Wednesday, January 30, 2013

TaFL Teaser 17

There's a Fine Line is wrapping up nicely with only two chapters left to go. One, Chapter 17, will be submitted to Literotica on Saturday for an early next week posting date. The other, Chapter 18 - Epilogue, is still in progress but I hope to have it finished before the end of the week and shipped off to the crew for review and corrections. Once they're both finished, there'll be a bit of silence from this little blog as I pour my attention onto the first novel in the Jarilo series. I'll try to stay connected to this world through shorts and comments, and I'm always available on twitter and facebook so it's not like I'll be turning into a hermit any time soon.

This chapter is a bit of an emotional roller coaster with Alicia confronting her father, returning to the human plane, discovering (finally) what she is, and then ending up with her mate at his apartment for some quality alone time. It's a lot for one young woman to take in but she's a trooper. The teaser is a bit emotional as well but I hope you all enjoy! You can find it by clicking the Teasers tab at the top or using this direct link.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Out with the old...

A few more changes to the old blog. I've fully removed all links to the old version of Emeralds & Ice. Being that it will provide the framework of the first Children of Jarilo novel under a new pseudonym, and also being that I will begin work on that novel in the extremely near future, I decided that it was time to take it down. Keep an eye out for info and updates on the new Jarilo project both here and at In a World With Monsters...

With the removal of the old, there was the creation of the new. When I decided to take Emeralds down, I didn't know what to add to the site at the time. I considered a few options and then decided on a section for snippets, Flash Fiction pieces, and shorts that would encompass any and all of my worlds to include After the Reveal and Children of Jarilo, as well as unnamed worlds or 'real' world stories. How very serendipitous that it coincided with a new offering from a lovely author, Nulli Para Ora (Yes, that's a link. Yes, you should go there and, you know, read, participate and buy stuff).

Nulli has begun a series called Musings featuring photo prompts and encouraging any and all to jump in. Write a poem, a story, a limerick, a haiku - whatever the picture calls to mind - and jot it down for all to see. I was intrigued... and not a little relieved.

You see, while I had the page ready for my little shorts... I had no little shorts to put in it :( Nulli's prompts spurred me to write a few tidbits which I have included here. But if you want to see the pictures that inspired the three stories, you'll have to just go to her site. You might find your own bit of inspiration.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


And now for something completely different!

I'm a bit of a craft geek. I love to try new things and tinker and fiddle with them. When a fellow Tweeter mentioned subscription boxes, I was intrigued but not totally sold on the idea. I mean, I love getting stuff in the mail and getting surprise stuff would be awesome but... I'm not a girly-girl. I buy my make up at Walmart and sometimes have to throw it away due to the expiration date without even opening it. I like a wash-and-go hairstyle. My only girly thing is I get my nails done but that's more to break me of the evil habit of biting than anything else. So, when the majority of the subscription boxes turned out to be samples of make up, perfume, or something similar, I thought it sounded swell but wasn't for me. 

And then I found WhimseyBox.

According to their site:
Whimseybox is the original subscription for DIY and craft lovers. Every month we ship our subscribers a box with craft projects along with a project idea. We are also an online community where anyone can discover, learn and share the best in DIY and craft. 

I had just cancelled my MMO membership so I had a bit of left-over fluffy entertainment money floating around the budget. At only $15 (which includes shipping), WhimseyBox cost the same as the MMO that I hadn't played in over five months. Win-Win in my books!

Now, what do you get? Well, it's different every month or so I'm told. I've only gotten the first one so I don't know how they do every month. This month was nifty (yes, nifty is a word) and I have the pictures to prove it!

First, the shipper -
WhimseyBox 1 - Shipper photo whimsey1_ship_zpseba6e903.jpg
The card laying on the right is a military ID which is the same size as most standard credit cards or American driver's license. It's there for size. The box was bigger than I expected and I wondered how much was padding.

Then I opened it to get to the shiny box inside -
WhimseyBox 1 - Inner Box photo whimsey1_inner_zps4caec79f.jpg

There wasn't any padding! The interior box was only slightly smaller than the shipper (as seen by the ever-present ID card). It's a nice, sturdy cardboard box that closes with velcro at the front and has a small label section on the back. They're good for storage or so I'm told.

Ta-Da! The pretty wrapping -
WhimseyBox 1 - Inside photo whimsey1_opened_zps65e21af9.jpg
Pretty blue paper and a pretty ribbon hide the goodies. There was a card on top that says "Creativity is a drug I cannot live without" on the front and has tips and URLs to instructional videos on the back geared towards the items in the box. Sweet!

And finally...the goodies -
WhimseyBox 1 - Goodies photo whimsey1_contents_zpsdeaf64f9.jpg

Not bad at all! The theme, I suppose, is block printing and you're supplied with everything you need to give it a go. A piece of linoleum/carving material with a single carving tool, some block printing ink, a palette knife, two sizes of gift tags and some really nice blank cards with envelopes. The stickers that came with the set say "Stop Pinning Start Crafting" which I found immensely humorous since WhimseyBox has a Pinterest board.

Still, I was quite pleased with the contents even though I've carved my own rubber stamps for years. One can never have too much carving material or too many carvers. What I haven't tried, though, is actual block printing with the proper ink so here's my chance. Which is what I was looking for in a arts & crafts subscription box.

Definitely going to maintain the subscription for next month to see if the quality remains the same.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

TaFL Teaser and Other Stuff

First the Other Stuff... else you'll just move straight on to the teaser and not even read the rest. Or is that just something I'd do? Yeah, probably. Anyway...

