Random Friday


Mighty Joleene Naylor gave me the Sisterhood of the World’s Blogger Award! She’s the most awesome indie author I’ve ever met and she’s still blogging after all these years and her Amaranthine series is one of my favorites, so go check her if you don’t know her already!

sisterhoodoftheworld_zps04ae03d0Here are the award rules:

  • Thank the giver and link their blog to your post.
  • Answer the 10 questions given to you.
  • Pass the award on to 7 other bloggers of their choice and let them know that they have been nominated.
  • Include the logo of the award in a post or on your blog.

Point 1: check

Point 2: will do in a sec.

Point 3: I don’t know who to pass this on, so if you who are reading this want it, grab it, answer the questions and link back to this post so I can read your answers!

Point 4: check.

My answers to Joleene’s questions!

1. You’re going on vacation to a deserted island and you get five things (besides toilet paper, food, and the essentials). What do you take?

notebook, pen and pencil, and da Kindle Keyboard – with that Stupid Phone that works as MP3 reader! 😉

2. What’s your favorite movie or TV show?

I don’t watch TV since the early Nineties. Anything with Da Muses tends to become a favorite, so I’ll say their latest movie, John Wick & Bang Bang (which are both action movies, but Muse H has also romance. And those jaw-dropping dance steps). And apparently both are getting sequels as well! 😉

3. What’s something you collect?

Art books. DVDs. comic books.

4. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

Nothing at this time. Call it middle-age wisdom! 😉

5. Cats, dogs, or squirrels?

Unicorns or other legendary creatures, thanks!

6. What’s a hobby people might not guess you have?

I’m afraid it’s all pretty much in the open…

7. Do you roll or fold your socks (or just stuff them in the drawer)?

pair them with a half roll and stuff then in the socks box.

8. What is the closest object on your right?

besides the mouse? Tablet for digital painting (not much used, unfortunately)

9. If you could be known for only one thing, what would it be?

My wonderful stories! 😀

10. If you were a ghost, who would you haunt?

Screenwriters – especially if they were trying to make movies out of my books!

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Random Friday


Mighty Jo awarded me again. I’m copy-pasting what this is all about:

willowdot21 AKA Shaun has started a new award, and  here is what Shaun had to say.

“This is an award for everyone who is part of the “Word Press Family” I start this award on the basis that the WordPress family has taken me in, and showed me love and a caring side only WordPress can. The way people take a second to be nice, to answer a question and not make things a competition amazes me here. I know I have been given many awards, but I wanted to leave my own legacy on here by creating my own award, as many have done before. This represents “Family” we never meet, but are there for us as family. It is my honour to start this award”

wordpress-family-awardRules:

  1. Display the award logo on your blog.
  2. Link back to the person who nominated you.
  3. Nominate 10 others you see as having an impact on your WordPress experience and family.
  4. Let your 10 Family members know you have awarded them.
  5. That is it. Just please pick 10 people that have taken you as  a friend, and spread the love.

I really like this award, as I love WordPress! Yes, it really feels like a family, so let’s see if I can find 10 other WordPressers to pass this on…

Bollywood Addict

Shafali the caricaturist

Vivienne Tuffnell

Rohan Healy

Laxmi Hariharan

Tricia Kristufek

Miss Kitty Roads

Nora Weston

Madison Woods

Bluetrix Books.

I don’t know about your side of the world, but here the weather is crazy and my health is going up and down like a yo-yo (raise hands whoever knows what a yo-yo is – I guess my younger readers will have no idea, LOL!). I want to sleep but I sleep badly. Mood swings follow the weather – hot and then cold and then hot and then cold. And it’s probably not even an approaching menopause, but a crazy tyroid, which apparently affects 30% of women. Especially women who were alive in 1986, IMHO. Why? Chernobil. Did you really think the radiations would stop at Russia’s borders? No way. The whole of Europe got it. And it’s starting to show.

That’s the sci-fi writer speaking – well, that’s what Kol-ian tells Daniele and Chantal when they come back to Earth in 2002. Those lucky two left in 1982, so they’d probably die if they breathed the air we have now! 😉 Anyhow, I think there’s some truth to the above statement – even if I used it in my fiction. And then we had another nuclear disaster in 2011. So we’re all fucked up – and don’t seem to be able to stop. Like Agent Smith said during the last year of the 20th century, “Human beings are a disease.” And we haven’t learned anything since. I might have skipped Earth’s Day, but it’s because I don’t believe in those silly “days” – we should respect each other and our planet every single day, not only on specific dates. Sigh.

