Showing posts from October, 2017

Saturday Snippets: Oz and Fairy Tales

October is almost over, so it's time for more snippets. These come from There's No Place Like Home?  (my NaNo novel from 2015, newly finished) and from "Paper and (T)horns" (my modern Beauty and the Beast retelling). From  There's No Place Like Home?   The kalidahs who had been sent to the front gate had expected an angry mob. Not quite torches and pitchforks angry. More like billy clubs and Molotov cocktails. At the very least, they had been anticipating an unruly assortment of people led by a towering, charismatic man, perhaps wearing a mask, who would shout meaningless mantras over a megaphone. Instead, the leader appeared to be a small girl with a fire in her eyes most of the kalidahs had long since forgotten. Hope. Righteous anger. Determination. Love. While the crowd behind her—and the kalidahs in front of her—grew ever more restless as they waited for something to happen, the girl simply stared into the heart of the Westford mansion with that fiery-eyed

Monday Musings: Inktober Drawings 9-22

Inktober is almost over! The month has flown by, and I've only shared the first 8 drawings on here, so this post is remedying that lack of art. The words in parentheses (Fairy-tale, Urban, or Forest) indicate which of the original prompts lists I pulled that prompt from. Day 9: The Genie (Fairy-tale) This is a (bad) drawing of two of the Djinn from the Albion Quartet. They look smoochier than I originally intended (I was aiming for a hug) but it works. No, you should not consider this a spoiler of things to come in the series. But neither should you consider it not a spoiler. Day 10: The Goblin Lord (Urban) I wanted to draw something Labyrinth-related but not necessarily David Bowie. So I found a picture of Toby Froud (the actor who played Toby in the film and also the son of Brian Froud, who worked on the character designs for the film) and drew from there. Day 11: The Wolf Boy (Forest) Have I mentioned that I cannot draw people? Or animals?

ThrowBook Thursday: Narnia Audio Part 2 (Full Audio Rankings)

This is a conclusion to a two-part series begun in last month's ThrowBook Thursday . Check out the brief reviews of the first four Narnia books (that I listened to for this re-read)  there . I am including last month's rankings, adjusted to include the last three books. I'll only add notes for the books not covered last month, namely The Magician's Nephew ; The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe ; and The Last Battle . (Has anyone ever noticed that Prince Caspian is the only Narnia title to not begin with "the"?) 7. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe read by Michael York How?! How did we pair Michael York with Narnia and get this? I expected to adore Michael York's reading because I typically enjoy him on-screen. Instead, I found his urbane style making large portions of Lewis' prose come across very condescending rather than the knowing winks that Lewis gives his readers (where he reveals that he understands life as they do). His Aslan i

Monday Musings: Keeping in Sync with Your Creative Drive

I have two more tips for keeping your creative bucket full that I did not cover last week. Keeping in Sync with Your Creative Drive Many of us have patterns and rhythms to our creative drive. I've mentioned before that autumn tends to spur me on to be more creative. It's not that I don't feel creative during other times of the year. It's more that when the first crisp days of autumn hit, I have to make something. I haven't always been aware of this trend, but ever since I first noticed it, it's something that I've come to expect, take advantage of, and even rely on (see last year's difficulties when I didn't  experience this creative surge). When I mentioned this in writing group two weeks ago, one of my friends said that she has  a way of telling when she's ready to work on a new project. Much like pregnant women tend to nest and get their houses ready for a new child, she starts cleaning and organizing her writing space. It's not a co

Beautiful Books: Paper and (T)horns

It's almost NaNoWriMo time, which means that Cait and Sky are hosting a Beautiful Books link-up in place of their usual Beautiful People link-up. I've decided to join in with a post about Paper and (T)horns . Two things to get out of the way before I dive into the questions: first, I am NOT doing NaNoWriMo, although I will be working on this story for the foreseeable future; second, this is not intended to be a novel (I am aiming for a novella, no more than 30,000-40,000 words). What inspired the idea for your novel, and how long have you had the idea? My friend Mirriam redrew the Beast from the live-action Beauty and the Beast film to make him more frightening, and I enjoyed her take on the character. In fact, I realized that I kind of shipped him with Maleficent, and thus the idea for Paper and (T)horns took seed. This was back in April of this year. Describe what your novel is about! A young man meets the girl of his dreams, only

Watercolor Wednesday: October Edition

This month's Watercolor Wednesday is much more packed than I thought it would be. I apparently did a lot more painting after last month's post than I remembered. First up, another sign for Samwise's birthday later this month. The Man in the Moon sketch here is one I played with a few times this month, and a couple of other sketches of him were in Monday's sketch dump. (I also used this painting as a chance to play with transparency. It worked so well I'm not sure the picture actually captures all the color that's on the page.) These two bookmarks were an experiment brought on by two factors. First, I ran out of my 5" x 7" (ish) watercolor paper, so I set to cutting up some of my larger sheets. Second, I cannot cut a straight line, so I broke out the paper trimmer, and the sheets were too wide for that even after I'd cut them in half, so I had to cut smaller strips off, resulting in these bookmark-sized pieces. The bookmark on the left i

Monday Musings: Keeping Your Creative Bucket Full

Last week, I went to my local writing group and, since the person who introduced me to Inktober was there, I shared my first few Inktober drawings with the group. One of the other writers asked how doing a challenge like Inktober affected our creativity. For me, having a creative outlet that differs from what I might think of as my "main" art form (i.e. writing novels) actually fuels my creativity as a whole. It's why I picked up watercolors this year -- to give myself a place for art to spill over when I didn't have the time/drive/energy to sit down at a keyboard. This was the short version of the answer I gave in group. But as I thought about it, I realized that the deeper topic was actually not how does pursuing one art form affect another, but how do I keep from draining my creative well/bucket dry? So here are some of the ways I do that. Consume Other Art This is one of the most common pieces of advice for artists struggling with keep

Top 10 Tuesday: Scary Characters

Before we dive into this month's Top 10, I want to share a couple pieces of fan art created one of my betas for the Albion books. I'm very excited to share them with you because who doesn't love seeing characters they've written inspire others to create something? Robin from Albion Academy ( Source ) Merlin and Robin in Albion Apparent ( Source ) You can check out more of Meltintalle's art on her Tumblr . Okay, back to the subject at hand. I know that "scary" is a subjective word, so let me clarify: these are characters that have, at one time or another, frightened me. Most of them were just frightening when I was a child (in some cases, specific incidents when I was a child), but all of them still have something unsettling about them even now. The Headless Horseman Source I'm thinking in particular of the version from Disney's animated adaptation of "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" (which was first released as