Plans, so many plans!

I have plans for this blog.

Well, I have some plans for this blog that hopefully work out. I’ve been trying to brain storm ideas for different entries that I want to put out there shortly.

Here’s what to expect in the coming weeks and or more:

  • Zebulon Entry 2.0 — I entered a contest and here is what I think about that.
  • PPWC 2017 — My plans and what I know so far.
  • Agent Search and Query Plans
  • 30 Day/Entry challenge — Something I found that will, hopefully keep me going on a regular post type schedule. They’re writing prompts I found and hopefully it keeps things going.
  • NaNoWriMo — What I plan on doing and how I’ll update everyone.


Hope this excites you to keep coming back! I won’t make any promises but I am going to do whatever I can to make sure all of these entries and more are written.

Let’s Get To Work!

Alright, so I know I’ve been gone for a couple months again. Sorry! There was a lot of re-evaluating going on in my world. I decided to be happy, less stressed. That sounds so weird saying that, but it’s the truth. I decided I just didn’t want to deal with drama anymore and I was so done with the things causing it in my life.

Life, and adulting in general, causes stress and drama no matter what. It is all about how you deal with it.

So, going back to something I mentioned back in August, I started doing a BuJo (a shortened phrase for Bullet Journal). As I mentioned then it combines a diary, planner, and all the things you may need it for. This link is one really fun and good explanation as to what it is. But in all honestly it is there to give you a way to organize your life in a way that is free-formatted and works for you. Rather then some of those pre-made planners that can cause it to become too overwhelming to be beneficial.

If that link doesn’t give you enough explanations, try Googling Bullet Journal or going on Pinterest. There is SO much out there that you can figure out what it is all about and see if it would work for you.

So I’ve sorted out my life. I use a disc-bound binder now, which gives me a lot of freedom to move papers around and gives me the benefit of adding things in the middle of all of the different things.

How does this help my writing?

Well, to put it simply. It made it seem less of a pressure. Instead of having giant lists of research, goals and outlines. I found a way to divvy it out so it is a little less daunting. I divided the to-do lists to being handled at different points during different days.

It gives me a chance to do word count trackers to narrow down my productivity and everything else. I can set one task to accomplish a day/week/month. It has been a more successful way for me to organize my writing, my life and everything else.

I’ve been doing it for about 2-3 months now. And I love that it’s helped me set short and long term goals.

Do any of you bullet journal? Have any of you decided to start now that I showed you the magic?


**Peeks around the corner**


Hello, hello. I’m so sorry to have kept you waiting for so long.


Where have I been for so long, you ask? Well, I seemed to have gotten lost in the wonderful world of Internets. I discovered something about myself: I am really bad at getting things blogged about when I really don’t have anything to actually blog about.


I know, I could have continued with the “How I…” posts, but I just couldn’t get it out. I’ve been less than motivated to do anything writing related and felt guilty about it. The last thing I mentioned, oh, four months ago, was that I was working on my query letter for Goddess Born and was planning to get it out there. I did get what I think is a decent attempt and I have been looking through agents and trying to find someone to query, but I really have been too nervous to take that step.


So during my lovely four-month break I’ve been doing a few things:

  1. Family time — I have a toddler, everyone, and she is becoming more and more of that classic toddler. Running around and exhausting her mommy. I love being a mommy but despite her being more and more independent its one of those special independence that require constant supervision. We’ve also had a visit from my mom for a few days and have been planning other excursions and trips up to see my parents at the end of this month/beginning of September.
  2. Toddlerness — This gets a separate mention as well. There have been a lot of transitions happening for the baby girl these last couple months that have made life difficult for mommy. She’s been moved to her own room (she spent over 18 months in our room) and on top of that she’s going to a toddler bed now. If you follow me on Facebook, you’ll know how that can be for me.
  3. BuJo — This may look like a funny word, and it does make me giggle whenever I see that printed that way. It stands for Bullet Journal(ing) and is a way of combining a diary, planner and task manager into one form. Its freeform so it awesome. I’m going to do a post on it in a little bit about how I’ve been using it and how I’m going to incorporate all my writing stuff into it.
  4. Writing — Nothing terribly new, I lot more planning on which direction I want to go with some of these stories that are floating around in my head. Trying to learn who has the loudest voice right now and if it is defined enough to start writing. Getting some research done to help flesh out some of those stories.
  5. Life — I got promoted at work around the same time my last post posted and its been exhaustingly wonderful. I love the new place I am at and the team I work with. I miss some of my old team but I get to see and talk to them still. This currently position gives me room to grow into a position where I can also utilize my writing ability and am already moving toward that goal.


