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Nearly 14,000 for this one, bigger than I expected. That just leaves the final chapter to do, yay!

Chapter Ten, Kemyt and Abdjeu

There was a slithery, slurping noise, and there he was: tall, lanky frame, silver hair, sardonic smile, P-90 and tac vest incongruously over jeans and his best fishing shirt. He paused for a moment, eyes raking over the square and the hundreds of gaping onlookers. ‘We come in peace. Take me to your leader!’

Read here on my website.


3,000 words in a day, not bad!

I love RDOs! Added 3,000 words to ye olde storey today. Jumping between Jack, Daniel and George, which is great fun. And have inserted Sam and Skaara into a very small tunnel. :-) This thing writes itself, well, if you don't count the decade thinking about it... Ahem. And if it wasn't, I'd be very, very worried.


Approximately ten years ago, possibly longer but I'm not going to look any harder, I started a story about Daniel getting kidnapped off Earth and having a few adventures. Ups and downs and a few other things happened along the way, but I finally got to write the moment when Daniel makes contact with the SGC again. Hurrah!! The end of the story is in sight, and it's a nice feeling. The best part of this story has been plotting and imagining all the scenes, coming up with every way it could work or not work, and having new ideas present themselves at just the right moment to make a chapter really sing. It's fun, dammit.


Wind battered Daniel’s face, errant grains of sand scored his cheeks, his hair whipped across his glasses and flailed his ears. He couldn’t hear much, talk even less: every sound he made was snatched away and flung far behind. His body bounced and jarred, collecting bruises with every passing moment – and he loved it all. He gunned the ‘ped harder, caroomed over a grassy hillock and soared down the other side, inertial dampers taking the landing in their stride. The smile etched on his face widened even further. Ahead and to the side other ‘pedders flanked him, racing home to the caravan with the setting sun warming their backs.

This one is too long for lj, read on my website here:


It's been a while, but the story is never out of my head, and I finally feel like working on it again. Daniel's pulled himself together with the support of his new found friends and they are travelling towards the main city in the hope of finding the Stargate. This chapter is a day off from the journey.



Well, almost. A pre-dawn lightening of the horizon heralded another scorching day. The lights blazing around the clan’s caravans parked along the river bank cast long, eerie shadows before Daniel as he ambled through the tall palms and scattered clumps of thigh-high grasses. His path took him away from camp, along a dried-up creek running into the main river body.

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My sun, my moon, my everything.

Molly, aged 14 and three quarters.

Gone to play with cousin Sophie in heaven. She gave me so much, asked only for cuddles and a chicken dinner in return.
She was the biggest part of my life, my best friend. I don't know what I'll do without her.

Thank you, Boo.

Nite nite.


A writerly day

Love cold, wet, windy days. There's no guilt at sitting in bed all day with a warm puppy, and just writing, writing, writing. Got 2000 words done of the second last chapter of N'Has'y. Woot!

Chapter eight is done. Just needs some polishing up.

Got on with chapter nine today. We're back on Tsydon. I really do like that planet. And now Jack's there, huntin' Gooold. He had a nice long conversation with Ba'al, which was much fun.

Final chapter in this book will be number ten, and hopefully the lot will be done by Christmas. Pray for rain!

Prime Suspect, the US version

Just watched the US version of Prime Suspect. Having been a huge fan of the original series I was hoping this new one would be as good, but... a bit meh really. One of the best things about the original of course is Helen Mirren, and that she portrayed Jane Tennison as a real woman - flawed, intelligent, perceptive, hard and vulnerable. And she dressed like a woman.

So, of course the US version - Jane Timoney (don't like that name) - is decked out like all the other lead female characters in US cop shows (Closer fantastically excepted): immitation male clothing, black, pants, totally devoid of feminity. This one even has a hat like the chap from White Collar. She solves the crime in a flash too. Not the four hour intricately plotted story of old, no the US solves the crime in under an hour. Very disappointing. And she does it mostly from a tip off and a chase. All the scattered clues of the old story that were pieced together so carefully, were either tossed off in a brief mention or missing completely in this version. Such a shame, because the George Marlow story was so intriguing. I've watched it several times and it pulls me in each time.

