October

Some things;

 

  • My stepson and his gf and their children stayed with us for a few months this summer.
  • I will never subject myself to that again. Seriously, that was a BAD idea.
  • Trying to get a handle on my health. Several issues have been neglected and have come to a head. I’m now getting them handled, but years of self neglect are taking their toll.
  • all of this has, of course, impacted my creative side. June and July are always bad months, with everything else, I was lucky I got anything done.

 

One of these days I need to sit down and do a series on Depression, Bipolar and Creativity. But at the moment I just don’t have the energy.

 

I am absolutely heartbroken over the events the other night in Las Vegas. When I was a kid, my grandfather would take me fossil hunting in the mountains around Vegas. They lived there for several years and we’d drive from San Diego to Las Vegas about once a month to visit. While I never called it home, it holds a special place in my heart. FWIW, the few folks I know personally who live there have all reported that they’re safe and sound.

On top of the horrors of the suffering in Puerto Rico and this incompetent administration’s response. On top of Houston, and the kids being here… I’m emotionally exhausted.

 

Writing:

So, easing back into writing. My brain is started to think in terms of stories again. I’m hoping it’s not a temporary thing.

One step at a time. I may have taken a hiatus, but it doesn’t mean I’m gone for good, or no longer writing or planning on publishing new stuff. I’m here, and I’m going to be around for a very long time, I can promise you that. It’s just a matter of figuring out what works best for me. Fun stuff.

 

I hope you are all doing well. Tonight I’m going to take a long bubble bath and read a book. And try to continue getting on with being ME.

Self care is important. Self care is vital to our mental health. There is nothing wrong, at all, with turning off social media, with getting back to the cosey nights reading a good book in the bath. Don’t neglect yourselves. Find what helps you cope in these difficult times and don’t let anyone or anything convince you, you shouldn’t do it.

Happy October folks. Take care. And please, be kind to each other.

~NPhoenix

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blurb blurb blurb. blurb blurb. blurb

I’ve been practicing writing blurbs and I think I need a lot more practice. I wanted to write one for BP. All day, yesterday I struggled with writing it, I read other book blurbs, I wrote up several versions and hated them all because I felt so lost. Then a couple dear friends, including J.A. Marlow helped me by tweaking what I wrote and rewriting it, in essence, showing me how to condense it to something to catch someone’s attention.

So naturally I thought I’d share em here. 😛

The Bastard Prince

A past to overcome. A new path to forge. A looming shadow that could take it all away.
Sold to slavers, the only thing the illegitimate son of the king of Balinor can look forward to is a brutal life, and death, in the bottomless mines of Daglis. An unexpected encounter with the Lady of the Light frees him but leaves him stranded in the great Northern Rahaun Empire. Casting off the past, Damien Zander soon finds new friends and a possible new future of his own choosing.
But war clouds the horizon. A returning evil long thought destroyed that could darken all of Avaria.
And the Bastard Prince finds himself caught right in the middle of it.

So this morning, I worked up one for book 2, The Sarukai Lord

The journey continues, the shadows deepen. The chance of a lifetime at his fingertips.

In all his wildest dreams, Damien Zander, the Bastard Prince, never imagined being accepted into the exclusive order of the Sarukai. Nor being given the opportunity to travel with Tienovey, the Lady of the Light, much less learning beneath the Guardian of the Light himself. It’s not an opportunity to miss. But the Sarukai have their own secrets and darkness has crept into even their noble ranks. If it’s not stopped, it will destroy the Sarukai from the inside out.
And the shadows have targeted the Guardian himself. For if he falls, so too will the Northern Empire.
It’s up to Zander and Tienovey to ensure the Light doesn’t fade.

I’m still playing with the book three blurb. I’ll add it here later. Anyways I wanted to share with you.

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Writing During Stressful Times; some links

It’s been stressful. The election and first days of the new presidency has added stress and anxiety to everyone’s lives. In response to this, several writers around the web have put together some posts, threads and statements giving advice and encouragement to their peers. I thought I would list/link to those I know of here.

