Monthly Archives: November 2015

Netwalk’s Children Monday

Chapter Two, in which we get a look at the interior life of Netwalkers (post-death digitally uploaded personalities), plus Netwalker Sarah becomes aware of a new issue above and beyond the Gizmo….

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Pledges of Honor Friday

And because it’s Friday, here’s the first chapter of Pledges of Honor, currently on pre-order at Amazon and scheduled to go live on December 3. Katerin finds out that there’s something rotten in the village she’s taken overnight refuge in…..

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Netwalk’s Children Monday

So I’ve decided that I’m going to try putting up a chapter a week of Netwalk’s Children and Pledges of Honor for a while. Children will go up on Monday and Pledges on Friday. I’ll be working on the website and putting up a Paypal button for people to donate as they desire.

Or, you know, you could also write a review (when done), or go buy the books at the Usual Places (now including iBooks and a few other sources through Draft2Digital as well as Amazon, Nook, Kobo, etc).

And now, for Chapter One, in which Problems Arise With the Children.

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Orycon Panel Schedule

It’s that time of year again…and I will be at Orycon, albeit not all that late at night due to my transport options. The Marriott isn’t quite as convenient as the Lloyd Center location was for either bus or driving, alas. Oh well. Here’s my schedule:

Friday, November 20

3:00 pm-4:00 pm —  Political Systems in SF — Salon A

Are writers getting it right? What do you need to consider when developing local, national, global, and interplanetary governments? Do existing governments with different cultural values really operate, or do they fail?

4:00 pm- 5:00 pm —  Healers, Shamans, and Clerics, Oh My! — Salon C

Medicine in fantasy novels. Is there really an herb for everything?

Saturday, November 21

11:30 am-12:00 pm — Reading –Willamette

I’m going to be reading selections from Netwalk’s Children (out for Orycon) and Pledges of Honor (out December 3rd).

3:00 pm-4:00 pm — Hybrid Vigor: Choosing Both Traditional and Self-Publishing — Sunstone

Don’t believe the True Believers on both sides of this non-existent divide: you can be both a traditional AND a self-published writer. Learn how to let the project choose the path.

4:00 pm-5:00 pm — Can Technology Save the World?— Salon B

Note: hopefully I won’t be delayed but I am coming from a different floor from the previous panel….and I may cut out early as I am switching floors again and am moderating the next panel.

China is becoming…something. North Korea is just plain scary. Energy-starved nations wanting nuclear power vs fears of a potential for nuclear war. How technology affects developing nations, how fast can they get it by what means, and what will it do to the world’s future?

5:00 pm-6:00 pm — Piracy: Fight It or Embrace It? — Sunstone

Same note as before: I’m switching floors so I might be late. Oops. I’m moderating this one. I’ll be there on time!

Piracy is everywhere, and creators hate it. Except when they don’t. HBO, for instance, says pirating of “Game of Thrones” is the best free advertising ever. Should creators learn to embrace the Jolly Roger, or fight it?

Sunday, November 22

11:00 am-12:00 pm — What is Cognition? — Salmon

A look at the impact of modern neuroscience and psychology on our understanding of understanding

1:00 pm-2:00 pm — Ghost in the Machine or Grandpa? –Salmon

I’m moderating this one…Needless to say, my Netwalker character Sarah’s gonna get talked about in this panel.

Is a personality upload a real person? Can they vote? What do they do for a living? Or for fun?

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Netwalk’s Children is now live!


At long last it’s here! Netwalk’s Children is live on Amazon, iBooks, kindasorta on Nook (there’s a page link but the dashboard says it’s still in progress), and it’s in progress for Kobo and some other sites. I’m really happy with this book because it came out pretty much like I wanted, and I think it makes a good transition into the last part of the series. We’re getting away from Melanie’s point of view and into that of Bess and Sarah.

So what’s it about?

The mysterious war machine device known as the Gizmo is getting restless and trying to use Melanie’s daughter Bess and her nephew Richard as a means of escape from its confinement. Meanwhile, problems arise with potential rogue Netwalkers tied not just to Melanie’s past but to her parents and the original capture of the Gizmo. Can Melanie work with her estranged Netwalker grandmother Sarah as well as Bess to stop the Gizmo and deal with past shadows that threaten to dominate Bess’s future?

