azhure: (me phoenix)

Ponyo as Totem by *Ravenari on deviantART

The amazing piece I commissioned from Pia Ravenari for Liam for his birthday.

I’m trying to get back into the swing of posting regularly again, which includes getting back to being on top of my rss feeds so I can do links round-ups again.  And so, some links!  Just a few, because I need to get on top of Google Reader in a big way.

Tansy Rayner Roberts talks about historically authentic sexism in fantasy.

Seven productivity myths debunked by science.

Jim Hines cover posing for a good cause.

14 writing tips from Anne Lamott.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (me phoenix)

Rainbow on the way home

I am getting obsessed with Instagram again.  One of many rainbows seen this week.

The total writing for this week: somewhere around 10k forward motion.  I say somewhere, because I am shuffling some scenes around, which is totally out of my comfort zone (I am very much a writer of the linear persuasion) and I’ve lost count a little bit.  Plus I did one day of outlining.  Either way, I’m coming up on the 80k mark

Not many links this week, but here they are:

How to use Tumblr to grow an author platform.

13 ways to write with urgency.

Lisa L Hannett talks about knowing what you write.

Gender differences in fat metabolism.

Overtelling, overshowing, overselling.

Jodi Meadows continues her series on from idea to first draft with a post on characters.

Justine Larbalestier talks about how we can’t control anyone but ourselves.

Chuck Wendig asks how do you write what the audience wants to read?

Stress makes you sick by changing your genes.

How children learn: portraits of classrooms around the world.

How to clear your head, eliminate distractions, and finally write what makes you happy.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (me phoenix)

26-05-10 II The Weight Of All Those Willing Words Βethan via Compfight

So, I’ve been sick this week.  And I am thoroughly sick of being sick.  It’s only a cold, but it’s kind of a nasty one.  The kidlet had it first, then me, and now the husband appears to have succumbed.  We’re a fun household.

But, despite being sick, I have been writing.  To the tune of 10,500 words this week.  I’m even kind of liking this book again, so maybe I’m past the horrible middle?  Cruised over the 70k mark, too.

Links for the week:

Clarion 2012: Every brilliant piece of writing advice.

30 indispensable writing tips from famous authors.

Could this discovery be the key to treating Alzheimers?

Sarah Wilson talks about taking time.

Five fears that can destroy an artist.

Chuck Wendig asks “What’s wrong with fiction today?”

Peter M. Ball talks ideas


Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (me phoenix)

Late Afternoon Jason Samfield via Compfight

This is me right now.

Please forgive any typos or weirdness in these links.  I am writing this post in a Friday evening while fairly exhausted and dealing with a chest infection.  And I’m not really that tired of the Olympics, I just can’t think of a better title.

The Readercon board issues a very good statement re the recent harassment issues.  I have faith in humanity and fandom after this.

Something everyone should damn well read: My friend group has a case of the Creepy Dude. How do we clear that up?

John Scalzi gives a guide on how not to be a creeper.

Why women are silent.

5 ways you don’t realise movies are controlling your brain.

Justine Larbalestier talks about the point of process porn.

World Fantasy Awards finalists are announced.  I am especially excited to see Cat Valente’s Silently, and Very Fast garner another nomination.

The Mythopoeic Awards winners are announced.

Justine Musk tells us the most badass thing you can do as a creative.

Sarah Diemer released two new stories: “Like a double rainbow, only better!”

Tansy Rayner Roberts talks about writing and motherhood.

Chuck Wendig gives us 25 ways to survive as a creative person

The men of steampunk. <– Can we just bring back formal dress for men as an everyday thing, please?  At least bowler hats and waistcoats, k?

Tehani Wessely talks about the Aurealis Awards,

Write about what makes you angry.

If something happens in your story, your characters must earn it.

The secret weapon of creating effective heroes.



Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (me phoenix)

One of the many ravens that are constantly in our backyard this time of year.