Why is it the US shows have to deliver everything in such formulaic blandness, neatly tied up and completed in 42.5 minutes? They have such potential, but so often miss the mark of being really good. And the accents of the supporting characters were so thick they were almost unintelligible. Ah well.


N'Has'y progress

Sat in bed today and scribbled out 1600 words. Yay! And Daniel finally got to where he was going and found something he's been looking for for quite some time. Clevah boy that he is.

Met an idol today

It's not very often you get to meet in the flesh someone you've admired for, oh, decade. Had my RDO today and went with mum and dad into the city for Morning Melodies. Peter Cousens gave a concert of Great Love Songs, and he was just heavenly. Peter is one of our major stage stars, featured in all the biggies - Marius from Les Mis, Raoul in Phantom, Phantom himself, Aspects of Love, Nankie Poo in Mikado, and many many more. His voice is divine, such clear diction and he pours his heart and soul into everything he sings. He's our Michael Ball. And to boot, he's a lovely guy, has three girls called Rose, Daisy and Marigold! and sponsors a program to prevent violence against women.

After the concert he announced there would be cds for sale in the foyer and asked if anyone could give him a hand selling them because his helper had been detained. When we got out there he was doing the selling and signing on his own, so I volunteered and spent a fun half hour taking money and handing over cds while listening to people talk to Peter and compliment him, sometimes gush over him. He was so pleased to talk to everyone and thanked them all for their nice words - such a gentleman. And at the end he gave me a big hug and a kiss and thanked me profusely for helping him out - I couldn't be more happy to help out this gorgeous handsome, lovely man who's given me so many wonderful evenings of entertainment. He gave me two cds for free, too. What a guy!


Remembering ten years ago

It's 20 past ten pm, September 9th. Exactly ten years since... I vividly remember that night. Was watching telly, ten minutes till my program ended and they broke in with a news bulletin. Sandra Sully on channel 10. Just sitting agog, chilled. at first they said it was an accident but when they showed the plane you knew it was deliberate. Rang mum and dad, got them out of bed. Rang my sister, knew she was upset about her boyfriend leaving but told her she needed to see what was happening. She said what channel is it on? I said any one, all of them. That's so clear. And then a bit later Sandra Sully was talking and behind her the monitor was showing live footage, and the tower began to fall and she didn't know, she just kept talking about something else as it fell behind her. Remember silly things you say - 'but there's people in there'.

Now watching the extraordinary doco 9/11 filmed by two French documentarists who were with a fire company on the day.

Here's to the heroes, the lost and the survivors, both from the day and the ten years of wars.


Resumption of ficcy goodness.

I swear, general anaethestic scrambles your brains and leaves you with a full-on case of the blahs. At least it did for me. I haven't felt the inclination to tackle Sun on the Horizon for ages, until now. Maybe it's 'cos spring has sprung. The freezing weather is gone, hopefully for good. Warm breezes and sunny skies make a girl's steps bounce. And the wattle is blooming, the daffys are nodding, the blossom trees and casting petals to the wind, and my brain has been ticking over story scenes like crazy, so life is good.

There are three more chapters to go on N'Has'y, then probably two or three juicy ones for Sabat which will bring the story to a satisfying conclusion. They are all plotted out, the holes have closed up and I can't wait to get to the end. Hopefully, if there are any readers still interested in it, they'll like it too. And if not, that's cool - I want to see what happens. I'm going to post the last three chapters together. Progress on chapter 8 is:

It does feel good to be creative again.

A great Aussie hero

I'm so proud of Cadel Evans today. He's the first Aussie to win the biggest sporting event in the world. He's put so much effort in over the last decade, overcome huge disappointments and injuries, and this year it's all come together. He's proved how talented and immensely strong he is - and he's just the nicest guy, to boot.

Congratulations, mate!

Aussie, Aussie, Aussie!!!!!


Thoughts on Harry's last battle

Took time out from coughing my lungs up this week to go see Harry part two - at the Imax in 3d no less. The Melbourne Imax is the third biggest in the world and it certainly is... big. As for the 3D, meh. They could have saved the cost of shooting in that and had another ten minutes of story - imho that would have been money much better spent.

