Tuesday 26 July 2011

Voting Time!

The Aurora Award voting system is up and running!  If you read and loved Destiny's Blood, please vote for it in the Aurora Awards by clicking here!  If you haven't yet had the chance to read it, I'm excited to announce that Dragon Moon Press is offering the e-book version for free (see my fancy side bar).  I'll also be selling Destiny's Blood for a special price at my upcoming cons - When Words Collide (Calgary), Can-Con (Ottawa) and Con*Cept (Montreal). Come and find me!

The Aurora Awards are a Canadian fan-voted science-fiction and fantasy award.  There are multiple nominees in multiple categories, and I hope you'll put in your two cents. Okay, actually, it's $5.50 to vote, but totally worth it to show your appreciation to the nominated fans and pros.

Thanks, as always, for your support!

Friday 22 July 2011


Exciting news!  I sold two short stories this year (woo!), and the second one is now available! Co-written by the lovely and talented Gabrielle Harbowy, Deserter is part of Beast Within 2: Predator & Prey, edited by Jennifer Brozek and published by Graveside Books.

Co-writing a story was lots of fun.  I wouldn't recommend doing it with someone you don't trust and respect.  In my case, that was hardly an issue.  Our story is a fun tale that involves were-cats.  Come on!  Who doesn't want to come back as a housecat?

This story is doubly fun, since it marks what I believe is my publication in every on of the speculative fiction large umbrellas (we're not going into all the nit-picky subgenres).  Say fantasy, science-fiction and horror.  Let's see - I have many stories in fantasy (my main squeeze), Destiny's Blood is considered science-fiction (it has spaceships or, as a friend described it, sword and sorcery meets science-fiction), and now this story would be considered horror.  Even though I'm pretty sure my fantasy stuff tends to be more horrifying. Or disgusting, when you consider Gluck.

If you're a Margaret Atwood fan and want to stick in literary fantasy as its own umbrella, my first two short stories, The Taste of Sand and, um, something else, were definitely in that stream. What the heck was that story called?  It was about an old woman suffering from Alzheimer, having a tender moment with her dead husband... Ah well, it'll come back to me at some point.  In fact, I'll find it and post it here as a goodie. Why not.  If I find it. Let me clarify.

But yes, I'm now published in all SF genres! Woo!

And, cherry on top of my large sundae, another review came out for When the Hero Comes Home, by Angela Roberts from the.gloaming magazine.  She liked it, which is awesome, and listed The Legend of Gluck as one of her top five.


Thursday 21 July 2011

3,200 kms, Two Cons and One Swamp Later...

The past two weeks have been rollicking crazy fun.  Roomy and I started off by going to the My Little Pony Fair in Providence, Rhode Island.  (She's the collector. I'm the enabler, the ride and the booth bunny!)  We started off our stay in Providence with a Lovecraft tour.  For the poor souls amongst you who are not aware, H.P. Lovecraft spent quite a bit of his life in Providence.  So did Edgar Allan Poe, while he courted the lovely poet Sarah Whitman (who ultimately rejected his boozy advances). 

Providence is really steep, really humid, and really hot.  It's a miracle Roomy and I survived.  Actually, it was all thanks to the frozen lemonade.  Bless those entrepreneurs who never give up on the lemonade stand dream.

See?  Steep.  Well, okay, you can't really tell, but trust me, it's steep and full of death!  Says so right there on the sign.

Cemetery where Lovecraft and Poe gained much inspiration.  After spending a cheerful sunny morning wandering its messy ranks of tombstones crumbling since before their time, I understand why.

... The Shunned House.  Aaah!  See the kitchen door behind the tree, opening onto the street...

The Shunned House is for sale!  Get your creepy real estate today!

Providence lines from the great floods which would have covered Roomy whole and swept her away.  Sad.

The Providence Athenaeum, where Lovecraft spent many an hour and Poe courted Sarah Whitman.

Lovecraft memorial, erected in 1990.

