Tag Archives: rabia gale

The Week from Inferno

Working... Working...

And lots of writing left to do. I know where I'm going with "Dowse and Bleed" now, and I have the next four or five challenge stories in the percolator, but I took some time out yesterday to read Rabia Gale's Mourning Cloak.

Wow. A quick and engrossing read. Kato is a man who thinks he's failed his god and his destiny and discovers that the seer aiding him saved him from failing his world. When Kato goes on a mission to rescue his captured wife, whom he thought deceased, he gets an opportunity to put the world to rights. A powerful story of how the right way may be beyond our understanding, and the path to redemption may be the path we thought led to perdition. Lovely, lovely, and I'm not doing it half enough justice.

Any good reads lately? How's the writing coming?

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Bookish Traditions: Reading and Writing

Written Work of the Day

The muse has kept her promise, though she must keep on with keeping it, and here is a snippet of genuine new material within this mishmash of sketch that's coming together.

Philip was glad to see Josh. It was good to see Josh. He was justly surprised at how many others held his time.

“Enough women?” he asked after the last bag was unpacked, their parents were in bed, and the hostess complimented.

Josh chuckled. “There's men too, but in Vardin, women are responsible for people.”

“And you're people?” skeptical.

“Got it in one. The men...” Josh's face closed. “They have their work.”

Philip prodded. “Which is?”


“English, Josh.”

“There isn't English. Not for that.”

The sketch is moving forward oddly and the word count is doubtless thoroughly incorrect, but here it is anyway.

41158/120000 words. 34.3% done.

Vardin Word of the Day

ivrat. householder: household (law, culture, tradition, or customs)

Rec of the Day

Rabia Gale is offering a giveaway on her gorgeous new book coming out, Mourning Cloak. Please go check it out!

Mourning Cloak by Rabia Gale

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Today's Favorites Inflicted: Snippets and Recs and Hugs

I'm feeling Christmassy (and sleepy and too sleepy and more than a little ready for significantly less stress), but today, I feel like sharing some of my favorite things around the web and my world.

Rabia Gale posted a lovely little rec post for her guest post about "The Lone Woman," a sale on Rainbird, which I love, and one of the most important indie publishing/writing articles I've lately read.

The lovely xenokattz is offering New Year/Ephiphany fanthings and prompting from holiday music and video.

I'm sending out Christmas cards this year, as soon as I can prop open my brain cells enough to do it.

And today, I unearthed this snippet, discovering anew how much I liked it:

Arienne stood upon the balcony of the Household of Vishet, looking toward the port and the golden edge of the sunset glow. About her neck hung a heavy chain of Vardin silver and the five sapphire links at its heart. Her bare fingers pressed into the stone frame. Her eyes took in the breadth of her city, to her the nation.

"I cannot do this alone," she said suddenly in a quiet voice.

There was no answer behind her in the royal chamber. Her guard and servant, bound to her in all the ways that did not matter, stood there near the wall. He would never be parted from her, even in this most intimate and fearful of moments. But he did not speak. He could not offer her comfort.

The princess glanced down and touched the silver and sapphire chains. Her gaze fell further, to the bare back of her right wrist. Slowly, she clenched the hand, knowing the weight soon to settle there.

Heavily, she whirled about in her heavy skirts and turned toward the guard in his uniform, even darker than her own. His eyes were averted.

"Where is Cayden?" she asked. It was not a question expected of her.

But the guard's eyes closed and she saw his jaw tighten in concentration. A moment, his eyes opened; he looked at her, saw her. "He is coming."

Arienne studied him, impassive in expression if not within her heart. She nodded royal acknowledgment and turned away. "When he arrives, leave us." She laid both her palms against the rail and returned her study to the city. It would be her only burden now.


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Tuesday Tea and the Social Brew

How about some tea, crumpets, and social brew?

The Tea

I have some guilty pleasures. Bottled fruit yerba maté is one of them.


While I like many flavors, today I want to recommend this refresher by Guayakí: Pure Body Peach. The combination of peaches and yerba maté is smooth and absolutely perfect. It's my favorite of all the bottled teas they put out. Best served cool and guzzled in doses.

The Crumpets

Tried a new recipe this last week and I like it. We shall call it Blueberry Muffin Bread. The bread is dense and thick, so err on the side of too much water rather than too little.

  • a handful of frozen blueberries puréed in water
  • a handful of pecans
  • sweetener and salt to taste (err on the side of generous)
  • all-purpose flour mix
  • a pinch of baking powder

Pour the purée in a bowl and add the pecans and sweetener. Stir in flour until dough is very soupy and all flour is thoroughly mixed. Layer parchment paper two or three times over a baking dish, then carefully pour in dough. Bake at 400 degrees for about 40 minutes1 or until knife comes out clean. If it's almost clean, taste it: it might be done. Allow to set for 15–20 minutes. Enjoy!

The Social Brew

Manuscript Multiple Personality Disorder | on symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment

Diagnosis: Manuscript Multiple Personality Disorder. Often found in writers who are working on multiple projects in the same draft or stage of review, thus utilizing the same muse.

— posted in comments at Write a Book with Me

The Rules of Music | on study and creation

To study music, we must learn the rules. To create music, we must break them.

— Nadia Boulanger, tweeted by Finale Music
a thought which applies equally well to any creative endeavor

My Favorite Online Fiction | on reading

I try to never miss Kris Rusch’s Free Fiction Mondays, Melanie Edmond’s Starwalker, M.C.A. Hogarth’s Black Blossom, or new issues of Beneath Ceaseless Skies.

