Thursday, 20 October 2011

Farming Today BBC - things some teachers don't know

Although I am supposed to be retired I often listen to this program if I am awaken early enough in the morning. The other day it came from Lincolnshire with the weather so dry the newly sown seeds were drying off and dying. It sounded like a different world to where we live in south west Scotland as it has been so incredubly wet for so long that the ground is saturated and often too soggy for the machines to travel on even if we manage to get a few hours dry overhead. This year it has been a case of snatching in harvest and later cuts of silage at the slightest opportunity. Some corn is still standing and probably rotted away.

Today the program came from Harper Adams College and I was astonished at a few of the things some teachers do not know about farming, but then I think of all things I don't know about city life, or various industries. I suppose it is just the same. Anyway I have decided to include a few aspects of farm and country life in my blog from time to time and if anyone reads it and thinks I can help with things they want to know then please do ask. My own back ground has always been farming and I have written several fictional family sagas, all with farming backgrounds. The farming details are authentic and as correct as I can make them. In one book I mention a calf being born feet first. Apparently that was news to one reader who had assumed the head came first, as with babies. Another time the characters were disapponted to find a heifer and a bull twins because the heifers do not breed when twinned with a male. Obviously this is not essential knowlege for teachers to tell their pupils, but they do need to know that a cow has to have a calf before she gives any milk, and that male calves do not give milk. I have to say that seemed common sense to me but who am I to judge other people.

I try not to include too many facts in my novels but my agent always asks for more - perhaps a bit like the Archers. Originally that program began as a means of getting government information out to the farmers after the war when grants were offered according to what the country required in the way of food, and to improve the quantity and quality.

That is enough for now. I have been too busy writing and have missed one of my favourite radio programs - Book at Bedtime - the Cat's Table. Thank goodness for the listen again facility.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Writing and related tasks

Whew sometimes this writing business feels like hard work. I have just finished uploading my fifth short romance novel to Smashwords and Amazon. I am not absolutely satisfied with the way it looks as I can't always keep the page breaks I want. I have split a poem in two at the beginning, but otherwise page breaks do not seem to matter as people use different size e-readers and their own size of print, which changes things anyway.

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Beginning a blog

Hello everyone - this is my first attempt at a blog but when I get used to it I will tell you a little bit about me and my friends, my writing, my family and life in general. Meanwhile please be patient while I get the hang of it.