Lessons from My Reading

M. K. Theodoratus, Fantasy Writer, blogs about the books she reads--mostly fantasy and mystery authors whose books catch her eye and keep her interest. Nothing so formal as a book review, just chats about what she liked. Theodoratus also mutters about her own writing progress or ... lack of it.

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Thursday, October 28, 2010

More Good Writer Web Links

The Read ...
There really isn't one this posting.  I'm caught up in reading a laugh-out-loud-sometimes, non-fiction book --  The Anglo Files by Sarah Lyall, a transplanted American who had to adjust to living without central heating among other things.  If you ever wondered about English foibles or about their Parliament, you might give this book a peak.

The book makes me glad we lived in Wales when on sabbatical and not England proper ... though I must say English folklorists are really quite pleasant and don't want to know what your paternal grandparents' did for a living.

Web and Other Stuff ...
Some promotion ideas, thanks to E. J. Wesley's blog, The Open Vein -- Trailer Talk:  Book Trailer Reviews.  Both examples appear to be relatively inexpensive to produce.  I bookmarked it for reference ... in case I ever have something to sell. 

[Come on artist.  Actually, my daughter is going to give me a promotional trailer for Christmas.   Only problem: I've got to write something to make it worthwhile.  Oh, she's also going to compose the music since she's a composer and harpist.  Yeah.  She's part of the family fantasy readers.]

After some thought, I decided to add this link from Jessica Faust, an agent (who doesn't represent what I write) on Learning from Your Reading.  Guess I'm on the right track even though I don't seem to have learned much.   She and her commentators do seem to make a bigger production of it than I do.

Then, 1st Turning Point came up with another useful promotion discussion by Rowena Cherry about "To Freebie or Not to Freebie".  If you're so inclined, she has a couple suggestions on protecting the stories you give away free.  Since I'm doing the freebie-bit with Renna's Tales, the article interested me greatly, especially the comments about freebies given out by newbie writers.  --   An after thought:  the site reviews both trailers and websites if you want to get some insight on what works and doesn't.

[Someday when I get my pictures up, I hope to have my website critiqued.  If I'm mean, I'll have the trailer critiqued too ... if they'd do two for one writer.]

Last but not least, Patti Struble at The Writer's Bump gives us a list of idea generators on her second blog about NaNoMo --  Taking Your Meds.  You might want to look and bookmark them in case your idea reservoir runs dry.
Progress ...
Trying to get my writing schedule reworked.  Thought I could write after the nightly news.  Turns out I can revise, but can't create.  My brain stutters.  Back to the drawing board with more sitting in front of the computer and ... hopefully ... some accomplishments besides winning at Solitaire.

Trivia ...
The old man assures me the zucchini is dead ... really and truly dead after three months (120 days) of the stuff.  I can't believe I actually know someone who buys the stuff in winter after growing it all summer.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Writing Success x 2

The Read ...
Writing success is rewarded a second way from getting your back list re-published.  You get your short stories reprinted ... by "traditional" publishers.  Got reminded about this aspect when I dug into the pile of unread books I bought last summer.  Had great fun reading a bunch of short stories by Leigh Brackett and Mercedes Lackey.

For a writer, short story collections help you see how a writer has developed ... provided they didn't rewrite every story in the collection.  The Lackey collection, Fiddler Fair, was published in 1998 and contains some of her earlier ... maybe as far back as when she wrote on a 286 computer while holding down a full-time job with an airlines. 

A comment from Lackey's introduction in case you ever wonder about finding ideas. -- "As for finding ideas, I can only say that finding them is easy; they come all the time.  Deciding which ones are worth developing is the difficult part."

Leigh Brackett has been one of my favorite authors since I discovered her John Stark novels -- written long before the space program destroyed our fantasies about the solar system being habitable without massive technological intervention.  Whatever, I still enjoy the stories even though the space program proved them impossible.

The introduction to The Best of Leigh Brackett written by her husband, Edmond Hamilton, gives an insight on how writing hasn't changed.  "We found, when we first began working together, that we had quite different ways of doing a story.  I was used to writing a synopsis of the plot first, and then working from that.  To my astonishment, when Leigh was working on a story and I asked her, 'Where is your plot?' she answered, 'There isn't any ... I just start writing the first page and let it grow.'"

And that was in the days of typewriters!  I wonder what her revisions looked like. 

