Quote of the Moment

"Magic comes from what is inside you. It is part of you. You can't weave together a spell you don't believe in." - Jim Butcher

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Patreon

So, I'm always interested in trying new things, and since I completed my Baker's Dozen Experiment, I figured it was about time I experiment with something else.

I made a Patreon page!

I've been publishing my short stories and novels, but I have a bunch of flash fiction and poems that I would love to share with the world. I thought Patreon would be the perfect way to offer these shorter works, as well as a way to have an option for readers to interact with me a bit more.

I know some people aren't completely familiar with Patreon, so I figured I'd take the time to let you all know how it works. It's similar to Kickstarter, but instead of pledging for a single project, it's paying for new content that the artist adds to her Patreon page on a regular basis.

What it really boils down to is it's kind of like a magazine subscription, but you get to choose how much you want to pay for that subscription. And depending on the amount you choose to pay, you'll get some fun bonuses. As a matter of fact, right now it's the only way you can get a signed copy of The Mind Behind the Mind (unless you happen to run into me, since the only signing I plan to attend in the coming year is at In Your Write Mind)!

There are two options that an artist can choose when she sets up her Patreon page. The first is to charge monthly. So, if you pledge $1, you would be charged every month to receive the content included in that price. The other option is to charge per creation. Every month you're charged for the content posted from the previous month.

I chose to charge per creation. Mainly because I only intend to post one flash story or poem per month. I might post two now and then, but not that often. As a subscriber, you can also choose the maximum amount of creations you're willing to be charged for each month. So, if you only want to pay for one each month, you won't be charged if I post a second one.

The lowest pledge for my work is $1, and that includes the ability to feed me writing prompts for the content I'll be posting on Patreon! To look at all my pledge levels (starting with The Pixie and all the way up to The Unicorn), please visit my Patreon page. Your support is appreciated. =)

I also added a handy little button to my blog and website that will take you to a page to subscribe. See it there on the left?

And if I hit some of my pledge goals, I may add some other bonuses as well for those already subscribed. ;)

Oh, and how could I forget? I posted a Drabble for free! So, you can read that while you're considering subscribing. I'll be posting another Drabble tomorrow, but that one will only be for paid readers!

Happy reading, everyone! I can't wait to share some of my shorter works with all of you.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

The Adventures of Karriya the Wizard - The Gods, Part 1

The Adventures of Karriya the Wizard is a series based on the main character I play in Everquest. Though most of what I write actually happened, many events might be embellished and exaggerated to create a better story. Happy hunting (and reading)!

Origin Story

The gods are many in Norrath... which is why this is merely Part 1 of the story. =D

Karriya has crossed paths with many gods in her travels, and it's well-known that once a god dies s/he doesn't stay dead. Which is why in one instance she can happily do a task for a god and in the other have to slaughter that same god. Fickle deities, they are.

But it's not as fun to talk about the nice things Karriya has done for the gods. Oh, no. It's much better to revel in her battles. And the battles have been many.

Some haunts of the gods are in the Planes of Power. These Planes harbor forms of the gods that are no longer quite as powerful as they used to be. Well, not for a level 105 wizard, at least. Though in her youth, she ran from them screaming... Wait no, Karriya the Wizard doesn't scream. She ensured that a full raid of her peers were with her and hid behind them. Please don't consider her a coward. Wizzies tend to splat gloriously -- she's wise, not craven.

Still think she's not as brave as she claims? Well, here's our first deity to use as an example: Terris-Thule, The Dream Scorcher. Many years ago, she took too few friends along with her to Terris's lair, just outside of the Plane of Nightmare. True, it was her Fabled version that was waiting to be taken down (a much more powerful version than which is usually up), but she had confidence that they'd defeat her. Sadly, not only did she splat as awesomely as any wizzie can splat, but the rest of her group wiped as well. Terris was not taken down that day.

But recently, Karriya had her revenge. This time Terris awaited her (the non-Fabled version), and she was going to take the goddess out single-handed (nearly with a single spell), but friend Rondor decided he wanted to join in on the fun (I mean, you got to kill as many as you can for those god-slaying achievements). Downpour sat just outside the cave, waiting to hail the Planar Projection. She's a bit of a mooch like that sometimes.

Karriya barely had time to commemorate the battle with some pictures before Terris Thule fell, defeated. No squishy wizzie anymore! At least not in the Planes of Power.

While there was great satisfaction in downing Terris, there was another fight in the Bastion of Thunder, another Plane of Power, that grew Karriya's pride tenfold. I know, you didn't think she could get any haughtier. Guess again. You have to remember, she is a high elf.

While not a full god (he still seems to count for that aforementioned god-slaying achievement, though), Agnarr, The Storm Lord, broods in his tower. To get to Karana, The Rain Keeper (a true god -- and to Karriya the only one that matters), adventurers must go through Agnarr.

Rondor was again along on this rather quick fight, and they climbed the last set of spiral stairs to be greeted by Karana himself.

Karriya then devolved into one of those squealing teenage fangirls and insisted on taking some selfies with her god. Yes, her god. Who doesn't love a good thunderstorm? Karriya sure does. Downpour does too (her surname is Stormsoul), but the little druid kept her composure in the presence of her god.

