Tag Archives: art

Science is moving faster than Science Fiction

There used to be a time when science fiction writing was safe.  The Earth didn’t have any really cool technology.  Times are changing.  As writers, we need to think up new and exciting things.  Our imaginations need to be bigger and better!

I recently read the attached article from Popular Science.  Click on over if you want details, but in a nutshell, MIT has created a synthetic/organic muscle that will respond to light.  They think they can create robots with this that will move fluidly.

Good thing?  Bad thing?  I’m all for progress.  But there’s a “but” in here somewhere.  What that “but” is will be up to the individual reader.

What I love when an article like this comes out, is the banter in the comments.  Some people make good points, some are just crazy.  Either way, it’s good entertainment.

If you like to write Sci-fi with robots, take a click on over and read the article.  There is definitely a great novel brewing in there.  – Just watch yourself, because there is fiction written about stuff like this that is forty years old or more.

I’ll pass on this, thanks… I like organic aliens, thank you very much.

http://www.popsci.com/technology/article/2012-08/light-activated-muscle-could-make-robots-move-real-creatures

JenniFer_EatonF

Write a Story with Me # 38 – Being Prepared by Ravena Guron

Ravena brings us into the Fae Dungeons.  Will they ever get out?

38 – Ravena Guron

Yoran found his eyes drifting to Sian for the tenth time in the space of a minute. She paced backwards and forwards across the marble floor, her arms tucked behind her back, avoiding his gaze. She seemed to be waiting for something, but since she’d spat on the floor a few hours before they hadn’t exchanged more than two words. Marci had been led out earlier by a guard. And although Sian’s mouth remained in a grim line, she didn’t seem worried for her sister, which put Yoran more at his ease.

The fairy man had mentioned something about meeting their queen. Yoran licked his cracked lips and examined the dirt under his nails.. Why had the fairies saved him? Why were they treating him so well now? Why did they want him to meet their queen?

What did they want from him?

He had a horrible feeling, in the pit of his stomach, that he knew exactly what they wanted, why they needed him to be well fed and rested. And if he told them what they needed to hear, he would be betraying the Establishment. He would be worse than a traitor to his own kind.

“When do you think they’ll come for me?” Yoran asked Sian, his voice too loud, ringing out in the silence. Sian didn’t reply, but he hadn’t expected her to.

He could tell the fairies the truth. The real reason why fairies were persecuted by the Establishment.

He thought back to that moment, all those years ago, when he’d overheard the conversation which had set him permanently against the race of fairies forever. His heart began hammering at the memory, the old hatred coursing through him.

Vermin. Filth.

They’d given him a small knife, to cut his bread with. When Sian turned away, he slipped it into his boot. So when he met the queen, he would be prepared.

Write a Story with Me is a group endeavor just for the fun of it.  A different writer adds a new 250 words each week.  It is the ultimate Flash Fiction Challenge!

If you’d like to sign up, come on over.  There’s always room for more!

Parts One – Twenty Nine Click Here

Part Thirty — Richard Leonard

Part Thirty-One —Sharon Manship

Part Thirty-Two — Shannon Christensen

Part Thirty-Three — Danielle Ackley McPhail

Part Thirty-Four — Siv Maria Ottem

Part Thirty-Five — Susan Roebuck

Part Thirty-Six — Jennifer M. Eaton

Part Thirty-Seven — Elin Gregory

Part Thirty-Eight — Ravena Guron

Don’t forget to stop by next week to see what happens next.

  Nicky Wells — TAG!  You are “It”

My First Rejection Letter

Okay, it had to happen sooner or later. After three publications, I’ve finally received the inevitable “slap” of a rejection.  When I opened it and started reading, the email could have gone both ways, and then it slipped into…

“We are no longer able to reply to each query individually, but please be assured we consider every submission very carefully.  Unfortunately, your manuscript is not a good fit for us at this time.”

Okay, well, it was a “nice” rejection.  They didn’t say it stunk. They even asked to keep them in mind for my next project (yeah, it’s a form letter, but it was nice, and I will still keep them in mind.  They are a great publisher.)

