Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Fictional Pets

Pets came up today in a discussion and I got to thinking about how seldom I write them.

Showdown at Yellowstone River has a couple of Dogs. The T muse, here Matt Court, always likes dogs.

Edward Kilsby, (another T muse) in Curse of the Pharoah's Manicurists has a pack of foxhounds and enjoys their company. He also has two horses, Oscar and Jamilla. Oscar is his horse, a temperamental stallion and Jamilla is a more placid mare. Charlie can hand

Ruvane Delkroy, in "For Love of Etarin" has a kitkin. These are domestic felines that remain kittenish their whole lives. We joke that it's the brains of the outfit, but there is some evidence that Furball may be sentient. 

I have a gunslinger who has a riding bird in Adventuresses.

There was talk of a sequel to Shell-shocked and a tripod kitten for the boys.

That's it. Most of my novel characters don't have pets of any sort.


In the Eight Thrones 'verse, 
James Ligatos does not allow pets. He's a cynophobe, terrified of dogs. He's also semi-observantly Jewish, so typical household pets are not allowed in his home.

David would have an obnoxious floofy cat, and spoil it rotten. And lecture it about bad behavior. Instead he collects replicas of David statues and Mapplethorpe prints. 



Tanis would have a habitrail with a couple of rats and Steven would indulge her. She'd teach them tricks and Steven would jokingly complain the wheel keeps him up nights.




 Valerio might have a doberman, who looks utterly fierce, and can be, but really thinks he's a big lap dog. Because a doberman is a working breed and needs a lot of activity to be happy, he and Val would go for runs every day along the river front

Nick understand he IS a pet and wouldn't want one.




Saturday, May 9, 2015

My Sexy Saturday: Sexy Today

This week’s theme is Sexy Today. We all have our idea of sexy and it means so much more than it did fifty years ago. Sexy can be any age and many are saying that being in your 50s is the new 40s because people live longer, love longer and enjoy a quality of life longer like no other time before. This week is all about being sexy today no matter what your age.


From "Showdown at Yellowstone River."



Buy link

Your Seven Sexy Paragraphs:

He broached the subject that had been preying on his mind since he'd met her. It loomed ever larger as the days passed and their wedding date drew no nearer. “Surprised some young man isn't trying his best to make you happy.” He stroked her hair. “I'm not sure what you see in an old man like me.”

Paz stared into the fire so long that Matt checked her face to see if she was asleep. “I'm not young, Matt. There was a young man, once. A long time ago.” Her low voice sounded sad. He'd heard her happy and aroused and coldly furious and irritated, but never sad.

“Dead?” he asked, kissing her neck.

She nodded. “Gunned down six months after we married. He was a shop clerk, in the wrong place at the wrong time during a hold-up. Out around Carson City, there aren't many ways for a young widow woman to live that don't entail selling yourself to one old rich man or a dozen less rich ones. I didn't like my choices, so I quit being a woman.”

“And you don't mind this old man looking out for you?”

She looked up at him. “Not a bit. If you don't mind a cantankerous old woman with guns sharing your bed.”

“Not a lick.” He tipped her mouth in closer and brushed his lips over it. “In fact, I love her.” He swallowed and added, “I asked you once, in too much haste, if you'd marry me. You said no. I'm asking again. Paz, I want you to be Jane Court before Christmas comes.”


The other Sexy People:



Sunday, May 3, 2015

Six Sentence Sunday

We're going to try this alphabetically.
By anthology title. I'm not alphabetizing 80 short stories.

A Dark Roasted Christmas is our first.
"One gift at a time" was my contribution.  It's Steven and Tanis together at Christmas, an Eight Thrones short.



There is no Buy Link.



Steven felt the edges of the frame through the wrapping paper. He eased the tape open, teasing, until Tanis nearly bounced with excitement. Steven gave her a wicked grin and shredded the colorful paper away with a swipe of his massive hand.

A painting of him, dressed as Othello, seated and brooding, stared back. Tanis chewed her lip, waiting. He smiled.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Craft fair question


I have signed up for a craft fair. 
I have many sorts of goodies, but they are fall goodies.

If you buy hand-made crafts, what do you buy?

What would you like to buy that no one makes?

What's your price point, what will you pay for items?

I knit and crochet. I do some sewing.
 
 
     

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Work In Progress Wednesday: The Sweet Science of Bruising

In an effort to add content, Work in Progress Wednesday will resume.

Seven paragraphs from the steampunk boxing rewrite:

Lillian swallowed hard and closed the door of her house soundlessly behind her. She made her way across the backyard, heart thudding and froze when the dog down the block barked once.

Silliness, pure silliness. She wasn't a skulking runaway to startle at every shadow. She was off on an adventure, a dangerous one, but still an adventure. Besides, she decided as she set her hand on the gate and let herself out of the yard, a man wouldn't sneak. He'd be quiet but he'd walk as if he had every right to be out and about.

