Monthly Archives: July 2013

Timesink Twitter

twitterMy name is Misa, and I’m a Twitter-oholic.

All joking aside, I do spend far too much time on Twitter. I’ve tried to lessen how many hours I whittle away, but it seems impossible.

My problem stems from the fact that all my friends are ones I’ve met online. I’m not an overly sociable person unless I’m in an environment I feel comfortable. That comes down to fan conventions and writer meets. Since there are no writers’ groups nearby, I rely on social media. Sad, perhaps, but true.

On top of that, the decrepit laptop I use to access the internet has decided it can’t run IM programs. I can get on Skype if I close everything else, but I’ve few contacts on there. So I chat on Twitter instead.

Twitter makes the world smaller, brings friends closer and allows you to interact with celebrities.

Cliff Simon responds to a question in his own unique style. :D

Cliff Simon responds to a question in his own unique style. 😀

See?

However, Twitter isn’t free of faults, and just this week there was a demand for the addition of an abuse button. I don’t believe that social media encourages such behaviour – those with discriminatory opinions would have had them beforehand – but it does make interactions seem remote. It’s important to police such responses to keep users safe.

And regardless as to the problems, I can’t imagine that I’ll be giving up Twitter any time soon.

Not Enough Time–Too much Net!

Oh, internet, how I lurvs thee…so much so that I spend far too much time with you, stalking your nooks and crannies, always amazed by your eccentricity, shock value and tendency to over-share.

As a history nut, one of the first time-sucks for me is research. I love learning new things, and the weirder, more surprising or unexpected the better. So when I go online supposedly to verify one fact, I might be at it for hours, following link after link, sometimes to the point where I forget what I was supposed to be looking up to begin with. Oh noes! I have to go back in again. D’oh!! J

Even when I’m not working I’m usually thinking about my writing, but I like to have something to do with my hands while I’m at it. Which leads to mindless gaming…shooting stuff, matching stuff, that kind of thing. You know what I mean…those free game sites where you have to sift through all the dreck to find something relatively good. And then, when you do, you end up playing it almost constantly for the next two weeks, like an uncontrollable teenager who’s discovered porn for the first time… Oh, is that only me??? Sorry…

But honestly my weakness is “news”. Note the quotation marks. I usually start out on my favorite international news site, catching up on what’s happening around the world, but I have to admit after a fairly short time serious news is replaced with silly/shocking/interesting/cute videos. I’m particularly drawn to animal videos, road rage videos, people doing awesomeness of all kinds and anything with military, kilts and bagpipes (I had to watch this again, twice, just writing this), or better yet, bagpipes with fire! Oh, and cops, particularly when mixed with reggae. I wanted to move to Denmark after watching that one! Usually once I start watching videos I move on to music…and the day goes pretty damn fast after that.

See? I started this piece hours ago and, having watched a bunch of Military Tattoo, talent show auditions and using-the-dog-to-propose videos, am only just finishing it.

*sigh*

Have a great day, on the internet and off!

Anya
Journeys Through Seduction

Anya Richards/Anya Delvay books available from Samhain Publishing, Ellora’s Cave, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Chapters Indigo.

Lost Time

DSCN0224You know how it goes. You’re traveling a desolate road in the evening. No one else in sight. Suddenly, there are lights in the sky. Your car engine sputters. The vehicle shakes. Stops. And the lights get brighter. Closer.  (Photo from June’s Super Moon over Seattle)

And suddenly, you aren’t in Kansas anymore.

When you’re returned to your car, your watch and the clock in the car don’t match up. You’ve lost time. In this case, I’m not claiming to have been abducted by aliens.

This is what happens when I get sucked into conspiracy theories, evidence for UFOs, and alien abduction stories on the interwebs.

One of the first and one of my favorites is Stuff They Don’t Want You to Know. The subjects are varied and the guys doing the show have great, deadpan delivery. The episode on fluoride was creepy as hell.

Another potential creep-fest is AnonymoUFO. http://www.anonymousfo.com/

Not only do they post compilations of the best UFO footage by month and year, at the foot of their homepage, they embed a number of TV shows documenting things like alien abduction stories (high on drama, no clue how high the verifiable reporting quality might be…but still, it’s all about the fun and the idea generation for the scifi writer.)

Oh, sure, I get sideswiped by Twitter, FB, and lately, Tumblr. But my self-discipline seems relatively good when it comes to those. It’s when I start down the tainted, murky rabbit hole of the totally bizarre that I truly lose myself and all sense of time passing.

