How to obtain cover art: 6 steps

1. Decide on a budget for your cover art.

2. Tell people you need some cover art. Put the word out and use your network. Look at artists' work on art websites. Ask fellow indies how/where they got their cover art.

3. Connect with an artist who has experience making cover art. Explain the kind of vibe you want to convey. Now is the time to make sure the art will fit within your budget.

4. Review the rough draft efforts together, preferably a couple of different options. If you don't like the art, say so. If you want a different font, say so. If the title is printed wrong, say so.

5. Narrow the choices down. Ask the opinion of some trusted friends who know the book. Have them look at the finalists and give their feedback, not just about the art itself but how well it goes with the book, how distinctive it is, how likely to stand out. Listen to your friends, but make your own decision.

6. Pay the artist, get the art.

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The Holy Bones of Cenotani

At the appointed hour, the Mightiest of All the Gods spoke to Her servant Cenotani, the greatest of all the prophets, and summoned him to serve Her in the City of Light. It had been twelve summers since the great prophet had left his rooms, and even longer since he had looked on the world with an undimmed eye. Though his frail body was bent and gray, his name was powerful among the righteous, for he yet spoke with the voice of The Mighty One.

At Her instruction, which Cenotani conveyed to the nine priests of the Inner Circle, speaking weakly but at length and with great specificity, they wrapped him in a supplicant's robes and carried him into the forest. In the secret grove, the holiest of all holy places, they laid his body on the fertile earth and covered him with the leaves of the sacred kutumba trees. There, they kept watch over him, taking turns in threes to guard him in the night, the forenoon and the afternoon. For eighty-one days, they fasted and prayed, drinking from the sacred spring and chasing the animals of the forest away from Cenotani's earthly shell.

On the eighty-second day, prompted by fasting visions and feeling the world spin and tumble around them, they removed the kutumba leaves and opened the supplicant's robes.

Cenotani, the greatest of all the prophets, had been taken up by the Mightiest of All the Gods. As a sign of Her great goodness, She had left behind his bones that they might support the One True Faith that Cenotani had preached throughout his long, long life. (The Sign of the Bones was first understood by the priest Sonara, who was then and there appointed the Leader of the Faith, the first to follow Cenotani himself.)

With solemn reverence and with the visions sent by the Mightiest of All the Gods playing before them, the eight priests and Sonara, the first Leader of the Faith, wrapped the bones of the prophet Cenotani in a cloak, freshly washed in the sacred stream. This holy bundle they carried back to the righteous, who raised a great temple and, in later years, renamed the city of Cenotanikatah (which means "bones of the holy one").

Within this holy city, seat of the One True Faith and most favored of the Mightiest of All the Gods, the righteous prospered and held at bay all infidels, until it was overrun in the Great Conquest some seven hundred years later.

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Activity on a new front

Sometimes thing go slowly, sometimes things go quickly. After discussing my need for an artist to do a cover for my book, I got a contact and things have started rolling. She sent me several cover concepts, which we've narrowed down to two.

Nice to make good progress toward checking something off the list!

Hey, did I mention that I'll be approaching people for some airtime on their blogs and sites? I'd like to do interviews, book promos, etc. around the TBD launch date.

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Self-editing, self-publishing

Editing your own work is difficult. There are so many things to which an author is blind in his or her own work. In a recent blog post, I talked about how I'm editing my novel. Like any author, I don't want to send this book out into the world while it's still just pretty good. I want it to be everything it can be.

"But Tony," you say, "haven't you been working on this same book since dinosaurs walked the earth? Quit dithering and just put it out there already!"

Actually, this delay isn't stalling or timidity on my part. I'm not endlessly fussing with the book because, like the poor cat i' the adage, I'm letting "I dare not" wait on "I would". I haven't been fussing with it at all. I declared it finished and started working on publishing it. I've been shopping this book around to agents and publishers for nine months, collecting rejections. One suggested it might make a good graphic novel, but had no interest in taking it on.

In that time, I've been following the news about publishing, about marketing, about the directions that author advances are going, about what kinds of books are selling and how author/publisher relationships are changing. I've become convinced that the traditional big-house publishing model is probably not the best one for this book.

Smaller, indie houses are more attractive, but I've seen more turnover and dodgy behavior in that market segment than I'm comfortable with. Do I really want to have my book tied up with someone who can't (or won't) pay me? Or someone who won't be around in two years?

