Friday, September 20, 2013

Autumn Days

I've finished my third novel: THE RIVER BRIDE. This photo is of Paugan Falls when the dam is open. A scene that appears in the book. So you get the visual. Nice huh?

And he is the reason I have nothing but good vibes these days. My little grandson, Oliver. Yes, I know I'm too young to be a grandmother. My 26 year-old son and his lovely wife refused to obey my command not to make me a grandmother until I was 60. But this kid...who can resist him?

 My other news is from 23 year old daughter who announced her engagement on Canada Day. A wedding to plan! Magazines to buy! Caterers to terrify!

Friday, June 14, 2013

McArthur and Company Closes its Doors

After two years of wondering, hoping, and waiting ... we have been put out of our collective misery. Read all about it here:

McArthur and Company Closes its Doors

I met with Kim McArthur in Toronto in April during a hail and rainstorm. The weather was violent but we got comfortable over bowls of soup and talked for hours. I learned the past two years had been as difficult for her as they were for me. We wore our battle-scars and our hearts on our sleeves as women of our generation do. Not a pity party by any means, Kim was wry and witty about the blows life had dealt her of late. As for me, my youngest brother had died suddenly and tragically on March 13, and my first grandchild was born on March 22. Life had humbled me into seeing there was more to it than book contracts.

Kim is a survivor. Even at that late date, she had plans in the works to regroup. Before leaving, I handed her my latest novel, THE RIVER BRIDE on a thumb drive. She looked at it and said "Um, what's this?" Old school all the way, she wanted printed pages. I laughed. I always imagine publishers to be cutting-edge-tech-savvy-texting-moguls. I forget that most of them are just as in love with words and the printed page as writers are.

Kim has gone on to form McArthur Blumental Creative Agency Inc. representing some of the authors she worked with in publishing. Even though I won't be one of them, I'm very glad to have had that afternoon in April, talking about life, love and writing. I'm glad I met her. I don't regret a thing.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Events, Awards and Writing in the Summer

Every year, from the time my children were school-age, I've tried to get all writing done and dusted so I could kick back and enjoy the season.

It has literally NEVER happened. My timing has always been off. While my loved ones were outside, boating or camping or fishing or hiking, I'd be holed up in my office, sweating over a final draft.

Until this year.

After a nice little rest of three months, THE RIVER BRIDE is getting a soft revision. Gently coaxing the main character out of the passive shell I wrote her in and making herself known. But this is delicate surgery, two hours a day, tops, to do this work. Or I risk killing the patient.


I'm joining a group of authors for a  MAGICAL EVENING IN OTTAWA on June 17 at 6:30 pm at Burgers on Main. I'll be reading from THE GREY LADY and ICED UNDER. It's free!

And on May 30 the winners of the Arthur Ellis Awards were announced and you can find out who won what here:


Got the sunscreen, the bug spray and a good book and life is very good indeed.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


It's a big list--too big to repeat here without our eyes glazing over. The number of entries was massive this year! Twenty-four entries for Best First Novel alone. Where are all these writers coming from? Several of the entrants are writers whose work I love but they didn't make the shortlist, which was too bad but not fatal. You've all made my personal shortlist.

One name on the list for Best First Novel is Peter Kirby for DEAD OF WINTER published by Linda Leith Publishing in Montreal. Peter took my writing class last April, presented by the Quebec Writers' Federation. Peter Kirby is a funny, smart Irish lawyer who made up a sinister mystery on the spot in which a Bic pen was the murder weapon.

So I hope he wins because I'm biased like that.

Best of luck to all of the entrants!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Celebrities--Do We Really Care?

No, seriously. I want to know. Do Jane and Joe Q. Public really care about celebrities as much as entertainment television programs would have us believe we do?

Or do entertainment television programs care about celebrities and we're just along for the ride in the dead zone between the six o'clock news and Coronation Street?

Case in point: E-Talk ran a frenzied piece on Justin Bieber's behavior (Justin had lifted his t-shirt for a bunch of paparazzi) asking the question: What has gotten into him? 

Isn't he just a teenager? Why should his mother be exempt from raising a teenager? I mean, really. Is that the best they got? That's nothing. Ask any parent who has done time in the teen years. Call me when he gets drunk and kicked out of school. Or sets fire to his locker. Now that's entertainment.

I care so little about this non-news, non-information, not-even-good-gossip that I have to ask: Do people really care about this stuff? Because it's not just Bieber. There are a whole slew of uninteresting people entertainment shows talk about as though they were interesting.

The trickle down effect of this boredom is that publishers are under the impression that we are interested and they offer dull people millions of dollars to write dull books. Thus reinforcing the whole dull celebrity fixation that they assume we are under. Interesting.

You know what's interesting? Debt free monetary systems. And astrophysics.

I've gotta go now. Ten feet of snow to shovel.