Wednesday, November 21, 2012


Without a doubt, Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. It's all about the Four F's: Food, Family, Friends, and Football. There's no pressure to shop for gifts, just a day to enjoy some chow with your loved ones and then the massive food-coma that sets in afterwards. 

It's also a time to be thankful for the things we have. And as clich├ęd as it is, here is my list of…

Stuff CM is Thankful For:

1) CobraMrsFit: The woman is infinitely patient and tolerant. She listens when I get all excited about a shiny new plot idea (no matter how outlandish or stupid it is), actually enjoys beekeeping, and insists on me having "guy time" with my buds. She’s also the most compassionate person I know. I got real lucky with this one.  

2) My Folks: I grew up in a home filled with love and laughter where Dad taught me how to be a man and Mom taught me how to be a gentle man.

3) My In-Laws: Listening to the horror stories from my co-workers, I am very thankful to have extended family that feels like family

4) This Nation: Listen, no matter what your political views are, it's hard to argue against the fact that we live in an amazing country. I've seen a lot of the world and trust me, we have it good. That's not to say other countries aren't fantastic, but this is our home. One of the most inspiring things is that if we don't like the way it is being run, then we actually have the right to vote the ruling party in or out of office. Our voice may seem small at times, but it does matter. Few places on this planet can say the same. Granted, we are not without our faults, but everyone has their issues. Yet no matter what, we are a nation of hopeful romantics, inspiring heroes, soulful artists, passionate dreamers, and determined entrepreneurs. Any one of us can be as much or as little as we want. How great is that, eh?

5) My Mentors, Betas, and Fellow Cantineros: This one is dedicated to my writing posse. Several years ago, I had no clue what I was doing. Then I met a some amazing people, especially those at Absolute Write, who helped point me in the right direction*. To Suz, thank you for being a friend and for providing the kick-in-the-pants that made me think I could actually write something. To Hillz and 'Bugz, you guys are amazing. Individually, you've helped me hone my skill in more ways than you'll ever know. To the Crew at the Cantina, you all provide a safe and encouraging place to linger between plot points. The encouragement you provide one another is an example of what all writing communities should be like. Stay shiny, gang.

6) My Dragon Brother: If you love comics, music, theater, and The Classics, this is the guy. Thanks for decades of laughter with, and at, one another, bud.

7) Pie and Wine: Because both are awesome and in ample supply this time of year.

So that’s my list. How about you? Anything in particular you’re thankful for?    

*Or "write" direction, if you will! Ba-dum-dum!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Mini-Blog Hop. Tag: You're It!

The lovely and effervescent Anya T. Quinn tagged me as part of a WIP Mini Blog Hop. And since I’m always up for supporting my fellow writers, I’m playing along.

Here are the rules:

Answer these ten questions about your current WIP (Work In Progress) on your blog. (SEE BELOW)

Tag five other writers/bloggers and add their links so we can hop over and meet them. (SEE BELOW)

Okay, so here goes....

1. What is the working title of your book?

The Devil’s Practitioner. Apparently Twilight and Harry Potter were already taken.

2. What genre does the book fall under?

Dunno. Kinda’ one-part Urban Fantasy and one-part modern Greek mythological action flick.

3. Which actors would you choose to play your characters for the movie rendition?

If I had my druthers, Neil Patrick Harris as the Main Character, Harlan, and Anne Hathaway as Emma. Of course, that may also be because I have man-crushes on the both of them.

4. What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

When down-and-out country doctor Harlan Edwards is chosen by the gods to find a cure for a dying Hades, he finds his road to redemption blocked by crazed fanatics and power-hungry deities, both of whom are willing to sacrifice the stability of the Underworld and the lives of all humanity if it means capitalizing on the death of Harlan and his patient.

5. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I’d much prefer to be represented by an agent since they know the murky waters of publishing far better than I do. Plus, there’d be a sense of satisfaction knowing I climbed the Big Hill and emerged victorious.   

6. How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

Just shy of 6-months. It’s hard to hammer out 96,000 words when you work 10 hours a day.

7. What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

Eesh. Maybe the Percy Jackson series, but that’s Young Adult. Otherwise, I like to think of it as Harry Dreseden vs. The Ancient Greek Gods. But with shotguns.

8. Who or what inspired you to write this book?

Actually, it started as a joke in the Absolute Write Cantina (LINK) and I drew up a mock-query letter. My feminazgul* pal, Psycho (aka: @Fatihah_Iman), encouraged me to follow up with the idea and when I mentioned it to my buddy Scipio (a classics/comics nut over at The Absorbascon), he helped me conduct the research. What started as a humorous spoof turned into a full-blown novel that digs deep into the mythos of the Greek gods and gives a lot of nods to the lesser-known deities.  

9. What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

There's a lot of action, a ton of humor, and a little romance, but the biggest enticement is that everything we think we know about the Greek Pantheon is given a fresh spin. Hades is a good guy, Death loves a nice cup of tea, and we see that the gods are just as fragile and broken as we mortals. And as Harlan struggles though his quest to find a cure, his actions will drastically alter the hierarchy of power among the gods in later books.

Assuming I write more in the series. 

Question #10: Tag, you’re it!

Okay, so here are my tags:

Tiffany Allee (@tiffanyallee) – She writes Paranormal Romance that is sooooooo good.

Bettie Lee Turner (@Bettiekins) – She’s the queen of fairies.

Cathy Pegau (@CathyPegau) – Alaskan Awesomeness that cannot be bottled.

Sean Connell (@slcboston) – Snark and laughs, wrapped in brains, and dipped in mwa-ha-ha.

Abner Senires (@abnersenires) – Kat and Mouse. ‘Nuff said.

So that's that. Happy Friday, everyone.

* I KNOW that’s spelled wrong. I’ll check with Psycho and correct it later.