Friday, October 29, 2010

Frantic Faerie & Fearsome Friday

Squeezing this out between deadlines, shows, & appearances.  :)  Thus the "Frantic."


Fabulous news!  Bad-Ass Faeries 3: In All Their Glory has finalled for an EPIC eBook Award for Best Anthology!!

We won't know if we've won until March, but so cool that the BAF crew continues to represent!  Find out more about the anthologies at our website: or our blog:


Listen on Halloween to WCUW!  If you're local to Worcester, it's 91.3 FM - OR you can stream it online from!  Why listen?  Well, because the Husband-of-Awesome and I will be chatting horror and other cool, scary stuff on the radio!  Fellow horror writers from New England Horror Writers and Broad Universe will also be there!



Well, it's Friday!  Tonight we'll be watching Genetic Imperfection do their shadowcast of Repo! The Genetic Opera at the Academy of Music in Northampton.  There's still tickets available if you're in the area.  It's a GREAT production of an awesome film.

And Tomorrow is VOLTAIRE!  In Worcester!  Tickets are also available for that, so come and party!

Then, of course, HALLOWEEN!

So, have a wonderful weekend to all.  :)  Happy Halloween, and Blessed Samhain!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Working for yourself…

Dear Hooman, WTF?!
… is that constant, "I gotta get this done" mixed with the entire purpose of wanting to work from home or work for yourself: Freedom!

I don't wanna be chained to the desk or a schedule. 

I like that fact that I can shoot out to go visit a friend who, well, likely needs a friend.  Or I can escape to a wonderful artist studio to get some writing done.  Or I can write while eating a delicious lunch.  Or that I can make my schedule around playing with my horse.

But… I still have work to do.

When I'm sick, I can - in theory - take some time off.

But… no one else will do the work.

It's a constant mental struggle sometimes.  I have a strong work ethic.  (Thanks, Mom! :) )  I also know the value of being true to one's physical, mental, and spiritual needs.

Like not signing on right away on a Sunday after playing with friends and your horse because the kitty just looks so cute in this nifty bow that came from a gift basket you won at the latest horse rescue fundraiser…
I iz soooo impressd wit these ribbons and pumpkin. Can't U tell?

… besides that, as I think I've mentioned, I've been going straight for the past few weeks.  Saturday I finally got my "crash and burn" day and slept in until about 3PM before shambling downstairs for H-of-A's pumpkin waffles and then going out to dinner (ok, that "counts" as work as it was a review) and then seeing a movie (back to my Day of Rest).

I totally needed it.  I was getting cranky as well as sick.

Can't U C I'z trying to sleep?  GTFO of mai face with dat camera!

In any case, this week is….. HALLOWEEN! 

Samhain for many of my friends. 

Also coolness for this week:

A'ight. Wuz kyoot 4 u.  Food nao!!
Voltaire!!  Who I actually wrote a blog about a while ago because he's a great inspiration to me as an artist/writer/make-$-by-doing-what-I-love kinda person. He'll be HERE in Worcester!!  I'm so psyched!

And THEN, also coolness, I will be on the RADIO!  :)  Dr.Chris, who I met at Rock and Shock the last weekend ago, invited me, my H-of-A, and other cool horror-y writers and other folk to be on his radio show on Halloween!  So, if you are local, it's WCUW or hop online at and stream us from 8PM until midnight (Eastern Time) on Halloween!

Now, as for that whole freedom thing?  Yeah, announcements made:  I'm going to bed!

Happy Halloween & Blessed Samhain!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Fundraising Friday

It's a misleading title. 

Though, if you want to send me inspirational money to get more work done on my fiction or webcomic, you can PayPal donations to me using any of my emails or from my website  Use any of the PayPal buttons.  I'd love you forever… ok, many of you already have that designation.  But really, I'd appreciate it very much.

What's been on my mind (besides wanting/needing more money – particularly with my beloved but costly equine companion) is how many other blogs I've seen talking about more ways to make money or enhance your income or save time so you can dedicate more to making money.

Makes me wonder.

I've thought about "affiliate marketing" but that's an awful lot of work or aggravation in some cases.  On my blogger version of this blog, I do that with Amazon and every so often I get emails from them about ways to sell more – which basically are thinly veiled requests to do more marketing for books on my blog.  That's not what I do on my blog.  The other places I mention regularly, like Sturbridge Coffee House or Sturbridge Coffee Roasters or Isador's or Generations … all independent and local companies who don't do affiliate marketing and, well, you readers who don't live in Worcester County can't get here easily anyway.

Another thing I see a lot are collections of pre-written blogs or blog ideas.  I'm a writer.  I seriously am not lacking in ideas for blogs.  I do lack the time and motivation to post, though.  If I had "pre-written" blogs, well, how does that promote or give people an idea of my writing?  Totally useless to me. 

