Happy Almost Thanksgiving giving friends in the US


Yup the holiday is coming up. Thursday all the Americans on my list will hopefully be with their friends and families, eating good food and remembering why they are thankful. I have been sitting here in Canada thinking about Thanksgiving and all the things I am thankful for over the past year.

Of course on the top of the list are my loved ones. My sweet husband who works so hard to support myself and our daughter. Who helps me write fight scenes by telling me how it should go and who was so very helpful with those science fiction things like space ships and the weapons and engines they would have. He is a wonderful man who has made my life so much easier and I thought I would take this week to tell him so.

I am thankful for all three of my daughters. From the two who I miss so much who are living lives so far away from me, to the fun and silly now twelve year old who lives with her father and I. My heart has grown so big just loving those three girls.

I am thankful for my parents. My mom and stepdad who live so far away from me. I hope that even with the trials they are going through that they will have a wonderful day and that things get better.

Now this is supposed to be my writing blog right? Yes I have been writing new things. I haven’t dived deeply into a longer project because of just releasing the Echoes of Elder Times collection last week. It hasn’t moved more than a couple copies but i am thankful both for the sales and for the five star review that went up yesterday!

But back to Thanksgiving right? Yes I have been writing some fun little short bits based on this holiday. Thanksgiving happened last month here in Canada but back home it will be this Thursday. So I plan on putting up these little bits on my Facebook author page. One a day (or more) will be put up over there. Some will be funny, some will by dark and some will be personal. This holiday is a mixed bag for me. For years I was the woman who made the feast. At one time I used to feed up to twenty people at my table and it has been fur years now since I have. I miss those days. I miss the crazy day of cooking all those dishes and then the happy and full faces of people who enjoyed what I made. So I will write about them.

Here in fact is one of the quickies i wrote:

Thanking

Place the napkins, light the candles, place the turkey on the table. Sit down, look around and realize that this is a special day. No matter the dishes, no matter the faces, this ay is unlike any other. For this one day a year we thank those who came before us, for those who are with us.

Or that is how it used to be. Now it is a rush to eat so we can go out and spend. What happened to the joy of Thanksgiving, of family and friends in one place? This year, why not settle back and relax. Eat that turkey and remember to thank the person who did all the work. Better yet, thank them by doing the dishes! That’s the ticket.

****

Will this end up in a collection? Maybe. This is a quickie length piece and I don’t yet have enough of those for a collection but who knows.

I have also contemplated putting all my Christmas drabbles, micros and quickies into a book and putting it out around Christmas. Something priced at 99 cents that will be filled with the fun little tales that I have written after doing a lot of holiday research. As for today I am done babbling over here. Time to dive back into writing drabbles, micros and quickies. Hope you all have a great holiday!

Been busy working


Well now that Halloween and the kid’s birthday is over, I have a bit of time to roll into working on my next publications. As I have commented before, I plan on doing a bunch of collections over the next few months. Adding in new material that will not be sold separately and of course massively editing previously published work can and will take a lot of time.

Last night I finished up the final story for the first of the Echoes of Elder Times collection. This book will include all of the previously published tales, which in fact is ten tale. Added to those tales with be a new one titled Winter’s End. Making this collection a total of eleven tales.

While this collection won’t be as large as others the stories are well worth reading IMO. They have the feel of retold faerie tales but with a twist of course.  Some are dark, some are light but they all have my take on the myths and legends of the old world.

echoes-starter-cover This is the working cover I have for the book but I do believe I need to change up the text color and font. The purple just doesn’t stand out after all. So over the next week I plan on updating this. I will probably remove the leaves and make the font both larger and another color. Simple covers can be some of the best. If I can get it the way I want you can expect to see this release just before American Thanksgiving. A nice book for those looking for a read while they are waiting in those lines at the check out on Black Friday.

In those news I am deep in the edits of Mythos of Love. This second collection will not be out till around Valentine’s Day but it need a lot of work IMO.  MOL will only contain six tales but the very first tale in the book is the novella The Knight Protector, giving this book a longer tale. Five of the tales have been published before and I admit they needed some major overhauls but the final and newest tale will by Singer of the Blood Song.  Now if you have no idea why I am using Mythos in the title here is a bit of the blurb I have used on the tales:

 

Mythos – A story or set of stories relevant to or having a significant truth or meaning for a particular culture, religion, society, or other group.

Love stories are common through out all cultures.  These short stories are my take on love and magic for romance can be found in any genre.

 

Fantasy and romance have mixed before but mostly as paranormals. Stories with vampires and werewolves at the heroes are fun to read but they are not the only romance stories out there. With Knight Protector I have just that, a knight. He is human, who an inner power.  An old fashioned tale with a damsel in distress and an evil wizard, it is a good place to start.

