Tuesday, November 29, 2011


I don’t know if the whole Authonomy thing is going to work out. I haven’t been on there networking because I’ve been working on a lot of other stuff. I mean, I’ve read a bit, but I didn’t participate. I just occasionally lurked. I do plan to leave the excerpt on there for a while, but I have a feeling that without participation on my part, I’m not going to get as much out of it as I would otherwise.

I had doubts when I was looking at my profile and determined that you’re supposed to have “friends” on there and sometimes they “invite” each other to things. LOL. The social media thing I’m most active on is probably Twitter. Second is probably Goodreads.

In book news, Lady Editor officially has the manuscript, as does my husband, who is beta-reading for me for the first time. He’s actually pretty good at finding word weirdness.

Monday, November 28, 2011


The movie post is off for this week. I am preparing to send the White Wyrm manuscript off to the editor. I'm making some last minute changes, because you know I can't stop monkeying around with the words. I have a lot of other stuff to do this week too, so my presence on the blog may be lighter than usual.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Bookishness - remix project

Ok. I put the first three chapters of the new book up on Authonomy. Hopefully I won’t make a complete ass of myself by doing so. I guess if I did make an ass of myself, it wouldn’t be the first time…or the last.

Anyway, this book is called The White Wyrm (working title that might be changed before it is actually published). My monster and some other similarities are lifted from a Bram Stoker novel called Lair of the White Worm, which is available on Project Gutenberg. I should warn you that some people might find parts of it offensive as the “N” word is used multiple times. I did not carry that over to my book, FYI.

When I told my grandmother about this project, she was like – Isn’t that plagiarism?

No, grandma, it’s not plagiarism. Lair of the White Worm is in the public domain. Also, I took no passages from the genius Mr. Stoker. This is not a “mashup” like Pride, Prejudice and Zombies . It’s an all new story, I promise. Dracula was also one of his monsters and how many people have written about Dracula or similar characters?

Here is the link if you want to check my book out. You probably have to have an account on Authonomy though.


My cover image that I tried to upload didn’t work properly. I need to mess with it to figure out what I’m doing wrong.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

making creepies

Good Tuesday, weblings. It is a dark and somewhat stormy evening, perhaps a good day to share the recent creepy additions to my stuff. Now, when I describe an object as creepy, I don’t mean it as an insult. I love creepy things. I would live in the Haunted Mansion at Disney World if they let me.

First up is a wine box my dad made for me for my birthday. As you can probably tell, it’s a velvet-lined coffin, complete with lid and handles on the side. Awesome, right?? I love it very much. He texted me a week or so before my birthday to ask, “Do you like coffins?” interesting question. I guess so?

He not only made the box, he also made the wine in the bottle. I think he said it was ice wine. Thanks again, Dad!!!

Next, we have a teddy bear. What’s so creepy about a teddy bear, you ask? Well, it just so happens this particular snuggly-wuggems is made from actual fur, like from an animal. Don’t get all PETA-y on me, though. My grandmother hand-made it out of an heirloom fur stole. Seriously, the fur is like way old. She said she thought it was muskrat, but wasn’t sure.

He hangs out in the curio cabinet with the Grateful Dead bears because I was afraid Max and/or Sneaker (feline residents) would try to eat him.

This third item is the handiwork of yours truly. I sculpt things occasionally. My original plan was to make a dodo skull replica. However, after looking at some pictures, I decided that it exceeded my skill level. I settled on a more abstract version.

This next guy probably isn’t so creepy, but he might be a little skeleton-y so I’m including him. He was drying on a drawing board when I took the pic.

Monday, November 21, 2011

movies: Scream 4 and Bad Teacher

Ah, a Scream movie. It seems like the others were so long ago. I do like the Scream series and was happy to have a new one.

I snagged the description from IMDB out of laziness: “Sidney Prescott, now the author of a self-help book, returns home to Woodsboro on the last stop of her book tour. There she reconnects with Sheriff Dewey and Gale, who are now married, as well as her cousin Jill and her Aunt Kate. Unfortunately, Sidney's appearance also brings about the return of Ghostface, putting Sidney, Gale, and Dewey, along with Jill, her friends, and the whole town of Woodsboro in danger. Written by Joey “

There are a TON of known actors doing cameos and such. We had some fun picking them out. Here are a few: Kristen Bell, Anna Paquin, and Emma Roberts.

As with the other Scream movies, 4 was pretty bloody. *extremely minor spoiler* There seemed to be an excessive number of stomach stabbings.

If you liked the other scream movies, you’ll probably like this one. There was a lot of running and screaming, etc. There was a bit of a twist at the end. We didn’t see it coming. Scream 4 is stabby good fun. B+


Bad Teacher

From IMDB again: “A comedy centered around a foul-mouthed, junior high teacher who, after being dumped by her sugar daddy, begins to woo a colleague -- a move that pits her against a well-loved teacher.”

