Tag Archives: short story

New Story: Threads

I meant to do this last week but… *eyes self* Yeah. I need to get my stuff together over here. Anywho, yes, there is a new story available on Kindle!

Threads is one of my attempts at playing with Greek myths, transporting them into modern times or other such weird quirkiness. I have plans to do something with the Minotaur myths, Selene and Endymion, and then from there we’ll see. It is definitely the more romantic/sickly sweet of the them, though then again, Selene and Endymion keep trying to get a piece of that action too… *whacks at them*

There were a couple of quirks with writing it. One was trying to write flirting. This is where being a social hermit finally bit me in the butt. I tend to get friends by accident rather than by any conscious choice, and if I’ve flirted with anyone, it’s gone right over my head (a trait that Katherine inherits). Thank God I had Mel to help get Zag and Katherine going. After that, I managed on my own fairly well. I really focused on the feelings I wished I experienced when I was her age, or even that I would feel now that I’m older, to a certain extent. I’m a little sappy and a big believer in true love, so I always try to give that to my characters in a romance. I just have to make some of them work for it.

I think I had the most fun writing Persephone and her daughter Melinoe. Rather than the naive damsel or the Stockholm Syndrome sort that she tends to get typecast as, I slid Persephone into a more…sneaky role. Oh, she still is on the naive side, but she also tries to manipulate the world to her own advantage. And her advantage, in her opinion, is whatever it takes to stay with Hades. She is very much in love with him, but was also smart enough to figure out a way to be with him when her mother threw a royal hissy fit. I thought it would make her a good ally for Katherine.

As for Melinoe, well, along with Zagreus and another immortal, they are considered the children of Persephone and Zeus. But I looked at more direct translations, which called their father Zeus Underworld. I honestly think it was meant as a comparison, since Hades is the king of the Underworld just as Zeus is the king of the Heavens. It just got skewed by the view of Zeus and how it doesn’t matter if the goddess is married (to an extent), he will try. Anyway. Melinoe was interesting because of how insane she is. I loved that I could make the threats to Katherine more psychological with her as a midway villain.

Which brings up bad decision number two. I won’t go into specifics, except… Damn it, I should have made Katherine afraid of something that I don’t have a phobia about. I know about having a fear of heights, they justifiably make me nervous, I should have gone with that. But nooo, I had to go with the first thing that popped into mind for a nightmare, and then when Mel said my ending needed more confrontation, it left me only one myth to turn to, the very first Greek myth I ever read. So I guess yay for hitting two myths with one story, but… I gave myself nightmares. Greaat.

Overall, I’m really happy with how this story came out. I had to do a little fighting, I had to do a lot of evaluating human behavior, but I think it came out right. And then comes the fun part: finding an artist to commission for a cover. Because I was doing a straight romance, I actually turned to an artist I knew who specialized them in a way. I’ve been reading The Way to Your Heart, an online manga by Emily Muto, for what I think is over a year (about when Yayoi went off the deep end is when I started reading). Her art has approved so much over the course of the comic so far, and I know she puts all herself into her pieces, which made her the perfect person. And the end result was well-worth it, a bit like she plucked the picture out of my head and just recreated it. I couldn’t have asked for a better person to work with, and if I continue this series, she will definitely be my go-to for future work.

Well, I think I’ve rambled enough. Go check it out for yourself!

Threads on Kindle


New Story: The Last Guardians 3-Guardians Ascending

Currently Working On:
The Shadow Day Quartet Book 1: Bandit’s Escape
Commission References

Yep, it’s official. I’ve finished the Last Guardians! So excited, you wouldn’t believe it.

The delay on me posting both the story and my blog post has two reasons: 1, noble took her time on this book cover, and wow, does the effort show. It looks AMAZING. I especially love how the city stretches out in unorganized chaos, perfect for the Lower Circle. 2, I got swamped in medieval fair stuff and wrapping up not only my own finals, but the finals for my students (I TA for a large class, scary stuff).

That said, I am so proud of this trilogy. (I’m sure I’ll hate it later, but right now I love it.) It wrapped up just the way I wanted to, and not only that, but everything fits together but is capable of standing alone. Writing from Rim’s point of view was definitely interesting. She’s younger than I usually write, and definitely different from writing either of the two Guards. I had to constantly remember the differences, especially since the Upper Circle and the Lower Circle raise completely different children. The ending came out a little differently than I expected, but that was more Rim going down an unexpected career path than anything else.

