Monday, December 27, 2010
In Which I Take A Few Days Off
So I will see you again in 2011, when I will be participating in 3 blogfests in a row (Saturday, Sunday and Monday)
The easiest blogfest ever The Eye Candy Blogfest
followed by the 2nd Annual No Kiss Blogfest
and finished off by Summer's Hannah's and My Show Me Yours blogfest! (link to the top right).
I hope you have a wonderful New Year's weekend. See you again soon!
Friday, December 24, 2010
In Which We Have A Merry Christmas
Tonight my family will be spending our time eating crab legs, Poté and probably some clam chowder as well.
Then the people will play some board games, open a single present and I'll spend my time rotating between laps and getting lots of love.
So, because I will be chillaxin and having a good time today, here's some fun Christmas/Winter related stuff on the interwebs, just for you!
Happy Holidays, pals - I'll see you next week!
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Stranger Than Fiction Blogfest
You could send in a flash fiction piece for a chance at some choice prizes and then, because it's also a blogfest, post your piece today to celebrate!
The theme was The Truth is Stranger than Fiction, which meant:
a fiction piece that originates from strange true happenings. It could be based on something that happened to you or a friend or a stranger. Something you saw on the news or heard from a coworker. Anything that originates from reality (the plot) but then you turn it into fiction
And I won one of two second places!
Here was my entry:
It used to be, when she was young, beautiful, desirable, she danced all night long. And there were men, and they would cheer, laugh, drink, want. They wanted her. Her limbs. Her hair. Her body. She craved the want. Craved the very need she fed.
Sometimes, though, she hoped they wanted the dance. Like the cigarette reflections in their drinks, she mimicked the fire, hoped they would feel the movement, feel the way she felt it, burning through her limbs.
So she supplied, fed their need, and in turn fed her own. The sway of her hips and the grace of her legs as she spun, turned, flew, were all to give rise to movement. She did it for the dance, for their desire.
Until her dance began to end, as all things do. Some things end suddenly, in a flash of flame and glory. Others smother, as the skin sags, the muscles weaken, the legs falter.
Still, she danced, and danced in the light.
The men no longer laughed, loved, desired, but jeered, mocked, loathed. She tried to return to them what she’d once received, but she was unseen, unloved. Broken, except for the dance.
Later, tired, alone, she remembered the men. Flames flashing in their seats, desire burning through her limbs. She climbed the stage and brought the fire once more; those red and orange flames flickering in nature’s first dance. She spun, turned, flew as the flames grew closer and she again felt the caress of want.
And there were men, once more, with sirens and lights. They wanted her, pulled her from the stage, the dance. Her hair blackened, shedding, ash.
The men spoke, but she paid them no heed. Instead, she remembered her dance.
As she watched her stage feed the need of the fire, she smiled.
Here, had always been her best audience.
So there you have it! I'll be jumping around to hit up the other entries today
Monday, December 20, 2010
In Which We Discuss Gaslamp Fantasy
I have a question: How many of you know the difference between Steampunk and Gaslamp Fantasy? *counts raised hands* OK that's about what I thought.
Let's have a brief discussion about these cousins.
Steampunk: steampunk involves an era or world where steam power is still widely used—usually Victorian era Britain—that incorporates prominent elements of either science fiction or fantasy. Works of steampunk often feature anachronistic technology or futuristic innovations as Victorians may have envisioned them
Gaslamp Fantasy: is a sub-genre, also called gaslight romance, of fantasy literature, having the Victorian/Edwardian era as background. It differs from contemporary steampunk, which has a much more super-science and tone.
A good way to separate the two is by asking yourself, "can I remove the steampunk technology/gadgetry and still have a story?" If the answer is no, you're probably writing Steampunk. If the answer is yes, then you're probably writing Gaslamp Fantasy.
A fun history of the term Gaslamp Fantasy is that it was first coined by artist Kaja Foglio (from Girl Genius, one of my fav webcomics) She coined it because, at the time Girl Genius was coming out, there was also a comic out called Steampunk and she didn't want any confusion. So she referred to Girl Genius as Gaslamp Fantasy, a term she misquoted from a book referring to Jules Verne and H.G. Wells.
