All the turns!

Jasper isn’t allowed to hike or play ball for a month. He’s got some issues with his back, and while there’s nothing dire going on, he’s supposed to only go on leashed walks. Needless to say, this is going to be a very long month… 🙂 Conveniently, I bought a new book on dog tricks the other day, so he’ll at least get some mental exercise. Hopefully he and Rosie will learn how to take turns practicing. They are not very good at being patient – they both want ALL the turns!

Writing-wise, I’m still in fairy tale land. My latest short story, “Ilsa and the Dragon,” will be out in a week or so in Beauty and Wickedness, the first volume in the fairy tale anthology series I’m putting together. And “Magic and Machinery” is Once Upon a Quest.

I just interviewed Alethea Kontis, one of my fellow authors in Once Upon a Quest. Alethea is not only a wonderful writer, she’s been a speaker about fairy tales at the Library of Congress, and even gave a keynote address at the Lewis Carroll Society’s conference celebrating the 150th anniversary of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. I think she knows more about fairy tales than anyone else I know.

There’s at least one more fairy tale story on the horizon for me. I’ve got a general idea about what to write, and am hoping my subconscious will figure the rest out while I work on other stories. I’m pretty sure there will be a dragon in this one too…

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Ilsa scanned the rocks, searching for a place where she could scramble up. This close to the cliffs, she realized they were actually a collection of blocky granite towers. Low, blocky boulders lay scattered about at the base of the crags, with short, stubby bushes clustering around them. Higher up, several giant slabs of rock leaned on one another, and here and there a few brave trees grew on small, knobby outcroppings. A small waterfall flowed down the lichen-covered stone of the southernmost crag, and turned into a little stream. Out of the corner of her eye she caught a glimpse of a raptor soaring high above the cliffs, its long tail streaming out behind it, and its red feathers sparkling in the sunlight.

Red feathers? Raptors weren’t red, and bird feathers didn’t sparkle. And birds didn’t have long tails like that.

But dragons did.

– from “Ilsa and the Dragon”
in Beauty and Wickedness

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The (as yet untitled) story I’m working on now is mostly set underneath London, so I spent some time over the weekend looking at images of tunnels and things. Fortunately I already had a Pinterest board set up thanks to another story. 🙂

Looking through these images reminded me how much I’d like to finish the other story – it’s the first novel in a contemporary fantasy series, and I think I’ve got about 20,000 words written so far. I’ve got a whole slew of things to write first, unfortunately, but it was fun to be reminded of that story and see that it’s still something I’m really interested in finishing. If I stay disciplined, I should get to it this year… 🙂

Jasper and Rosie are disciplined when they know there’s a ball involved.

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