Straight from Hel

Helen Ginger is an intelligent, caring, versatile person who keeps busy with her writing career. She pens the blog, “Straight from Hel” with insight and humor. From her web site:

I’m a freelance editor, book consultant, and writer. I teach public speaking as well as writing and marketing workshops.

In addition, my free ezine, Doing It Write!,, which goes out to subscribers around the globe, is now in its ninth year of publication.

I’m also an Owner/Partner and the Women’s Marketing Director for Legends In Our Own Minds®.

Of course, what I get asked about most often are my three years as a mermaid at Aquarena Springs. Swimming with a shimmery tail, picnicking underwater, performing synchronized ballet, blowing air bubbles … all year round, even in the winter.

Helen Ginger

Helen Ginger

I’m actively involved in the writing community. I was the Executive Director of the Writers’ League of Texas from 2003 – 2005. Currently, I serve as a Committee Chair for the Texas Book Festival, and volunteer as a gift wrapper for the Bess Whitehead Scott Scholarship fund.

Stop by her web page at

Stop by tomorrow and hear her talk about her career, with advice on editing your work, and what every new author should look out for.

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Woot!! I’m being inteviewed!

Helen Ginger is interviewing me on her blog, Straight From Hel.

Cool, huh? Stop in and check it out.

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SFReader has new reviews up!

SFReader has new material on site. 😀

Subject: new reviews

Cthulhu Australis, Volume Two
by David Conyers
Reviewed by Jeff Edwards

Space Wolf
by William King
Reviewed by Kevin Lumley

DS9: Terok Nor: Day of the Vipers
by James Swallow
Reviewed by David Roy

Sirens of Titan
by Kurt Vonnegut
Reviewed by Ron Sanders

Black Tattoo
by Sam Enthoven
Reviewed by Jennifer Hairfield

Victory Conditions
by Elizabeth Moon
Reviewed by S. J. Higbee

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vampires gotz nutin on meee

funny pictures
more animals

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meet Karina Fabian

Firestorm of Dragons

Firestorm of Dragons

In 2005, Karina Fabian turned her attention totally to fiction. With Rob, she has edited the Christian SF anthology, Leaps of Faith, (coming 2008) and Infinite Space, Infinite God, an award-winning SF anthology with Catholic themes (2007 twilight Times Books)

Her latest fantasy adventure, DragonEye, PI, features a down-and-out dragon working off a geas by the Faerie St. George. Vern d’Wyvern (yes, it’s an embarrassing name for a dragon) is partnered by Sister Grace, a Mage for the Faerie Catholic Church. Together they solve crimes magical and Mundane and save the universes on an all-too-regular basis. DragonEye, PI, stories appear in magazines and on the Internet, and its first book, “Magic, Mensa and Mayhem” comes out from Swimming Kangaroo in early 2009.

In addition to juggling the stories from at least three different universes, Karina is President of the Catholic Writers’ Guild, moderator of Catholic Writers Online, and active in a half-dozen or more groups. She also teaches writing seminars on-line. With four kids, four pets and a very understanding husband who is an officer in the Air Force, she tends to sleep in her “spare” time.

Karina’s Websites:, where you’ll find info about her, her writing and her eclectic writing/homeschooling/humor/just-gotta-say-it blog, where she’ll gladly advertise your book if you’ll return the favor to someone else, where you can learn more about the fantasy noir dragon detective Vern, his partner Sister Grace, and the world of Dragon Eye, PI.

Here’s an interview snippet:

If your book was turned into a movie, who would you like to play the main characters?

No idea. I’d leave that for the casting company. I just want them to say my lines.

What is your favorite word? Least favorite?

Favorite: Paycheck
Least Favorite: Rejection

What is the hardest kind of scene for you to write?

Descriptive, like the scenery and such. I’m not a visually-oriented person, so dwelling on the color of the grain as the sun strikes it in the mid afternoon with the flock of birds billowing across it, lalala…. is not easy for me to write.

If there was one thing you could change about your work, what would it be?

I’d get picked up by a major publisher who’d get me on bookshelves nationally. I’m working on making that change. In the meantime, I’m working with several great small-press publishers. It’s my hope that, if this dream comes true, they’ll be able to complement each other and I can build my readership for all my books.

I realize that sounds terribly commercial, but writing is a business, and right now, I’m in a business mindset.

What’s the one question that no one ever asks you and you wish they would?

I don’t have one. I’m content to let people ask me what they will.

Where can we see your work online? In print?

For a list of my books in print or coming soon, check out my website, I have a full list of short and long works with links.

I also do websites for the anthologies I’m in:, where you can learn about Infinite Space, Infinite God. Thought-provoking sci-fi with a Catholic twist!, to read about Leaps of Faith, an anthology of Christian sci-fi, to learn more about Firestorm of Dragons–dragons as you’ve never seen them before!

Since I edited Infinite Space, Infinite God and Leaps of Faith, I answered some of the questions below:

What’s the biggest mistake that new authors make?

Not following the guidelines. It does not matter how good your work it, if it does not fit the theme and approach of the anthology, it will not be accepted.

What are the things that will make you turn a book down?

Not following the guidelines. Bad grammar. Lazy plotting or characterization. Lack of internal logic in a story.

What formats do your books come in?

Electronic and print.

To read complete Bio and interview, go to

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Meet Andrea Allison

Here’s the second part of my interview with Andrea Allison:

Part 2

What inspires you?

