Thoughts on FLYING ANGELS

Howdy, howdy! How’s everyone doing today? Tomorrow is Thanksgiving over here, so happy Turkey Day/Friendsgiving/whatever to those who celebrate and happy Thursday to those who don’t! But today it’s book review time. I wanted to step outside my comfort zone this month, but I wanted something safe. Something that was bound to be decent at least. So, I went with Danielle Steel’s new book, Flying Angels. It was released on November 23rd from Delacorte Press (an imprint of Random House). As usual, I must thank them and NetGalley for allowing me access to an ARC in exchange for an honest and unbiased review. So, let’s do the thing.

Not a bad cover.

Flying Angels follows a group of young women who end up becoming nurses in the Medical Air Evacuation Transport Squadron during World War II. They come from all walks of life and have encountered various struggles along the way, but in the war, they’re all the same. They’re just nurses trying to keep the young men from the frontlines and themselves alive. Death doesn’t discriminate. They all have to learn that one way or another.

So, I thought I was safe with a Danielle Steel novel. She’s a prolific writer with fans all over the world. She must be good, right? There must be a reason she’s so popular, right? Even if the genre isn’t my usual cup of tea, at least the writing must be passable, right? Wrong. I was wrong on all counts. And the sad part is, I probably really would’ve liked the book if it didn’t read like an outline of a story. I know it’s hard to balance showing and telling, but this book was ninety percent telling. Personally, I hate that. There’s nothing inherently wrong with it, but I’m not a fan. You can tell me a hundred times how selfless and wonderful a person is, but if you don’t show me, I just don’t care.

Me to every single character.

Speaking of selfless and wonderful, no one in this entire book had flaws except inconsequential rich people. They were just there to show how much better their daughters were than them. I mean, we’re told the characters grow and are changed by the end, but how? They were perfect to begin with, so they had nothing to learn. Even the deaths of family and friends can’t make these people bitter or angry. It’s friggin’ annoying. Like, I know they aren’t real people in the first place, but I at least want characters who have human qualities.

Also, I despise third person omniscient POVs. They’re rarely done well and the narrator hops around people’s thoughts and feelings until everything becomes muddled. It’s especially confusing when most of the characters are she/her. Learn to use names or at least change paragraphs when you’re hopping around people’s heads. I know this is just a pet peeve of mine. Some people really like this POV. I’d rather be closer to the main characters.

Every time a random thought showed up that had nothing to do with one of the main characters.

Aside from everything else I hated about this book, the writing was repetitive and bland. In the first twenty pages, the same five tidbits were repeated at least fifty times each. It could’ve been edited down to three pages and still conveyed the exact same message. Better yet, there could’ve been a few scenes showing me these things instead of just telling me. But enough ranting.

Ultimately, I hated Flying Angels. I loved the premise, but the execution was horrible. If I never read another Danielle Steel book in my life, I won’t care. Maybe her other books are better. Maybe this was an anomaly. Don’t know and don’t care. People like her. I’m just not one of them.

starstar outlinestar outlinestar outlinestar outline

Overall, I gave it 1 out of 5 stars. Mostly because you can’t give zero star ratings on most websites. If you are a fan, by all means read it. Enjoy what you enjoy. If you’re not already a fan, maybe try something else by her first.

November Thanks

Howdy, howdy! How’s everyone doing today? I’m still struggling with productivity and all of that. And I have no idea what to ramble about in these posts, since I can’t complain about current writing problems. Can’t have problems if you’re avoiding it. But, since it’s November, I guess I should write about things I’m thankful for. Thanksgiving is next week, but so is my book review post. It’s now or never, I guess. I know most people announce one thing a day for the entire month, but I’m too lazy for that. So, in no particular order, here are thirty things I’m thankful for at the moment.

1. Dad. Of course he starts off the list. This should be no surprise to anyone. He takes care of me, annoys me, and cooks me good food. What else do I need?

