Friday, July 31, 2009

The Word of the Day, THE QUILT, and Random Memories

The word of the day is knontsky. That is what I had to type to get to my own blog. We are now taking suggestions as to the definition of this new and exciting word.

The Kissing Cousin of a nun who skis? Who doesn't?
Kind of Neat October Night SKY?
Suggest your own.


It is so freaking gorgeous you won't even believe it. I swear I don't even want to give it away. But it was made to be the "ultimate schwag" prize for a contest. We're now shopping around to figure out where. We're leaning toward RT, but there's also the Brenda Novak charity auction for Juvenile Diabetes.

ANYWAY it is midnight blue and with ice blue, white and gray. It has a wolf's head embroidered in the center with a full moon, also a cobra. The animals have Savorsky (sp?) crystals in their eyes and there are also crystals scattered over the midnight blue sections like stars in the night sky.


I tried to take pictures. They did not turn out or do it justice. We will have to try again. ANYWAY I LOVE MY SISTER!!!


I saw a headline for "odd 911 calls" or some such. It made me remember something. So right here and now I will again thank the Edgewater and Wheat Ridge, Colorado Police Departments.

One of the approximately 9 times I've had pneumonia (weak lungs sucketh, I've had it either 9 or 11 times, I honestly can't remember, but I do have permanent scarring on my lungs) I had a huge fever, felt like absolute dog crap, was stuck in bed and was not going to be able to pick up my teenage son after his event on the far side of town. I leaned over, intending to call the event center and have the director send him home in a cab that I would pay for.

I'd bought my phone from a friend who had upgraded. She had pre-programmed 911 on speed dial. (Very sensible.) Because I was sick, fever ridden, and clumsy, I accidentally speed-dialed 911. OOPS.

Okay, at this point I'm sick, fevered, clumsy AND feeling stupid. But I explain to the nice dispatcher what's up, apologize for taking his time, etc. He was very nice, and wanted to make absolutely sure that I wasn't going to be staying home alone. That I was obviously (boy I must've sounded bad, like Darth Vader on STUPID pills) very ill, and if I didn't have someone to stay with me he was calling an ambulance and I was going into the hospital. I reminded him of the teenage son I'd been trying to call. He said, fine. How soon was my son expected home? I gave him a good guess. So he said he'd send someone to check on me an hour after that.

Sure enough, right on time, the officer came by to make sure I was conscious, alive and actually breathing and that my son had made it home safely to take care of me. The officer said that the dispatcher had been really, seriously worried because of the way I sounded and that it was no trouble for them to check on me, but if I got any worse I really should go to the hospital.

And they called on the phone and checked back again later.

How nice is that?


As Ellece will tell you, I am a serious fan of anipix. (GRIN). When I am bummed (which is actually fairly often lately because of hormones and circumstances that have nothing to do with writing) they almost always jolly me out of the worst of it.

WELL I went to the LOLcats site and found one that I have now framed and kept (as I have with a couple of Ellece's). It shows a really-seriously annoyed fluffy kitten glaring at the camera. The caption?

Now available in fun size.


Okay, enough random for the nonce. I really do need to eat breakfast and get to work. UGH.


Thursday, July 30, 2009

Up Early

Got up at 4:30. Have to write. HAVE to. Think I know where the scene is going, FINALLY. I hate it when the book fights, but some do. But this one seems to be coming in to the boat now (to use the fishing analogy). They still fight, but they're getting tired, so it's for shorter bursts and you still make progress.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

A Touch Annoyed; and Measure Your Heads

Okay, I'm a touch annoyed. Just a touch, but enough to post about it.

I have charities I give to regularly. I have charities I give to if I'm particularly flush and the mood strikes me. One of the latter (and if I knew which one they'd never see another dime) SOLD MY ADDRESS INFORMATION so that I'm now on what I delightfully refer to as "THE SUCKER LIST" and am getting mailings from charities I've never heard of, and schtoof stuffing my mailbox. ALL OF IT WITH MY FREAKING NAME MISSPELLED TO BOOT.

Now most of these agencies are good, useful charitable organizations. I understand that. And I might even have supported them. But I can't support them ALL. And I'm not impressed at having my information sold. And as Ms. Aoams (how the hell would you pronounce that anyway?) I am beginning to feel harassed. Every day. EVERY DAY I'm getting stuff. And it's a waste of their money soliciting, and a waste of my time and energy. These charities would be better off saving the printing.

On to more pleasant things.

Points are progressing on the Brownie Points. Attapeople to those who got the correct answers. On Monday I will post point status before the next question.

The fedoras are arriving from Ebay. I now need my hatters to do me a favor.

These are real hats. Not the costume stuff. Some of them are actually vintage. SOOOOOO I want them to at least come close to fitting. Could you please (and this is GOING to feel silly. You know it is) take a tape measure and measure around your head at your forehead? I'm pretty sure you know where to e-mail the results and your name & mailing address by now, as there are only 4 of you and you're my most regular regulars. BUT just in case: .

And while it will come as no surprise to most of you, I do, in fact, have a big head.


Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Status. Depression. And Stuff

Okay. There's LOTS of good news. Book seems to be doing well in pre-orders. (And if you haven't yet, please do. First week sales are SOOOOOOOO important!)

I have a new kitchen table and it is lovely.

My sister has finished the quilt and is sending it. To say it is lovely is SUCH an understatement. I really, seriously, am having a hard time motivating myself to give it as a prize. Cathy and I have discussed it, and we will probably have it as a prize at RT. We're on the faery court and it probably is the best giveaway and would give the quilt the best exposure. Because I want EVERYBODY to see this. Which is why I will be posting pictures everywhere when it arrives.

