25 December, 2012

Happy Holidays!

Many of you are celebrating Christmas today (in which case: A very Merry Christmas to you!) but regardless of what festivities you participate in, I hope you have a wonderful holiday season and a great New Year!

-----The Golden Eagle

18 December, 2012

Teaser Tuesday (102)

Teaser Tuesday is hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading. It's a weekly, bookish meme.

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week, my teaser is from The Difference Engine by William Gibson and Bruce Sterling. How I found this book is a bit of a story--remember when Google had Ada Lovelace on their homepage a little while ago? Following the links in the search results, I noticed Wikipedia mentioned The Difference Engine under Cultural References as a steampunk novel that included Ada Lovelace. I thought it sounded cool, especially since I read Neuromancer by Gibson (and liked it). I'm not very far into this story yet (only 20 some pages) but Lovelace has already been mentioned.

Her room above the Hart seemed distant as childhood's first memories, here in the smell of slaughter, in this dark where giants moved--Houston reeled suddenly to slash at the curtains with his cane, tore them open, gas-light catching the patterns of frost on the glass of each mullioned pane, illuminating the Texian's kerchief and the grim eyes above it, eyes distant and merciless as winter stars. Houston staggered at the sight, the striped blanket sliding from his shoulders.
-p. 67


Have you ever tried a book because it contained a particular character, either a real or fiction person? What are you reading now? Got any teasers to share?

-----The Golden Eagle

17 December, 2012

The Look Tag (AKA The Thing Where I Post An Excerpt From My Novel)

Over the past couple of months (yes, I know, I took that long . . .) I've been tagged by JeffO at The Doubting Writer and Susan at Mywithershins to do the Look Tag.

The objective: Post the first instance of the word "look" (or variant) from your current project, along with some of the surrounding paragraphs. The following excerpt is from my National Novel Writing Month project--which is as yet unfinished, in case you were wondering; at the rate I've been writing this month, I think I might have it completed some time in January.

The project is untitled. And before you get confused, in the following scene everyone's aboard an airship called the Ornatus, all personnel have been called to the Engineering deck, and the main character's POV has not been introduced yet (this is only the first page), which is why it's all third-person omniscient.

   Behind the Captain stood three individuals: Two boys and a girl, all with the nose, eyes, and cheekbones of the Captain but with none of the overbearing authority. They weren't officers, not part of the full-time crew, and rarely filled in for the personnel on the lower decks though they had passed all the proper tests. They were the children of the Captain but still considered too green to perform major tasks on a mission as important as that of the Ornatus. They were there because, in an emergency, they could be a fallback.
   One of the boys, in particular, looked uncomfortable standing in front of the 87 crew members. His eyes shifted from one part of the room to the next and he swayed very slightly, like the movement of someone who needs to go to the bathroom very badly and doesn't want to show it.
   The girl, on the other hand, looked on the way to inheriting the mantle of her mother, the Captain. Standing still as feather in a void, she observed the proceedings with an intelligence lost on everyone except herself and another person she could not see.
   "Someone is playing havoc with this ship," the Captain announced, her voice carrying to the back row of the assembled crew. "And I want to clarify immediately that nothing, nothing shall put this mission in jeopardy under my command. Whoever has played these tricks on the noble Ornatus is a fool and has no purpose onboard this airship. All of you have been called here so that I may inform you directly of the fact that each and every one of you will have your quarters searched. In fact, your quarters may already have been searched, as I ordered a top-down check of the entire ship."
   The crew began to mutter, their voices turning into a sweep of anger and indignation that they should have their belongings nosed through by higher officers. The Captain clapped her hands once, and the murmuring stopped, though there was still a hum of discontent.


Any thoughts, critiques, criticisms, opinions on the excerpt?

If you participated in NaNoWriMo, did you finish your novel in November or are you still working on it?

-----The Golden Eagle

14 December, 2012

The Hobbit Blogfest

M. Pax and Tyrean Martinson are hosting the Hobbit Blogfest (or Hobbit Fest) today, in celebration of the book and new movie. Being a fan of J.R.R. Tolkien, I had to participate. It's a simple event--participants just post their answers to four questions about the story.

What is your favorite hobbit characteristic or the one that you think closely resembles you?
I don't think I have a whole lot in common with hobbits, other than being relatively short. My favorite characteristic of hobbits would be their determination in the face of difficulty, even if they don't appear very fierce in their peaceful lives at Hobbiton.