Gaslamp Fantasy stories are typically not so focused on the machinery, and oftentimes the technology is just in the background.
Now, since we had a fun little discussion, time for some steampunk/gaslamp fantasy pics!
Friday, December 17, 2010
Friday Fun Words
You'll never guess what we've got in our house now. NEVER! This is how you're going to look:
see more Lolcats and funny pictures
Anne has been wanting one of these for years. It was why she had built her guinea pig cage so big, just in case.
Well after years of waiting, she finally arrived!
Meet our newest family member, a hairless guinea pig!
Her name is Harriet B. Suit (the B stands for birthday). She's a skinny pig, which is a breed of pigger which is born hairless except for a bit of hair on her nose and maybe some on her feet. She's almost four weeks old and she's super nice and super duper warm when you hold her.
I definitely want to eat her.
Now, Onto the words!
Advest - when you invest in ads. Which is dumb. No one watched commercials anymore
Unwricat - this is the opposite of an LOLCat. A cat which refuses to do any sort of writing or interwebs lording. Because own the interwebs, ape-friends. They most definitely do
Brofo - This is a curse word you use specifically to refer to your "bro" when he does something particularly heinous. Similar to Mofo
Biteypo - Clearly a Po which has a preference for biting
Glerperp - This is a term which refers to the sounds people (and dogs too) make when they throw up. Gross, right?
And that's all for this week! I'll be back next week for some more Friday fun!
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
In Which I Pick My Characters
I always have a very firm picture in my head of what my characters look like. Sometimes it may take a whole novel before I know for sure, but by the end I could pick them out of a lineup.
So that's why I'm always surprised when I'm able to find pictures of real people who match my imagination so well. Sometimes their hair cuts are a little different, but that's no big deal.
In Glimpse I pretty much only have 3 characters, not counting Rule the sea serpent. Here are the pics I found of my characters:
This is main character Pier:
Here's Pier's younger sister Nemmy:
And this is Pier's love interest Lani:
Yay! Fun times! So how about you? Been browsing the people pics on the interwebs?
Monday, December 13, 2010
In Which The Siblings Provide Me With Some Art
Brother decided he would draw a cover for my novel. Back in the day he wrote a comic strip for his school newspaper. It was really good and Twin and I keep harping on him to make a webcomic, but so far, no dice.
Anyway, back to his "cover" - this was before I won the cover for 30 Covers 30 Days. Keep in mind he didn't know anything much about the story beyond "A boy and his sea serpent".
Here is his work of genius:
The text, in case you can't read it says:
"You gotta believe!"
- a touching story about a boy and his sea serpent friend and their rage-filled fight against the world
Written by Sarah Ahiers
Illustrated by Sir Patrick Ahiers
Apparently at some point Brother was knighted.
Twin also drew a (more serious) picture for the WIP. Here's the colored pencil version, though I have high hopes she will color it with her awesome art tablet on the computer (hint hint)
I'm a particular fan of the fish.
So what about you? Do you have any art created for your WIPs?
Friday, December 10, 2010
In Which We Host A Blogfest
It's blogfest time!
How many of you participated in National Novel Writing Month this year? Raise your hands. Okay, good. Well this is for you whether you won or not.
The awesome and spectacular Hannah approached Summer and I, so we are joining forces to bring you the "Show Me Yours" Blogfest!
The point of this blogfest is to share an excerpt of your NaNoWriMo novel. It can be any scene but try to keep it at 500 words so we can all get around to as many blogs as possible.
Who's with us?!
The date as you may have noticed is January 3rd, 2011. This will give you time to choose a scene and edit it, revise it, change it...whatever. Feel free to give us a little background about your story or at the very least a title and a genre. That always helps, right?
So if you participated in NaNoWriMo 2010, now's the time to show your skills or your bad writing! Excitement!
