I shall keep practicing and continue to drink in knowledge of 'the craft'. I wish all of you success in your continuing endeavours for the upcoming year and look forward to reading your stories.
Wednesday, December 30, 2009
I shall keep practicing and continue to drink in knowledge of 'the craft'. I wish all of you success in your continuing endeavours for the upcoming year and look forward to reading your stories.
Thursday, December 24, 2009
I thought that I would sneak out one more post before Christmas. We've got a lot of vacuuming, cleaning, etc. to do today. Having visitors is, of course, a good motivator to get one to clean one's living space (nod, if you agree).
We are pretty sure that all gifts are accounted for (except for the ones that Santa brings...). They are even wrapped this year. The Christmas eve tradition in our house has usually been to take turns in a secluded room to wrap your presents. That was not fun, but a single malt usually made the task bearable. My wife is ahead of the game this year with everything wrapped on behalf of everyone. This was to allow us to spend time with my parents who are driving to town this afternoon.
Danielle Ferries had a great pre-Christmas post at her blog From the Attic where she posted a festive photo of herself as a little girl. I think we should start that as a small, online tradition. I present to you at the left a photo of me and my mother exactly 40 years ago (now I feel really old) when we lived in Sidney, B.C. That's the best that I can come up with as mum would have all the good stuff in her album (me naked in the tub, etc.)
I wish you all a great holiday in whatever format you are celebrating. So...have a Merry Christmas, a happy Hanukkah, a memorable Eid, a jolly Kwanzaa, or perhaps just an eggnog or glass of wine while watching the snow gently fall on the lawn (for those in the northern hemisphere). Cheers! ~Alan
Monday, December 21, 2009
Today he had a link to a YouTube video. It's the current Christmas offering from Jib Jab. Perhaps you've seen it, perhaps you haven't.
The short video reminds me of the story currently to be found at 52 Stitches called The Bump in the Night, by Bill West. I may never look at Santa quite the same again.
You can find the YouTube video here.
Sunday, December 20, 2009
Anyhow...at the McMichael I saw Mt. Lefroy, by Lawren Harris and was mesmerized by it (shown right). My lack of art education shows when I can't even explain why I liked it so much...I just 'did'. I suppose that if I had a few million of disposable income lying about I may be inclined to buy that piece of art, or something similar by Harris.
Monday, December 14, 2009
I'll leave off with a picture of the boy and the dog. Jet looks smart in his Christmas attire (I will note here that it was not my idea) although somewhat demonic with his glowing eyes. And Sean is almost cracking a smile. It's the photo that was attached to Ginny's annual Christmas letter. Again, this is just the photo, I wouldn't want to bore you all with the family schtuff.
Friday, December 11, 2009
Saturday, December 5, 2009
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
MORAL LESSON FOR TODAY
One day a farmer's donkey fell down into a well. The animal cried piteously for hours as the farmer tried to figure out what to do.
The gash from the bite got infected and the farmer eventually died in agony from septic shock.
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
That was a real learning experience for me. It is nice to know that when my back is against a wall (yes, that was a cliche) I can produce a novel length bit of fluffage. And I think my WPM count at typing improved.
I limped across the finish line, yesterday, with about 5 hours to spare. I'm pleased that it's done, but not really pleased with the story. While outlining the story in October, I had a page written up with a list of messages I wanted to convey. Very little of that was accomplished. I've decided that I had too many characters. Some where fleshed out very well, others I only scraped the surface of. I do realize that all of that can be added/altered during edits 1 thru 13...
The story is still in progress and probably needs another 10k words to bring it to an end. I want a break for a few days, but I fear if I delay too long I may never return to the seedy underbelly of Metropolis.
Many thanks to those of you who dropped by my blog during the month and endured my endless whining. I would have packed in the project the first week of November had it not been for those cool inspirational pep talks the NaNo people email to the participants. But, more importantly, the advice, the kind words and the frantic shaking of the pom poms by my Internet writing friends was the real reason I completed NaNo. Congratulations, also, to those of you who completed your novels and to those of you who didn't, but bust a gut trying (oops, my cliche is showing again).
Saturday, November 28, 2009
Thursday, November 26, 2009
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Newfoundland novelist Tina Chaulk (listed with other local authors on my sidebar) posted a video by Kristina Horner. A cute look at the NaNoWriMo dilemma. Or was it a conundrum...
