Blogs Deserve Readers.

There’s some wonderful stuff out there.

J.W. Manus usually shares the method to her formatting madness on her blog — Ebooks = Real Books.

Yesterday she asked an excellent question:  What the Heck is a Book Anyway?

“In the evenings, here of late, I’ve been taking my formatting-fried brain over to Wattpad. Browsing, snooping around, skimming stories, seeing what the kids are up to. It’s fascinating, actually. I suggest anyone who writes YA and wants to know what matters most with kids today, spend a few hours on Wattpad. Thousands, maybe millions of young people are pouring their hearts out on the virtual page, using stories as social activities and developing communication skills via the written word.

“It’s a free-wheeling, free-for-all, and I’d say the majority of writers on Wattpad not only don’t know the “rules” of writing, but don’t really give a shit that rules exist. (This appeals to my inner-anarchist.)”

The rest of the article is definitely worth your time.  I’m enjoying Wattpad right along with Jaye.  The site is a barometer of this new generation, as in New Adult.  See what they’re reading and writing.  Straight from the horse’s mouth.

Like Jaye, I believe arbitrary rules are made to be broken, especially when it comes to individual creativity.  I guess I’m a scofflaw.

To satisfy your inner sci fi nerd, check out The Musings and Artful Blunders of Scott D. Southard.  His post on Battlestar Galactica is the first I’ve read that does the new BSG justice.



“See, as a lover of storytelling, the idea of breaking down what I consider almost a perfect show feels a little… well… sacrilegious.

“This is writing voodoo, and I almost want to keep the show safe in my heart, not expose it to the world; letting the memory of experiencing it over the course of its run continue to survive as a cherished memory.

“So after struggling over the idea and what to actually say, I decided to set some ground rules for myself. Yeah, I’m going to do something different here, focusing on only three points I want to say about the show. Yet, here is the rub: I am going to attempt to do it without ruining even a minute of it.

“Yup, I’m going to avoid spoilers, plot points, and, to make this even more difficult for myself, I am even going to avoid naming characters.

“Why would I burden myself with such limitations, especially with a show that has been off the air for a few years now? Because this show deserves that kind of respect. Honestly, if you give it a chance it will speak for itself.”

Read the rest here:  Battlestar Galactica:  Humanity’s Show.

In my world the new BSG is the quintessential science fiction series.  So much so I can’t re-watch it as I can episodes of Firefly.  Once was lightning in a bottle.  Can’t be repeated.  And like Scott, I have no interest in prequels or sequels.  Impossible to improve upon perfection.

So go, read, enjoy.  Julia

News Bites.

News around my bookish world -

I just received a lovely children’s book from Nina Clark~


This is very exciting for Nina as it’s the first of many many installments in Lucy’s Wonder Weenie story.  You can find Nina and Lucy here.  Check them out!  This is a self-published children’s series.  I’m totally impressed with the professional look of the print book.

I’ve been reading lots – getting no writing done whatsoever.  I guess between my father’s sudden illness, travel back and forth to help my parents, my own remarkably prolonged bout of influenza/pneumonia/general brain fog I can’t seem to concentrate on any of my, oh, eight or nine WIPs.  Gol durn dang it!

However, I do have some new faves in the indie and not-quite-so indie world of literature:

Greta van der Rol.  I was already aware of this author.  She writes  science fiction and space operas.  Although I’m not a big paranormal romance fan – mostly because many of the more recent books in the genre are just plain silly – I decided to pick up a copy of her paranormal romance, Black Tiger.  I loved it.

Black Tiger

So why did I love it?

1.  Retro in tone.  Heavy on the romance, light on the erotica.  The romance unfolds at a relaxed, tropical, realistic pace.

2.  IR romance – Hunky dark and deep Indian were-tiger meets lonely blond and brainy Aussie doctor.

3.  Setting – Rural India.  How often do you find a romance set in rural India?  And read about squat toilets?  And still think it’s romantic?

4.  Appealing inner tiger – The shifter theme is subtle, not in your face animal.

5.  Intelligent/engaging characters in an intelligent/engaging story told in equally intelligent/engaging prose.  Ms. van der Rol gets all those nagging medical details right.  (I have a thing about accuracy when it comes to medical details.)

6.  A nice suspenseful subplot regarding poachers.

Take a look here.  Ms. van der Rol has just released a new installment in her space opera series too, Morgan’s Return.

I’m currently reading a great book.  It is great.  It is sooooo great.  It is fucking great.  I am loving this book.  And I picked it up on a whim.  I’m a huge fan of the movie, Die Hard, with Bruce Willis.  Huge fan.  I can’t wait to see the latest in the series.  As I read some promo material for the new movie I happened to notice that the book upon which the original Die Hard was based had been re-released – Nothing Lasts Forever, by Roderick Thorp.

