So y’all get a Three-for Thursday. 🙂 I still wrote a poem for each day; I just didn’t get to post about them.
Actual deadline day, so we went for a kinda haiku. Definitely needs work, but the photo is from Kamakura, Japan. I was able to catch one of the golden eagles that hang around there diving for a fish.
This is from Meiji Temple in Tokyo, Japan. There was a raven on the tori, which looked really cool. It was a super foggy, rainy day, so it took some cleaning and cropping to get the photo to a place where I was okay with it…
I’m also watching American Gods, so Odin’s Ravens decided to poke their beaks in and make this cross-cultural. And about warrior sacrifice and corpses.
I call the pair “Munin at Meiji.”
This pair is more whimsical and based on American soil…and from Arisia, where I got to go to an Absinthe Tasting room party. There’s a long history of absinthe and artists, so that’s where I went.
Poems and photos are rough and raw; I’ll edit and fix them up later. My April challenge is about the creation, not the finessing. Please do not copy or share the photos or poems I’m posting. I am not finished, and sharing them can hurt my future plans for these pieces. Thank you!
Sooo… super late and I’ve got a conference to drive to tomorrow. Raw picture to go with the raw poem. I know I’m going to crop the picture and see if I can sharpen it a little… not sure what else. Both currently titled “One Crow for Sorrow.” Picture was taken in Rockport, ME on a surprise vacation from a friend some years ago. 🙂
Please do not copy or share the photos or poems I’m posting. I am not finished, and sharing them can hurt my future plans for these pieces. Thank you!
I managed another short poem! (Seriously, this is an achievement for me!)
This pairing references the beautiful and heartbreaking story of Hachikō, which if you don’t know, is worth looking up. But have plenty of tissues handy.
Scott, Husband-of-Awesome, actually took the photo. I honestly don’t know if it’s from Taiwan or Osaka, Japan… so I hope the pairing isn’t problematic with the Japanese story, though the story has been retold several times in several cultures—one of the most recent and memorable (at least to geeks like me) being the Futurama episode, “Jurassic Bark.”
The poem, like all of what I’m posting, is in its rough draft form, too. My aim for the month is composition; I’ll edit later. Please do not copy or share the photos or poems I’m posting. I am not finished, and sharing them can hurt my future plans for these pieces. Thank you!
I have been under a bunch of deadlines for editing and writing… and had a bunch of fresh new health issues pop up over the past couple of weeks…but despite being late posting this, I am SUPER EXCITED to be returning to Boskone this year! And DAMN, look at that great schedule!
And if I’m not on a panel… I’ll likely be found at the Broad Universe table in the Dealer’s Room…
or, if it’s Friday Night, I’ll be throwing the Broad Universe Party again! Look for us on the hotel Party Floor!
Outside of tabling and partying, here’s my fabulous schedule:
Tarot and Divining Fantastic Fiction
Format: Discussion Group
16 Feb 2018, Friday 17:00 – 18:00, Lewis (Westin)
Author and Tarot guru Trisha Wooldridge leads a discussion on Tarot, fortune-telling, and the art of the seer in fantasy and science fiction. Trisha will provide a live demonstration.
Folktales Within Poetry
16 Feb 2018, Friday 18:00 – 19:00, Marina 3 (Westin)
From “The Lady of Shalott” to “Goblin Market” to The Iliad, some quite engaging poems are inspired by folklore, legends, or myths. What other examples can we add — perhaps from non-European poetry? What do folk sources bring that an original story might lack? Our panelists will discuss (and perhaps read) some of their favorites — what are yours?
Theodora Goss (M), Jane Yolen, C. S. E. Cooney, John Chu, Trisha Wooldridge
Group Reading: Fiction for Kids and Young Adults
17 Feb 2018, Saturday 12:00 – 13:00, Griffin (Westin)
Boskone presents a special group reading for lovers of children’s and young adult fiction. Our authors provide a range of stories and topics that are sure to delight and entertain!
