Friday, August 30, 2013

Make Good Art

I recently watched again Neil Gaiman's 2012 commencement speech for Philadelphia's University of the Arts. If you haven't seen it or heard of it, you might be living under a rock somewhere. If you have, it's a good time to remind yourself of his wise words:

Make. Good. Art.

"Be wise, because the world needs more wisdom. And if you cannot be wise, pretend to be someone who's wise and then just behave like they would."

I have personal relationships with writers, or rather, with their words, their powers. Even if I never meet them in person. I had a close friendship with Ray Bradbury, and he never knew. But it was powerful, brought into existence by his words and their affect on me. It began when I was eight. He was sixty-five. He was writing because he was compelled to write, to create, to spin worlds into being just by recording his thoughts. He wasn't writing for me. But his words found me. They filled an empty place in my life that I didn't know existed until his words were there. I called him by his first name, and people who know me know who I mean when I say, Ray. He died last year, and I cried as I would for any beloved grandfather. But the friendship lives on, as his words do.

I have a similar friendship with Neil Gaiman. I discovered him with Sandman and reveled in his short stories and novels. Neil is another writer with whom I am on a first name basis. He doesn't know. He's never met me either. But the power of his words have changed my life. When he delivered this address, I felt as if he were speaking to me. I know a lot of other people felt the same way. In any case, I have decided to do what he advises. Neil, thank you. Thank you for your words, for your vision, and for the inspiration you have given me. I will go forth and make good art.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013


Over the years, there have been several posts about short pieces of fiction being picked up by literary journals and ezines. Today I announce the release of my second book.  And I'm super excited about it!

It's called The Vanished: Wraiths & Fables and it collects eight of my short stories in one place, long with select illustrations. This is award-winning fiction and it's perfect people who enjoy tales in the vein of Ray Bradbury, Neil Gaiman and Rod Serling (yeah, the guy from Twilight Zone.)

Here's the cover:

I know.  Pretty rad.

The Vanished is available for Kindle and for Kindle compatible devices. This means virtually every smart phone and tablet, along with newer Macs and PCs. Simply visit the app store inside your phone or tablet and download the free Kindle App. (Or visit the links I've provided above.) Then you can purchase ebooks on Amazon with your Amazon account and either send them directly to your device or to the cloud to download later. Also, if you have an Amazon Prime account, you can borrow the book for free!

My book is $2.99.  A fair price for flights of fancy that will take you to other worlds, wouldn't you say?

I'll be running a promotion next week, so stay tuned!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Greetings, Earthlings!

So it's been a year.  Actually a whole year since I posted here.  That's ridiculous.  That's what being a full-time student, a professional artist, a mother of four, and a hobby in writing will do to you.

So.  I graduated with my BFA in Illustration.  Graduated with honors thank you very much.  I read a lot of books.  I moved twice (once out of state.)  I signed with a rep for DawgArt and got my first contract.

Not much is new.

That's a joke.

I am currently in the process of formatting my book for sale on Amazon.  It will be an ebook.  The one I've been talking about.  The collection of short stories.  Actually, there will be two of them.  Released simultaneously.  I was going to sell it for 99¢, but then I'll only get 35% of sales.  So I'm going to sell it for $2.99 and get 70%.  You'll buy a bunch of awesome stories for $2.99, won't you?

This collection is rad.  I promise.  There's art too.

I am also updating the books I'm reading.  I don't know if I'll be able to get around to reviewing all the books I read in the past year.  Maybe I'll just make a list and star the ones I adored.

Stay tuned!