Tag Archives: science fiction

Writing Life: “Sex, Drugs, Rock & Roll”

Today’s post comes from my friend Jade Bennett over at Jade Bennett Writes. Who also, if you hadn’t heard, launched her IndieGoGo campaign today!  She’s aiming to raise money to self-publish her first novel Mechanics of Magic, the first in a series titled Mechanical Maladies.  Check her out, and if you support her cause, please donate or share her IndieGoGo page!  Thanks, everyone!

Now, about Writing Life.

I’ve spoken on the topic of saying what you mean to say, how you mean to say it, multiple times, and this post isn’t going to change that tune.  I’ve been asked by several people why I choose to portray controversial subjects in my writing, how I approach those topics, and how I deal with the “backlash.”

Truth?  I’ve never really had any backlash.  I own what I write, and if people don’t like it, they can go complain on the internet.  (You know, like I do all the time.  You guys know.  =P)  If something means a lot to you, and you want to put that down on paper, that’s your call.  Gaining the courage to show the world is an entirely different matter.

Let’s face it: a stranger’s opinion is the difference between the cost of one book in our pocket and one less digit on our sales sheet, and that’s big.  But not as big as how we feel about, say, our mother reading that gay romance novel we wrote, chock full of drug abuse, rape, and our main character’s struggle to get by in an anti-equality society.  Or our father running across our heart-rending essays on teen suicide or our flash fiction about parental alcoholism.

It doesn’t matter.  I swear to you, write what you’re passionate about.  It may not be pretty and it may cause some controversy, but that’s okay.  Our modern world was built on controversy.  Voices rise and things change, but if we keep silent, we’re stagnant.  Even if it’s in your fiction, in a small, indirect way, say what you mean.  Even if it’s through your characters in a fictional realm on a fictional planet, address those things that call to your heart because only you can say them the way you intend them to be said.

Stand up.  Your friends and families will judge you.  Strangers will judge you.  But at least you can say that you stood for something.  So few people see what courage there is in writing fiction.

Be blunt.  You don’t have to be crass, but be honest.  If it’s not honesty from your perspective, be honest from an opposite perspective.  Fiction always displays at least two sides, if not always evenly.

Moral of the story?  Don’t be afraid to write about the hard things in life.  Your family may not approve, but you’ll be a voice for so many people who stand beside you.   More than you might realize.  Don’t let fear silence you. <3

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In Which Kit Procrastinates….

I’ve been working like hell to get all of the ins and outs of Kestrel plotted out.  Then I decided “I’ll make notes as I go.  I’m tired of dawdling.”  Naturally, I got some work done on the story (I’m nearing the end of the first chapter, about 4k in), but I’ve been struggling with the imagery for some of my characters.  The men, mostly.  I’ve got a clear idea in my head of both Kadri and Kizzy, though Thera is still a bit of a mystery.

So, I’ve been playing “cast my novel” with IMDB celebrity lists.  It’s been an all day affair.  I had intended to accomplish something, since I have this new goal where, if I can reach 10k words by next Wednesday, I can buy myself a tablet (which is now possibly the first half of the cost of my passport.  We’ll see).

Yeah, fat chance that’s going to get done.  I’m a horrible person and a lazy writer these last few weeks.

In any case, I thought I would share with all of you, the faces that will be my cast.

So far, Kadri has no actress.  I know what she looks like, and there’s no one I can really liken her to right now.  I’ll update if I find someone.

Kizzy is adorable.  Also no actress.  I’ll update if I locate someone.  Or have her drawn.

Greyson!  Greyson is, against my better judgment, represented by Ian Somerhalder.  He’s gorgeous, and I kind of imagine Greyson to have a gritty attractiveness to him, but overall, he wouldn’t be traditionally handsome.  But Ian Somerhalder is the closest I could get to that fine-featured, gritty look.

Because, really, argue with me that he’s not gritty-hot.

My next male character?  Hunter.  He’s an optimistic mechanic with a dark sense of humor and a charismatic smile.  Who better than Alex Pettyfer?  I’d make his eyes lighter, probably a sea foam green.  All of the clones have really light eyes across the spectrum so that their serial numbers, etched into their irises, are visible.

Oh, you bet. Take it easy, ladies. He’s taken.

“Taken BY…?” you ask?

