Sunday, June 3, 2018

I'm Not A Pantser and Other Important News

I decided to try pantsing. I have spent several months pantsing away, free as a bird. Except it doesn't work for me! I write myself into weird tributaries of plot and end up at cliffs. Back away, Back Away!

 I bought a notebook. And dug out a bunch of writing books I own on plot. I have been taking what I have already written, and figuring out where to go!

Here's the book I am working with. It uses a graphic visual plotting planner I like a lot. 

I guess it is good to know for sure!


Later this month I will be part of a fun SFR .99 Sale! Keep your eyes peeled.

In August I will be part of two panels at the Fort Collins Comic Con!

Science Fiction, Fantasy, Paranormal, and More: 
Author Panel Discussion
 With Carol Van Natta, and Matthew Angelo 


Don't Be a Diva 
(How to Succeed as an Indie Author)
With Carol Van Natta

We do try to spout helpful stuff for writers!

In more personal news:

One of my darling twins is now a college professor at University of Wyoming! She just graduated with her Masters!

Her twin will join her at UW!

Lucky for me, daughter #3 will live at home so I don't get empty nest syndrome!

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

WIP Excerpt Her Cyborg Escapee

Here is a snippet from a new SFR. I am planning a September Release.

Space colonist Neve leaves her farm for the port city to buy some livestock and a couple farm dogs. Her trip doesn't go as planned.

She sat on the edge of the audience, near a trellis with greenery. The musician on stage was good, though she wondered what had a happened in his life to drop him on a distant colony world.
There was a thud on the other side of the trellis and a muffled groan. Fast whispers, and rustling.
“Drover, go see what happened behind the trellis.” The minibot obediently rolled away. No one else in the theater had noticed the sounds, but none were sitting close to the trellis.
Drover reported to her holo wristband. “Animal girls. One is hurt. They jump from high up.”
Animal girls? Did Drover mean Human Mods? Illegal under the Alliance, animal modified humans were a lucrative sex slavery business in unregulated space. Which this planetary system resided in, though they were considering joining the Alliance.
  Neve heard more whispers, it sounded like an argument, followed by a sob. She quietly slipped around the trellis to a utility walkway.
Two big-eyed women stared at her. Both had a ruff of plush fur on their head, pointed triangular ears, huge round black eyes, small noses, and mouths. They had golden brown short hair covering their bare arms and legs and edges of their faces. The silky negligees they wore showed women’s breasts and waists, women’s legs, covered again in the golden fur. Long plushy tails. Plushies were the hottest commodity in the flesh trade.
One girl had an injured foot, the ankle at an odd angle. “Broken foot?”
The girl nodded.
A man shouted in the distance, down the utility walkway.
“Oh no,” one squeaked. “They are coming. Come, sister, let us try to hide.”
“Are you trying to get away from slavers?” I whispered.
“Yes, miss. Please go back to the garden theater. They will hurt you too.”
“You are quite beautiful, they would steal you away, too.”
  Neve made a quick decision. She touched the injured one. “Climb up on my back. I am much stronger than I look. We will run to the street and catch a taxi.”
The small plushie climbed onto her back, and Neve gripped her legs in front of her. “Drover, follow behind and shoot shock tabs if we are pursued.
“Yip yip,” he gave his audio affirmative.
They ran down the narrow alley. Neve heard the heavy pounding steps of large men close behind them. Drover zinged out shock tabs. They wouldn’t kill a healthy person, though they could cause heart rhythm issues.
There was a garbled cry and a heavy body hit the ground.
“Julian is down. Oh! So is Chirut!” Neve’s rider spoke.“Your baby bot is a good shot.”
“Weasel rats. Pests on the farm,” I gasped. Running at top speed with a girl on my back was a challenge.
They came to the end of the walkway and had to climb over a locked gate.  The uninjured plushie handed Drover over and then quickly climbed over herself.
Then they were back on the main street. Neve shoved the girls behind an air quality unit in the shadows and hailed a taxi. A flitter veered out of the traffic and lowered to the walkway. It was older and not at all posh but had a picture ID of the driver on the door, which reputable driver’s used. She hustled the plushies and Drover into the cab.
“Where to?”
Shit! She couldn’t go directly to her hotel, they could be followed. “Calypso Square.”
Calypso was another busy night scene, a bit closer to the space docks and a bit wilder.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

My Mother was Lovely

In every way.

That has made my life immeasurably easier in so many ways.

Her mother, my grandmother Anna Clara, was a lovely person too. She raised a dozen kids in the Twenties and Thirties in Wyoming. Just keeping that many kids fed and clothed was amazing.

Growing up with security and love, sensible rules and manners, good schools, decent food, clothing toys, vacations...So many did not have that in childhood. We were solidly middle class--which makes life easier-- with vacations and bikes and dental visits. Also pets, hobbies, the enormous garden, television, the library. My childhood was rich. I'm grateful for that.

Here's to Mom!

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Snippet: Her Cyborg Escapee

Here is a snippet of a cyborg romance WIP. My plan is to have it out in September. Her Cyborg Escapee is set in the Diaspora Worlds on a colony planet named Valdeer.

