Monday 24th March, 2014

Things that have happened since my last update:

  1. Ireland won the Six Nations championship (Yay for BOD!)
  2. My niece and my dog, Rosie, both had their birthdays.
  3. I finished Civ 5. Twice. Admittedly on Settler setting. More or less come out the other side of the addiction now, though.
  4. I continued to host the Esfinges Twitter Talks on Monday and Thursday. In fact, you just missed another one tonight.
  5. I’ve seen a cover for 25 Ways To Kill A Werewolf. It looks like it’ll be out in time for attending Edge Lit in July [External Link], so expect me to be plugging it fairly soon.
  6. I’ve decided to include anthologies towards the thousand books in my Ink Plan target (mentioned way back in July 2013), so I’ve got in touch with most of the publishers and editors – a few contacts still to be sorted out – to find out numbers and whether they’re willing to share numbers. I hope to start with official Ink Plan status updates soon and get a bookshelf sorted to sit to the right of the screen to give you links to the books that count towards it.

Sunday 9th March, 2014

Not much going on this week. I’m tapping away (occasionally) on a project that you may never see. Once or twice a year I play with (tv or movie) script format and the current idea is one of those.

I have also been playing Civ 5 and various FB games that Ole [External Link] mentioned. Now that we have a shared household (6 computers and tablets combined on last count), it’s a little hard to avoid the temptation of trying these things out.

I also got some homework done, if you want a child-friendly piece of flash fiction.

Other than that, I have now introduce Ole to rugby and he appears to enjoy watching it. This weeks’ Six Nations results look promising for an Irish championship. I’ll keep my fingers crossed…

Sunday 23rd February, 2014

I missed a weekend. Nothing major but I was a bit distracted by plans coming to fruition last weekend. I am now in possession of a housemate. Apparently, this is how romance with a Scandinavian works… [External Link]

On the good side, Ole has made the conversion to supporting Wales in Rugby Union surprisingly well and managed to sit through the Friday night match (Yay, Wales!) against France. He was even feigning attention in the scores of the other two matches on Saturday. (Well done, Scotland / bad luck, Italy, Good job, England / Ireland, I’m so sorry.) He may yet survive the experience of moving in with the Pack. If he makes it through to some arbitrary date, I may have to ask him to write a page for himself, too.

The main addition since last time I did an update is that SWASH 2014 is now open for business. The weekend will be Saturday 31st May – Sunday 1st June. This is sometimes discussed as the main HEMA event in the UK and is definitely the British Federation of Historical Swordplay (BFHS)’s [External Link] flag ship event. Worth a nosey, even if it’s just going to the Leeds Royal Armouries on the day to observe as a member of the public!

Yeah, and I haven’t achieved much in the way of writing / creating.

Sunday 9th February, 2014

Well, that first R&D “Untitled” novella I mentioned back in January. is done. It finished off at 22600 words. As this is a first draft it could end up a few thousand words shorter or longer by the time it’s well and truly finished. However, the first draft being done means it’s time for a break for a few days and then consider what project comes next.

If you’re bothering to look at my list of things to do on that link, by the way, I’ve started trying to rehome An Invisible Tide, so that’s no longer on the “to do” list at all. I’ve had a couple of additions to the list, that are just ideas sketched down at this stage, too. This is not including doing re-reads and perhaps salvaging older work. If I think about it too hard, I’m likely to start doing some of it, so I’ll shut up now.

The weekend went OK, although the rugby results weren’t exactly what I was hoping for (Ireland beat Wales 26-3, England beat Scotland 20-0, France beat Italy 30-10). Well, at least BOD’s on track for a glorious end to his International career.

And a reminder about the Esfinges Twitter Hours (on site link and details on the Esfinges blog [External Link]). The inaugural #HEMAHour went well but we could do with more people discussing women in martial arts in general for #WarriorWomenHour! If you’re interested and want to ask what things are like before trying it out, this is a good place to start.

Sunday 2nd February 2014

So, we’re into February already and I’m only about 1,000 words nearer to the end of that untitled R&D novella I mentioned last week. This sounds even less impressive when I admit that the finished first draft should be about 20,000 words – so I have 4,000 (ish) words to go – and I’ve been working on it since November. On the plus side, I have another idea on my project list that I think’ll fly. No news on that any time soon, though!

Actually, on the plus plus side, the Six Nations has started. (Wales beat Italy 23-15, France just beat England 26-24 and Ireland beat Scotland 28-6. End of Rugby transmission.)

On a fencing note, I am now the Twitter Pilot for Esfinges [External Link] – you may have noticed the announcements on both my and the Esfinges Twitter accounts [External Link] – and I’m up to mischief straight away. If you fancy chatting about Historical European Martial Arts (HEMA) and / or women in Martial Arts in general, I’ll be running some twitter talks. I’ve posted an event link here and details can also be found on the Esfinges blog here: [External Link] You don’t have to be into these things already. If you’re interested and want to ask what things are like before trying it out, it’ll be a good place to come for some rough and ready information.

There are also some new events added. I’ve completed the Nordic Historical Fencing League [External Link] set of four (the first was Helsinki) with details for:

There’s also some fencing going on in Barcelona in June.

Sunday 17th March, 2013

I hope St Patrick’s Day [Wikipedia article: St Patrick External Link] went well for everyone. My week has disappeared in completing small tasks – some of which are still outstanding as I still haven’t refound the photos I’m supposed to scan for someone – and the weekend has been spent organising for and spending some time with my niece. It was her birthday in the week, so we’ve had a family meal this evening.

