Progress Report

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I don’t know how much will get cropped to allow for the title banner, but here’s the finished painting for the cover of The Daedalus Enigma.

I’ve also composed both a one line and a full blurb for the book. I will share them once they get the approval from my publisher. I’m still waiting for the editing process on the book to start.

Over the weekend I made good progress rewriting a scene for Maelstrom of Fate. Both Viktor and the Commodore were as unhappy with the first attempt as I was. It just wasn’t flowing, and both voices were too far off for the characters. I’m much happier with the rewritten version.

My project for this week (if I find time) or this weekend (if I don’t), is to reformat the first three episodes of The Adventures of Pigg & Woolfe to match the submission guidelines for one of the publishers I want to query about the Steampunk serial.

That’s all I’ve got for now. There was probably more I wanted to talk about, but my brain is a little fried from the overtime.

New Character Profile and Cover Art Update

Well, that was interesting. I had to re-add my Waves of Darkness banner to my media library to set it as the featured image for a new character profile page. I don’t recall ever deleting it. For that matter, the available library seemed to be missing several images I know I have not deleted and which are still in active use on this site. Perhaps the fact that both the desktop and the laptop are in use at the same time has something to do with it. (I use an Ethernet cable for the desktop, and the laptop operates on wifi.)

Anyway, I’ve added a character profile for Xandricus, one of the antagonists in The Daedalus Enigma. I used the photo of the portion of the cover art which depicts him in dragon form as his profile pic. I will have to hunt for an appropriate image for his human form to add later.

Which brings me to the cover art update. The cover for The Daedalus Enigma is now two thirds complete. I hope to finish it tomorrow.

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I ended up turning my drawing table work light off to get a good photo. It wanted to cast a glaring reflection off the darker shading. Acrylics dry shiny if left undiluted.

I realize it looks a little odd he isn’t looking down at the ship; but, as the reader will discover, his eyesight is not very good in that form.

Cover Art Update

Yes, I know this post is a few days late. Below is part of the reason.

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I have one third of the cover for The Daedalus Enigma finished. I’m pretty happy with how it’s turning out. The tricky bit has been drawing with a paint brush. I’m used to rigid drawing tools (pencils and pens). Using a flexible tool takes some fine control. I’m just glad acrylics allow for do-overs. I had to paint Circe’s eyes twice to get them right.

The next section I’ll tackle will be Xandricus, the sea dragon. Lastly, I’ll paint Belladonna and the Heart of Hell’s Breath.

Don’t forget about the Red Shirt contest. So far, I only have one entry. That’s what I get for posting it on Labor Day weekend, when half the fannish world was at DragonCon or other conventions. I need a large enough pool of entrants to get four winners; after all, I have four Colonial era Royal marines to kill horribly.

Finally for this week, I am officially IN for Chattacon in the dealer room. I’ll have to check with the programing director closer to the convention to find out if I’ll be on any of the panels.

Beauty As Keen As The Flash of Blades -By Christopher M. Chupik

Wow! I’d never heard of this author before, and that is a damn shame. I’ll have to make a point to add her to my TBR pile.

According To Hoyt

Beauty As Keen As The Flash of Blades -By Christopher M. Chupik

(This one was a real challenge to write. It would have all been in vain if not for the help of Deuce Richardson, Keith West and Morgan Holmes. A shout-out is also due to Jennifer Jodell, for her thesis Mediating Moore: Uncertain Origins and Indeterminate Identities in the Work of C. L. Moore. While her analysis takes a more feminist approach to the subject than I would, I still recommend it as as well-researched piece about an author often shrouded mystery and misinformation. http://openscholarship.wustl.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1783&context=etd)

This article was brought to my attention a while back:

They managed to get Kameron Hurley, Ann Leckie and N. K. Jemisin on the list, yet somehow they failed to mention Leigh Brackett, Andre Norton, or, the subject of today’s column, C. L. Moore…

View original post 1,767 more words

Red Shirt Contest, Shopping, and Update

AHOY! Announcing the Maelstrom of Fate Red Shirt Contest! I have four Royal Marines to kill off, and I need names for them. Those interested in entering please comment on this post here, anywhere you see it shared on Facebook, or on Plurk. Include your first and LAST name in the comment: the characters/victims are male and Colonial era military, so they will only be addressed by their last names. That being said, any gender may enter. The winners will acknowledged in the forward of the book, and I will announce the names on this blog in October.