I typed some real shite at 6:30 this morning in an effort to pad the word count. I shall attach an excerpt from that for your reading *cough* enjoyment. Please don't think any less of me...
Anatoly was even more dejected than the previous night. He left the radio station, having barely spoken to Big Ben Murphy. He caught the number 17 bus downtown, to work another four hour shift at the diner.
His shift went well, as the harbour seemed quiet tonight and there weren’t many sailors or longshoremen dropping in for their gourmet offerings. They had enough time for Donovan to show him how to make ‘Toad in the Hole’. They fried up some sausages and wrapped them in bacon strips and then poured on the mixture of flour, milk and eggs. They baked this in the oven and could cut it up into eight portions. They reworked some of the thick, brown gravy made earlier in the day for hot turkey sandwiches by scraping off the hardened skin and adding chopped onions to the mix.
Donovan noted that they used to eat this back in England. Except that it came in a Yorkshire Pudding format where the sausage stuck out of the muffin like a greasy, brown phallus. Miller wanted these added to the breakfast menu to try to bring in some new customers.
Donovan also showed Anatoly something his mother used to make for him when he was a boy. He called it the ‘Golden Eye’ and it was very simply a slice of bread fried in oil with an egg in a pan. All he had to do was cut a hole in the centre of the bread and drop the egg into it space and let them fry up together, flipping it once to cook the other side. He would have to make this for David at breakfast time one day.
They sat down at a booth and ate their creations, getting up occasionally to collect money at the cash register or to pour more coffee for customers.
Saturday, November 21, 2009
We're off to visit my parents late this afternoon to take them out to dinner and then to a Senior Men's hockey game in the nearby town of Harbour Grace (the home of Dan Cleary of the Detroit Red Wings, for anyone hockey inclined). It's their birthday today so nothing says Happy Birthday in Canada more than dinner out and hockey. Yes, you read that correctly...both of them celebrate their birthday today. Dad is 68 and mum is 65. True pensioners now, the pair of them.
The next chance I'll have to type up anything into Word will be tomorrow night. So I'll have to rely on the old fashioned pen-to-paper for any progress for a while. I don't quite know, at the current rate of progress, how I'm going to squeeze out 20K words in just 8 days...yikes, let the crap flow (which is sort of a local joke regarding the state of the harbour at times). There's not enough character description going on, not enough conflict, almost no symbolism and generally not enough exposition. So I should be serving up a lot of fluff and nonsense for the next few days...thanks all, for the continued kind words of support (and yet you still return to endure my whining!)
As I look back on the post I notice that I have uses a lot of brackets. Apologies for that (it's kind of how my brain has been working the past 21 days)...and a lot of those dot thingies as well.
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
I have enlisted the help of my three friends, below, because the say if you put enough monkeys in a room with keyboards, one will produce a Shakespeare work (and I mention the bard in my NaNo story). I think the smart money should be bet on monkey #1, he's showing a good dramatic element and he's following the NaNo mantra about never using the backspace key. Well done, Bubbles!
Why Can’t We Change Our Process?A Unique Look at ‘Why Things are Done the Way they Are’
Monday, November 16, 2009
To cheer myself up over the weekend I broke out the plastic to order a couple of books from our Amazon friends. The books were only about $18, but the shipping was an additional $12 something. That sucked, but I'm sort of used to it now due to the fact we live on an island. I recall that when we ordered a couple of love seats shortly after moving into the house, we had to wait over 2 months for manufacturing and shipping. I could understand that if they were like hand crafted by the Amish, or the fabric had golden strands woven into it...
...sorry, back to the books. I have been wanting a copy of Stephen King's "On Writing" for some time, after it was highly recommended by all of you kind folk. My second pick was anthology of fine horror stories by the fine authors of 52 Stitches. I am looking forward to the arrival of volume one any time now.
My current word count is 23,400. That is 51 pages, single spaced (I opted for the single space as it would speed up the scrolling back that I knew that I would have to do to refer to facts that I were already 'out there'. God forbid I should contradict myself.
My sister emailed me a video (which is kind of odd considering that she's living with us at the moment) that I found hilarious. It's for a product called Kiwi Bacon...and I apologise (I am Canadian, after all) to any vegetarians or New Zealanders I may have offended.
