Designed for updates, bits of undeniable wit, unasked for wisdom and story scraps.

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Friday, November 9, 2012

Shadow On The Wall ESBS Scene Release!

As promised, here is a scene from the upcoming,

Shadows On The Wall: The Immortal World Book 2

Chapter 2

Wearing someone else’s skin was not nearly as uncomfortable as it used to be. The stray thought gave her pause, as she actually could not remember a time she had worn her own skin.

It was a worry that she couldn’t truly understand. She didn’t remember what her own skin looked like. It had been too long since she had felt the weight of her own bones, seen through her own eyes. Why it should bother her so, she couldn’t say. Her master had never requested that she look like herself, he always had someone else for her to be.

A seagull screamed directly overhead, bringing her wandering mind back to the humans’ port she currently strolled through. It was different kind of nightmare she experienced now. This was her only semblance of freedom, and it was marred by the job she must perform.

The ocean was calm, the waves gently lapped at the docks in a loving embrace that belied the vengeance they had wreaked the night before. Sailors were working hard to repair the damage from the storm before the ships could sail again.

Cameo slowed to a stop before one of the ships and stared at it’s magnificent hull. The Quick Redemption had docked in the early hours of the morning, as soon as the storm had ended. It wasn’t safe to have a ship so large remain docked during such a storm. From what Cameo had heard in the bar the night before, the sailors had been very upset to reboard. After six months away from their homeport the men had been looking forward to a few days with their families.

The news hadn’t just upset the sailors though, Cameo’s master had also been annoyed to have his plans thwarted. She rubbed a hand over her neck, hoping the marks no longer showed. Normally makeup would be enough to cover them up until they faded, but her master had been very put out. He was not quite as careful when he was angry.
The Quick Redemption had returned swiftly though, and now she would be able to do her job, and then enjoy her relative freedom for a night or two.
The Saltwater Tap Room was packed with all of the single sailors who weren’t ready to retire to their hotel rooms and bachelor pads. They drank and told their stories and danced with girls who hoped to meet their Knight In Shining Armor.

Not bloody likely, Cameo thought as she stared at the brazen sailors from a booth in the back corner. These sailors only wanted to meet a damsel they could distress for the night. She felt the familiar urge to sigh as she stared at the happy humans, enjoying a life of blissful ignorance.

She was so lonely for her own kind it sometimes shocked her. She had never met another shifter, her master had assured her they had died out. That was why he had rescued her and kept her safe, she was the last of her kind.

The last shape shifter. A genetic dead end, at that. Without another shifter to there was no way to pass on the gene. She would always be this alone.

Her master would never understand that burden, his kind were many and he could be with them whenever he wanted. He reminded her often though, that his kind were a danger to her. Vampires couldn’t resist the lure of shifter blood. He kept her safe, but for a price.

Reminded of the task at hand once again, Cameo turned her attention back to the crowd and spotting the one she had come for. A name, a picture and a location was all she was given, but she was good at her job. She would find him.

A young man stopped in from of her booth and looked down at her with an easy smile. “Well, what’s a pretty thing like you doing, sitting all alone? Waiting for someone?”

Or he would find her…

She smiled slowly, “I was waiting for you.”

The Extra Special Birthday Surprise: ESBS

It's that time of year again! The ESBS is here, because it is what?

November 9th! (Best day of the year in my extremely biased opinion)

So, first things first:

1. Giveaway of Only The Stars Know by Ryan, from RyanReadsBooks on YouTube. This will be a US Only Giveaway. I believe it will be opening tomorrow, and I'll post again to make sure you have all appropriate links and videos available. Giveaway Includes: Signed & Personalized copy of Only The Stars Know: The Immortal World Book 1, Signed Submerged In Darkness bookmark, and two extra signed business cards for Only The Stars Know.


2. Scene release from Shadows On The Wall: The Immortal World Book 2!!! That will be posted right here, in just a few moments!

3. Book Orders can now be made directly through me, via email & Paypal. EMAIL ME HERE if you would like to take advantage of this! Be sure to include "Book Order" in the subject line, and your name, how many books, personalization wanted, and mailing address. In return I will send you my PayPal information. The books should end up costing about $8 plus shipping & handling! (Probably $11 total, for continental US)

4. Pre-Release copies of Shadows On The Wall: The Immortal World Book 2 can now be requested by reviewers! Please EMAIL ME HERE if you are interested. Make sure you put "SOTW Pre-Release" in the subject line, include your name, review forum links and any personalization you might like for the book.

There now, aren't you happy I'm alive?

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Learning Lessons From Others' Mistakes

Wow, had a crazy wake-up call/lesson learned this afternoon.

Some poor, not all that bright blogger wrote a blog in May of this year about a news story and ended up using what he likely thought was a perfectly innocent, likely free photo off the internet.

What he had no idea of at the time (though should have researched) was that the man who both took and starred in the photo is now a writer and very well known actor for a comedy website that many people frequent (myself included). He is a beloved face on the website for his humor, charm and immodesty about his own good looks.

So when this paragon of comedy innocently did an image search on his own face (please, don't act like you've never done it) he was shocked to find this picture of himself just floating wilhe-nilhe about the internet. It was unlicensed and unaccredited everywhere it popped up portraying him as a dufus.

So he went on this comedy website and wrote an article linking back to most, if not all, of the places that had used his picture without permission (including this unsuspecting blogger) and said that, while he was not going to throw a fit or demand people take it down, couldn't they use this more flattering image that he would also provide for free? And thus he posted a similar but unarguably more flattering picture.

