We spent the better part of this week in Toronto — an impromptu trip after receiving a call with some concerning medical news on Sunday night. So, for the first half of the week we’ve explored the inner workings of the Toronto hospital system. As someone who more or less grew up inside hospitals, I’ve made some observations:
Whoever is running the parking system is making a killing. We spent as much on parking as we did on food for two.
Urban Green Man: An Archetype of Renewal, edited by Adria Laycraft & Janice Blaine, and to be published by EDGE Science Fiction & Fantasy.
The Green Man has haunted our churches and buildings and global subconscious for countless generations, becoming just another forgotten mythology that is relegated to garden statuary and English pub signs.
No longer. Witness as the Green Man rises to capture our imagination in this anthology of original new fiction, the Urban Green Man.
I’ve been following the news regarding Canadian Immigration pretty closely — not surprising considering my immigrant status. Last week this article in the Globe and Mail talks about the percentage of immigrants who settle in Ontario vs. other provinces, which kind of bored me. What was interesting, though, were two issues in the continued fight against immigration fraud. When Andrea and I filled out our application, most of our time was spent collecting evidence to prove our relationship — records of emails, phone calls, meetings between us, friends, and family, etc.
Sometimes, when I sit down and stare at a white blank page, my heart races. I fear the mistakes I’m about to make, at the same time I’m in awe of the creation about to spring forth the tip of my pen. I’ve done it before. I’ll do it again. I am not a fast writer, but I am a sprinter.
Sprinting is this — pen to paper, writing around 500 words/day until a story is done.
I sat down this morning, meaning to write a blog post about focus and patience, with OCD tendencies. It would have been my first substantial post since the beginning of the month, but when I logged in to WordPress I found my site unresponsive. Temperamental, even. Other sites I host on the same server, but different accounts, were fine. I was about to blame my half-full cup of coffee when Google interceded and warned me that my site was being suspicious as all fuck.
It’s now my second February living in southwest Ontario, with 50F weather and scattered rain showers. The snow, which didn’t fall until mid-January, is a memory and it will be at least a week before we have any chance of seeing more.
What the hell, Canada?
When people learned I was moving to Canada, I heard all kinds of jokes. Eh? Eh? One was about seeing moose, which I’ve seen no trace of here but I have found in northern Wisconsin, where my Dad lives.
Life with chronic health conditions and no health insurance is interesting.
Celiac disease is pretty much a condition of maintenance. There’s no cure and the only preventative measure is avoiding eating or drinking gluten (wheat, barley, rye, and oats). Gluten is everywhere. Beer and bread are bad but I’ve found it in foods I would never have suspected, like tomato soup, sausage and lunch meats, and many, many sauces. Flour is a cheap filler and thickener so it’s commonly used, which makes the life of a celiac a royal bitch.
I thought it’d be interesting to look at some rough numbers, based on my Duotrope stats, year over year.
13 submissions to 10 different markets
4 stories on submission
13 rejections, 5 personal (38%)
43 submissions to 36 different markets
11 stories on submission
39 rejections, 16 personal (41%)
Each year saw one story pulled from circulation after one submission (one was a reprint from 2008)