The movie is pretty funny. Cameron Diaz’s character, Elizabeth, wants to find a rich man to take care of her. In order to do this, she decides that she needs bigger boobs, so she starts finding ways to get extra money at the school in order to afford a boob job.

The movie was pretty funny. I did think that Elizabeth could have used a slightly better personality. She was supposed to be bad, yes, but a redeeming quality or two (other than being over the top hot) would have improved the story. Bad Teacher gets a B-.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

remix project update plus a new cover for an older book

I have to push out the date I planned to put a portion of the remix project up on the writing feedback websites. I need to read it one more time. I promise I'm not caught in a rewriting fit.

I just need to pick through it one more time to make sure there's no jacked-uptedness. I’m shooting for beta readers and feedback websites to get the book the weekend after Thanksgiving, which is probably not the best time to expect people to read it.

I did finish a readthrough today. I like it a lot, even when I'm trying to find something wrong with it.

I'm a bit intimidated by putting the writing out for the purpose of feedback from strangers. I think anytime you solicit someone's opinion, you have to prepare yourself for the worst.

Not all feedback is helpful. I saw this guy on a website once tell a writer that they had too many sentences that began with the letter "T". um, what is the proper number of sentences that should begin with T? Does he count them in everything he reads? I have follow-up questions.

If I could choose one thing that could happen with the feedback that is close to being the worst, I would have to say that it would be someone pointing out an incredibly annoying writing tic that I've been afflicted with all along but never realized. That would be lame. but hey, I guess if I can resolve it only a few books in, then I wouldn't be too bad off. right?

I almost forgot. I redesigned the clockwork cover the other day. Here it is in case anyone wants to see it.

I thought the other cover had too much going on. I don't know how long it will take for the various ebook retailers to update their screens. I know amazon has it up already. I haven't updated my website yet, but I will at some point.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

procrastination plus book trailer update

Today I was reading through the remix project and I discovered that somehow like 200 words or so had vanished from the manuscript. It’s weird because I have no idea how or why they disappeared. Luckily I still had a hard copy printout of the previous version, so all I had to do was find the corresponding page and type the missing part back in. I’m just glad that I hadn’t taken the pages to the recycle bin yet. Yay procrastination!

Ok. Guess what. No…not chicken butt. Book trailer update! I have completed the flower animation. I have also resolved the problem of the crap-ass picture quality.

Flash animation does not convert to avi format well, which is why the video looked blurry or grainy or whatever the first time I put it up on the blog. The problem was even worse when I converted the completed animation to avi. It was so bad that when I tried to play it on full screen, the flowers looked like straight up 8-bit graphics. After working so long on the thing, the bad picture made me want to cry.

But I did not cry. I looked for and eventually found a solution. The conversion from Flash to Quicktime (mov) went much smoother.

I haven’t made the final adjustments to the timing of the flowers yet. The roses will start before the rest of the foliage, with the exception of the grass blades. There will also be words in the middle, of course. The flowers, etc are just the border.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

movie: Horrible Bosses

Horrible Bosses is a comedy about three guys who have really terrible people running their work lives. They finally decide they've had enough and the bosses must die.

The movie is, of course, very funny. However, the three primary (and bumbling) characters aren't the most colorful. The bosses are by far the best. Each of these personalities is wonderfully over the top. Kevin Spacey is psychotic. Colin Farrell is a cokehead moron. He’s almost unrecognizable as his usually luscious head of hair has been replaced with a grotesque comb-over. And Jennifer Anniston is crazy perverted and sexually aggressive.

Horrible Bosses gets an A-

Monday, November 14, 2011

movie trailer squee

Regular Monday movie post has been postponed so that I can bring you a trailer for a movie that I can't wait to see.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

wanna hear it? here it go.

Thursday! Which means tomorrow is Friday! I do love Fridays.

I read the other day on an author’s blog that this publisher believed that an author should put out a book every 4-6 months in order to keep a steady stream of income.

4-6 months?? Holy crap. The logic makes sense because new releases usually trigger sales of the old books too, but geez. I’m not sure I could do that if I had the opportunity to write full time. Well, maybe. It wouldn’t be a leisurely keyboard tapping schedule; that’s for sure. I would be terrified of running out of ideas.

Talk about pressure.

Anyway. I learned something earlier this week. I should not edit on days in which my mood is not very good. Reading my words on days that I hate everything actually causes me to dislike my own writing, even if I’m reading something I previously. Those days are very few and far between, luckily.

I also learned that I should not let my daughter go through my mp3 player song list. She’s 14. She saw various titles containing the “F” word and another especially wholesome song called “Sex for Breakfast”.