Spent yesterday (Italian holiday) trying that Kindle Comic Creator – interesting. It makes better mobi files, but with SKYBAND I should probably try the panel-by-panel reading, except it seems to put the page and then the single panels. And the parts in prose it can’t detect, so unless I put some kind of frame around them, they’d still be unreadable.

Anyway, I now have a decent mobi file of Fleur de Lys 1, so I might upload that to KDP during the weekend. When I’m not writing Shooting Star (brand new beginning, by the way, and it’s going ways I never expected. I even get to explore S’lyss’s private life as Governor of Gaia! ;)) or revising the body switch that will go out to editors on Monday, that is! 🙂 Have a wonderful weekend and more guests coming in May! 🙂

UPDATE: found this wonderful drawing on DA and thought it was perfect for today’s rambling!

humans_again__by_naolito-d5rnxhw

Surprise Sunday


… and it’s a blog award! With special thanks to Rohan7things who passed me the Best Moment Award! Thank you, Rohan (and BTW, if you’d like to do a guest post… you’re very welcome! It would be an interesting change of perspective! ;))!

No rules except passing it on, so here’s a list of bloggers… no, wait, I’ve already done that. Okay, you, yes, you who are reading this and would like to have this shiny award on your blog: just grab it, paste it and pass it on! I could nominate, but some people don’t accept awards, or they already have it, others never pass them on, so… no names. If you want it, grab it and have fun! And thanks for stopping by! 😉

I didn’t go to Deepcon (as you might have guessed), so not much else to say. Gotta go back to those writing projects – the Italian stories that always take me back down memory lane because they’ve been written in the late 1980s early 1990s so sometimes I wonder if and how I changed. And I don’t mean physically (I didn’t, except now I color my hair – my former classmates think I hybernated for 20 years to stay as I am. Which I probably did, but don’t tell them!).

Those were stories written in my early twenties, and yeah, I guess I changed a lot since. Not my writing style, though! 😉 Pity Italians don’t read, I’m sure they’d enjoy those stories. And no, I’m not translating them because they’re too set in Italy in the last years of the 20th century – “period piece” they’d call it in Hollywood. I doubt anyone is interested anyway. And too many things would get lost in translation (that’s my main objection)! 😉

Okay, as this blog has almost 200 followers – would you like me to do a giveaway? Post a free piece of fiction? Celebrate? Just forget about it? Vote in the poll and let me know, thank you! 🙂

Have a wonderful Sunday!

Random Friday


First a warning for you social network users… careful when you share your location. Or you might find yourself in the same situation as this agent. I guess that author doesn’t read the same blogs that I read, LOL! Anyway, stalkers are everywhere, do not give away these things on Facebook or whatever…

There was some form of “statement” pasted on my Italian friends’ profiles last week that said if you copy/pasted it, nobody would breach your privacy. A statement in Italian. On an international (US-based) site. My comment was: there is no privacy online, do not post what you don’t want to be public – no matter how you set your privacy options!

I’m appalled at the kind of things people post on social networks thinking it’s safe. Sigh. Not to mention Facebook “rules” that apply only to some. See what happened to the Elfquest Official page and the New Yorker because of those vague rules… Glad I “censored” the SKYBAND gals when I posted their new tattoos on Facebook! Still, it’s kinda creepy…

Now, Mighty Jo has given me another blog award, yay! So, here are the rules:

I tell you 5 Fabulous moments, 5 things I love , 5 things I hate, and then I nominate 5 friends.

Now the hard part.

5 fabulous moments

I’ll let pics talk… I made a slideshow of five pics because they didn’t look good all lined up! 🙂

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

5 things I love (in no particular order):

1) Bollywood movies (can you tell?) and all kind of movies that have a story and don’t try to impress me with special effects or (worse, yikes!) 3D – Asian, American, European, I don’t care! Love movies! 🙂

2) reading blogs, mags, books, ebooks…

3) writing journals, blog posts, fiction, non-fiction, whatever…

4) drawing comics, cartoons, illustrations, graphic novels…

5) music – movie soundtracks, ethnic, celtic, classical, pop, rock, whatever, as long as there’s a melody and I can dance and shake my booty – well, my feet  more likely, LOL! 🙂

5 things I hate (same as above):

1) cockroaches. Call the Men in Black and get rid of them.

