Nov 2020 Update

The release date for The Conductors is coming up. Set for March 2021, it seems closer everyday. It certainly feels like it too as I’m starting to do more author events such as paneling at FiyahCon and two Library Journal Events.

  The Conductors got a starred review from Publisher’s Weekly!

View full review here.

I’m hard at work on follow up for the Conductors.  Can’t say much about Book 2 yet, but it continues the adventure of mystery and magic and it the stars align right will coming Fall 2021. I’m in the revision phase with this book and fine tuning details and trying not compare it to The Conductors. I think the hardest part in writing is going from a fairly complete project and then going right  to a draft. You can’t help but draw comparisons and feel the new piece of work is terrible….even though it should be at that point! 

This month been particularly hard to a write, for variety of reasons, and I know I’m not alone in that respect. I wonder that’s why I noticed more people announcing they’re doing Nanowrimo this year. I guess I could be part of that number, but not really.  I started a new project around the top of the month by chance with an eye to getting a bulk of it done by the end of the month. At this point I know I won’t get as far as like, (baring taking off a few days from my dayjob).  I threw out 30K words last week because the story was getting a place that I was getting bored writing it. To keep vague, I was doing too much setup and spending time with new characters I didn’t particularly like. I basically starting over and I’m pretty close to matching and surpassing the place I stopped word count wise, and I’m in a much better place.

Basically never be afraid to start over. You’ll get much further ahead then trying to patch up something you know that’s not working.
  Tease for Next Month I got some beautiful character cards designed by Jaria Rambaran.  I got them done a long time ago and have been waiting for for the right moment to start sharing them…which I decided will be December!  Here’s a sneak peek of one of the first cards. Open Call for Beta Readers!
I have a few projects I would love to have others take a look at. My most immediate need is a reader for Conductors Book 2.  While the books are rather stand alone there will be mild spoilers if you haven’t read the ARC yet. (If you’re the type to fret about spoiler, don’t worry I can hook you up!)

I also have two new projects fairly early in their development: A middle grade fantasy that’s a about one girl collecting magical paints to protect a magical artifact and her home. A novella about a time traveler, who happens to be a museum curator trying to to find her parents who have gotten lost in time.  
If you are interesting in becoming a reader, check out: here

  Recent Reads

Right now I’ll all about Black Sun.  I have loved everything I read by Rebecca Roanhorse so far, and this book is no exception!   If you love epic fantasy, immersive worlds, and characters that moved beyond the binary of good vs evil, you’ll love this boo!. It’s lush, it’s expansive in scope, and it felt familiar although I never seen a world like this before. It reminds me of everything I love about epic fantasy!

Runner up is Ring Shout.  The cover drew me in even before I read the pitch:  Birth Nation of casting evil spell on people (true fact by the way!).  It’s a clever mixture of history and magic that appeals to me specifically and it packs a punch in short amount of time the story has to work with.

I also read Alex Trebek’s autobiography, ironically picking it up from the library just days before he passed. While I had started reading it, I read it in earnest after seeing the news. I always had fond memories of Jeopardy from watching it with my grandmother (and only then, I rarely watched on my own). It’s nice getting some history about the show and about him. I was struck just how current the book was, with quite a few references to COVID19 and other recent events in his life. While it could have been a distraction I found rather intimate and right fitting with the conversational tone of the book.

  Recent Watches

My feelings at the Lovecraft Country is complicated, mostly because while there many loved about the season, quite a few things brought it down in big way. I really loved the series opener, while there were couple episodes and few moments that captured the feeling I had at the start,  I finished the season mostly because of low episode numbers and wanting to be part of conversations afterwards. The biggest point of contention for me was that the protagonists were wandering around looking for answers and less than proactive far too long. And too much magic being done to them instead of them using and finding and using their own spells. Although it would have been a very different story, I kinda wish they spent the series driving around in Woody crossing paths with monsters in every definition of the word.

Agents of Shield recently finished its series, and it’s steadily improved with each season. Might not be my favorite show ever but it was always good, fun –  and beat all the odds.  It made it to seven seasons and bowed out on its own terms. Somehow along the way managed to hit every major scifi trope possible.

Gaming Corner
I have just started Hades, mostly because the buzz about it perked my curiosity. It easily rose my favorite games list, mostly because I love the key facet in the game play.  A game where failure becomes a way to move forward. 

Video games are the one piece of art that punishes you for your mistakes.  Dancing, music, painting, etc don’t actively punish you like games do (it’s more of peers and subjective opinions). Video games if you do something wrong, move at the wrong time, or just hit the wrong button, will bring down a wrath of epic proportions.  I have died in video games so quickly that I don’t even know what I did wrong.  Or died when something occurred that I hadn’t learned to anticipate yet All which makes me quit and not look back.  In Hades you still die, but it’s done in a way you’re almost relieved. 

To die in this game is to have a moment to make upgrades to your skills and weapons. To trade in your spoils for things that will you help later out in the game, and have more time to build relationships with NPCs.  You never lose anything unless you lose power during a battle. Most importantly it also neatly breaks up your gaming time. Sure the setup encourage  you to do just one more run, just one more escape attempt.  But it also allow you to do that one run, die,  and put the game done for a bit.  Add in great artwork, great designs, and compelling story, Hades is a winner in my eyes. It might even keep me busy until Spider man: Miles Morales is on sale.

And excuse me I’m about to get back to it….
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