It’s ArmadilloCon time!

ArmadilloCon is this weekend in Austin, Texas at the Omni Southpark Hotel. Here’s where you can find me:

Friday the 24th at 10:00 PM-11:00 PM
Badass, Babe, or None of the Above: How is Gender Evolving (or Not) in SF Literature?
Ballroom D
How have female characters been written in SF/F literature historically? Have these roles changed, and are new tropes emerging?

Saturday the 25th 2:00 PM-3:00 PM
Broad Universe joint reading
Southpark A
A joint reading by members of the writers’ group Broad Universe “promoting science fiction, fantasy, and horror written by women.”

Saturday the 25th 7:00 PM-8:00 PM
How Would Discovery of Alien Life Affect Us?
Ballroom F
Do we run scared, work things out in the spirit of peaceful cooperation, or accept our new alien overlords?

Saturday the 25th 9:00 PM-10:00 PM
SF Movies from Last Year
Southpark A
The good, the bad, and a few movies more

Sunday the 26th Noon-1:00 PM
Writing Fiction from a Gender, Ethnic, Cultural, or Temporal Viewpoint Other Than Your Own
Ballroom D
What are the challenges of writing a character unlike yourself in a significant way? Are there benefits to creativity

There you have it! As well as me, there will be many talented writers including my good friend Trakena Prevost! If you’re in the area, I hope you can come by and see us!

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Spring is here!

Spring in Austin brings one special thing to everyone: allergies. Luckily, that’s my only problem at the moment. I started therapy for my rheumatoid arthritis, and I’m happy to say it’s going very well. I have to go in to the doctor’s office every few weeks and get an infusion, and then I feel really good. No joint pain, minimal shakiness. No more bad hand days!

Of course, after my first infusion, I got really sick because my immune system is so compromised, but this time, I’m going to be more careful. I’ll just have to be satisfied with run-of-the-mill sneezing and coughing brought on by Austin’s spring season. I’ll muddle through somehow.

My gluten experiment never got far off the ground because I backslid so often, but I did take away a few things from it. I don’t buy bread anymore and very little pasta, so I’ll be able to reap the health benefits there.

Hopefully, I can keep improving and write more and more books until someone finally tells me to stop…or Austin kills me.

AND I have the schedule for the Lone Star LesFic Fesitval! Here’s when I’m scheduled to speak and such:

9:45 – 10:15 Registration

10:30 – 11:30 Group discussion: “Lesbian Fiction: Dreams, Affirmation, and Entertainment” about why we love lesbian fiction and how we came to write it.

11:30 – 12:30 I’ll be reading in room B

1:30 – 2:30 I’ll be signing books at the book signing table

2:30 -3:20 “LesFic Super Powers: Vampires, Demons, Ghosts, and Psychics” I’ll be moderating this panel.

Plus, there will be many more authors, another group discussion, more panels, signings, and readings. We have something for everyone, including a silent auction, a $3 book table, plus lots of vendors selling books, jewelry, clothing, and more! And on top of that, there will be at least one giveaway, possibly more.

And I will be fully mobile. ^_^

How’s everyone else feeling? Anyone up to traveling?

 

 

In Austin in April?

Come see me at the Lone Star Lesfic Festival! It’s Saturday, April 11th at the Norris Conference Center. I’ll have hours and program details for you as I get them, but it will likely be from 10 am to 5 or 6 pm. That’s plenty of time to stop by and say hello. It’s a free event with lots of panels to see, books to discover, loot to buy, and prizes to win!

And you know, I’ll be there, so win-win-win-win. And I’ll be handing out swag that you can only get if you meet me in person. Now you HAVE to come.

False false alarm

OMG, loans, you guys. So, after a lot of kerfuffle, we are moving. Again. Again again, even. So, I’m not only working on edits and finishing another book, I’m also packing to move.

Next week.

I’m also reading on the internet how to put a blind dog at ease in new surroundings and getting ready for a con this weekend. Here’s my FenCon schedule again, in case you missed it:

Saturday 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM Trinity I – IV
Female Protagonists and their evolving role in Literature

Description: It’s been a long time since the pulps used women as simple plot devices. Strong female leads make for great books, and we explore some of the best and worst examples of female protagonists in fantasy and science fiction.