What am I missing? Is there a UFO Tumblr? Where else should I be looking for the odd and inexplicable? While you help lead me further astray, I’ll just meander off to check out the TED Talks Sabrina linked to.

Supernatural, Merlin, Twitter, Blogging, Fotolia and More

bigstock_Male_Rear_In_Underwear_405966My MANhandler picture today is one of my personal favorites. I’m rather partial to everything about this photo. Everything. Enjoy!

I am admittedly either very good at avoiding writing or very bad at managing my time. I’m not sure which it is, but it’s sort of a personal epiphany to sit here and acknowledge all the things I do other than write when I sit in front of the computer. For example, when I received my reminder that this was my day to blog, I immediately ditched the manuscript and dove into writing here vs. there. Such a lack of willpower! I’m easily led astray these days, and here are a few of the things that occupy my attention:

Supernatural: I’m pretty much an urban fantasy diehard, and some of what I write is pretty graphic in the way of violence. Ironically, I have to watch half of this show through my fingers. But when the eyes are on the screen and the hands over the face, very little writing gets done. Yay, Netflix! NOT HAPPY. I blame Tibby Armstrong.

Merlin: I’m a total BBC-Wales addict thanks to this show. I don’t catch it on regular programming, but I bought the first season on a whim and became addicted within minutes. I absolutely love this show and will watch it over and over and over. So good!

Twitter: It’s nothing for me to fall into Twitter and emerge hours later wondering what happened. I become engrossed in the most ridiculous things, like #Sharknado. W. T. H. My brain automatically assigns hashtags to things now. It’s a real #problem.

Blogging: I love to blog. It’s like chatting, and I’m very proficient at chatting. Sometimes I’ll get a wild hair and have to go write Laptop and Email symbol in devil shapeimmediately, sharing thoughts and ideas and best practices with my readers and fellow writers. Other times it’s publishing news. And yet others? It’s all about me getting a cat. Capital time suck.

Fotolia: This is my favorite royalty-free photo site. Sometimes, when I’m looking for inspiration for a book or a scene or a setting, I’ll spend an hour or three browsing photos and adding to my collection of MANhandler pics. Hey, somebody has to do it!

And the “more” I reference? That’s the internet in general. I get lost in it, browsing Ebay and CNN and Yahoo. It’s ridiculous! If I’d gain a little more focus and hammer on, I’d get a lot more done. I just don’t think life would be complete without my MANhandler days, though. They keep me sane. 🙂

 

What are your favorite online haunts? Share and give me other places to frequent. Pretty please?

Hanging out at Ted’s Place. A Lot.

Welcome to the internet.  You know the place. Full of mysteries, both frightening and beautiful.  A world of information at your fingertips, new friends to meet, stalkers to fend off, political arguments to be had. Frustrating, boring, overwhelming, fun and always, always, engaging.  The topic of the next two weeks–our biggest internet time suck.

First, I’ll waive off the obvious.  Like many others out there, I’d be lying if I didn’t say social media, predominantly in the form of Facebook, remains my single biggest time suck on the internet.

Also, as a writer, research can draw me on, chasing facts and stories from site to site to get that one piece of information that will my own story fall together.  Or maybe, the research is just so interesting I get drawn into it, that I know now everything I could possibly know about Amazon lore when all I really needed to know was a list of Amazon queens.  But given that I am prone to lose myself in research, I tend to keep that tightly under wraps and only embark when I really can’t move forward with out.  Wherever possible,  I often purposely leave the research until the end for that very reason.

Now that I’ve gotten the easy answers out of the way, I will introduce you to my real weakness and reveal my true geek DNA.  If I want to get lost, I just pop on over to Ted Talks and watch those videos.  Speakers are chosen for their ability to communicate well, their topics are challenging and fascinating and some are just so cool and they can be a real motivational voice in the dark when I’m feeling blue and need to hear someone say things I need to hear.

Take a visit. Here’s the link to the playlist on how to tell a story, with videos by writers and thinkers on story telling. Here a couple links to how to tell a story videos.

Chimamanda Adichie: The danger of a single story

JJ Abrams: The mystery box

But you remember, once you enter….

Bwhahaha!

When you eventually drag yourself back to the world, tell me how you like it.


