Friday, April 30, 2010

Oh Look... A Query...

How sad. I don't have a letter to look forward to tomorrow. Now how will I ever entertain you? Just kidding. :D

Well, I want to post a few things. First of all, this week has been horrible for me. Lots of things happening on top of being sick. I won't bore you with my whiny details, though. I will however say I'm glad I thought to schedule a couple of the blogs as I didn't get out of bed some days. If I haven't commented much or responded much, don't take it personally.

I want to thank everyone for stopping by and reading posts this whole month. The drop in comments means you are all taking a well deserved break! I hope you are all patting yourselves on the back, because you should. You all did a great, great job with this challenge!!

I also want to say that don't think me wishy-washy (even though I know I am) about my query letter. I'm going to post it right now, as I had it before I tweaked it. Christi Goddard actually helped me so much! So when I am done ripping it apart, I'll put that up as well and see what you all have to say.

Speaking of Christi, she gave me a wonderful award. I can't pick and choose for this one, guys. I think you are all awesome and I want all of you who comment and follow my blog to please, please take this award. I cannot stress this enough. I will come by your blog and I will check to see if you took it!!!
Kidding.

Maybe. ::Snickers::

Okay, so without further ado (::snorts:: I said 'ado') here is my query letter:

I am pleased to submit for your consideration my fantasy, LEGEND OF BLACK ROSE. In this 55,600 word fantasy, Black Rose is a man chosen above all others as the Champion of Fizanu, goddess of Justice, who finds himself pitted against an Ages old beast.

Rose has come a long way from being an adventurer, father, husband. Even though the world of Eir du'Brusai is young, Rose has watched the twin suns rise and set for hundreds of years. He's witnessed the destruction of a magical city and has seen the creation of a horrible, soul-eating monster. A promise is made to this beast: Lay the soul of Black Rose at the feet of the goddess of the Underworld, Ta'arinuru, and it shall be released from its earth-bound prison.

In a battle that will alter the course of the world, Rose must choose what is best. His death or that of the demon known as the Dourghuun.

Based strictly in a fantasy world of the author's creation, LEGEND OF BLACK ROSE will appeal to readers who enjoy such works as from DRAGONLANCE or FORGOTTEN REALMS and even those who enjoyed THE LORD OF THE RINGS.

If you would like to consider LEGEND OF BLACK ROSE, I would be happy to send the manuscript at your request.

There is one last thing. Okay, two. Again, I have been working on this query. This is the original one. Christi, I sent you one I had already tweaked. But I'm looking at your suggestions! So don't feel you have to respond again.

Second, I'm one follower away from 100! ONE Follower!! I just need ONE more and Cheri and I can hold our awesome Spring Into Reading Give Away!! So spread the word, get me that one last follower so you can all enjoy you some fun stuff. :D

And have I said thanks to all of you lately? Yes. But I'll say it again. Thanks you guys. You are the best!


Zee...



Zebra, zoo, zepplin... Lots of Z words to choose from. Would you believe, though, I have a goddess? Whose name begins with Z?

I do!

Zesial (Zeh see uhl):

There is no mistaking Zesial when she appears on the mortal plane. Her appearance and leaving are marked by a bright, shining aura that surrounds her. Recognizing the harm it can do to mortal eyes, Zesial dims this aura during her visits, and takes the guise of a young human woman with flowing, floor-length, auburn hair and twinkling brown eyes. She has been known to pull a dying creature who has committed great acts of bravery, faith, or compassion from the mortal realm, to place them in the heavens; thus immortalizing them. The constellation known as The Faithful was created by her at the behest of Yizanthia.

And yes, I had Yizanthia (Yeh zan thee uh) and could have used her yesterday (wow now look at the Y's) but actually didn't even think about it. So I will give you Yizanthia as a late post:

Patron Goddess of Travel - Patron Goddess of Pilgrims, Adventurers, and anyone else who travels, Yizanthia appears in the guise of a young woman with flowing red hair and green eyes, wearing a light brown travel cloak. She has been known to break bread with pilgrims who have traveled for many years and has also, according to legends, joined with a few small bands of adventurers who were unsure of their paths or who had lost their way and gotten into situations past their abilities to handle. Yizanthia once appeared before an old couple who were traveling to visit their dying daughter. They had walked beyond their capabilities and were alone and scared in a dangerous wood. The Goddess passed the night with them, working secretly with Erlaynia (Er lay knee uh) to keep the couple safe from animals and bandits. Yizanthia believed that they were unaware of her true self; yet the old woman figured out the secret, and spoke of Yizanthia to everyone she knew, telling them of the kindness of the Goddess.

Zesial is the goddess of the stars and constellations. I have only a few constellations with stories behind them at the moment. I have lots of work to do on the folklore and history of my world, but it all seems to come out when needed and recorded then. I do have a story of a young dragon who, upon being hatched late one night thought that the moon, Merydwen (Mare ee dwen) was his mother. He stretched out his little, leathery wings, breathed fire on them to dry them out and gave a few tentative beats. Lifting himself from the ground, he was pleased he could fly up to his mother and flew towards the moon. The effort was so great on the dear, little thing, that he plummeted towards the earth. Zesial had witnessed his fall and caught him just before he hit the ground and lifted him up into the stars where he could be close to Merydwen. He follows her across the night sky, always a little behind, but always there.

So there is my final alphabet post. Look for my post May 3rd as I join the rest of you, along with Arlee and sum up this month and what it meant to me. And as usual:


Favorite Band: (Person, really) Ziggy Marley. Favorite Movie: Zoolander.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

My Query Letter...

Okay so I am going to leave it up to you guys. I'll set up this blog so you can vote.

Year of the Tiger...



Well, I am going to prove my love of research here in this post. Y has been a difficult letter!

So let's get down to it, shall we?

Year of the Tiger. The year 2010 is the Year of the Tiger according the Chinese Zodiac. The Tiger symbolizes bravery. The Tiger is courageous and a fighter, protecting households from the Three Tragedies: Fire, Thieves and Ghosts.

Yawns: Old superstitions believe that when you yawn, it is a sign of danger nearby. Others claim when you yawn, you must cover your mouth or your soul will escape.
Why do you say, "Bless you" when someone sneezes? Same reason. Most used to believe your soul fled with the sneeze and blessing the person brought it back. Or, the Devil would enter and by blessing the person you drove him back out.

Yoga! I love Yoga, I have recently begun doing regular Yoga workouts. Yoga is stretching of the muscles and deep breathing. I'm overweight and Yoga is helping me build a regular exercise routine. But where did Yoga come from? The origins are from India. Yoga is meditative in nature, originating from Buddhism and Hinduism. One who practices Yoga to a high level of attainment is called a Yogi or Yogini.

Yogurt. Just how good is yogurt for you? Well, it has been around for over five thousand years and no one has ever claimed it bad for you. Yogurt is world-wide. The Turks, Greeks and even Americans have enjoyed yogurt over the millenia.

Without progression of languages over the years, we would still be stuck calling each other 'Ye'. A derivative of Old English, ge and pronounced like yea. In the early printing press days, Y took over the thorn (a letter in the Old English and Icelandic alphabets) so instances of Ye Old Shoppe actually referred to 'the' instead of you.

All right, all right enough history for you I suppose. Which, if you didn't know, Queen Elizabeth (1533-1603) was actually killed by her make-up. Talk about looks that kill!
I swear, that was the last! Okay on to...