Talmai.  He’s Ularian.  What is Ularian?  Reptilian humanoids from Ularis who have no male/female gender differentiation.  Every Ularian can father and mother children… who hatch from eggs.   I have the physical whys and hows of it mapped out, but I’m not sure you want to hear about Ularian anatomy.  It’s graphic, and includes the word “intercourse” a lot.  ANYWAY.  Talmai is represented by Jamie Campbell Bower… if he had a fine layer of shimmery scales on most of his body.

Perfectly androgynous. Necessary for his race. He’s not nearly as young as he looks. =P Also, his scales make him shinier.

SO.  There you have it, folks.  The boys of Kestrel.   I need to stop being so picky about my ladies and give them faces.

No. No, I need to write the story.

That’s what needs to happen.

WELL, have fun. *salute*  I’m off to wrap up chapter one and pound the keys into the glorious sunset. <3

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Don’t forget! G&L is accepting fiction submissions!

Remember, Goggles & Lace’s second anniversary is coming up!  Anyone interested in submitting some short fiction for the anniversary contest: the submission deadline is April 8th!

Please see this post for more detailed information, and don’t hesitate to email me if you have any questions!

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Big Changes on the Horizon! (an invitation to submit to G&L)

As you know, G&L has been up and down for the last several months.  I’ve been a bad blog-mommy.  But, as I mentioned before, G&L’s 2nd anniversary is coming up in April, and I want you all to be a part of it!

I have some surprises in store for you, and maybe even for me, as I work my way up to April 22nd.  This particular “surprise” though, isn’t going to be much of a surprise, as it requires a bit of forethought.  Ready?  I know you’re ready.

G&L would not have come this far without all of you.  I’m not known for my ability to keep on one thing for any length of time, and if it wasn’t for my readers, G&L would have been one of the many things I would have given up for no apparent reason.  So, for all of you and everyone who promoted the posts here at G&L over the last two years, I want to extend the invitation to enter a small short story contest.

Now, I don’t have the means to pay anyone, keep in mind.  You’d retain all the rights to your work.  This would simply be a means of promoting your writing/blogs/websites through a small short story collection.  (For those of you who have read my collection  Something Peculiar, it would be exactly like that.)

Contest Details:

  • Of the entries, 7 will be chosen to be included in the collection. Submission deadline is April 8, 2012.

  • All submitters that are not chosen will have their names and websites listed on the final page of the ebook and receive a copy of the ebook to use in any promotions they like.  (The object of this ebook is to get our fiction out there, remember.)
  • No corrections or alterations can be made to any entry once its submitted.
  • The ebook will be sent out on April 22, 2012.

Contest Rules:

  • There is no set theme.  The genre must fall in the categories of fantasy, science fiction, or spec fic.  YA or adult fiction are both acceptable.  (Not “adult” fiction, by the way.  Erotica will be discarded.  I have some young readers, and I’d like any submissions to be a strong PG-13 at the worst.)
  • Entries must not exceed 1200 words.
  • If published previously, authors must currently hold the publishing rights to that particular piece of fiction.  I’d rather not get into a copyright battle.  Though, I’d prefer if the entries were not published previously.

Submission Guidelines:

  • Format:*
    • Page Information

      • Margins — 1.5 inches all the way around
      • Font — Courier, Courier New, or other clean monospace serif font from 10-12 pt. (I use 12 pt. Dark Courier.)
      • Line spacing — Double-space
      • Paragraph indent — first line, 5 pt.
      • Header — right justified, contains the following information:Last name/ TITLE/ page#A header does not belong on the title page. Start headers on page two of the actual manuscript. First labeled page number should be 2.
    • Cover page
      • Do not use a cover page with short work, either fiction or non-fiction
    • First page
      • Contact information — Name and address, phone number and e-mail address in the top left corner of the page, single spaced, left-justified
      • Word count — top line, right justified (you’ll have to do this with a table if you’re working with a word processor), either exact count, or rounded to the nearest ten
      • Title — drop down four double-spaced lines, centered
      • by — centered and one double-spaced line beneath the title
      • Name or pen name — centered and one double-spaced line beneath the word by
      • Body of the story or article — drop down two lines and begin.
      • Scene or section breaks — drop down two double-spaced lines, insert and center the # character, drop down two more double-spaced lines, and begin your new scene.
    • Second and subsequent pages
      • Header — should be in the upper right-hand corner of the page, and page number should be 2.
      • Body text — begins on the first line, doublespaced throughout.
  • All files must be in .doc or .odt format.
  • Must be fantasy, science fiction, or speculative fiction.  YA and adult fiction are acceptable.  (Not “adult” fiction.  Erotica will be discarded.  PG-13 rating cap.)
  • All submissions must be sent to gogglesandlace-at-gmail-dot-com with “Anniversary Submission” in the subject field.
  • Judging will begin on April 8, 2012.

