Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Blog has been Washed Away

There will be no blog tonight.  The faucets to our washing machine have died and decided to flood the washroom.  Go ahead and laugh at the bad '70s décor… the spigots were probably even older than that.

Scott is scurrying to Home Depot as we speak.

Wish us luck because I kinda need clean clothes for Pi-Con.  *sniffle*


(Also, FYI, no blog on Friday because I don't have time to prewrite one, but I will be back on Sunday.)

Monday, August 22, 2011

Pi-Con Schedule and other Bits & Ends

As I mentioned, I'm the Guest of Awesome at Pi-Con in Enfield, CT this year. :)

Here's my schedule:

Friday, August 26
7:00:00 PM Guest of Awesome Reunion Suffield
8:00:00 PM Sex & Genre Literature Suffield

Saturday, August 27
10:00:00 AM Dark Matter Somers
3:00:00 PM Broad Universe Rapid Fire Reading (2 hours)
5:00:00 PM Fatal Femmes Somers
7:00:00 PM Tarot & Divination as writing tools Suffield
9:00:00 PM Chicks in Chainmail Somers

Sunday, August 28
1:00:00 PM Caring For Your Pet Unicorn Suffield
2:00:00 PM of Gods and Genre Agawam

So, I should have caught this at least a moon or two ago, but I'm scheduled during the Broad Universe/Heir to the Sun Release party and set-up.  Fortunately, I have some equally awesome friends - and even a Husband-of-Awesome - who will be around to help.  After 10PM, though, I'll be living in our party room.

Besides that, it's a nice spread. I have a lot of time to take care of Dealer Room set-up on Friday and most of the party work can be done ahead of time.

Stuff left to do for Pi-Con:

Make promised artsy stuff & Decorated Divinations - happening tomorrow.  (Hi, Renée!)
Finalize Rapid Fire Reading stats
Make RFR flyer (& have H-of-A print it)
Make Party flyer (& have H-of-A print it)
Make spreadsheet for selling stuff
Make Instruction Sheet for selling stuff
For the Love of All That Is Good and Holy, DON'T DEADLINE THE NIGHT BEFORE!


In other cool news, my favorite bookshelf is featured here:

Thank you, Hunter!  :)

Besides me, there are some other excellent stories about people's favorite bookshelves.  If you have a special bookshelf, check out Hunter's submission guidelines and share with us!


I spent the earlier part of today embracing my artistic child and painting faces of kids waiting in line for Pony Rides at Whip-O-Will Stables.

Did I actually take any pictures of the adorableness?


So, you have to trust me: it was über-cyoot!!!  Horses in My Little Pony colors (pink & blue, purple & pink, green & pink, brown & purple, blue & white) were the biggest hit.  Second to that were butterflies. Lots and lots of butterflies.  I also had a Spiders & Vines, a Bloody Batman, a Lion, and a Hello Kitty as a few outstanding pictures that challenged my artistic ability. (Ok, remembering how to paint horses on faces was a challenge, too.)

Fortunately, kids aren't terrible art critics.  :)  Yay childhood!

You should totally come to the Whip-O-Will Stables Horse of Course Benefit for Bay State Equine Rescue.  I'll be doing both face painting AND Tarot reading. 

You really want a MLP-colored horsey on your cheek!  You know you do.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Pi-Con is a Week Away!

NChanter (Pi-Con Prez) & Me at the Pi-Con Party during Arisia 2011
This is a Fannish Friday post. :)  Because I'm a member of Geek Fandom and proud of it!

I started going to Pi-Con a few years ago because it was right by my hometown of Springfield, and I could stay with my Mom for free, and--hey!--another nearby convention!

I later found out many of my friends were there, like the Come Again Players/Genetic Imperfection, who do Rocky Horror Picture Show and Repo! The Genetic Opera.

One of the first panels I went to was one for Girl Gamers, which was great!  (I ended up being on that panel the following year.)  As an overall convention, it was very female friendly, which gave it bonus points in my book.

Anyway, Pi-Con has had me giddy all year because they invited me to be their Guest of Awesome this year.  (The equivalent of the Fan Guest of Honor at most conventions.)  Between the irony of the convention being local to where I grew up the total "uncool geek" through most of school and the fact that I'd fallen in love with this convention anyway, I've been on Cloud 9 since last Pi-Con.

