Archive for March, 2012

I bit the bullet and got a Cintiq

Posted in Artwork, Author, Covers, Illustration with tags , , , , on March 26, 2012 by darcytown

I’ve been wanting one for years and years and years.  So now a Cintiq is on its way to me.  For those that don’t know:  Loveliness.

Got it for book related reasons:

1.  I need a better art suite (tablet + program) to work on book covers.  Sai+Picasa was a headache inducing nightmare (for that type of thing, nothing against either program otherwise).

2. Now I can start creating fun things like stickers and buttons.  Which I’m sure will sell to my mom and someone random who doesnt even know what they’re buying.  But I can give them away as ‘swag’.   Maybe that’s getting ahead of myself, but I’d rather have the stuff prior to needing it, then not to have it on hand if it becomes something I need.  I guess I’m just planning ahead and hoping for the best.

3.  I’ll also be creating art for my books.  I started out as an artist (not a writer) so I’ll be getting back to my roots a bit.  And maybe I can fill up my gallery on here with stuff that isn’t ballpoint pen or Sharpie pen on computer paper.  How novel.  😀

Anyone want to see something in particular?


Some amazing Tumblr Accounts

Posted in Artwork, Illustration, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on March 20, 2012 by darcytown

I lose myself in these when I get writer’s block, or if my wrists are killing me and I can’t write even when I want to.  Note some of these have NSFW stuff in them.  So you’ve been warned!  This one not only has some cool art sprinkled in, it also made me nearly choke on my drinks a few times tonight.  Sigh…sigh…such ability with facial expressions, makes me swoon.  (this one’s mostly Homestuck, so…probably won’t appeal unless you like that). this one can get very NSFW.   Mmm…nsfw.

Character Creation – That Super Fun Thing I Waste Time On

Posted in Author, Book Information, Book News, Science Fiction, Uncategorized, Wastes of Space with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on March 15, 2012 by darcytown

(Warning: This is a train of thought post and does not have much organization involved)…

I looooove the character creation phase of stories.  I’m referring to the big push of the nitty-gritty details before I start a series/book.  This is the part where I get each one of my cast figured out looks-wise, personality, a bit of history, age, jobs, etc.  Characters can and do pop out of nowhere later throughout the course of writing, and some of those can be the bestest (Reloy), but every story has to start off with its set cast.

The first place I start is the mains.  My stories have 1 or 2 main characters (with 1 exception) around which the over-arching story revolves:

Dahlia and Lucifer – Morningstar.

Rake and Ravil – Wastes.

Oregon Atari Argyle and Kentucky B. Coffee – Reactor 8.

Camilla / Col.Mayer / Sam / Soltana / Aliya – Prophets.    Tangent on: This is my exception story, it’s also the first one that I envisioned and ever started writing.  It took me years and years to finish book 1 (The Bound Prophets is a working title, but probably not a final).  This story is unique in style vs the others and may require a complete re-write before it ever sees an audience outside of two of my friends. Tangent off.

When I started Morningstar I used movie stars as my visual templates.  I found pics that worked with the story (3-4 pics per character), I pasted them into a Word doc, added one word descriptors, and sometimes a one-liner here and there.  I included things that would immediately recall not just a character’s looks, but their personality as well.  That I think is the most important aspect…character personality (and consistency of personality).  Drives me up the wall when a character has some strange personality shift without it being explained.  Just because a change is convenient to plot, doesn’t mean it’s right.  In fact, it’s wrong.  Characters are sacrosanct.  I hate it when authors put plot above character, it drives me nuts.  So…yeah anyways…I get pictures to help me keep their personality in mind.

I then print those pages off and tack them up on the wall above my computer, sharing space with timelines, factoids, and maps (I freaking love maps).  These are the closest thing to my book bible without actually being my book bible.  My bible is a leatherbound book called a book-book (it’s a book about my books, ha-ha I’m clever!).  Into the book-book goes scene ideas, quotes, notes, dreams, random tangents, ideas for a book 5 books into the series, etc.  It’s my cheat sheet and treasure trove all wrapped into one.  It’s also home to amusing plot ideas that got scrapped.  Wastes has some great ones that never came to be.

Damn it…off topic I’ve gone again.

So…I started off with celeb pics for characters (yeah, I already have a dream cast for Morningstar…not that that will ever happen).

Okay, let’s get on to present day (I wrote the Morningstar Trilogy in 2009).