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Neville was great, a true hero and a true Griffindor. Harry, Hermione and Ron were all suitably brilliant and it was really sad to see them for the last time. I've enjoyed each and every movie, but they'll never be as good as the books.


Amazing photos of Endeavour

A lady in the US has taken a couple of stunning photos of the shuttle Endeavor taking off from Florida last week. Her pics have gone viral and she's suddenly famous. Go have a look, they're incredible.

William Shatner, ever my hero

Have a watch of this - The Shat singing, kinda, O Canada. He brings his own unique, inimitable style to it, and even throws in a cute little Cap'n Kirk grin. Love that man!


Important safety tip...

Stoopid human trick number 1:
Don't reach over the small saucepan on the stove to get to the even smaller pan on the back burner, because the high flame coming up the back of the front pan will wrap around your arm and set you on fire. D'oh. I always considered myself a careful, common sense sort of gal, but one absent-minded reach - and there's flames on my jammies. Lucky I wear cotton and not nylon stuff - I'd be typing this left handed, from hospital. As it was I just went 'ooh' and puff puffed the flames out. Didn't burn or leave a mark on the sleeve but it sure stank. Lesson Learned.

In other breaking news, the Ferals next door have moved out!!  Six years of squealing tyres, ear-shattering music from cars, 3am calls to the cops (by me) to tell 'em to shut the hell up, yowling kids, slamming front doors, arguments in the front yard (lest they wake the babies!) punch ups in the street with former mates (took the edge off that night out at the ballet, let me tell you!) the dogs barking all bloody night, and timing hubby's drug runs at night (seriously, who goes out five or six times for no longer than ten minutes after 11pm?) although he did give up on that after disappearing for 3 to 4 months...  I saw my long suffering neighbour on Sunday and we just smiled at each other. 'How's the serenity?' was the perfect summation.

Friday I'm going to see the Tutankhamun exhibition (pronounced Tutin' Carmen in Orstraylian). So excited. I still have the booklet from the first time it came in the 70s or 80s.

Telly - recently watched and loved Downton Abbey, Chaos - Eric Close's new show, Shanks' ep of Endgame which made me go looking for the rest of the series, Tomorrow When The War Began - excellent Aussie film based on John Marsden's books, and the ever brilliant Mentalist - they always manage to come up with something new and the last ep closed with a truly touching scene.

Work continues to be a pile of shite, I spend all my money on supporting my Vet (wonder if there's a detox program for that?) and I've actually scribbled down a couple thou new words of Daniel's lost in space epic. Situation mostly normal, somewhat smouldering.

Rodney's going to be on SGUck. Do I dare...?

Apparently lj got shut down by Russian mobsters or politicians or something. Guess they don't like all that fic flying around.
This was the prompt: Gairwyn & Sha're friendship. AU. Sha're somehow makes it to Cimmeria (with or without Amaunet) and meets Gairwyn.

It went a bit west from there and turned into 'Sha're saves the day'. For the purpose of the story I'm ignoring the canon element of Amonet sleeping through Sha're's pregnancy.


Searing, shredding, fire consumes me.


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Well, how's this for peculiar? The novelisation of Red Riding Hood (featuring, in case you missed it, our own Mr S) has been published without - without!! - the ending. According to this website you have to dowload the ending after the film has been released.

It boggles the brain, truly.


The Mentalist vs Castle

Just watched the latest ep of The Mentalist - wow...

I connected with this show right from the first. Simon Baker's acting is perfect, the supporting characters are fully developed and fascinating and even Lisbon is very likeable - despite the de rigueur black outfits and hipster pants that make her tummy stick out. The UST between her and Jane is fun, more so in that it won't go anywhere. It doesn't need to go anywhere and would be false if it did; Jane is wholly committed to finding (and killing Red John). I like his bumbling antics that hide the intelligence behind them, I like the wounded hurt that drives him. I love the way he hides behind Lisbon when things get dangerous. I like Rigby and Cho's manly connection - 'I don't want to hear about your feelings.' 'Good, me neither.' Rigsby is a nice doofus and Cho is an excellent straight man. I like Van Pelt who makes mistakes and wants to learn and do the right thing, I very much like her hunky new fiance. But, most of all I like the continuing plot arc of Red John, how it pops up at unexpected moments, turning an ordinary case into one fraught with tension.

