Six Sentence Sunday! “The Project”

A few years ago I was lucky enough to sell a short story to GRIT Magazine – it was one of my first professional sales and I was thrilled, to say the least. I later put it up on Amazon with a homemade cover and right now it’s FREE for the taking…

The Project

Jeff McAllister’s wife, Jessie, loved her quilts and her computer. But now she’s gone, and Jeff has to figure out how to survive without her and how to deal with her online legacy. With the companionship of his faithful Golden Retriever, he begins the toughest project of his life, still grieving over his loss. This short story was originally published in the August 2005 issue of GRIT Magazine.


“Dear friends…” He paused, unsure how to start. She so loved this particular bulletin board; she had spent hours on it while he worked on yet another project in the shop. So many new ideas here; so many new friends, so many…

“Dear friends of Jessie – this is her husband, Jeff. I’m sorry to tell you that she passed away a week ago from a sudden heart attack.”


I hope you’ll come on over and grab a free copy while you can – have a great day and fantastic Six Sentence Sunday!


New Babbage steampunk stories!

A few years ago I ventured into the virtual world of Second Life, a free online world where you can wander anywhere and anywhen, taking up different avatars and accessories as you wanted to.

I landed in a steampunk sim called New Babbage – a quaint little town with a few little quirks. Not that I was without my own, becoming Sheryl Skytower, the Clockwork Dragon of New Babbage!

Recently the New Babbage Fiction Press put out their first work – Tales of New Babbage, The Steampunk City – Volume One.

I am happy to say that I helped out by writing some of the introductions to these fine tales – stories by and about the citizens of this virtual steampunk world.

If you’re looking for something different to add to your reading pile may I suggest this wonderful book – available now in print.

And if anyone wants to wander into Second Life – it’s free, VERY easy to learn, and a great way to make friends and visit other worlds from Victorian steampunk to reproductions of famous cities to art galleries to nightclubs and RPG sims.

Just be sure to drop your favorite clockwork dragon a note!


Change isn’t always good…

A few dribbles and drabbles in the heat…

They’re changing Wonder Woman’s costume. Again. And her origin story.

Not happy.

I’ve noticed this trend happening in comic books a lot, and the Wookie agrees – a new writer, usually a Big Name, gets onto a title and decides that he just HAS to put his Mark on It for All Time. So we work up the costume, kill off a few beloved characters and/or change the origin story because, well, we have to.

I like Wonder Woman’s Origin story. I like Steve Trevor.I *love* Nathan Fillion doing the VOICE of Steve Trevor. And, yes, you can bring the origin story up to present day without sacrificing a whole lot of integrity, as this animated movie shows. So why, for the love of Zeus, are you dumping Diana in the middle of an “urban environment” sans Steve?


I mean, who wasn’t a hopeless romantic on the whole Diana/Steve thing? I never liked the Clark/Diana shippers much… or the Bruce/Diana. Sorry.



I’ve decided to pull my works off of Smashwords, and by proxy B&N and other venues whenever they get around to updating their files. The sales were awful, to say the least, and considering I don’t get paid out by Smashwords until I reach $10… I won’t be getting any money for years, if that. It was a one-year experiment with short stories that I’d already sold and had the reprint rights for, so nothing lost there. However, I should warn potential self-pub addicts racing to Smashwords not to expect much. After a year none of my works ever appeared on Kindle despite my continued questions – I’m not sure if it’s Amazon being the big green monster or the Smashwords staff not doing the work, but considering that Amazon is a prime ebook market, well… It may be easier to get stories out to different markets using Smashwords, but the only thing that I sold were my free stories. Not that it’s a bad thing and I’m hoping some of those sales translated into sales for my actual novels, but can’t say much good about the year-long experience. That’s just my story, YMMV.

Along the same lines, one self-pub author (’cause I just can’t be a cool kid and say “indie”) recently commented on her blog about how much time she was spending promoting her works and how little time she had left for writing.

Allow me a snerk here.


Folks, don’t get into self-pubbing unless you really know the score. Sure, you may have all the control, yatta yatta yatta, but you have to be your own publicist as well. And yes, that may mean less time for you to write while you run all over the place Tweeting and FBing and whatever to sell your work. That’s part of the deal.

Me, I’d rather let my publisher do that and give them part of the royalties for doing so. The self-pub author may get higher royalties on one hand, but are you ready to run your butt off doing promotion? Most of which, btw, takes money. Not to mention community contacts and professional friendships that you’re unlikely to get being a lone author.

I’d rather just write.

Stay cool, everyone!

what I’ve been reading lately…

… and, as usual, I’m all over the spectrum and I darned well like it!

I think there’s nothing more boring than a person who stays within one genre and never sticks her/head outside to see what else is out there – take a risk and you just might find something new AND good!

so, without futher ado, what I’ve been reading lately… and liking!

Undercover by Lauren Dane

So… about that spare change in your pocket…

Just wanted to remind everyone that I’ve got a short story collection up for sale – less than two dollars for seven stories, which is pretty darned cheap if you ask me. Less than thirty cents a story…

Looking In, Looking Out:

A werewolf tries to avoid his destiny. A tour guide brags about the first inhabitants on a new world. A demon has to deal with a new resident who just can’t learn to be evil. These are only three of the seven stories inside that will make you laugh, cry and wonder just a bit about the world inside and outside. Previously published in such esteemed online magazines as AlienSkin Magazine, The Harrow and Dark Recesses Press, this is the first time these short stories have been made available to the public in print format.

Seriously, you can do worse for two bucks.

Can’t you?