Saturday, August 8, 2015

What is an Author?

I tried to share a Facebook post by my brother, Keith Ewing​, where he thoughtfully included a link to my book, What is a Hero? (Damson Dragon Diary 1) but Facebook apparently thought I just wanted to share the link. No, THIS is what my brother said, and that I wanted to share:

So, it’s after bedtime for my oldest. I go into his room and his light is still on. I fake indignation as he really is a monster when he’s short of sleep. But his also a READER, which makes me happy. I don’t know any reader that didn’t spend time in childhood reading when he/she should have been sleeping. So, I go in to turn off the light and I see what he is reading. It’s the book that my sister wrote. My son is reading the book that my sister wrote. For fun. Is that cool or what?

That is so beyond cool, that cool does not even begin to touch it. That is downright frosty. I have accomplished many small goals on my way to my eventual bigger goal of becoming a professional author. (I am already a professional writer, but it's not quite the same thing.) When I sold my first story, I was a very happy woman. When my first book was published, that was an amazing time. When a bunch of other skilled writers and artists wrote stories for The Protectors, a world I invented, that really felt like author territory. But none of it made me feel like I had accomplished the goal like this.

My 11 year old nephew is sneaking time to read my novel. Today, I really am an author.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Watch out. I'm back.

So, long time no post. Yeah.

After my back surgery, and actually, before that when I spent most of a year recovering from a hamstring injury, I sort of went into a bit of a depression spiral. So, sorry about the pretty much 2 year hiatus from public writing. Silly to let a few injuries get me down, but I'd been feeling so good about dropping pounds and building muscle and having more energy than I'd had in years when I was boxing. Then suddenly, I couldn't do anything without pain, gained back all the weight and then some, couldn't sleep, couldn't walk, stand, or sit very long without intense pain, just generally felt old and fat and useless and hurting.

Not that I haven't been writing at all during all this. I'm not sure I know how to not write. I just haven't been doing things like working on The All-American Alliance, the long promised sequel to the Protectors, which a couple of folks have already sent me stories for, or finishing book 2 of the Damson Dragon Diary. Anything that felt like something I "should" do just felt like more than I could manage. I held it together for my day job, mostly, but as soon as I came home I became a hermit. I vegged, binge watched TV, buried myself in books and stories, hid from the world, didn't want to talk to anyone, and didn't have any energy to do anything I didn't have to do.

Depression sucks.

And, on top of that, my technology decided to make my life more difficult. First a hard drive crash, then a mother board crash hit me each time I tried to dig myself out of the depression hole, and started trying to do my normal stuff again. I got websites started for and and then crash, lost all the software, passwords, graphics, etc. I got a plot bunny frenzy and feverishly wrote in a couple weeks more than a dozen chapters for a new novel with a werewolf and a navy captain in Alaska. Crash. Gone. Bleah.

Stuff like that is just irritating normally. When you're already depressed, it feels like even your computer hates you. And what's the point in trying, anyway?

So, it took me a while, but I'm honestly starting to feel mostly like myself again. Most days, anyway. I was writing random fluffy stuff during all that time to keep myself from going completely nuts. And, I came up with an urban fantasy series about a quirky spider-kin girl with 8 eyes who sees the future, the past, and the insides of people's minds, among other things. Time not entirely wasted, then. I'm working on polishing up the first book on that right now. Got rough draft of second book done and half of third, and a plot bunny for the fourth in my head. So, this spider girl has me caught in her web.

I will write the end of Damson Dragon 2, though. I promise. It's in my head. The trouble is, it's depressing. And trying to write a depressing chapter when you're already depressed is not an easy matter. that's why it's taking so long. So, I'll probably write it as Damson getting past her depression and moving on with her life. And I'll write it when I can finally get past my depression and move on with my life. Life, art. Art, life.

Damson Dragon book 3 plot is in my head, too. I'm not planning on abandoning my favorite dragon EMT at the end of book 2. I've been learning some new colored pencil techniques and I'm looking forward to doing some more D Dragon art, too.

I'm headed for Comicpalooza in Houston in May to speak on the panels there, and will launch into submissions for the AAA book around then. After multiple computer crashes, the biggest challenge is going to be finding everyone's email addresses again. My first Liliana book should be polished enough to be ready for prime time by then. A couple of agents asked for pages when I described the concept. Then I went home to get the pages ready, and realized my pages totally weren't ready for agents to see them yet. Hopefully, they will be by May, so I can send those pages and get on with other projects.

Keep your eyes out for "A Spider, a Red Wolf, and a Fairy with a Machine Gun" probably coming to a bookshelf near you in a few years.

And in the meantime, look out world, I'm baaaack.