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As for Castle... what a waste. I watch it for the gorgeous Nathan and the odd - rare - writing reference. Apart from Castle, none of the other characters are in any way developed, even ... what's er name? Beckett. (thanks IMDB) She's so closed off, I can't get any sympathy for her. Castle's daughter is nauseatingly perfect, his mum is fun and adds a splash of colour and interest. The two coppers in the team - I still can't remember their names, even after three seasons. They get to walk in an out of frame, they pull clues out of the ether without ever going out of the police station to do some detecting.

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And yet, I keep watching it. Why?? Maybe I'm just waiting for another Firefly mention from Nathan.

And why is it that there are tie-in books for Castle and not for the Mentalist? Apart for the obvious 'Castle's a writer' answer... I went searching for some fic, but had to look away (shuddering) from all the 'Jisbon' ship. I ask you...

Is it Christmas yet??

So, this year is turning out to be a biggie, any way you look at it. We've had floods over 2/3rds of the country, the mother of all cyclones, more floods, two despotic dictatorships thrown usunder by popular people power and more on the way out, the Japanese take their killer ships and head home, monster storms in points north of here, and now poor New Zealand has suffered an enormous earthquake in Christchurch. Last year's quake was bad enough but this is awful, people still trapped, many killed. Kiwis are our cousins over the fence who talk a bit funny, and it's sad to see such devastation. We have rescue teams in the air, and more on the way; watching the NZ firies pulling people out of buildings was truly inspiring. Ironically, I tried to get onto the Christchurch Library website this arvo and got nothing - found out later why.

On a personal note: kilos lost - 4!, kilometres walked - many, many; stories completed - one!

And it's not the end of February yet.
Pity it's only for US people, but if you've got a book ready to go you could win an edit and be considered for publication with Del Rey - here.


Japanese whalers give up the hunt!

Just saw this on the ABC site -

Activists cautious over Japan whaling halt

Posted 1 hour 0 minutes ago

The whalers say constant harassment has forced them to suspend operations. (AAP: JoAnne McArthur/Sea Shepherd Conservation Society)
Anti-whaling activists cautiously welcomed news that Japan was suspending its annual hunt near Antarctica as a result of their harassment campaign.

Bloody brilliant! Serves the murdering bastards right. We can only hope they never come back to the whale sanctuaries again. Woohoo!

News on the SG front could be coming

Joe Mallozzi has blogged about news they are expecting on the future of Stargate. In some form or other it looks like the chevrons will be engaged again. And personally, I'm glad that a third season of Universe is NOT on the cards. The actors and everyone who worked on the show were fantastic, but it just was not, ever, Stargate. Even better news, M&M (Mallozzi and Mullie) are off Stargate for good. They have a new project in Toronto - bye bye Boys. Yes, you did come up with some cracking scripts, but there were far more bad ones padded out with endless running down corridors. Worse, Joe's blatant manipulation of the fans was a canker on the fandom of SG-1 and Atlantis.

Fingers crossed our show (and Atlantis) will rise from the ashes and be even better than before.


It was two years ago today.

Today is the second anniversary of Black Saturday. Two years ago the temperature hit 50C, the wind was hurricane force, and half the state was on fire. This year? Half the state is under water. Rivers flooded, crops ruined, towns evacuated - to say nothing of the ruin that is Queensland and the fires blazing around Perth which have already burnt 60+ homes. If this is the beginning of the consequences of global warming I dread to think what will be happening in ten years time.

Here's a nice story about the property of a lady who died at Kinglake, which has been willed to become part of the national park.

Still, in the midst of all the crap, there are always some small moments that give hope -

And sometimes nature helps itself.

Book blog

I have access to a lot of publishing news at work, so I thought I'd pass on the odd tidbit to those of you interested in writing and publishing and getting published.

