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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

A Little Teaser...

Here's just a snippet from Judgment on Tartarus, Book One of my Tartarus Trilogy:

   The Tartarian met her eyes squarely and said, "Let us merely say that you and I have had our differences since you came aboard Astrella, Ensign. I am not unaware of your hostility toward me. And yet, unknowingly, you became instrumental in rescuing me from death. How strange the tangled coils of fate!"

   He paused a moment, as if unsure whether or not he should continue. "Your self-incriminating testimony at the inquiry was also quite--remarkable. You must have realized, Ensign, that your previous failure to report Klasner's threat might draw, at the very least, a reprimand."

   Before she was even aware of speaking, Rona heard herself saying heatedly, "Sir! I am well aware of your hostility toward me--but I do not countenance attempted murder under any circumstances!"

   Malkis held her eyes with his own an uncomfortable moment longer, as though he were sifting her mind. "Perhaps, Ensign Scott--perhaps--you are a somewhat better officer than I previously estimated."

   Rona sat dumbfounded. That caustic remark was the closest thing to a compliment she'd ever heard from the Tartarian's thin, bluish lips! She had no idea how to respond: Thank you--for what? Detesting me?  @copyright 2011

That's just a hint of things to come in my epic SF love story and adventure. Hope you enjoyed!

Keep on reading; keep on writing.


Thursday, September 12, 2013

Whoops! That's Not What I Meant!

What's the funniest thing you've ever "accidentally" written?

Mine would have to be: "Grasping his dar'dul-adz firmly in his right hand..." Whoops!

Now I knew perfectly well what I meant to say by that line. A dar'dul-adz is a spear traditionally carried by Shalt-ahnk warriors on the planet Tartarus. But someone unfamiliar with my work could get another idea entirely!

My two daughters nearly died laughing when they read that line in one of my first drafts of Judgment on Tartarus. Not at all the effect I was trying to achieve!

A few of my typos have turned out to be unintentionally humorous, too. For instance: "She loved herons." Herons? Really? Well, I love them as well, but that line should have read: "She loved her sons." Big difference!

The infamous autocorrect often leads to inadvertent comedy. It once insisted that the word I wanted to type was not "goddammit" but "goldsmith!" Huh? How on earth did it reach that conclusion?

I can imagine an irate Captain Richard Hughes shouting, "Goldsmith, Fleet Admiral Gutierrez! Goldsmith!"

Ah, the many trials and tribulations of being a writer, in any genre. But no matter what difficulties you may encounter, hilarious or not, keep on writing and keep on reading!


Friday, September 6, 2013

Writing Space Opera

When I told my doctor recently that I was about to publish my first space opera, after writing three SF novels, she responded, "Oh, you write music, too?" That set me back on my heels a bit. I refrained from laughing, but had to remind myself that most members of the general public don't know much about the different genres in science fiction and fantasy.

I'm sure my doctor, being an intelligent lady, knows all about Star Wars. She simply didn't realize that genre is often referred to as "space opera" ( just as Westerns used to be referred to as "horse operas." ) Space opera doesn't require accurate, or even plausible, science. So the author doesn't have to explain how a vleez-bot works. But in true SF the science must be accurate or at least "theoretically" possible.

My soon-to-be-published novel Galaxy Rand is sheer, unabashed space opera. Who cares how the tech works; it does! The characters are fun; the story is fun. Can a lesson or two be learned along the way? Probably. But that isn't the main point. It's an old-fashioned, exciting adventure harking back to the days of pulp fiction.

Hope you enjoy! Keep reading and keep on writing,