But…

I understand what people talk about now.  Since this was an all-encompassing form letter, I have no idea WHY it was rejected.  In fact, I don’t even know if they got past the query.

***I don’t know***

Are they glutted with Paranormal Romance right now?  I don’t know.

Was the story too short? I don’t know.

Have they seen the plot before?  I don’t know.

Was in not “Romancy” enough? I don’t know.

Did they not see the value of it as a continuing series? I don’t know.

Did they laugh at my inadequacy? I don’t know.

Honestly, when I first read it, I was not disappointed, even though I was really interested in that publisher.  My reaction was more like.  “Oh, okay, I’ll just look somewhere else”

But then those questions above started sinking in. I started questioning myself.

After a little while though, I dusted myself off.  I like the story, and I have it out at a few other publishers as well.  Someone will like it.

But while I’m waiting, I don’t want my cute little egg sitting in one basket.  I’m actively seeking a few more publishers.  One that I’ve found, I actually think I like MORE that my first pick.

We’ll see how it goes.  No tears, no disappointment, just onward and upward.

It’s just the business, right?

How do you feel about “form” rejections?

JenniFer_EatonF

Please don’t send me to the slush pile! I’ve been good!

A temporary goodbye to the Little Blue Lady from Mars

PKO_Alien 3 0003387You are going to shove me into your hard drive and never look at me again.

No, I’m not!

I promise!

Alien Smile CloseBut I’m a rehabilitated alien! 

I made cookies last week and everything!

It’s not that.  Your interviews have been great. Hundreds of people have clicked on over to read them. I’ve gotten a great response—even when you’ve been abrasive, which is a bit odd.

PKO_Alien 3 0003387Then what’s the problem?

.

Time is the problem.

Did you know it takes a few hours to do one of those interviews?

PKO_Alien 3 0003387Ha!  You’re not doing anything.  I’m doing all the work. 

You’re just whining and complaining in the background.

Yes, but as much as I love you,

there is a little work involved in bringing you to life.

PKO_Alien 3 0003387So?

.

Well, I’ve got writing to do, you know.  I’m starting the sequel to Last Winter Red this weekend, and I have three books out to query now, and Fire in the Woods will be going to query in a few weeks.

Alien Huh CloseThey are more important than me?

Hmm. At the moment, yes, they are.  But listen, I promise to set up an interview for you at least once a month.  Twice once I get a little more acclimated to my new schedule, okay?

PKO_Alien 3 0003387[Sigh]

I guess I really don’t have a choice, do I?

Sorry.

.

PKO_Alien 3 0003387I’ll miss you.

.

I’ll miss you too.

But I’ll see you in a few weeks, I promise.

Free_Fridays!

Alien SmileOkay. 

How about for the last Free Friday for a while, we give away a copy of “Make Believe”.

Great!  That would be awesome.

You know, the reviews for my story Last Winter Red in this anthology have been “off the charts crazy” good!  And several people have asked about more from the Last Winter Red world.

PKO_Alien 3 0003387Well, I’m happy for you, but not happy that writing the sequel means I have to go back into the hard drive.

Hey, I will keep my promise.

I even have an awesome author all lined up for April.

PKO_Alien 3 0003387All Right. 

.

Make Believe

Please bid the Little Blue Lady goodbye for a few weeks, and everyone commenting below will be in the running for an ebook copy (your choice of format) of the “Make Believe” anthology including my story LAST WINTER RED.

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The Little Blue Lady From Mars © Jennifer M. Eaton.

JenniFer_Eaton Sparkle__F

Do I read what I write? Umm… Huh? Do I have to answer that?

Are ya looking for Romancing Your E-Reader?  25 Ebooks Up for grabs!  Click Here to Enter!

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Yep, I’m still hopping around in cyber-mayhem promoting “For the Love of Christmas” and

  “Make Believe”.  Today I am guest-posting on Jenny Keller Ford’s site, so please hop on over so I don’t get lonely.  I’m talking about breaking the rules a little.  Shhhh! Don’t tell anyone.