Ditto for ebooks and stuff.  Yeah, I know how to write.  It's just finishing an ebook… and then the time to promote that.  I could be working on my fiction and stuff I want to do and trying to sell that.

Try a podcast!  Um… already doing that and the vast majority of "lessons" I found online and even paid for entirely don't apply to me and what I'd want to do with the podcasts I run.  Some sort-of apply to the 2nd episode of the Broad Pod I'll be doing, but most are thinly veiled disguises for people selling products to advertise themselves.  Um: no.

So, basically, as a self-employed writer, most of these things won't work for me, and I'm left to… keep on doing what I'm doing. 

For now.  Till I get more published.

Unless you want to donate, of course, then I can get more writing and possibly some art done.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Writing Today

It's 4AM - about 24 hours after I'd've normally posted.

I had most of a blog post done.  Didn't finish it.

Aimee had a blog post similar to my sentiments here.

This is how I feel about writing a blog post right now.

And this.

And if I had a picture of Calico rolling in the mud and not wanting to do anything, I'd post that to.

Enjoy the cute fuzzies in lieu of coherent writing.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

October: Vampires!

Broad Pod October Episode Vampires by Broad Universe  
Download now or listen on posterous
October Broad Pod.mp3 (11722 KB)

Welcome to the 9th Episode of the Broad Pod!  This October, the Broad Pod eagerly brings you… Vampires! 


Trisha Wooldridge of A Novel Friend Writing & Editing ( hosts the October episode featuring Rae Lorie (, Gail Z. Martin (, Roxanne Bland, and Morven Westfield ( invite you to join us for a bite or more of some fiction with fangs.


The Broad Pod is sponsored by Broad Universe, a 501(c)3 organization dedicated to promoting, celebrating, and honoring women in speculative fiction.  For more information about the organization, visit us at 

Posted via email from The Broad Pod posterous

Monday, October 18, 2010

A Filler Blog Post

… because I don't know what time I'll be home tomorrow and totally missed Friday again.

Quick writerly notes:

Rock & Shock: AWESOME.  Here's the group of us. 

Other pix throughout this post are:
Me & Kevin Barbare, Rock & Shock founder & part of the WAAF Morning Show.
T.J. May, New England Horror Writers Events Coordinator. He ran the table.  You don't want to make him angry.

I'm too tired to properly caption them. 

I sold some Bad-Ass Faerie books, but no chap books.
Met & re-met fabulous people.
Gave Tarot readings.
Thanks to the H-of-A, without whom I would not have pulled this off, managed to "supply" the table with various convention staples.  I'll leave it at that.  If you've been to any convention, ever, you know what I mean.

I left early on Sunday, though, to attend the wake of my friend's mother, and I'm off west again in the AM for the funeral services.

And I have two articles to write.  Now.

One is with Voltaire.  Because I can't find a place to include it, here's a fun quote just for you blog followers:

T: What is a question you don't get asked (or asked often) that you wish
interviewers asked - and what would be the answer to that question?

V: "How do you feel?"  (I do not understand the question)  "How do you feel?"
Sorry, that's a Star Trek reference!  heh heh… Sorry, I'm a nerd at heart,
a spooky nerd, but a nerd all the same.

And my throat hurts too much, and my speech too incoherent to do the intro for the Vampire Broadpod tonight (so enjoy the link to last month's), so I have to put it off a day.  Many apologies!

Now, to finish an orchard review and the Voltaire interview.

Wish me luck & a little sleep?

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Writer's Heal through Writing

"I don't think you're going to get much writing done today," said a friend of mine after I'd told her I was worried for another good friend who is going through a difficult time.

The friend who said it isn't a writer.

When my Dad passed, I was on the computer sending out notices to everyone.  I split my plan into three groups based on our level of friendship.  The closest friends & family got the most description, not-as-close friends and family got a different description, business acquaintances got an even different one.  Each letter had it's own purpose, and each letter was a different kind of healing and coping for me – though I had the tissues with me for every single letter.

Then came the replies.  I could deal with those, too, and each was healing, helpful, and comforting.

I hated phone calls.  I didn't know what to "say."  Same with the live interactions.  But in the emails, I could pour all my heart and soul into those clickety-click keys.  Same with my blog.  And I had an article due – which I did very well on despite everything.  Then, something my mom said sparked the opening for another short story.  It needed time to ruminate, but almost exactly a year later, I wrote it in a single sitting.

Writing is a powerful tool of emotion.  Emotion is a powerful part of writing.