Friday, November 13, 2009
Perhaps I should be wearing my reading glasses. The object at Indie's feet looks like a brown paper lunch back as opposed to a golden idol. I must be something mighty tasty for him to be protecting it with a whip and revolver.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
The word count, as of now, is 13660. I'd like to get another 5oo done before going to bed. It's after 10pm here, so bed will be soon as I'll be getting up at 5:45am to start it again. I'm really impressed at some of my 'buddies' word counts...they set a challenging pace. I bet that Danielle Ferries, in particular, will have this thing rapped up with a bow by the 25th of the month!
In other news...I'm please to announce that my flash story "Thor's Hammer" has been accepted at 52 Stitches as part of this year's line up. It's I thrill to be presented with talented writers such as: Catherine Gardner, Mercedes M. Yardley, Brenton Tomlinson and Laura Eno. If you haven't done so before, drop in to 52 Stitches for a tasty, dark story each Sunday. With Aaron Polson carefully applying the stitches, you know you won't be dissappointed...
Saturday, November 7, 2009
The cover illustrations of your books, especially the latest, Frostbitten, are beautiful. I'd like to know if you have any input into their design or are given a choice of covers. Or is it out of your hands?
I don't choose the art. In fact, with most of the covers, I don't see them until they're done. This is common with the "big" publishers. It's only with small publishers (or really big names) that the author gets a significant say in the cover art. It's a marketing decision, and I leave it to the pros.
Was there any commercial reason to start writing conventional crime fiction, as opposed to your established modern fantasy books? Did you pull your existing fans along to the new series or have you had to establish a new fan base?
I started Exit Strategy after my third Otherworld book was written and there was some concern because the first two hadn't sold as well as the publisher hoped. I was about halfway done the book when I sold Dime Store Magic and everything took off. A few years ago, my agent asked if I wanted to finish Exit Strategy, and I did. I read a lot of crime thrillers, so it would be my second choice of genre to write in and makes a nice change of pace.
I would like to know how easy it was for you to find a publisher for your werewolf series. Were you already published when you wrote them?
In my twenties I started working on novels, and would sporadically send out query letters and sample chapters, but never got anything more than a form letter rejection. So I gave up and concentrated on improving.
When I finished Bitten, I had an instructor look at it, to see how well I was progressing. He offered to recommend an agent, and things happened very quickly from there. Within a couple of months I went from being unpublished to having multiple book contracts. So it was a long empty road, with a very quick stop at the end!
What techniques do you use as an adult to capture the teen mind when writing YA fiction such as the Darkest Power Trilogy?
I don't simplify the story lines or the characterizations at all. I think that's important. Teens understand and enjoy complex characters, dark themes, etc. I do tweak the language, not for the audience, but to suit the younger narrators. In my first trilogy, there's no sexual content. Again, though, that's a reflection of the main character, who hasn't even dated yet, so it's not an issue. In short, then, to write for young adults, I just use a young adult main character and make sure she really is a teen--in her language, in her way of thinking, in the issues that concern her and the tools she has at her disposal.
The biggest challenge was that I'm a whole lot older than my main character. As a teen, I hated it when adults tried to write in a teen voice and it was painfully obvious that they were on the wrong side of thirty. Having a daughter in the right age group made that easier--I had a living subject to study and a built-in focus group.
When you were doing your degrees, were you writing? What did you put in place to give you the time to write?
Growing up, I never thought 'writer' was a valid career choice, probably because my parents didn't. They fully supported it as a hobby, but didn't think it was something you should plan to make a living at. So I went to university for psychology. As I was preparing for graduate school, though, I realized I was heading into a career that would leave me no time to pursue a dream of publication. So I switched gears and went into computer programming, which gave me a 9-to-5 job that paid the bills while I took writing courses, joined writing groups, and worked at improving my craft. I sold my first novel in 1999 (it came out in 2001) and started full-time writing in 2002.
Everyone talks about needing to have a web presence as an emerging writer. It seems to me that the most successful writers worked on their writing, got the book deal, and then worried about a web presence. What do you think?
For promotion, I'd urge them to find what they enjoy and do that, rather than taking everyone's advice on "what works" and spending a lot of money. Other than having a decent website (which is always worth the cost) nothing has been proven to absolutely increase your sales. So you do what you enjoy. Most of all, though, you work on the next novel. That's what will advance your career far more than any promotional efforts.
I would like to thank Kelley for taking time away from her busy schedule to provide in-depth answer to some really insightful questions. For more information about Kelley Armstrong, or her novels, please visit her website here. If you're interested in reading a PDF version of her Fall, 2009 newsletter available on her website, you can click here.
