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The book has landed 6, November 2010

Posted by babychaos in General Wittering, Work, writing.
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Yes booyacka! The book has landed… I have sweated blood over this thing but at last it is out of my hair…

So if you want to find it here’s where to go.

E-Book of Few Are Chosen retailing at £2.50 or as near as I can get it because they all work in US$ and I don’t:

Amazon UK here
Amazon US here
Smashwords here

Paperback of Few Are Chosen retailing for £10.00:

Amazon UK here
Amazon US here
International – The Book Depository here

If you like the idea of the flying cars – er hem, sorry snurds – you can buy cards and postcards some scenes in which they feature here if you’re in the UK or here from the US and the postage to the rest of the world is probably less expensive than from here in the UK.

Amazon.co.uk is reporting a delivery time of 5 – 8 weeks at the moment but this is a lie caused by a computer glitch. They assure me they will alter the delivery estimate to reflect a more realistic timescale (despatched within 3-5 days) in the next week or so. Amazon.com is reporting despatch within 2 – 4 days and the Book Depository will despatch within 48 hours. Clearly e-book despatches are instant.

If you want to help I would be very grateful – please don’t feel forced it’s your call, you realy don’t have to. However, should you want to there are three things you can do to help float the novel.

1. You can always buy it.
2. If you like it, please say in a review on Amazon, two lines is great, two paragraphs is fantastic.
3. Click on the Amazon links I’ve given, scroll down the page to the links section and agree with the tags by putting a tick in the little box beside each one.

Oh and here are a couple of the pictures…

Lord Vernon pursues the mervinettes

Few Are Chosen, Snurd Chase

Here’s one of the hero’s wheels that’s not a porsche, it’s meant to look a bit like a variant of late 1960s Lotus.

The Pan of Hamgee's snurd

The Pan of Hamgee's snurd from Few Are Chosen by M T McGuire

Not forgetting the baddie chasing the hero too…

Lord Vernon, the evil baddy from M T McGuire's Few Are Chosen pursues The Pan of Hamgee

Lord Vernon, the evil baddy from M T McGuire's Few Are Chosen pursues The Pan of Hamgee

Wahoo! 20, May 2008

Posted by babychaos in Art, careers, General Wittering, Life and living, Light Fluff, Play, Pregnancy Issues, Work.
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The Muffin is now the right way round although he has disengaged… I knew that though, the reflux has returned with a vengence.

Hoorah!

Have completed the art commission and been paid in cash.

More hoorah.

The other one didn’t come off… but hey. Guy wanted to commission some designs for rugs, I rang up loads of carpet companies, an artist and places like the Crafts Council to research the going rate but it was a start up company, in the States to boot so I think what with the exchange rate and all, even bottom whack was too much. Sigh. Recession schmession. Never mind.

Have also bought a stone polisher, or a stone tumbling machine as it’s sometimes called, at a car boot for £2. It’s not high quality but I’ve always wanted one… my bathroom is full of stones picked up off beaches, mountains etc and just as soon as I can find out how to do it properly, I’m going to polish some! I’m guessing jaggedy rocks will take more goes of sharp sand and longer to polish than smooth off the beach ones.

Hmm… we must be cautions…

Shiny stones!

Also tempted to start an art blog and put all my musings about writing and drawing there…

The Stealth Jam Gene… 6, December 2007

Posted by babychaos in Art, careers, General Wittering, Life and living, Small Scale Disasters, whinging, winging, Work, writing.
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I have fluked it a bit, today. I was meant to book a blood test for today or during the next 3 days which means I should have rung the surgery last week.

Needless to say I forgot and it was only because I was looking through my huge National Health pregnant lady’s folder, this morning, to find out what week I was supposed to book my Midwife’s appointment that I realised I was supposed to have it today.

Even so, somebody up there is obviously smiling on me because they had a cancellation for 12 o’clock which means I’m off the hook and despite being CFC* and generally cack I got to have them today, when I was supposed to, anyway! Mwa ha ha haaragh!

This was quite good for me. You see, I’ve been a bit down. I guess partly because I’ve been coming to terms with the fact that I’ve not made any money through my art, not sold any cards and that the shops that have taken them in town – plenty – are not selling them either. That the first novel in my trilogy, though nearly complete, is unlikely to make me the next JK Rowling and that, basically, I’m not going to make millions through any of my artistic talents, allowing my husband to give up his hateful, high stress, 24 hour a day, why won’t the fuckers ever leave us alone? job.

