NaNoWriMo Event


Dear Friends, Family, and Righteous Supporters,
 
On November 20, the Office of Letters and Light will be bringing together the most mighty of endurance novelists for an event that will define our generation forever.
I’m speaking, of course, of National Novel Writing Month’s Night of Writing Dangerously. It’s a write-a-thon, and it will take place at the beautiful Julia Morgan Ballroom in downtown San Francisco. I will be there, writing my heart out and raising money for the Office of Letters and Light, NaNoWriMo’s parent nonprofit.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Attendees like me must raise $250 to get in the door, and from there, a rich array of prizes, delicious food, and sumptuous writing time awaits. But this is not about me getting a treat-filled night of literary abandon. This is about children and adults getting the encouragement, structure, and inspiration they need to achieve their creative potential. Proceeds from the event will fund National Novel Writing Month’s free creative writing programs in hundreds of schools and communities around the world.
 
 
 
 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The Office of Letters and Light does inspiration like nobody else (did I mention I’m writing an entire novel this November?). And on their behalf, I am asking you to donate.
 
This is an opportunity that will help me get a novel written in a short amount of time and will help push me into finishing it.  November starts a marathon of writing for many people where we all write 50,000 words which is equivalent to a short novel.  With this event it will give me the final push for the month along with allowing me to collaborate with other authors and have people backing me and helping me during the event.
 
Also, I will let you touch my raffle prizes if I win some.
 
Thank you for supporting me in my novel-writing quest, and for helping the Office of Letters and Light create a more engaged and inspiring world.

Kickstarter – A Polaroid Adventure in Marrakesh, Morocco

Some of you may have seen this before, but the artist has FIVE DAYS left to earn the amount of money she needs to go on her dream trip.  I am pulling for her because she is a friend, yes, but also because she is a FANTASTIC artist and deserves this chance.  Please donate even a dollar and it will help her on her way.

One of the great things about Social Networking is I am able to meet wonderful new people and introduce others to these wonderful people.  I have had the great fortune of knowing a few artists before I even began to write this blog and their skill and beauty has grown through the years and it is wonderful to be a part of that growth.  One of the great things about having a blog like this is I can share with you all the wonderful people I have met through the years and also help them out with projects they may be doing or at least get their information out there.
I have had the good fortune to have known Briana Morrison before I really even got into doing these blogs and I have watched her work grow and become more of who she is through her Etsy.com store “The Dizzy Pixie”.  She recently posted on her Etsy.com store and on her Facebook of an excursion she is wishing to undertake which she needs some help on.
Three of her mentors: Susannah ConwayAmanda Gilligan, and Jen Altman, are a part of a 12 like-minded group who, for a week, will be roaming Marrakesh, Morocco and documenting their experience.  They will have workshops and work with one another to grow their talents and share their gifts with each other in hopes to be able to share the experience and their talents with all of us.
Brianna has already taken it into her own hands to be able to attend this excursion in February 2012 by putting down her $500 deposit.  She is asking me and anyone else to help her on the rest of the expenses.  She has started a Kickstarter project and is asking to raise $5,000 which will cover air fare, the workshops, film, and other material she will use once she comes back from this magnificent journey to put it all together into an exhibit she wishes to share with all, up and down California.
You do not need to break the bank to help her out on her dream, it only takes $1 to donate and if you share this information with others we can get her out to Morocco and help her with her dream.  If you do not have the means to donate, please share this information on your Blog, Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Email, etc.  Every little bit of money will help.

Interview with Jeremy Tarr author of (S)mythology

Jeremy Tarr, debut author of (S)mythology, will be doing two book signings in the Sacramento area come Saturday, July 30th.  But, before he sits for hours signing books he sat and answered a few questions about his book and about who he is.
 