Hannah, Summer and I will be using the same widget, so if you sign up on any of our blogs, your name will show on all. My Mister Linky Widget is over there beneath my followers --------->
Feel free to steal this badge to advertise but please link it back to here or to one of the other ladies blogfest post so peeps know the rules
I hope you enjoy your weekend!
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
In Which I Do A Dance
The "I finished a novel" dance of course!
It looks a little something like that, though to be fair I kinda hurt my back shoveling on Saturday, so it was much more restrained. You can ask twin, she'll vouch for me (she'd better...)
So, the working titled Glimpse of Another Shore is now completed at 58K words. Also, because I edited as I wrote (which was awesome by the way, I highly recommend it) I'm also technically done with my first line edit as well! wOOt!
Here are some fun stats:
This is my second novel completed in 2010 (though to be fair, Foxfire was started in late 09)
This is my first novel written in First POV (though I've done many a short story in first POV)
This is my first full length YA novel. I had a lot of fun and now think I may delve into YA more often. Also the shorter length required for YA is kinda nice.
I love it. A lot. I think some of my love has to do with the very minimal amount of editing and rewriting that needs to be done, but I don't even care. I LOVE IT.
So now I'm giving it another read through for a quick line edit. I'm also adding chapter breaks instead of just scene breaks. Then it will go to Twin for a read (since she's my alpha/beta reader) and also Hannah and Teebore who are my awesome crit partners.
After that I may look for a few other betas as well, peeps who read a lot of YA, preferably fantasy YA. So if that's you, we may be chatting later if you're interested (I'll make a post about it in the future)
So, how is your WIP coming?
Monday, December 6, 2010
In Which We Had No Interwebs
Luckily, I have some LOLCats saved for just such and emergency.
Here you go.
And how was everyone's weekend? Twin, Myself and our mom went shopping at the Mall Of America and it was awesome.
Friday, December 3, 2010
Friday Fun Words
How was everyone's week? Are you staying warm? I hope so, because it is CO-OLD here. And the worst part is, it's all sunny and nice looking outside, but as soon as Mommy opens the door to let me out, a cold arctic blast of wind hits me in the face.
I don't think it's fair that I have to potty in the cold. Not. One. Bit.
Anyway, onto the words!
*Huelewi - and the news. Hah!
*Broloto - gelato for brothers. MMMM, even though even though it's an arctic wonderland outside right now, I could totally nom on some gelato.
Cruded - when you've experienced a "crud" moment
Miliffin - A millipede muffin. Delicious? Or creepy? You be the one to decide
Typen - pens for typewriters. What? Some typewriters like to collect pens just like everyone else! Man, I don't have any tolerance for typewriter bigots like you. *shakes head sadly*
And that's all for this week, friends! Stay warm!
Thursday, December 2, 2010
In Which I Give A Shoutout
Shannon McMahon is running an Anonymous critique session. The writer is anonymous, so you don't have to worry about hurting a pal's feelings and can critique truthfully. Stop by and give it a look if you're interested.
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
In Which NaNo Flies Away For One More Year
How did it go for everyone? I think my NaNo buddy list was about 50/50 for winners, which is pretty awesome.
My final word count is almost identical to last year's, and even though it seemed harder to do the actual writing this year, I don't know if I'm reading into things.
But know what was awesome? Editing as I went. Never again will I shut off my internal editor and just go go go. That just leads to horribly depressing edits later. Nope, from now on I'm going to allow myself to edit as long as I first get my word count in.
This year's NaNo is already leaps and bounds ahead of last year's, so that is awesome.
It's not quite done yet, but I'm on the final climax of the story so I don't see it being more than another 10k.
I want to get it completed as fast as possible so I can give it another quick edit and then get it out to Betas. 2011 is going to be the year of the query. This I vow.
So, how did your NaNo turn out? And I don't want to hear just about your word count, I want to hear about the actual story.
Ready, set, TELL ME!
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
In Which I Got Picked!
I was the very last cover picked for 30 covers in 30 days!! I can't even believe it! They actually did a bonus cover today and it was me! How crazy is that?!
