Monthly Archives: February 2014

Is Your Subconscious Mind Setting You Up for Failure?

Well THIS was eye-opening. I think I understand now why I’m having these motivation issues. Thanks, Kristen!

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Image courtesy of Cellar Door Films WANA Commons Image courtesy of Cellar Door Films WANA Commons

In my last post we discussed striving to find balance and giving ourselves permission to be imperfect. This brought about some interesting discussion and I’d like to expound. I confess. Americans are notorious for “shortening” the language.

We use a lot of words as synonyms when, truth be told, they aren’t. Or we have “blanket words” which mask truth, thus prevent us from making progress in life, with relationships, our career or even ourselves.

As writers, we of all people should appreciate the power of words. We have the ability to create entire new worlds that could possibly endure hundreds or thousands of years…all by using various combinations of symbols. Words have creative and destructive power. This is true in non-fiction, fiction and in life.

When I began college, I was on scholarship to become a doctor, thus spent over three years…

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WIPpet Wednesday: The Not-So-Triumphant Return

So I’m working in Word now. Yaaay.

No, I don’t mind not being able to jump to whatever chapter and scene I want, like I can in Scrivener. Scrolling is fun. *eyelid twitch*

Many thanks to everyone who has helped me figure things out so far (like how to highlight the whole document so I could format– never picked that trick up on my own). I think I have it formatted correctly for editing. Now I just need to finish this read-through, and wait for my editor to say that it’s time.

For WIPpet Wedensday, here’s the last twelve lines (in my WordPress editor, anyway) that I read over. The math? 26th, minus 14 for the year. Because I’m reasonable like that.

Oh, context… mer man (hello!) was just visiting with Aren and Rowan, and he and Aren (POV character in this scene) are trying to figure out how to help Rowan. Kel (mer dude) is getting ready to change forms and go back to the water. Aren is refusing to acknowledge that he has feelings for Rowan, because… well, long story.

We reached the dock, and he stepped out of his clothes and handed them to me. I put everything in one of the wooden crates in case he needed it again.

Kel looked out over the dull gray water. “Try to be honest with yourself about what you’re feeling for her.”

“I don’t—”

He held up one hand to stop me. “I know, you don’t want to. It’s against your family’s religion or something.”

“No, I mean I can’t let anything like that happen. I told her I’d try to help her. You know as well as I do that she’s not safe as long as she’s with me.”

Kel looked back at me and raised an eyebrow. “You think safe is what she wants?” I didn’t answer. I had no idea what she wanted, and I doubted she knew, either. “I’ll see what I can do for her, if you’re sure that’s what’s best. It’ll be up to her, though.”

“Of course. Thank you.” I turned and walked back up the path, and heard Kel splash into the water behind me. I suddenly felt more alone than I had since I was a child, and hurried toward the light of the house.

Yes, there’s quite a bit of casual nudity in this book, what with people changing physical forms and all. I haven’t had any complaints so far.  😉

For more WIPpet Wednesday goodness, stop by and see our host KL Schwengel and click on the link near the top right corner to find everyone else.


Like I said, I’m just trying to be ready to send this thing off. After that, I’ll be reading, and going back to that plan of trying to finish Resurrection. I’m feeling a little better about things than I was a few days ago. I just wish I enjoyed challenges more, you know? I’m happiest when things are easy and I can be lazy.

There, I said it. I wish I were different, but that’s me. I haaate challenges. Does that mean I get bonus points for going ahead with one?

I think I need to get back to working in my office. I’ve been upstairs too much lately. Need my own space.

Um… I think that’s it for my update, actually. Oh, but in other news, Krista Walsh’s Evensong is on sale for 99 cents this week for e-books. If you haven’t got it yet and think you might be interested in a fantastic fantasy adventure that involves an author being transported into the world he writes about (and facing the characters lives he’s been ruining), go get it now! Links here. It’s a great read, well worth a buck and a few hours of your time.


Keeping an Eye on Indie ReCon

Keeping busy. Yep, thaaaat’s the plan. Fortunately for me, I have plenty to keep me occupied at the moment. As I mentioned yesterday, I’m participating in an online course to learn more about Scrivener, my favourite software IN THE WHOLE WIDE WORLD. So far, so good– two classes down, homework done, no major issues. Yippee!