That leaves me. If I can't transfer the risk and cost of editing to a publisher, either large or small, I need to take it on myself. In a perfect world, I'd have the cash on hand to hire a professional editor who could be ruthless in helping me with these six sigma enhancements to the text. I'd pay them as a work-for-hire, they'd make my book shine to its fullest extent before I publish it.

Alas, I'm too hard-pressed for that. Universal truth: what I can't hire someone to do, I have to do with my own two hands.
  • Editing: With the tools at my disposal, I can edit this book. Not as well, certainly not as quickly, but I can do it.
  • Cover art: I can't possibly do a professional-quality cover, so I'm going to have to hire someone for that. Please contact me if you'd like to be considered for the job.
  • Layout and formatting: I can do the layout and mechanics. I've already done layout, using Blood Picnic and other stories and Poetry on the Fly as test-beds and practice with the necessary software. (Why did you think I published a collection of limericks? Because I thought it would be a best seller?)
  • Promotion: That's something I'm still working on, but I'd have to carry that load no matter what publishing model I went with.
These are all a source of consternation and frustration, but not fear. Never fear to take on difficult tasks. You can decline them for good and sound reasons, but don't fear something just because it's hard.

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One sentence

I'm editing "Verbosity's Vengeance: A Grammarian Adventure Novel" in preparation for publishing. Although I'd like to hire an editor, it's not practical to do so. Instead, I'm relying on some software tools, my own fresh eyes, a verbal read-through that I'll do later, and possibly the assistance of an eagle-eyed human. (Bear in mind that this book has already gone through at least six drafts, five beta reads and multiple close edits.)

Today, I'm going to share with you one sentence from the book. It happens to be sentence #2866, as determined by Editor. Here's what I wrote (the "he" is the Grammarian):

"He knew from past experience that there was an inverse relationship between intelligence and susceptibility to his memetic energies."

That's a decent sentence, right? However, the word "that" can often be removed without impacting meaning. What happens if we take it out?

"He knew from past experience there was an inverse relationship between intelligence and susceptibility to his memetic energies."

The software flagged "past experience" as redundant. Can it be removed?

"He knew from experience there was an inverse relationship between intelligence and susceptibility to his memetic energies."

Come to think of it, that entire phrase can go, can't it?

"He knew there was an inverse relationship between intelligence and susceptibility to his memetic energies."

Re-reading that sentence again, I realize that the entire opening is unnecessary if I trust the reader to treat this as assumed knowledge.

"There was an inverse relationship between intelligence and susceptibility to his memetic energies."

Could I cut further? Do I really need to specify "susceptibility to his memetic energies"? Couldn't I just say "to memetic energies"? Well, no. There are other people using memes in different ways in this book, which cause different effects. Certain plot elements revolve around that difference, so I don't want to imply that susceptibility to HIS powers implies susceptibility to all related forms of memetic power.

One sentence down; 9049 to go.

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#FridayFlash: The Revenge Engine

On the first anniversary of when I first took up with you, I raged and wept. We were together just six months, but it was enough for you to destroy me. A life so full of promise, ruined. A golden, glittering future lay corrupted and shattered at my feet. Just as I'd done every day since it had all ended, I swallowed broken glass and vomited scorpions. Every hour of every day was filled with variations on the same echoing accusation. How could I have been stupid? Why had I thought myself worthy? When and how should I end this remnant of a life?

On the second anniversary, I dreamed of vengeance and retribution. Eaten away by the acid of thwarted ambition, I hated you with a psychotic passion, not least because you had gone on with your life, leaving the wreckage of me behind as just another meaningless husk to be ground under heel. All my talents, all my abilities, all my potentialities were burned up in the throbbing of the revenge engine I had fashioned myself into.

On the third anniversary, I stared at the walls, steeped in the sadness that permeated my life. It hadn't been my fault. None of it had. The mistakes I made were small, but you took advantage of them with brutal ruthlessness. The desires I'd had, the ones you turned against me, they were good and fine. Even though I had lost the capacity to hope, I knew that I was not to blame for what you had done to me. Anger, yes. Occasional rage, yes. Bitterness, always. But mostly sadness and gray shuffling from week to week.

But the fourth anniversary is the one that mattered.