I’ve followed Elizabeth Bear since my days back on Livejournal. She shared this thread from Chuck Wendig on anxiety and self-care.

 

 

Over on facebook, Tamora Pierce posted this gem;

To those who are losing a lot of their will to create in the wake of President Tyrant:

Don’t let him and his orcs win. People NEED your books, stories, poems, paintings jewelry, dolls, knitting, tapestries, vases, weaving, dishes, every creation that comes from your hands. Every creation is a punch back at the haters and the heartless. Every word puts hope or thought or dreams or solace or fire into those who read it.

You become a different voice from the bullyraggers and the foolish; your ideals, wishes and convictions reach your audience, whether they are reading Dr. Seuss or James Joyce. You convey food for hope and imagination whether you realize it or not,and the most innocuous-seeming work gives those who partake of it something to go on with.

Keep soldiering on. Comedian or philosopher, baker or glassblower, writer of tomes or fan fiction, you’re needed now more than ever.

 

 

And here is a post from Kristine Rusch here* which states what have said for some time;

…escape is rest. It’s important. It gets us away from the horrors, the terrible things, the stresses and upsetting moments of every day life.

Sometimes, art provides a different perspective, a new way of thinking about important things. And sometimes, we just hang out with a little boy wizard fighting a big powerful evil because it entertains us.

This is not light stuff. It is not unimportant. It is extremely important….

This post actually expands on a post she put up in October, The Importance of Fiction.

My Thoughts;  We stand on the brink of change so drastic I can barely wrap my head around it. Self care is very important in these hectic times and it is not a bad thing to take time for yourself. Creating, in whatever form you use, is important. it matters. What YOU create matters. So to wrap it up, a reminder of a great commencement speech by Neil Gaiman in 2012 I believe.

If you know of other posts along these lines, by all means comment here with the link and I’ll add them to the post.

Be kind to each other.

~NPhoenix

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Happy Imbolc

 

January was a difficult month. I’ve seen over and over on FB, Jan was the trial month, Feb is when 2017 ACTUALLY starts. Something I really can’t argue with. This morning, as I was coming home from grabbing a quick (and unhealthy) bite to eat I got bushwacked by an idea for the Avaria series. It wasn’t forced, it was the result of beating my head against the wall begging the creativity in me to please crawl out of the hole, I won’t let the monsters get you. It just jumped me from behind the bushes and I got a huge insight into a beloved character and explanation for some of his motives in the series (note; this wasn’t a Zander scene fwiw).

After months of blank brain, anxiety and depressed brain, I had clairity. and something else, kindof a startling realization; no anxiety at all. Yes there are concerns, I’ve got a lot on my plate atm, but the anxiety isn’t there. Anyone who has dealt with anxiety can relate that wonderful fresh feeling of being able to clearly think. However long it lasts, I’m glad it’s here.

SO, I’ll be getting fresh content stuff up and scheduled at the patreon page. Please check it out, maybe share it if you like it. Thoughts, ideas and suggestions are always welcome (even if I don’t agree with them). I’m slowly going through the website to fix links and whatnot some of this is way overdue for a cleansing.

 

Politics –  Call your representatives. Write letters, share stories the media refuses to cover, and always ALWAYS check your sources! And if you have to, disconnect, take a walk, paint, write, turn off social media and the news, turn on a childhood fave, blast your music, let yourself rest and don’t, for the love of all that’s holy, DON’T FEEL GUILTY FOR HAVING TO SELF-CARE.

Be kind to each other.

~NPhoenix

 

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State of the NPhoenix, an update, and future plans.

Happy Early Ostara to those who celebrate it! (Or Mabon[I think] if you’re in the Southern Hemisphere)

So there are some things I’m having to change. Plans schedules and whatnot. First of all, because of some things one of my kids is going through, I’ve had to prioritize him and his needs over everything else. Now that he’s where he’s getting the help he needs, I’m able to readjust my schedule and reorganize my plan for 2015.

Elemental Truth.

