Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Final day of Nano and Tall Tales & Short Stories Books!

Well, it's all over but the crying. It is 11:40 and I have finished my NaNo 50,000 words. It was very touch and go for a bit there, especially because at the start of day today, I had 13,932 words to write.

I feel as though I have been wandering around in a weird haze for the past week as I scrambled to up my word count. This NaNo has been especially tough for me, since I was out of town without a regular computer until November 20th. That's when the insanity began as I typed like a mad woman, trying to get words out.

And then the heat in my car went out.

Did I mention today was -18?

So I was writing pen-to-paper as I sat at Midas waiting for the guy to tell me it just magically started working again, even though he didn't do anything to it. His magic trick cost me fifty smackaroos, but he was a good guy, so I think I will go back when it happens again.

Probably tomorrow.

And let me tell you, toward the end, it was NOT pretty. This is an actual excerpt from the final 1000 words as I saw the finish line, pretended people were cheering me on, and officially lost feeling in both my brain and my fingertips.

Still, there was no one outside.

Not in front of her door, not in front of her window, not in the grave yard across the gravel back alley that no body but no body ever used, and not no body near the chapel ruins.

Nope, no body. There was no body outside.

“There is no body.”

“Could ye have been hearing things, Linde Love. I hear that happens as ye get older.”

“I was not-“

“Maybe it was pipes,” Scott suggested once again.

“I know the sounds of pipes here, Scott."

“Maybe it was just kids, daring each other to come knock on your door. Did you ever do that at Litivus Manheim’s estate when you were young? I did.”

“Did you take annoying pills today, Scott?”

“What? Me? No, it is our pathetic author, who can not think of any thing better for us to do but sit here and make stupid conversation for the last one thousand words of her national novel writing month challenge.”

“Oh yeah, stupid author.”

“Any how, there is really no one there?"

“Yes, there is really no one there.”

Who said you had to have talent to be a writer?!

But, I am officially a NaNo winner, as evidenced by my little icon below.

And, on a very exciting note, I met with Steve Van Bakel tonight, editor of Tall Tales and Short Stories Volume III, (as well as Volume II and Volume I, of course...) and mastermind behind Tall Tales Press, based right here in chilly Calgary. The books look great, so if you would like one, visit the Tall Tales Press website or email me and I will get you a copy. And if you're a writer, make sure you submit to next year's contest.

Now I am going to ice my knuckles and rest my brain. Congrats to all the other NaNo winners and participants, and remember if you want to battle the post-NaNo blues, click here.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Pain in my fingers

Well, according to the NaNoWriMo Website, I have 3 days, 22 hours, 47 minutes and 13 seconds to finish my NaNo. Current word count: 26,403. Yup, just over half way. So, I have to pull 5899 words out of somewhere dark and deserted to pull this off. And I'm blogging.

So, if anyone has some magical potion to sprinkle over my head, or someone has cast a curse on me and would be so kind as to remove it for the next three days, it would be appreciated. I need all the help I can get.

Thanks. Appreciate it.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Back to Calgary

I arrived back in Calgary yesterday and stayed at my Dad's, which is always theraputic, especially for the weary traveller.

Today is my Mom's birthday, and I'm staying at her place tonight. Can you believe she's actually 35? She doesn't look a day over 28.

My Grandpa was in the Herald today! They wrote an article about Ham operators, and there's a big picture of him in his hamshack. I'll upload it as soon as I can because I don't want to have to pay to link to the Herald website after buying 50 copies!

Being back is weird. I'm glad to be home, ecstatic to see my car and excited about going to see Harry Potter last night. I miss my ocean view and going for cigarettes in John's room before bed. I had a lot of fun with John and Sunny, who live in Burnaby, and I will miss them a lot.


Tara & John

For those who don't believe my One Night in Dundalk post, I'm including a picture of the Menonite dancing with a beer, and I can't get them to all line up properly, however I believe those of you reading can figure out which one is the Menonite and which is Tara and John.

And with that, I'm going to type, try to increase my NaNo word count, probably ending up just embracing jetlag and passing out after 16 really, really bad words.