My sis is the BEST!!

The book is coming along. Slower than I'd like, but there you go. They frequently do. Have lots of nice people who have agreed to do quotes, which is lovely as well.

The fedoras are starting to roll in from EBay. Which means I'll need to be making a post office run in a week or so for those who are enrolling in the Order of the Fedora.

I am still accepting posse members. If anyone feels inclined, send "PICK ME PICK ME" in the re to and have your snail mail address in the body of the e-mail so that I can send you your hand-made (by my own two little hands, computer and printer, oh, and pre-fabbed laminator cards) membership card with your not-too-terribly insulting nickname.

I am headed to a couple of cons. I will be bringing my gray fedora with the peacock feather, for those who will be looking for me. :) When I am hatted, feel free to approach. When I am not, I'm probably in a panel or something where I can't be interrupted. If I am in the bar, join me. :)

I am dealing with depression. It's hormonal. I know that. There are some situational things, but they're not huge. However knowing why you're depressed is like knowing HOW you broke your leg. It doesn't really change the reality of it. So, if I sound bummed, please just roll with it.

Everybody have a great day! Long live Johnny Depp. Long live the FEDORA!!!! RAWR!!!!

Ah. . . hormones. Gotta love em.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Monday Morning Trivia/Hamilton Style

Okay guys. It's Monday. Trivia Day. But it's also the day our interview of LKH goes up on the joint blog (see previous for the link). SO we're doing an Anita Blake question. BUT to avoid the problem of an answer posting here and showing everybody the answer the rules have changed. You should send an e-mail to with your answer as the RE.

What is the name of Anita's favorite penguin. :)

Now be sure that if your e-mail has a different name than your usual posting nme here you let me know in the body of the e-mail, so I can get the points posted properly.

And hie thee over to the other blog for the interview.

Enjoy your Monday.


Sunday, July 26, 2009


Okay, the vote thing may be a scam. I'll get back to you.

BUT YOU NEED TO GO TO THE JOINT BLOG MONDAY! Our Visiting Dignitary of the day is Laurell K. Hamilton. She is a terrific lady, and managed to fit in and give a great interview even though her schedule is an absolute nightmare. So PLEASE go to the joint blog and say "Hi".



(DOH, the link would be nice wouldn't it? )

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Help Please.

All right guys -- I have a couple things here:

First -- SCHWAG HAS HIT THE MAIL. Minus the hats. Some of them haven't arrived yet from E-Bay.

Second -- I want input on the current breakfast serial. Is anybody reading?

Third -- WE NEED YOUR HELP! Okay, there's a competition going on at Barnes & Noble .com (I will provide the right link when Cathy sends it). We need votes. LOTSA votes. PLEEEEEEEEAASE tell everybody to vote for our Touch of Evil. PLEEEEEEEEEEASE.THANKS!

Oh, and I may be going to some Cons in the near future. Will post where in the official blog and here too.


Saturday Morning Breakfast Serial

When last we left our intrepid (possibly anti)heroine she was being brought back to visit "The Snake" by four of his henchmen by way of a portal. Shall we see what she's up to this week? Hmnnn? I think we shall.

Chapter 2 - Echoes From the Past

Strip searches are not fun. They are humiliating at best, and that's if everybody behaves.

They behaved.

I appreciated it. But I had to wonder if it was the Snake's orders, or Georgie's glowering (and heavily armed) presence that kept it that way. It wasn't fear. Not anymore. I'd been gone too long. Only a very few people who knew me when were still alive. The ones who were had mostly scattered, managing by hook or (mostly) by crook to get the hell out of "the cess pit."

I pulled back on my clothes without fuss. George handed me back the cell phone, but kept the ring. He'd probably give it back when I left . . . assuming I walked out. If they buried me, he'd keep it. I wouldn't have any more use for it.

They led me down a narrow hall of black painted brick. Two led. Two followed. The size was intentional. No one could fight well in such confined quarters, and it could be held by a single man long enough to hide the evidence, get the boss out, or both.

We'd almost arrived when the new kid couldn't stand it any more. "I don't believe it. She's nothing special. She can't have done everything they say."

"Shut up or I'll shut you up." Casper ordered. Luke just shook his head. He might hate me, but he didn't underestimate me. A shame really. Particularly if things went badly. Doing the math in my head, I realized they just might. Because it was almost time.

A little over nine years ago I killed Merv the Perv. It was self-defense. Not that it particularly mattered. The man needed to die. He'd tortured and murdered any number of kids my age and younger. I killed him. But he was connected. So unless I wanted to be at the mercy of the authorities, I needed protection. I came to The Snake. And I made him a deal. I'd use my talent to "see" things for him if he protected me. He got three questions. I got protection from the officials and my freedom---if the visions were true. If not, he'd slit my throat for me himself.

The first two were easy. Made him money. Made him happy.

For his third question he'd asked when and how he was going to die.

I told him the truth. He had less than ten years and he'd be killed by a traitor in his inner circle. Poisoned. He'd wanted more details, but I didn't have them. Not then. Not now. The talent only gives what it gives, and it's particularly stingy with "hard" information.

"Soft" information is the stuff you can change. The future's mostly mutable. People make choices every day that change their futures and by extension, those of the people in contact with them.

"Hard" events are predestined. They're GOING to happen: exactly when, and how, they're supposed to. You can try anything and everything you like to change them, and it won't matter a damn.

The Snake's death was as hard as it gets. I don't know why. Ask the Almighty. Maybe he'll answer you. I don't have that kind of pull. I just get glimpses of the future, no explanation is provided.

