Thursday, September 29, 2011


Titles are kind of hard. Sometimes they come up easily, and I don't have to give it a second thought. Then there's something like Twelfth, which after weeks of writing and thinking, I think I might have a real title for it. And there's the story I refer to as LM, which I'll be releasing to all the usual self-publishing places when the cover comes back to me, which will be as soon as I come up with a title. It's had four different titles. It's a frigging short story, for crying out loud. Then there's the novella I'm currently working on which had its title well before I set the first word down. How nice is that?

So, the actual title for Twelfth? "Worn Soles" -- but I still need a title for LM! I'm stuck between"The Grieving Mermaid" or "The Mermaid and the Landsman Prince" which kinda sounda a bit too romance novelly:

She was a mermaid, princess of a people who dwelled beneath the waves.

He was a landsman prince, scion of a seaside kingdom and sailor of the ocean's surface.

And one day, they meet, and must find an answer to the question: if a mermaid and a landsman fall in love, where do they make their home?

However, that's not what my story's about. In my story, he's a married guy, and she's kind of, um, crazy. And they don't get together. I actually LIKE the title "The Mermaid and the Landsman Prince" but it just doesn't work for my story. (bummer.)

But LM will be coming out soon. Maybe then I'll quit hyperventilating. And it'll probably be called "The Grieving Mermaid".

(But I still refer to "Worn Soles" as Twelfth.)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Steven Pressfield has it right. Resistance is a bitch. Bitchier than me first thing in the morning before coffee during that time of the month.

A friend recommended The War of Art to me some while ago, and I just found my copy and was flipping through it. Yeah, I don't have the fun Resistance where one uses sex to get out of creative endeavors. Right now, Resistance is taking the form of Linux, the hussy, which I normally wouldn't give a second glance to not because of the quality of the OS (because it's been a fun fling! If only I knew what to do with it!) but because I generally have too much on my plate to add a whole new way of working on my computer and learn a new vocabulary besides. And what's worse? Linux, the hussy, has all these pretty pretty little distributions, so it's a bit like having a lover who dresses up in a different role every night. Last week it was Puppy, a few days ago it was Ubuntu, now it's Puredyne, but my head is getting turned by Mint. Or Chakra. Or openSUSE.

Oh, god, I'm a harlot.

Anyway, because of my infidelities with Linux, my writing has stalled, and nothing has gone forward. I got LM back from my beta weeks ago and am just now working on the corrections. I still have to get the cover done for it. I've already gotten "Ashes" back, and have yet to dive into those corrections. And the current story I'm writing, which has the working title of "Twelfth" has languished on my hard drive, patiently awaiting my infidelity to run its course.

But I'm back on track, now. Until something else turns my head of course. Which it won't, 'cause completely reformed, that's me. Um. As soon as I download Mint. Or maybe openSUSE.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Beta Readers

I think that "beta" should be spelled "betta" and that my beta readers should become betta readers. This probably means that I'm easily amused. If I put a mirror in front of a betta reader, do they stop reading and start attacking their reflection? Perhaps they're better off as "beta" reader. Although it makes me wonder about alpha readers, and whether there are any omega readers, or anyone who are chi rho readers. 

I've been fortunate in my choice of first readers. They're astute, and wonderful, and aren't afraid to tell me off. Usually with big huge red pen marks, because that's the kind of awesome they are.

Hm, probably a good thing they aren't betta readers; hard to wield red pen underwater. But still, very pretty.

Monday, September 12, 2011

A Bit About Me

I'm a writer living in north Texas. My hobbies include the Three Rs from grade school, except that aRithmetic has been booted, leaving only Reading and wRiting behind. There is currently a Rutabaga holding the position of the third R, but we all know it's just a place-holder until something more suitable comes along.

I enjoy knitting and tinkering around with things, neither of which are R enough to make it into the Three Rs. And before anyone thinks that tinkering = mechanically inclined, allow me to clarify: that means I burn my fingers with a hot glue gun on occasion, or that I figure things out with my knitting, or I poke something and ask, "Oh, what does this do?" before being hurriedly led away by concerned friends.

I'm married to a wonderful man who should be elevated to sainthood for his patience with me, except hopefully without the martyring because martyrdom doesn't sound like a whole lot of fun. We currently live in a multi-family domestic co-op, which sounds a great deal like a sitcom waiting to happen. Thankfully, it isn't because we all know it would be more fun to be in a space opera. Or anything starring Nathan Fillion.

My favorite writers include the trifecta of Gaiman, de Lint, and Tolkein (admission: I've only read The Hobbit and LotR. I will probably never read The Silmarillion, nor any of the Lost Tales, nor Children of Hurin). Other favorites include Peter S. Beagle's The Last Unicorn (and let's not forget "Two Hearts"!); the Abhorsen books by Garth Nix, the David Sullivan books by Tom Deitz, and Robin McKinley's Damar books. I enjoy short stories a great deal; there is something very satisfying about the short form, and my idea of a fun weekend involves coffee and an anthology.

Once upon a time I was a theatre major. Now I'm just someone with aspirations to be a professional student, but somehow I don't think that comes with dental and 401K. (And before you say that actors/theatre people don't have benefits, Actor's Equity offers benefits.)

'Nuff said; back to writing.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Here's What's Going on in my Head

Still trying to get comfortable in my skin, exposing myself with blogging. Not quite pulling one's shirt open, which one should never do in polite company. But as a writer, one performs actions that are the equivalent of, well, opening up one's ribcage to show off the inner workings. Exposing yourself. Here I am, and here's what's going on inside me. In my head. In my heart.

