Monday, November 26, 2012

Everything You Need for the Apocalypse

According to the Mayan calendar, next month is the end of the world. We know the date, but we don't what "apocalypse flavor" it will be (zombies? natural disasters? Bieber fever?). Just in case you're one of the lucky ones who survives it, here's a list of links and info that might come in handy.

Recipes for the Post-Apocalypse: How and why to eat rat meat by Lauren Davis

Wine pairings for the post-apocalypse: What to drink with rats, dog food, and more by Lauren Davis
(on a side note, I have a bottle of "Zombie Zin" stashed away, a nice little red wine specially created for a zombie apocalypse--see pic above).

Survival books to keep on your bookshelf in case of the apocalypse by Lauren Davis

Survival Kit - CMM Survival Tactical 1 Person Bug Out Bag w/ Crossbow & Gas Mask
(This actually has terrible reviews; I just like saying, "Bug Out Bag")

For those who like to travel light:
Zombie Apocalypse Survival Kit in a Sardine Can at

This one is on my bookshelf (I bought it--and the others I own--just for research; honestly!)
The Survivor Manual: An Official Book of the Hit CBS Television Show (based on US Armed Forces Survival Techniques)

And don't forget to catch as many episodes of "Man vs. Wild" as you can. I don't know if it will help you survive; I just like watching Bear Grylls get naked in the woods.

See you next week!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Links for Writers

Image courtesy of Phaitoon /

I'm trying to slog my way through NaNoWriMo and doing a terrible job of it. Rather than writing every day, my over scheduled November means I skip a few days, then have a marathon writing session to catch up; skip a few days, have a marathon writing session to catch up . . . One thing that this NaNoWriMo has taught me is that when I put my mind to it (and put the rest of life on hold), I can write one hell of a lot of words in a single day. It's not a pace I couldn't keep up with on a daily basis, not without buying new clothes every day so I can skip laundry or learning to love eating take-out out of Styrofoam trays.

But enough with the whining and onto today's info for writers.

Writing Metaphor, Memorable Characters And Horror With Chuck Wendig

And speaking of Chuck Wendig, if you need to amp up the conflict in your NaNo novel (or any other novel/story), here are
25 Ways to F**k With Your Character (or, Building Conflict One Cruelty at a Time)

The Big Three - Goals, Motivation and Conflict, by Florence U. Cardinal

Need help brainstorming your main character's goals/motivation/conflict?
GMC Wizard

Goal, Motivation, and Conflict by Susan Dennard

Using Invalid Beliefs to Show Character Growth by Sharon Clare

See you next week!

Monday, November 12, 2012

November After Hours

Welcome to another "After Hours" post.

For those new to the blog, the “After Hours” posts are more personal, get-to-know-me posts, kind of like “After the Catch” from “Deadliest Catch” without the death and maiming (er, hopefully without the death and maiming, anyway).

And now for the “After Hours” questions.

1) If you could eat only one meal the rest of your life, what would it be?

Texas Roadhouse Dallas Filet (mignon). It's like crack to me.

2) If you owned a CB radio what would your "handle" be?

Captain Quirk.

3) If you could have had the starring role in one film already made, which movie would you pick?

Alien, of course. I’d love to be Ripley.

4) Describe your "good china," whether you actually own any or not.

<Picks self up after rolling on the floor laughing>. We didn’t even bother registering for china when we got married, we just knew it wasn't going to fit our lifestyle. And now, after years of raising kids and pets, we don’t even have any matching plates. I think I still have one left from the “country” set I bought (little houses and red designs-on-a-barn) right before we were married; I have two of the set decorated with grey roses we bought around our one year anniversary; one of the white ones I bought years later when our plate inventory was dwindling; a couple of the black ones (though one set was flat dinner plates, and the other was slightly curved, so even though they’re black, it’s obvious they are from different sets . . . well, you get the picture.

My family has always cared more about what's on the plate than the plate itself. As long as I'm making my uber-delicious Fettuccine Alfredo, they'd eat it off off butter-tub libs if they had to.

5) When are you happiest?

It's hard to nail down one thing that makes me happiest; there are lots of things that fill me with bliss: when I’m camping/hunting/or just generally out in the woods; when I’m writing; when a really good book sucks me into its story world; when I’m snuggled under a blanket with hubby watching TV while a blizzard howls outside; anytime I’m visiting Kentucky, etc. I'm either an incredibly happy person, or just easily pleased. Not sure which.

6) What's worse, extremely cold weather or extremely hot weather?

Extremely hot weather. I can add more clothes when it’s cold, but there’s a limit to how much I can take off without getting arrested.

7) Chocolate or vanilla?

I like chocolate, but I don't love chocolate. I prefer vanilla ice cream and angel-food cake.

See you next week!

Monday, November 5, 2012

November Update

One month into the new posting schedule and so far, so good, ha-ha. Of course, this month is one of the busiest of the year, so we’ll see if the posting schedule survives it. This month is deer hunting season and turkey hunting season, so I'm going to be out in the woods as much as possible.

And as if I wasn't over-scheduled as it was . . .

I put my short stories aside to work on the fantasy novel that’s been dogging me for years (Macha Mong Ruadh). I had been making good progress on a major revision, but on October 30th, the muse came fluttering by and sprinkled inspiration dust (or something) on my head . . . and now I’m doing NaNoWriMo (write a 50K novel in a month). Just what I need: another novel collecting dust, waiting for revision, making me feel guilty about ignoring it. But, when the muse gives a gift, I hate to turn it down.

Part of the problem is my fickle muse: Cletus the Redneck Muse. Here's a rare picture of him:

See what I have to work with? I wonder if it's possible to be assigned a new muse.

So now I will be spending the month of November working on a zombie-apocalypse novel. It’s still early, so I can’t say for sure how it’s going to turn out, but so far, it’s been absorbing to write—I keep getting caught up in the story. So hopefully it will be as much of a page-turning read as it has been a page-turning write.

In other news, my story “Comfortably Numb” will be in the December "Utopia" issue of Penumbra Emag. I’m proud to say that it will be my second story published in the magazine (which makes them the best magazine ever, in my opinion). ;)

Wish me luck, and check back next Monday to see if I keep to my schedule or if I spend November curled in the fetal position, weeping, while Cletus throws Pork Rinds at me.