Here's an interesting article about the royalties authors are getting (or not) for ebooks - here  The really interesting quote is this: "The study also found that 90% of agents have author clients who have expressed interest in self-publishing, but publishers aren’t scared." Most publishers are still lagging behind on ebook publishing, and very rapidly - ie. things are changing every week - authors are realising that their publishing future can rest in their own hands. The 'stigma' of self-publishing, which was a virtual death-knell to anyone wanting a 'real' publishing deal, is very quickly turning the other way. There are a lot of epub platforms becoming available now like Desktop Author, and sellers like Kindle that enable authors to get their works out to the masses and reap the rewards.

Why would you hand over your baby that's taken years of your life to some publisher who thinks about its worth for months, finally agrees to publish it, then insists on major changes, delays, alters, and eventually publishes your book with little or no fanfare because they've spent their advertising budget pushing the latest James Patterson, and then they get around to paying you 10% (if you're lucky) six months after the fact. (We won't go into the tiny print runs most books get these days, or the 'surplus' that is sold off for 1% of cost to remainder sellers with a year, or even earlier. And authors get NO royalties for those books - remember that next time you see one of those bargain book sellers!)

Publishers are starting to wake up to this threat, and their answer is to cut out the middle man, the bookseller, and sell their books themselves: here.

Witness this young lady who has gone from wanting to sell a few dozen copies to raise a bit of money to apparently selling 100,000 copies in December : Amanda Hocking

With social networking, it really is within everyone's grasp to hire a professional editor and sell a well-constructed book to the public, and keep the majority of the profits themselves. Maybe this is the future of the book?


Poor sods in Queensland. As if the last two months of floods hasn't been enough, Oma is now chucking down a monster of a cyclone that looks like it could swallow the whole state. They're saying it will be as big as hurricane Katrina. The RSPCA is flying out a hundred plus animals. People are leaving any way they can. It's due to hit the coast Wednesday night.

ETA - the Bureau of Meteorology real time map is here.  There's a kind of dread fascination watching the storm move into the picture and get closer and closer.

Daniel's Gate rewatch comm

A bunch of us are doing a rewatch of SG-1 at the moment, over here. It's amazing how much you pick up from episodes when you haven't watched them in a while. If anyone wants to join the conversations, please feel free. This week we have a double screening of Family and Secrets.


For heaven's sake

The Cairo museum looted, mummies and antiquities stolen and damaged. I'm all for change when it's warranted, but opportunistic looters should be discourage in the strongest terms. Looting a museum is not going to get the government changed. We don't want a repeat of what happened in Iraq.

Zahi Hawass here talking about burning buildings close to the museum...

Just watched the SBS news. They showed the museum ringed by a human chain of ordinary men, protecting it with their own bodies, bless them. The army later turned up, but why weren't they there in the beginning? They're also surrounding the pyramids. It's terrifying to think of what could be lost when unrest like this explodes.

Interesting to note, this has all come about because of Wikileaks. It was because of corruption in Tunisia's government highlighted by Wikileaks that stirred up the protests there, then it's snowballed around Northern Africa to Egypt, Yemen and Jordan. Let's hope the fundamentalists don't end up in power.


Of drought and flooding rains.

An entire town of 300 evacuated by chopper. 22 metre flood peak in Ipswich. 9000 homes in 32 suburbs will be under water in Brisbane tomorrow. 11 dead including kiddies and babies, 59 missing, two towns virtually wiped out. 75% of Queensland is now declared a disaster zone with an area larger than France and Germany together under water.

Nearly two years ago Victoria suffered the worst bushfires in Australian history. Now Queensland is suffering the worst ever floods. The speed of these floods is incredible. It's been going on for nearly two months now and everyone thought the worst had passed by last weekend, then a tsunami ran down the middle of Toowoomba yesterday; towns that were flooded, emptied and being cleaned up suddenly went under again and now Brisbane is under a major threat. A year ago Toowoomba's dam was 7% full - now it's overflowing. I'm watching footage taken by a man as he floated down the road on the top of his car - he then spent a few hours clinging to a tree.

Once again nature shows its awsome power, and people show their strenghts too. The next couple of days are going to be awful.



amazing footage of a flash flood carrying away cars from a car park

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