Sunday, April 29, 2007

Manitoba writers and publishers shine!

Wow! What a great evening. I'm still all aglow. And I didn't even win an award! (heck, not even nominated).

The Manitoba Writing and Publishing Awards. A great evening for rubbing shoulders with writers, publishers, and me! I think about where I was five years ago (working in a warehouse, writing on the side), and where I am now (president on the board of Prairie Fire magazine, GM of the WIWF, still writing on the side) and the number of Manitoba artists, writers, poets and publishers I know now, and I just love it. Every bit of it! Wow! What happened?!? Heh.

Congratulations to Anita Daher for winning the John Hirsch award for most promising writer! You deserve it!! I'm so glad she'll be joining the WIWF this year on our school stage. Yay!!

And Faith Johnston SWEEPING the big awards with her book A Great Restlessness. I had a hand in geting her one award (The Alexander Kennedy Isbister Award for Non-Fiction) and her book sure deserved it. Being a jury member was great. Who knows what I'll be asked to do next??

Hmmmm...writing on the side...Full Burn? Where art thou??
Soon, my friends, soon. I've had bigger writing to fry - grant proposals. Not as exciting, but very, very necessary for my bread and butter. But soon!


Oh, and only six more sleeps till SPIDER-MAN 3!! Can't wait!
Oh, and my birthday in five more sleeps. Ick. The big Three Seven. Ay Carumba!!

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Just a gigolo, and everywhere he goes...

Wow. Days flyin' by. Busy, busy, bees.

Poor bees. Have you heard? Billions dying around the world. One theory is cell phones. Yup. Radio waves screw up their little heads, they leave the hive, and never come back. Poor bees.

My scientist-sister-in-law blew holes through this theory though: if it was cell phone usage, then the massive bee deaths would have started in England (which has the highest rate of cell phone usage in the world for the longest time), instead of starting in one part of the U.S. (as reported) and slowly spreading outwards.
In any case: cell phones = evil!

And I might be getting one for my job. Ick.

I'm a no-car person. Walk, bus, and ride bike (and bum rides).
Weird people on the bus. Other day good looking dude gets on, dressed sharply (black leather jacket, nice shirt, black pants, white stylish shoes, bald, well groomed, you get the picture). Heavy accent. Starts talking to me, I keep up the conversation cuz I'm in a good mood so no problems there, plus the fact I'll be getting off in five minutes. He starts telling me he's seeing three girls tonight, one after the other.
Wow, I say, busy night.
Ya, he says.
He goes on to explain how he came from Israel two years ago. A barber by trade.
I take quick glance to his bald head. Hmm, I say.
Do you want to know how I've been sustaining myself for the last six months, he asks.
I nod.
I'm a gigolo, he says.
Really, I say.
Ya. Palomino Club. Great place to meet women, he says. They're like 42, 43, but that's cool.
Ah, I say.
Ya, he says. They give me money. I don't ask for it. They buy me gifts. Clothes. (He points to the shoes) Versache, he says.
I nod. Nice. My stop, gotta go.
Come with me, he says. We'll have fun.
I laugh.
Probably, I say. I know you will.

I spent the evening playing Destroy all Humans on my PS2. Quite a different evening, I would say.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Another week flown, wiser and happier

Wow. Time is just FLYing by!

At least this time, it was a good week. Got the raffle stuff for WIWF up and going, and it looks like that's going to work out okay (launching the sale of tickets at the Ondaatje event), got the final advertising finalized for the Ondaatje event, so that will be plastered all over Winnipeg next week, and then I'm sure the ticket sales will spike!

And, of course, I did my favourite thing on Friday night: GAME!

I'm such a geek. Love games. Boardgames, cardgames, rpgs, miniature games, games, games GAMES!

So, Frank ran a small Marvel Superheroes game on Friday here at my abode. An old game. Developed back in 1985. I prefer to talk in dates and not years. To say "Hey, we played this game 22 years ago!" makes my stomach turn. Scary. Heh-heh. But it's still loads of fun as a "beer&pretzel" game! Make a superhero and beat up some supervillains! Fun!

Oh, and then Saturday, I went down to Imagine Games (in the Exchange) and picked up a new game: Munchkin Cthulhu!

It's so goofy! Can't wait to play it.

Today is my Dad's second birthday. Yup. He was actually born on April 4 but someone at the hospital mixed up his birth certificate date with another kid's and so his certificate says April 16. Lucky guy! Two birthdays! Not that he gets double presents. Heh.

