I failed to take my own advice last night, and didn't do my word searches on The Enhanced League. I read the whole thing from start to finish last night, and I like it. The word searches can happen at any time, and maybe I can deal with some of them on the road during the week.
After I finish with them, this book will be ready for beta readers.
I slept in a bit this morning, but was still up before seven. Otto needed some “poodle time,” But he's snoring away in his bed right now.
His down time leads to my opportunity. The first draft of The Yak Guy Project is in the vault. I ended with a couple of emotional scenes, but it was the right place in my mind. I always like the “life goes on” ending, and after I wrapped up some threads, it just felt perfect.
It still needs some things, no doubt. This one is in first person, so I'm sure most of the sentences start with I, my, or we. This is the bane of first person, but I usually manage to change enough of them to make it palatable. Right now, it needs to rest while I turn full attention to Enhanced League.
My plans don't always come together, but this is exactly where I wanted to be sometime today.
I still worry about word count, but I've convinced myself that shorter is better for 21st century sensibilities. Enhanced League is 37,000 words more or less. Yak Guy is a novel at nearly 70,000. This will change during the editing phases, but it gives you a rough idea.
I don't know what to do with myself for the rest of the day, but I'll probably start those word searches. I need to read some blogs too, and now I have time to enjoy them.
Sounds like I need a new plan, and that has to be a call for beta readers. If I'm lucky that will happen next weekend, but I'd have to get incredibly lucky. Doubt, the raven, is whetting his beak as I type this. He loves my editing phase.
I also owe Chris Graham a few more posts, but if I drag my feet, I may be able to write about a new book.
Hello, everyone, Harmony Kent here. Welcome to my tour stop on the Story Empire Roadshow. First of all, I would like to give Craig a huge thank you for hosting me today. Yesterday, we did a bit of exploring around the murky world of The Forest of Dean, the setting for my Mystery/thriller, The Glade. Today, having had so much fun the first time around, I thought we could revisit an interview between Craig’s awesome Lisa Burton and one of my side characters from Interludes (the naughty book). And, remember, throughout this week, I’ve set up offers on Kindle deals on some of my books, so do visit the other tour stops for details of which books and when the discounts are happening. The most prolific commenter at the end of the tour will get to choose ONE copy of any TWO of my ebooks!
Lisa Burton Presents …
‘This is Lisa Burton, the robot girl, and this is Lisa Burton Radio. Don’t touch that dial, because we’ve got some hot and steamy erotica lined up for you today.
‘Our sponsor today is Interludes, by Harmony Kent. This is a steamy group of erotic short stories for adults.
‘Our guest today is Giles Fontaume, a wealthy businessman from New York.
‘Welcome to the show, Giles.’
‘Hello, Lisa. Actually, it’s Mr Fontaume. Would you be good enough to tell me the reason for this call?’
‘We’ve gotten a report that you were involved in a yachting accident where a young woman went missing. What can you tell our listeners about that?’
‘You have me on air now?’
‘Oh. <cough> . Yes. The Elloise—’
‘That would be your yacht, correct?’
‘Correct. We left Coffs Harbour en route for Monterey Bay … taking the scenic route. Nine days out, the …<ahem> … young lady in question jumped ship.’
‘Okay Mister Fontaume, but the world wants to know what happened to poor Stella? I have newspapers from Brisbane, Tokyo, London, New York, and even Entertainment Tonight, and all of them want to know what happened to her? Where did she disembark?’
‘I hardly think that’s at all relevant. I hired the woman to waitress for the trip, and she failed to execute her duties.’
‘Yes, but she hasn’t been seen since you left Coffs. Again, Giles, where did Stella disembark, exactly?’
‘Oh, for heaven’s sake. It’s not my fault she took it into her silly little head to jump overboard in the middle of the Pacific. I mean, how stupid do you have to be? I threw her a life jacket; what more could I have done? Surely, I don’t have to tell you how utterly awful my travels were without a proper waitress. Damned inconvenient.’
‘The life jacket was magnanimous of you. Did you even think about turning back for her? It isn’t like she could swim to Monterey Bay.’