Here's the link for the post and here's the awesome cover designed for me by Henry Sene Yee:
And here's the synopsis I had whipped up for it:
Glimpse of Another Shore, by Sarah Ahiers:
In a country where one member of each household must serve the navy in the war effort, sixteen year old Pier Arvin is doomed to spend his life as an “exotic” kelp farmer. Lame.
When Pier finds an orphaned sea serpent he decides to keep it as a pet. Everyone knows a serpent will eat a man faster than he can blink so surely the serpent, Rule, will add some excitement to his life.
Joint swims around the reef and close calls with sharks show Pier you don’t have to wear a naval uniform to find action or catch the eyes of pretty girls. But when Rule accidentally injures Pier’s younger sister and then attracts the attention of the enemy navy, Pier realizes the idea of war is very different than the real thing.
Now he has to make a choice, surrender Rule and his town to the enemy, or risk his life in an attempt to free them all.
Yay! Internet hugs for all!
In Which Blogger Is Jerking Me Around
Monday, November 29, 2010
In Which The Holiday Is Over
I actually forgot what I was originally going to post about today. So here's a fun conversation I had this weekend with Twin and Brother while driving over to our parents' to nom on some delicious turkey.
Bro: Look, a hawk in that tree. Where do hawks go in the winter?
Me: Some of them migrate. Some just stay here.
Bro: What do they eat?
Twin: Not all rodents hibernate. Squirrels.
Bro: Well certainly the animal living in my ceiling doesn't hibernate.
Twin: We should get a ferret. That would take care of the problem
Me: Yeah but then we'd have a ferret in the wall, and that would be worse
Bro: Then we could stick a fox in the walls to get the ferret
Me: And we know where to get one
Bro: Then we'd have to put a cougar in the walls to get the fox
Me: No, we're not putting a cougar in the wall. I believe the correct step after fox is foxhound
Twin: Well, a foxhound doesn't actually kill the fox
Bro: Yeah we'd have to get some fox hunters and put them in the walls.
Me: Then we'd hear the fox hunters at all hours and their bugles (side note here, when Brother makes a bugle sound, it drives Tula crazy)
Bro: But then the hunting commissioner would get in the walls to tell the fox hunters that it's not the right season. All we'd hear is "What's this now? The season is over, jolly good and all that"
Me: Then the fox hunters would come out of the wall and tell us they'll be back next season. And we'd still have a fox in our wall
And that's how we spent our time on our drive over.
How was your Thanksgiving?
Thursday, November 25, 2010
In Which We Celebrate Thanksgiving
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
In Which There Are Literary Consultants?
Here's an example:
The Writing Coach.
Someone mentioned she had used a Literary Consultant (this specific one) before she queried her novel, and now she has an agent and a 3 book deal.
I've never heard of someone (or a team) of people you can hire to help you out, a creative or literary life coach if you will.
I think most people can be successful on their own without a consultant, but still, color me intrigued. If it wasn't in the UK, I'd dig a little deeper on this, for curiosity's sake. But clearly it is not cheap.
What about you, would you ever hire a Literary Consultant?
P.S. - being as there is a delicious holiday in the states tomorrow, there will be no Friday Fun Words. See you Monday!
Monday, November 22, 2010
In Which We Discuss 30 Covers In 30 Days
30 Covers in 30 Days is a fun little offshoot of NaNoWriMo. The Office of Letters and Light (the peeps who run the NaNo show) get graphic designers to make book covers of some of the NaNo projects. One cover each day, posted on their blog.
Last year was the first year and it was just one graphic designer. He was going to see if he could design a book cover every day for 30 days. He failed miserably. I think he got like 5 done.
This year the OLL decided to ask more graphic designers, 30 to be exact, so they're all responsible for making a single cover in a 24 hour time period. So far for this year, only one cover hasn't been completed.
Anyone's NaNo project could be selected, as long as you have a title and synopsis entered under you Novel Info page. There is also a "Nomination" form you can fill out for yourself or for anyone else you feel has a great synopsis.