In this comedian's defense; it wasn't right for people to use his photo unlicensed and unaccredited and I too would be annoyed to find an unflattering photo of myself floating about the internet with hashtags of #dumbass and #assholes.

In the bloggers defense: When you run a small blog with few readers and less money, it is much easier to find photos via a google image search, than through a professional website that you must pay for and then credit the photographer.

Lessons to be learned: Don't take unflattering photos of yourself and post them on the internet. Don't use unaccredited photos unless you want it to possibly bite you hard in the butt someday.

Now, this poor blogger's previously quiet site has been blown up with comments (unwittingly?) directed there by the comedian...and they are not nice comments.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Possibly Bad People, LJ accounts & Burnt Toast, And A LBD Reference

I don't know why Pangur Ban keeps hissing at my roommate whenever she walks by. My mom thinks it's because my roommate has done something to my cat when I'm not around...but I just don't think she's that bad of a person. ( I rank people who are cruel to animals up there with rapists and serial killers) It's bugging me though, not knowing. I really need to learn how to speak cat, and just ask Pangur.

In other random news; I logged onto my long forgotten LiveJournal account today, BlackAsMySoul (so named for my favorite scene in Chris Moore's book You Suck!). It was a curious thing. I looked back on my early attempts at blogging and saw some good, and some very immature posts. I suppose that I shall feel the same about my early posts on this blog in a few years...but I hope not.

Anywho, it has unduly depressed me. Also, it brought to mind from the grave dead friendships that should remain buried. Even more depressing.

And thus, I am depressed. Hmm. I need a pick-me-up.

I need to do some writing, as well. To get my creative build-up out on paper (or keyboard). Yes, that is what I need. But it is 1 AM. So first, I should probably sleep. Yes. Sleep. A grand idea.

BTDubbs, (As THELydiaBennet (The Lizzie Bennet Diaries) would say) I want to buy books. But Cameo and Damon won't let me...I have to write 1000 words on Shadows On The Wall first. I am depressed. Oh wait, I already said that. Nvm.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

An Update In So Many Ways

You may have noticed that I have updated the look/feel of this blog with a slightly variation in the color scheme. I also added more tabs to the top of the page, which link to my other important profiles. I advise you to use them immediately, and often.

In addition to these changes, I have added a word count widget for Shadows On The Wall, just to the right. I am basing my total goal on count that Only The Stars Know came in at (That was like 6800 or some such nonsense, I rounded up). As you can see, I have written 11,307 words as of this afternoon.

I am currently under book arrest by Cameo, and I am not allowed to buy or read any books until we have reached 20,000 words. Yep, big trouble for me.

As for the VideoBook, I have recorded chapters 2 & 3. Chapter 2 is scheduled to go live at 10am PST on Monday (the 1st).

I am also hoping to do a special Vlog next week for Banned Books Week. I recently found out a book I very much enjoyed was the 3rd most banned book in 2011. I am shocked, naturally.

The giveaway for Only The Stars Know is still going over on Lindsay Mead's blog, you can click the banner at the top of the page to be scooted on over there. I suggest you enter! Many many times! The book will be signed and personalized for you, by yours truly--so hop to!

Wells, I'm all tuckered out for tonight. Happy reading all!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Only The Stars Know Giveaway, Hosted By Lindsay Mead!

Lindsay Mead, The Book Vlogger, is hosting a Giveaway of OSK this week on her YouTube and Blog!

This will be a signed copy of the book!

For more info:

Oh Good Gracious...

How long has it been since I blogged????

What the heck happened to me??


These are some questions you may have been asking, I know I have. Then you saw my OSK VidBook post and probably thought I had lost my mind...then you saw the OSK VidBook Prologue and thought I was a genius....


You had best agree with that. Meaning: You had best have seen the Prologue on YouTube. (If you didn't my heart shall wither and die)

Just In Case:

Well, I'm partial to a little blood and guts I suppose, but I think that was pretty darned good.

Anywho, so yes, that is what is up with me. No, I didn't die (though I plan to at some point in my life).

Essentially my entire life comes down to juggling necessity ('real' job) with my greatest passion (writing)...My greatest passion is overwhelmed by the necessity to destroy the necessity for a 'real' job. Which means marketing Only The Stars Know like a death bead patient with only another year to live.

Other things going on in the life of me: poking Pangur Ban in the stomach whilst she sleeps, avoiding grocery shopping in the hopes that I'll magically grow (shrink?) thin, attempting to force small paychecks to cover big bills.

Not all that exciting...or realistic for that matter.

Things going on the in the writing world of me:

Giveaway of Only The Stars Know by Lindsay Mead, The Book Vlogger! Starting sometime this afternoon on her lovely YouTube channel: Lindsay Mead TBV

Chapter 1 of the VideoBook went up Monday afternoon: OSK Chapter 1 VidBook

And I am developing a plan to enter the (ABNA) Amazon Break Through Novel Award for 2013. I have not yet decided which book to enter because I am a lazy bum who sits on her cushy arse rather than writes Shadows On The Wall.

I also just upgraded to Google+ even though I have absolutely no idea what that means or what to do with it..

You may not have noticed this, so I'll tell you: the world of my writing is much more busy/fascinating that my 'real' life.

In the end you are likely still wondering why I have not blogged all of these wonderful things. I am sorry to leave you wondering.

.... te-hee.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

An Introduction & A Plan

Yes! We're branching out! Now I will be providing books on video! Lol! Also, I might vlog once in a while too, I'm finding it to my liking so far. Granted, writing a blog is much easier, but less personal.

Please share this video everywhere. Pass it along! Help me out here peeps!