Not all of the tales will have the traditional happy ending though. Because we all know that love doesn’t not always have a Happily Ever After. Sometimes the hero is killed or dies and the heroine is left to mourn. So you can expect some twists and turns from that collection.

And that is enough for now. Expect a lot of work over the next six months. I will be slowly removing from individual sale those titles that are all ready part of a collection. I do this mostly so that you, my readers, won’t feel you have to buy all of my titles and find yourself with duplicates. I will only do this on Amazon, as it is the largest seller of my work. If you still want individual copies you can go to places like ITunes, Barnes and Noble or Kobo. Happy reading everyone!

Audio of Escape!


I know I am a bit late with blogging this week but I wanted to wait till I had the link for something really cool. Sheenah from Papercrane books offered to have a voice actor/author from her company read the first two chapters of Escape for her biweekly blog. Now I have the link for those of you who would like to heart them read. The actor has a great voice and he really brings the chapters to life.

You can hear it here

http://windowstomymind.wordpress.com/

Go over and give it a listen, then you can leave comments here or over there!

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Got this email from a friend….


suteko:

I had to reblog this…it is both sweet and funny…

Originally posted on Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog..... An Author Promotions Enterprise!:

Time is like a river. You cannot touch the water twice, because the flow that has passed will never pass again. Enjoy every moment of life. As a bagpiper, I play many gigs. Recently I was asked by a funeral director to play at a graveside service for a homeless man. He had no family or friends, so the service was to be at a pauper’s cemetery in the Nova Scotia back country.

As I was not familiar with the backwoods, I got lost and, being a typical man, I didn’t stop for directions.

I finally arrived an hour late and saw the funeral guy had evidently gone and the hearse was nowhere in sight. There were only the diggers and crew left and they were eating lunch. I felt badly and apologized to the men for being late.

I went to the side of the grave and looked down…

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This week’s recommendations November 8th, 2014


Originally posted on Indie Book Nirvana:

Horror

4.3 stars with 3 reviews!

This Road Darkens is a collection of five short stories. This compilation includes four short stories that were published separately and can be downloaded apart from one another: The Interview, Story Night, Thief and Lift After.

This is the tale of a trucker, Roy Roberts, who believes he’s seen it all. He finds out how truly wrong he is when he’s sidetracked by a wild fire and drives down the wrong road. The path gets worse and worse as he comes face to face with true evil.

Word count: 20,320 words
$0.99 (Kindle Edition)
$4.99 (Paperback)


4.4 stars with 8 reviews!

At five years old, John Andrews’ life is changed forever by a fistfight in a vacant lot. Twelve years later, fleeing a haunted past, he and his mother abandon post-war Newcastle for the hope of a better life in Cornwall—in the village.

Life…

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The difference a page makes


As a writer of short stories I am always looking for places to publish my work. Mostly I have wisely published them myself on the ebook retailers out there. With the amount of work I have out there now I have of course decided to combine them together into collections.

But with the growth of sites all over looking for flash fiction I thought I would try a couple of them myself. In most cases they accept your work and put them up for people to read. And of course in most cases I send them things that have not been published before but I have in fact send a couple of my published tales over to the site Quarterreads.com

Now I am very confused about this site. They want poetry and stories under two thousand words, which I can do of course. I have one tale that they have accepted and no one seems to look at (you can see it here)

https://quarterreads.com/story.php?id=121

Once I got the first one up I decided to toss over a handful more of my work. Some poems and quickie flash fictions, which are under five hundred words. Every one of them were rejected for being too short! They actually said that the work submitted were unfinished…which is so wrong.

Okay now that confused me. See any of you who have read my poetry collections know that I write short free verse poetry. In most cases the poetry is only eight to twelve lines long and are COMPLETE! Same with the quickie fiction I posted. These are quickie, tales meant to be under 500 words.

Well okay I thought, maybe i need to send them over something longer. I looked over my published tales and decided to send them Partings and Twas the Night. A ghost story that has been edited over and over to the form it is now and a science fiction Christmas tale that again, edited and complete.  Well today I got an email again stating that they need editing and to be COMPLETED! Really? This has made me decide to give this place a skip. If a tale that has nine reviews on Amazon that are four and five stars then I would say they just don’t like my style and wish them a lot of business and luck. The concept of having flash fictions and short short stories up for sale for a quarter a read is a great idea but it looks like I don’t fit their idea of stories.

Oh what a difference time makes


Last week I blogged about doing new stories for the collections I am working on. This week  I thought I would comment about the older stories that I am editing for those collections.

