partlyopenbook: Not me. :) (Default)
I don't know about anyone else (no, really, I don't), but I'll be happy to see the last minutes of this year.

Granted, I realize that every moment contains its own RESET button. But 2014 wasn't very good to me, and at times it was hard to remember the RESET button existed.

There were a few good things about 2014. I released three "books" on Smashwords: The Information Man... Zandry of Bonewood... and my newest one, The Hero and the Holly.

I met some interesting people. Of course, now none of that really matters, since I moved back to The North Hole and left those interesting people behind. Which didn't seem to bother those people that much. C'est la vie!

I got a new (used) car. That in itself has been a mixed blessing. I love, love, love driving my car... but I hate that I've had to put $1400 into it since I bought it. In May. I hope it doesn't cost me nearly that much in repairs and maintenance in 2015.

I got away from some very bad people that were in my life. And it hurts to think that they're thinking the same about me....

Despite having only a couple of stories accepted and published by the professional writing world in 2014, I am still writing. During the upcoming year, my focus will stay on what I can accomplish. The last two years, I honed in on challenging myself as a writer. Whereas my inability to have erotica published might have seemed like a failure, to me it isn't quite so. I did write a lot of erotic tales, and I had a very good time doing it, too! That isn't a failure. Am I going to try again to have an erotic tale published? Probably not... I'm not closed-off to the idea altogether. Simply, there are other avenues to explore.

I have a few things that I want to finish up in 2015... like The Pickled Pirate.... and After Dan & Steve Saved the World. After that, my intention is to clean up my novel manuscripts and send them out to publishers using Ye Old Query Letter and Submission process. This upcoming year will be about that, and if I work on anything at all, I mean for it to be this sweeping, gargantuan epic that I've wanted to work on for years... Or (sigh) perhaps a couple of sequels. I have three ideas for sequels to stories I've already finished. At the very least, I could block them out, chapter by chapter, which is handy to have if a publisher is interested in Book The First, so I hear.

Largely, however, I've found that blocking books out doesn't work very well for me... I tend to get a bit tangential when I write. Or another idea hits me that makes the book more exciting for me to write! And that, that I like better than trying to stick to a pattern. Patterns tend to dull the senses after a while. Good some of the time, but not, for goodness sake, all of the time!

So, in 2015, I intend to finish my outstanding projects... The Pickled Pirate will probably be out sometime in February... depending on the amount of editing the volume requires. The titular tale isn't finished yet. The accompanying four short stories are in splendid shape and form, as far as I can tell, and the editing there will be minor, if it exists at all. But the release date depends on how quickly I can actualize the book itself, seeing as how I plan to release it using a different site. There will be new formatting rules to grasp. Always an adventure!

I plan to read more in 2015 than I did this year. Of course, this year was dangerous with dips into devilry, beleaguered by bandits and beasts of the metaphorical and allegorical sort—and I didn't have much time for reading. Since returning to The North Hole, I've felt relaxed enough to sink into books... now, of course, that all of my books were left behind me. Thank goodness for digital libraries and electronic reading devices (and my brother's personal library)...

In the upcoming days, I intend to start charging the minuscule fee of ¢0.99 for my books, except The Hero and the Holly. This includes all others, though: The Information Man, The Carols of Holly House, and Zandry of Bonewood (which is already listed for a price). I would like to try and make some money (please reread Paragraph 5), and, of course, free samples of those works will be available to read prior to purchasing. A lot of people don't want to pay for art, I know. If you don't want to pay for my books, there are plenty of other good stories that you can find for free, either on Smashwords, Project Gutenberg, Fiction Press, Archive of Our Own, or your local library... But a nice book, for less than a dollar? If I found a book at the thrift store that I really wanted, it would be ninety-nine cents there, too. Comparatively, my books are bargains, even if they're not very long. Please consider buying books for authors you like, whether it's me or Meg Cabot or Chris Colfer!

The upcoming year is far from mapped out. (See my sidebar on blocking books.) There are things I want to do, sure... Mostly, I just want to have a good time, have some fun, earn a bit of money from my stories, from hard work in the less fictionalized world (Real Life), and maintain an interest in my art without falling into crevices of heartache. Basically, I want to stick to my oldest of old new year's resolutions: Be happy, and try not to die.