(I'll have a lot more time to write if I don't have to go to a "real" job!)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

39 Reasons

Yestereve whilst at work I let vent to my annoyances by compiling a list. It amuses me to share that list with you now.

39 Reasons
To Be A Hermit

1. People Suck.
2. Rob is not coming back.
3. Quiet.
4. No interruptions when writing.
5. Plenty of long walks.
6. Go to sleep when I want.
7. Wake up when I want.
8. No roommate..
9. Have as many cats as I want.
10. Raise bunnies.
11. No job necessary.
12. Stop being reminded of exes.
13. Read books as often and as long as I want.
15. Get dressed when and how I please.
16. Talk to myself without getting weird looks.
17. No human interaction.
18. Be as sarcastic as I want.
19. Be whomever I want.
20. Act as bichy as I want.
21. Sing loudly.
22. Dance crazy.
23. Go barefoot.
24. Never straighten my hair.
25. No stupid people.
26. Adopt-A-Panther
27. Have a pack of dogs.
28. No longer feign interest.
29. Sleep in the woods, or on the beach.
30. Pretend I am happier alone.
31. Train Pangur to kill.
32. Shooting practice once a day.
33. Hire a Robin-like servant to do my bidding.
34. People suck so bad it hurts behind my eyes..
35. No more people ignorant of their own ignorance.
36. No more meaningless conversations.
37. No more hiding what I think.
38. Start a witch rumor, and follow up on it.
39. People REALLY SUCK.
Postscript: Yes, this was written on a napkin.

Post-Postscript: Yes, the number 39 is a random number I came up with for no very good reason.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Waiting On The World

And I keep waiting, waiting on the world.

I seem to be having one of the rough days. The kind where it seems like everything is in slow motion, just waiting on that first spark that catches.

Do you know, when you're reading a book and at some point a week goes by in steady time for the main character and the author just summarizes it in a few paragraphs?

I feel as though this year and maybe even last year, could be summarized in a few paragraphs and just slipped into the middle of the book. It's the kind of thing a reader guiltily skims through, not really worried about the down time, but not appreciating that the main character had to go through all of that. Every minute of it, experience it all...and you just skimmed a couple paragraphs and it was over.

I'm not trying to make you feel bad (well, maybe a little) but you have to admit, the analogy brings a certain poignancy to the boredom that is right now for me.

On the upside, I might be getting some time off from work in the next couple months where I could possibly devote a large amount of time to writing.

I have been feeling mentally constipated (I apologize for the crudity, but that is truly the best metaphor) lately and really need to get it all out on paper. I figure, time off and no money will prove a very good laxative.

Now I really feel bad about that metaphor. Seriously, I am sorry. This sort of thing will only get worse until I find time to really write.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Why NOT To Piss Off A Writer

File this under the heading: Why Not To Piss Off A Writer


Moving forward; yesterday's work night was a good night. Why? Well, certainly not because a certain coworker has been pushing me patience toward it's limit. Actually, it's because I was a smart little cookie (writer, rather) and brought my beloved Black n' Red with me.

Black n' Red(tm) Notebook,
my good friend
So, when aforementioned jerk started pushing me, I was able to simply take out my notebook and escape the inane stupidity that was trying to force itself upon me.

I wrote most of a scene from the next book, Shadows On TheWall, in which Anthony finally pushes David to the point of violence. And you must understand, David is much like me in the respect that, while he talks a good game, he is generally laid back and non-violent.

Anywho, so, Anthony got thrown through a window (about ten stories up in a hotel) and now Cameo is cowering in the corner. And I feel fine! It's nice to be able to express myself so eloquently.

So, kids, remember this the next time you are pissing off a writer. We may not react much outwardly, but you are on our kill-off list.

There are only two types of people who sit around thinking of ways to kill off people:


and writers.

 As Castle would say, I'm the one that pays better.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

A Scattered Accounting

Whoo, so it's been a little while since I blogged. Sorry 'bout that ya'll. I've been terribly scattered lately. I really do need an assistant to keep me organized. Between trying to make sure all the bills get paid on time, working six days a week, the apartment stays clean, Pangur Ban is fed-oh crap I forgot to refill her dish, dammit!
Hold on a sec, I'll be right back.....
Okay! So, as you might guess, blogging is not exactly at the top of the list. It's true, there have been several times in the last couple weeks where I have wanted to blog, but it's usually about silly things that probably only matter to eccentric, hermit-wannabe authors like me.

My CafePress shirt,
from CASTLE(abc TV show)

I haven't been writing much if at all, and it's seriously frustrating me. Logically, I know that I'll be much more emotionally stable if I get a few chapters out of my system, but I'm rebelling for some stupid reason.
I downloaded Flyleaf's 2009 album, Memento Mori, last week and I have been listening almost exclusively to it since. Literally, all of my side thoughts have been expressed in lyrics lately. It's wonderful in a frustratingly plagiaristic sort of way.

Also, I'm close to launching into a full rant on the topic of cuss words. It is a topic that frustrates me considerably, as I can see both sides of the story and wish only that everyone else could. They are WORDS. Words have only the power we give them. So, like anything else, the spirit in which they are used must be taken into consideration before sentencing someone.

Perhaps scattered was not a strong enough word to use to describe me lately. In fact, an example might best serve to demonstrate.

Today I woke up, fed Pangur, showered, filled out my CA voting ballot, called my dad, got dressed, checked the mail, drove to drop off my ballot, paid my electricity bill, went to the bank, filled out a credit card application, called my mom, texted my brother, surfed Amazon, checked FB, dA and YouTube, read the first 2 chapters of The Golden Lily, by Richelle Mead, and then realized it was 1:30 pm and I hadn't had anything to eat.

