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Monthly Archives: April 2011

“Sing in me, muse, and I’ll tell the tale of our sun and moons, and the tragedy that caused them to flee from their homes on this world…”

“Why do you always start like that, Zee?”

“Like what, young one?”

“The whole ‘sing in me’ bit. What’s that all about?”

“Will you let me finish the story without interrupting again if I tell you?”

“Yes!”

“I suppose I have no choice, then.”

“Well, you just always start that way.”

“Very well, Miss Rebecca. I start my stories with ‘sing in me, muse’ because it is the classic opening for all great stories. It is a statement invoking the gift of inspiration, asking humbly for the spirits of the ancient ones to speak through you, to give clarity and meaning and power to your words.”

“Oooh. What’s a muse?”

“That’s what I’ve been trying to tell you! It’s a spirit of inspiration. Weren’t you listening? Young lady, if you don’t pay attention, I’ll just go back to my tent and go to sleep.”

“No! Don’t, Zach, please finish!”

“No more interruptions?”

“None from me. Miles, Landara, will you be quiet too?”

“All I’ve been doing is listening, and watching the pyro over there torch things.”

“And I’ve told YOU, oh fierce warrior, that I am NOT a pyro. My inn burned down in a brawl that you and your friends started, so…”

“Quiet!”

“Thank you, Rebecca. Now, if you’ll all be patient, I’ll actually tell this story.”

“Landara, Miles, you guys listen too. Zee is a great storyteller. Oh!”

“Yes, little one?”

“Should I go find Mr. Rime and Mr. Arsus too?”

“No, that  won’t be necessary. Mr. Arsus should know this story as well as I do, and Mr. Rime needs some time to relax. It’s been a long trip thus far, and we’re only a little more than halfway to Dhe’laza. He needs this more than any of us. Now, before I continue, I will thank you, sir Miles, for your recommending of this hot spring as a respite from our travels.”

“S’nothin. Friend o’ mine runs the place anyway.”

“Well then, I shall continue. We are here at a very special time. As you can see, both of our world’s moons are full tonight, a phenomenon that occurs but once every fifty years. We call it Twinlight. Now the sun and the moons of our world are very old indeed, but they were not always our sun and moons. In  a long forgotten time, they were giants that roamed this world.”

“Giants? Pft.”

“Shush, Landara, it’s true. Giants once walked the land, and evidence of this still stands embedded in the rocks near Dhe’laza. We’re only a few days from being able to see them. Now the giants walked this world long before the humans did. No one knows for certain where they came from, but we do know this. There were two main tribes, D’ossa’s fire giants and the frost giants led by Zalar. These two factions were often at odds, with D’ossa being brash, and Zalar being gentle, fighting back only when forced.”

“That’s a good thing, right?”

“Yes, Rebecca. That’s a good thing. It’s an important lesson to fight only when you need to defend yourself. Now the hour is growing late. I am going to get a drink, and then we will continue this story.”

“Very well, Zach. We will wait for you here, and you can finish soon.”

(To be continued)

I’m still working on my entry for this month’s writing challenge. I’ve been considering it quite seriously, and I want to make it a bit of a teaser for the novel I’m diligently writing, bit by tentative bit. I want it to be good. I don’t care if it’s perfect (I’m not QUITE that OCD of a writer), but I want it to be a decent showcase of my abilities and my characters. That much being said, it will still be in by the end of the month. I’ve got some time.

I’ve been doing some reading. *GASP* “You have time to do that?” No, I don’t. I MAKE time to read. It’s how I’ve always been. It’s just something that comes naturally to me. I sacrifice time that I could devote for other things to make room for books in much the same way that I scrimp on food to make room in my budget for booze. It’s all about priorities. That’s why today’s visit to the liquor store cost me $2 more than today’s visit to the grocery store. That’s beside the point. The point is that I’ve been thinking about books I’ve not read in a long time. At the top of my list of such books is one rare title from a few years before I was born. It’s by Richard Adams (yeah, the guy who wrote Watership Down), and it’s called Maia. I borrowed a friend’s copy of it back in high school, and I never had a chance to finish it. Now that I’m older, I appreciate books far more than I used to (my English degree certainly helped this), and I am rereading a bunch of stuff that I loved in my youth.

Anyway, more later tonight.

I discovered Weird Al’s blog today. I’ve been a fan of Al’s music for as much of my life as I can remember. I’d just like to throw him a shoutout, and thank him for brightening my life with his performances. I can’t wait to hear the rest of the new album. Random fun fact: I chose the design for my blog before ever knowing about Weird Al’s. I guess I must have good taste.

Yeah, we actually have one of those. It’s also Beverly Cleary‘s birthday. The woman responsible for giving the world Henry Huggins and his neighbor girls, “Beezus” and Ramona. In honor of her, I’d like to invite all of my readers to follow D.E.A.R. guidelines for at least half an hour today. Not “Drop everything and run!” as Ramona once blurted out in her usual boundless enthusiasm, but Drop Everything and Read. Read with a loved one, or a close friend, or even just by yourself. Shut down your computers (after you finish reading this post!), turn off your cell phones, and dedicate a nice, quiet half an hour (or more, if you like) to reading a good book.

