About that Story in Mortal Remains

Thought I’d share some photos of the interstitional fiction from Mortal Remains. I had a blast designing these pieces and putting together the art notes. The idea behind the fiction was to take a group of everyday hunters, and toss them into a situation where they find they’re in over their heads. In this case, it’s a murder investigation. Each piece, which precedes the chapter, offers a clue to the overall mystery and reveals a little bit about what an encounter, or evidence a hunter might find. Some antagonists, like the Mummy, never cross paths with the hunters. Others, like the Changeling, try and make a deal or know more than they’re letting on.

As I’m wont to do, there are layers of meaning represented in each piece. The second-to-last piece, which was the Last Will and Testament, serves as the ending and wraps up a lot of loose ends. The devil is in the details, I suppose. Har, har.

Anyway, here’s some photos of what a few of the pieces look like in the premium print edition of Mortal Remains. They’ll fill your screen if you click on them. Hope you enjoy the supplement!

Mortal Remains 1

Mortal Remains 2

Mortal Remains 3

Mortal Remains 4

Mortal Remains 5

New Shinies Sans Sniffles

Sephiroth Avatar

…and I’m back for the next segment of “My Life as a Writer.” For ten minutes, at least, since I am STILL dealing with the worst kind of con crud imaginable. Yes well, I whine. What can I say? That’s what gets me through it. Hee.

Anyway, trying for fresh air today and I thought I’d give a brief update about Oscar Wilde, Stud Cat. Oscar has been given a clean bill of health, and he’s going up for adoption this weekend. There are currently 17 cats available for adoption; the staff really likes him and I’ll share a link when that goes live. If you’re considering rescue, please think about it. I found out just how common pet abandonment is, and a lot of time landlords don’t know a pet has been left behind right away. This is just not cool.

I’m good, really. Behind, but sane. I had a great time at WisCon last weekend, mostly because I was able to see people I knew and meet new interesting people. Haven’t gotten the chance to follow up with a living soul, though, because the way my week’s been going. For me, WisCon is the type of show that works well, when I have people to see already. Media-based shows, like a GenCon or NYCC and what-have-you, those I can fare well on my own because there’s always something for me to do, even outside panels. And here? I’m not sure what my contribution would be to a show like this, other than to boost the signal of the folk who are already there. That’s more being self-analytical than anything else, as I’ve pulled back from promoting for the sake of promoting–I don’t have a novel out just yet. Perhaps when that happens, I can talk to some trusted friends, and figure out what folks might be interested in. I suppose that’s every writer’s worst fear, right? Oh, you want to meet me? Um… Hopefully, I’m fabulous in person. Hopefully.

On that note, I’m planning an event for ConText 27 in Ohio that I hope will be the first of many. More on that later! But, for now? I want to share more of the jewelry I’ve been making. They’re clickable, so you can check out each one if you so desire. Shiny!

Vintage-Inspired Necklace

Helm Bracelet

Netted Bracelet

Wire Wrapped Pendants

Pocket of Posies Bracelet

Crystal and Leather Bracelet

    Caffeinated Beverages Consumed: Well? HAH.
    Work-Out Minutes Logged Yesterday: Up down left right up up down down.
    In My Ears: A computer fan. How droll.
    Game Last Played: Samurai vs. Zombies and Samurai vs. Zombies 2
    Book Last Read: *eyebrow raise* There was something…
    Movie Last Viewed: Antz Why? I really don’t know.
    Latest Artistic Project: You’re looking at it.
    Latest Fiction/Comic Release: Last Man Zombie Standing
    Latest Game Release: Mortal Remains
    What I’m Working On: Primarily tie-in games work, original comics, short stories, and novels.

The Story of Oscar Wilde, Stud Cat


Pictured above is Oscar Wilde, who came to our door for help last week. We were hoping he’d find his way home, but after a few hours it was clear it wasn’t going anywhere, so we put out some water for him, a towel and some food. He is extraordinarily friendly, and didn’t exhibit any of the other signs feral cats tend to do. No ear mites, good teeth, etc.

He came back the next day. First, he was spotted chasing a squirrel of enormous size. (We do have rather large squirrels, mind you. Some as big as a small cat.) I didn’t see the result of said cat chasing, but when he showed up again a few days later, we finally escorted him into the Dane County Humane Society. Now, the shelters have odd hours and, as it turns out, MANY places in town either don’t take cats or aren’t no-kill shelters. In Oscar’s case, we suspect he might be local to our neighborhood, and may have been accidentally abandoned when the owners moved out. We were advised not to bring him in, especially since we have two other fuzzballs already, but we were told he’s very healthy.

So what’s next for Oscar Wilde? Well, the shelter is going to try and find his owner first, then keep him under observation for a week. If you ARE the guardian of this cat? That’s where he is, and I hope you have a happy reunion! Then, if they can’t find his owner, Oscar Wilde will go up for adoption for the next thirty-odd days. When he’s listed, I’ll post the link to share.

