Tag: Writing

Sylvia in the Wilds Short Story

Sylvia in the Wilds Short Story

In the Arcera Trilogy, Sylvia Thorne discovers just what happens when the first war in a thousand years breaks out.  But before that, she was just a Rider, spending her days traveling through the wilds between the Four Cities.

Right before the first book Meadowcity, she gets stuck in Lightcity, waiting for a package to deliver.  She isn’t stuck for long though, when a young girl decides to go on a haphazard mission into the wilds–and Sylvia feels compelled to follow.

Which brings us to Sylvia In The Wilds–the short story prequel, which will be available as a free ebook in April 2017!

The story is currently with my beta readers, and I can’t wait to share it with you!

New Year’s: Done

New Year’s: Done

Like many others, I can’t help but look back on 2016 and look forward on 2017.  I think it’s beginning to be a blog tradition for me, anyway.

2016 was a crazy year for me.  Crazy fast and crazy amazing.  And I can’t wait for what this next one brings!

It started off with a trip to Japan:…Which I won’t be forgetting any time soon.  We arrived just in time for the cherry blossoms (sakura).  I guess I didn’t realize how quickly they peak and begin to die: in the beginning of our trip, the sakura in Tokyo were at peak (like above in Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden).  We then spent a week traveling to Gotemba, Kyoto and Osaka.  By the time we came back to Tokyo, the sakura were gone or dropping petals.  The timing was amazing!

I was more than a little inspired by Japan, and have begun to learn more of the language, as we are planning a second trip in 2017!  The inspiration reached even further, and might be finding some influence over my next book series, which is currently brewing.

Once we returned, I had to buckle down and finish up A Rift Between Cities.

Lots of things (including our trip) stole time from my writing schedule, but I managed to complete it in time!  Seeing the trilogy finished was an incredible part of the year.

Turns out I couldn’t say goodbye to Sylvia, however.

In 2017, look for a short story prequel following Sylvia’s adventures before the war.

The new series I’m working on is in the world-building stages, which I have learned is probably my favorite part of writing.  I’m tentatively planning a 4 or 5 book series, which I can’t wait to share with you!

In 2017, I’ll also be selling and signing my books in the Artist’s Colony at Connecticon!

Despite a lot of negativity and bad things that happened in 2016, I don’t mind saying that I had a great year.  The New Year gives us a chance to turn the page on the old, and start blank:

Why I Went Indie (For Now)

Why I Went Indie (For Now)

While browsing through my email today, I saw a title from one of the many book/writing-related senders that I subscribe to.  It was titled something like “Want to be a writer? Do this…” 

What?  I am a writer.  I write.  Doesn’t the act of writing make me a writer?  I wrote a whole book.

But here’s where I am different than a surprising amount of people out there: I published it.

I didn’t stick it in a drawer because I thought it was terrible and no one would read it.  I didn’t put myself down, or tell myself I couldn’t be a real writer.  I didn’t spend hours crafting query letters, only to receive no response, or be declined.  I chose to self-publish.

*Gasp!*  But, isn’t that a lot of work?  you ask.

Yes, yes it is.  But I had a story burning a hole in my brain, and I needed to get it out to readers.

I tested it, of course, and took in feedback before I released it into the wilds.  And I learned many a lesson along the way (like, not to get too excited when uploading your book information to Amazon, because you WILL make a mistake).

But I am happy as my own publisher, for now.  It helps that I actually like formatting Word docs, and designing promo things in Photoshop, because every day I find there is something I need to do to market my next book, or promote the current title–in addition to all of that work it takes to write, edit, format and design both an eBook and paperback.  But I refuse to wallow in un-published land just because there is a stigma about self-publishing, or because it is hard.

Sylvia has grown on me.  She keeps pushing when she has nothing left to push.  She keeps going when no one else will.  And I will keep writing.

If some publisher takes an interest in my books, that’d be great.  Until then, I am happily on my own.

Young Adult- Let’s Get Rid of the Age Qualification

Young Adult- Let’s Get Rid of the Age Qualification

Yes, this is my bookshelf.  Kim Harrison and J.K. Rowling are awarded prime real estate.
Yes, this is my bookshelf. Kim Harrison and J.K. Rowling are awarded prime real estate.

Back in the day, when I first started buying books, I remember beelining for the “Young Adult” section of the store.  In the beginning, it was maybe one rack of books in the corner, or behind the “regular” fiction/literature section.  It was the place in the bookstore where I would read each title, examine each cover, and figure out which books I hadn’t yet read.  Essentially no other section in the store existed for me for a long time.

Even now I can still visualize the young adult section in several bookstores I frequented long ago, most in stores that no longer exist.

I thought, “Young Adult”, these are the books for me!  I am a young. adult.

Even now, in my {insert age here}’s, I am still considered a “young adult”.  And I wonder, when will I stop being a “young adult”?  I feel as if I have been a young adult for a very long time.  When do I become an old adult?

But I refuse to stop enjoying young adult books because I am no longer a teenager, and I don’t think anyone else should either.  YA books are not classified as such because they are watered down, less serious, or not as good as “regular” fiction.  The only qualifier I can see is that they generally feature a teen protagonist–a character who, more often than not, faces far more emotional, societal, or crazy dystopian struggles than traditional fiction.

Sure, I read my fair share of traditional fiction, but Young Adult will perhaps always be my favorite section of the bookstore, and it will always hold that magic for me.

Yes, YA has certainly been gaining popularity recently with the Hunger Games and Divergent series being converted into movies; but I feel it still carries a stigma, which is why when I talk about Meadowcity, I like to tell people that it is for ages 12 and up.  I don’t think people should stop enjoying a style of writing once they reach a certain age.

YA books are for the young, and the young at heart–something I hope to be for a long, long time.

“I see now that dismissing YA books because you’re not a young adult is a little bit like refusing to watch thrillers on the grounds that you’re not a policeman or a dangerous criminal, and as a consequence, I’ve discovered a previously ignored room at the back of the bookstore that’s filled with masterpieces I’ve never heard of.”

– Nick Hornby

When I am finally classified as an “old adult” you still won’t be able to pry Harry Potter from my stiff, arthritic fingers.