Monday, April 30, 2012

The Joy of Writing

Promising writer and fisherman
It was my pleasure and delight to listen to my six-year-old grandson read his story to me yesterday afternoon. He was so excited to share it--and oh, yes, the illustrations that accompanied it. The story was about a "trdl" and a snake named Hiss. His eyes grew wide with excitement as he read the two animals went to the "mestrius" (Mysterious) Woods. He giggled when those words rolled off his tongue.

I told him I loved his choice of "sithering" slithering to describe the snake. And he agreed it was the right word for a snake.

I cannot tell you the end of the story because he is only on page 6 and it is going to be 13 pages long. It may be awhile before he finishes the tale because he has to draw the "trdl" and Hiss as they go along on their adventure.

Let me tell you what an adventure it was for me soaking in all the joy and delight this six-year-old exhibited at sharing this wonderful story. I hope he never loses this very special feeling of satisfaction and happiness he receives while writing a story.

I too sometimes get giddy when reading my own story. Or should I admit that? I chuckle at some of the particularly humorous phrases (funny to me anyway) and cringe at frightening scenes and even get a bit misty-eyed when I read an especially warm and meaningful conversation. I must say I enjoy the "work."

Yes we all have those days when we can't stick three words together, but then I remember the exhilaration when just the right phrases and emotions tumble out on the page. That keeps me going.

Hearing my grandson's giggles and chuckles as he read his work certainly reminded me of the joy of writing.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Guest Author Karina Fabian Live and Let Die

When a dragon and a nun play secret agent, all Hel breaks loose! 
It is my pleasure to welcome the zany, creative author Karina Fabian to the blog today. Karina is an award-winning fantasy, science fiction and horror author, whose  books make people laugh, cry or think—sometimes all three.  Check out her latest at her website, Fabianspace

Her newest book in the Dragon Eye P.I. series, Live and Let Fly, was released on April 20 from Muse It Up Publishing. I'm excited she is stopping here on her blog tour so you can get to know her and get a taste of her entertaining writing. After Karina's piece on Writing and the Twisted Mind, enjoy an excerpt from Live and Let Fly, watch the book trailer, and check out the links for more info about Karina and where to find her book. A special treat from this author is a clever video of slides with Karina reading from her story.

Writing and the Twisted Mind
Karina Fabian

When I was a Sophomore in high school, I played the creative writer in Up the Down Staircase.  I can’t even remember her name, but I remember the lines she read to the class about the thing she saw skulking across her kitchen.  “How fearful were his eyes!  Should I kill him?... Is it obvious I’m talking about a cockroach?”

To get into the part, I kept a notebook with me, where I wrote flash fiction with bizarre twists.  The one I remember most was the frog in the blender—from the frog’s POV.  Who knew that part was going to prepare me for my career as a fantasy/sci-fi and parody writer?

Live and Let Fly is full of crazy scenes, but I think my favorite when it comes to the twisted mind category is attack of the Munchy, Munchy Moles.   Alas, I must withhold the scene at the request of my children who think it’s the funniest scene in the book, but…

Have you ever played Hungry, Hungry, Hippos?  Well imagine how the ball must feel:  Towering jaws of death opening and closing, opening and closing, as you scramble and bang against your fellow balls, trying frantically to keep your distance.  If you should accidentally roll into those gaping mouths, you enter oblivion—but if you don’t quite make it, you’ll be smashed upon its plastic teeth.

* Make the board life-sized
* Make the board tilt
*  Instead of being the ball, you have to avoid the balls—six-foot-in-diameter heavy balls of rolling destruction!

Then, just for fun, I had the animatronics section of the museum come to life and attack as well.
It was one of the most fun scenes to write: scrambling people, rolling balls, vicious animated machines in the shapes of all kinds of nasty creatures.  Bullets flying, people yelling…and one dragon doing his best to save them all.

It doesn’t end well—though not fatally—of course, which means I had plenty of opportunity to get my characters in and out of new fixes.

Unlike the character I played in Up the Down Staircase, I do not take my fiction too seriously, which just makes it all the more fun!

Karina certainly does have fun with fiction. Take a peek at the book trailer.

