Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Writing Modern Fantasy

Okay, so anyone who has read my works, gay or straight stories, can tell that I like a hefty dose of fantasy, magical and paranormal, with my reality. I like to create things that cannot be in this world, yet set my story in this world. I consider this to be 'Modern Fantasy'. That has become a very popular subset of fantasy, with Harry Potter, Twilight (yes, haters be quiet, it is still a contribution to the genre), Black Dagger Brotherhood, New Species Organization ... just to name a few.

Now, a lot of people think with fantasy that anything goes. Well, to some extent, that is true. You can create the fantastical, like a whole new world contained within speck that a talking elephant rescues, or you can take a scientific phenomenon like a black hole and turn it into a space surfing route for humans to travel the galaxy. That's the beauty of it! The interesting part comes when you mix it in with the world as people know it today.

How does it fit? How do you explain it? Is it a shock to everyone, like werewolves suddenly admitting they exist to the world at large, or have they evolved along side people and everyone has always known? Is it still a secret from the world at large but the main characters, and the reader, get to be the privileged few that find out the magic hidden away from prying eyes? That's the question you really have to figure out; how do you make the implausible become plausible? How do you make the unrealistic come alive in the reader's mind?

It's not easy, I guarantee it! I once had a reader tell me that they loved one of my series, simply because the characters, who really aren't human, are people they can see. They have otherworldly characteristics but I made it so believable and it worked so well in the modern world I created that they felt like real people they wanted to meet and get to know. That was a compliment of the highest order, because that is EXACTLY what I think a writer of modern fantasy should strive for.

However, there are some rules, or perhaps you might call it a formula, to create a ' modern fantasy' story, imo.

1. Your main plot event MUST be something that isn't possible in our world, as we know it.
2. The setting should be Earth, as well know it, or as close to as we know it as possible.
3. The special characters should seem human, but make them your own special twist. They don't have to look human, per se, but give them that something that makes them seem like a neighbor, or a person on the bus, or in the grocery store that you could walk up to and say hello. They should be both ordinary and extraordinary.
4. The solution that overcomes the plot obstacle can often be something magical, or fantastical, as it were.

A few examples of ideas I've bandied about:

Spoof the Iditarod: Have a human racing through freezing black holes in space with the help of a space person/animal that is like a sled dog guide, in order to find some magical cure for a deadly plague on Earth. The cure might not be magical on whatever alternate Earth they'd find it on, but it could be on Earth they come from.  The main plot event is finding the cure in space, the setting is earth-both alternate and 'real' and 1 character could be human, and another human like but with fantastical powers. Obviously, the cure would seem magical on the Earth the character is trying to save.

Gift a person with the ability to control their body down to a cellular level. Then say they were captured by the government and forced to produce stem cells that were being grown into embryos or even children that were being used as experiments. But... if that person had the ability to control their cells... would they destroy the embryos and children if they found out what was going on, how would they not know about it, unless they were being kept in stasis? Would they have say, a psychic type link to any 'body' created by the cells if they were aware of them? A story like that could go in many directions.

So as you can see, it is relatively easy to take something that is 'modern and real' and make it into 'modern and fantastical'. If that's a genre you're interested in, try it out! I'd love to see your stories, so if you do, link it here!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Hypnotic Posted on GA

Hi Readers! I thought you would like to know that I just posted Hypnotic Ch. 20 on GA. I hope you enjoy this final chapter, though it isn't the end of stories in the world of the Carthera. Don't forget to leave a review or a comment here and tell me what you thought of the story!

Friday, May 25, 2012

What I Did Today

Nope, not writing, sorry! Before the ocd scrubbing got to me (I have serious issues with needing to clean sometimes, but I managed to stop after 3 hours today, lol) I went with my bratlings to a local garden park. The sun glinting off the lake during our picnic, finding the next beautiful flowering rhodie or iris around the corner of the many paths, and a lot of laughs at the antics of the geese, ducks, and squirrels begging for peanuts made for a lovely morning after a week of rain. I thought I'd share a few pictures for your enjoyment as well!


And this one just made me laugh. I titled it: Goosing a Duck!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

From the Land of Potato Salad

LOL! Yes, Hello from the Land of Potato Salad. So... we were invited to a last minute birthday bbq tonight. It is 55 degrees and raining off and on but this is the Pacific Northwest... we don't melt! So anyway, I had to go get the fixings for my mother in law's recipe for potato salad. We're talking 10 giant potatoes, a dozen eggs, mayo, sour cream, dill pickles, seasoning... and whew boy does my house STINK! I made the giant double batch since my hubby would be quite indignant if I didn't have a 2nd tub sitting here at home, since it is of course better the next day.

Now that I'm finally done with that, I'm settling in to work hard on The Experiment. Come back later to see if I get the next part ready to post tonight, if not, it'll be up tomorrow! Yay!

You might be even more excited to know the next chapter of Hypnotic is at my beta/editor. I knocked out 5757 words yesterday alone on that puppy, so it should be good and long... which is good since it is the last chapter. Yep, the last one. *don't kill me!*

So what else is coming up in the land of Cia's stories to keep my readers from dying of story deprivation? Well, I have a fantasy story I'm writing for the summer novella anthology at GA, though that won't be live until August sometime. I'm also plotting out a sequel for Pricolici to send to the publisher, and once The Experiment is done, I plan to go straight into the next story set on Seral's planet! Yep, there will be more!!

