Wednesday, May 26, 2021

UPCOMING RELEASE: Like Sunshine After Rain

 

I'm happy to say I have story called "The Witch and the Sunflower" in the upcoming charity anthology Like Sunshine After Rain, coming this summer from Raw Dog Screaming Press. Here's a bit about the anthology:

Raw Dog Screaming Press and international award-winning editor Heidi Ruby Miller are taking pre-orders for the charity anthology LIKE SUNSHINE AFTER RAIN. Proceeds benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. The beautiful cover is by Brad Sharp. Interior illustrations by Sharon A. Ruby.

This limited edition anthology is available in lettered hardcover and numbered paperback editions. It hosts short stories, poems, and essays from 82 authors.

Find out more and pre-order your copy at the Raw Dog Screaming Press website. It's a limited edition, so get it before it sells out! And stay tuned for the launch event later this summer.


Monday, May 10, 2021

REREAD: The Dying of the Golden Day, Chapters 1-5

If you read my post about finishing the first draft of The Heartfriends Book 3, then you know I'm embarking on a reread of Books 1 and 2! Which I was a little bit intimidated by, to be honest. I started writing The Dying of the Golden Day in 2013 and published it in 2016, so it's been a minute since I looked closely at it.

Now that I've started to reread it, I thought it would be fun to do a short blog series with annotations on the story, like what inspired certain choices, how I drew from my experience in Kazakhstan, and notes about my writing process. I'll do about five chapters at a time, so let's begin!

Thursday, April 29, 2021

The Road to Book Three--Part 1

 the words "The End" in Times New Roman

It's the first update on the Heartfriends Book 3! I started writing this book over a weekend way back in October 2019 at the Broadkill Writers Resort (thanks, Jen and John of RDSP!). Then the pandemic hit early in 2020, and it took me a long time to find my footing in terms of balancing work, job searching, and writing. But a year and a half after I first began this manuscript, I'm here to say that I have a first draft! 

That said, it's the messiest draft I've ever written, and it has more holes than a slice of Swiss cheese. However, in the words of a friend, I now have "a whole skeleton of a thing," and that's the important thing! It's much easier to fix a story when you've got words on paper. Terry Pratchett said, “The first draft is just you telling yourself the story.” I've definitely accomplished this because there were a lot of elements I needed to figure out. Now I get to flesh those elements out.

The next step is to set the manuscript aside for a few months. I have two short stories I'm working on for anthologies, and those are due by the end of May and the end of June. I also want to dive back into a couple longer projects, including a mystery novel, and play around with those over the summer. Then I'm going to reread Books 1 and 2 and take notes so I can make sure I'm wrapping up all the loose threads into a (hopefully) satisfying ending. Stay tuned for more updates!

Saturday, April 24, 2021

Mike Flanagan Movies

It's been a while since I've blogged, hasn't it? I'll readily admit that the pandemic got the better of me (and still is some days), and I'm just now getting back into the groove of writing and writing-adjacent tasks. Bear with me! I've got some story releases later this year as well as fun podcasts and blog posts planned.

If you listen to my podcast (Positively Pop Culture) or know me in real life, you probably know that I've recently gotten more into horror films. I've always been okay with psychological thrillers, but I shy away from straight-up horror movies because I'm a big ol' baby. But last October, my roommate, who is very into the genre, encouraged me to watch more. Turns out I really like Mike Flanagan's films because they tend to balance the horrific with the emotional. He usually both writes and directs, so I feel like he's more tuned-in to the storytelling aspect than some other directors. I especially like that he focuses on characters and their relationships with one another.

Since I finished watching his back catalogue this week, I thought it would be a good time to do some blogging so I can reflect on what I liked about each film and give my tentative ranking of them. I'm not including The Haunting anthology because that's a whole different animal. Here we go! (In order from least favorite to most favorite)