NSFW – Canadians Swear.

Canadians swear a lot.

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I mean, really a lot.

Everything is a bitch, people are constantly asking if someone is shitting them, and 90% of the population can be categorized as bastards at any given time.

We can use “fuck” in so many ways that there is no longer any reason for dictionaries to classify it grammatically. It’s a verb, a noun, an adjective and an adverb  – if there’s a place in a sentence that some variation on “fuck” can be shoehorned into, it goes in there.

It even doubles as punctuation.

And that’s just ordinary conversation.

When we get mad, it can ratchet up to the point where entire paragraphs have been constructed without any non-swears at all. It’s just one possible pronoun or article followed by a long stream of expletives that even sailors would blush at.

But you have to be aware.

Because when we’re really upset – I mean, beyond the natural perturbation of life’s ordinary troubles – when we are so seriously incensed, driven to the wall of anger-insane….

We do not swear at all.

When that happens, be afraid.

Be very afraid.

Because when the cursing stops, we are in deadly earnest, and we intend to stomp you into smithereens.

 

This Week in Canada…

duel

 

A sort of catch-all bill aimed at getting rid of some outdated laws went through Parliament a few days ago, and while it is long overdue, some things were a bit of an eye-opener.

 

The government, at long last, agreed that “pretending to be a witch” would no longer be an offense punishable by law, to the immense relief of schoolchildren at Hallowe’en all across the land.

No, no one had actually been convicted for impersonating witches recently, although Google notes that a Toronto man was charged in 2012, so it is possible that “recently” only covers the last five years. While it is sad to think that people are being hoodwinked into paying big bucks to have demons evicted from their clouded minds and bodies, it is, in the end, no different and no worse than the televangelist demanding followers send money to prevent him from being “taken by the Lord”, or for pastors to eject starving widows from the congregation because they cannot afford to tithe enough for the pastor’s liking – both of which are actual things that have happened in my lifetime.

 

But the other big news from this bill was that dueling is legal again!

Yes, indeed. It is now, once again, the right of every Canadian to settle their differences with sword or gun, as long as it’s done according to the time-honoured traditions.

You cannot imagine how ecstatic we all are about this.

Pistols at dawn! Gauntlets thrown and gloves smacked across faces!

All across the provinces, people with anger management problems are telling their best friends to start boning up on the responsibilities of the “second”, the less recalcitrant are looking up “delopement” in the dictionary, and we all are imploring landlords to lay down stocks of claret and beef steaks, because protocol demands that there be a hearty and red-blooded breakfast following the ritual bloodletting for the honour of a Lady. Lace cuffs are expected to be the most sought-after sartorial item this fall.

Well, it makes a change from all the wrangling over whether customers should have to pay a fee to get their cell phones unlocked, anyway.

When the music stops

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A long time ago, my husband and I went to a slightly posh pool party with some more – uh – well-heeled friends of ours. The hosts were our own age, and everyone assured us “you’ll just love them – they are SO cool”.

And they were. Really. They’d made a ton of sushi from scratch, and bought imported beer, and it was a glorious, sunny, perfect day. They were sweet to us: they were interested in us, in our artwork, in our plans, in our opinions. We liked them.

Everything was going swimmingly (hah!) in fact…right up until the radio began playing some rap song or other, and our host said those fateful words.

“Music today is such crap.”

Music. Today. Is. Such. Crap.

We kept our heads down. No one wants to be a cranky pain in the butt when they’re a guest, right?

 

But then he didn’t stop.

“There’s no depth to this shit. No story. No meaning.”

 

I shot my husband a warning look, but it was too late. He had that gleam in his eye – the one that said, in no uncertain terms, “Oh, buddy. Game ON!”

 

But Pat started out mildly enough.

“Yeah,” he said. “Not like what we grew up with…

 

“Not like ‘Afternoon Delight, right? So insightful. And the Captain and Tenille’s ‘Do it to Me One More Time’ – that was fucking  brilliant stuff, wasn’t it? Or ‘Wild Thing’ by the Trogs? Oh, and ‘Louie, Louie’ – that was so fucking deep, man.”

And then he stood up and struck that Vegas-night-club pose, like you do, and began warbling

 

“Night in white saaaaatiiiin

Never reaching the eeeend!

Letters I’ve wriiiitten

Never meaning to seeeend!”

 

At which point, he launched himself backwards into the pool with a very dramatic splash.

 

Let’s leave aside the fact that our own parents and grandparents said exactly the same things about our music (possibly minus the profanity, depending on whether it was mixed company or not). That might be argued away, though I’m not sure how.