Thank you Jeremy Tarr for taking the time in sharing a few minutes of your time in answering some questions about yourself and about your book, (S)Mythology.  I know my readers will enjoy this interview immensely.
Question 1: Firstly, can you tell us a little about yourself and how it came about that you wrote (S)Mythology?
In the Autumn of 2004, I fell completely in love with a girl – head-over heels, violins-playing, clichéd “in love.” She was going through a rather tough period in her life, so I wrote a short story for her called “A Tale for Sophie” to cheer her up. That story consisted of much of the first Act of (S)mythology. I started writing it on a Friday night and I’d finished it by Monday morning. I spent the next several days drawing illustrations for it and gave it to her by the end of the week.
Question 2: What is (S)Mythology about and who do you believe will enjoy it?
At heart, it’s a fairy tale about love and the mythology that we interweave into the process of falling in and out of love. But because it’s a fairy tale, it’s also about witches and sorcerers and devils and heroes and villains and mermaids.
I think the book can be enjoyed by anyone from ages 10 to 110 with any sort of longing for whimsy and a liking of the fantastic.
Question 3: Where did the idea come from, to have such a tragic occurrence happen if someone looks at her?
I blatantly ripped it off from Medusa. No doubt, I’ll be expecting a lawsuit from her shortly.
Question 4: Did you know Katy Smail before the project or did the project bring you together?
I was shown Katy’s work by a friend of mine in 2007. If it’s possible to fall in love with illustrations, I did right then and there. She was living in Edinburgh at the time and I was in Los Angeles. We wrote back and forth. I’d send her short stories and she’d send me illustrations. We share a lot of the same loves and inspirations, so our work seemed to instantly connect. I brought (S)mythology to her in December of 2008, by that point she had moved to Brooklyn. We worked on it through all of 2009 and we didn’t actually meet each other face to face until last January in the dead of freezing winter in the East Village in Manhattan. We drank gin and talked for hours.
Question 5: Had you always wanted to have illustrations in your book or did that come later?
As I mentioned earlier, I’d originally created my own (somewhat crude) illustrations for the book – so I always knew it needed them. But it wasn’t until I saw Katy’s work that I knew it not only needed them, but they had to be hers!
Question 6: Was there any other consideration to location for this story or was London a serious part of the story?
I was living in London when I wrote the book, so it just came about naturally.
Question 7: Now that your book has been published and been out for a few months have you gotten used to being a published author?  or is it still surreal?
Writing is such a private and lonely thing, that it’s a bit weird when others – strangers – read what I’ve written. Until now, all the characters in the book lived exclusively in my brain and they had their adventures and conversations up there – it’s a bit schizophrenic, really – but now they’ve popped out and people read about them, so it feels very odd for strangers to know who my imaginary friends are.
Question 8: Was writing one of those things you had always wanted to do?  Had you always wanted to be published?
I’ve written for as long as I can remember. It’s one of those things that have always made me happy.
Question 9: And just to get to know you a little bit better, If you had a yard sale tomorrow for all but 3 of your belongings, what 3 items would you absolutely keep?
There are so many practical things that I’d have to keep, like my phone and laptop. And I wouldn’t sell my underwear as I wouldn’t want shoppers rummaging around through my unmentionables. My father gave me a fountain pen that I would have to keep. And I’d also keep my grandfather’s pocket-watch and my other grandfather’s wristwatch. That’s more than 3, isn’t it? Let’s sell the underwear then!
Question 10: When you aren’t writing, what authors do you like to read and did any of them inspire you to write (S)Mythology?
My favorite author is Anthony Burgess, specifically Earthly Powers, the Enderby series and Kingdom of the Wicked, but he didn’t inspire any part of the book. I’d say the books that most inspired (S)mythology are Alice in Wonderland, The Little Prince and Master and Margarita. Some of Terry Southern’s nonsensical insanity may have rubbed off in the book occasionally as well.
Question 11: Are there any books you are currently reading?  Which books are your top favorites? And what authors would you recommend to people who read your book (S)Mythology?
I go through phases where I read a book a week and then I don’t read anything for a couple of months. I’m currently slogging through Tropic of Cancer because it’s one of those books you’re supposed to read. I just recently finished Twenty Thousand Streets under the Sky by Patrick Hamilton and Augustus by John Williams. Patrick Hamilton and John Williams are two of the most underappreciated writers of the 20th Century. Everyone ought to read Hangover Square by Hamilton and Stoner by Williams – they’re unbelievable, out of this world, mind-shatteringly amazing! There aren’t enough adjectives to describe how amazing they are.
Question 12: I know a lot of Fantasy writers love to play Dungeons and Dragons or like to participate in Role Playing Games, are you one of those writers and which games if so?
I’ve actually never played a role playing game in my life. Though I did go to the Renaissance Faire a couple months ago. When I was a kid, I was always more into comic books than role playing fantasy. I used to be obsessed with comic books – mostly the villains: I always found them more interesting. Especially Dr. Octopus, the Red Skull and the Penguin. Batman was the only superhero I liked – mainly because of the Tim Burton movie. All of the other superheroes I thought were ridiculous: too gumdrop, go-get-‘em, goody-two-shoes.
Question 13: There are a lot of my readers who are writers and have the dream to be published one day, what are your words of wisdom to them?
You will meet rejection and you will meet failure, and it will hurt like hell – but writing is one of those things that some people just have to do. We’re like drug addicts. So, you keep going, like the last line of The Great Gatsby, “so we beat on, boats against the current…” That’s maybe a little cynical – but I would say, don’t worry about being published, just worry about writing well. Don’t try to please anyone but yourself. And, it’s a cliché, but you mustn’t give up. 
Question 14: Has your life changed at all since you published your book and how?
Not really. Sometimes I get fan mail – that’s new.
Question 15: Are there any other books brewing in that brain of yours and will they be similar to (S)Mythology or are you going to try something different?
I’ve finished writing a book that will be part novel and part graphic novel. I’m working on it with one of my oldest friends, Louis Pieper, who’s a comic book artist. The novel is written and Louis has designed all of the characters, and now we meet weekly at a pub to thumbnail the actual boards. It’s completely different than (S)mythology and is about mobsters, terrorists, musicians and fashion models.
Katy and I have discussed a few ideas, as well, as we both want to work together again. I’m also about two chapters into something new, but I really don’t know what it is yet.
Question 16: Do you have a process for writing and can you describe it to us?
One of my favorite lines from Alice in Wonderland is when the King of Hearts instructs Alice on how to read a poem by saying, “Begin at the beginning and go on till you come to the end: then stop.” That’s pretty much how I write.
Question 17: Do you believe writing is a skill or a talent?  Do you have any suggestions to beginning writers which will help them on the path to becoming published?
I think the writing aspect is a bit of a skill – you can learn by writing and writing and writing some more. You can be taught, or you can teach yourself, how to string together some interesting sentences. I think storytelling is more of a talent. Scholars can debate on and on as to whether or not JK Rowling or Stephanie Meyer or Dan Brown are good writers – are their prose beautiful and meaningful and substantive? – but it’s undeniable that they have a certain amount of genius to be able to tell stories that can completely captivate millions and millions of people across a wide swath of ages and races and socio-economic statuses. And when the talent of storytelling and the skill of well-honed and beautiful writing come together, that’s when you get the best kind of book: that’s when you get that rare thing that goes on the list of “classics.”
Question 18: Was there anything that had to hit your proverbial cutting room floor when you were working on (S)Mythology, which you really wish you could have incorporated better?  And will you use it in another book down the road?
There were a few chapters that were tossed – some bits about a doppelganger, something else about a strange snowstorm in Los Angeles – I have no idea if those things will pop up again, but probably not, because I don’t think they were all that interesting.
Question 19: Is there anything else that I have forgotten which you would love my readers to know about your book or about yourself?
Let me think… Oh! I know…. I’m not English. Some people think I’m English. I wrote (S)mythology as if I were an Englishman. But if people want to think I’m English, I’m very happy to indulge them in their beliefs.
Again, thank you for this opportunity.  I hope your trip to California is safe and enjoyable.  We will see you in Sacramento on July 30th at 4p and in Davis at 7:30p.