Favorite Band: (Not really a band) Yankovic, Weird Al. Favorite Movie: Young Guns II

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Book Review: Wake...


I'm sick.

I'm bored as hell.

So what do I do? I read. Want to know how long it took me to read 'Wake'? Prolly not. It got devoured in a sickening 7 hours. Yep. There are times I wish I could read a little slower, you know?

Anyway.

Here is the blurb for Wake:
Not all dreams are sweet.

For seventeen-year-old Janie, getting sucked into other people's dreams is getting old. Especially the falling dreams, the naked-but-nobody-notices dreams, and the sex-crazed dreams. Janie's seen enough fantasy booty to last her a lifetime.

She can't tell anybody about what she does -- they'd never believe her, or worse, they'd think she's a freak. So Janie lives on the fringe, cursed with an ability she doesn't want and can't control.

Then she falls into a gruesome nightmare, one that chills her to the bone. For the first time, Janie is more than a witness to someone else's twisted psyche. She is a participant....


And now the review. I absolutely freakin' loved it! It is a YA Fiction by Lisa McMann. It helps she grew up in Michigan, where I grew up. And now lives in Phoenix, Arizona, which I am deeply sorry she does. Hey, I lived in Tucson. Phoenix is horrible. But this isn't about geography, people, this is about her book.

I love Janie. I can see why some teens would connect with Janie. I did as an adult, but that's just me. I also love Cabel. What a doll. Jerk, I thought at first, but an absolute doll. So I understand these books are a series. I will have to read the next one. My daughter sort of dropped this in my lap today, told me she has to take it back to the library.

McMann's style is ... different. I don't know how to explain it. I've never read a book in this style before. I like it, but it is stilted. You'll have to read it to understand what I am trying to say. However the idea that Janie falls into other people's dreams is pretty. Darn. Cool. There are a few bits of slang in there that will end up dating her book horribly. She mentioned NSYNC, which... wow. This book is kinda old with that reference used. I didn't like the boy band personally, but hey. It might throw someone off later on... saying, "Who the hell is N S Y N C?"

While the style is strange, the writing sort of stilted, it flows. Very. Well. I mean, come on. I read it in 7 hours. It takes me around 8 or 9 to read the latest House of Night books by Kristen and P.C. Cast. Sometimes 5. Without interruptions. Would I suggest this book? (Wake. Keep up!) Yes. To teens? Absolutely. Mild language? Yes. F word is slightly prominent, but it is in my household as well. Yeah... well. Sex? Um. Suggestive would be more like it. Hey, it's about dreams! It has to happen and our little Janie remains pure. At least in the first book. But I still would recommend it.

If I have to rate it, I give it three out of four Jolly Rogers.


Cough Up the Query...

So Nathan Bransford is doing a little experiment on his blog. Okay, maybe not little... But it is interesting.

Hop on over and read it, otherwise I will just give you the quick low-down. Here is the opening from his blog:

"On Thursday we discussed the query process and whether or not queries adequately reflect a underlying work's quality. Can someone really make an assessment of a book project based on a query? Really really?"

Interesting question!!! And very interesting experiment at the moment, too. I've participated. I sent in my query (badly, I admit. I didn't even begin it with "Dear XXX" nor did I close it! ::blushes::) as well as my first 30 pages. Nathan told us, "Act like an agent" and then we voted on the 5 queries he picked.

Wow. I have to say that I read all five queries and the one that seemed the most "cliche" to me won out. I chose the one that didn't. By the way, the genre was YA Fantasy. Now... I LOVE fantasy and enjoy YA Fantasy as well. Duh. But I don't like cliches. I hope I haven't fell into one inadvertently.

Don't get me wrong, each query, to me at least, seemed strong. They each had their weaknesses and strengths, some seemed sort of dry. But they were good! Perhaps I let my dislike for cliches jade my opinion, but I didn't think so. So I waited until today to see if we could truly find a gem by query alone. Now, personally, if I were an agent, I would have asked for a partial from each of those queries. But I'm a sucker that way.

Today I read the first 30 pages sent by each of those authors of the queries. Surprise, surprise, the query I chose certainly did not live up to my expectations. I could barely get through the first few paragraphs of all 5. Only one stuck out to me and it wasn't the one I chose or the one I thought to be cliche, even. Completely different! Most everyone else chose the pages of the query that won out. Sorry, but typos really affect my reading. Someone commented that the last lines of the pages from the query that "won" were great. I didn't make it that far.

However, I am going to go back and read all of the pages from each entrant, to see if my choice still stands out.

Now I know just HOW important a query is to catch someone's attention. I tweaked my own just a bit, but now I feel like I have to change the opening of my book. Seriously, I wonder if perhaps people would feel that my opening pages would be dry, dull and dusty. Maybe not the first 30 pages, but the first couple of paragraphs at the very least. You've all seen my snippet. That is my opening chapter. What do you think? Perhaps tomorrow I will post my query letter for you to all rip apart. ;) What do you say?

Have a good rest of the week!

X-tra, X-tra!


Ha! Wrong spelling but I used X! Not X-ceptionally well, either. X-ray is about the only word I can think of at the moment. I'm going to be stumped when it comes to a band name that I like...

However, I do have an X to discuss. Xargil. (Shar gill) HE is my god of Fate. Fancy that. Here is what I have written on Xargil:
Surrounded by tomes and scrolls that outline the lives of every mortal, this God knows what’s in store for us all. Xargil is always making notes and changes. No matter what he has in store for us, nothing is ever set in stone. Xargil has been known to appear to mortals in the form of a male human scrivener. His physical appearance changes, depending on the monastic order in which he appears.

Scriveners are mortal beings who serve the god of Fate. They become monks of sorts at a certain age. How do they become Scriveners? They're born to it.

Just like the Mahjii (Muh geye), Scriveners (Skriv ehn ers) are born with a power that does not reveal itself until a certain age is reached. When a potential Scrivener is born and they reach the age of 12, they will suddenly fall into a trance-like state. They'll begin to "write" in the air and as they do so, words will appear, golden and floating, flash and disappear. What are they writing? The future. Say a Scrivener to be suddenly falls into a trance while swimming with friends. They'll suddenly write what is going to happen. Either they'll have an enjoyable day or perhaps someone will drown. Maybe a storm blows in fast and furious, with lightning striking the pond or lake they're in. You get the idea.

So Scriveners of Fate serve the god, Xargil. But mortals being what they are, they always try to find these Scriveners and sadly, kill them. Their reasoning is that if they can kill the Scrivener, their Fate will be their own. So Xargil has a small island for those who serve him, hidden by magic. Only Scriveners can find it and when they turn 12, they must leave home or be destroyed by the ones who loved them. Not everyone seeks them out to kill them. But they leave home, nevertheless for their own safety and protection, seek out the Isle of Fate and live their days serving the god who bestowed this gift upon them.

Okay, hopefully that wasn't too awful long today. I didn't want to suck you into another long post when I know you have lots more to read than just mine! Now, I sort of cheated with the band name, but I think I have found me a new fave trance/progressive group. Can't call them my favorite just yet, though.
Band: Xtigma. Favorite Movie: X-Men. That was a given! I love the comic books too!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Just Some Characters...


