Salt Cod Chowder

Monday was another experimentation in the kitchen day. What else would you do after having spent part of the morning doing a major clean of the gas range? You have to then set about making it a mess again. I had a piece of salt cod soaking in water in the fridge. Originally I’d planned to make my Stockfish Soup in Stonehouse Cooks. But I wanted more of a chowder with lots of winter vegetables,…

Review: Mort, by Terry Pratchett

Mort by Terry PratchettMy rating: 4 of 5 stars Slowly making my way through the Discworld series. This fourth novel doesn’t disappoint, exploring in Pratchett’s usual funny, madcap manner the apprenticeship of Mortimer to none other than Death Himself. Told with wit and style, the characterization is excellent, the plot brisk, and although Pratchett deals with an old concept, he handles it with freshness and vivacity. View all my reviews

Getting Down to the Business of Writing

Since my last post I’ve taken advantage of the lull between Five Rivers’ publishing projects to work on my own writing. It’s amazing what you can achieve with a little will power and discipline. In about 10 days I’ve: Finished the first revision of my novella, Caliban. This is a speculative fiction dealing with the concepts of reality and beauty, through the voice of an alien creature known as Tine. It has been challenging writing…

Review: The Ant King: And Other Stories

The Ant King: And Other Stories by Benjamin RosenbaumMy rating: 1 of 5 stars Call me despicable, an ignoramus, whatever villainous epithet you wish; I just didn’t get these stories. I tried. I really did try. There is very much the device of the parable in these stories, but what the moral of each story was eluded me. Rosenbaum throws aside the conventions of plot arc, character development, environmental description. In fact, he doesn’t seem…

Writing and Cooking my Way into the New Year

We’re under a snow squall advisory here. Gary’s futzing with some renovations in the mud room today before returning to glass business tomorrow. I’m catching up on some Five Rivers Publishing business. Just finished the mailing for a Goodreads promotion. Thought I’d take a moment to share another recipe I threw together yesterday for dinner, this time to use up leftover smoked salmon and some cocktail shrimps. I looked at them in the container and…

Review: The Mayor of Casterbridge

The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas HardyMy rating: 4 of 5 stars One of the few Hardy novels I had not read. Certainly you see how Hardy was developing the skill that led him to produce Tess of the d’Ubervilles and Jude the Obscure. Fascinating how the themes of the open country of the moors counterpoint the microcosm of urban life in this novel, mirroring inner human nature and social convention. It’s this use of…