I regularly run workshops in writing and Tarot.  If the audience is mostly writers, I keep to writing advice.  However, I often offer the workshop to a more spiritual group who want to cover the self-discovery, emotional, aspect of Tarot and writing.  I use the Rider-Waite deck for this class because there's almost always people in the scenes… or at least there is something going on.  By focusing on the story, not the meaning of the card, you get your a reading.  You have a journey of self-discovery as you figure out what is going on for the characters or scene portrayed in the card. 

You'd be hard pressed to find a writer who refuses to admit that each character they write doesn't hold a small piece of themselves.  Using the Tarot to stimulate the subconscious of the mind creates the character and story the person needs to hear.  Writing a "story" about a "character" both distances the receiver of the message and allows them to go deeper into the emotions, goals, fears, motivations, and conflicts because the story isn't about them – it's about the character.  Once the story skeleton is written – usually about the length of a journal entry – then the receiver reads it.  And, like most writers who haven't planned out a whole story ahead of time, the receiver sees so much that he or she didn't realize s/he wrote. 

And then they get the message.

The key is still in the writing.  For those of us who practice, when we're in the groove and just letting things flow, our conscious mind steps out of the way.  From there, we reach deeper and touch the emotions and pieces of our soul that, consciously, we don't want to deal with or are afraid to deal with.  We're not limited by logic or the parameters we think we know exist.  We're not rationalizing (that comes after when we want to smack our character because, "What were you – or me- thinking!?")  While writing, though, we're attending to all that's deep within us.

So, maybe I'm not working on my fiction at the moment as I worry about my friend.  At least not right away.  I might still– and my characters are certainly going through some major pain.  But regardless of what I'm writing, I'm writing. 

This blog post barely touched upon the worry, but that's ok.  It's not my place to publish on that.  Even so, the writing gives me strength to finish my day.  Little pieces are flowing through, getting worked out in the parts of my mind and soul that are active during the clickety-click of the keys… and part of me is closer to God, Spirit, or whatever you decide to call That Which Is.  Part of me is with my friend, because parts of the soul wander when we write.  And part of me is In the Moment.  Now.  Attending.

And that is the healing power of writing.

Monday, October 11, 2010

When Life gets "In the Way"… It's ok

I missed my Foodie-or-other-F-alliteration Friday post yet again.  But I don't regret it. 

Life brings a lot of opportunity, and it would be a shame to miss it!  I have fallen away from taking photos because at conventions or on vacation or during other photo-worthy events, I'm busy enjoying, networking, chatting, learning, listening… living.

(Opening pic - totally "borrowed" from the fair where I ended up writing most of this blog.)

My life reason for missing Friday?

Had a lovely trainer come for an evaluation on Calico Silver.  It was a good opportunity to learn more about my horse – who is now a big part of my life – as well as myself.  I made it home to do some work on the Rock & Shock article that's… due TODAY, and then was back out and running for a website meeting for the rescue.

Saturday was another brilliant day of living.  I started off at Whip-O-Will Farms, who was holding a benefit for Blessings Farm… and the wonderful instructor, and friendly colleague of mine, Amanda, gave me a lesson gift certificate for the Comedy Night fundraiser for the rescue.  Then I was off to visit Cali again, but found the sign for Brookfield Orchards, which I knew I also had an article due on, so I made a slight detour and added some appley goodness to may afternoon.  (Which Cali also appreciated.)  I returned home, after dark to my "starving to death, I tell you!  To Death!" kitty and did more article work, recalled I was STILL out of business cards, and then scurried to get my stuff together today – for the Holistic Happening – where I'm doing more horse-related fundraising with Tarot and book sales.  (And typing my blog in the quiet moments.)

Yay 6 hours of sleep… but all the wonderful healing is definitely helping.  I have some great roommates in the quiet room.  Diane Lewis, another Tarot reader and Medium.  Anne Belliveau of The Brilliance Within who does divine openings and healing.  Thelma Rusack, a certified Reiki practitioner.  It's wonderful speaking with each of them, just being in their presence.  I've also had given some wonderful Tarot readings. 

What does that mean for the upcoming week?

Well, besides Holistic Happening follow ups…

I have to write my Rock & Shock article and my orchard review.

I have two doctor appts.

BU Website!!!  (Don't worry, Morven, I'm appropriately flogging myself for taking so damned long.)

Next Broadpod episode (not quite late, but awaiting one more response.)

Broadpod 2011 sign-ups and 2nd episodes.

Broadsheet follow up & article with Shaenon Garrity.  (Another person from whom I need to ask forgiveness for lateness.)

Voltaire follow-up.

Calico time.

Fiction time!

Rock & Shock, itself, with New England Horror Writers (set-up, break down & any holes… but that's the weekend… oh, wait, I DO have to prepare!

Oh… and yeah, my hourly tutoring work!

And, of course, my regular blogs… unless life really does steal me again.  (Please accept any advance apologies.)

