My Misguided Fairy Godmother Muse

Once upon a time, there was a girl who started writing stories.

She spent several years scribbling away at them, going back and forth between a few different ideas and consequently not making much progress on them.

Then something strange began to happen. She began to have even more and more ideas for even more stories! What could this mean?

But, cheerily, she continued writing, and making notes for all the new ideas. She became obsessed with making lists of the stories, and developing titles for them, and designing mock covers for them, and writing out summaries of what they were about. She began to be more excited about “playing” with the stories than actually writing them.

Time went on. The list of stories continued to grow and grow and grow! But far from complaining, the writer was delighted.

She did so enjoy making those lists and writing those notes, you see.

Somewhere along the way, she began to notice patterns. Whenever she would take a break from working on her writings, whether on purpose to recharge, or accidentally due to busyness, she would suddenly get hit with all this inspiration — and, more often than not, that inspiration might include ideas for new stories.

Then the year of 2015 hit. The ideas were flying in left and write right. It began to get insane. The writer began to despair of ever getting around to writing all of the things, especially at the snail-like pace the actual writing was happening.

So the writer stepped back and analyzed this phenomenon.

That was when the writer discovered the presence of her fairy godmother.

Most writers talk of their “Muse”.

(very helpful…)

This writer realized that instead of a muse, she had a benevolent but misguided fairy godmother of inspiration. (Perhaps rather like Ophelia from Broken Glass by Emma Clifton…)

The writer realized that the fairy godmother muse freaks out whenever the writer is not making Story, knowing that the writer is happier when making Story. So the fairy godmother, thinking the writer is just tired of the old stories, quickly throws a bunch of new ideas at the writer to get her attention.

If you haven’t figured out by now, this writer is me. And this benevolent but misguided fairy godmother of my writerly brain/inspiration/muse is the cause of both my excitedness about having so many story ideas to write, and my despair over ever finishing anything, let alone all of them.

My fairy godmother muse, especially this year, is constantly going:

“STORY. STORY! YOU’RE NOT MAKING STORY. YOU’LL BE HAPPIER WITH SOME STORY. MAKE STORY!”

And hands me more and more storyness, shoving it into my brain and then beaming and watching happily as I flail around like a headless octopus and try to work on ALL OF THE STORY THINGS.

Unfortunately, my fairy godmother muse doesn’t seem to care if I’m actually making PROGRESS on said stories, i.e., actually writing them down…

As long as I’m flailing around doing plotting or brainstorming or making lists, she feels confident that she has been doing her job well and fulfilling her role in keeping her writer happy playing with stories.

To give you an idea of the insanity that’s underway, I’m going to share a list of the story ideas that have “clicked” this year ALONE.

The main ones are:

  • The Other Half of Everything (I think I’ve mentioned this enough…)
  • Darkling Reflections (Finished this one! Huzzah! …Yes, it’s a short story; I can still be proud.)
  • The Siren and the Skyship (swashbuckling sky adventuresome gender-swapped steampunk Little Mermaid retelling)

Five more stories in the Kedran’s Wood series (bringing it to a total of 8… so far; last year it was supposed to be a “trilogy”. Haha. Isn’t that just ADORABLE?)

  • Son of Kedran’s Wood – prequel novella
  • Return to McAllistair Mansion – short story (I wrote this one! I’s so proud of me.)
  • Mixup at Kedran’s Wood – novella between books 2 & 3
  • The Novelist of Kedran’s Wood – novel set after book 3, a double story
  • Celebrations at Kedran’s Wood – short story set after all of the planned books (thus far… *cough*)

As well as:

  • A modern Cinderella retelling about a writer, set during NaNoWriMo
  • An untitled fairy-tale mashup conglomeration retelling (RETELL ALL OF THE THINGS)
  • An untitled thing I’m currently calling “The Epic Book” which is vague but has some awesome ideas swirling
  • An extremely vague notion of an idea for a con/heist story that would be a companion to Underground Rainbow, starring the eccentric purple-haired artist (no, unfortunately this has no plot yet and I probably will never be able to make it work)
  • An idea for a nonfiction book about various things

And I also “made official” i.e. added to my lists because I had had ideas about them but was pretending they didn’t exist:

  • The tenth Starrellian Saga book
  • A sequel/companion novel to Heartseeker about the Bard and Trillum
  • An untitled Arthurian retelling which is going to be super cool

Not to mention my Sleeping Beauty novella The Rose and the Raven, which had been a vague idea for years but only just this year finally came together as something I could write… (But, again, having trouble CONTINUING… ya know?)

