My Writing Kit…The Story of a Fountain Pen

writing kit

Yesterday, I asked you all to stay tune today’s post, for today I was going to discuss the writing kit that I made. About last week, I was at Barnes and Nobel and was looking at all the notebooks that they had, and I picked out one of the bigger journals that had lined paper. I also picked up another pen, like we writers could never have enough pens. I also picked up a bag to put it all into. While on this same trip, I picked up a fountain pen, a little more on that later. The little pencil bag was a gift from the cashier, so that one was free, which is always a plus. Then a few days later, while I was at the Target I found some small thin little notebooks to add to my kit. These little notebooks are going to used as a place where I could jot down ideas for stories and such.

I have wanted to create this type of kit for a while now, I just couldn’t find the right tools for creating the kit that I wanted. My idea behind the kit was that I wanted a bag that was not a book bag, or a pack back, but was big enough to hold a notebook or two if so be. A bag that I could have in my car that would not draw too much attention for thieves, and yet it was a bag that I could take with me and that I could write down stories while I was out and about.

Therefore, when everything came together last week this kit was born and I am so happy to have a bag that has some of the essential tools that are necessary for me to write on the go. Now on the story of the fountain pen…

When I was about nine-years-old, I received my first fountain pen. Granted, the first time I tried using this pen, it marked me up with drips of ink. But overtime I began to master that pen. I mean I loved that pen, until it ran out of ink and could not find a replacement cartridge for it. However, since that fountain pen died, I have always wanted to replace it with another. I mean I have looked for years and granted they are expensive, which is one of the reasons that I could not replace my original fountain pen, until I got older.

Even though the price was one factor, I would not let that sink my dream of wanting another fountain pen. But hold and behold, Barnes and Noble was selling fountains at almost a fraction of what they were online. Granted, when I went up to the cash register the sales clerk irked her eyes at me and said, “You do know that this is very expensive pen?”

I smiled at her and answered, “Yes, I know it’s expensive for it is a fountain pen.” Then I went into my story of wanting to replace my first fountain pen, and then she sort of changed her tone about me purchasing an expensive pen. Sorry, if you are selling them in the store do not judge the customer who wants to purchase one, especially when they know what it is and why they want it so.

Granted, the one draw back to this fountain pen is that the ink is blue and not black, but the manufacturer does sell replacement cartridges for the pen in black. But I can live with blue ink for a while, since I found what I really wanted, which was the fountain pen.

Let’s also face the fact that we writers tend to have a favorite pen, and there is usually a story that goes along with that pen until it is either lost, stole or worse, its sadden death. But now matter what happens in live, we always go back to that favorite pen and wish that we could find another to replace it even if it is a hard thing to do.

I hope that you all have a fantastic writing day, and if you have created your own writing kit, please feel free to share. Happy Creating! Happy Writing! Happy Writing Adventures to all!

 

Its Been a Week…New Things are Coming

Hey guys! It has been about a week since I have posted any thing on here. There are some exciting changes coming to Faerie Rose Press, Moonspinner3 Books, and Elderwood Publications. But first lets start with the new header. As you can see there are two new logos that have been added to the header. The first is Pink Top Toadstool Productions.

Pink Top Toadstool Productions logo-page-001

Pink Top Toadstool Productions is for short stories written in the Fantasy genre. So if you follow the logic of the header, Faerie Rose Press is for Fantasy genre novels and above that is Pink Top Toadstool. So Fantasy genre stuff is on one side and on the other side is Elderwood Publications with the other genre writings, and in the middle is Moonspinner3 Books and under that is my picture. I’m trying to expand my little enterprise while not getting over whelmed. I will explain my logic a little bit later in the post. But first let me introduce the other side of the short story coin with, River Valley Short Story Productions.

River Valley Short Story Productions logo-page-001

River Valley Short Story Productions is for story stories written under other genres. This includes westerns, or anything that is not fantasy, and that is why it is placed just above the logo for Elderwood Publications. This is where story stories will be published.

