Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Starting Rose Blue

Tonight I started my new novel, Rose Blue.

A traveler hesitates at dusk, at a crossroads, because she sees a corpse hanging on the gallows, but the vision vanishes. She continues on to the village and asks the innkeeper, who reports it was the ghost of a man hung years ago for horrible crimes. Only a brave person would face the ghost at night, as it is reputed to climb down from the gallows and walk – and kill.

Many thanks to Mike Pennington for this beautiful glass rose, and for the inspiration he regularly gives me.

I have decided to put Hatching Disaster / Dead Wizard's Loot on hold - mainly because I realized it was the fourth in a series, and I haven't sold the first three yet. I hope to come back to it later, but I don't want to spend time on a novel I can't sell.

Have you ever shelved a project you loved because it wasn't currently feasible?

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

2010 Guide to Literary Agents

Therese Walsh sent me a brilliant book, and it arrived today!

2010 Guide to Literary Agents tells where and how to find the right agent. It also includes a free one-year online subscription. I'm looking forward to trying it.

This very useful book contains many entertaining and informative articles on choosing agents, writing queries and synopses, editing, contract points, promoting, and my favorite: Leaping Into the Fray: A Writer's First Year with an Agent and Editor, by Therese Walsh.

Now I'm going to go through the rest of the book and choose the agents I'd like to query - out of a list of over 550!

Thank you, Therese!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Blog posts for writers - Sept 22nd

About critiquing: Dare to Be Blunt from Vision: A Resource for Writers

When to Update Agents from BookEnds, LLC

Why Do Agents Have 30- or 60-Day Cancel Clauses? from Guide to Literary Agents

Beware of what you post: There is no out of town opening any more from Janet Reid

“I don’t HAVE a friggin’ bio!” More on writing your biography for a query letter from Behler Blog

On the Google Settlement: Speaking of Our Benevolent Overlords by Pimp My Novel

Query formating: Research Tip Tuesday from Literary Rambles

Something isn’t right: Is it my query or my manuscript? from Writer Unboxed

How long should I wait to hear back about my manuscript? from Ask a Literary Agent

What not to say in queries: "This Has Never Been Done Before!" by Nathan Bransford

In the beginning…there was the beginning from Behler Blog

In her plotting series: The story question by Jordan McCollum

Chasing Your Dreams from Rants & Ramblings

Monday, September 21, 2009

Blog posts for writers - Sept 21st

Promoting from Mystery Writing is Murder, about promoting a book

In the Dark: Thoughts on Tackling the Anxiety of Writing Fiction from Storytellersunplugged

Social Media and How to Use It Sensibly As a Writer from Pitch Parlour

Character description: who? when? how? from TalkToYoUniverse

Our Big Announcement! from the Literary Lab - 2009 Genre Wars Fiction Writing Contest!

Emotional Tension from the Literary Lab - engage your readers

Another mark of the amateur from Edittorent

Overcoming Self-Doubt from QueryTracker

Anatomy of a Critique from Vision, A Resource for Writers - This one always makes me laugh.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Blog posts for writers - Sept 20th

Bookends on Choosing a Title

Editorial Anonymous on Definitions for the Perplexed: High Concept

edittorrent on Don't undercut the drama

edittorrent on characterization: Johnny, Dressed in Layers

Behler Blog on First impressions

Behler Blog on Word Count Boogie

Mystery Writing is Murder on Luck

Plot to Punctuation on Show Some Character! -- a new (to me) blog
---- Do you know the real reason not to use passive voice? Find out here!

The Intern on hare e. coli

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Blog posts for writers

I wandered through some posts this week that I thought would be very useful for writers.

To start with, I found a new address for Therese Walsh's blog, and this one can be added to Google Reader.

STARTING YOUR STORY on Help! I need a Publisher!

Do Your Characters Send the Messages They Intend To? on the Archetype Writing Blog

Getting through the bad patches on Magic District, on getting stuck.

Tips for Polished Writing – Words and Phrases to Avoid, Part I from Gabrielle Edits

Activate passive narrative—most of the time from Writer Unboxed

Show, Don't Tell from Writer's Corner

Response Speak from Pub Rants, on what rejection form letters may mean.

Why Agent Honesty Is Overrated also from Pub Rants.

Author-Agent Agreements from Rants and Ramblings

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

I won a great book!

A couple of days ago I noticed that Writers Unboxed was having a contest to give away 2010 Guide to Literary Agents on Therese Walsh's blog. So I popped over to her blog and signed up.

And I won! I am thrilled!!!

I'm getting ready to start submitting, so the timing is perfect.

I also noticed that in one month, The Last Will of Moira Leahy will hit the shelves, so I'd like to give Therese a little plug. Have a look at her book and her blog.

She also has some articles just for writers. I have her bookmarked so I can come back and reread them.

Thanks again, Therese!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Dragon Wax

Or a wax dragon. This little fellow is supposed to be a candle, but I could never bear to burn him.

He was a gift from Carla (with a long Italian last name I no longer remember). We both lived in Grass Valley, California in those days. Hmm, 15 or 20 years ago. How scary!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Dragon of the Sword

This tiny dragon is protecting my sword. Thank goodness dragons have thick hides, as he is huddled against the blade.

I found him at BayCon in 1986 or 87. Unfortunately, I have misplaced the artist's name.

If anyone knows who made dragons like this one, please let me know in comments.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Dragon under glass

As a writer of fantasy, I am fascinated with dragons. Power, wisdom, strength - these are words that come to my mind when I think about dragons. Pathetic and comic aren't words I normally associate with them, but sometimes they are appropriate.

I have a large collection of dragons that I'd like to share with you.

This little gentleman is trapped inside a brandy snifter. He doesn't look terribly pleased with his accommodations.