My eyes and ears are always open to catch whatever I can find. I read a lot. I love movies. With every new idea, I find inspiration from it even when I feel unmotivated to write.

What kind of research do you do for a project?

Having a blog on the same subject as my writing gives me a way to research for my writing as well as share it with like-minded people. I read stories about haunted experiences, deaths that led to such experiences as well as a world some embrace while others ridicule. Researching places and people are necessary too for accuracy purposes.

Where do you like to go to do your best work?

I’m pretty much ok in most environments as long as no one is bugging me or constantly looking over my shoulder as I write. That annoys the heck out of me.

Do you like to write with a pen and notebook, on a typewriter or on a computer?

I’ve always been a pen and paper kind of girl.

Do you listen to music or prefer silence?

I prefer music or some kind of background noise. Can’t concentrate without it.

Do you outline your story before you start a novel?

I don’t write novels yet. However, I use to not outline much. I would let the story lead me wherever I felt inspired to go. Now, I’ve began to use scene cards for outlining purposes.

Do you edit as you write, edit after you’re done or a mixture of both?

Edit after I’m done while I’m transferring from paper to computer and a few times afterwards.

If you weren’t a writer, what would you do?

I have no idea. Never really think about it much.

How does your family feel about your writing career?

They are very supportive. Always have been. I’m lucky to have them.

If there was one thing you could change about your work, what would it be?

Hmmm….I guess nothing. I’m satisfied with how it is for now.

Where can we see your work online? In print?

I find myself in the position where most of what I’ve had published were in ezines that have since shut down except for one. I have one short story “Tornado Luck” that is available online at Long Story Short and in print, in Stories of Strength, an anthology to benefit disaster victims.

Do you have a website or blog? Tell us about it.

I have a personal website at It’s all abut my background, where you can find me on the web and what I’ve had published.

I also have two blogs.

Southern Expressions is about my life, writing, and anything else I find interesting. Then there is Ghost Stories. I started it about four years ago after moving to Oklahoma and discovering the wonderful world of satellite TV. It’s about the paranormal, folklore, mythology, etc.

To read the entire interview, go to Whispering Spirits Message Board

To read “Tornado Luck” Click Here.

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Little eBook Reviews features The Designated Survivor

good review

JC Gatlin - Author

The Designated Survivor‘ was reviewed by Paul Little on his blog Little eBook Reviews. He writes:

The Designated Survivor Cover Photo“This is JC Gatlin’s first offering on KDP as far as I could tell and it is a relatively short ebook at around 93 pages. These two facts tell us that the author is on a mission to make a splash with a fast paced novel. The blub is accurate and we get straight into the plot from the get-go.

“The main characters come together seemingly at random and as we go through the pages we learn about each and more importantly what we do not know. We know that Tess is on the run and desperate to get to her daughter and any road trip is going to be fraught with tension on the way. Quite how people outside the car learn about Tess is left to the imagination but this…

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The troubles with mixed genre

Cussedness Corner

I am finding I have a lot of trouble promoting my books because they are mixed genre.

The categories are almost set in iron.

I often use Dark Fantasy I like tvtropes for my definitions these days.

I have the basic horror types (vampires, werewolves, necromancers) plus gore, grit, grime, and atrocity. I’m graphic about them. Perhaps too graphic at times, especially in the Dark Brothers of the Light series.  But I can’t call it horror because it is set on an alternate earth setting.

Alternate earth is usually the realm of Science Fiction and I do have some science elements, but it is definitely not Science Fiction.

A few months ago I put my lycan novel, Serpent’s Quest, up for a free read at wattpad and since it was about werewolves (of a sort) and vampires, when I saw the category for werewolves, I used it and then banged…

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The troubles with KDP Select

Cussedness Corner

The value of using KDP Select has become questionable in many cases. Jennifer Malone has an excellent article on it. Be sure to read the comments.

Daverana’s own  experience with it has been that it does not  work well. We have offered three different books by three different authors and not seen a bump in sales as a result of it.

A year ago, Carolyn McCray wrote an excellent article on the ways to decide whether KDP Select would work for you or not.  And from reading the article, I see that she’s saying you already have to have fabulous sales numbers to get any benefit from it. She could be right there.  If you don’t already have substantial visibility, KDP Select is not going to give it to you.

Jane Friedman has a guest post from CJ Lyons, whose final analysis is that the bloom is off the…

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10 best things I learned at Surrey International Writers’ Conference

10 best things I learned at Surrey International Writers’ Conference.

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How does a writer describe taste and smell?

makes you think. I like to use sensory words in my work

5 Writers 5 Novels 5 Months

How Smell WorksKaralee’s Post #24

I find describing taste and smell a challenge.

I also have an interest in medicine and biology so if you are want an introduction to the mechanism of how we taste and smell you can look at: and

When I think of a taste or a smell I automatically try to describe it through something else that has a similar taste or smell. This is effective when I’m trying to describe a mixture of things such as a cake, a summer day in the woods, walking into a grocery store or a shoe factory, or driving by a dump or going into a gym locker room, etc.

But what if the item I’m trying to describe has its own unique smell and taste, what I think of as a primary smell or taste?  For example many fruits and vegetables, meats, fish, many flowers, or pine…

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New website

Com visit me at

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157. Even if Dali and Magritte

157. Even if Dali and Magritte.

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