Come on over!

I love to see familiar faces!

ChristmasFiligree

Make BelieveFor The Love Of Christmas CoverWhy all the hullabaloo? Well, it’s to promote my two new releases “Make Believe” and “For the Love of Christmas”

That’s why!

And don’t forget to click on “Enter to Win” for a chance to win your choice of the two titles! Yay!

Oh, I almost forgot… A few random commentors along the tour path will win their choice of anthologies, too. So be sure to hop on over and say “Hi”

ChristmasFiligree

Hop on over and send me some love!

Jenny Keller Ford‘s blog- Why I don’t read what I write.

ChristmasFiligree

Visit my Anthology buddies!  They are celebrating too!

Jenny Keller Ford

J.A. Belfield

Kelly Said

Lynda R. Young

Terri Rochenski

JenniFer_EatonF

Big Publishing House, Small Publishing House… Red Fish, Blue Fish. What the Heck do you do?????

Help me think through this, ‘cause it’s driving me nuts. I’m finishing up my novel, Fire in the Woods. I felt pretty cozy about it going in to the beta process. Now, rounding to home plate, I’m really excited.

I’m excited because, as authors, we always think what we’ve written is great. The Beta Process is usually a slap in the face as reality sets in. For me, the slap was not so hard. Yes, it needed tweaking, but every single beta reader is just as excited about this novel as I am. Wow… it’s a pretty great place to be. (Ten beta-readers, in case you were wondering)

So now I am sitting here with a novel that I am reasonably sure is good enough for a big publishing house. No brainer, right? Send it on out!

This is where I hit a snag. Am I a patient person, or an impatient person?

The truth is, that the big houses that I am interested in… Baen, Daw, Tor, Random House, Entangled (a little smaller) are now — are you ready for this –

ACCEPTING UNSOLICITED MANUSCRIPTS.

Wowzers! No need to take a year to find an agent, and then wait another year to get your stuff read. (If you can get by without an agent-there are pros and cons to this)

Anyway, the problem is that many of these houses do not accept simultaneous submissions. That means they expect you to send your manuscript to them… and only them. Now, this would not be a problem, but all of them, in their submission requirements, give themselves a HUGE timeframe to review novels. I understand that they get a lot of submissions, but you want me to take a year before I even hear back from you? And then if you decide to pass, I’ll need to wait another year to hear back from the next one?

My goal is to have Fire in the Woods traditionally published in printed copy format. I want the perks of professional editing and layout and cover design (etc) However, there are plenty of small houses out there who will read your query in a day, and read your manuscript in a month or so.

So, what, I wonder… other than prestige… would I direct myself to a big house when I have the possibility of getting my novel in the hands of readers in a year, as opposed to two to three years or more?

Hmmm. I think typing this just made things more clear to me.

Anyway… what are your thoughts?

(Self-publishing is not of interest at this time. I don’t have the time or money to do it right)

Write a Story with Me – Part 14 – Plans and Schemes – What will he do? with Richard Leonard

Hello there!  If your new over here, Write a Story with me is a little idea I came up with for my Blogiversary.  It’s a story I started in mid July, and a different author ever week adds an additional 250-ish words to the story.  When they are done, the next person gets tagged and they are on their way!

It’s great fun because it’s a super flash-fiction challenge, because you NEVER KNOW what you’re going to get hit with.  You can’t plan, because you don’t know what kind of curve-ball the person in front of you will throw.

Sound like fun?  It is!

If you’d like to catch up, a list of the previous segments is below.

Today, we have Richard Leonard up at bat.  Take it away, Richard!

14 (Richard Leonard)

Yoran fought the urge to crush the evil little monster hovering just beyond arm’s reach. He guessed Janosc spoke in a falsetto voice to put him off guard, which it certainly did. Staring fiercely at the disgusting wasp-like creature buzzing before him, he knew what was to eventuate and could see no way to avoid it.

“What do you want? Speak quickly, we have little time.”

“Isn’t it obvious?”, said Jonasc in his normal gruff voice. “You’ve seen this before, Yoran. You know it’s terminal. I can help heal your daughter… but only if you help protect my world.”