And tonight, she was a man. She had cut off a good foot of her long black hair and burned it in the stove. The pants and shirt she wore, bought cheaply from a passing trader, made her feel immodest and half-dressed, as if she was going about in her underthings. The band that compressed her breasts chafed her ribs and the serape that concealed the rest of her shape made the night almost too warm. A trickle of sweat ran down the back of the band and itched abominably. The money pouch felt too heavy and she wondered if she should have brought less than five dollars.

But her driver, Eliot, had said the entry bribe was three dollars, a hefty price. The fight was illegal, bare-knuckle boxing being a violent affair, so they had to pay off the proper officials to even hold it. She had given Eliot his own three dollar entry fee, and another dollar to place a wager for her on whomever he thought likeliest to win.

She stepped carefully, the fat orange moon lighting her way. It would be easy enough to step in a prairie dog hole and break her leg. That would be a fine way to be found in the morning, A lantern would have been a wise idea, but it also would have given her away.

In her long life of odd behavior, this would certainly set tongues wagging if word got out. It was no secret in Abilene, that the late Artemus Shaw had wanted a son and that he had raised his daughter to be as eccentric as he had been. He was a man ahead of his time, and because of him, her house was the most modern in town, with gaslights, indoor plumbing, including hot water and even a telephone.

She'd heard the saying that curiosity killed the cat, but satisfaction brought him back. In Lillian's world, that proverbial feline was nine times dead, despite reviving, and she was working on the rest of the cat colony.  And tonight, she would have a world of her curiosity satisfied.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Six Sentence Sunday: Chained to The Wheel

From Tall, Dark and Wriggly


Buy Link: http://www.stormmoonpress.com/books/Tall-Dark-and-Wriggly.aspx

From "Chained to the Wheel":

The Immortals answered his summons.

One by one they approached the door and shed the skeletal disguises they wore on official business in the larger Net, taking on their true avatars. He required the skeleton look—a sort of company uniform—but each runner was free to individualize it, whether Horus' nightmare of half-rotted flesh or the Datazon's clean lines, Clarion's burned horror or Swift-Current's almost-cartoonish creation, with its
bright yellow eyes and cheerfully bony smile.

The skeletons, coupled with EIT's wheel-within-a wheel logo and his own Net appearance on a wheel of fire, were his little joke on his name. Some few got it, but no one dared laugh or call him out for bad allusions.

"What news on the Rialto, children?" he asked as he always did, once they were assembled.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Six Sentence Sunday

From "The Arcology Job" in Somewhere Out There



 Miho typed in the information as he got it, as parts of the map lit up and various routes highlighted. It always amazed Hevik to watch the Aleran’s mind work, faster than any in most Corps, as paths were considered and discarded by what looked like a computer on the holo.

 After a long minute, Miho smiled. “Here. We’ll need a high-powered deck cutter, three different suites of virus controlled drones, and six bottles of Cortani liquor.” He smacked the holo with a wide grin.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

My Sexy Saturday: Sexy's Got You, Babe

This week’s theme is Sexy’s Got You, Babe and is based upon the old Sonny and Cher song, "I’ve Got You, Babe." This is all about the lovers who are always there for each other. Rent’s due, no money yet they have each other; life’s throwing them a curve ball, they have each other; job expectations aren’t panning out yet they still have each other. You get the idea. Their external odds maybe be insurmountable, or seem that way, yet they have one another held firmly in their love.


The things a man will do for one he loves include leaping into an arena and fighting in a death match, protecting him on a prison world and following him halfway across the galaxy. Miho and Hevik very much have each other's back throughout Heart's Bounty.



Your Seven Sexy Paragraphs:

“Ooo, a lover’s spat,” put in Malkin. “Glad I’m in the cage. You know that most homicides occur between intimate partners over infidelity.”

They turned on him and said together, “Shut up.”

Miho looked at Hevik and burst into laughter. Hevik didn’t laugh. “This is different,” he repeated.

“How? How is it different than me enjoying myself during the Rave? You know you weren’t the only  one I fucked that week.”

“I know. This is different,” Hevik took several short, deep breaths. “This is different because you didn’t want it and it hurt you. It’s different because you’re mine now and…because I love you.” The words came out all in a rush and he wasn’t sure he wanted to see the look on Miho’s face. Suddenly the deckplates looked good again.

“Really?” There was none of Miho’s usual cockiness or sharp tongue in the word. His already big eyes were wider than they had any business being and Hevik realized the kid looked and sounded hopeful.

He pulled Miho close and kissed him just as sweetly as he knew how. He focused only on the lips under his, the body in his arms. His Miho.



The Other Lovely Folks:

Friday, April 17, 2015

Five Influences Friday: Alive On the Inside

Alive on the Inside is one of my most controversial books and one of my first shots at writing erotic horror. It lost me a number of readers, some of it for sheer gruesomeness.


