Monthly Archives: September 2016
Jingly balls, jingly balls, jingly up your way. It’s time for #TWANTA2016 to shove another tree up another fairy’s frock and display his shiny balls for the seventh time. For the uninitiated, it was all @captain_doodle’s idea. There he is on the right, the sexpot. Those taking part in Twanta send a cheap but fun gift to someone that I nominate, possibly a complete stranger, and in return they receive a similar pressie from someone else. TWitter secret sANTA, see? As usual I’ll link you to the blog post from @davidtims from a few years ago which beautifully sums up the spirit of Twanta.
FOR NOW, JUST TELL ME IF YOU WANT TO TAKE PART so that I can add you to the Master Wallchart here at Twanta Towers. I’ll give people a few weeks to join, and you’ll receive the name of your Twantee shortly after that, deffo before the end of October. Those of you who are old hands will know all this already, but for the sake of completeness here’s a reminder of how the whole thing works.
You must have specifically asked me, and I must have confirmed that you’re taking part before you can join in. I reserve the right to reject anyone that I suspect of being dodgy. This is an attempt to avoid the slight wobble that happened several years back for two of our lovely twantadors (see below for a glossary of terms).
Make sure you follow @twanta2016 on Twitter. He (it’s me really, but don’t tell the little tweeters. Let’s not spoil the magic, eh?) will follow you back. DM your address to him so that he can pass it on to your own Secret Twanta. I do remember some of your addresses from last year, but once #Twanta2016 is over I will always delete the addresses of those who ask. If the Twitter Unfollow Bug has caused @twanta2016 to unfollow you, let me know so that I can correct that.
Tell me if there are any mortal enemies that you don’t want to be paired with. We don’t want to be responsible for any “INCIDENTS”. You can also make special requests (e.g. if you’re allergic to chocolate, or perhaps you don’t want to post anything to a different country). We are a benign Santa, and will accept all reasonable requests.
Very occasionally things go awry, and when that happens Twanta Fairies step in to send a gift at short notice. Please also let us know if you would be happy to be a volunteer Fairy, should any be required (though that’s not very likely).
Once @twanta2016 has everyone’s address, he’ll DM you to let you know for whom you are buying a gift (grammar), together with their address. You might want to spend a little while researching their timeline to find out a little bit about them. Yes, that’s a bit stalkery, but you’ll be able to make your gift a bit more personalised that way.
Buy a pressie for your twantee (as the recipients have somehow come to be known) and send it to them. Mark the envelope #TWANTA so they know what it is. Let @twanta2016 know that you’ve posted it (so I can keep track in case anything goes missing). It’s entirely up to you whether to remain anonymous or to expose yourself *snigger*.
Do NOT buy hugely expensive pressies (unless you’re buying for me, obv). Small, fun and imaginative is the rule of thumb, but don’t send an actual thumb. That would be hideous. I recommend spending no more than a tenner, though that of course is up to you. The photographs accompanying this post are of some previous gifts, should you need inspiration.
When you receive your #TWANTA pressie, again let @twanta2016 know. Challenge yourself to wait until Christmas Eve or Day to open the thing. Harness your willpower, grasshopper.
When your willpower fails, take a photo of your gift ready to post on Christmas Day when there will be a special SundayPix theme so that we can all follow the fun. Post the pic on Christmas Day including the hashtag #TWANTA2016 so that we can all follow the fun, and collect the pics on a special Pinterest board.
Have fun, and if it all goes tits up, remember that it was originally all the idea of that @captain_doodle, and castigate him mercilessly, not me oh no leave me alone.
Having trouble separating your twanta from your twantee? Completed your trifecta yet? Got no bloody idea what I’m talking about? Then this section will save you from social embarrassment akin to leaving the Ladies with your skirt tucked into the back of your knickers.
TWANTA – this word has two meanings. Firstly it is the all-encompassing name for the whole cosy event itself, although usually with the relevant year attached to its tail. Secondly, the Twanta is the person sending a gift. It is the Twanta’s own choice whether or not to remain secret.
TWANTEE – the person receiving said gift, with a smile and a song.
TWANTADOR – general term for anyone taking part.
TRIFECTA – the magic three milestones achieved by a Twantador who has (1) sent a gift, (2) learned that it has arrived, and (3) received their own.
TWUMBUG – a dirty rapscallion who fails to send a gift as promised.
FAIRY – a good-hearted TWANTADOR who volunteers to step in and provide a gift at short notice for anyone who falls victim to a TWUMBUG.
TWANTAVERSE – every bloody thing to do with Twanta. Constantly expanding.
EPISTLETOE – a hand-written letter included with the gift to add a virtual Christmas kiss and a personal touch. Not to be confused with Camel Toe, which is something entirely different.
Occasionally I get told off by SundayPix lovers because I either forget or CBA to set a theme. In an effort to overcome this I’ve drawn up this schedule of themes for the rest of the year. Bookmark this post, then if dim old Wombie forgets again you can simply refer back here. I’m especially looking forward to 13th November.
For those who don’t know, SundayPix is a weekly photograph thingy I run on Twitter. See me there for more info.
25/09 Festival – @dbrereton
09/10 The pattern on my duvet cover – @little_mavis
23/10 Sunday Confessional – a weekend guilty pleasure – @allthisandless
06/11 Bonfire night
13/11 Audio – speak a movie quote for others to identify – @kjcollard
04/12 Favourite book cover – @_polyhymnia
01/01 To be decided by a poll of SundayPixers
Four years ago today, encouraged by Alex Brightsmith, I published my inoffensive little “Magnificent Seven with fur” tale about rabbits and cats working together against seemingly insurmountable odds. I doubt Alex knew what she was unleashing back then, but I’ll be eternally grateful that she did.
There are now nine substantial books out there with my name on the cover as either author or editor, along with a couple of other small things. These days you can buy some of my stories translated into Russian, and even get yourself a Wombie audiobook to listen to while driving. You can buy Wombie jewellery and stationery, and you can employ me to edit your manuscript and format it correctly for publishing (yeah, I’ve not made that page yet – I ought to get my finger out). The tenth book and fourth full-length novel***, The Raven’s Wing, is well on its way to completion now that I’ve fallen back in love with it again.
I’ve met numerous authors, attended signings and book fairs, and made a lot of new friends. I’ve had “Oi, Wombat!” shouted at me in a busy town centre. Perhaps my favourite meeting, though, was in Michigan when I was introduced to a stranger whose first words to me were “You asshole, how could you end Fog like that?”. In short, I’ve had the BEST bloody time, and it’s down to you lovely buggers who read all my blather. Thank you *snogs your faces off*. And if you don’t like my writing (a) what are you doing here? and (b) blame Alex.
***if you can’t actually count four, that’s probably because you’re not aware of the privately published novel called ‘Murder at Wombat Towers’ which was written about and for a dozen Americans to thank them all for their remarkable hospitality and friendship over the years.
I can’t describe this book any better than my chum Lisa. This is a marvellous book and currently FREE.
Hitting you up with another extra post and OFFER this week…
and you can’t afford to miss it.
If you want a stunning set of stories based on pieces of music…
you can’t go wrong with this beautiful and intelligent book!
And this week it’s FREE to download from Amazon Kindle. FREE from September 2nd to 6th – you don’t want to miss this one.
This is the first book from The Anthology Club. I have a story in their second book…
Stories by Marissa Ames, Michael Walker, Michael Wombat, and Michael S. Manzwill captivate you. Each story is accompanied by a song, and you get a brief explanation of its inspiration. An eclectic mix of genres and something to inspire everyone.
“Music gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.” Plato
I couldn’t have put it better myself!
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