September 2015 VCON cometh

As usual, I’ve been busy.  Going to appear at VCON 2015 on some writing related panels. VCON is always a good time. This year’s writer Guest of Honour is Joe Haldeman, famous for The Forever War among other books.  

To find out about the con go to

For more on Joe Haldeman, see

Con prep, around our house consists of rereading Haldeman, making costume for J. and reading Aurora Awards nominees. 

For info on the Aurora Awards, see


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August 2015

I’ve been very busy this summer. Currently have six short stories done and making the rounds of varied science fiction and fantasy publishers. Plus I’ve sent some poems out, too.

TV writing this year started with a spec script for agents to look at. Also, I’ve been working with another TV writer on a new SF TV series idea. 

The novel has been restarted & I’m up a few hundred words. Mostly, I’m thinking about how to tackle the ending. Plus, I’ve been reading about the process.

A while ago, I purchased a great Story Bundle all about writing from the StoryBundle site. These included works by Douglas Smith, Laura Resnick and Dean Wesley Smith. I really enjoyed reading these plus they’ve given me some good advice.


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May 20, 2015 Post Dance Competitions!

Woot! Three weeks of dance competitions and Jessica did terrifically! Here she is doing an aerial!  I thoroughly enjoy my time watching her and being a laid-back and not fussy dance mum.

It’s time for me to find that new agent.  I’ve got a spec script that I want sold!  Plus, I feel like I can do the other scripts in my head now.  So watch this space for more on that!



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April 25, 2015 Burnaby Creative Ink Festival

Sandra Wickham’s invited me to do a Blue Pencil Café at her new writing convention, the  Creative Ink Festival in Burnaby, BC.

Modeled on the usual SF/F con, the day is all about writing.  I’m hoping it’s a success for Sandra. It’s a good place to meet other authors and learn about publishing and writing.

I’ll be blue-penciling script scenes at 11 am there. So, signup if you want some help on tv or film scenes! I might read from my novel in progress later in the day.


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February 2015

It’s spring weather here in Vancouver. Time to get focused for the writing year.
I have put a lot on my plate, but for me this is the way to do things. I never really know what’s gonna turn out the very best, but if I concentrate on one project, sometimes that one goes nowhere. It’s better to have several ongoing. I think this also helps me to create excitement in my own head.

The novel needs to be done and rewritten. I’m now aiming for the end of the first draft, hard. Then I need to get to the rewriting.

I have one or two short stories I want to write, too. I currently have 4 stories out doing the rounds. There are markets I’d love to be published by – from On Spec in Canada to and F&sf or Asimov’s – but I’m pleased to find a fair number of new markets. It’s been a really long time since I wrote short stories and I’m loving it at the moment. It gives me a real feeling of satisfaction to complete a story and email it out.

I’ve finished the Blake Snyder book ‘Save The Cat’. It’s intrigued me enough that one of my next possible projects is to follow his method along to see if it really can help me to write a big movie script. I liked the book and felt like I was learning, which is great.


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December musings

I’m starting the preparation for the big day – Christmas Day when I cook like I’m expecting a whole army but get only a small platoon.

What’s the ‘writer’ career up to during holidays? Especially vaca time away from busy corporate writing job?

So far, I’ve worked on changing a short story into a movie idea. It’s for a contest looking for dark SF, fantasy or horror shows. I normally don’t / can’t enter contests as they’re for people who haven’t sold yet or aren’t members of the WGC or WGA. But this one is a good excuse to adapt a story I have.

Also, I cook and see friends. No one does any real business this time of year in tv. Or film.

I’m also reading. I love books on writing. My newest acquisitions are kobo versions of Save The Cat by Blake Snyder and Max Adams updated version of one of my favorites The New Screenwriter’s Survival Guide.

Max Adams’ book is mostly for full-time movie writers but there are great tips for all of us.

I wish I’d re-read her chapters on agents before continuing with an agent who absolutely couldn’t sell me as a writer. Nice guy but not for me. I was too involved in trying to make a living and developing my day-job career as a tech writer to think about it.
To be fair, too I also didn’t generate the number of scripts needed per year to become a movie writer. The third time I turned down a gig from him, he dropped me which was expected, too. But the gigs weren’t totally ‘writing’ and not good enough to replace the day job.
Now I think I’ll be working on the prose and tv/film and only look for a new tv agent when I have a good portfolio built up.


Ali Matheson photo gingerbread typewriter



Christmas cactus blooming


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November Writing Initiative

November 30, 2014

At the end of the NaNoWriMo initiative.

I reached  14,038 words in November. This was an achievement for me and is more than usual.  I did some short story work and some on my novel. A ‘win’ there is 50,000 words. That’s hard to do, even for professional writers like me.  Plus, I’m doing a corporate day job, living my life, raising the child, cooking, cleaning, et cetera.  I can’t just lock myself up like people with supportive spouses can.

Also, to be fair, I got sidetracked by some television work I was doing (more on that in another post), which took a couple of weekends from me.

I highly recommend the wonderful pep talk by SF author Brandon Sanderson. I really love his analogy about the scuba diver.  If you love to write, keep writing.  I think he’s onto something there.  I’m not as happy when I’m not writing. Life keeps intruding :) but it’s all material, too.



Robert Sawyer announced he was going to do the National novel writing month sprint earlier today. I looked it up and decided that it sounded like a great idea. Robert is a very good SF writer and some of his work has been made into great TV as well. Check out his site at (yes, he has that URL.)
So, today I signed up at
They suggest you try to write a 50,000 novel in the month of November. It’s a great deal of writing for a busy single mum with a corporate job, but it’s also a good challenge for me. November’s usually a hard month for me, so it could be good to be very busy.
I will try to use the initiative to finish my novel. I’m at 57889 words now. I need to get to the end. I don’t know how many words it’ll take to get to the end, but that’s what I’m aiming for.

Stettler Museum Typewriting machine from the Stettler Independent

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