I’d like to jump up on my soapbox for a minute (and hope it’s one that I’ve not turned into a car) and mention something that bothers me. No, it doesn’t bother me, it infuriates me, frankly. I hate book banning. I’m of the opinion that books should never be restricted, just because it has some things in it that one person might find offensive. I know that I don’t write what I do to please everyone. If I did, I’d never sell anything. I don’t write just for the sake of controversy either. I’m looking at you, Dan Brown. Put the pen down and step away from the paper, slowly. Thank you.

If there is one thing that I’m truly passionate about in my life, it’s books. I spend my days surrounded by them. I edit them. I try to write them. I dive head first into them and hope that they don’t forget to let me go at the end. Some people, however, decide that it is up to THEM to protect the innocence of everyone else by banning a book that they personally find offensive, and attempting to prevent anyone else from reading it. First of all, this only makes people want the banned stuff even more (remember a little thing called prohibition?). Second, it raises the anger level of anyone with a relatively normal amount of common sense. People, these books were written the way they were for a reason. They need to exist as is. Have you heard that they’re attempting to reprint Huckleberry Finn without the use of the word “nigger” in it? Are we attempting to gloss over racism and act as though it never existed? I call bullshit. I intend to fight the banning of books until my dying day. Anyway, I’m going to step off of my soapbox now (the brakes are starting to give way, and I’m on a bit of a hill…), but I’ll leave you with this. Have a list of the most recently challenged books.

If she were here, I’d read a book with my significant other, but we both have work that we need to do. At least we had the weekend to spend together, visiting family, bowling, and whatnot. Anyway, I plan to use the time as a distraction from my ever ongoing job hunt, my need to finish my taxes (they’re done, just need to be filed, don’t worry), and my attempts to actually be productive with my own writing and editing projects (sorry, V, you know how I do).

I’m building a pantheon. The gods of this world are fun to create, especially in their descriptions. For example, the head of my order of gods is a goddess, atypical for most “mainstream” pantheons. Does that make my gods and goddesses hipsters? Yikes…Imagine Zeus, or even better, old one-eyed Odin, with the hipster glasses and a case of PBR at his side. Well, despite not being mainstream, per se, I think it’s better. The queen of the gods is a badass lady, beautiful and terrifying at the same time, and wielding a large glaive against her foes. I’m tempted to make death and a god/dess of the harvest into a single character. I dunno. Too many options present themselves at the moment. Time to go hide in a bookstore for a few hours.

Well, It’s been a nostalgia week, so I broke out the Game Boy Advance SP and Pokémon Yellow. As I played through the interactions between Ash and Gary (yeah, I’m a by-the-cartoon-purist. I don’t nickname my Pokémon either), I realized something. I don’t have anyone that I compete with on such a direct level, a true rival. Now granted, I’m also not wandering around the world, capturing various wild creatures and forcing them into battle with other kids’ captured animals (and here you grownups thought Pokémon was wholesome 😀   Seriously. How are animal rights activists not up in arms over this franchise?). But I digress. My point is, I don’t have someone that I’m constantly struggling against that I can use as a focus for my energy and as a source of determination. What’s this boil down to? I have little to no drive to do anything. I don’t know that developing a rivalry NOW would be the best thing to do, either, considering that the only person I know that I could even begin to consider as a writing rival is one of my best friends, and is letting me edit her first book. There’s also the fact that she’s already done with her first book, and I really just started laying down foundations for mine back in January. Oh well. I guess I’ll just have to keep going.

I found some pretty awesome stuff today, in my various roamings and divings of the internet. 1: A Pokémon Tower Defense game. Play it here. B: A blog of man who gets authors to insult him when they autograph books to him. Read it here. Amy Sedaris has given me my new favorite insult.  Finally: The ultimate bedroom. If I ever have the means, I want each of my kids to be able to grow up with a room like this. Yes, occasionally I go link-happy. Today is one of those days.

I’m playing with dialogue a lot right now, partly in response to Sonia M’s latest writing challenge. I’ve decided that my upcoming entry will be a nice bit of story/character development, starring Zach and maybe one or two of my other characters. Zach’s got hundreds of stories to tell, if not more. He’s been around for a while, remember? This will be the first time he’s ever told anyone else (other than me, I mean) one of them in his recent memory. I hope to put most of it to paper while I am at work tomorrow. More soon, I promise.

During the climax of the PS2 game, the Major is fighting hand-to-hand with another cyborg who has a body identical to her’s. Batou comes across the battle, and has to figure out which one of them is the real Major. He calls her name to get their attention, then shoots the one who turns to look at him.

This is in my head today. For those of you who don’t know yet, I didn’t get hired for that full-time job I mentioned earlier. So it’s back to the job hunt. I’ve still got 2 part-time jobs, but I’d really prefer the stability of a single job that’s able to meet my needs.

I have today off, so I’m taking some time to mope a little, and catch up on some reading and writing. I’m also still knee-deep in editing for V, so it’s all good. Naturally, though, a true day off demands little to no actual work. I’m doing my best at this, but I have a hard time truly doing NOTHING.

More book related stuff soon.