Thursday, October 31, 2013

Book Fair at the Farmer's Market

On Saturday it’s time again - I need to get out of the house and face real people. Exciting! Sarasota Author’s Connection are arranging a book fair at the Farmer’s Market in Sarasota. 

If you’re in the area, come see me! I will have books to sign, and some swag. 

There will be more writers than me, of course, and the Farmer's Market is known for attracting tourists, so I'm sure it will offer many interesting products.

I look forward to it, because I love getting out and meeting both readers and other writers. I also dread it, because it opens at seven. In the morning. 

Who knew they made a 7 AM for Saturdays!

We’re supposed to be there to set up at 6:30. That means I need to leave my house at six. Saturday will require a lot of coffee.

The event is between 7AM and 1 PM, November 2nd on Lemon and State St in Sarasota.

Image from uniquesarasota.com

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Cover reveal - Corpus Chrome Inc, by S. Craig Zahler

COVERS
Who should be given a second chance at life? 
 
Decades in the future Corpus Chrome, Inc. develops a robotic body,  dubbed a “mannequin,” that can revive, sustain and interface with a  cryonically-preserved human brain. Like all new technology, it is  copyrighted.
 
Hidden behind lawyers and a chrome facade, the inscrutable  organization resurrects a variety of notable minds, pulling the deceased  back from oblivion into a world of animated sculpture, foam rubber  cars, dissolving waste and strange terrorism. Nobody knows how Corpus  Chrome, Inc. determines which individuals should be given a second life,  yet myriad people are affected. Among them are Lisanne Breutschen, the  composer who invented sequentialism with her twin sister, and Champ  Sappline, a garbage man who is entangled in a war between the third,  fourth and fifth floors of a New York City apartment building.
 
In the Spring of 2058, Corpus Chrome, Inc. announces that they will  revive Derek W.R. Dulande—a serial rapist and murderer who was executed  thirty years ago for his crimes. The public is horrified by the  decision, and before long, the company’s right to control the lone  revolving door between life and death will be violently challenged….
 
Cover Art by Bradley Sharp
  Cyberpunk/Transhumanism novel  coming from Dog Star Books in January 2014
---
 
  
What They’re Saying About S. Craig Zahler
 
“Zahler’s a fabulous story teller whose style catapults his reader  into the turn of the century West with a ferocious sense of  authenticity.”
—Kurt Russell, star of Tombstone, Escape from New York, Dark Blue, and Death Proof  

“If you’re looking for something similar to what you’ve read before, this ain’t it. If you want something comforting and predictable, this  damn sure ain’t it.  But if you want something with storytelling guts  and a weird point of view, an unforgettable voice, then you want what I want, and that is this.”
—Joe R. Lansdale author of Edge of Dark Water

Monday, October 28, 2013

Be mindful with local expressions

If you visit my blog somewhat regularly, you know I'm Swedish. I learned English in school, for better and for worse. To make things easier as a writer in exile in the US, I learned British English, which is mixed up with English words we've imported to Swedish. The latter often get a new meaning along the way.

Thus, I think spellings like colour, harbour, labour, and realise are correct.

To me, this is a jumper. =)
To me, a jumper is a form of woman's clothing. It's a nicer form of a sweater, usually in a knit but thin material.

I think a biscuit is a form of cookie or cracker, and a crisp is a french fry.

To me, a walkman is called a freestyle, and a diet coke is called coke light. Homely to me is something nice that feels like home. Here it means ugly. Figures!

This list could be very long, and it's not getting shorter from me picking up local Florida expressions.

Through my years in the US, friendly American editors have taught me to recognize many of my mistakes, but some still slip through, I'm sure.

Up until recently, I assumed this problem was specific for foreigners, because my normal is a different normal than what's normal for people here. (Confusing sentence, I know, sorry, LOL!)

Local expressions and habits can mess things up for people born in the US as well, and as writers, we need to be mindful of this.