I've been struggling lately with finding the right look/person/actor whatever that would represent my characters best, should a movie ever be done. Yeah. Sure. But it helps to finally put a face to the character. Seriously, I have this image in my head of Black Rose, but he's always changing because I could never pinpoint his looks. Well, I finally (after discussing it with my hubby) found someone!

Taylor Kitsch. He played Gambit in 'X-Men Origins: Wolverine'. Yep. That is Black Rose. Maybe not looking so happy or smug. :D

So my other characters, for the most part, have been taken care of. For example, Kayta in my 'Crowning Absolution' story... Kate Beckinsale. That's pretty much the look of her. From 'Van Helsing'. But Kayta is like 18..19 years old. Her mother, Nive (Knee vay) would be this lady:
Shohreh Aghdashloo. She was in 'X-Men: Last Stand' as well as 'Lake House'. She's pretty! And doing well for being 57.



What about Alabassin? My sweet, cute Alabassin who actually does get to choose love in an arranged marriage. My friend, who I portrayed him after, sort of looks like Johnny Depp. But Johnny (sadly) just does not fit the bill. Alabassin should look like Justin Chatwin from 'The Invisible'. Throw some blonde hair on that boy and he'd do just fine!




Alabassin's father was easy, but everyone would mistake him for Draco's father. Jason Issacs fits Mandorak Li'endrin perfectly.

And then there is Farrehn, my half ogre. And his buddy Vendras. The Rock would make a great Farrehn. And originally, I had chosen Heath Ledger as Vendras, he's just got that smart alecky look down pat!

I have yet to find anyone suitable to fit Nightshadow or even Laria. I'll have to work that out. My brain is a little bit mush today. I hate being sick!! But oh well.

Hope you enjoyed this post. It is nice to put an image to a name. Have a great day, everyone!

When We Were...



Lookit that! Three W's in the title alone. Sweeeeet. Well, what shall we discuss for W?

Okay, okay I will give in and go with the obvious... Writing!

What prompted me to become a writer... well let's see. I read a lot when I was a kid. My mom used to read a couple of books a day and I always wondered what captivated her attention so much about these books? My mom would read just about anything. When I got old enough, I started reading a lot too, because I discovered the secret. How books could take you away to far off places and times. I read the "Little House on the Prairie" books over and over and over again. I had the whole set. I took very good care of those books.

Later on I would read those "Choose Your Own Adventure" books where you would read to the end and it would ask you, "What now? Do you go down the tunnel with Famir? Or do you go home?" Whatever option you chose, you had to turn to a new page... you get the idea. I would always go back and choose something else so that I could read the entire book.

What does this have to do with writing? Lots! Every writer should also be a reader. I've learned that lesson well. There are times when I don't have anything to read and my writing tends to suffer. Strange. But, because I read so much and fell into reading fantasy, it gave me a desire to write. I didn't know it at first.
I started off writing fan-fiction with a friend of mine. I wrote off of the Elf Quest graphic novels. I've said that already in a post. But when I was 19, I played my very first game of Dungeons and Dragons. My boyfriend at the time was a geek, but he looked like Duckie from Pretty in Pink. (Jon Cryer) He was a cutie.

Anyway, here I am, the only girl in a room full of boys who are in awe of the fact that I'm someone's girlfriend and I am willing to play D&D. It took awhile for them to get over this. Soon they were helping me create my character. They asked me, "So what race do you want to be?" then gave me a list to choose from. As soon as they said Elf, I nodded enthusiastically. One of them rolled their eyes at the fact that of COURSE the GIRL picked the ELVEN race... sheesh. Then they asked me what I wanted to be. I didn't want to be a fighter or a mage. They already had plenty of fighters and told me mages were weak, in stage whispers. When they said Ranger, I asked them what that was.

Yeah, I had no clue.

Well, Rangers use bow and arrow and can track really well... the bow got me hooked, I had taken archery in high school and was pretty darn good at it. Never competed though. So here I am, creating an Elf Ranger. Okay, what do I want to name her?

Again, no flippin' clue I had to go through so much trouble to create a character. But I. Was. Hooked! I chose Kayta. Kay is my middle name and whenever I tell someone this, they smile and nod and ask what does the K stand for? ::Facepalm:: So I thought, let's add something to the K-A-Y and so Kayta was born.

She began as an Elven Ranger with long, curly black hair and green eyes who was the mate of another Elf named Dirk. (Or as we liked to call him, Dirt. Mud when it rained. Slush when it snowed. I actually told the Dungeon Master in a fight that I was going to hit the dirt and he rolled the dice. I did two damage to Dirk, my boyfriend.)
So from D&D I moved Kayta to a story. She was a part of the Underworld and trying to save mankind from her father. That story fell flat. I had no idea what I was doing, but I was writing it well.

From there, Kayta evolved. She moved onto the computer. At the time, I worked for AOL in tech support and security. One of the guys I had trained with who was on my team had this window up between calls. I couldn't figure out what it was, so I went over to him on break. He was playing "Legends of Cosrin". At the time, it was a game AOL offered up for people to play and they charged, get this, $2.99 an hour. An HOUR!! I can't begin to tell you how much of a bill most of my friends racked up playing this game.

Ahem. I didn't have to pay cause I worked for AOL. BUT! I wasn't allowed to tell them that. No AOL employee was allowed to let people know they worked for AOL when playing those games. So people didn't really know how me and a few of my friends could afford to play ALL. DAY. Long. They learned later when the game was moved from AOL and payed for privately.

In Legends of Cosrin, Kayta went back to being an Elven Ranger, but with a kick. She was half elf, half demon. Her back story was that she had just run away from home. Home, mind you, being the Underworld. She carried with her THE Book of Shadows. The book that contained every spell known to gods and man in the universe. She stole it from her father, who was planning on taking over the Underworld. At the time, I thought, what a cool story! But all the other people muttered about how I was "god-mudding". Which meant I had made my character powerful and untouchable without even realizing it. I didn't know I had made her powerful, I just thought I had made her INTERESTING. Go figure.

Then, while playing LoC I decided I wanted to write stories of all the characters I had along with all of my friend's characters and place them in a large, diverse world. I wanted to tell, originally, how they all came to be a part of this little city in LoC, where they came from, what their background was. But lots of things changed. I like where I am taking them these days and so do they. I'm doing something with their characters (and a little piece of them as well) by immortalizing them in my writing. Now, I just have to get published so everyone else can enjoy them as much as I did.
And I apologize for the length of this post. I hope it was in the very least, entertaining. So that is how I got into writing. How about you?

Favorite Band: Weezer. Favorite Movie: While You Were Sleeping.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Wow, Three Post Monday...

I have been wanting to share what I got from Amazon.com. See... Talli had a contest a while back and I won. (First contest ever, mind you!) So I chose the Amazon gift certificate. Wanna see what it helped me get?

Shinai! ::Swoons:: They are Martial Arts practice swords made of bamboo. Now I know you are asking, "What in the world did she buy those for????"

A very good question! See, I've mentioned before that I am a member of the SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism). If you don't know what that means, I will tell you. I'm a member of a very large, very diverse group of people. The SCA is a historical re-enactment group. We portray pre-17th Century Europe. Each area of the country is broken down into "kingdoms" and from there, broken down into Shires and Baronies.

Now this isn't some cute little Renaissance Festival group we're talking about here, folks. As a matter of fact, Renn Fairies don't like to be associated with us and vice-versa. (Hence the Renn Fairies comment. Hehe.) Why? We're more period for one and we don't act out our fighting.

