Feeling the Gratitude today

So, yesterday, Melbourne, my town, turned on one of those glorious autumn days that make you want to frolic and gambol and otherwise bask in the sunshine and revel in being alive.  And then I turned on the radio and this was on, which seemed appropriate:

Although in my case it was more go outside and loll in the hammock, rather than in bed, but you get the idea.

But I was good.  I did do some work, I just did it at a coffee shop with outside tables, where I could bask in the real sunshine (and frolic in my imaginary world).  And I enjoyed it.  And it has put me in a good mood today, which is lovely.  So I want to share some things I’m grateful for.  First, at the moment, I am most pleased with this:

Books actually bought for reading!

547323_332176723551639_366061772_nIt’s a book.  It has my name on it.  It has a gorgeous cover.  All of these things have existed since October last year.  But now it is available in three dimensions, with actual paper between covers, for people to buy*.  This makes me glad.  And a little squoogly.**

(*In Australian Post shops if you are in Australia.  My apologies if you aren’t!  One day I will have many books and they will be available in all formats everywhere, but it is not this day. Sadly.)

(**Squoogly is a word we have invented in our house for that combination of bashful and delighted that you get when someone compliments you fulsomely – or when you see your first book available for sale.)

I am also grateful to friends who bought the book (see first photo) and took pictures of it in the wild (see both photos).  They make me squoogly too! (See**, above.)

I am also pleased that we have a tiny, miraculously tiny frog in our frog tank.  Last year, our little frogs successfully bred in captivity, surprising and delighting us.  They produced one normal-sized frog and one we called Frodo because he was little and gorgeous.  But this year, although we got spawn and even tadpoles, we didn’t get any new frogs.  At least, so I thought, until I saw the tiny, tiny one the other day.  He’s the size of a quarter of a thumbnail.  He’s so small it was hard to believe he wasn’t just a trick of the light.  But he’s real and he’s still there and he feels like a tiny miracle.  I’m finding tiny tiny insects to feed him and hoping we can keep him alive and growing.

And then there’s this:

I enjoyed the Hobbit movie but best of all, I think was the dwarves singing.  I sincerely hope there will be more in the next two.

And there are many more things to be happy about, but I’ve rabbited for long enough.  What are you happy about today?

Writers, follow your own star and dream big

‘Dream no little dreams, for they contain no magic’.

I don’t know who said this first.  (I read it on the side of a memento coffee mug from a RWA conference and it was provided by Vicki Lewis Thompson.)

I just know that it is a phrase that is speaking to me at the moment on the subject of writing.

It came to mind yesterday when I saw the girl, who is on school holidays, spend a good couple of hours creating a personal translation key for the runes in The Hobbit.  I’m pretty sure this would have pleased its author.

When J.R.R. Tolkien sat down to write the Hobbit he could not have had any idea that they book would be as popular and enduring as it turned out to be. If what I read is true, he never intended to be a novelist.  He only wrote the stories to introduce people to the mythology he was creating.

Yes, that’s right, J.R.R. didn’t set out to write a book.  He set out to create a whole mythology for a country (England) that he felt lacked a proper one.

What a completely mental thing to try to do.

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