‘Turn back? Are you mad? I couldn’t possibly go back. No, that wouldn’t do at all. I had a schedule to keep. And, of course, that idiotic stunt was her idea. No, no. The silly woman isn’t my responsibility at all. Besides, I’m sure we were near a shipping route. Yes, most likely some other boat picked her up. You understand that I couldn’t have my whole trip disrupted because one of my minions decided to duck out of her obligations. I mean, she knew what I expected from her when she took the position.’
‘It looks like we have a caller. I hope it’s one of the networks, like BBC or someone. Hello, caller, you’re on the air with Lisa Burton and Giles Fontaume.’
‘Hi, this is Stella. I just heard the show, and called to speak with Giles.’
‘Stella! You’re safe? Thank goodness. What would you like to say to Giles?’
‘Giles, you’re an arsehole. I nearly drowned. Not to mention the sharks. How could you have just left me to die?’
‘Oh, please. That’s just like you to over-exaggerate. Besides, you’re the one who jumped. I should sue you for the inconven—’
‘Jumped? I fell, and you know it. After you pushed me. If you hadn’t tried to force yourself on me, it would never have happened in the first place. And, as for your comment about me not fulfilling my duties, I’d like to know where in the contract I agreed to sleep with you? As far as I’m concerned, waitressing means just that. I never signed up to serve you in other ways. You might have thought it’d round off your evening bourbon on the aft deck, but—I promise you—it was nothing more than harassment.’
‘Oh, calm down, woman. I ought to have known better than to employ an hysterical female. It’s not as if anything bad happened to you.’
‘Oh, no, of course not. I only drifted at sea for days on end with nothing to drink or to protect me from the sun. It’s a pure fluke that sharks didn’t eat me for breakfast. Only chance washed me up on that small island. And if a Hawaiian native hadn’t been there on retreat … well, I dread to think what … I would’ve starved to death. I should report you for attempted murder.’
‘That’s terrible, Stella, but we’re all glad you’re safe. I don’t know what I would do under those circumstances; robot girls don’t float. Walk until my battery died I suppose. So where are you now?’
‘I’m in Hawaii with the guy who saved me. And, believe me, he’s so much more man than Giles will ever be … um, yes, he’s all man. Anyway, the reason I rang in … I need a Green Card, and Giles can get me one as my employer. It’s all his fault that I’m stuck here in this position.’
‘What’s stopping you from going back where you came from, to the UK?’
‘Well, let me see. Oh, right, all my possessions and money stayed on your little yacht.’
‘It’s hardly little—’
‘And, I’m pregnant. So, no, going back isn’t an option. And I don’t want to. That was never in my plans, and I’ll be dammed if I’m gonna let you muck it all up.’
‘Don’t look at me to sort out your problems. Why should I? You’ve done nothing for me but give me trouble. And as for that trashy book you left on board … Interludes, was it? I’ve never read such smut. That tells me everything I need to know about the kind of girl you are. Those stories are so hot they burned the pages. Ugh, all that romance—I can’t stand it, no matter how much you dress it up with alien hunks or hot shifters or dying heroines. And now you’re pregnant. Well, no surprises there. You are so not my problem.’
‘Well, Mister Fontaume, it sounds like you’ve read Stella’s whole book, so—obviously—it grabbed your attention.’
‘Interludes isn’t trashy, and neither am I. The book is a sexy collection of short stories that has a well balanced mixture of romances including contemporary erotic romance, shifter romance, alien romance, and historical romance, that will appeal to everyone. From sweet to hot; to friendship and second chances; to a variety of real life issues that the characters deal with, Harmony lets us experience enjoyable and steamy erotic romance short stories that will leave any reasonable reader wanting more. But then, we all know by now that you’re anything but reasonable, don’t we, Mr Fontaume? You’ve just proved, again, how selfish and out of touch with everyday people you are. Now, about that Green Card?’
‘I swear, if you don’t help this poor woman, I’m going to hack into your accounts and make life miserable for you. I’m a robot girl, and I can do it too. I won’t leave a single track. Her author already put her through enough, and most of it’s your fault.’