Let’s just remember that we’re not sixteen anymore, and that even songs that you actively loathed back then have now acquired the patina of nostalgic familiarity, so that you sing along to Nancy Sinatra’s ‘These Boots Are Made For Walking’ with as much enjoyment as you do to Dire Straits or David Bowie.

And the next time you open your mouth to utter those words, be aware that

A) There was just as much crap on the radio in 1970 as there is today, and not every single teen rushed out and bought those 45s; and

 

B) Today’s music isn’t aimed at you.

 

 

And no. They never asked us back.

 

Over here at the Help desk…

Indie writers  complain too much.

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I know, I know. But it’s true.

We whine that we aren’t selling “enough”, that ads don’t work, that giveaways do but no, they don’t, not the way we want them to. We complain that good cover art costs too much, we complain about three star reviews, we bitch at our editors, we angst over small word counts.

And really, we need to stop.

Time was, none of this could happen for most  of us – not at all, not ever.

Time was, you couldn’t publish a book unless you had one of two things.

Either you had the incredible good fortune to land an actual book contract with an actual publisher – this had (still has) the same odds as being struck by lightning while whistling nineteen-thirties show tunes in a minor key; OR you had enough money to finance the thousands of dollars needed for a vanity publishing of your memoir about being a dog-clipper in Butte, Montana.

Now, anyone can publish a book. Not just eBooks – you can have a Print on Demand service create an actual physical book, and it doesn’t cost you a dime other than a discounted copy or six for your mom.

You can make your own cover – although you should not.

You can skip the editing process – although you should not.

The book doesn’t have to be trendy. It doesn’t need to be ripped from the headlines, or come with a CD or a recipe for piroshki by Zsa-Zsa Gabor.

It doesn’t even have to be any good – you can just put it out there. Possibly no one will buy it, and possibly it will get awful reviews (and even good books will share these fates) but you can put it out there.

Traditionally published books – well, a lot of those authors sell very few copies, and lots more get mean-spirited reviews, too – and those authors won the equivalent of a once-a-century tontine/lottery with really arcane entry rules, so what exactly are we complaining about?

Do I wish I could write better and faster? Yup.

Do I wish I could stop making continuity errors and typos? Yes, indeedy.

Do I long for brilliant and unique, eye-catching cover art for under $50 a pop? You betcha.

Do I dream of six-figure sales numbers and topping the Amazon bestseller list? Oh, honey, I do, I do!

 

But considering that I have published three books now, with an initial outlay of less than $200USD and have made that money back plus some – I cannot complain.

And neither can you.

 

 

Talking Failed Greenland Colony Blues

Studies and research into Norse archaeology of the Viking Age are really problematic.

Never mind the public misperception of the horny helmets. Never mind the controversy over whether Norse women were actual, in-the-flesh, straight-up Valkyries, or the occasional but collective aneurysm that surfaces every time a new re-enactor comes across this:

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It goes much deeper.

There are excavated Norse sites dating to the Viking Age all over the place. South Uist, Buckquoy, Skaill, Birsay, Jarlshof.

Some were occupied for only a few years, a decade or two. A few, like South Uist, survived into the Middle Ages, more or less. But they ceased to be Norse pretty frequently, and, as noted, often ceased to be occupied at all. Not much is said about this: it is occasionally mentioned in the research that the settlement was abandoned after a certain point, but there is not even much speculation about why that might have happened. Usually, the archaeologists wax on ecstatically about the “pristine” context the settlement has, because nobody bothered to build over it.

Erik the Red “discovered” Greenland around 985 AD, when he was exiled from Iceland for three years for killing some people.  The colony survived for 500 years.

L’Anse Aux Meadows was used at least periodically for about twenty years and possibly a bit longer.

 

For some reason, though, whenever Greenland mentioned, it is always as “the failed colony on Greenland”. Always. There are whole National Geo specials about the failure.

Speculation as to why the New World site was not more utilized and exploited is the main topic for L’Anse Aux Meadows. Hardly anyone thinks about how amazing it really was that the Norse got there at all. Nope. The important thing is that they didn’t build a city the size of York, and spread their influence to every corner of the continent.

 

It seems to me that there is real and disturbing problem here and it is this: in those colonies where the assumption is that original inhabitants (the Picts or “Celtic people”) are presumed to have been slaughtered or forced to flee, the colony is deemed a success, regardless of how short the lifespan of the settlement was.

 

In those places where the original inhabitants were not the victims of genocide or displacement, the colonies are deemed failures.