On the fourth anniversary of when I first took up with you, I wanted to move past you. I looked at the recurrent date on my calender app, the one set to "Repeat frequency: annual", and it came as a surprise. It seemed like another life. Therapy and time changed me from the wreck you left behind into... this. Older, yes. Wiser, perhaps. More cynical, certainly. But also with more perspective. I don't feel things as deeply as I used to, not because I'm incapable, but because, thanks to you, now I have the acumen to distinguish what I can ignore from what I should cherish.

Happy anniversary.

I still hope you die.


This story is doing several things at once:
  1. It's my #FridayFlash for this week (duh).
  2. It's a celebration of #FridayFlash in general, which celebrates its fourth anniversary today! I've been a regular for years. I haven't missed a week since September of 2009, if you can believe it. In celebration of the day, I included a significant fourth anniversary in this story AND kept the story to less than 400 words! Happy Anniversary, #FridayFlash!
  3. As a writing prompt arising from a conversation with  @runpetewrite I agree - great prompt!

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Fighting women as main characters

Today's words for Three Word Wednesday are: clever, finish, silky

It would be stupid, not clever
To retcon finished "Hank" into "Heather".
From big, brash and brawny
to silky and tawny?
Maybe NEXT book I'll endeavor.

This was inspired by the blog post about women's true role in warfare through the ages vs. the inherited narrative of "men fight, women stay home and worry about them". It's worth reading, since it has implications about how fiction portrays women fighters.

It would be dumb for me to try to turn my current male hero into a female one, but I've already written a story about a strong, capable female heroine. Maybe the next full-length book will feature her in a starring role.

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The usual sort of Monday

On this overcast Monday morning, I'm going to be working on a book, writing some stuff, putting out fires, and drawing sustenance from the fabric of the universe.

However, I will NOT be writing any insightful blog posts. Instead, I leave you with a question:

Your child brings you a report card with four As, two Bs, a C, and an F. As an involved, loving parent, how will you screw up your response to this situation?

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#FridayFlash: Into Darkness

These previews have their own soundtrack, but you add your own unwanted counterpoint. The screen is alive with explosions and spaceships, CGI and cartoons, teasers and promos. Coming soon, coming in July, coming in November, coming in 2014. We all know these trailers are misleading and probably contain the best forty-five seconds of their respective movies. We embrace, we reject, we tolerate.

But you?

You cackle and catcall after each one with blurted, half-shouted snark, polluting the sudden silence with the kind of thing that must knock 'em dead on Twitter. No one RTs your commentary. No one Likes it or Faves it. You have forgotten how people in shared space behave. You are alone in your mirth. Does that make you uneasy? Do you feel disconnected from the people sitting in the dark with you? Worse thought: do you not even notice? You punctuate each of your shouted pronouncements with a laugh like an overloaded bench grinder.

Are you drunk? High? Self-absorbed and stupid? All of the above and more besides?

Your boyfriend - or is he your husband? - shushes you after each one. This is also a source of hilarity, but of a forced kind. You can pretend that the rest of us are enjoying your witticisms, pretend that the rest of us are shaking our heads in admiration, pretend that the rest of us are quietly capturing your bon mot in tweets and status updates, pretend that the rest of us wish we were you.

But I can tell you are old enough to know better.

You are no high school or college kid, drunk in a movie theater on a school night, just for the sheer madcap joire de vivre of it. You are, like the rest of us, someone who is willing to trade $11.50 for a couple of hours spent in another time and another place, closely observing another life, perhaps even living that life. A late Thursday night show is for those who want to balance indulging their fantasies with getting up for work, with getting the kids off for school, with the bridal shower, with the lawn mowing, with soccer, with mom's cataracts, with the quarterly reports, with deadlines, with with with with with with with with with

with the brutality of real life.

There are no affirming murmurs supporting you as you crack wise during the previews. Will you take this as a hint? Will you listen to your husband/boyfriend? Will you be quiet once the movie starts?

Or will I have to kill you?

This final frontier, this five year mission, these voyages, this starship... they are all I have.

And I will not let you take it away from me.

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New book: Sunday Snaps

A great collection of short stories was just released in print: "Sunday Snaps: The Stories". It's available from Amazon:

"This colourful and quirky collection contains short stories, flash fiction, vignettes and poetry of various styles and genres. It developed over the course of 52 weeks in 2010/2011 whereby a series of ‘Sunday Snaps’ were posted online as a creative writing exercise.