 Nothing lasts forever

I gotta be honest.  I had no idea Die Hard was based upon a novel.  I jumped on it.  Downloaded the book immediately.  I swear I cannot stop reading it.  The prose is a little rough, the phrasing awkward, but the story is close to perfect.  If you expect to read a clone or a script or screenplay of Die Hard, forget it.  Nothing Lasts Forever is not Die Hard, nonetheless you can see how the movie evolved from the bones of the story.  If I were you I’d buy a copy.  Right here.

In other news, J.W. Manus has been working her little buns off on this book~



The book is next in my queue.  It’s quite exciting to ponder Eagle Man’s words of wisdom, especially coming on the heels of my recent ghost story… my friend Little Hawk’s invaluable assistance.  If you’d like to learn more about Spirituality for America, here and here. Don’t you love the cover?  Fantastic!

I’m also enjoying three other indie books – one I’d never have looked at if I hadn’t read an interesting review stating that the label YA did the book a disservice – I avoid YA like the plague – The Last Analog Summer, by Fred Limberg.  Another indie, sort of an Austen-esque story, The Taming of Lady Kate, by G.G. Vandagriff.  And a book of humorous essays– It Was Like That When I Found It, by Lorca Damon.

Tomorrow– Gardening Season begins at the Barrett’s.


What do sick (ill) authors do when they should be working?

By J.W. Manus:  Is Good Enough Good Enough?

By Penelope’s Romance Reviews:  A Typical Dinner At Penelope’s House

By Dr. Harrison Solow:  Dysgu Cymraeg, Learning Welsh

By Extremely Average:  Searching for Inspiration, A Conversation

From The Red Pen of Doom:  5 ways to make blog posts GO ALL VIRAL

From The Red Pen of Doom (yes, he gets two):  The Red Pen of Doom impales FIFTY SHADES OF GRAY

By Amber Skyze:  Her brutally honest harrowing tale of escape from an abusive husband.

By Lorca Damon (an oldie but goodie):  Tweets from the Bathroom

By Tom Stronach:  One Pan Leg of Lamb and Veg

From Must Love Fiction:  Marina’s Zombie Report~ The Walking Dead, Season 3, Episode 2, Recap  (Read the comments too.)

From Cowboy Poetry Press:  Liquid Cowboy  (The poems are gorgeous.)

By Chef John Malik:  The Good Lady Upstairs

From The Cocktail Whisperer:  Cooler Weather=Four Roses + Cock ‘n Bull Ginger Beer

From Vina’sdeliciousrecipes:  Fried Banana

From ars technica:  Microsoft’s first stab at a tablet, Surface reviewed

From One Good Book Deserves Another:  One Wrong Move, by Shannon McKenna  (Especially the excerpt at the end.)

Oh, and this… Breaking Clean, by Judy Blunt

“John,” Mike once asked, “how often do you tell your wife that you love her?”

“Oh, I’ve told her that before,” he replied cautiously. I cut into the conversation from my corner of the ring.

“You only told me you loved me once, and that was the day we were married,” I said.

“Well,” John said, injured and defensive, “I never took it back, did I?”

Okay, I think that’s enough for now.


A Secret Project… Revealed!

Jaye Manus and I decided to experiment.  I have three books out in The Soul Series – Incorporeal, In the Flesh and Stay.  We wondered if it would be possible to combine the three books into one volume, you know, like the big pubs do.

Three in one, I like it, says I!

So we worked hard, well, Jaye worked really hard.  She nearly killed herself on this project- read about her trials and tribulations here- while I read text until my eyes crossed.

Not only is the result stunning, beautiful, to die for, the compilation includes some previously unpublished bonus material, (written by me, of course), and I’ve left the door open.  Who knows what dreams may come?

So… Thank you, Jaye.

Introducing The Soul Series, Special Edition.


I have come to the following conclusions:

Canned coconut water is an acquired taste.  I like the way coconut water tastes straight out of a coconut, but my taste buds remain decidedly undecided about canned coconut water.  No added sugar is a plus… I guess.


No matter how you disguise it, tofu still tastes like tofu.  Sometimes good tofu sometimes bad tofu but always… tofu.



With Amazon’s new Author Ranking System now operational, I’m wondering how long it will take before Amazon develops a reality show – Amazon Author Fight Club.  May the least pasty-faced author win!

People who plant vegetable gardens in the front yard have a few screws loose, especially if they live on a busy street and most especially if they plant pumpkins.  What?  I didn’t smash it.


J.W. Manus is a bitchin’ formatter!

Ah, baseball – This has been one of the best post-seasons… Evah!

All right, laters!