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Work In Progress Challenge

I just got “tagged” by R E Hunter of Writing & Random Thoughts with the Work In Progress Challenge. I’m supposed to answer the following ten questions about my Work In Progress (WIP).

I’m in an interesting situation in that I am in the process of finishing off the WIP I have been working on for the past nearly four years (yes, ouch!) – it has been accepted for publication by Kristell Ink, and is due out early 2013. In the meantime, I will be going on with the next book in the series. In that respect, many of these questions apply to both … So, I’ll answer as appropriate …

Cover by Me – Not the final cover (which will be done by someone with talent in that area)

1. What is the title of your book/WIP?

“Healer’s Touch” (completed). The next book is still in search of a title (although, I’m thinking something along the lines of “Warrior’s … [something]”, with a final part called “Magician’s … [something]” … yeah …)

2. Where did the idea for the WIP come from?
That could be a long story … I didn’t start out with any sort of plan, or idea. I had a couple of characters I wanted to “hook up”. When I started enjoying the writing, I decided to read up on what sort of things a story needed (a goal, an antagonist, stakes, etc) and the rest started to get tacked on until I had something I thought was quite exciting … and then I re-wrote.

I guess the main “idea” in this book is my MC’s power–she transfers life-energy (“ghi”, or “jin”, depending on which culture’s talking about it); so to heal herself or a friend, someone or something has to be injured … or killed. Now, that idea comes from a character I created when I was a teenager (a young male … I was a teenage girl, afterall). Where it came from before then, I don’t know … I was watching a lot of “Gargoyles” at the time …

3. What genre would your WIP fall under?
Fantasy (with a dollop of romance and a little steampunk)

4. Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

Well, now …

Read more…Work In Progress Challenge

[Music] Jamie McDell – Rewind

This is a post for those of you not regularly exposed to Kiwi music … Keep an eye out for this girl.  If her career doesn’t take off I do believe it will be a matter of poor luck and/or timing, rather than a lack of talent. I think she’s got it.

No, it’s not book-related … Well, actually, with just a smidgeon of imagination manipulation … yes, yes, it could work. OK … this is Llew singing about Kynas … (o: Woot! (Not that book-related posts are the be all and end all, but it is nice …)

Right, I’m off researching book trailers, while I also hurriedly get my Countdown entries for September down from 31 to 10 … and then arrange those 10 in order of appeal … I’ve been listening to them nearly all month, and I’ve got from 57 down to 31 … argh! How do I get that down to 10? By being absolutely brutal, that’s how …

A Night to Remember: Part Six (by Simon Petrie)


A Night to Remember: Part Six (by Simon Petrie)

Part One of this story can be found here. Part Two is here. Part Three is here. Part Four is here. Part Five is here. An updated list of extant parts can be found here.

– – –

The one positive aspect, Gordon decided, was that Claudia Iyzowt was still alive. Albeit for a given value of ‘alive’ that involved the short, grey-haired heiress’s apparent sedation and confinement, by the medium of a set of depressingly secure-looking straps, to a disconcertingly medical-looking and unnervingly technological trolley with an unnecessarily extensive collection of blade- and sensor-wielding robotic limbs poised thirty centimetres or so above Claudia’s.

The negative aspects

Read more…A Night to Remember: Part Six (by Simon Petrie)

Neat Finds …

Recently, a jewellery maker called Catherinette Rings had a two-for-one deal … well, I couldn’t pass it up. And so began my collection of Steampunk Jewellery … may it continue!

Catherinette Rings - Funky Necklace
Catherinette Rings – Funky Necklace

and …

Catherinette Rings - Funky Watch-Style Bracelet
Catherinette Rings – Funky Watch-Style Bracelet

I think the bracelet is meant to go around the other way, but I had to work with gravity to get the catch done up … Perhaps I could have put it on my other wrist, but, well, it looks like a watch, so I wanted to wear it as I would a watch …

If you like the look of this stuff, go check Catherinette Rings out! (Also on Facebook)

Author Interview: Richard Barnes

It’s SpecFicNZ‘s Blog Week, and for my part, I interviewed New Zealand writer, Richard Barnes. Richard writes speculative fiction short stories, with plans to write a novel in the near future. You can visit his blog, and check out some of his work at: http://richardbarneswriter.blogspot.co.nz/
Oh, and Richard interviewed me in return … here.
Cover: The Royal Wedding From Hell (Richard Barnes)

Here’s the interview …

Light or dark chocolate?
Dark, most definitely. Light isn’t real chocolate, surely? Does Juliet Binoche touch a spec of light chocolate in Chocolat? I think not.
Chocolate or Vanilla?
Hmm, I would probably say choc ice cream wins, but only just…there are times when I’ve chosen vanilla over choc.
Favourite colour?
Don’t really have one. I tried to chat a girl up one time by asking this question – she said “brown” because she was so close to the Earth. I went on to express my enthusiasm for all things environmental and got absolutely nowhere. I wonder where she is now? Probably Finland.