2) People who try to force their beliefs or ideals on someone else and/or who ridicule others for their beliefs. Just because you don’t agree, you don’t need to make fun of them.

3) OK, the first two were copied from Jo, so I’ll try to be original now. Traffic – and those drivers who drive only on Sunday or when it’s pouring rain and don’t know how to do it (can you tell last week and part of this one I had to drive to work?). Grrr.

4) screaming white monkeys… I mean high school kids on public buses (can you tell I’m back to using public transport and the schools have started?). Again, if their parents had been VHEMT, the world would be a much better place! 😉

5) I’m trying very hard to be positive, so I can’t think of a fifth thing to hate at the moment…

and now the 5 friends… I don’t have 5 bloggers who accept awards I can think of, so if you – who are reading this – have a blog and want this neat award, just grab it and pass it on! I did all this only because 5 is my favorite number, LOL!

Now, to end more with randomness: I watched Karam, but I have two problems with that movie. 1) the subtitles are not synchronized, so often you have no idea of who is saying what. Guess I need to start learning Hindi after all. 2) too artsy for my tastes, reminding me of Rumble Fish (I loved Matt Dillon, but I hated F.F.Coppola for shooting in b&w). There’s even the colored fish on b&w background. It was meant to be shot all sepia, apparently, and there are part that are cartooned, and there are no songs or dance numbers, so I guess it’s for regular movie watchers who want the story of an assassin falling in love with all its tragic consequences.

Must have been Priyanka Chopra’s week, as she was also in Love Story 2050. Now, that’s pure Bollywood sci-fi, with time travel (from Australia 2008 to Mumbai 2050) and dance numbers. It reminded me of Fifth Element, Back to the Future part 2 and some Krrish as well (the fake butterflies and Priyanka add to that, LOL). And I loved the soundtrack as well, lyrics by the uncle of the Akhtar Twins (who, by the way, wrote the lyrics of my two favorite Bride&Prejudice songs, “A marriage has come to town” and “No life without wife”). So, lovely Priyanka and introducing Harman Baweja who unfortunately is no Hritik. I mean, yes, he can dance, see?

But the original is something else! (And yes, DO watch also “Dil Laga Na Dil” from the same movie, Dhoom 2, as advertised on the video!)

So I joined the 2.3M (when I joined, yesterday they were 2.5M) fans on Facebook and voted Aryan as my favorite character – no Arsène Lupin (or Lupin III of anime memory) or Danny Ocean can compare to Mr.A a.k.a. Aryan, LOL! OK, I’ll stop drooling now.

Back to work! I better do some reading and writing and, dear Jo, the pencils of SKYBAND 12 are done, tomorrow I’ll have my cover artist check my anatomy… more naked people, sigh! Have a great weekend! 🙂

Writer Wednesday


I forgot to mention that while in Massa I saw the first fireflies of my life – I was bummed because I didn’t see them in Certaldo and then my cousin’s wife said “Look, a firefly!” and suddenly in a garden in the middle of a town I saw one. Three the following night. I didn’t know they were seasonal, and apparently this year was good for them. But then the heat fried my brain and I forgot to mention it, LOL!

Anyhow, I’ve sent out the new version of CVE3.  So I’m done cutting chapters and characters, adding the beginning of the next book that actually belongs to this one, etc. I even put back in two scenes that I had cut out at first translation when the actual end was supposed to be the middle of the next book. So I’m very curious to hear what editors and beta have to say about the changes. And wordcount went from 58K to 76K, so this makes it the longest novel for this year, LOL! Anyway, it’s a little like Loralie‘s revisions of her book, which means we’re all the same after all – fast or slow, sometimes we really turn our stories upside down! 🙂

I must thank Prue  for discovering the Cosmopolitan cover generator – please check her “historical” issue and then the Silvery Earth special here.