See, when you fight in full armor (yes I said Full Armor) you can't very well choreograph the fighting without it looking like you are letting the other guy win. Okay, maybe you can, but where is the fun in acting it out? Well, to each their own. However, in the SCA you actually have to choose your persona.

What do I mean by persona? You get the opportunity to portray someone in a specific time era. There are limits. Can't go into the 17th century and you can't go back farther than a specific time. I forget, its been awhile! Anyway, your name has to be researched. As does your device. Your Device is basically your Coat of Arms. I get grief all the time with my pirate persona. Not because she is a pirate, but because tri-corner hats didn't appear until the 17th Century. So I have to fix it. Ah well.

So do you see what I have said about researching your persona? You have to come up with something that could pass for the time period you are representing. You also have to come up with a back story. You have to research and ::gasp:: learn some history! Sorry. Hehe. I get a little defensive because people tease me about being a Renn Fairie and I'm not. I don't get paid to act a part, I chose this hobby.

So anyway, when you fight, you fight in armor with a very large stick of bamboo the size of a baseball bat. People still get hurt, which is why they have waivers at every war. Yep. War. When you practice, though, you don't have to be in full armor and can use the light armor and Shinai. My husband and I fight with the Shinai. He used to fight full armor and I didn't make it all the way to full armor and can't now, because of my hands. So I stick with the Shinai and Rapier fighting.

So my persona is Captain Sorcha (Sore sha) MacGregor of the Blue Drake (my ship!!!). My device is divided in half. Up on top, I have two Celtic crosses in silver on a blue background and below I have a red dragon, rampant I believe, on a gold background. Which, you can't use just any color, mind you. You have to use colors they could have made back in the day. My back story is that I was around at the time the Templar Knights were being killed. I was captured with another group, going to be hanged and was actually innocent of any crime. So I escaped, boarded a ship and decided if they were going to try to kill me I might as well do something to deserve it.

You learn so much in the SCA. At War, you actually get to take classes on how to make all sorts of things. People build trebuchets and catapults for contests. Archery is part of the fighting as well. Arrows have tennis balls on the end. Hehe! What is even more impressive. This group is watched by the Government. We're all trained (most of us anyway) in hand to hand combat and very well could act as a last line of defense if called upon. So I bought me some Shinai. It has been awhile since hubby and I have fought and we're looking forward to getting back in fighting shape! So, Talli, thanks for holding that contest!! I'm so glad I won. I would have gotten them at some point, but since I won the contest, I figured I should get something fun and not be so practical about it. :D

Have a good week everyone!

The Truth Revealed!

Okay, so if any of you were around yesterday (Sunday) you saw my award from Michelle McLean.

I did pass it on. Check here, if you haven't already.

Now... time for the truth to be revealed!

But first, can I just say you guys are great? You crack me up and I wish half of what I said was true. But alas, only two things were true. Are you ready? Okay!

1. During the summer of my Junior year of high school, I would sneak out every night. One night near a golf course, my friends and I came upon a group of college kids drinking around a fire. We threw rocks and I nearly got caught! I hid behind a dirt pile and someone ran on top and looked everywhere but down.

~True!! Yes, I was a bit of a delinquent in my high school years. No excuses for it other than I worked hard and felt I was due some fun. After this night, though, I never snuck out again. And... for the record, I didn't sneak out every single night, so this is partially true. :D

2. As a kid we moved around a lot. I've lived in places like Japan, Netherlands and Germany.

~False. I've never lived outside of the United States. Wish I had!

3. I speak fluent Japanese and have been invited to businesses as a translator. Half the time they wanted me to dress as a Geisha but I drew the line there. That was pretty unprofessional!

~False. Again, it would have been fun, but no, I do not know any other languages. Just a smattering of French and Spanish.

4. As a child, I attended Clown School, where I learned how to juggle, create balloon animals and learned the tips and tricks of makeup. I also performed at a fair and later, I was the clown for the Pizza Hut I worked at for kid's night.

~True! Hehehe! Yes, I went to clown school. I belonged to the 4-H club in the small town I grew up in and clown school was a requirement. My sister did it with me. It was pretty fun.

5. I'm an ex-Monster Truck professional. I used to drive over five cars and jump through hoops of fire. My truck's name was The Destructo-saurus.

~False. Oh, but someday I will go to Race Car Driving school!! I love to drive fast!

6. I've discovered that aliens are real, but no one believes me. However, the United States government keeps close tabs on my movements and sometimes camps out in my yard.

~False. Al, you and my husband both wish this were true. In a way, I do as well. There is no way, in a universe this size, that we are alone.

7. When I went skydiving, I accidentally pushed someone out of the plane without a parachute. I had to jump out fast and catch them and open my chute so they didn't die! I felt horrible.

~False. Wow... I think I would have fainted had I accidentally pushed someone out without a chute.

8. Because of my love for pirates, I actually got cast as an extra crew member in "Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man's Chest". I got to meet Johnny Depp and Orlando Bloom!! ::Swoons::

~ False. As much as I would LOVE for this to be true. Sadly, it is not. However, I did go to the opening night with my hubby and friends all dressed up as Pirates. We got lots of attention. It was great. :D

So my daughter helped me with these lies. She's got as good an imagination as I do. I'll have to post up her short story she wrote for her English Literature class. Her teacher loved it. She's also a good poet and a songwriter. She's very talented.

Thanks everyone! Have a good week.

V Is For...



And it is Monday. And we're on the letter V, closing in on the end. V...vee... Well, Voice is always a good V word. I tend to be rather omniscient in my writing. But we all talk about Voice or View.

I have a beautiful view from where I live...

I have a character named Vendras (Vehn drass). He's rather funny, quite charming when he wants to be and a typical male. He tends to constantly wager with his friend, Farrehn (Far en) who happens to be half ogre. There's something else about Farrehn, but you have to read my stories to figure it out. Hehe! Vendras can also be pretty crass. He's my comic relief when things get too stressful.

What's that? ::Hears whispering:: No, Vendras, I can't tell them about stuff like that. This is a clean blog.

Victory is another good V word. But victory comes with a price. Doesn't everything?

Vengeance is another good V word that I write about quite a bit. It seems to me that the entire Li'endrin (Lee en drin) bloodline has vowed vengeance upon the world. But where did that come from? Just because the Warriors of Relavia (Ruh lah vee uh) split and formed their own kingdom, one full of Warriors who follow the code of honor and are not as ruthless or as underhanded (See...underhanded) as the Relavian kings of old?

I'll let you in on a little secret.

The Relavian bloodline is cursed. Yep, that's right. Cursed. Doomed to continue repeating the mistakes of their forefathers, reincarnating over and over again into the same family tree until someone gets it right. Sounds like... fun. Heh. Maybe not.


Moving on...
Favorite Band: Van Halen. Favorite Movie: Van Helsing.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

You Know it is Sunday When...

I don't have a letter of the alphabet in my post title. Hehe!

I am going to use today to do my award given to me by the wonderful Michelle McLean. She's so awesome!

The rules are rather simple for this award: Post six fabulous lies and two truths about myself. Let's see if I can pull this off. Ready? Okay!

1. During the summer of my Junior year of high school, I would sneak out every night. One night near a golf course, my friends and I came upon a group of college kids drinking around a fire. We threw rocks and I nearly got caught! I hid behind a dirt pile and someone ran on top and looked everywhere but down.

