I have been searching, searching I say, for the right book to accompany my November writing marathon. I like to read while I write; don’t know why, but it always fuels me in the right direction. I think I’ve mentioned that I’d tried my hand at a series of “mainstream” fantasy books the last few months, trying to read what’s selling and get an idea of the market. All well and good, but the result has been far from positive on my end. I’ve been frustrated, uninspired, and unable to finish a damned single one of them.

Thankfully, after a trip to the local book megastore, I came back with Blood and Iron by Elizabeth Bear. I’ve been meaning to catch up on her, and after two foiled attempts to find Joe Abercrombie (they had the second in the series, and the third, but not the first) or anything by Emma Bull, I found Ms. Bear’s collection and said, “OH yeah! I’ve been meaning to get to this forever.”

Being a mom doesn’t give you a lot of time to read, sure. And maybe that’s why I’m super picky these days. But falling into Elizabeth Bear’s writing is like… well, having read nothing but her short stories I don’t think I knew what I was prepared for. Dark and delight, and on some of my favorite subjects. Her slant on Arthuriana is particularly thrilling for me, obsessed as I am with it.

I’m only a few chapters in, but happily hooked… it’s just such a great feeling to find the RIGHT book.

A short little update to the last post about the free ebooks at Tor. Courtesy of commenter Linda, here are the links to the books and wallpapers:

The links to the ebooks in other file formats are available at

The links to most of the wallpapers in the 1600×1200 size are available at

Through the friendly FriendFeed Fantasy Writers Room I discovered that Tor.com is sending free ebooks to registered folks. OMG it’s so awesome to see a huge publication company do this! I really think the wave of the future is with online publication, .pdfs, and the like (not to mention CC licensing…). Yay! Books to read

Not only that, but the wallpaper offerings are truly gorgeous. I’m usually the kind of gal who keeps my wallpaper the same for a while, but I’ve been changing every day.

What are you still here for? Go sign up!