So that’s a round-about way of saying I have been trying to be productive in these months away. And I do have some posts planned and half-written coming up soon. I think I’ll keep going on the “How I…” posts I’ve done and expand on some more background.


Though, right now, I’m sitting here waiting to see if my name gets called for jury duty. Yay for democracy! I’ve actually never sat on a jury, always got dismissed before it could happen. We’ll see what happens this time.

What’s Up Doc?

So, I was going to continue with the whole trend of “this how I did this” posts, but I got distracted again. I started working on some other things and decided to change things up a bit and do a small “what’cha doin’?” post for this week.


This past Thursday marked the beginning of Pikes Peak Writer’s Conference, and I am feeling a bit melancholy about not being there. Those are the family of my soul, the family of this passion that is so deep inside, my tribe, and despite coming to the conclusion that I needed to have a year for me, I am missing all of those people and the knowledge I would have learned this weekend.


I actually had a dream last night that I was sneaking into the conference – kinda like a junky sneaks around – trying to get my PPWC fix. Wandering around listening at doorwayas to hear the information and basically just stalking the Marriott and all of my friends. It was weird and I woke up a little heart-achy. But I posted an “I miss you” post on Facebook and I bucked it up so that I could stick with my plans from earlier this year.



This year is for me. For my family. For my writing.


Next year I plan to jump back into conference with more words and experiences to share with that tribe of mine. A plan of action I intend to stick through to.


So because of being heartsore, I decided to go more into what I am currently working on: Nailing an excellent query for Goddess Born. I’ve been working on getting it perfect, reading up on examples and trying to find something that really helps show off what I think is a great story.


On top of that I’ve been doing all of the adulting. I actually set up a separate bank account so I can start saving all the monies needed for conference as well as some of the other things I’ve had trouble saving for. I have a habit of spending the money I see in front of me, so I’m hoping this out of sight, out of mind process will actually help me be a better adult and get things saved up for the important things in my  life.


Hopefully organizing myself this way will help me really start the few growing up processes I haven’t actually nailed down yet.


Here’s to adulting and having a budget. Now I am going to get back to writing this query and getting some progress done on this snowy weekend.


Now you all get writing too!

And It Started With a Big Bang

So, now that we have talked about the religious system of Tespion, as well as the actual gods of Calypto, I wanted to go through my actual process of creating said religion.

Like I said, when this story was first started, religion wasn’t a main part of the story. It wasn’t developed in any which way or form other than saying that the Felidae worshipped the gods with their shifts.

When I decided to plot out my outline so that I could get my story finished, I relized that religion really was an important aspect of Tespion and these people. Because this story is not in our world, I didn’t want to go and use an example from our world. This world, even though modern like our own world, the religious system is a little more … barbaric. But it works from them.

I’ve always been a history buff, and I really loved the ancient world. So when I started coming up with Dallian, I used what I loved and went from there. One of the reasons I chose pantheism rather than monotheism is because it works better for the system. This world and the Dallian religion, at least as I imagined it, couldn’t work with a singular god or goddess.

With knowing how the structure of the gods works, I began to create the structure of the religion. I knew that I didn’t want to leave it as a “we have multiple gods” idea, I wanted the religion to be structured because when I plotted, religion became a pretty large part of the story. It needed to be as developed as any other character in the story was.

Like we discussed in the first religion post, a big aspect of the religion itself if that the practitioners get markings. The markings of these people have been an aspect of the story since the beginning, but it wasn’t a religious thing. Originally the characters that were marked were actually cut into and scarred by these markings. It wasn’t as common a thing as I was going to be making it be as a religious thing. Cutting people is not a good thing, and since I had a main character that was going through an extensive marking, I didn’t want to explain how this person could be getting these markings and survive as she was being cut up. So instead of cutting, we switched to tattooing. Not tattooing as we know it today, it is a more barbaric form and uses a dye filled needle and mallet. It’s not supposed to be an easy process.  They’re given under the influence of drugs that cause the practitioners to hallucinate so they can commune with the gods.

These markings also represented the status of the practitioner. The more tattoos/markings they have, the more involved they are in the Dallian religion, or they find they’ve reached more milestones worth getting marked for. The darker and more vibrant the blue dye is, shows they were able to go to a temple that have the best supplies, usually in a city with greater riches.

So after understanding my pantheon and these markings that the practitioners get, I needed to move on from there. Where do those that practice go to worship?

With that question in mind, I thought about it. I didn’t want there really to be a “sermon” aspect of the religion. That wasn’t the point I was trying to make with this religion. I wanted it to be a “free” religion, one where the practitioners could practice as they want, when they wanted to and where they wanted to. Obviously there would be locations where the leaders of the religion did the markings, but they wouldn’t go on a weekly/daily/holiday basis.