Kristy Acevedo, Daniel P. Dern, Erin M. Hartshorn (M), Sarah Jean Horwitz, Justin Key, Trisha Wooldridge
This is a special group reading designed to generate a larger crowd in order to introduce more people to the work highlighted in the session. There may only be 5 chairs at the table. If so, we ask that the moderator has a couple extra chairs moved to the table area. The group reading is scheduled for 50 minutes and each reader has 5-minutes to read. Please be sure to time your reading to ensure that you don’t go over time. The “moderator” is assigned to welcome everyone to the reading and announce that each reader will introduce herself/himself along with their piece as their turn to read comes up. If there is time available, please open the room to questions.
Border of the Unknown
17 Feb 2018, Saturday 17:00 – 18:00, Marina 1 (Westin)
Much fine fantastika involves crossing the boundary between the known and the unknown — especially that uneasy border between the village and the trees. Let’s look at the long history of that great unknown, the enchanted forest. Why has it pushed and pulled at people’s imaginations since ancient times? To find out, let’s stroll away from safety and into the woods, as the liminal light fades and the shadows gather all under the boughs unbowed …
Theodora Goss, Errick Nunnally (M), Trisha Wooldridge, Dana Cameron, Gerald L. Coleman
Live from Boskone: A special selection of tall tales as told by our program participants — plus audience members. All show off their open mic skills in the third annual Boskone Open Mic extravaganza. This year features the myths and legends of yesterday, today, and tomorrow! Each participant contributes his/her most legendary performance — a 5-minute story, poem, song, skit, interpretive dance, or whatever!
OPTIONAL: For extra appeal, feel free to come dressed as your favorite mythic or legendary character.
The Rules: Boskone members are invited to join our participants in the open mic by signing up for one of the six open slots at the door to the event, which opens for sign-ups at 7:30 p.m. Each performer is given a firm 5-minute time limit (max), including setup time. So a quick transition between acts is key. Please no profanity: DragonsLair is within hearing distance.
Elaine Cunningham (M), Lauren Roy, Kenneth Schneyer (M), C. S. E. Cooney, Carlos Hernandez, Gabriel Erkard, E. Ardell, Benjamin Newman, Roberta Rogow, Don Pizarro, Trisha Wooldridge, Mary Ellen Wessels, Edward L. Stauff
Neil Gaiman Anniversary Reads
18 Feb 2018, Sunday 13:00 – 14:00, Harbor II (Westin)
It’s a notable year for Neil Gaiman, with publication anniversaries for his engaging, ironic dark fantasies The Graveyard Book (10th) and The Ocean at the End of the Lane (5th) — plus from his lighter side, Don’t Panic: The Official Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Companion (30th). Let’s gab about his novels and stories, comics and characters, movies and TV adaptations and rock-star aura.
Bracken MacLeod (M), Jane Yolen, Justin Key, John Langan, Trisha Wooldridge
I’m happy to share the cover release of my friend and sister Broad, Terri Bruce on my blog today!
Terri is an amazing woman and an amazing writer, so look forward to when you can get your hands on this book! … And if you haven’t read the first in this series, Hereafter, you need to do that. Like now!
Without further ado, here is the GORGEOUS cover for Thereafter.
Now that you’ve seen the contest and the pretty, here are all the details to further make you want this book! Besides a medieval Spanish knight AND a cowboy!!!!
Genre: Contemporary fantasy/paranormal
Publisher: Mictlan Press
Date of Publication: May 1, 2014
ISBN: 978-0-9913036-2-5 (print) /
ISBN: 978-0-9913036-3-2 (ebook)
Number of pages: 318
Word Count: 99,000
Cover Artist: Artwork by Shelby Robinson; cover layout by Jennifer Stolzer
When recently-deceased Irene Dunphy decided to “follow the light,” she thought she’d end up in Heaven or Hell and her journey would be over.
Boy, was she wrong.
She soon finds that “the other side” isn’t a final destination but a kind of purgatory where billions of spirits are stuck, with no way to move forward or back. Even worse, deranged phantoms known as “Hungry Ghosts” stalk the dead, intent on destroying them. The only way out is for Irene to forget her life on earth—including the boy who risked everything to help her cross over—which she’s not about to do.