By the way, thanks to Col emailing me and telling me how on earth to work the html code, the links on the right hand side work now! Thanks, Colin! Everyone must be sure to check out his way-cool blog.

Monday, November 14, 2005

One night in Dundalk

This weekend was interesting to say the least. I have to warn everyone - the computer I am on does not give me proper punctuation, because it is set on a French keyboard function. So if it seems like I am having an apostrophe catastrophe, thatès why. SeeÉ!É!

This weekend I took my free flight from the company and flew to Toronto to see my girlfriend, Jenn. On Saturday night we played roadies for an ACDC cover band called Bare Rump. I am not an ACDC fan by any stretch of the imagination, and I thought these guys (and gals) were good.

Dundalk seemed to provide just as much entertainment for us as the band did for them. Interesting to say the least! First, one of every three people had a mullet, women included. I havenèt seen that kind of hair since the 80s! My next surprise though, came when two Menonite men walked in, ordered drinks and started dancing! Soon, the girls with the feathered, back-combed hair were wearing their hats.

Then, while I was outside having a cigarette, the bouncer (quote unquote, but my quotes arent working) frisked me to make sure I wasnt sneaking out alcohol, then bought me two shots of tequilla, showed me the entrance and exit point of his bullet wound from the Gulf War and then demonstrated five ways he could kill me where I stood.

A guy pulled me up to dance. He was wearing a t-shirt with a picture of himself on the front. I immediately sat down.

Later, Jenn went to the ladies and found the guy with the picture of himself on his t-shirt doing something with a woman Blogspot would shut me down for describing.

Deliverance began playing on the television. Im not joking, folks. I have pictures to prove it.

A drunk guy fell on Jenn and knocked her out of her chair.

I slipped outside for another cigarette, and this extremely drunk guy started a conversation with his back to the door. He told me he loves living in Dundalk, and informed me how peaceful it is and how nice everyone is there. As he was telling me this, the bouncer threw - yes, literally THREW a guy through the door, shattering the glass, and then put him in a strangle hold and tackled him to the ground.

Another fight broke out and they shut down the band. Someone stole my beer. The cops were supposedly on their way (surely to investigate said beer theft), but probably got distracted on their way out to Dundalk and never arrived.

We packed up the equipment and were having one final cigarette at 3 am before hitting the road. Beside us a few feet away, a guy fell face-first into the dirt, drunk and unconscious. Of the 10 or so people standing there, no one moved to help him.

He is probably, at this moment, lying in the dirt parking lot.

One night in Dundalk...

Friday, November 04, 2005

Au Revoir!

Well, it's another fine fall day in Halifax (well, Dartmouth and Lower Sackville, really). The colour of the trees as they change from green to a beautiful maroon is utterly heart-stopping. If only I could climb a tree and stay there instead of going to work...

Things have proved - well, challenging. The saddest part about today, aside from the fact the reps we're here to help clearly don't want us here, is that JP (aka crazy French driver) left to go back to Montreal. It's going to be weird without him, and it was sad saying goodbye. It was a quick goodbye, however, because these French guys believe in arriving at the airport 20 minutes before their flight is set to leave. I received an sms from him saying he made it on with 2 minutes to spare. I would have had a heart attack. Here's JP with a really, really large beer, a mere 45 minutes before his flight.

There are still five of us here, though, and the five remaining are a total blast. Tomorrow another girl, Denise, leaves also, so tonight we're fiesta-ing in her honour. I don't think I've drank this much since I got my fake ID when I was 15... (sorry, Mom! hehe)

Tomorrow, my travelling buddy and I are going to take the sweet blue PT Cruiser to PEI. I can't wait! That is, if we can get our bums out of bed early enough heh heh.

So far so good with NaNo, but tonight I'm not going to get much done, I'm afraid. Linde had a big night last night though, and I think she needs some time to get over her anger with me, so it's probably for the best.

There's a great place here called The Economy Shoe Shop, which is this magical courtyard-type place, but it's all indoors. We are going to go there tonight for a bit before we move on. In case that link doesn't work, here's a pic of The Shoe Shop, too.

Tonight should be fun, if I could only wake up! I'm NaNo exhausted, and it's only day four!