“How?”

“Well… it involves taking her to through the Portal. However, I’m not sure if I’m prepared to do so. It’s a big risk for us.”

The color of Yoran’s face deepened as the veins in his neck swelled. How dare this vile bug hold his precious little Marci to ransom. Her life traded for the promise of allowing the beetle fairies and their world to thrive in his beloved county? For any other father the decision would be easy. But Yoran can never be seen to have made such a choice. Marci’s sacrifice would be expected of him.

SO… does he save Marci or not?  Hop on over to Richard’s site to read the rest of his section.  Have fun!  http://richardleonard.wordpress.com/2012/10/01/write-a-story-with-jennifer-m-eaton-part-14

If you’d like to sign up, come on over.  There’s always room for more!

Part One – Jennifer M. Eaton

Part Two – J. Keller Ford

Part Three – Susan Roebuck

Part Four – Elin Gregory

Part Five – Eileen Snyder

Part Six – Mikaela Wire

Part Seven — Vanessa Chapman

Part Eight — Ravena Guron

Part Nine – Vikki Thompson

Part Ten — Susan Rocan mywithershins

Part Eleven — Kate Johnston  AKA 4AMWriter

Part Twelve — Julie Catherine

Part Thirteen — Kai Damian

Part Fourteen — Richard Leonard

Don’t forget to stop by next week to see what happens next.

 Sharon Manship —- TAG!  You are “It”

Writing to a Deadline AGAIN? You betcha! Part Two

Yes, here we go again.  When I left you I had five weeks to write a story from scratch and submit.  Here’s how I did it.

Check out yesterday’s post by clicking here to see how I got myself into this mess.

Okay, so this is how I did it…

I took two days to come up with and outline the story.

I gave myself 1,000 words a day of writing time by placing FIRE IN THE WOODS on hold.  Within Ten days (two weeks in to the process—I don’t write on weekends) I had a rough draft.

Three more weeks until Deadline.

I posted the first half of my story on Scribophile, took general comments, and did a mild revision.

Two weeks until deadline… and no one had even seen the second half.

Now it was time for my writing buddies to jump on board.  They all read it in full.  One ripped me a new one.  It almost felt like a “keep out of genres you don’t write” kind of critique.  Ever gotten one of those?

One beta said it was good, but when I asked her about the harsh comments I received from the other person, she agreed with many of them. (Ugh!) Later the same day, two glowing betas came back with mild changes only.

Talk about contradicting criticism!

I mentioned that I was now unsure, and was considering an overhaul… and one buddy… let’s call her multi-published Romance Writer #1 said:  “DON’T YOU DARE!  This is your story, not hers.  Tweak if you must, but don’t change. Always go with your gut.  Your gut likes what you wrote. The publisher will, too.”

So, I thought it over, and agreed with Romance Writer #1.  If I made the drastic changes to both my characters to make everyone happy, it would be sappy, and not really what I wanted.  So I stuck to my guns.  Tweak, polish, complete.

One week and three days until the deadline.

Oh Crud!  I need a query!

I wrote up a query really fast and sent it to my query gnome.  (If you don’t have one, find one)  She slashed my blurb and re-wrote it for me, but left the rest in-tact.  I tweaked slightly to keep in my voice and posted it to my Scribophile group.

Multi-published Romance Writer #2 jumped in and tweaked it some more.

You know what? I ended up with something that even made ME want to read it, and I don’t read Romance. (It’s great having friends that like to write queries.)

One week to deadline:

Yes, I pressed the submit button, and I did it one week early.  Funny, I was not as stressed about this one. I’m not sure why.

I learned a few things through this process…

Well, maybe not learned, but it reiterated things I already knew:

1.        I can write under incredible pressure.

2.       You need more than one beta, get many opinions and go with majority… don’t try to make them all happy

3.       Go with your gut.

4.       Writing buddies are incredibly important.  My friends knew I had a deadline, and they dropped what they were doing to critique.  Know what?  I will do the same for them.  If you don’t have writing buddies, find them.

