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Over the last two years, I’ve been podcasting my novel, The Aldersgate here. I’ve also had a short story available, which takes place in the same world, entitled “Castledeck and the Arabella”.  In spite of the fact that people have asked to give me money for the work I’ve done (which is truly sweet and thoughtful) I’ve never actually put up a donation button or anything. I haven’t felt it necessary.

But things have changed.

In light of recent events in Haiti, I’m asking you a favor. My friends Bart Leib and Kay Holt at Crossed Genres have proposed that we offer free fiction in exchange for donations to Haiti relief: a brilliant, brilliant idea.

If you’ve listened to Alderpod— if you’ve read the short story, if you’ve enjoyed Arri Gaffer’s recording of it–consider giving what you can to people who really need it, those people struggling through tragedy the likes of which we cannot comprehend, in Haiti. My mother spent almost a month in Haiti about four years ago, and returned with the most haunting, desperate, moving stories about that island and its beautiful people; that they have been made to endure yet another catastrophic event like this is beyond heartbreaking.

If every single one of you who have read the story before, or have listened to the podcast, donated just a dollar, we’d have close to $2,000! That kind of money could do so much to help.

No amount is too small. Join with us in responding to this tragedy to the best of our abilities by sending relief to Haiti.

“The value of a man resides in what he gives and not in what he is capable of receiving.” — Albert Einstein

To donate, visit the Crossed Genres website.

Castledeck and the Arabella can be found here as .html, .pdf, and as an .mp3

The site has been in dire need of a little tidying up, and thanks to some art by the brilliant Brigid Ashwood (of whom I cannot say enough when it comes to her artistic talent) I’ve done a bit of a renovation! See: new background, new banner! And the best part? I did it myself, with CSS. And the site did not implode, the world did not end, and I’m actually happy with the results. For reasons I can’t quite comprehend, I’m far better at designing things on Pages than I am with Photoshop…

I also have a new tagline: Steampunk. Fantasy. Western. I mean, that really does sum up the whole thing, doesn’t it?

At any rate, watch this space! More meandering steampunk chatter, and some thoughts about writing weird west to come soon!

“I’m no more a knight than I am an ass, though I suppose at times there has been sufficient argument to support the latter claim.” – Emry Roy, from Chapter Five of The Ward of the Rose

Most of my writing-only posts live over at Natania Barron – Writing Across Worlds. To save you the trip, here’s a few!

Alas, I am very, very busy. I was busy last week working on edits for Queen of None, but then I ended up in the middle of another, unexpected project, that is going to take up most of my time for the next few days. And my “most of my time” I really mean every waking moment that I’m not chasing around my two-year-old (which really isn’t as much time as it seems). A little cryptic, but a girl is allowed a little mystery, right?

So, that means no Alderpod for right now, unfortunately, and few posts here and at Writing Across Worlds. But I’m putting together something special for next week as soon as I get everything together and sorted out. So hopefully that will make up for the delay!

alderpodlogoAlderpod #20 – Chapter Eighteen: Departure

Wow, 20 episodes! So, in spite of my mention yesterday about taking forever with this I ended up with some time alone (in the quiet, mostly) to finish the song. It’s not perfect, but it definitely does what I wanted it to do (I hope!).

In spite of the fact I said there’s 10 chapters to go in the notes section, however, there are 12. Though this is Alderpod 20, it’s 2 chapters behind the final count. Which is 30. I can’t add, but that’s not news.

If you’d like to hear the .mp3 of the song alone, you can snag it here. The song is called Beyond the Veil.

Alderpod #20. Yeah, it’s kind of a big deal. It turns out that the episode has a full-blown song in it, with guitar and voice, so I’ve got to get that down before I set it free, and I want it to be good. So, knowing me, I’m going to spend an inordinate amount of time on it. Hopefully by “inordinate” just a few more days will be enough, so I can get it out the door; I’m itching to get the rest of the chapters out.

So, thanks for the patience and the awesomeness as always. I think I’m also going to release an .mp3 of the song itself, because the quality always dies when it comes to compression.

Anyway… yeah, that’s the status report this morning. 🙂

alderpodlogoAlderpod #19 – Chapter Seventeen: Welcome

Huzzah! Another chapter done. Instead of putting my notes here, I decided to go ahead and babble a bit at the end of this one. So stay tuned at the end for ramblings and insight (hopefully…haha).

I’m also going to be releasing some bonus tracks in the next few weeks, where I profile the characters for you, talk about their inspiration, and how the approach has changed from book to book. Alderpod #20 is recorded and ready–I’ve only got to give it a last listen, and queue up the music. Now that the book is done it’s a bit easier to go. Hard to believe that I’m 2/3 through at this point.

I realize there’s been next to nothing here since the “end” of the book last week. I have a podcast, but I’m in that point of the editing where I’ve listened to it, and now I want to rewrite the whole fraking chapter.

This is not a good scenario.

So: a window into my brain right now. No, you don’t want to see it. I’m forcing myself to contine to write every day, and sometimes, that’s all I’ve got in me. My kid is sick again (OMGWTFBBQWTH!!?!?!?!?!?!) and I spent most of today wrangling him and/or decluttering the horror that is our house right now. Blog posting is not conducive, and unfortunately for you, writing in actual works of fiction takes precedence.

I tried to get Alderpod #18 together, but the forces conspired against me. In spite of the fact that my child naps every day of his life from 2-4, or therabouts, today was not that day. So my middle-of-the-day time was a big sucking vortex.

The pathetic culmination of my day? In spite of the fact I wrote somewhere around 3K (which I know I should be proud of, but honestly, the quality is so… meh… that it feels a lot less exciting), I gave up somewhere around 8:30pm and went and watched Picture Perfect on Hulu. Yes, I watched a romantic comedy with Jennifer Aniston and Jay Mohr (and Kevin Bacon, because he’s in every movie ever made). And throughout the entire film I kept thinking: “Wow, Jay Mohr is really freaky in this. His eyes are dead. This would be so much more awesome if the guy she pretended to be engaged to ended up a zombie!”

And I’m going to stop now, because I don’t have anything interesting to say at this point other than: sorry. I will try to suck less, and be more full of win…

Okay, more effective if I actually liked champagne.

But, at approximately 3:3opm, EST, here on a very chilly blustery day in North Carolina, I completed the second draft of The Aldersgate.

That’s thirty chapters and a hefty 161,000 words. (Like me, it could stand to lose some.)

I started The Aldersgate two years ago, and finished the first draft one year ago. This has been the single largest project I’ve ever undertaken, and certainly the longest book I’ve ever written. Of the original 100K in the first draft, I salvaged somewhere around 5K, and rewrote everything else.

There were days that I honestly never thought I’d get to this point; sincerest thanks to some of the most awesome readers/listeners/Tweeters out there, too.

So, yes. In the meantime, I’m going to finish another WIP that is single person, pure fantasy, and will hover around 90K when said and done. Then, well, of course, I have to work on the sequel!

In case you’ve missed them, I’ve been posting more general writerly stuff over @ NB. Check it out!

Going for the Jugular – Killing Characters

Writing to reach you – On recent successes and writing binges

The white space: what we don’t write – On what we chose not to write about.

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