 

If this is not indicative of some very deep-seated problems in how we view the past, then how else can we explain why the demise of a settlement that was in use for less than a quarter century is neither questioned or discussed, but a colony that hung on in very difficult conditions for twice as long as the United States has been a country is a “failure”?

It’s okay. You don’t have to answer right away.

 

I’ll wait.

Author Updates

So far, in writing “The Shades of Winter”, there’s been a suicide mission gone horribly wrong, a mad king, a couple of very crucial betrayals, a mini-rebellion, the return of an ancient evil, and the mother of all storms.

And that’s just the first half.

 

This might be the most action-packed thing I ever write. Can’t wait to see what my imagination comes up with next.

Promote, Publish, Repeat!

Please welcome author Lucinda Moebius.

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I am currently promoting a new release!

My newest book is a non-fiction Self-Help book for authors. I created the book based on lessons I learned about creating an effective book marketing plan.

Publish Promote Repeat: Preparing to Launch your Book Workbook

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B071KQDRMS

Promotion is a process. There is no magic formula for selling books. Hard work and dedication are required to create, publish, and market a masterpiece.
This workbook guides you through a three-phased process of bringing your book to a broader audience. Following the steps outlined in this workbook will streamline your prepublication, publication, and post publication marketing process, delivering to you the potential to not only achieve, but maintain, an improved ranking in the sales market.

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About the Author

Lucinda Moebius has been a writer since she was a child and was first published in 2010. Since then she has worked hard to create unique visions and stories. Her work includes novels in multiple genres including: Science Fiction, Fantasy, Paranormal, Children’s Books, Screenplays and Non-fiction. Lucinda has a Doctorate in Education and loves teaching, but her greatest desire is to help others understand how literature and writing can bring enlightenment and understanding to everyone. She offers book coaching and advice to everyone, whether they want it or not.

 

What do you love most about writing?

My favorite part about writing is the magical shiver I get up my spine when I read something really good and I realize I wrote it. Sometimes I wonder if I’m the one who wrote my books or if there is someone else taking over my thoughts and fingers and weaving a spell over the computer. Part of my writing process is to set aside a project once I complete it for at least two to three weeks so when I pick it up again I am looking at it with fresh eyes. When I come across those little gems of word magic in the pages I get goosebumps all up and down my arms and I feel like I can feel a Muse breathing secrets into my ear. I believe in spirits at exactly that moment.

What is your chosen genre, and why?

I don’t really have a chosen genre. I love the written word and write in whatever genre I feel most inspired to write at the time. Currently I have published Science Fiction, Paranormal, Literary Fiction, Self-Help Nonfiction, Poetry and Children’s Concept books.

I have two series in progress right now. One is a Science Fiction Family Saga and the other is a paranormal thriller series.

What inspired you to write it?

I write because I have to. There is no other reason. I need to have the creative outlet to let the voices play and evolve. Honestly, it doesn’t matter to me if no one else ever reads my writing. I love to watch the words spill out onto the page and weave themselves into the magic of a story.

 

Books by Lucinda Moebius

Echoes of Savanna: Book One: The Parent Generation

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B006RM66QM

 

Raven’s Song: Book One: T1 Generation

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B006YJ92GO

 

Write Well Publish Right

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product

 

Publish Promote Repeat

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B071KQDRMS

Feeder: Chronicles of the Soul Eaters Book 1

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0615968325

 

30 Days Stream of Consciousness V. 1

http://www.amazon.com/30-Days-Streams-Consciousness-1-ebook/dp/B01BW8JXBU

 

A Haunting

http://www.amazon.com/30-Days-Stream-Consciousness-Haunting-ebook/dp/B01D7T9CFY

 

Abduction

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01F1DMOBI

Fire and Ice A Love Story

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01GGL8QUM

Raising Grandpa

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00OPP1FCI

I Know I am Awesome

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00QYAQBZI

Oh Brother!

https://www.amazon.com/Oh-Brother-Baby-Coping-Kids-ebook/dp/B01A1PC5YM

Firefighter Jeff

https://www.amazon.com/Firefighter-Jeff-Dr-Lucinda-Moebius-ebook/dp/B06ZZ41W6N

How can we follow you on Facebook?

Lucinda Moebius Fan Page: https://www.facebook.com/Lucinda-Moebius-Fan-Page-136358979707547/

SFF Promo Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1132459036786385/

Twitter Handle

GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4176363.Lucinda_Moebius

Website: www.lucindamoebius.com

Blogs:

Your Next Favorite Author: http://mynextfavoriteauthor.blogspot.com/

Moebius Musings:  http://moebiusmusings.blogspot.com/