It's more than a little frightening. Actually, exposing myself via my stories doesn't scare me. Much. I wanted to be a writer when I was younger, much younger, and after abandoning it, I've come back, and it's like slipping into an old, broken-in pair of comfie jeans. Oh, hello, yes, I remember how well you fit now and I was daft to leave you behind.

But this blogging is another thing entirely. I'm not protected by the thin scrim of fiction, by fantastic settings, nor do I have interesting characters and thrilling circumstances as a buffer betwixt me and the rest of the world. My life is boring. I don't DO anything of interest, which I think is the reason why I have been Twitter-resistant. I mean, who wants to hear about me waking up and waxing rhapsodic over my coffee? Hell, I do that every morning and I don't want to hear it. Nor, I think, does anyone want to hear about whether I'm having a ham sandwich or a turkey sandwich for lunch. My sandwiches are quite boring as well. Lunchmeat on whole wheat bread, with mayo and lettuce, for those who are curious about the jejeune details.

But blogging -- that's considerably more than 140 characters. What the ruddy hell do I write about? "I wrote about 3,000 words today, and revised a chapter of my novel; what the hell was I thinking when I wrote it?"

Now that I'm through whinging about blog content, here's some actual content, and I guess it's indicative of what I'm afraid of: I'm working on a story that bears the working title "Twelfth". During the writing, something came up, figuratively as well as in-the-story-literally. Does that make sense? In the narrative, something came bubbling up, so I suppose that makes it in-the-story-literal. It's a pretty icky thing to write or even say, and I almost hesitated in its inclusion, but I really have to stay true to the story, to the character in question . . . and anyway, I really hate dead baby jokes. (No, that's not a non-sequitur; it relates.) But anyway, when I write things like that, I wonder if I need to put disclaimers all over my writing, like "Really Awful Stuff Happens! Do not read if you're sensitive!" But I think I'm sensitive, and I rather like reading awful stuff happening. Sort of. But that's the worry that's been percolating in the back of my brains.

Oh, goodness, I'm probably going to have to figure out what to do about hate mail. I've still got time, right?

Monday, September 5, 2011

Blog Fodder

I haven't figured out how often to update this blog, nor have I quite found a "voice" for it. All I do know is that I'd rather keep it about my writing, so I'm very disinclined to post anything personal. This means:

*no posts on marital problems, nor posts on lack of marital problems (unless the husband does something super-spectacular-awesome that I really have to share with my closest seven million friends! RIGHT NOW!)

* no bitching about my nearest and dearest

* and very minimal medical stuff only as it's germane to my writing (example: my typing hand fell off and doctors have advised me to learn to type with my toes as I recover; as a result updates and story output will be slow), as opposed to stuff that isn't germane (example: someone stole my legs and left me in a hotel bathtub filled with ice; however writing not impacted because I can still type. But if you see a pair of stunning, long, tanned and toned legs, they're, um, mine).

*Politics, religion and other hot-button issues. Because there are other blogs that cater to those things, and my political affiliation/religious affiliation/stance on <fill in the blank> are outside the scope of this blog.

So, that leaves remarks about:

*the weather. Weather's fairly safe topic. And possibly germane to my writing (example: Tornado came by; computer currently in Oz. Must go on quest to retrieve it. No longer have legs for silver slippers, as my statuesque gams were replaced by serviceable set with big thighs, so need to find silver galoshes that fit calves.)

* My imaginary friends, unless they do something upsetting, as I don't want this to become a bitch platform (don't you hate when your imaginary friends are assholes?).

*Anything to do with writing and self-publishing, in general or in specific.

*Anything that I enjoyed reading and would like to share. 'Cos storytellers are also storyDEVOURERS.

In conclusion, we'll have to see how this evolves. All these guidelines I've put down today may be tossed out by this time next year. I think I've kept it fairly open and set some good boundaries; only time will tell though.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Poppin' the Cherry

Blah blah blah bla-blah blah blah. Blah.

There, it's done. The first post to my blog. Now it isn't scary anymore. It's a bit weird to me anyway, to write without an audience in mind. Very shortly I'll be publishing some of my fiction, and if all goes well, someone will buy it and like it and come looking for me here, where I will proceed to present myself as a babbling git. Hello! Welcome! And I hope that my having cottage cheese for brains doesn't upset you!

I've kept journals and the like, but I write those with no audience in mind (I mean really, who wants to hear me complain? I'm a whiner!). The stories I write with an audience in mind -- an audience who seeks to be entertained by my literary prestidigitations, such as they are.

And then there's this blog, where you discover that the spectacular, larger-than-life, drop-dead diva onstage . . . is actually a rather tired-looking, plain and unspectacular woman who kind of blends into the woodwork. Not that I'm calling me or my writing spectacular or diva-licious -- it's more like the stories are "onstage" and this blog is me in a shared dressing room with discarded bits of costume and used pots of Ben Nye make-up.

But here I am, and here's the place you can learn a bit more about me and my writing -- it sounds weird for me to write this to a non-existant ubiquitous "you". There's no audience yet, just a story waiting for a cover, another at the beta, and a third in progress. I guess this post is so I can pop the blog's cherry and not worry too much about what I'm going to write about and why.

And if you're one of those future readers (as of this writing), well, here I am, there I are, and please wish me luck on my writing career, if you would be so kind!

Thank you for stopping by!