Friday, November 6, 2009
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
- Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall arrived in St. John's Monday afternoon to begin their cross-Canada tour. Sadly, I missed the official welcome as I was playing basketball with the geezers. And my invite to dine with them must have gotten lost in the mail.
- NaNo is going well. I've fallen behind a bit as I haven't met my daily quota I set for myself on weekdays. I'm sure that I'll have some catching up to do this weekend. With the few words from this morning, I'm at 4265 words. It's sure slow going at the start as most of it has been conversation setting things up. I'll be glad when it moves along and 'stuff' happens.
- I'd like to officially announce that I will be posting the Q & A with author Kelley Armstrong this Saturday morning (November 7) for those who want to read her insights. For those new to my blog, I posted here requesting questions from my readers to send on to Kelley, author of more than a dozen books of horror, YA urban fantasy and mystery.
Frostbitten, the 10th book in her Women of the Otherworld series is now available. Please invite others who may be interested to drop in Saturday and hear from Ms. Armstrong.
Monday, November 2, 2009
The Shah Faisal Mosque in Islamabad, Pakistan can accommodate 300,000 worshipers
Market along the main street in Murree, Pakistan (one of the locations in the book "A Thousand Splendid Suns," by Khaled Hosseini)
Along the Grand Trunk Road en route to Peshawar, Pakistan.
A little girl in the Jhelum Market. Her father motioned to me while we were driving slowly through the market and wanted me to take her photo. So I did.
Saturday, October 31, 2009
Friday, October 30, 2009
Yep, Captain Jack Sparrow. What's not to love about the dreds and cool beard!
Ahh, the aforementioned Lecter. My son might have the voice down, but not the glassy-eyed look indicative of folks partying too long.
Our friend Pee Wee...OK, so that's a little weird. Don't worry, I won't touch that one...
So what guy that grew up in the '70's didn't want to be the Fonz? Except in Canada, he would be ending his sentences in Eh?
What costumes would you pick? Feel free to throw your picks up on your blogs...
Have a great halloween tomorrow night. Watch out for creepy people.
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
I have been polishing up a story for 52 Stitches, who will be re-opening for submissions on October 31. I've also been compiling notes for the NaNo this year. Yikes! A mere 4 days away. As a practice for this, I have been getting up at 6:15am each morning to get together my notes that I have scattered all over the place. The early start also gives me extra time to read the fine blogs of others. As a result, I have found a couple of things to bring to your attention.
First, Erin Cole has been hosting some amazing horror stories at her blog Listen to the Voices. The 13 Days of Horror has been a great lead-up to halloween with writers such as Michael J. Solender, Laurita Miller, Barry J. Northern, and Paul D. Brazill. I know what you're thinking...that's a lot of
Most of you are also familiar with Brenton Tomlinson over at Musings of an Aussie Writer. He will be editing the first anthology for Blade Red Press: Blade Red Dark Pages, Volume 1. This sounds like a high quality publication and, with BT at the helm, you know that they will print only the best. You can check out thier submission guidlines here, but keep in mind that submissions close on November 30.
I will now get to my paid work. I realize that I have been pimping a lot this morning but fear not...I will have a hot shower and give myself a good scrubbing!
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Sunday, October 18, 2009
The most appropriate definition I could find on this was..."a present-day man who has acquired profound knowledge or proficiency in more than one field."
I would like to think that this would also apply to women. Have you ever met somebody that has inspired you in some way? I don't mean the team coach that gives the inspirational pep-talk. It goes far beyond that. Something intangible.
I registered for a night-school class at King's College (London, Ont) back in Oct. 1996. It was called 'The End of the Millennium-Psychological Perspectives.' It was taught by Dr. Jaroslav Havelka, a psychology professor originally from Czechoslovakia via Italy, who came to Canada in 1951. The first lecture opened with "What is the report card for our civilization? The last millennium people were dying with the name of Messiah on their lips...but they were better off than us as we are rotten morally." He attributed this to something he called 'Scientific Materialism' and the fact that we are much more 'ego bound' than our ancestors. And so began the eight lecture series...
As is my custom, I tend to get places early and sit with a cup of coffee. I waited prior to class on a couch in the large entry hall of the building when Dr. Havelka wandered along. He recognized me as one of his students and sat and began chatting with me. How was I enjoying the class, what did I do for my work, etc. I was a bit surprised at first, not accustomed to professors chatting socially with me showing interest in my life. I wish that I had taken more advantage of that to pick his brain a bit.
