Monthly Archives February 2010

Dialogue

“Considering how foolishly people act and how pleasantly they prattle, perhaps it would be better for the world if they talked more and did less.” - W. Somerset Maugham I live in a small house on a pleasant, leafy street in a city by the sea. On occasion, during warmer times, people stop and admire my magnolia tree in full bloom. Nowadays, they’re stopping to puzzle over
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Three Bags Full

It is true that a synthetic sweater can be washed and dried in machines, but to me this rather reduces it to the level of a sweatshirt.” - Elizabeth Zimmermann I might as well get it out of the way, and have done with the mid-winter knitting blog post. We’ve broken the back of one of the dreariest months of the year. The February blahs have passed
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Snow Day

“Everything that slows us down and forces patience, everything that sets us back into the slow forces of nature, is a help.” - May Sarton Suddenly it was spring. By Maritime standards, at least, the day was spring-like. The mercury went a few notches over freezing, the sun blazed in the late-winter sky, melting snow dripped, and birds twittered in the trees. What a lovely day it was.
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Rerun

Here’s a blog I wrote about a year ago, soon after a stellar visit to the library, and the occasion of the great writer Elizabeth Bishop’s birthday*: Happy Birthday, EB! “When I am reading a book, whether wise or silly, it seems to be alive and talking to me.” - Anton Chekhov Follow-up to last week’s library treasures. Rather than burble on about what a great haul it was,
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Downy Woodpecker

“There is nothing happier than a writer not writing.” - John Updike Well, it didn’t take long before Friend J had me sorted out. The charming littlevisitor to my magnolia tree is a downy woodpecker. He had me fooled with his diminutive size and the stout little beak; I was convinced he was a finch of some sort. But no. Definitely a downy woodpecker. He returned just this morning and pecked
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Little Bird

“A serious writer may be a hawk or a buzzard or even a popinjay, but a solemn writer is always a bloody owl.” - Ernest Hemingway My favourite tree is my magnolia tree. It sits now in quiet splendour, dormant while the buds await warmth and rain before the annual explosion of blossoms that herald the coming of spring. The filigree branches are dusted in snow, and within there
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Sage Advice

“There are three rules to writing a novel; unfortunately no-one knows what they are.” - Somerset Maugham Kurt Vonnegut, when once speaking at an Ivy League school, asked the full house of 2,000 how many of them were writing a story at the time . Most of the audience raised their hands. And how many of you are stuck, he asked. Not quite, but almost as many, raised
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Character

“Unlike even those closest to us in real life – our spouses, our lovers, our kin, whom we can never know completely – fictional people retain only as much privacy and secrecy as those who created them decide to let them keep.”  - Doug Bauer Well, there was nothing for it but to pay a call to the Newborn Little Neighbour. It’s always a thrill to meet
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