2. Little sis (Jenae). Chosen family is the best. You’re always there to listen and commiserate and just be random together. Love you, sis.

3. Danielle. For much the same reasons as Jen. Hugs!

4. Stonecoasters. We might not talk often, but they’re there when I need them.

5. Old Interwebz (Yahoo chat) friends. I still can’t believe I’ve known most of you like 15 years and you still keep me around. You’re weirdos and I love it.

6. Borden’s eggnog. Because eggnog. What else is there to explain?

7. Ghirardelli peppermint bark. See above.

8. Books. I just like reading, but I can also say they’re for work and not be lying. They don’t even have to be boring books. I can read all the genres and say I’m studying tropes and character development and all that jazz.

9. Medical technology. Wheelchairs and ventilators and patient lifts and suctions and pretty much everything that makes my life possible. They’re all great. It’s a pain in the ass to get them through the government (or absurdly expensive out of pocket), but life would suck without them.

10. Music. What would life be without it?

11. Anime. I liked it before it was cool.

12. X-men. Just heard Disney’s rebooting the ’90s cartoon and I’m cautiously excited. If it comes to fruition, I guess we have to get Disney+ in 2023.

13. Bats. They’re adorable.

14. Wombats. They’re adorable and poop cubes.

15. Octopuses. They’re just awesome in general.

16. Let’s make this easy and say most animals. I just like animals.

17. Computers. I wouldn’t have most of my friends without computers.

18. Grocery deliveries. Sure, it’s not ideal, especially when the packer doesn’t read your requests or has zero idea how to pick produce, but it’s made pandemic life easier. It means Dad doesn’t have to go to the store as often.

19. Doctor visits via webcam. I despise the trip to UT Southwestern, so these “telehealth” visits have been awesome. I don’t get to go to a restaurant afterwards, but with Covid, I don’t know if I’d want to stop anywhere anyway. I also like not having to get up early just to get there on time.

20. Pretty people. I know I’m not supposed to objectify people and all that, but whatever. I don’t harass people or make inappropriate comments to strangers. But I can still look. Cripples can be creepers too! I’m only creepy sometimes. I swear.

Animated people count as people. Artist: Lorinell

21. The fact that my friends accept my creepy side. You know who you are.

22. Spiked coffee. I haven’t had one in a while, but like knowing it’s an option.

23. British murder mysteries. They can be weird, but tend to be enjoyable.

24. All things rainbow. Contrary to popular opinion, my love of rainbow stuff has nothing to do with the LGBTQ+ scene (that’s just a happy bonus). I just like ridiculously colorful things.

25. Notebooks. I don’t use them, but love having them. It’s weird.

26. Boxes and baskets. Decorative storage. It’s another one of my weird likes because I don’t actually need them.

27. Cheese. That needs no explanation.

28. Pasta, bread, carbs. Again, no explanation needed.

29. Seafood. Actually, food in general.

30. That November only has 30 days, because I’m totally out of things I’m thankful for at the moment. I’m sure there are things hiding in the back of my brain, but they aren’t helping me out.

What are you thankful for? As always, feel free to share your thoughts or comments here or on my social media pages!

What Do I Want?

Howdy, howdy! How’s it going this lovely day? Things here are pretty much the same as always lately. I avoid productivity and mostly just read. The world is still chaotic and filled with the plague, so I mostly just sit at home and mind my own business. Social media is kind of annoying with all the drama, so I lurk instead of participating. That’s about it. But I’m not here to whine. No one wants to listen to that. Instead, I’m going to ramble about things I want. People (mostly Dad) keep asking me what I want. What I’d like to have. And I keep saying nothing, which is true. If I want something, I usually just buy it or save up for it. But there are things I want that I won’t buy because I don’t know where to get good ones (and if I look it up, I’ll be tempted to buy stuff), I can’t actually use them, and I’ve run out of space for most of them. Weapons. I’m talking about weapons. The sharp pointy or slicey kind. I also like whips, but that’s another post. Anyway, in no particular order, here are some things I want but will probably never get.