Sabrina Garie is on a journey to create the most kick-ass heroine in romance fiction. Meet Jocelyn, a single mom who gets a second chance at love in her newest book Next Move available from Ellora’s Cave and Amazon

And Some More Watson

I struggled with this post, wracked my brain trying to come up with a sidekick that hadn’t been mentioned before. In the end I landed on a character already on our list: Dr. Watson.

I loved the idea that a woman, and a woman of Asian descent at that, playing the counterpart to the mind-bending Sherlock Holmes. In this series Joan Watson is Sherlock’s sober companion and as such has to accompany him everywhere, even crime scenes. At first only an observer she develops an interest and begins to assist Holmes with his cases.

Over the course of the first season of Elementary Joan develops an interesting relationship with Holmes and begins to see herself in a different light.

I love the chemistry between Watson and Holmes. It’s not, at least not yet, a sexual chemistry, but the collision of two people who have very definite opinions and don’t like to be foiled in their endeavours. I love how they slowly being to work together, but Watson remains a strong personality who continues to grow.

Overall I believe Elementary is a nice addition to the TV landscape. Different from the BBC version and filled with neat twists and great characters, this female Watson makes an excellent sidekick.

“How often have I said to you that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth?”
tangledindulgence_msr

Tina Christopher-Sexy Steampunk & Sensuous Sci-Fi

Tangled Indulgence-available at ECKobo and Amazon

My favorite Sidekick is Wilson – Castaway movie

Ohhhh what a sidekick Wilson is to Tom Hanks in this modern Robinson Crusoe type drama. Tom plays Chuck Noland, a systems analyst for FedEx. He is a man who is too busy to become engaged to the love of his life, played by Helen Hunt.

castaway poster

During the Christmas holidays, his work calls and with him being such a  workaholic he leaves his lady and catches a flight to attend to business in Malaysia.  But soon he becomes a lone castaway on a uninhabited island, as during a violent storm, the plane he is travelling in, crashes into the ocean.

Soon a corpse washes ashore from the flight he was on, along with some FedEx packages from the plane. He buries the man and after a couple of melt downs he goes into survival mode, opening the packages to see what he can use. As he attempts to make a fire, he cuts himself and gets very angry. Picking up a Wilson’s sporting goods volleyball, he throws it away in anger…that volleyball, now with his bloody handprint, will become his friend and sidekick “Wilson”.

castaway-wilson-sos-lost-sea-gps-622

After he settles down, Chuck draws a face in the bloody handprint on the volleyball and calls him Wilson. Over the next four years as Chuck struggles to survive, makes a shelter, fires to cook the fish he catches, Wilson becomes his sidekick. He talks to the ball, fights with the ball, and keeps it as his companion.

castaway-wilson

 

SPOILER ALERT

Four years later Chuck finds a portable toilet washed ashore and he is able to make a raft. Taking Wilson with him, he leaves the island. But unfortunately, Wilson falls into the ocean and floats away and is lost at sea. Chuck is devastated at losing his friend and sidekick. And I was devastated too!!! jan *wiping away tears* It was such an emotional tear jerking scene when Wilson floats away on the ocean waves. But Chuck is eventually rescued. Yeah! But when he returns to civilization he learns that everybody thought he was dead. And so did the love of his life. She has married and has a son…*jan wiping away more tears*

Alas this is a must-see movie for Tom Hanks fans. And for someone who wants a good cry too.

Anybody else like this movie?

 

Hugs!

jan

Elemental, Watson.

This is going to be a short blog post. It’s just too dang hot here, and my motivation has plummeted as the temperature soars.

AR Storytelling in BBC's "Sherlock"

I don’t watch a lot of network TV but I love mysteries and try to watch all the BBC productions. I’d say Dr. Watson is one of my favorite sidekicks – droll humor, puts up with the arrogant jerk and hold his own when he needs to, and will do anything to help out Sherlock because he’s a friend. He has shown that he will also kill if it’s to save Sherlock. And, he’s a thrill seeker and lives for the hunt, so he is no slouch. Some times a sentimental fool, he’s a perfect sidekick for the calculating, emotionless Sherlock.

That’s about why I love him.

Viki Lyn

http://www.vikilyn.com
http://www.vikilyn.com/blog
http://www.facebook.com/VikiLynRomance
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Once Viki Lyn wrote her first male/male romance, she was hooked. Now she gets to write about two sexy men as heroes instead of one.

What inspires – the reality that romance between lovers is a hope more than a guarantee. Her stories are sexy, but it’s always romance that drives the story to its final happily-ever-after.