Any questions, comments or concerns can be sent to gogglesandlace-at-gmail-dot-com.  Please include “Anniversary Contest Question” in the subject field.  If I missed anything above, please feel free to let me know.  I’ll be happy to make the correction.  =]

 

*  “Format” section borrowed from Holly Lisle.  If you don’t know of her work, check her out.  She’s amazing.

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Prompt: Fob Watch

Prompt Fridays are back!  And here’s your new one:

You’ve come into possession of a fob watch, mysteriously or otherwise, and I want you to write about it.  Tell me its significance to you.  If it has supernatural qualities, tell me about them.  Or, give me a character-perspective of this fancy new accessory and how your character came into its possession.  Go!

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Something Peculiar!

The e-book exclusive I was promising all new subscribers has finally been finished and released!  If I had (or liked) champagne, I’d be popping a bottle right now!

Something Peculiar will still be available to anyone who subscribes to G&L between now and October 31st, so if you thought you missed your chance, think again!  All you have to do is sign up to receive email updates of any posts by G&L, and I’ll send you your copy.  If you’ve subscribed since May and haven’t received your copy, email me at gogglesandlace [at] gmail [dot] com and I’ll send your copy right out. <3

It’ll arrive as a PDF, but I have other formats available upon request.  (Honestly, the MOBI is a much better presentation than the PDF, but PDF is a bit more popular.)

In any case, I feel victorious. <3

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Create an Alien!

Late, but here’s Friday’s writing prompt!  Courtesy io9.

Create an Alien: Whether you create something that’s humanoid or the size of an amoeba, designing an alien can be a lot of fun and help spark a few story ideas. There are a number of different methods that you can work with to add a bit of chance to the results. One approach you could take would be to write several types of adjectives on small pieces of paper. Toss them in a shoebox and then randomly pull out a string of descriptions. Another method would be to pick an environment, like a Martian desert, and design an alien based on how they’d survive within it. If your goal is to create an alien for a dark fiction setting, you could try creating a cute alien first and then twisting it into something predatory. After you have your creation in hand, you can then explore several different options to flesh out your alien. You could determine how they reproduce, if there are any other types of aliens within that species, what type of pets they might have or food they might eat, etc.

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Operation: Evac Earth

Your family, friends, and life might be a lot different…if they were in space! Imagine that everything you knew was transported to a traveling space ship or space station. How would your day to day life change?  What led up to the move to space?

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Encouragement! – May Challenge

On Saturday, I challenged my readers to take part in a little challenge for the month of May:

Write or plot for a minimum of ten minutes per day from the 1st to the 31st.

The kitchen timer is effective, of course, and I’m sure some people prefer it, but for anyone who wants to up the stakes, I urge you to try Write or Die. It’s a program that lets you input a time limit or word goal, gives you a list of consequences and a ‘grace period.’

How this works: For the time (or word count) allotted, you write continuously, with the option to pause only once. The ‘grace period’ is how long you’re able to go before A) a little box pops up to remind you that you’ve stopped writing, B) a horrible, ear-destroying sound comes out of your speakers, or C) your text begins erasing itself. (Hint: Never pick “Evil” as your consequence!)

Hell of a motivator, am I right?

So, there’s my recommendation. =P Now, I’m off to tweak some fiction for a submission to Weird Tales Magazine! That should take care of today’s 10 minutes (and THEN some)!

Happy writing, kiddos. <3

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6:30am does nothing for my mental state…

SO. At 6:30am, I woke up with a bug in my shirt, ripped my clothes off, beat it into submission with a phone book, and flushed it down the toilet.

I was very displeased by these events.

Also, LfBH: Part 7 is going to be super late, because a virus ate my computer. Any advice on how to get rid of XP Home Security 2011 would be more than appreciated.

AND. As I’m FINALLY winding down from the bug incident and settling back into bed, I get this smashing idea for a fantasy/sci fi race.

Unfortunately, it came to me in bullet points, and I haven’t made much progress since. Also, I’m still working on the reproductive anatomy…. so I assume Google and Wikipedia are in my future. Also, this new fantasy race may be the perfect excuse for me to write more boy-slash without having to justify it socially within the story. Earth is stupid, and I refuse to write about it.

Just kidding. I still love all my human friends.

<3
Kit

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