Wednesday, June 28, 2006


Ah, the joys of getting no damn sleep.

So, I worked until 3 a.m. last night. Great fun to be had by all, including bouncing about 30 drunks under the age of 25 (above 21, duh!) about fifteen minutes before closing. Then--hooray! Home to go to sleep.


I decided to write for a few minutes to try and wind down. That was four hours ago. The Muses are slavedrivers these days, forcing me to crank out new material at the rate of 8-12k per day. Absolutely ridiculous! On top of that, one of my cats has discovered a new game- yell at the kitten. He's been running around squalling at her for two hours. It doesn't matter how many shoes I throw at the little bastard, he's just not happy unless he's pissing me off.

Now, I'm too exhausted to write and relegated to playing Snood and ranting about life in my blog. Oh, happy happy joy joy (sorry Ren and Stimpy!)

The good news is that for the first time in three weeks, I have two days off back to back. Good god! What will I do?

um.....write. duh.

The deadline is approaching on the Dragon's Den material. I might churn out a bit more of it this morning before I go back to bed for the fourth time and try to catch some shut eye. The sooner that gets done, the sooner I can relax.

Hell. Maybe I'll have a beer later.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Whew! Of Books, Magic, and Bitches

Wow, is my life busy these days! Too busy even to blog, which is quite odd since I rarely resist the opportunity to blow off steam.

The release date of Goddess' Revenge is September 15. I'm kind of glad it's a few months away (commitments piling up here) but then again I'm a little peeved as well. September 15th????? I have to go to the Tennessee-Florida football game that weekend! Damnit, now writing is going to interfere with FOOTBALL? No one warned me about THAT.

Plus, over at the Dragon's Den (my writing group), Chum had to pull out of developing the magic system so I took it on. I took his admittedly brilliant concept and developed the religion, mythology, and magic limitations from it. You know what? I LOVED IT! I've not had this much fun (creatively) in a long time. I may pay him to conceptualize my magic systems from now on--his ideas are so much more creative than mine that working with them was pure pleasure.

Then, to top it all off, there's been a kerfuffle involving Changeling Press. A huge blog war has commenced which I must admit I considered getting involved in just for the sheer bitchiness of it. After all, we authors are whiny bitches who look down upon our readers....oh, wait. Is that true? *looks down at her readers--all two of them* Check out if you want to see how a blogger can start and rumor, scotch it bitchily, and then manage to offend all sorts of people all across the globe. yep, she thrives on it, obviously, not really giving a rat's ass about whose feeling she might hurt or what-have-you. Personally, I find the whole thing kind of ridiculous. It is very easy to criticize something or someone when you have no real knowledge of what it is they do or how they feel. And, of course, I'm sure that all the authors out there are whiny bitches who look down upon their readers -- after all, I'm guilty of that, aren't I? In point of fact, it's easy for any self-proclaimed expert to babble on endlessly about their perceived wrongs and insults paid them. After all, there's no degree quite so satisfying as the one you give yourself, is there? After all, if you need proof, check this out--it's fallout from the same blog: -- more total retardedness on MANY parts. Do I solely blame the bloggers? No, I don't, although I think it's much easier to spout off your mouth about something than to try to do it yourself. Do I blame the authors for getting into an uproar? No, I don't. First, the rumor spreads that their publishing company is going under (which it is NOT), then material is posted without permission (do that to anything but this blog and my attorney will call you!), then their products are called everything from donkey's balls to unadulterated shit.

Very mature, ladies. Very mature.

Of course they're pissed. I'm pissed for them. BUT, I can't help but think that the bloggers have every right to their (admittedly biased and bullshit) opinions. Let 'em rant! Who gives a fuck? I don't. Does some bitchy wannabe in England affect my self-esteen as a writer. *snort!* Hell, no. Does a camp follower from California make sit up and question what it is that I do? Are you kidding me? My MOM couldn't make me do that!

The fact of the matter is that there are those who DO and those who WISH THEY DID. I know what category I fall into. Do you? Grow up, already. Oh, and please--comment on this blog. I'd appreciate it if you directed your insipidity at me--who am not involved - rather than people whose hard work and creative effort you evidently despise. There are no self-proclaimed oracles here--particularly not ones who misspell contractions without effort and can't be bothered to worry about what their idiocy leads to.

If people would get paid for stupidity, they would be a lot of very wealthy people with blogs.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

The Word For The Day is "Ack!"

