So many promos! Now back to me :)

I thought I’d check in and ramble about myself and my work for a little bit to break up the other indie folk.

That said this cross-promotion thing is amazing. All the great writers that I’m showing off are also showing off Larkspur. In October I had 160+ downloads, 101 in November, and in December I have 425 so far, and it’s only the 4th! I’m sure I have a few more promos set up for December too, and I’m not-so-secretly hoping to break 1000.

I have most of the major scenes for Delphinium written and pretty polished, now I’m just trying to tie them all together coherently. Sometimes I explain something in a chapter only to find that I wrote something similar already, so that all has to be fixed and redone. Some of the chapters take place over a day and others might be several weeks and I need to summarize, or expand, and make it flow right. I’m feeling really good about this story though- I have fewer “this sucks, what the hell am I even doing” days than I used to have. The story itself, by the way, takes place over 4 months and almost a week. I am gradually scaling up the time for each book, Aconitella should take place over a year and a half, and a few of the vaguely plotted stories for after the Larkspur series may cover five to ten years. I am working with a lot of time, generations here, so going week by week might not be the best idea in the world.

The Wolf Within has been put aside so I can wrap up Delphinium, but it will be written alongside Aconitella. I want to try dealing with more than one world at once, outside of Scenes. And even with Scenes I tend to fall back into the realm I’m working on at the moment. I’ve not been able to stick to another realm long enough for a good coherent Scene in a while (sorry about that).

I do have a pretty finished opening page to The Wolf Within though, so I’ll go ahead and share that here! 🙂

The pups were coming out of the den. They were less than a moon old and had only opened their eyes a few days past, but the alpha-mother was letting them come to meet the rest of the pack. Their alpha-father stood at the opening of the den, tail wagging his entire body as he made himself wait for his mate and puppies to appear. It was their first litter.
The other two wolves of the pack stood further back, not part of the family and not wishing to intrude, though keeping away from new puppies had proved too difficult to overcome entirely.

Alpha-mother came out first and greeted her mate. An uncertain whining was heard from the den and she yipped, telling her little ones that it was safe. Alpha-father had had enough waiting and stuck his head into the den, sniffing and licking the bundles of fur. He grabbed one by the scruff and pulled him out, setting him down before covering him again in licks.

The other two siblings ran out then and all descended on their father, licking at the corners on his mouth and pressing to him, showing him deference and love.

“Come,” the alpha-mother said to the two sitting off to the side. She nudged one of the puppies, a solid black one, in their direction if her beckoning had not been enough. “You are pack too.”

The elder, a golden wolf with suspiciously blue eyes, looked to the younger white wolf before taking a step forward.

The black puppy moved to him, tail low but swishing, shy and trying not to show her fear. The golden wolf dipped his head and licked her in greeting, and she nuzzled him back.

“Smell different.” The pup sneezed and stood back to look at the other pack members, then back to his mother. “Wolf-not-wolf.”

“Man-wolf,” his father explained. “Pack.”

The golden wolf laid down to be less intimidating and all the pups decided it would be a grand idea to tackle him at once.

Finally the black pup went over to the white wolf and sniffed her curiously. She was different than the golden wolf still, and reminded her of her parents in how she sat.

“Alpha-not-wolf?” she asked.

Her father walked over and bent his head, exposing his neck. “Man-wolf queen. She is the alpha of all the alphas. Wolf and man-wolf.”

The queen nudged alpha-father to stand and snorted in annoyance. “I am still young, and a guest of your father’s. I am not here as his alpha.”

Hope everyone is having a great Christmas season! ❤

Indie Promos and other stuff

You may have noticed that I made a new category for Indie Promotions. I’ve recently begun using facebook a lot more than I ever have joining groups for writers, authors, and marketing help.

They’re wonderful! It’s a bunch of fans of the genre and art working together for the good of all. There’s a lot of cross-promotion and helping each other out. I had over 100 downloads last month and almost at 100 for November too  ❤

Mostly these promos revolve around mailing lists, but since my list is tiny (26 people, woo) I think it makes more sense to post here on my blog where I get more views, and also the posts are tweeted. (I think I’ll come up with something eventually where once a month I’ll gather the promos I did on the blog and send them to the newsletter too).

Double good news- this gets me on my blog more. So I think I’ll be upping the amount of other posts I put here because I don’t want it to just be swamped with promos.

