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>Musing on New Year Traditions December 31, 2010

Posted by Elizabeth Schechter in 2011, Happy New Year.
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>So, I’m sitting here in my jammies sniffling (Hubby brought a cold home from work. Isn’t he sweet for sharing?), surfing the web and cooking a pot of lentils, all while avoiding the novel that I’m trying to get finished for first quarter 2011.

The glamorous life of a writer, hm? What a way to spend New Year’s Eve?

Well, yes, actually. Those lentils are a very important part of my New Year’s Eve prep. When it comes right down to it, if I do nothing else but have a spoonful of lentils at midnight, then I’ve had a fine New Year’s Eve.

Southerners, you have hoppin’john and greens, right?  (What is hoppin’john, anyway? Not the recipe. Why do they CALL it that?) You have to have your black eyed peas for the new year? This is the same thing. Italians have lentils at midnight. This, my friends, is kitchen witchery at its finest. You have this food that is imbued with all the qualities that you want from the new year — prosperity, health, wealth, luck, fertility. Good times, fat times, times of plenty. You put all of this into the pot and you cook it down with hope and love, and you feed it to your families and your friends at the stroke of midnight, the threshold time, the time when what was, and what will be are in the balance. You eat this, and you take all these qualities into yourself and you make them part of you.

Magic.

There are other traditions. I didn’t know about some of yours until I read them on Facebook. Up until about two days ago, I had never heard of the “the house must be spotless and the laundry must all be done before midnight” one.

(looks around at the messy family room and the pile of laundry just visible around the bedroom door).

Yeah, that one isn’t happening in this house. Not this year, anyway. I like it, so I might coopt it for next year. If I remember.

But I will never, EVER forget my lentils.

So, since I’ve rambled at you enough, I’ll leave you with another tradition. Auld Lang Syne. This is an arrangement that I really like, performed at the Maryland Renaissance Faire by the Pyrates Royale.

Happy New Year!

>Plans for the New Year December 28, 2010

Posted by Elizabeth Schechter in 2011 plans, to-dos.
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>So, since my brain is still frozen, I’m thinking about what the goals are for 2011. I should have some goals, something to shoot for. I didn’t have a list like this for 2010, and did surprisingly well. So if I make some goals, I should do better.

Well, that’s the theory, right?

To, the 2011 to-do list.

  • Sell Princes of Air
  • Sell Nomad’s Moon
  • Finish Drum Mage
  • Polish and Sell Drum Mage
  • Finish House of Sable Locks
  • Write Tales from the Arena and pitch it as a shared world series.
  • Outline Hidden Things 
  • Short stories  — at least four, to equal this year. More would be better.

>Brain Freeze December 27, 2010

Posted by Elizabeth Schechter in a-writers-life-is-never-dull, crap-writing-is-crap, except-for-when-it-is.
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>I don’t know if this is due to holiday craziness or the cold down here (yes, it does get cold in Florida. Right now, they’re saying it will go down to the 20s tonight.) but my brain has been refusing to function. Nothing has been done on Drum Mage, nothing done on Sable Locks. My brain feels like a wasteland. Frozen tundra. The words will come back out when the thaw hits, I guess. Hopefully, there’s no permafrost in there.

Now, I did start Sea Prince (a mainstream novel that I’m collaborating on with the person with whom I wrote Nomad’s Moon), and I think I’ve gotten a page in a day and a half — which is actually pretty good, because I’ve been trying to get that much done all year! Have I mentioned I hate writing battle scenes? So naturally, this one starts with a battle scene! Once I get through the battle, things will start moving faster. I can’t even foist the battle scene off on Danielle, who likes that kind of thing, because she is spending the holidays at the bottom of the world. Literally! She’s in Antarctica!

On the up side, I finished a pair of mittens, and am almost finished with a pair of socks and a wonderfully cuddly shawl.

>Snowbound Release Date December 19, 2010

Posted by Elizabeth Schechter in upcoming work.
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>The new Nick and Steven short story Snowbound will be up on the Circlet website on December 23rd, this coming Thursday.

>Advent Calendar Dates December 8, 2010

Posted by Elizabeth Schechter in advent Calendar, circlet, upcoming work.
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>I have more than just Snowbound showing up in the advent Calendar this year. Here is the story of mine that will appear, and the dates:

Darkest Night, from Apocalypse Sex, will appear on December 11th.

And now Snowbound, which is original and includes the characters from The Hand You’re Dealt, will appear sometime around Christmas Day. As soon as I know when, I’ll let you all know.

(edit – yes, I know that originally, I had said that there would be another story. Apparently, there was a change of plans that I wasn’t aware of. Not a big deal.)

>Woot! December 8, 2010

Posted by Elizabeth Schechter in circlet, happy-happy- joy- joy, upcoming work, yippee.
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>Just got the news that Snowbound has been accepted for the Circlet Advent Calendar!

>Google Books December 8, 2010

Posted by Elizabeth Schechter in annoyance, ebooks, Google Books.
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>Google opened their Ebookstore yesterday. So of course I had to play with it.

Right now, I only have one beef with it. And it’s not with the bookstore per se. It’s with the program they tell you you HAVE to use to download. Last night, I followed Google Books directions on how to download books to my reader. Downloaded Adobe Digital Editions, registered, and plugged in my Nook, just like it said.

The damn thing tried to delete the books I’d downloaded from Barnes and Noble, Project Gutenberg and Google Books before they opened the bookstore. Told me that they were licensed to a different user and I shouldn’t have them. Needless to say, I stopped the program and ripped it out. I only lost one book, and because of the way that the filenames are coded, I’m not sure which book it was.

So, if you want to use Google Books, here’s my advice. There’s a add-on for Firefox called Epub. You can read and download from Google Books using it, and it doesn’t get uppity about books you’ve legally downloaded from another service.

Splitting my focus a little December 1, 2010

Posted by Elizabeth Schechter in a-writers-life-is-never-dull, writing.
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>Working today on Fool’s Gold, which has a deadline staring me in the face — December 15th. Need to get this done, but taking the month off and working on Drum Mage seems to have shaken me out of the funk I’d worked myself into about this story. I know now how to get past the LONG, BORING, NO-SEX-AT-ALL part.

Important when you’re writing erotica, the ability to do that. Even if it does take a month of working on something else.

And around the edges, I’ll be working on Drum Mage. I left it at a good place. Nick’s about to get himself into some deep trouble with his Steven… always a good time!

>Revised TOC for Carnal Machines December 1, 2010

Posted by Elizabeth Schechter in Carnal Machines, is-it-may-yet?, upcoming books.
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>

Just got the notice that there was a revision to the order of stories for Carnal Machines. This is the final TOC. I’m still amazed that I have the blow-off story!
Human Powered by Teresa Noelle Roberts
The Servant Question by Janine Ashbless
Slight of Hand by Renee Michaels
Mutiny on the Danika Blue by Poe Von Page
Deviant Devices by Kannan Feng
The Perfect Girl by Jay Lawrence
Dr. Mullaley’s Cure by Delilah Devlin
Her Own Devices by Lisabet Sarai
Lair of the Red Countess by Kathleen Bradean
Infernal Machine by Elias A. St. James
Doctor Watson Makes a House Call by Essemoh Teepee
The Treatment by D. L. King
Lucifer Einstein and the Curious Case of the Carnal Contraption by Tracey Shellito
The Succubus by Elizabeth Schechter
Is it May yet???