Well, hell. After the Titanic (otherwise known as my computer) crashed, I have been operating on less-than-acceptable levels. For one thing, I now only have 40 gig of uncorrupted memory. (Thank god my books are stored on flash memory!) For another, unimportant little programs like Java are currently non-operational (gasp! how in the hell am I supposed to live without chat?) and I can't even get any of my messenger programs to work. I've had to downgrade to dialup (damn modem fried too) so everything is slllllllooooooooooooooooowwwwwwwww.

Could this have happened at a worse time? I don't think so.

So now, I'm trying to build a website, maintain the one I have already, and keep up with my mountains of daily correspondence while piecing together what remains of the hard drive and ordering the things I need to fix it. Jesus H. Christ! What else could happen?

(A word to the wise: never ask that question. It's like dangling a margarita in front of karma after it's left an AA meeting.)

The answer: a new deadline.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Let Sleeping Cats Lie

So, I'm in the process of restoring a fairly catastrophic loss on my computer. Thank god I have a flash memory stick because one of my hard drives completely FRIED.


So far, I've had to get a new hard drive, new RAM, a new sound card *grumble*, a new mouse (why I don't know) and I've had to reinstall unimportant little programs like, oh, I don't know-AOL, Java, Adobe, all the anti-virus crap, Wordperfect (are you freaking kidding me?) ad nauseum. It's a colossal mess and my mood reflects that.

Until now.

The kitten, who has been running at top speed since 3 a.m. has finally decided to take a nap. So, she crawled up into my lap and curled into a tiny purring ball, where I thought she might remain content for a while. Naturally, she didn't. After amusing herself for a while by gnawing on my wrists while I typed, she finally decided that of all the places in my office for a kitten to nap, the open lid of the printer was the most favorable. Of course, since one of my plans for the morning is to print out hard copies of some work I have to edit, this nap place didn't meet with my favor. At the moment, however, she's just too adorable to move so I think I'll have to have a cup of coffee and wait until she wakes up.

Besides, I can't put the new print cartridge in. *sigh* I think I'm turning into a softie. Be afraid; be very afraid.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Waxing Philosophical

What a lovely day.

It's beautiful outside, a very comfortable 78 degrees with a nice breeze, and I actually took the afternoon off to work in my garden. It is small (but growing) and now that there is no apparent danger of frost (although this is Ohio so you never can tell) I decided to plant my summer flowers. A couple of years ago, I thought I could end all my gardening woes and just sow the whole thing with wildflower seeds.

The poppies were pretty. The thistles were not, once they grew to eight feet tall with spiky leaves.

So, a bottle of Roundup later, I opted for old-fashioned flowers like sweet peas and roses. I thought, if nothing else, it would smell good and still be kind of pretty. The result? A sweet-smelling bed of thistles, which miraculously survived the Roundup.

This year, I hired someone to clear the thistles from my flowerbed.

So, this morning, armed with little pots of flowers and seeds and *gasp!* even some mulch, I descended into my garden for some relaxing excursions into horticulture. The result?

Ozzie and Harriet divebombed me.

After spraying said birds with the garden hose, I managed to toss a few wilted-looking seedlings into the dirt, prune my hopelessly tangled rosebushes back (I have some of the gathered blooms on my desk at the moment, and work to train my clematis and morning glories through their trellis.

Even I have a nice afternoon sometimes. It is distressing, however, that the high point of the whole day was not the well-ordered end result of my garden, but the fact that I blasted two murderous swallows from the sky with a stream of water.

I should be ashamed of myself.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

The Apocalypse--A Couple of Days Late

Okay, I can now freely admit that I have been laughing for weeks over 06-06-06. Everytime I saw a fundamentalist Christian expounding their views on the coming of the Antichrist and the aproach of Armageddon because of a date it was difficult for me to restrain my all-too-audible laughter. I distinctly remember a few years ago (about 20, actually) when a friend of mine was convinced that the Rapture was coming. She spent all day in a field waiting to ascend into Heaven with the rest of the righteous and was quite shocked that she had to creep back into the house, thoroughly chilled from a soaking rain, and continue life with all the rest of us sinners. I told her at the time that her greatest sin was presuming to know the will of God.

She didn't speak to me for six months, during which time I continued to sin quite happily and quite proficiently as an example to her holier-than-thouness.

At any rate, yesterday I was quite cheerfully occupied with laughing at the near-miss of the Apocalypse. Now, I'm not quite as sure.