It was like an omen for how excellent 2011 would be:

  • Editing an anthology (ok, behind on editing an anthology, but still!)
  • Renewed writing work
  • Major editing projects
  • HORSE!
  • President of Broad Universe
  • Poetry Sale
  • Another completed novel draft

And we're not even into my favorite month, September, yet!

Anyway, besides being the Guest of Awesome and being on a whole bunch of panels, I am also doing the following at Pi-Con:

  • Running a Dealer's Room with artsy and writery and sciencey friends (including Broads!)
  • Running a wonderfully caffeine-fueled Broad Universe party, sharing with a release party for Heir to the Sun
  • Bring Broad Universe to the Main Tent for a Rapid Fire Reading that I'm making extra special with a some games and trivia and--of course!--plenty of chocolate!

Please, please, please consider joining me at this convention (if you aren't already).  :)  It's taking place at the Holiday Inn Springfield-Enfield.  Even if it is just for one day, try coming out on Saturday for the reading and the party and probably a bunch of other panels that I'll be on.

Stay tuned for my full schedule on Monday!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

August 2011 Steampunk Episode

Welcome to the August 2011 episode of the Broad Pod, sponsored by the Broad Universe.

Rae Lori, multi-genre author, artist and voracious book lover, is hosting episode which will be showcasing some Steampunk selections delivered right to your speakers. Reading this month are: Jody Lynn Nye, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Pauline Baird Jones and Emilie P Bush.

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So kick up your feet, grab your favorite treats and drinks and take a listen. You may discover some new and great reads to add to your bookshelf!



The Broad Pod is sponsored by Broad Universe, an international, non-profit organization dedicated to promoting, honoring, and celebrating women writers of science fiction, fantasy, and horror.  Find out more about our organization, including new fiction released by women, more podcasts, and information about writing and publishing for women, visit our website at


BroadPod_Steampunk_Episode_08011.mp3 Listen on Posterous

Posted via email from The Broad Pod posterous

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Meet Jennifer Brozek!

A long time ago (I don't actually remember when), in a galaxy… well, still this galaxy, I had asked the excellent Jennifer Brozek for an interview, and I received it sometime in May… and it sat in my inbox until now!  (Because I'm a dork like that.)

Now, finally, it's getting the sunlight it deserves.  Not only is Jennifer another Broad (yay!), but I especially got interested in her work because she freelances for role-playing games, particularly ones which shaped my life, including DragonLance and White Wolf worlds.  In 2010, she even won the Origins Award for Best Role Playing Game Supplement.

More recently, she's featured with several Broads and Friends of Mine in the collection of women-only written hard science-fiction stories, No Man's Land, available from DarkQuest Books.

And to give credit where credit is due, I borrowed Jennifer's photo from her webpage.  :)

Now, I'm happy to introduce: Jennifer Brozek.

1. You've got an amazing body of work to your credit. What are you working on right now? What are you most proud of working on?

Thank you. I've always got an iron in the fire. I like to keep busy. Right now, I am finishing up a new anthology for Flying Pen Press called Space Tramps: Full Throttle Space Tales #5. It's about the lost people of a space faring society. I'm also working on a novella for Dark Quest Games' Shadeside RPG. The novella is called The Lady of Seeking in the City of Waiting. I've got a couple other things also but those are the two most immediate projects.

As for what I'm most proud of, that's a tough one. I think it has to be either my finance book, The Little Finance Book That Could or my horror collection, In a Gilded Light. The first one talks about how I became debt free and have remained so for over a decade—something that is close to my heart. The second one was a personal project that I never intended to have published. Then, once it was done, a couple of publishers became interested.

2. Your most recent release is a short story in the anthology No Man's Land called "M.O.V.E." Can you tell me what it's about?

"M.O.V.E." is about what happens to two female military cadets on a Military Observation Visit Experience. They are unexpectedly on the front line of an attack on a military space station. It is by their quick thinking that they save the space station from sabotage.

3. What inspired you to write this story?

I was asked to write a story about females in the military for the anthology No Man's Land. It was natural for me to look to my past for inspiration. I took an experience I had as an Air Force cadet—a base visit—and extrapolated what that sort of thing would be like in a space faring military.

4. This story is part of your Kember Empire series. For those of my readers who have never read any of your work, tell us a little about the Kember Empire. 

The Kember Empire is the setting for a vast imperium that spans two colliding galaxies. I've written several stories and a novel in this setting. Most of the stories revolve around the Guardsmen (military), the Explorers (scientists/archeologists), the Counsel of Primes and the Counsel of Luminaries (politics). Obviously, "M.O.V.E." is based around the military and its culture.

