Sunday, February 18, 2007

Monday meanderings

I never said I was going away altogether, did I? So here are a few things left over from last week.

Emma Urquhart blogs

Long-term readers will remember Emma (Maree) Urquhart, the 13-year-old author of Dragon Tamers, a book which was published by Aultbea. I have written about Aultbea many a time here -- so much so that the firm's spokesperson told the Scotsman that I have a 'thing' about the company. Well, thing or not, I don't think I want, or need, to say any more about the firm today.

What I am going to say is that Emma Urquhart is growing up fast and now has a blog. She is not the world's most frequent poster (there was nothing in December 06 or January 07, apparently because of a lack of money), but she appears from time to time.

On 9 February she put up three posts. The first explains the publishing history of Dragon Tamers and her current view of Aultbea. It's worth reading if you've been following the subject, and if you have any views, as I have, about young writers being made into stars.

Not Born Yesterday

On 2 February I mentioned a satirical newsletter, Not Born Yesterday, which is regularly sent out (via email) by John Ward. I recommended it to UK readers. Actually it is not without interest to readers elsewhere, but the political and current affairs references are chiefly set in a UK context.

Well, shortly after I wrote that piece, John had computer problems. These were not solved by a repairman who was, shall we say, less than 100% reliable. Result: some of John's database went missing.

So, if you were one of the 20 or so readers who signed up to receive NBY after the GOB reference, you may or may not have been sent anything. If nothing has arrived, be so good as to drop a brief line to John again, and all will be well. His contact address: notbornyesterday@googlemail.com.

Romantic shortlist

The shortlist has been announced for the UK Romantic Novelists' Association award for the best romantic novel of the year. The list includes two romantic comedies, two sagas, and two twin-time-period dramas. One of the authors is a man. I am one of the three judges, so you will hear more in due course.

POD Critic

An anonymous editor from a small publishing company in New York has set up shop as an online critic for books published via POD methods. The guidelines on how to submit books for review were given on 30 January. Early posts suggest that this critic is not about to hand out praise lightly. But would you have it otherwise?

Blogger bigtime

Yesterday's Sunday Times carried a remarkably silly story about a woman who has been blogging for six weeks and has just been offered a £70,000 contract by Viking Penguin.

I would like to tell you that this lady was a complete amateur, totally unknown, knew nobody influential, and had never previously written anything longer than a letter to her Auntie Jane. But that wouldn't be true.

It turns out that Judith O'Reilly, 42, is a former education correspondent of the Sunday Times.

How long, do you think, before she gets to sit on Richard and Judy's sofa? Two or three days should do it, surely.

Jacqueline Wilson

A much more sensible ST story is the one about Jacqueline Wilson, the lady who writes books for children and teenagers: books which help them to cope with life as it is lived in the 21st century. Sales so far: 20 million, and as a result she is much loved and admired, and with good reason.

The Bloomsbury housekeeper

I have never been a fan of the Bloomsbury group myself, but there are plenty who are -- no doubt as a result of being force-fed the books as part of their Eng Lit course. If you're among those interested in Vanessa Bell and her friends, you need to read about the diaries of Grace Germany, the lady who served as housekeeper at Charleston, in Sussex. The ST yesterday carried a lengthy and well written article.

The farmhouse at Charleston is open for visitors, and if you're in the area it is certainly worth a visit.

Serene Ambition

Serene Ambition is a site for those who are getting along in years. There's a blog, and lots of links to other sites about 'fearless aging' and the like.

This site is very American. And it reminds me of a story I heard at a talk by Rabbi Julia Neuberger. Julia was once working in an American hospital, and a very old lady was brought in and put into bed. The doctors gathered round and had a long discussion about her. After they had gone, Julia wandered over to the patient's bed and had a look at her charts. The lady was 104 years old, and the diagnosis was 'failure to thrive'.

The greatest living

There are some people who derive a great deal of pleasure from debating 'the greatest'. Would Ali have beaten Marciano? Or Joe? In the all-time England cricket XI, would Len open the batting or Denis?

Those who enjoy this kind of thing (and I am certainly not one of them), can spend a happy hour or two worrying about who is the UK's greatest living writer. The discussion is hosted by the Arts Council.

Well, I really don't like to sound too grumpy, but occasionally I really am. And I have to say here and now that I have long regarded the Arts Council as a complete waste of space and public money, and if you want any further proof, here it is.

Thought for the day

As I waded through the n00 pages of the Sunday press, a thought came to me. As far as I am concerned, the government and the bigtime UK publishers have something in common. I no longer believe a word they say. Yes it has taken me a long time.

12 comments:

Andrew O'Hara said...

I never liked this recent rush of child geniuses, and there's a real sadness about the perhaps justifiably angry Urquhart's transformation from prodigy to self-proclaimed "whorethor." I recall eight year-old Adora Svitak ("Writing is my life") and Macaulay Culkin...it's a distasteful (and harmful) little thing publishers have engaged in, and I hope they will move on to better things--if that's possible for them to do...

liz fenwick said...