I sat down a few days ago and did a full read through of E1, from the front to back. And I discovered something sorta distressing about the back end, which I’m working on right now. It is nowhere near where I thought it was completion wise. There are several things I need to rewrite/fix to make it a rounded tale. So where does that put the serial? I thought I’d get it done and have it up for sale by the first. And tbh if I didn’t have other things going on in my life, I would have. But it wouldn’t have been what I want it to be. It wouldn’t have done justice to the story I’m trying to tell. It wouldn’t have been the best I can do with it. I don’t want that. My readers don’t deserve a half assed attempt. I went with self-pubbing so I could control my schedule. I need to remind myself of this.

I’m going to cut the serial postings to once a week. I know, I know, it’s been sporadic as it is, and for that I apologize. Reducing my stress level is a big thing for me right now. So I think I’ll be posting chapters around Tuesday or Wednesday.

When it is done, it will be offered up for sale on the usual sites and I’m planning on going through Createspace to do a print version also.

Blog

It has suffered from neglect. I admit that. I’m working on putting together some more posts to get back on a schedule. I would love any suggestions for topics.

Other Projects & this year’s writing/pubbing plan.

I decided that this year is the year of the series. What that means, to put it simply, is that my focus is going to be on getting my series written and up for sale. The Avaria series, the Elemental series to start with. I have a lot planned. It’s time to get them done.

Flash Friday. I haven’t done that in so long, and I want to get back to doing that too. ATM it would be sporadic though, E1 is my main focus with the Zander tales on it’s heels ready to be finished. I’m not sure I can spread my attention that far.

ATM I don’t have dates down for when stuff will be out. I am going to be trying to guesstimate that this week, and put up the announcement or somesuch next week.

Real Life

To give you a rundown, and I feel I owe explanations to my readers. My 14 year old got caught up in a very bad situation last summer. What followed was lots of court stuff, him being in juvie, and then at home monitoring, and trying to get to the bottom of what seems like a 180 degree change in attitude. Currently he is in a special inpatient program which is helping him address his issues (drug & alcohol and mental illness such as depression & PTSD) and we are doing our best to cope with the fact that the kid we knew is not who he is now. It’s a tough thing to accept but we are doing our best.

Thoughts, prayers, candles lit, Buddha’s belly being rubbed are all appreciated. I worry that his bright star will be forever dimmed by this. Then again I am a worry wort, so I may be over-stressing.

Hug your families. Hug your friends. Let people you care about KNOW that you care about them. You never know what might happen tomorrow. Don’t put it off.

NPhoenix

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Quick update.

Ok, so last year was not the easiest year I’ve ever had. This year is going to be better. I refuse to believe otherwise. So here are a few things I’ve got on the plate.

2015 Writing/pubbing lineup

Elemental Truth;

I am not going to dwell on it. I’m working on it daily. I’ll post chapters as they’re ready. I’m hoping that by the end of this month it will be ready to be pubbed. I’m also going to be releasing it in print, though I’m not sure when it will be ready.

The Bastard Prince, The Sarukai Lord, The Dragon Gates & Crossroads

I love this story. and I hate it. Which makes me sad to say. Once I’m done with the E1 edit/publishing, I’m diving into the Zandercrack and it’s going to be published. This year. Even if it kills me XD.

Those projects could easily swamp me this year. But here are other things I’d like to try to check off the list;

The Fallen. Two maybe three scenes and it’s DONE. >.<
Zombiestuff  –  I have more storires set in this world I want to tell.
Crown of Bones – Fantasy Adventure series, with female protags.
Space Opera
PHFR (prehistoric-fantasy romance)

 

There are other things but right now I have to focus on E1 & Zander. Those have been sitting for way too long. It’s the year to dare to be bad I have to. My sanity depends on it.

I’m also hoping to take one of Dean Wesley Smith’s workshops (you can find them over here) because I want to improve in many areas. Anyways, there’s more on my mind, but I’ve been catwaxing all day. Time to finish the typo sweep and post the next chapter of E1.