2. As a kid we moved around a lot. I've lived in places like Japan, Netherlands and Germany.

3. I speak fluent Japanese and have been invited to businesses as a translator. Half the time they wanted me to dress as a Geisha but I drew the line there. That was pretty unprofessional!

4. As a child, I attended Clown School, where I learned how to juggle, create balloon animals and learned the tips and tricks of makeup. I also performed at a fair and later, I was the clown for the Pizza Hut I worked at for kid's night.

5. I'm an ex-Monster Truck professional. I used to drive over five cars and jump through hoops of fire. My truck's name was The Destructo-saurus.

6. I've discovered that aliens are real, but no one believes me. However, the United States government keeps close tabs on my movements and sometimes camps out in my yard.

7. When I went skydiving, I accidentally pushed someone out of the plane without a parachute. I had to jump out fast and catch them and open my chute so they didn't die! I felt horrible.

8. Because of my love for pirates, I actually got cast as an extra crew member in "Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man's Chest". I got to meet Johnny Depp and Orlando Bloom!! ::Swoons::


Okay, there we go! Pick out the two truths. I'll let you know tomorrow. In the meantime, I'm going to pass this award on to...

Mary McDonald at Mary McDonald Has The Write Stuff
Tahereh at Grab a Pen
Summer at "...and this time, concentrate!"
Niki at Wool 'n' Nuts
Roland at Writing in the Crosshairs

Ahhh... have fun. :D Just sharing the love. ;)

Saturday, April 24, 2010

U, You, Ewe...


Wow, the closer we get to the end of the Alphabet, the harder it is to come up with topics.

I'm sad this is going to be ending soon, but I am looking forward to May 3rd. Read this to find out more.

Now back to our regularly scheduled letter of the day... U.

Sometimes I think people can write up some interesting characters. I'm going to go back to Nightshadow for my example of someone being underhanded. Nightshadow, mind you, is an assassin. She is one of the elite, a D'raetus Pastiniir. (Dee ray tus Pass tin ear) (Hehe pass tin ear, sounds like I want you to pass the tin ear I can't hear, darn it!)

When Nightshadow is taken in by Nikkolani (Nee coe lah knee) she shows incredible talent and skill with various weapons. The fact that she's a woman and can hide lots of them in discreet (and not so discreet) places is a bonus. She has concocted her own special poison, used from a plant called the Dragon's Tear, found only on the island where the dragons and Dargorians dwell. How did she obtain such a plant? Well, we'll discuss that someday...

So with this poison, she's also created the antidote. She coats each of her weapons with this poison. When she is sent after someone, she uses those weapons and brings the antidote with her. Not for her own, personal use, mind you... but to gain something. See, she offers up a second chance to whomever she's meant to kill. She dangles that little vial of antidote in front of their nose and tells them they have a chance at living, at redeeming themselves. When they're gasping for air, dying right before her eyes and begging her for the antidote she tells them it comes with a price. Not just coin, but something more. If she's been sent after them to kill them, what are they going to do differently now that she's offered up this second chance. Are the going to seek revenge and come after her? Will they keep walking the path that brought them to this point or will they change? What will come from saving their life? That and she asks for a good amount of money, dumps the antidote into their mouth and makes sure they swallow and leaves no trace of the antidote for someone to replicate it.

Nightshadow is a smart cookie.

But while she can be underhanded, so can Nikkolani. He is the one who forces her to always work with Tyren (Tie rehn) with the hopes the two will fall in love. Which they do. Sadly. Because with Nightshadow and Tyren working together and caring for each other on such a level, they're willing to do almost anything. If Nikkolani sends Nightshadow out on a potentially dangerous task, one she's never faced before, he *knows* Tyren will go with or at the very least, follow her. So he's able to use the two of them like his own little puppets.

Nightshadow knows what Nikkolani is doing, as does Tyren. But Nightshadow is willing to sacrifice her feelings, to leave the D'raetus Pastiniir and Tyren behind to make her own way in the world. To stop walking the path of destruction that claimed her father's life and do something better with her own.

Oooh... did I just give something away? Maybe. But that is because I like you guys so much.

Favorite Band: U2. Favorite Movie: Underworld.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Top o' the Mornin'


Well, I had a T post all planned and ready, but we know how well planning and readiness work in writing. Right? Heh!

I am going to go with Thanks in this T post.

Thanks to all of you who follow me. Thanks to those of you who comment. I especially am thankful for those of you who enjoyed yesterday's snippet. I am happy to announce I will be posting some more. That was the opening scene of the first chapter.

While I have worked on my query letter and have sent that off for a critique ::hyperventilates:: I have watched a couple of contests pop up on Query Tracker. One awhile back asked for your first sentence. My first sentence is dull as dishwater. But I'm okay with that. My first paragraph... I'm sure it would have people glancing back at the title wondering what gardening has to do with Legends and is Black Rose a bush?

Ha! No.

BUT! I am okay with that as well. It is setting things up. I have considered revamping the whole beginning, but I'm leaving it in reserve. If I don't get any requests when I start sending out queries, then yes, I will change it. For now, though, I'm okay with it. I'm really thankful to all the positive comments. My story flows, the descriptions are just right. That is what I am aiming for. I don't like to read stories where you get so caught up in the descriptions that you lose sight of the plot. This being fantasy, I have to world-build. (Michelle told me! So I build.)

Black Rose's real name is Croggen Di'orn. (Crawg ehn Dee orn) That name is over three hundred years old. Fizanu (Fih zah new), his goddess, chose the name Black Rose. Rose for short, as Black Rose gets repetitive and Black just doesn't sound right... Eh. It does get explained. His name. :D

So, thanks again to everyone. Thanks to Arlee Bird for this Challenge! I'm gearing up for May 3rd. I'm thankful to have such cool and interesting blog buddies. :D

Favorite Band: The Tossers. Favorite Movie: Two Weeks Notice.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Some Satisfying Snippets...

So I promised I would offer up some snippets of my work. I think I will be doing this on a regular basis. We'll see.

Now, I have no qualms about sharing my work, mind you. In fact, I would love and appreciate some feedback. I do belong to a critique group online. I wish there was one here in my little town. But half the people here who are writers (and half the population are writers) write fiction and its all based on Alaska. Or memoirs. Anyway. Let's get down to it, shall we? I'd like to post from my current WIP I am revising and editing. Legend of Black Rose. So here goes and I do have to warn you, it may be long:

Sweat trickled down his brow, missing his eye. It ran down his cheek and the droplet fell from his jaw, mingling with the earth. He did not pause to mop his forehead. His garden was a labor of love, his only calm in his chaotic world. One he would gladly pour his blood, sweat and tears into.

High above, light from the twin suns filtered down through the trees. At this time of year, the smaller of the suns trailed far behind it's older brother. The summer days were hot, the light long lasting. The height of summer would be upon Croggen's home soon.

Home, he thought, pausing in his work finally. He straightened from his hoe where he had turned the dirt and stared beyond the motes of dust he had stirred. A small cottage sat off to his right. The sunshine illuminated it in such a way it seemed to glow. Was this truly his home? He had no wife preparing a meal within those walls. No children played in the field beyond. He looked down at his left wrist where two black roses were caught in an eternal bloom. One each for his wife and son. The sadness of their loss still weighed heavily on his heart even after all this time.