 

 

The reason why I created these two divisions is that I love to write story stories. This has always been a joy for me since I was younger. Let’s also state that like most writers, I did not start to seek out on the writing journey of writing novels, but rather short stories. Short stories are fun to write, and are a blast to put out if you are looking for a quick fifteen minute fix on your writing, short stories are the way to go. Therefore, with all of this in mind, I thought that I needed a place to publish short stories and that is where Pink Top Toadstool Productions and River Valley Short Story Productions come in. Yes, I said productions for both Pink Top Toadstool and River Valley Short Story.

I main reason why I am going with Productions as the underlining title for both of these, is that productions in mind are quick and have a lot of make on their own merit. This is the same for any production company that is under a bigger name such as Disney or Warner Brothers, for some where in the mix is a production company that also deserves credit for what they put out, and that is exactly how I feel with these two divisions when it comes to short stories.

On this note, I want to give some quick updates on other happenings within Moonspinner3 Books. Ravages of Time is still being worked on. I have not put aside this project for the sake of short stories. Heck no. But I am currently working on a short story on the side, which means that I am still writing and actively writing and working on things even if I am not posting on here daily. I plan to work on making a schedule for getting things in order, for the new year.

I also created a kit for writing that I can take with me. I will make time to be on here tomorrow, so that I can share with you this kit that I made myself, so that I can take my writing with me. So I hope that you stay tune for tomorrow’s post.

Here we go again…

Before I begin, talking about the last oil that is being spilled upon the writing community, let me ask, “Is this for real?”

This year, in the writing community we have dealt with bullying tactics by the likes of Faleena Hopkins, but now we have someone is taking #cockygate to a whole other level. God help us all!

cockygate-audacity-faleena-hopkins1

The writing community is up in arms again in the defense of not an indie author, but rather a New York Times best selling author. This author has written and sold not just thousands of books but millions of books. In case you are not aware, Nora Roberts, (yes, thy Nora Roberts) has now been called out for plagiarizing titles. Let’s make this clear first off, “You cannot own titles.”

Sorry, for the red font but this one is over the top. Just saying. Nora Roberts on her blog, Fall Into The Story, she has written a post called, “Mob Rule by Social Media.” I have added the link so that you can read it when you feel like it. She says that she was recently accused her of stealing the title of her book. Let’s get to the facts shall we, this author who called out Nora for stealing, has one book out, her debut.

The book that Nora wrote came out a year before this author’s book, and as Nora says in her blog, “You can’t copyright a title. And titles, like broad ideas, just float around in the creative clouds. It’s what’s inside that counts.” Agreed and well said. Let’s also put out here that this author, has no fact just emotions that her follows have grabbed onto like a bunch of monkeys grabbing on to bunch of bananas.

Just like Faleena Hopkins followers grabbed on to the knowledge that they gained from her to attack other writers, this author’s followers are doing the same thing to Nora. This attack was not only on this author’s feed, but also on Nora’s pages, which let me state Nora clearly says on her blog that she is only Facebook, Instagram and her blog. That is all the social media that she is involved on.

This author has even claimed that Nora is “trying to use this first time writer-whose books has been well received-for my own profit.” Further more the quote goes on from Nora, “ride her coattails as I have no originality. This after more than thirty years in the business, more than two hundred books.” She even goes on to say that she has never heard of this author’s book and she has never read her book either, which she polity states, “I never will now.”

Nora states , that she does not now this woman and this author does not know her. Furthermore, this author “lit the match, foolishly.” Furthermore, Nora Roberts has been plagiarized before and as she says it leaves an open wound. So why in the world would Nora plagiarized?

This whole thing boils down to this new-bee author trying to make bank on someone else’s success from one title. Sorry, this is wrong. She has been called names and a liar for coming out about this situation, when all she did was write a book a year ago. That is all. She wrote a book a year before this other author.

Granted, I could ask how do we know that this author did not plagiarizer on Nora’s book? But we cannot do that for, no one owns a bloody title. Yes, I have a few of Nora’s books and I love to read them. Do we want to be like her someone day? Yes, we do. Let’s own up to that fact. But to call her out for the success of her career is just nasty business, and a slippery slope that we cannot take back.