NPhoenix

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It’s time

So I’ve been waffling on this for a while now, but I’m taking a jump here. Starting next Tuesday here and, possibly Wattpad, Elemental Truth will be posted as a serial. Two chapters a week, Tuesdays and Thursdays until it’s done. Once it’s wrapped up, I’ll do a final edit pass then it’ll be available as an ebook & a POD through either Createspace or Lulu (I’m still looking into the details on that). This is an experiment, I’m not sure if I’ll serialize the other Elemental books,we’ll see how things go. One step at a time, right?

 

Ok, off to do a final edit sweep and try not to dissolve into a pile of twitching nerves.

 

 

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Re-Release

One of the greatest things about self pubbing, is if you need to change something, you can. If you don’t like the cover, you’re not stuck with the pubbing co going SOL.

The Magic Maker is one of my favorite stories, and the first of what I hope, many set in that world. To date I haven’t been able to really dabble much with it but I plan to. I redid the cover, and did a skim through to correct things (typos, misspellings, random commas etc) and have gotten it back up.

The Magic Maker

In a corrupt city, Tia struggles to keep her small family together. She finds herself caught between a sorceress and local crime lord, and to top it off, an unknown voice begins begging her for help. With time running out, can she escape the city with family and sanity intact?

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Smashwords
Kobo

In other news, I’ve had to push Zander back 1 month due to personal reasons. Mid may is the new target.

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2014 Goals, Plans, and Expectations

A new year, new goals. I’ve made up a tentative publishing schedule for this new year, starting with the goal of one new publication (large or small) a month with three large releases for the year. We’ll see how it goes. Goals are dreams with a date on them they say. And I’ve even taken into account the usual grueling summers I have.

There are plans to move to another house sometime in late spring early summer which may disrupt things.

The big releases, the first three Zander books, are slated for April, ?June?, and September/October. The final book, Crossroads (which *might* be 2 books) *might* be ready by December.

I’m still dabbling with the idea of E1 up as a serial, but I’m not sure with everything else I have on my plate, that I have the mental capacity to to that atm. I might do something like that over the summer since E1 is, for the most part done.

Other smaller projects will be released through the rest of the year, hopefully on a monthly basis. I’m not hinging all my hopes on any one project. As a writer who plans to be around for a long time, my larger goals are long term, not hinged on any one book. A career isn’t built on one book, rather multiple projects. I’ll refer you to Dean Wesley Smith for more on that particular viewpoint.

I also have the goal of doing a Friday Flash fiction every week this year. Lofty? Maybe. I’m gonna try to do it though.

Last year’s sales;

With the lack of new material up for sale, sales were fairly non-existent. I haven’t pulled up the actual numbers yet, but I know they were spotty. There are a number of reasons why, ranging from pricing, covers that need to be improved and just lack of new material to keep my name up at the top of the new release lists and whatnot. Last year was fairly brutal for me. For a number of reasons and that impacted me finishing and releasing stuff. In short; sales sucked and I’m the reason why.

That was last year. This is a new year, new opportunities, new information to learn. This year. I want to write more. I need to write more. I need to get a better handle on covers, formatting and get back in the game so to speak. The paralyzing that halted me over the past year and a half, seems to have melted away. While there is a touch of anxiety, it isn’t halting me. Onward and upward! I’m ready! Are you?

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December is here

Where did the year go? Rhetorical question, I’m not expecting an answer :P. So I did hit the nano words and my brain decided that Dmitri was going to go to sleep and Zander promptly started whispering at me. 0.o

Something that I noticed, post nano. I don’t seem to have the post nano brain-dead. I think it’s because writing has become such an integral part of my day (yes my DAY) that writing 50k really isn’t all that big a deal. Looking over my records on writing, I seem to have the greatest monthly output, wordwise, in feb, march and april. Interesting (imo).

I was fiddling with a program called Aeon Timeline to set up the timeline for the Zander stories. Mind you I’ve tried a number or programs and most timeline ones limit the dates. This thing is effing awesome. The world Zander lives on and the time frames in this world are VAST. This program allows me to set up my own date/calendar system. My OCD is very happy with this. VERY happy.