Here are some of my favorite synopses and covers done so far for NaNo 2010 (in no particular order):
Day 7 Cover
The Impersonal Business of Death, by Chasia Eidson:
Harold Griswold is the 1100th Grim Reaper in an age where the Reapers use cell phones to do most of their business. The cold technology allows for a more efficient system of carrying souls into the afterlife with no hope for the dying to plead their cases. Feeling a sudden desire to connect on a more personal level with the people he has been assigned to after befriending a small girl with numbered days, Harold decides to start a web blog for his future customers to read. His blog details his interactions with mortals and apologizes for the increasingly impersonal business of dying.
I really like how well this cover matches the synopsis. The cover itself is very impersonal and I love the cell phone bars
Day 8 Cover
Trick’s Millenium, by S.M. Davis:
Don’t pet Trick thinking he’s just your average big black dog…you’d be dead wrong. Trick was once a man…a man named Patrick with a wife and family and the ability to see the dead. When Death came for his wife, Patrick made a deal that would change his life (and death) forever: his life in exchange for hers. Death accepted. Sentenced to a thousand years as Death’s spectral hound, Patrick struggles at first to distance himself from his still-living family and embrace his bizarre new existence in the Between-Lives world. Luckily, his new ghostly friends soon show him the ropes. From avoiding exorcists and Bloody Mary, to scaring the daylights out of the living, Patrick has a lot to learn about the afterlife. Four paws take some getting used to…
This was the first one I saw that I thought would stay my favorite. That changed when some later ones popped up, but still. I absolutely adored the fingerprint paw prints and would probably read this book.
Day 9 Cover
When Camping With Mr. Cod, by Eva Verner:
Danny’s life on the inaptly named Cuddlebug Lane (and before you ask, yes, that really is the name of the street) is only just beginning when he meets his overly eccentric neighbor, Albert Cod, whom he thinks has an uncanny resemblance to the Doc from Back to the Future. Mr. Cod is a writer who spends more of his time trying to get into the shoes of his characters so he can accurately write them than actually writing.
He already knows that the guy is a little more than odd, but when Mr. Cod pesters him endlessly for a few hours to come along with him on a week long camping trip to Virginia, Danny reluctantly agrees. But what Danny soon finds out is that “a little more than odd” is a greater understatement than saying pumpkins are kind of orange.
Not very long into the trip, Danny sees just how extreme Mr. Cod goes to get personal with his fictional characters, including being sprayed in the face with mace (a lot) and convincing Danny’s girlfriend back at home, Laura, to believe that he’s now a polygamist with seven wives.
It’s going to be one long, stressful, and strange week, and by the end of it Danny will most certainly be lamenting the sad lack of bears at the campground.
I think the synopsis sounds kind of interesting, but I mostly posted this one because I think the cover is awesome. I would totes pick this up and give it a look if I saw it on a shelf. I love how it's all glowy
Day 11 Cover
Heroes and Villains and Scott, by Acacia Ackles:
Ezra Gordon. At nineteen, he already leads one of the most successful superhero leagues in New York City. He’s taken down three supervillains, eight major villains, and a whole smattering of vagabonds and ragamuffins. He has the power to generate lightning from the palms of his hands. He owns several bobbleheads of himself. But he is not the main character of this novel.
Donovan Kyle. His very name smacks of supervillainry. He remains one of the only untouched, all-his-limbs-intact supervillains east of the Mississippi. He can freeze anything with a single touch. His wins-losses record is higher than some superheroes. He has absorbed information from comic books, television shows, movies, and past mistakes, and he knows how not to fail. But he is not the main character of this novel.
Scott Benson. His hometown was 95% superpowered - and he was one of the lucky 5%. Ezra Gordon has been his best friend since they were in gradeschool. He has never defeated anyone, even at a game of chess. He cannot shoot lightning from his hands. He cannot turn household objects to ice. He cannot, in fact, do anything but get in the way. And he will do so for the entirety of this novel.