After a day wandering the streets after Lovecraft (and eating at the Cheesecake Factory with friends, mmm, cheesecake), we trekked off to Hasbro the next day.

This was the fourth My Little Pony Fair I attended.  The first was in Memphis, Tennessee, three days ride away (and two to come back when doing 90 mph through Kentucky.  Ah, you unbridled spirit, you.)  I had just bought my lovely car, Maude, when Roomy mentioned that she couldn't afford to go to the Fair that year.  Roomy was sad and I had a car, so I figured: road trip!  Ergo, one of the first things I did with my new (used) car was to drive it three days away. It was awesome.

So this was my fourth Fair (still a sucker for a road trip).  I helped Roomy build a diorama (last year, I constructed a model of the Kentucky Derby's Winner's Circle).  This year we went for a Fair theme.  The centrepiece was a carrousel, which used up all of my swear words several times.  A grand time was had by all.
Hasbro is fun.  They have a Lite Bright Lane. I can't show you any pics since their suited muscle forbade it (they had a lot of muscle), but it was neat.  Trust me.

Roomy's booth.  Lotsa ponies.

Carrousel that used up all of my swear words.  Cellophane is not the sturdiest material.  We made it there okay, but on the way back a large piece of luggage tipped right on top of it.  We heard its crinkly cry of death and laughed.

Roomy's custom entries.  My Little Cthulhu was very popular!

Cake.  Large slab cake.  I put this here to confess that I didn't have a piece.  I was on sugar overload from being in pink land already, so I feared diabetes would sweep me away right there and then.  Kind of like the flood waters of Providence might have swept Roomy away, many decades ago.
And a good time was had by all.  Roomy and I headed back to Ottawa through the Adirondacks.  There are some haunted buildings in those hills, I'd be willing to bet my nephew's favourite pair of socks on it. (Not mine.  He might not notice if he lost his favourite pair. I'd go into shock. Don't worry - I'd buy him even cooler socks. I'm a good aunty, thank you very much.)

Then I was off to the cottage!  I hung out with my family, including my cute drooly niece and my non-drooly nephew. It was relaxing, which is always lovely. I'm not a fan of posting pictures of my niece and nephew on my blog, but trust me, they're adorable.

Following a nap in the swamp, an inability to find a frog (possibly due to nap) and my brother's heroic and nearly leechy dive for a turtle, I decided to attempt kissing the shelled reptile to see what would happen.  Turns out the stories are true.  It's the frogs that turn into princes.
I went straight from there to Polaris 25.  Wait, first I dropped my mom off at the Toronto Union Station.  Toronto drivers?  Like, regular, day of the week, let's drive downtown Toronto drivers?  You're crazy.  Don't argue. You know as well as me that it's true.

Polaris was an awesome time. I hung out with lots of cool folk, mostly fellow author Erik Buchanan and his lovely lady at the Dragon Moon Press table.  Thanks to everyone who came to say hi and buy books, and to everyone who came to the launch of When the Hero Comes Home!  I still grieve having missed the ice cream social.  Next year, I'll just host my own. Oh ya, like I'll remember.  I'd manage to miss that, too!

Thanks to so many people, including Karen Dales, Violette Malan, J.M. Frey, my bus buddy (Thought Admiral Korath), K.W. Ramsey, Eric Choi... and so many others who made this con memorable!

I'd likst you (okay, I left this open for a second to run after a bad cat, and I have no idea what I was going on about, but it makes me sound drunk and bossy, so I'm leaving it in.  I think it's a good end to this post, too!)



Monday 11 July 2011

Allons-y once more!

I'm back from Rhode Island and off tomorrow to the land of no Internet (gasp!)  I'll be back with updates next week, including pics from last week's My Little Pony Fair.  Our computer had issues, so no pictures could be downloaded.  Ah well, trust me, they're worth the wait (and so very pink!)