As Irene desperately searches for an alternative, help unexpectedly comes in the unlikeliest of forms: a twelfth-century Spanish knight and a nineteenth-century American cowboy. Even more surprising, one offers a chance for redemption; the other, love. Unfortunately, she won’t be able to have either if she can’t find a way to escape the hellish limbo where they’re all trapped.
I am THRILLED beyond all measure to finally be able to bring you Thereafter, and I want to thank all the fans who have waited (more or less patiently) an extra year for this book to finally come out. Thereafter would not have been possible without your support—thank you all! I hope you love this beautiful new cover as much as I do, and I hope you find Thereafter to be worth the wait.
Her hand touched a rock, one of the flat beach stones she’d seen on graves. She picked it up, laying it flat in her palm. She didn’t remember picking this up. In fact, she had been careful not to take any. It had seemed disrespectful and too much like stealing to remove them, and while she’d seen a few here—both loose and piled in cairns—she hadn’t picked any of them up. There had been no point. What would she do with a rock?
No wonder her bag was so heavy.
She tossed the rock over her shoulder and heard it hit the ground with a satisfying thud some distance away. It felt good to be rid of something, to make a decision and be sure it was the right one.
She surveyed the pile again and then grabbed a small handful of paper animals. She picked one up between a finger and thumb. It was a horse. Irene had been in Chinatown during Chinese Ghost Festival, a holiday in which the living left offerings for the dead. These offerings included paper replicas of things people thought the dead would need in the afterlife—money, clothes, television sets, and even animals. Irene had admired the precise and delicate folds of the Origami figures and had picked some up to admire them more closely. Without thinking, she had dropped them into her bag and apparently been carrying them ever since.
Well, even Jonah couldn’t argue with her on this—there was no way she was going to need a paper horse on her journey through the afterlife. Plus, these didn’t hold any sentimental value. She cast the horse onto a nearby fire and watched as the paper curled and blackened in the low-burning flames.
The fire leapt and seemed to glow blue for a moment. Irene tensed—what was happening?
Thick black smoke began to rise slowly from the flames, spiraling upward in a thickening column. The smoke grew denser and then elongated sideways. Irene leapt to her feet and backed away, her heart pounding. Something was forming in the fire.
The smoke was taking shape now; there was purpose and design in its movements. She could see a long, horizontal back, four legs, a neck, and finally a head and a tail. The smoke swirled with a final flourish and then shuddered into the solidity of a smoke-colored horse. The animal blinked passively. Then it violently shook its head, blew out a breath, and delicately picked its way forward out of the fire. It immediately put its head down and began to lip the ground, looking for food.
Irene stared stupidly at it. “Are you shitting me?”
About the Author:
Terri Bruce has been making up adventure stories for as long as she can remember. Like Anne Shirley, she prefers to make people cry rather than laugh, but is happy if she can do either. She produces fantasy and adventure stories from a haunted house in New England where she lives with her husband and three cats.
I’m thrilled my first post is from Vonnie Winslow Crist, a woman after my own heart when it comes to faery tales and folklore. I just love her post here!
Ogerhunches and other Goblins by Vonnie Winslow Crist
Goblins are dark Faeryfolk often associated with Halloween. They appear in fantasy literature and film from J.R.R. Tolkien’s Hobbit and Lord of the Rings to J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter to scary nursery rhymes like Little Orphan Annie by James Whitcomb Riley. And there are so many terrifying varieties of goblins that a Red-cap, Bogy, Padfoot, Barguest, Tankerabogus, Grindee, or Ogerhunch could be hiding under your stairs this very minute!
Not all goblins are as fearsome as Red-caps who wear hats died crimson in the blood of their victims. Nor as frightening as a Bogy who is known to follow people around calling out, “I want my bones.” Nor as unnerving as a Padfoot who walks behind an unsuspecting person, then runs up to his side and roars. Nor as scary as a Barguest with its horns, teeth, claws, and fiery eyes. Nor as dreadful as a Tankerabogus who comes and carries naughty children away to its pit-hole. Some goblins are actually more terrifying!