We were past the nine year mark. I'd gone off and gotten myself in the Academy where, ostensibly, they'd train me to have better control of my gift. He wanted me to look again. Give him details so he could cheat the reaper one more time. If I didn't give them to him, he was liable to get testy. And me, unarmed, in the heart of his stronghold.

I was so screwed.

Friday, July 24, 2009


I'm apparently allergic to something I ate at lunch. My entire body itches, including my eyeballs. Took antihistimines, but it's still miserable. Thought maybe I could sleep it off, but NOPE. Too itchy to sleep. This sucks.

Big Doin's at the Day Job

Big doin's at the day job. This means I have to work today and Monday. Good for the pocketbook. But I still have to write. So I'm up EARLY. Let's hear it for caffine! WHOOO HOO!!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

"I Thin' I Need A Bigger Box"

A Dios Taco Bell Dog.


Okay. I have screwed up. A lot. You don't live this long without mistakes. Some of them turned out really well. Some, not so much. I've been angry and frustrated at a lot of people. Some of them deserved it. Soem, not so much.

But AS OF THIS MOMENT: I HEREBY DECLARE A "DO OVER." I forgive myself. And I really, seriously am trying to wipe the slate and forgive everybody else too. Because, ultimately, most people are just chugging along as best they can. The ones who aren't will screw up and be on the new shit list soon enough. Or not, considering a great number of them aren't in my life any more.

My life is mine. And I've been trying to please everybody. It doesn't work. It also doesn't please me. In fact, it's depressed the hell out of me. SO, I'm letting myself out of the little bitty box I've been trapping myself in to be acceptable. (Like the Taco Bell dog in dealing with Godzilla, "I thin' I need a bigger box.) I'm going to be me. This means that I'm going to seem really, seriously, freaky to a lot of folks in this conservative little town sometimes. But oh well. It means that I'm probably going to look a little silly wearing my fedora and such at cons. Again, oh well. I get to be silly, and feisty, and have fun. I really do.

I've been very hard on myself because I'm still here in Texas. I've made some decisions that were logical, but have kept me from achieving the move so far. It sucks. And I've been punishing myself for it. But I hereby forgive myself for that too. Because I did my best. And I screwed up. And nobody got hurt but me, and I don't have to be hurt if I don't want to. And I don't. So I start over. SO. I've done it before. Only a few hundred (thousand, maybe even million . . . no, not million, but multiple thousands are a definite possibility and hundred is a given) times. And I've survived, and learned. And that's a lot of what life is about. You live, you learn, you move on to be a better person.

I'll make it to Denver eventually. It will work out. And in the meantime, I'm going to be the best me I know how to be---warts and all.


Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Officially Official

Okay guys. I have crawled out of my nice comfy bed. I did not want to. For the first time in weeks it is not roasting hot and I do not have to have the air conditioner on for survival purposes. You laugh? I'm honestly not joking. Ever since I got a bad case of heat prostration I simply can't "do" heat any more. I used to hate air conditioning. (It makes the air taste flat to me). No More. I love me my little buddies.

But life does not stop. So I'm up. Taking my meds, posting, finishing packing Lackey/Minion swag, getting ready for the day job and . . . . oh yeah, writing.

I have recreated most of the Lackey/Minion list. Not all. Sadly, I think that some of it is just GONE and, even more sadly, some of the people who were interested have gone too. Le Sigh.

Oh well, I guess the rest of you will just have to make it up to me. LOL.

ANYWAY, I have received LOTS of replies from other, lovely authors who are willing to be interviewed. I have permission to post the first of them. Unfortunately, I've mislaid the log-in information for the joint blog. SO, as soon as I get the chance to talk to Cathy and get said information, and then am off work so I can honestly fiddle with it without cheating my employer, I will post a notice about said interview, and post said interview.


Be well. Be happy.

Cie/C.T. Adams

Monday, July 20, 2009


Okay -- today is a Harry Dresden question.

In which book does Harry go "bowling for vampires" in the Raith Deeps?


Sunday, July 19, 2009

SUNDAY morning breakfast serial?

Okay, I'm having a harder time with JoAnn than with Sahara. But last night I had it take off in my head on me. SO, ready or not. . . .

I slid the ring on my finger, making sure it was point side up. I mean, how bad would that be? Survive the assassin and then poison myself accidentally by clenching my fist. Besides, as weapons go it was a sweet one, and NOT cheap. And when I got to my apartment, I was going to run a few tests on it, see if I could trace who had provided it to Adonis.

Oh, and feed my cell phone. Chocolate. She'd earned it.

The one thing I wasn't going to do was go up to the hotel room Celeste had provided. Lords only knew what nasty surprises might be waiting for me there.

I thought I knew who hired Adonis. But I wanted to be sure. Because, well, while I'd love to blame everything on my co-worker, I do have other enemies. Serious, dangerous enemies. And even worse allies. I wouldn't have made it to adulthood otherwise.

I took the subway. It's cheap. And it was early enough in the evening to still have plenty of passengers. Safety in numbers actually works for the most part.

I live in a rooming house in one of the "iffy" sections of the city. It's a three-story Victorian with porches, turrets, ghosts and a pair of gargoyles that stand guard on either side of the stairs leading up to the front door. All of the tenants are women. All of them have the kind of problems that leave them leery of strangers. My kind of place.

I was about half a block from the gate when a pair of men stepped out of the shadows in front of me. I didn't need to hear my cell phone squeak to know there was another pair behind me. Four men. Just for little old me. It was almost flattering.

"Hello Casper, Luke." I greeted the two in front of me by name.

"Jo." Luke spat my name like a curse. No surprise. He's the type to hold a grudge.

