Monday, February 25, 2008

A Sad Story

It’s been rather a traumatic weekend. On Friday evening, Mick found a small dog at the side of the road, she looked like she had been involved in an accident with a car. She had a badly broken leg, and was in very bad shape. She had obviously been abandoned by her owner, and looked like she had been living rough for several weeks. The weather here has been really cold, and nighttime temperatures have been below freezing most of the time, so she must have had a pretty miserable time of it.

I really do not understand the mentality of people who can treat their animals like this. I know what I’d like to do to them, but it can’t be published on this page.

Mick took her to our local vet, who said the accident had probably occurred a couple of weeks before, as her leg was broken in two places and infected. He said he would need to x-ray it to make sure, but he thought the only option was to amputate her leg. The vet kept her overnight, and said he’d call the following morning and let us know the verdict.

Mick and I talked about it that night. Not only was the cost of the dog’s treatment prohibitive to our keeping her, but we have three cats who would never tolerate a dog in the house. It upset us both terribly, but we knew we had no choice but to tell the vet to put her to sleep. It was a horrible decision to make, and it’s haunted us both. We can only console ourselves with the thought that, had Mick left her where she was she would have died anyway, and it would have been a miserable death for her.

The only good thing to come out of the whole incident was, I found out that our vet was delighted with the story I wrote about him and his experiences on the Iditarod. Unfortunately, I can’t post a link to the story, as I said I would, because it isn’t in the on-line magazine. It will, however, eventually appear in the archive, so I’ll post a link then.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Oklahoma Writer’s Federation, Annual Writing Contest

I did make a New Year’s resolution to post something on this blog every week. But then, I also made New Year’s resolutions to quit, abstain from, and generally cut down on my bad habits, and I haven’t done any of those things either. Oh hum.

Truth is I’ve been totally swamped with work preparing my entries for the Oklahoma Writer’s Federation annual writing contest. Admitedly, most of the work was already done, though some pieces needed editing and revising. Then I made the mistake of deciding to enter a category that needed a lot of work.

I’ve been tinkering around with an idea for a nonfiction book for some time now, and have even written a few chapters, but the thing takes a lot of research, and other projects kept getting in the way. Well, that’s my excuse, I guess there was also an element of procrastination involved, isn’t there always?

Anyway, I had a sudden rush of blood to the head and decided to submit the thing ― you notice how it’s become “the thing?” ― to the nonfiction book category of the contest. This involved writing a chapter outline and submitting sample chapters, and as I had only written about seven chapters thus far, the scale of the project was monumental. I had to spend every available moment on the computer, and my husband, Mick, got lumbered with making dinner, grocery shopping, and several other chores for a week. I don’t know what I’d do without him.

To cut a long story short, I just got it done in time for the deadline, then I had to walk round to the post office in a blizzard to get the thing in the mail. I know it doesn’t stand a snowball in hell’s chance of winning, as I had no time to revise or edit, but hopefully I’ll get some feedback from the judge about my idea.

Right now, I never want to see the bloody thing again, but give it a few weeks...