Yes, I am mother of the year, thank you very much. She showed me the title to the breakfast song, and I honestly had no idea what it was. I took the mp3 player away from her to see what classy artist sings that ditty. Christina Aguilera. It’s on Bionic.

That’s all the wisdom I have for now. I’m going to go do some editing so that I might someday release another book.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


What up? I'm still sick, but am feeling better. Last night I was only woken up by one over the top coughing fit. progress! woo! I'm trying to get over this thing before I have to resort to antibiotics.

So what have I been doing? Ya know, usual stuff, probably less of it. The book trailer is cruising along. I'm dividing my time between that and tweeking the remix project.

My animated stems now have acceptable leaves. Last night I worked on the rose blossoms. I had some trouble figuring out how I wanted them to look. I didn't want photo realistic because nothing else in the animation is. I did a couple of sketches. They were too abstract.

I ended up using a photo from a recent shoot of roses. I found the one I liked best, plugged it into PhotoShop, cropped and applied a filter that converts photo to drawing. Then I took it over to Fireworks and made a few adjustments by hand, added lines and such. This is what I ended up with at the end of the evening.

This is, of course, much larger than it will appear in the actual trailer. Also the background won't be black. The flower looks sort of Warhol-esque, I think. When it goes into the animation, there will be various adjustments made. Not all the rose blooms will be exactly the same size, shape and color.

I will probably show what I have on the trailer again within the next week or two after I finish the blooming sequences. The video took like a freaking hour to upload to YouTube last time. I want to make sure there's significant progress before I go to that trouble again.

Monday, November 7, 2011

movie: Unknown

Unknown stars Liam Neeson as a biochemist named Dr. Martin Harris. He and his lovely wife, Gina, arrive in Berlin for an industry function. When they arrive at the hotel, she checks in. He discovers that they left a bag at the airport.

He catches a cab with the intention of returning to the airport to retrieve the bag. He doesn’t make it. He is in a car accident and wakes up in the hospital 4 days later.

People who should know him don’t and some guy seems to have stolen his identity. Even his wife doesn’t know who he is.

Unknown has a fair amount of action, a couple of car chase scenes. There are some twists and turns in the story, as you can probably imagine. The pacing was decent.

I think what really added an element of danger to Dr. Harris’ situation was him being in a foreign country where every little thing wasn’t at his fingertips. He has no family nearby, other than his wife. The only acquaintance he had in Berlin was a scientist who he had never met in person. All in all, a pretty good movie. A-

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

wednesday sickness and ranting

ugh I think I'm sick. I've been trying to fight this stupid cold off for a couple of weeks now. My efforts have been valiant but they're failing. I don't think travelling all over the state last Saturday helped. Walking around outside in brisk fall weather for Halloween also didn't help.

I'm doing my best to power through what I need to do. I hate being sick mostly because it slows me down. I’m already short on time due to the nature of my life.

Today I read a message board post for an author who was bitter about indie authors offering some of their work for free. He said that they are stealing attention from traditionally published authors that he felt were more deserving and trying to make a living. Rrrrright.

I think that if a person really wants to read a book, they aren’t going to change their plans because they found a freebie instead. Well, maybe if it’s nonfiction (with instructions on how to do something), but certainly not fiction.

Anytime I see someone exhibiting an angry us-versus-them mentality when one isn’t necessary, I automatically assume they have some problem with themselves that they aren’t willing to deal with in an adult manner. For example – low sales rank, can’t be the fault of the author, it MUST be those darn indies with their free fiction!

Bitch, please. Here’s a tip - work on writing a better, more exciting, more appealing book and then use your time to promote that book instead of spending time whining on message boards. Or if you want some of that freebie attention, put out some free fiction of your own!


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

movie: The Adjustment Bureau

From IMDB summary: “Do we control our destiny, or do unseen forces manipulate us? A man glimpses the future Fate has planned for him and realizes he wants something else. To get it, he must pursue across, under and through the streets of modern-day New York the only woman he's ever loved. On the brink of winning a seat in the U.S. Senate, ambitious politician David Norris (Damon) meets beautiful contemporary ballet dancer Elise Sellas (Emily Blunt) - a woman like none he's ever known. But just as he realizes he's falling for her, mysterious men conspire to keep the two apart. David learns he is up against the agents of Fate itself - the men of The Adjustment Bureau - who will do everything in their considerable power to prevent David and Elise from being together. In the face of overwhelming odds, he must either let her go and accept a predetermined path...or risk everything to defy Fate and be with her.”

The movie was slow at first, but once the story got going, it was good. There are some shades of the television show Fringe (one of my faves) and other parts were Matrix-esque minus the sci fi. The Adjustment Bureau was romantic and full of action. It gets an A-.