Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Happy Holidays - and what they all mean

Santa Claus
The dhredel
Christmas trees
The Nativity

All of them are symbols of the holiday season. Hanukkah, Yule, Christmas, Kwanza - December is a sacred month for several belief systems. Understanding why some thing are relevant, and to which belief system can be a challenge for any child, even more so for an autistic child who has trouble making connections.

My friend asked me to search for one book that explained all of the season's stories in simple easy to understand language. She wanted a book that not only dealt with the belief systems but also discussed the numerous stories that are told at this time of year - Father Christmas, Black Pete, and Frosty just to name the first three that popped into my head.

I couldn't find such a book. So my challenge to you, and myself, is to share a holiday story or tradition. I'm going to spend the year gathering them all together(a task I suspect could actually take much longer) as a gift for my friend's son next year. Different cultures celebrate in a multitude of ways. This young man, is questioning all of them. I'd like to give him some answers.

Have a wonderful holiday season!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Need to know

Lani Diane Rich is a wonderful time sink for me. Her books and blogs always make me think, and laugh. Or laugh and think. It doesn't matter in which order but there's insight mixed in with the amusing bits.

The other day she wrote this about a self published book that is brilliant. It's called Need to Know by Christine Merrill. And I got sucked into the excerpt on Christine's website. So deeply entranced was I that I was almost late for work.

Need to know is a self published book by a published author. Apparently the book defies marketing's ability to slot it into genres. It's a little bit of several things. It's unfortunate that publishing has those parameters because they're losing a great story. It's fast-paced, descriptive and I was hooked right away. It is a good read. But don't believe me, or Lani. Go check it out for yourself. Then go tell Christine.

John Grisham started out self-published and selling books out of his car trunk. It's a lot faster, and less suspicious, to use the Internet these days to help Christine sell copies.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009


I've been crazy busy trying to get all of my holiday gifts made. Playing with lots of fibre and yarn has fed my creativity quite a bit in the last few weeks. Something about all of that colour and texture just makes me happy.

On Sunday I went to the Fiber Garden - and didn't buy a thing.

The guys had some beautiful fibre - bison, Icelandic and targhee. There were several skeins of merino hand dye that I adored but they were laceweight. I'm not proficient in lace yet.

One of the other things that stopped me was the realization that I have two writing projects that desperately need my attention. My spinning wheel inspires a great deal of material for the sweater book but even she's been silent the last couple of weeks. Until all of the holiday gifts are complete I have to manage my time very carefully.

One thing I've been sure to do is spend a few minutes every day with my writing. I've alternated between Heal Casey and Hell to Pay. Not much gets done by this method but progress, no matter how minor, is a step forward instead of standing still.

Right now my creativity is racing in many different directions. I'll let you know where it all leads.