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Wednesday, December 29, 2010


So what sparked my interest in science fiction? Well, I grew up watching old SF movie serials on TV--Buck Rogers, Flash Gordon, and the like. I also loved the old SF movies like Forbidden Planet, The Day the Earth Stood Still, and War of the Worlds. ( Not the new ones---the old, good ones! ) For TV shows I watched programs like The Outer Limits, Twilight Zone, Tom Corbett: Space Cadet, and so forth. From those I got into reading SF ( although there wasn't much geared to kids back in those days ) and Fantasy--of which there was a lot more!

From an early age then, I believed in the possibility of space-flight, and it fascinated me. I wanted to travel to the stars, land on other planets, and encounter alien beings---even though we were always being told they were dangerous! When man first landed on the moon, I remember my grandmother telling me, "We used to laugh at all that Buck Rogers stuff. Everyone knew it was impossible to land on the moon!"

If my brain had been wired differently, I might've wound up working for NASA---but instead I was blessed with "creative genes", so all my space adventures take place only in my head.

Hope you all had great holidays,


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A Funny Story

For several years between college and getting married, I hung around with a lot of fellow SF fans, including a few famous authors. I was a beginning writer then with no publishing credits to my name, although I had exhibited and sold some fannish artwork at SF cons ( conventions.)

At one particular con in Canada, I was eating dinner in a hotel restaurant and ordered roast chicken. I carefully peeled off the crisp, succulent skin and set it aside to eat last. Just then, Isaac Asimov, the famous author of many classic SF books and stories, happened by. He snatched the whole piece of chicken skin off my plate, downed it, smacked his lips, and told me, "That's my favorite part!"

I looked up at him sadly and wailed, "Mine, too!"

Maybe after all these years he's paying me back for that stolen chicken skin, and now I can say that I'm a published SF author, too!

Hope you enjoy this true story.


Monday, December 27, 2010

Feedback is Good!

I'm back after the Christmas holiday and, despite a bad cold, ready for the new year to begin. Got some very good feedback from an early reader of Judgment on Tartarus: she "can't put the book down" ! Believe me, a writer can't hear better news! And no, she's not related to me nor is she a friend. As a matter of fact, I've never even met her.

I think this bodes well for the fate of Judgment if the very first reader ( apart from me and my husband, of course ) loves my book that much. I hoped against hope that someone would find my book that interesting, but I hadn't expected it to happen so soon!

I have plans to donate two copies to the local library. I'm told they circulate one copy and the other is kept in a special uncirculated section. There is evidently a section reserved for local authors as well--an unexpected bonus as far as I'm concerned. Next I have to consider such questions as whether to offer my book on e-books such as Kindle and how to create my own website. Decisions, decisions!

I'm doing the best I can along this journey, taking it one step at a time and hoping for the best.


Tuesday, December 21, 2010

First Readers

Hello again! I'm back at work after a short break for family time in NH. Came back last night in our first snowstorm! I've begun getting a bit of feedback from early readers of Judgment on Tartarus, and so far it's good! I even surprised one friend of mine who didn't  realize I had written and published my first book. That was fun, I must admit. She asked me what it's like to hold a book in your hands that you actually wrote. I confessed that it feels a bit weird. I've been reading most of my life, but to hold and read a book that you produced feels very strange---almost surreal! But it does feel good.

What is perhaps most encouraging is the people who ask where online they can order/buy my book---that is particularly surreal! I can't help thinking, Wow! This person is interested enough in my work to spend their hard-earned money on it! I don't think there could be a greater compliment.

So far, so good. I'm sure I'll be getting more feedback as soon as my book is available online in mid-Jan.

I'll close for now.


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Recharging My Batteries

Hi, again!

As a writer I find I have to "recharge my batteries" from time to time. So I read books, magazines, etc., watch movies and TV shows, DVDs---anything that will help spark my imagination. But I do have to tread carefully. I don't want to inadvertently "borrow" anyone else's ideas, which can be really difficult. More than one person can come up with the same idea and recognize it as a darn good one!

How many times have you thought up an idea---only to have someone else get there first? It's happened to me on many occasions, unfortunately. I used to kick myself, but such frustration in life seems to be inevitable. Now I try to congratulate my competition---on recognizing the sheer brilliance of my ideas!

All for now,


Saturday, December 11, 2010


Hello again!

Most of the online bookstores will have Judgment on Tartarus for sale in mid-Jan. I had the best luck locating the book by title, not author's name. Several copies are already in the hands of eager readers ( or will soon be on their way to them, providing I can get anywhere near the Post Office at this time of year! )

Too early for any feedback yet---I'd rather people took their time to enjoy the book and let it sink in, instead of rushing through it. I know Judgment won't be everyone's cup of tea, but to quote J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter books, "In order for some people to love it, others must hate it." How true!

On many occasions over the past years, I've been sorely tempted to just chuck the whole dang manuscript and give up. But each time I began re-reading it, I'd think, This is just too good a story to be tossed! And each time I sat down and reworked it, the story only got better! There is something to be said for perseverance, even though the work can often be a royal pain in the, ah---stern section, as Captain Hughes would say.