— posted in comments on Writer at Play

Passive Voice? | on grammar

I do agree that those are weak verbs in an action scene and should be excised, but this sentence is an example of a passive construction. Not all instances of those two verbs are passive, as this sentence is an example of an active construction.

— posted in comments on The New World of Publishing

Show 1 footnote

  1. The recipe is for high-altitude cooking. Adjust as necessary.
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These are a Few of My Favorite Things

We all of us have favorite things. Mine are primarily words, tea, fiction, and music. Cooking, organization, and analysis tend more to be guilty pleasures. What can I say?


tea • noun 1. the second-most perfect beverage in existence, the first being water; 2. nature's pharmacy for the soul.

My favorite current tea blend: CHICORY MATÉ SPICE

For an entire teapot:

  • 4 tbsp. yerba maté herb
  • 2 tbsp. stevia leaf
  • 1 tbsp. chicory
  • 1 tbsp. cinnamon powder
  • 1 tbsp. ginger powder

For one cup:

  • 2 tsp. maté
  • 1 tsp. each of chicory, ginger, cinnamon, and stevia

Use a coffee filter to strain this tea! A regular tea strainer will get gunked up with powder and you may lose some of your tea. Steep in almost boiling water until a dark, rich brown. Strain and enjoy!


writer • noun 1. a reader who decided if you want something done right, you must do it yourself; 2.a reader who ran out of books; 3. a reader inspired to immitation.

Unseen by Rabia Gale

A collection of two previously published fantasy short stories about magic in unexpected places and about the loss of that magic. I had read the second selection—about a pudgy, ordinary man who has forgotten his own incredible origin and former life—before Rabia asked me to proofread this collection, but the first story—about a Pakistani girl who can see into a fantastical world others are blind to—was new to me. Both are enjoyable, full of choices between modern safety and wild beauty. Recommended to avid readers of Beneath Ceaseless Skies or Lightspeed's fantasy selections. [ ebook ]

Other Impressions of the Author:

Aphorisms of Kherishdar by M.C.A. Hogarth, voiced by Daniel Dorse

Being quite fond of flash fiction in the first place, Hogarth's fil ekain, or incense stories, drew me from our first introduction. The Ai-Naidar are a graceful alien civilization who value the society more than the individual; thus they seek to find the place of each in the fabric of the whole, that none endure separation. These are beautiful stories, "short and lingering," as the narrator tells us, and the reader does justice to them with his warm storyteller voice. If you have never tried audio before, this is a lovely place to begin. [ audio ]

Other Impressions of the Author:
Spots: the Space Marine

The Case of the Poisoned House


hardtack • noun 1. a boring, edible substance made from flour, water, and maybe a pinch of salt; 2. a base for creating simple, mouthwatering breads.


  • a bowl of all-purpose flour
  • a large jar of salsa
  • water

Combine all ingredients until all powder is thoroughly mixed in and dough is slighty soupy. Layer a baking dish in parchment paper and pour in mixture. Bake between 350 and 400 degrees until a knife stuck in the middle comes out clean. Enjoy!

[Note: I live in high altitude and it seems to take roughly about an hour for the bread to be done.]

What are some of your favorite things?

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Myth, Legend, and Folktale

This is the post I have been waiting for. Marie Brennan, in a guest post on Jim Hine's journal, encapsulated beautifully so many of the things I have wrestled with about my own fiction recently. My good friend, Rabia, asked me to write a post for her a while back that ended up being about flash fiction, but it was supposed to be about writing myth.

This is that post she asked for.

Continue reading

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Random Updateyness...

I am now the proud possessor of Insurgent. Will give reading report next week.

They'll know next week if Awake is cancelled or renewed. Leonard Chang answered me himself. :crosses fingers:

I highly recommend Shattered and M.C.A. Hogarth for some excellent short stories.

I have three Tumblr blogs now. Well, four, but that one's private. Worldbuilding and personal, fandom, and Vardin. I'm officially nuts.

I've got another fic for my Safe reading list, but nothing for the original novels. :headdesk: Will post reading lists soon.

Speaking of which, I'm not reading Insurgent this week.


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Check-In: Where have I been and why have I been there?


Y'all might have noticed that with the exception of the Insurgent countdown, I've been pretty much absent without leave. But as always, there are reasons, and I'm going to cover them in brief before resuming a semi-regular posting schedule.

Continue reading

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Meme Post #1: The Lucky 7

So from Rabia Gale:

1. Go to page 77 of your current manuscript/work-in-progress (or page 7 if you don’t have 77).
2. Go to line 7.
3. Copy down the next 7 lines, sentences, or paragraphs, and post them as they’re written.
4. Tag 7 authors, and let them know.

I'm sure you all know my current novel-length WIP is Summerlight, no matter how recalcitrant and shifty mess that work is turning out to be. :grumbles at book: :book grumbles back:

So it's not 77 pages yet. Here's on page 7.

They seem to be rather divided about that.

You always were the one who believed in fairies.

Love always,

Miles stopped reading. "The letter is dated from just over nine months ago, about three weeks after I heard from him last." The crinkles about his eyes were back, but this time he was frowning, as if in pain.

Rob considered the timing. His mind immediately began to calculate the potential dangers and some of the strange things they could be expected to take seriously.

"Do you really think we'll see dragons?" Josh asked, aiming his question at Miles, the more credulous of the men.

Now for my seven writers:

Tag in_the_blue, pygmymuse, lithiumlaughter, arliddian...

Let's stick to four.

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