Sacramento Book Signing
Date: July 30, 2011
Time: 4:00p – 5:30p
Where: The Avid Reader at the Tower
1600 Broadway, Sacramento
Telephone: 916-441-4400
Davis Book Signing
Date: July 30, 2011
Time: 7:30p
Where: The Avid Reader
617 Second Street, Davis
Telephone: 530-758-4040

Kickstarter project for artist to go to Morocco to grow

One of the great things about Social Networking is I am able to meet wonderful new people and introduce others to these wonderful people.  I have had the great fortune of knowing a few artists before I even began to write this blog and their skill and beauty has grown through the years and it is wonderful to be a part of that growth.  One of the great things about having a blog like this is I can share with you all the wonderful people I have met through the years and also help them out with projects they may be doing or at least get their information out there.

I have had the good fortune to have known Briana Morrison before I really even got into doing these blogs and I have watched her work grow and become more of who she is through her Etsy.com store “The Dizzy Pixie”.  She recently posted on her Etsy.com store and on her Facebook of an excursion she is wishing to undertake which she needs some help on.

Three of her mentors: Susannah Conway, Amanda Gilligan, and Jen Altman, are a part of a 12 like-minded group who, for a week, will be roaming Marrakesh, Morocco and documenting their experience.  They will have workshops and work with one another to grow their talents and share their gifts with each other in hopes to be able to share the experience and their talents with all of us.

Brianna has already taken it into her own hands to be able to attend this excursion in February 2012 by putting down her $500 deposit.  She is asking me and anyone else to help her on the rest of the expenses.  She has started a Kickstarter project and is asking to raise $5,000 which will cover air fare, the workshops, film, and other material she will use once she comes back from this magnificent journey to put it all together into an exhibit she wishes to share with all, up and down California.

You do not need to break the bank to help her out on her dream, it only takes $1 to donate and if you share this information with others we can get her out to Morocco and help her with her dream.  If you do not have the means to donate, please share this information on your Blog, Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Email, etc.  Every little bit of money will help.

(S)mythology book signing in Sacramento and Davis

It is always a pleasure to meet someone who has the same dreams and hopes as you might have. It is especially wonderful to find someone who has been able to accomplish some of those dreams. The author of Sacramento Fantasy Literature Examiner has been given the opportunity for an interview of one such author and while that interview is put together here is a small taste of who this wonderful author is and what he has accomplished.