Now, normally in a day I might accomplish 3 of those things. In a WHOLE day, not in a matter of hours. I mean truthfully, out of all those, only 3 things. I could have a day where all I do is feed Pangur, shower and surf Amazon. And that is typical.
And now that I have to leave for work in half an hour I realize that I forgot to call the tire store about my car. Even though I made a list (a very scattered, crazy list of things to do, things to buy, and things to remember).
I'm this cose *hold up fingers about an inch apart* to giving up. I need an assistant, a keeper....
And for some reason, I am sounding more and more like Damon when I lose my temper, I keep saying things like "Bloody hell!" and "Blast it!" and "Oh for the love of..." I think I hang out with him too much. Actually, he's been avoiding me a bit lately, my hectic moods make him uncomfortable.

I think if I could convince myself to go to sleep before 2 am I might be able to start waking up earlier and actually accomplish something.
Off topic(not that there was a specific topic): I think I want the soundtrack to the new Underworld movie...I love Lacey Sturm's and Evanescence's contribution there.

I believe, what if I believe you? Forgive, relieve me, please come back to life. Come back to my life.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

But She Has A Great Personality!

I was looking at someone I've know for about five months today. Not a friend, just an acquaintance that I'm not overly fond of. As I looked, I realized that the person was really very unattractive. This seems harsh, I know, but allow me to explain.

I realized right after this exactly how harsh that really was, and immediately began to question my realization. Why was this person suddenly so unattractive, I asked myself? It came to me that this wasn't a sudden development. Rather, over the time I have known this person they have been slipping more and more in my perception. Perhaps interestingly, their outward appearance has not altered in that time, but I have grown to know them better and I realized that their insides were ugly.

The person is not attractive in physical aspects, but if their personality was better then it would be something easily overlooked. It's a cliche I know, but the line "oh, but they have a great personality" is true. Some people are plain or even unattractive by society's standards, but they have shining warmth and good humor which makes them beautiful.

In contrast to this person I was examining today, a few years ago I met a young man in a work situation (I no longer know him, so I feel I may be a little freer with details). When I met the young man, my first impression was not complimentary. Aside from his rather plain exterior, he seemed to have a sour disposition, and not much of a sense of humor. Being that it was a work situation, and not merely social, I was forced to endure this man whom I had immediately judged to be a donkey's rear end.

Day by day, I realized I was wrong. He had a dry, sarcastic sense of humor, an incredible sense of duty, and ambition up the wazoo.

As time as passed, I have realized how much we were actually alike. It has given me a nightmare of how people may in fact preceive me upon first meeting.

As my observations of his inner self grew, the way I saw his exterior changed as well. The plain young man was replaced by someone I respected and liked. I became attached and considered him a friend, and then began to wish for more. I didn't know at the time how my perception of him had altered from what a casual observer might find, until I introduced him to my best friend at the time.

She, of course, knew my feelings on the topic of him, and from my descriptions expected some godly representation of a man. Upon finding a rather plain, apparently serious young man, she was disappointed and did not hesitate much to tell me so.

There is a person I know now for whom I have enormous liking (friendship wise, don't get any ideas) and as I had this entire thought process today I began to wonder if my perception of this person had changed as well. As I thought, I couldn't see that it had, because this person had presented to me a warm, humorous exterior from the start. I came to the conclusion rather swiftly that I could not judge whether or not this person was attractive, because I had a biased opinion. The personality of this person is such that I would answer in the affirmative almost no matter what.

I could go over every relationship, of every degree, that I engage in with the humans around me, and find dozens more examples of this.

I am writing this morning to tell you, quite simply, that your personality (at least for me) is at least 80% of the beauty (or lack thereof) that I will perceive within you. First impressions are not always lasting. If I am wrong about you, and you show me, then I will change my opinions and my impression of you.

This has made me think of who I project to others, as well. I haven't been able to decide if I like who I think I'm projecting. Or, rather, if I like how people may be perceiving me. As I am sure I have said many times before, I really like myself. I do. But I know that not everyone is going to, and selfishly, I want them all to.

Food for thought.

On a side note: I am sunburned and uncomfortable. PALE AND PROUD! (my version of P & P)

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Untitled Dam Scrap, TBC

I knew there was a reason I was supposed to go to the dam today. I knew it. And there I was, walking along happily, when suddenly I could hear their voices on the wind....

“Look,” she peered around the crowded store and then back at the vision of darkness before her. “We need to talk.”

“Alright.” He eased his stance and waited.

“Not here!”

“Not here? Why ever not?”

“Because! There are people! They might hear!”

His eyes narrowed as he took in all the curious stares around them, the people that slowed to hear what was being said. “That is correct. Alright.” He appeared to think, and then said, “Have you been to the dam?”

Had she been to the dam? What kind of silly question was that?

“Of course. How can a person live in this town and not have been to the dam?”

He ignored her question and nodded, “Good. Meet me there, then.”


“10 pm. At the 11th lamppost.”


“We need to talk.” Repeating her own words.


“I’ll be waiting.”

To be continued...

Oroville Dam, Oroville, CA  4/26/12 (c) shanco.corp
I think I know who this exchange is between. But the characters don't want to tell me their identities, so I can't be sure yet. There is only one story I know of though, that takes place within 25 miles of here. The rest are all spread out over the Northwest, but there is that takes place just up into the Western Slope.