Next weekend I'll be at Polaris!  If you're gonna be there too, make sure to come say hi by the Dragon Moon Press Table where I'll be selling Destiny's Blood for the super special price of $10 (another gasp!), and come to the Canadian launch of When the Hero Comes Home on Sunday, 11 am to 1 pm.  Authors J.M. Frey and Erik Buchanan will also be onsite and we'll each give a reading.  I've a super duper cute outfit planned to contrast the Barbarian dragging the rotting head story, as it amused me to do so (both plan a cute outfit and have a barbarian drag a head. They're both amusing things to plan, what can I say).

See you all soon and I hope you have an awesome week! 

Tuesday 5 July 2011


Usual disclaimer - Roomy is the pony collector.  I'm the enabler. And boy am I good at enabling!

Roomy and I are off on an adventure tomorrow!  Rhode Island it is for us, for the My Little Pony Fair (did I ever mention I'm a sucker for a road trip?)  The actual fair will be at Hasbro headquarters, so much excitement abounds in the pony community.  I'm looking forward to seeing it, too!  I've been in many a textile mill, but never in a pony mill.  Well, okay, it's more like design shop. You get the idea.

On Thursday we're going to enjoy a Lovecraft tour.  He spent a large chunk of his life in Providence, so we're going to visit some of the sites that inspired his writings, including the Harris House (The Shunned House) and the cemetery where he sought name inspirations.  Edgar Allan Poe also spent quite a bit of time in Providence, while courting the lovely but ultimately unattainable poet Sarah Helen Whitman.  Much of the failed romance took place in a lovely gazebo, and we're totally going to go check that out, too.

Plus, there's a Poe-Ta-To in Rhode Island.  I promise to report back with pictures.

Friday and Saturday are the fair, and I'm the official table keeper.  My job is to sell Roomy's ponies while she runs around giggling and buying stuff (hopefully not so much that we can't fit it all in the car.  I'm not holding my breath on that one.  Thankfully I have mad Tetris skillz.)  Last year, in Kentucky, I was reading a fantasy trilogy during the whole fair and quite failed in my selling duties.  This year I've been forewarned. But I dunno - the new Jim C. Hines book is due out this week, so all bets are off.

Roomy IS kind, though.  She gives me a tiny little spot on her table so I can put my books there. (Not this year, I'm informed.  I take that kind remark back. I shall now stop reading this out loud as I type so Roomy won't correct my musings.  I now type without speaking. Which, to be fair, must be less annoying for Roomy.) Last year, I sold a few copies of Princess of Light and one of the Pony collectors happened to be a reviewer for Sequential Tart.  Three great reviews later, she ends her trilogy grade with "All in all, a perfect fantasy adventure!" (Read her reviews here.)  So you just never know who you'll meet.  That's why books must be dragged everywhere.

I'll be online during the fair and promise to post pics and updates.  I'll be Tweeting and Facebooking for fun, mostly on the Saturday. Roomy has two contest entries, we have a diorama entry (which I helped build), and I'll post pics the day of the fair.  I don't want to spoil the surprise!  I know pony collectors lurk here, too.  Oh, I know.
Last year, we got second prize for the booth, and Roomy won a few customizing contests as well. The hat on the pony, for example, won a prize.  It's an awesome hat.  I built the diorama based on the Kentucky Derby's Winner's Circle. Building Pony dioramas is apparently what I do when not prepping for shows or writing books.  Roomy is in the background, preparing her attack plan, no doubt.
See? Awesome hat.  Fuzzy pic, but still an awesome hat.  It has miniature ponies on its rim, running a race. Because Roomy is insane.  This year, we're bringing a better camera, but no hat.  Can't have it all.
Working on this year's diorama. Cellophane is a good Pony crafting product, as it's pink and shiny. What more could you possibly want? See that concentrated look? That's me trying not to cut myself. Sorta worked most of the time. I don't scar easily, thankfully, nor do I learn from past experience.

Thanks to our wonderful house and cat sitters (including a stranded collector)!  After the fair, I'm abandoning Roomy back home and strutting off to a cottage, and then straight to Polaris. I'll see some of you then!  In the meantime, see you all in cyber space!