It is my birthday on the 12th! As a small child I did actually believe that the whole marching band tradition that went on around here was ALL FOR ME. It was very exciting for a few years!
I was always very nearly named Lily, which is Protestant tradition for little girls born on the 12th. Boys are William/Billy. Luckily my Dad didn’t get a say and Mum went with ‘Tammy’ instead (Tammy Andrea Moore…my pen name didn’t take a LOT of thought).
Anyhow, I digress! It’s my birthday so celebrate with me and enter for a chance to win a $25 gift card. I will also be sending a bonus newsletter on Wednesday so keep your eye out for that! Wink wink, nudge nudge, say no more!
In more writer news, I am getting to that point in Wolf Winter 3 when my brain waits until I’ve tucked the wolves away from the night and then sidles in. “You know what would be cool? An absolute tool and a real wee dote - in love.”
Then it just does finger guns at me, winks, and sidles away. And that’s not actually an idea per se. I mean there’s no plot there, nothing to actually write down, but I also know that the absolute tool and the wee dote would be a brilliant dynamic. So I end lying awake in the wee hours of the moring trying to puzzle out what the two of them could get up that would be a book.
My brain has obviously already done this on some level, to know this would work, but has decided not to share it on a conscious level.
I think I actually have it, almost! It’s in good shape, but now I have to put it aside for a couple of weeks and see if I still get that dopamine hit when I come back.
That is how I tend to write. I never get that ‘the entire plot arrived in my head over night!’. There’s usually just a character—like Cloister—who I need to build a world and story for so they have somewhere to stand. Sometimes it’s more high concent (as high concept as I get :D), but they are a bit harder to beat into shape.
For example? My absolutely awesome He Otter’ned Done It! series where the main character is a zoo keeper in charge of an escape artist otter who keeps finding murders. And like no one REALLY thinks the otter did it, but after the third time they gotta start to wonder.
I mean, I think it’s great but it’s hard to pitch and I’ve never quite managed to build a functional world around it.
One day though!
Recommendation of the Week
Look, I could waffle on about how much I love books that use the restaurant trade or food as part of the narrative (I’m not so much ‘can’t cook, won’t cook’ as ‘can’t cook, shouldn’t cook’). Why bother though? King of the Kitchen doesn’t need a hard sell. It’s a a fun, flirty, foodie fest from Bru Baker, author of the Camp H.O.W.L series. What more do you need?
Go check it out! In English OR in French.
Rising kitchen talents Beck Douglas and Duncan Walters have been on the foodie paparazzi radar for years, since their status as heirs to two of the biggest celebrity chef empires around makes them culinary royalty. Beck is known for his charm and traditional food as cohost of his uncle’s popular TV cooking show, while Duncan earned himself a reputation as a culinary bad boy, both for his refusal to work in his father’s restaurants and his avant-garde approach to cooking.
They’re also heirs to a food rivalry that could put the Hatfields and McCoys to shame, and when they’re photographed in the middle of a heated argument, the press goes wild with speculation. Damage control ensues, with a fake friendship engineered by PR cronies that leaves both of them secretly pining for more.
Beck chafes under his uncle’s micromanagement, and Duncan’s relationship with his homophobic father becomes even more tenuous when Beck and Duncan start getting closer. It’s hard to hide their chemistry on national television when Duncan joins Beck’s cooking show, but they won’t be able to take their relationship—or their careers—to the next level without breaking a few eggs.
Cover Artist: Maria Fanning
Oh. No. I am not ok with this one. The Moss People, slow, verdant, and inexorable as they move through a devastated world.
Ingenuity and Indignant Cats
Or how to stop your cat from getting away with murder
An Amazon engineer made an AI-powered cat flap to stop his cat, Metric, from bringing home dead animals.
As someone whose cat once brought home a rat through the cat flap and then murdered it in the middle of the nativity scene my gran had on the hearth*? I support these efforts!
*Well, it had started as a nativity, but we weren’t that religious and my gran just kept adding these cute little houses. So it was more of a sprawling hearth-side town laid out on a blanket of cotton wool snow. There were Christmas lights under the snow! And a little pond. It was gorgeous…before the rat murder right in the middle.
**In fact, we were so non-religious that it was only two Christmases ago I realised the Baby Jesus wasn’t meant to be in the manger until Xmas day. There I was in the middle of Waterford, all indignant on behalf of…someone, “Look at that! Someone’s stole Jesus and put a corn chip in his place!?’
The corn chip was odd, though.
This is just so beautiful.
Before you watch, this is a overdub for comedy purposes. Wilfred looks a little unique but he is well-loved, well-cared for, and happy with his lot in life. It might have been funnier to watch without that, but the first times I saw Wilfred I was always worried that no-one was taking care of the little lost goblin and people were being mean to him. So…no need! He’s fine. Should audition to be in some sort of Tim Burton film, but fine.
I just love these! I would definitely have some!
Useless Site of the Week
Poetry of the Week
Check out this podcast from the Seamus Heaney Centre where some great poets, writers, and musicians (or all of the above in the case of Ciaran Carson) talk about love songs, black masses, and blue eyed lass’s.