Steampunk Hands Around the World

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by Ray Dean

by Ray Dean

What do you like about steampunk?

What I like is the fact that many people like and even love steampunk and they don’t even know it. That would have been me a few years ago. I’d watched steampunk inspired movies and animation, totally digging the spiff and shine, the gadgetry and magic, and the mash up of genres, tropes and imagery to create something, well…unnameable. Except it does have a name. Steampunk.

Until three weeks ago I never thought for a second that I would do more than read a steampunk book or watch a movie. This will soon change.

Steampunk Hands Around the World is the brain child of the Airship Ambassador, Kevin Steil. I was invited to participate by group member, Suna Dasi, who had put out a call to attract a multicultural group of women to participate in this quirky, fun event. I am so very glad that I accepted. The Mission Statement reads as such:

Steampunk Hands Around the World is a month long event in February 2014 showing and sharing that steampunk and the community is global and as such, all steampunk everywhere are connected. There are new friendships to be found in every conversation and event. “Hands” is presented in multiple formats from blogs to videos to live events. Each person is responsible for organizing their own content and format, but the central theme is that of global connection and friendship.

While contributions to this event will be unique and varied, by an equally unique and varied group of artists and steampunk lovers, my part will be a short story tentatively titled The Golden Bird. In keeping with the theme of this event, it will of course, be a steampunk tale and it will be multicultural. I’ll be posting it right here on February 23rd. And, if all goes as planned, The Artist will provide a unique piece of art to go along with my story. I am both excited and nervous because this puts me on a deadline. *shudders*

So…I’m signing out now so I can get back to work on this story.

by Ray Dean

by Ray Dean

The Ministry Blog Tour

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TheGrayTowerTrilogy

I am excited to be able to participate in The Ministry Blog Tour in celebration of the completion of the final book in Alesha Escobar‘s Gray Tower Trilogy, Circadian Circle. Congratulations Alesha! It’s phenomenal to be able to rub shoulders with such smart productive indie authors. It inspires me to work harder and to believe in my writing. Thanks Alesha for being an inspiration and for producing a quality piece of fantasy literature.

The Gray Tower Trilogy is a mash-up of magic and espionage, set in an alternate WWII era where the Nazis join with warlocks and vampires to gain the upper-hand, and the Allies employ wizards to stand in their way. The trilogy follows the exploits of Isabella George, an alchemist trained by the Gray Tower and hired as a spy by British intelligence. After losing friends and colleagues to the horrors of war, she’s ready to retire. However, a vampiric warlock stalking her, and a deadly secret from her past, only draw her further into a world of danger and deception.

If that doesn’t sound like a fun and interesting story line check out what others have to say about it:

“In addition to the variety of allies and enemies Isabella George encounters in the first book, an array of new characters and situations await a reader in Dark Rift. Some of the characters are warm while others are of a most sinister and evil nature. I even found myself having some difficulty falling asleep at night after one particular encounter. While I will not disclose any of the major plot elements, I will reveal that there are several plot twists for which there is little or no warning. While there might be extremely subtle hints, Alesha keeps her secrets well hidden.” (Goodreads Review)

“This is a fantastic finale to a series of espionage and fantasy woven into a complex plot with well-developed characters and intriguing story line. I could not put this book down! There was tension, suspense, magic, love, mystery, and more over an exciting conclusion. Circadian Circle gripped me to the very end.” (Samantha LaFantasie, Made To Forget)

Go for a chance to win some loot by signing up for the Ministry Raffle. Come on, you  know you want to! Have fun! And congrats again Alesha!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The-Towers-Alchemist-Kindle-cover-600x800-72dpi1The Tower’s Alchemist (The Gray Tower Trilogy, #1)

Dark-Rift-Cover-low-rez-singleDark Rift (The Gray Tower Trilogy, #2)

Circadian-Circle-CoverCircadian Circle (The Gray Tower Trilogy, #3)

Endings Keep Running Away From Me

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I use Grammarly for english proofreading because if I didn’t you’d be reading this post in Martian.

I’ve been working on a story for nearly three weeks now and I’ve hit a wall.

It started with a character I created a few months ago for another project. Her name is One, which is short for Onesiphorus. She has a dilemma. She’s come into possession of a book and that book is forbidden. I followed her through her day to day life. I’ve gotten into her head and heard her thoughts. I understand her. I’ve given her something to sacrifice and fight for. I’ve challenged her current situation. I like her.

I had a vision when I started this short story (an off-shoot of my current novel length WIP) of where she would end up. In my vision, One is looking out over the walls of her city into the vast barren plains that constitute the hinterlands. She is contemplating self-exile.
The vision ends there. I’m not certain how she gets to this place or how things went so badly. I realized that the ending, in particular the journey my character travels to get to the end, eludes me.

Endings, no matter the story, elude me. I almost always know where I want my protagonists to be in the end, but the just before is this mysterious place I can’t seem to get to. It scares me too because this is part of my craft, a huge part of what I want to do and somehow I feel like I’ve run into a wall every single time

I had such difficulty when it came to the ending of An Unproductive Woman. AUW came to me in effortless linear waves. There was never a moment when I felt stuck, when I had to go back and fill in any gaps. And I did this all without an outline. But when it came to the ending, I choked. And this is evident in the reviews that AUW receives. Some of those reviews site an unsatisfactory ending.

How do you know when a story is finished? What constitutes a satisfactory ending to you?