Log in

No account? Create an account
14 December 2017 @ 01:51 pm
Just put up two "Further Adventures" onto Amazon and Smashwords.

I don't know why, but the activity always fills me with anxiety.

"Karate Masters vs the Invaders From Outer Space" is Antryg and Joanna lending a hand as extras in a low-budget schlockfest martial-arts movie - only to discover that someone or something from another dimension is out to destroy everyone in the project. I must say I had a hoot writing it, and an even greater hoot painting the cover.

"Hag in the Water" is John and Jenny - mostly John, because when the gnome wizards of Ylferdun Deep come looking for Jenny to help solve the murder of one of their number, she's out of town. In spite of the fact that, as he says, there are pigs on his farm with more magic than he has, John steps in to help solve the crime.

These should be up - Amazon and Smashwords assure me - within 72 hrs.

Merry Christmas!

I have been, by the way, struggling with stress and minor health issues - knees and back - which slow me down. But I'm off teaching until early February, and hope to be back at least a little more regularly here, between starting new projects.
04 April 2017 @ 09:24 am
Open Road E-Book Sale!
Open Road, the e-publisher which handles both my digital backlist and that of George Alec Effinger, is having a sale in April.
On April 6, The Silent Tower will be available for $1.99 in the US.
George’s short novel Death in Florence will be downpriced to $2.99 on April 20.
The same day, April 20, the Sun Wolf and Starhawk series (Ladies of Mandrigyn, Witches of Wenshar, Dark Hand of Magic) will all be $2.99 across the US.
The series will go on sale for the equivalent of $2.99 in Australia, Canada, the UK and India on April 26.
Dragonsbane will be $1.99 on April 29.
They tell me that all these one-day sales will be featured in various e-pub newsletters (BookBub, Early Bird Books, etc), but keep an eye out at Open Road.
24 December 2016 @ 05:19 pm
Christmas Eve, as a difficult and painful year is ending. Windy here, and chilly for California (my friend Laurie, who grew up in the Bitterroot Mountains of Idaho in a cabin which was heated only by a wood-stove, sneers at me if I say, "It's cold."). I look forward to a quiet evening watching something simple and pleasant on TV - "American Graffiti," or possibly "Godzilla" - and rising early to do the Family Thing: the first Christmas without my Dad.

I will tender my usual apologies for not being better about posting this year. I feel a bit like I've fallen off the planet, and have not seen nearly as much of my friends as I'd wish, something I'll try to remedy in the new year. I find I'm still not back to 100% of my energy after having pneumonia almost two years ago (my friends who've also done that have warned me this is perfectly usual); I get tired more easily, and am grossly behind on my writing, mostly due to losing the summer to Dad's illness. I don't go back to teaching until February 6, so with luck will catch myself up. I'm pleased - and mildly surprised - that I DID complete a book this year, the World War One Zombie Apocalypse novel "Pale Guardian," (7th in the Asher and Ysidro series) which, people tell me, is already on sale in the U.K., so I'm looking forward to getting copies any time. I also managed to do a couple of novelettes for Amazon, including a Ben January story involving the infamous Moon Hoax of 1837. Again, with luck, I hope to get a couple more up early in the new year.

Many thanks for your patience and support. I wish all my friends here a happy holiday - I would say the cats with you one also, but that would be a lie and you all probably know it. The cats don't give a crap about anything but their dinner. (They'll all spend the day in lock-down tomorrow, and serve them right).

Merry Christmas to all, and to all good-night.
18 October 2016 @ 10:11 pm
Wow, thanks for the prompt and excellent replies to my pistol question.
The main thing I needed to know was, Was this thing really a thing? I read about it on-line, and it sounded so weird that I needed a little corroborative evidence. (My niece tells me she actually held one).
Thank you, Ross TenEyck for the link to the site! Badgermirlacca, thank you, but it looks like I won't need to be questing further.
I still think it sounds really weird, but at least nobody's going to be e-mailing me with "That's just an urban legend" or "I'm a major gun expert and I've NEVER heard of such a thing."
Bless you, one and all!
18 October 2016 @ 03:28 pm
A question to the Group Mind.
I need information - for purposes of the plot - about rare old guns. Specifically, about a kind of small "ladies' pistol" of the 18th century whose barrel - at least according to the article I read on-line - was screwed onto the frame of the gun, AFTER the load was placed. (Of course, like all 18th-century firearms, you could only shoot the thing once before you had to re-load).