___________________________

Saturday 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM Pin Oak
Pimp My Monster

Description: Let’s trick out our undead, partially deceased, shapeshifters, and other things of nightmares for the 21st century. How to put a fresh twist on these festering creatures from the past.

___________________________

Sunday 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM Pin Oak
Why Should You Join A Professional Organization?

Description: Professional organizations have much to offer, but are they for everyone? Or like Groucho Marx, would you rather not belong to a club that would have you as a member?

___________________________

Sunday 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM Addison Lecture Hall
When Will it Ever End?

Description: How long is too long? When should a series hang it up, or is there no limit to the number of books an author can or should write in a specific setting? Which well-known series have done an excellent job of holding our attention across multiple books, and which have jumped the proverbial shark?

It’s this weekend in Dallas, so come on out if you’ve to the inclination.

So so so busy. If I neglect some of your blogs, I’m sorry. I’m up to my eyeballs in it.

False Alarm

Okay, so not moving. I was amazed when things were going so quickly for getting our new house. Turns out, my disbelief was justified. Being pre-approved for a loan does not a loan make.

So we’re not going anywhere.

In further sucktastic news, Polly, our big lab, hurt her tail this morning.

Polly.

Polly.

Those of you with big dogs will know that tail injuries are pretty common for the over-excited dog. But a cut on the end of a tail leads to Dexter-like levels of blood spray. Our porch looks like a crime scene. I see a trip to the store in my future to secure a cleaner harsh enough to get blood off stone. We researched on the internet how to get a bandage to stay on a dog’s tail, but all we found were very unhelpful suggestions that would have required us to go to a hardware store. Here’s my simpler solution: apply bandage, then slip a clean sock over the dog’s tail. Secure with tape and hope the dog lays still long enough to let herself heal. We’ve had to reapply the sock once already.

In more badass news, my struggle with viral arthritis appears to be under control. The meds I’m on are working well, and the doctor thinks I might be able to stop them soon.

Also in the badass category, I’ve got the final edits for The Fiend Queen and am powering through them, so you’ll have a pretty sweet book in January. Check my 3-D graphic, courtesy of Maria Zannini:

 

Sweeet

Sweeet

Also also badass, here is my FenCon schedule! All the places you can find me at FenCon XI, September 26ht-28th:

Saturday 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM Trinity I – IV
Female Protagonists and their evolving role in Literature

Description: It’s been a long time since the pulps used women as simple plot devices. Strong female leads make for great books, and we explore some of the best and worst examples of female protagonists in fantasy and science fiction.

Panelists:
C. Dean Andersson, Paul Black, Lillian Stewart Carl, Stoney Compton, Selina Rosen, Barbara Ann Wright, J. Kathleen Cheney *

Saturday 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM Pin Oak
Pimp My Monster

Description: Let’s trick out our undead, partially deceased, shapeshifters, and other things of nightmares for the 21st century. How to put a fresh twist on these festering creatures from the past.

Panelists:
Aaron de Orive, Christopher Fulbright, Angeline Hawkes, Craig Wolf, Barbara Ann Wright, Steven E. Wedel *

Sunday 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM Pin Oak
Why Should You Join A Professional Organization?

Description: Professional organizations have much to offer, but are they for everyone? Or like Groucho Marx, would you rather not belong to a club that would have you as a member?

Panelists:
Lou Antonelli, Cathy Clamp, Amy Sisson, Barbara Ann Wright, Peri Charlifu *

Sunday 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM Addison Lecture Hall
When Will it Ever End?

Description: How long is too long? When should a series hang it up, or is there no limit to the number of books an author can or should write in a specific setting? Which well-known series have done an excellent job of holding our attention across multiple books, and which have jumped the proverbial shark?

Panelists:
Eric Flint, Marshall Ryan Maresca, Rob Rogers, Shanna Swendson, Barbara Ann Wright, Linda L. Donahue *

Hope to see some of you there!

Bold Strokes Books Camp!

Last week, my publisher, Bold Strokes Books, hosted a writers’ retreat in upstate New York at Easton Mountain Lodge.

I call her Speedy.

I call her Speedy.

Together me and my intrepid, tiny rental car (not really an intrepid) groaned up hills and valleys for some spectacular views.

There were breakout sessions filled with helpful information, hours with no events so we could write or read or hang out, and wonderful lunches and dinners provided by the hard working volunteers at Easton.