Yes. That is 16 (or 17 if you count The Rose and the Raven) stories, either from ideas from this year or “officialized” by listing them as stories to write. THAT’S JUST THIS YEAR ALONE. That’s not even thinking about the 30+ other stories from BEFORE the notorious 2015-when-all-the-stories-exploded-in-plotbunnies-and-said-write-us-or-we’ll-kill you. Sometimes I scroll through my list of 50ish stories and just go… “HOW EVEN.”

Sixteen new stories this year, guys. (So far…)

Can you see how insane this is getting?

Apparently there’s just no dealing with a benevolent but misguided fairy godmother of inspiration.

(And no, I don’t actually know whether you should be very happy for me or PLAYING A DIRGE.

It’s very confusing and I honestly can’t tell anymore.

Blame it on my fairy godmother.)

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Fall 2015 Books

Today is the first day of Autumn! Yayness! Can you feel it in the air? Maybe? Almost? …Ahem. Autumn just kind of excites me because it’s not going to be as HOT and it feels adventurous and it smells nice and feels nice and of course NaNo will be soon and… you get the picture. I LIKE AUTUMN. There.

Also, yesterday (Sept. 22) was Bilbo and Frodo’s birthday. Couldn’t let that go un-noted… HAPPY BIRTHDAY GUYS. (Yes, I always celebrate the Long Expected Party, even if it’s just by thinking about it.)

I’ve heard it called Hobbit Day… and yesterday for it, Rebekah @ Wordsmithing and Worldbuilding posted possibly my favorite Middle-earth-ish post ever.

Everyone, go read it.

Fans of Tolkien and Lord of the Rings and Middle-earth: read the post because you will understand and it will ring true (no pun intended).

Non-fans: read the post because it will show you why you should become a fan and read the books.

I just love that post a lot and it reminded me again of all the reasons why The Lord of the Rings is my favorite book and Tolkien my favorite author, and… it made my soul happy. ^_^ ❤

***

And now, with a new season, once again, it’s time for some book anticipation…

*drumroll*

Here is a list of books coming out this Autumn that look interesting to me!

poisonedcurecover

The Poisoned CureDeborah Dunlevy

September 8, 2015

Okay, so this one is technically already out, and before Autumn officially hits. But still! I’m so very very excited about this! I need to get my hands on it. NEED. The first book in the series, The Book of Sight, was one of those random free Kindle downloads I did a lot of when I first got my Kindle app. Except that this one I actually read it. And loved it so much that I actually bought the second and third book. (Bought. This is the person who doesn’t buy books very often, especially not e-books.) And I actually read them. And I’ve been waiting on the edge of my seat for the fourth to release — and I hear there’s going to be a fifth, which makes me all kinds of excited!

Six of Crows – Leigh Bardugo

September 29, 2015

I know nothing about this except it’s apparently set in the same world as Shadow and Bone which I know nothing about except that it’s quite popular and several people I know seem to love it so I want to perhaps try it… But Six of Crows is on my wishlist because it sounds like an awesome fantasy heisty book. What is not to like? No idea if it’s cool or not but it certainly sounds cool…

THE SUNKEN REALM KINDLE COVER SEPT 2015

The Sunken Realm – Serena Chase

September 30, 2015

Ever since I finished reading The Seahorse Legacy, I’ve basically been dying to read the conclusion. So… yes. Though I do hear that The Seahorse Legacy was kind of redone, so I must read that again as well! Bwahaha. ALL OF THE EPIC PIRATENESS. And and aaaaand… CAZIEN. ‘Nuff said. ❤

A Thousand Nights – E. K. Johnson

October 6, 2015

In this case, I’m entirely guilty of cover-love. I totally am only interested in it because of its gorgeous cover. Well, that and I think it’s a retelling of Arabian Nights which just sounds awesome because retellings! I have no idea if it will be any good or not though.