I managed to do the timeline for Books 1-3 and then Zander/Talia’s part of bk 4 and was starting to work on the timeline for the forensic fantasy part of bk 4 when I realized that I needed the name of a character, I couldn’t for the LIFE of me remember his name. So I did something I shouldn’t have done. I opened up my backup files and started skimming through old versions of Crossroads. -.- I am kindof surprused how well it holds up. YES there are issues, and no I don’t think I’d be able to edit it to fit into the new plot/timeline. But some of those scenes are golden. Just golden.

Anyways, I’m back to plugging away on the Zander story, I want to finish bk 2 before Jan 1st. Anyways this sat on my computer for way too long. Hope yall are having a good december so far.

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Epiphany

One of my favorite unfinished novels takes place in the Zander world. Titled Velvet and the Shadow, it’s a love story of sorts. One problem I had was that the story fizzled after about… 30 or 40k. The characters kinda fell together too easily. At the time I couldn’t figure out why and I set it aside. It’s fairly far down in the ‘list’ (22 or 23 or some such number) and I figured by the time I got to it, I’d figure out why I had trouble with it.

With NaNo right around the corner I’ve been going over nano plans and projects and put together a possible rough prologue for Z BK2. That sparked a short scene idea, just a snippet which will probably never be in any book, kindof a historic glimpse of something that shaped the past of Zander’s world. I made myself cry **rollseyes**

But then I realized something about the one character who witnesses this sad event. (I will say this, there are multiple reasons I’m not comfy with snipping that here, mainly the topic is quite depressing, unrequited love & all that) This event shapes his future and how he handles things in the future.

Some of the things that lead to some other things is because of the depression he falls into post this event. The domino effects of this are far reaching, and adds to some of his issues. Yeah, if people think I’m mean to Zander, seriously wait till I start getting into Mikial’s story.

But yeah, THAT realization led me to the epiphany, the why I stalled with Velvet and the Shadow. I know why Vel & Mikial never would have fallen together that easily. They’re both deeply hurting souls, and very walled off from others. It’s going to take a lot more than what I had to bring them to any kind of understanding let along ‘together’.

**rubs hands together**

**scribbles out notes**

I also realized that I don’t think I’ll ever be able to write Savna’s story.

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How the Myths still affect us

This post was inspired in great part by Kristine Rusch’s post Story Demands.

For years I had this dream of publishing the Zander books traditionally. I pictured them on a bookshelf in a bookstore, I would even go to waldenbooks and find where my name was and kinda scoot the books around so there would be room for them. >.>  Ever do that? 😛

As brick and morter bookstores vanished (where I lived we only had chain bookstores, tehre were NO small indipendent ones) so too went the dreams of seeing the books in bookstores, and when I decided to self pub, there was a period slight mourning. I’d never ever see them in print. Ever.

Ok so that was dramatic, now I’m planning on putting out print editions eventually but for the n00b self pubber a couple years ago (a couple YEARS??? O.M.G!) it was a drastic thought, I wasn’t sure I’d ever do print copies at all.

But there were a lot of things that hung on. Sure I was going to self pub, but I was clinging to a lot of the traditional thought processes and that included how I was putting a story together and the wordcount caps.

As you can see, if you take a glance at my offerings, I have shorts up. Nothing large. A lot of reasons for this, many of them are legitimate time and RL issues (I have had some life upsets over the past year and a half that have impacted writing and publishing), but there are other reasons, a lot of them have to do with the fear issue. Fear of failure, fear of imperfection, fear of ridicule, fear of something I can’t quite put my finger on.

Larger project = heftier formatting = greater chance of typos = imperfection

And everyone has seen the ridicule self pubbers have garnered from others if they have typos and imperfections in their self edited* projects.

But then again, look at the ‘traditional’ published authors who ALSO get ridiculed. It doesn’t seem to matter who you are, if you put out something in the public eye there is going to be someone, somewhere who is going to hate it and make fun of it. Period.

