Clearing the Decks

My daughter has more than fifty stuffed animals. As far as I can recall, she has never willingly parted with a single one.

She’s eighteen and she has clothes that last fit her when she was twelve. You can’t tell her she’ll never wear them again–she is quite certain that she just needs to lose a little weight. Those clothes are absolutely not lost to her wardrobe forever.

Her room, as you might guess, is a bit of a mess.

Of course, I’m not innocent. I have nearly every notebook I ever wrote in. Every file of course, but also at least one printout of most of my stories. Some of the book-length manuscripts have multiple copies. And, of course, just about every book I ever loved.

I have a similar issue with furniture–especially handed-down furniture. I like it. I like possibilities. I hate to let go of something so useful (and expensive to replace!) as a decent piece of (free) furniture. I move desks around, change shelves, rearrange rooms, trying and trying to find the best configuration… For years, my entertainment center was a baker’s rack someone gave me. It worked! Ugly as hell, but it worked. It’s still ugly, but at least it’s in the kitchen now.

This past weekend I had a much needed clearing-out. As I argued with my kid about a box of stuffed animals she hasn’t opened since we carried it off the moving truck nearly three years ago, I told her, “You have …

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The Perils of Technology

Every year I do a post on thankfulness, but after the day I’ve had today, I’ve decided to do something a bit different.

I am a lover of technology. I got my first computer in 1998 (and that was late), a Compaq Presario laptop with a 13″ screen, 32MB of RAM, and a 2GB hard drive. $1,500. I did so much on that thing. Designed my first website (with the now-defunct Geocities — stop laughing), did a ton of digital photography using a very old version of Photoshop, wrote countless poems, and more. I loved that little laptop and believe it or not, I could turn it on today and it would still run (but not go online, obviously). It was my first leap into the computing world, and it opened up so much more for me. Those were the days.

I’ve had 10 computers since. I went to desktops for a bit, then decided they were too bulky and took up too much space, so I switched back to laptops. I had the fun experience of Windows ME. I spent $1,700 on a Toshiba laptop with a special graphics card and 1GB of RAM (which was a lot back in 2006) for gaming purposes (now? I can’t even run it. Sad). My computer prior to the one I’m using now had a monitor failure 2 years in that completely sucked patootie. And this one had a fan malfunction and was gone for 11 days and I nearly went nuts …

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New Release: To Rule the Stars

To Rule the Stars coverNew Release! To Rule the Stars: A Space Princess Anthology, by us!

In it, three of us wrote stories around the theme of space princesses. We thought it’d be fun to put princesses into space, and we ended up with a really great selection of stories.

Here is the official blurb:

Meet the princesses.

A trained diplomat, kidnapped by an alien race desperate for justice, and its dashing leader…

A political pawn, on her way to meet her betrothed, who stops in the asteroid belt to answer a call for help, and finds a princess both beautiful and brave…

A captive raised to believe that the greatest evil is magic, when it–and the handsome ship’s engineer who wields it–are the one thing that might save her…

For this week only it is on sale for 99c! Then the price will go up to $1.99. Grab the Kindle edition here.

(No princesses were harmed during the making of this anthology.)

This anthology also includes a sneak peek of Ever Touched, our May 2017 release, third book in my Fey Touched series.

All proceeds go to UNICEF, as always.

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To Rule the Stars

To Rule the Stars cover

Kindle versionSmashwords EditionPrint Edition

Meet the princesses.

A trained diplomat, kidnapped by an alien race desperate for justice, and its dashing leader…

A political pawn, on her way to meet her betrothed, who stops in the asteroid belt to answer a call for help, and finds a princess both beautiful and brave…

A captive raised to believe that the greatest evil is magic, when it—and the handsome ship’s engineer who wields it—are the one thing that might save her…

Here are their stories.

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Just Keep Swimming

When Siri reminded me that it was my turn to blog today, my immediate thought was, Awww, I don’t want to do that!

I, like many people, am not in a good place today, and the thought of pulling out something reasonable just seems like too much. I make it a point to not be political on the Internet, so today has been hard, and I’d actually told myself I was just going to not touch the Internet at all.

But alas, responsibility, so here we are.

It’s easy to assume the worst, but we don’t know what’s coming in the days ahead. Worrying about it is unproductive. We just have to trust ourselves to do what is right when the time comes, and hope that others do as well.

(I mean, that might be a bad hope, seeing the situation we find ourselves in, but what else can you do?)

My coping mechanism for the day is just to keep busy. There’s a ton of things I need to work on, not least of which is finishing up the final touches on To Rule the Stars, which will be out next Tuesday the 15th. If you haven’t seen our awesome cover, take a look at Siri’s post from last week.

I’ve also got to do the business end of the aftermath of our weekend at MileHiCon. Alas, taxes and whatnot. I probably should also do some related networking, decide on our plans for next year, and look at …

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The Makings of a Princess Story

Hello, Turtleducklings!

Today I am super excited because I get to unveil…

THIS!

To Rule the Stars cover image

 

What is it, you ask? It’s our next release, an anthology of longish short stories by three Turtleduck Press authors, plus a sneak peek at our next novel. (Never fear, KD Sarge—our fourth author—hasn’t gone anywhere. Look for her next piece right here on December 1!)

And yes, each story features outer space. And at least one princess.

To be honest, I had a lot of trouble with mine. I didn’t want to go the route of Star Wars, with a grand space opera, since I only had the length of a novelette to work with. Next I ran through some classic Star Trek rip-off ideas and abandoned those as well.

But then what? How to reasonably put a princess in a space setting and give her an adventure…oh yes, and a romance?

Luckily, I already had a space setting—the steampunk ‘verse featured in The Haunting of Heatherbrae Station. It’s based on an alternate nineteenth century where a powerful source of energy, called ether, enabled humans to invent space travel more than a century early. Lots of fun…but I still wasn’t sure how to use …

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