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Hodge Podge No. 4, RIP Dolores O'Riordan, and Recipes

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odge podge, number four in a series.

My last hodge podge post, full of little tit bits, was back in July.


First, my ROW80 goals:

enter handwritten edits to The Handful of Time (working title) and reread: first part, done! Now to start the rereadquery Druid's Moon: not done yetquery The Charm of Time: started! I've got a draft query letter and synopsiskeep editing Mystery at Bertram's Hotel (working title) on paper: done! Now to enter all these changes...back to school!: must do this week's homework!
Second, my 30 Things I Want To Do list.
I'm not going to update the list just yet, but I will note that of the bands I wanted to see, I had a chance to see The Divine Comedy last year, and have a chance to see Runrig this year, and I didn't attend last year and may not attend this year.
Is it bad to want to go back in time and see bands when they were touring the albums you loved? To not be as excited by their new songs?
I really wanted to see the Manic Street Preach…

Year-End Knitting Round Up, ROW80, and Winter Photos

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nitting round-up for year's end!

Last year my goals were to knit some wee hats and booties to go with the baby blankets I'd made.

I never actually did this. My other goals were:


"1. Finish knitting three more cowls
2. Think about buying expensive wool to make, slowly, methodically, and properly, a gorgeous design by Kate Davies
3. Organise all our photos and print a few, especially for our grandparents
4. Bake more!"

Number 1 never happened. I still dream about number 2. I sort of did number 3, especially as I didn't mean "our" grandparents, I meant our daughter's grandparents. I made two photobooks, but it's already time for the next one. Number 4 sort of happened, except that I haven't really tried any new recipes, but stuck to old favourites.

I posted a brief update in March, that I'd started a baby hat for a gift. Later, I shared the photo, as I actually finished it!

Some of my other posts throughout the year:

Photos from Mont Blanc, …

Tolkien Birthday Toast, ROW80, and IWSG

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oday is the day to toast Tolkien!

Here's the info from the Tolkien Society:

"To celebrate Tolkien’s twelfty-sixth (126th) birthday on 3 January 2018, The Tolkien Society invites all Tolkien fans to raise a toast to the Professor.

Let everyone know what you’ll be drinking and where in the comments below, and share your pictures on social media using #TolkienBirthdayToast.

The Toast

After Bilbo left the Shire on his eleventy-first birthday in The Lord of the Rings, Frodo toasted his uncle’s birthday each year on 22 September.

J.R.R. Tolkien was born in Bloemfontein on 3 January 1892, and we invite you to celebrate the birthday of this much loved author by raising a glass at 9pm your local time.

The toast is simply:

The Professor!

All you need to do is stand, raise a glass of your choice of drink (not necessarily alcoholic), and say the words “The Professor” before taking a sip (or swig, if that’s more appropriate for your drink). Sit and enjoy the rest of your drink."

Today is also…

Annual Books Read Statistics and End of ROW80

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ere it is: The Annual Books Read Statistics and Thoughts post!

Here are the statistics for 201620152014201320122011 (and the list), 20102009 (and the list).


Books Read: 268, including the following (roughly):
49 novels
45 board books, although the railway books by Rev. Awry and the Beatrix Potter collection total 49 books (which involve ongoing rereads, including the board books from last year)
27 essays and non-fiction and comics
24 short stories and scripts, counting the stories read in anthologies as one since I didn’t read all the stories
17 poems
13 YA/MG books

2016: 168 novels and MG/YA and essays, etc., 45 board books and over 30 books in the Folio Society collected works of Beatrix Potter, 28 short stories, and 25 poems; Journal of Inklings Studies and Tolkien Society’s Amon Hen and Mallorn issues (also counted as one)
2015: 91 novels and MG/YA and essays, etc., 29 board books, and 12 poems 2014: 111 novels and short stories (plus essay collections, comics, and poetry)
2013: 1…

Summer Fire Publication Day!

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oday is publication day!

The Dirty Bits from Carina Press "give you what you want, when you want it. Designed to be read in an hour or two," these "microromances are guaranteed to pack a punch and deliver a happily-ever-after."
Summer Fire, on sale now! "'You know how it is with Canadians. We come alive in the summer.'

Ayse had resigned herself to an interesting—but in the end unromantic—trip visiting family in Istanbul. Great-aunts, touristy sites and endless meals…until she meets fellow doctor Hakan.
All tanned skin and defined muscle under his polo shirt, his kisses cut off her breath, making her dizzy. His every touch is a thrill.
Ayse wants all of Hakan at once. His sweet mouth, the heat of his body against hers, their heartbeats slowing together.
A holiday romance might give her some blazing memories come the lonely winter, but maybe, just maybe, the fire between them doesn’t have to be as fleeting as the summer.

For those times when size does mat…

End of NaNoWriMo! and a Story Snip

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nother NaNoWriMo under my belt!



I didn't get quite as many words as I'd like -- was hoping to have the final action scene written already, since I find those difficult. Then I can reward myself with the fun of writing the Happily Ever After epilogue!



But hey, at least I don't have to type it all up! I've been getting better at drafting straight into the notes app on my phone. It's more intuitive than drafting on the computer (which has way too many distractions) and comes closest to the feeling of falling into the story that writing on paper gives. Paper actually has other limitations for me -- I'm more inclined to slack off and write silly things, especially in dialogue, and to start writing in note form rather than complete sentences, to the detriment of the story.

I've just spent a few minutes hunting for a snip to share. They all seem confusing or sappy or too mysterious when out of context, but I think the moment when Rory's ex-wife reveals her fea…