I can list off numerous people who have ignored this and continued on. From musicians, to actors, writers, directors, and so on.

I can also point out people who have thrown in the towel, hundreds, thousands even, who have given up, gotten bitter, and continued on in their little lives, because somebody didn’t like what they did/said/produced so they stomped off in a hissy fit. Or just went *poof*.

Smaller projects, while still subject to dreaded typos, are less time consuming on formatting and easier to typo check (in theory). They are safer. Again in theory.

**takes a deep breath**

The projects that really move me are my big ones. The monstrocities. The doorstoppers. The ones that I got duped into believing years ago would never sell. The huge epic ones I was told that agents weren’t representing them because publishing companies aren’t going to buy them.

I’m not even going to breach the George R.R. Martin thing, I really am not. 😛

So the things I learned as a nOOb writer, trying to break into the business included;

  • don’t make your first book part of a trilogy, pubbers don’t want to risk investing on an unknown whose work might not even sell.
  • Don’t make your first book larger than 90k. agents won’t shop it around because pubbers won’t buy it. Typesetting issues and cost and whatnot.
  • General fantasy and Epic fantasy no longer sell. That ship sailed in the 90s, don’t write it. UF and vampires are the ‘thing’. And romance.
  • Sex. If in doubt, toss sex on the page. The more your characters get laid, the greater chance you have of selling your book or bagging an agent, and the more explicit, the better. (I swear to dog I heard this from multiple sources!)

Now obviously these are wrong. I’m not going to tell you how to ‘bag an agent’ mainly because I don’t feel the need for one. There are other places you can go to locate that information, here is not one of those places.

But this was my understanding, among others which I am still discovering (some of these are so deep rooted I have a hard time defining what they are!) as I go along.

Last night I finished the rough draft of Bastard Prince. In came in at 52k with several placeholders in the beginning for battles and such that I need to plan out a bit better to fill in. There are some threads I need to lay, and flesh out, some plotholes which make it look like a colander (I think I could drive a jet plane through some of them XD) but it is, for lack of a better word, done.

I also pulled up what I have of bks 2 & 3 and got a good idea of what I need to do to finish them. And I saw what the myths of the trad pubbing had done to my story, and how it had tweaked with my head.

I had this story, you see. And it’s a life story. It’s Zander’s story, and it geeks me right the hell out. He’s got an intense one, with highs and lows, with loves and hates, joys and sorrows. Friendships and betrayals and all of it moves through a greater story which pushes the world he lives in to the brink, and eventually, possibly, over. And it’s important.

But to make it fit, to appease who I thought needed to be appeased to get it to the people I wanted to share it with, I came close to murdering it. One of the most important foundational parts of the story, book two (which needs a name) rings in at 16k right now with a lot of [this happens here] type of place holders.  Why? Because I was going to skim over it. I was thinking, oh this is the romance part, the slow-down part. This is the part people are going to yawn through. I can do flashbacks.

You see, even though I decided I was going to self pub it, I was still stuck thinking I was writing one book. I was locked into thinking that I needed to keep it small. I was trying to squeeze all of this huge, epic story into 90k. 17 (or was it 19?) years of world shaking events into 90k.

I sat in on a few conversations with some friends at FM as I mentioned in some posts over here, and my brain kinda rebelled, and melted and threw a full on tantrum (really, brain? REALLY?) but in the end it was like a sign from dog.

I sat down and did the outlines for books 1 – 3 and knew that this was right. This is the story I’m trying to tell. And it’s all important. And 90k just isn’t enough room to tell it all. And that led me to think about Crossroads (which is the grande finale to the Zander story). Which scares me because that is a friggen monster story and brain started doing the flailing again because brain realized that I KNEW, finally, that I didn’t have to stick to the old formulas anymore, and when it stopped its flailing and started calming down, it started thinking about the things I tossed as irrelevant to the story because of that whole 90k/bag-an-agent-go-trad thing. Things that were relevant. Things that need to be there.  I realize now that  Crossroads will be two books (I *might* divide it three ways, I’m not sure yet).