Does anybody know about these things? (We're into REAL antiquarian territory here).
06 September 2016 @ 10:17 am
Settling into the "new normal" after a difficult and tiring summer which has left me - among other things - grossly behind in my work. I am teaching two classes this semester, working on the next Ben January novel (the first of a two-book contract which was one of the positive things about the summer), and trying to find time to do the next Further Adventures tales. I'm still also trying to finish a fantasy novel, and am shuffling around with two Further Adventures serialized novels, which, as I recall, Further Adventures fans said they'd be open to, even though they WOULD be serialized. (And there's always those seven or eight historical romance mysteries floating in the background, that I've been trying to get to for YEARS).

I will be Guest of Honor at Con-Dor in San Diego, March 3-5, and will also be a minor, local-talent guest at Gallifrey One 17-19 Feb (and am trying to get into the Art Show again).

I had my birthday and used part of my birthday money to get a new crop of weird t-shirts to wear to teach in. I have finally been able to steal a couple of hours here and there to get back to painting. I did sleep a lot.
09 August 2016 @ 10:45 am
MANY thanks, by the way, to all who assisted with information on the whole "What was the rank of the Quartermaster-Sergeant's store assistant?" issue. It was most helpful! Bless you all!
09 August 2016 @ 10:43 am
Well, the bad news was that the alternator, battery, and belt were all bad and need replacing.
The good news is that the car didn't quit on me until I pulled into my driveway last night.
So, I'm as happy as I can be under the circumstances. It should be done by the time I need to leave to meet friends for a twilight picnic at the Hollywood Bowl to listen to an all-Mozart concert under the stars. If one is scheduled by Fate for Car Trouble, this is a fairly painless way to get it checked off.
Still working on the revisions of Pale Guardian - and the online certification class that the community college district (or possibly the State - I'm not sure where these orders come from) is requiring me to take - and prepping for classes which start in less than three weeks (and so far the adjuncts - of whom I am one - don't have either offices or telephones on campus) - and trying to work my way back to the next Benjamin January AND the next couple of Further Adventures.
It has been a massively difficult summer.
04 August 2016 @ 11:54 am
First, my apologies for not posting in awhile. My father passed away on the 22nd of July - it's been a difficult time.

Second, I am finally able to start the editorial-notes revision of Pale Guardian (Asher/Ysidro # 7), though it's still a bit hard to concentrate. (I am also taking a certification course for my teaching, NOT what I'd rather be doing at this point, but necessary to earning a living).

Third - Does anybody know what the rank of a Quartermaster's Clerk in the British Army would be, in 1915? I'd guessed a Corporal (since the guy who did the actual Quartermaster job in a regiment was a Sergeant), but the editor is asking, "Could you confirm that?" Anybody know where I could look for the answer?

MANY thanks!
13 July 2016 @ 04:16 pm
A day of first draft. Any historical is research-heavy, which means first draft is very slow: 4th of July Parade in New Orleans, 1839 (did they have 4th of July parades? Look up). From where to where? (Jackson Square to Lee Circle, which was Tivoli Circle in 1839, and what did it look like? Where there trees there?) Picnic later... Where would the free colored burial society have their picnic? (Congo Square, probably...) What did Congo Square look like in 1839? (More look up. Dig out maps) When did they tear down the city walls? (More maps. More look up). How has Ben January's neighborhood changed in the 7 years he's been back from France? (More look up). How has the massive economic depression affected black neighborhoods?

And we're only a paragraph in.

AND half the story takes place in France nine years previously, so the whole process has to be repeated with Paris (how far had the Rue de Rivoli extended into the old medieval neighborhood along the river by 1830? What was the Pont au Change called back then? The French have a nasty habit of a) cutting new streets through Paris and b) changing the names of existing streets). And where was the guillotine set up at that time? (I now know a LOT about the care and operation of guillotines).

And I need to get as far into the first draft as I can by August 29th, which is when the semester starts and I will be doing this in between teaching and some truly exhausting driving, not to speak of my father's illness which is absorbing a great deal of time and energy from everyone in the family. No wonder I want to sleep all the time.