In other words, I can’t produce my cards for the kind of money people are prepared to pay – about £2.50 a pop or at least, not if I want to do it at anything over cost (25p a card). There is a market, I know there is a market because I canvassed a lot of people from all walks, ages and sizes of life and they all said they’d buy them if they saw them for sale. They’re not the famously tight East Anglian in the street, though and the only access I have to them is on-line… so I have 5o packs of Christmas Cards in my local shops, not selling and 200 packs here at home which I am spectacularly failing to sell as well.

Ah…

Worse, not only does every fucker I talk to suggest I submit to Phoenix, who persistently tell me to sod off, but Phoenix works kind of like tupperware, kleeneze or the like in that they don’t sell in shops but through a network of agents who sell their cards at charity bazaars, schools or through coffee mornings at home. The net result being that not only do they not like my designs but when I find out about school fetes, church sales, bazaars etc the lady from Phoenix has always already booked and I am therefore barred on the “we only allow one card seller and it’s the lady from Phoenix” rule. Grrrr! For fuck’s sake!

Then something happens like this morning and I realise that I do have a special kind of luck. Ok, so unlike one of my sisters in-law, I’m not the kind of person who can write a book and meet a publisher at a dinner party the day I finish who thinks it’s so fantastic from my description, alone, that they swear to find me a children’s book deal on the spot – and I never will be that much of a jammy bastard (more’s the pity but I’m feeling this one particularly keenly at the moment having fallen foul bloody Phoenix again, only by a different route).

Then again I am able to sail through life, completely disorganised and inefficient, without nearly as many cock ups as there should be, including a number of things which I forgot about when I was at work which, if they’d turned out the way they should have, would have undoubtedly resulted in my getting the sack long before I was made redundant.

Throughout school, one of the few things I never got into do-do for – and trust me, my mere existence was enough to get me into do-do with many of my teachers – was forgetting to do my homework. Yes, ok so I had untidy handwriting which meant I would never get an A (because at school neatness and presentation is always more important than getting the right answer – just as being tidily dressed allows you to be the shittiest little bully on earth, make the lives of countless others a complete misery and still end up a prefect – not that I’m bitter and twisted or anything oops, put the baggage away BC, where was I? Oh yes…) I could tell the teacher I forgot and they would not only believe me but let it go so long as I did the work in lunch hour or by the next day. This when others would wind up in deepest, darkest poop.

So although I’m feeling a little disheartened because I have had to accept that I’m not going to earn my fortune doing things I’m good at because I’m too shit at selling them, completely lack any market analysis skills and don’t have the kind of luck required, either. Although, I’ve had to accept that my career is never going to be anything more than a hobby and that my priority is going to have to be all the things I loathe but do for love; housework, dusting, cleaning making the place tidy… more to the point, things I’m REALLY super-shit at. In the long run, I’m sure this stealthy, almost unnoticeable jamminess is a useful skill which counts for something…

Mr BC will be stuck in his job until he is 60 and there is nothing I can do to save him, all I can do is offer my crap support and keep up my hobbies of writing and drawing when I have time in the hope they’ll save me from becoming super-boring. The fact I fear this, worry I won’t measure up probably makes me super-selfish… Mr BC clearly has no such worries so at least that’s reassuring.

So… I guess I’ll just put my faith in the amazing properties of stealth jam and hope… oh yes… and tell myself it’ll get easier when I am not pregnant, with my hormones all shook up!

* CFC: Completely Fucking Crap!

Addendum: If you are pregnant, I suspect you will feel your own version of this at some point… I’m sure it’s exactly the same for me as it is for everyone else! If you are pregnant and actually ARE feeling like this right now… well… at least you know you’re not alone.

A partial success… 20, November 2007

Posted by babychaos in Art, careers, General Wittering, Life and living, Work.
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Despite my failing to convince my local charity contacts to opt for my cards, the gallery manager on the committee did suggest I submit to the local gallery’s Christmas show. I got one in, Frosty the Abominable Snowman which I’d submitted as a print because their size limit was 12″ and I only had works on A4 – 11″ – and over the limit when when you add a mount and frame.

So to my complete delight the first one sold in 20 minutes and since it was a print, number 2 of 10 sold about 5 minutes after that. Wahoo… now I’m thinking prints for sale on Etsy might be the way forward… although so far all I’ve managed to list is my alphabet poster… I’m also hoping to flog cards at a coffee morning next week. It’s in aid of the Cathedral choristers so I think this picture, framed up as a print, might be a good sales bet.

angelchoir_main.jpg

The lady who organises it all is going to phone me back later… apparently, I’m in if the plant lady says no! Fingers and toes crossed that she does!