This has been a weird week.  I have been writing, but it’s all been about forcing every word.  I think I’m skating along the edge of a burn out, but I really want to get this draft finished.  Also, I hate this book.  Can anyone tell that I’m in the middle of the book?

What I would really like is a weekend down south, just away from all technology.  It’s not going to happen, though.  Hell, I’d give for a weekend where I get to sleep until I wake naturally, don’t have to do any laundry or housework.  Also not going to happen.

I’m finding myself frustrated with reading, also.  Which I think is a factor of spending time reading books that really don’t grab me.  Alisa Krasnostein on Galactic Suburbia this week said something that really resonated with me (paraphrasing here) – being that it’s the book’s job to make you read it, not the other way around.  I need to work on giving myself permission not to finish books that don’t do anything for me, even if everyone else loves them.  There are too many other good and great books out there.

That whinge done, have some links!

Cat Valente’s Fade to White at Clarkesworld.  Go and read it.  Now.  It’s even free, though Cat’s stories alone make it worth subscribing to Clarkesworld, IMHO.  I may have squeed when the latest issue appeared on my Kindle.

Via EgobooWA: An excellent video on how to edit a book.

Angela Slatter shares a great infographic about the writing cycle.

Justine Musk shares 6 things you need to know about your inner genius.

10 foods you crave and why you crave them.

Does your diet fail because you sleep too little?

Justine Larbalestier talks about YA writers and duty of care.

Chuck Wendig talks about caring less as a writer.

Pixar’s storytelling rules illustrated in Lego.



Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (me phoenix)



Typography art of Neil Gaiman’s New Year’s Wish by idea-obscura

Tansy Rayner Roberts talks art, writing and literary awards: in it for the money?

Causes of death: 1900 and 2010.  The part that freaks me out the most is the last line: “Our previously steady increase in life expectancy has stalled and may even be reversed.”

Creative Legend George Lois on Ideas as the Product of Discovery, Not Creation

Dreading a Task? 5 Tips for Getting Yourself To Tackle It.

Terri Windling talks about artistic inspiration.

Whatever happened to horror?

Justine Musk talks about a cool mental trick to make yourself more creative.

A calorie is not just a calorie.


Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (me phoenix)

Image from Karen Salmansohn.

This has been a kind of crappy week, mostly due to minor health annoyances.  I was struck by a migraine one day, and am now dealing with a head cold.  Minor stuff, but still damn annoying.

But I have still been writing, dammit.  Working my way through the edits of Never, albeit at a very slow pace thanks to my brain being slightly mushy.  I also finished beta reading an excellent novel written by a friend.  I’m always tempted to do more beta reading, but my time is fairly precious, and it does take time. It’s always rewarding, though, especially when you’re reading something by someone who is really talented.

Links for the week!

Aussie Spec Fic Snapshot 2012 – all the links!

The art of turning minimalist.

So you want to be a writer?

Dresses made entirely of light.

How to have a near death experience.

We’re breaking our planet, once and for all.

6 things you think you need to get healthy…but really don’t.

Should we eliminate psychopaths from the gene pool?

Great writers believe in themselves (so should you).

Taking the mystery out of query letters.

Five steps towards making peace with criticism.

Writing about race in science fiction and fantasy.  Part Two.

13 things you may not know about agents.

The art of learning your shadow.


Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (me phoenix)


It’s a Sunday morning.  The kidlet and I have been relaxing in bed with the iPad for a while, and are now up and about.  He’s currently (slowly) eating breakfast and playing with trains, while I am on the computer, having eaten my own breakfast.  Spotify is running 80s radio for me.  The husband will be back from a fishing trip later on today, and everything seems okay.

I caught up with an amazing friend yesterday, which is a huge part of why everything feels awesome right now.  I am just so utterly blessed to have some of the people in my life that I do.  I also feel relatively on top of things – I’m going to get stuck into editing Never tomorrow, I have a nice list of admin type stuff to be done.  I just feel like I’m getting things done and moving on with life (levelling up, maybe?), which is always a great feeling.

