Thursday, 20 December 2012

Mid winter ramblings

I haven't been writing here in a while. Not that I haven't been writing, it's just that my writing time has been reserved for brief updates on Facebook and mostly working on my novel, Small Dreams.

Today, however, is different. Today I'm home with a cold and my thoughts are skittering around madly like cockroaches when the light's turned on. I'm not really focusing well enough to edit my novel so I'm inflicting my thoughts here where they're being read for free. Not that I'm actually getting paid for my novels yet but I'm hoping that will change some day. I've got no financial hopes pinned here.

I confess, I stink at editing. Small Dreams is continually bouncing around between 452 and 460 pages, kind of like a yo-yo dieter. I hack out some pages, mostly days where the main characters do nothing but go to work, come home, chat over dinner, and wash the dishes (what on earth was I thinking when I wrote those days?) then the pages creep back up in the form of dialogue and observations.

I've been observing my kids more and more for dialogue, especially now that they're teenagers and come up with interesting statements. My son, while hilarious, ends up saying things that don't really suit the characters so it's more my daughter I use. Son, I will share with you.

My son showed signs of his offbeat sense of humour years ago. Picture it. We're standing in a busy line at the movie theatre, waiting to buy tickets. He's the picture of innocence. Bright blue eyes, gleaming dark blond hair, and a smile curving his lips. He clasps both hands together, tilts his head and announces in the sweetest voice ever, "I'm a disturbing little boy." Right out of the blue.

Last week we were grocery shopping and I needed salad fixings (I pretty much always need salad fixings). I went to grab my usual mixed greens and son blurted, "No, you need to buy this one" then pointed at one of those packages of lettuce alive. It was fresh and green so I picked it up. That was when son noticed the root ball underneath.

His eyes widened. "Mom! We have to plant that as soon as we get home.We can plant it in the tree in the living room." Yeah, the ficus tree I have growing behind the futon. Because, a, it would grow so well behind the futon and, b, I want to do flips over the back every time I make a salad. So I reminded him that lettuce needs light and it was not the right time of year to grow anything on our balcony. He looked so disappointed I assured him we could grow lettuce in the summer then wanted to know why he wanted to grow it in the first place seeing as he treats lettuce like it's poison.

"Ben and Bean [our guinea pigs] eat lettuce and they're my friends. I want lettuce for them." He paused and we kept walking then he continued. "They're friends... friends I keep in a cage and never allow free."

Okay then creepy child.

Later on we were walking home and son informed me that his class is learning about people and who to trust. His teacher had a page with pictures of various people and asked the kids who they would pick off the page to trust. Every child but one picked the shot of an innocent looking child. My son picked the 6ft tall man with a mohawk. Curious, I asked him why. Not that I have anything against 6ft tall men with mohawks, it just seemed like an interesting choice.

Son rolled his eyes. "Doesn't anyone watch movies? You never trust kids that age, they're the ones who know where all the bodies are hidden."

The plus side is, if I ever decide to write a horror, I just need to follow my son around with a pad of paper and a pen.

Now my throat has convinced me that an ice cream sundae is a splendid choice for lunch. The chocolate ice cream has calcium and the marshmallow fluff is full of egg whites and protein. And the salted caramel sauce has... well it has... it doesn't matter I'm sure it has vital nutritional requirements my body needs.

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