Buy Link

Blurb:
Nick Harper has a nice life, a nice job, and a nice girl. Until Labor Day Weekend, when the Phantasmagoria Traveling Wonder Show comes to town.

Seduced by the dark and wickedly erotic charms of both the Phantasmagoria and Torturo, a man known in the freak sideshow as The Pain King, Nick embarks on a journey of self-discovery, love, and pain.

But the show is not what it seems. It changes those who come with it in ways they can never imagine, not even in their worst nightmares.

And Nick's changes are just beginning...


So where did this dark and twisted sideshow come from?

1) Peculiar MO

The town of Peculiar is very real, and I only took a few liberties with the 1986 geography (it has more than doubled in size since I moved away). Most of the locations are quite real. Most of the people are very real. Some names were changed to protect the guilty, innocent and all in-between.

 
Nick's duplex. This is the one that stands at his address. I lived in it for about 4 years, between the ages of 2 and 6.

Looking North on Broadway at the water tower


Looking south on Broadway, from the water tower.


First Baptist. Where Nick picked up a load of self-loathing and guilt. Readers will be pleased to know Brother Bob no longer preaches there and their pastor now is a good and compassionate man.

 
This is the house I used for Lisa's home. It's my old house. When I lived there it was white with black trim, and there were evergreens on each side of the door. Mom grew irises under the front window and four o'clocks under the bedroom one.



2) Freaks (1932, Tod Browning)
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0022913/?ref_=nv_sr_2

This movie caused mass panic in the audiences because it used actual circus performers. I was rapt. Daisy and Violet Hilton were the inspiration for Alice and Dinah (who are rather less sweet than their origins). JoJo the Dog-faced boy (not in the film) was the inspiration for Wolfgang. And Joseph/ine is the mundane version of Jene.







3) The Freakshow by Bryan Smith

I bought this from Bryan at Hypericon, ages ago. I made the mistake of starting it on Sunday. I kept stopping on the way home, reading until I hit a gross-out limit and then driving until I just had to read again. I swear that 200 mile, 4 hour drive took me 6 and I was nearly done when I got in.


Blurb:
The Flaherty Brothers Traveling Carnivale and Freakshow has rolled into Pleasant Hills, Tennessee, and the quiet little town will never be the same. In fact, much of the town won't survive. At first glance, the freakshow looks like so many others--lurid, rundown, decrepit. But this freakshow is definitely one of a kind...


The townspeople can't resist the lure of the tawdry spectacle, though it isn't mere morbid curiosity that draws them into the freakshow's inescapable web. What waits for them behind this curtain are hardly the usual performers and tricks. The main attractions are living nightmares, the acts center on torture and slaughter...and the stars of the show are the unsuspecting customers themselves.


4) Geek Love by Katherine Dunn


Blurb:
Geek Love is the story of the Binewskis, a carny family whose mater- and paterfamilias set out–with the help of amphetamine, arsenic, and radioisotopes–to breed their own exhibit of human oddities. There’s Arturo the Aquaboy, who has flippers for limbs and a megalomaniac ambition worthy of Genghis Khan . . . Iphy and Elly, the lissome Siamese twins . . . albino hunchback Oly, and the outwardly normal Chick, whose mysterious gifts make him the family’s most precious–and dangerous–asset.

As the Binewskis take their act across the backwaters of the U.S., inspiring fanatical devotion and murderous revulsion; as its members conduct their own Machiavellian version of sibling rivalry, Geek Love throws its sulfurous light on our notions of the freakish and the normal, the beautiful and the ugly, the holy and the obscene. Family values will never be the same.

This...is not a book to read while pregnant. But I did.
And it imprinted itself on me enough that some of the acts, like the Pin Kid and the Geek (who form the base of Torturo's act) made it into my story.



5) Research.

There are many sites on the net devoted to sideshows. I found them quite useful.

I visited actual carnivals, including the Delta Fair which had a freak show. I paid my dollar to see what they had. There was the usual giant stuffed snake, along with a story of a Vietnam vet who was so strung out on heroin he believed the thing was his commanding officer. And several magical illusions. They nearly hired me to do the Houdini talk, since I knew the tale better than the person doing it.



The midway, with the chanting come-on of "All Alive on the Inside!"


 

My youngest getting a turn as Arachnea, the Spider Girl. They had a Genie in a Bottle illusion as well.



A bouncer thing they call a chupacabra.
















I wrote Alive on the Inside, because part of me is still 7 and seeing the two-headed baby in a jar in a trailer full of pictures of historical freaks, uptown on Broadway on a hot summer night at  Peculiar's Bushwhacker Days.



Wednesday, April 15, 2015

One Day Sale

All Romance Ebooks

https://www.allromanceebooks.com

is having a One Day Sale.

Everything by Inkstained Succubus is 25% off.
Use the search box's drop menu for publisher and type in "inkstained."

This will take you to our entire list and we have several new releases!

Some books under $2! Nothing over $5!