This one is my second favorite (so far, since we still have 10 or so covers to go). I want to read this book and I love the whimsy of the cover.
Day 14 Cover
The Dark Chocolatorium of the Thirteen Santas, by Annie McAndrew:
As a ward of the monks of Antrum, Coll knew he was expected to learn charity, humility, and the making of the fine chocolates that are the monks’ livelihood. He never expected to discover a highly illegal automaton on the doorstep.
The monks, usually quick to investigate things Unknown, show no curiosity at all about the mechanical monstrosity. But Coll is certain they know more than they’re saying. His search for answers the monks won’t give leads him to the Duchy’s most notorious sky pirates, the Shrike and the Dove, who aren’t in the business of “something for nothing”. But their price seems so reasonable – carry just one little message – that he goes along. Too late, he learns that the message concerned the ransom of the Duke’s son; that the Duke responds to such things in force; and that there were in fact more smuggled automatons - a whole army’s worth, now marching against the Duke’s Own.
With pirates fighting soldiers fighting automatons fighting monks through the streets, Coll’s easiest course would be to creep away before the Duke’s Own arrest him or the automatons march right over him. But he still doesn’t know who’s loyal and who’s lying. And he’s not about to leave while a riddle like that remains Unknown.
As it stands right now, this one is my favorite. Not only do I want to read this book based on the synopsis, the cover is AMAZING! Creepy guy, glowing eyes, bar of chocolate? So full of win.
Day 16 Cover
Nano Kid, by Sage Collins:
When the new kid, Dean, saves Caleb from some bullies, Caleb starts to dream that Dean’s come to save him from everything, like his abusive dad. He can’t help it. Dean’s so strong and cool. Why can’t Caleb be like that?
He soon finds out that the reason he can’t be like that is that Dean’s a cyborg. Well, according to him, “cybernatically enhanced” but same thing. Dean’s on a mission—so cool—to find a kid at Caleb’s school who was injected with nanobots when he was a baby. This kid should be super-strong, so that leaves Caleb out, but he still wants to help. He wants to be around Dean.
The more time he spends with Dean, the more he realizes he’s… crushing on Dean. Darn it, like he didn’t have enough problems with bullies calling him “gay” without it being true?
But that’s not the real problem. The real problem is that Dean might not have the same feelings. And that Caleb’s crush might not stand the test when he finds out Dean’s supposed to kill the Nano Kid.
I just like the cover on this one. It really screams YA to me.
Day 19 Cover
The Whale Is A Harsh Obsession, by Viviane Rozsa:
Call her Jezzie.
For months Captain Jezebel “Jezzie” Ezalong searches the universe with her intergalactic crew for the elusive steampunk white whale “Leviathan.” When she finally wounds the creature with her own hands, the space pirate ship Ishmael appears, headed by her rival Elijah. He scuttles her spaceship the Ahab into near destruction, leaving Jezzie with no choice but to let the whale go and retreat.
On nearby planet Mazorgog, as her ship undergoes repairs for the second pursuit, Jezzie saves the life of a socially-awkward, intelligent albino named Melvin. He’s lanky, tall, bifocaled and a nerd, but he sports a deep scar running down his pale face she can’t ignore. Jezzie invites Melvin onto her ship, and a friendship grows between the two as they pursue the white whale… a friendship that blossoms into love.
But there is a secret Melvin holds from Jezzie and the crew, one that could tear the two of them apart should he reveal it. Melvin has no choice when the pirates ransack the Ahab and capture his Jezzie. He will risk everything to save her, even his own life by Jezzie’s own hands.
Herman Melville is rolling over in his grave, and Douglas Adams is cracking up a storm. The story of a whale, a woman and outer space.
Heinlein was right. The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. But whales are worse.
I think the synopsis on this one sounds interesting, and I love the cover with the light streaks of space and the thought bubble title.
So those are some of my favs so far, but you should check them all out on the blog, because they're all good in their own way. And make sure you have a title and synopsis entered on your novel page and you may see a cover designed for you.