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Did I mention the views? The fields and hills stretched far into the distance. There were deer, beavers, geese, even a bear! Thankfully, the bear only appeared outside a car window and not in anyone’s cabin.

I received some much-needed encouragement and a clear direction of where I want my novel to go from here. I needed this trip more than I knew.

Say what you want about big versus small publishing, I don’t know many publishers that would offer their writers an experience like this. I reconnected with some old friends and made some new. (The Facebook friend requests have been flying.) I wrote about 5000 new words and finished two books.

CORN!

CORN!

All in all, it was a wonderful, inspiring experience!

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Gnomed!

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The bunkhouse I shared with Jennifer Lavoie and Juliann Rich.

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Guest rooms at Easton Mountain.

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The kitchen

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Breakout session room.

 

Have you ever been on a writing retreat? Were you inspired?

 

Cast lists and a near miss

It’s been an odd couple of weeks here at my house. I’m struggling with joint pain, but luckily, my doctor thinks it’s viral arthritis instead of rheumatoid which is a very lucky thing. I know people who live with RA, and while I feel greatly for them, I don’t want to join their ranks.

In fits and starts, I’ve been working on cast lists for all my books, updating each one so that it reflects the characters at the start of that particular book. I’ve got The Pyramid Waltz and For Want of a Fiend done. Those tabs are at the top of this page. Now when people are lost about who a particular person is, they can just come to my page and have a look-see. Do check them out and let me know if I’ve missed anyone. Accidents happen. I’ll have tabs for A Kingdom Lost and The Fiend Queen up soon.

I hope everyone can come see me at ArmadilloCon on July 25-27. Here’s where to find me at the con:

Protecting the Indigenous Tribes Fri 8:00 PM-9:00 PM Room E Maresca*, Compton, Wright Indigenous peoples confront a diverse range of concerns. What should be done to ensure their existence?

40 Years of D&D Fri 9:00 PM-10:00 PM Room F Benjamin*, Finn, Maresca, Marmell, Sarath, Wright How did D&D inspire authors?

Build the Perfect Thief Sat 11:00 AM-Noon Room E Finn*, de Orive, Foster, Sheridan Rose, Sullivan, Wright Thieves can make delightful characters, but what does it take to create a great thief? Brad Foster will make an accompanying drawing to be sold for charity.

Gothic Novels of the 1800s Sat Noon-1:00 PM Room F Sarath*, Cheney, Jones, Swendson, Wright Discussion of how gothic novels came to be and which stories can still hold up today.

Reading Sat 2:00 PM-3:00 PM Southpark A Wright

Evil Characters Sat 10:00 PM-11:00 PM Room D Denton*, Acevedo, Marmell, Rountree, Stufflebeam, Wright Discussing the best evil characters in history.

Are You My Mummy? Sat 11:00 PM-Midnight Room D Webb*, McDonald, Waldrop, Wright I want more mummy stories! Why aren’t they being written? Are there any good ones out there?

I hope you can make it out to this great event. These panels are bound to be very entertaining. And don’t worry about that reading hour. I plan to do a humorous talk about dealing with rejection and probably how to sell books with Barbies. And I will have new swag to give away.

Anyone else planning to go to an event? Anyone else heard of cast lists on websites? I hear that’s the new thing, and you know how I like to jump on a bandwagon.

Liz McMullen’s pride blog, Denver Pride, and Armadillocon

And all the cons I’ve loved befoooore…

Boy, am I everywhere.

Firstly, I’m guest blogging today on the Liz McMullen Show during her June Pride Blog. I’m talking about writing a trans character as part of my new project, but because I still love Katya and Starbride, you can enter to win one of their books!

But where can you see me in person, you ask? How about the Denver Pride festival, June 21st-22nd. I’ll be one of five Bold Strokes authors manning a booth and selling loot! We’ll also have plenty of swag to share, so if you’re nearby, stop in or we’ll collapse into tears. 😦

If you refuse to see me anywhere but Austin, try ArmadilloCon, August 21st-22nd. You can find my full schedule under the Participant Index. There’s a lot of cool talks this year, plus a Dealer’s Room, Art Show, Charity Auction, and much more.