Jeremy Tarr is a writer who came out with his debut book in January of this year, entitled (S)mythology. Described as “Charming, poignant and absurdly funny, (S)mythology is a contemporary fairy-tale that whisks you on a wild adventure from the streets of London to the far reaches of the globe from haunted islands to African villages, from the peaks of the Alps to the depths of the Underworld.” The style of writing is reminiscent of when stories were told to one another rather than read. Action moves quickly and whisks you away into the story and into the life of one Ms. Sophie. A twenty-one year old who has her life turned on its head when her adoptive father dies suddenly and she had not stepped foot out of the house she had grown up in within the past sixteen years.

Mr. Tarr will be in Sacramento and Davis come July 30, 2011 for book signings. The interview will be posted here about who and what makes Jeremy Tarr, the writer, tick in the very near future. Subscribe to this authors posts to keep up to date on local Fantasy writers and books.


Sacramento Book Signing
Date: July 30, 2011
Time: 4:00p – 5:30p
Where: The Avid Reader at the Tower
1600 Broadway, Sacramento
Telephone: 916-441-4400


Davis Book Signing
Date: July 30, 2011
Time: 7:30p
Where: The Avid Reader
617 Second Street, Davis
Telephone: 530-758-4040

Social Networking and Writing

One of the great things about the internet is the vast amount of people you can meet without ever stepping outside of your house.  With being on Twitter I have met some extraordinary people and people I probably would never have met otherwise.  Due to this fact the connections I have met with other authors has been fun and rewarding.  I only have recently, as in the last few months, even started writing regularly to this blog and even started up my own Facebook page.  Now, granted, I have more followers on Twitter than on either my blog (though thank you for you who do follow me) or on my Facebook page, but I am sure those things will slowly grow as I, myself, continue to write.

I started this whole adventure by saying yes to Fantasy Faction, which has taken off quickly.  From there I joined up with Examiner and have been writing similar things to what I was writing for Fantasy Faction.  None of this really pays me (though I do get some money from people checking out Examiner), but it is more for the experience and to get my name out there.

My husband has really no idea on how to use any of this for social networking.  He is a computer programer, but does not have a Facebook page, a Twitter, or even had a MySpace when that was the thing to have.  He just does not get in to this nearly as much as I do, but his comment to me when I asked him if he was proud of what I had accomplished in just a few short months was, “I don’t get this social networking thing, but it seems to be working for you, so keep it up” which was a wonderful feeling.

There seems to be many tricks to make sure you are followed by people you want to be followed by and to start gaining a wonderful following, but I more care if they find what I am saying interesting and wish to follow me for that reason.  I don’t want people just to follow me because I am following some large names.  I want people interested in what I am saying and for who I am.

The next step I want to take is actually to start to write again and perhaps post small snippets about what I am writing to have people interested in it before it is even published.  I have seen many people do this for second, third, and seventh books/novels, but rarely do I see someone who is just starting out.  I want to have people follow me from the very beginning of the birth of the idea and see it grow into the book or novel which is put out onto the shelves of a bookstore and made into a file for eReaders.

I hope you who have read this entire post will be some of those who will follow me through that journey and help me along when I stumble.  Follow me on my FB page and on Twitter as well to make sure you are around for everything.  And if you are in the Sacramento (CA) area, check out my posts on the Examiner as well or if you just want to know some great books I have read, check out my posts on Fantasy Faction.

Friday in Chico has awesome music

One of the wonderful things about Chico, California is the fact that on a Friday night there is no lack of live music.  I came to Chico for a particular performance by a professor of mine, but while I awaited this show I sat in Naked Lounge and heard of at least three other performances I could go and see.  There was even a performance in which people were walking around giving away tickets to the first 50 people who were interested.

Live music is a wonderful thing as it brings people together and allows others to perform to a group of people who are friends and people who were introduced to their music in some way shape or fashion.  While I sit here listening to Jeb play a slightly sad piece I watch people slowly trickle in and realize I don’t know half of them and the other half I know know from going to CSU, Chico.  My professor seems to know most of them, but there are some he does not even know.  There isn’t enough chairs in Bustolini’s to accommodate everyone, but people don’t seem to mind standing in the back.

Part of the reason for the big turn out, I know, is the fact that my professor, Geoff, has a new CD coming out and this is his “Release Party”.  He has been planning it for months and we are here to congratulate him and hear some of his new music.

Personally, his music got me through a hard drive I had to do a few years ago when I thought moving from California to Florida would be a good idea.  Needless to say I knew all of his songs by heart by the time I arrived in Florida.

Music in any form can be a powerful thing.  Live music can be even more powerful as the artist tells a story behind a song they have written or becomes emotional while playing.  I personally love live music. If you have a chance go and see… anyone.  It is an experience worth participating in.  And it doesn’t have to be a big band, just someone who enjoys playing, and has a decent voice or can play decently.