"I take it Snake wants to see me?"

"He does." Casper smiled with saccharine sweetness.

"But why send four men? He could've just called. I'd come."

"Well, he's a little peeved about losing the Spook." The gravelly voice behind me sounded familiar. I glanced over my shoulder to find Georgie two-toes and someone I'd never met.

"Hey George. What happened to the Spook?"

"That's what Snake'd like to know. He sent him here to collect you, and *poof*" he made a little gesture with his hands, "he disappears. Snake figures you had something to do with that."

I stood there and blinked a little. The Spook was one scarey bastard, and sneaky enough for twelve. What in the hell could've happened to him? Unless . . . Nah. "No. Actually, I didn't."

"You expect us to believe that?" The new kid snorted. Without even looking, George swung around, giving him a good, solid blow to the solar plexis. The kid folded like a card table, gasping for air.

"Thanks George."

"No problem. The boss may be pissed, but he made it clear that nobody does nothin' to you if you come along nice."

Luke coughed pointedly and gestured toward an arched trellis. The space between it was shimmering like an oil slick. A portal. The Snake had actually paid somebody enough money to build him a portal. Damn. He must want to see me really bad. And I bet I knew why.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Saturday Morning Breakfast Serial

It's that time again. Hope you're hungry . . .


Chapter 2 -- All that Glitters

One of the big things they insist on in my line of business is "blending in" to the culture where you've been assigned. Pop culture is one of the required courses of study. I aced it. My esteemed co-worker squeaked by with a C-. But one thing Celeste had studied was the wedding customs. After all, she would be getting married here, and she wanted to do it right. And she did, mostly. The scheduling was a little weird. Generally the bachlorette party would be a week or so before the wedding, and the rehearsal dinner the night before, but there was no point in arguing. The wedding was tomorrow evening, so everybody would have time to sleep off their hangovers, and since rooms had been scheduled for everybody here at the hotel, nobody'd risk arrest for driving drunk.

I was toast. Seriously, so done with this whole wedding thing. I wanted nothing more than to go to go home to my nice, quiet rooms and curl up with a stiff drink and a good book. If I asked it nicely my "cell phone" might even morph into a cat and curl up with me. I was standing at the far corner of the bar, holding a nice big tumbler of Jack plastic smile pasted on my face when the entertainment arrived.

Oh . . . my . . . God.

Okay, I'd expected a stripper. I had not expected a dozen of them. One for each of us. A few of them looked as though they'd taken their cues from The Village People. But there were others thrown in as well.

The last one through the door was dressed as a Greek God. He was young and handsome, but he looked soft, with dark, doe-like eyes and soft curls the color of milk chocolate. His skin was the warm, golden brown that comes from nature enhanced by way of a tanning bed. Judging from what showed outside the toga he was slender, but muscular, a body to die for.

Maybe literally.

Adonis showers death.

He looked around the room, obviously trying to find me. Not that easy now that the lights had been dimmed, an honest-to-God disco ball lit, and throbbing techno music was blaring over the bar speakers so that the strippers could begin their "act." It was loud enough that you couldn't even hear someone next to you shouting their lungs out. The bartender finally decided to help him out, standing up on tiptoe to point at me over everybody's heads.

Now that he knew where he was going, he slipped through the crowd, stalking toward me with the sleek grace of a hunting cat. His features hardened, becoming more predatory.

I moved away from the bar, giving myself more room. He didn't like it, but covered his displeasure with a dimpled smile. Stopping a few feet from me he began dancing, moving his sandaled feet very little, but the rest of his body quite a lot. Particularly his hips. He was lithe, limber, and I got a glimpse of a teeny little gold g-string that barely contained his . . . assets beneath the toga. He was obviously aroused. Normally I would have had to work not to let that be distracting. I mean I'm young, red-blooded, and it has been a ridiculously long time since . . . well, since. But I'd had advance warning, and I wasn't letting this boy close enough to do me any damage.

His eyes met mine, and I saw the realization hit him. I knew. With lightning speed he changed tactics, lunging at me, grabbing for my arms. I caught a glimpse of the tiny, poisoned spike on the inside of the ring he wore as I dodged his grasp. Spinning, unexpectedly, I got hold of his arm. Using the momentum of his own movement against him, I twisted. His shoulder separated from it's socket with a satisfying pop that was inaudible to anyone else, his scream was swallowed by the whoops and shouts of the dancers and guests. He dropped to his knees from the pain, the arm with the ring now useless. I dropped to one knee behind him. Sliding my arm around his neck I tightened, cutting off his air supply. We were behind the edge of the bar. No one could see. No one bothered to look. If they thought anything, they probably thought I was screwing him. Regular strippers would never allow that. But most of the guests didn't know it. Or maybe Celeste had hired hookers. I wouldn't put it past her.

It felt like it took forever for him to pass out, as he bucked, and fought, clawing at my arm with his one good hand, but it really wasn't long. I dragged him further into the corner, where it would be dark even when the lights came back up. Hiding him best as I could behind the floor-length curtains I carefully stripped the ring from his finger and ducked behind the bar. Walking purposefully, I strode down the service hall, through the kitchen, out the delivery door and into the night.

Friday, July 17, 2009


Couldn't Resist the Cuteness.

Health, Writing, Hope, Frustration


Okay, early morning. I slept okay, which helps. I have the day off, and probably 3x as much to do as is humanly possible. I'm also not feeling all that great--haven't been for a while. It's nothing huge, but one of those chronic things that makes you drag ass around and be spacy and unfocused, which makes it harder to get things done. I'm also depressed, which doesn't help matters any.