Yesterday I sat back and worked on getting things formatted. While doing that I realized that I really needed to update The Knight Protector.  For those of you who have not read that tale yet, it is the first of the Mythos of Love stories and was originally published  back in 1999 in my long lost collection of poetry and tales titled, Inside Dreams – Outside of Reality. Yes, I was published under a different names, Lisa Prior, and the book was filled with a lot of work that desperately needed editing.

Well I started on that  yesterday. Let’s just say I cringed at all the errors. I will probably pull down the copy that is up for sale, once I get the collection updated, that is how bad it is! Fifteen years ago I thought it was a masterpiece of course. A novella length story that had heroes, villains, a damsel in distress, evil monsters, gods, magic and mayhem. Everything that a good old fashioned fantasy needed.

Now it isn’t a bad tale, just that in those fifteen years since it first came out I have learned a lot about my craft.  So hopefully I will get it all edited up nice and clean so that I can move onto a totally new piece for the collection. You will see the evolution of me as a writer in this collection for sure.  Here is an excerpt from where I started to fix the flaws:

 

Hargon stood looking out over the parapets. The storm whipped his long white hair around his face, but he did little to restrain it. He reveled in the ferocity of the storm and raised his arms to embrace the storm. As the storm’s power lessened he dropped his arms and pounded a fist on the stonework’s before him. “I shall have my revenge! By all that is unholy I will have the soul of the one named Yasha!”

 

*****

 

The protector walked into the crowded room. People were at tables and couches talking about many things. He looked about for any faces he recognized. There were a few friends and he went over and gave each a smile and a few words.

 

He found himself drawn toward a different place though. With a smile he walked out the door and into a small orchard of blooming apple tree. Sitting under one was a small woman playing a sad aire on a simple harp. He listened quietly from the shadows as she started to sing. Her voice brought a tear to his eye, the song was so clearly full of longing.

 

From the shadows he spoke to her in a gentle voice, “Why the sad song, lady?”

 

She looked up, startled. “Who?” Then she slowly smiled a sad smile as she spotted his form in the shadows. “Oh, hello. It is nothing, kind sir.”

 

He could see some pain hiding in her eyes. His heart went out to her. He walked out of the shadows and squatted down in front of her. “Are you sure?” The concern in his voice was clear in his tone.

 

She closed her eyes a moment and sighed. “Yes, I am sure. You don’t need my troubles.” She opened her green eyes and stood. “Thank you, though.” Her face cleared some. She looked around at the orchard and tried to change the subject. “It is lovely out here tonight.”

 

Not taking his eyes from her face he spoke again. “Yes, it is,” he smiled down at her. He recognized her now. She was one the ladies he had danced with in the past. Though she looked very different tonight. Dressed in simple leggings and a tunic she reminded him of someone else. After a moment he realized that he had been sparring with her off and on for a week. She was a good fighter but she had a soft side. She could be faked out by a cry of pain. He smiled, “Would you like to dance?” He held out a hand to her.

 

She looked confused for a moment until she heard the faint strains of music coming out the doors leading to the orchard. “Yes,” she murmured, “that would be nice.” She took his hand and stepped up to him.

 

He put his arms loosely about her and smiled, looking down. Her hair glowed with silver highlights in the moonlight. She moved lightly in his arms, like a dream. They flowed to the quiet strains of music and she rested her head against his chest with a sigh. He could feel her tremble in his arms. Concern crossed his features. She was holding something inside, showing him a pleasant smile. He gently took her chin in his hand and raised her face to look into her eyes. He could see tears standing in them. She tried to blink them away but one spilled over and down her cheek. He caught it on his thumb. “Tell me what’s wrong.” He tightened his arm about her, drawing her closer.

 

She closed her eyes and stopped dancing. “I truly can’t tell you, my lord.” She tried to turn away but he held her still.

 

“Is there no way I can help?” His protective urges where strong around this woman for some reason. It could have something to do with her gentle nature or the fact that she seemed to take care of those around her, much the way he did.

 

“Truly, no. It is something I must deal with myself.” She would not meet his eyes. “I am sorry, Yasha. I am truly not good company this evening.”

 

“That’s all right Elinor. I don’t mind. Come, let us finish our dance at least.”