There will be hard copies available at Orycon, and the Amazon listing includes hard copy as well as Kindle editions (I’ve also enabled Matchbook which means you can add on the Kindle edition to a hard copy purchase for a minimal amount).

Technical means aside, this is the first time I’ve worked with Draft2Digital and I like it much better than GooglePlay. I’m submitting fully formated epub to Draft2Digital, though I could just submit a Word file and let them format it. I’m liking the experience so far….

This is also the first cover that I completed entirely on my own, with a little bit of advice from my son. I’m rather proud of that, though the one for Pledges of Honor makes me even happier. My personal perspective is that this book’s the best one of the series so far…and I sure hope it takes off and sells well.

One more Netwalk book to go, and then I’m pretty much done with it for the time being, I think. Netwalking Space should come close to wrapping up the series loose ends, though I could see a far future sequel. We’ll see what happens. Meanwhile, I’m ramping up the Goddess’s Honor fantasy series, and the Oregon Country series is getting built and formed even now.

But today belongs to Netwalk’s Children. Happy book day to it, and may it do well.

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A snippet from today’s work

I’m not nanoing this year, but nonetheless I’m getting my pre-Radcon release put together; a novella in the Goddess’s Honor series–Beyond Honor. As far as timing goes, it’s a prequel to Pledges of Honor.


She shook her head. “Grandfather had been thoroughly enchanted by Zauril’s sweet words and bright toys from Daran, enough to speak of pursuing those who have fled Medvara’s grasp on this land. By the time Zauril acted, he had secured the support of the army and the Guards by speaking of invasion, conquest, and gold. None dared openly help me.” She gave her uncle a bitter smile. “Let us see how well he can run Medvara without its magic. That I was able to do once I crossed the borders. Even with a babe quickened in my womb, my curse held.”

“So the Empire-over-Sea now chooses to remember its exiles and harvest this colony.” Alame’s long fingers flickered in a quick ward at the mention of the great Empire that had once belonged to the house of Miteal. “Not that the Empire’s favor will do him much good if you withdrew the land’s magic.”

“I did the best I could considering everything that has happened. It is a long story, uncle, and Zauril may not have the support he claims. There are—things I learned about his connections to Daran while his prisoner.”

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The first day of winter


Woke up to this today, and it kept on coming. However, because things were right at freezing, even though the snow kept falling at this level, it also wasn’t piling up above two inches. One of the first things I did was trek out to the barn to check on Miss Mocha because she hadn’t gotten her winter shoes yet. That appointment is scheduled for this Friday, and I had been hoping that this storm would be like the others and warm up. Nope. She came loping up with the herd so things weren’t too bad, though she was grateful for me picking out her hooves and spraying WD-40 in them to help stave off the worst of the ice balls. I thought she was shaking because of the cold for a moment but no, it’s because she’s been conditioned to equate getting caught with being fed grain. So she got a taste of grain (about a handful) and she settled with no shivering. Maybe she thought I was going to be crazy enough to try to ride her in this stuff. Nope, not if I don’t have to. Then, when I turned her out, she trotted over to one of her friends and they pressed foreheads together, then she trotted off to join the other one. That mare…sigh. She doesn’t like me taking Mocha away from her, so we Have Discussions. I suspect part of the issue is that this mare is still pretty lame (she’s there for a pasture layup) and Mocha being Mocha, she’s looking out for her. Or something.

