Saturday, March 8, 2014

The Wind-Up Terrier's Glorious Debut is Nearly Upon Us!

I have been lax on posting again but this achievement necessitated an announcement.
The Wind-Up Terrier is finally done, at least far as it needed to be to send to beta readers.
In the next few months I will be tweaking something here and tightening bolts there and then, when it gleams, The Wind-Up Terrier will be released.
If you would like to wait until then to read, when it's up for sale and formatted, you're welcome to but if you don't and want to meet Euphemia and the clerks now, I'm currently looking for beta readers to help me spit shine this construct.
Below is a short excerpt from the book.

Oh, for all of god’s little cherubs dancing up in heaven. Are you coming or not?”
Euphemia looked at Dezzy who had a hand on the door handle and was staring at her with exasperation. “Uh, yes. Of course.” She followed Dezzy in and, to her surprise, the rest followed her.
Dezzy walked into the pub, followed by Euphemia together with Ally, Emmie and Mildred. They didn’t make much of an entrance but as moments ticked by, the room quieted. The inspector looked up from his pint and blinked. His face slackened as Dezzy walked towards him. “Not you again. Why d’ya want t bother me now? Haven’t I got a right to some piece and to be let alone in my own damn boozer! Have ye come t spit in my beer? Yeah, right. That’d be a fine finish to a perfect week.” He took a gulp of beer and wiped his mouth as he stared defiantly at them.

Dezzy spoke coldly. “As a matter of fact, we are here to give you the means to closing the case that has caused you such discomfort.” She stared back at him, her head to one side and her arms crossed, brown eyes dark as if something was viewing him from a pit in Tartarus. 

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Wordy Day, I'm Dying Inside

So I've been slacking off a bit. Honestly, I'm dying in side, not literally but emotionally. I'm still good for the odd spurt of inspiration but for the most part I'm ...bliegh. 
There's so much I haven't done with my life and so many things I have done that I didn't like. 
I'd like to fix these holes in my life so that I will be complete, one with the world, totally zen dude. 
That is why I feel that I need to resign my post as an intergalactic peace officer and spend a few galactic lunar days not being able to point a pacification grade, blaster/stunner with exploding grenades. I just don't think I want the responsibility. I think I want to deliver Earth/Betelgeusian fusion cuisine for a while. 
Maria Hall sent off the message to her immediate supervisor, took off her weapons belt and laid a hand on the hilt of her weapon with a low groan of sadness. She sighed and looked around the room where all the other chairs and shiny white desktops were. She unfolded her legs and hopped down from her hover chair, sighing again before she stepped out of the room and into the vacuum tube that took her to the parking level. She had to do it, she just had to.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Wordy Wednesday; Austintatious Annie, Grandma's wisdom

This is the first thing I wrote about Austintatious Annie, my Austin based super hero. Initially, I wanted to go with shape changing being a natural talent and then I decided it's something she was given. Now I think it may be both, natural talent that blooms into full blown shifting with guidance.

Here's Austintatious Annie as she started out.

Tastes change as you get older. That’s what my grandmother said to me about stewed spinach as she was trying to make me eat it. Yeah right. You aren’t going to like it for a while, possibly ever but you might as well eat it anyway now and not complain, even though grandmother probably had when she was a kid. She’s never been quiet about her opinions.

It is true, though. Things change as you get older. You get bigger, stronger, more awkward or just have your hair darken in your teens. I had all of these things happen to me from the time I turned twelve to when I was about fifteen. I also learned how to look like other people, anybody else. I like acting. I like pretending I’m stronger or taller or more confident or even an entirely different person and I really like theater. 
Because I started being able to do this little by little, I just thought I was a really good actor. I guess I am since I have a built in way to change without makeup and since I can be someone else in my head, even my awkwardness which leads me to bump into sharp-edged things a lot, goes away while I’m pretending to be someone else. I got a lot of parts. I live in Austin. There’s a lot of theater. I played little kids, women, even men if the part fit what I wanted to do well enough and the director would let me.