Writers were invited to use the snapshots as inspirational writing prompts. The result: an eclectic assortment of light-hearted comedy, romance, dark tales, tragedy, slice-of-life stories and expressive verse. While the spires of Milan Cathedral and a café in Toronto provide the backdrop to romance, elsewhere a marriage is arranged, children grapple with loss, and a woman rushes to the side of a life-long friend. With a bit of French cuisine, a spiteful kitty, a mother’s pact with the devil, a birthday kiss and a dash of supernatural revenge, this unique collection offers a tale for all!

Stories and poetry by: Sam Adamson, Kim Bannerman, Cath Barton, Dominique Boller, Juliet Boyd, Jodi Cleghorn, Sandra Davies, Miriam Dunn, Rebecca Emin, Annie Evett, Stacey Faulkner, Wendy Ann Greenhalgh, D A Volpe Herskowitz, Stephen Hewitt, A J Humpage, Steve Isaak, Mandy K James, Susan May James, Maria Kelly, Mari Lee Kozlowski, Lisamarie Lamb, Shannon Lawrence, Tyrean Martinson, Tony Noland, Linda Olson, Roslyn Ross, Tony Schumacher, and Ren Thompson."

That "bit of French cuisine" refers to my story, "The Roast Duck of Amiens", a bittersweet tale of two American tourists who unexpectedly find themselves eating the best food they've ever tasted and the ensuing confrontation with the rough-cut French chef who completely misunderstands their reaction to his cooking.

This is a charity book, with proceeds from the ebook and print editions will go to the Canadian Red Cross Homecare Services.

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Review: "Editor" copyediting software

Over at Today's Author, I take a look at of “Editor”, a product of Serenity Software. It's an interesting software package that will scan your prose for things like:

Sure, MS Word will spot your mismatched verb tenses, but will it spot a tautology? Or a cliché? Or a pretentious term?

For my review, I fed in the novel I've been shopping around to agents, which I felt was 99.99% fine. How did it fare? What errors were spotted? SPOILER: lots and lots and lots. The software gives extremely detailed outputs, with suggestions for changes and alternate wording for each issue spotted.

Go take a look at the review. Feel free to comment, there or here.

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Five rules for managing Creatives in the workplace

Success comes from growth, growth comes from innovation, innovation comes from the Creatives you have in your workforce. If you want to succeed, you need to manage Creatives effectively. Here are five proven methods for ensuring your Creatives give your organization the innovative edge for years to come.

1. Pretend you care about their trivial bullshit. Hey, Creatives may be addle-pated zonkos, but they aren't stupid. They understand that you couldn't care less about whatever dopey tribal thing has got their Tardis in a twist. All they want you to do is to pretend to care. It's as simple as not being immediately dismissive by saying fickwad things like, "Looks like somebody has too much time on his hands." Instead, say something like, "Wow, that looks really engaging. Any chance we could make some of that rub off on that deadline you missed?"

2. Pay for unnecessary crap. No, another set of brushes or even more fonts isn't going to do a damned thing toward changing the underlying nature of the tasks. What they WILL do, though, is keep your Creative more enthusiastic about working on those tasks. When you get a request for something stupid from ThinkGeek, you're not buying cubicle art. You're plugging the meter on your Creative's Magic Fingers!

3. Buy good coffee. If everybody in the office had access to decent coffee instead of that burnt asbestos stuff the lowest-bid vendor supplies, the general morale boost would be most evident in your Creatives. Why? Because the accountants, shipping and receiving clerks, sales drones, middle managers, and other replaceables would be marginally less irritating to the Creatives. Take care of the talent first, right?

4. Always refer to Creatives with a capital "C". The fact is, every Creative on your team (as well as any Creative you might replace them with) has an ego the size of the Pacific Basin. It doesn't cost anything to change the standard boilerplate so it refers to Creatives instead of staff writers, staff artists, engineering, etc. It makes them feel special, and feeling special makes their little Creative hearts pitter-pat and pump out the goods for you.

5. Get rid of the damned firewall. You know what would be more effective that the firewall? A printed monthly memo from the IT guys listing what websites your Creative visited and how long he/she spent at each one. Send it in a sealed envelope marked PRIVATE, but circle a couple of the worst ones (porn, animé, Facebook, etc.) in red sharpie and do an initialed, "Pls clarify? Are you OK? See me if need to?" note in the margin. Make sure it's ambiguous. That way the uncertainty, fear of exposure and shame will spur your Creative on to tremendous efforts.

Follow these simple methods and your Creatives will position you for success!