Links for the week:

Writing fast, writing slow – and why one book a year suits hardly anyone.

27 Dos and Don’ts for being a badass woman.

What does the editing process look like?

Peter M Ball (and the Spokesbear) talk about Undead Press and about being in business as a writer.

Cassandra Clare talks about rape culture.  Justine Larbalestier replies, with her own experiences as a writer.

When you fear that you’re just no good.

What to do when “doing what you love” isn’t an option.

When the apocalypse throws you back in time.

The 1960s science fiction novels everyone should read.

Greg Rucka talks about why he writes strong female characters.

I kind of want this ring.  WANT.

Charlie Stross talks about the state of SF.



Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (me phoenix)

This photo of dingos I took at the zoo last weekend makes me want to write a story about dingo shifters. They look so human.

This has been a strange week.  I started off the week with a massive burst of energy that was, unfortunately, somewhat short-lived.  The end of the working week saw a couple of bad days for me, but I am proud that I still managed to write, even if I didn’t manage much else useful.

Links for the week:

C. S. Lewis on Why “School Stories” and Media Distortion Are a More Deceptive Fiction Than Fiction

Neil Gaiman addresses the University of the Arts Class of 2012.

The seven bad habits of successful authors.

How reading novels can make you a better person.

How to use your iPad to help you lose weight.

A map reveals how much of London actually lurks below the earth.

So what the hell is urban fantasy, anyway?

What is running a Kickstarter really like?

Tuesday therapy: Know your rights.

The 9-5 guide to staying active.

Unstuck: an app that helps you achieve your goals.


Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (me phoenix)

An oldish photo of a lunar eclipse, fairy lights and car lights.


“Artists have to take a dive, and either you hit your head on a rock and you split your skull and you die… OR… that blow to the head is so inspiring that you come up and do the best work that you ever did. But you have to take the dive, and you do not know what the results will be.” – Maurice Sendak

Catching up on links from the last two weeks.

How to stay motivated.

Crappy first drafts of great books.

Ellen Datlow talks about editing anthologies.

What cancer statistics really mean.

How Joyce Carol Oates would launch a writing career today.

Why body detoxification is a myth.

How do you mother yourself?

Resisting Resistance.

Peter M Ball (and the spokesbear) talks about social media.

Storyfix begins their deconstruction of The Hunger Games.

Jack Dann shares some writing keys to the kingdom.

Goddess Leonie talks about how she gets creative work done with a child.

Blogging tips for newbies and veterans.

How to live well.

Why are so many vampire stories weak?


What happens to girls when they read a fashion magazine?



Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (me phoenix)
Gantheaume Point

Gantheaume Point, one of my favourite places. Old photo, because I didn't have the camera out much this week.

This has been an odd week.  Much pain again, with the arthritis flaring with the change of weather.  I think summer is finally gone, with the nights getting cooler and the days milder.  It’s been lovely to not have to hide away in air conditioning all day, and to have fresh air flowing through the house constantly.  The great shift in my exercise routine is happening, too: no more swimming, and building up my tolerance for walking instead.  I am entertaining the idea of purchasing an exercise bike for rainy days, but slightly put off by the prices, especially of recumbent models, which I am drawn towards.

There has been writing, and I’ve been happy with the quality, but not quantity of it.  My pace is much, much slower that I use to write.  But I suppose that I should be thankful that I’m writing at all.  Between pain, a two-year-old and everything else, it would be very easy to just stop and stare at daytime television all day.

I have been devoting a decent amount of energy to uncluttering, which is a very satisfying thing.  We’re not messy people, but there are places in the house that get cluttered with stuff, and when they’re clean and tidy, things feel much better.  I have a massive list of things I’d like to do around the house (painting, for one, she says, eyeing off the horrid yellow walls in this room) but I’m tackling them in small pieces. They all add up.