Love this weather. Wakes up the brain. Also, I've been walking to work all week. Blood has really been pumping better, although the hip joints are feeling it. I think I'll walk another week or two to build up the leg muscles before switching to bike (my prefered summer transport). I've got to get my legs in better shape before softball season starts in May! Ugh. I'm a lump. I think the first two weeks of practice are gonna hurt. Heh.

Okay, back to the computer. FULL BURN has not completely fallen off my radar, I promise! I've just been sideshowed by other obligations (there's that "writers block" again...), but everything is starting to really come together and smoooooth out. Without so much stress, it's easier to concentrate on other things.

Like words in my brain that that reach my fingers.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

First Robin of 2007!

Hey! I just saw my first red breasted robin.

Does that mean Spring is actually here?? Sure can't tell from that wicked north wind out there.
Stock Footage of Robin courtesy of the internet.

WARNING: Robin I actually saw may not be this one!

I made a quick jaunt to Harry's Foods to pick up some commerical Easter chocolate for Tanya, and some salady making stuff for Easter dinner tomorrow at my brother's house. Should be fun. Big family gathering and all.

Yesterday was great. Spent the afternoon at a friend's house playing boardgames, and then Tanya and I went to MTC to enjoy The Constant Wife. We weren't actually intending on going, until Anita Daher told me how fantastic it was. So we trusted her instincts, and it really was quite an excellent play.
Thanks for the tip Anita!

For tonight, I think we'll just be resting on the couch, maybe watch a movie. Nothing strenuous. It was such a tense and long week last week (for a short week!) that I really need to just rest and think of nothing much but rest. Maybe dig a little deeper into David Bergen's "The Case of Lena S" which I'm already well into.

Friday, April 06, 2007


Okay. That was a week from Hell. Seventh Level I think.

Among my other JackofallTrades skills, I'm also the president on the board of directors for Priarie Fire magazine. Our AGM was Wednesday night, and since we have not had a business meeting since January (the one in Feb had to be cancelled), we also had a "short" business meeting AFTER the AGM. Needless to say, Wednesday was a long day for me - in at 8am, out at 8:30pm. Bleh.

And then yesterday (Thursday for those at home keeping track), again another 12 hour day. Finished selling some advertising for the MWPA (yes, I do too much, as Chandra Mayor chided me on Wednesday), did some number crunching for our Ondaatje event for May 9, had a meeting, then met with the auditor for 3.5 hours. And also found out some "lovely" news.

The raffle which we (the Writers Festival) had been preparing for, which we were going to start selling in a week's time, can't go ahead. Even though we planned on making less than $4000, we still need a license!!! And this is mostly my fault because I had done the initial research in January, searching the manitoba gaming commissions website for 2.5 hours. What I found led me to believe that we only needed a licencse if we were anticipating net revenues of over $5000. Little did I know there was ANOTHER form for "community" raffles under $5000. And now we have to apply and wait a minimum of 3 weeks to get a license #.

Needless to say, I found this out in the middle of the audit. So the rest of the audit was kinda dreamlike. After he left I felt so sick that I thought I was either going to cry or vomit or both. I sat and brooded and refused to go home. Then I spent the next four hours getting everything ready for the application for next week, and examining a website for grants and foundations which I had planned on doing anyways, but this was as good excuse as any to make time now. I finally managed to make myself leave near 8:30pm or so. After some mindless tv and gorging on snacks and talking it out with Tanya, I felt a bit better, not so guilty. I know it isn't 100% my fault (heck, we don't even have all the prizes accounted for, and you need to list them on the application), and technically the raffle isn't even my responsibility - it's the board's (the Writers Festival). But I did some of the initial research on my own, and gave false info and for that I feel miserable.

My consolation is that we can still save this raffle - instead of having Ondaatje draw the winning ticket at our May 9 event (which was our plan) we can have the event as the raffle "kick off." Start selling tickets there. With luck, we'll have 300 people there, and we can sell 300 of our 450 tickets. That would be a great way to start. And then have the draw near the end of May or June to give us plenty of time to sell the rest of the tickets.

Also, we haven't printed any tickets yet, we don't have all the prizes, and we haven't even advertised this raffle, all of which make me feel a little better. But guilt is so very powerful sometimes, especially when you are seen as reliable and responsible. Ugh.

Okay. Ugly post, but I needed to say it. Apolgies for the angst.

Needless to say, Full Burn has been postponed yet again. My hopes is that next week will slow down quite a bit (although April is going to be busy all through).

And after all this, I still love my job. Heh. Weird.

Okay, off to play board games for the afternoon, and off to see an MTC play in the evening. I was assured by a reliable source that it was very good. The best in years, in fact. I'll let you know.