Black Friday / Cyber Monday Sale

b-is-for-broken Kobo sale

For this week only, B is for Broken is on sale for $0.99!

So you can get 26 awesome stories for less than a buck… I mean, that’s like, what? Four cents a story or something? Pretty tough to beat 🙂 Treat yourself to an escape from the post-election, holiday season–you’ve earned it! (Do I sound like a Nice ‘n Easy commercial? I mean… it worked for them, right? LOL)

Get B is for Broken now!

Kobo

Amazon

And if you’ve already read B is for Broken, would you do me a favour? Leave it an honest review on Amazon and/or Goodreads? Your two sentences and some stars could really help this anthology out.

 

Eric Hill from Boston, MA, USA - Poppies in the Sunset on Lake Geneva

Remembrance Day

Eric Hill from Boston, MA, USA - Poppies in the Sunset on Lake Geneva I wanted to post something for today, Remembrance Day, but I was at a loss for what. I didn’t have it in me to write something personal and profound, but I really felt–especially given the events of this week–that something needed to be said. To be shared.

Then I learned of the passing of Leonard Cohen.

I can think of nothing more appropriate to share on this day than this video of Leonard Cohen reciting “In Flanders Fields” by John McRae.

 

I remember.

Equus Update

Beautiful blonde woman with horse in the field, effect of toningI wanted to be sure and give at least one more update about the state of submissions to Equus before the submission window closed. As we inch closer and closer to that date, I figured now would be a good time for that 🙂

As I write this there are several unread submissions in the queue waiting my attention so if you read this and think, “Wait! She just said she hasn’t seen [This particular thing] but that’s totally what my story is about!”, take a deep breath and smile. It just means I haven’t read your story yet, but when I do I will probably be pleasantly surprised.

I still haven’t seen the volume of submissions I’d have liked (about 63 in total so far–including those I haven’t read), but if history chooses to repeat itself there will be a big spike toward the end of this month. If you want to beat the rush I recommend submitting before the final week if you can.

My shortlist is very short, and so far it only contains creatures that we would describe either as ‘horses’ or ‘unicorns’. There are no donkeys, zebras, centaurs, kelpies, hippocamp, Pegasus, trojan horses, hippogriffs, longmas, pookas, Uchchaihshravas or… well, something you’ve totally created that no one else has already given a name to. I want this anthology to represent as wide a range of horse-like creatures as it possibly can, so if you’re stuck for something to write about you can increase your chances of inclusion by choosing something outside the obvious. This is not to say you shouldn’t write a horse or unicorn story if that is what you are inspired to write, but if you want to submit but are still looking for inspiration, I’d suggest looking at some of the less used horse-like creatures for ideas.

As I mentioned in my last update from the slush pile, all the stories on my short list are currently what I would describe as ‘fantasy’. And I love fantasy, don’t get me wrong, but I’d also like to see some science fiction horses. Or steampunk (or dieselpunk, or solarpunk!) horses. Noir horses. Mystery horse. Or even horror horses (nightMARE anyone?).

Submissions are open until the end of this month, so there is still time for you to conceive of, write, polish and send me your best Equus story. And I hope you will.

I’ll be spending a lot of time reading submissions toward the end of this week so if you’ve submitted and are waiting to hear back from me, thank you for your patience. If you haven’t submitted yet, now is a great time to change that. 🙂

Equus Submissions Banner

“Funny” NaNoWriMo Story

nanowrimo_2016_webbanner_participant

I’m participating in NaNoWriMo again this year. The project I’m working on is strongly related to the one I wrote last year so I was poking through last year’s file to find a character’s name, actually, when I came across something that made me laugh. I didn’t laugh in the “OMG that is SO funny!” kind of way, nor was it the “I need to laugh or I’m going to cry” kind of way… but it was something smack dab right in the middle of those two things.

What I found, right in the middle of my NaNoWriMo project from last year was this (edited for length and secrecy):

Why is today so hard?

I got a really good sleep last night and then I opened up my email and there was good news there–Book Bub Deal!! Whoot! And also there was evidence of all the hard work I’ve been doing over the past months and years. There were story submissions and edits, and copy edits and updates on the project I’ve a novel contracted to and… fuck. It shouldn’t be this hard. On a day when all the mail is good, when there’s evidence that I’m doin’ it right–editing, writing, publishing. When my Facebook messages are filled with .gifs from Dani that scream about the positive relationship we have, and…

Why is it so hard?

Today of all days?

Why am I sitting at my computer with burning eyes trying not to cry?

Is it because of the debate/discussion/argument/whatever on my Facebook page about the new cabinet? That thing has spawned so many threads and tangles and tendrils that I can’t even begin to keep track of it anymore. But surely it’s not that, debate, discussion, these are good things. Healthy things.

Is it because of the deadlines that are looming over my head like a Greek (Damocles was Greek, right?) guy’s sword? That wouldn’t make much sense, really. Last month was the crazy one for deadlines. This month I’ve only got…. well, there are a few but the Chimera timetable is my own, so it’s not completely inflexible, and we’re at the final stages of [Pen Name Project]–though I sure do wish everyone would get me their contracts so we could make announcements and stuff, and [author] has [Novel my alter ego edited] now, so that’s totally out of my hands…

Maybe it’s the blog tour. Maybe that wasn’t such a great idea, especially as something I’d have to put together in November, NaNoWriMo month….