Watching a child in their second year of life is incredible.  Especially when said child is sleeping well, and therefore the rest of us are sleeping well ;)  He’s developing such an imagination – he re-enacts scenes with his trains, and tells us that Totoro lives in every big tree he sees :)  He still remains one of the cuddliest kids I’ve ever known, too, which is just delightful.  Hard to think that in a few years he’ll be in school.

Links of the week:

4 ways to hack into your mind and become infinitely more creative.

How to become a real writer.

10 books every fantasy author should read.

Making art, making magic.

Why it’s good to give your stuff for free.

10 secrets to creating unforgettable supporting characters.

How to create story structure to die for.

You must engage your creative side.

How I wrote Doll Bones (Holly Black talking word count).

An exceedingly simple guide to keeping a journal.

How to make a living as a writer, part one.  Part Two.

How will we get around in the post-apocalypse?

I want to make this for my kid: Narnia-themed playroom.



Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (me phoenix)

Awesome is having an artist friend who comes over and draws Totoros with chalk on the paving for your kid.


Not the best or the most productive of weeks, thanks to a flare up of arthritis pain.  But I managed to write every day, and to stick to not breaking the chain.  I am officially giving myself the weekend off from work, though – today the husband and I are going to see The Hunger Games in Gold Class, and tomorrow is massage day.

In good news, the pain seems to be less today, so hopefully I’ll be back to being productive next Monday.


Housing and dreaming community.

The gift of tabula rasa.

Inside an artist colony.

A three-step algorithm for happiness.

Train your brain for monk-like focus.

Cycle to work at your home office.

Does accepting limitations make us weaker?

What’s the value of SF/F awards to the community?

6 simple ways to release flow.

Struggle is a sure sign you’re making art.


Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (me phoenix)


This has been an…odd week.  A couple of days where everything got derailed – husband was off up north working on site and got stuck there when the airport closed due to a cyclone.  So the kid and I have been on our own since Thursday.  Bless the little guy, he’s been awesome – going to sleep without too much fuss and sleeping through the night.  You’ve never seen sad until you’ve seen a two-year-old’s face when you tell him that Daddy isn’t coming home as planned.  My heart breaks thinking of kids who get told that Daddy or Mummy aren’t ever coming back.

Links for the week:

Terri Windling talks about suffering for art.

Using Kickstarter to fund fine art.

This is how you organise a pantry!

Will eating red meat kill you? (an analysis of the study that’s been making the rounds)

The many ways science has (wrongly) assessed your personality.

How not to be a clever writer.


Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (me phoenix)

Things which keep me grounded; the view from the kitchen: tea, geekery, a kidlet not eating his breakfast


This has been a hard week.  Two lights lost to the world and moving beyond, two new holes in the world.  I wish I could physically be at the memorials for both.  My heart is there.

It feels somewhat wrong to be moving on (as it always does after a loss), but at the same time it feels right.  The loss of anyone is a reminder of what matters, to value those things in life.  To make our lives worthwhile.

I want to make my life mean something.  To be a good mother to that amazing kid above.  To be a good friend.  To write something that fills a hole in someone else’s life.

I will do these things.  I will make my time on this earth mean something.

On the mundane side, I have been keeping on with keeping on.  Still keeping my chains unbroken, and this week finally getting around to trialling the Pomodoro technique.  Much modified (which for me means that I pretty much only get one or two pomodoros in per day) but so far it’s working pretty well.

Some links for the week:

10 amazing real-world locations for fantasy worldbuilding.

Sometimes what feels like surrender isn’t surrender at all.

Dystopia and the ferris wheel effect.

Are the nutritionists lying to us?

The things that save us.

Are we too obsessed with happiness?

The five best productivity methods.

The art of being fearless.

On piracy and copyright and file sharing and free speech.


Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.


azhure: (Default)
sister awakened

January 2017



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