DC – stop laughing. I can hear you. Even now, through the screen I can HEAR you laughing. Stop it NOW. -.-

**clears throat**

The FM crowd, they make fun of me. My plotbunnies breed.

And you know what really bothers me? How much I have let myself be held back by traditional publishing myths. I have a lot of stories to write. I have a lot of stories to tell. Many of them, oh so many of them in Zander’s world. Zander isn’t the only character in his world that I adore. There’s Auron, Michael, Kale, Shaderunner, Rune, Tayek, Nyhavi, Tienovey(though there is a lot of Tien in Zander’s story) Ivonnova (still trying to decide on the spelling there), Caladorn, Eric(name change imminent), Brent, Uralko and so on. But without Zander’s tale, I just can’t tell the others. His is the foundation. Why? Ask brain, I just write 😉

How much further, would I have been if I had realized sooner that I didn’t have to keep it under a certain size?

You know what really makes me wonder? What other things are going to come up that are holding me back in little ways?

I can say this, (hours after I wrote all that up there)  I started reading ZBK1 today (I know I just finished it yesterday) and I found myself loving it. Just loving it. It’s rough, it needs work, and I see where I need to tweak things and I found some typos I need to fix. But I love it.

I love the words I finished working on yesterday. I don’t hate them. Another myth bites the dust.


This is why I took Angela James Before You Hit Send workshop. Seriously, worth every penny I spent on it, and if she puts it out in a book form I’m so buying it. Awesome, awesome workshop.

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Music and the writer – Sunday Serenity

I know this isn’t universal, but I find I write best with music playing. But not just anything. I don’t just turn on the radio, or random playlist and let music play. I have playlists. I have theme songs. Certain songs evoke certain moods and make me think of certain stories. My first completed novel was written to four songs played endlessly over and over (and drove my hubby NUTS I tell you!). Well lately, as I’ve been working on Zander I’ve had another character, the ice dragon, talking at me. Yesterday, I discovered music that fits him.

I’ve also had other music, songs that fit other situations and characters.

~*~


Lux Aeterna – from the movie Requiem for a Dream (most people don’t know that this part is only part of the full song which is something like 18 min long, but this part is the epic bit I love). This is Zander’s story. All of it. Laid out in music. Close your eyes, listen, hear the swells and receeds, feel the power building, that’s Zander’s story. and it leaves you almost breathless with it’s intensity. (Or it does me)

~*~


I see this as a clip, a video of sorts of Zander’s kids :P. Glimpsing each of their adventures, I would love to do a digi video set to this music with the end of it a picture of Zander surrounded by the five of them. **sigh** 😀

~*~

Grey’s story. Hands down. It’s an achingly beautiful song (IMO) and it’s just…it’s Grey and Nekita.

~*~

This always makes me think of E2 for some reason, which is one of my Nano Projects for this year.

~*~


And finally this, The Promise by Vas. This song, and other songs by Azam Ali (the singer of Vas) were what I was listening to while writing E1. I have no idea what language it is in, I think Turkish? But I’m not sure.

So, as my Sunday Serenity post, what music, if any, helps you write? Inspires you? Have a great Sunday yall!

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Fun Fun

It’s been a long day. An interesting day. With some good, with some bad, and some things I’ll need to work on fixing.

So here, have some dragons;

 

Miranda stared at the ice encrusted mountain. Ice Keep. Traditional home of the Ice Dragons. She settled on the ridge, glad for the clear skies and light wind. In a storm it would be dangerous to approach. She craned her neck, looking around. Grey said there would be sentries. He said there were always sentries.

When she turned around she saw the larger blue gliding, hard to see against the blue sky. She swallowed, straightened, and coiled her tail around her feet. She hoped there would be a warm fire at the end of this.

The blue glided closer, glancing her way, then turned with curving back towards the keep in a lazy glide. Miranda didn’t move. She only knew Dmitri, and he from a distance. This wasn’t Dmitri. The blue gave out an odd call, nothing like she’d heard from her own kind. From somewhere within the keep another call echoed out as several more ice dragons, their hides ranging from a pale gray to deep blue came out in a flight formation. Miranda stayed still. She was a messenger from the Dragonmaster. These were wild, near-ferals. Below her.