If you could choose between a scrumptious second breakfast and a perilous unexpected journey – which would you prefer?
Oh, probably the unexpected journey. I'd feel too lazy sitting around munching food (even if it was delicious) if other people were doing something.

Have you ever left behind something on a journey (expected or unexpected) and wished you could have it over and over again? (A pocket handkerchief?)
A camera. It drives me crazy to see something interesting and be unable to photograph it.

What is your favorite part or quote from the book that you hope will be in the movie?
You may have already guessed my answer to this one: The eagles! I'm also highly looking forward to the Lonely Mountain. And the elves. And Beorn. And Bilbo Baggins played by Martin Freeman. And--heck, I'm looking forward to  the entire thing.

Who else is excited for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey? Have any of you seen the movie, and if so, what did you think? 

-----The Golden Eagle

11 December, 2012

Teaser Tuesday (101)

Teaser Tuesday is a bookish meme hosted by MizB (Should Be Reading) every week.

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week my teaser is from The Rapture of the Nerds by Cory Doctorow and Charles Stross. The book is actually available online for free, since they published it through a Creative Commons (CC-BY-NC-ND-3.0) license. I have to say the story is a little weird a short ways in (weird being subjective, of course) but I like it so far. And hey, who could resist reading a book with the subtitle "A tale of the singularity, posthumanity, and awkward social situations"?

(I could look at this cover for a long time and speculate about how to put the pieces of machinery together. It's a busy image, but I think it's an effective sort of busy.)

As it turns out, like much of the newer local architecture it's an inflatable building, an outsized bounce-house made of metallic fabric and aerogel and compressed air. The whole thing could be deflated and carted elsewhere on a flatbed truck in a morning, or simply attached to a dirigible and lifted to a new spot. (A great safety-yellow gasket the size of a manhole cover sprouts from one side, hooked into power, bandwidth, sewage and water.)
-p. 45

What are you reading now, either fiction or non-fiction? Got any teasers to share?

-----The Golden Eagle

10 December, 2012

The Cheers, Cavanaugh Blogfest

Most everyone in the blogosphere has heard of one person: Alex J. Cavanaugh.

As a way of acknowledging him, Mark Koopmans, Morgan Shamy, David Powers King, and Stephen Tremp have come up with the brilliant idea of hosting an event in his honor, called the Cheers, Cavanaugh Blogfest. I jumped on as soon as I heard about it!

Blogfest questions:

In +/- 20 words, what does Alex look like?
In +/- 20 words, who could play Alex in a documentary (living or dead)?
In +/- 20 words, who does Alex remind you of?
In +/- 100 words, (excluding the title), write flash fiction using all these prompts: Cavanaugh, Ninja, IWSG, Cosbolt, Guitar.

- Be a Follower
- Join the Linky List
- Post your 200 word contribution (on Monday, December 10, if you would)
- Have fun!

More information available at any of the hosts' blogs.

My answers:

What does Alex look like? Satellite dishes, obviously. My theory is, his avatar is an accurate representation of alien technology used to emulate humans/infiltrate society. It's the only explanation of how he manages to write so many comments in a day, aside from clones!

Who could play Alex in a documentary (living or dead)?
Casting aside the satellite dish idea for a moment, I'd have to say Orlando Bloom.

Who does Alex remind you of?
No one. I think he's a pretty unique person; or at least, he's the only super-amazing, highly-supportive power-blogger that I've met so far!

Flash fiction piece (untitled):

"Captain Cavanaugh!"
   "No interruptions now, trainee. Be ready to launch on my mark. The Cosbolt must reach our enemy's star system in less than one hour."
   "It's the IWSG. They've left their sign on our ship, sir."
   "The shuriken?"
   "Yes, Captain. And . . . some of the crew are saying there's an IWSG Ninja on board the ship. Strange reports are coming in from all decks."
   "There's nothing we can do about it now. We have to launch; I don't care if guitar music starts blasting through the intercom, the Cosbolt is on a mission. Engineering, get us into space! And you, trainee. Before you leave, I have only one thing to say: There's only one true ninja on board this ship, and he's sitting right in front of you."

(Word count: 131)

There's also a bonus part of the blogfest, which I thought I'd include:

In +/- 40 words, leave a comment for Mrs. Cavanaugh - thanking her for sharing
Dear Mrs. Cavanaugh,
Your husband is amazing, and a great thank you is owed for the personal sacrifices you must make due to Mr. Cavanaugh's blogging. So, thank you! And may you both live long and prosper.