[I wrote then too (... and published some non-fiction).  I can remember the stapled re-write  pages, some 5 inches long and other 24+ inches long ... and some typewritten and other pieces in pen on binder paper.  For variety, I taped pieces together into a similar mess.] 

Web and Other Stuff ...
Okay, the distinction over MG (tween) and YA has my head swiveling because of There Be Demons falling through the gap.  Michael Stearn at the Upstart Crow Agency has come to my rescue (sort of) in his blog:  Middle Grade?  Teen?  Where Do You Draw the Line?.

[I'm still confused about my writing.  I think my stuff is too old for kids but too young for teens.  Maybe that's why I'm playing with the Half-Elven again.]

Curious about what happens when you get The Call (from an agent) or any call for that matter.  Roni Loren at Fiction Groupie shares her experience here.

Perhaps a great idea?  Via Coleen Lindsay on Twitter, an article on a British site that's linking individual writers into support/critique groups --  Quilliant.com.  If you're a loner, you might want to check them out.   I think it's interesting if you want a brilliant quill ... or computer.

[I'm fortunate.  The Northern Colorado Writers and AW Water Cooler mostly meet my needs here.]

Progress ...
Well, I did get my one lonely picture up.  Felt like getting trapped in a black hole.  And, I've got promises of more artwork to come.  Maybe, I won't spend forever getting the next batches up.  Glad I didn't have to pay someone else to do it.

Also, have my outline for the new Mariah novellette/novella/whatever as done as it's going to get. Tonight I start writing.  :-)  *heh*,  *heh* 

Next, now that my critiquing is almost done ... I need to decide what I'm going to revise.  The decision?  Probably, give Dark Solstice  a once over since it was rejected ... again.  I'm trying for e-publishers but can't quite separate out whether or not they want romance with their fantasy.  DS comes after the HEA has disintegrated and in need of reconciliation. 

[Oh, there are other real hurdles to jump over ... but one of them is that the kind of book I wrote would fit into the 1970s easier than it would now.

Trivia ...
One of my favorite fantasies is finding a new C. L. Moore or Leigh Brackett book/story that I haven't read before -- while standing around in dusty used bookstores waiting for the old man to check out the folklore etc. sections.  If I'm lucky, the stores have chairs for spouses to sit in.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Publishing, Better the Second Time Around?

The Read ...
Mid-list authors get no respect.  At least, that's the impression you get from many of the writing blogs and forums -- but there are exceptions.  Writers who persevere and end up writing a popular series.  Their publishers reward them by reprinting their back list.

Okay.  A second chance happens to best-selling authors and people who get back their e-rights all the time.  [But, that's another story.]  

Today, the read's about Masques, Patricia Brigg's first published novel which had gone out of print.  Her introduction is well worth a trip to a mortar-and-brick store to read the introduction where she discusses the process.  Her Mercy Thompson series [about a coyote shapeshifter caught in a world of European werewolves, vampires, and fae] opened the republishing doors for Briggs. She revised Masques and was rewarded with a pop onto the New York Times best seller list.

Oh, the book.  Imagine the damaged son of a power-mad mage finding a magic-wielding mercenary who helps him defeat his father before he destroys their world.  Actually, the book is written from the mercenary's viewpoint and was a good read deserving of being on the best seller list.

Problem:  She gave me an excuse not to market.  I need to revise.  Yeah, I do.  See "progress" below.

Web and Other Stuff ...
Promotion has been pushing to the top of my mind for a while, so all the articles about book promotion ... and other writing too.  Arielle Ford, a publicist and writer, recently did an article on "The Rule of 5 for Book Promotion." in the Huffington Post.   Bottom line: she likens promoting your writing to a marathon rather than a sprint.  --  This is courtesy of Writer's Beware who listed it on Facebook.

If you think an agent will solve all your post-writing problems, think again.  Rachelle Gardner (agent blog Rants & Ramblings) ... talks about what happens when an agent fails.   Actually, the blog links to a series of blogs by Wendy Lawton, another agent, in Books & Such who had the courage to tackle the ticklish subject.

More on promotion:  Author K. C. May give a nice idea for using Kindle to promote your book in her blog:  Writer in Training.

Progress ...
Write?  Market?  Promote?  All three at the same time?  
After realizing my first attempt at fiction -- written to amuse myself --  was over 400,000 words that could be cut into three books [the Far Isle Half-Elven] plus leftovers, I went on to write three more self-contained book manuscripts.  The YA/MG stuff which is laying around in various stages of revision.  

