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How many times do you hear people say that?  In my case, it’s truth. Games are how I relax. If I’m not playing, I’m not relaxing. Sometimes I feel like the only woman in the world opening up her calendar to see if she can fit 20 minutes of gaming in there.

When I went to college, I used my very first paycheck from the new job to buy a Super NES and a game from the pawn shop. (Pawn shops in college towns are incredible. I snagged the most amazing CDs there.)Image

The game? Illusion of Gaia. Check out this action. You slide under things. And have a sword. And fall down nearly dead of scurvy. I’m not kidding. That’s my favorite part!

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I would come home from school, finish work at 11:00 pm, and play Illusion of Gaia for half an hour. Then I could go to bed.

I realize that I associate specific events with what game I was playing at the time.

Senior year in high school was Tekken  with my dad and brother. The fact that my daughter’s name is Nina? Yep. Tekken.

I was dating my husband while playing Secret of Evermore and Earthbound.

9-11 happened during Chrono Cross.

I moved to Seattle during Devil May Cry.

My son was born during OKAGE: Shadow King. I literally played with his tiny, new body wrapped up on my chest.

And there the timeline stops. Children plus writing plus more responsibilities equals no game time. And this makes me sad. I realize that it is also unhealthy. I need that escape. That respite.

Thanks to my dear friend’s urging, and physically putting the game in my hands, I played BEYOND: Two Souls
last night. And it was incredible. An experience, to be sure. I’ll be making time for it in my life. A simple pleasure that pays dividends.

Plus! Games! YAY!

So what about you? I know I’m not the only one who loves my console. What do you guys play? Any fantastic games you’d suggest?

Reading

Littlest reads to the rabbit and turtle. Because, why not?

Happy 4th of July, everybody! I hope you have a blast. (Oh, the puns!)

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Ladies and Gentlemen, I’m delighted to say that Nameless: The Darkness Comes and Pretty Little Dead Girls: A Novel of Murder and Whimsy will both be turned into Audiobooks! That contract was inked, and I’m quite excited. I will not be recording them myself. They’ll actually hire a new, amazing actress who has oodles of talent.

I am, however, narrating Beautiful Sorrows.  It’s completely ready except for a few overdubs. The only problem is that Mason and I have a heck of a time getting together in order to finish the final recording. But hopefully it will be soon!

And yes, I’m recording in a closet. That picture makes me laugh.

Recording it has been a dream of mine, and I’m quite happy. I’m also thrilled to hear somebody else narrate my work. This is just cool all around.

Dark Side of the Sun

You guys, this is exciting! Author Bryan Cohen put together a fantastic event featuring sixteen authors with sixteen books, each dropped to 99 cents. My debut novel, NAMELESS: The Darkness Comes, will be included in this.

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That’s right. You can pick up SIXTEEN dark fantasy/horror/contemporary fantasy ebooks for SIXTEEN BUCKS. Hello, birthdays and Christmas! Yay!

This is an all-day event, and there will be several giveaways going on. In fact, I’ll be there from 12:00 -3:00 PM Eastern to answer questions, give away my own prizes, (books, handmade items, and a query critique), and just banter, so please stop by! There’s something for everybody, please show up for this online event! It’s here.

 

 

Here are the books for the “Dark Side of the Sun” event! On June 27, 2014.

The above book covers are all clickable links. Click on each one of the books above to open the Amazon page in another window. You can also click the links or covers below to buy the books on Amazon. See all the descriptions below.

- Grace Lost by M. Lauryl Lewis
- Blade Song by J.C. Daniels
- Canes of Divergence by Breeana Puttroff
- A Gift of Thought by Sarah Wynde
- Rock n’ Roll Heaven by Shawn Inmon
- Plague of Angels by John Patrick Kennedy
- Nameless by Mercedes Yardley
- Dark Bayou by Nancy Duplechain
- Celestra Series, Books 1-3 by Addison Moore
- The Complete Portal Arcane Trilogy by J. Thorn
- Hidden by Megg Jensen
- Netherworld by K.N. Lee
- What Hides Within by Jason Parent
- Cattle by Joseph Duncan
- Dying for a Living by Kory Shrum
- Plague of Coins by Aiden James
- Crimson Night by Marie Hall

I hope you can make it, my friends! This will be a great Friday event! :D

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I’ll tell you the thing about summer: it’s hard.

I’m in the midst of one final polish to my novel Stormlight before sending it to a publisher who expressed interest. That means that I needed a little bit of quiet time. Solution? Let’s have a magic movie!

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I took the kids’ cups and filled them with Sprite. (Water for the purist.) A few drops of blue food coloring and a couple of Swedish Fish tossed in, and I convinced the kids they were drinking Ocean Water. More Swedish Fish as a treat (Goldfish crackers for that same purist who doesn’t like sugar), a blanket on the floor, and suddenly watching The Little Mermaid took on a whole new meaning. This would also be great with Ponyo or Finding Nemo. Or even Jaws if you want to scar them forever. I also knocked out ten chapters. Win/win!

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The secret for me is keeping it simple. I’ll be overwhelmed by something elaborate. But food coloring in Sprite? Yeah. I can do that! Hooray!

Do you have some tricks up your sleeve to make movies magical? Could you share?

 

 

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Hang out with the epic Zombiepalooza show! My portion starts an hour into the show, and runs for about 50 minutes. I really had a lot of fun. :)

You can watch the video here.

Jackie and crew really work hard to put together something special. Thank you so much, you guys!

 

Nope, I’m not being sexist. I’m being literal, and it’s AWESOME.

baby chicks

 

This is also how you pick up chicks. :P

 

The Angry Ginger, my friend Jamie, and I each have one to snuggle!

The Angry Ginger, my friend Jamie, and I each have one to snuggle!

We went and picked up five of the little darlings. Originally the plan was for four, but this tiny baby chick was being crushed into the corner by its siblings.

“We want that one,” I said.

“She probably won’t make it through the night,” the woman warned.

“Then we’ll take that other little one, too, so we’ll have the four after little Five Piece kicks the proverbial chicken bucket.”

Five Piece is doing beautifully. They all are. We now have a happy flock of five!

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The chicks are, from left to right, Jessica Fletcher (the brown Araucana), Chicken Noodle (the white Araucana), Five Piece (the middle Golden Sex Link), Winner Winner (the Golden Sex Link on the right), and Peco (the black Australorp).

Peco was originally named “Pecker” by my six-year-old, but I didn’t need sweet, cherubic voices shrieking “Pecker!” around here. Since Littlest calls her “Peco” anyway, we just went with that.

Lest you worry, we’ll never, ever eat these chickens, despite their names. And yes, Jessica Fletcher is definitely the busybody of the group.

The chicks stay inside this container under a heat lamp at 95 degrees until their feathers grow in. These pictures were taken a few weeks ago, so they’ve actually moved outside to their chicken coop now. They seem super happy there!

Backyard chickens are much more common in Las Vegas than I realized. You’re not allowed to have roosters in city limits, but hens are just fine.

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We wanted them for a number of reasons. Self-sufficiency. Responsibility for the children. Research for the next novel I’m starting, which has the working title of “The Kitchen Witch.” But really, this picture above says everything.

Do you have chickens? Any suggestions for newbies?

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