‘Hawaii’s nice. I want to stay here. And Kaimi is gorgeous and kind and … yes, well, things got a tad steamy on the island. It took a long time for him to nurse me back to health, and we’ve fallen in love. The thing is, I’m not ready to get married, not yet, and definitely not just to get my American citizenship—I’m not that sort of girl. Giles promised me a Green Card at the Monterey end of my waitressing gig. So come on, man, give it up. You owe me big time. Of course, I’m glad Harmony eventually came through for me, but an extra paragraph or two about a settlement or a Green Card would have helped, you know.’
‘You don’t get it. You didn’t finish your contract. So, no Green Card from me. You have to earn it—’
‘Okay, time to wrap it up, folks. We’ve heard enough from Giles for one lifetime. One last word for our guest; I know lots of lawyers and barristers, and I’m sure they’d love to hear about Stella’s plight and how Mr Giles Fontaume of New York left her for dead after she fought off his unwanted advances. On behalf of all our listeners, I’d like to offer my condolences for everything you’ve been through, Stella. We are delighted that you made it through what can only have been a horrendous experience. And it’s great to hear that you’ve found love. Sounds like your island stay might have been rather … interesting.
‘For Lisa Burton Radio, I’m Lisa Burton. I’ll post all the details about Interludes, by Harmony Kent on the website.’
I’d love to hear what some of your favourite characters are from books you’ve read. Thanks so much for stopping by!
My website/blog: http://harmonykent.co.uk
My twitter handle: @harmony_kent
My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/HarmonyKentOnline
I took off a few hours early yesterday. I have gobs of vacation, and since I have the house to myself, I wanted to get some things done. Old What's Her Face* made her annual trek south to watch the Super Bowl with her brother. There really isn't much more attraction there than that, and I decided to watch Otto. (That's code for getting stuff accomplished.)
With the extra time, I stacked the deck for today. Last night, I finished my beta read and made some detailed notes for the author before sending them out the cyber-door. Then I assembled and scheduled next week's Lisa Burton Radio show. I felt so good about it I made myself a drink before bed.
This left me with some time to move my projects ahead. Otto let me sleep in a little bit, but we were still up before 7:00. I fed him, and myself, filled the humidifiers, and made the coffee. Like all days, I started with email and social media.
I moved on to The Yak guy and added several thousand words to his story. He's starting to have bigger thoughts, and placed himself in real danger for the sake of others. He only has to do it one more time, then take a group of helpless folks across a wasteland, have an epiphany, earn his reward, and it's done. It sounds like a lot when I see it written out, but travel time will have to be pared down and explained more than lived through.
I could be done in about three more writing days.
I surfed through all the sites again, picked up the mail,and found Karen O.'s awesome review of my second Experimental Notebook. Many of you are writers, and Karen is a prolific reviewer. Maybe you ought to introduce yourselves over there. She's associated with other reviewers too, and it's good to know a few. Hit the link above, and you might convince yourself to pick up my 99¢ masterpiece while you're there.
Then I picked up The Enhanced League. I wrote another micro piece about behind-the-scenes corporate evils. This project is about three tales away from being finished too.
After finishing the micro piece, I made a chart for the playoffs. I can't detail the whole event and keep reader interest. When I refer to it though, I want a cheat sheet so I can be accurate. Right now, I want to return to the television guys so they can detail the playoff structure for everyone. Then I'm going all the way to game seven of the World Series, which I'm calling the The World Championship. (This isn't Major League Baseball, and I don't want to step on their toes.) After that, I have one post-season tale that ties up some loose threads for my pseudo main character. Then it's done.
I might add another anthem piece, but it depends on how I feel after it's all assembled.
Many of you are writers, most of you are readers, here's a question for you. The Enhanced League is coming together with more micro-fiction than short stories. Would this be an issue to you as a reader? They all serve to tell a bigger tale as a sum than they do standing alone. This makes the book different than my Experimental Notebooks. Would you feel ripped off spending 99¢ on a book of mostly micro-fiction?
It's been pretty quiet in Cyberspace this week. I hope it all means you're tearing it up on your own projects, or doing something fun while I'm working. I'm not counting much on tomorrow, but may spend an hour with The Enhanced League. Yak Guy requires deeper thought, and after calling my parents I don't know how much time I want to dedicate before turning on all the pre-game stuff.
I want to end with Go Steelers, but that ship has sailed.
*Entertaining Stories, protecting my wife's identy since 2013.
Come visit me at Venture Galleries today.