In the fall of '97 there was a story in the paper about a popular university professor having passed away. He died of cancer only 12 days after being diagnosed. It wasn't until a few years later that I began to learn more about his incedible life journey.
His wife, Jane Vincent-Havelka, was the keynote speaker at the 50th anniversary of the college, who were establishing a permanent collection of his art work. I have the 9 page speech that I printed from the Internet a few years ago, and am now unable to find it online. The best link I could find was to the information poster of it here. I'll list in point form some of the events that occurred in his life.
- born in Moravia, Czechoslovakia in 1922
- area was occupied by the Nazi Reich in 1938
- his was involved, with his father, with the partisan against the Nazis
- he was sent to work in a tank factory in Vienna (where he attended evening classes at the university) and had access to music, museums and theatre
- he returned to Czech after the war, attending classes at the university
- the Soviets cracked down on intellectuals, and he secretly fled to Milan to attend university on a scholarship. He was unable to tell his parents, and he never saw them again
- he obtained a Ph.D. in 1950
- immigrated to Montreal in 1951 and began studying psychology and physiology at McGill. He became a research assistant and studied brain functions under famed neurologist Dr. Wilder Penfield.
- had no formal art training, but was a prolific artist producing woodcarvings, drawings (his self-portrait is above, 1993) and painting
he wrote plays and essays and his novel, Pelynek, won an international prize. His final books, Variations and Musings of an Inquisitive Mind, were psycho-philosophical essays.
- established the department of Psychology at King's College in 1969
- is fluent in six languages
- had a special interest in thanatology, the study of death, and was an active participant in the King's College Centre for Education about Death and Bereavement. For 30 years he studied Eastern Religions, particularly Buddhism, and the Tibetan Book of Living and Dying and the Tibetan Book of the Dead were constant companions.
I could continue on with more points, but I would be beating it to death. It's difficult to put into words the aura that a person like this emanates in a crowd. Yes, he was a charismatic and engaging speaker with some truly amazing ideas. But one got a sense of well-being from him and you couldn't help leaving his lectures with a desire to learn more. To push yourself beyond your comfort zone...
Anyway, I've prattled on too long. I realize that this post is probably of little interest to anyone but myself. And I would be surprised if any of you has read on long enough to get to this point.
In October of 2001, an exhibit of 350 pieces of his art work was exhibited in a church in London. About half of these were on sale. I saw a number of pieces that depicted either Christian or Buddhist themes but I couldn't afford to put out the money at the time. I now have two things to regret about that period of time. I should have engaged Dr. Havelka more in conversation and I should have purchased a piece of his art to remember him by. If you happen upon a person who touches your instincts in such a way, act on them and learn more. I may live another 47 years...perhaps I'll get a second chance to learn more.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Saturday, October 10, 2009
That provides a nice little segway into a bit more pimpage I'll throw at you. While attending the night school classes in creative writing in 2007/08 I met a woman called Debbie (who is one of my NaNo buddies this year). Her husband is a talented landscape photographer by the name of Terry Adey. I would recommend you check out his website for some stunning and haunting images of the Newfoundland coastal regions. The attached photo is from his web page.
Friday, October 9, 2009
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
- A reminder to everyone that I am still looking for questions to pass on to Kelley Armstrong (see previous post). You've got until the end of the day tomorrow in your time zone to get questions to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Every question is greatly appreciated folks (at the moment, including my own question, I have two....
- I have finally considered myself 'certified'
insaneand signed myself up for the 2009 installment for NaNoWriMo. I am a NaNo virgin and will need a lot of prodding and a friendly shoulder to cry on. Seriously. I mean it. I need all the friends I can get, so if you want to buddy me you can find me here.
- Katey Taylor had a great post last week about Banned Books week, with links to the Most Challenged list for last year and Frequently Challenged or Banned Classics. You can link to her blog here. This is, of course, a debate that has been society for almost as long as there have been books in print. It's by no means just a problem in the US. Please link to an article I read yesterday at Canoe.ca about the Toronto District School Board considering removing "To Kill a Mockingbird" from its system because of a complaint from a single parent. Wow! I wish that I weilded that sort of power *sighs and shakes head*.