Depressed? Why? Because (a) Chronic health stuff always gets me down. It's not horrible. I have it better than a lot of folks, but it gets to me. Water wears away stone; (b) I'm in a place I don't want to be; (c) the book is fighting me hard, and the deadline is approaching; (d) I'm behind on home stuff, and I hate living in a dirty house, but I REALLY can't spend a lot of time on it until I get the book done; and (e) like everyone else in this economy, the $$ just goes too damned fast. Again, I have it better than most, and I don't mean to complain, but it wears on me. So I'm going to take a little time and sit down and be grateful for the good things, which should drive away the gloom for a bit.

1) I have people and animals I love and who love me.
2) I have a really terrific family--my son James is somebody to be proud of, my parents and siblings are cool, and I have lots of other relatives who I love dearly and who love me right back (and me left back and me front and back. LOL)
3) I have friends. Good friends, that stick by me even when I'm having those wonderful (NOT) hormonal mood swings. (OOO BABY);
4) I have food, shelter, a running vehicle, a job, and OH YEAH, that little WRITING CAREER thing.
5) I can see, hear, taste, touch, I have all of my senses and while it may not be perfect, and I do not look like Catherine Zeta Jones, my body functions pretty well for the most part
6) I have the means to create things. Which is just, seriously cool. I mean, things appear in my head. People come to my imagination, and I can write it down so that other people can interact and enjoy them. Seriously, how COOL.
7) I can read, which helps me to enjoy other people's words as well. Literacy is so important.
8) I have a pretty wonderful future lined up to look forward to.
9) A book coming out on the shelves in August. I remember when having A book come out EVER was a miracle, a dream, something I didn't believe could possibly happen. Now we have our own SHELF in some stores.
10) I have my faith. This should probably go first actually. But I have my faith. And when I'm feeling like crap and forgetting all the things I have to be grateful for, it pulls me through and gives me the strength and endurance to keep going. AMEN.

See, now I am feeling better. If the TODO list doesn't all get done today, okay. I'll hit the highlights.

Wish me good luck.


Thursday, July 16, 2009

5:00 a.m.

It's 5:00 a.m. I am at the keyboard. I was up until about midnight last night. Some of it was posting and being naughty. Most of it was writing. Broke through a block and am moving forward, but time is critical.

Leaving now.


Tuesday, July 14, 2009


If you have not received your truly cheesy membership card (complete with not-too-horribly insulting nickname) and your schwag, it has probably run afoul of the mailing gremlins and I will need to resend. Post a note here, or e-mail me (AGAIN) at .

NOW, I am introducing the ORDER OF THE FEDORA.

I mean, get real. Hats are cool. Ask any costume director of a mafia movie. Take a look at Johnny Depp in Public Enemy. Ask your local pimp (okay, maybe not that last one. LOL)

SO, since I am a NSE-Overlord, it would be appropriate for my posse members to be appropriately hatted, tricked out, and generally cool looking. ESPECIALLY those posse members who are in the (Dah dah DUM) inner circle.

But it takes a certain . . . chutzpah to wear a hat well. Balls if you would. Are you up for it? Hmnnn? If I supply the hat? Hmmnnn? Let me know.


OY I am FINALLY not nauseous, but I'm still not myself. I overslept this morning---just rolled out of bed at 6:30. This is SO not me. Seriously. I'm the insomniac normally.

Oh well. I'll write what I can this morning.

Talk to y'all later. Sorry about the confusion on the trivia thing. My copies of the books have been packed for the move to Denver. They are WAAAAAY in the back at the bottom. I think I'll have to do more general stuff and other people's works for a while. Or dig them out so I can fact check myself BEFORE I post the question (le DUH).


Monday, July 13, 2009


Okay guys, comments this morning have been in favor of trivia. SO, for the moment, we'll go with it.

I'm making up the rules now, and there will be some disclaimers at the end.

Correct answers win brownie points.
First to 100 brownie points wins a prize. Autographed something or other reasonably nice.
Correct Answers to trivia from our books, blogs, blog ring, short stories or whatever -- 5 points
Correct Answers to trivia from other books -- 2 points
Correct Answers to trivia from anything else (movies, music, pop culture) -- 1 point

DISCLAIMERS -- I am fallible. The computer is old. If it crashes or I lose the file holding all brownie points I will not be held responsible. I am old (and getting older by the second!) I don't move too quick. I will use a calculator and reasonable care in adding points. Also, I will EVENTUALLY get prizes distributed. It just may take a while. I am not perfect. And finally, If I get a quote not absolutely-positively-perfect, but you know what I mean, I reserve the right not to quibble.

Oh, and TODAY ONLY anyone in the posse who posts a comment with their "not too terribly insulting nickname" gets spotted 5 points. Cause the NSEO rewards loyalty.

Fair 'nuff? Good.


Question 1 - In Howling Moon - Cat was wearing a tee-shirt with a smart-ass/snarky saying on it when she climbed into the limo with Charles, Raphael and the others. What did it say?



Sunday, July 12, 2009

HMNNNNNN Input needed

Okay, the Visiting Dignitaries have moved. Which means I need SOMETHING to spice up the place. I have a couple of ideas and want to know if you're interested. This means you really do need to answer.

First "Cie's Playhouse."

This would be a feature (probably on Mondays 'cause that was mostly when the VD [and boy doesn't THAT abbreviation look bad] usually happened. )

I would start with a sentence or two.

You would take turns posting continuations in the comments, one following another.


Me: There was a young lad from Milwaukee
You 1: Who went for a beer with a donkey
You 2: The two got so drunk
You 3: That they kissed a skunk
You 4: And now they're both smelling quite funky.