I stopped using celebs.  I went instead to a mecca of picture-ness that is Model Mayhem (it’s a website).  Now, their purpose is not for me to go and find my perfect cast, but damn they provide such a nice way for me to find said cast.  You can search models by their height, color scheme, gender, age, we’re talking hand picked.  Now this can take me hours if not days of sorting through pics to find someone perfect.  But when I do, it’s like a light clicked on.  I do a little dance and copy paste them into my new Word doc of awesome.  And when I’m done, I print and tack them up.  They stay up until I finish writing the series (then into a file folder they go).

The best part about this process is finding new characters that I hadn’t even thought of simply because I find a totally rad picture online.  This happened mostly with Reactor 8…I came up with a character named T. Britannica Peppers simply because this one guy’s pic screamed ‘use me please, I am perfect!’   So Tomato was born, curly crazy fro and all.

Uh, yeah, dudes called Tomato.  The naming convention in Reactor 8 is unique, I don’t name all my characters after fruits.  Which brings us to naming, sweet glorious naming.  It’s not really that glorious, names do not get a lot of forethought in my book (at creation).  I will look up the meanings of names after they’re chosen, but I don’t pick names due to their meanings (exception Prophets, but everything in Prophets is an exception).  Other exceptions are my demons, because they’re named after Fallen Angels.  I picked them because I liked the name and I liked the basic description in the Lesser Key of Solomon.

Names generally spring into mind when I’m daydreaming a scene to music (that’s how I plan my scenes…they’re all to music).  Typically I get to the point where someone needs to call someone by name and…a name pops into existence.  Marx, Kennedy, Lincoln…all came into existence at the same time.  Ladriam and Appleadris were made up jumbles of pretty sounding syllables.  Danny, Mica, Whitney, Celeste, Sammy…were just the first thing that popped into my head.  But no, I didn’t just come up with Oro, Evgeniy, and Tasanee on the fly.  I had to look up some actual names of the country of origin.

Anywho…sitting above my computer are the basics for Reactor 8.  I got pics, schematics of oil rigs, equipment (harpoons, goggles, wrenches, snow gear), maps of my lovely reactors, and maps of the North American railroads as they stand (or stood) relatively recently.

I’ve been itching to write Reactor 8, but I must finish Wasted (book 7 of Wastes Series).  I’ve delayed too long on that story and I have a few advanced readers who’ll start to cut at me with spoons if I don’t finish that beast already.

So I should probably quit writing this, and get back to writing that.


Wastes Away – Scene 1

Posted in Author, Book Information, Book News, Science Fiction, Space Cats, Wastes of Space with tags , , , , , , , on March 13, 2012 by darcytown

Since I’m a slowpoke, I’m posting the first scene.  I’m really, really hoping it’ll be ready before the end of March.  I just can’t put out a half-assed product, so I’m being super thorough.  :3

Anywho…it’s attached as a PDF.

Wastes Away Scene 1

Grimm…Must Be Alone

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on March 12, 2012 by darcytown

My mother, father, and I watch the show Grimm.  We enjoy the show (Monroe is an awesome character).

What we cannot fathom is why anyone likes Sgt Wu.  Seriously…he’s not funny, he sticks out like a sore thumb anytime he is in a scene, and why for the love of God is he getting scenes/camera shots to himself?  He’s not a main character, he’s a side character and he’s poor at acting as even that.  His one liners are shitty (that’s the writer, but still it’s his delivery).  He has no charisma. I do not believe for a second that he’s a cop, I see him and I see an actor acting as a cop.

Biggest peeve – he has scenes where he’s explaining or showing the detectives how to do things?  As if they don’t know how to find a license plate on a car? WTF?  That doesn’t make any sense.  Writers…what are you doing?  Has the guy slept with someone, blackmailed someone, sold his soul to the devil?

Get him out of all of the scenes, put him back where he started out as, a character that showed up 1 or 2 times to drop off results or a test.

Also…he cannot be the first responder at every crime scene in Portland day and night.  If he is then he’s a clone or has robots of himself wandering around the city.  That by the way…that would be interesting and would make his character way better.  Right now he’s a godawful annoyance and he gets noticed in every scene he’s in…in a bad way.

Best two shows of the season were the ones he wasn’t in.  Okay, rant done.


Can’t Sleep…Adorable-Ness

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on March 12, 2012 by darcytown

I love following similarly minded people on Tumblr.