This is the story where I had the Bell Moment, as I like to call it. I was sitting here, needing something because I’m an IDIOT, and was trying to figure out how to make a signal in the dark, when I remembered a moment-of-random from the second story that was just a very minor detail at the time. My brain went, “OH! OH!” and it solved all my problems. So I call them “bell moments” ever since. Want to know why? Read the story.

Next is the anthology, but first I need to commission noble for both the anthology cover AND a less craptastic cover for the first story. Which means finishing reference pics. But first, must finish Mari’s first story and plot the second so I’m ready for the fall. Well, and finish my video game class this summer, and the summer play… For now, read the final(ish) part of the trilogy!

The Last Guardians: Guardians Ascending on Kindle

New Story: The Last Guardians 2–Guardian Proving

Currently Working On:
World-building the lands of Eresith
Formatting Guardians Ascending for Kindle

Yep, the Spiral City world has a name. The world is Saveer, the continent is Eresith, though it’s a bit like Europe since there’s another part of the continent that I haven’t touched yet, and I know for a fact it has a land-bridge to yet another continent. I may even have a map after this week. ^_^

In other news, the second part of The Last Guardians is up on Kindle! And this one has a much more impressive cover page, thanks to the amazing artist on deviantart, the user noblestallion. I love commissioning her for work, she does amazing pictures. This is the first time she’s done a city scape, but I wouldn’t have known it. (If ANYONE cripes about it being “too perfect,” please remember that this is the Upper Circle, the place that prides itself on being near-perfect.)

For the second story, I knew it had to focus on Liv. But like I said in the first book, she is so passive, it was hard to get her to take the step forward. Which gave me the idea that maybe something needed to happen to give her the initiative to do things herself. So I knew she needed a crime or criminal to deal with that required logical thought and examination of evidence, what she brings to hers and Mai’s partnership, which is how I came to an arsonist.

A character I unexpectedly brought back in was Sul. He was name-dropped in the first story, but I honestly didn’t expect him to reappear…I didn’t even know he was a him to begin with! But he was a fun character to flesh out, especially his different relationships between Mai and Liv respectively. Liv’s grandmother was also a piece of work. Liv herself though was the biggest surprise. She had so much going on, and how she felt about her partnership with Mai and being a guard surprised me. I don’t know if some of it was her getting a couple of years under her belt between this one and the previous story, or if it was just learning more about her, but I became just as attached to her as I am to Mai and Ava.

The Last Guardians: Guardian Proving on Kindle

New Story: The Last Guardians 1–Guardian Seeking

Currently working on:
Getting the world-building for the Spiral City and surrounding areas organized
Getting Guardian Proving formatted for Kindle

Thought I’d start sticking that *points up* in here so you all know what I’m up to. But yes, the first of the Last Guardians trilogy is up on Kindle! *happy dance* Okay, the cover art is temporary, I’m still waiting on the “official” stuff I paid for. I’m still excited for the story to be up. It’s the first in this world, but there’s a LOT that’s going to happen in it.

The story really started with the idea of the city. I loved the idea of a city being so isolated, and so physically divided that it became socioeconomic as well. (See my world building post for more about this process.) From there, the idea came around for the main character, and with the help of my short story professor, Mel Odom, her motivation for going after the serial killer. Mai was such a strong personality, I knew I had to have someone to balance her, which is where Liv came from. A rookie, awkward in her role, I didn’t know a lot about her in this story, but I knew there was a story to her, but I’d have to dig for it and I didn’t have the time for it at the moment. But she helped pull Mai back from being a complete maniac, and slowed her down, as well as showcasing elements of the culture that Mai tends to disregard…Mai is not a polite person.

Writing Mai’s story didn’t feel like any kind of work–and it is definitely Mai’s story. It literally poured out, and I had to force myself to take breaks for important things like food and water. The only thing that kept biting me in the butt for a couple of drafts was the ending. I had a hard time not setting the story up for the trilogy or changing character point of views. Thank God for Mel, who helped straighten me out and get an ending that worked. He also was instrumental in pointing out other slight problems that I didn’t notice while writing it, but would throw a reader off.

Overall, I’m very proud of this story, and that it’s the beginning of my introduction to this world. Mai is the kind of protagonist I like to put out there, strong but flawed, human but willing to go to extraordinary measures for what she believes in. The fact she’s female is just a bonus. 😛 A really, really big bonus.