The other thing that’s happening right now is Indie ReCon. For anyone who hasn’t heard about this, it’s a free (FREE!!!) online conference that’s alllll about independent pulishing: the hows, the whys, the what-the-heck-am-I-doings. They’ve got guest speakers, chats, webinars, articles… probably no dancing bears, but you never know. The full schedule is here, and like I said, it’s free. I plan on dropping by frequently.

Oh, and prizes. There are giveaways during every event, and a grand prize of a Kobo Aura with BOOKS.

Today was day one (and only running until the 27th), so it’s not too late to get caught up. The full schedule is here. Plan accordingly.

Susan Kaye Quinn* contributed a webinar video thingamabobber on facing your fears (click here), which I really enjoyed. It seemed relevant to my interests, considering yesterday’s terrified confusion and brainsplosion.

I think this is going to be good.

*Author of the fantastic Indie Author Survival Guide, which I’ve mentioned here before. Really useful.

Birthday Breakdown and the Rest of the What’s-Uppage

Caution: Here be self pity. SLAP ME ALREADY.

Some of you may have noticed that I’ve been sort of kind of a little bit not here so much lately.

No hard feelings if you haven’t.

I haven’t done a ROW80 update in a while, haven’t participated in WIPpet Wednesday for a few weeks. Mostly it’s because I have nothing to share or update. I’m stuck. Frozen. Dead in the water. THE THINGS THEY ARE NOT GOING SO GOOD IN MY BRAIN-HOLE is what I’m saying. I can’t write, can’t even make sense of my own work when I read over it, can’t focus, can’t brain today I have the dumb, what have you. Can’t think of much to write about here, obviously.

Maybe it’s the pressure. My editor was sick, but he should be ready for me to send my manuscript soon (hence the reading over for continuity issues after I made changes). I’m honestly terrified that I’m going to get this thing back with nothing but a message that says “this is crap, try again.”* Now, that would work out to be less expensive for me than an actual edit, but it might not be the best thing for my spirit. Or my career. Or my sanity.

I can’t read blogs about publishing right now. Thinking about formatting is giving me stomach issues. Celebrating friends’ successes is still making me happy, but I can’t think about my own work right now. I’m thiiiiis close to saying screw it, I didn’t need to follow that dream, I’m fine, it was a stupid idea anyway and wasn’t likely to come to anything because I lack guts and persistence and other good stuff.

I won’t, because momentum, but it’s a thought.

Oh, and I’m looking at eighteen-year-olds on Twitter who finished a draft of a novella and are like “I AM THE BEST WRITERER EVER AND AM GOING TO MAKE A BRAZILLION DOLLARS WHEN I PUBLISH THIS NEXT WEEK WHO WANTS TO PHOTOSHOP ME A COVER LOLZ” and wonder where I can get some of that confidence (if not some of that business sense, because that sounds like a bad plan to me). Because I feel like a bad writerer right now.

I’m going insane, basically.

On top of that, AJ is going through a really bad time at work. He doesn’t take it out on me or the kids, but it’s still one more thing that I’m worried about, and it means that I can’t really talk to him about my self-imposed issues. Because really, I’ve brought this all on myself, so what right to I have to gripe? Well, except here…


In other news, I turned 33 yesterday. I can’t really take credit for this achievement, as I wasn’t responsible for bringing myself into the world and I’m fairly risk-averse, so survival was likely… but I’m still really happy about this turn of events. Another spin around the sun is definitely something to celebrate, and too many people don’t get to enjoy lives as long as I’ve had. I got to see both of my parents on my birthday for the first time in years, got a FaceTime call from my extended family in Ontario (and they sang “Happy Birthday” to me, which made me cry), spent 6 hours driving (not the most fun part), saw a juvenile bald eagle (which I count as a gift from Mother Nature, because why not), had a lovely evening… good times. OH, and epic cutie-pie Sidney Crosby scored a goal in the final hockey game of the Olympics, and I’m pretty sure that was just for me.

On every birthday I declare that THIS is going to be my year, the year when I do things and make things happen and yadda yadda. Maybe this is it. Or maybe every year just builds on the one before, and there is no one year.

