Where Have I Been?

Sorry about the long silence. I’ve been like a lady obsessed.

First, some news. I have 2 stories ready for submission. Yay! I’ll get those suckers sent off by the end of the weekend. Here are the queries I’m working on; this is for The Face in the Magic Mirror, a novella:

Prince Richard is trapped by a spell on a magic mirror, through which he must answer truthfully the vain questions of a very beautiful and ambitious queen. As long as Richard finds the queen the fairest of all, she is content. However, one day, Richard falls in love with the queen’s young stepdaughter, Angelika.

He urges Angelika to flee the queen’s jealous wrath, so she runs to her friends in the woods, a farm worked entirely by dwarfs. There, she meets Gretchen, who came to the farm looking for a husband. She has made her choice, but her heart does not yet agree with her head.

To free Richard, Angelika, and a land in the grip of the evil queen, Gretchen and her betrothed decide to become heroes.

Yeah, so it needs work. My WordPress theme made it italic; I’ll have to find that setting and turn it off. One day.

Here’s the other, for A Little Night Magic, my Regency urban fantasy. Some of you have seen other versions of it before:

Tory is a spy. She’s also a starcaster–able to manipulate starlight. The Intelligence Ministry director, Mr. Bradburn, thinks her specialty should be using her feminine wiles to seduce state secrets out of unsuspecting enemy operatives. And while Tory appreciates the implied compliment, she would like nothing more than to find a way to respectfully decline.

She doesn’t realize that what Bradburn really wants is a patsy. When enemy spies try to steal a new magical prototype, Tory thwarts them and traces the spies back to Bradburn. Before she can gather evidence against him, he frames her for the theft of the prototype. Now, everyone wants the prototype and Tory’s dodging villains like ladies evade louts at a ball.

Disguised as a domestic servant, armed with lockpicks, decoding disks, and a black powder revolver, Tory must evade her fellow operatives, find evidence of Bradburn’s connection to the enemy, avert the plot against the throne, and clear her good name.

So why am I obsessed? Because I’ve been a crazed songwriter lately. I’ve been churning out songs like I’ve never been able to churn out stories. In the last month, I’ve written the music and/or lyrics to four songs (although one needs more polish), and I’ve even set one of them to music. I had already set another song to music last year, so I now have 5 songs. As soon as I write one, another pops into my head. The music generally pops in later.

Here are the titles:

  • So Screwed (with music)
  • Oh, Autism (with music)
  • Worth the Waiting (lyrics only, needs rhymes)
  • How to Write a Country Song (lyrics only, written on Saturday and Sunday)
  • Lady Geek (lyrics only, written yesterday and today)

Most of these are comic songs, except the 2nd and the 3rd. No, I don’t intend to be a singer. No, I don’t have a singer lined up to do demos. No, I don’t have a collaborator lined up to help me with the music. Yes, I’ve been studying how to write songs (hence the 4th song). Yes, I got the appropriate “For Dummies” book. Yes, I am still totally lost. No, I have not given up writing fiction.

So thanks for hanging with me. I’ll try to keep you guys posted.

Those Excerpts at the Back of the Book

So you just finished reading a great story, and you turn the page to find an excerpt of the next book. What do you do, read it or skip it?

I skip it and here’s why. The story was just resolved for me. I just want to think about it for a while. My mindset when I just finish a book is just not prepared for diving right into another, even by the same author, along the same storyline. I won’t start reading anything else until that evening at the earliest. And most likely, it’ll be something by a different author.

The only exception is books that end on cliffhangers. Such books will annoy me (you pay for a complete story!), but my annoyance will be mitigated by the presence of an excerpt. Usually, the excerpt resolves the cliffhanger, and I come away satisfied. Usually.

So, do you read those excerpts, or do you skip them?

An Impromptu Technology Review

I appear to have injured my shoulder. I’ve had this nagging pain going on for about a year or so and it suddenly got much worse. So now I’m dictating this post using Dragon Dictation (for the iPad). So this is also serving as a test how effective Dragon Dictation is. Don’t know if my “voice” would be different if I actually hear my voice.

So I actually had to do a fair amount of editing on that little paragraph. I think I am going to have to speak very slowly into this thing. Also Dragon puts ads along the bottom when you’re recording and processing what you’re recording. You occasionally see little ads about Dragon Naturally Speaking.

Okay so I keep forgetting to say my punctuation. That is going to take some getting used to. I think for a novelist, this is going to be awfully cumbersome. But maybe for writing blog posts it won’t be so bad. And maybe I’ll get used to it.

So now I’m going to mail this to my e-mail address and put it in a blog post. Let me know what you think. Does it sound like me?

Dang I forgot my punctuation again.

(Naturally, I fixed all of my editing problems before I posted this.)

Going Through Some Changes

Hey, the title of this post is the name of a song, isn’t it?

Sorry about Monday’s post. I read all your comments, and thank you. I have just a little upheaval going on right now. Yanno, the whole “life intrudes” kind of thing. I’ll try not to let my blog go entirely dark, though. It may just be a bit more informal than usual.

Still reading. Lately, I’ve been reading Alison Goodman’s Eona, but since I occasionally find the plot frustrating, I am currently taking a break from it to read Jennifer Estep’s Venom.

Read any good books lately?