Monday, October 5, 2009
- I will send all questions to Kelley but, depending on the number of questions and time constraints, she may not get to them all.
- I will post the questions and answers, but not the names of the people that wrote the question (to protect the 'shy', or in the event that not all are answered or there are duplicates of questions).
- I am confident there will be some creative 'thinking outside the box' sorts of questions. There are some regularly asked Q & A at her website here, so I would advise checking it out to avoid asking her questions she frequently receives. Actually, check out her website anyway as there's a tremendous amount of information to be found there.
- Rather than posting your questions in the comments section, I ask that you please email them to me at email@example.com (I'll give until end of the day Wednesday the 7th).
I think that Kelley Armstrong is affording us a unique opportunity to 'pick her brain' about all things horror and fantasy. She is a creator of otherworlds with vampires and werewolves, with witches and demons. Kelley has had experience with online fiction, short stories in anthologies, E-serials and episodic novels with continuing plot lines. She even noted in her email that she has participated in NaNoWriMo and hosts a group on her site to encourage others. I look forward to reading your submitted questions. Thanks!
Saturday, October 3, 2009
I'm surprised that I maintained my sanity during the first year. A 5th paper and subsequent re-write may have prompted me to the clock tower, sniping at bearded, tweed-coated academics that bore a resemblance to Dr. xxxxx. After the final exam, I was presented with my 48.5% grade; good for a chance to enjoy his class another semester. I did, however, discover that I could take the other first year English class. I wrote my papers for Dr. yyyyy and was given a C+ grade. Perhaps this English shtick wasn't so bad after all? I'm hoping that the first semester professor wasn't biased against me because his ex-wife was my English teacher in high school.
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Mercedes Yardley last night posted on her blog about a person by the name of 'Richard Ridyard' who attempted to pass off a story as his own, but was actually written by the horror master Stephen King. Fortunately, the people at Shock Totem recognized it for what it was and called him up on it. You can read her full story here. She also mentions that horror writer Angel Zapata has had one of his stories plagiarized. I read this morning that our own Aaron Polson has also had his story "Communion" plagiarized by this person. You can read his comments about this at his blog here.
Angel does an amazing job of building a case against this fraud on his most recent post. Do yourself a favour and read his well-researched story exposing this person here. There are numerous comments from folks at his blog, updating information on the story.
There's not more I can add to what others have said about this person. When on-line publishers accept stories there is a certain amount of trust assumed. I somehow doubt this was done for money because, as we all know, there isn't a lot to be had by publishing short stories on e-zines. I think that it's more of a sick joke by someone who has carefully placed stories for some time, knowing that eventually they would be discovered. I also think that this person is getting off on the amount of attention they are receiving. Sort of their '15 minutes of fame.'
There will always be people who try to scam the system, but it is comforting that when a person like that is exposed for what they are the rest this community can rally together. In a matter of hours people all over the world have gathered and shared information on this fraud in an attempt to expose him/her more quickly the next time. I have no doubt that Richard Ridyard will surface again in another persona, but at least everyone will be watching.
Monday, September 28, 2009
I was getting lunch together in the kitchen when I noticed a group of teens in the park behind us. It's not unusual to see a few there eating their lunch away from the Jr. High school. More kids used to hang out there, but the large wooden play structure they sat on was set on fire at 4am one morning about a year ago and the city never replace it. Good idea.
Anyway, there was a large group of kids milling about and more showing up every minute. There seemed to me something menacing about the group, so I kept watch. I estimated about 50 to 60 in number and they all moved en mass into the parking lot of the plaza just out of my view. I switched windows to the front of the house and saw them moving towards the creek. Cars started showing up and parking, and many more older teens got out of the vehicles and joined the crowd. All of a sudden many of the group started to run back in the direction of the park where they had started. Some cut through the opening int he fence and came in groups down our street. A police car drove up our street and many headed back through the fence into the plaza. Two more police cars showed up in the plaza and the kids began to scatter in all directions.
My son returned to school and reported later that the group had heard that two boys were going to meet in the park for a fight. Perhaps I'm a bit stunned to think that 50 to 60 kids, boys and girls, want to see two guys beat the crap out of each other in a public park. The mob mentality really is a powerful thing. Also, if the junior hockey team had had that sort of support from its spectators, it wouldn't have folded a couple of years ago leaving us with no team playing in our 7000 seat arena. It was a new sort of thing to witness, but I suppose it happens all over the place...it does, doesn't it?