Time will tell, I guess. Until then, I’m going to keep on going. I’m starting an online course today about using Scrivener. It’s my favourite writing software, but I only understand its most basic features and would like to know more. This won’t help with the fact that I need to learn how to use Word and track changes for editing (Help? Anyone?), but it will help when it comes time to publish. I have a friend’s book I promised to look over, and I’ll get to that once this ms has gone to the butcher editor. I’ll have a cover artist starting soon, which might be a nice distraction. And there are projects lined up, begging for attention…

It’s not that there’s nothing to do, it’s just that I can’t do it.

Except that I will. I’m just going to keep going and trust that things are going to get better. That’s a good plan, right?


*To be fair to my editor, he would probably phrase it more nicely, as a shit sandwich. You know, where you frame the harsh bits in niceness. Like, “This was an interesting effort. But it sucks. Hey, I saw a picture of your cat and she’s really cute.” BECAUSE THOSE ARE THE NICEST THINGS HE WILL BE ABLE TO FIND TO SAY.


Just to be clear: I friggin’ love sneezing. I sneeze big, and I’m not ashamed of that. I like the floopy-headedness that follows a good nosesplosion, and the way it sometimes leads to feeling less stuffy, even if only for a few minutes.

But this week, man… I’ve got this cold, and I’ve had a runny nose since Friday. It’s been kind of miserable, but I’ve been keeping my chin up (if only so that the drip stays post-nasal). I’ve been pretty cheerful about the whole thing. I try not to feel sorry for myself about a little cold, even if it makes me feel like my brain is bathing in snot, you know?


You’re welcome.

But now there’s this tickle way up in my right nostril that WON’T DIE. No matter how many times it makes me sneeze, or how hard, it just comes back. It was fun at first, because WHEE, SNEEZLES! Ha ha, cute.

Not so much anymore.

Guys, it’s like those people who have spontaneous orgasms all the time. You hear about it, and you’re like “Sign me up for THAT disorder!” and you probably high-five yourself because that was super clever. Yeah, it sounds great… until you’re the one stuck exploding five times in the middle of Walmart, and everyone is staring at you, and IT’S NOT ALL THAT FUN ANYMORE.

There is literally no point to this post. I just kind of wanted to touch base and gross you all out a little, because I love you.

You can thank you when I’m clear-headed enough to understand you.

EVENSONG: Release & Giveaway

Today’s the day! Congratulations, Krista. Everyone else, go get it! Only 99 cents for a limited time.


The Rooster Goes Moo


If only there had been some farm animal with three letters in its name that they could have used as a title…

Welcome Back to Vampireland, Population Me. Kind Of.

In which I’m somewhat incoherent and write in the least-formal manner possible because I’m getting a cold and am kinda woozy-like. Don’t judge me. I’m a good writerer, really.

So, you might remember the story on what’s happening with that whole vampire thing. Good stuff, but I’m not back at it yet, as I had a brilliant idea regarding another project that I had to take care of, and then I had no time for anything.

Maybe not brilliant so much as fixing what ain’t broke, but that’s what happened. And I had to plan this other thing, and write a book review, and… you know. Stuff.

So for WIPpet Wednesday, here’s five sentences for the fifth of February, from the last scene I wrote in Resurrection before I was a big stupid poopy head and didn’t finish it. *kicks past me in the hypothetical nards*

Shivva (vampire) and Daniel (also a vampire, who you might remember from here and here) just fed at the club, and are looking for somewhere to be alone together.

I’m used to being here with Daniel my trainer, not Daniel who’s amazing in bed. And shower. And floor. And… oh, a meeting room. That’ll do.

Whatever works, Shivva.

Want more from the WIPpeteers? Mosey on over to the linkie and check them out. Just don’t go dragging them into any meeting rooms (or showers, or…). I can’t guarantee you’ll make it out alive.

Oh, and say hi to our host, KL Schwengel, will you? I sort of convinced her to sign up for Pinterest. We might need to pull her out of that black hole.


Wednesday also means updates on A Round of Words in 80 Days, the writing challenge that likes to pretend that I have a life. HA!

I got nuthin’. I mean, I’m doing stuff, but nothing worthy of AN OFFICIAL UPDATE.

So… Yeah, we’ll catch up on Sunday.


Book Review: Evensong (Meratis Trilogy #1), by Krista Walsh


Half of me thinks I should have written this review as soon as I finished reading the book, when the details were clear and the excitement fresh.