Not these specifically. This is just so people know what I’m talking about. This goes for every picture in this post.

1. A new pair of sai. My current pair are just cheap and purely ornamental. I got them on a whim at an anime convention, so they aren’t great quality. I don’t mind them being ornamental, but I would eventually like to get a decent pair to replace them. No idea why. I can’t use them, so it doesn’t really matter if they’re good or not. I just like them and as I get older, I prefer nicer things.

2. A new katana/wakizashi/tanto set. Again, I already have one that my folks got me a while back for Christmas (birthday, maybe?). It’s nice, but you can never have too many blades. And again, I can’t use them, so there’s no real excuse to spend that kind of money on a good set. I’d feel sad if they just sat there, not getting any use. But deep down, I still want them.

3. A battle axe or two or three. Mostly because I can’t decide which style I like best. Axes are a relatively new interest for me, so I don’t currently have any. Only got into them a couple of years ago. I have no idea where to look for them (which is fine, because I would want decent ones and have no money or space for them). They range from pretty plain to super ornate, so I suppose I could get some good looking decorative ones and not feel too bad about not being able to use them. But I won’t.

Glaive of the Bodyguard of Guglielmo Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua and Monferrato, ca. 1575 Italian, Etched steel, wood; The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

4. A glaive/fauchard. The picture doesn’t really show it, but they’re polearm weapons (on a long shaft). You can blame Sailor Saturn and her glaive for my interest in these things. There are a lot of variations of this type of weapon across cultures, so I’d have to do more research before I actually consider getting one, but they’re so pretty they had to go on the list.

This is nowhere near a full list of the weapons I want. If it’s shiny and stabby, I probably want one. I might already have one. But yeah, blades are beautiful. What kind of weapons do you prefer? Or, if you’re not into stuff like that, what are some things you want but probably won’t buy? What do you collect? As always, feel free to leave your thoughts or comments or questions here or on my social media pages!

Mythical Pets

Howdy, howdy! How’s everyone doing this week? Things here are pretty quiet, which is good. I can’t complain. But I still can’t muster up the motivation to write regularly. Definitely not attempting NaNoWriMo. I’ve just been slacking on every front except for reading. Even that’s kind of difficult since I pretty much hate one of the books I’m currently reading. And, as usual, I had no idea what to ramble about this week, so a friend told me to write about which mythical creature I’d want as a pet. “All of them” is apparently not an acceptable answer. Sadness. So, I whittled it down to three (kind of).

1. Cerberus and/or Fenrir. If you know me at all, this is the obvious answer. Why? Because puppers! Cerberus has always been one of my favorites. Her part in Garnets and Guardians (I should probably try looking at that one again now that I’ve had a couple of years away from it to see if I can fix it) is still some of my favorite writing that actually came from me. What’s not to love about a floofy pupper that guards the entrance to Hades? And all doggos need companionship, so I’d adopt Fenrir too. Poor dude just needs some love and cuddles, then maybe he wouldn’t be so hell bent on eating Odin. A giant wolf and a three-headed hound should be able to get along, right?

2. Dragon. I mean, who doesn’t want a dragon? I’m not even picky about the type of dragon. Something warm to cuddle in a cave with while we enjoy our hoards. What more does a girl need? But then I think about all the other reptilian creatures and I start to waver. A basilisk would be neat, but would require extra special care, so no one makes eye contact. I’d also love Jörmungandr (the world serpent). Why did Loki have all the cool kids? But mostly, I want a dragon.

3. Kraken! Actually, I’m quite fond of most of the water based mythical creatures. Hydra, kelpie, etc. I would say Cthulhu, but I don’t think an elder god would want to be my pet. Same for merpeople and selkies. But a kraken would be lovely and think of how good they are at hugs. They just get a little overzealous and break boats. But they could be fun. I’d just need to get a place by the ocean. It wouldn’t be fair to bring one to north Texas. Not enough water around here for the big baby.