I recently started to read a book that was pretty good, except for a few lingual quirks. Like, the author insisted on calling a headset a bluetooth. The word popped up several time on each page, until I couldn't stand it any more. I've been meaning to go back and read the rest, but in my heart I know I never will. The bluetooth is too annoying and throws me out of the story every time I see it.

A headset is a device connected to a phone, computer, stereo, whatever.

Bluetooth is a standard for wireless communication. It was invented by Swedish company Ericsson in 1994, and the name comes from a Danish/Norwegian king.

I have a bluetooth keyboard, a bluetooth mouse, bluetooth headphones, and I send data from my phone to my computer with bluetooth.

I discussed this with some other writers, because I couldn't get over the expression "a bluetooth." The rest of the book was eloquent, and there had to be a reason for this annoying misuse of the word. One of my colleagues told me that in parts of the US, headsets are called bluetooths, and people honestly don't know the difference.

That's a neat trap for a writer if she happens to come from such an area. This person has written a book that makes perfect sense to people in her city, and will drive readers from the rest of the world bonkers. Oops.

I don't have a solution for the dilemma. I have learned now that "she pulled on her jumper" won't make sense to Americans, but I'll keep using similar expressions because I don't know any better.

What can we do? Be mindful with everything that could be a local expression. It can make or break a book. =)

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Book review: Storyland by Dawn Napier

Imagine a world where snippets of lore come true - in a dark way. It's not fairy-tale land, because there aren't any fairy godmothers or cheerful little dwarves rescuing princesses. It's story-land, with the stuff people talk about around campfires to scare each other before sleeping in the wild. 

In Napier's world creatures out of mythology, books, and movies come alive, bringing out both the best and the worst in surviving humans.

The best in us is amazing, but the worst in us is pretty darned bad.

This book is unlike everything I've ever read before. The first part is a series of suspenseful stories, and at first the timeline confused me. Then I decided it didn't matter, and went along for the ride. And what a ride it is!

Is it good? Let me put it this way. I didn't intend to read a book today, and I attempted to put it down several times. Each time, I went to the kitchen for another cup of coffee, and returned to the book. I HAD to see what would happen, and who would survive.

The book is well written, superbly edited, scary, gripping, and intense. If you're the kind of person who wants to hide under the bed at the mere thought of something supernatural, it might not be for you. Me, I read it on Kindle and as soon as I finish writing this review I'll go see if it's available as paperback so I can keep it forever.

Blurb:

Storyland is a unique vision of the urban apocalypse novel. Creatures of fantasy and nightmare have returned to the real world, and human beings are now an endangered species. Fairytale monsters have come to life, and the lessons they teach are grim.

 Out of the ashes of civilization's ruin rises Alicia, a gritty young girl born and raised in this terrifying new world. With a pistol in one hand and her trusty machete in the other, Alicia forges through nightmare after nightmare in search of a safe haven and trustworthy friends.

It is a dark realization, but she learns in her travels that some of the monsters wear human faces.

See the book on Amazon!

Friday, October 25, 2013

The SFR Brigade presents: Operation Earth

The SFR Brigade Presents is a blog hop where sci-fi romance authors present snippets of their work. This week, I would like to share an excerpt from my book Operation Earth.