Inside the Literary Mind of C. S. Boyack
JANUARY 19, 2017
CALEB PIRTLE III
Question: Tell me about your newest book and what was the inspiration behind your writing it?
Craig: I have a lot of projects going on, and this could be answered several ways. My last novel was The Playground. I wanted to weave together different viewpoints almost like a Frank Miller or Quentin Tarantino story. This one is paranormal though, and might appeal to some.
I also write a lot of short fiction. My last publication was a collection of short stories that include science fiction, paranormal, and fantasy tales. I tried to replicate the pulp era in some of them.
Lucky you, you've just landed on Lisa Burton Radio, the only show out there featuring the characters from the stories you love. I'm your host, Lisa the robot girl, and today we have an interesting fairytale princess with us today. “Welcome to the show, Anatar.”
“Thank you, Lisa of Burton. It's a pleasure to be here.”
“My bio says you and your sister Eletay were orphans. How does an orphan get to be a princess? Were your parents banished or something?”
“No secret heiresses here, I'm afraid. Our family lived in a small village outside Chantain. I was only seven when our parents died, and Ella was nine, so I don't remember much about what happened. We spent several months wandering and working for food when we could find anyone kind enough to let us stay.
“If we were able to improve our lot, it was because I saw opportunities and grabbed them. But what it really comes down to is me and Ella. All we had was each other.”
“It's nice to have that kind of relationship. At least you still have some family around. What's it like growing up in a castle? There must be some fancy shindigs and beautiful gowns involved.”
“Growing up in the castle? Interesting question. To be clear, Ella and I were servants in the castle then. I got caught stealing food and they made us stay and work. Ella was upset, but I prefer to think of it as one of the opportunities I jumped at.
“Anyway, the king at that time was actually not royalty, either. He was a magician who usurped the throne. People who made him angry would wind up turned into statues, so everyone was afraid of him. There wasn't much entertaining. The court was more oriented to running Chantain and rooting out the nobles who were in hiding.”
“So he turned them into statues? Why didn't he just have them stuffed and pose with his boot on them?”
“Because then you could only lord it over one victim at a time. The king had the statues of his victims all over the castle and grounds. Some of them were defiant, but most of them were pleading for their lives. It was pretty terrible, and nobody could avoid seeing them.
“Mine and Ella's job was to keep the prince entertained. He'd caught me stealing, you see, and he used that to make Ella do what he wanted. At first, when we were all young, he made us sing and dance, tell folk stories, play games. He also pinched us and made us eat things like raw lemons. The other servants resented us because they thought we had it easy. They gave us the worst jobs when we weren't with the prince. “
“Sounds like life at the castle wasn't easy.”
“Luckily, Ella had a way of making friends with people. We would always help people with their chores, when we could. One day, the old gardener took me aside and showed me a spot behind the hedges where I could listen at the usurper's window. He was giving the prince magic lessons, and I followed along. That was my second opportunity.”
“You little sneakthief you.”
“Well, I had to. As we grew older, the prince got strange around Ella. He always wanted to have his hands on her, and there were more psychological torments, too. We both knew we weren't safe in Chantain.”
“Did you ever have to, you know, whammy someone?”
“It did come to that, yes. Ella and I saved enough to try and find another position. When we told the prince, he was furious and tried to make Ella kiss him. There was a big fight. He turned Ella into a statue, and then I turned him into a statue and forced the usurper to restore Ella… It was a mess.”
“Wait, I need to make popcorn. Kidding!”
“I'll show you later. It's good that Eletay wasn't badly hurt, but it seems like the magician got what was coming. So, is that how you two became princesses?”
“Since the magician usurped first, I figured why not. The people in the castle liked us better than the king, especially Ella. We've been able to make it work.”
“Now your story appears in a collection of stories. What other kinds of characters might readers meet?”
“People might have an idea that fantasy is all about the beautiful, rich and famous, but it's a very broad genre. Some of the other stories feature a disabled soldier, a woman with dwarfism, and a kind-hearted servant boy. Not to mention the goblin, the donkey, and the dragons. Even those who may seem to be typical beautiful princesses don't sit and wait to be rescued. They step up for themselves.”
“As your own story demonstrates. Are these stories meant for adults or kids?”