I could keep going, but I don’t think anyone really wants me to keep rambling about the pet potential of mythical creatures. What about you? What kind of creatures would you want as a pet? As always, feel free to share your thoughts, comments, questions, or whatever here or on my social media pages!

Thoughts on THE CHRISTMAS DRESS

Howdy, howdy! How’s everyone doing today? Not much going on here. We got our Covid boosters on Thursday. Had some aches and pain the next day, but nothing some aspirin didn’t take care of. So, we’re good to sit in the house and avoid people for another six months! Anyway, it’s the last Wednesday of the month, which means it’s book review time. This month, I decided to step completely outside of my comfort zone and into potential Hallmark Christmas movie territory. I wanted something happy and annoyingly cutesy, so I requested The Christmas Dress by Courtney Cole. It was released yesterday (October 26th) from William Morrow Paperbacks (an imprint of HarperCollins). As usual, I must thank them and NetGalley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest and unbiased review. Let’s get to it!

Cute cover.

The Christmas Dress follows Meg Julliard who returns to her Chicago home after her father’s death. She leaves behind a bad ex as well as a budding fashion career in NYC to take care of a 1920s era apartment building filled with elderly residents and so many things that need to be fixed. With very little money and no idea what she’s doing, Meg thinks things are impossible. But with a little help from the residents, the hunky handyman, and a smidge of luck, things just might turn around.

Sounds sickeningly sweet, doesn’t it? It is. It has everything you could ask for in a Hallmark holiday movie. Quirky best friends and random new friends, manly dudes to lust after and fall in love with, and so much drama that you know will work out perfectly. Plotwise, there are plenty of twists and turns, but none of them are unexpected. Awkward moment with the ex witnessed by the new beau? Right on cue. Drama from the new beau’s manipulative ex? Ditto! I can honestly say I’ve only read like three books in this particular genre in my life and they all have the same basic plot points. That’s not bad. It’s a really popular structure. It just leaves little to be said that hasn’t already been said.

The characters are all sweet and endearing, except for the two exes. As it should be. Personally, I thought Meg was over the top dramatic, especially when it comes to Logan’s ex. Who in their right mind would decide to break up with their new boyfriend without even listening to his thoughts on drama that he had no idea was coming? And she puts her decision on him because she repeatedly says that he’s such a good guy that he’ll end up doing the “right thing” despite the fact that he’s flat out said he’s not going back to the ex for any reason. Meg’s whole value system is stuck in the 1920s along with the apartment building. It’s creepy. And she flat out refuses to listen to people who actually have experience with the manipulating so and so, which causes more drama. She only chills when her bestie does some light cyber stalking and says the bitch is crazy. That is so weird to me. Luckily, everyone else in this book is relatively sane.

As far as the writing goes, it flowed nicely and made for a quick read. There were some things that made me raise an eyebrow, but I have a feeling they’re pretty standard for the genre. Like, every time Logan shows up, Meg’s ovaries tingle. I don’t know what that means. I understand it’s code for him making her horny, but my ovaries have never been the bits that tingle. It’s an hilarious phrase to run across, though.

Ultimately, The Christmas Dress was exactly what I wanted it to be. Nothing more, nothing less. It was fun and corny and predictable. I won’t be looking for another one like it for a while.

starstarstarstarstar outline

Overall, I gave it 4 out of five stars. Like I said, it was exactly what I wanted, but it didn’t offer anything new either. If Hallmark holiday movies are your thing, it’s definitely worth a read.