So I guess the moral of this blog is whatever your endeavors, keep at it and don't give up!


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Character Driven

Going back for a moment to the "kind" of science fiction I write: though my books are set in a future when space travel between planets is possible, my stories are always about people, not hardware or theories. I write about their characters, what drives them, their relationships, problems, and the challenges they meet.

So of course I can't wait to see how readers react to my characters! Will they like Rona Scott---or find her too wishy-washy? Will they like---er,ah---well, at least respect Malkis of Tartarus? And what about Captain Richard Hughes with his hair-trigger temper and no-nonsense attitude?Will they be able to see past the facade to the man beneath it? I'm keeping my fingers crossed!

The growing interest in Judgment on Tartarus is very encouraging, especially as I'm relying heavily on word-of-mouth advertising!

Thanks for reading,


Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Cover Art

I was surprised ( again! ) to find my book listed on already! And unlike, they actually have a pic of my cover. The colors appear to be pretty accurate, and the art is larger than the pic on Wheatmark's website. Also, I was happy to see they've listed Judgment at a 29% discount. That's a relief! I've been warned to be patient with Amazon's bookstore; evidently they frequently have some problems.But I'm waiting to see what discount Amazon will offer.

I really don't enjoy the business end of publishing, but---once again, I'm going to give it a shot. Rather be writing!

All for now,


Sunday, December 5, 2010

Glutton for Punishment?

Here I am again. Today I took up work on Book 2: True Son of Tartarus.This book is finished except for the nit-picky stuff: editing, title pages, etc. Not as much fun as writing, but, heck, somebody has to do it--and, well, there's only me. I have a few fans in the wings waiting for a copy of Judgment to read. I thought at first Book 2 would be longer than Book 1, but at this point it looks as if they may be dead-even. But, for anyone who likes Book 1, I can only say from my point of view, I think Book 2 is slightly better. I'd give reasons, but I don't want to give away the plot of Judgment! Anyway, in a few months hopefully, you'll be able to read both and compare.

Back to work,


Saturday, December 4, 2010

Judgment Day!

My sample copies have arrived! Yesterday ( if you checked out my last blog ) I got a wonderful surprise---ten copies of Judgment on Tartarus arrived via UPS! You can imagine my excitement as I unpacked those books and held the first pristine copy in my hands. I had prepared myself to be disappointed with the workmanship. I was not.

It was the fulfillment of a long-held dream! The cover is beautiful, the colors are rich, the stock, shiny. The book looks like one you'd pick off the shelf of any bookstore. Only I wrote this one! Hard to get that through my head.

As I've blogged previously, Judgment is up on Wheatmark's website You can view the cover there---though it's much more impressive in real life. Keep checking, and for the next couple to three weeks. They are supposed to list Judgment, hopefully at a discount and with the back cover text I've already given you a sneak peek at. It still remains to be seen whether they'll offer the "Look Inside" feature. Now that the book's been published, I can't quote from the contents, nor can anyone else, without the written permission of the publisher. That really feels odd!

All for now,


Friday, December 3, 2010


Hello there!

Got an unexpected e-mail yesterday from my publisher telling me my Author's Sample copies had shipped and were on their way! Wow! I really expected it would take at least two more weeks--glad I don't have to wait. I am not exactly a patient wait-er. So in the meantime I'm trying to accomplish something while waiting for the UPS truck.

Hoping I won't be severely disappointed,


Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Sneak Peek

Hi, again!

About two weeks to go and counting! It's so hard to rein in my excitement---trying to concentrate on other things---like Christmas decorations, feeding the multitude of ravenous birds and squirrels in my backyard, um---ah, where was I?

So, as promised, here's a sneak peek at the back cover copy of Judgment on Tartarus:

     Newly assigned to the space cruiser Astrella II, captained by the legendary "Hero of the Gorgonian Wars", Richard Hughes, Ensign Corona Scott fears her long-dreamed-of career is about to be deep-sixed! She runs afoul of her new CO's volcanic temper, and Med Supervisor Johann Weiner warns her that Astrella's ExO, Malkis of Tartarus, is going to make her life a living Hell. He hates Terran females! Rona's ideals are put to the test as the shocking bigotry and hatred she finds aboard Astrella culminate in sabotage and murder and, ultimately, in a serious rift between Hughes and his ExO. Without warning, Astrella is mysteriously dispatched to the enigmatic planet Tartarus, where Rona Scott encounters an unsought destiny far beyond her wildest dreams, and where the fate of Astrella's crew rests upon the outcome of a barbaric, bloody duel to the death!

So what do you think? Does this make you want to read the book---or not? Would you recommend a book  like this to your friends who read? Comments are more than welcome. If you have trouble commenting on my blog, I'm also on facebook as M.r.Tighe; leave me a message there. You can also view a tiny pic of my cover using the info in my last blog. Thanks!

Trying my best to wait patiently,