Enough is enough. Sorry, this is year has been nasty and for the record some of the bridges have been burned between writers within the community. We need to rebuild and stand up for authors and to acknowledge that no one can own a title. This was Faleena’s downfall and this will probably be this author’s downfall too. I’m not saying pick a side but this year has been harsh to this community.

As Nora states on her blog, a fire has been started and the person who started needs to put it out. However, the fire is continuing to burn and there is not water to put it out, but there is enough fuel to keep it burning. Let us rise up from this and come together and stand by those that have been wrongly accused.

Nora wanted to be strong and not let this come out, but she has had enough. We have all had enough of this bull shit this year. Frankly, enough is enough. Let’s put out the fire and stand by those that need justice and face facts. Yes, we should be loyal to our readers and our readers should be loyal to us, but this does not mean that we use our readers to attack fellow writers.

Part of being a writer is doing your homework. Knowing the process. Understanding that titles can be used over and over again just like the names that we go buy. If you wanted something original go out on a branch and look for it.

Let me just say that I have found the covers of both books and the author, who has accused Nora of plagiarism. The author is Tomi Adeyemi and her book is titled, “Children of Blood and Bone.” Nora’s book is titled, “Of Blood and Bone.” I’m not starting a witch hunt here against Tomi, but give me a freaking break, there is one word difference between the two titles while four words are the same. This is unbelievably stupid to say the least.

Yes, Tomi has come out and appologize to Nora and has even acknowledged that both works were titled in “isolation.” Granted, this statement from Tomi came out two days ago. But the fire keeps on raging. Haven’t we had enough fires this year?

 

What to get Writer Friends this Holiday Season

Image result for Christmas FairyAs November draws to a close, and December opens its arms to the merriment of season greetings, the start of winter, Christmas, any other holiday that you might celebrate, it’s time to talk about what to get that writing friend that is on your list.

Yes, we writers like to have gifts that are essential to our writing goals or wishes. This is also how you prove that you are supporting their goals in life by giving something that will help them with their writing. So without further ado, here is this year’s Christmas list of what to get your writing friends. Let me also preface this as I did this same post last year, so if you need ideas you can also check out that post. Here is the link to last year: Need help shopping for the writer you know?

Let’s start with the kids that have an interest in writing. If the child that you know is interested in writing, give them a notebook or a journal along with a nice pen or pencils so that they can start using these tools to build their arsenal. Granted, this is the same suggestion as last year, but it’s always going to be a goto one at any rate. However, this year I’m also going to let you know who you can make it better. If there is a certain character that they like and they cannot find a notebook with that character plastered all over the front of the notebook, I would suggest check out Vista Print and make a personalized notebook with the said character on it. This way they have something unique that they will cherish and love. You can also do this same idea with Staples, or Office Max.

Now let’s talk teens and preteens that love the art of writing. Again I’m going to the notebook suggestion. You can never go wrong with a notebook or a set of really awesome pens or pencils. If they are into technology and already have a laptop, might I suggest that you purchase for them a licensed copy of Scrivener, or Microsoft Word that way they have a writing software at their lovely fingertips. The other gift that you can give them is a larger monitor with the capability to do HDMI, this way they can look at the bigger screen instead of depending on that tiny little screen. You are not only helping their writing but their eyes also. The other suggestion is a nice keyboard and mouse set so that way their fingers have more room to move than being confined to that keyboard.

Also on the licensing note, you can also give the gift of Adobe Photoshop. Yes, this gift can be helpful to the self-published author when it comes time to put together the book or if they are having someone else do it for them, then help with the deposit. But if they are like me and want to take full control of how that book looks and feels, Photoshop is not a bad investment for their writing career.

Now for the college-aged kids, same suggestions as above and you can never go wrong with Microsoft Word, for they are going to need it for writing those lovely papers. But let’s get into some other useful things that they can use. Planners are big. I mean really big, for there are whole sections now in craft stores just dedicated to the art of making a really awesome planner. If your college-age student is really into detail planning, you can not go wrong by giving them a planner and some of the different options for customizing that planner to suit their needs. Granted, the planner gift can also be a good one for those teens and preteens that are on your list.