The Golden BraidMelanie Dickerson

November 17, 2015

Another medieval fairytale retelling of Hagenheim from Melanie Dickerson! I’ve loved previous installments in the series, and I keep hearing there are secrets and surprises in store for this one… Plus, THAT COVER. ❤ Needless to say, I’m very excited! Also, Rapunzel. It will be interesting to see how it’s retold in this tale!


Defying ShadowsAshley Townsend

November 2015

This is the sequel to Chasing Shadows, which I reviewed. I’m curious what will happen next with the romance and timey-wimey stuff and Robin-Hood hints and that ending of Chasing Shadows… Yes. Very curious… (Also scared of how it will turn out. But still curious. XD)


So there you are! What I’m looking forward to. I probably won’t manage to get hold of them all, but y’know me and my lists. 😉 It’s still fun, right?

Are you excited about any of these? (Aren’t they pretty covers?? #shallowbookworm)

Any you hadn’t heard of before?

And what are you excited for coming out this Fall? 🙂

ALSO IT’S FALL, GUYS. FAAAAAAAAALL! ❤ *throws leaves spontaneously*

777 Challenge – Round 2

I was tagged again — twice! — for the 7-7-7 Challenge, this time by Kelsey Bryant, and by Shantelle Mary Hannu. Thanks so much, guys! ❤ And everyone, check out their loverly blogs, do!

Rules

There seem to be slight variations on the rules, but basically you go to page 7 of your current WIP (Work In Progress), and select 7 lines of your story as a snippet to share on your blog (some say at the top, some randomly selected, some say the 7 lines should be 7 lines down…). And then tag 7 other writers! Simple enough. (Even I should be able to figure this one out… *coughcough*)

Snippet #1

I finished my short story Darkling Reflections, so it’s no longer a Work In Progress, but here are seven lines, seven lines down, on page seven, from it anyway! 😉

picdr

(pinterest)

The lawyer—her father’s and now hers, just as everything else was—stood by a side table and waved her over as she approached.

He looked exactly like a lawyer ought to. Distinguished, steel-grey, crisp, businesslike, and very tidy. He appeared pleased to see her and smiled a little.

Even his smile was tidy.

“Ah, Alethea. I did not think you were coming.”

Snippet #2

I’ve already done the 777 Challenge for my main current WIP, The Secret of Kedran’s Wood… So, instead, here are seven lines from it that I wrote recently.

picthingThat night, Tare went to the warehouse.

The winding way down the dark alleys beneath the cold starry sky was familiar, though he had not walked it since . . . well, since that fateful night the previous summer. After that, there had been no need to.

Ignoring the cold wind that wrapped round him and stabbed down his collar, he padded with silent purpose through the shadowy darkness until he reached the door of the warehouse.

It was locked, as the Chess Club had said. But that did not stop him.

Pockets and fights were not the only things Tare could pick.

Tagging

I tag: Sarah | Rebekah | Christine | Tracey | Jenelle | Cait | YOU if you want to!

You guys don’t have to do it, obviously… just if you want. 😉 And if you’re not currently working on anything… well, whatever you were working on last will do! And if you’re not 7 pages into something… then any 7 lines will do! Basically, have fun with it!

Thanks for reading. ❤

Yorien’s Hand Cover Reveal

Hey everyone! Today I’m excited to join in the cover reveal for a the third book in The Minstrel’s Song series by Jenelle Schmidt: Yorien’s Hand!

First, a bit about the author (who interviewed me on her blog a couple weeks back!), and then scroll on for the cover, read a little about the book, and even take a peek at a snippet from the book that the author is kind enough to share with us!

Author Bio

JS Author Photo Color

Jenelle Schmidt grew up in the northern-midwest. She now resides with her husband and their three adorable children in North Carolina where the summers are too hot and there is never enough snow. Jenelle fell in love with reading at a young age during family storytimes. To this day she enjoys creating exciting adventure tales filled with poignant themes and compelling characters in the fantasy and sci-fi genres.

You can find out more about Jenelle on her website:

www.JenelleSchmidt.com

And now . . . *drumroll*

The Cover

Yoriens Hand - Cover Reveal Medium

Book Description:

The years of Oraeyn’s short rule have been peaceful, but now ominous nightmares plague his sleep and cling to him during his waking hours. When two of his most trusted advisors disappear without a trace and not even the power of dragons can locate them, the fell promise of the king’s nightmares becomes reality.

