Tag Archives: Stuff

Thoughts on Christmas Cards

Even though I moaned quite a lot when I was writing all those Christmas cards, I actually do like sending Christmas cards. For one thing, it’s a nice way to let people know you’ve been thinking of them (*cough* even if you haven’t been in touch all year long *cough*), for another, I like the thought that a Christmas card might brighten somebody’s day.

Of course, I also love getting Christmas cards (they definitely brighten my day!), and I always put them on display in my sitting room. So each time I’ll come through the door they’ll put a smile on my face. 🙂

Cheering Myself Up

Here are two clips from the MGM musical THE PIRATE with Gene Kelly and Judy Garland.

And in the next she finds out that Kelly’s character is not Mack the Black:

And now, good night and gute Nacht!

The Plagiarism Thing

Just in case you’ve stumbled onto this blog after you’ve read my comments on Smart Bitches, Dear Author or Teach Me Tonight:

I’m not going to comment in length or detail on the latest plagiarism scandal because by now I seem to have put my foot in often enough as it is. I hope I have made it clear that I consider quoting from copyrighted sources without attribution wrong and that I do in no way condone how Cassie Edwards used her sources. However, I also think that in the course of the discussion (in the original blog posts as well as the comments) on Smart Bitches and Dear Author, a lot of statements have been made that didn’t take into consideration how research is incorporated into fiction, how this differs from academic writing, and how fiction might quote or paraphrase or refer to other fiction in the form of intertextual references, which don’t require attribution (except when your quoting directly from a copyrighted work — in this case you have to get permission from the copyright holder first and then include a formal attribution in your novel).

Blogging Dancers

A few months ago I remarked how lovely it would be if dancers would start blogging (hanging out on authors and romance blogs all the time is a bit incestuous, after all). And the guys at Rambert heard me! Yay! (Okay, okay, not heard-heard me. They probably did some channeling or something. Caught the vibes that were floating around in cyber-nirvana.) Now they just need to get the hang of weekly blogs, and Bob will be our uncle. Or something. 🙂

Muddle, Muddle, Toil, and Trubble

As you might have guessed there’s a reason why I haven’t been blogging on a regular basis lately. It’s not just that the new semester is well under way (and I’ve got another pile of student papers to correct *sigh*) (and so far, the correcting was rather depressing … *sigh-sigh* I DO speak Chinese in class, I tell you!), but writing-wise things are also a bit muddled at the moment, which is good for the thesis (I’m getting some work done – yay!), but bad for the Muse. She sits in her corner and sulks, poor thing. In order to cheer her up, I started looking into polishing and translating one of my old German manuscripts. Naturally, I’m not satisfied with the results so far, but it’s better than nothing. Besides, it’s awfully nice to rediscover this particular story: as I wrote it eleven years ago, I no longer remember all the details (frankly, I’m amazed at some of these details — “I wrote that?? I say!” *g*).

So here’s an itty-bitty glimpse of the first chapter of my YA fantasy novel (remember, I told you I’m not at all satisfied with it so far):

There was nothing I hated as much as the assemblies at court.

For one thing, I couldn’t stand crowds, especially the ghastly crush of mind-numbing perfumes, stiff brocade, and fake smiles. And if that wasn’t bad enough, I also lived in constant fear of tripping over the hem of my dress, of dropping my glass, or, worse, of spilling gravy all over my clothes and making a fool of myself.

Really, there was nothing I hated more than those assemblies. But, of course, I had to attend every single one of them — after all, that’s what was expected of the king’s daughter.

But at least nobody had said I had to take part in the endless rounds of gossip and all the petty intrigues which accompanied dainty sips of sparkling wine. Thus I usually withdrew to the safety of an recess at one of the windows and watched the ladies of the court besieging my brother.

That evening I was in a particularly bad mood because outside the full moon was sailing across the sky and I longed for my forest. As my blood flowed in the rhythm of the moon, I couldn’t shield my mind against her powers.

A shiver whispered through my body when I felt the howls of the wolves echoing through the forest.

The mark on my forehead began to throb.

Hmmm. As I said: not at all satisfied yet. Duh.

Uh-hu …

I’ve just found this on a German authors’ messageboard with an international division:

But I would say that ANY setting external to the USA, unless the story
focusses on Americans in that setting, will not make it in the States.

I couldn’t help laughing. Out. Loud.

People, there is romance. The genre which shan’t be named. The one that makes up about half of all paperback fiction sold in the US. And there are lots and lots and lots of romances *cough*like Regency-set historicals*cough* which are not set in the US and which don’t feature Americans. And some authors of such romances are even successful. Sort of. *g*

And books set in Scotland? These still sell very, very well in the US.

And what about Harlequin / Mills&Boon novels? UK, Australia, New Zealand — and if you go back a few years, you get some more exotic places as well.