Now let’s talk about writing guides as gifts. There are several that have come out this year and there a few that have been around that I have picked up this past year. However, I’m going to say one that every fiction writing is getting and it makes this year top ticket item for writers: Save the Cat! Writes a Novel: The Last Book on Novel Writing You’ll Ever Need, by Jessica Brody. Save the Cat! books were originally written for screenwriters and someone has taken the formula and made it accessible for fiction writers. Granted, Save the Cat! has always been a go-to guide for any writer, but now we have one for just as fiction writers. Let me tell you, this is going to make a great Christmas gift, for it will come in handy.

Let’s get into the adult writers in your life, this list can be quite endless for anything is possible, and I mean anything. Notebooks, journals, technology, writing guides, and planners are going to be on the list for any writer. However, on my own personal take, think outside of the box. Really outside of the box. If your writer friend is a coffee drinker, while they write get them either a really nice mug or get a personalized mug from Vista Print, that has a quote about writing on it. Granted, you cannot go wrong with a candle or incense, for most writers like to write with a candle melting in the background. I would also suggest music that will help them relax when the writing can be a little bit too much.

Another handy gift, to give this season to your writing friends is a cork board, this way your writer friends can tack on their writing notes just above their writing area so that they can look up and find notes if they need it. Trust me, some writers can never have too much cork boards even if they have one.

Granted, if you really want to go out on a limb, a nice Tarot deck can be a good tool that writers can have in their arsenal. A deck and show images that can help inspire writers to unleash that creativity that they have built inside and is just waiting to come out. Granted there are so many decks out there and my suggestion would be to pick one that you believe speaks to them and not to you. Unless you want a deck for yourself and that is never a bad idea either.

On that note, I hope that you have a Happy Holidays and have fun shopping for that writer friend that is on your list! From all of us at Moonspinner3 Books, Faerie Rose Press, and Elderwood Publications, Happy Holidays!

Image result for Christmas wreath faerie

 

 

Updates for the Month of November

I can’t believe that November is almost over, like in two days. This month has been extremely busy with NaNoWriMo, getting ready for Thanksgiving, and of course may the shopping season begin. In the mean time, there are still things happening right here at Faerie Rose Press, this includes making plans for next year. Yes, 2018 is almost over and 2019 will be coming soon upon us. Before, we get to what is in store for next year, let me get into what has been going on this past month.

Let’s start with NaNoWriMo. This month, I started work on the first draft of The Bird that Sings. This draft is going so well, that I’m still working on it. Let me define this statement by saying that while I didn’t reach the goal of 50 thousand words, I did however, get to a point in the draft where I’m going to stay that it is a work in progress. Yes, it will be put on the shelf of projects to be worked on but it will not be so far on the shelf that it gets ignored. There are other children that have asked for my undivided attention. One of those children is Ravages of Time. Let me preview this conversation about Ravages of Time with it’s in the plan for next year.

However, about Ravages of Time, while it quietly sat on the table going, “Hello over here have you forgotten about?” The answer is now, I have not forgotten about Ravages of Time, not per say, it is just that other projects came along that gained me attention, such as The Bird that Sings and The Raven Prophecy to name a few. This can be a real problem having so many writing projects sitting on the shelves calling out for attention. That as part of next year’s plan, I really plan on working one project a time and seeing it through. This is where Ravages of Time comes in. While The Raven Prophecy has been a work in progress for the last fifteen years, I feel that since Ravages of Time has been calling out the loudest to me, I thought that I would see to it’s final stages. This means getting a second draft written, and hopefully get it published next year.

