It has definitely been an interminable winter in the mid-Atlantic, but we got what I hope is the last snow storm of the season yesterday. It’s now colder than the ninth circle outside, but it’s rather pretty, too! Yet I’d prefer to stay inside and write, to be honest. This southern gal has never developed a taste for temperatures below about 65, even after decades in the north!


Big Biscuit Bottoms: Murder Ballads playlist

Last year, we wrote a Valentine’s Day story that featured a main character who is a toy store manager by day and a Bluegrass musician by night, Andy Lane. In Dandy’s Little Girl, Andy’s band, the Big Biscuit Bottoms, were hired to play at an anti-Valentine’s Day party at a popular bar, and I had way too much fun coming up with their set list because I love Bluegrass, folk music, and old Country music. Given how often love turned to death and murder in these songs, it wasn’t difficult for me to compile a “murder ballads” playlist for the band.

Last year, I posted here with the playlist enhanced by videos. This year, I’ve gone a step farther and created a  Big Biscuit Bottoms: Murder Ballads set list on Spotify!

I added all the songs from the original set list in the story and added some others I’ve found since then. I’m sure I’ll keep adding to it as I find grisly, creepy new material.

Happy Valentine’s Day! ;)

Letters from Cupid Now Available!

Our Valentine’s Day story, Letters from Cupid, is now available!

We wanted to do something light and fun for Valentine’s Day, and we’d had a plot bunny about a secret admirer leaving notes on someone’s door. It wasn’t specifically earmarked for Valentine’s Day, but it did involve the note writer offering support after a break-up. We decided we could easily adapt it to fit the holiday, so we plucked that plot bunny off The List and wrote it!

I wrote Macon, the curmudgeon, and I may have let some of my own opinions about academia come out through him. To be honest, my opinions usually do slip out if we’re writing in a university setting. ;)  I love academia, but it has its flaws, and it’s no more immune to internal politics than any other job. And yes, the whole “sitting at the back of the room and grading during faculty meetings” thing does actually happen. We don’t like long, tedious meetings either! Unlike Macon, however, I do at least skim the agenda.

Torquere Press coupon!

Torquere Press is celebrating Valentine’s Day all month long with a special 15% off coupon! Just use “sweetheart2015″ as your coupon code when you’re checking out to apply the discount. The coupon code will work on preorders (like Letters from Cupid) and already published Torquere or Prizm books alike.

And just as a reminder, we do have a Valentine’s Day story from last year as well! Dandy’s Little Girl is available from Torquere.

Plot bunnies everywhere

I’ve mentioned before that Ari and I use Evernote for our notes and ideas. It’s really useful because you can clip articles and images from the web, upload documents, and create your own notes, all saved in specific notebooks.

We have one note that’s just an on-going plot bunny list. Whenever one of us gets an idea for a plot or character, the standard response is “Put it on the list.” Although now that it’s pushing 100 plot bunnies, I think it might be deserving of capitalization: The List.

Since the Herc’s Mercs series seems to have taken off nicely, we’ve been thinking more and more about ideas for continuing the series. We’d been lumping the Herc bunnies in with all the other bunnies, but last night, we decided it was time to give the Herc series its own bunny list. So I pulled all the plot bunnies specifically earmarked as Herc ideas plus a couple of others that we’d discussed as being of potential use for Herc stories and added them to a separate note in our Herc’s Mercs notebook.

The Herc plot bunny list is already 7 items long, which doesn’t count the two stories we’re currently working on. So if our readers like the Herc’s Mercs series, I don’t think they need to worry that it’ll dry up any time soon!

We have two Herc’s Mercs stories going at once because we started one, realized it wasn’t working out the way we wanted, and decided to backtrack and do over. However, before we got started on the do-over, another insistent Herc bunny came along, so we decided to roll with that one and get back to the do-over afterward.

Right now, we’re probably about 3/4 finished with the insistent Herc bunny, which features a retired merc whose attempt at building a second career as a private chef is interrupted when the circuit court judge he works for is targeted by an ex-con with an axe to grind. Ezra “Ghost” Levin ends up calling in a favor to his former boss, Cade “Hercules” Thornton, and getting a team of mercs to help him keep his judge safe. For those who liked Herc’s Mercs: Bloody But Unbowed, Daryl “D-Day” Greer makes an appearance in this story as part of Ghost’s team. :D

Blizzard’s 10th Anniversary

This year, Blizzard Entertainment celebrated 20 years of being in business and 10 years of World of Warcraft, and they had some really nice in-game events to commemorate the occasion.

They revamped the old Molten Core raid and gave us a 40-man raid for level 100 with a guaranteed helm and corehound mount and a (small) chance to get a pet named Hatespark and a weapon enchant. They also gave everyone who logged in during the anniversary event a Molten Corgi pet. It took me a while to get up to the necessary ilevel to enter the raid, and I initially planned to run it one time for the helm and mount, especially since it was a looooong raid. Even with a good group, you didn’t get out of there in less than 90 minutes, and if it wasn’t a good group, it could take over 2 hours.

Screen Shot 2014-12-14 at 10.30.36 PM

And here you see a screen cap of my corehound’s ass. I took this cap because of the enormous skeleton I ran across in one of the zones. When I realized what I was looking at, I took this cap and wondered WTF had been big enough to leave behind a skeleton this size and if there were any more of them lurking around the zone.

Continue reading Blizzard’s 10th Anniversary


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