in two weeks.'


This has been quite a rant, hasn't it. Oh well, I'm just frustrated that loyal viewers are devalued. And having just spent time watching more DVDs than TV, I just wonder where the future of TV is going, especially with the channels offering their programs on internet a - with no commercials.


Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Cover love & Thor

You all know how much I love the look of great covers. I skim over many blogs, some to do with book reviews, and upcoming books. Here are some covers that I was drawn to the cover for one reason or another.

I have to say that my favourite from these is Shadow Kin by M.J. Scott (who is an RWAus buddy. Hi Mel).

And speaking of appealing images. Here's the movie poster for Thor.

I saw it last week and loved it. They did a really great job of converting the comic. Here's a look at Chris Hemsworth

 Hello God of Thunder!!


Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Time flies

It's been ages since I last blogged here. I've done some over at the Dark Side DownUnder, and a couple for my book blog, but nothing here.

There's many reasons, with the biggest one being that I have been very tired lately. Yes, CFS always reminds me to slow down when I try and run ahead. Frustrating, sure. Hard to establish routines - you bet. But I try. Just like I know sometimes I just have to take a break. Last week, I had two whole days away from the computer. No emails, no program scheduling for DSDU, no writing, no email loops, no blogs, nothing.  I did some housework and errands, rested, watched tv, and read. And it was really refreshing. I had need that time away. And to be honest, I feel like I should do it more often.

I have just caught up on one of my Google Reader accounts, and I have noticed how much I now skim, rather than read. I just don't have the time. As is the same for commenting. I'd love to comment more on blogs that interest me and of writing buddies, but time and energy do not permit.

I also finished doing Angela James' fantastic 3 week 'Before You Hit Send: Self-Editing' Workshop. Well worth the time and the price. While I didn't use it to it's full potential due to health and family commitments (going through manuscript and posting bits), I did get a hell of a lot out of it. So if you are looking for an editing course, this one is a must.

The next course starts 11th July and goes until 1st August. You can find the details here.

I hope to be more regular again with my blogging.

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