Basically the temples where the priests and priestesses and live and practice their own devotion to the gods. They are there to talk to the practitioners that wish to come and find sanctuary or need their markings. I do hint that the high priestess give sermons, but they aren’t something that are common or necessary.

After I came up with the place, I needed to know more about the leaders themselves.  I decided there would be a combination of priests and priestesses all working together to make sure everything goes smoothly. There is either a high priest or priestess that runs the whole system and is based out of the main temple in Lolia, similar to the Pope in Vatican City. In Goddess Born, it is a high priestess name Aileen. The high priestess is someone that makes decisions for the religion, someone that makes changes within the system. It is a nominated field, the current high priest or priestess is chosen and molded by the previous high priest or priestess. It is a station for life.

So how long did it take for me to come up with the religious system? Honestly a few hours of really sitting down and looking into how I wanted it to be. There are changes that happen based on what is good for the world and the story. Like the number of gods and who the gods are or represent changes periodically. But the main structure of the religion took a few hours.

This rounds up our religion discussion. Hope it was informative for you! See you next time!

Oh My Gods!

Now, with the overview of religion out of the way, we’re going to talk about the gods of Tespion.


Let me say this before we get too involved, because I really didn’t mention it in the other post, but I’ve come to the realization that I am either all or nothing when it comes to gods in my writing. Like I said, I’m atheist, but I did learn about a majority of different religions growing up. When it comes to my writing, I either have no mention of gods or religion, or the other end of the scale and it is a world that believes in pantheism. I don’t have a single story planned that has a monotheistic aspect to it.


Obviously, like I mentioned in the previous post, Goddess Born is the pantheistic end of the scale. I also talked about how the pantheon is actually based very much like some of the ancient religions in the way that they have gods set at different levels in their hierarchy and different types of gods. So with this post I think I’m going to tell you about that hierarchy and the different types of gods we have in Tespion.


First, though, I wanted to say that there is a different world that the gods live in. It is called Calypto. It doesn’t have a physical representation on Tespion like the Greeks had with Mount Olypus, it is a separate world that the dead go to after leaving Tespion, think Asgard with the Norse gods. To be brought there the gods themselves have to take them or they have to be dead.


But let’s start talking about the gods. I briefly mentioned the head of the hierarchy in the worldbuilding post, but I wanted to go more into who they are and what their status is in the world. Without going into too much of the creation myth of Tespion, I want to say that Neasa (the Mother of All) and Asher (the Father of All) or basically the crotchety old grandparents of the family tree. They created the worlds and the other gods. They are the standoffish grandparents that never, or rarely interact with the people of Tespion. They concern themselves with the world of Calypto and their own children behaving. They only involve themselves in Tespion when the people break the rules and they come in like a terrible storm and no one likes the result of that.


The next level of gods are a bit divided into three categories:

  • First, the Fates. Those in charge of the destines of the people of Tespion. Some of the Fates interact with the people directly and some not so much. Calita, who is in charge of the present, interacts the most. She raised Micah, who is the father of the main character of Goddess Born. Micah himself is considered a Fate because he was created and raised by them.
  • Then we have some other “parent” type gods that represent the different races. For example the Felidae have both a mother and father god, Keeva and Alaster respectively. They’re usually the creators of the people and are responsible for them.
  • The third group at this level are the gods that represent the different aspects of life. For example: we have Leander who is a god of dark magic and malice, Dierdre who is the goddess of hearth and home, Mallick who is the god of death and Marah the goddess of birth and fertility. These gods, and their brothers and sisters, don’t have races they’re responsible for but do have different duties tied to what they reign over.


After this level we have our demi gods. The children of a god or goddess once mated with a mortal. Demi gods really aren’t as present in the stories because after the Great War, the gods rarely interact with mortals to produce children. Micah, on Tespion and to those aware, is considered a demi god because he is the son of Calypsa. His is sort of a special case because he was not birthed but created. He was made to be the key to Calypsa’s prison. He actually almost fits better with the final category, but he is technically a blood descendent of Calypsa.


Last we have a category of gods that are looked own on by the main gods: gods created by other gods. These are not demi gods that are born from other gods, but godhead given to mortals and made into immortals. This, again, is not something that occurs often and it only is supposed to happen when all the gods agree that it is the right thing to do. The best example of this is Selene, who was made to be a goddess after her and Micah died so that she’d be able to remain with him.


