Jordancon 2014 Report

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Okay, confession time. I’ve never read a Robert Jordan book.

Nonetheless, when some of my critique group invited me to the annual convention for all things fantasy, sci-fi, and Wheel of Time-centric, I couldn’t really say no. I mean, Patrick Rothfuss and Brandon Sanderson were both attending guests. You just don’t say no to that.

Suffice to say, we had a blast. The convention takes place just outside of Atlanta, Georgia, so it was a short three hour drive from our home base in Columbia, South Carolina. We arrived at our hotel late Friday night, watched a grown man pee in the bushes, discovered that trash cans were not in fact hotel room standard at this particular establishment, and mostly ignored the mildew ridden shower curtain while we washed up for bed.

Okay, the con was great. Our hotel? Not so much. Seriously, who doesn’t put trash cans in their hotel rooms? Not a single trash can. Not a one.

But I digress.

I don’t think I’ve ever been to a scifi/fantasy con that was so writing-centric. It was very refreshing! Saturday we sat in a panel called “More Than Just Prose” which emphasized the importance of lyricism and working in poetry to the novelist. Basically, Pat Rothfuss talked about Middle English and geeked out over The Last Unicorn. It was awesome. Continue reading

A Wild Blogger Appears! 2013 Goals Update! Also New Theme!

2013 Writing Goals Update

Back in January, I did a list of writing goals for the upcoming year. And I gotta say, I haven’t done too horribly. I’ve always been the type of person to set inhumanly lofty goals for myself (insert shooting for moon, landing among not stars because stars are not closer than the moon thank you science clichéd phrasing here) and this was no exception. So, despite not meeting all of my goals, I think I’m doing well so far. Let’s do a quick analysis, shall we? Continue reading

In which I apologize for lack of updates, and apparently my brain is full of bees

Greetings fellow human inhabitants of the world wide web. Welcome to my black hole of non-writing, non-reading, non-stop craftstraveganza time.

So, I just got back from Momocon, an anime and sci-fi convention in Atlanta, Georgia, where I sold laser cat paintings and jewelry all weekend. Great times were had, and very little writing was done in the weeks leading up to the event, cause I had a lot of sparkly stuff to make. It happens. That being said, I’m pretty behind on writing and reading right now. According to Goodreads, I am 7 books behind schedule (SEVEN!) on my Goodreads Reading Challenge *weeping and gnashing of teeth*. I gotta get my butt in gear, you guys. Oh and add me on Goodreads if you like. That link goes to my profile. Continue reading

Top 10 Books of 2012 (Read, not published)

I like making lists. I’ll admit it. I’m a list maker. So at the end of the year I like to make a lists of all my favorite things from that year. Now, in this case, these are not all books that were published in 2012, they are just books I read in 2012. I’m way late on some of these books, and I realize that. I’m also kind of late on doing New Year stuff. *shrug* I regret nothing.

Okay, here they are: Continue reading

Social Networking Sites for Writers/Bloggers – My Faves

I recently changed my WordPress theme again (do we like?) mainly because I didn’t like the narrow design of Skeptical and I wanted something more minimal and clean looking, with a better font pack. I’m now using Able, with custom colors. I like the newly opened space on my blog. It looks clean and organized, but it’s also colorful and fun in a way that it wasn’t before. As I was re-organizing my sidebar content for the new theme it occurred to me, “Goodness gracious I have a ton of social networking sites. This seems rather unnecessary.” So I got rid of some of them. Which ones did I deem worth keeping, you ask?

  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • Instagram

That’s it. That’s all. Now, here’s my reasoning behind the apps I kept.

Twitter is great for short bursts of information; little shout outs as it were. I also keep a feed of my 5 most recent Tweets in my sidebar because they’re short, completely text-based, and don’t add any unnecessary clutter. If I want to make a quick update about something, but don’t necessarily want to publish a whole blog post about it, I can just throw it up on Twitter. This way, people can still see it directly on my blog even if they don’t use Twitter. At the same time, I’m not spamming all my WP followers’ reader feeds with little updates multiple times a day.