The state of play …

I was starting to feel it had been a while since I posted here, but I see it’s only been 5 days. That’s not terrible, is it? I mean, you guys don’t miss me that much when I’m gone, right? You’re allowed to, I guess. I suppose it would be flattering. But it was also be, like, responsibility, or something … urgh. OK, don’t miss me. But do come visit. Let’s make it like we’re old friends – we don’t have to talk everyday, and when we do chat, it’s like we’ve never missed a beat. Yeah … I like that.

Righty. So, you guys know I have been writing a story, now titled “Healer’s Touch”, for several years now. It’s taken that long because over the course of shaping the story itself, I was also learning the craft of writing, through my involvement with ‘sites like WDC, or through reading and trying out the advice offered by Larry Brooks (I honestly believe that applying his story-structure to my story has been close to the single most significant thing I’ve done for it) and Janice Hardy.

So, this is a wee “this is where I’m at” post …

In a recent post I mentioned that I had struck up some back-and-forth with a small publisher. Well, right now I am sitting on a contractual offer …

Read more…The state of play …

[Music] Music Discovery: September

Here’s the mash-up video for The Countdown this month:

New Zealand will be somewhere in the middle. I submitted Jamie McDell again … What can I say? That girl has a future – well, those of us who like little country with our pop think so, anyway.

OK, I see the video doesn’t tell you which country each of the songs comes from, so I’ll paste the song list here …

:Malaysia: +2Db – Stay Calm – MY
:Colombia: 1280 Almas – Animalito – CO
:Slovenia: Alex Volasko – Ptice – SI
:Norway: Alexandra Joner feat. Madcon – Sunrise – NO
:Lithuania: Andrius Pojavis – Tolima artima – LT
:Peru: Anna Carina – Me cansé – PE
:Estonia: Artjom Savitski – Sinu juurde tagasi – EE
:Indonesia: Bayu Risa feat. Hannah Al Rashid & JFlow – Desire – ID
:Vietnam: Bức Tường – Ra khơi – VN
:Germany: Chima – Fliegen – DE

Read more…[Music] Music Discovery: September

New Post Title (Hey, I’m savin’ my creativity for my novel. You got a problem with that, punk?)

Right, I was just noticing that I said I’d keep you informed how I went with that Manuscript Contest I entered (and, I would link to where I said that, and should be able to because I just read it … but I closed the post and I can’t remember which one … Lesson, kids? Erm … write … everything … down? Yeah … yeah … that’ll do). So, I thought I should tell you how I went …

Well …

I didn’t get third.

And, I didn’t get second.

Read more…New Post Title (Hey, I’m savin’ my creativity for my novel. You got a problem with that, punk?)

[Writing] Plotting’s hard work!

Hello, my peeps!

So, I thought I’d keep you up to date with the goings on … well, somewhat, anyway.

First up, I’m looking forward to finding out the outcome of the Contest I entered at the end of July. In all honesty, I don’t expect to have come anywhere, but the results being out means I can move on with things.

My son and our dog at the park
It’s good to get away from the computer now and then – these guys certainly appreciate it.

It’s been a strangely tough time of late. Of course, first up, I rushed my manuscript finished for that contest. I put it away for a few days and set to work on the next book. But, working on that book got me thinking of things that could do with being tweaked in the first book, so, of course, I couldn’t leave it alone … So, I tweaked, and then I went on to editing.

And then there was this Cover Contest on offer, too. Of course, I figured that since a publishing contract was a very slim possibility from the Manuscript Contest that I may as well enter this so that, if I were lucky enough to win it, I’d have a cover lined up for when I go Indie.

And then there were the AMP Scholarships opening up. I did it last year, but I know that application was a bit wishy-washy. This year I have more of an idea of what I needed and why, so I filled in an application and even submitted it. The closing date was Friday (NZ Time).

It’s an odd feeling to me, to be putting all these things out there … I mean, the most likely outcome is that I’d get nothing from from any of them, and that would be OK. But, because I did enter, there is that small chance that something in my manuscript happens to grab the judge (even if I have since improved it … oops) and I win a critique. That would be cool. That’s the one prize I don’t see interfering with anything else. But, what if he offered publication and I won a free cover? I’d feel bad, when someone else could have won that prize. And, if I win a free cover–a fee which I’ve built into my Scholarship application–would I feel OK if I then got money from that scholarship that I no longer needed

Read more…[Writing] Plotting’s hard work!