“You must have had a rejuv,” Jorla brought up Neav’s least favorite topic.
“Yes, it was part of my retirement package. I retired after sixty years from New Jupiter Armtronics Corporation.”
“But that is not a basic model clone.” Jorla swept her hand in the air over Neav’s body. “That upgrade must have cost a lot.”
Neav shrugged. “It just so happened they had me ready but they contaminated the clone I was getting so it had to be recycled. The only other clone they had prepped was this one, which was slated for a procedure later in the day. They decided it would cost more to keep me in the facility for another day and get me prepped again for the procedure than to just use the Class I clone. I was slated to get a Class III. So I woke up looking like a hologram star. Not what I expected. I find the...attention...unpleasant. But the body I got is well muscled and so is quite suited to farm life.”
“You do look fit.”
Neav shrugged. “Really, I just want a simple farm life, with a dog. Couldn’t have that kind of second life on New Jupiter.”
“And with robots,” Jorla sounded skeptical.
“They are a hobby now. It is fun to meld disparate parts into something workable. I plan to get the dog soon. I hear spring is the time to find them in Valdeer City.”

Jorla snorted. “Well, if I had those looks, I’d be looking for more than a dog in Valdeer City.”

Sunday, March 4, 2018

New Covers and Writing Life

I made new covers for Diaspora Worlds. I was tired of the old ones! I went for romantic couples, and tried to find younger models, since all the characters are fairly young. Also, I need to do something calm, since I am still getting over bronchitis/asthma inflammation. Sitting on the couch seemed like a good idea. 

I also worked on the new Starlander cover, Starlander's Pirate. I decided I should remake Starlander's Myth and am thinking of calling the series Paranormals in Space. That is the fun part of self publishing, you can rethink things and make changes.

Sad times, our little dog Baxter died unexpectedly after a very sudden, short illness. One day he was chasing squirrels, the next he was gone. We got him from my niece when he was a young dog, since she couldn't keep him. He was such a clown!
Our little Chihuahua Monita, a sweet little old lady, spends a lot more time sleeping now.We are looking for a small rescue dog, an older dog would be fine. Casper does not have many small dogs so keep you fingers crossed.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Excerpt from Starlander's Pirate WIP

Long, long ago...

Years ago I wrote what I call a Space Western, Starlander's Myth. I always loved the world and the mix up of SFR, paranormal and fantasy elements. It was obviously Firefly inspired, and oddly enough Firefly still inspires me. I originally planned a trilogy but with all the publishing shuffles that never happened. But I had this idea in the back of my mind... Starlander's Pirate. 

I decided not too long ago to only do writing stuff that is fun so I pulled this out, deleted a scene that muddled too much stuff up, and am pantsing my way into the Black.


“Docking," the guard leader spoke. "We will soon enter the Nalan’s Belle through a lock. You will be housed in a storage bay where you will find bunks, hygiene facilities and rations.”
Soon after docking they were moved through a lock into a huge storage room. The guards pointed out bunks, a privacy wall with showers and toilets behind it, a galley area and storage units full of food packs. To Pansy's surprise, their housing was a corner of a huge, ship long open hold, with large doorways meant for cargo, only partly filled. Tall storage units separated the different section, but they were all connected by a long walkway.
“Find a bunk. We will take off in thirty minutes, use the bathrooms and make sure everyone is harnessed. Your master, the Enforcer, will meet with you at some point in the next few cycles. You are to obey him. Your slave bracelets won't allow you to leave this hold, you are welcome to wander about all you want down here.”
Pansy helped get the kids settled then harnessed herself on one of the top bunks where she could keep an eye on most of the group, other than those directly below her.
“I'm hungry,” one of the smaller children spoke as the engines increased the whir of warm up.
“I'm sure we will eat soon. Try and take a nap. It will be noisy and maybe bouncy, so we need to stay harnessed until ten bells.”
“Take off in one hundred and ninety-eight.” The auto clock started.
The ship took off from the spaceport, easier than the previous lift off from the planet in the transport ship. After an hour or so an auto voice directed them to unharness. Pansy and the other women found the ready made meals and got everyone fed. After eating the children played games in the walkway, reveling in the space to run.
"I wonder how long it takes to travel to Nalon Prime?" Elnora nervously pleated her skirt with her fingers. Pansy wondered if there was yarn around, Elnora found crocheting comforting.
“I wonder what an Enforcer is, and what they need blood for?” Madelina asked. “And how much?” Madelina had been the widow of a top commander, used to luxurious living before he was condemned as a traitor. She’d had an expensive Rejuv so looked younger than her forty years.
"Well." Elnora said. "We have children to protect. And old Shali." Shali was a tiny, elderly woman with arthritis and no money for a Rejuv. Also, a criminal record, though she'd once trained as a teacher. She'd been stuck in with them to help tame the youngsters.

Pansy’s stomach had that uncomfortable tight feeling that came with dread. "Enforcers are some type of super soldier. Like a one man army. The Core Planets use them."

Sunday, February 11, 2018

I need a Hero!

I started world building for a Space Fantasy story/ series starter, the Kingdom of the Seven Moons.

I love my main character, Mercia, a simple seamstress in the bowels of the Palace. I love the world, which is a bit retro-robot, lol. They have some tech from Those Who Came Before, which is so far beyond their capabilities it might be magic

This ancient tech --or magic-- changes Mercia's life. 

Mercia is dragged before the King early one morning. He is furious with the head seamstress for an unfinished garment, but she was not available so they grabbed Mercia. He points his Sceptre, which holds an ancient orb weapon, to turn her to dust in his fury.

Mercia reaches to push the orb away in panicked self-defense, and it leaps into her hand, turning the king and all his guards to dust.

She's the new Queen.

But I don't have a hero yet. The scholarly schoolmaster? The Court Jester? The horned monster who doesn't turn to dust but turns into a scarred man? So far each of them has turned out to be far too knowledgeable about how Mercia should proceed and they try to take over all the action.

Hmpf. I want Mercia to move the story. Maybe I need an anti-hero?