From the furthest reaches of the world, an ancient enemy stirs. Stretching beyond his crumbling prison walls, this foe seeks to bring life to the darkest of shadows. His army marches towards Aom-igh with deadly intent, threatening all Oraeyn holds dear.

Aided by dragons, and with the warrior Brant and Princess Kamarie at his side, Oraeyn must journey into the wilds of a forgotten realm. Trusting in the wisdom and skill of the enigmatic minstrel, Kiernan Kane, the companions race against time in search of Yorien’s Hand, a relic that may hold the power to save them all.

Snippet from Yorien’s Hand

Finally, only Oraeyn, Brant, and Kiernan remained in the room. Brant laid a reassuring hand on Oraeyn’s shoulder and then turned to the story-teller.

“That was quite the tale, minstrel. I suppose you’ll be staying behind, or perhaps disappearing… again?”

A smile played across the minstrel’s face. “Oh, no, I think I shall be coming along on this adventure,” he replied. “I believe I will be able to offer some help, to you, Sir Brant, in particular.”

Brant grimaced and glowered. But Kiernan continued, turning his attention to Oraeyn. “Sire, please do be sure to pack plenty of food for the journey, for I shall sorely miss the palace kitchen while we are away, but such is the lot of heroes, and it is unbecoming to complain.”

Yorien’s Hand by Jenelle Schmidt

***

This all makes me very excited for this series! I need to quickly read the first two (King’s Warrior, and Second Son), which are waiting to be devoured, so I can read this delightful sounding third book! After reading Stone Curse in the Five Enchanted Roses collection, I’m excited to read more by Jenelle. 🙂

You can add Yorien’s Hand on Goodreads HERE.

Thanks for reading, everyone! 🙂

Also.

Guys.

I want a dragon to ride on. I do. DON’T YOU AGREE?? (If you ever find out where I can find one, tell me pleeease.) DRAGONSSSS. ❤

Liebsterish Encore and Versatile Blogger Award

Firstly, I want to say — WOW, I love all the discussion that came out of my last post on books! That was fantastic. Thanks for weighing in in the comments, y’all! You are all so awesome, with such great thoughts, and discussing books is the BEST. 😀

Secondly, if you haven’t heard, Beyond the Mask just released on DVD!!! *cue excited squealing* I just rewatched it and alksdjflksjdlkj IT’S SO FABULOUS I LOVE IT SO MUCH. ❤ If you haven’t gotten a copy yet, you simply MUST. It’s such a wonderful movie, so much fun, so well done, so epic…! Masked-man, humor, 1700s, right before the Revolutionary War, John Rhys-Davies, fabulous acting, awesome costumes and sets, HUMOR, action, a touch of sweet romance, a theme of redemption, lovable characters, sheer epicness… WHAT IS NOT TO LOVE? It’s at bunches of Walmarts (at the moment), and, I hear, also Christian bookstores, and online. So go find it! Go go!

ISN’T IT SO PRETTY???

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Okay, now I got those important thoughts out of the way, onward to the actual post! It’s about time I caught up on some tags again… *rubs hands gleefully*

liebster-award-3

I was, once again, nominated for the Liebster Award, this time by Sara Letourneau — thank you, Sara!

I’ve done it before but thought it would be fun to answer the questions anyway.

Rules

Here are the rules, which I’m mostly ignoring today because I am lazy. 😉 But feel free to snag this tag for your own blog if you wish!

  1. Once you are nominated, make a post that thanks the person who nominated you and links back to their article.
  2. Include the Liebster Award sticker in your post.
  3. Nominate 7 to 10 other bloggers who you feel are worthy of this award. Let them know they have been nominated by commenting on one of their posts. You can also nominate the person who nominated you.
  4. Answer the 10 questions asked to you by the person who nominated you.
  5. Make 10 questions of your own for your nominees.
  6. Lastly, copy these rules in the post.
  7. All of the nominees are free to accept or reject the nomination.