The news that Al-Zarqawi was killed yesterday has changed my perspective a little. Granted, on the surface this has very little to do with 666 or 06-06-06 but bear with me a minute. Is this death good news? Of course it is. It's very good news for the coalition forces and the people of Iraq. This is at least one major cog gone from the wheels of the insurgency; and really gone, judging from the fact that we dropped two 500 lb bombs on his head. (all I can say about that is- ewwwwwwwwwwwww!)

However, the chain-reaction that will follow this is disconcerting. To think that Al-Zarqawi's death will effectively 'end' terrorism in the Middle East and particularly Iraq is naive. Granted, it will send it into disarray, but the organizations are still there. This might send Bin Laden out from whatever spider hole he's been hiding in with his dialysis machine, but I doubt that as well. One thing you can say about cowards--they are consistent. If you actually read the book of Revelations (which, I've noticed, most Christians really don't) then you know that Armageddon refers to a town in the Middle East, where the earthly armies of the Antichrist meet with the forces of good.

But something happens before the war actually takes place. There is no conclusive victory or defeat, although the valley of Armageddon fills up to a horse's knees with blood. Sound familiar? Does it sound, perhaps, like our war on terror?

Now, I'm not really a conspiracy theorist. (no, really, I'm not!) The death of a terrorist who orchestrates and revels in the deaths of innocents can only be a good thing. I have to admit, however, that I think this event may lead to an escalating spiral of renewed violence in the Middle East. Sometimes, when a group loses its head it retaliates with random, unplanned, scattered attacks that are impossible to track. And while I watch video of Iraqis dancing in the streets for joy at Al-Zarqawi's death, I keep in mind the fact that they are dancing with guns. If someone tried that in the States they'd end up in jail. In the Middle East, however, it is a fact of life; they all have guns, have to have guns if they are to survive. Those guns, I fear, will be used more rather than less in the weeks ahead.

So is Al-Zarqawi's death the harbinger for a true Apocalypse? Nah. He wasn't a viable candidate for the Antichrist, after all. He was nothing more than a two-bit, cowardly, hiding in a safe house with a woman and a child thinking that would keep him alive sort of jackass who had nothing better to do than to kill his own people to prove some obscure point about how he had a direct line to Allah. As a matter of fact, he was really just an idiot with a gun.

Let's not make more out of this than it is.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Of Bird Poop and Other Things

There's a pair of swallows living in my garage.

They've come back every spring for three consecutive years. I named them Ozzie and Harriet just for giggles. When they turn up, they build their nest in the same spot: the corner right above the rail to the garage door. Last year, they hatched two sets of eggs over the course of the summer. It was kind of cool to look out when the baby birds were bigger and see five of them lined up on the garage door rail waiting patiently for their dinner.

This, year, however, the birds seem to have a poo problem.

I can't park my car in my own garage any more. On top of that, if I go into the garage to get relatively unimportant things like the lawn mower or flower pots, I am dive-bombed by Ozzie and Harriet. Yeah, I know: the mental image of me beating away a pair of swallows while fleeing from my own garage is humorous. It's like The Birds was cast by Hitchcock with midgets playing the birds. Last weekend, the great garage scrubout commenced; this weekend, it looks like it was never touched.

I don't have it in me to evict the birds. I guess my car will have to stay outside until the fall, when Ozzie and Harriet travel to Florida to poo on cars there.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Haunted by my Mother

I've decided my mom isn't done with me yet. Ever since she passed away in December, I've sort of tinkered with the thought that maybe....just maybe....she's haunting me. Today, I reached definitive proof.

I received a call a few minutes ago from my publisher. It turns out that the contracts I sent to them were not only not signed (hunh?) but also that I'd sent a duplicate set with a different book title, et cetera on it.

Allow me to state for the record that I have consumed no hallucinogens in a very, very long time. That being said, what in the hell? Granted, occasionally I might *forget* to record a check in my checkbook, but forget to sign a book contract? For a two-book deal?

Not bloody likely.

Also, the alternate title for the book was something I'd never even considered, so how in the heck did it end up on the contract?

Pretty freaking weird.

A few other things have happened that lead me to this conclusion as well. Yesterday, after the auction, I sat outside with a friend while we smoked and there was a sudden, loud crack. No reason, just a crack. A painting I brought home from my mother's estate has fallen off the wall four times in the last couple of weeks, and her wedding picture keeps turning up in different places on my desk. So, I'm reasonably convinced that mom has decided to haunt my ass -- thanks so much, mom.


