Snow and the mysteries of teeth

A flurry of terror and dread arrived with the flurry of snow this week. How I hate snow. Ye gods, it’s what I moved to the south to avoid, isn’t it? It was made rather worse yesterday as we had to walk into town in the snow and slush in order to partake of our office Christmas lunch – which was very nice indeed, but I could have done without the chilly journey. And that sense of doom and misery when one’s foot starts to slip. And I was the only one wearing trainers too, dammit. Not only that but it was soooo cold when we started the cars in the morning – and foolishly I’d only worn my fingerless gloves so got a telling-off from Lord H – that I lost all sensation in my fingers when I came to finish the ice scraping and actually drive off. Which was fine once I’d worked out how to put on my seatbelt using my teeth and my elbow, but it did mean that every time I tried to put the radio up I just ended up punching the knob with my fist (as it were) and switching it off, as I couldn’t make my fingers turn the dial. Double dammit.

Keeping to the subject (sort of) of work, I had a lovely surprise in my last ever session of the University Writers’ Group when they presented me with an anthology of their work over the year dedicated to me. I was so touched that I felt quite tearful. It’s a great booklet and I think they’ve all done amazingly well. Hindered and held back by me, that is. So thank you, gang, for that – really appreciated. You’ve been a wonderful group. Next year, I’m taking a well-earned break and they’re sharing the chairing duties between them. I think the shake-up in the format for them all will be fabulous, but I’ll still be in the background if they do need any help. Which, I suspect, they won’t.

Other exciting writing news is that The Bones of Summer seems to have had a small boost from its recent Rainbow Fiction award placing and gained a rating on Amazon UK for a while. Which was very nice. At the same time, Maloney’s Law had a brief flirtation with an Amazon rating, so I’m glad to see the first Paul Maloney book venturing out of its cave, albeit temporarily. And on the subject of Amazon, I complained to them once more this morning about the lack of stock of A Dangerous Man, which has been going on for two months now, and this time I queried whether they’re not stocking it because it has gay characters in it, along the lines of the GLBT Amazon PR disaster earlier in the year. This time, I received a nice email back (which for once wasn’t the standard response) saying it should be in stock shortly, so we wait and see, eh. I live in hope, but faint hope. 

Ooh and I had my first reader response from the lovely Elly from my online poetry group saying she’d read Salt and Gold and had really enjoyed it – so that absolutely made my day. Thank you, Elly! It’s lovely to have sold a copy and therefore have a 100% enjoyment response. What could be nicer? And I’m also greatly heartened by the growing number of good reviews and ratings for Two Christmases, both on the Goodreads and the Well Read Bookblog sites. That’s been nice too.

Meanwhile I mustn’t forget the glorious good news from my online writing friend, Vicki Tyley, whose wonderful novel, Thin Blood, was rated as being a Top 10 E-read recently. Well done, Vicki! It is indeed a great mystery/thriller and I can thoroughly recommend it to you all.

In non-writing news this week, I have – sad to say – finally collected my mouth guard from the dentist, an act that ages me indefinitely (am I really turning into my grandmother? God forbid …), I fear. I have to wear it at night to stop me from grinding my teeth down to the point of non-existence. Well, I never said I was a relaxed person … Dentist’s classic comment: Anne, you have the strongest jaw I’ve ever had to treat – which is good news in one way as if you ever fall off a cliff you’ll be able to hang onto the rope with your teeth and wait for the helicopter to arrive. Hmm, I’ll try to remember that if I’m ever in that position. Anyway, I was hugely embarrassed when I got it home, opened it up and attempted for some considerable time to put the mould in my mouth. Nobody told me I should in fact be wearing the plastic thing that’s on the mould – I nearly threw it away!! And at £85, that would be some throw, I can tell you. Lordy, I’m in the wrong job. Anyway, after much tears and grief, I finally resorted to the Internet thingy and realised I should be wearing the plastic, NOT the mould. Doh!! I am so definitely in the running for Idjit of the Year 2009. Sigh. And, yes, the plastic fits perfectly. Slinks away in shame …

Oh and I only have 3 working days left until the holidays, hurrah, hurrah!

Anne’s website – biting off more than she can safely chew, every damn time


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