-----The Golden Eagle

06 December, 2012

Guest Post By Cherie Reich: The Nightmare Collection Blog Tour

Today, I have a special guest post by Cherie Reich, author of the recently-released Nightmare series of books. It's an eerie tale, and the inspiration for one of her horror stories. Take it away, Cherie!


Cover art by Nicemonkey at Dreamstime.com. 
Cover design by Aubrie Dionne. Bookworm logo for 
Surrounded by Books Publishing created 
by Cherie Reich.

Once Upon a December Nightmare – Loosely Based on a True Story

Thank you so much for having me on your blog today, Golden!

You hear all the time about horror stories being based off a true story, such as The Exorcist and The Amityville Horror. Thinking the story might be true greatly increases the fear factor. But I am here today to tell you that Once Upon a December Nightmare in The Nightmare Collection is loosely based off a true story.

On December 28, 2002, three friends (my best friend, her sister, and her sister’s husband) and I were going to go to a movie and out to eat. Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers was sold out, and we couldn’t decide on another movie to go see, so we ended up at Subway to eat dinner. We chatted for a while, and none of us wanted to go back home so early, so we piled into my friend’s husband’s old truck and rode around. We ended up on one of those one-lane mountain trails in the Jefferson National Forest.

We were having fun, joking around and the like. Then, we saw the tree blocking our path. No worries. The “James” of the ground said he knew a spot we could turn around and go the other way. All good, right?

In the clearing, some hunter, or hunters, had deposited deer remains. They were very creepy and sent a chill up my spine. Plus, I wasn’t thrilled about them, since I’m a vegetarian and feel bad for the poor creatures. We didn’t know why the deer were there, but the mood in the truck changed as we headed back the way we’d come.

When the headlights flickered out and plunged us into the dark, I knew our fun night had changed to one of horror. The cell phones didn’t work and we had no way of starting the truck, so we set out to walk to the main road.

In situations like this, I have to admit I become a great talker, even though I’m typically the more shy, quiet type. I talked about aliens, The X-Files, serial killers, and monsters. I kept saying we had to stick together and keep walking. I could’ve walked home that night, even though it was so cold and we all grew numb.

Eventually, we came out to the main road and found a house. The people in it wouldn’t let us inside, but they did let us use the phone to call my dad. We stood around there for a while before I said we should keep walking. Dad found us, and we climbed into the car with the heat blasting and went home.

Although our adventure ended much better, I don’t think I ever would’ve written Once Upon a December Nightmare without having lived the tale ... to some extent.

As a writer, do you or have you used real life events to inspire your stories?


About The Nightmare Collection:
A legend is hungry tonight. 
A child monster will get its first taste of blood in Nightmare at the Freak Show. Four friends will enter the forest on December night, but only one can survive in Once Upon a December Nightmare. Almost ten years after Cassie's December nightmare, the monster awakens to hunt again in Nightmare Ever After.

Add to Goodreads.

Purchase links:

E-book format:

About Cherie Reich:
A self-proclaimed bookworm, Cherie Reich is a writer, freelance editor, book blogger, and library assistant living in Virginia. Her short stories have appeared in magazines and anthologies. Her e-books include the horror series Nightmare, a short story collection with authors Aubrie Dionne and Lisa Rusczyk titled The Best of Raven and the Writing Desk, the futuristic space fantasy novelette trilogy Gravity, and The Foxwick Chronicles, a series of fantasy stories. She is a member of Valley Writers and the Virginia Writers Club.


I am giving away prizes to two lucky people. The prize packages are open internationally and include: a signed copy of The Nightmare Collection, a signed copy of Gravity: The Complete Trilogy, and a $10 Amazon Gift Card.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

-----The Golden Eagle

05 December, 2012

I'm Still Alive After NaNoWriMo: An IWSG Post

The Insecure Writer's Support Group is hosted by Alex J. Cavanaugh (in addition to new co-hosts each month) and is all about writers and their problems. From his blog:
It’s time for another group posting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! Time to release our fears to the world – or offer encouragement to those who are feeling neurotic.

I don't really have any sage advice today to share with visiting members of the IWSG. Not that I usually have any great advice to share in the first place, but since I know a lot of writers have just escaped the clutches of National Novel Writing Month or are just stressed in general from trying to hack away at their stories, I thought I'd post this in the hopes of making someone laugh:

Anything happen to you recently that caused you to feel like saying "I'm still alive"?

