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.

Monday 11th March, 2013

This weekend, I made it to SWASH 2013 – the BFHS’s flag-ship event [External Link]. Basically, sorting things out to get there dominated the week (although I got some edits done on 25 Ways to Kill A Werewolf) and it filled Friday through to Sunday evening. I crawled in to bed about 8pm yesterday and woke up – barring the bleary eyed trip to the work mobile phone to turn it off when it started ringing – about 10am this morning. The Hellhounds have since been released from doggy-borstal and I’m almost ready to start my working week tomorrow. Except for the sore thigh muscles and the impressive bruises (only three this year).

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]).

Sunday 6th January, 2013

Perhaps a fitting mood to be in for the start of the year, but my news is currently full of “maybe”s – which means there’s not much point in me telling you about what I’m up to in case none of them get off the ground.

On the positive side (in the sense of things organised) I have committed to:

  • Purchasing more wasters from The Knight Shop [External Link]. There will be a blog post on the new additions to the kit bag (and I’m buying a new one of those, too) when they turn up and I’ve had a play.
  • I am booked in for the 2014 EasterCon / Satellite 4 [External Link]. I say booked in but what that means is I’ve bought membership. As there are plenty of things that can go wrong between now and April 2014, I make no further promises.

I am idly thinking about buying membership to EasterCon 2013 [External Link], as it’s not too far away in Bradford, but I suspect I shall chicken out of that. I shall, however, be making some sort of appearance at SWASH 2013 in early March, if anyone fancies some fencing.

Monday 24th December, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Apologies for the delay in posting but I went to Glasgow for the weekend and really couldn’t bring myself to write a bog post when I got back on Sunday evening. I maybe should have lined up something beforehand but thought a Christmas Eve post would be the most seasonal thing to do. In keeping with this, the penultimate day of the TTA Press Advent calendar is up (links can be found from here: [External Link] and the forum thread for discussion is here: [External Link]), and I’m cooking the things I’m supposed to take round for the family dinner tomorrow.

To prove that Christmas is essentially here, I have a brass band:

Extra brownie points / mince pies all round if you remember all the words!

A number of historical fencing events have gone up on my list of events. In date order:

There isn’t much else to talk about and I’ll update you on my Flattr-ing [External Link] experience next week.

Monday 5th November, 2012

Remember, remember the fifth of November… I was supposed to do something yesterday, wasn’t I? Okay, people, we have a belated house-keeping post this week. Let’s start with:

Outlaw Bodies

The anthology came out on November 1st. On this site, there’s been an announcement post, a related post (background on my story in the anthology and maybe spoilers if anyone wants to talk in-depth about it) and I’ve added a note to the right so that everyone can get the links to order it. I won’t bore you with repeating the same details for a fourth time. (Look! It’s to the right! That way –>).

As said previously, there are links to all things Outlaw Bodies related here: Outlaw Bodies Blog Carnival [External Link]. If you know of something that isn’t linked there or you’ve seen an online review you think the team should mention, let Djibril know on the comments.

Other Writing

You may also have noticed that another announcement post went up this week. I’ve had another short story accepted for another anthology (No Monsters Allowed). More details as and when.

In terms of what I’m producing at the moment, I am most definitely not taking part in NaNoWriMo. One year, I will, I swear, but my usual work combined with life circumstances mean I can’t commit to writing every day. Yes, that is a cop out. Tough. That said, I’m also basically not writing. I’ll get back to redrafting a few things soon but I’m supposed to be working on typing up and commenting on an acquaintance’s script. The key phrase was “supposed to be”.

Just “Other”

The “supposed to be” is because I’ve been continuing the DIY on the living room. It may even be sorted for Christmas. I now have half a laminate floor down – with help yesterday from my sister. Yay us!

Fencing / Events

Swordfish came and went. I haven’t attended but I’m hoping to go next year. While sitting and staring at rough dates for these things (I hope to make SWASH, the Smallsword Symposium and Swordfish in 2013), it occurred to me that I miss off mentioning a large number of events that I hear about something like a week before they happen. I need to try and stay more on top of these things. And maybe find a way to display them better. Any suggestions?

And, dates for SWASH 2013 have been released (see the BFHS news [External Link]) as March 9th and 10th 2013. Although they’ve changed the weekend, this still conflicts with watching the Six Nations (rugby union) so I probably won’t attend the whole weekend. I promise not to grumble too much but I can’t promise not to wear my Welsh rugby shirt. I’ll post an event note for it when there’s a page dedicated to it instead of just sending you all to the Fed home page.