Check out the other participating authors as well! =)

~~~~~~


Far above the Earth, a nearly endless line of men dressed in identical black uniforms moved through a long corridor towards a number of reprogramming chambers. They all stared forward, keeping their eyes on the neck of the person ahead.

No one spoke.

Not a sound could be heard except for the sound of the men's boots on the floor of the ship's interior.
A thick, waist-high tentacle stretched up from the floor. One of the men held his wrist above it, just like the person before him had done, and the person behind him would do. The voice of the ship echoed in his mind.

Peter. Adın Peter olacak.

His name would be Peter. Such an unfamiliar word, and difficult to say. No matter. If the ship chose it, this was who he would be.

Bu, Amerika diye bilinen ülkede en yaygın olarak kullanılan 23. isimdir.

Interesting. Peter was the twenty-third most common male name in a country known as America. That word was also hard to say, but as soon as the new brain-tip was installed, it would be second nature. Not a thing to look forward to, but a necessary step.

He had carried so many names during the years, known and forgotten so many languages he could barely remember his own. Sometimes he tried to think about it, but fighting the information in the brain-tips made his head hurt.

Felsefe yapmanın sırası değil.

This wasn’t a time to get philosophical. It was a time to comply. The queue moved forward. Ten steps, thirty, a hundred. It would be his turn to enter the chamber soon. The memories of the last world visited, Ka'thwuk, would be gone and his mind would be filled with awareness of Earth.

He stepped into the reprogramming chamber, obediently following the line.

Evde kalıp hayatı paylaşacak bir eş bulabilir miydim?

Could he have stayed home? Found a chosen to share his life? No way to know and a futile line of thought.

A tentacle brushed over his hair, and he shuddered. At least he didn't have to connect with the ship. 

Being a man had many disadvantages, but this was a definite upside.

The tentacle uncovered his old implant and ripped it out, sending blazing pain through his being. 

Excessive training kept him on his feet, even as his legs threatened to buckle. Then the ship thrust the new brain-tip in, and his stomach flipped over as new and unwanted knowledge forced its way into his mind.

The sensation passed quickly, and he followed the line of men forward once more, towards the other side of the chamber. He was Peter now, fluent in every language spoken on the world below.

I'm going to America on the planet Earth.

~~~~~~




Seven billion people on Earth go about their daily lives, and no one is prepared when a global EMP slows the world to a crawl. With all our technology incapacitated, everything changes. Within days alien soldiers line the streets, and life will never be the same. In the midst of chaos, Rachael Hill struggles to adapt to the new order, doing her best to keep herself and her cat alive.

On a ship far above the planet surface, Peter just got his new Earth name, and can't even remember his identity from the last world he visited. It's another day on the job, one more planet on a never ending list. That is, until Rachael bumps into him, dropping exotic objects all around his feet. His culture taught him females should be obeyed and protected, but he never had an urge to leave himself at a woman's mercy until now.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Confession time: I covet technology

I’ve been wanting a new iPhone for some time. It’s silly, because there’s nothing wrong with my old one. I’ve had it for over four years, and even if I can invent problems with it to justify wanting new technology, it works fine.

Today, I ordered a new one anyway. Of course I need 4G speed, a better camera, and Siri. Because… Well… Uh… It's available...?

My boss calls it circuit-lust, and I think he’s right. My mind is so soaked in commercials it can’t tell “need” from “want” anymore.

Is it a geek syndrome?

I'm the same way with computers. They're new and shiny. 

They have new processors, faster memory modules, and clean keyboards (LOL). I had a perfectly fine laptop as well as a new desktop computer, but I still paid an arm and a leg about a month ago for a new laptop. It can compile videos in 12 seconds, and it's all silvery and shiny. So pretty! (That I can justify since I actually work with making videos and editing large images, and I usually run more than one computer at once.)

Anyway, I’ve had a bad conscience all day since placing the order for the phone. Not necessarily over spending all that money on a new phone - I can find ways to justify that to myself - but over abandoning my old phone who has stood by me through so much. We have a comfortable relationship, the phone and I. It’s like a worn pair of shoes that fits just right, or a favorite chair.

Luckily, I found a way to make me feel better about it. I’ve cleaned it out and I’m giving it to hubby. He can use it as an iPod, because he doesn’t have a gadget to watch videos and listen to music and such.

It's probably a good thing that I live in a time where we haven't quite perfected household robots and androids yet. I get so excited over every new gadget - Google Glass and that new Samsung watch make my eyes glaze over - imagine if there were machines available that actually walked and talked...

How is your relationship with technology?

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Do you like book trailers?

I love playing with videos. Mixing images, footage, and music together to a whole is a magical pastime. If there's a downside it would be that time disappears so quickly when I dive into a project.

What do you think about book trailers? Do you watch them? Do they influence your decision on whether or not to buy a book?

If you're a writer, do you use book trailers? Do you make them yourself, or use a specialized company?