Digging into the earth once more, he worked to push thoughts of his lost family from his mind. After all, nearly three hundred years had passed. Twenty Ages, fifteen years per Age. The ache in his heart felt only days old.

High above him, in the trees, birds sang out. They called to each other, called to him, but he stayed bent over his work. After some time, he paused again, tilting his head.

“Rose,” a female voice whispered into his mind, a gentle breeze. She pulled his thoughts away from his past and his task.

“Yes m'lady?”

“An urgent matter has risen. I require your services once again.”

“I am yours to command, goddess.”

“Why so formal today, Rose?” she asked. “Ah. Yes, I see now.”

Fizanu, goddess of Justice, had gently pried into the mind of her Champion.

“As always, Rose, I ask if you desire me to release you from your duty.”

“Do you no longer need me then?”

“As long as there are injustices in this world and those who cannot right the wrongs against them, I will always need someone like you.”

“Have you found a worthy replacement?”

“No,” she said after a long silence.

“Then no, m'lady. I do not desire to be relieved of my duty just yet.”

“I would take away your pain, should you so choose.”

Croggen leaned heavily on the handle of the hoe and shook his head.

“There is no need, Fizanu. Were you to take away my pain, you would strip me of my memories. You'd take away the essence of who I am and why I walk this path. I would no longer be worthy to do your bidding.”

Another silence stretched out before she spoke again, this time giving him the information he needed.

“You must travel to Pilgamore in Jenlakai. The King and Queen are in danger.”

“War?” Croggen asked as he continued creating the row he had begun.

“If this were merely an act of war, would I be bothering to summon you?”

“No, but if Quagha Li'endrin is invading –”

“He is not invading. At least not yet,” she cut across his thoughts. Images flashed in his mind, her impatience made them flicker quickly. Croggen continued turning the soil.

“Rose,” she spoke within his mind suddenly, the images had stopped. “What are you doing?”

“Working in my garden,” he responded, ignoring her tone.

“I need you to leave at once.”

Rose looked at the row he worked, noting he had almost reached the end.

“I won't be but a moment,” he told her. “I always finish what I start. This is no exception.”

“Time is of the essence,” she said. Her words were clipped.

“I understand the urgency. A brief moment will hardly make any difference.”


Okay, Favorite Band: Smash Mouth. Favorite Movie: Serendipity.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

R Is For...



Well, let's see. R could be for lots of things, but in my case it will be for Rituals and Rulers.

Let's start with Rituals. Not writing ones, mind you, but ones I've created in my world. Rituals are very important and have not strayed very far from the original in hundreds of years.
Marriage: My marriage rituals begin with a Kissing Stone. As simplistic as it sounds, it is still a ritual held in high regard. A man who is interested in courting a woman would first find a small stone. More often than not, the man would scour riverbeds looking for ones shaped like a heart. He would then present it to the woman he had his eye on. If she kept it, her answer was yes. If returned, it was no and the man would throw the stone back to the river. Or where ever he discovered it. Over the years, of course, the Nobles used the ritual and would sometimes use gems instead of stones.My Alabassin, heir to the throne of Relavia, is a sweet, simple man. He actually went out to find a stone to give to Kayta, daughter of the king and queen of Paridzule. When she accepted, he let her choose her own wedding ring. Another ritual he followed. Most of the men later on would buy the ring for their intended rather than let them choose their own. By allowing the woman to choose her own ring, it showed she still maintained her independence and was not insulted by the man who chose for her.
Rulers: The ruling families of my world are stuck in the Feudal society, apparently. The throne is passed down from father to son or mother to daughter in some societies. I may have to break the mold somewhere and have a kingdom vote upon their king or come up with some other method. I've always felt that fantasy should follow Feudal society rules, but then again, rules are made to be broken. Right? Right. (Look lots of R's!)
That's just a small taste of things I have worked on. Hope you enjoyed it. :D

Favorite Band: Rage Against the Machine. Favorite Movie: Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Queue Up For Q...


Ahh, Q. Quality, quantity, quarantine... Hmm... I don't want to be quarantined. But those are a few of the Q's that come to mind. Minding my P's and Q's, that is what the blogging challenge is all about. Minding A's and D's as well.

I could go with the obvious post, but where would the fun be in that? See. We could go the route of Questions.

So let's do that. I will dedicate this Q post to a day of Questions. If you have any, ask away! I will answer to the best of my knowledge and respond in comments.

I do happen to have a character I am working on with a name that begins with Q. His name is Quagha Li'endrin. (Kwag ha Lee en drin) Quagha is going to be the grandfather of my character Alabassin (Al uh bass in). The WIP containing Quagha is years before Alabassin is even a thought, let alone Alabassin's father, Mandorak (Man door ack).

Quagha, in Legend of Black Rose, is trying to force a neighboring kingdom across the strait into an alliance. They're not a very large kingdom, Jenlakai (Gen lah keye), the size of their army would barely dent a tenth of Relavia's army. What Quagha is interested in most is the tactical advantage they would provide. He'd be able to utilize their ports and ships to gain a fractional advantage over Paridzule which would be just enough to tip the balance in Relavia's favor.

Quagha intends to force Jenlakai into this pact by producing his cousin to marry the king and queen's young daughter. Instead of welcoming Quagha with open arms and open vaults, they usher their daughter out of the kingdom under the cover of night. This is sort of what Quagha expected, so he decides he will take the kingdom by force, destroying towns and villages every day until the daughter is returned and properly married, locked into a treaty.

Ahem. Sorry, I got carried away. I don't want to give out too much information! Hehe. And don't forget to ask those questions!


Okay so, Favorite Band: Queensryche (of course!!! Geoff Tate... ::Swoons::). Favorite Movie: (The) Quick and The Dead.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Posting the Letter P...





Okay, I feel rather silly, as there are days where the letter coincided with characters or places of my world. I didn't really want to blog this entire month just about my world and writing. Trust me, I would have burned out and would not have finished out the month. But I am going to try to be a little more aware of the letters.

I'm so silly.

So for P: I give you Paridzule. (Pare id zool)

Paridzule is a southern Kingdom. Sharing a continent with Relavia (Reh lah vee uh), the two kingdoms have been warring since the birth of the world. Relavia used to be the only kingdom on the entire continent. Warriors wielded magic as well as swords. When the then Relavian king decided he wanted to war with the other continent and kingdoms, some of his followers hesitated. While the use of magic and steel made them a force to be reckoned with, world domination was not their ultimate goal. So those who chose to go against the king left.

A Civil War broke out inevitably. The Relavian king would not let his Warriors go without a fight. So, fight is what they did. When the dust settled, one kingdom was torn in two. Paridzule chose to turn their backs on magic and set their sights on becoming the best fighting force. Relavia, never one to back down, left magic to the Mahjii (Mah jeye) and trained just as hard.

No one really remembers the reason why the two kingdoms constantly war with each other, their hatred for the other has been ingrained down the line for generations. There are those, however, who dare to hope for a united kingdom once more and fight for that dream.
Favorite Band: Pogues. Favorite Movie: Pirates of the Caribbean. That's a big duh. I'm such a Pirate! Jack Sparrow ::Drools::

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sunday, Sunday...

Sundays are so quiet now. I'm loving this A-Z challenge, but boy does it have me hopping on the internet! I'm very thankful for my new followers/friends. Lee brought us all into the community a little more and I appreciate that! Would have never found half of you otherwise.