“We do reach out to young readers, say eight to twelve years. The stories we tell our children become their dreams for tomorrow, so it's important to offer a rich array of possibilities. That said, fairy tales are a beloved art form. Any reader who loves fairy tales will enjoy this collection.”
“It sounds fabulous. My boss has a whole bunch of notes on fairy tale structure, and it's a great way to plan a story. Thanks so much for visiting with us today, and I hope your future is brighter than your past has been.”
“All my plans are for Chantain, to protect my sister's throne and help our country grow. But I'll still keep my eye out for the next great opportunity.”
“Our sponsor today is Aunt Ursula's Atlas, a collection of fantasy short stories by Lucy D. Ford. I'll provide all the links and details on the blog site. Don't forget to hit those sharing buttons on your way out! Lucy will thank you, and you'll want others to share when your characters appear here.”
Purchase hub on Draft 2 Digital: https://www.books2read.com/u/bxg6qP
Connects to Apple, Nook, Kobo, Scribd, 24 Symbols, Inktera, Angus & Robertson
Web Site: www.debyfredericks.com
Fantasy and Children's Writer
Children's Editor at Sky Warrior Books
My books: The Seven Exalted Orders, The Grimhold Wolf, Masters of Air & Fire from Sky Warrior
The Magister's Mask, Too Many Princes, The Necromancer's Bones from Dragon Moon
Welcome to another edition of Lisa Burton Radio. I'm your host, Lisa the robot girl, and with me today is author, James Ferris Wheeler. “Welcome to the show, James.”
“Thank you, Lisa. I feel very honoured to be invited by a charming celebrity like you.”
“Why, thank you. I understand that you just ordered a new suit. Can you tell our listeners why?”
“It is still hard to believe, Lisa. You must know, my previous books, well – they are good, and they sell. And I always craved for a little fame. What the readers say: 'Great books. Who wrote them? Sorry, that name slipped from my mind.' After years of writing one book after the other – my latest novel, “Dagger in the Rock” was nominated for the MFBS Award! The Most Fascinating Books Society is very fastidious and secretive about their nominations.”
“How exciting. This award sounds like a big deal. Tell our listeners something about it.”
“The award ceremony is going to be held in the Royal Hall at the famous Eden University. The TV crews are certainly already setting up their gear, proving once again that red carpet, purple drapes, and shimmering candelabras enhance this prestigious event. Evening attire is required, hence the new suit. Imagine – only the best authors receive a nomination. The respective winners receive a statuette and 100,000 GBP, and continuous news coverage.”
“Sounds like a great place for a red carpet broadcast. People in beautiful clothes entering a beautiful hall. I'll bet your wife is really excited for such a big event.”
“Angela is overjoyed! She knows how I feel after even the tiniest rejection. I tend to assume the worst, I get nervous without a reason, and Angela is there for me, she is my rock, she is my anchor. Ever since receiving the invitation – I am a nervous wreck.”
“Why would you need to keep it together? Most of the time a nomination is great publicity. Winning is awesome, but there are no losers.”
“I am an introvert. Meeting strangers gives me the creeps. It is devastating to know that my readers keep forgetting my name. Angela knows me, she knows how to lift my spirits. She is a real blessing. I have this recurring dream…We are at the award ceremony, and when it comes to my category, Georgia Cartwright opens the envelope, saying 'And the winner is…' – and I wake up before I know the winner's name. Angela keeps telling me to consider this a dress rehearsal. It helps – at least a little. I need to win – for my sanity. I don't want to be second-best for once.”
“Aww, poor baby. There are a lot of introverts in the writing business, and I work for one of the biggest ones you ever saw. You should be enjoying this moment and not dwelling on the actual award quite so much. It sounds like Angela's a keeper and you should listen to her.”
“I love Angela, my guardian angel. But you have to understand that there are a lot of great British writers out there. Some of them have been nominated for the umpteenth time! They know how to socialize, they know how to promote their work. You may now ask yourself why I can talk with you so freely. The answer is easy: The audience does not see me.”
“What if they wrote better stories? You've obviously been nominated, so your work is good too. At that level everything is subjective. Ask five different people, you'll get five different winners. So tell me about this suit. What did you order?”