Here are some of my videos. I admit that many of them share the same images and footage. Stock photos and stock videos are sort of expensive, so even if I would love to get new stuff for each video, my wallet wouldn't approve. Normally people won't see them all together. =)



The video for Embarkment 2577 is made with Corel VideoStudio. I have a new cover for the collection volume and should probably replace the one in the video, but I haven't gotten around to it. =)


The video for Undercover is made with Microsoft MovieMaker.


The video for Kidnapped is made with Microsoft MovieMaker.


The video for the Goddess's Saga is made with Microsoft MovieMaker.


The video for Shadow of a Man is made with Adobe Premiere.


The video for Operation Earth is made with Microsoft MovieMaker.

Friday, October 18, 2013

The SFR Brigade Presents: Kidnapped

The SFR Brigade Presents is a blog hop where sci-fi romance authors present snippets of their work. This week, I would like to share an excerpt from my book Kidnapped.

Check out the other participating authors as well! =)

~~~~~

Patricia expected to be home, in her own bedroom, or in an ambulance, or maybe a hospital, but when she finally managed to focus, she found herself staring into a pair of cold and dead blue eyes. A male voice said something in a language she couldn't understand, "Koira cha tinn? Waplaho banejem cackat tor tebe? Kako ya ting ro thrab?"

Since the words didn't make any sense and the eyes frightened her, she looked at the rest of the face, and immediately wished she hadn't. Half of it was handsome, but the other part came from a nightmare.

She had been raised not to make fun of people, to believe a person's looks in no way mirrors the inside, and not to stare at others' misfortune. It was still almost impossible not to gawk at the combination of scars and destroyed skin that made up most of his left cheek, stretching up towards the temple and down toward the chin. It was both deeply tragic and terrifying.

Trying to pull back from the horror in front of her didn't do her any good. She was in a chair with her arms tied to the armrests, and there was nowhere to go. The man spoke again, repeating the words from earlier, and she found herself babbling, "Who are you? Where am I? I can't understand a word you're saying, please don't hurt me."

The cold eyes locked in with hers, and what she saw in them frightened her. She imagined it to be the gaze of a mass-murderer, empty and void of the life that fills normal people. She was no doubt selected to be his next victim. She whispered, "Oh, please no, I don't want to die."


Kidnapped

It's a late winter night when Patricia Risden heads home in her car, on a road she's driven many times before. She doesn't have a care in the world, that is, until a man appears from nowhere, right in front of her.

When she awakes, she finds herself a prisoner of the unscrupulous Alliance Commander Travis 152; an intimidating man who demands information and complete cooperation. Travis soon realizes his mistake; Tricia doesn't know anything, and she is incapable of even getting a glass of water from the ship's computer.

Infamous for being a ruthless executioner, conditioned since childhood to feel nothing besides fear and pain, he still deems her harmless, and finds enough pity for the lost young woman to let her out of the cell; a decision that will change both their lives forever.


~~~~~

Kidnapped was released by Desert Breeze Publishing in 2012, and is available as e-book and paperback.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Strange tidings from the UK

I stumbled over a blog post named Self-Published Erotica is Being Singled Out For Sweeping Deletions From Major eBookstores. When I read the title I didn't think all that much about it, but then my brain grasped what it really said.

According to that blog post, the whole debacle with deletions of books started with Amazon selling legal adult content, which led to an article named, "Amazon cashes in on Kindle filth." I have tried to access the article, but their servers appear to be down at the moment, which leads me to believe that millions of other curious writers also want to read it.

I was able to read some other articles. Like this one in The Mail Online which mentions - in a horrified tone - how "Writers can self-publish using the Kindle Direct service, which allows them to put titles online within minutes."

The website On the Media has a more balanced point of view. They mention that the books which originally started the debate are "Leagues worse than pornography. They're written to give the reader pleasure while imagining someone raping a child."

I'm sure most people don't want to read books like that. The material is probably illegal in many countries, and I absolutely agree that retailers have a choice in what they want to sell.