This Red Shirt Contest will run from September 5-30, 2016.

On to the shopping: we made a nice haul at a community yard sale event on Montlake/Mowbrey mountain this weekend. We got a very nice coffee table and end table set for $60, an elephant lamp (that one was from a sale on Big Ridge), nautical bookends, a Civil War commemorative sculpture with clock, a pewter leaf-shaped candy dish, a copy of Where Is Joe Merchant by Jimmy Buffett, and a nifty signed copper and wood sculpture of some sort of boiler tank by Kenneth Tatyrek.

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All the little valves turn, too.

Another thing I want to share is a pic of the artwork I bought back in July at the art show at LibertyCon.

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The Dread Pirate Kitties by Jim Humble

Finally, the update: I have started work on the cover art for The Daedalus Enigma. It is acrylic on watercolor canvas board, 12×18 (even though the board is 14×18: I am working the size of area which can be reduced after scanning by 75% to get the 6×9 book cover size; painting the art larger allows me to get better detail). So far, I just have the background colors painted. When wet, acrylic works similar to watercolor, but it dries much faster and does not bleed if you paint another color over it. I’m seriously considering omitting the pig from the one scene for two reasons: placement would mean not depicting the entire animal, and I’m not sure I could really do it justice. I fear it would be a distraction to the overall image.

As I’ve stated before, it has been years since I’ve worked with acrylics. In fact, the last time I did, I was doing piece work painting wooden cut-outs for a craft show dealer. That job ended when her pattern cutter made her think I was copying her designs and selling them for myself. His family and my husband had a bad history from well before I ever met my husband, and I think this might have been his motivation. Whatever. I do NOT operate like that…ever.

I finished reading Thieftaker by D.B. Jackson last night. Damn, he makes me feel lazy about my research. I plan on adding the next book in this series, Thieves’ Quarry to my TBR pile soon. He also has two more books in the series: A Plunder of Souls, and Dead Man’s Reach. I highly recommend these books to anyone who enjoys my Waves of Darkness series. They are set a decade earlier than my series in 1760s Boston. I really think you would enjoy reading about the adventures of Ethan Kaille.

Oh, and some more book sales would be nice (shameless begging here). I was just shy of the pay-out limit for second quarter royalties; so they were carried over to the third quarter report. C’mon guys, I wouldn’t mind getting paid. (Oddly, all my second quarter sales were print books: not one ebook on the report. Of course, some distributors are notorious for late reporting of sales to the publisher.)

That pretty much covers it for now. I do plan on running a few smaller contests leading up to the release date for The Daedalus Enigma. Stay tuned in for updates on those.

 

Concept Art, Book Release News, and More

Please excuse the poor quality of these images; pencil does not scan very well.

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belladonna 001

xandricus 001

These are the three scene I plan to use on the cover of The Daedalus Enigma. I’m thinking of using acrylic paints for this one. They are a medium I haven’t worked with in well over a decade, but I think acrylic will work better for my purposes than watercolor on this cover. Colored pencil is not an option. It doesn’t scan well, and even if I get a digital version to look good, the printout sucks ditchwater. I learned that lesson the hard way with the cover of Silent Fathoms.

I’ve been told to expect an October release for The Daedalus Enigma! Nice to know things are back on schedule with my publisher. There were a few hiccups last year which pushed the last book back a couple of months to December.

I don’t have any more conventions I plan to attend this year, but I think I will run a Red Shirt contest this September as part of my efforts to promote before the book release. I’ll post details next weekend for that on how to enter, how many spots are open, and how long the contest will run. I have a few other pre-release marketing ideas, but I need to get things in place before I can say anything official about them.

I also plan to get back in touch with my beta readers for The Adventures of Pigg & Woolfe soon. I’d like to query a few publishers with the first few episodes and hopefully get a start-up date for the serial in publication by early next year.

If you’re going to dream, might as well dream big.