Check the Character Bios tab for the backgrounds of the protagonists of There's a Fine Line which were added over the past week or two. Along with Blake's and Alicia's bios, I hope to have Malphas' before the end of the week. I still would like to do Sapphire's and Opal's though they may get further development at a later date. I have plans for the pixies...

Also, check the link to the right to the Elaina Roberts' site. This will be my home in the near future after I finish up Fine Line and begin to work on the Jarilo series. It's still in development but the first book will be a complete revision of Emeralds & Ice. I plan to bring the story into the present era, change some things around, and work it to fit in with the developing mythos. Those who've read the novella-length story before should be able to pick it out from the revision though it will experience some massive changes in order to get it to full novel length and kick off the series. Until it becomes my primary writing focus, it will remain on the site for those to read. After I've begun the revisions, however, it will be removed.

This has been a huge decision for me. I do not like charging for a story that was previously free of charge and that many people have already read. I know many many authors who do that and I'm perfectly fine with their decision. I have supported them by purchasing those novels that I thoroughly enjoyed the first time around with anticipation of reliving the story once more. This is totally a personal issue that I have with my own work; no one else's. However...the amount of work that will go in rewriting Emeralds to get it to fit in with the Jarilo mythos will be phenomenal. Yes, I believe it will be worth it, but it will be the same basic story. You see my problem. In the end, I've decided that if I want to break into publishing, I have to place a proper value on the work that I wish to offer to the buying public. I will do free promotions, or at least reduced prices, because that entices readers to try new authors (I might not have read Elizabeth Hunter or Tina Folsom had their series' first books not been offered for free on Amazon), but I can't offer it for free all of the time. Sucks, but that's how it goes.

Anyway, now for the stuff you really want to hear.

There's a Fine Line - Chapter 16 is back from the editor and ready for submission. I'll pop over to Lit on Saturday morning to upload the file. Hopefully, it'll be ready by Tuesday or Wednesday of next week. I do like maintaining my schedule and have been slightly amazed that I've managed to do so since NaNoWriMo ate my soul. I expect there to be no more than 2-3 chapters and then the story will be finished and the After the Reveal world will go on holiday while I work on the aforementioned project. My three beta readers have been amazing at keeping up with the constant push of chapters and Archangel_M, my editor, has gone through many a Red Pen of Doom in an effort to make me sound somewhat coherent. I managed to improve my comma usage on this chapter while merrily skipping entire words in places. Damned if I do...

Anywho...the teaser can be found by clicking the tab at the top or going directly to the page using THIS LINK. Thank you to everyone who's trudged through this rather dark tale of mine. Your comments, votes, and encouragement have been greatly appreciated.


Wednesday, January 2, 2013

TaFL Ch15 snippet & Info

With the holidays, I've not heard from my lovely editor but, in order to maintain my self-imposed posting schedule, I've decided to go ahead and post the snippet unedited. Any errors are my own so no pitchforks and torches at dusk to hunt down Archangel. Chapter 15 covers the massive battle at the church to retrieve Alicia and, hopefully, stop Malphas from more mischief. While I could have drawn the battle out over several chapters, I felt the story would suffer from the unnecessary details. In an effort to keep the focus on the growth and changes in the two primary characters, I did not go into minute detail on the fighting between the demon's minions and the group of nonhumans gathered under Blake's command. That's not to say it's entirely been ignored, either. There is enough included so readers should know the fighting is fierce and pixies are super cute in battle mode. So, with that being said, the snippet can be found HERE. Enjoy.

Also, Chapter 16 is in progress, though it's slow progress. There have been a couple of other things pulling at my attention that has kept me from working on it like I would have liked.

One is the new website. With much encouragement by Mokkelke and others, I've turned my eye towards publishing the novels that I'm currently developing alongside Fine Line. I've chosen the self-publish route at the moment though that may change the closer the novels get to completion. These novels (one the NaNovel that shouldn't have been) are paranormal romances set in an entirely different world and mythos from The Other Half and Fine Line. There will be no character crossover nor do I have plans to publish either of those two stories. The only story from Lit that will get published has already been pulled from that site, Emeralds and Ice. It will get a rewrite to fit into the new mythos as a prequel. I think Draike will make a nice Shifter, don't you? The new website is under construction but the blog portion is being transferred from WordPress. It's still a work in progress and can be found here under my new pen name, Elaina M. Roberts. I'll announce the launching of the entire website as soon as it's built.

The other issue was on a personal level. Over the Christmas holidays, we were asked to petsit a pair of ferrets for a young man in college so he could visit his family. Having owned ferrets for many years, we were pleased to borrow his, spoil them, then gratefully return them when the holidays were over. Sadly, that's not how it has played out. One of the ferrets seemed a bit under the weather when he arrived and we all tried to excuse it by saying he was stressed by the many changes the pair had gone through in recent weeks. The owner had only had the animals for a couple of weeks when he left for the holidays so there were two massive changes for them. Include change of diet (from crap to something better), change of routine, and even styles of interaction and I'm sure they were wondering what the heck had happened. As the male continued to get more lethargic, we noticed other things that raised red flags as to his condition. I spoke to the owner and then took the ferret to a vet on Thursday, 27 Dec 2012. I got the call last night that, just as he was being prepped for exploratory surgery to find out if there was a blockage in his intestinal tract, he had passed at the vet's office. I am, of course, double-thinking all the steps I've taken in trying to figure out if there was something I should have done differently. There wasn't, really, but he was a sweet ferret and it's always sad to see them go so young.