Only it doesn't have to be a limerik. It can be a story, or whatever.


We can do the whole motivation thing of "What are your goals for the week? What did you accomplish last week?"


Monday morning trivia. I will pick a book (ours or one by one of my favorite authors) TV show or song or whatever and will pull out a quote or ask a trivia question and you tell me (for the quote) author and book; or the answer to the trivia.


You come up with something. Come on. I know you can.


Never mind. I just blather on. But it's hard to even blather coherently on Monday mornings.

NOW YOU'D BETTER HURRY UP. I'm just saying -- Tomorrow's Monday and all. But NO PRESSURE.

Cie/C.T. Adams

Good Morning

Okay, I was sicker'n a dog yesterday afternoon. I do NOT usually throw up, but apparently yesterday was the exception. Then I had the heaves. UGH. Stomach is still a little iffy. Anyway, I'm going to try to take it a little easy today, eat bland food, and not too much of that. But sick or not, I need to be writing.

I'm not sure whether or not this particular breakfast serial is working. I warmed to Sahara almost immediately. She's just off-beat enough, and capable of thinking on the fly. JoAnn is a colder, harder character. I think I like her, but we'll have to wait and see.

The full version of "Run" is going to be going on our new website. I'm thinking it will be on the "Contact" page under my name, or on a separate page you'll reach from a link there. I asked our web guru to do this so that folks who missed the first part can find it as a whole in one place rather than having to root through four or five months of e-mails. My plan is to make each story available in PDF when it's over.

A reminder to keep stopping by the official blog. We'll be having the Visiting Dignitaries there, and we've got some good ones coming up.

On a totally different note, I sometimes envy plotters.


There are two basic types of writers. (Oh there are variations, but they generally fall to one degree or another into one of the two main categories, so run with me here).


Plotters plan everything out. They work out exactly what is going to happen and how they're going to get there. The characters pretty much do what they're told.

Pantsters get the characters, and the situation, and then let 'er rip. They have a general idea of where it's supposed to end up, but no idea how they'll get there. Every decision the characters make leads to the next thing they write. The characters run the show. Sometimes badly.

Pantsters generally sound a little bit insane when talking about their characters and their books.

I am a panster. And sometimes I really, really, wish I wasn't. Particularly when I'm on deadline and would love to see how it all marches neatly to the end. Or when I need to explain to someone (like say an editor) what's going to happen. OY.

But I've tried plotting it all out ahead, and it just doesn't WORK for me. Frustrating.

Oh well, sick or not, frustrated or not, I've GOT to get back at it.


Friday, July 10, 2009

Saturday Morning Breakfast Serial

Okay, I'm a gonna sleep in tomorrow if I can. If I can't, I'm going to be working on the book. SOOOOOOOO before I go to bed, I'm setting out the bowls and the box. You can get your milk out of the fridge for yourself.




I should've known better.

I might want to know who had pulled the strings to tie Celeste and I together. Celeste might want to know. But the ultimate boss, Alara did not want to tell us. I deduced this from the fact that she, um, hadn't. Even when we both requested a transfer. Oh to hell with that. DEMANDED a transfer. So I should've known that trying to beard her in her hotel would be pointless. Then again, I've been known to beat my head against brick walls on occasion. Generally only succeeding in damaging said walls. Not that I'm hard-headed.

Alara didn't see us. She had her lackey/secretary stall us. Long enough that we had to leave or be late to the final fitting for the gowns for the wedding. We wouldn't get a chance to talk after either. Immediately following the fitting was the oooh baby, bachlorette party. We were doing this because it was what American humans do. And we had been trained to be the perfect American humans.

Now tomorrow Alara'd be at the wedding as an honored guest. She couldn't not be without insulting the bigwigs. If I timed it right, and confronted her in front of people, I might just get an answer. I also might get sent on the worst possible assignment.

No. Not possible. Even if Earth was cushy, working with Celeste is the worst possible assignment.

It was exactly dusk when the two of us walked into a conference room that the seamstress had converted into a fitting area. The four other bridesmaids were already there, wearing full length silk beaded gowns in a shade the brochure had optimistically referred to as amethyst, but was actually more of an eggplant/purple. I strode up to the table, grabbed the garment bag with my dress and pulled down the zipper to reveal. . .

The most hideously yellow dress you have ever seen. I mean, really, seriously, hideous. Not only was it that lurid, glow-in-the-dark-fluorescent yellow generally used for safety vests, it had ruffles, and lace, in LAYERS. AND it was made for someone of considerably more amazonian proportions.

Yellow eggplant arriving dusk, indeed.

"Oh . . . my . . . GOD."

"What's the matter?" Celeste strode up to the table, and if I'd had any doubt that this was her doing it was dispelled by the wicked little smile that crossed her lips for just an instant before she suppressed it.

"Oh NO!" She gave a fairly credible howl of horrified dismay. "But this isn't POSSIBLE? What will we DO? The wedding's TOMORROW!"

Which was, of course, my cue to step down so as not to ruin her "big day." Which I really didn't mind doing. I did, however, wonder just exactly how much she'd had to pay the tailor to make this little snafoo happen. Definitely less than she would've had to pay me to just say no. But then there would've been a stink. This way nobody was to blame. Just one of those things.

Yeah. Right.

Still, I was more than happy to do my very best martyr imitation. And if it was just a trifle overacted, well, only one or two of the people in attendance was bright enough to notice. And they wouldn't say anything.

My "phone" beeped and twitched in my pocket. I pulled it out and was rewarded with another message: Adonis showers death.

Great. Peachy. What in the hell was that supposed to mean?


