Posts Tagged ‘One Sweet Ride’

And the winner is …

October 28, 2009

colourful prize ribbonIt’s October 28, the day we announce the winner in our MillarLITE limerick contest. This was not an easy decision! Entries came in from across town – and across the world! That’s what happens with blogs; the internet is a global community, so readers (and limerick writers) can be anywhere.

Since I knew some of the entrants – and I loved all of the entries – I called in backup judges to help me choose among my favourites. Using blind judging (not blind judges! – they could all see, they just weren’t shown entrants’ names) along with a complex rating system (which I would explain, if I were not mathematically challenged), our judges definitively decided we had a tie. Yikes. Additional judges were enlisted, their votes were tallied, and we STILL had a tie. Doug Smiling winnerThen I thought to check names, and realized that Doug Harris had tied with himself! So Doug Harris of Stockton-on-Tees, England, UK  is indisputably the winner of our MillarLITE Limerick Contest. Congratulations, Doug!

Because Doug graciously agreed that any of his limericks that made the finalist shortlist could be posted here, readers get to enjoy both limericks. You can decide for yourself which one is your first choice!  Here’s one:

Tombstone_textThe limerick’s known for its wit
And being straightforward – that’s it!
It cuts to the chase
(Well, there isn’t much space)
One might, on my headstone, just fit.
             – Doug Harris

Well said, Doug! … Now you’ve got me thinking about my own epitaph … “A writer who hailed from Nanaimo,  Spent all of her time trying to rhyme-o … Nah … I hope I’ve got a few years left to figure that one out).

Here’s another one by Doug:

IrelandA fellow who hailed from Dún Laoghaire
Put forward a wonderful thaoghaire:
Towing Ireland by boat
To the Azure de Côte
Might make weather in summer less draoghaire.
             – Doug Harris

Some of our judges weren’t sure how to pronounce the Anglicized name of this Irish town on Dublin’s “Riviera,” but if you think  “theory” and “dreary” for lines two and five, you’ll get it right.  Very clever, Doug! 

And lucky us!  Our other two finalists also agreed to have their entries posted:

tree“Now Paddy,” said Seamus McGrew
“Just look at this advert, would you?”
dese blokes in ‘ere tell us
dey’re wantin’ tree fellers –
The pity is, we’re only two.”
       Charles (Chompy) Brody

Great fun!   Chompy says he’s “somewhere in the Middle East” right now, although he hails from the UK. He’s clearly got the limerick-writing knack, wherever on earth he is. 🙂

Another finalist from right here in Nanaimo also had fun playing with spellings in our English language:

SpellingThe foreigner shouted, “Enough!
I’m finding the going too rough
When it comes to spelling
I find it quite quelling
I can’t understand half this stough.”
       – Deirdre Godwin

Well done, Doug, Chompy and Deirdre! … and thanks to everyone who had fun writing and sharing their witty entries. Doug’s prize – a copy of One Sweet Ride – will soon be winging its way across the Atlantic, and our other finalists will receive an electronic copy of one of my short stories, as thanks for allowing their limericks to be posted. (If you didn’t win, but you’d like to purchase a copy of One Sweet Ride online or via e-mail, just visit the One Sweet Ride website. Shipping starts next week.)

 I can’t help it, I just love limericks. Thanks again to all who entered – and a special thanks to Doug, Chompy and Deirdre for making ME smile!

© Judith Millar 2009. All rights reserved.
Limericks are the property of their writers.


Join me in the Winner’s Circle

October 21, 2009

J K Galbraith medallionI usually keep the focus on “funny” in MillarLITE, but I can’t resist sharing some exciting news. I was delighted to learn, this past week, that I’ve been awarded the 2009 John Kenneth Galbraith Literary Award for a serious short story I wrote called “The Insomniac.”

Yes, I do write serious material (although I often manage to sneak some humour into my serious writing too). John Kenneth Galbraith was one of the brilliant minds of our time. An internationally acclaimed economist and ambassador, he authored four dozen books and was awarded the Order of Canada in 1997. He also received the American Presidential Medal of Freedom – twice!

To have my name in any way linked with Galbraith’s is, for me, a huge honour; to be the first woman to earn the award since its inception is the icing on my cake! Woman at computerIf your computer screen is flickering, it’s because I am jumping up and down in excitement – do not call your internet service provider!