And a short sword-and-shield fencing lesson for her this afternoon, which is not something I know anything about but I figured if I got her in the habit of using both hands and hitting the weapons rather than her friends / opponents, the wooden toys would be a little safer and more acceptable to my sister. Just call me an irresponsible aunt. The good news is, I think my niece enjoyed being an armed pink princess and I may wear my fencing kit next time. Just to survive.

Edited to add: And the Wales v England game was awesome 🙂

Monday 25th February, 2013

I didn’t mean to leave it quite so long between posts. I skipped one wekend because I basically didn’t have anything to share, but two? I guess I just misplaced the to do list at some point!

I was pretty active, b my standards, this weekend in that I went up to Leeds to meet a bunch of other people who learn Welsh with SaySomethingInWelsh [External Link], and spoke a mix of Welsh and English. Nobody was comfortable enough to speak in only Welsh but we threw Welsh words into some English sentences, and English words into some Welsh sentences. And all came away feeling like we’d been marked “must try harder”, I think. But we enjoyed it and I hope to go back next month.

I also managed to watch all three of the (men’s) Six Nations rugby matches this weekend. Short short version: England beat France, Scotland beat Ireland and Wales beat Italy.

The better news is, I also finished a short story. I’d been having difficulty with an idea and have been sulking for a while. On Monday I persuaded myself to put it down and pick up another, so by the end of Sunday I’d written 5000-ish words. 3800 of them survived the first draft. Not bads for a week’s work!

Oh, and the latest things up on the Artful Hearts Designs Facebook page [External Link] are some cocnut shell keyrings from Sam and some more pictures from Terry.

Sunday 10th February, 2013

Well, I forgot to take Mousie to the February freeplay session – it could be that Miss Mouse is not intended to learn to defend herself while on her travels. That may even be what the Hellhounds are for. (Finally! A use for them!)

Of course, going fencing meant I missed the Scotland v Italy game – and so, again, I probably missed the most entertaining and open game of the weekend. I made it back to watch an efficient but not that spectacular win by Wales over France in a game that was only entertaining because “my” team was in it rather than because of anything that actually happened. Today’s match between Ireland and England was barely any better with the weather making it hard to do anything but hang on for grim death. Apparently. (I wasn’t there, I can only go by what was shown on tv.) England won and thus become the favourites for the Six Nations.

At this point, I have to admit I haven’t been up to much. I’ve been procrastinating, which makes for lots of time sinks and no obvious progress. Sam has been a bit more industrious, however, and you can find some photos of her keyrings, earrings and candles on the Artful Hearts Designs Facebook page [External Link], along with some photos of her friend Terry LAIR / Cabin Clutter Creations’ work. Sam’s also currently running a competition for a keyring, which you can see here: [External Link].

Sunday 3rd February, 2012

Could someone please tell me how we got to February already?

On the good side, February means the Six Nations is on again. I watched the Wales v. Ireland match (I kind of wish I hadn’t. First half = ouch, second half = oh, so close). I missed the England v. Scotland match (more on why shortly) and I chose not to watch the Italy v. France game – which, by a swift intervention of Sod’s Law, apparently turned out to be the most exciting game of the weekend. Italy won and, according to some, turned the “natural order” on its head. They’ve been improving over the last decade, though, and they played extremely well last season so I thought it was a possible and deserved outcome.

I missed the Calcutta cup match (England / Scotland) because I met Dylan Fox [] and Allegra Hawksmoor [External Link] at The Telling (2) [External Link] in Doncaster – at least, for part of it. Although spoken word is often lost on me (short attention span, missing some of the nuance) it was an interesting evening and I’m glad I went. But then we were also involved in some pre-Industrial Age style smelting and manning the bellows was oddly fun.

There’s been an on-site change this week, in that the Smallsword Symposium web page went live with the 2013 dates (and more information to be added between now and October), so I’ve created a link page here.

And the final thing to mention is my sister, Sam Jackson, is starting up the arts and crafts again. Things should be turning up on her Etsy account (Sam’s Hut [External Link]) at some point but, for now, she’s concentrating on a Facebook page (currently known as Artful Hearts Designs [External Link]) that is intended to be a shared page with other craft-y friends. Her coffee-themed candles are well worth a look.

Sunday 27th January, 2013

It’s a fencing week this week, starting with the events currently in the sticky slider on the front page (in date order):

I should be attending the SSS Sheffield events and I’ve just booked my place at SWASH (including the dinner) – but I may slope off to watch Scotland vs. Wales on the Saturday.

Further dates for events that I may be going to but don’t currently have enough detail to put up a link for are:

  • April 13th, SSS Sheffield freeplay session
  • May 11th, SSS Sheffield freeplay session
  • August 10th – 11th, Fechtschule York
  • August 16th – 18th, Fightcamp 2013
  • October 19th – 20th, Smallsword Symposium V

(And if you can think of any that I ought to mention, whether or not I can attend, let me know.)

In keeping with the theme, I have two new pages, having written something about the latest addition to the Knight Shop waster set and my second hand Federschwert.

To cap it all off, there’s been a call for submissions to a “dragonpunk” anthology that aims to turn the privilege of medieval-style high fantasy upside down (Combustion Books: [External Link]). And a similar point of view on high / medieval Europe based fantasy can also be found in an older post on the Future Fire Editor’s Blog (“L is for Low Fantasy” [ target=”_blank”>External Link]).