All Because of Chickens

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Saturday Morning Musings: Fave candy and the memories with it

Welcome to the first Fall Saturday and the last Saturday of September!

Any plans this weekend? Have the leaves started to change colours in your area?

Have you started to think of a Halloween costume? We probably should have kept this question for October, but our Musers are sharing their favourite childhood candies. Some of these candies aren't even around anymore.

Let's get sharing...

I went through various favourites, but the one that stuck with me (probably because it was seasonal back when I was eating it - before I was diagnosed diabetic at 15 and had to curtail my candy eating in those times of sugar-free scarcity) and which I still indulge in if I am at home at the right time and I need a sugar boost, is the Cadbury's Creme Egg. It's luxurious, and I used to eat it in a way that made what's basically two bites of sugar and chocolate into a three course meal. First I scraped the chocolate off the top with my teeth until it cracked and I could scoop out the inside with my tongue, and then nibble away at the chocolate shell. Everyone ate it a different way, and even the advertisements on the telly played up on that, asking how you ate yours. It brings back memories of the build up to Easter - when we used to get eight or ten big chocolate eggs from our aunts and uncles and grandparents, which took weeks to get through, though the first one was gone before breakfast on Easter Sunday morning!

Marathon Bars. {insert wistful sigh}

These were 12 inches (30cm) of caramel braid covered in milk chocolate. It took hours to eat one and ended up as much a fashion statement as a treat. I don't think they've existed since the 1980's.

At the time, we lived in the town of Wanship, Utah, which was a dozen or so houses, a gas station, and a grocery store run by the grandfather of the first girl I had a crush on ( I was 5, Jackie? You out there?), who was also the only kid in town my own age. Others were close, but that means a couple of years older.

Jackie and I would sit on the big green box in front of her shop and talk about things while sharing a Marathon bar. I remember trying to convince her that The Hardy Boys wasn't a scary show because everything was fake, like Scooby Doo.

Kola Cubes have to be the candy I remember with most fondness. I have just looked them up online and apparently, they are 'Retro sweets', so apparently, they are still available although I haven't had one since I was about 10 years old. The memory they conjure up, is of walking home from ballet lessons on a Friday evening. My friend and I were given a small amount of money to spend in the sweet shop and it took us ages to decide on which combination of treats would add up to that sum. A quarter pound bag of Kola Cubes was always obligatory and then, as many other sweets as we could get for the remaining pence! Although I haven't had a Kola Cube for many years, I can conjure up the smell and taste even now!

You, our readers...your fave candy and the memories it brings?

Keep reading and dreaming. If there’s anything you’re curious about just drop me a note:

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Saturday Morning Musings: Do children/teens reviews count?

Hey, there!  How’s it going? Typing this out everything is chaotic around me, but that’s life and “they” say you’ll learn to roll with the ride. I think I’d rather be on a Merry-go-round.

With my daughter starting high school, I’ve taken a trip down memory lane to my own teen years. The switch from not feeling my opinion matter to learning how to give it so it did. If you’ve ever wondered if your opinion mattered, our Musers are about to let you know ;)

But, before we get there, I did say I’ve been a little chaotic, well I missed two of our Musers’ sharings last week. Here’s Heather’s and Conda’s thoughts on who they would like to collaborate with first:

I'd love to write a book with Peter Straub. He's my favorite author. I've read my favorite book by him, Mystery, over twenty times! I know he would be great at collaboration, since he wrote two books with his friend Stephen King. The thing I like best about Peter Straub's writing is that his descriptions are very visual. It feels like I'm actually seeing the things in his books as I read.

My favorite collaborator would be fantasy author Terry Pratchett. Or him as a mentor, rather, for all that I could have learned from him. After I read my first book by him, I started writing fantasy. One of my biggest goals is to be as great a writer, what a talent.

Sadly he passed away recently. He and his wonderful books are much missed!