Even developed a nice writing pattern.  Draft a manuscript in the first half of the year.  Revise the manuscript in the year.  Then, I discovered the usefulness of critiquing and beta-reading, where I played with the manuscripts, changing them over time.

Problem:  My writing skills for long stuff kept improving.  Now, I'm staring at four manuscripts wondering how I'm going to retool.  [Plus, I have all that draft material lurking in the computer files.] --  I think I've found my excuse to a void marketing.  *heh.  heh.  heh.*

What makes me think I'm not procrastinating?  Well, There Be Demons was very nicely beta-read, thank you.  Lots of revision done.  Thought it really was ready to market.  Even have been compiling a list of fantasy-liking agents who might like the kind of fantasy I write.  Then, I happened to revise the first 300 pages of the Prologue.  After it was reduced to 250 words, I read so much better.  --  I think I've found a wondrous Mobius strip to play on.

Trivia ...
Something's wrong ... major big time wrong.  The last three books I've read showed up on the New York Times best seller list on Sunday.   [Dark Slayer (Feehan), 61 Hours (Child), and Masques (Briggs)Things I like usually don't become main stream popular.


Oh, I've made it to 300 Tweets.  [@kaytheod]

Friday, October 15, 2010

Gotta Love the Villain

The Read ...
Love the way Lee Child constructs his villains.  Take a couple common traits, and then he twists them into something evil.  The twisting gets tighter and tighter through the some 400+ pages of the book until Reacher, the hero, finds a way to defeat them.  61 Hours presents an excellent example.  This time it's a super-short guy who over compensates, and Child gives a running commentary of the villain's actions/POV during the course of the book.  You'll never look at short people the same again.  

Child never ceases to amaze me with the way he weaves seemingly unconnected facts together to make a reasonable sub-plot when he ties them together.  Most authors do well with one or two.  [It's one of the reasons they get published by "traditional" publishers.]  Child scatters sub-plots like seeds ... manages to tie the results neatly at the end.  In this case, he manages to create a plausible defeat the human villain and his assortment of bad guys.

One possible loose end.  When the snow near the bunker was melted for two miles around at the end, it left the question that Reacher might not have survive his race up the stairs to the surface.  Here the internet is a spoiler since his official site publicizes the next book in the series ... where Reacher is very much alive.

This book may be a pivot point in the series.  Reacher, the supreme loner, is showing some need for attachments ... however much he denies the need of them.

Web and Other Stuff ...
Writer groups are an invaluable new set of eyes to review your manuscript.  They can catch the craft mistakes you make and then gloss over.  They can tell you when your plot and characters don't make sense.  They can tell you when you say the same thing twice in the same paragraph [aka telling, then showing].  I you lack a group, the Galleycat's recent blog gave its readers some good pointers on keeping a group going if you find a couple writers to work with.

1st Turning Point contributor, Jeri Westerson, gives an interesting case study on being a mid-list author ... and needing to promote your own work since your publisher won't pay much attention to you:  Promo Idea Number 25.  She nails my feelings in the first sentence:  "Promotion is the bane of authors."  Only problem is that it's also the bane of writer's too.  [Since some of the agent blogs I've read, my mind separates the part of seriously writing (writer) and getting published by someone other than yourself (author).]

Do have a complaint about the article.  I've read other blogs of Westerson which mentioned her sleuth.  This time for some reason Crispin Guest -- disgraced knight turned "private eye" with a thief side-kick -- poke my curiosity enough to go looking for the books.  And, I thought my to-read pile was down to 3 1/2 feet.

I've mentioned the Northern Colorado Writers before.  On Wednesday, Kerrie Flanagan wrote a right on blog about writing queries.  As I said in the comments, I wonder why I was able to write accepted queries [most of the time] for non-fiction, but can't seem to find my footing for fiction.

Most writers should know Nathan Bransford has one of the best publishing blogs around, but he also often features guest  bloggers. On Thursday it was author Hannah Moskowitz, who I think I should know.  Whatever, she discusses professionalism and writing.  I include the link here because of the info, but also because I flunked most of the activities, especially remembering book titles and authors.  

Example?  At the moment, I can't remember who wrote the Hunger Games trilogy even though the books wrung me out emotionally.  Yeah, I know I could look it up on the web and appear more insightful than I am.

Then, Stephen Tremp gives shares a great idea on using Twitter [and Facebook] for promoting your book.  Check out "Blowout Sale".