I'm trying to follow everyone who is following me. If I haven't dropped by your blog, please leave me a link *points at the lurkers* yes, you too! I'd like to read your blogs as well!

I'm currently revising my WIP: Legend of Black Rose. Fantasy. Yeah, big "Duh". Lol! It's turning out pretty good. I have some snippets ready in the wings to be posted. I have put my synopsis up here. I'm waiting for my query critique to come back before I move on to actually sending it out. I'm nervous as all get out about it. I will be submitting the revised 30 pages to my critique group on the 20th. We'll see!

My sister in law, Cheri, is closer to 100 followers now as well as I am! As soon as we hit that magic number, we'll be having our very first contest! I'm excited, can't you tell?

Hope everyone had a good weekend and hope you also have a good week! I look forward to reading more excellent blog posts in the A-Z. Keep up the good work everyone! And if you have not taken Arlee's award for Prolific Blogger, then do so! You do deserve it for this challenge.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Ooooh O...


What to post for O. Hmm...

Onslaught. Odyssey. Overactive. Ordinary.

Well, I can write about another character. Onetta (Oh net uh). She's a Kefferling (Kehf er ling) and a Mahjii (Muh jeye) (wizard). She's also Aun's (Ay oon) best friend.

Aun is a Dargorian (Dar gore ee un). I have mentioned her before. She's an amethyst dragon/humanoid. Her powers of speech are telepathic as her sonic scream would rip the flesh off of anyone in range. Even a chuckle hurts people. Onetta rescued her. Aun would have been dragon food if not for Onetta.
Onetta had been brought to Argisindya (Ar giss in dee yuh) as a wee kitten. Kefferlings are Elf Cats. They have fur covering their bodies and have tails, ears and whiskers. But they are humanoid as well. They're very agile and fast. Not all Kefferlings have magical powers, but those that do are trained as any other Mahjii before their magical energies consume them.

Onetta came across Aun when she was young and, as I said, about to be dinner. Dargorians and Dragons do not get along. Most Dargorians feel they have evolved beyond Dragons and are therefore superior, but they're not.

Aun owes Onetta her life and Onetta protects Aun like her own cub. The two communicate very well with each other. Onetta often purrs or mewls, lashes her tail or curls it over her arm as if it is a cape. She can speak like anyone else, but more often than not, her body language speaks volumes. Especially when her tail fluffs. Hehe.

Favorite Band: OMD (Orchestral Manoeuvers in the Dark). Favorite Movie: (The) Order.

Friday, April 16, 2010

N!...


Nightshadow! This is going to be a good post. I am going to introduce you (or re-introduce you) to one of my all time favorite characters.

Nightshadow.

She's soooo much fun! Nightshadow is an assassin. I created her when I played LoC (Legends of Cosrin) and had so much fun role-playing her. When I first created her, no one knew I played her. When people found out I played her and my other character Kayta... well they'd flip out. It was fun.

Half the time people forgot I played both. But I digress.

Nightshadow is the only daughter. Her father was the King's hired assassin and they lived a life of luxury. He kept his job a secret. For all his wife and daughter knew, he was a Nobleman, for the king called upon him frequently. Nightshadow's real name is Teresea Fershand. The day she discovered her father's secret was the same day her world came crashing down.

Promised to another Nobleman's son, Teresea was to marry finally at the age of 19. She was a handful, fiery in temper, as quick with her tongue as she was with a blade. She didn't want to be married. Her parents tried to force her into it and she fought it every step of the way. Her father finally convinced her it was time, to please bring honor to the family by doing this huge favor. She'd do anything for her father. Little did she or her father know, her fiancee knew her father's secret.
Nightshadow's parents were killed by her fiancee and she would have died as well, if not for her quick thinking. She fled, carrying her knowledge with her and vowing revenge on the man who killed her parents. She ended up living on the streets to survive, always moving as the search for her grew. When Nikkolani found her, he knew she had talent and trained her to be one of his deadliest assassins.

She knew she followed in her father's footsteps and that the same fate may be in store for her as well. But she had vowed to never fall in love, to never put her family in danger. She was prepared to live a life alone. Or so she thought.

Ha! That's all I will tell you for now. I know, I'm mean.

Favorite Band: Nightwish. Favorite Movie: Night at the Museum (1 & 2) (And Night at the Roxbury too!)

Thursday, April 15, 2010

WIP Status...

So I am currently working on revising Legend of Black Rose. So far I have over 11,000 words in the latest revision. I don't have a set goal, but it is far better than what it was a few hours ago.

So here is the synopsis if you'd like to take a peek. This is what I am using in the query letter (I'll take feedback!!):

Black Rose is a man chosen above all others as the Champion of Fizanu, goddess of Justice, who finds himself pitted against an Ages old beast.

Rose has come a long way from being an adventurer, father, husband. Even though the world of Eir du'Brusai is young, Rose has watched the twin suns rise and set for hundreds of years. He's witnessed the destruction of a magical city and has seen the creation of a horrible, soul-eating monster. A promise is made to this beast: Lay the soul of Black Rose at the feet of the goddess of the Underworld, Ta'arinuru, and it shall be released from its earth-bound prison.

In a battle that will alter the course of the world, Rose must choose what is best. His death or that of the demon known as the Dourghuun.


So there ya go. Wow, I do use 'so' lots, don't I? Bad habits and all that.

Cheers!

M is for...


I could say Murder. Mayhem. Magnificent. Money. Money would be good. No, I don't want to talk about money.

Managing. There we go. How do you manage your life? How do you fit writing in with your busy life if you work, go to school, have children? Managing your time is a constant struggle.
For me, managing my time is pretty difficult. I try to do the majority of my work (I use the term work loosely, folks.) while everyone is at work or school. Late at night I utilize my time and try to write or catch up on blogs. I have to fit cleaning the house, making dinner, doing laundry and all that into my time. When spring and summer hit, I have more to juggle. Visiting family, mowing the lawn, gardening this summer! Woot! And of course I have to try and play World of Warcraft in all of this. Not that it is a major priority, however it is still connecting with a friend who lives in Washington. One we try very hard to keep in touch with and try to play when we can.
It is amazing to me that I get any writing done. Sometimes I don't. I can go for weeks without revising a single word. So on that note, just so you know, I am taking this week off to work on my WIP. (I sound so professional, lol!) I'm going to have to cheat slightly by planning my posts ahead of time. But I still have a daily challenge to live up to. I will read and comment when I can.

Favorite Band: Metallica. Favorite Movie: Memoirs of a Geisha.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Before the L Day Ends...

I feel like an idiot. I so could have posted about my character, Laria for L day. So since this character actually has a real live person behind it, I thought I would make up for my lax in brain productivity.

Laria. Laria rules. I love her. She is based off of my friend Liz's character from LoC (Legends of Cosrin). She's an Elven Ranger in LoC and I kept her mad bow and arrow skills in the book as well. She's a fiery one, just like Liz is in real life. She's very logical and even tempered until you get on her bad side. Nightshadow (Watch for the N post) tried to kill her in LoC, so there's some bad vibes going on there.

Liz has been a friend of mine for going on twelve years now. We've seen each other through thick and thin, yet we've never met face to face. We email, IM and talk on the phone, but have yet to meet. She's helped me with lots of Laria things while writing, she's read my rough drafts and edits.

