Summer at the Country House,
watercolor on paper, 19th c.
1. Pico de Arte Award:
Billie of Chapter and Verse -- dear deluded man that he is -- has awarded me an elegant Pico de Arte.
To inspire others with their creative energy and talents. This can be through writing, artwork, design, interesting material or contribution to the bigger community. It is a special honour to receive it.
Indeed it is an honour.
Since I am barely post-Luddite in regards to the addition of pleasing side-bar trinkets, please visit his blog to see this charming sigil and read his excellent poetry.
Edit to Add: It seems that sweet -- and equally deluded -- Vesper has also honoured me with this award. You should read her recent Gothic tale.
2. Delicious lines encountered (I really should keep a list):
Dear Author provides an entertaining and encouraging feature about "first sale" stories. Historical romance author Joanna Bourne recounts the following:
I pounded it out on a selectric typewriter. There was something called carbon paper. No, I won't go there. Suffice it to say this was a long time ago and the woods were full of the cries of mating pterodactyls.
3. How to make male readers cross their legs:
After finishing A Malignity of Ghosts (more or less) I have suffered from the usual writer's insecurities -- that stage when one tries to view the MS with an outsider's eyes -- when one can see only possible deficiencies and few strengths.
Among other things, I have been worried that I pulled my punches, diluted impact, avoided the viseral. Wondering if I have been too elliptical, too prissy in my prose. If allude, imply and suggest are sufficient for the dark things in a character's psyche and experience, if I have trusted the reader too far.
In short, if I've been a chickenshit.
Possibly as a result of this morose examination, the opening lines of the next St. Claire chronicle are tentatively thus:
He'd been castrated.
While he was alive.