Okay guys. Cathy and I have been thinking (always a dangerous proposition). And since this blog is really and truly my personal blog, and she had a personal blog, that maybe we needed an "OFFICIAL" blog for the shared book identity. SOOOOOOOOOOO, with that in mind.


The Visiting Dignitary posts will go there (including the upcoming interview by LKH). The serial will stay here. There may be some overlap, but all of the official stuff will appear there and Cathy and I will both be participating and commenting.

To make it even more obvious, the official blog has the same header as our website.

ANYWAY, please stop by and enjoy. But also please don't abandon me here. I get LONELY. (Whimper.) LOL



OKAY -- I only have a minute. I'm behind on word production and the deadline is looming in a seriously threatening manner.

1 -- Bought the dog a regular harness for tie-out and am getting pickets for the neighbor's fence.
2 -- BEHIND on the words. ARGH!
3 -- New website is being revised a little to make it easier to find things like the blog.
5 -- Newsletter is going out. It does not have some of the things it will in the future because I'm BEHIND ARGH!
6 -- No swag has gone out either. I am a bad, bad, author. (Slap wrist lightly because I HAVE TO TYPE)



Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Thursday VERY early morning ... au deux

What is it with the blasted dog and Thursday middle-of-the-night/morning jaunts? 1:49 a.m. and I'm wide awake after chasing her . . . AGAIN. ARGH! I'm going to have to buy her a harness, something she hasn't needed since she was a pup. But there's no help for it, because I'm SOOOOOOOOO not doing this again if i can help it. I can't afford to be this tired.

But tonight, since sleep evades, I'm going to try to write.


Deadline Insanity


Okay, we're in the last month of the book deadline. My mojo has returned and my muse is happy. But my BODY is trying very hard to say "screw you buddy." I love to travel. Travel does not love me. It exhausts me, which trips the trigger for a couple of the chronic medical conditions. UGH. Still, there you go. The deadline is the deadline. I am up in the wee hours writing, then writing again after the day job. The house is filthy (and will get filthier yet before I get the book finished). All of the many, MANY other things that a writer has to do to keep things rolling (interviews, sending swag, sending interviews OUT, updating information on the website, writing up proposals, etc., etc., etc.) have to wait unless they are absolutely critical. The book comes first as the books are the engine that drive the whole machine. It is a familiar scenario. That doesn't make it easy.

ANYWAY, I'm blogging quickly before I duck out and get ready for the day job.

The visit with the family was wonderful. Glad I went. But OY am I TIRED.

Now I'm off and running.

Be well. Be happy.


Monday, July 06, 2009

New Website is Up!

The new website is up. It's gorgeous. Some of the information on the page still needs to be updated, but that's our problem not the designer's. PLEASE go take a look. We're very proud of it and comment here.




Back From the Trip

Went to visit the family for a few days. It was a great visit, but I am utterly and completely exhausted, and didn't get the chance to write as much as I should have. I will, however, worry about that tomorrow. Right now I'm going to bed.


Oh, and Ellece, you are SOOOOOOO cool. Thank you so very much for MY swag, and my anipix. I thought I'd blow a gasket over the Rolaids pic. The people in the next hotel room thought I was losing my mind the way I was laughing. You're the best.


Thursday, July 02, 2009

I KNOW it's not Friday, but . . . SERIAL

All right, fine. It's not Friday. It's three in the freakin' morning on THURSDAY. But I'm flying on Friday, and the dog slipped her chain while she was out in the middle of the flippin night at 2:15 because she just HAD to pee, and then she got out of the fence and led me on a merry (for her) chase all around the neighborhood (we're talking several blocks here), completely ignoring all of those lessons and obedience stuff because it would be so much fun (AGAIN for HER . . . at least until she got caught) and NOW I don't think I could sleep if my friggin life depended on it. Although I suspect about the time it's time to go to the day job my body will decide, WELL if you INSIST (SNORE LOUDLY).

Can you tell I'm a little FRUSTRATED? I KNEW you could.

Anyway, with that in mind, grab your bowl and hang on. Oh, and if the story's affected by my mood, so be it.


Chapter 1 -- I Hate Weddings.

Yellow eggplant arriving dusk.

I looked at the letters on the miniature screen, my brow furrowing. WTF?

"You have got to be kidding me." I talked to the creature in my hand. Yes, it was a creature. It LOOKED like one of those nifty hand-held telephone devices that are all the rage (to the point where the humans will risk life and limb to poke at them with their thumbs when they're indulging in life-threatening activities) and can do everything but tap dance. I would've preferred it look like a cat, or maybe a Labrador. But nope. The boss insisted. Probably because Celeste is allergic.

Ah, Celeste. My partner. Again not my choice.

My name is JoAnn. I'm a clairvoyant. A seer. If I ever get a handle on my "gift" I'll be a strong one. At least that's what they tell me. They being the Academy. Because I'm a clairvoyant, I got paired with a wizard, magic user type. In this case, Celeste. Celeste Rogan-Styles soon to be Rogan-Styles-Woodard. Yes, those Rogans, Styles, and Woodards. The ones who created the Academy after the last big infestation nearly wiped out civilization as we know it. (The "big three" as it were were very big on civilization. At least judging by their descendants.)

That she was paired with a former street-urchin, no matter how powerful, is a source of horrible mortification for Celeste. I know this because she's told me. Loudly. Ad nauseum. She has also tried to use every ounce of influence she and her family have to get the situation changed. Apparently Alara, the current Dean, was not impressed.

Damn it.

Her influence did manage to get us a seriously cushy assignment for our training period. There hadn't been an actual blight infestation on good ole earth ever. The blight, are nasty creatures. They're invisible to the naked eye. They don't smell. You can't taste them. But the damage they can do is truly horrific.