Thank you Sisterhood of the Traveling Pens!

(Note… all my buddies are “on-line” friends.  Social networking.  It ROCKS!)

So, that ends the tale of my latest madness writing adventure.  Will it work out? Dunno.  But I do know that push comes to shove, I Can do this.

My advice?  Challenge yourself. You don’t know what will happen or what you can do until you try.

Yay! It’s my favorite Day of the Week! It’s Write a Story with Me day! Part Five

Write a Story with Me! Is going full-throttle.

Are we having fun yet!  The answer is “Yes!”

So… What’s happened so far?

Part 1: Twelve year old Marci picked a leaf off a hallowed tree.

Part 2: She runs home and sees her pregnant mother and little sister Lauren greeting her father’s flying ship, one of the Planetary Raiders from a long voyage.  Marci gives the leaf to Janelle, a tiny person who emerges from a hole in the floor.

Part 3: Bethany (and older sister) is introduced. She is the villain of our story, and very jealous of her sister Marci.  She sneaks back home from greeting her father, and eavesdrops on Marci.  She discovers the illegal fairy, and prepares to use the information against her sister.

Part 4: Bethany is carted off by fairies.  A big scary beetle-fairy tells Janelle she has to come back to the nest with him. (He’s Janelle’s brother.  Janelle wants to start a new fairy nest, but her brother (Janosc) does not want her to do it, because a fairy queen is like an ant queen. Janelle says they need to start a new nest because their world is in danger.

Part 5: The next installment comes from the wonderful Miss Eileen Snyder.  No need to click a link this week.  We are posting right here!  Take it away Eileen!

Jodi looked up from the book she read and began to rub her eyes hard to a watery end. The street bench had grown rigid and hard and she shifted her weight and stretched her entire body with an audible yawn.  She plucked her eyeglasses from the crown of her head and with a minor adjustment they fit her face again.  She didn’t need them for reading; in fact she didn’t need them at all.
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 Unexpectantly, a wistful March wind tunneled the entire length of Carlisle Street. Jodi turned toward the breeze to feel it touch her skin, it was refreshing. She caught sight of the unbridled ivy leaves fluttering against the brick of antique row homes that lined the narrow easement, not much wider than an alleyway and paved in blue cobblestones, the window boxes were decorated with cold weather pansies, bright yellow and purple. Their beauty was evident but their genus was no match for the encroaching ivy that clung steadfast to the masonry bricks of Colonial Philadelphia.
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She thought of her favorite book on Greek mythology, when the Sirens of Circe flapped their leaf like wings to intimidate Odysseus and his shipmates. What lie in a hardy leaf, what purpose a leaf if it bears no flower? Does it not nourish the bud? Yet, its shiny veneer was a fitting contrast to the flat, red brick. Perhaps, a leaf does have powers!

Now It’s time to scoot on over to the Nederland’s with Mysocalleddutchlife’s Mikaela Wire for the next installment. Mikaela gets to figure out who the heck this girl is, and what Colonial Philadelphia has to do with flying ships, and fairies.  Well, I guess it all has to tie in to that leaf from installment #1. Ummm… Okay, Mikaela… better you then me.

Tag Mikaela!  You are “It”.

Here are the previous installments:

Part One – Jennifer M Eaton

Part Two – Jenny Keller Ford

Part Three – Susan Roebuck

Part Four by — Elin Gregory

Stop by next Tuesday to see what happens next!

For my present… I want you to write a story with me. Happy Blogiversary to me! Hop on board!

Are you ready to write a story together?  Let’s go!

Yay!  It’s my Blogiversary!  A year ago when I started this little writer’s haven for my monotonous mind, I had absolutely nothing to say.  My first post was “Okay, I have a blog.  So now, what”.  Very funny.

So, Let’s talk about my present.  Yes, I want a present.  Why not?  Don’t you give presents?  Hey, I deserve it.  I’m working hard here!