Happy 2015 to everyone!

partlyopenbook: a raccoon looks like it's clapping (yay)
While we in the North spend a lot of time in our houses during the long, long winter, sometimes, to save energy, it's not exactly a hot and cozy house. It's tolerably warm. One of the things I like to wear around the house are "wristers" -- half-gloves without fingers. I made a new pair, and decided to post a photo of the finished product.

(click to enlarge)

The yarn turned out to be a lot thicker than I thought... It's just a double-crochet rectangle, rows equally the height of your wrist and hand. Put in a little thumb-hole where it's comfortable for you... by chaining four and skipping three (then skipping one in the next row so the stitches are even)... I put a row of loops at the top of each... by chaining four and skipping three... then stitch along the side and tie it off! I crocheted it flat by working in the front loop rather than the back (away from me) loop. This is easier when you're wearing your wristers to type!

With the rest of the yarn, I made a small circle-scarf... It fits around the neck for a nice warmth. It also fits over my sizable Scottish head to keep my ears warm. That was done just with a row of double crochet, and a row of skipped double-crochet (dc1, ch 1, skip 1).

I've also been working on a new afghan with an easy shell stitch. Pictures of that some other time.

Merry Solstice to all! Winter might be here, but the days are getting longer!

Photo taken the other day at the park...

(click to enlarge)

Should mention that all of my books are still free.

partlyopenbook: Not me. :) (Default)
I think Cover 2 is definitely out of the running. It just isn't very warm.

So it's Cover 1, or Cover 3.

Cover 3

They don't look like much... The jpg files were purposefully created as low-quality images. The actual covers will be sharper and tidier in appearance.

partlyopenbook: Not me. :) (Default)
Here's another cover design for the upcoming novella, The Hero and the Holly. I can tell you that Covers 1 & 3 are literal representations of what's in the story, whereas Cover 2 is a symbolic representation of what the story contains.

If you'd like to throw in your two cents, feel free. You can post comments on my entries even if you don't have a dreamwidth account. (Or create one. It's free.) I'm not close to deciding which one will be used. And again, it could be none of these.

Cover 3

partlyopenbook: Not me. :) (Default)
I finished a new novella yesterday. It's called The Hero and the Holly. After I make some inquiries and do some other thinky-thought things, I'll write more about it, including its release date. For now, ogle and bitch about the covers. I haven't made up my mind which one of these I will use. It's also possible neither of these is used.

Cover 1

Cover 2

partlyopenbook: (hullo)
I had a lovely, busy weekend attending a retreat, and met new people, had wonderful insights into religion and the human condition.

I used to keep a paper journal, in which I wrote quotidian events. However, I've encountered a lot of problems writing in it lately. It seems to trigger PTSD stuff, and I'm not sure why... Instead of writing the mundane, now I keep it strictly for religion and writing. Using these subjects for journaling seems to be going well. I'm able to write without bursting into tears! So—success!

I've been studying religion intensely the last few weeks, which might be related to the events of the past year (or past two-plus years), or some other unknown, undiscovered reason. It's nice to have a place to pen my thoughts and—dare I say—insights into my labyrinthine religious paths, both Druidry and a more conventional monotheism. Druidry "allows" you to have another religion. Not sure if other religions allow you to have Druidry.

At the retreat, we studied and practiced silence. This is definitely a theme I'd like to explore in my writing, and I hope to do it in the more theological and Christian (Lutheran) story I started last month. It's intended to be a novel, and I hope I can finish it... I hope I can finish all the little projects I've started! But I found Silence an inspiring attribute, and it made me want to work on the story again.

Though I haven't gone back to it yet, I have been working (slowly) on the short story which will complete the upcoming collection of short stories, a collection titled The Pickled Pirate. From circumstances that I won't get into, I wound up writing a plethora of pirate parables (okay, not parables, but points for alliteration, right?) during the summer. Since none was used for the project, I'm going to release them myself. There are four, and they are...

1) Arthur Nobody
2) Out of the Blue
3) Captain Storm's Revenge
4) Seth

All I need is this last story...

Interestingly, this titular tale (ah-haaa!), "The Pickled Pirate," uses Rex Malin! He's The Information Man, the hero of, uh, The Information Man. Malin is in the plot's background, but I expect that he'll show up for dialogue eventually. So, if you haven't read The Information Man yet, you might want to. Like my other titles (currently), it's free. The Pickled Pirate takes place in Toronto (hi, Canada, ILU!) in 1929, more than a year after The Information Man.