-----The Golden Eagle

04 December, 2012

Teaser Tuesday (100)

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly, bookish meme hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading. On a bit of a random note, I've finally hit 100 TT posts; but before I get carried away reading through them all, here's today's teaser!

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week, my teaser comes from one of my favorite books, and one you've almost definitely heard of before: The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien. It's been years since I read it through, and I'll admit I was spurred to go back to it due to the upcoming release of the first movie. I'm more excited for the film trilogy now, especially after having seen Sherlock and Martin Freeman, who's Bilbo Baggins. (Interesting fact: They've cast Benedict Cumberbatch, from the same TV series, as the Necromancer (in addition to Smaug), yet the Necromancer doesn't actually appear in the book in any form other than references by Gandalf . . . anyone else curious to see what they've done with that?)

"What shall we do, what shall we do!" he cried. "Escaping goblins to be caught by wolves!" he said, and it became a proverb, though we now say "out of the frying-pan into the fire" in the same sort of uncomfortable situations. 
-p. 109


Have you read The Hobbit and/or The Lord of the Rings? What are you reading now and do you have a teaser from it?

-----The Golden Eagle

03 December, 2012

The Make Believe Anthology

The Make Believe anthology is out today! The blogger heading the launch day celebration is Lynda R. Young, whose story, Birthright, is included in the collection.

About Birthright:
Christa can mask the pain and hide the scars, but running from a birthright is impossible.
   She’s tried to escape her grief by fleeing to a small town in Florida. Much to her frustration, the locals think they recognize her even though she's never been there before. To make things worse, a man named Jack spouts outrageous theories about her.
   Both spur Christa to bolt, to start fresh yet again, but there’s something about Jack that intrigues her enough to stay. The only problem? Someone else wants her to leave, and they won’t stop until she’s dead.

About the other stories:

The Amulet of Ormisez by J. Keller Ford
There is only one way to save Elton Fletcher’s brother from an insanity-ridden death. After years away from home, fighting for his people, Elton returns to discover his only sibling, Cayden, possessed by greed and malice, and responsible for malicious, unthinkable deeds. Cayden, though, isn’t the only one afflicted by the Amulet of Ormisez, and Elton finds himself in yet another battle, where the price of failure could be his own life.

Petrified by Kelly Said
A mysterious storm has replaced summer with winter, devastating crops and smothering Castle lands in snow. Prince Sterling August stands alone as a leader, lost in personal grief as well as a desire to help his people but with an inability to do either.
   The answers he needs await him, but without Lochlyn, a woman who’s just as isolated as Sterling, he’ll never see what stands before him, cloaked in illusion.

Last Winter Red by Jennifer M. Eaton
Emily is a Red, a woman whose sole purpose in life is to produce offspring. When her husband dies and leaves her childless, she risks her life and forsakes the safety of Terra—a disease-free city born after the nuclear holocaust. Beyond its boundaries, she knows, survives a man with whom she can be properly paired.
   The Outside, though, holds secrets the government struggles to keep, and what Emily discovers on her quest for a mate will change her life forever.

Escort to Insanity by J.A. Belfield
From a charity auction, to a stroll in the park, to the craziest night of her life. Nicole Harrington can’t help but wonder how a simple event went so drastically wrong.
   Of course, the male escort she booked is wholly to blame. Not only charming but shrewdly intelligent, Benjamin Gold drags Nicole into a platoon of unimaginable problems—ones from which she’ll have to find the courage just to survive.

Sacrificial Oath by Terri Rochenski
An impetuous act unwittingly makes Alesuela the fulfillment of the Sovereign’s Blood Oath to their Goddess. In five days, she’ll be forced to make the greatest choice of her life: become the virginal sacrifice already promised, or force the man she loves most to die in her place.
   With an impossible choice in front of her, she searches for ways to undo the oath, and in her quest, finds not everything in her life is as she expects.

Purchase links:
Barnes & Noble
All Romance
Books On Board

About Lynda R. Young:
Lynda R. Young lives in Sydney, Australia, with her sweetheart of a husband who is her rock, and a cat who believes world domination starts in the home. She writes speculative short stories and is currently writing novels for young adults. In her spare time she also dabbles in photography and all things creative. You can find her here: Blog, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads

Other people spreading the word about Make Believe:

Do you know Lynda R. Young? Have you read Make Believe yet? Do you check out many anthologies?

-----The Golden Eagle