Keeping me honest

photo (38)

photo (37)

My holiday plans kind of went askew, because I decided to drive up to Queensland to spend a few days at Mum & Dad’s farm. The kids are having a ball, and though the temperatures are pretty frosty in the mornings, the sun is gorgeous! Master 1 is spending hours at a time outside, playing with the dogs and wandering the yard. Master 4 has decided he can’t be shown up by the baby and has overcome his concern about the dogs and also playing nicely, AND he caught the first fish of the holiday, much to Master 11’s disgust. Miss 8 spent the day at work with Granna on Friday being helpful, and has adopted one of the dogs as her personal friend. Master 11 has been fishing and bike riding with abandon and he and Grandpop have just disappeared to an offsite fishing spot, so he’s super happy. Of course, two days of driving (more than 1100km) and another two days of driving still to go home again has enshortened my break somewhat, but I’ll keep plugging away!

In the interests of keeping me honest, here’s my holiday list again, with a WHOLE POINT ticked off!

  • Edits for many, many stories. Announce and advance a couple of other projects in the works. Apply for a grant. (all FableCroft things)
  • Interviews for a blog project. Done! Well, the first part, anyway :)
  • Write about eight zillion reviews (books and TV).
  • WA School Library Journal layout.
  • Application for Google Teacher Academy in Sydney.
  • Sort and dispose of several boxes of toys.
  • Catch up with friends. I can claim a little of this, but they are QLD friends, rather than Canberra ones! 
  • Paperwork/tax stuff.
  • Keep up with emails – already struggling with that, but please bear with me! Actually, I’m happy with where things stand for this, despite the blow out of travel days. 

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Eddings Reread: The Diamond Throne (Elenium 1)

Because we just don’t have enough to do, Alex, Joanne and I have decided to re-read The Elenium and The Tamuli trilogies by David (and Leigh) Eddings, and – partly to justify that, partly because it’s fun to compare notes – we’re blogging a conversation about each book. We respond to each other in the post itself, but you can find Alex’s post over here and Jo’s post here if you’d like to read the conversation going on in the comments. Also, there are spoilers!

Diamond_ThroneTEHANI:

I was feeling a little book-weary yesterday so thought I might as well start my reading for this conversational review series, given it’s usually a soothing experience. Within a single PAGE, I was reaching for Twitter, because SO MUCH of the book cried out to be tweeted! Great one-liners, the introduction of favourite characters, and, sadly, some of the not so awesome bits as well. I was having a grand time pulling out 140 character lines (#EddingsReread if you’re interested), but the response from the ether was amazing! So many people hold these books firmly in their reading history, and it was just lovely to hear their instant nostalgia.

ALEX:

And I read those tweets and everything was SO FAMILIAR that I immediately started reading as well. And finished a day later.

JO:

Ok. A) You people read too quickly! B) Tehani those tweets were enough to start me feeling all nostalgic. I was in the middle of cooking dinner and had to put everything down, run upstairs and dig the books out of their box hidden in the back of the wardrobe. Continue reading

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School holidays

It’s school holidays and I feel like I’ve kind of fallen off the internet in my mad efforts to get ALL THE THINGS DONE in the two week break before ploughing back into my full-time and full-on job. I’ve spent most of the first few days cleaning, washing clothes (had to wash two boxes of clothes that got damp – luckily discovered before any damage was done!) and unpacking/moving boxes around. Also managed to get my hair done today (at LAST) and the kids got haircuts yesterday too – all looking very smart now. So, what else do I plan (hope) to achieve before school goes back?

  • Edits for many, many stories. Announce and advance a couple of other projects in the works. Apply for a grant. (all FableCroft things)
  • Interviews for a blog project.
  • Write about eight zillion reviews (books and TV).
  • WA School Library Journal layout.
  • Application for Google Teacher Academy in Sydney.
  • Sort and dispose of several boxes of toys.
  • Catch up with friends.
  • Paperwork/tax stuff.
  • Keep up with emails – already struggling with that, but please bear with me!

Sure, that’s doable, right?