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Some real world experience

As a follow-on to yesterday's #FridayFlash ("Hell no, GMO!"), here's a blog post from a Kansas farmer entitled "Why We Choose GMO Crops". As a perfect example of descriptive titles, the post is about why they choose to grow GMO crops.

GMO crops have problems, but they also offer significant benefits for the farmers who use them. Do the benefits outweigh the problems?

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#FridayFlash: Hell no, GMO!

For being out in the ass-end of nowhere, cell phone reception was surprisingly good - three bars. Jeremy scowled as he texted his friends. The traditional media guys were bailing because of the scheduling snafu, but all three podcasters and both livestreamers were still coming.

He looked up from his iPhone 5 at the enormous blue pickup that eased to a stop several car lengths up the road from Jeremy's VW. Wide and high, the nearly-new truck had dual wheels in the back and a complicated-looking hitching thing in the bed. It had a red and white lettered logo on the side. Bracing for the first confrontation of the day, Jeremy  tapped out GTG and tucked the phone away. His REI vest had an inside cellphone pocket, both vented and padded. He didn't expect things to get rough, but he was glad for the padding.

The truck shut off and a big man climbed out. Boots, jeans and a belt buckle with what was probably a NASCAR logo. His blue golf shirt had the same red-and-white lettering as the truck. Jeremy braced himself, spreading his feet. He wasn't going to be driven off before the protest had even started, and certainly not by some millionaire corporate farmer.

"Good morning! I thought I'd stop and see if you needed some help, but it looks like you're getting ready for an event."

The big man's voice was surprisingly normal. Jeremy had expected... well, there was no reason why a farmer's voice had to be deep and twangy, right? That was stereotyping. Now that he was closer, Jeremy could see that the logo on his shirt spelled out "Kimner Farms".

"Uh... yeah. I'm just waiting for my friends."

"Fair enough. So, what have you got against them?"

"What? I don't understand. I don't have anything against my friends."

"No, I mean what do you have against GMO crops." The big man pointed at Jeremy's sign: HELL NO, GMO, THROW THEM BACK AT MON$ANTO!!"You came all the way out here to a soybean field to protest against them. Mind telling me what you find so objectionable?"

Jeremy stared. There didn't seem to be any rancor or confrontation in the man's voice, just an open question.

"Uh... lots of things."

"Such as?"

Jeremy didn't know what to say. He wasn't the spokesperson for the group, just one of the rank and file. They'd warned him to be ready for the sherrif, for counter-protests, for accusations of trespass. The last thing he'd expected was to have to talk to some farmer and defend something so obvious as why genetically modified crops were bad.

The big man stood, waiting for his answer.

"Look," said Jeremy, "are you the farmer who owns these crops? Because this is public road and I have every right to be here."

"Hey, calm down. No one's questioning your rights. I was just asking why you don't like GMOs. I think just about all these fields around here are planted to modified hybrids, either from Monsanto or maybe Cargill, Land O Lakes, DuPont, you name it. Folks around here seem to like 'em well enough. I guess that means that if you're gonna protest GMOs, this is the place to do it. So... what's up? What's wrong with them?"

"They're bad for the environment. They poison wildlife. They're pure profit for the big corporations." Jeremy said the first things he could think of. He wasn't good at one-on-one confrontations, and the big farmer's composure was rattling him. "They're bad for small farmers. They make people use more chemicals. They... they lead to dependence on the chemical companies and the seed suppliers. They... uh, they contribute to monoculture, which is bad for the environment."

Throughout this recitation, the other man's expression had been one of polite interest. As Jeremy trailed off, he nodded and waited a moment, as though he were inviting Jeremy to continue. It wasn't a rude move, not something that seemed obviously calculated to humiliate, but Jeremy still felt a bit foolish.

"I see. Well, that's a pretty serious list of reasons to dislike GMOs," the man said. "As you might imagine, I take a somewhat different view of things, but I won't spoil your day with them."

His cell phone's chiming interrupted whatever he was about to say next. He excused himself, turned away from Jeremy and took out an iPhone 4S from his back pocket. After a brief conversation, he hung up.

"The rest of your party got lost on the way here. They just stopped up at the main offices on Bartam Rd. to ask directions." He waved his iPhone. "The mapping software tends to fall a bit flat once you get out onto these back roads. Anyway, they should be here in ten, maybe twenty minutes."

He walked back to his truck and climbed in. As he pulled forward, he leaned out the window.

