ARC giveaway, first novels and some very persistent squirrels

May 24, 2008

I’ve been in the garden a lot these past couple of days. And this year, I have hope. You see, I garden like some people diet. I start out with great intentions and then tend to find better things to do.

But I love spring, I love the idea of growing this lush garden full of organic fruits and vegetables. So much so that when we bought our house five years ago, one of the things that sold me was the generous plot of land on the side, bordered by a gray stone wall. It really would be the perfect garden, except for one factor: me.

Year 1: planted tomatoes, cucumbers, three kinds of peppers, onions and lettuce. Came down with unexplained fatigue a month later (pregnant, anyone?) and decided to grow a baby instead. Husband raked over the weed-filled mess in August. Total vegetables harvested: 0

Year 2: planted tomatoes, cucumbers, three kinds of peppers, onions and lettuce. Couldn’t bring myself to go out and weed and water in scorching July temps with a new baby. Husband raked over the weed-filled mess in August. Total vegetables harvested: 5 tomatoes, 1 slightly scary looking pepper that nobody but me would eat.

Year 3: Already pregnant with kid #2. Planted tomatoes and pumpkins, thinking surely with only two crops… Raked over in July. Total vegetables harvested: 1 surprisingly hearty pumpkin in November.

Year 4: Abandoned cute garden plot for two container pots of tomatoes on the deck. Installed a bird feeder right above them. The seed from the bird feeder sprouted weeds in my lowly containers. Weeded like a fiend, watered, the tomatoes survived! The squirrels noticed and stole every tomato, except for two tiny ones that I took off the vine green. A third tomato was stolen by a turtle. My husband called it my most successful year ever and sweetly didn’t mention that we’d spent approximately $60 in plants, pots and supplies for a yield of two cherry tomatoes. Total vegetables harvested: 2 1/2

But this is the year! Today is the day. I’m about to finish planting watermelon and pumpkins in the main garden. The tomatoes are in pots on the deck, looking quite weed free and happy at the moment. I’m not sure what to do about the squirrels yet, but I’m fully prepared to write my next novel while sitting on the deck, shooing away the little buggers. So if a demon conjures up vicious, tomato-stealing, fire-breathing squirrels in my next book, you’ll know why.

In the mean time, I have hope. Fifth time is a charm. Besides, what could possibly go wrong this year?

On a totally separate note, I the winner of yesterday’s ARC giveaway is Jayne Thomas. Yay Jayne!

Want to try to win your own ARC? Just sign up for my quarterly newsletter and you’re entered. Easy as growing tomatoes (or not). Also, I’m blogging today over at The Brandford Bunch.  Stop on by and hear the story of how this author made her first sale.

Now off to the garden…


9 Responses to “ARC giveaway, first novels and some very persistent squirrels”

  1. Scott Granneman Says:

    Man, that was a funny post! I thoroughly enjoyed it, and I wish you the best of luck this year!

  2. Angie Fox Says:

    Thanks! I just cleared out the last weeds from the very back of the garden and guess what I found? Strawberries! I thought I’d killed them a long time ago.

    In fact, I forgot to even mention them in my failed plant inventory. I planted them in year 2, let the pumpkins mow over them in year 3, lost them in weeds in year 4 (assumed dead), but here they are!

    Perhaps I should spawn a new figure of speech: as tough as a strawberry.

  3. Chessie Says:

    LOL, WTG Angie! You thumb is very nearly, barely some shade of very pale green. Good luck in your battle with the squirrels this year. I’m curious how the watermelons do.

    The Butterfly garden is looking good this year, but I’m quickly losing motivation to go out and weed. At least the plants that are well established are looking pretty. I’m hoping they distract people from the weed issue.

  4. Christine Says:

    Good luck with the garden! I grew watermelon one year in my tiny backyard garden and was rewarded with one softball sized fruit that September! It was delicious! All seven bites! 😉

  5. Angie Fox Says:

    Wow. Seven bites! I’m going to have to hire you as my gardening advisor. That’s way better than I’ve ever done. Curiously, do squirrels ever go after watermelon?

  6. Terra Says:

    That was the cuties post I have seen yet. I can just imagine you sitting there writing your next book and coming up with one hundred and one ways squirrels can become part of the paranormal world.
    Personally, the little buggers drive me nuts but they are not as bad as groundhogs. Got one little bitty groundhog last year and he ate my entire garden in one sitting. GRR! This year I will be a little more diligent and try to capture any critters that might want to eat my plants before I can get a chance to enjoy the fruits of my labor.
    Good luck to you on your gardening and even better luck with your writing.

    Oh yah and yes squirrels do go after watermelons. Actually squirrels, raccoons, groundhogs, skunks and any number of other critters will eat fruit when given the chance.

  7. Angie Fox Says:

    Just call me the squirrel patrol. Well, until I can find something to grow that nobody else wants to eat. I did notice that the animals snubbed the mangy pepper from year 2. Of course, so did my entire family. I was fully prepared to split the skinny little thing four ways.

  8. sandrar Says:

    Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. 🙂 Cheers! Sandra. R.

  9. Angie Fox Says:

    Aw, thanks, Sandra. Glad to amuse you. 🙂

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