Or–and this is probably it–maybe it’s the fact I, for some god awful reason, thought it would be a good idea to do two NaNoWriMos. Two. Including one that is non-fiction–which, by the way, I’m going to find some way to count these words toward. What was I thinking? Holy shit.

I can totally catch up on [Pen Name]’s NaNo word count, I think I’ll even manage to pull off a win there… but then, of course, that just gives me a bunch more stories of hers that need to be edited [Redacted because boring and rambling]

…but December is also royalty month and there ought to be something there for me, if only from FAE. Plus, I’ll get a chance to see how the other two books are doing–

Maybe this is the thing. I say stuff like, “I can handle anything except uncertainty” but I live in a world of uncertainty. I mean, we all do, really, but perhaps people who do what I do have got a bit more of it than the average bear. Between the uncertainty of whether something will be accepted, or well-received, or sell or whatever… and the uncertainty of paying my expenses, and the un–

Nah. I think that’s a cop out.

I think, really, I’ve just taken on too much. Again.

I don’t just have a pen name with [redacted], I have a whole other identity. I’m trying to be two people at the same time, but I’m just one. Just one body. Just one brain. Just one lifetime. The obvious answer would be to cut back there, give her less time in my day, but I really LIKE her, I like the work I do as her. But I like Rhonda too…

I guess I’ll have to try and cut back on commitments. I can be two people if both of those people aren’t trying to be human dynamos. Next year should be a bit more sane in regard to things (though I probably said that last year, too, didn’t I?). But next year I only have [Redacted], Sirens, [Redacted], [Redacted]–

Oh my God. It’s freaking crazy.

Okay. No more new things.

All those projects on my white board? They are just going to have to stay there as ‘Future’ projects until I get something done and out the door. No. Two somethings. For every two somethings I clear completely off my list (that means published and the initial burst of promotion done) I can consider starting a new thing.

If I’m not feeling overwhelmed.

If my brain isn’t reminding me of the confetti that is falling on my screen right now*.

Then I can take on something new.

So why is today so hard? Who knows. Does it matter? Probably not. Just pick something you can do, and do it. Keep plodding away at writing things, working toward those NaNo goals because at least that’s a thing you can cross off your list when you’re done.

Control what you can, and let go what you can’t. Oh. And make all of this some sort of weird internal monologue for [Character] so that you can count it toward your NaNo goal. It’s a bit cheaty, but fuck it. Quantity over quality, right? That’s the motto.

Yeah.

 

Alone photograph by Rhonda Parrish

The struggle is real, dudes. And the more things change the more they stay the same… LOL

*I was typing on a webpage that put celebratory confetti all over your screen once you hit your word goal for the day

2016 Giftmas Blog Tour

2016 Giftmas Blog Tour Information & Sign-up

2016 Giftmas Blog Tour

When I was a kid money was tight but the food bank was there to help make ends meet–especially during the time my mom was a single mother of three. We were lucky in that we didn’t need to use it regularly, but every year we received a ‘Christmas hamper’ and they really made the holidays shine. There was always a big turkey, for starters, and then the rest of the contents were like an amazing surprise bag of food. I still remember the excitement I felt pulling things out of the box with my mom and either cheering or groaning. “Yay! Candy!” or “Eww… escargo? Who eats snails?” (Give me a break, I was a kid).

These days I’m in a much better position financially, but that’s not true of everyone. In fact, given the fire in Fort Mac, the current economic state in Alberta and the influx of Syrian refugees, I’d guess that more families than ever are going to need help from the food bank to make their holidays awesome. So this year, I’m dedicating my annual Giftmas Blog Tour to food–sharing favourite family recipes and collecting donations for the Edmonton Food Bank.

Although my fundraising page is open to donations now, at this point I’m primarily looking for people to participate in the blog tour.

What Is Required:

Participants will be asked to write two blog posts — one to appear on their own webpage, blog or social media page* and one to appear on another participant’s webpage, blog or social media.

  • Blog posts will be between 200 – 750 words long and include (at a minimum)
    • a story about food during the holidays and/or a favourite family recipe from the holidays.
    • a Giftmas Blog Tour graphic
    • a link to the Edmonton Food Bank fundraiser page for this event
  • Including a short biography with links to your website or work is encouraged.

Participants will be asked to host two blog posts — one that they have written themselves and one that another participant has written.

  • I will need your permission to give your email address to the person you will be hosting so they can email you their blog post.
  • Posting days will be determined ahead of time. You will absolutely get to provide input on when you post.

Timeline:

Sign-ups will be open until November 23rd.
The posting schedule will be determined by November 30th.
Guest blogs will be due to their host by December 3rd. (Participants are encouraged to write these early. Especially since December tends to be a busy month for many people.)
The blog tour runs from December 5th – December 12th.

To Sign-Up:

 

**Sign-ups are now closed. Thank you!**

*This is a new thing I’m trying out. Your chosen media platform will have to allow for blog-length posts so, for example, while Goodreads or a Facebook Page could work, Twitter most certainly would not