5. What was the most exciting part of contributing to the No Man's Land anthology for you?

I've never been invited to an all female anthology before. I'm really looking forward to seeing the different points of view. Also, I am pleased to see that more and more women are taking an active role in writing military based fiction.

6. You've worked on both gaming literature and in speculative fiction. How do the two differ?

The short answer is that for gaming literature, you are playing in someone else's sandbox. In general speculative fiction, you are playing in your own sandbox. There are benefits and drawbacks to both. In gaming, you must get the continuity exact or someone will most definitely notice while in your own world, you can fudge things if you need to. In game writing, the heavy lifting of world building is already done for you while in your own writing, you need to do all that work of world building yourself. I enjoy both kinds of writing.

7. How did you break into the world of gaming?

I started out reviewing games for Black Gate magazine. Then, a friend of mine I gamed with online found out and asked if I would start reviewing games for his magazine, Campaign magazine. I did. So, when I pitched a fiction column to Campaign, that got picked up. A year later, my friend became an editor for Margaret Weis Productions and immediately hired me on as a writer for him. It was both a case of who I knew along with proving that I could work to a word count and a deadline.

8. Any future appearances you would like to mention?

I will be at GenCon and WorldCon/RenovationSF for certain this year. All other conventions are up in the air.

9. Where can we find you on the web?

I live on the web. I have a personal website at and a blog at I'm on Facebook (jennifer.brozek) and I'm on Twitter (@jenniferbrozek).

10. Anything that I've missed that you would like to mention?

I would be remiss in my editorial duties if I didn't mention the anthologies I edited. I have five of them coming out this year—two that are already out and three that are on their way.

·         Beauty Has Her Way, Dark Quest Books, Feb 2011
·         Human Tales, Dark Quest Books, Apr 2011
·         Beast Within 2, Graveside Tales, Jul 2011
·         Space Tramps, Flying Pen Press, Sep 2011
·         Human for a Day, DAW, Dec 2011

Anthologies are some of my favorite editing jobs because I get to craft the product from start to finish while working with some of the best authors in the business.

Monday, August 8, 2011

This Week in Trish News

My gemstone and bead order came in today!

I've mentioned before that one of my side hobbies is jewelry making.  After all, we artistic folks are a fickle bunch.  Yes, I love writing above all, but it's healthy to exercise the brain on several artistic endeavors--and just plain good for the soul.

And, for a rare occasion, I'll actually be selling some of what I've made at Pi-Con!

In particular, I'm making bookmarks and Decorated Divinations.  Don't know what a Decorated Divination is?  Don't worry.  I made it up.  Remember, I've also been reading Tarot for 15 years and will be running a Tarot & Writing workshop at Pi-Con.  Still curious?  Then you better come to the convention and I'll be happy to sort you out.

As an added note, that is one fabulous pile of gems that I only paid about $36 for, including shipping, so I'm happy to recommend Black Market Minerals for anyone else interested in gemstones and beads.


Besides exploring my non-writing artistry, I'm knee-deep in edits for UnCONventional. 

I'm glad Kate and I picked stories we really liked and writers who we knew were good; it makes the reread-edit-reread-edit pattern much easier.

Arisia is also definitely holding a reading for us, and we will be having a fabulous release party!  Be prepared… because weird is getting weirder. :)


Other work:

Press release deadlines.
New trainees.
Restaurant review.


I cannot forget the other Big Thing that has me running this week.  Broad Universe is having our first Open Meeting on Sunday, August 14th, at 7PM Eastern Time (which is GMT - 4 hours)

Part of the problem is we're an international organization and we have members at all different technology levels, so we want to find something that is inclusive and free for anyone who wants to join.

Not as easy as you might think.

Morven Westfield, general tech goddess for many Broad Universe projects, is working on this.  We're doing another test meeting tonight.  Fingers crossed!


Now, I need to return to work.  Happy Monday!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Wednesday Writer Wrists

My wrists hurt. 