Charlie started to close the door behind us, his other hand gripping the handle of his dagger so tightly I could hear the leather wrap on the handle strain, as we listened to the footsteps coming our way, slow, bored. My predator's instincts rose; then I had a great idea. I shook my head at Charlie and winked, and he shuffled out of my way, leaving the door ajar. I settled myself with my back to the door, just inside the shadows and let the script play itself out:

CLUELESS MINION enters Stage Left. He pauses, hearing a noise, but does not report it. Instead, he fondles the stars on his nametag and moves toward the empty hallway, his mind on adding another. (Probably saying, "I was proactive today!")
CLUELESS pauses at door, hesitating. He stands and, back to the door, reaches for his walkie-talkie.
Suddenly, a well-muscled and gorgeously scaled tail whips out from the crack in the door and wraps itself around his neck. He only has time to grab ineffectively at the tail before he's drawn into the darkness. The door shuts behind him.
Pan shot of the empty hallway.

I slammed my victim on the floor and pinned him with my forelegs, then I leaned my face in nice and slow, making sure he got a good look at my fangs before he saw my eyes. "Where's the girl?" I growled low and menacingly.
"Wh-What g-g-girl?"
Charlie crouched down by Stutterboy and glanced at his nametag. "Look, Philip, we're in a bit of a hurry. We know Rhoda Dakota's being held captive somewhere nearby. Now you can be a good survivor and tell us where…or you can be dinner."
"I-I don't—"                 
"Phil A. Minion." I mused and drooled a bit for effect. I live for these moments, I really do. I licked his cheek and asked Charlie, "Can I have fries with that?"
"Why not? This is Idaho."

For information about Karina and her books:

Live and Let Fly is available at Muse It Up Publishing,,, and major online booksellers.

For a real treat, watch this trailer with Karina reading an excerpt from Live and Let Fly.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Earth Day is April 22--Earth Day Giveaway!

Earth_day : Human hand holding green globe with leaves  Vector  Stock Photo

Every April 22, the world stops to recognize Earth Day. In 1970 the first Earth Day was initiated to stop the destruction of our environment and to preserve our world for future generations. Instead of factories belching black, toxic smoke into the air, factories dumping toxic waste into our water systems, the unlimited use of pesticides, and the destruction of the wilderness and loss of wildlife, people took a stand to stop this savage destruction.

People today are more environmentally conscious and schools make a big push to educate our children to care for our earth. Even the simplest thing as not littering makes a big difference and is an easy lesson for our kids and for us to learn and do.

E-books are environmentally friendly. We can save our trees and gas, and eliminate trash by downloading e-books. Thousands of books can be stored digitally on e-readers and reading devices. (At this time there is some concern about what will happen to the obsolete e-reading devices.)

I am recognizing Earth Day by giving away my mystery/suspense e-book, Sunshine Boulevard, to a commenter on this blog via a random drawing. Just leave an idea on how we can help save our environment in our own way. For instance, we turn off lights when we leave the room. How about you? Winner will be chosen Monday April 23 at 9 pm. 

We will all be winners if we have a healthy environment!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Smarter Now


Hope you got a giggle from this cartoon sent to me by author Roseanne Dowell. 

This resonates with me because I am getting older and I would say I am smarter now too! Probably smarter because I learned from doing dumb things when I was younger. Learn by experience is one of my favorite sayings. 

I remember when I took piano lessons in grade school. I would really beat myself up when I hit the wrong note. My piano teacher's words of wisdom were always, "It's okay to make the mistake. Just don't repeat it next time." Hopefully I transferred that advice to my life.

It's too bad I can't advise my growing children on living life. Well, I do, IF they ask me. But there are some things in life that one has to experience to learn the lesson. Unfortunately we still often repeat the mistake instead of correcting our course and making a change.

I hope you are remembering how much smarter you are now than when you were a youth. Oh yes, that is one of the positives about getting older. Enjoy it, all you wise women and men! 

Monday, April 9, 2012

Travel With Me Along the Interstate Through Tennessee and Kentucky

I took a "blogcation" this week because my husband and I traveled from Florida back to our home in Michigan. We are snowbirds and enjoy the sunny winters in Florida and the fun summers in Michigan. I combined a few slides from our journey for your viewing pleasure.

I love experiencing the gorgeous coming of spring in every area we drive through--Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, to the Midwest states where spring has just begun and finally into Michigan where usually the season is just waking up. But not this year. As the rest of the country has experienced early springs, so has Michigan with spring blossoms turning on their bright colors and the countryside carpeted in refreshing green grass.

I am sharing some of the sights I saw as we traveled through Tennessee and Kentucky in this little movie I made using Picasa.

 Happy Springtime wherever you are!!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Hi Gang. I am taking a "blogcation" this week before Easter. I will return after the holiday. Have a Happy Easter. Blessings from J. Q. Rose.