rflong: (Default)
( Nov. 20th, 2008 12:03 pm)
About em... emmm years ago... oh all right between 1989-1993 (I think, its a bit blurry) I went to university in Aberdeen.

Why Aberdeen? you may ask.

It was first in the UCCA handbook, I will answer and chortle in a knowing way with everyone else who went there at this time. It was a running joke. It probably still it.

Why Aberdeen? Celtic Civilisation Course - that was one thing. And the English degree I ended up doing which actually included (shock horror) Old English and Linguistics. I liked Scotland, that was another. I have no idea now. But I did have a lot of fun, which probably accounts for some of the blurry bits mentioned above.

Then there is this:

This is what Aberdonian Students got up to on a Saturday night. I was at this gig. I remember the fake standing stones clearly. Well, kind of clearly. And it was fantastic. The venue was the Lemon Tree and my friend Kirsty asked me did I want to go. Which as it turned out I did. But we didn't bring the hand puppet that night.

I have no idea if I am in that film. There are people in it  who look like me certainly, but they're blurry! So I can't tell. This would have been our final year I think.

This blast of nostalgia was brought to you by the fact I heard them on a radio show yesterday at lunchtime and oh how I squeed! Their rendition of The Bonny Lass o' Fyvie (or The Irish Dragoons) was the inspiration behind my short story The Bonny Lass O' Fyvie. So its kind of writing related. The wonderful thing about Scottish folk music, particularly Aberdonian folk music is the extremely high body count. As this one will attest. Also if there's any sort of romance in the song, expect it to end badly. Very badly.

This band is also well known for playing ACDC's Thunderstruck on the border pipes. How's that for innovation? There's film of it somewhere too. If anyone is interested, or even just morbidly curious, I'll dig it out. :) Yes, I think that qualifies as a threat. But hey! I'm not threatening the Celine Dion cover of Highway to Hell now, am I?

rflong: (Default)
( Feb. 14th, 2008 10:09 am)
I subbed Puzzlebox and The Wolf's Sister. Pray for an arrow right on target rather than a boomerang effect. :D Fingers crossed.

Now I can start to relax again, I hope. Then again, its me. Maybe I'll start working on a rewrite of Relief Duty. Anyone who read it before would surely love to be catapulted back into the Ayredale Special Collection, a library where the most dangerous things are inside the books.

I think it might be time. And I think I know how to make the story work now. (I hope)

Just put the fact I have two WIPs to finish to one side for a moment, will you?

I also queried on subs for The Wrecker's Daughter (looking good) and The Bonny Lass O' Fyvie (ok). Got responses within the day which was wonderful. They are still circling, looking for a comfy place to land. Fingers crossed again.

Torchwood was good last night, but the end surprised me! 
Once again, Internet explorer foils my lovely post and crashes when I try to do something. Arrgghh. Most annoying Microsoft thingy ever.

So here is the mark 2 post, which won't be as funny or witty or clever. But here goes.

Not yet properly awake, even after two mugs of tea and a drive on the M50 carpark motorway in pouring rain. I also set up a cooler in our special collection room, trying to take down the temperature to a level that will not slowly dry out the books in the manner of smoked kippers. Hmm, better check the cooler shortly, just to make sure I did actually set it up alright.

I wrote a bit of May Queen last night, new words which are always wonderful at first glance, and rather disappointing at the second. Still. they are new words and that is what matters. A twist came to me, as twists will, which I think has firmly lodged its way into the narrative. Hopefully it is as clever as I thought it was last night anyway.

I also typed up a little more Moy Tura Echoes. This may be the best way to work myself out of the block I have found myself stuck in with this novel . There is some more still to type - two more scenes I think and then I hit the end of what I have written so far. But hopefully something magical will occur. Either that or I will have to put in some serious grind. Well, I'll let you guess which is more likely at the moment.

Sunday is Book Day at Farmleigh house, with a special exhibition on special bindings in my dream library . There are a load of children's book events going on so we should be able to entertain the small ones long enough for me to Ooo and Ahhh a reasonable amount. There is a gang of us going, most of the Leceister Codex brigade I think, so it should be fun. Thing is, I hope the weather isn't like today.