The Last Guardian: Guardian Seeking on Kindle

New Story: Runaway vs. Rogue

So, let’s get the bookshelf up to date! First things first (if not necessarily in that order) is my little western-suspense story, Runaway vs. Rogue.

Unsurprising to those who know all my characters, Rima, the main character, was originally a roleplaying character. While conceptualizing the story, I realized how perfect she was for the story and couldn’t help myself. A rough and tumble girl, she lives in the saddle and has a habit of falling in love with the wrong sort for her background: a rich, much older man (any sleazy comments will be ignored). She ends up chasing after a stallion to earn her father’s favor again.

Writing the story wasn’t as difficult as I had expected it to be. Rima was already a very clear voice in my mind, and I know enough about horses to work out how capturing the animal had to work. For setting, I ended up putting her in an area I based off of the Oklahoma Panhandle. I’m familiar with the area, especially around the Beaver river, and I thought it could make things interesting (and more complicated).

It was smooth going, until one of the minor characters interrupted. Bless Nathan’s heart, he wanted to be useful so badly, and I could not convince the character that he was as well suited to helping as a turkey to rain. (For those who don’t know, turkeys can and will drown themselves in a rain shower.) I managed to work him in, thankfully.

I don’t know if I’ll work with Rima and Nate again. I like writing the occasional western, but they aren’t usually related to each other, unlike my fantasy worlds. So I guess we’ll just wait and see what the reaction is to them in their first story.

Runaway vs. Rogue on Kindle.

I Return! With Saving Emily

Wow, it was forever since I posted. I am so sorry to have vanished like that. After I got sick, I basically spent the next month and half treading water with homework while trying to get a costume sewn for my part in the medieval fair this year and…yeah, it was chaos incarnate.

I come offering some news, though? My first story has gone up on Kindle. ^_^ I’ll post a link to this post once it gets finalized up there, and also on another page where I’ll keep a running list of my published works. Especially since I managed to create my own version of Tortall, curses. But more on the Spiral City later.

What I really wanted to talk about in this post was the story that will soon be up, Saving Emily. It feels really strange to me that it is the first story I’m ever publishing. Not because I’m not proud of it or anything. I love my characters, Isaac and Emily. I’ve always loved action flicks, and it was a lot of fun to actually write one of those gruff heroes. And then I threw a teenage girl at him. X3. Poor baby, but it was so entertaining to do. At the same time, I saw so much growth in both Isaac and Emily that it really made me happy with what I did. Once a lot of my works become available, you’ll see that I’m BIG about character interaction and growth and an inner arc of change, to the point I sometimes forget I need a plot (oops).

At the same time I feel proud, I feel like I really stepped out of what I normally write for this, and it might end up being a one-short type of story. See, it’s a sci-fi/horror tale.

Nothing against horror readers and writers! Honestly, I think if I was a slightly different person I would love horror. The elements of the story are amazing, and I like incorporating facets of the genre into my own work without making it fall into the genre itself. Why?

…Because I have too much imagination for my own good.

Yeah, times like these my brain is actually a hindrance rather than an aid. Normal people can go see those movies, get the tar scared out of them, and have a laugh about it later and go home. I might laugh, but it will be hysterically. Sleep will be slow to come. Nightmares, not so much.

Hell, people, the endings of the Portal games gave me nightmares! Even the little two-player side game in the second one!

Writing Saving Emily was such an extra challenge to me. I had to have help even plotting it out, because of my lack of experience with horror, and then writing it was slow going due to the fact that writing the creepier scenes at night freaked me out. And thank you, Mel, for having me put the stupid thing underground in TUNNELS. Which my brain then went, “Oh, hey, water, water makes it creepier, yes?” And the answer to that is yes, water does make it creepier, especially for someone like me who is mildly afraid of water in the sense that if I can avoid it, I will. (…Before anyone gets an WEIRD ideas, I mean things like lakes, ponds, bad thunderstorms, sewers, that sort of water.) Editing at night was not any better, but thankfully my professor who was serving as editor was very patient with me about my reluctance to even look at the silly thing after dark. And I still had bad moments where I’d jerk away if something so much as brushed my shoulders afterwards.

I’m so glad some of my work is now up though, and even if it is a little outside of what I normally write, I feel like it is a step in the right direction. So go read it!

EDIT: It’s up! Saving Emily on Kindle.