Because plays don’t have an exact look for their actors, with some exceptions, I never went much farther than changing my appearance a bit and changing how I moved and walked. There might have been some difference in shoulder width but nothing large enough to be too noticeable. This changed when I had to play a character who was a showgirl. It wasn’t my usual but by now I was pretty well known and I was persuaded to do it since I didn’t tend to refuse roles that were handed to me all tied up neatly with a bow.
The character as the director imagined it was supposed to be big busted and I am only endowed in the technical sense as my fun bags get lost completely under a sweater. The solution was prosthetic boobs. I hated the idea but I went with it, going home and spending the whole night psyching myself up to have two miniature camel humps strapped to my chest. 
Oh the joy. 
I woke up the next day exhausted and went down to the theater to have my “boys” sized. When I stripped off my shirt for the costume guy, he stared at me. I wondered what he’d found to stare at and looked down. “I had a chest!” It wasn’t a pair of bazoongas like the director wanted but it wasn’t “fun size” anymore either. My boobs were way too big for my bra. Good thing it was a sports bra or I would have keeled over from asphyxiation. The director and the props man made a decision. I didn’t have to wear the rig. All I had to do was wear a push up bra and call it a day.

That’s when I began to wonder what I could do.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Wordy Day; The House of Damaged Dolls!

A while ago, I decided arbitrarily that I would create a story for someone that I knew at the time. I don't like them much anymore but I still like the story idea. See this former friend had recently purchased a house and when he ventured up to the attic in the garage, he found a variety of (somewhat disturbing) toys, a few of which were disfigured which only added to the level of creepy.

I thought that this was interesting and, perhaps quite unreasonably, decided that he would appreciate a novella about toys emerging from his attic and...Doing things. I never did finish it. The beginning wasn't very good and the tone was a little dry, still, I did work on it a bit and I guess, as I don't know when I'll finish it, I can post an excerpt. Enjoy creepy stuff. I'm pretty sure you have no idea what the conclusion of the story is. Perhaps I'll finish it soon and we can all know exactly what happens to the couple living in; The House of Damaged Dolls! (Title might be tweaked a bit, heh...)

They had come with the house. The Realtor had even told him they were up there, but who doesn’t buy a house just because of creepy doll? They’re harmless and you get a story out of it. It isn’t as if any doll, by itself has ever been a threat to anyone in real life. There’s absolutely nothing to worry about if a person buys a house that just happens to have dolls trapped in the attic. Well, unless you happen to leave the door open on your way down. Phil hadn't, thankfully. He’d shut the door to the attic quite firmly but, when he closed a door in another part of the house, the attic door frame jumped and the door clicked open, silently wavering above the steps.
The day passed with great successes. Items were packed and suitcases were double-checked, lunch was eaten and errands were run. There was nothing special about the day, really, except for the fact that it was a day off and would be enjoyed for that if nothing else. As the hours crept by, the attic door occasionally swung gently back and forth, only once oozing a soft creak. The sun set at sixish but Phil was not an early sleeper. He stayed up far past dusk, composing, watching things and generally enjoying his dwindling freedom. At the end of a documentary, long past midnight and with the light from the television blinking across his closed eyelids, Phil blinked himself awake, rubbed his face and crawled to the bathroom before he fell into bed.

The door was almost closed. its hinges had quieted. There was no movement and there was no light. All was dark. But at the corner of the door a spot of shine flickered in the light of a passing car, somehow shining all the way up there and through a garage window. The car passed, dragging the light with it until the garage was again dark. 

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Wordy Day; Ariana's Childhood, Part 1

Ariana looked up at her mother and knew that she wouldn't be comfort. She could feel that her body had begun to shake and her mother must have felt it because her hand tightened on Ariana's much smaller one, making Ariana flinch but still her mother did not look down or say anything. Ariana knew she was on her own and clenched her whole body, steeling her five year old frame for the pains she was about to go through. She began to shake harder and as the visions slammed through her brain, Dark! Vortex! Sand! she felt her grip tighten upon her mothers hand and then she fell to the ground severing even that contact. Pain! Red! Black! War!

When the visions and impressions fled, Ariana lay panting on the floor of the side hallway, all alone. Her mother was gone and she was bruised, her small shoulders aching and her face wet and clammy from tears that she hadn't even felt. She took a deep ragged breath and began to cry for real. It was the side corridor so her wails wouldn't disturb the rest of the house, she thought.

She shut her eyes and abandoned herself to despair, letting her misery out with her forceful cries that echoed through the hall. She heard a door click open and her eyes flicked open in shock. She scooted around on the floor and stared at the door that had opened behind her. It was just ajar by a few inches but as she watched like an animal about to be slaughtered, the door opened and a little girl, a toddler, stared out at her, her green eyes large and somewhat neutral. The little girl stepped forward and nodded to Ariana. "You're loud," she said with a three-year-old's lisp. "Stop it."