Standalones Vs. Series

Hello, hello! How’s everyone doing this bright and beautiful day? Things here are pretty annoying. WordPress seems to have tinkered with its editor, so now the text appears super tiny unless I zoom my screen in, but the preview for the final post looks perfectly normal. We’ll see. It also froze and lost the entire paragraph I just wrote despite supposedly autosaving it. It’s nowhere to be found. That’s always fun. Otherwise, things are good. Dad, the neighbor, and I are scheduled for our Covid boosters tomorrow. We got appointments at our preferred pharmacy, so we don’t have to run all over town. It’s been a pretty painless process so far. Hopefully the actual appointments will be just as easy. But that’s not what I want to talk about. Today, I’m here to ramble about standalone books versus series and which I prefer as a reader versus as a writer.

Me when I lost my supposedly saved work.

As a reader, I’m not usually picky about whether something is a series or a standalone. Series tend to offer better chances for character development and a deeper plot, but they also run the risk of dragging things out. I love getting to know the characters over multiple books and seeing how they grow, who gets redemption arcs and who doesn’t, etc. Series also provide a chance for world building that you don’t get so much of in standalones. They’re more immersive a lot of the time. Not always, but often. The biggest drawback of reading a series (for me) is that I feel compelled to finish them even if I don’t particularly like them. It’s like I haven’t given them a fair chance if I haven’t read everything. I know that’s ridiculous. And I have plenty of series that I gave up on, but it still feels awkward to me. Now, if I love a series, the hardest part is the wait between books. I try to find series that are completed or close to it, but sometimes it doesn’t work out. The waiting is the worst.

Standalones also have a lot to offer. They can be quick, fun reads, but they can also be in-depth and wonderful. On the other hand, a lot of them feel thin to me, lacking in the plot or the character development or both. It just depends on the book. I also think some genres lend themselves better to standalones than others. Horror, yes. Epic fantasy, not so much (but there are some gems). And some genres dance around the line between standalones and series like it doesn’t exist. Cozy mysteries. Most of those series are written as multiple standalone books, so even new readers can pick up any book in the series and not be lost. But from a reader’s perspective, as long as I like the story and the characters, I’ll read anything. Series or standalone.

Reading-wise. Get your mind out of the gutter.

As a writer, standalone novels are hard. I don’t think I’ve ever finished one. Short stories and stuff like that, I can do. The last standalone novel I tried to write decided it wanted to be a trilogy. I haven’t finished it (book one still needs major edits before I can even vaguely plot out book two), but the plot is too much for one book. I can’t find a middle ground between short story and multiple books. It’s really weird. I’d love to be able to write standalones, but for now, my brain is stuck in series mode. Maybe I’ll find a way one day, but today is not that day.

Ah well.

What about you? What do you prefer to read, standalones or series? Why? If you write, which do you gravitate towards? As always, feel free to leave your thoughts or comments or questions here or on my social media pages! See you next week for my monthly book review.

Progress, Not Perfection

Howdy, howdy! How’s everyone doing this week? Things are pretty much the same here. Got my flu shot last week. Should be eligible for a Pfizer booster soon. Other than that, I don’t have any reason to leave the house for the foreseeable future. I’m mostly okay with this. I should really buckle down and start writing steadily again. My slushing duties are basically done until the next submission period, so I have zero excuses to avoid writing. I just have to get back in the rhythm. NaNoWriMo is fast approaching. I’m not participating (I write far too slowly for that), but it’s always encouraging to see others’ progress. And progress is what I’m going to ramble about today.

I was watching NCIS the other night and Gibbs said something that I keep thinking about even though I’ve heard it before. “It’s about progress, not perfection.” I guess when Leroy Jethro Gibbs quotes a motivational poster, it just hits different. But actually, it’s not originally from all the self-help crap (like motivational posters) floating around. According to Google, the quote’s origins are from the AA book (something to do with focusing on spiritual progress rather than trying to achieve spiritual perfection), but it’s shortened version has spilled over into common use pretty much everywhere (exercise, writing, art, etc.).