Laria becomes one of Kayta's most trusted friends (See, another K post I could have written) when she helps Kayta get back home after losing her memory. Kayta's ship is attacked and she's tossed overboard, left to die and hits her head on the side of the ship before she falls into the water. She's rescued by a Pyrate of all people.

When Kayta is dropped off in the closest port that has a Healer, she ends up meeting Laria, Farrehn and Vendras. Laria is a saucy girl. She calls people "Sugar" and would rather fill someone with arrows as look at them. Liz gave me several ideas for my website including "Laria's Guide to Hunting".

"If it moves, hit it. If it moves again, hit it harder." I look forward to her recipes for Goblin Stew or Ogre Casserole.

So there, I made up for my L post. I hope you enjoyed this!

Awards...

Now, I know that these awards weren't exactly given specifically to me. However, I chose to accept them when told "You all deserve it so help yourself".

Why thank you. I will. ;)

I know, I posted a bit about me that was uber serious so I've got to add a little fun in here today. So with that being said, I have these two awards:

The Sugar Doll Award was offered up over at Beth's blog. The rules for this award are:
The Sugar Doll Award is about joy and happiness. In accepting the award, we have to agree to list 10 things that people may not know about you and then pass the award to fellow bloggers whose blogs bring joy and happiness to your life.


Ten things about me you don't know, eh? Hmm...

Well here we go:
1 - I hate rum. I drank so much in my younger years I cannot stand even the smell of it.
2 - I'm allergic to nickel, therefore I cannot wear gold unless it is pure. Like I could ever afford that! lol!
3 - I've been married 3 times. Yes. 3. Uno, dos, tres. Third time must be the charm. ;)
4 - I portray a Pirate persona in the SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism). I'm a sad pirate, allergic to gold and hate rum. XD
5 - It took me five and a half years to graduate high school. Lots of extenuating circumstances, see.
6 - I failed English. Every. Year. And I'm a writer, go figure!
7 - I am the youngest of 53 grandchildren on my mother's side of the family. Last pic I had taken with my Grandma was when I was 5, she passed shortly after that.
8 - I'm half Dutch and have my mom's side of the family tree documented back to the 1600's in Netherlands.
9 - I am a serious history freak. I love researching history and I wouldn't let anyone pay me if they needed information for a writing project. :D
10 - I have this weird memory. I can remember practically every book I've read, movie I've seen and can remember numbers at the drop of a hat. Seriously, it's freaky. I have so much useless trivia in my brain it is a wonder I can even function properly.

So there's my 10 things. I want to pass this on to Cheri, B. Miller, The Alliterative Allomorph, Talli and Elizabeth Mueller. Wow, it's difficult to pick, but I will stick with those choices.




The Prolific Blogger was over at Arlee's blog. Lee passed it on to all of us in the A-Z Blog Challenge and if you haven't accepted it, I am going to tell you to accept it! Any of you following my blog who are in the A-Z Challenge, take this award and pass it on.

So there, that's it about me. Hope you are all having a great day!

Living Life...


Ahhh... life. Laughter. Love. Longing. All great L words that combine in Life.

I've learned to appreciate life a little more. For a long time I had serious depression and anxiety. I still battle anxiety, but I am no longer on meds for depression. I've had to change my outlook on life, to view the positive, fight the negative and reinforce myself as a human being.

Why am I telling you this? It is important. It is something I share because I truly want to help others with these issues. I wrote an article on Living With Depression and Anxiety. The one that has the most views is The Importance of Communicating With Your Children.

I wont' go in to a lot here. You can read if you like. I'm not afraid of sharing something like this if it can help someone else out there. Therapists aren't exactly experts unless they've gone through similar situations in their own life. It is hard for people to understand what others go through unless they've lived it themselves. Especially something as severe as depression. It is still a battle, but one I willingly fight these days. I have much to live for.

Favorite Band: Linkin Park. Favorite Movie: Legend.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Getting Your Kicks...


Ah yes, today is the letter K.

Kids. I have two. Six if you count my kitties. They're a handful, I tell ya. Sometimes they are getting into trouble, just like kids. I was going to post about one of them on G day since her name is Gir. (Grrr) That wouldn't have been fair to the other kitties, though.

So here, I will share with you some pics and info about each "kid".

Colby goes first, she's the oldest. My mom sort of pawned her off on my because she's getting older. (The cat, not my mom) My mom wanted to travel more, not have to be burdened by a pet. So Colby entered our lives. Which was fine. She fits in as the Alpha Kitty of the group. Then my mom went and got another cat, because she got lonely. I don't blame her. My kitties are great company when no one else is around. I don't know if I have a good pic of Colby, let's see...

Then there is Osiris. Yeah, I love explaining his name to the Vet.

"Name?"

"Osiris."

"Osiris? What kind of name is that?"

"It's the Egyptian god of the Dead."

"Oh." Silence. "Current on his shots?"
Yeah, I love to tell people that one. He is a golden god kitty, lol! He's part Manx, part Maine Coon. Fluffy as all get out with his short, crooked tail. My husband found him when they were trying to catch a rat that kept eating the insulation. Live trap, obviously. The first day he caught Osiris's sister, Squeaker. Then Osiris himself. Squeaker squeaked when she purred, it was really cute. But then she fell into a bad habit of not using the kitty box and well... we had to give her up for adoption.
When I moved to Alaska, we just had two cats. Three if you count my brother in law's, but she was outside most of the time. I can barely pronounce her name, but I think it is spelled Feducious. Please don't ask for the long version, I really cannot pronounce that one. Hehe!

One year, we were expecting my son to come up from Arizona. (He lives with his dad.) Christmas visit and all that. His flight got snowed in at the Seattle airport and they canceled, saying no unaccompanied minors were allowed to fly. We were so depressed. We went to the grocery store to do some last minute shopping for our Christmas dinner. We were not a cheery bunch. I looked around for my daughter, but she'd went off on her own. I was down at the other end of the store when my husband came up to me and said, "She found a kitten. There's a guy outside with kittens."

Oy.

"Well, we did promise her a kitten one day. What do they look like?"

"Well you have to come see them. They're cute!"
Of course they're cute, they're baby kitties. So I went out and lo and behold, one was curled up in my daughter's jacket sound asleep. Another mother was there with her kid and the guy asked which one she wanted. The kid pointed to the one in my daughter's arms. Right then, my daughter looked up with a pained expression, saw me and almost cried.

"I think she wants that one," the guy told the kid. The kid pouted but the mother saw my daughter's look. "Let her have that one if she wants," the mother said. They all looked at me then and I sighed. "We'll take that one."
I'm such a sucker.

So we get home and there is a note on the front door. See, my brother in law thought we would be on our way to pick up my son at the airport. He had no idea yet that the flight was canceled. The note read: "Family, kitten in house. Just look for Osiris."

He picked up our kitty's litter mate from the same guy outside the store. We just missed him. So now we had 4 (5) cats. Thus Oona and Gir came into our family. At first, we thought Gir was a boy, because the guy said so and we looked up her little kitty skirt just once, mind you. We couldn't tell, so we let it be and took the guy's word. So when we went to get them fixed, imagine our surprise when Gir was a girl. Hehe! So from that day on, I tell her she puts the Grr in Girl, baby.

I know, long post for a Tuesday, but I hope you enjoyed it. I love my furry kids. They're cool!


Okay... Favorite Band: Kinks. Favorite Movie: Knight's Tale. ::Sighs:: Heath Ledger was a great actor.