I’ve tried to summarize what happens in CVE3, with the southern campaign, an Amazon marrying the Varian Emperor and on the cover your neighborhood warrior woman, Astrid, the female protagonist. And no, I didn’t submit for a real Cosmo issue – why, would you like to read it? 😉 Well, you can’t because it’s a medieval world – they haven’t invented newspapers yet (they have in BoI – Earth, but this is before) and certainly not magazines… so this is really a virtual issue! 😉

The story I worked on last week is this year’s sci-fi title, Technological Angel. Which starts on 1982 Earth, so it took some research to add to my own memories of what and wasn’t available at the time! 🙂 Again, I’m pointing to a post about Technology by Loralie as I’m a technophobe (but I’m still here indie publishing, LOL. Ever heard of a technological luddite? ;-)). I wonder what younger people would think of 1982 Earth in my novel – yes, there’s also 2002 and now, for obvious reasons, it ends in 2012. You can tell I first wrote it ten years ago, but it evolved a lot through Italian betas and my own writer-evolution. I sure hope to have at least one of them that reads English to check the latest version when I’m done. I still have to write the final part about 2012, but as I started this back in April, I need to type what I have so far to continue organically. Hopefully soon it will be done – I might discuss it with one beta at the Chicon7! 🙂

Now, Katy gave me the Liebster Blog award, which I already had from Georgina back in January, so I’m not really passing it on. I believe it changed from what it used to be (see original post), but I did receive some blog awards that requested to say something about myself and answer questions… so I will answer Katy’s questions to follow the new rules because she tagged me and she deserves an answer even if I don’t pass it on! 😉 Here goes.

11 Questions for Those Bloggers:
1. What is the weirdest thing you have ever done in public? Gee, I don’t know, I hate being at the center of the attention… but if you poke me enough, you can watch my nice hysterics! 🙂

2. Why did you get into blogging? Because I’m a compulsive writer – can’t stop writing (although I decreased the number of posts, used to be short and daily, now longer and every other day)

3. Whose idea was all this, anyway? Dunno, Katy, but someone twisted the rules during the past 6 months, it wasn’t like this! 😉

4. What is your favorite genre to read? Fantasy – although some subgenres such as urban or paranormal don’t really appeal to me. It must be another world, not our planet with vampires or werewolves! 😉

5. What is your favorite genre to write, just for you? steamy m/m romance – I end up censoring it whenever I want someone else to read it, LOL!

6. What is your favorite book you wrote? usually the last one – but I haven’t written anything totally new since I started translating/rewriting and publishing my Italian stories.

7. Do you have a favorite book? If so, what is it? anything by Brunella Gasperini, my inspirator.

8. What kind of music do you like to listen to? 1980s pop, 1990s rock, celtic, Bollywood – anything, really, from any era and any country, as long as there’s some form of melody! 😀

9. Favorite food? I eat to live, don’t live to eat…

10. (this is bloody exhausting) Will you still be friends with me after all this? Of course, Dear Editor! 🙂

11. There is no question 11! You’re welcome (hopefully this will relate to Question 10). Phew! 😀

I’ll stick to the old rule for this award – no questions and no nothing. And, like I said, I will not pass it on. If you want it, grab it, and answer Katy’s questions! 😉

Now, closing with a few links: Dean Wesley Smith on e-book pricing again. Michael Stackpole on traditional publishing obsolete thinking about e-books. 6 steps to publishing on a Shoestring. Actually, check all of SPAL if you wanto to learn to DIY! 😉 And don’t forget the new Smashwords requirement for cover images (I always uploaded the same image I used for POD, I only did the “e-book version” when I started uploading to Xinxii or Drivethru…). That’s all for today! 🙂

Random Friday an another award


Oh, golly, it must be award season again in the blogosphere (might be the approaching Oscars? ;-)). I got another blog award from wonderful Ben at story multiverse (thank you, thank you, thank you!) and it’s called Kreativ Blogger Award (which sounds perfect for this creative barbwire here, LOL!)!

As it’s been some time since I wrote things about myself and there are plenty of new subscribers to this humble blog *waves*, I’ll try to go through the whole thing again. Rulz sez: pass on to 6 Kreativ Bloggers and tell 10 things people don’t know about yourself.