"You have a good protest, all right? If you and your friends would like to come up to the offices afterward to discuss the matter over a cup of coffee, feel free. My name's Byron. Byron Kimner."

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Hiking the Appalachian Trail

I'm still being swamped by things this week, so don't be alarmed that I'm not posting anything here. No, I'm not off hiking the Appalachian Trail, literally or metaphorically - I'm working.

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Tenth Doctor: the Musical

Because I'm overbooked today, instead of something witty and insightful, you get a Doctor Who video on this painful, crushing Monday morning.

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#FridayFlash: No Fit Food

The muse vampire recoiled, yanking its long teeth from the neck of the human. It clawed at its own throat, screaming and choking with the burning acid that it had drawn from its victim. So intense was the shock and pain that it collapsed into full, tangible visibility.

Stumbling backward, it fell over an almost-full box of blank paper and crashed against a rickety card table, sending the dusty laser printer and a long row of books to the floor. "Bird by Bird", "On Writing", "The War of Art", "Plot and Structure", "On Writing Well" and a dozen other like paperbacks fell on top of the muse vampire, along with an ink-stained mug full of expensive pens and newly sharpened pencils.

At the computer desk, the human barely reacted to this supernatural intrusion. He turned away from the screen, glanced at the writhing muse vampire with sad, defeated eyes, then returned to the webpage he was working on.

Burning, tearing agony filled the muse vampire. Instead of feeding on warm, succulent mouthfuls of delicious creativity, it was choking on the vitriol that ran in the human's veins. Instead of gaining a few weeks of peaceful undead existence at the cost of what the human would have regarded as mere temporary writer's block, this was the end. The vampire knew it would die here, howling amid the detritus of just another nobody aspiring writer.

Confusion warred with fear and pain within the muse vampire. How? How could it have been so wrong? The books on writing, the expensive pens, the literary accoutrements... even if the human was a terrible writer of derivative fan fiction and boring porn, even that low-grade creativity would have been adequate food. How...?

And then the muse vampire saw what the human had on his screen.

And with the last of its dying breaths, the muse vampire shrieked. Better that it had tried to feed from an uninspired accountant or an illiterate watcher of reality television or even from a personal injury claims lawyer! Death came from attempting to draw sustenance from this... this... this inhuman monster!

Through blistered lips, the muse vampire cursed the human, knowing that no horror it could inflict could make the human suffer any worse torment than the SoulDeath the human had already inflicted on himself. With a final, gasping convulsion, the muse vampire died and dissolved into a smoking ruin of corruption.

The human paused, listening with half an ear to the silence that had returned to his lonely room. He didn't need the printer, the pens, the paper or any of the books. Not for a long, long time... not since he strangled his own soul and killed his dreams of being a writer. With thudding, unfeeling regularity, his black heart pumped the same thick mixture of self-hatred, despair, and anti-creativity that ran in the veins of every twisted half-human of his kind.

He sighed and returned to his work of copying other people's semi-popular webpages, slapping them together with a quick MOBI format and uploading them as Kindle books under a dozen different pen names.

And in the prison torture cell of his mind, the hissing refrain went on as it always did, waking or sleeping: plagiarist... plagiarist... plagiarist...

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What I learned during the A to Z Challenge

During April, I wrote 26 separate letter-themed blog posts, each dedicated to one of my woodworking tools. What did I learn during this process?

1. There are many forms of geekery - woodworking is one of them. It was easy to talk about these tools: to describe them, what they were for, how to use them, how I acquired them, other tools that do similar jobs, etc. Some of my readers were surprised that I own so many. I was surprised that they considered such a small sampling to be "a lot of tools". There are plenty of guys who have many more tools than I do; I'm just a hobbyist.

2. Sharing your passion is only strange to those who have no passions of their own. Some of the readers of these posts were also DIY types. Others were knitters, writers, sculptors, glassworkers, or artisans of another kind. Every one of them could understand the passion for the tools, even if they used tools different than mine.

3. I am a stranger to brevity. The shortest of these woodworking tool posts was 450 words. The longest went over 1000 words. Even for funny stuff, it's asking a lot of readers to stick with me through that volume of words.

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A compelling title

For Three Word Wednesday: believe, penitent, tribute

I look on these works and believe
Fair tribute was paid - I'll not grieve.
No penitent writer,
A lover AND fighter
With plenty of tricks up my sleeve.

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