My son starts football tomorrow morning. (That's soccer for the rest of you). He is so excited I doubt he will sleep tonight. Again, I hope the weather isn't like today!!! And he made a new friend last night. A family with a boy his age moved in up the street and they have bonded big time in the space of about twenty minutes. Guess I'd better get used to having a second little boy running around. My daughter looked a bit shocked though. She isn't used to having to SHARE her brother with someone else. And someone who wasn't impressed by her Little Mermaid Barbie, either. The indignity!

I got a rejection for The Bonny Lass O'Fyvie the other day  (no comments or anything) so it is off out again elsewhere. 

Will probably be wallpapering the infamous kitchen tonight, and trying to avoid listening to the screams from the living room as Ireland plays France in the Rugby World Cup. Determined to have take away at least. Something will have to make up for it. No, I think the wall papering is a really good idea. 

I am not a rugby fan, except by osmosis.

Also must find out what the French press wrote about a particular member of the Irish team that has them so riled up!
I've been back at work this week, hence the silence. Playing catch up. It has been going pretty well apart from

(a) a bizare computer ghost on one of the library PCs which causes multiple windows to open sometimes (40-50 instances of Internet explorer) , creates folders for no reason and wipes out favorites. Problem is, it seems to be only persecuting one of our users.

(b) the case of the missing Codex - a historian working here found reference to a provincial chapter of 1909 and wanted to see the documents. My boss and I found more about this Chapter in one of the historical works written by someone who lived here, including a reference to the Actorum Codex 1871 which was noted as being housed in the archives here. Imagine our surprise as neither of us had ever heard of it! We had a search yesterday and lo! it appeared in a cupboard right where it should have been. Still can't remember seeing it at any point before but that's old books for you. Great name, isn't it? I feel it will be lifted for an Ayredale library story someday soon.

(c) A LARGE number of donations snuck in under the radar while I was away so I have to sort them out, decide what we need and catalogue them. Luckily we have some room left.

In honour of the return to libraryland I found one of my Orang-utang pictures (taken at Dublin zoo earlier this year) It's one of my favorite pictures - It's also the picture on my phone - and I am very proud of it. I got some wonderful shots in France as well. I will have to post up a few soon. But my Orang-utangs above are still my best I think.

Not news on rejections or acceptences. I subbed Come and Play and The Bonny Lass O' Fyvie last week - not sure if I mentioned that. I was planning to take [personal profile] nephele up on her very fine offer (look at her blog, especially if you are a YA writer - go on, you have 2 more days)  but as May Queen is not yet finished I can't really and I don't think I'll be able to pull another 25-40k words out of somewhere in two days! Shame, as I would love to give it a go, but she does specifically ask for completed novels. And I don't think, by any stretch of the imagination that The Penitent could be described as YA!!! :D

Nothing from McMillan yet. It's starting to look like it has been rejected. *sigh* So, I'll give until the end of the month and then start thinking about what else I want to do with it. Still trying to keep the fingers crossed for an 11 hour miracle.

That's it for now. The library calls.

rflong: (River Bridge)
( Sep. 2nd, 2007 01:09 pm)
Coupled with two rejections coming through last night - one for Come and Play and one for The Bonny Lass O' Fyvie. I've sent out Come and Play again already and want to do The Bonny Lass as a snail mail, so much print it up and write a letter on the home pc (it being the one with a printer attached!)

I've been unpacking most of the morning. We still have all the bags to go. Hubbie just phoned. He was out with his fishing club and has six mackerel for us for dinner tonight (ok, maybe not ALL of them for dinner). We also picked up some rather lovely sorrel sauce in France so that might be the menu, I reckon.

France was lovely, really really lovely. We were in a great site in a wonderful area. Most of all we didn't do too much which has left us both wonderfully relaxed (possibly a little too relaxed). The world is winding up around us and I don't think we're quite ready to join in yet. My daughter goes back to her creche tomorrow and my son and my husband are back to school/work on Tuesday. I am the lucky one - not back until next Monday (at my boss' suggestion! YAY!), but we have a lot to do to get the boy ready for school again! Shoes for one thing. He needs new ones. And the new (which we did manage to be organised enough to get before we went) trousers have to be taken up. (Mum?!)