She heard the deeper, familiar, bellow and turned, tensing without meaning to, watching the larger beast swing into view. Dmitri. Who could blend in against the ice. Only living son of Lothos. She wanted to hate him as much as she hated his sire and Otto for what they’d done to her family. Instead she sort of felt sorry for him. How awful it must have been to have to pull the pieces of your life together after having it shattered by the actions of such selfish, power hungry creatures.

He back-winged, landing on an out-jutting rock, and gave a motion. Time to shift. Time to talk. Miranda took a deep breath and inclined her head, melting into her human form. When she looked up, he, and the other now human shaped dragons, were walking towards her. None looked friendly. Dmitri had no expression on his face. Ice dragon. Cold. Ice for eyes, ice for soul they said. There was no warmth there. Miranda swallowed.

She rested a hand on the hilt of her short sword, meeting Dmitri’s eyes. Pale eyebrow arched. She wasn’t defenseless, not as dragon, not as human, he’d best remember that.

“You’re far from your ranges, Miranda.” Dmitri said when he stopped, a few feet away. The others flanked him.

“I bring a message from my brother.” She looked at her fingernails and frowned. One looked a touch jagged. She sensed the impatience from the others though Dmitri hadn’t made a move.

“Indeed?” He said finally.

“Something about a Grande Council.” She pulled the scroll out and started to hand it to him. He waved it away with a shake of his head and frowned.

“Grande Councils are for leaders.”

“You’re,” She swallowed, finding it difficult to say Lothos’s name. Lothos was the old leader, Otto had taken his place, but it was supposed to go to Dmitri, right?

“It doesn’t work that way here.” Dmitri said.

###

 

😀

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Some things

Take a moment, watch this. As a writer, think about what it is you’re doing.

 

I don’t know about you, but this is my favorite scene from that movie. As a kid I would sing this song as I led our family dogs through the backyard and into a world of imagination. As I got older, I found my backyard became the world of Pern and I was a dragonrider (somehow swings became dragons, don’t ask I’m still not sure :P), then other times it became the side of an Integral Tree from Larry Niven’s  Smoke Ring stories.  Sometimes it was the setting of the Enterprise and I was on a voyage with Capt Picard and all them, and so on.

I read voraciously as a kid and a teen. Sadly I don’t read as much now as I did then, which is something I’m trying to change. Writers need to read after all!

But as a writer, do you know what we’re really doing?

Like Willy Wonka in the movie, we’re holding out our hands to the reader, we’re saying “Come with me, come play in my world, come see what I dream about, meet the characters that move me. Come on, don’t be shy, jump right in!”

There is a lot of drabble out there, talk about readers as if they are some stupid non-entities we’re trying to get to open their wallets and pour out their hard earned into our pockets. But that’s not the right mindset, if you ask me. I want my readers, all eight of you (:P just kidding, there are twelve of you! XD), to walk the roads of my imagination. I want you to be able to enjoy the adventures of my elementals and dragons in the Elemental stories, to stand with Zander against incredible odds in the Avaria stories, to walk the paths of the ancients in the phfr stories.

I have all these stories, I have all these characters, I hope one day you’ll all get a chance to meet them.

Fellow writers, remember when you get discouraged and down that somewhere out there is a kid in his or her backyard playing out the adventures you’re writing about. Whether its aliens in alaska, or out of control spam, or crazy squirrels and dimensional rifts, there’s someone out there who is waiting and loving every word you write.

Write for you, and know someone, somewhere will love it.

~*~

In final I saw today on my newsfeed on facebook that Anne (A.C.) Crispin passed away this morning from cancer. I don’t know the details, I was unaware she was ill until just a few months ago and it made me very sad. I had one, brief interaction with her, some years ago (5+ I believe) and we discussed books and she was super encouraging. Goodbye Anne, another great gone. **sigh**

 

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