On March 17, when I hit 10,000 hits, I joked with Gloria Richard, who I met on this blog, that for my Blogiversary I wanted to double my hits.  At the time, achieving another 10,000 hits in four months seemed like a joke.  Ummm… not so much of a joke anymore.  I’m now over 28,000.  Thanks so much, guys.

So, since I don’t have to ask for 20,000 hits, this is what I want.  You’re a writer, right?  How about we write a little story together?

Sound like fun?

My Writing Bud Jenny Keller Ford did something similar to this recently, but I’m going to make it a little easier and less stressful.  (Because you won’t have to worry about someone posting before you finish what you’re working on.)

If you want to play, just click here.  Comment that you want to join, and include your email address (if you are worried about email grabbing software, type it in this format:  Jennifer-eaton (at) Comcast (dot) net.  We will be able to contact you , but the bots won’t get you.  If you are hopping on to this late, go ahead and add your name.  The more the merrier.

We will start off with an opening of about 250 words (about a page 12 point double spaced).  Then person #2 on the list will be up to bat.  They will add 250 or fewer words.

Notice I said “or fewer”  If you are tight on time, and you want to post 100, or even fifty, that’s fine… as long as you are pushing the story forward.  Likewise, if you need an extra ten words to finish your thought, that’s okay.  This is for fun, but don’t go crazy… give the next person a turn.

Once you are done, post your addition to your blog, and send me the link so I can include it in the page list.  Then don’t forget to tag the next person on the Comments List.

I will post the link to your site on Tuesdays, sending people to your own site to read your installment to the story.

Rules:

1.       CLICK HERE  to add your name to join the group.

2.       Post only after you have been tagged to make sure that the person before you has presented their installment.

3.       If you can, post your addition to the story on your blog within four days of being tagged.  If you do not send your installment to jennfer-eaton (at) Comcast (dot) net by Sunday 4:00PM EST there is a possibility that you post will not be scheduled on time for the Tuesday update.

4.       Send the link to your blog post to “Jennifer-eaton (at) comcast (dot) net”, and tag the next person.

5.       MAKE SURE YOU INCLUDE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS. SOME PEOPLE DON’T HAVE “CONTACT ME” OPTIONS ON THEIR WEB SITES. We need to be able to tag you to let you know you are  “up”.

6.       If you do not have a blog, or you don’t want to post your installment on your site, you can email your addition to me and I will post it here and add it to the story-roll.

7.       You may direct your readers to “Write a Story” for links to earlier installments, or to add their name to the comments list if they’d like to join.

8.       When we get to the end of the list, person #1 will be up to bat again.  We will keep going until we end the story, or interest wanes.

9.       If the muses aren’t poking you with their magic word wands, please pass to the next person in the list. We will come back to you when we start the cycle over.

10.   No cussing.

11.   I will post weekly (probably Tuesday) a link to your blog so people who are following the story can read the next installment.  If we end up ahead of ourselves (finishing early) the weekly post will appear behind to those contributing.  That’s okay.  It will make room for hiccups if someone does not submit on time.

12.   If you bow out, and others continue, you still agree to allow us to use your words and ideas in the project moving forward. Your name will be credited for the work you contributed.

13.   If interest wanes, and I need something to keep my creative juices flowing, I may finish it on my own… unless it is in a category I don’t enjoy.  Then I will let it die.

14.   Most importantly:  Have fun!  That’s what writing is all about.  If you can’t do it when your number comes up, no harm, no foul, just pass on to the next person.

Note:  If you finish in a day, please submit that same day and tag the next person.  This will keep the “weekly post” ahead of schedule in case we hit a bump, like someone getting sick, or on vacation, or forgetting to tag the next person.

#1:  Many writers want to try flash fiction, but don’t know how to start.  This will give you a prompt coming from someone else, and a pre-determined story to build on.  How great is that for flash fiction experience?

#2:  I originally thought of just posting the installments on jennifermeaton.com for people to read.  But if you post your work on your own blog, it will drive more traffic to your site, and also to your fellow authors and we have higher visibility to draw others in, which will make it more fun.

So, what are you waiting for?  Jump on the list and let’s have some fun!