In regards to other stuff- I do have a Scene finished that I was going to post, but it doesn’t feel right to me for some reason. I think I’m going to have to rewrite it. It involves a realm I’ve never really done anything in yet, so it’s new and wobbly. I do have another Scene that’s almost done so I think that’ll be up in the next few days as well.

And I am working on Delphinium. It failed as a NaNo project (I got really caught up in election stuff), so I won’t be able to wrap it up by December, but things are going well. I got another beta reader that liked Larkspur and is top notch with grammar, so I can’t wait for someone who knows that to be a help

Hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving and is having a great Advent!

 

 

Maps!

I’ve been working on The Noctuinad Wiki for a few days now. It’s coming along nicely, I’m getting a lot of the worldbuilding tangles sorted, and making *lots* of fun charts. I thought I’d share here and explain more about my world.

We know that Noctuina has 256 magical realms. The perimeters are rectangles that have no care for land, sea, or any man-made structure. You can cross a realm length-wise in a season and a thirteen days (104 days), and it’s half as tall as it is wide. Near the perimeters there can be a mixing of the magics- they are not hard borders by any means. A skilled user of cræfts will feel the difference.

Here is a chart I just finished for the wiki, detailing not only the borders, but all the names of the realms. Clandestina is near the middle (1 up and 1 to the right from the center). On the wiki clicking on a part of the map will open a tiddler with that realm, some information about it, and a larger version of that realm’s map (without details, yet, I’m slowly going through the realms and making quite large detailed maps about each one).

I also broke up the world into continents. I’ve been doing this in my head for a while, giving each section it’s own cultural theme, before getting into the specifics within each realm (and even further still). Today I also outlined and named the continents.

There are nine, color coded for easy viewing. I’ll describe them quickly, comparing them to our own cultures/continents. These are not set in stone, but more short-hand so I know what kind of cultures go where on the map.

Oinos – the islands of Oinos are all themed in a Greco-Roman fashion. Given how much Greek mythology I read and love it isn’t surprising that this is a place I go to when I think. ‘Oinos’ is the Latin word for One.

Twye – is a pilgrim-esque type place, an Early America after European settlers have come. ‘Twye’ is the Yola word for Two.

Sān – Asia. There are several realms in the large continent, and their individual cultures range from Chinese, Japanese, to Vietnamese, to a mix of those and others.
‘Sān’ is the Chinese, and Japanese, word for Three.

Arba’a – My Middle East/Egypt continent. Deserts, caravans, pyramids. I’ve loved Egyptian mythology for as long as I’ve loved Greek and I wanted a place to explore those types of cultures.
‘Arba’a’ is the Arabic word for Four.

Tallimat – I haven’t done much thinking here yet, but in general this is a continent that embodies far northern / Inuit / Alaskan culture. There are lots of mountains here and they are almost constantly covered in snow.
‘Tallimat’ is the Inuinnaqtun word for Five.

Hvnnali – Another take on early America, only before any Europeans showed up. I hope to explore my own variations of Native American and Central American cultures.
‘Hvnnali’ is the Choctaw word for Six.

Seidth – These islands are my Celtic/Irish lands. I feel they should be distinct from the rest of my ‘Europe’ because the magic will be far more intense in these lands. They’re also called The Magic Isles.
‘Seidth’ is the Old Breton word for Seven.

Khaisa – The second continent I chose when making the map. This is my Africa, with the lower half turning into an Indian culture as well. I think it’s my favorite continent because of how it’s shaped- like a (biological) heart.
‘Khaisa’ is (almost) the Nama word for Eight (it’s better written as ǁkhaisa. There’s a beautiful clicking noise at the start of the word- it’s a wonderful language).

Kilenc – And finally, Europe. I think this is the first continent I decided about in my head, given how the western part reminds me of Western Europe. The western parts are more late mediaeval/renaissance/Victorian with the east being early mediaeval and Germanic.
‘Kilenc’ is the Hungarian word for Nine.

Bonus!
Huge version of the map, no realms or names

The Noctuinad Wiki (help me pick a design)

I am working on an official wiki. There will be two versions, my personal version with *all* the information about Noctuina and a public one for you. The public one will be updated as new books, stories, and lore comes out of the woodwork and onto amazon and my blog.

Now this is being made with Tiddlywiki Classic and a variation of the tiddlypedia theme. I’ve played with the CSS a little to make it more into something I like (namely making all the fonts Times New Roman). Aside from that it still looks fairly like wikipedia, and I am wondering whether I want it to stay that plain. On one hand it is easier to read and we’re all used to how wikipedia looks, on the other hand I do love old paintings that I think bring the feel of Noctuina to you.