Now to forget the serious stuff.  Followed some Tweet to Tabby's Nocturnal Nights.  Now I know why I don't shop at Wal-Mart ... if only I'd have to fight with too many train crossings [in our town].  If you want the full gallery, check this out.  Actually, this is pretty gross -- just to warn you.

Progress ...

None.  Unless you consider the rejection of Dark Solstice progress.

Trivia ...
The old man's prowling ... waiting for me to get off the computer to do the important stuff.  Going to the bank, out to lunch, and buying groceries.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Writing Improbable Characters

The Read ...
Can Death be a love interest?  Do you feel more comfortable with a hunky fae masquerading as a normal cop?  Kalayna Price offers the reader both in her Alex Craft novel, Grave Witch, the first book in her second seriesThe first paragraph starts off running:

"The first time I encountered Death, I hurled my mother's medical chart at him.  As far as impressions went, I blew it, but I was five at the time, so he eventually forgave me.  some days I wished he hadn't -- particularly when we crossed paths on the job." 

By the end of the chapter you know that Craft has an uneasy working relationship with the police department and is estranged from her family ... all revealed in quick thoughts commenting on the action as she copes with an unhappy customer.  Yeah, Death shows up ... and the cop/fae.  My internal editor shut off while reading this book ... so I'll recommend her as a good craft example to follow.

Price's marking is also good.  Take a look at Kalayna Price Official Website for some ideas you may be able to translate for your own marketing.  I know I bookmarked the site.
 

Web and Other Stuff ...
Ever wonder how a publisher [and maybe an agent] might look at your full manuscript?  L. J. Sellers, mystery writer, has a blog on the Blood Red Pencil with the checkpoints on a Publisher Evaluation.

Eric at Pimp My Novel punctures a few myths in his latest blog, Here Be Dragons.  He gives one of the most pertinent summaries of the current status of the publishing industry.  While he really doesn't say much new, it's a succinct summary. 

If you're on a tight time line:  "Think of it this way: chains are the dinosaurs, indies are the scrappy mammals, and Amazon is the asteroid."

Then, I finished Christine Feehan's Dark Slayer.  A nice satisfying read about which if I said more I would land both feet into the land of spoilers.  But the book has other interests for a writer than just a well-written story.  Marketing information.

For the first time I've noticed that the Penguin Group is offering a money-back guarantee on, I assume, selected books.  Return the book by 5 December 2010, and you get 100% of your money back.  And, it didn't even look like there were strings attached. 

When I went looking for more details on the offer, I discovered Penguin.Com's Screening Room.

I got lost for about fifteen minutes watching videos of some of my favorite authors before my priorities reared their stern heads.  [Hey, dimwit, you got a blog to write.] If you're wondering what a big publishers is doing to promote their first line authors, you might explore a while.  You might pick up some tips you can use for your own books ... provided you can find a way to imitate them cheaper. 

[Yeah,  my computer literate artist daughter and I have been discussing doing videos to plant on YouTube.  Biggest two problems at this point:  the script and the artwork.  Stay tuned.]
 
Progress ...
Still wrapped up in Voices of Ghost Creek.   Revisions, revisions, revisions.

As I said on the Half-Elven blog:  "Oh, on the Renna's Tales front.  Revisions don't bore me ... but give me creating any time ... ideas bouncing around like bucky balls is much more interesting than the discipline of editing, etc.  Latest idea.  Renna wants to be a serialized novel of the years just after the Rebellion.  

"Think of Renna and Maren arm wrestling.  My mind seems to be doubly active when I'm dozing in my chair with Wiggles sprawled on my lap."

Trivia ...
Roasted vegetables with rosemary/garlic chicken.  Even the last of the zucchini tasted good ... and only one pan to clean up.  --  I thought it was the last of the zucchini.  The old man brought two more in.
  

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Good Web Links

The Read...
Still deep in Christine Feehan's Dark Slayer.   Am finding her characterization much deeper than usual.  Guess centuries of suspicion, antagonism, and loneliness can do that.  She also is playing on the sympathy factor of a villain that targets the unborn and young children.

Web and Other Stuff ...
A writer's internal editor can be notoriously inconvenient ... especially when reading something plagued with bad copy editing.  Karen Marie Moning  recently shared her personal rating system for her own manuscripts. --  Is your writing filled with ones or fives?