So, as I know some people don’t like blog awards and don’t have time to ask around for permission, well, you – yeah, you who are staring at the award button and would like to wear it on your blog, grab it, post it and leave me a comment so I can read the ten things I don’t know about you. And of course, pass it on! 😉

Now, for the 10 things… *mumble mumble*…

1) I created Silvery Earth in my tweens, but even my sister couldn’t recognize it when she read a novel set in the actual Silvery Earth. I guess it evolved – much like its creator and this very planet, LOL!

2) As my nephew admitted he’s afraid of dragons, I’ll have to introduce him to Dragonheart AND my own dragons (a.k.a. Fajrulo). Poor babe confuses dragons and dinosaurs – NOT the same thing! 😉 I forgive him only because he’s 7, and still has a lot to discover! 🙂

3) For SKYBAND (see FB album) I bought a lot of tattoo mags (and googled “tattoo” a lot as well), as all the characters have at least two. I’d love to have one myself, but I don’t seem to be able to take a pick. Sigh.

4) For a couple of years I did beads jewelry, but as I didn’t sell much (tried to, but failed – I’m bad at marketing on all fronts! ;-)),  it’s still all there in a boots box next to the abandoned “lab” of materials. One day I’ll have to go back to it, hopefully.

5) I have a brand new (5 years old – and I’m 46) passion for world movies, subtitles. I’ve always loved movies, but for the duration of my life in the 20th century I was stuck with the dubbed versions available in Italy. Thank God my English is now good enough to watch foreign movies subtitled (thanks, Amazon!).

Oh, boy, I’ve run out of things you don’t know… sorry! Rulz sez 10, but I really have nothing else to say (and 5 is my favorite number anyway), so I guess I’ll end up here. NOT cheating! Here’s a list of the other blog awards and the posts that went with them!

Sunshine Award (May 25, 2010)

Versatile Blog Award (June 27, 2010)

One Lovely Blog Award & You’re Going Places, Babe (July 7, 2010)

Spotlight Award (Aug.18, 2010)

Stylish Blogger Award (Jan.26, 2011)

Memestatic Award (April 4, 2011)

Liebster Blog Award (Jan 25, 2012)

Speaking of world movies, along with The Promise I bought Moolaadé because I was intrigued by the poster, and mostly by the pitch – when do I get the chance to see another African movie? In spite of winning Cannes Un certain regard, this movie was not dubbed at all, so the DVD was in original version (Bambara+some very bad French) with Italian subtitles. Like The Promise, sometimes people spoke but no subtitles came up. Sigh.

I loved the setting (Burkina Faso), so unusual from what I’m used to, and loved the story (yeah, I cried at the end, but it’s very powerful). I’ll have to watch it again to copy some clothes for SKYBAND, as my heroes have reached the former Black Empire which is based on Africa (and it’s 300 years after Fire, so my original cover for Fire won’t do. I’ll have to show a change in clothes, LOL).

So it was a great surprise and a great discovery (especially for 3euros) that probably never came out in theaters, but is certainly worth watching. IMDB summary: When a woman shelters a group of girls from suffering female circumcision, she starts a conflict that tears her village apart. Worth every second of it, if your curious about the world and other cultures.

A long time ago (last year?) the Mighty Caricaturist (who, by the way, deserves the Kreativ Blogger Award, so, please Shafali, grab it and paste it on your blog, so we can all smile with you!) suggested an Indian movie that was NOT Bollywood. So, as I’m discussing world cinema, I’ll be adding this specific title that is about India and it’s culture, but doesn’t have all the Bollywood songs that turn off most  westerners. It’s a thriller, so I won’t say anything.It’s also shorter that the usual Bollywood 3-hours-movies (less than 2 hours), so if you like non-action thrillers, go check “a Wednesday!“. And there’s nothing funny about it, which is funny considering the source! Thank you, Shafali, for the great suggestion! 🙂

As (you guessed it) I got my latest Amazon purchases, the next reviews of DVDs will be… Bollywood again! 😉 Have a great weekend everyone! 😀

Writer Wednesday and a blog award


I will start this post by thanking the wonderful Aussie author Georgina Anne Taylor for awarding me the Liebster Blog Award. Georgina is a fellow Creative Reviewer, and I’m keeping an eye on her: as soon as she releases a novel, she goes on my TBR list! If you like shorts, though, you can already check her writing on Smashwords.