I have to get myself back to writing. Big time. The only problem with taking a holiday is that you do have to get going again afterwards. Ah well. May get something done shortly.

Oh, and I am busily planning evening courses for the new term. Might even take two! Eek. Such ambition. So far my options are Fencing, Pottery, Jewellery Making, and Woodcarving. Such a dilemma.

Yes, all taking away from those all important writing hours. Bad bad me.

Anyway, talk soon
I've been a bit run off my feet for the last few days and probably will be tomorrow as well.

On Friday I took the day off work and headed into town with my husband and son. We looked at potential new cars in the morning and then met up with a gang of our friends. The Chester Beatty library is hosting an exhibition of one of Leonardo DaVinci's notebooks, the Codex Leceister which is mainly notes on water and the moon. It was quite an incredile experience. What struck me was the apparent randomness of the comments, the way in which his mind seemed to leap from one place to the next (according to the commentary of course), each one logical and following naturally but at the same time, enormous leaps. The sketches were incredible - brief and obviously done on the fly, but still beautiful.

We've also been filling the days with the regular chaos of the weekend. I got a migraine yesterday which, as usual, wiped me out for most of the day. We got a nice take away last night.

One of the comedy channels here is showing Drop the Dead Donkey for hours on end. This is a comedy that ran through the 90s which I loved then and is still hillarious now.

I also subbed The Bonny Lass O' Fyvie to an anthology this evening. Fingers crossed.

So, anyway, back to my giggling on the sofa.
rflong: (Dogmatix)
( Aug. 1st, 2007 09:53 am)
All hail the mighty typo. The stupider the better.

Many thanks to Deb Hoag in LH for spotting this one for me in my rewrite of The Bonny Lass O' Fyvie! It would have been truly and unrelentingly embarassing to send this off anywhere. 

He’d drawn a large asterix beside this. 

Yes. You can see it, can't you. Lots of detailed formulae which our quantum physicist has worked on, and he decides to highlight the most important statement with...


Deb, I thank you!

In other writing news I typed up another 2500 ish words of Moy Tura Echoes last night - the ever daunting Pigeon Man scene.

rflong: (Clock)
( Jul. 24th, 2007 12:23 pm)
I'm trying to whip "After 39 days" into shape and trying to discern what is the common procedure for poetry submissions. I'm a fiction girl, always have been, always will be, but poems do tend to find their way out once in a while, and so far their publication rate is much higher than that of my fiction! Go figure.

I did a bit of work on "The Bonny Lass O' Fyvie" last night. I want to get it polished up and out soon. The lack of responses to the pieces I have out is still a niggle, but I figure the best thing I can do is to submit/write more and just keep it all churning away. I think I have found another good market for "The Wrecker's Daughter " if it should come back again.  Fingers crossed it doesn't of course.

So, the main thing that remains with "The Bonny Lass O'Fyvie" is to sort out the whole chemical/mental time travel problem - I think by doing as my husband suggested and tying it in with the traveler's illness. As his body deteriorates, parts of the brain that lay dormant before are activated etc. I'm not entirely sure yet, but I HAVE to work it out. Mainly for the sake of my own sanity. Then I have to make it convincing!

We have three quarters of a kitchen (perhaps a little more) but no cooker yet! Soon, soon... please god soon! Never thought I would get sick of take away. All I want to do at this stage is boil up a big pot of pasta and make tagliatelle d'agusto. That, with some parmesan and a big bottle of wine would go down a treat. That or the chili beef ramen. Yum!

Ah well, maybe tomorrow. I won't get my hopes up for tonight. Oh, the car is in the garage again. Nearly had a heart attack when they told us the engine coil problem wasn't an engine coil problem and could be something more serious and then didn't ring us back all day yesterday! Contact was made, by my husband because I'm a chicken, today and it turns out that the engine coil had in fact gone as we thought but in a new, unexpected and interesting way. Phew! They thought it might have been the head gasket. 

Do I sound like I know what I am talking about?  

Anyway, hopefully I will have my car back tonight or tomorrow morning. Then I have to decide whether to sell it or not! :D  No, really, I love my car but it seems to be spending more time with our mechanic than me at the moment and, frankly, I'm getting jealous.

20 minutes til lunch. I have purposely left HP at home so I will do some work in work. Some...


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