Friday, June 27, 2014

The Guilty Pleasure of Implement Porn....

Shawn has been looking for a journal to replace the one she keeps Mason's memories in.  That sounds very science fictional doesn't it?  But, in reality, it's just a kind of a baby book that's kept growing over the years.  Shawn writes down little tidbits she'd like to remember or thinks should be noted for the future/future reference.  The one she just filled upstarted in 2004.

Today, after her haircut, we decided to see what we could find to replace it.  We went to the kinds of stores that specialized in fancy pens and papers and...

...of course, it was *me* who walked out with twenty dollars worth of STUFF.

Admit it (because you know it's true), paper and pens are like porn for writers.  I will confess that have this particular love affair with quad lined notebooks.  I filched my very first one from Shawn, back in our college days, when she would have to special order lab notebooks that were quad lined.  Now you can find those pretty regularly at Target, and I usually buy myself a couple of the really cheap ones during the back to school sales.

At Wet Paint today, I found something I might be even more in love with "dotted" notebook paper.

Look how pretty!

The guy at the art store might have thought I was a little odd for petting it, but they DON'T UNDERSTAND.

Paper is very special to me.

I mean, maybe I *am* a bit weird, but I still love the feel of pen on paper.  I find notebook writing still very useful.  I've been known to carry a notebook around not only to take Captain America style notes, but also to have on hand should I be inspired somewhere where my computer isn't easily accessible--like, say, when I show up a little early at Mason's school for pick-up or whatever.  Plus, even though it ends up messy and crossed out, I enjoy the constriction of having to write long-hand sometimes.  I almost always edit when I transcribe to screen, but the act of having to push on and not worry about perfect phrasing can really help me get the gist of a scene out on paper.

Also I used to occasionally sketch out pictures of my characters and I found that a lot easier when I had quad or blank pages.  Now... now I can haz dots!

Plus, I had to buy a pen. I had two in my hand, but Shawn made me put one back.  I did get out with two notebooks though... hee hee.

I'm not sure non-artists understand this weird implement thing.  I suppose it's like anything aesthetic, like a nice briefcase for work or a good pair of sexy shoes.  Paper and pens are a bit cheaper, too... or at least can be.  There are some people who are willing to pay a LOT for a really nice pen (luckily I'm a cheap date when it comes to pens.)

Thursday, June 26, 2014

New in Ebook!

The penultimate novel in my AngeLINK series, Apocalypse Array, is out as an e-book from Wizard's Tower Press today.  Believe it or not, this cyberpunk book was never previously released in e-book format.  Now you can go get it.

It also has, as you can see, shiny new art from Bruce Jensen.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

New Podcast

Mason and I had a blast doing out 14th MangaKast:

Go check it out if you want to hear me babbling about manga without coffee--well, technically, I HAD a couple of cups, but... I felt like I was in a sitcom or something because, not finding any of the good stuff on the shelf, I simply ran water through the old filter.  Yeah, that was just about as gross as you might imagine it would be.

Anyway, what I find fascinating about the podcast is that, unlike my WattPad project, I really could care less if no one listens.  The process of making it with Mason is just so MUCH fun.  So, you know, check it out... or not.  I will keep doing this because I love it.

I only wish I felt that way about other things I do...

I wish I could figure that out.

At any rate, here's another screen shot from this week's Bleach (by Tite Kubo.)

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

New Installment and Thoughts

My newest installment of UnJust Cause, my serialized work-in-progress is up:

Alex hasn't used her magic since she accidentally blinded Devon (the half-werewolf/half-vampire). Now, feeling cornered, she instinctively lashes out... at a friend.

I thought that maybe here on the thirteenth episode, I should take a moment and discuss my feelings/experiences working this way.

There are, for me, some distinct advantages to having a strict 'publishing' deadline. Having set myself a weekly goal of getting something up, some forward momentum made, is probably the only way I would have written as much as I have to-date. Considering the extent to which writing original fiction has been difficult for me in these last few years, this stands out as a HUGE benefit.

The disadvantage is that writing like this is also very seat-of-my-pants. If I go down a road, I'm committed to it. Revision is only going to be possible once the story is completed and ready to become an e-book. I'm already feeling places where I wish I could go back and restructure things a bit.

The way I've decided to deal with that is that I've handed out some of this to Wyrdsmiths with the idea that I can be concurrently working on a more polished draft for the e-book. Of course, the first-draft-y-ness of this serialization may ultimately turn off some readers. I'd been hoping, of course, for the kind of community that AO3 (archive of our own) gives a writer, where there might be a strong back-and-forth during the process, between the writer and the community of readers. I'm not getting anyone brave enough to point out my faults yet, and that really kind of bums me out.

This is, btw, one of the main reasons I don't come out on AO3 as a 'professional' writer. I have a feeling all the criticism would stop dead under the silly idea that 'well, she must know what she's doing,' which is of course not only nonsense, but which actually discourages me. I like the back and forth. I like knowing people are into a story enough to get mad about some turn of events or a moment that seems out of character or whatever.


Well, all the same, at least I'm writing. This is much more than I can say that I'd be doing without WattPad. So the experiment continues to be "profitable." We'll see if I'm able to grow an audience as I'd like to, and whether or not it will translate into e-book sales once everything is done and dusted.

Monday, June 23, 2014

What I'm Reading....

I probably haven't mentioned this here yet, but I've taken an extremely part-time job at the Ramsey County Libraries as a "sub," (which they, quite charmingly call "itinerant page" a job title that makes me feel like it ought to come with tights, a tunic, and a lute.)  It pays well, but I work very random hours.  So one of the biggest benefits for me is exposure to all the books, etc.

On Saturday I worked at Maplewood (one of my favorites partly due to their astounding manga collection).  While I was there, I noticed a two volume manga set marked as "new."  It was called No.6.

Yesterday, while cooking our annual fleischkuekle batches, I read both volumes and started in on the remaining chapters at MangaPanda.

So, I ended up writing a review of it this morning:

And... I just got a call from my sub coordinator, and it looks like I'll be working there again tonight!  Yay!  More manga!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Poetry Market

I'm not much of a poet, but maybe some of you are.  If you have some speculative poetry you've been wondering if there's a paying market for, there is:

During national poetry month, I did, by chance, write a haiku.  I have no idea if it's quite what this market is looking for, since it's not terribly speculative, but I thought what the hey! and sent it.

Wish me luck.  And luck to anyone else who might submit!