The Liebster Blog Award originated in Germany. Liebster means dearest or beloved, and Liebe is love.

In accepting the Liebster Blog Award, the recipient agrees to:
*Thank the person who gave them the award and link back to that person’s blog
*Copy and paste the award to their blog
*Reveal the 5 blogs they have chosen to award, commenting on their blog to break the news!
*Hope those people in turn pay it forward by accepting and awarding “The Liebster Blog Award” to bloggers they would like to honor.

My blog winners are:

Sarah R. Yoffa

Bill Talcott

C.S.Splitter

Chrystalla Thoma

J.C. Martin

All are fellow authors, some you’ve met on this blog, some not yet, but you will, eventually.

***

Now, to the real Writer Wednesday! 🙂 I’m going to use a few quotes today. I’ve found some that mirror exactly how I feel, both as a writer and as a person.

The worst enemy to creativity is self doubt – Sylvia Plath

I’ve been struggling with self doubt most of my life and not only referring to my creative endeavors. Sometime it comes from inside me, sometimes from outside – my spiritual teacher says we hear from others what we don’t want to hear from ourselves, so if someone tells me “Why are you doing this, it’s useless”, it’s my own self-doubt that called for it. So, this human yo-yo goes from creative euphoria to depression caused by self doubt. What if I’m not good enough? What if nobody likes it? What if…? I really should stop thinking as much and having all those expectations!

Last week on an impulse I uploaded a short by BG Hope. I posted the cover in the “e-book covers” photo album on Facebook, but that’s it. 48 hours later I had the Smashwords purchase notification. For a story that didn’t receive any comments from any reader and was uploaded after a final pass for typos an other mistakes, from a pen-name that has to site, no blog, no marketing, no nothing. Maybe I’m writing in the wrong genre. I know, I’ll soon be jealous of the pen-name that sells more if it’s not the one I cherish more! 😉

But then, here we go to quote #2

My books aren’t trying to fathom the mysteries of human existence, I’m an entertainer – Bernard Cornwall

Which goes well with #3

Literature is a luxury; fiction is a necessity – G.K. Chesterton

Both ring very true to me. I like to tell stories. I’m not a wordsmith, though, I’m a storyteller. Again, I write what I like to read, therefore I don’t indulge in long descriptions because, as a reader, they bore me AND cloud my vision. I have a vivid imagination, I don’t need many words to form an image. I’m sure I’m not the only reader like this, so hopefully my target audience will find me, eventually.

The more a man writes, the more he can write – William Hazlitt

That’s another great quote. I’ll keep writing, and get better with time. I’ll expand my vocabulary, but will keep my voice, and there’s no stopping me. I plan on uploading 30 titles this year – does that mean 30 new stories? Yes and no, because the few Italian ones only need to be formatted and many of the English ones are shorts. And even the novels (shorter than the ones that came out last year) are already written, albeit in Italian, except the last CVE, which I never got down to write when I wrote the others. But I do have an outline, and it shouldn’t be too hard to spit out a first draft in a month or less. At least not for someone married to Writing! 😉

I’m also exploring other outlets, so I might add some links in the Find my stuff page soon. I even found a very useful booklet on how to format comic books for Kindle and Nook. I don’t have direct access to PubIt, but it was still interesting, also for the other resources it lists at the end for “artists” like me. So, if you have an image-heavy book or comic book or graphic novel and are struggling with the meatgrinder and other formatting, go check this little guide. Now I better go finish that SKYBAND chapter, shouldn’t I?

Amazon and Goodreads are not getting along very well anymore, so I’ll have to find other ways to get there. GR already broke up with B&N (it was there when I signed up, now I only get to import titles from Amazon – until Jan 30, that is!), maybe they should strike a deal with Smashwords or Lulu! 🙂 I already “rescued” some books by friends I have reviewed in the past – but if you’re an author and only have books only on Amazon/KDP, you’ll soon be kicked out of Goodreads. I sure hope you’re not keeping all your eggs in one basket, though. Amazon is huge, but they’re not the only ones.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, it’s my nephew and godchild’s seventh birthday, I gotta party! 😀

various topics & an award


Here is another reason for NOT writing in my mother tongue: what’s going on in Italy with the publishing industry. I’ve mentioned I never wanted to pay to be published, but dozens of my fellow Italian writers are not so picky. I’m glad to see that the new generations are a little smarter than that! 😉