Viki has worn many hats, working in corporate finance to owning her own art gallery, but writing has been a long lasting passion.

Viki Lyn: Award winning author of male/male paranormal and contemporary romances. You can find all of Viki’s books at the following sites: Amazon, All Romance Ebooks and GLBT Bookshelf.

Thou shall not kill.

For archangel Razi-el, he had no choice. He would break God’s commandment again if it were to save Uri-el from a demon’s talons. Yet even God’s most trusted archangel cannot avoid punishment. No longer Razi-el, he is now Izar, a Protector sworn to kill for the angels.

When a Protector kills an angel, Izar is summoned to work alongside Uri-el to capture the killer. Izar is shocked when his bloodlust spikes hot for the archangel. He knows better than to go after forbidden fruit. Refusing to give in to temptation, he ignores his body’s tempestuous arousal for Uri-el until a heated argument turns his blood into molten lust.

As they rush to find the killer, their passion plays into the demon’s plan. Izar will have to make a choice between life and death if he is to save Uri-el again.

http://www.ellorascave.com/sins-of-lust.html

My Sarah Jane

elisabeth-sladen-jon-pertweeI grew up watching Doctor Who and Sarah Jane Smith was my hero. Therefore writing this article is bittersweet, bringing back happy memories of watching Sarah Jane’s adventures and the sad knowledge there’ll be no more (actress Elisabeth Sladen died April 2011, after a short battle with cancer

For those who are new Whovians, Sarah Jane was a feisty, independent young woman who didn’t fall in love with the Doctor. In fact she was his best friend before Donna, and the two characters are very similar in that both stood up to the him.

Given Sarah Jane was around in the early ’70s, this was a pretty big deal. Gone were the stereotypical helpless damsel in distress – Sarah Jane often got herself and the Doctor out of danger.

Of course, Elisabeth appeared in the new series alongside David Tennant and Matt Smith, as well as having her own show. Here, Sarah Jane investigated alien threats while raising an adopted son. She was shown to be nurturing and loving, and she always gave the aliens an “out”. However, if they didn’t accept this (which was more often than not

she wouldn’t hesitate to remove the threat by any means possible.

Like her character, Elisabeth was a strong woman. Few knew about her cancer and she gave no sign of suffering on-screen. That made her death a sudden shock that rippled beyond the Who fandom, making news headlines. I was greatly saddened and part of me still cannot believe she’s gone. Then again, in a very real way she’s still with us.

forever

The poignient end title of the last Sarah Jane’s Adventures

Stiles Doesn’t Want to be Robin to His Bestie’s Batman All the Time #teenwolf

Teen Wolf’s Stiles Stilinski is 140 lbs of pale skin and fragile bones and believes sarcasm is his only defense. The reality is that Stiles is 140 lbs of all things good in the world.

His affection and loyalty for his best friend, Scott, the (supposed) hero of the show can’t be underestimated. Like Buffy, he’s saved the world–or at least Scott–a lot, and while he’s hilarious, always bringing the laughs, he has the scars to show for all the pain he’s faced in the world.

If you can watch, oh, I don’t know, six full episodes of Teen Wolf and not fall for Stiles Stilinski, then I’m pretty sure we can’t be friends. 😉

This fanvid explains all that his hilarious and awesome about Stiles. Watch it and learn why to know him is to laugh and love him.

And this fanvid explains Stiles’ pain. And, lo, does he have the pain. He’s not just sarcasm. He’s a deep abyss of feels, yo.

Seriously, after watching those, don’t you love Stiles? And want to give him hugs and cookies? And be his best friend? And encourage him to snuggle up with you and just breathe in his scent? Um, *cough*, maybe that’s just me.

Speaking of sidekicks, in our latest book, Love’s Nest, our hero, Mateo, has a funny, life-long sidekick in his twin sister, Luz. But when their relationship changes due to secrets Luz is withholding from him, Mateo is led to a new life of passion and fairy magic. Love’s Nest is out on Wednesday! Be sure to check it out! We’re really excited about this release!

Keira Andrews and Leta Blake write fairy tale inspired m/m erotica and romantica with Ellora’s Cave. Check out Love’s Nest, available on Wednesday through Ellora’s Cave! And also remember to look at Earthly Desires and Ascending Hearts, the first two books in the Tempting Tales series, available for purchase at AmazonBarnes and Noble, and Ellora’s Cave.

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