If you want to read “The Insomniac,” you’ll find it posted on the John Kenneth Galbraith site. If you’d rather flip the dial back to funny, I’m fine with that too, because today is the last day for you to submit funny limericks to the MillarLITE limerick contest. You have until midnight Pacific Time today (October 21, 2009) to e-mail your entry (or two, or three) to

Just a reminder: while limericks are sometimes bawdy, keep your submissions light, and clean! When it comes to S-E-X, this is as risqué as we get:

Robin Red BreastA robin complained in her nest:
“I wish he would give it a rest!
I married a leg-man
But now, since the eggs, man,
He’s crazy about my red breast!”

OSR_book coverIf your limerick wins, you’ll receive an autographed copy of One Sweet Ride, an anthology being released in November, 2009, which contains three of my short stories, along with the poetry and prose of other Vancouver Island writers. And your winning limerick will be posted here, on October 28th! Full contest details here.

winning cupI can’t wait to read your limericks. Perhaps you’ll be the one to join me in the winner’s circle!

© Judith Millar 2009. All rights reserved.

E-mail limerick entries to, subject line: Limerick Contest Entry – before midnight, Pacific Time, tonight (Oct. 21, 2009)!

Strange creatures I have known

September 23, 2009

Sea monsterIt’s all over the news: strange creatures have been sighted on Vancouver Island! And right in my neck of the woods! A team of creature hunters is looking for evidence of a serpent-like animal in Cameron Lake.  Which is scarcely a stone’s throw from Nanaimo. If I had a good arm, and an aeronomically-designed stone, I could practically bop the beast on the head!

Numerous sightings since 2004 have convinced John Kirk, the co-founder of the B.C. Scientific Cryptozoology Club to come and take a closer look. (Kirk is no slouch when it comes to stalking weird critters. He’s tracked a jungle dinosaur in Africa and looked for the legendary Ogopogo in Okanagan Lake!)

If he wants to see some strange creatures here on the Island, I suggest he check out the kayakers. I’m not sure what an Ogopogo is, but I think one walked into my garage last Wednesday. Turned out it was my Kayak Guy returning from a five day paddle. Kayakers already look like an alternate life form in their black neoprene Farmer John wetsuits and kayak boots. This particular organism had sprouted five days’ growth of grey beard and smelled like the Creature from the Black Lagoon. (He remembered to pack all his kayak gear, but forgot his shaving kit and toothbrush!)

a rose from pierreYes, cryptozoologers, there are some strange creatures here on the Island. And to think one is married to me – the girl who was once pinned to Pierre Trudeau! Ah yes. The PM once pinned a rose on me – the very rose from his own lapel! Well, OK, he handed it to me across a head table, and I pinned it on as I walked back to my seat. (And wore it for days. Until it was just a stem his fingers had touched.) In my mind, were were “pinned.”

Pierre’s not the only Canadian Prime Minister who’s crossed my path. I bumped into John Diefenbaker – literally – on a stairwell in the Parliament Buildings during my school’s Grade Eight trip. I told you I was a klutz. (Or he was. I recall he stumbled, grabbed for the handrail, and didn’t apologize – so I think it was me.) Things went better with Kim Campbell. She was only in office for about ten minutes, but she found time to sign a gold-sealed congratulatory letter to me when my children’s peace poem won an international prize. Nice!

But politicians can be “strange creatures” too. Take Brian Mulroney. (Some would say, “take him – please.”) He doesn’t keep in touch – but why would he? I’ve skewered him in a number of limericks, including this one, published in the Kitchener-Waterloo Record on the eve of Canada’s disastrous (for the PC’s) October 1993 election:

Pizza sliceVote for Eenie – or Meenie – or Moe;
Order Parliament Pizza to Go.
“Mozzarella Mulroney”
Had too much Baloney –
But if Grits give us Zits, we’ll eat Crow.

Which brings us back to our limerick contest! You have till October 21 to try your hand at writing your own limerick about a current-day “Eenie” or “Meenie” – or any other strange creatures that happen to catch your attention. See  Let’s Hear it for Limericks! for full contest details. You could win a copy of One Sweet Ride – an anthology featuring poetry and prose by some of Vancouver Island’s strange – but wonderful – writers! 🙂

© Judith Millar 2009.

E-mail limerick entries to, subject line: Limerick Contest Entry.