Here's how it works. A single blight latches on to a person. It soaks into their skin, becomes a part of them. It starts by feeding on the energy of their thoughts and emotions. Slowly, it turns them darker, and darker: anger, fear, despair, black rage, suicidal depression take over. And while it's feeding on their energy, it's breeding. Little eggs, no bigger than the head of a pin, form in the large muscles. MILLIONS of them. As they grow their shells put out enzymes that dissolve the muscle tissue so it can be absorbed as food for the unhatched babies. The host is being eaten alive, and doesn't even know it. He's just tired. Listless. No will to live. But at the same time enraged. "Life isn't fair." This is when it gets tricky. If the host suicides, the blight dies, and its offspring with it. Lots of those "murder/suicide" types are blight victims.

But sometimes they don't suicide.

Sometimes the eggs hatch.

Then you get riots, genocide, mass murderers, and worse. Things you don't even want to think about. Your worst nightmares don't even touch the edges of it. Although, I have to say the guy that came up with that Cthulu mythology was on the right track.

Blight can only be killed by magic. Even then it's not easy.

They can only be found by clairvoyants.

Thus, the two person teams.

And, my own, personal hell.

Now she's getting married. Oh freakin' GOODIE.

Of course, since we're a team, she has to have me in the wedding. Has to. Even though she (ever so politely) loathes me and I (considerably less subtly) would rather dance the macarena naked in front of a bunch of starving lions than have to go through the very VERY public humiliation of her wedding. Because she'll make it humiliating. Just to show everyone her martyrdom at having been paired with that. It's how she is.

The creature in my hand let out a pained squeak. My grip was starting to crush it.

"Sorry. Sorry."

But I'm not stressed. Of course not.

And stress is so good for my gift. And if you believe that, I have this bridge . . .

Yellow eggplant arriving dusk.

This time the words were underlined and in bold.

"I wish you could just talk to me. It'd be so much easier."

It sighed. A soft sad whisper of sound that would've probably passed unnoticed and unheard if I hadn't known that this wasn't a phone.

"I know, that's not how it works. I have to learn to control my gift. The better my control, the better we can communicate."

Unfortunately, I don't have control over my gift. If I had, I would've seen her coming.

"THERE you are." Celeste's voice was a long-suffering whine. "Do you have any concept of proper behavior? No. Of course not. And even if you did, it wouldn't matter. You don't care. Never mind that it reflects badly on me. My supposed 'maid of honor' disappearing from the festivities without so much as a word."

"You didn't want me there anyway, and you know it. This way you can just blame it on my general lack of breeding and manners." Rather than making snide, disparaging remarks that I was supposed to be too stupid to understand that kept everyone chuckling at my expense.

"That's not the point!" She pouted and stomped her little foot. She looked pretty doing it. Of course. How could she not? She might be a grade-A, full-bore starts with a B and ends with an itch, but an unlimited supply of money can provide one with magical and medical adjustments to any little physical imperfections. Not that there had been a lot of those to begin with. She is a tiny, delicate looking creature, with a perfect features, golden ringlets, and her blue eyes hold all the warmth and compassion of the antarctic plains. "You're making me look bad."

"Consider it payback for last night's remarks." I suggested.

She stared at me, her mouth forming a silent little "o" of surprise. She didn't even seem capable of speech. That was all right. I really didn't want to hear anything she might have to say anyway.

Last night had been the rehearsal dinner. The food had been excellent and expensive. The entertainment had been had at my expense. I was still stinging from it. Good manners weren't what had kept me in my seat. It was pure self-preservation. Because if I made a scene. If I called her on it, confronted her outright in front of all of these notables in this oh-so-public setting, I would be committing career suicide. Maybe even committing literal suicide. Because there are other, less cushy places where I could be assigned. Places where the life expectancy of a Guard is hideously short and the end is excruciatingly painful. They'd make damned sure to arrange it, too. If I didn't "behave."

And the scary part was, I was beginning to think it might be worth it.

"I didn't mean it like that." She lied. Of course. What else could she do?

"Bullshit." I sounded tired as much as angry.

"It was just a joke."

"No." I corrected her. "It was an entire evening of jokes. At my expense. Meant to humiliate me and show everyone how much better you are. We're alone here. You don't need to lie, or pretend. And neither do I."

She blinked again. Whatever she'd expected from me, it wasn't brutal honesty.

"You really do hate me."

"Oh yes." I smiled at her for the first time. It wasn't a nice smile. And she shivered.

"Then why did you fight the reassignment. Are you really that ambitious, that you'd insist on being tied to someone you hate just to use their connections."

It was my turn to blink stupidly. "I didn't."

"Of course you did."

"Nope." I recovered some of my aplomb. "My application for reassignment probably beat yours to the office."

"Then who? Why?" She was outraged, and it brought a flush of color to her pale cheeks.

It occurred to me that we'd finally found something we actually agreed on. "What's say we find out?"

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Question and Serial

Okay, I have a question for y'all. The blog has always had a black background with white lettering. But I have been given "the lecture" that it's hard on the eyes for people to read white on black.

Is it? Do you want me to change it?


Okay, next thing. Holiday weekend coming up. Saturday morning will be a busy one. So the Serial is being posted Friday instead. We're even starting a whole new story. Since I make them up as I go along, I haven't got any real clue where it will go, or even what style it will take on. I've been in kind of a frisky mood though, so there'll probably be some humor involved. Maybe. Unless things go south, in which case we could get brutal. We'll just have to see.

Just so's you know.

So get your game face on a day early.