 

With a sigh she moved back into his arms and let the music take her away. It was pleasant here, sheltered in a man’s arms. No need to be strong. She shook her head slightly. “No thinking like that girl. That’s what started the whole mess.” She smiled weakly up into his deep brown eyes. He was so handsome and she knew his reputation as the Knight Protector. Any damsel in distress had only to whisper his name in the air and he would appear. She was sure it was mostly the tittering of the fanciful young women who looked longingly on him when he walked into a room. Though there was some truth to the rumors. He had been involved in many rescues of maidens in the past. But then she was no dewy young maiden without a thought in her pretty head. She was a fully trained bard and she could hold her own in a battle. But she didn’t feel strong this night. Her troubles were not the kind that magic or a solid blow from a staff could fix. She had made her bed and now she had to sleep in it. Lonely bed or no. Her mind without willing it thought back on the events of a month ago.

 

***

As you can see, this is a fantasy romance. Sweet and fun to write even.  I plan on adding at least one more tale to the ones all ready in this group before I release the collection.  Here is an excerpt from Singer of the Blood Song:

 

Sitting in the quiet darkness, her eyes just a dark pool watching him. Just him. Silently supporting his talent with her presence, one true fan of the new voice. She mouthed each word as he sang, as he spoke and she held her breath for the endless moment before the applause began. She drank in the pleasure that lit his face and smiled when his searching eyes found hers. Only two souls knew whom the songs were sung for, who inspired the words. And only two understood the pain and deep love those words called forth.

 

As the crowd cheered and the stage door Jills moved toward his perch on the stage, she moved back and deeper in the shadows. She didn’t watch the young lovelies press against him nor did she listen to the promises they made. The women tried to play the age-old game but none of them would be going home with him this night.

 

Only she would be.   She stepped out of the club and turned to walk around the side. Her car was parked in the back. Where he could slip out and not be followed by his new fans. They had done this many times. Playing the small clubs across the northeastern states had been both a joy and a learning experience for them both.

 

******

 

Ohanko sighed with relief as the doors shut behind him. He found the night’s performance had pulled more out of him than he expected. Looking about he smiled when he spotted the sleek, black car, idling just a few feet away.

 

He picked up his guitar and headed toward it. Inside he knew would be Kiele, his island flower. She was delicate and loving, she was always there, waiting for him. As he slid into the soft leather interior of their one luxury he rested his head back and smiled. “As always,” he leaned over and kissed her waiting lips.

 

She lifted her soft hand and gently caressed his tired face. “Tough night, wasn’t it?”

 

He nodded, his eyes closed. “They were cold, you saw how long it took for them to warm to the music. I don’t know what Rogers was thinking, booking me into that place.” He ran a hand through his shoulder length black hair and shivered a little with the chill of the late night air.

 

Noticing his chill, Kiele turned on the heat and pulled away from the club. “Me either. Those people were as dead inside as last Sunday’s pot roast. The place should be left to the wannabes and the sinking.”

 

Ohanko lifted just the corner of his mouth in a smile. “Well, maybe he thought he would give them a treat. A little excitement in their tired lives and it was only one night. I think I can take a night of energy draining listeners. Besides they really perked up near the end. I think the SONG got their blood moving.”

”You should not have to. You have paid your dues.” She paused for a moment as she negotiated around a truck that was double-parked. She darted a look out of the corner of her eyes at his face. “And you definitely don’t need those young things all over you.”

 

He repressed the smile that wanted to spring across his face. He had detected just the hint of jealousy in that comment. He knew she was nervous of the attention the younger women showed him. “Ah, but they are so full of juice,” he teased her.

 

”Juice?” She lifted one slender brow, her fingers tightening on the steering wheel.

He smiled then and trailed his fingers up the inside of her leg to the hem of the leather mini she had worn. “Yes juice. But that is all they are full of.” He trailed his fingers a little higher and she gasped. “I prefer my women filled with blood and passion,” he whispered.

 

”Stop that,” she mock growled and slapped at his hand before he could distract her more from her driving. He could feel her relaxing and he pulled back his fingers, after one more quick caress of her inner thigh.

 

”Let’s head home.”

****

So if you like romance and fantasy mixed together, this collection will be for you for sure. Expect me to finish it up by Valentine’s day 2015 (I hope!) All depends on if I can get my modern writer’s head wrapped around my old writer’s head.

The joy of writing or coming up with one more short story


As a writer who does mostly short stories coming up with a complete set of stories for a collection is important. While I have released a lot of my tales as separate shorts, I like to do one new and unreleased short story for each collection of tales that I put out.

Now the one I am trying to work on for release is Echoes of Elder Times. In this collection of tales there are a few that go with one of my earliest releases, Ice. so the tale i want to work on should book end that tale as best I can.

I have started and and stopped so far four times on this tale. Coming up with the right direction for a story to go is the hardest thing for a writer, IMO.

I admit that lately I have done dozens of mini tales. Drabbles and other shorter than short fiction forms that of course will be released in a collection or three but I Need to do a tale that will fill the ending of my collection.