Also…this guy is a ninja and reminds me a lot of two cats that I know. <– Found here.


Wastes of Space e-book Promo

Posted in Author, Book Information, Book News, Science Fiction, Wastes of Space with tags , , , , , on March 9, 2012 by darcytown

You can get Wastes of Space (e-book on the Kindle) for free this weekend on

Wastes Away (book 2) is coming soon!


Who hasn’t been there?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on March 7, 2012 by darcytown

I love Homestuck, I’ll admit it, a total fangirl.  So that’s a level set for this entry.

I think the single scene that I could relate to the most was this:

(Image preface, her character just seriously choked on a instant message convo with a boy she likes.  Basically securing herself in the ‘friend’ box, not the ‘girlfriend’ box)  (also, yes that weird looking thing is supposed to be a laptop):

Who hasn’t choked and botched a convo with a m / f / ? crush in text these days.  Poor Jane.  I didn’t really like her character before this, but this scene got me.  I wuv her now.

If anyone wants a 6000+ page long addiction, check out Homestuck:

But if you do, read the pesterlogs for the love of God!  Don’t skip anything or an already confusing story will get beyond comprehension.  That being said, I love Homestuck in the worst kind of way.  ❤


What’s wrong with cliffhangers?

Posted in Author Rant, Book News, Science Fiction, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on March 6, 2012 by darcytown

A grand total of nothing.

I’ve been reading a few Kindle forums (slap myself on the wrist, stop that Darcy!) and there are some readers who get irked by the existence of book ending cliffhangers.  As if it is a personal affront to their entitled readerness or something.  I can only understand the grumpy mood if say…the author dies and doesn’t finish.  That would be…well disheartening.

But why are cliffhangers acceptable in shows (hello season finale, always a cliffhanger), movies (typically those that are trilogies), but not books?  If you’re writing action/adventure, as I tend to do, there isn’t necessarily a point you can cut off that doesn’t leave some sort of cliffhanger for a reader.  It just doesn’t make sense for everything to slow down to a nice ho-hum pace so that there can be a “conclusion” that makes a reader feel warm and happy.  I call epic bullshit on anyone that needs that shit to enjoy a book.  I will mail you epic bullshit badges.

Epic Bullshit Badge

One book pops to the forefront of my mind in regards to cliffhangers: The Golden Compass (Northern Lights in Britain I believe).  That was not an ending that wrapped shit up.  That ending was a book ramping up to full trilogy-rad-tasticness and I LOVED it.  To end that story on a “conclusion” would have stolen the momentum it had been building, it would have taken away the rush of emotion as we are left wanting more.  I like being left wanting more!

So what’s wrong with being left wanting more?  What’s wrong with a writer pulling you in for a multi-book roller coaster?  I’ve actually seen complaints where a reader goes on to remark about how they have to read the rest of the books to get a conclusion.  Like that’s a bad thing.

…are you fucking kidding me?  Could you have read just one of the Harry Potters, or just one book of Lord of the Rings?  Should JK Rowling have put the whole story all in one book so that you didn’t have to wait until the rest of them came out?  I don’t know if that reader is spoiled or just on crack.

Authors do not owe readers a tight wrapped story in a one book bundle.  They owe them a good story, but whether that happens in 1 book or 5 books or 10 books, that is up to the author.

So anyone critiquing any story for cliffhangers also earns themselves an epic bullshit badge.

Okay…rant done.

Coffee Liqueur yummy-ness

Posted in Cocktails, Uncategorized with tags , on March 6, 2012 by darcytown

Found this on Punk Domestics (which I just found and totally dig). I love liqueur recipes. I want them all! I have to try this one out, because I still have yet to make a coffee liqueur that I really like.


The first time I had cold brewed coffee I was in love. It was from a coffee roaster that treats their beans well and the flavors melded in such a way that it really blew my mind. When I tasted the natural flavors of the coffee without any bitterness getting in the way, the first thing that came to my mind was using this method to make coffee liqueur. I took the way I had started making cold brew coffee, substituted the water for vodka, added simple syrup and was done.

This is probably my easiest recipe, few ingredients and very little hands on time. I do not know if this recipe is unique, but as of yet I have not seen anyone else using this method. I have had this straight in a cordial glass, over ice, or just mixed with milk to make an excellent white Russian.

This same method…

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