Cat TV and other pleasures

I am writing this in the cafe where I do most of my novel-writing, on a damp Friday morning. Vancouver has just had a week of fog in the mornings, with chilly sun and blue skies in the afternoons after it burned off. We’re trending back to warmth and downpour now. It’s one of the things I love about winter in the Pacific Northwest. It’s usually chilly but gorgeous *or* rainy but warm. The silver lining is always very apparent.

What’s more, she bragged, we’ll have flowers soon. The snow drops are over an inch high in places, and I’ve seen crocuses breaking the ground here and there.

(Edited to add: since I drafted this post, it’s busted out sunny and warm. Bask, Vancouver, while it lasts!)

Part of the winter entertainment at our house has been feeding birds. We have two ‘window cafe’ bird feeders suction-cupped to our windows. As they are also meant to amuse the cats, we call them cat cable and I’ve named the window feeders BBC1 and BBC2 as a result. The hummingbird feeder (which hasn’t had any visitors yet as far as I know) is ITV.

The seed feeders have had starlings, chickadees, bushtits, goldfinches and one downy woodpecker. They swoop in about a meter from our dining room table to grab seeds and run for it. It’s all I can do not to spend my days slack-jawed in the kitchen, staring fixedly at the thing.
bushtits at bbc 2

My class “Writing the Fantastic” has opened its virtual doors and I am getting to know a (mostly) new group of feisty and enthusiastic new writers. This is an intermediate workshop, open to both novelists and short fiction writers. Next quarter, I’ll be teaching Novel Writing 2 again . . . I don’t know about summer courses, but they’ll let me know soon.

And speaking of novels, I shall be starting mine–the third in the trilogy I sold to TOR last year–next week. Or possibly tomorrow. I was going to keep working on the outline until after Kelly and I go to Victoria next weekend, but I think I’ve gotten as far with planning as I can, and I’m keen to get into the first scene.

The Victoria trip is for Gottacon, and as I mentioned last week, I’m especially excited about it because it’s my first Guest of Honor gig. Eeee!

I love Victoria; I went last year to go sailing as research for the trilogy, which has a lot of old fashioned sailing ships in it. Kelly hasn’t been in ages–when her parents moved to the Island, we started going to Nanaimo, Parksville and Qualicum–so we are very much looking forward to it. We’ll have dinner at Clive’s Classic Lounge, home of the grilled cheese sandwich cocktail.

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About Alyx Dellamonica

After twenty-two years in Vancouver, B.C., I've recently moved to Toronto Ontario, where I make my living writing science fiction and fantasy; I also review books and teach writing online at UCLA. I'm a legally married lesbian, a coffee snob, and I wake up at an appallingly early hour.

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