Friday, April 13, 2012

Fanmail, MIA Authors & Aspirations For the Future

I have been frustrated of late with authors who become successful and no longer sort through their inboxes and answer mail. This is going to seem unreasonable, I know, because people like JK Rowling, Stephenie Meyer & Suzanne Collins get SO MUCH mail that they would never write another word if they took the time to look at and respond to every piece of fan mail they received. I get that. Really, I do.

I just keep thinking that there has got to be some way to make it work. Some way to still thank the people who have made your career possible, the readers. And then there are the aspiring writers who, without fail, will always write long, thoughtful, complimentary letters and ask for advice. Isn't it the duty of successful authors to encourage the next generation of writers along?

When people hear that I have written books (people who previously thought they knew me based off of their own misconceptions) they look at me in a completely different way. They think that writing a book is some sort of mystical, far off thing that only strange old people can accomplish. But there are hundreds of thousands of girls and boys out there writing stories almost as soon as they can write anything. All of their dreams, aspirations, and even nightmares are caught up and flung upon the page for anyone willing to see.

I want you all to know, that when I finally make it, when I am finally successful enough to quit my day job and write full time, I swear to you I will find a way to still read my mail. If I have to employ a secretary, nay two secretaries, I will.

I will.

Because readers matter to me. Readers are the people who make my days bright. When I see reviews, or when I listen to someone tell me about one of my books, my entire world just feels like it's lit on fire. It's glowing, and warm, I can feel this burning spreading through my chest and into my outer extremities and I am happy.

Why should any author deny themselves that glorious feeling?

And the few times when I have succumbed, and written to an author, I have received one reply. I don't know if she will ever read this, but this is a huge thank you to Tamora Pierce for responding personally to the email of a very young (16, I believe) Shannon A Hiner with encouraging words. I think about that response often and how grateful I am that she took the time. It wasn't just a couple of words even, but a full letter response.

In thirty years, I want to be that kind of author. She has written dozens of books, is highly successful, and is still down-to-earth enough to respond to one struggling, very young, idealistic writer.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Out of Frustrating Sometimes Comes Some Good

My scheduler at work has been annoying me rather significantly lately. You see, I am supposed to be a server/busser in our restaurant. Lately though, I have been scheduled to cashier. The problem should be clear to anyone in the restaurant business, but if you aren't I will explain:

Servers make mullah tips.
Bussers make so-so tips.
Cashiers make next to no tips.

The reason I left my former job for a job that pays a full dollar an hour less was that I would be making tips. In the first couple of months at my job I was making about $700/month in tips, and only $750 in actual paychecks.

So, instead of only making $8/hr, I was in fact making about $18/hr...nearly unheard of in this county.

Now, cashiering, I am making much, much less. Barely enough to survive on. Actually, I am not making enough to survive on. I have made my issues known, and have been assured that it will only be for about another week, but still I am very tight on cash.

The good that has come out of this very frustrating bad is this: Cashiering is so damn boring and slow that I have been able to roughly outline the entire first half of Shadows On The Wall this week. HUZZAH!

Unfortunately, I have come across a new problem: a plothole.(Like a pothole in the road, only it's in the storyline).

A plothole right smack dab in the middle of the book. The rough draft that I wrote approx. 6 years ago has this huge hole, like a time vortex that one of the characters just slipped into and disappeared while the others carried on as if nothing had happened. I mean, they should feel really awful for letting that happen...terrible human  beings.

I think I have come up with a cure for the plothole, but getting the story back on track after that hole may in fact be difficult.

Nonetheless, the fact that I have had so much idle time on my hands at work lately has brought this bugger of a problem to my attention far before it became a really difficult issue.

I suppose I should be a bit on the thankful side that I have had the extra time, but my wallet and bank account are not feeling very magnanimous.

This looking on the bright side post brought to you by: Shanco.corporations.
(Lobbied against by: The wallet and bank account of Shannon A Hiner.)

On a completely unrelated side note: Long time and very successful authors may not be effected so much by their reviews on book selling websites, but I certainly am. I feel that it is necessary to give a hugely thankful shout out to my first reviewer in the iTunes bookstore, a certain Beekersc. I appreciate so much that you took the time to not only read Only The Stars Know but to also leave a few lines telling others how much you enjoyed it.

Only The Stars Know in the iTunes Store
Remember everyone: A book read, but not reviewed, kills a faerie. No joke.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

When Being Happy Becomes A Problem

So, I'm pretty content at the moment. Yep. I mean, sure, there are a few things that I would love to change (having to work in customer service, oversleeping the alarm everyday, basically talking to myself and receiving odd looks for it), but on the whole I've been fairly happy in the last month.

I've settled in at the new job, got rid of the troublesome roommate, and I've been very adventurous in the kitchen lately. I'm practically on cloud nine.

Are you wondering why it almost sounds as though I am complaining?

Well, see here's the problem: I'm rewriting Shadows On The Wall. What, you mean that one sentence doesn't answer all your questions? I suppose I will explain then.

When I originally wrote Shadows On the Wall it was the spring of 2006. My sophomore year of high school, and also the year I passed the CA HS Proficiency Exam and left high school behind forever. It was the year I got my license, my first job, and we moved from Modesto to Oroville. BIG Year. (I also started writing Die For Me Again, but that was in the autumn.)

In the Spring of 2006 I let myself fall in deep deep like with someone entirely unsuitable and unavailable to me. I already loved this boy as a friend, so it was doubly bad. Unwittingly, he ended up breaking my heart that spring, or rather, I let my heart break over him. He really didn't do anything to break it, so I shouldn't blame him.

Well, those of you who don't know me all that well will not realize how catastrophic this was. I don't just get crushes on guys, when I decide I like them I go head over freaking high heels and totally lose my heart. No, really, I don't do anything halfway, especially not love. So while this wonderful boy thought we were just really good friends, I was in fact losing my mind over why he didn't like me in the same way.