The article continues with pointing out, "As for the idea that these books are just in bad taste, well, absolutely. They're the worst. But you won't find these books unless you're looking for them." Good point. One can wonder how the writers of the original article found them...

I understand that book sellers want to remove material that's outright illegal, or borderline so. Unfortunately, it doesn't stop there. It is impossible to single out which books break the rules without reading them all.

Sure, one can write computer algorithms that will search for keywords, phrases, and similar clever things, but I doubt we have artificial intelligences able to make informed decisions on when certain words can be close together and be okay and when they're wrong. Thus, the solution becomes to delete everything.

Right now, as I write this, retailers work on removing all self-published erotica. Is that really the right way to deal with a problem caused by a handful of books/writers/activists?

Here's a shocker: authors need to sell books to make a living. Authors of books with adult content need to buy food and pay their bills just like everyone else. Punishing them through pulling their books hardly seems fair. They didn't do or write anything illegal.

Also, today, erotica is targeted, but it won't stop there. I'm already hearing about authors in other categories whose books are removed from large retailers.

Thus far the hubbub has been on British websites, but even though the country is located on an island, nothing is isolated in the world of the Internet.

I went to the website of British bookseller whsmith.co.uk, and their page is closed down, with a message saying the page will be closed until "all self published eBooks have been removed. When our website goes back online it will not display any self published material until we are completely confident that inappropriate books can never be shown again."

From whsmith.co.uk


Retailers are apparently attacking self-published books, because that's easy. The blog points at some works by major publishing houses that definitely break the rules, but they're not touched, because they're not self published.

I wasn't familiar with any of the titles mentioned, so I looked a few of them up. The book Tampa by Alissa Nutting is published by Harper Collins. It is about "Celeste Price, a smoldering 26-year-old middle-school teacher in Florida, unrepentantly recounts her elaborate and sociopathically determined seduction of a 14-year-old student."

That's okay, but all self published books must go?

Don't get me wrong. I don't hold a personal grudge against Alissa Nutting - I had never heard of her or the book until an hour ago - but if the object of the game really was to remove books with objectionable content, how can it be okay to keep a book where a 14 year old is seduced by a teacher while removing innocent YA books because they're self published?

The result of this is easy to sum up: Writers aren't happy. Readers aren't happy.

This might all blow over. Similar things have happened before and just gone away. However, do you know who is happy and who wins on all this? Traditional, big publishing houses.

Friday, October 11, 2013

The SFR Brigade Presents: Shadow of a Man

The SFR Brigade Presents is a blog hop where sci-fi romance authors present snippets of their work. This week, I'm going with my brand new release, "Shadow of a Man."

Shadow of a man is a novella in Desert Breeze Publishing's Borealis series - a number of stories written by different authors but set in the same environment. I love the series, because every writer brings something different.

Click here to check out the other writers participating this week!

Excerpt from Borealis XII: Shadow of a Man

Theresa left the ship between Dominic and Geo, struggling to keep her back straight and her head high. Hiding behind one of the men would be most excellent, but unbecoming.

How could anyone be expected to believe she and Giovanni were siblings? She was short with a head full of brown curls, and he was tall with a mop of fair hair crowning a face that looked nothing like hers. Adopted, maybe... Or with a different mom or dad, maybe from different planets...

At least no one questioned them.

At least she still remembered her new name. Riza sounded enough like Theresa to be feasible for her.

She took in the new environment in quick glances, doing her best not to stare. The station wasn't as bad as she expected. She had imagined the place to be busy, dirty, and smelly.

I don't know why it should be smelly. Seems prudent, is all.

Everything in sight was neat and she wanted to grab Dominic's arm and ask about it, but he was too far away. Geo, on the other hand, had apparently developed a knack for reading her mind.

"We've gotten priority docking; regular ships don't come in this way. The normal docking bay is a couple of floors below us. The top floors are the nicest. The further down you get... Well, you'll see when we go to Korn. You won't want to wander any further down than that." The upside of being rich: even with false identities, money gave better treatment. She still hadn't expected anyone to regard them as VIPs.