A Long-Suffering Sigh

Isn't life grand? The whole plagiarism thing really got my blood pressure spiked last night--it's the one thing I cannot reconcile with posting work on the internet. Getting up every morning and googling your own titles or character names just to make certain some yabbo hasn't stolen it is beyond annoying. You know what's even more annoying?

How absolutely ridiculous some people are.

I read in the Dragon's Den yesterday about how joey (moderator at found one of her stories (just published in Quantum Muse) on this imbecile's blog, and how, consequently, Bibsy found one of hers as well. So, I went to check it out for two reasons: first off, I couldn't comprehend that someone was really that abyssmally stupid (stole stories and didn't even change the titles? come on, already!) and second, to see if there were any other stories I recognized. Naturally, I found a third theft....apparently this ignoramous only likes to steal from one ezine.

At any rate, this morning as I frantically tried to meet my deadline (and I did but just barely) there's a new post on Dragon's Den. It's a link to joey's livejournal. Interested in what she had to say about the whole thing, I went to read what she'd said.

Therefore, I quote: And Celina popped her head up in our defence (well, I think it was more in defence of Bibsy). And while I have no wish to have anything to do with Celina, it was still decent of her. Or maybe I see too much good in people, and she was just sticking her nose in? End quote. Gee, in a way that was kind of ....nice....sort of. :)

Well, joey, probably a bit of both. True, it was Bibsy's situation I was familiar with originally, but I've read enough of your stories to recognize Hoff. I was sticking my nose in, but by the same token I hate plagiarists. I think it's important that all writers works together to eliminate those little bottom feeders no matter where they are lurking as I'm sure you should remember.

But,then, a moment of ROFLMAO! Are you kidding me? The faery queen is 'eeked out'! Let me eek you guys out too. Believe it or not, I still have *contact* with many people at fantasy writers. org. I even drop by and check up on the forums occasionally just for shit and giggles. *grin* Granted, I haven't done so in quite some time because I've noticed a definite trend towards mind-numbing inadequacy on the boards there as of late. If I'm still being *told stuff* it's because I still associate with the same group of people online. Oh, and make no mistake--my *banning* from was entirely voluntary, a suicide if you will. The thing that should really *eek you out*, tfq, is the fact that you're still obsessing about a confrontation from six months ago when, quite frankly, I haven't thought about it until today.yH

Eeked out. Like the *shame* of leaving would drive me offline, or keep from communicating with people who are my friends. And, for the record, if it had been tfq's story stolen I would have said the same thing.

Make no mistake: I hate plagiarists. Hate them. It's a bleeding shame that young writers' early publishing experiences are ruined because of thievery. It's cowardly, absolutely dim-witted, and completely illegal. Whether it's bibsy or particleman or joey or tfq--my opinion remains the same. But the rest of it? That I can laugh at. Thanks for the laugh, tfq.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Plagiarists, Tramps, And Thieves

Sorry, Cher. If I liked your music at all, I'd feel a moment of remorse for that title but at the moment I'm too damn mad.

I hate plagiarists. That's one of the major reasons I now belong to a private online writing group as opposed to a public one (well that and my damnable temper) but today (which already sucked--auction day) I discovered that my long-latent fuse can still be lit.

On this blog site, someone is posting other people's stories as their own. WHY? Can you answer me that? What kind of colossal moron do you have to be in the age of Google to post someone else's work as YOUR OWN and not even change the freaking title? Jesus H. Christ. Don't believe me? Check it out.

Any of it my work? No. Does it matter? No, it doesn't. Someone unscrupulous and stupid enough to steal a writer's work and try to pass it off as their own is lower than low, sort of like the buttheads who bilk little old ladies out of their life savings. Writing is art, creative, and extremely personal. Those of us who write do so because of a love of the art, a true need to create something lasting and sometimes beautiful, sometimes funny, always important for the writer's need to share the workings of their minds. We don't write so that someone else can claim our work! We don't write so some hee-haw hick stuck in nowhereland can pretend to be the creator of our worlds, our characters, our conflicts!

This person is an idiot. Beyond an idiot. Criminally stupid as a matter of fact. They STOLE those stories from an online ezine with the intention of passing them off as their own.

Got a problem with my opinions? I'm here.....waiting......and I haven't sharpened my fangs on a lying thief in a long time. Hopefully, the perpetrator will get a life someday, but then again I doubt it. I'll be watching. So will at least a couple of writing sites that I know of. If I find out exactly who this is, there will be a LOT of other writing organizations that will know who they are too.

Be warned. Plagiarism is not tolerated. Period.