See, I’m working on sticking with goals. One way that I am seeing this through is by making another cover for Ravages of Time. Yes, I have made previous covers for Ravages of Time, but this one is the most suitable cover, in my opinion for the piece. This cover is more mature and gives a more complete feel for the story that is going to behind the front cover.  If you need a reminder of the previous two covers here they are:

Ravages of Time-2-page-001 Ravages of Time cover2-page-001

While I kept the house as the center point of both of these covers with time being a secondary theme of the cover. One is plainly in cover, while the second is in black and white. The clocks at the bottom on the second one are somewhat smudged out to give the feel that time can get fuzzy as time goes on. While the first one, is actually my first attempt of making a cover and I feel that it’s time has passed and is no longer needed. The second one, while it gives more of a setup for the book it still does not convey the message, or rather the tone that I want to give for the book. This third cover, sets out to do exactly that and that is set the tone. Without further ado, here is the third front cover for Ravages of Time…

Ravages of Time cover5-page-001 (1)

This cover still has the house being the center point, and the clocks are really taken a back stage. When you look at the cover, it gives the impression of a picture frame around the house. I have changed the colors on the house to give it a more older feeling.

Of of my goals this year is give more of a story vibe when I describe how things have come to me, as far as writing projects, as well as the covers that I make for my work. In the past, on this site, I have posted up a new cover without going into detail which on my part is bad. As writers we should be story tellers, and on this I want to work on this piece of what I want to convey on this site, which means telling the story. Therefore, let me give you the story of how this version of the cover came to be.

I was driving in my car at night, through Longmont, Colorado when out of nowhere Ravages of Time called into my brain. I had the previous cover in mind, but then something was like wait a minute, it can use a different cover. Granted, the funny thing that came first to me was the clocks, such as the clocks were going to be used as border around the image of the house. Therefore, the second thing that came to mind was the house, which is so funny for when I first made the cover for Ravages of Time, the house was the first thing to come to mind. However, that was not he case this time, for it was the clocks. However, when the image of the house came to mind, I wanted to make it look older and more worn down then the previous versions. However, I was like that’s perfect, but instead of going to my computer straight away to work on it. I sat with this image in my head for a week. Yes, this image was coming to me for a whole week, when I was intensely working on The Bird that Sings. Then last Saturday, I had enough of this image coming to me and being like: Hey, I gave you a fricking gift what are you going to do with it? Therefore, I sat with my computer and I worked and configured with cover for four hours. Yes, that’s right, four hours! Let me just say that it was the best four hours that I have spent working on this cover, that is not to say that I rushed the previous covers but this cover I wanted it done right. I didn’t want it rushed. I wanted to take my time to work on it and to make it as perfect as I could possibly make it.

Granted, I have been sitting on it for the last few days keeping it to myself, but I guess that is also my proactive as a writer and as a creator. I can keep things to myself until I’m ready to send it out into the world.

Therefore, next month one of my goals is to start the ground work of getting my area completely ready to work on Ravages of Time. Yes, while others take December to recoup from NaNoWriMo and gear up for the holidays, I’m going to be digging deep into Ravages of Time. This of course is my decision. Part of it is also that it can get the attention that it feels that it deserves and oh will it get it.

On a final note, I want to thank everyone is currently following this site. Let me announce that currently, there is a 120 followers and growing. Thank you, thank you to everyone that has followed this site, for your support means the world to me.

Also I want to say, that in the month of December, I will be posting new content as well as my list of Top Ten gifts for Writers, which is a continuation from last year’s post on, Christmas gifts for your writer friends.

That is all that I currently have to say in this update post. I hope that you all of a great writing day! Happy creating!

In Memoriam: Stan Lee

No automatic alt text available.Yesterday, the news broke of the passing of Stan Lee, 95, the creator of the Marvel Universe. Even if you have not read any of the comic books, you should know of the many characters that he created such as Spider Man, The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man, The Black Panther, the X-men, and The Avengers to name a few in a long line of characters. He was more than just a creator of legendary super heroes that domed the pages of comic books, he was a writer.

A comic book writer, which at times made him feel embarrassed. Given by this quote, anyone who read his would say there is no need to be embarrassed.

