Showing posts from December, 2013

Christmas Critters

The Australian cattle herder awaits his Christmas stocking. Do you herd what I herd? Christmas catnip and the adolescent cat. *ecstasy* This is my 17th Christmas. Catnip is for children. I choose to look beautiful and comport myself with dignity. Except that this thing keeps following me around, guys. Guys? I am such a good boy. I know because this human keeps telling me so.

I forgot to include the photo of Rudolph...

... the red-nosed dolphin.

Christmas in Florida Is All About Light :o)


If You Are Afraid, Give More

I LOVE the music video for Vienna Teng's wonderful song "Level Up." Dance! Here are the lyrics , if you want to read along. Thanks B via D :o)

Oh, and out of respect for PL Travers –

I'll just mention that Amy Nicholson's essay in LA Weekly beautifully encapsulates why all the ads for the movie Saving Mr. Banks (which is about the making of the movie Mary Poppins ) have been giving me the heebie-jeebies. Having read Nicholson's essay, I now have even less interest in seeing the movie than I did before. The title of the essay: "Saving Mr. Banks Is a Corporate, Borderline-Sexist Spoonful of Lies." Thanks, B.

Snowy Randutiae for a Sunday

Yesterday was one of those perfect winter days wherein the snow begins early in the day, but lightly – the five-flakes-per-minute variety – then slowly builds, and your own schedule brings you out into it while it's beautiful but not yet gusty and difficult. I had a magical snow walk, then got home to a cozy evening of watching it get wild out there. I love this time of year, even though it brings its challenges. Actually, the challenges are partly what I love… the darkness, in particular, brings a kind of raw feeling that I can't access as easily the rest of the year. It can be uncomfortable, but it's also a richly contemplative time for me. And I LOVE the New Year. ****** I've been wanting to say a few things about books and TV. I'm only giving myself a few minutes to write this post, so forgive me for the lack of linkage and description; I'm trusting in your ability to google. Warning: it's a bit scattered. I read a YA mystery called The Killing

A Musical Tribute to Nelson Mandela

From the notes of this YouTube video: "On Saturday, 7 December 2013, Woolworths had planned a performance at our Parkview store in Pretoria to support our Operation Smile Christmas campaign. The Soweto Gospel Choir planned a rendition of James Brown's 'I Feel Good.' But, after Madiba's passing the choir decided on a tribute instead. They chose Johnny Clegg's 'Asimbonanga.'" Thanks, Kristin.

I've never been one to decorate for Christmas…

… but after all, 'tis the season.

A Thank You to My Readers

Today I received a pile of fan letters in the mail, forwarded from my publisher, and I've just spent some time reading a few of them. This batch came from all over the United States; it came from Canada, Sweden, Germany, the Czech Republic, Australia, New Zealand… To answer a few questions that come up a lot: Yes, I do receive these letters. Sometimes it takes a while, but they always get to me eventually. No, I do not throw them away. I don't even throw them away after I've read them. I still have every single fan letter I've ever received. It's impossible to express the amazement with which I read these letters. How touched I am by the sensitivity of my readers, by the things they notice and appreciate. By the clever and succinct questions they ask that make me laugh, and sometimes suddenly see the flaws in my own books (which is a good thing!). By the respect they have for the work I've done, and the courage they have as they write or parent or go to scho

The Hungry Games Randutiae for a Sunday

I like the movie of Catching Fire SO much more than I liked the movie of The Hunger Games . (No spoilers here.) I'm happy about the directorial change to Francis Lawrence, who doesn't rely on way too much shaky cam to create tension ( which I blogged about when the first movie came out ). I have to say, though, that I think I'm going to need a sedative or something for watching Mockingjay Parts 1 and 2. If they stick to the plots and characterizations depicted in the books, parts of it are going to be so hard to watch. The word of the day today at is "pilcrow", which is the punctuation symbol for "paragraph":  ¶ . I'm rather fond of this symbol, because I use it frequently in my work, when I've got sentences crammed together and realize there should be a paragraph break between them, or worry that my own formatting is so messy that I'll forget to put in the paragraph break when I transcribe from my handwriting to the type