I hope some of you can make it to one of these. Even if you can’t, we’ll forever be internet buddies. Speaking of the internets, have you heard of #OutWriters on Twitter? It’s a way LGBT writers (like me) and fans are currently connecting. Join in the conversation and say why you love LGBT fiction.

Pics of Saints and Sinners in New Orleans

First, some pics!

 John Morgan Wilson, Michael Thomas Ford, me, David Holly and Rob Byrnes

John Morgan Wilson, Michael Thomas Ford, me, David Holly and Rob Byrnes

Here’s me doing the genre panel. We lamented the closing of bookstores as a way to get the word out about new LGBT fiction. The moderator asked if we described our books using genre terms. Some opposed the idea of genres altogether. Some said they never tried to pitch to anyone outside of the LGBT community. I said that I pitch my book to anyone I think might read it but that I describe it differently to different groups of people. If I know my potential audience is gay, I throw the lesbians right out there. If I suspect they aren’t, I start with the idea that it’s fantasy and add the lesbians in slowly, like flour to homemade frosting.

Here’s me reading:

I had the only lesbian fantasy there

I had the only lesbian fantasy there

I read the pirate fight scene from A Kingdom Lost. I don’t know if anyone was moved.

Here are some New Orleans pics. If you’ve never been there and are thinking of going, just remember that the French Quarter is noisy at all times of the year. Bourbon Street is party central, as we heard clearly from our 15th floor hotel room, one whole street away.

The beautiful (if very noisy) Hotel Monteleone.

The beautiful (if very noisy) Hotel Monteleone.

The bar (also noisy) inside of Monteleone

The bar (also noisy) inside of Monteleone

Bourbon Street, where the noise comes from

Bourbon Street, where the noise comes from

Bourbon is full of bachelor and bachelorette parties, frats of dude-bros, and flocks of woo-girls. Not my scene.

What was my scene was my fab birthday party complete with dogs in party hats:

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As you can see, they needed a little cajoling. Thanks to everyone who sent me birthday wishes. You guys are the best.

What has everyone else been up to? Any New Orleans stories you care to share?

p.s. I added some Horsestrong sayings to the Worlds tab at the top of this page, just in case you were curious.

I like to pretend it’s not a regular occurence

But I often don’t have anything to blog about! Still hard at work, still out hustling A Kingdom Lost. I can tell you again where to find me at the Saints and Sinners Literary Festival.

Saturday, May 17
1 PM
WHEN GENRES COLLIDE: THE PROS AND CONS OF QUEER CATEGORY LABELS
A label like “gay writer” or “LGBT fiction” can be both a blessing and a curse — vital in promoting our work and reaching a core LGBT readership, but also classifying and possibly confining us by our sexuality. Genres and sub-genres like lesbian romance, gay men’s mystery, and LGBT horror can further narrow how our fiction is publicly presented and perceived. In a time of increasing assimilation, audience fragmentation, and expanding publishing formats, are these labels helpful or harmful? Do they damage a queer author trying to tap a broader reader base? Are these niche categories outdated, or more important than ever to our literary survival? And what are the options?
Panelists: Rob Byrnes, Michael Thomas Ford, S. Chris Shirley, and Barbara Ann Wright.
Moderator: John Morgan Wilson.
Hotel Monteleone, Royal Salon B

Sunday, May 18
11:30 AM
SAINTS AND SINNERS READING SERIES: WRITERS READ
Festival authors debut their latest works in our annual reading series. Expect to be entertained, engaged and thrilled by the written word read out loud by authors Mary A. Celeste, Kevin Klehr, Jeff Mann, Ron J. Suresha, Shawn Syms, Jerry Wheeler, and Barbara Ann Wright.
Sponsored by The John Burton Harter Charitable Trust.
Hotel Monteleone, Cabildo Room

I’m looking forward to it in a big way! I’m also looking forward to my birthday, which is on the 19th. I love birthdays…

On a personal note, does anyone have a pet that is losing/has lost their sight? My oldest dog has diabetes, and her cataracts are now so bad she runs into things. It’s really bumming her out. We’re helping all we can to guide her around, but I know she’s kind of depressed no matter how many times we cuddle her. Our vet said she would get used to it and use her other senses to compensate, and she’s doing that a little, but it breaks my heart every time she runs into a wall. Does anyone have any tips?

Daisy, my poor diabetic dog

Daisy, my poor diabetic dog