When I wanted to add goblins to my Young Adult fantasy adventure novel, The Enchanted Skean, I had to decide what my goblins would be called and what they’d look like. Plus, I wanted to give them characteristics which would make them repulsive and fascinating at the same time.
The first type of goblin I created are Grindees. They’re smallish nocturnal goblins that travel in swarms of 20 to 30 individuals. Grindees chase down travelers, devour both animals and humans, then steal whatever valuables they possessed. They have glowing orange eyes, mottled skin, elongated fingers, multiple horns, and wide mouths filled with razor-sharp teeth. Able to speak in a hissing, lispy manner, Grindees are happy to let a person know just how much they despise humans – just before they bite them.
When it came to creating the second type of goblin for The Enchanted Skean, I decided to find an archaic word for a frightening creature. One of the fabulous words I found in Jeffery Kacirk’s The Word Museum was Ogerhunch. According to Kacirk an Ogerhunch is “Any frightful or loathsome creature, especially a bat.” Well, I’m a fan of bats, so I decided to make my Ogerhunches goblins that looked like forest debris and stumps. A horde of Hunches will sneak up unnoticed, knock their victims to the ground with their branch-like limbs, then suck their juices out with their rootlets. Luckily for the protagonist in my novel, Ogerhunches aren’t especially smart and they’re afraid of fire.
In the sequel to The Enchanted Skean, Grindee and Ogerhunches are sure to appear. The trick will be to add an even more devious goblin to the mix.
So this Halloween when your doorbell rings and you open your door to trick-or-treaters, keep your eyes peeled for goblins. It’s easy to separate them from the neighborhood kids – their ugly faces aren’t masks and they don’t come off with make-up remover. And remember “you better mind your parents and your teachers fond and dear, and cherish them that loves ya, and dry the orphans tears and help the poor and needy ones that cluster all about, or the goblins will get ya if ya don’t watch out!”
About the guest writer: Vonnie Winslow Crist is author of a YA fantasy novel, The Enchanted Skean, 2 speculative story collections, The Greener Forest and Owl Light, and other books. A firm believer that the world around us is filled with mystery, miracles, and magic, Vonnie celebrates the power of myth in her writing.
Squeee!!! It’s finally time share the cover for the sequel to FINN FINNEGAN Darby Karchut‘s GIDEON’S SPEAR! You all know how much I love my author, Darby, so please help me spread the word. Even awesomer, the amazing Lisa Amowitz, another friend of mine, outdid herself making this cover–and it truly is a perfect fit for the book. Everything you may have loved about Finn, but with even more action and humor!
Awww over the cover…and here are the details!
The sequel to FINN FINNEGAN
By Darby Karchut
(The Adventures of Finn MacCullen #2)
For Finn MacCullen, it’s time to Irish up.
With a shout, Finn held the spear aloft. “Come along, ye manky beasties,” he yelled, throwing every bit of Gideon-ness he could into his voice. “I’ve a wee point to share with ye!” Gripping the end of the shaft in both hands, he swung it around and around over his head, creating a whistling sound. “Faugh a ballagh!”
“The Spear!” Goblin voices screeched in panic. “The Spear of the Tuatha De Danaan!”
“Yeah, you got that right!” Finn yelled back.
When a power-crazed sorceress and the neighborhood pack of beast-like goblins team up and threaten both his master and his friends, thirteen-year-old Finn (not Finnegan) MacCullen does the only thing an apprentice monster hunter can do: he takes the fight to the enemy.
And woe to the foe he meets along the way.
(Book One of The Adventures of Finn MacCullen)
“Overall, a great choice for adventure-loving readers who prefer their battle scenes with a hefty dose of ancient weaponry, ground-fighting skills, and just a touch of magic.” —School Library Journal
“If Lloyd Alexander had written The Ranger’s Apprentice, the result might have been something like Finn Finnegan. Fantastic!” –Mike Mullin, author of Ashfall and Ashen Winter
“Finn Finnegan brings classic adventure into a modern day setting for a great read.”
—Dee Garretson, author of Wildfire Run and Wolf Storm
Title: Gideon’s Spear (The sequel to Finn Finnegan)