A new competition! Help support Japan!

Art by Cagle Cartoons, allvoices.com

Some of you may know, from my recent tweets and Facebook updates, that my brother Bryce and his wife Megumi (and her parents) live in Japan. Their home in Saitama province, north of Tokyo, was not directly affected by the quake, tsunami or the ongoing worries with the nuclear power plant, but that does not mean they or their community are unaffected. A disaster of this magnitude naturally affects everyone profoundly.

Bryce works at a local school and I have already sent him some gifts for the kids and some black and white artwork provided by Yvon Hintz for the kids to colour in.

Bryce and I discussed how else I might support him, his family and his adopted countrymen and women, and we thought a competition that also aimed to encourage donation to organisations that would help with the relief and reconstruction effort.

The competition part.

In keeping with our shared black humour, Bryce has suggested that everyone should post their favourite post-apocalyptic film, with a link to something about the film – a youtube link, a picture, a funny essay, fanart, whatever you like. Bryce and I will judge the results based on… whim, I suspect.

Bryce is looking for a suitable prize around his area in Saitama. Whatever the prize ends up being, it will involve things from Japan and something Godzilla-related. This is another element of the coping-with-disaster through black humour, I guess. Stay tuned for more detail, but it will be something cool!

Part the second

Here is a selection of organisations and groups who are raising funds for Japan. If you like the sound of one, please consider donatingn something, however large or small. Or pick another fund raiser you know and like.

I have made a donation to Red Cross International. There is no need to let me know whether or not you have donated, though we would of course be delighted to hear if you want to share that with us.

Not dead, but very tired.

Forgive me reader, for I have sinned. It’s been more than a month since my last blog update. I’m afraid I was preoccupied with editing the second vampire novel (working title Walking Shadows, though I suspect that will eventually change) and now I’m editing a short story for the Twelfth Planet Press anthology. Other, more mundane, parts of life have also intruded, but nobody wants or needs to know about that.

Instead: exciting new things!

I have declared myself a supporter of the National Year of Reading 2012! I hope to be more involved in the campaign, but generally – folks who love to read should do more of it! And they should encourage the kids and adults in their lives to do more of it too! To that end, please feel free to comment with your suggestions of great books to get as gifts for people who seem reluctant to open a book for fear they will be bored to death. For example, to encourage my young male nephews to read I used to get them books by Roald Dahl. One was so leery of books I got him The Mole Who Knew It Was None of His Business, because how can any self-respecting child resist a funny picture book about poop?!

I’m very pleased to see that Mary Borsellino’s The Wolf House is now available as a paperback at Amazon.com. Go and buy it, vampire-loving folks, because it’s full of surprises, wonderfulness, horror, sadness and life.

In the app side of things, my app, Melbourne Literary, was recently updated. My husband, Tim Richards, also released his latest app, Melbourne Getaways – the perfect app for those in Melbourne looking for ideas for day and weekend trips out of Melbourne, or visitors to Melbourne wondering what happens outside the Melbourne metropolitan area.  He also updated his Melbourne Historical app, with more of the city’s hidden historical secrets! The apps only cost about the same as a cup of decent Melbourne coffee and contain a wealth of personally-researched information. If you buy and like them, feel free to go and leave a review in the iTunes store, because we’d be thrilled if you did.

Tim has also released a new eboook –   We Have Here the Homicide: A Travel Writer’s Strange Affair With Poland. It’s a book of his published travel writing about Poland and is full of observations both witty and poignant about the country that is just about his home from home.

I hope to be back to a more regular blogging routine now that the edits are away. I have GaryViews to do, and rants about language, and all kinds of things, so I had better be!

Words are like oxygen

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