Muse Monday: Why?

Today’s post is going to be a bit different. Yesterday while I worked on edits so I can get Shattered Illusions out to my beta readers, part of my mind decided to wander. I shared the questions on Facebook and got a couple of responses. They were very similar, but off enough I could see the different mindsets between an indie author and one who is trying to get traditionally published.

Now, the questions have no context. They were idle thoughts while I worked. I found myself wondering: Why are some things considered lazy or amateurish? How did those rules come about?

Pure curiosity on how these things came about. And after reading the responses, I wondered why these two chose the paths they did: one indie and another trying to break into traditional publishing.

And with Indie Author Day coming up in less than a month I know this is a question I will likely be asked among others. The short answer is I had a story I wanted to share. I have longer, more in-depth reasons which would bore most people. I did consider both paths, but found indie a better fit for me.

In other news, I totally found a location I want to use in book 3. *squeal* Nope, not sharing until I at least get the rough draft down during NaNoWriMo in November.

Oh, and I’ll be attending the Indie Author Day events at the Boise location. I’ll post more on it once I get details.

Muse Monday: Side Stories

The original version of Twisted Magics started roughly 2 years before the final version. I still have the files (it was horrible). A few people were unfortunate to have been exposed to it, but not all is lost. The rough ideas are still there.

And I’ve started digging them back out to rewrite. I’ve been considering posting completed pieces here, but I’m not sure how interested people would be. The current one I’m working on is from Lockonis’ perspective.

That’s not saying that I don’t have a bunch of others started and possibly close to completion. I toyed with the idea a little early on, but didn’t start really kicking off doing these side stories until I needed to write sections of Shattered Illusions from another perspective.

Would you read side stories or something from another character’s perspective?

Muse Monday: Intimidate

How does one make a character that is not physically strong or large intimidating? I bring up large for the reason that even though I’m quiet, people find me intimidating due to my height. Really, I’m probably more afraid of you.

But getting ba2016-07-12 06.47.36ck on topic. I have a number of characters who can come across as intimidating through force of personality alone. And it isn’t even that they have to be loud or forceful. Once in game, I had Lockonis standing behind the people in her party talking just playing with magical fire in her hand. The slightly crazy look on her face probably helped seal the deal, but you get the idea.

Then there are the ones that the potential threat they pose is intimidating. Usually they are already opposing the one who is intimidated in some manner, even if it isn’t directly. The true power behind it comes from what they can be capable of if they go from being passive to active. Because you know someone is eventually going to piss them off enough to act.

It’s an interesting dynamic to consider when dealing with these widely varied characters. I’ve only considered a couple here, but I’m sure there are more ways to intimidate someone.

Muse Monday: Shattering

Today’s post might go in a few different directions, but I’m announcing book 2’s title. Just no date – way too much work ahead of me, but the title I’ve had on it a while has stuck.

I had this song on in my vehicle and ended up hitting repeat (much to my husband’s dismay when he realized I had left it there for a while). Eventually it gave birth to the finalized title for book 2: Shattered Illusions.

No, don’t take this as a general plot. I also won’t say more on this as I don’t want to spoil anything.

I suppose the next question I should answer is if Lindsey Stirling was the reason I gave Ketayl the instrument I did. The answer to that would be no. I won’t argue that I find inspiration from her now (and others), but initially it was because of my grandfather. Granted, when he played, it sounded like someone was killing a cat slowly. He was good when he was playing the guitar and 3 harmonicas at the same time though. Just not the violin.

I’ve used this month’s Camp NaNoWriMo to do some heavy editing. Not that it would really change things in terms of getting Shattered Illusions edited, but watching my little arrow get closer and closer to center amuses me.

Shattered Illusions has undergone significant changes – all for the better as far as my too eager beta reader is concerned (we’ll see). Still have more in mind to make, but I’m hitting the point of not wanting to look at it anymore right now.