Had someone in the Protectorate developed a sudden affection for her husband?

It could be a trap.

The stress was getting the better of her. She wanted to wipe her palms on her clothes, but she couldn't do that. Could everyone see how nervous she was? If anyone gave them away it would be her. Too much pressure!

What did he say? Something about the lower levels and not going there...

"Well, how bad can it be? It's not like they eat children or anything, right?"

Geo didn't answer. She didn't think Dominic paid attention to her, but he glanced over to meet her eyes and gave a huffing noise. It could mean anything, but sounded an awful lot like "yes."


See the book on Amazon!

Release day: Shadow of a Man

The Borealis novellas is a series of independent stories written by different authors, but set in the same environment. Around a year ago, Desert Breeze Publishing asked if I'd be interested in writing one, and I did a happy dance. I love this series, and I am proud to get the opportunity to be part of it.

My book is called Shadow of a Man, and it's reasonably priced at $1.99.

Check out the blurb:

There might be a place Theresa fears more than Borealis, but she can’t think of one. The old and decrepit station houses all sorts of cruelty, and to make it better, this is where her husband Dominic was imprisoned, drugged, and tortured. He returned a mere shadow of his old self, scarred by abuse and Uudon withdrawal.

Borealis is the last place Theresa wants to go, and the only one she can’t escape. Dominic’s apparent madness does nothing to alleviate her fears. Her once sweet husband has turned into a womanizing monster, and will destroy anyone who gets in his way.

Geo, her faithful and all too handsome bodyguard, appears to be the only one on her side. He once helped rescue Dominic, and pays for the insurrection with a lifetime on the run. This might be a situation not even he can handle, and Theresa fears none of them will make it out alive.


And, here is an excerpt:

"I wish we weren't going to Borealis."

"Trust me, you're not the only one."

Interesting.

Captain Geo rarely answered when she spoke, even if he was right next to her.

Sometimes she forgot what his voice sounded like.

Why is he standing guard inside the room anyway? He's usually on the other side of the door. Oh well, maybe he needs company too.

Theresa turned to meet his eyes and lifted an eyebrow.

"Did something happen to you there?"

He stood right beside the door with his feet apart and his hands tucked behind his back, looking authoritative and unafraid.

"Something happens to everyone who sets foot there. You too. Am I correct?"

This time all willpower in the world couldn't suppress the shudder. How could she be so fearful of a place she'd never seen? Telling herself Borealis was built and inhabited by humans didn't help one bit. She still considered it one of the lower levels of Tartarus where souls were tortured until the end of times.

"You know. You helped get him out."

He nodded, but didn't have time to answer; his radio crackled to life. She couldn't quite make out the mumbling voice on the other side, but it didn't matter.

It wasn't for her.

It was never for her.

"Ma'am."

Geo's voice right next to her made her jump. His chiseled face was almost within kissing distance. How could he be so quiet and still move so quickly?

"I need your assistance."

The mere words made her feel fatigued.

"Oh no. What did he do?"

"He's setting fires on the cargo deck, ma'am. Fire will deplete our air supply."

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Join my newsletter!

I've been thinking about starting a newsletter for a long time, and finally got around to it. I won't send out many e-mails, but I will send out messages with news, book releases, giveaways, and contests.

Joining me is easy. Just fill in this tiny little form, and get in on the fun! =D


  Email Marketing You Can Trust

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Sarasota Book Fair - Success!

I've spent the day at the Sarasota Book Fair, and I had a great time! Hubby went with me. I didn't think he would, because he usually dislikes events, and doing something together was awesome! I met some good friends, made new friends, sold some books, and bought a book. I had so much fun I even signed up for another fair.

Once I get settled down and unpacked enough to go through my business cards I will highlight some of the fantastic writers I met.

When someone stopped at the booth but didn't really make contact, I patted my pile of Kidnapped and said, "I'm in the business of abducting people and sending them to space."

A corny line, maybe, but it turned out to be an ice-breaker. One woman rewarded me with true laughter. That in itself made the day worthwhile!