Witter, witter, witter… 29, October 2007

Posted by babychaos in Adult Content, General Wittering, Pregnancy Issues, whinging, winging, Work.
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Still feeling like shit… but happy shit and I find it helps me get going in the morning if I have some biscuits or a piece of toast before I get out of bed. I therefore have a packet of biscuits to hand so I can nibble one before I get up (yeh, decadent or what).

I’m hanging onto the fact this should wear off, too – or at least, reduce.. I’ve had it for about three weeks now, possibly a bit more, so in theory, if I’m at 9 weeks now, I’ve only another three to go before it starts to slacken off. If it doesn’t, I suspect I will get used to it, over time and find better ways to manage it.

Today I didn’t really wake up when Mr BC got up, even the cat found me too boring to pester and left me alone… then, just before leaving for a meeting the sweet man arrives with a tray containing a cup of coffee, a packet of Ryvita and a choice of Marmite, jam and peanut butter to spread on them – all foods I have been craving on and off. He is such a thoughtful kind hearted soul.

I haven’t been doing very well with the eating regimen, either. Being vaguer than most pregnant people as standard, anyway, without being pregnant, the pregnancy head thing has taken my brain by storm and the whole memory game is quite tricky.

I write EVERYTHING down but even so, I often find myself wondering why I have to do the items on the list. For example after the midwife’s visit I had a three point list. Point three was “Call Hospital”. All well and good. I know I need to call them but I can’t, for the life of me, remember why I was supposed to call, which makes ringing them up – and writing the list – a little pointless*.

* Handy hint. If you need to write a to do list, remember to state, in detail, if required, why you need to do the things you need to do.

On the food front, having been regularly putting away large quantities of salami and parma ham, I now find I’m not supposed to eat these uncooked (lysteria). Oops.

Rectifying my errant behaviour I replace the sizeable salami-void by eating more cheese, carefully selecting only those made with pasturised milk. Now I find I’ve got that wrong, too. Yep, the brie I’ve been troughing over the last month is wrong because pasturised milk or not, it’s mould matured, while unpasturised cheese from small producers or from abroad is fine. Yes the truckle of fabulous local chedder I turned down at the farmer’s market yesterday (my favourite and rarer, in manageable sized truckles, than unicorn pooh) would have been fine. How fucking annoying is that?! (s’cuse my French).

Half the time, when I come to buy stuff, or order in a restaurant or well… anything really, I can’t remember what I’m supposed to eat and what I’m not supposed to eat. My brain, like an overfilled sponge will only retain three quarters of my dietary regimen. The minute I recall a foodstuff I’d forgotten about and add it to the banned list, something else falls off the bottom… perhaps this is self preservation. I don’t know.

On the up side, reading up on it on-line I discovered a French woman, living in England who had been told by her doctor that eating soft cheese, for her, would be fine – I think, it was because she would have eaten so much of it, anyway. Well, if that’s the case then what I’ve eaten shouldn’t do any harm, seeing as I am a cheese monster and eat about my own body weight in cheese each week (I’ve always assumed it’s because I drink very little milk).

Yesterday I managed to select the right meal at the right time. We had a pot roast ham joint with baked potatoes. It was so good! A little slice of heaven! Angels tip-toeing over my tongue! I don’t think I’ve enjoyed a meal as much for a long time… washed down with a glass of Vina Ardanza. Blimey that was good!

It also made me think about other stuff. It made me feel for people having these side effects for other reasons, chemo, for example. The positive side, for them, is harder to identify and the sickness is worse than anything I’m experiencing. All this is good news for me, in that the hormones are very active, which means the muffin is probably doing ok.

Actually I’m pretty sure the muffin is doing ok anyway, it’s not communing with me very much but because it’s very busy growing. It’s like our cat, when we got him. He was too scared to sit on our laps or come close but he made it abundantly clear that we belonged to him and he wasn’t going anywhere. It may yet give up or go wrong but its made it’s intention to stick very clear.

That may sound bizarre but I’m pregnant mwa ha haargh! I’m allowed to be a nutter.

Well, time to go, I have to enjoy a quick sleep before I get up – if the cat will let me – then I have to go into town to get some paint to spray the manky old frames I bought at the car boot yesterday red and green. Then I can submit my pictures – yeh, the vetoed Christmas card designs – to the local gallery’s Christmas open show…