And of course just as the challenge kicked off for the month, I came up with an idea for book 3. That one is really untitled – even I’ve got nothing right now. At least it looks like I’ve got my project for NaNoWriMo in November (even though I kinda want to work on it now).

I suppose that’s enough wandering for one post.

Muse Monday: In rememberance

Some people like to put in things for people who have been in their lives. I’m sure someday I will, but my latest little cameo was to a player character in our gaming group that one of my characters killed.

He took a swing at her first. It was the last thing he did.

Anyway, I didn’t give him a glamorous or even remotely nice little place, but his name was mentioned. At the very least it entertained me and I’m sure once a couple of my upcoming beta readers (who are also players) get their hands on that part, it will make them smile (at least it wasn’t one of theirs I inadvertently killed).

Perhaps not the most Muse Monday worthy topic, but he ended up in a large section I rewrote and I had people look at me funny for giggling maniacally. Did I mention my characters were not fond of him to begin with?

Muse Monday: Creating from the real world

Last October, my husband and I took a road trip up through Oregon, Washington, and then came back down through Idaho. Along the way, we stopped in two different cities that helped form the base of the open market area in book 2.

The Olympia Farmers Market is probably not as well known as the Pike Place Market (and the throwing of the fish). Being able to walk through and take in the two markets gave me more of a base for the location than the physical buildings themselves. I only hope I can do the experience justice.

Sadly, I did not take any good pictures of either place. I want to go back at some point and I look forward to traveling to new places and hope ideas are sparked.

What places inspire you?

Muse Monday: Paladins

2016-06-16 20.55.16I saw this image on my Facebook feed and of course sent it along to the paladin in our gaming group. Brunnhilde takes this as far as she can on a regular basis. She’s got a really good diplomacy, but her violent tendencies make it ineffective. One of these days, they’ll let the bard take over for talks.

However, I suppose the same could be said of Silver Blaise, though he’s not to Brunnhilde’s extreme. He’s more of a protector and a healer, though I can’t say how events outside of the church may change his disposition over time.

No, that wasn’t a hint at anything – I really don’t know.

PaladinsWhat I find interesting about the alignments in tabletop RPGs is that they are far more flexible than most people give them credit for. I bought my husband a shirt with this saying to the right a while back. And I love the complexity that can be brought to the otherwise “goody two-shoes” character.

Though I still enjoy playing chaotic neutral characters predominantly, but I’m also enjoying the struggle right now in game of my one lawful neutral character. Brunnhilde might get decked (or worse) for kill-stealing from Savanas who is currently out for revenge. More of that story in a later post.

Do I adhere to the alignment system for my characters in my books? No, I don’t keep that stuff in mind while I’m writing and I’ve never assigned an alignment to anyone that hasn’t come from gaming. Silver may be the exception as he is a paladin and  I usually walk the line at points with him. Case in point in Twisted Magics is when the reporter approaches him and Ketayl. I’ve got another fun one in book 2, but obviously, I’m not sharing right now.

Things like this sometimes help generate personalities or help determine the course of action a character might take when I’m not certain, but like I said, I don’t typically keep this in mind while writing.

Muse Monday: Try Everything

First I want to apologize for my lack of response and posts lately. Life’s been crazy and I’m still playing catch-up with everyone.

Recently I was making a new playlist for the book I’m working on and admittedly, I’m not sure if this song belongs on it or if I just put it on there for my daughter. Playlists end up getting burned to CD and then into my vehicle they go.

Anywho, I bought my daughter Zootopia for her birthday and she’s been in love with it so I get to hear this song frequently enough that it gets stuck in my head:

I keep asking myself if it belongs on the playlist in question. I still can’t honestly answer, but maybe it needs to be there while I’m editing. Or I need to hear it for myself.

In any case, I thought I’d switch gears and try something fun for a change. Figured I should also keep it light to start.

I’m curious how many others build playlists for what they are working on. Do random things just seem to end up on it?