 

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Hello blog, I miss you

While I do write up over at FableCroft more frequently than here these days, it’s not really at all the same thing, and I miss blogging here! Hopefully we’re getting back on track with our Doctor Who reviews soon, but I’m also going to make a concerted effort to put down more words in general at this place, else otherwise, where’s the proof it all happened? :)

Gosh, scrolling back through the last few posts here (and goodness, a long time between drinks there too!) it seems I really haven’t recorded much at all this year! I suppose a full-time job (and family and everything else on top) will do that to you. So, to sum up:

  • Still loving my job – it’s full on, engaging and lots of fun. There are challenges, but I’m enjoying finding ways to overcome them, and there are fantastic opportunities, which I’m loving grabbing hold of. This was a good move.
  • We had a FableCroft book party in Hobart in March, which was fun, and was nice that my parents were there (child-minding for a week!).
  • The CBCA Judges’ Conference in April was interesting – a very passionate group of people and some really hard decisions. As with any other judging panel, but bigger!
  • photo (36)Awards! Delighted to say we won an Aurealis Award for One Small Step in the Best Anthology category at the Aurealis Awards in April, which was awesome – it’s not the first AA something has won, and we’ve been shortlisted a few times, but it’s the first time I got to bring home a pretty trophy! I was also stoked that Jo Anderton won Best Collection for The Bone Chime Song and Other Stories, and she also took out the Australian Shadows Award for the same category! Super cool. And at the Ditmars earlier this month, Tansy, David and I were awarded the William Atheling Jr Award for Criticism and Review for our conversational Doctor Who reviews, and because they both got pretty trophies (designed by the amazing Kathleen Jennings) for wins in other categories (yay!) I got to bring that one home too! Are they not beautiful? :)
  • I’ve more projects going on over at FableCroft than I can shake a stick at. Cranky Ladies was fully funded (148%!) in our Pozible campaign in March, and is simmering away with stories starting to trickle in; Insert Title Here is on the bubble, with a table of contents to be announced very shortly (and another special announcement to go with that too!); we launched Jo Anderton’s new novel Guardian at Continuum, and it’s starting to get some reviews around the traps; and there are another couple of things going on that are yet to be announced. SO MUCH GOOD STUFF!
  • I didn’t win NAFF, but I did make it to Continuum over the June long weekend anyway, and had an absolute ball. Only had two days there, but I think it’s possibly the most fun I’ve had at a convention ever! I was certainly on more panels than I’ve ever been on before! Caught up with loads of people, sold some books, learned some things – it was great.
  • Undertook my two CBCA Judge’s talks (one in Launceston, one in Hobart) to small but engaged audiences. Can’t say I’m sad I’m not judging again this year, because I’m still in a bit of “forced reading” fatigue. Hence probably the fact I’m doing a new reread review project of The Elenium and The Tamuli with Alex Pierce and Jo Anderton now – comfort reading for the win!
  • Aurealis Awards will soon open to entries – we’re trying to fix up some behind the scenes problems with the entry form before we go live, but looking forward to another year of finding out about all the great work that’s been published this year.
  • I’ve been gradually getting out and doing a little bit of socialising with friends around Canberra. Had an unexpected movie date with Shauna O’Meara the other day when I took a group of students to watch How to train your dragon 2 (which was fabulous!), so that was lovely, and met up with Rebecca James last weekend and Donna Hanson yesterday. Saw Nicole and a few others a few weeks ago at a Canberra Society of Editors meeting where we talked about our editing processes, and went out to dinner with my library staff last Friday. Still have lots of people I really want to see, but time is against me! I will get there…
  • Probably the biggest thing in the past few months is that the family have made the move to Canberra! With all the time sink and financial expense that goes with an interstate move. We’ve been trying to sell our house since January and FINALLY (having changed agents a couple of months ago) have an unconditional contract on the property. We’re losing a bucketload of money, but at least it’s (hopefully) done now. Holding our breath until it’s finalised though! Of course, that has meant a whole heap of living out of boxes, unpacking boxes, chucking stuff out because why have I bothered to cart it about for so long… All that stuff, but we’re slowly getting there! Just renting now (and for a while, I think) but a pretty good place, even if it can’t hold a candle to our lovely Launceston home :( Oh, and we have a nanny now! Because I have no idea how we would manage otherwise. She’s great, a young lady who used to babysit for us in WA, and we’re super lucky to have her. Kids are all settled into schools and doing pretty well, though we still miss our friends in Launceston. And WA, for that matter! Stupid nomadic family… :)

Is that it? No, of course not! But it will serve as a catch up for now. I’ll try to do better. Really, I will!

 

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New Who Season Five Report Card

See David’s S5 Report Card and Tansy’s S5 Report Card through the clickies! (See our Season One Report Cards here, our Season Two Report Cards here, our Season Three Report Cards here and our Season Four Report Cards here.)

We would like to thank everyone who nominated our “New Who in Conversation” series for the William Atheling Jr Award again this year – it’s a great honour to be on the ballot! Voting for the annual Ditmar Awards (which the Atheling is included in) is open to all members of  Continuum X (2014 Natcon – Melbourne) and Conflux 9 (2013 Natcon – Canberra), and can be done online.