I was up and on the computer by 11:30AM.
I slayed* some email.
I took a break from typing to make calls.
I slayed more email.
I took a break to do some dishes and put chicken and green chiles into the crock pot for tacos.
More email slayage.
Conference call with new Readings & Events Coordinator & Assistant.
More email slayage.
Break to put away laundry, wash the cat water fountain, feed cat.
Write agendas for Motherboard meeting and Open Meeting for Broad Universe--and anyone interested.  Save the date! August 14th starting at 7PM Eastern time!
Break to check on taco stuff.
Properly filed into the new file cabinet some of the collected paperwork (dating back to 2006) in the "To Be Filed" folder in the OLD file cabinet.
Write a guest blog post for
Break to finish preparing and actually EAT dinner.  (I did eat cereal, yogurt, hummus, a peach, and a test taco at the desk throughout the day, lest you worry I didn't eat.)
Slay all/most emails related to Bay State Equine Rescue - Hey! Fundraiser where Calico lives.  Horse of Course Family Fun Benefit at Whip-O-Will Stables on September 25th, for anyone living around Central Massachusetts!
Finish dishes for MIL before she comes to clean.
Listen to a podcast with Neil Gaiman as I continue with work…
Slay all Dragon*Con related emails.
Slay all Pi-Con related emails.
Pull spot checks to evaluate for my tutoring job.
Tally total email slayage at OVER 150 FREAKING EMAILS!!
Pause for a temporary, "Damn, I'm good!"

Realize I did not:
Finish my spot check.
Write any web copy for my web site
Write a press release for Broad Universe motherboard changeover.
Critique anything for UnCONventional.
Write my own durned blog post - wait, here it is! >check!<

Before I go to bed, I will go over one UnCONventional story.  And then a housecleaning note & $ for Mom-In-Law.  And then bed.

*In case you're wondering, my "slay" metaphor means to actually deal with, respond, record and do whatever else in regards to emails sitting in my inbox awaiting some sort of action.  As I break to write this blog, there are 198 emails still awaiting action.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

And Even More Bits & Ends

And Even More Bits & Ends

On Technology

I totally thought my Blogger blog was what was getting posted to Facebook.  In general, the Blogger version is a better overall blog because it does more and gives me less trouble.  I can load photos more easily, I can caption said photos, and it doesn't inundate me with ridiculous advertisements whenever I want to do something.  If you read me at, you often get a better blog that looks nicer.

So, when I couldn't get a cute Nylis picture to load on my Live Journal, I didn't think twice.  In fact, for the past week as LJ was just not working at all and freezing, I didn't care.  Then I got comments on my little [imagine cute cat photo here] or something quippy that I wrote on the LJ from my Facebook feed (because those come to me via email).


So, I got some suggestions.  The biggest one was for the NetworkedBlogs app… but my ability to fake technology know-how has failed.  I went through all the links on that and couldn't find how to just make my Blogger blog be automatically sent to Facebook (and, hopefully, LJ for that matter, so I don't have to double post all the time.)

Of course, I've been meaning to do something with the Wordpress account I opened about two years ago, but my fake-techno-superpower fails me there, too… and I don't have hours to kill. 

Hell, I haven't even written up the copy my web mistress needs to update my website, which we worked on over a month ago.

Add to that: I lost my charger for my netbook at Readercon and the hotel cannot find it… and you have my great levels of Technology FAIL!!!

On Animals

Loki is still kicking… pretty well, too, despite the heat.  He gets frozen water bottles twice a day and a fan on him constantly, so he actually has a better cooling system in his little hutch than we do in our overall house where the only AC unit is in the bedroom… and if that dies, we're SOL because it's built into the wall. (And it's getting testy.)

We're dealing with sunburns on Nylis' ears.  The vet recommended we make sure to put Bullfrog brand sunscreen on her ears before she goes out, which we're doing.  It's helping, but she's scratching the existing burns, so the vet said to put cortisone on those.  They are slowly getting better.  We're trying to avoid any need for a Cone of Shame… the local squirrels and birds laugh at her enough and are entirely unimpressed by her abilities to occasionally catch (and even less frequently kill) a slow mole or mostly-domestic mouse or an obese chipmunk or a seriously stupid baby bunny.

Calico is doing great.  She's gotten a lot peppier during lessons and has a CLEAR preference for the outside--if only there weren't any aggravating bugs.  We're in the process of discovering that we can bend (purposeful "we;" I'm not exactly the most athletic person, either.)

No, I don't have any new photos.  I'm too busy having fun.

On Writing

I was supposed to start in on the critiques for UnCONventional, but I lost my day.  I don't know where it went, but it ran away… likely in the Thunderstorms.  So did any writing except for this blog, which is being posted after midnight… after the day has already run away and it's technically the next day and my blog is late.

Oh, and I still have hours to work… so, this is my writing.

Happy Manic Mon… er… Teriffic Tuesday.

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