Thursday, June 22, 2006
It was windy as hell today, with the ever-present threat of rain hanging over the country. It made it not-too-pleasant for those hardened souls down at Stonehenge for the Summer Solstice celebration. Anoraks and jumpers all round, then.
By early evening the clouds had scattered somewhat, and the winds had dropped making it an altogether pleasant twilight to the longest day of the year.
I used the mild atmosphere to put the rabbit run out on the lawn and give the 'scamperers' a nice bit of exercise. I then retired with a cup of tea to watch some World Cup footie.
Every so often I would get up to check no cats were mulling around. A couple of times I caught one prowling round the cage terrifying my tiny wee furry bunnies. The last time I checked that evening, though, I noticed something odd.
There were no cats, foxes or anything else around; just Mopsy and Pippin, playing freely and eating the grass. I watched them momentarily, as Pippin kept turning awkwardly to chase after Mopsy. She was persistent in her chase, not giving up for anything except to get up close to her sister.
"Strange," I thought. "I hope they're not fighting."
Then, to my absolute horror, Pippin finally caught up with her. She mounted her and proceeded to hump her vigorously from behind. Her hairy little fur-ball bottom was just a blur as she let rip into my little Mopsy.
I dived for the cage, my heart thumping and breath short, and whipped Mopsy out, put her back in the hutch and stood back to take in the gravity of the situation. Pippin, is a bloke!
I couldn't believe it. We had been told we were taking two females, but instead not only did we have a boy and a girl, but incest and rape would appear to be ripe in the bunny community.
My immediate thought was, "Pippin needs to get fixed as soon as possible." But then the chain of reasoning kicked in; "What if she's already pregnant? I can't handle another half-dozen bunnies - where would they go? And if she isn't pregnant, I can't leave them alone together before I can get them to a Vet, so where are they going to sleep?"
You can see the dilemma.
And as any normal caring rabbit owner would do in this day and age and predicament, I immediately turned to my cohort, my protector of all things knowledgeable, my cyber-shoulder to lean on. I logged onto Google.
"Female bunny humpin"
It would appear that female bunny humping is a common occurrence. Two females or two males that live together, may be seen humping, not as a form of intercourse, or gay relationships, but as a way of displaying dominance. In fact, it has also been seen in a hutch with one female and one rabbit. Yes, you guessed it; female rabbits hump their male partners to remind them who the boss is! (Sounds familiar).
I sank easier into my chair. "That's a relief," I thought. "But what if Mopsy's already pregnant? Or worse, what if she isn't and I put them together and it turns out Pippin IS a boy, after all. I couldn't take the risk.
I sat for a reasonable amount of time looking at images of rabbit penises and vaginas. I eventually became slightly worried that the cyber-policemen might be watching my internet usage and decide to come round my house and club me for beasteality-related perversions. I logged off and took my new found knowledge out into the garden. I lifted Mopsy and Pippin into my arms one at a time, opened their legs and checked them out.
Two girls. No doubt about it. Relief all round, but I think just to be safe, and to avoid several horrible illnesses such as cancer, I should get them sprayed regardless. Safety first, eh? I can't go through that experience again anytime soon, that's for sure.
Back to business and I got through quite a lot today. I received some fantastic feedback on my query letter template. It's all about being punchy and appealing, giving the editors what they want and getting your sales pitch across at the same time. Couple that with getting a 4-page synopsis down to a single page - which took me a while, but I got there - then you can start to see the horror of this kind of work.
I worked on the letters for Stella and Hunting Jack, too. Printing them off for read-through's and editing them time after time. Each time I put them through the mill, more chops were execute. The tighter the synopses and letters are, the happier I become.
I prepared the first few letters for sending out to publishers I want to pitch Stella to. Some of them will go out with a couple of chapters and the synopsis, others just the synopsis. I'll probably sit on the letter and synopsis for a couple of days and keep going back to it; just to make sure it's as close to perfect as I can get it.
I submitted a couple of my kids poems to Forward Press for a new anthology they are working on. I sent them River Monkeys (one of my personal favourites) and Gnu Atchoo!. Both make me laugh, both are silly and both give me the best chance I think I have of getting accepted at this moment in time.
I'm toying with purchasing a couple of 'How-To' books; The Well-Fed Writer and The Well-Fed Writer: Back for Seconds by Peter Bowerman. Both come highly recommended and could be just the insight and motivational type of reading I could well do with.
I'm not going to write any more today, but as you should remember from yesterday, 10 years ago today I was stood in Finsbury Park, London, N4 for my first ever Madness gig in London. Madstock 3 - never forget!