Now…do your reviews count…

Yes, children's reviews count - possibly more than adults, if they're our audience. Now that kids choose their own books with their own money (or their parents' credit card), rather than having books bought for them, they're probably more likely to read the reviews of other teens first, and a praise from our target readers is invaluable.

I don't write for pre-adults, but I'd say if that's your market, then absolutely reviews from larval/pupae-stage humans count. They're the target audience, so how could they not. I might question how many would actually post a review, but that's a different question.

All reviews are important but those of children and teens are definitely valuable when writing YA books. I usually find children and teens have definite ideas about what they like to read and can be very blunt when they give their views! But if they are the intended audience, their opinions are vital. Children and teens are often very social media savvy and are used to interacting with each other and websites, so the idea of giving an online review is often quite natural for them.

Keep reading and dreaming. If there’s anything you’re curious about just drop me a note:

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Saturday Morning Musings: Collaboration

Hey, hey, Saturday Morning Musings is back!

How was everyone's summer? Everyone back to school? I don't know about anyone else, but the year always seems to start with September and end with part of our musings world's school season.

Time to see what our Musers are sharing today, it's all in answer to Terri's question: if you could collaborate with any current author on your new manuscript, who would it be?

TERRI BERTHA, Mainstream NEW author

It definitely would be Stephen King, the master of the macabre.  To work and study with someone who has written some of the best and most effective horror, suspense, science fiction, fantasy would be beyond my wildest dream.  It is clear that he loves to write and is good at it, based on the numerous awards he has received. Mr. King’s ability to make you love his characters, only to be terrified and scared to death of them in your waking and sleeping hours, is unique.  In my opinion, he is at his best when he writes the 'real creepy scary stuff'.

If I could collaborate with any author I would choose Dennis Lehane, even though he only writes adult books, I love his writing style. Maybe we could figure out a way to combine our ideas into one book. I would actually like to write an adult book so his expertise would help me very much. Perhaps we could find an idea that would suit both of us. I have always wanted to write about my father’s life before he got married and having an author like Dennis Lehane with me, who has written so many great historical novels, would be great! We could write about the twenties and thirties and how some young ambitious kids got involved with the mob so they could make money. But maybe even if I don’t collaborate with him, that is a good idea.

If I could collaborate with any current author, I think it would be Jonathan Stroud. I loved his Bartimaeus series (YA fantasy) with its wit and humour and the clever use of magic. The main character Bartimaeus is hilarious and captivating, probably one of my favourite characters of all time. I would love to work with JS on another fantasy novel, to explore neat magical ideas as well as characters in whatever world we create. I've never collaborated on a book before, but if I had to, I would choose an author of books I already love, because much of my writing is inspired by them anyway.

ALIX RICHARDS, Hot author:

Over the years a couple of authors/writers have mentioned collaborating on works. But our schedules didn’t allow for it. A friend said the universe was working against such an idea. LOL There are many I would love working with on a piece. However, if given a chance, I would love to collaborate with Mel Favreaux. Our worlds are similar and it would be interesting to see what would come out of it.

So Mel, if you’re reading this…I have empty time coming up. Just sayin’…

My current manuscript is a fantasy about garden gnomes and the author I would love to collaborate with is Terry Pratchett. Sadly, he passed away some time ago, so that is not possible. However, in my opinion, Terry Pratchett was the master of humorous fantasy and it would be wonderful to talk my story over with him and to hear his ideas.

KURT DYSAN, Hot author

I'd love to collaborate with Haruki Murakami. It would be a fascinating opportunity to get inside his sense of story. Books like Wild Sheep Chase came from some curious ideas and thought processes. Actually, I'd be even happier if, instead of collaborating we just lived near each other while we each wrote a book and in the evening we got together to listen to jazz (a shared passion), have a drink, and talk about our work and what we were trying to accomplish (successes and problems).

Keep reading and dreaming. If there’s anything you’re curious about just drop me a note: