From Harp & Sword Chronicles

Sunday, January 31, 2010

New Website!

I have a new website up, listed in links, but will put here as well:
I have a blog space on that website, so I probably won't be on this one as much. Check me out there first for updates. I'll probably use this one for spiritual stuff and that one for the writing updates.
I'm having fun with both so...:)
Thanks to Jesse Fox for following me! (((((Huggles Jesse)))))
Onward and upward and searching continuously.
I'll be blogging on the Pagan_And_Pen blogsite February 13th from 8am-12pm PST. Check out the calendar on my website for link. New stuff I'm investigating that I want to talk about, as well as promoting my new releases. Hope to see you there!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Words of wisdom...

I don't have any. LOL! No, seriously, in joining chats this past weekend (m/m chats) I find I am very inept at voicing my opinions. The Aries temper in me pushes my 'pride' or 'ego' button and I fall into the trap without looking. I have a narrow vision, it seems, on the realities of life. Not that anyone blasted me for saying things, just that...what they said on certain topics, as compared to what my opinions were, made me feel like I was a fish out of water. It was a heavy lesson, but being that I'm a new kid on the block and wet behind the ears, the greenie, the rook, it was more a wake-up call.

Yes, I want my name out there. I want to make myself known, but there are ways to do that and speaking up just because you think your opinion holds even a drop of water is not the way to do it. No one treated me unkindly, let me get that out there up front, I had three responses to my comments and all were nice and diplomatic. No, what I'm trying to say here, and again, being woefully inept at it, is that I'm feeling and realizing my own inferiority. I would never make a good public speaker. I'm learning how to expand my knowledge, my vision, so-to-speak, but I'm still a kid in this area. A teenager in my mind. I need to grow up. Also, I don't know the etiquette. I had a woman contact me privately about what 'not' to say in those posts. She gave me valid reasons for my opinion being out of turn, but it still hit me hard that I had done something wrong out of ignorance. I learned from it and that's the good thing, still no one likes to be pulled aside and told they did something wrong, especially when you thought you were trying to help another author. I won't go into details, but it's an author/writing/publisher thing, something I'd never heard of before because I've not known anyone who experienced the situation, so I had no idea this thing happens.

It's not easy to realize that the world of authoring is not like the world of fandoms. In the world of fandoms you can leave if you don't feel welcome. In the world of authoring, you have the choice of giving up or pushing forward and learning. This is all a very dramatic reaction, I'm sure, but it was still a heavy wake-up call. For me, it's better to keep my mouth shut, and simply listen and learn. Never will I give up, but my strategy to get my name out there has just taken a very bad review by yours truly and it's time to block/delete/revise.
So...with that in mind, I need to learn how to speak my mind by getting other opinions on a subject first. So, I'll be asking a lot of questions in the future, simply to understand how others in this writing world of m/m love stories think, what they expect. I'll sift through that information, form an educated opinion, and go from there. Huh. Easy to say. Hard part is to actually do it. I have a tendency to forget lessons learned.
Write On!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

"The time has come," the Walrus said.

Changing things around, getting face lifts, adding gadgets. Now that the three story lines I've been working on for the last 10 years have been picked up for publication thru Dark Roast Press, I can focus on the work of promotion.

As you can see, I've sort of veered from my Jimmy Page fun and am now focusing this blog on things that deal with authoring and promoting. Some spiritual ponderings will still be added as I have to pursue what inspires me on a writing as well as a personal level, but the majority of this blog will be used to share my work and to offer contests and all sorts of fun things for the readers and followers. It's also a means to help other authors promote their work. As soon as I find the blogs to writers I enjoy, I'll let it be known I'm following them. So, if I've commented on your writing and you have a blog let me know where I can check it out. ;)

Please do follow me if you are interested.

For this first post since facelifting my blog, I'll begin by saying I'm once again tackling the sequel to "Crimson Dawn" (Harp & Sword Chronicles hovered over my head to get the first two books for that series done, so I had to get those off my plate, first.) Now, though, Kevin, Vic and the others are back on my plate and I'm focusing on really making a splash in the sexuality of this installment. The first book was sort of the backdrop to where the characters are going, a means to introduce them and set up the foundation. This one is purusing the romance between Kevin and Vic and the challenges thrown before them that Hampton can't seem to veer away from, and he's enjoying doing it, too.


No, seriously, Hampton is a bad guy, but is he more an anti-hero than a villain? Curiouser and curioser, said Alice. We shall see. One thing's for certain, he won't be expecting how much Kevin loves Vic; enough to sacrifice his...well, I won't say it. It'll give it away.

And I'm getting over my fear of sex-scenes. I guess with all the promotions I've stumbled across dealing with nothing but sex scenes it sort of gets old and tiring. (Dig it, burned out on sex...or is it more desensitized? Riddle me that one, Batman.)

But, it sells, it captivates, and honestly, if written well, it really and truly is beautiful to read. M.L. Rhodes does it wonderfully. Mel Keegan is another favorite. When sex scenes sound like porn I do skip over it. I want to read scenes that capture the 'feelings', not just physical, but in the soul of the persons involved. What does the sex trigger for them? What does it do to make them fulfilled? It should be a mystery going in and when leaving give you a sense of 'Man, that was just as good for me as it was for them.' Of course, this is just my opinion on the matter. I'd be interested in what others have to say as other insights always 'dilate' the mind.

I'm not good at writing sex scenes. It's just something I need to practice at because of the desensitized predisposition I've had on the subject for the last few years. They are very difficult to write, and to those who do it well and hold my attention I say, "I'm not worthy! I'm not worthy!" But what a great way to gain inspiration! :)

Friday, January 15, 2010

And this one is the second book cover. Still waiting word on release date, but should be sometime this month, if not next. No nude guys on these covers, but I think the designs are breathtaking, if I do say so myself. No I didn't photoshop these, but I did find the pics and the fonts and formatted the placing of words. The gal at Dark Roast Press found the colors to use and put in the borders as well as put the designs together. I was floored at how well the color of the font fit the pictures! Yay, Winnie!

First cover to my "Harp & Sword Chronicles" series picked up by Dark Roast Press. Release date TBA. In't it purty. See above for the second book cover in the series. Hopefully both will be released at or near the same time. :)

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Nice picture, huh? See comments on Duran Duran below...

To be honest, I'm not receiving any comments to these posts, so if you're wondering why I'm not here day in and day out posting, until there's some traffic here, I can't see the point. Not being snide or rude, just saying that when there's something to say I'll be here posting. And for the last 10 weeks nothing has been happening except I've been down with battling a fibroid tumor in the uterus, enough to cause my OBGYN to recommend a hysterectomy, which I'm all for. Get the damn thing out of me and maybe my life can get back to normal. I've not even touched my computer for about 6 weeks as a result. I'm online today as I'm feeling pretty good, considering. Thought I'd touch base with anyone out there who may just stumble upon these rantings of mine and decide they want to read more.

Anyway, a friend of mine and I are diving a bit into the Duran Duran side of things and finding out that Simon Le Bon has been an out bi-sexual for a few years now, I got all excited and decided to splash into the past for a bit. Also, it's cool to be able to capture onto the lyrics and spark the flame of passion for words again. Robert Plant does the same, but he and Simon do it from different angles, so I get a well-rounded view of imagery from both sides. :) Nice.

Also, their videos do have a habit of inspiring the mind. My friend is working on a story for the video to "Nightboat" and I pulled out an old story I started around the time 'Wild Boys' came out which is a story video in itself! I love the videos where there's an actual 'theme' to them. Went into You Tube and pulled up Arcadia's videos as well and just love seeing Nick and Simon do their thing from the creative angle. It's been a nice change of pace, different temperature in this pool than Led Zeppelin, but still both bands are very much in my top playing lists. (I can never truly break away from Zeppelin and Pagey. :)
So, with that being said, I await the surgery while dosing myself on pain killers and seeking to remember that there is life outside the doctor's offices.
Peace out,

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Voices From The Grave Are Not Necessarily Audible...(Pete Duel)

A long time ago, when I was 8 years old, I used to love watching "Alias Smith & Jones" with Pete Duel and Ben Murphy. I had such a crush on Pete even at that young age. When I learned that he had killed himself that same year all I remember was hearing the news. I must have blocked out how I reacted, because I have no memory at all of that. For the next almost four decades I didn't really give much thought to the show. I saw it once or twice in syndication when I was in my mid-teens, but never anything after that. I never really understood why, possibly because of the fact that the stigma of Pete's death hung over it. A few weeks ago, I was getting invovled in some fan fiction with the Slash genre', and there is a Live Journal community called 'Flash-Slash' where they take four word prompts and sit and write a story around those four words for about less than 15 minutes without any editing. A slight plan before they go in, but after that the rule is no stopping to think about what you're going to write, just write. One of these girls who participates is named Hardboiledbaby, and she did a few pieces for Alias Smith & Jones. I just melted into the stories she constructed and got in touch with her about them. I then gave in to my desire and purchased the first season for A: S&J (a mid-season release so it only had the pilot movie plus 14 eps) and watched them all in a weekend. I once again fell in love with Pete Duel and found myself questioning what brought him to commit suicide. All I knew was that it was by a bullet to the brain.

I found fans on You Tube who had visited his grave. Got to see pictures of his tombstone and found myself crying. I then searched out the articles about his death and how it happened. December 31st, 1971 at around 1:35 in the morning. His live-in girlfriend, Diane Ray, was asleep in their bedroom when she awoke, thinking she was dreaming, to see Pete at his dresser unwrapping a .38. He said, "I'll see you later", went out into the living room and shot himself.

I wanted to understand what made him pull the trigger. I found out he suffered from depression, severe, possibly what they would now call clinical depression. At that time the war with Viet Nam was still going on and pollution was raising its ugly head in leaps and bounds. Pete was an avid ecological advocate. He cared about the world, animals and people. What he saw going on around him must have really heightened his sorrow. He turned to alcohol to alleviate his pain, but as we know now, alcohol just intensifes depression. He tried AA groups and battled with both problems, but he lost the battle that night. He simply could not rise above his sorrows. On a good and positive note, from what people said on the set of A: S&J, he never let the alcoholism interfere with his work. He was a professional, no matter how much he despised doing series work, wanting to further his skills as an actor with movie roles. Now, I suffer from degenerative disk disease in my neck, mixed with arthritis. There are some times when the pain is so bad it's debilitating and I just want to die so that I can end it. I never suffer from depression, but I have a friend who is clinically depressed and I've seen what it can do to a person. There was no treatment for such severe depression back then as there is today (if you can call what they offer today 'treatment'.)

Pete's love for the environment would be sorely needed today. I feel his was a soul that was born out of time. I believe his death to be a tragedy, but I can honestly understand why he did it. Too many things, too soon, must have made him feel like living was pointless.

Today, I wonder how he would feel about everyone 'going green'. Would he have hope? Sometimes I wonder myself what it's all for...living...being here. We're on the brink of religious caused mass destruction where there honestly seems to be no hope for mankind to survive. I wonder if he would simply take a gun to his head again. Everyone who new Pete said that he cared so much about people and the world around him. He took in stray dogs, loved animals and nature and felt his world falling apart with all that was happening to destroy this world and mankind. It just messed him up.

I had kept my feelings on his death within for about two weeks after reading more about it. Then last Saturday I couldn't hold back anymore and released the grief. The death happened almost 38 years ago, but I finally faced it and understood the tragedy of it. The next day I went to the grocery store. Now, I do my part for the environment. I recycle what I can, when I can, and try to save water and what have you, but I know I can do more. So, with Pete's love for the environment on my mind and heart, I sought items at the grocery store that were 'green'. I bought the shopping bags they use to keep from using plastic. I needed dishwashing liquid and looked for Seventh Generation products, thinking I could do the 'green' thing while also helping the Native Americans, but unfortunately this store did not carry Seventh Generation. I did, however, find the Clorox 'green' products called 'Green Works'. I picked a bottle of dishwasing liquid and said, "For Pete. Yes, for the environment mostly, but also in honor of Pete." I searched for all things I could do to help.

I went home and unloaded the items. I took the bottle of Clorox Green Works and went to read the label. I saw that Clorox has partnered up with Sierra Club Foundation. I saw the recycle symbol at the bottom of the label...and then I saw something else beneath that symbol that almost made me drop the bottle. Talk about freaky, this about did it for me. Beneath that symbol, in bold letters...was the word "PETE".

I know it's an acronym, but what it stands for I have no idea at this time. I only know that it spelled out "PETE".

I stared at that thing for about a minute, unable to breathe. It did not say "Peter", but "PETE". The form of the name 'Peter' that Pete Duel used.

I took it as a sign that he was smiling down on me.

Sometimes voices from the grave are not always audible.
Blessed Be.