I'm cleaning, sort of.  [No matter what I do, the piles keep getting deeper.  Yeah, I know the solution.  Less solitaire and more organizing.]  Whatever, made a discovery as I checked through the old emails from before my "vacation" last summer.  Chassily Wakefield at 1st Turning point wrote a pertinent blog on time management.  Promotion and Time  Management for Unpublished Authors -- Finding a Balance.

On the finding an agent front, how about an "old standard"?  Victoria Strauss of Writer Beware has an article on finding a legitimate agent on the Science Fiction and Fantasy writers website.  "The Safest Way to Search for an Agent" .  The article is filled with good advice and lots of useful links.  Well worth bookmarking.  [Was reminded of the article, which I read long ago, by a mention on Facebook.]

Am feeling a little sorry for the people who Google "apocalyptic" and get one of my old blogs.  It's like when Goggle Alerts tells me someone's writing about "taking vengeance" [the title of the novelette WolfSinger Publications is interested in] only they are talking about the wrath of god instead of Mariah [Dark Solstice].

Progress...
Not writing, but still seem to keep busy shuffling papers ... and the empty/full boxes under the library desk.  Who knows?  I may have an empty space to revise/edit the print copy of Voices soon.  In the meantime, a couple new characters are perculating out of my brain, but I may go back to just expand on the Maren story I started at the beginning of the year.  Only I'll keep her in whatever medieval cul-de-saq she vegetating in.

That causes a problem of what I do with Faithful Alice Sweet.  I like the old dame.  Actually, she was only around 50 years old.  Only a YA would think her old.

The other accomplishment:  I did send out queries to several agents for There Be Demons.  Now all I have to do is sit back and wait for the rejections.  No.  I don't think I'm being too pessimistic.  It's just when I read all those agent comments about how they "fall in love with a writer's voice" ... I figure that ain't going to happen to me.  People might enjoy reading my stuff, but they'd never "fall in love" with it if they had a brain in their head.  Why do I say that?  It's my firm belief that falling in love with anything is totally adolescent.  Which brings up the question on whether I'd want an adolescent agent.

That said.  Really appreciated the auto-responder to Chris Richman of Upstart Crow.  Gave answers to most of the questions a writer might have at the beginning.  The website was also helpful.  Is he my "dream" agent?  ?Quien sabe?  He doesn't handle adult stuff ... so he'd be out for the Half-Elven.

Oh, I also sent out Dark Solstice out to a small e-publisher who has good editors according to AW Water Cooler.  [Hope I didn't confuse the publisher notes from the others I rechecked.]

Trivia...
It's nice to have hot water again.  Most of the dishes even ended up getting washed in the dishwasher. Only, the garage door opener went out.  We're back to lifting the door ourselves ... until the repair man can make it.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Hopping from Book to Book

The Read ...
I like to give new authors a try.  This time I bombed out ... on a recent grocery story buy.   Paid full price which stabbed a cheapskate's heart.  Did read a couple pages before I bought the unknown author.  The first chapter was nice, if slow.  The concept of a runty, near-sighted goblin was appealing ... but the next three chapters bogged me down.  On the second day of reading ... when I found myself rereading similar dialog on the part of the adventurers who captured the goblin, I gave up.  

A lot of people, though, must have liked the book since it had a couple sequels.  Maybe they were desperate for a new supernatural being?  Or, is that paranormal now?  Maybe someone will be happy to find it used.

Jumped into Christine Feehan's Dark Slayer, the umpteenth book in her Carpathian series.  You have to admire any writer who can keep three different series front and center on the bookshelves.  Must admit the middle ones didn't grab my interest much.  You can only take so many hunky Carpathians forcing their attentions on their newly discovered "life mates".  Granted the stakes are high.  The nocturnal Carpathians turn into particularly nasty vampires when they don't find their one [and only] true love.

Then, Feehan put the villain she'd hinted at in previous books front and center.  The books now have a cagey and powerful nemesis to defeat.  Result.  More exciting books.  For example in the first chapter, tons of back story about Carpathians is incorporated into a fight with a powerful vampire.  At the end of the chapter, the MC discovers the sprawled body of her life mate, "the curse of all Carpathian women", sprawled in the snow as the sun is close to rising, and she needs to seek her lair.

In the second chapter, she saves a child from a vampire trap but is confronted by a more powerful vampire, who just happens to be one of her brothers who thinks the MC is dead.  By the end of the chapter, her problems are complicated when she is confronted by the Carpathians, whom she hates for good reason, who insist on healing her wounds, a offer she resists.  The story is off and running.  I'm a fourth way through, and the story line hasn't lagged yet.  