Monday 27th February, 2012

With a little help from Cheryl Morgan [External Link], I put together a post on Women’s Role Models: Ringers, which I posted last week. This is a continuation of the Women’s Role posts started with Women’s Roles in Fantasy Fiction and continued in Women’s Role Models: An Introduction. A post on “Soldiers” follows some time this week – probably Wednesday, when tradition suggests I should actually be out proposing to random men. Feedback on all of these posts would be appreciated, as would suggestions for further examples.

The radiator drip was solved with a cork, thankfully, but I have been redecorating. I’ve managed up to the first coat of paint. This did not distract from Saturday’s rugby – France beat Ireland, Wales beat England (woot! Triple Crown!) – or the disappearance of Sunday in an all day trip to SWASH 2012. Next year, I think they’re moving the dates to slightly later in the year, so I won’t have to chose between men rolling in the mud and people waving swords again. Hopefully, decorating won’t enter into the equation.

Redrafting on 25 Ways To Kill A Werewolf continues, with more writing on hold for a while. I just don’t have the time with redecorating and such.

Sunday 4th December, 2012

Two Dragons

"Forward, Upward, Onward, Together" - whether we like it or not

Well, to the left is my latest drawing attempt. You may recognise the original photo. The quote underneath is from the Bahamian coat of arms. It seemed appropriate. I don’t think my control is getting that much better – but, then, I’m effectively only putting an hour or week or so. Whether I’ll make anything more of it? It depends on how long my interest keeps up.

In writing, the latest news is that my story Beaumains is now up in the last issue of Crossed Genres [External Link]. While I’m disappointed that the ezine side of things is closing, I hope CG get the success they deserve with the other projects the team are working on. I’m also very proud to be in their last issue – if only because it means they picked me (me!) and I’ve been in an issue each year they published.

A short rugby detour: Yes, I watched Wales v. Australia. A good match and Shane Williams retired from International level with flair. But I think it will be just as interesting to see how the number 10 shirt pans out as how Wales play post-Shane. I would be very disappointed for the longer-serving Stephen Jones to leave the scene due to not being selected rather than through choice, and without the same kind of send off.

So, it’s officially Advent and it’s okay to talk about Christmas within my hearing. Anything before December 1st (except for actually buying the presents as people on my twitter feed know) and I just get grumpy.

Of course, this also means that advent calendars have taken over the world again. You can find the annual, short fiction-y goodness through the TTA Press site [External Link]. I shall be up on Day 8 but every day’s will be good for a coffee break. Let me know of any others that are up and running this year and I’ll pass the details along next catch-up.

And, as I tend to post videos at this time of year, here’s another one. It’s not a Christmas-y one, though. It’s one I found of last year’s SWASH as SWASH 2012 has officially opened for registration. Get your tickets while they’re hot, folks! [External Link]

Sunday 6th November, 2011

Following last week’s story, I thought I’d put up a bit of the world building behind it. Not that it actually required much, being flash fiction but the choices that were available in a thousand words had to be fairly carefully made. In this case, I tried to stay as flexible as possible, giving myself enough room to come back and develop both the stranger and the old woman’s people.

The other short story I’ve been working on will get printed off on Wednesday and submitted to the TTA Press [External Link] slush pile. It’s getting to that time of year again when I feel the need to measure myself against the best speculative fiction magazine in the UK (in my fan-girl opinion). I’ve also got work submitted to a number of other places and am working on a submission for a competition. I think the worst part is the waiting – once you (technically that should be “one” but apparently no-one uses the third person singular any more) have done all that you can do and you’re waiting for someone else’s opinion to filter through in its own sweet time.

For those of you with a historical fencing bent, the SWASH 2012 part of the British Federation for Historical Swordplay (BFHS) [External Link] has gone live and can be found here: [External Link]. Some details are still to be arranged, but dates, location and prices can be found by following the link. Keep an eye out for the full programme and so on being put up there in the near future.

In other news, the bedroom is now nekkid except for the dado rail and the radiator. Work paused while I went to pick up some new-to-me furniture for the living room. I expect to be doing the DIY bit with some help from the parent on Wednesday (a day off) and next weekend I shall probably be complaining about plastering and / or fillering. I haven’t done any drawing or gardening this week and my use of SaySomethingInWelsh [External Link] ground to a halt towards the weekend. If anyone wants to come and try slapping my wrists, feel free.