I met one of the area's local graphical artists and got praise for my book covers. She's very talented - her portfolio blew me away - and that compliment warmed the ego since I've done the ones for my self-published books myself. I also love the Desert Breeze Publishing cover artists. Kidnapped, Operation Earth, Undercover, Flashback... They're all awesome!

The cover for Undercover turned out to be an attention-grabber. Several people stopped to talk about it. "Hey, that looks like James Bond."

I said, "Yes, but my spy is Russian, and boy is he in trouble."

Great conversation starter! I brought a poster of Kidnapped, but maybe I should make some of the other books as well.

I was surprised over the varying interest in my books. I sold the most of Touch of the Goddess. I didn't expect to sell any of that one. On the other hand I expected to give away lots of pens, candy, and post cards. The visitors seemed to think all that was okay, but they'd rather talk about books or publishing.

A part of the Goddess mystery unraveled as one of the other writers told me the book and I were mentioned in an article in one of the local newspapers. The journalist wrote that I paint out a hopeful future for the human race.

I guess it's true for "Touch." I tend to think of all the books in series as one entity, and in books two and three the human race has something of a hard time, but all's well that ends well. Right? ;-)

Anyway, during the years I've been to plenty of shows for many different employers in various areas of business, but this one was the first for me, and it felt great.

Thus far I've only done virtual book tours, but now I have one event per month with real-life interaction planned for the foreseeable future. =D

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Working on the re-write of Wrath of the Goddess

Most books flow out of me. I get an idea, start writing, and work on them from time to time until they have enough of a skeleton to develop into a novel. I guess my approach to writing is as random as they way I do everything else; I potter about here and there, and don't consciously work on them until it's time to finish up.

Wrath of the Goddess was always different.

When I first got the idea for The Goddess's Saga, book one and three almost wrote themselves. The second book in the series, not so much. It fought me tooth and nail and did not want to be written. I had book three finished long before book two.

Ever since Desert Breeze Publishing signed me up, my life has been a learning experience. I learn new things every time I'm in contact with one of their fantastic editors. I learn new things every time I just talk to the editor in chief. They're not at all involved in The Goddess's Saga - they're not into the pagan deity thing - but after working with professionals for a couple of years I saw my earlier, self-published books with new eyes.

The Goddess books clearly weren't up to par.

To be honest... The writing sucked. Ouch!

I took them off sale and begun my rewrite with great enthusiasm. I had written them once. Touch of the Goddess had been edited by a professional company who charged a hair-raising sum to do it. How hard could it be to polish them up?

Oh, good gravy...

The first book, Touch of the Goddess, didn't put up much of a fight. I poked around with the third book, Return of the Goddess, because it was always my favorite. I'm not worried about that one. It will be happy to be polished and re-published.

Wrath on the other hand did not want to be re-written. If a story could defend itself with weapons, it would. It's happening anyway, of course, and I'm delighted to say the book is almost done. It just took three times longer than I expected. Maybe my Goddess doesn't like to be wrathful.

Wrath of the Goddess
Coming soon!



Tuesday, October 1, 2013

This doesn't bode well for equality

A while ago my husband got a tooth ache. He has been putting off going to the dentist, partly because it's expensive, and partly because it's not his favorite place. Can't say I blame him; I don't go unless I have to.

Once he made it there, the dentist told him he needs a root canal and a crown. A couple other teeth also need attention, and the bill would end up around $5,000. Whoa!

I decided to sign us up for dental insurance. I found a plan that would work for us, signed us up with me as the primary insurance holder and him as the co-insured, and paid for a year from my bank account.

The other day, I was surprised to see an envelope with his name on it from the insurance company. When we opened, it contained a letter addressed to him along with two insurance cards bearing his name "and spouse."

Really? I sign up for insurance, I pay, he is co-insured, and it still ends up in his name? What are women in your world? Appendixes that follow men? Good for nothing besides being spouses?

It doesn't really matter. I mean, we have the insurance, he can get his dental work done for a reasonable price, and I can go when I need to. It still annoys me.