Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Farewell, My Mommy-In-Law

Last Tuesday, at approximately five in the afternoon, my wife Violet's mother Gizella Horvath passed away. She was 63.

She'd been in and out of hospital many times over the last few months, but on Christmas Eve she went to stay. Her condition stabilized but never improved, and on the Friday before last it took a turn for the worst. From what I understand, she had a bad heart. That led to many health problems, the final one being kidney failure.

Sadly, she'd just been discharged from her hospital and sent to a nursing home. She didn't even have the chance to sign in before being rushed to the nearest hospital to that home, where she was put on a respirator. She slipped into a coma, and it was clear she was never going to recover. She was taken off the respirator, and passed away minutes later.

The funeral was last Saturday. Many people came, both family and friends - far more than Violet and her sister Georgina expected. My parents came up from Ottawa to cook meals and help with the driving. Georgina came up from Brockville to host the reception and help Violet deal with the estate. My dad and I served as pallbearers.

The first time she met me, I was in my underwear. Maybe sometime I'll explain the context. It didn't put her off me, however - she looked so delighted when Violet and I announced our engagement. She called me Timmy. I called her Mummy. She loved to cook, and took great joy in watching us eat. In that respect, I was the perfect son-in-law; I always asked for extra helpings.

Now that the funeral is over and the funeral home has been paid, we have a chance to miss her. I try to keep Violet in good spirits. Sometimes I am successful, sometimes not. Either way, she has me. I'll do all I can to help her through this.

Goodbye, Mummy. We miss you. I miss you.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

New Reviews!

My publicist at Flux sent me this review by a kid last week. Here's my favourite bit:

"I know the plot sounds kind of weird and demony, but if you like weird demony stuff, like I do, then you will like this one."

Weird and demony. That's me!

Then there's this one I found while playing around with Google. My favourite line:

"It is certainly not subtle (the book oozes a smug, anti-Christian attitude) but Carter delivers the finale he promises: he really does close the book with the end of humanity."

More and more people are finding Epoch! Very exciting.

Back To Normal?

That certainly seems to be the way of it right now. I'm settling into my new job, no longer fearing they'll go muttluk on me (ie - fire me with little or no reason). The work is dull but not hard, and the people are friendly. There's also a Tim Horton's nearby, which is great for my tea refreshment needs (and before-work writing time). All in all, I can't complain.

Violet has returned to school, and is entering her last semester. We both have high hopes she will graduate with top marks and land a fantastic (and high-paying) graphic design job come the summer.

Karma is settling down a bit, but he's still very much a kitten. We aren't quite so worried about our personal possessions as we used to be, but every now and again I'll come home to see my notebooks and stuff all over the floor while Karma stares up at me innocently. He's started cuddling with me, so I don't hold the occasional act of destruction against him.

Writing has been going well, with progress made on both The 25 Demons You Meet In Hell and Cupidity. 25 Demons is up to 21 chapters, and Cupidity 26. Of course, those numbers don't mean anything in and of themselves, but trust me when I say it is good progress. I'm already plotting my next book, to be written simultaneously with the next arc of Kids Who Know. I just can't bear to work on only one project these days.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Data Entry

My new job at TD has started, and so far so good. Basically, I'm typing information from one computer screen into a database on another computer screen. It's fairly simple and repetitive, once you get the hang of it - and I'm still getting the hang of it. Unlike my last job, however, they're not expecting me to pick it all up in the first five minutes. The people there seem nice, and I get an hour for lunch plus breaks. Not bad at all.

My writing is going well. I finished chapter 19 of The 25 Demons You Meet In Hell today, and had some good ideas for chapter 20. I think there will be 25 chapters, but that's just a guess. Either way, I feel like the book is four-fifths finished. I think completing the first draft by the end of January is a very reasonable projection.

Karma is napping on the printer next to me. You wouldn't think that the plastic surface of a printer would be comfortable, but apparently it is.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Happy New Year!

Wow, 2007 went by in a flash, huh? At least, that's how it seems.

The new year is upon us, and tomorrow I start a new job. Today will be my last day off in a long while. You might think that I've used the time off to look back over 2007 and list my accomplishments, and contemplate making resolutions for 2008. You might think that, but you'd be wrong. I'm doing all that stuff right now, off the cuff, at the last minute. Here goes:

2007 Accomplishments

- was unemployed for almost half of it, but didn't starve to death.
- successfully finished and edited The Right Hand of Evil.
- rewrote Young Nostradamus
- launched two novels, Epoch and Section K
- launched two blogs, too!
- adopted a wonderful kitten, Karma
- fought depression, and felt positive 75% of the time.
- saw Transformers 5 times.

2007 Regrets

- didn't finish The 25 Demons You Meet In Hell or Cupidity.
- was pretty darned depressed and negative 25% of the time.
- didn't see Transformers 6 times.

2008 Resolutions

- I will write every day.
- I will stay positive 85% of the time.
- I will finish the aforementioned novels, and
- I will get back to Kids Who Know and finish it this year.
- I will sell another novel.
- I will stay employed.

That's all I've got. Not the most profound of stuff, but then neither am I. I'm just here to have fun. Happy New Year, all!