As a perfectionist, it’s difficult for me to appreciate the idea of progress. That affects my writing. It took me years to accept that nothing I write will ever be perfect, to just say it’s the best I can currently do and toss it out into the world as is. And I still struggle to see progress from piece to piece, since everything is different. It also takes me forever to write because I’m one of those weirdos who edit as they go, especially on short pieces, so I don’t always get to see the progress of a story through multiple drafts. It’s part of the reason I’ve been avoiding writing lately. I’m mostly just annoyed that I don’t seem to be moving forward. I can handle rejection. It’s the feeling of being stuck that I’m having trouble with.

But I need to suck it up and get over it. In my head, I know this. Actually doing the sucking up and getting over is proving much harder in practice than in theory. However, if I have no words on the page, I’ll never see any progress. I won’t have anything to mold into something resembling perfection. I have to write. Creativity is hard. Ugh.

Even Chuck thinks so.

Okay, I’m done whining and rambling. I will strive to see my own progress instead of aiming for perfection. I’ll try not to let myself feel mired in mediocrity. A forward motion. That’s what I’ll try to achieve. Self pep talks (read that as pep talks in general) are not my forte, so I’m going to stop now.

Anyway, what are some words of wisdom that help motivate you? What doesn’t help? As always, feel free to share your thoughts or comments or questions here or on my social media pages! I’ll try to think of something better to ramble about next week.

A Villanelle

Howdy, howdy! How’s everyone doing this fine day? Things here are about the same as always. I did write some words last week! They weren’t very good and there weren’t nearly enough of them, but it’s something. I’ll keep trying to write something this week as well. The story is there, I just have to pry the words from my brain and splatter them on the page. It’s just fighting me still. This blog post is also being a pain in the ass. I’ve gone through twenty lists of prompts, but nothing is sticking out and begging me to write it. Nothing is even producing an inkling of an idea. So, I decided to trudge through some of my old poetry that would otherwise never see the light of day and pick something to post here. This is a villanelle that I wrote for my Intro to Poetry Writing class back at SMU. In case it’s not obvious, I didn’t know what to write about back then either. Please excuse its suckiness. Poetry is fun, but not my first language. I get a lot of it wrong, especially back then. As always, feel free to share your comments or critiques or whatever here or on my social media pages!

Me while trying to decide what to post here.

Writer’s Block

I don’t know what to write.
The words just won’t come
And fill that void with the contrasting black and white.

Should it be about wrong versus right?
No, that idea fills my head with a monotonous hum.
I don’t know what to write.

How about the darkness and the light?
No, I just want the parts to equal the sum
That fills that void with the contrasting black and white.


Maybe I should just go grab a bite
To eat, maybe have some rum
Because I don’t know what to write.

Maybe music can lend me some insight.
Maybe the pounding of Yuki’s drums
Can help fill that void with the contrasting black and white.

That’s enough; this is it for the night.
I’m done trying because the words won’t come.
I just don’t know what to write
To fill that void with the contrasting black and white.

Thoughts on THE ORPHAN WITCH

Howdy, howdy! How’s everyone doing this week? It’s the last Wednesday of September, so you all know what that means. It’s book review time. This month, I wanted something more fantasy than anything. Just something a little different than all of the cozies I’ve been reading lately. I thought that might help me get excited about reading again. My search brought me to The Orphan Witch by Paige Crutcher. It was released yesterday (the 28th) from St. Martin Press’s Griffin imprint. As usual, I must thank them and NetGalley for giving me access to an ARC in exchange for an honest and unbiased review. Let’s get to it!

A nice cover.

The Orphan Witch follows Persephone May as she drifts through life trying to find her place in the world and a family to share it with. Bad luck seems to follow her around until she’s invited to spend some time on Wile Isle, then everything goes from bad to worse. There’s a curse only she can break, people who keep attacking her for no reason, and lots of betrayal and deception. But throw in a hot librarian and maybe things aren’t so bad.