Now, go enjoy life!!  (& Writing)

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Serving Passion

If you want to be a professional writer, you better damn well love it.  And LOVE it to the extent that spouses and family members get used to your ignoring them with some regularity.  Otherwise, it's not worth the hassle, headache, and heartache.

Sounds like a downer?  If you've got that passion for writing, you wouldn't think so.

Whether it's fiction or non-fiction, it's that passion - passion beyond the colloquial use of "love" - that draws you into a project, makes you willing to discipline yourself and your writing.  That passion will get you through any "starter" articles you need for clips.  And that passion will be what gets you to write successful pitches for other articles… after that passion has gotten you through all the research on HOW to write a good pitch, article, or novel.

When I'm working with regular students (not those who want to write), the hardest thing for them is the fact they don't want to write, so I can't ask, "Why are you writing this?" without some sort of preamble or explanation or rephrasing.  "Ok, you have to write this for class, I get it.  What can someone learn from your topic?  Why should someone read your point about this?"  That can usually get the ball rolling.

For those of us who want to write, however, those are equally important questions.  A writer needs to have a purpose - even if it is the reader's entertainment.  If it's non-fiction, there generally is some lesson, too, even if it's something simple like appreciating kindness, no matter how small the gesture.  But we also need a good answer for, "Why are you writing this?" 

In fact, we need a few.  The first, of course, should be because we love to write, we NEED to write, and at any given moment, we'd be writing something.

If you're just getting into writing, we need to harness that passion so it can take us further in our careers.  A newer non-fic writer needs clips, so take that writing passion and write about a topic you feel passionately about - something you'd write about anyway - so it's not a crapload of work that you don't like that you're just giving away.  If you're writing fiction, not knowing where it will end up, write about what you love.  There's lots of contests and prompts out there, but it's not worth forcing yourself to write something that's not singing to you.  There's no guarantee you'll win the contest, and if you don't care about the topic it will show.

Once you've gotten to the point of filling assignments, then you've got to have a lot of passion for the act of writing to get you through the harder points of completing assignments you may not entirely love.  You have to find thrill in the act of creating a thesis or a point as well as adore the puzzle and challenge of outlining for unity, discovering the most potent quotations, and drawing it all together to have a compelling piece about… merchandising mushrooms or bulk onions, for example.  After all, assignments pay bills… and we want to make money, right?

Now, if you haven't got an assignment, if you're pitching articles on spec, those three questions, "Why are you writing this?  What can someone learn from your topic?  Why should someone read your point about this?" are even more important as they work together.  You must be passionate about the topic and believe you are the person to convey this lesson and inspire the audience - and that must come through in the pitch.  Not only do you serve the passion, but you are serving a portion of this passion to the editor - and ultimately, your readers.  You have to love this topic enough to do the best research you can and present it in the best fashion you can so that you deliver the best message possible.

I've found a lot of newer writers forget that.  In the quest to publish something - anything - for pay or even for clips, they'll throw together substandard work that they don't care about.  Yes, bills must be paid, but what is worth more: working on something you love and enjoy so that it is a quality someone will pay more money for or churning out work you don't care about for less money… and therefore having to do more work to pay the bills?

Granted, if you want food or heat or a home, there needs to be a transition period, a balance.  It's foolish to drop all paid work and just do what you love on spec.  But make some time.  Serve your passion a little every day.

Passion is powerful, so if you are living the passion of your writing, you WILL see it manifest itself.

Monday, October 4, 2010


There is a lot I wanted to write this weekend.  I actually did intend to post a sweet Anniversary blog for Friday.

But I was too busy living it all.  :)

And I do not regret that.

It has been a wonderful, beautiful, and amazing weekend… and I am exhausted in the best way possible.

Tomorrow, I'll be up and out to play with my awesome horse (assuming my oil change doesn't take forever), and back to work… and happier for it all after this weekend.

So, a brief blog so I can be well rested.

Thank you, Aimee, for the most amazing culinary and social surprise that had me in grateful and touched tears on Friday.

Thank you Renée, Sean, Dave, Stef, and everyone at Artrax Studios for inviting and including me on Saturday for the weekend Open House.  I had a great time reading Tarot, and I'm so glad that Sunday proved an even busier and better day for you.  You all inspire me.

Thanks to Steve, Theresa, & Allie for the relaxing Sunday in good company - a well-needed and much-missed get-together. 

And, most of all, thank you a million times over to my most wonderful husband who not only puts up with my craziness, but makes my life immeasurably better with him in than it ever could be otherwise.  I can only hope I can return even a part of the miracle you give me.  I love you!  It's been ten amazing years, and I look forward to many, many more!

May all my friends, colleagues, and readers have this kind of greatness in their life! 

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