Well the story I am working on is Winter’s End and here is a little bit of it for you to read

****

The winter settled in and seemed like it would never let go. While those who lived in the far north knew that winter could linger long into what was supposed to be spring, since the brief war of Gods and Giants, old Mother Winter had not released her grip in almost two years.

The day of Ice, as the war was known, had lasted for an unknown time. Man and all the lesser creatures had been frozen in place, with only those special few still moving about. When the war was done and the ice slowly withdrew the world had changed. Most of those living in the big cities did not survive the thaw. Of those who had, fewer still survived the uprisings. The world changed dramatically when the world ended.

Those that survived had many different beliefs on just what happened and who was responsible. In most cases they were wrong. The handful that had an idea kept their heads down and their mouths shut. Speaking out now was a one-way ticket to the other side of life.

***

Excerpts are a useful thing and I will post up more now that i am back in the writing phase of my works. The collection that I plan on working on after Echoes will be the Beyond Realities collection and here is a little excerpt from the as far unfinished tale for the end of this collection.

****

This tale is titled Finding Momma

The child stood in the dark, the rain soaking down her hair and clothing. She looked about like a frightened squirrel and dashed from under a tree to the bus stop shelter. Fear and sadness was clear in the stance. Fear grew stronger as a voice floated out of the night.

“Little kitten running away in the dark. Where does she think she’ll go? Who is she running to?”

Sarah froze for a long moment, then ducked beneath the bench, curling into as small a ball of wet misery as she could. Her tiny voice, barely audible as she whimpered. “Momma, please find me. Momma, I need you.” Tears slid down her face unheeded into the fur of the ragged teddy bear she clutched in white-cold hands.

The eerie voice came closer and continued to frighten the small child. “Kitten hiding in the dark, come to Sheila, come out now. I have treats and toys for good little children. Good little girls and good little boys.”

“Momma, where are you,” Sarah cried and shuddered more as the shadow filled the doorway of the shelter. She pressed back against the glass, trying to escape the reaching claws.

Suddenly there was a growl and the shelter shuddered as lightening filled the night with flashes of light and roars of thunder. Sarah let out a louder whimper, too scared to truly scream. She felt the walls about her shudder and then the glass before her shattered outward, sending glittering shards into the night. As the wall broke she finally screamed into the night.

Suddenly the storm stopped and there was silence. She could hear her own ragged breathing loud in her ears. She stayed curled tight in a quivering ball for long moments before she heard something new. A soft voice, singing a gentle lullaby, came from before her. She uncurled just a tiny bit to look around. Spotting a shadow before her, she curled back up tight, but a different soft voice spoke to her.

“She is gone now, little one. No more to hunt you.” This voice was soft and furry and Sarah swallowed before lifting her head. She looked up to see a large hand, held out, not to grab or hurt, but seemingly to help.

Sarah debated as she stared at his callused hand, but something about the face that went with that hand decided her. She placed her tiny, cold and shriveled fingers into his and let him pull her out.

Brian was careful as he lifted the tiny child from under the bench. From her ragged jacket ,to her soaked and holey sneakers it was obvious she had been living wild. Her head barely came past his as he knelt before her. It was hard to tell her age or the color of her soaked hair.

In the soft glow of the street light he could see that she was pale, thin and worn looking.

***

After I finish these two tales I will think seriously about what to put out next.

Getting close to releases


Yup more stuff to be added to my list of titles. As I have blogged before I have been submitting stories to a few various anthologies that are seasonal…sorta. Well I have been accepted for all three as of this morning. Now I don’t have the titles for all three but they should be out soon.

So for a recap on the anthologies. The first one I submitted to was to be a collection of Halloween drabbles. Yup a whole book filled with 100 word stories that have to do with Halloween. That one was a perfect fit for me at this time of the year. I tossed off a fun little story and submitted Walk With the Pumpkins. When I have the title and link for that anthology I will put it up so my readers can pick it up if they wish.

The second anthology was to be stories about clowns, yup clowns. They could be any type of story as long as it had a clown in there somewhere. I wrote basically a flash fiction, a short short. The title for the tale, Behind the Red Nose. I wanted to do something a bit different than the other stories and I was glad when it got accepted. Again I will put up the link soon.

The final anthology is Ode to Autumn – Season of Change. This is the anthology from my friends over on the Wordsymth. Great group of writers who all write very different things. This is obviously a collection of stories dealing with autumn..everything up to and including Halloween of course. My story will be How I became a Legend.

Now I got asked so very nicely to make the cover for Ode and I of course said YES *chuckle* Once we have the link for it I plan on setting up a website for our little group. It should be a nice thing for everyone to link their other works too.