SEASON FIVE REPORT CARD – Tehani

Picture28The Doctor: Matt Smith

So, this is where I came in. I started with Matt Smith, and I’m a devotee, and this season is just fantastic in so many ways, mostly because he IS the Doctor. I started here, so I don’t know if I would have become a Doctor Who convert if I’d started with Eccleston or Tennant instead, but even though I love them both too, Matt Smith is still my favourite New Who Doctor. He subsumes the pain and sorrow we saw very clearly in Nine and Ten, but still manages to use it even when he’s hyped and manic and child-like, which I adore. Season Five is a heck of a ride, and I loved it!

The Companions:

Amy Pond: Karen Gillan

Little Amelia Pond and grown up Amy are brilliant. I don’t think Amy always gets the best character stuff early on, but she grows and changes and the character becomes so much more than we could have hoped for after the first episode, and Gillan bounces beautifully off Smith, which is completely adorable.

seriesly-doctor-who-L-wUT9UcRory Williams: Arthur Darvill

Rory is possibly my favourite companion ever, partly because he’s such a bumbling yet completely competent person, partly because his devotion to Amy is just gorgeous (even though he’s clearly well aware of her flaws) and partly because he too gets to grow and change over the course of the season. And get killed. A lot.

Recurring Characters:

River Song: Alex Kingston

Hmm, wait, did I say Rory was my favourite? I meant River! Tough yet in some ways fragile, cynical while absolutely still wide-eyed about the universe, and mad about the Doctor while completely understanding all the issues that position contains! She’s awesome, and I adore her. Um, yes, maybe I adore them all, and this season is my favourite ever?

What is your favourite episode of this season?

drwhos5ep5title-e1274753670222Just ONE? Urgh. Um, hmm, “Eleventh Hour”, because that’s where it all begins? “Vincent”, because it always makes me cry? “The Time of Angels/Flesh and Stone” because angels and River and SET UPS??! If I have to pick just one, I think I’ll go with “Vincent”, because I can watch it over and over and love it every time.

Least favourite episode?

“Vampires of Venice”. It grew on me a bit, discussing it in our review this time around, but it’s a low point in a really great season, for me.

Favourite guest performance?

vincent2VINCENT! Played by Tony Curran, so beautifully.

Describe this season in one word!

Brilliant!

Grade: A+

We’ve already reviewed:

“Rose”, S01E01

“Dalek”, S01E06

“Father’s Day”, S01E08

“The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances”, S01E09/10

“Bad Wolf/The Parting of the Ways”, S01E12/13

Season One Report Card – DavidTansyTehani

“The Christmas Invasion”, 2005 Christmas Special

“New Earth”, S02E01

“School Reunion”, S02E03

“The Girl in the Fireplace”, S02E04

“Rise of the Cybermen/Age of Steel”, S02E05/06

“Army of Ghosts/Doomsday”, S02E12/13

Season Two Report Card – DavidTansyTehani

“The Runaway Bride”, 2006 Christmas Special

“Smith and Jones”, S03E01

“The Shakespeare Code/Gridlock”, S03E02/E03

“Human Nature/The Family of Blood”, S03E08/E09

“Blink”, SO3E10 (with special guest reviewer Joanne Anderton)

Utopia/The Sound of Drums/Last of the Timelords” S03E12/13/14

Classic Who Conversation podcast – Spearhead from Space (1970)

Season Three Report Card – DavidTansyTehani

Classic Who Conversation podcast – Genesis of the Daleks (1975)

“Partners in Crime”, S04E01 (with special guest reviewer Lynne M Thomas)

“The Sontaran Strategem/The Poison Sky”, S04E05/06

“Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead”, S04E09/10

“Turn Left”, S04E12

“The Stolen Earth/Journey’s End”, S04E13/14 

Season Four Report Card – DavidTansyTehani

The Specials: “The Next Doctor / Planet of the Dead / The Waters of Mars

The Specials: “The End of Time”

“The Eleventh Hour”, S05E01

“The Beast Below / Victory of the Daleks”, S05E02/03

“The Time of Angels / Flesh and Stone”, S05E04/05

“The Vampires of Venice / Amy’s Choice”, S05E06/07

“The Hungry Earth / Cold Blood”, S05E08/09

“Vincent and the Doctor / The Lodger”, S05E10/11

“The Pandorica Opens / The Big Bang”, S05E12/13

A Christmas Carol, 2010 Christmas special

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