So this is goodbye from the Land of Potato Salad; I hope everyone else is having a lovely day.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Speech Tags . . . or Evil Tells

Okay, so I've decided that speech tags are evil tells! So often I have seen stories where the authors are lazy and use their tags to tell the reader how the character feels, instead of showing them. I try to avoid telling my readers how my characters feel, instead using their expressions and actions to show them instead.

Then, you also have to consider the common view that using tags other than said or asked is gratuitous as well, and distracting to the reader. Said and asked are so common that most readers don't see them.

The problem?

They don't show the reader what is going on with your character physically.

There are so many things to consider in writing!

Where my ruminations have left me . . . speech tags are to be avoided; they're like evil little speedbumps for readers, and I don't want that in my writing. I use them occasionally but try to stick to said or asked when I do so. Typically I'll use actions or thoughts from my characters to show the reader what is going on instead since it feels so more immediate.


"That's not fair!" she cried in petulant anger. (I know she's angry, but only because I'm told. Not as visual)

"That's not fair!" she said.  (This doesn't have nearly enough emotion, even with the exclamation point)

"That's not fair!" She glared at me with her lip stuck out in a little pout as her foot stomped sharply on the floor. (Did you get that I'm writing a little girl throwing a temper tantrum this time?)

Friday, May 18, 2012

Hypnotic Ch. 19 Posted!

Hi Readers! Just a heads up that Ch. 19 of Hypnotic has posted on GA. You can find it through the banner link below. If you don't have an account there, feel free to leave any comments or thoughts here!

Happy Reading!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

It Was A... Series Review

Hi readers! Sorry for the dearth of updates lately, but sometimes personal lives takeover. Totally unfair, right? I should be able to write uninterrupted, but that's a pipe dream, lol! So, I finished up a chapter of Hypnotic tonight but it needs a couple of edits before I post it so come back and check in tomorrow; I hope to have it for you sometime in the early evening!

Oh, if you need something good to read in the meantime, check out the 'It Was A..." series by Lugh, one of my fav authors and someone I consider a good friend. It's original, and all together the stories add up to a novel length story. Each one was an anthology submission on GA, so they stand alone but together, they tell the story of Puck and Rix, from their chance meeting and frantic sex in a pleasure world alley to a corrupt galactic government conspiracy and a whole religious experience via trantric sex! Oh, did I mention that Rix has golden eyes and purple hair and is a total stud? :P

Friday, May 11, 2012

Great Story -Nighttime Wishes- Out Now!

A lovely author and friend, MA Church aka nomoretears00, has released a new ebook titled Nighttime Wishes. I had the great honor of helping to beta read this project and I can tell you from personal experience that this is a story not to be missed. Original, and hot as all her stories are, I couldn't put it down! Take a peek at the awesome cover and description; I'll add the links to the various sites the story can be purchased as it becomes available!

Through the darkness of space and the barriers of Time an alien warrior is driven. The need to claim the one who will be his mate sends him back to Earth for the final time after many years of watching, and waiting. Ziang, warrior from the planet Maz’Rar, has come to claim his most precious prize and start a new life.
 But an unforeseen accident results in a crash landing in a desolate wood. His plans for a quick removable of his mate is now laying in a twisted ruin at his feet, much like his space craft. And his arrival has not gone unnoticed by the United States government.
Shawn, disowned by his parents for being gay, has returned to his family home to find his father dying from a stroke and his mother unable to cope with the family business. When the dust settles he finds his mother moving away leaving him with the family home and business in a small town he swore he never wanted to see again.
Unsure what he wants, the decision is taken from him by a fiery crash in the woods near his home and an alien that has come to claim him as his mate. The very same alien that has been observing him since age six when he made a wish upon a shooting star in the middle of the night.
Tensions mount as they are forced to hide Ziang while he waits three days for rescue. Will Shawn go with this being from another world? Will he be given a choice? Or will Ziang be captured by the military never to be seen from again; just another UFO myth in a long line of many?
Available at:
Allromanceebooks If you make a purchase on Sunday, you get a 30% rebate on ARe... at only $2.99, that makes this book an even better deal!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

What's Going On

Hi blog readers! Life continues to be busy as always! I've many things in the works, but one of my projects lately has been to start working on cover art for my Carthera stories. I plan to try to put them in ebook format and offer them for readers who like to read with ebook readers once I finish Hypnotic. Since I like to play with different graphics, I came up with one for Bonds Unbroken already and thought I'd share.

Well anyway, that was my fun time work today. Now I just have to come up with ideas for Two of a Kind, Hypnotic, and Inside of You. Ah well, that will have to wait, this evening is slated for working on The Experiment! The next part should be up tomorrow so come back to read it!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Prompt Fun!

So, today I'm busy writing Part 27 of The Experiment but a scene just isn't flowing for me. I'm getting locked down writing, and to avoid getting blocked I thought I'd do something small and fun. Then I thought I'd share it with you!

My prompts are titled 'Dribbles' so this is what I call a droplet. The goal is to write a story in 100 words or less, with a prompt theme. I hope some of you will try it!

Today's Droplet: I deserve a _________
My response:

Sunday's Sundae

“But I want it.”
I sighed in defeat. “I never had a chance, did I?”
Chocolate drizzled over rounded mounds.
A warm tongue licked soft lips. “Oh yeah.”
 “This is bad.”
“Just think of how good it will taste. I want the cherry first.”
I gave in as I eased the spoon into the cold treat. The first spoonful had a creamy ice cream base, chocolate syrup oozing over the side, and a succulent cherry perched on top.
“Oh, so good.” I moaned. “Screw my diet.”
I had to learn stop arguing with myself. I was always right.
The End

*Look for more of The Experiment tonight or tomorrow!*