Questions

1. Pick one of your favorite writers. What do you admire most about their work?

Diana Wynne Jones. And… everything? Her books are just so hilarious but also have wonderful story worlds, fabulous mind-blowing plot twists, and brilliant characters who I love; and they’re even deep books when you go to look beyond the surface. But… well, I guess, mostly the humor and the characters. I wish I could write like that. I just… love everything of hers I’ve read. ❤

2. Do you have any weaknesses or guilty pleasures when it comes to food? If so, what?

Well, chocolate? But I maintain that’s not a weakness — it’s necessary. 😉 I like sweets; I guess that’s a guilty pleasure, even if I don’t necessarily eat them often. Also anything noodley/Italian. YES. ❤

3. What was the most daring or adventurous thing you did as a child?

Ha! Haha. How about… nothing? I don’t think I’ve ever been a very adventurous person. I do remember once sleeping in a non-heated house on an extremely cold night, just to prove I could. That’s probably the most daring thing I can come up with, and it wasn’t very. 😛

4. If you could visit any city, country, or landmark in the world that you’ve haven’t been to yet, where would you go?

The British Isles! All of the scenery and history… Mostly Scotland and Ireland, but also Wales and Cornwall and Stonehenge and… Yes.

5. What is your favorite type of setting? In other words, do you prefer beaches, lakes, mountains, cities, forests, etc.?

Forests, hands-down! They are the most beautiful, and relaxing-feeling, but also mysterious and… I don’t know. They just feel the best and look the best and I love forests.

6. What literary trope are you most tired of reading about?

I think I’ve mentioned this before, and I’m not sure if it counts, but I’m sick of the tough-girls. They simply annoy me to no end.

7. On the flipside, what is one thing you’d like to see more of in published novels?

Heists and con-artists, please! There are not enough of these tales. But they are just so fun. I keep looking for more…

8. What birthday or holiday gift do you cherish most?

The latest was Illusionarium by Heather Dixon. I so enjoyed that book! *flailing and fangirling squeals* *huggles it*

9. If you could invent one thing (technology, household appliance, computer program or app, etc.) that currently doesn’t exist, what would it be?

Well, probably some sort of thing to manipulate time so that I wouldn’t always waste it (ha!) and so I’d have time to do all the things I want; or maybe something that automatically transfers my stories in my head, perfectly, into words on paper. Yes. I’d like that.

10. What’s your favorite kind of weather? Do you prefer rainy days over sun, snow over heat, etc.?

After such a hot summer, I’m thinking COOL WEATHER AND RAIN PLEASE. But I don’t really know. I tend to change my mind to whatever is NOT currently happening. (I’m difficult to please and flighty like that.)

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Versatile-Blogger-Award

I was also tagged by Rachana for the Versatile Blogger Award! Thank you, Rachana! I’d never gotten this one before… Makes me feel specials. ^_^ Check out her blog, do!

Rules

  • Thank the person who gave you this award — of course.
  • Include a link to their blog. They deserve to have some credits too.
  • Next, select 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly.
  • Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award — you might include a link to this
  • Finally, tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself.

I’m once again ignoring rules; sorry, I’m a rebel today. But here are some random facts…

7 Things About Me

1 – I’m really really super bad at coming up with facts about myself. (That’s a fact!)

2 – My hair is brown and longish and has a reddish tint in sunlight; I say it’s because of my Irish ancestors.

3 – I can play the pennywhistle, and I’m better at it with my eyes closed than open; my fingers know where to go unless I’m looking at them trying to remember for them.

4 – I love owls and have a painting of one on my wall, and also a wooden key-chain of one from Japan that my dear cousin gave me. It is adorable and I love it. ❤

5 – I love doing calligraphy, especially with Tolkien’s Elvish alphabet, Tengwar, even if I haven’t done much with it in a very long time.

6 – I dream a lot, and my dreams are usually extremely strange and fairly vivid; many of my story ideas are from dreams.

7 – I will sit and endlessly stare at the books on my bookshelf and daydream about what the books will be like when I read them. (Yes, I should probably just READ them to find out; but time! Time is key! And I don’t have it! Plus, books are just gorgeous to look at. DO NOT DENY IT.)

Tagging

(By the way, for the record… Who DOES like being tagged? Because I like being tagged — even if I don’t always get around to it — but I always have a hard time coming up with bloggers to tag in turn, especially not wanting to tag people all the time… And I’m not sure who likes tags?)

I’m not officially tagging anybody, but like I said, if you want to do either (or both!) on your blog, consider yourself officially tagged!