When I realized he never would, and that I couldn't simply be 'just friends' with him, my heart did a weepy little break in two and I haven't been the same since. I believe that was the first time my heart was truly broken. (There have honestly only been two times in twenty-two years).

In the year following this heart break I completed two novels in the Immortal World series, one and a half standalone novels, and droves upon droves of weepy heartbroken prose.

Have you caught on yet? When I am heartbroken I write like crazy. And apparently, I write rather well because two of the most popular IW books came out of utter heartbreak.

I am now faced with two distinctly different problems, both resulting from the fact that I am in a happy state of mind currently:

1. I can't seem to write easily when I am happy.
2. Shadows On The Wall is a very emotionally stormy book, with deep lows--something that is quite hard to write from a good mood.

The answer? I'm not sure. I suppose I could go out and find some completely unsuitable man to fall head over heels for, in the hopes that he will tear my heart asunder and leave me a wasted shell of a woman....but that seems like an awful lot of work, and plus, there really aren't any worthy males to be had at the moment.

Nope, I just don't know. It's a problem, that is for certain.

Suggestions are welcome (with the understanding that, depending upon my mood, I may rip them apart or take them out of context or do any number of annoying/shannon-like things with them).

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Obsessions, Procrastination and Possibly Some ADD

I am absolutely obsessed with the coast of California. I'm really not sure why. The ocean is too cold this far North to really enjoy. The beaches are mostly rocky and there are tons of hippies all around, but I can't seem to stop researching, viewing pictures of, and visiting the coast. I love it. It's the most beautiful place on Earth to me.

Yesterday I was online and somehow (I really don't remember how) I ended up looking at a map of the state up toward Crescent City. An hour later I was doing research on estuarine lagoons and an hour after that I was trying to figure out how to place a story around it. I know, this is ridiculous!

Anyway, I'm trying to apologize in advance in case any odd coastal scenes pop up in the next couple books. Like I said I can't seem to help it.

I'm having a lot of trouble with procrastination and concentration lately. Honestly, I wouldn't be surprised if Damon smacked down another ultimatum soon. I'm trying to avoid that, but I make no promises. I'm out of unread books at the moment, having just finished 2 in the last 3 days. I will try very hard not to order anymore for some time. I have a bad case of trigger finger whenever I am on Amazon.

That should, naturally, mean I should avoid Amazon, but you see: I end up on Amazon as a result of viewing book trailers on YouTube. And I end up on YouTube because I see book ads on Facebook. And of course, I'm on Facebook to let you know that I just wrote another blog. Vicious circle it is.

The upshot of this is, after I finish this blog and let you all know that I have written it, I will probably end up ordering another book. I should probably be banned from the internet, but let's face it, that's not going to happen.

Well, I have started the first chapter of Shadows On The Wall, but as I said, concentration is at an all time low here. I have got to stop renting movies constantly, and going to see movies. But this month is golden as far as movies go. This weekend is definitely taken up, what with The Hunger Games. Two weeks ago it was John Carter. Two weeks from now Mirror Mirror comes out, and of course I will have to see MIB3 as well. Should be interesting...

If any of you are in the habit of praying to anyone, you might send out a request for me to have concentration and some sticktoitiveness. That would be wonderful.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Scrappy Prose and a Note

My own expectations weigh heavily
Pressing down upon my shoulders
Burying me beneath their crushing force
Masking my natural sunniness
With a quiet, forced formality.

This is not me, I scream
Silenced by the distance
That keeps me cut off from all
Only the most persistent
Find me in this dank, creeping jail

Am I lost here in my self-imposed
Prison with walls so high
I can’t see over, wander about
Aimless and without the desperation
Necessary to escape this exile

Defeat claws at my feet
Reaching to take me, keep me
Please just let me get away from
The apathy of sameness, always the same
Want to feel, be and see the world beyond

Trapped in the now and don’t know
How to see the future or even
The way to reach what I know is my
Destiny sleeping at my door, still asleep
As I scream and cry and beg for it to find me.

So I've got 2 prologues of epic goodness staring at me, questioning who will be first. 1) Shadows On The Wall and 2) In The Darkness Remain. While I am truly torn between them, I think in the interest of publishing order I should work on Shadows On The Wall next.

Damon says he doesn't care, as long as I'm writing something.

Progress reports should be forthcoming in the weeks ahead. Wish me luck.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The Official End

...of the Hiatus!!!


About one and a half weeks after my last post I found someone I thought would be a good roommate for me. We discussed the situation thoroughly and found that we are complimentary in many aspects, though not so wrapped up in each other to pose the possible friend problem*.

My roommate is now a person who is quieter than me, studious, not a drinker, never heard of a drug, cleans her dishes directly after using them, and only speaks when spoken to. That last one actually gnaws at me a bit, I constantly feel as though I should say something because she is so dang quiet. Makes me into a bit of a chatter bug.

So the living situation is much altered and for the better. We also found a different apartment to move into, and now I have had the pleasure of decorating a place for myself without having to deal with someone whose tastes are so many worlds apart from mine. I also trust my new roommate enough to display my books in the common areas, as well as my precious breakables (tea cups, tea pots and the like) ((all my tea paraphernalia)) (((yes, I like tea that much! Don't laugh at me!))).

Life proceeds much the same at my job, there are a few people getting on my nerves, but I can handle it (with a knife buahahahaa!)