Also, for you younger people who still have to decide what to do with your life and would love to live on writing, I suggest you check Chris Guillebeau. He was on the list of Writer’s Digest 101 best Websites for writers (I’ve just started going through it, will post anything I find interesting in there as soon as I find it) and they say:

The free download of 279 Days to Overnight Success is worth the visit alone. Other info for entrepreneurial-minded writers – including articles, a blog and an e-mail newsletter – will keep you coming back for more.

I did download the free e-book, and found some interesting tips in it (so it’s in my e-book folder for the keeping, ha!:-D). But it’s even more interesting for whoever wants to live an unconventional life and make money out of it. So hop there and check it, you might want to go back for more (I probably won’t, but you never know! ;-)). This guy wants to visit all the countries of the world by his 35th birthday in 2012 AND has a site called The Art Of Non-Conformity, what’s better for a writer?? 🙂

You might also notice that I added a “Grammar etc” category in the sidebar. Again, thanks to Writers Digest 101 best webpages for writers (except Conan the Grammarian, who was already there). On Grammar Girl there’s an interesting bit on understanding voice and tone in writing – so not just grammar. Still have to check all the articles, but I thought this one needed a mention.

And finally, I got another blog award, thanks to Cassandra.

Here are the rules:

  1. Thank and link back to the person who gave you this award. Thanks again Cassandra!
  2. Share 7 things about yourself. See below.
  3. Pass the award along to 5* bloggers who you have recently discovered and who you think are fantastic for whatever reason! (*Changed from 15 to 5, but I’ll leave it up to you the amount you want to give.) Also see below.
  4. Contact the bloggers you’ve picked and let them know about the award. To do…

Seven things about me that you can’t read on my ABOUT page (I’ve already done this and can’t remember what I said – I’m getting old! – so I might repeat myself here):

1.  I have a day job, my real job is writing (and drawing), and my hobby is making jewelry with beads.

2. I love watching movies, but often are too lazy to go to the cinemas (also because everything is dubbed in Italian over here, the few cinemas who show in original version are in the center and I live in the outskirts), so I have a collection of DVDs (and some VHS) that would put my local Blockbuster to shame.

3.  I have a song lyric or movie line for almost everything that happens in life.

4.  I am fluent in three languages, but my favorite is not my mother tongue.

5.  I hate the summer, I’m a winter person – still miss the snowy winters, and I’ve been living back in Rome since 1978 (snow: 1985, lasted a couple of days. 1986 and 2010 lasted a few hours).

6. I’m a girl, and love this blog award color, but my favorite color is blue.

7. I have friends all over the world and love it!

As to passing this award along… By the way if you want to know why I’ve given them the award, click on the link and check out these very interesting blogs. Some might already have the award, but I lost track of who won what, so… there you have it… again! 😉

Madison Woods

Hema P.

Melissa

Shafali the caricaturist

Jai Joshi

Congratulations and thanks for writing such amazing blogs.

UPDATE: is it Award season? I got handed another award (thanks, Hema), so here it is. Rules are the same as the above.

I pass it on to whoever is reading this, reader or subscriber or passer-by, if you fancy Bogey on your blog, pick it up and pass it on! 😉

Happy blogging! 😀

Awards


OK, this is the week of extra posts, so here I am again. Ollin kindly awarded me with the Versatile Blogger Award, so here are the rules: first I have to tell you 7 things about me and then award 5 other bloggers who I think are deserving of this award – I’m stick to the “5 instead of 15” chosen by Ollin because 1) 5 is my favorite number and 2) I don’t know 15 bloggers who would accept the award! 😉

So, here are the 7 things about me:

1) I’ve had the same day-job for 22 years, but have been doing my real job (writing) for much longer than that – since I was a tween, which means I must have become quite proficient at it after so many hours. I hope to get rid of the thing-that-pays-the-bills soon, maybe I’ll reach 25 years of “service” and then quit.

2) I’m single, or, as they’d define me in the Regency era, an old spinster, therefore I’m not a good romance writer. I wrote all the love stories I had in mind during my teens (ah, youth!) when I also exhausted my poetic vein.

