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Author Topic: The good morning, good night thread  (Read 588151 times)
Ed
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« Reply #795 on: February 07, 2009, 05:24:57 AM »

You would think all that salt underground would make the groundwater, rivers, streams brackish. Is it?   huh
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« Reply #796 on: February 07, 2009, 05:36:36 AM »

No new snow today, but yesterday's has frozen solid so we have some very interesting back and side roads round here. Scuppered my plan for a bike ride, too. Last Saturday I rode down to Arlingham and where you can look across the river  to Newnham (Geoff will know these places) where the Church sits high on a hill above the Severn, which is very wide at this point. It would have made for a beautiful photograph today, everything snow covered and frozen, but it would be a major trek to get down there today.

Reading an uninspiring book at the moment (I wish I could just abandon books, but for some reason I have to get to the end) which has meant I haven't felt inspired to write much this last week or so. Also, as ever, work is getting busier and busier and by the time I finish the last thing i want to do is look at a screen again. Some nights I don't even have time to, even if I felt inclined. There's a growing culture from above that 'you're lucky to have a job and you need to do more and more work to prove your value and thus keep that job' and it only takes a few people to subscribe to that notion to mean everyone has to.

Got a whole bunch of old stories and re-writes and rejects that I need to submit but I'm feeling uninspired in that area too. There are ten submissions I sent out last year (some dating back to April) that I've heard 'owt on. I know one said in their guidelines that the response time would be long, but it still doesn't inspire to keep posting things out into what feels like a black hole. I need a little feedback and (hopefully) success once in a while to keep me going. Somedays I even think my email mustn't be working...

Hey ho. Onwards and upwards.

Del
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"If you want to write, write it. That's the first rule. And send it in, and send it in to someone who can publish it or get it published. Don't send it to me. Don't show it to your spouse, or your significant other, or your parents, or somebody. They're not going to publish it."
 
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« Reply #797 on: February 07, 2009, 09:46:26 AM »

Ed, the groundwater in parts of Cheshire is salty which is one reason why drinking and irrigation water is piped from the Lake District or Wales. River water too isn't saline since much is from runoff after rain and not so much comes from deep down.

On long submission times - I too have some over 9 months since submitted. Another problem is that some mags are reducing their size and frequency, if still in production, cos of the financial situation and so the backlog of subbed stories is growing. If you subbed to Screaming Dreams, the back log is over 9 months cos Steve  Upham has been very  ill and has recently moved house. Escape Velocity has skipped an issue or two - even though I offered to contribute funds - while Robert focussed on the book side and transferring  from Lulu to Lightning Source for printing. I also found by pestering that two of my stories hadn't been accepted for anthologies but that the editors had forgotten to tell me!

My foot hurts. Ironing board catastrophe. I wasn't even on top of a mountain at the time!

Geoff
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Ed
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« Reply #798 on: February 07, 2009, 03:16:46 PM »

Just finished another culinary excursion involving diced shoulder pork, chorizo, wine, tomatoes, chilli, onion, garlic and butterbeans. The final touch was a tablespoon of honey and a good helping of finely chopped parsley. Recipe here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/database/porkchorizoandbutter_90830.shtml It looked very good in the casserole pot and the sauce tasted great, though pretty unusual. I was really looking forward to digging in, but as soon as I tasted the chorizo - yuk. Tough and very smokey. The taste of it pervaded everything once I'd had it in my mouth. Horrible.

The pork had so much liquid in it that it boiled instead of frying. I think that might be my fault for not having the pan hot enough before I put the pork in. Generally, it seems like if you sear the meat quickly it seals-in the moisture. So the pork was tough as well as the chorizo. The dish had no redeeming features after I'd finished with it. Very disappointing.


Geoff - I've never heard of salty groundwater before, but it makes sense. I briefly wondered if locals have evolved in some way to tolerate salt more than other Brits, but then I remembered that drinking water is a fairly new phenomenon for us Europeans scratch

On long submission times. I've also had a couple of stories out for several months. Apex was the longest. I get to the stage where I stop caring whether the story will get published or not and start to want nothing more than a response, sometimes.
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Planning is an unnatural process - it is much more fun to do something.  The nicest thing about not planning is that failure comes as a complete surprise, rather than being preceded by a period of worry and depression. [Sir John Harvey-Jones]
delph_ambi
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« Reply #799 on: February 07, 2009, 04:44:33 PM »