Image result for stan lee quotes Yes, he went on to do a very good thing indeed. He opened up the minds and creative outlets to many of his fans. This goes for out a doubt whether you ever were a fan of Spider Man, or in my case X-Men. Yes, I was more of a fan of X-Men then of Spider Man. But even so, they were almost the same in that they were given super powers either by being bitten by a radio active spider, or they were born with the powers. Besides, the super powers that were put upon them, they also had real-live issues. Take Peter Park, aka Spider Man. Stan Lee in an interview that he gave to Lee Cowen a couple of years ago, he said that, “Peter Park was a teenager dealing with real-live teen age problems. I wanted to give him a connection of the readers.”

Yes, he certainly gave that connection for almost most of us had the feeling that we did not fit in with the crowd at school. But more than just giving his readers a connection to the characters, he was always creating, writing, and making cameos in most of the films that have made up the Marvel Universe. He said that while being the movies was fun, his real joy came from meeting fans at conventions. He said in another interview of Sony Entertainment, “No matter where I go in the world, everyone knows Spider Man. Spider Man is one of my most recognizable characters, and when Spider Man gets called out it puts a smile on my face.”

Even though, he never retired but on the subject he said, “Why should I retire? I’m doing what I have always wanted to do.”

Furthermore, on the subject of writing he gave this quote:

Image result for stan lee quotes

Stan Lee, you will be greatly missed!

 

What NaNoWriMo Means to Me

It’s day eight on NaNoWriMo, which means we have been participating in NaNoWriMo for a whole week. Yes, a week of this writing exercise is gone. In case you were wondering, The Bird that Sings is currently at 14,048 words or roughly nineteen pages. On the other note, here is a clever riddle to stroke your fancy: Why do pilgrim’s pants always fall down? Stay tune for the answer.

However, speaking of NaNoWriMo, I want to talk about what NaNoWriMo means for me. During November it is reserved for us writers or authors to try our hand at writing a first draft of a novel. While this is the case for most in that they work on a novel that they have had on mind for awhile and have had the secret desire to get it out onto the page. While tend to play it safe with what they are comfortable writing what they have written before, in terms of genre and POV. I, on the other hand, tend to look at NaNoWriMo as a chance to experiment.

Take myself out of the norm of what I typically write. This includes going from POV of third person narrative to first person. Further, while I enjoy writing fantasy, I usually use NaNoWriMo to tackle other genres that I have not written before. This gives me a chance to not only experiment but also a chance for, as I feel on the matter, growth.

We as writers all need to let ourselves that chance to grow with our writing. Let’s face it if you don’t grow then you cannot improve yourself. While growth maybe one of the core values that I have in stowed with Moonspinner3 Books. But it is true, we all need to have that little hint that we are growing and maturing as a writer. This even goes for those that write children’s books and young adult. While our subject matter cannot show the maturity that we want to convey due to the limitations of subject matter, but we can hide secret meanings between lines of text.

Granted, while our young readers may not see the light bulb being turned on, but our older readers may. Remember we also want to be clever with what we put on the page. Therefore, I tend to think of NaNoWriMo as my chance to be clever and to grow. Then what I gained during NaNoWriMo, I can carry forth to my other works in progress and to future works.

Think back to that riddle at the top, Why do pilgrim’s pants always fall down? Granted, its not like the riddle of why is a raven like a writing desk? But the answer to the posted riddle is clever. Before I give you the answer, think of what a pilgrim looks like. You have that picture in mind. Here is the answer: They have belt buckles on their hats, overcoats and on their shoes, but not on their pants.

bear pilgrim

Therefore, in short NaNoWriMo is an opportunity that we have been given to grow our use of words and our abilities to write and share stories. There is a reason why, the slogan for NaNoWriMo, is the world needs your story. This is true but the only way that we feel comfortable sharing our stories is through the process of seeing the growth in our storytelling skills. Its just up to those that dare to try to change their course through the opportunities that are given to us.

This does not mean at this point that you should change what or how you writing your novel that you have already started this month. It simply means try something new the next time that you are writing a new project, rewriting your novel, or even editing the novel that is in progress. I would never want you to change what you have written based on the advice that has been given in this post.

I hope that you all have a great writing day! Good luck during NaNoWriMo! Finally, happy creating!