I still have a long way to go before The Pickled Pirate is finished. Cheer me on, if you'd like, with tweets or emails or comments! I could always use the extra support, and it's nice to know that people appreciate what you're writing.

Also, since I'm in the mood to sell my work, I've posted an opening chapter of a novel I started but am not going to finish—posted at the community I run, [community profile] erotic_bubbles . It's a members-only community, so to read it you'll have to have a dreamwidth account. It's free, too (like my three books). I had great plans for my DW Community, but, like most things this year, it's had to be put on hold.

As we come towards Samhain, the end of the Wheel of the Year, I grow more and more confident that things will begin to turn around for me. I'm really looking forward to celebrating Samhain, even if, as usual, I have to do some quiet rituals on my own! But it will mean quite a lot to me, more than it has in the past, as I have spirits to acknowledge and the beginning of a new life cycle to celebrate. It's time my life went forward. I hope your futures are bright, too.


partlyopenbook: (stache)
Finally got around to updating and editing the main site. And fixed a typo. Trust me, when you're a writer who prides herself on editing skills, a typo on your web site is embarrassment times twenty... But I can't remember when I last updated, though it was likely this past summer, when R + M = LOVE was released on Hyacinth Noir. I doubt I had my editing and writing cap on very securely through a summer that would've made Carroll's Mad Hatter worry. Considering what's happened the last couple of years, I'm surprised I've managed to accomplish one impossible thing before breakfast! Forget six!

Hyacinth Noir is having a photography contest, called The Samhain Wild Hunt! I can't wait to see the photos sent in! I won't be participating, alas. I may have the opportunity to offer my own Halloween/Samhain gift, however, so be on the lookout!

By the way, stories still FREE.

Which leads me to mention why I decided not to remove Zandry of Bonewood, after all... I moved its Category—again! I think that'll make me feel better, and I think it's less erotic than other erotic tales out there... but it's sexy enough that Adult Content is still required! I remain bewildered as to what makes a novel fall under the category of "erotic". Is it personal opinion? For me, I tend to think of erotic stories as anything that contains more than 50% SSS — Significant Sexual Substance! But I guess the Personal Opinion part is what matters.

I'm planning to release another set of short stories in the upcoming future. It'd like its title to be "The Pickled Head and Other Tales" ... but we'll see. This new compilation might be released somewhere NOT Smashwords, and probably under another name, although I'll talk about it plenty on this site... So, under another name, but still me. If released elsewhere, it'll have to be purchased rather than downloaded for free. I have the cover art planned, just haven't started creating it yet. And I'd like to write a fifth story to add to the four already finished. I wish we had 36-hour days. Who's with me?

If I start feeling a little better today (do I have a sinus infection or what? IDK), perhaps I can sit and write for a few hours! It'd be lovely to get a story written, what would be my first completed anything since early August! Wish me luck! 


Thursday, 23 October 2014 12:15
partlyopenbook: Not me. :) (Default)
Leaves fall... frost settles in during the dark mornings... nature is calming down... everything is rather tranquil, and, as always, everything is beautiful.

I still have no regular employment. And I can't make anyone give me a job, no more than I can make anyone pay for something I wrote. Unfortunately...

I've made all my books free at Smashwords. As in, you can get them for zero cents, zero dollars — money is not required to purchase them!

It'd be nice if my writing was worth more than free, but I'd rather have people download the stories and actually read them rather than get paid for a full-download. At present, having just moved into a place after a good fortnight of literal homelessness, I'm hardly in the mindset to market myself, and making my stories free is the only way I can really sell my art right now.

If you like what you read of mine, tell your friends... tell through social media, leave scrap pieces of paper with my name on them in random places (public restrooms, parks, subways, buses, your favorite indie bookseller's). Word of mouth is still the fastest and best way to let others know about good writing for our LGBT community.

Thanks, and have a nice day!

Free books!
BTW: If the prices aren't listed as FREE! yet, Smashwords is still working on it. Check again later! Don't give up!


Sunday, 19 October 2014 22:47
partlyopenbook: (bluebirds)
Today... in the woods.


Friday, 10 October 2014 17:25
partlyopenbook: (bird)
Long time, no post... Things are better. Going to collect some wayward short stories into another collection. Release date TBD. As soon as I figure out if I can write the fifth and final addition to the collection...

In the meantime, enjoying what I can of the outdoors.