There are cases, though, where a god will be naughty and not get approval from his brethren. Calypsa being the best example of this. Because of her creation, and her insanity with it, she was actually imprisoned and Micah created to protect Tespion from the powers she was givene.


So those are the biggest gods that play a part in my Tespion stories.


For all my fantasy writers out there, how built up is your religious system? Do you stick with Earth-based god systems? Have you created your own gods?

I Say A Little Prayer For You!

In my worldbuilding post, I really could have spent thousands of words talking about religion and the process I went through in my current book, Goddess Born, but I didn’t. I instead gave a brief overview. What I am going to do over the next two posts is talk about the evolution of religion in my story. Also I want to talk about pantheons and creating your own – basically my journey of getting gods that work for my system.


I may actually do more additional posts in more detail of the evolution I followed for the different categories I talked about in that post. Hopefully it isn’t too redundant for all of you.


This first post is going to be about the evolution of religion in the Tespion world, as well as the actual religion in more detail. I think I’ll also get a little personal and talk about my own, or lack-there-of, religious beliefs and how it has affected my creation of this religion in this story.


I’ve talked about it before, but I’ll mention it again for readers who may be new and may not have read backwards in this wonderful little blog of mine. I am atheist. I was raised by a set of parents who educated me about religion but did not force it down my throat. They taught me it is a personal choice to believe what I wish to believe, but they made sure I was well aware of morals and values. They also made sure that if I showed interest in religion, they would help me learn what I needed to learn to make an informed decision.


With that, I’ve learned that I have no interest in shoving my beliefs down other people’s throats, and I hope that others won’t do it to me. I am informed in my decision, and it has been one that has been unchanged for more years than I can count. I will not discount your beliefs. I am not the atheist that really goes out of my way to “prove you wrong”. I expect the same courtesy. I don’t want to be told I’m immoral or get in long discussions of why and how I am wrong. I have friends that are Christian, I have friends that are Jewish.


But, I don’t want to make this a soapbox about my beliefs versus yours. I wanted to talk about it because I think that when it comes to religion especially, what we believe can effect what reflects in our writing.


When I first started writing Goddess Born, religion was a background. Something not very developed and only a small aspect of the story. There was mention of gods, but nothing to show the structure of religion because it really wasn’t a big thing at first. When I went through the revamping – or plotting – of the story so that I could get things more uniform and actually finish the novel, religion became a bigger player.


In the worldbuilding entry, I talked about it a little but let’s go into more depth.


The Dallian religion is a very … pagan I guess is a good word. It is full of ritual and is very pantheistic. Dallian itself is the umbrella of the religion, beneath that are different sects and strings. Similar to the Greeks and Romans, as well as a majority of the other ancient religions, the practitioners either worship the gods in general, or some even worship a specific god or goddess.


Outside of who they pray to, just like religions in our world, there are different interpretations of the rules of the gods. So we get different sects from that as well.


There are temples spread all over Tespion and these temples are run by priests and priestesses. Though I do hint at there being sermons held by the priestesses and priests, I don’t view it like your standard sermon. The priests and priestesses talk to the people about the gods and their rules, they educate.


The main task of the priests and priestesses to those that practice the Dallian religion is to perform the marking rituals for their members upon reaching a milestone in their lives. The milestones aren’t even set in stone, markings are done when the practitioner wants that reconnection to their god. The markings are done under the influence of hallucinogens that act as pain killers and provide a way for the practitioner to communicate with the God they are honoring.


In Goddess Born, religion ends up playing a big part of the story. Both of the antagonists touch on the religion of this world. First we have Calypsa, a scorned goddess seeking revenge. Then we have Brayden, a religious fanatic who believes he is a messenger of the gods out to deal out the gods’ judgment.


Brayden is a member of a sect of Dallian that believes all magic is against the rules and will of the gods. He uses his beliefs to strike out against those he believes have magic even if they don’t. Think the Inquisition.


Like other fanatics, Brayden’s group – known as the Old Ones – they strike out haphazardly and have no real way to understand the magic of the world. These fanatics cause a big rift during the story and Brayden is one of the major forces that Lynn is fighting in Goddess Born.


Magic – as an aspect of religion – is handled two-fold. Though magic is really only known to those that have magic, the priests and priestesses don’t talk against it. It is actually hinted at through the story that the priests and priestesses of the main temples actually have magic themselves. Or at least understand that there is magic out there. But since one of the main rules of the gods is that magic not be verified to those that are not initiated into that world.


I’ll go over magic later, though, I just wanted to say that even though magic is not largely discussed it is still definitely mixed in with the religion of Tespion.


I think that kind of gives you the overview of religion of Tespion, so I think we’ll stop this discussion here.