I'm happy to announce that I released my latest novel, Move, yesterday! As you can see from the front page, I published it through Smashwords and it should be available through Amazon later today. I'm so excited!
As you know from previous posts, Move is a story about a young woman that unknowingly makes a deal with a djinn (genie) and finds out that messing with fate is an unpredictable and dangerous venture - especially with the djinn doesn't have full mastery of his craft! This is really a book about dealing with life ruts, and the proper way to get out of them. The protagonist, Ruby Josen, finds herself in a life rut that she can't seem to break free of, but it turns out to be a trap of her own making. Ruby isn't moving ahead because Ruby is afraid of change, and her desire to stick with the comfort of the familiar holds her back from taking chances that would lead to a better life. By taking the passive approach of letting another deal with her problems, she hopes that she can keep the comfort of what she knows and let others deal with doing the work that a better life would take. Plus, she finds herself victimized by other peoples' mistakes and doesn't know how to stand up for herself. Ruby's passive demeanor puts her in the perfect trap, and she can't see that the key to freedom is in her own hands - and that if she won't use that key, others will use her self-imposed imprisonment to their advantage.
So why self publish this novel, when I worked so hard on it for so long? Simply stated, I prayed over it and realized that my mixed genre approach could make publishers uncomfortable. Although audiences are willing to snap up vampire-romances, other forms of mixed genres are taking on more slowly, and a lot depends on having one genre clearly primary over another - which this book does not. I define this book as a mix of urban-fantasy and mystery and by and large, that gets mixed reviews from readers. Some love it, while others that don't like to see a heavy mix of genres dislike it (especially when it comes to mysteries). I very much believe in this novel and feel that there is an audience for it, but I'm not sure that a publisher would be comfortable with a novel that's not clearly one genre over another. In short terms, I thought it was more likely to be rejected, so I decided to strike out on my own with this one. We'll see how readers react.
It's been a lot of work, but well worth it. I hope readers will enjoy it. Keep an eye on the home page of this website for links to more online bookstores as they become available, as well as other promotional news and information.
That's all today. Enjoy the rest of your weekend and I hope you have a great start to the new week.
If you love books then you know that most people view you as being lost in a fantasy world. This stereotype applies to readers just as much as writers. People think we get so lost in those "other worlds" that we aren't in touch with reality.
And they're wrong.
Oh, they're very wrong because I believe they miss a fundamental point: the reason why we retreat into those worlds - whether it's one created by us or one created by others - is because we're VERY in touch with reality. In fact, we're probably in touch with it better than others are, because the very nature of the worlds we "visit" cause us to perceive the world we're "in" with more detail and clairity than most people do.
It is true that there's a thin line between fiction and reality. In fact, I believe most people would be very surprised at how much reality is reflected in fiction. It's masked, of course. The entire purpose, at least in fiction, it to entertain, but it does that by showing us different reflections of what we know. No matter what the genre, that new and different world holds up a mirror to make us see reflections of what we know in new and different ways. Do you relate to the characters? It's because you understand what they face based on situations or experiences you have. Are you intrigued by the plot or theme? It's because it reflects something that interest you in your own life. Do you ponder a course of action? It's because you see something there that you have or do face and are trying to stretch your mind to consider wider possibilities.
So the next time you see a reader or writer, don't be so quick to assume that they're out of touch with reality. In fact, they might be more in sync with reality the little things that so many people take for granted speak to them, and help them to see the "real world" with a wider perspective and a clairity that pierces the surface and gets the core of meaning - a meaning that could change everything, not just in the worlds they visit with writing and reading, but in the very life they live, everyday.
And isn't that what fantasy is about - taking us out of reality, so we can come back and see our own life more clearly? It's something to think about.
That's all today. Happy Friday to you, and I hope you have a great weekend.
It's no secret that I'm a huge fan of sci-fi and fantasy. You all know that I'm a big fan of The Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, Star Trek, and pretty much anything having to do with superheros, especially Marvel creations like The Avengers, Thor, Captain America, and the Iron Man series. I'm anticipating The Hobbit with great interest as well. A prissy lady I am not when it comes to my movie picks. But there are some other movies out there not in these categories that I think are must sees. For example, I highly recommend:
Office Space. If you work in an office, this is a must see. The parallels to real life in an office are funny and a bit scary! And no joke - the opening scene when Peter has all the people telling him he messed up his TPS report is so errily reminicent of my former workplace that it's scary.
Eragon. A lot of people thought this was a Harry Potter rip off, but I think anybody that read the entire Inheritance Cycle by Christopher Paolini will tell you that it was a unique series all it's own. I think the reason this movie didn't do better was that it came out in the midst of Harry Potter mania, and they didn't do enough marketing to really push it as the unique creation that it was. The books definitely got more advertising and made more headway as a result. This movie was actually pretty good and I loved the concept of the dragon riders. It's a pity that movies weren't made for the rest of the series, because the books were absolutely awesome. On the big screen, it would be epic.
Dazed and Confused. Just teens without a worry in the world on the last day of school. Who doesn't love reliving that? Even if we didn't do it like they did, we still relate to that feeling of freedom.
Cheech and Chong's Up in Smoke. Hilarious and goofey. Who doesn't love this? This comedy of errors definitely strikes the funnybone in most of us! (And if you like this, you'd also like Friday with Chris Rock. So funny!)
The Waterboy. Adam Sandler + Kathy Bates = Brilliant! And if you like college football then this is a must see. It's goofy and funny with a heartwarming theme. I guess. Well, it was funny watching him knock people over anyway! (I'd also recommend The Blind Side - it's more serious, but a great story especially for football fans).
Paulie. This green cheek conure had a life full of adventure! Bird lovers, you have to see Paulie's adventures in finding his original owner, Maria.
So see, I'm not completely stuck in a rut. I have my favorites like everybody else, but there's always room for more good stuff, even if it doesn't fit the typical mold. Heck, sometimes breaking the mold and broadening your horizons is what makes it great.
Happy Friday to you. Have a great weekend.
Man, you can't go anywhere without getting hit full on by Harry Potter mania. Excitement is high as we approach the release of the final movie in the series - Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2.
You know what I say? Have fun with it. The journey with the boy wizard has been a fun one, and this is where it ends. We won't pass this way again. So let's enjoy the excitement and fun of the wizarding world - one last time.
I think that's what trends are all about: Discovering new things and having fun learning about them. Who knows how many people have been introduced to fantasy through Harry Potter? All along, my response to the critics that claim it's inappropriate for kids has been how? It has them reading. It helped them discover a genre they might not have discovered for themselves for a long time - if at all. It's opened a new world to countless people, and that world will enrich their own lives by letting them have a glimpse at things they may have never discovered.
I'll admit that I have done my share of complaining. I've griped that it seemed to rip off Tolkein, Lewis, and even Star Wars from time to time. But then again, there's nothing new under the sun. I once read that there are about 20 basic plots, and every story created (written or performed) is a variation on those plots. I believe it. The job of the artist is to create by mixing up reality in ways that are rare and, at times, perhaps forgotten. I think I have learned to see the merit of Harry Potter more fully over the past few years and, in my own journeys through writing and now publication, have learned to forgive some of what I came down too hard on.
Yes, Harry Potter is everywhere now, but that's ok. As I said, we won't pass this way again. So I don't mind meeting him every time I log on, or tune in. It is kind of nice. Yes, it's a bit sad that the journey is ending - but also exciting. After all, who knows what awaits to dazzle us next?