Saturday, 20 September 2014 20:49
partlyopenbook: Not me. :) (Default)
The worst thing about finding a place to live is how awfully it's misunderstood by everyone else. They expect you to just find a place and move in an hour later. In actuality, a lot of it is just waiting for people to get back to you. It's a lot of waiting. Waiting... More waiting. And anxiety because you're not sure how long you can stay, if rent will go up, if heating bills over the winter will drive you back into the poorhouse, if you'll be able to afford food.

Still unofficially homeless. Staying at a hotel tonight and tomorrow night. Nice, fairly cheap, comfortable. A toad outside the access door, oddly comforting and very strangely Ohioan - just not sure how. I'd give you info to donate to my paypal account, but I have to figure out how that works first. Until that happens, please buy a book of mine. It doesn't even matter if you ever read it. Ninety-nine cents isn't a whole lot of money, but it's enough to make me feel better about myself. Smashwords doesn't pay until you get to $10.00 (I think that's how it works). I'm at 2-something.

At least I have a cause now. I mean, one greater than homeless animals (including horses). Now it's homeless people, too.

There's really nothing like having a home, a real one, one that's never-ending.
partlyopenbook: Not me. :) (blink)

I just realized that this starred city I have in my WU favorites could change next week. Dumfries, Scotland it might end up saying.

Oh, Motherland... I don't know what to think of this yet. By the time my two minds have become one, the decision will have been made. And I hope it turns out to be the right decision.

And, in regards to the Saga of the Lavender Plant, the roots have not yet sprouted new growth, but the seeds did in fact spring up on Monday!
partlyopenbook: (stache)
I added another whole story to Zandry of Bonewood! (Ahh, the joys of self-publishing...)

So now it's five stories, ninety-nine cents! That's a yard-sale, Goodwill bargain price, so go and get it!

Plus, if I ever make any money, I still plan to donate to no-kill animal organizations.

For anyone who's already purchased it, as far as I understand, you can download the new version without paying again.

New story, new book!

Zandry of Bonewood and Other Stories
Four FIVE short fantasy romances
¢0.99 at Smashwords.
partlyopenbook: a raccoon looks like it's clapping (yay)

Zandry of Bonewood and Other Stories
Five short fantasy romances
¢0.99 at Smashwords.
25% Free Sample

edited 9/13/14 to most up-to-date book info
partlyopenbook: (hullo)
I've returned to the cottage after an unanticipated and extended hiatus. If I'd had more time to consider options, instead of just bolting out the door as I'd done in April, I would've spent a lovely month in Canada. Ah, well... Maybe next time!

Not much here at BDC (Breezy Day Cottage) has changed. The garden is ENORMOUS. If anyone wants any tomatoes, look no further...

Between exceptional heat and trying to get my writing life back on track, there has begun a great purge of every garret nook and every basement cranny. I'm not entirely sure how I wound up with so many clothes... or what half of this stuff actually is, besides junk. Perhaps useful to others, but, for myself, it's become junk. The sentimentality I often feel towards objects, once holding some significant or profound memory, has been forced into a cold oubliette.

Another purge was my from-seed, homegrown lavender plant. She was put in a place where she would be looked after, and received attention enough, where she'd been talked to and watered. Alas, she was neglected in the way of proper sunbeams: she'd been left in a place with inadequate light. I've cut off the dead stems and set her back in sunlight. It's possible that the roots might form new shoots with good attention. It's also possible that the new batch of seeds I planted will sprout. It's possible that neither of these things will happen.

Future posts will update you on this most interesting story!

I started writing a new novel the other day... then dutifully recalled that I'd left my Summervale rewrite hanging in the ether of Unfinished Projects. Yesterday morning, I wrote quite a bit in the rewrite. Originally, in the upcoming release of Zandry of Bonewood, I was going to have Summervale as the first story... I'll probably switch things up a bit, though. I still believe the rewrite is worth the time, but I also think it doesn't make a great opening story in a collection of short stories.

I've decided to devote September entirely to my writing. I say this as if I don't devote every month and every day to my writing... But last month was rather lost in the way of writing, aside from a five-day flurry of short story production. This month, I mean to get a lot more done, I mean to do what I can to reach a few goals, finish a few tasks.

Later edit... I have Last Time in Summervale put together in its entirety, minus sufficient editing. It looks as though it's going to top off around 13,000 words! Yikes! The original was about 9500 words! That's a difference of 3500 words!

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