On being a great loser

For starters, never begin a game of Risk. No good can come of it. Fun, fun, fun, rising blood pressure, glee, despair, fury, philosophical levels of doubt about your value and place in the universe because if you were worth anything you’d surely roll something above a two! I’ve never been great at losing. Some […]

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busy somethings and busy nothings

We had a mad couple of weeks, and then things calmed down and the quiet is a different kind of mad. First, the mad weeks – the busy doing something bit. A kiwi friend came to town and so I played tour guide, which I love. We walked our feet off. The first day we went […]

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whelmed

It’s a lazy Sunday here, and tomorrow is 14 Juillet (known as Bastille day only outside of France, apparently). Sundays are so much nicer when Monday’s a holiday. This is what we’ve been doing: and a few minutes later: Movies, music, food. Hanging out like pros. It is summer holidays and so far so good. […]

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trial and error

This parenting shtick is all trial and error. You know what? This LIFE shtick is all trial and error. I mean, sure, there’s good advice (there are whole books full of it) but it’s hard to be sure the advice is good until you’ve tried it out to see if it errs. So we stuck […]

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in it for the long haul

Writing a novel is like a long haul flight. But worse. And better. I, for one, prefer novel-writing, but then I really don’t like long haul flights. We’ll be here for 22 months before we visit NZ. I miss home, I do, but 24 hours in-flight, plus layovers – ick! So there are obvious differences, […]

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playing to our strengths

Rather than trying to be a super-person, brilliant at everything, they say it’s best to stick to your strengths and outsource the rest… or something like that. One of my strengths is a middling amount of web-nous. Middling because there are people fluent in all those nifty languages that pop up when you right click […]

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on a hiding
different cow species

on a, in French, means ‘we have’… so I could say on a cacher which means, ‘we hide’, but I’ll get to that later. I got another rejection letter – argh! – but this one was very (very!) encouraging and had helpful advice… so, if I’m keeping perspective, this is all very positive progress, after all […]

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where’s wally progress?

Progress feels slow but it’s there… just. I submitted a short story to a Paris lit magazine today, and also received a rejection letter from a lit agency I queried… before Elena was born. I got the message about four months ago, thanks, but the email cleared up any confusion, yes. Sorry, no more bitterness. Promise. Progress on my […]

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creativity begets creativity

Today I painted for the first time since we arrived in France. I have had good intentions since, oh, week three or four. Now, in month ten, I finally put paint to canvas. I had my little helper, the pants-less wonder, contributing – first with green ballpoint pen, and then with my paintbrush. He then commandeered my […]

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by sheer force of will

We are rapidly approaching the terrible twos – and I suspect this is just a taster of things to come. Food and toys are thrown around. There’s kicking and screaming. But why can’t I spin her around wildly? I really really want to. The stones are more interesting than going to a cafe for lunch. […]

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