Just like that, Ariana closed her mouth, wiped her tears, peeled her sore body off of the hard floor and went into Melody's room. They'd probably play a game and it really was that simple. As soon as Melody showed up and didn't seem to care, Ariana calmed down and could begin recuperating for the next fit. They had gotten worse this year, but in the last months, Ariana was sure they'd lessened. She wondered if it was better when her mother wasn't around.

This is a bit about two characters in a series of books that I am working on, which includes the infamous Snow Sands I removed for revision late last year. Ariana and Melody are broken members of their family. They mostly stick together up until and during the events of Snow Sands. Ariana experiences visions, mostly against her will. 
Snow Sands is currently being expanded but it should be republished, perhaps under a different name, by May of 2014

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Grammar and What it Means to Us and Everybody Else

I is one good girl. I likes banana and drinks five glass water the day.

The above sentence is wrong. It's very, very wrong. It does communicate as all the necessary information is there but, it barely counts as English, let alone good English.
I guaranty you that there is a language that would accept this sentence as proper, if it was translated, of course.

This fact serves to illustrate that the rules which we use and take pride in to construct prose aren't the only rules out there and the significance we attach to certain phrasing styles is based on what those before us have determined, as well as popular culture, not to mention many centuries of invading peoples.

What we can learn from this is...

Harshness has no place in the enjoyment of writing and neither do strict rules on how to do things!

I don't advocate clumsily strung together sentences and blandness is probably the worst thing that a story can communicate. I also don't like bad grammar.

However, there is wiggle room.

I'd really appreciate it if people stopped telling others that there's one way to do things. Not even the grammar and writing books agree with you there.

There's more than one way to do things in this world. Stop being so rigid, unless you're one of those English teachers or Literature professors, you know who you are. If so, it might be too late for you. You'll prove to be a good life lesson for your students on how to deal with difficult people.

(I'm not saying English teachers are inherently bad. I had plenty of good ones. Literature professors on the other hand...Well, hope springs eternal.)

Thursday, January 9, 2014

I've Been Slipping

I try to keep from being too negative, most of the time, with strangers at least.

I've gotten better, honest, overall.

To be absolutely truthful I've been slipping for the last several weeks. Sanity, creativity and drive have gone out the window and my laptop is  still unusable. All of the hardware is usable, if anyone would fix it for less than a hundred and change, which they won't. The hard drive is fine, though. Unfortunately, I lost the screwdriver and now the hard drive is kinda stuck in the computer. Well, it is stuck. There's no kinda about it. Some of the connectors are also disconnected and the keyboard has some keys pried up because apparently my boyfriend and I are a bit like monkeys when we get annoyed. We can't just leave it alone. We gotta poke the damned thing, preferably with something pointy and metal.
No, we were like otters with a reallly big clam.

I do have a new computer now. Used new.  It runs on windows xp and I can't get the word processor that I had before on it. I'm less than pleased about that. Apache Open office is nice and all. I could even like it better but I need compatibility. The writing demands it. Microsoft word has been a pain for a while but I need it.

I'm thissss close to getting a typewriter and shoving it down someone's throat.

I'm also considering a career in comedy.

I saw a sign a few days ago that said, "Peaceful passification authorized."

What could it mean? I started looking around for gas dispensers just to be safe.

Perhaps I have a future on stage. I just have to get over my fear of rejection. Also, I need to get over the fear of being recognized from my...Other activities. No kidding, I dream that my sordid past will come to light.
 People will go, "Did you hear? She ate an ice cream cone seductively in elementary school."

I didn't know, okay! but I would be ruined forever.

Nah. That would be silly. I have nightmares about other things being exposed. It's probably nothing. Still, you don't feel special unless you have deep dark secrets. 

The book is being worked on, albeit erratically and with little focus or surety.
I am just now regaining my routine and I am considering pen names. I think this name, which I never liked much, is fine for Snow Sands and any related fantasy but I think the book I'm currently trying to finish might go under another name. I'm not sure. It's hard to be certain. We'll see. I'll go back to posting on Wednesdays. Probably stories. Maybe grammar, if I knew for sure what that was.

I hope I haven't bored or disturbed you.