Now that I am all unpacked and happily settled in, I feel it is time to call an end to the Hiatus I declared.  I am ready to put my mind back to work on what is truly important to me. I have missed my characters sorely this last month, and Damon keeps giving me pointed looks so I know it is definitely time.

To prove my devotion to getting back on track, I have some prose that I've been working on the last few days. It's almost ready, and I shall share as soon as I am done.

Thank you, my precious readers, for your infinite patience (who am I kidding? You? or maybe you?)

On an off note, there is a movie coming out every Friday this month that I want to see. How awesome is that?! Starting with John Carter, Mirror Mirror, then The Hunger Games and on through Men In Black 3...this is freaking fantastic! The movie gods are on my side for once! (either that or they are conspiring to empty my wallet)

Again, thank you all for reading and staying with me, be on the lookout for Scraps, Prose and Fun Bits from me!!!

*PFP: Where you move in with someone who is a really really good friend and then you discover just how annoying this person is to live with and it ruins both your friendship and your roommate situation.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

The Dirtiest Word In Writing

Yes, indeed, the word I hoped never to utter: Hiatus.

But, as life intrudes upon the world of my writing I am forced to admit there is really no time to write. My roommate announced to me yesterday that she is moving out in 30 which time I will have no way to afford the apartment by myself. As for the roommate, it is an easy 'good riddance' for me. As someone who can finish a 12-pack single handedly more easily than she may read the back of a book, you may imagine how much I have enjoyed her company.

Unfortunately, this puts me in a tight predicament. I must either find a new roommate (scary, daunting task) or fine a more affordable home (also daunting if not quite so scary).

The next few weeks shall be full of query calls, tightly crunched numbers, and a whole lot of stress until I have something nailed down securely. The stress itself keeps my levels of concentration at an uneasy low.

My sincere, grievous apologies to all those awaiting more writing from me. If you wish to shoot me I only ask that you make it fast and fatal.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Just A Human

Last night I was laying down, wondering what it would be like to find out I'm a shape shifter, so far into life already. I mean, the who I am that I am I have already molded and decided I like. But what if something were to change drastically, something I could not hope to control or dictate?

It was while I was pondering this that Damon walked in, presumably for an update on how In The Darkness Remain was coming along. Before he could ask, I asked him a question instead.

"Damon, do you think there is any possibility, likelihood, or chance that I could have some latent powers or abilities that might make me non-human or an abnormal human?"

His eyes narrowed suspiciously and he said slowly, "Why?"

"Because...I know that for a human I am extraordinary and different. That sounds conceited, but I really do have faith in those facts. But, I guess it's because of all my time around non-humans, I always feel as if I'm 'just a human'. in the Immortal World it's not, 'Oh, he's a vampe and she's a human.' No, she is just a human. I am just a human. I want to be more than that."

A little smile was creeping across his face as he regarded me, "So, instead of protesting the unfair treatment of humans, you are simply wanting to be something else?"

"Well, yeah, I want to strive for more, better...I don't want the bar lowered so that I can reach it. I want to achieve reaching the bar on my own."

The smile was whole now as he stared at me, "Can you imagine if everyone thought like that? Striving for better instead of expecting the world to lower it's standards to their level?"

As a footnote to this story, I would like to add that Damon is considered to be speciesist which is the equivalent of a racist but towards other species. My post script would be that I am not a fan of people who wave the word 'racist' around. There is racism left in the world, no doubt. But waving the word around is as irresponsible and offensive as the act itself. Think before you use the word, think hard.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A Trip To The Levee

A stork lifted off the water, canting gracefully through the trees. Its snow white feathers flashed through the dead brown trees like a beacon. On the other side of the river another stork called to it and they met in the middle, diving toward the water and then lifting back into the sky, side by side.

The duck shook its head and then dipped its neck back down into the water in search of lunch.

Ripples in the water flowed with the cool breeze, while underneath the river flowed the opposite way with deceptive strength.

Across the river a hawk landed on one of the trees. Her wings stretched out to enjoy the breeze as she balanced precariously on the edge of a branch. She called out for her mate, and the sound echoed across the river, but he did not come. She called again and then took off, circling the trees and eyeing the water.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Mission Control: We have a break-through! (BGSP)

It has been 4 long, long days since I have read a new book. This knowledge/inspiration desert has been tough on me, I won't lie.
At first, I didn't know how the Ultimatum would resolve itself. I knew I wouldn't touch a book until I had written the prologue--I couldn't go against Damon's wishes like that-- but it was very tough going.
The first day, I wrote a few paragraphs.

The second day was little better, I could think of nothing, so I went to work after writing nothing and with little hope of ever knowing a new book. The meager brainstorming I did at work resulted in me adding paragraphs of scene description to what I already had.

As I tried to sleep on the second night I had a brief burst of inspiration which made me glad that I had a pad of paper and pen on my bedside table.

On the third day, I woke to rainy skies that mirrored the aching of my soul. (melodrama, anyone?) It was my day off, so I went off to run errands. When I arrived home I spent a few hours working on the marketing strategies for Only The Stars Know. Then I spent a few more hours creating a book trailer. Then I spent an hour watching TV.

By the time 1am rolled around I was thoroughly disgusted with myself. Really, self? This was the best I could do?

So, I pulled out the big guns. Sometimes the only way to get excited about a scene is to have lived it. Sometimes the only way to get all the details is to have lived it.

After going through my Big Gun Secret Process I started scribbling madly away at my journal. I literally could not write fast enough to get the scene onto paper. By 3:30am I had the gist of it down, and I couldn't stay awake any longer. I laid aside the journal and turned out the light. I fell asleep easily.