So you get to choose! Here’s the two versions I’m playing with right now- plain on the left, and my personal version on the right (you’ll notice a few of the tiddlers are different). I can either keep them visually separate, make the soon-to-be-online one look like the one on the right, or tweak it some more (mostly look for other pictures that might look good as a background).

Wiki comparison.jpg

Shipping

So.. shipping is serious business.

For the unaware, ‘shipping’ refers to (relation)shipping- the desire to see two (or more) characters in a romantic pairing. This can take the form of fanfiction, fan-art, screeching when it becomes canon, ignoring all evidence when it doesn’t turn out to be canon, and other varying levels of madness.

Typically for the purposes of announcing your fics/art as a certain ship there’s a couple-name that’s given to your chosen pair. In real life this was ‘Brangelina’ for instance. Dramione is the pairing of Draco Malfoy and Hermione Granger. Sometimes it’s a bit more than just squishing the names together, ‘Harmony’ is Harry Potter and Hermione. Add in Luna Lovegood and it changes to ‘Lunar Harmony.’ Sometimes names just don’t go that well together and for Snape and Hermione we tend to just see SS/HG. Other times the ‘ships’ are given ‘proper names’ – like Sirius/Hermione being the S. S. Puppy Love.

… Yes, I ship Hermione with just about anyone not Ron.

But the most common are said squished together portmanteau names. And because I’m me, and I spend far too much time on this sort of thing, I began thinking about what my characters’ ship names would be and decided to declare some. So far I only have a few I like, and one isn’t canon (but who am I to judge after everyone I like Hermione with?).

Pierre/Elizabeth – Pierreth

Pierre/Mora – Morierre

Piers/Eglė – Epiers

Of course I have a lot of other characters and varying (canon and not-canon) pairings, but most of that would be spoilers and mean very little to you.

Happy Halloween everyone!

Mailing List Promo!

Early NaNo is going well. I’ve not hit my wordcount exactly every day, but I am consistently working and excited.

With Delphinium now slated to be out soon I wanted to reward you lovely lot.

As you know Larkspur is set as permanently free. This is in the US Amazon, Kobo, and B&N online stores. Amazon in other regions hasn’t price-matched, but it’s at .99 in those places.

Delphinium will be $2.99 at release, maybe upped to $3.99 at a later point. It is going to be 100K+, so *seven* times longer than Larkspur. You will have gotten your money’s worth 🙂

I know I’ve taken ages with it, I know many of you are waiting for it. And so, to those that have joined, or will join, my mailing list before the release will be getting Delphinium for free. After it’s officially out you’ll have to pay. But for the next two months or so (as I finish and then edit it) anyone who joins the list will get a free copy as soon as it is done.

I am not requiring a review to get this copy, though I’d adore if you left your thoughts. This is my gift to you.

Join this list to get a free ARC copy of Delphinium before its release!

Early NaNoWriMo

November is National Novel Writing Month. From the 1st of November to the 3oth the goal is to write 50-thousand words, or 1667 words a day.

I know a bunch of writers and several of them have already decided they are doing NaNo. I half-heartedly have tried in years past (last year trying to finish Delphinium..), but I didn’t last more than a few days. Now said friends have roped me into it and I’m not allowed to escape.

(Thanks, kalez ❤ :P)

This year I will again try and finish Delphinium for NaNo. It isn’t technically within the rules, as the story isn’t new and a good chunk is written already, but blah- don’t care.

Reasons I think I might get it to work:

1 – My friends will hound me about it, I’m sure.

2 – I’ve been doing a lot better lately with productivity and feeling good about myself. I started the keto diet in the middle of summer and it’s doing wonders

3 – I am fed up with not having Delphinium out. I owe you this story. I owe the almost 100 people who have written reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, who loved Larkspur, and are still waiting. I owe the people I know through Facebook who are both my friends and readers. I owe Pierre and Lizzy.

I am making a minor tweak though-I’m starting October 17th. I have more than 50K words left and if I want to squish in the (more or less) correct number of words a day I need more time. So I’m just going ahead and adding in the last two weeks of October. Let’s call it fée-time and pretend it can work that way.

Seeing as it’s after midnight already and I’m not too tired I guess I’ll start now.