Watch for "The Gods, Part 2" in the coming months! And that won't be the last we hear of the gods of Norrath, I assure you. Karriya does enjoy tangling with them -- got to up that haughtiness rating (and the achievement)!

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Writing Bullet Journal

OK, so I'm usually the last person to jump into something that can be seen as a "fad" (heck, usually I run the opposite direction because I hate being part of the crowd - lol), but when Shelley Adina started talking about Washi tape on Facebook, I was curious. Off to Google I went, intent on discovering what exactly a Bullet Journal is. (Yes, I had no clue that these things were so popular. Fine, I live under a rock then.)

And I got crazy excited by what I saw.

Hello, world. I am an obsessive list-maker. My husband thinks I'm crazy because of all the lists I make. I am also in love with pretty pens. All the colors make me drool...

However, I still haven't found a list-making tactic I am completely happy with, which is why I was so excited to try a Bullet Journal.

I read the basics on the Bullet Journal website, and then I watched all the videos on the BoHo Berry site (if you are considering starting a Bullet Journal, I highly recommend these).

After some thought, I figured I'd attempt both one for personal use and one for writing (with a tiny bit of overlap). Yes, I know, with a Bullet Journal you're supposed to use it to integrate everything in your life. But I thought it would be awesome to have a separate Writing Bullet Journal so I could page back and solely look at my writing progress throughout the year (I know a bonus to these is it can also be diary-like, but for some reason I'm not that into gushing about feelings in these things -- maybe that will change eventually).

I started my personal one in a regular notebook the final week of 2016, and my writing one at the beginning of this year in a nice Piccadilly journal I hadn't written anything in yet. I didn't want to invest tons of money in new stuff until I knew if I liked it, though I did buy a kitty stencil and a couple rolls of Washi tape... and then stickers (more on these later).

What do I think so far?

Well, I'm not thrilled with the personal one. It may be the notebook or that I'm using a set of InkJoy pens I had on hand (which I have grown to hate - they make me want to never touch a ballpoint pen again). I used some old stencils I also had and then doodled a little with the kitty stencil I bought, but I'm still meh on it (thought I'd love stencils, but honestly, not a huge fan right now because I feel like I'm wasting too much time doodling). And I kind of feel panicky with it sometimes because my to do list before the Bullet Journal was a spreadsheet with a list of things to do for the entire week. Yes, I know I can adapt the Bullet Journal to whatever I need it to be, but the thought of writing out a whole weekly to do list makes it feel more overwhelming. Even now I have the habit of migrating too many things once I turn the page, which means I have the first day of the spread with too many items on it.

I do like the Habit Tracker, though. That's quite nice. Part of me is tempted to only do a Habit Tracker each month in it and go back to my spreadsheet for my to do lists.

Anyway, this post isn't about my Personal Bullet Journal. It's about my Writing Bullet Journal! And that one... I'm in love with!

How could I have such differing feelings? Who knows. Maybe it's the stickers? I just can't seem to find the desire to add stickers to my personal one...

Anyway, I'm using a little of the Washi tape in my Writing Bullet Journal, but not going too crazy with design. Here's my title page! Isn't it pretty? Book Washi tape! And yes, I'm happy I don't have messy handwriting. I'm using a Micron pen, which I had on hand because I use them to do the outlines on my hand-drawn versions of the Fate Tarot cards. Love the Micron, though I'm tempted to try Staedtlers because Walmart actually carries them not in a pack of varying sizes.

And here's the month of January! I kept things simple, but I'm tracking how many days I write. The colors are from gel pens (I bought a 100-pack back in November to do some coloring, and I really like using them in the Bullet Journal as well).

I also wrote in my 1-Year Plan. Though I also have that typed up in a Word doc, it felt good to write it down in my Bullet Journal as well, like it solidified my goals more. And yes, those are sparkly heart stickers!

Finally, here's the guts of my Writing Bullet Journal. My dailies! And I love this so far. Mostly because... stickers! If I hit my writing goal for the day, I get a sticker (I may do a smaller sticker if I write but don't hit goal, too)! When I started the Writing Bullet Journal and wrote down my first daily writing goal, I felt like I was missing something. Stenciling felt like too much work, and I do love stickers but never have anything to use them on. I quickly demanded my husband take me that night to Walmart so I could buy some stickers. A sticker is my reward for actually writing. True, I don't succeed everyday, due to life (and exhaustion), but I don't seem to get too sad not seeing everyday with stickers. Even though the thought of earning a sticker still encourages me! So this seems to be working well for me.

As you can see, I'm keeping things pretty simple. I have a little "bling" with some Washi tape, the stickers, and the colored gel pens, but I'm not spending tons of time making it look all fancy. It's still pretty to me!

I also started a section for Ideas and Mindworms (when one popped into my head one night). I know I'm not quite two weeks in, but I'm thinking I'll be sticking to the Writing Bullet Journal (even if I do have a master list of monthly tasks on another tracker, which I can access from my phone -- I don't check and update that one daily). We'll see about that personal one...

If I come up with any new layouts, I'll be sure to post an update! Maybe I'll even post one if I have an awesome streak and a bunch of stickers. <3

Do you have a Writing Bullet Journal? Or a Bullet Journal you use for other things? I'd love to hear what works for you!