It’d really mean a lot to us if we can find a home for him. I’d hate to think we rescued him, only to find out he can’t be saved.

150 Years Later. The Long Walk.

American history is rife with varying perspectives, and there is a lot that often gets missed. To make way for certain points-of-view, whether they’re political or not, it’s rare when you get to hear both sides of any story–especially when there are problematic points in our history that have been obscured by time and eclipsed by wars.

The Long Walk is one such event. This 400-mile march, which took place in 1864, forced approximately 10,000 Navajo and Mescalero Apache from their lands to a place called “Bosque Redondo.” Thousands died. The impact of this event, which was led by the U.S. Army, is still being felt today.

U.S. history is not squeaky clean (as no history is) and lesser-known tragedies rarely get a blip until the survivors(1) speak up, like the internment of Japanese-American children during WWII. Indeed, though January marked the 150th anniversary of the Long Walk, it wasn’t talked about very much.(2)

For many personal reasons, reading about this dark event has impacted me greatly, not as a Navajo or Mescalero Apache, but as a writer(3) and student of humanity. This story I’m linking to, this one in particular, is extremely powerful. If you know who the musician Clearance Clearwater is, then you will appreciate this article even more. Legacy of Forced March Still Haunts Navajo Nation.

If you’re not clear on what the Long Walk was, there are several links in the aforementioned article that go into detail, like this one to The Bosque Redondo Memorial. For a more educational take, the Arizona Memory Project–GO LIBRARIES–has a lesson plan about it, too.

(1) When I was visiting Las Vegas a few years back, a moment of serendipity somehow brought this up in casual conversation. To hear a story about this, from someone who had family who was there? It was powerful. Very, very powerful.
(2) I had known it was an anniversary year due to prior research for my work, but wasn’t clear on the month. Quite embarrassed about that, actually.
(3) Out of respect, I’m not linking to any of those posts or that story.

In the Category of Fun Time-Wasters…

Big Giant Sword Fighting Avatar

Thunderstorms and lightning were very, very frightening last night, so I hopped on our Kindle and allowed the very addicting Samurai vs. Zombies 2 to take over.

Samurai vs Zombies 2

Swipe games are a lot of fun to play for me, because each level provides something new. I finally beat the game last night, not without help mind, and have been taking advantage of some of the enhancements to get more coin. There are three separate levels: a daily challenge, the main quest, and multiplayer aspect that pits your main character against the zombie horde. There is a large variety of zombies, oni, and what-have-you; some that are definitely nastier than others. The mechanic is pretty straightforward, and it’s very easy to learn. You have a leadership bar at four tiers that fills up. The more leadership you have, the more allies you can summon, and each has various abilities and specialties. Your main character has two special abilities they can access to impact what’s on the screen. They are also varied and unlocked through play, like the Divine Wind and the Flash Bomb. Outside of these aspects, you level up your character and your defenses as you earn coins during gameplay.

What I like about this version of the game, is that there are multiple ways to play it. The Daily Challenge locks in your strategy, and you win for a nice reward. Multiplayers are nice, but wow…I did burn through a few Revives just to spite the other player for the non-stop barrage. (An aspect I don’t like about playing with stranger, but is mildly reduced here given you don’t have chat and it’s not a free-for-all; multiplayer options do try to match up to your power and expertise.

Once you beat the game at Level 50, you do get the opportunity to replay any level — and earn more coins. The challenge levels post-50 are fairly tough, and I despise certain monsters with a passion as you have to get behind them in order to take them down, but strategy? Well, that’s part of the fun!

It’s not a “deep” game, and the art strays into manga-territory, but that’s okay for me. Sometimes, brain turn-y, off-y swipe swipe and tappity, tap, tapp games are exactly what’s needed when the to-do list overwhelms. The game can be found on iTunes, Facebook, Amazon, Google Play — pretty much everywhere you can find mobile games. Support, like through the Samurai vs. Zombies Defense 2 forums, is available too.

Yep, time-waster. Ah well! After defeating this game, it’s back to late nights of Skyrim for me! Using that one as a reward, because flower collection is time-consuming. Heh.

    Mood: Late start. Super hot yesterday; perfectly cool today!
    Caffeinated Beverages Consumed: Two LARGE cups so far. Switched to tea. Yes, it’s Aveda. And your point is?
    Work-Out Minutes Logged Yesterday: Up down left right up up down down.
    In My Ears: I Love Paris by Frank Sinatra
    Game Last Played: Samurai vs. Zombies and Samurai vs. Zombies 2
    Book Last Read: *eyebrow raise* There was something…
    Movie Last Viewed: The Matrix
    Latest Artistic Project: CLASSES! But… Shoot. Need pictures.
    Latest Fiction/Comic Release: Last Man Zombie Standing
    Latest Game Release: Mortal Remains
    What I’m Working On: Primarily tie-in games work, original comics, short stories, and novels.

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