On day four I woke up late, a result of being up until 3:30, I'm sure, so I got ready for work and left soon after. Business was slow at work, and I was itching to work on the book, so I requested to go home early and ended up leaving around 8pm. I stopped for dinner and then hightailed it home. I brainstormed for about half an hour (painting my nails is a very good way to brainstorm, I have discovered) and then discovered I had left my journal in the car. I ran through the dripping cold rain to retrieve it and then finally sat down to finish the prologue.

Last night, around about 12:15am, I finished that prologue.

It is...indescribable. Damon asked me if I love it, and I had to reply honestly that I could not love it, because of the horrible pain he suffers through for it. But I am proud of it. I think my writing ability is becoming more and more finely honed with every story I write. And I think that you, the readers, will love and hate the story, which are not two different things, but facets of the same thing: passion. And I want this story to inspire passionate responses.

Of course, the best news is that as long as I type up the prologue today, Damon said I could start reading my new books immediately! Huzzah!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Only The Stars Know: Book Trailer

This took a ridiculous amount of time to make...

Please share with everyone you know!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Damon's Ultimatum

Damon's Ultimatum...Translation: I got myself in trouble with my character and now I am going to be punished accordingly.

Last night we were driving home from my parents house, Damon and I, that is, and he said in his normal quiet tone, "Will you be working on the book tonight?"

I knew he meant In The Darkness Remain, for I had stupidly told him I wanted to start the prologue soon. I had, also stupidly, thought aloud to myself that I should write it that night, while I was in between reading books.

I hesitated before answering him. I knew he had heard my still liquid-like plans and I knew he realized how easily I would push them aside. At the same time, I really did want to work on the story. It's just, I had been awake since 8am (a near unbelievable feat for me) and it was already 11pm...and I was tired...Okay so I'm rationalizing. But really, what did he expect? We've known each other for almost 8 years, if he doesn't know me by now then there is really no hope.

So I stopped hesitating finally and said, albeit haltingly, "I had considered it."

His voice somehow went lower as he said, "I think you should."

In fairness, I do know that tone. I know it means trouble, and I know that if I decide to ignore it I will regret it.

As I walked into my apartment and set my things down, I went through my normal routine: let Pangur out of my room, feed Pangur, put away laundry(aka throw it on the ground and hope it puts itself away), make cup of tea, turn on Sam, sit in front of Sam sipping tea, check email, check ads, check sales, check blog....

So 12:30am rolls around and I'm really tired now. I think about picking up my newly arrived Sherrilyn Kenyon book, the 2nd in Nick's trilogy!, and put it back down because I feel guilty... I turned on the TV, watched a rerun episode of an old sitcom...turned off TV...fell asleep at a 1am.

Long story not so short: I'm in trouble. I am now forbidden to touch any of my newly arrived unread books (2 at the moment with a 3rd still in transit) until I have written the prologue. Those of you who know me well understand what a horrible sentence this is. Not touch books? Not read my new books? WHAAAT?

Well, like I said, I always regret it when I ignore that tone from Damon. There is no question of me not adhering to this edict either. No ifs, ands, or buts.

Alas, there shall be no more reading until In The Darkness Remain is properly started. I never thought I would miss Angela as a main character after finishing Die For Me Again, but she is a fluffy bunny compared to Damon's slave master approach.

...hmm...slave master... *evil smile*

Thursday, January 12, 2012

New Venues for Only The Stars Know

In my tunnel vision, I originally only published Only The Stars Know to Kindle and stupid is that? Well, via Smashwords Only The Stars Know is now available on just about ALL ereaders. Including, but not limited to: Apple iPads/Books, Nooks, Sony eReaders, etc... Click Here to go to the Smashwords page for my book where you can buy it for only $0.99.

 Also, you can read the first 20% of the book for free to see if you like it. If you do, and you read the whole thing, please post a review! Reviews are something my books and I need to live and thrive!

In other news! I got about 30% of the outlining for In The Darkness Remain done yesterday. Those of you who know me well probably remember that I normally don't outline at all. Well, I've been having so many ideas for the story that I'm afraid I'll start forgetting them. As for the actual writing itself, I have started some drafting from Damon's POV, which most of the story will be in, but I doubt any of what I've written thus far will be in the book. Mostly it's just background on his life before being a vampire to help me understand him as well as possible. There are certainly some curious circumstances...Don't worry, I'm not going to continue being this vague within the book. You will understand Damon almost as well as I do, once you read it.

In my personal life, my Pangur Ban is turning 7 months old this Sunday, the 15th! Her birthday present is something she would have been most happy to do without, she was spayed yesterday by the Paws Clinic in town. She is not altogether happy with me. She's taking her pain killers with a good grace that makes me suspicious, and frankly I fear she will kill me in my sleep.

Also, I'm decorating my apartment. I'm hanging pictures and art like crazy. I am cleaning a lot as well, my roommate thinks I'm either on drugs or suffering from some type of hormonal imbalance due to pregnancy. I told her she's insane and then threw out the 5 year old apple cider dry mix that was rotting in the kitchen cabinets. Honestly...

I am in my second month of my new job and my stress levels have gone waaaaay down. I do have a wee bit of a cold at the moment, but I'm taking Zicam and vitamins like crazy, so hopefully it will amount to nothing.

One last note, I know you might be wondering why I am working on In The Darkness Remain instead of Shadows On The Wall. My normal routine is to write the rough draft of one book, then revise a different book until I publish it. I was going to scrap that routine after I published Only The Stars Know in favor of a faster publishing time for the next book, but Damon has been bugging me lately to write his story. And I recognize the feel of the pull, the story is ready to be written.

Until we meet again! Adieu!