The only problem.  I'm busy.  I barely got down to the TV to watch Castle last night.

Web and Other Stuff ...
Guess I hit Barnes and Noble wrong.  Today, we had to pick up a book the old man ordered.  Found the books books I bought on the display shelves ... on a Monday.  So, the scenario, went to the store on Wednesday.  They stock on Thursdays. I bought at the grocery store on Friday.  Bottom line:  they lost the revenue on four books. 

I wouldn't have ordered them either.  This writer business is keeping me too busy.  Guess I could have gone to my used book sites to find them ... but, again, too time consuming.

Progress ...
Did get my short story up ...Stubborn Is As Half-Elven Does ... still with no artwork.  The details are on my Half-Elven blog. 

What I wasted my writing time on -- agent queries.  All those listings for fantasy agents makes it seem like a large market.  Then, you look at the websites, interviews, and blogs.  You discover they don't really care much for the type of fantasy you're trying to flog.  Then, you go to the AW Water Cooler and find some have a questionable reputation.  Ugh.  I've landed square in "query hell".

Trivia ...
The old man went to take a shower after the news last night ... and no hot water.  The hot water heater died just when the dishwasher was full and waiting.  The part has to be ordered, and we may get convenient hot water heater by tomorrow ... if they overnight the part.  Until then, the stove's been drafted.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

To-Read Pile Discoveries

The Read ...
Found two gems in my to-read piles ... in two separate piles.  First, award winning Connie Willis' Lincoln's Dreams, which turned out to be Robert E. Lee's dreams instead.  The main character is an author's research assistant who keeps tracing down obscure facts about various participants in the American Civil War.  What I found so intriguing was that Willis took all those facts and built a back drop for the love interest's mental/physical collapse.  I think the book classifies as a psychological thriller.

An example of the way Willis uses facts:  "We spent the rest of the day in the library.  Annie took notes on Lincoln.  I read Lee's letters and tried to find out what Annie [Lee's daughter] had died from.  Nobody seemed to know.  I found the chicken, though.  Its name was Little Hen.  She had walked uninvited into Lee's tent one day, and Lee had kept her for over a year.  She laid an egg under Lee's camp cot every day and sat on Traveller's [Lee's horse] back, which delighted the soldiers."

M. C. Beaton's A Highland Christmas, featuring Hamish Macbeth, was the other book I read -- if you can call 130 pages of large print a book ... even if bound like a mass paperback.  From what I can tell, if you are the author of a popular series, you often get rewarded by being asked to write long short stories or novellas for theme anthologies.  If you are close to the top of your game, your novella [or shorter] may get bound as a single.  Or, at least they did ten years ago.

The series, set in the "very far north of Scotland", easily contains over fifteen cozy mysteries where Macbeth's rogue supervisor presents a greater opponent than the criminals.  All the major secondary characters of the novels appeared in this volume.  I love the way Beaton skates across the Highland character cliches without getting bogged down.  The novelette is well paced and yielded many chuckles and some out loud laughs.  What more do you want for entertainment in the dentist's waiting room.

Web and Other Stuff ...
So, you're in the business to make money writing?  Well, Tim Ferriss who wrote the Four Hour Work Week, gives his opinion on his blog about "how writers really make money"[This via the an AW Water Cooler thread started by V-Man.]   The comments are interesting.

Then, there are the financial problems of Barnes & Noble.  While I don't think the behemoth will go to the bone yard any time soon,  their wrinkles are showing.

A couple days ago, after over a month of visiting other places to buy books, we happened into the local store.  Did my usual browse the display areas, the sci-fi/fantasy section, mysteries, and YA.  Can't remember buying a book.  Today, I browsed the grocery store book section while the old man restocked our light bulbs.  Found four new books.  We're talking Patricia Briggs, Christine Feehan, and similar names here.  Didn't see hide nor hair of them while at B&N.

Saggy, baggy bookstores, anyone?

Progress ...
This blog is so late, I had better have made some progress in my writing.  *smirk*,  *smirk*  I did.  I posted the second Renna's Tale -- As Subborn As a Half-Elven.  Still don't have any artwork, but we'll see what Sunday brings.

And, no.  I didn't query any agents.

Trivia ...
Embarrassment, really.  Chanced to look at a couple comments I left earlier on other blogs a couple days ago.  Oh, the typos.  No one would ever want me to be on their team for a spelling bee.  I don't even want to know how many typos can be found in the Renna stories.