I have read only one of the Romantic Novel of the Year short list so far and I hope they are all as good as Iris and Ruby. I don't envy you haven't to choose.

Clive Keeble said...

There's a beautifully illustrated p/b book, "Charleston, a Bloomsbury house & garden" (text by Quentin Bell & Virginia Nicholson, photographs by Alen Macweeney) published by that excellent indie house, Frances Lincoln, £16.99 ; available from stock in many good bookshops ! The book gives a great feel for the house ; included are paintings of, and credit to, the Bloomsbury housekeeper, Grace Higgens (nee Germany).

Some books have no "sell-by date" and a pleasure to stock ; they are not going to be sold at half-cover alongside the supermarket caulis, and will help to ensure survival for the more adventurous indie bookshops !

Anonymous said...

Web Credit Report
Credit History Online
Online Credit History
Internet Credit Report
Internet Credit Reports
Credit History Online
Online Credit History
Web Credit Report
Instant Credit Report
Check Credit History
Online Credit History
Internet Credit Report
Internet Credit Reports

Rachana said...

bingo
play bingo
bingo sites
bingo online
internet bingo
online bingo
play bingo online
play online bingo
bingo casinos
bingo websites
bingo casino
bingo web sites

Rachana said...

Credit Report
Credit Reports
Credit Report Online
Credit Reports Online
Credit Score
Free Credit Report
Free Credit Reports
Online Credit Report
Online Credit Reports
Credit History Online
Internet Credit Report
Internet Credit Reports
Online Credit History
Web Credit Report
Check Credit
Credit Check
Free Credit Score
Instant Credit Report
Online Credit Check
Check Credit History
Free Credit History
Get Credit Report
Credit Check Online
All Credit Reports
Consumer Credit Report
Credit Bureau Report
Credit Rating
Credit Repair
Credit Report Score
Credit Reporting
Full Credit Report
Check Credit Rating
3 Credit Reports
Credit History
Equifax Credit Report
Experian Credit Report
Fix Credit Report
Free Credit Reporting
Instant Credit Report Online
Trans Union Credit Report

Anonymous said...

Credit Report
Credit Reports
Credit Report Online
Credit Reports Online
Free Credit Report
Free Credit Reports
Credit Score
Online Credit Report
Online Credit Reports
Credit History Online
Internet Credit Report
Internet Credit Reports
Online Credit History
Check Credit
Credit Check
Free Credit Score
Instant Credit Report
Web Credit Report
Online Credit Check
Free Credit History
Check Credit History
Get Credit Report
Credit Check Online
All Credit Reports
Consumer Credit Report
Credit Bureau Report
Credit Rating
Credit Repair
Check Credit Rating
3 Credit Reports
Full Credit Report
Experian Credit Report
Free Credit Reporting
Credit Report Score
Trans Union Credit Report
Instant Credit Report Online
credit report
credit reports
credit reports

Anonymous said...

Credit Report
Credit Reports
Credit Report Online
Credit Reports Online
Credit Score
Free Credit Report
Free Credit Reports
Online Credit Report
Online Credit Reports
Credit History Online
Internet Credit Report
Internet Credit Reports
Online Credit History
Web Credit Report
Check Credit
Credit Check
Free Credit Score
Instant Credit Report
Online Credit Check
Check Credit History
Free Credit History
Get Credit Report
Credit Check Online
All Credit Reports
Consumer Credit Report
Credit Bureau Report
Credit Rating
Credit Repair
Credit Report Score
Credit Reporting
Full Credit Report
Check Credit Rating
3 Credit Reports
Credit History
Equifax Credit Report
Experian Credit Report
Fix Credit Report
Free Credit Reporting
Instant Credit Report Online
Trans Union Credit Report

Anonymous said...

Online Credit History Web Credit Report Internet Credit Reports Internet Credit Report Credit History Online Equifax Credit Report Instant Credit Report Online 3 Credit Reports Top Bingo Casinos Best Bingo Casinos Internet Bingo Casinos Bingo Casinos Online Bingo Web Sites Online Bingo Casinos Bingo Websites Bingo Casinos Hoodia Prices Compare Hoodia Best Hoodia Hoodia Side Effects Hoodia Pills Buy Hoodia

Anonymous said...

коттедж
восстановление зрения
зеленый лазер
электрошокер

home for sale costa rica said...

hi people
wow i didn't notice it...

i think this spot is so interesting!

niz said...

Hello .. firstly I would like to send greetings to all readers. After this, I recognize the content so interesting about this article. For me personally I liked all the information. I would like to know of cases like this more often. In my personal experience I might mention a book called Generic Viagra in this book that I mentioned have very interesting topics, and also you have much to do with the main theme of this article.