Google+ still hasn’t really caught on in a lot of circles, but I love it and here’s why. Like Twitter and Facebook, you get a news feed. But unlike Twitter, it’s a great medium for sharing articles and media with photos and video. Many Plus users have begun using it as a primary blog, because it’s so visually pleasing and easy to maintain. I also love the Hangouts feature and have used it for on the fly writer’s chats with my critique group. If you’re promoting a new book or want to host an online chat for your fans, Google Hangouts is a great option for something like that. And how much the better if you already have a following there via your Plus page?

Instagram is my go to for photo sharing. With the new “view from the web” feature, there’s no reason to rely on an outdated clunky site like Flickr for image sharing anymore. No offense to Flickr, but I never cared for it very much even  in its heyday, and nowadays it’s more outdated than ever. I love the clean interface of Instagram, and the profile feature that lets you see all of a user’s photos in one easy to view page. The mobile app is great for grabbing pics on the go and sharing them with your friends either through the app, or online.

I had to. I’m not sorry.

You will no doubt notice one giant gaping whole here. I don’t use Facebook. Well, I use Facebook, but I use it only for private correspondence and personal friends. I will certainly create a Facebook account to promote my writing at some point in the future… say… if and when I get published. But until then it seems sort of pretentious and just unnecessary to promote… nothing really? I mean, I don’t have a book yet. I’m not selling anything. I had fan pages in the past for visually creative work I did, and for businesses I ran, but I’m not sure what I would have to contribute to a FB page for my writing. I’ll get back to you on that after I publish my first book. 😉 That being said, if you are a published author, you should absolutely use a Facebook fan page as a promotional tool.

Social networking has grown and changed so much over the last several years, and will obviously continue to do so. Myspace** has gone the way of the dinosaur, and so too will others. I think it’s fascinating to watch and analyze how we share information and how that sharing changes over time. Lol, probably why I’m a librarian. Information technology, yo. It’s good stuff. ;D

** The new and improved Myspace notwithstanding. We’ll see how that goes when it finally debuts sometime next year.

Yallfest! Charleston Young Adult Book Festival – Nov 10, 2012

So many awesome author events coming up in the near future for yours truly! I managed to snag tickets for Neil Gaiman next month (excuse me while I flail haphazardly), one of the Erin Hunters later in the month, and now I find out about this awesome YA Lit Event coming to Charleston, South Carolina in November of this year! As I was looking through the author list, I was mildly interested in a few of the guest speakers I was seeing… and then my eyes fell on one name.

BETH. FREAKING. REVIS. Author of the Across the Universe trilogy.

AHHHHHHHH I AM SO PSYCHED.

Definitely going to add more YA books to my “to read” list over the next couple of months, so I can be up on some of the other author guests at the event. Some are writers I’ve been meaning to check out for a while anyway. Cassandra Clare, Holly Black, Deborah Harkness (I *started* reading A Discovery of Witches and really like it so far), David Levithan, Cat Tiernan, and Kami Garcia, to name a few. To see the full list of authors coming to Yallfest, click here!

It’s a good thing John Green isn’t coming, because I might actually explode with happiness.

Finally finished The Millennium Trilogy yesterday…

Oh man. Oh man. Ohhh man. Epic long post coming up in the next few days, but… suffice to say. The final book did NOT disappoint. Lisbeth Salander is my waifu.

Reading tons of great books lately. Right now I’m working on the first in Molly Harper’s “Nice Girls Don’t” series. Omg that woman is absolutely hilarious. The MC is a recently fired librarian who is shot by a drunk hunter who mistakes her for a deer in the woods, after which she is changed into a vampire. Hijinks ensue. This book is definitely feeding my need for actual GOOD vampire fiction, which is something I have been lacking since finishing The Vampire Chronicles by Anne Rice about 15 years ago. And it’s FUNNY. Awesome. The literary world definitely needs more monster comedy.

So what are you guys reading right now?