The other half remembers that if I’d done that, I’d have been a babbling idiot whose train of thought jumped tracks every few lines, and it wouldn’t have made any sense.

Looks like rationality (such as it is in my mind) won out over enthusiasm this time, if only because I wanted to wait until purchase links were available. You’re all very welcome.

So, Evensong.

Much as I love reading things my friends (real-life or blog) have written, I’m often wary of promising to review things. I’m an honest reviewer, but I don’t like giving less than four stars. This means I get to be all gushy and enthusiastic when I love something (four stars is a “love” from me, BTW. Five just has that extra je ne sais quoi that makes the story eat my brain so that I can’t put it down). It puts me in a difficult spot, though, when a book is good-but-not-quite-there, and I can’t in good conscience give more than three stars. Normally, I just don’t review, but when you promise to do it…

You can see where my reluctance comes from.

But then here comes this Krista Walsh character, and she’s all, “Hey, I’m looking for people to read this ARC and review,” and I’m all, “Hey, that book actually sounds kind of wicked…”

And friends, I was NOT disappointed. All of the stars. *throws them at KWalsh*)

Evensong is the story of Jeff Powell, a fantasy author who gets sucked into his work far more literally than most of us do and becomes trapped there. He meets his characters, who are even more badass, clever, strong and real than he’d ever imagined them, and has to help them out of a mighty sticky situation while trying to figure out whether all of the crap-storm they’re dealing with is actually his fault.

It’s fun, it’s fascinating, it made me laugh and cry. Oh, and it made me absolutely terrified of what I’m planning to do to a few of my own characters in the future. I mean, yes, this is the mark of a great storyteller. Krista Walsh and her characters got into my head and messed me up. I’m scared to write, now, because WHAT IF I’M ACTUALLY HURTING MY PRECIOUS PEOPLE.

I’m not entirely sure I appreciate that, but I can’t fault her for it.

I don’t want to give spoilers. The only other thing I’ll say is that I’m CRAZY HAPPY that Krista Walsh is publishing these books herself, because that means I don’t have to wait FOREVER to get the next one!

Now, you’re all going to have to hold onto your panties just a little longer, because the book’s not officially out until February 10. Here are your purchase links for when the time comes:


AMAZON.CA  (Did I mention Krista Walsh is Canadian? *chilly high five!*)

KOBO (That’s right, she’s not neglecting you. GO BUY)

B & N *

Mark your calendars. Read. Enjoy.

*Y’know, for your Nook. Your Nook e-book reader. YOUR NOOKIE BOOK READER.

ROW80 Update: WTF, Past Me? Edition

Well, I figured out what to do with myself. I started reading over Resurrection, and had happy times all over the place. And then I got the the part where it stopped RATHER abruptly, and screamed at Past Me for not just finishing it so Present Me could ENJOY IT IS THAT SO MUCH TO ASK?

Apparently, yes.

So I’m going to have to finish that up, if only to satisfy myself (and anyone who wants to volunteer to beta read approximately 40,000 words of vampires, addicted victims, gory crime scenes, snappy banter, betrayals and sex. No fun at all, really. First chapter’s here, BTW)

I think that Cinderella story just got them back into my blood.

ROW80 Update:


  • New goals as of last Wednesday: Plan out the rest of Resurrection. COMPLETED.

Oh, I planned it. It took an hour, five pages in my notebook, a lot of work on my dry-erase board and a few slams of my head into a wall to clear it, but I did it. Guys… it was so good I wanted a cigarette after. Then I remembered that I’ve never smoked, so I settled for a Fruit Roll-Up instead*. It was fantastic.

I always knew how this one was going to end, but didn’t know how to get there. I do now.

  • New goal as of today: Finish first draft of Resurrection by the end of February. I only have two hours per weekday day to work this month, but that’s okay. I should be able to do this. My husband might lose me for a few evenings, but this is going to happen.

Oh, and this week I also kinda sorta found a cover designer for Bound and got that information sent off so she can start in March, NO BIG DEAL.


Read “Under the Empyrean Sky” by Chuck Wendig. SO GOOD. The concept (agricultural dystopia, creepy-ass GMO corn, oppressed people and flying cities) is fantastic, and the story lives up to its ideas. I’ll get a review up on Goodreads soon.

LIFE- Goes on. I can’t talk about it. I have vampires in my head.

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