Why NanoWrimo?

This is a question I asked myself for a few years, when others prompted me to participate. “Nah, I don’t do competitions.” That’s basically it: I’m not a competitive person. I hate rivalry, petty jealousy and all that nonsense. I think someone once told us (at our matric farewell, no less) that life is a competition. I remember thinking back then, “in your dreams, sir.”

But somehow I participated last year, anyway.  Why?  Not because it’s a competition.  Because it’s a challenge.  I love a challenge.  And did it pay off!  Here is what I got out of it:

  • A fun novel (“Arcana”, the story of Ivy Pennington, accidental witch)
  • All the fun from writing a novel from beginning to end
  • a reminder that I’m a writer and that I can pull it off
  • all my inspiration refreshed, and my vooma and gusto for not only writing but publishing
  • fun, fun, fun!

It is incredibly important that one grabs a challenge when it’s set.  Actually the best challenge I can get is if someone says “it can’t be done” when I know I can do it.

This year I’m raising the stakes!

I’m going to participate again – at least, I’ll do my level best to try (the worst that can happen is that I run out of inspiration as I’m a “pantser”, one of those believers in hard-core spontaneity).  But additionally to that, I’m looking for authors who would like to approach P’kaboo for publishing when they are finished.  Especially young authors.

In the interim, feel free to pop a comment here if you’re participating in Nano.  I’d like to follow your progress.

…pumpkin time, I’m signing off…







An eventful week finished (*phew*)

This week was particularly busy and strange.

Firstly there were the violin exams.

Both young violinists I had enrolled (one of them being my own little Miss Meg) seem to have acquitted themselves nicely of the job of entertaining an examiner from Glasgow for somewhere between 13 and 23 minutes each.  The older one, my Gr 7 student, left feeling fine, but little Miss nearly had a nervous breakdown.  Unusual for a child who has practically grown up on stage, who has stood and performed countless times, who has even helped others; who was the one dishing out fairy dust last year so the others wouldn’t be so nervous.  Well, she got her waffles and ice cream reward afterwards.

Rewards: waffle & Ice Cream


Junkmail (where I advertise my studio regularly) invited me to write a post for their official blog.

I’m still hyperventilating from this.  Ezine Articles has all sorts of weird and wonderful style posts but the posts on Junkmail are professional, informative, and need to be right.  It’s hard to explain how this can mean such a lot to me:  They are a professional newspaper for advertising (despite the name which has its reasons).  If Rekord had asked me to write an article for them it would feel the same.  At any rate, click the link or the image and you’ll get there.


From the article in Junkmail



In the interim my oldest is loaded down with projects for

Art and Design,

and her exams for her second-last year start this week.


RSR painting blue crane on Heritage Day (the national flag was obligatory somewhere in the pic)


… and when I looked up, my son is experimenting with building games.  Yes, PC games.

Well, I’d better let him.  Both the girls and I write; my young artist also paints; for my son, there’s got to be a modern outlet for his creativity.  Today, games.  Tomorrow, perhaps IT.  It’s a pretty good profession, and a great hobby.


On the publishing front:

“From My Cold, Undead Hand”

by Marie Marshall is now available in paperback on Amazon, and also available on Kindle.


Available on Amazon, in paperback and Kindle. And of course as P’kaboo ebook, in epub and e-pdf formats.


Another book of ours, this one by Honeymead Books, is available in paperback on Amazon now:

An Air that Kills

by Morgana Somerville

An Air That Kills

The story of two unequal companions, Mistress and Maid.  There is an element of humanity contained in this story, that the author brings close to us.  It’s hard to explain.  You need to read it.

And “Arcana” (by gipsika) is still on the first page of Epub Bud.


The story of Ivy Pennington, accidental witch.



As usual, there are more projects in the burner,

but first of all now this oncoming Friday, our Studio Concert.

Let’s hope all goes well.  I may not be online much; though I’ll definitely try to be in the P’kaboo Book Club around 8:30 pm on Monday evening, to entertain us all.  I’m hoping to have an author in there to interview, otherwise we can grab a book and pull it apart.

Witches flying against breast cancer


That little nesting kingfisher doesn’t look too impressed.  All those ghosts and witches, and a hopeful stick planning on becoming a scarecrow.

I have to say, if I were a programming wizz I’d like to write a facebook applet.  One people can get addicted to and simply keep on playing.  I’ve never yet paid a cent to any FB games but there are some who buy resources by the truckload.  I wouldn’t mind being on the receiving end of that cash.

Sneak peek for the cover of “The Morrigan”:



“Actually, interesting fact of bygone eras,” said Federi, “in the past pirates chose their captains democratically.”

Pirate Captain Radomir Lascek is in trouble. Of all the forces that are trying to take the Solar Wind out of his hands, Federi is still the most benign.  The Solar Wind finds herself on a space trip hunting for a treasure that might turn out to be real.  Dana, Empress and Goddess of planet New Dome, is leading the expedition – but she is not exactly an ally.  Strange little aliens have boarded the Solar Wind and are hitching a ride, causing havoc, and in the background lurks an evil entity that identifies itself as “The Morrigan” – one of the Ancient Gods, demanding blood sacrifice.  And Captain Lascek’s most loyal sailor, Federi, is plotting mutiny…

… later.

Imagine a wall…



Originally posted on Marie Marshall:

Today I was pondering the famous ‘three light switches’ conundrum when I remembered another one. It had been posed to me by a fellow writer – even so it wasn’t of her devising, it had been posed to her by someone else who had been amazed at how quickly she had come up with an answer. Instantly. I wondered what you would make of it. Shall we see?

Imagine a wall made of hard, smooth blocks of stone. It’s so high you can’t see the top. It’s so wide that no matter how far back you step you can’t see where it ends, if indeed it ends at all. A wall so mighty must have foundations almost as deep as it is tall, so it can’t be undermined. It is, as near as makes no difference, a wall of infinite dimensions! How do you get to the other side?

If you…

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