Then it was back to home and prepping for book releases and an upcoming craft show. I laid out the plan for a novella in the Goddess’s Honor series and wrote enough of the opening to insert into the back of Pledges of Honor. Hubby went into the attic to install insulation and I turned to cranking out inventory. When I first planned to participate in the show, I had been thinking about designing stuff. Not inventory. Then I realized I needed inventory, not just flashy design stuff. So. Today was cranking out pretty hanging things, not necessarily Christmasy stuff but things meant to be pretty. No idea if they’ll fly, but I’m running several different lines for this show. Plus chapbooks. All of which needs to be done before Orycon, because we won’t get back until just before the show. Yikes. I do need to plan things better…

There’s so much that’s been going on and it’s been easier to throw a note up on Facebook than write about it. I interviewed for a long term temp job and didn’t get it, but it was a good interview and I know why I didn’t get the position (credentialing). That meant we had to adjust a Portland trip time for the flying trip back to do the interview. Then it was back to Portland and Clatskanie, to winterize the garden plus search out chanterelles. We ended up with three days of great mushrooming as well as piles of produce. For a first year garden it turned out pretty well, providing the bulk of vegetables for four households (all us old folks) from mid-July through the first part of November, as well as giveaways to others. And there’s still onions, carrots, beets, and chard left. We froze some of the produce but ate most of it fresh.

I also have two books launching, one in November and one in December. Netwalk’s Children drops the Monday before Orycon and Pledges of Honor in the first week of December. Production work is done on Children (hard copies will be available at Orycon) and work’s mostly done on Pledges. Now it’s just promotion (sigh).

Promotion and inventory creation. That’s what I’ve got to do here. But for the first day of winter, with snow flying, we’re settled in and stuff is happening.

And with that, I’m tired and off to bed.


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An exercise in cover creation…Pledges of Honor

When I got the rights back to Pledges of Honor, one issue I ran into was the total lack of a budget to do cover work. Editing had happened long before I sent the MS to the publisher that I got it back from, so at least I had that factor handled. But. Cover.

Pledges is high fantasy that is, as I described on Facebook, set in an 18th century-esque alternative Pacific Northwest locale. Very alternative, though it’s still a colonial frontier, albeit one where the colonialists are fleeing active persecution and have to collaborate with local populations to survive (backstory). There are elements who want to do the traditional colonialist thing, and they’ve gained power in one nation. But. There’s also a pack of squabbling Gods and Goddesses, and the high politics of the divine pantheon affect magic and political power at the human level. Lots and lots of backstory that is only mildly referenced in Pledges, and to be honest I’m not certain how well I’ve pulled that off.

There will be more of the strife between colonialists and collaborationists in the next books, because, well, the original imperial power is now remembering their colony and That Does Not Bode Well. But when they show up, they’re going to find that Things Aren’t What They Thought. And, well, that would be telling more about the story, wouldn’t it?

Meanwhile. Cover. I posted several pictures yesterday and got some good feedback. Besides cover pix yesterday, I also browsed the fonts to find the look I wanted. However, when it came to the lighting and background color, the initial font I chose didn’t work. Didn’t matter what color the text was, what the color the drop shadow was…the font didn’t work. I wish I’d saved some interim pix for comparisons, but oh well.

So I chose a backup font, and it turned out better than I thought. Then it became an issue of alignment. At first I wanted the title across the top, but…well, that didn’t work with the picture. Played a bit more with colors and alignment, and came up with this:

epub cover

I may have to play with it a bit more once I start submitting the ebook and I know the CreateSpace cover is going to be a challenge…but the cover is DONE.

Yeah, I know I could go to Deviant Art or Fiverr to get an artist, but I’ve yet to find someone who resonates with what I like. Plus at some point in the future I probably will update the covers and then change things out. For now, though…I like what I see, and thanks to all who helped me figure it out!

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Second round of shots for Pledges pic

So several folks on LiveJournal wanted to see more impact and there was at least one suggestion for a dark green background. But…lighting sucks.

I do have one promising candidate.


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Cover pix for Pledges

Oh, Internet hive mind. I’m playing with the cover pix for Pledges of Honor, but I’m having problems deciding which one. Any suggestions? Each piece has a meaning within the book–the rutile is Katerin’s Eye of Dovré, the charoite is Metkyi’s gift to Katerin, the stone is Metkyi’s heartstone, and the sword could be either Katerin’s or Rekaré’s. Spacing for titles needs to be a consideration as well.


(Note: there will be a more substantive post later. Just need to get the cover rolling.

ETA: More pix taken with a green background as recommended. Meh, mainly due to lighting. But there’s one promising addition. WordPress is being a pain so I’ll put it in a separate post/.


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