Sounds fun, right? It could be, but it’s not. The plot is far too convoluted. It honestly feels like an early draft where even the author is just going along and trying to figure out what’s happening. The beginning is slow and sparse on important details. Everything is crammed into the last half of the book, which makes it super muddled. And for an island that doesn’t let people come to it during certain times of the year, it sure seems to make a lot of exceptions. If the rules of the magic system are so easily ignored, it destroys all my faith in the system to begin with, which makes the loopholes Persephone and her cohorts exploit more annoying than exciting. There was a lot of potential for this story, but the execution was lacking.

I mean… it’s not a lie.

The characters were okay. Persephone was too naive a lot of the time. And her background could’ve been explored and utilized better, but she was an okay protagonist. Hyacinth was ridiculously manipulative and selfish, but it was (poorly) explained away as her being under someone else’s influence despite the fact that she was a horrible person all along. Moira, Ellison, and Ariel all had potential to be really interesting, but were largely undeveloped. They felt like afterthoughts, brought in to move the plot along. And Dorian could’ve used a lot more fleshing out.

You can probably guess how I feel about the pacing. Ugh. Aside from the beginning being slow and the end being rushed, there were so many spots that were just infodumps. Instead of spreading the background throughout the story naturally, there are huge sections of it unceremoniously scattered everywhere. I almost didn’t get past the first chapter because of it. But I pressed on.

The writing itself was average at best and subpar at other times. Mostly, the dialogue was the cringe-y bit. It was so stilted and a lot unnecessary things were said that were strictly for the benefit of the reader. I can’t think of a specific example from this book, but I mean like when characters are talking about someone the main character knows, but the speaker goes into ridiculous detail about great aunt Muriel with the glasses and saggy jowls or whatever. People don’t talk that way. It’s annoying. Just say “Aunt Muriel died,” then do a descriptive paragraph. Not everything belongs in dialogue.

Ultimately, The Orphan Witch didn’t live up to its potential. Luckily, it works just fine as a standalone, so I don’t even have to entertain the idea of sequels. It just wasn’t for me.

starstarstar outlinestar outlinestar outline

Overall, I gave it 2 out of 5 stars. Well, one and a half, really. One star because it got published (which is hard to do and means someone liked it) and half of one because it had potential. If you’re interested in it, you might like it. If it just seems meh to you, you’re not missing anything by skipping it.

Shameless Self-Promotion: A Twofer

Hello, hello! How’s everyone doing today? Everything here is about the same as usual. It’s going to be another pretty short post this week, I’m afraid. If you stalk me on social media, you probably know all of this, but I’ll post it here anyway. I have two announcements about publications I have stories in.

First, my flash fiction piece “The Water Horse” will be appearing in the silver volume of Dark Cheer: Cryptids Emerging! It’s coming out in February, but you can pre-order now at the links above. It will be an amazing collection. I also know at least one of the authors in the blue volume, so I think that one will be wonderful as well. Please feel free to spread the word!

Second, the ebook of Love Letters to Poe: A Toast to Edgar Allan Poe is currently on sale until Friday! My flash fiction piece “Poisoned Honey and Pickled Pigs’ Feet” is in that one. There are some other neat things going on with this sale. I’ll share the details below. Reviews are encouraged if you have a few seconds. And again, feel free to spread the word!

For a limited time only, Love Letters to Poe: A Toast to Edgar Allan Poe is on sale for 99 cents. The price will go up to $4.99 after this Friday, so make sure to snag your copy now! Here.

The editor teamed up with Literarily Illuminating for a special treat – purchase their Poe candles this week & get a complimentary copy of the anthology. Check out their Etsy store now before they sell out! Here.

Win Virtual Tickets to Poe Fest! Buy Love Letters to Poe: A Toast to Edgar Allan Poe by this Friday and enter to win! Additional purchases (buy a copy for a friend!) will count as additional entries. IMPORTANT: Email your proof of purchase to loveletterstopoe@gmail.com to enter.

That’s the end of my announcements! I’ll be back next week with our regularly scheduled book review.