“I selected a slightly shimmering slate grey one – it is accentuated by the silken bow tie Angela bought me. I have to look my best as the event is shown nation-wide.”
“Sounds very posh. What's Angela wearing?”
“Angela's wearing a charcoal grey dress with turquoise accents – she looks stunning in that dress!
“You don't understand how difficult it is being a fictional author. I thought Karen would never finish my story. Can you imagine that the kept interrupting my story due to her craving for coffee?! Did I mention that she was writing other stories in parallel? How dare she!”
“Oh, I get it. I'm a personal assistant to an author myself. We've had a guy living at the writing cabin for a year now, and his story still isn't finished. So when you talk about these other stories, it's probably a good time to mention this is a collection of short fiction.”
“Yes. There are 15 contemporary short fiction stories with paranormal streaks taking the readers to Boston, Dublin, Dundrum, Galway, Heidelberg, London, Munich, Nuremberg, Skerries, and other places. London, that's my story! The other stories introduce quit normal people and some strange occurrences:
– Rachel has a recurring nightmare. > poor woman!
– Madelyn and her marble. > has the poor girl lost her marbles?
– Jenny and the shadow. > why doesn't she switch the light on?
– Louise and her hunches. > has she visited the lady with the crystal ball?
– Ted and the noises. > try earwax, man!
– Dee and her prison. > poor woman – let her out!
– The heatwave in Willowsend. > a fictional town and a grandfather.
– Judy and her projections. > why don't you join a circus, girl?
– Joe and a voice. > hey Joe, keep cool.
– Roberta and Laura. > a multi-cultural encounter.
– Marty giving directions. > hey boy, it's great that you care.
– James Ferris Wheeler and the award. > my story – I'm so excited!
– Aoife at the Dundrum Town Centre. > hey lass – you're funny!
-The secret of the blue window – with two alternative endings.
These story variants are based on human curiosity. If I had seen that blue window – I would've wanted to find out why it is blue!”
“We love collections and anthologies around here too. They're getting really popular and I think you're going to be pretty successful. The anthology is called In a Small Compass: Volume One, and it's available right now. Pick up a copy for free and find out if James wins the MFBS award. I'll include all the details on the blog site. Any closing words, James?”
“Thank you so much for having me on your show, Lisa. It means a lot! And it helped in keeping my frustrating dream at bay. Have a lovely day.”
“Best of luck to James, and his lovely wife Angela. For Lisa Burton Radio, I'm Lisa Burton.
“Don't forget to hit those sharing buttons on your way out. It won't cost you a dime, and when your character is on the show you'll really appreciate it.”
In A Small Compass
15 contemporary short fiction stories with paranormal streaks take you on a journey to Boston, Dublin, Dundrum, Galway, Heidelberg, London, Munich, Nuremberg, Skerries, and other places.
Find out more about:
– Rachel and her nightmare.
– Madelyn and her marble.
– Jenny and the shadow.
– Louise and her hunches.
– Ted and the noises.
– Dee and her prison.
– The heatwave in Willowsend.
– Judy and her projections.
– Joe and a voice.
– Roberta and Laura.
– Marty giving directions.
– James Ferris Wheeler and the award.
– Aoife at the Dundrum Town Centre.
– The secret of the blue window – with two alternative endings.
Karen was born in Central Europe, discovering her love for languages at an early age. She is a linguist, translator, and technical author; writing is done in her spare time. She spends her time mainly in Germany and Ireland, collecting her inspirations on the go.
Her stories comprise some hobbies, favourite locations, animals, topics, beverages, etc. Most of the locations do exist; pubs and/or shops might be gone; people are fictional unless stated otherwise.
+++ Upcoming: “Neighbors!” (a flash fiction series) +++
Karen's personal motto:
Don’t look back in anger!
Karen's 10 statements
A typical work day begins with… black coffee and my schedule.
I lose track of time… when I am reading.
I have always… wanted to live in Ireland.
I have never… been bored.
Home means to me… being with the ones I love.
I am inspired by… almost everything.
I would like to meet… (and discuss with) the Dalai Lama.
My worst character trait… impatience.
My best character trait… open-mindedness.
The best advice I was given… keep an open mind.
Buy/download links: http://books2read.com/u/m0zodW