3) Recurring themes in my writing (since that very beginning) is friendship, the “new” one is fitting in – I have plenty of outcast characters who bond and decide to fit in, or not.

4) I tried all sorts of writings and other creative endeavors (poetry, short stories, novels, graphic novels, comic books, comic strips, illustrated books, screenplays, stage plays) and sometimes dream of becoming an artisan with her own shop in some old medieval town.

5) My hobby is doing jewelry with beads – which I’m not doing much lately for a) lack of time and b) because I have a box full of unused, unsold jewelry I don’t know what to do with. Maybe I should sell it on e-bay.

6) I had a fanzine in the 90s, a photocopied A5 little journal – or two. I had the International Mag with works from all over the world (I had around 30 pen-pals back then) and then I “published” my graphic novels, Kolia&Joris, The Prince and the Adventurer, Fleur de Lys, Mercenaries?! and some one-shots. Those I tried to sell at Italian comic-cons – I had reached the respectable number of 10 readers! 😉

7) It’s the number behind my latest graphic novel effort, SKYBAND! Seven characters with seven different everything, I toyed with that number all through the writing of the story! I made seven columns on the notebook (well 8, one for the “question”) and wrote the 7 answers according to each character…

And now the Award goes to…

Cassandra Jade (even if she’s away, and might not be able to forward it)

Lisa of Milk Fever

Madison Woods

Mickey Mills

and Shafali the caricaturist

no reasons given, I just love them bloggers! 😉

Happy writing

YA fiction


First of all I must thank Hema for awarding me The Sunshine award, now featured in my sidebar. I’m passing it on to those blogs that get me thinking and keep me smiling, or

Zen and the art of tightrope walking because Viv’s post always make me think and

Lua and Stephen because they keep me smiling (I know Lua has already been awarded by Hema, but I think it’s another award… oh, actually Madison gave you this one as well… so double award, Lua! As for Stephen… well, the first! :-D).

Now to the topic at hand. No, I don’t write YA and don’t intend to. Unfortunately I’ve forgotten how it felt to be a young adult (although I could try to “recycle” some old stories). But something triggered my memories, so I’m going to share them with you.

I grew up between France and Switzerland and the Swiss school (elementary classes) gave books as prizes (the French school gave medals you could keep for the week, then pass them on the next…), that’s how I got a couple of my favorites (I did only 3 years out of 5 at Swiss schools, and moved to the French Lycée for the last 2).

The first was “Un hiver dans la vallée de Moumine”, and the memory was triggered by the fact that the Moomin are coming out in their comic strip version in Italian. I knew the novels (suggested from 8-year-old), now I plan on discovering also the strips. But in the meantime (I plan to go to the comic-book shop where I have a discount, but it’s on the other side of town…) I re-read the old book won when I was about that age (between 8 and 10, don’t remember the exact year when I got it). I enjoyed the ride very much, but still can’t remember the original feeling, sigh. I’m not sure I liked it much, though, as I have only one book in the series. But now I think Mrs Jansson is very good both as a writer and as an artist (with her own, very personal style). History says the Moomins were discovered and made famous by Japanese, but well… I knew them already when a friend of mine mentioned them because she had seen the Japanese version! 😉

Now, my absolute fave was “Chevalier de l’impossible”, which, thanks to Google, I learned is called “How to become king” in English. I wasn’t seventeen, but I always loved that tale, and read it many times, even when I was much older.  I’d say it’s still my fave YA, and wish I could fine another story like this one (maybe there are, but I have enough books on my wish-list to actually look for them). But it’s highly recommended to anyone (although I liked the French title better – “Knight of the impossible”, isn’t this great? The original “Koning van Katoren” means (I think) “The king of Katoren”, so I guess the English title is closer…). Maybe I should read more books of Jan Terlouw! 🙂

Both authors are Scandinavian (one Finnish, the other Danish) – so the Swiss didn’t promote only their literature (but I have the Heidi books, yes, just don’t remember them, haha!). Still have to re-read Pippi Longstockings with original illustrations… and the Heidi books… geez, can I have more hours in the day???

Do you have any book(s) from your childhood/teen you still remember/re-read with the same pleasure?

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