I've taken a look at the recipe, and a couple of points occur. 45 minutes isn't nearly long enough cooking to make the pork meltingly tender. And regarding the chorizo, did you skin it? The skin can be horrendously tough, even on the chipolata size chorizo that looks like it doesn't have any skin. It does. Also, there are many different types - some are smokey and hot, others are really mild. If you try the recipe again, use a different type. Make sure it's genuine Spanish one. Make sure the pork is outdoor reared. Makes a big difference. Won't be all watery.
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« Reply #800 on: February 07, 2009, 05:50:19 PM »

Speaking of submission times, what's the current turnaround time for EV, just as a matter of interest? (Just so's I know if to pester you guys or not ...)
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Ed
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« Reply #801 on: February 07, 2009, 06:16:09 PM »

Thanks for the pointers, Delph. Yep, I did skin the chorizo - just caught it in time before I chucked it into the pot. Got it at the deli counter in Morrison's, so I've no clue where it originated, but I am wondering whether it was the real deal or not, because much of what you buy 'smoked' these days isn't - it's an added chemical flavouring. Like with kippers. They're just painted with a yellow dye and favourings to make them look and taste right, instead of being cured by smoke like they used to be.

The pork was from our local butcher, so it should have been proper, but I do wonder about some of his pork based products, because his bacon is very watery too. Could be that he tumbles it in water, I suppose. It's a shame that you have to think about stuff like this, isn't it.

I might try it again sometime, but if I do I think I'll use the chorizo for flavouring and then take it out before serving, and I'll cut the pork into thin slivers to reduce the cooking time but still leave the meat tender enough to eat.
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« Reply #802 on: February 07, 2009, 08:15:31 PM »

Speaking of submission times, what's the current turnaround time for EV, just as a matter of interest? (Just so's I know if to pester you guys or not ...)
If you've got something send it directly to me - Robert's  snowed under.  Metaphorically and literally.
I'll respond within a week, Robert says he has unread subs dating 3 months back.

Geoff
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« Reply #803 on: February 07, 2009, 08:17:08 PM »

Ed, being a regular vistor to the Isle of Man, I can verify that Manx kippers are smoked the traditional way.

Geoff
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« Reply #804 on: February 08, 2009, 04:15:53 AM »

Speaking of submission times, what's the current turnaround time for EV, just as a matter of interest? (Just so's I know if to pester you guys or not ...)
If you've got something send it directly to me - Robert's  snowed under.  Metaphorically and literally.
I'll respond within a week, Robert says he has unread subs dating 3 months back.

Geoff

OK, many thanks - will do.
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delph_ambi
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« Reply #805 on: February 08, 2009, 04:31:01 AM »

Ditto Craster.

(ie, Craster kippers are smoked properly)
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Ed
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« Reply #806 on: February 13, 2009, 02:46:20 AM »

Will have to give them a try afro

Funny old week here. If snow was last week's signature weather, this week's has to be rain and floods. I know of a couple of shops and pubs that have literally only just reopened after having all their flood damaged repaired from the storms of two months ago, and within two days were flooded again huh
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« Reply #807 on: February 15, 2009, 12:51:52 PM »

The whole DAB radio signal has vanished in my corner of the world. Maybe it's country wide for all I know. There's no Planet Rock, no Arrow Rock no rock stations of any kind. I'm having to listen to a badly tuned FM station because the local radio station interferes with the best FM stations and I will not listen to Radio 1.
Dammit, where's all the rock gone  pissed
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delph_ambi
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« Reply #808 on: February 15, 2009, 01:00:03 PM »

Do you not have a digi box for your telly? There's always Kerrang! if you have.
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Ed
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« Reply #809 on: February 15, 2009, 02:03:14 PM »

Owen, the chippy, has a DAB radio at work, and I complimented him just the other day on the higher quality of the static he was playing over that of a standard FM radio. It really was something to behold. Me, I just stick with my MP3 player - with exclusion earplugs it actually makes a very good pair of ear defenders, as well as playing high quality crystal clear music with no banal yapping breaks between tracks. Ideal afro

Cooked pan fried duck with creamed cabbage, smoked bacon and caramelised pears for dinner tonight - lovely smiley
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Planning is an unnatural process - it is much more fun to do something.  The nicest thing about not planning is that failure comes as a complete surprise, rather than being preceded by a period of worry and depression. [Sir John Harvey-Jones]
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