Selkies' Skins

Selkies' Skins
Current book in series Temple and Skinquest. Enjoy Castle and Well from Amazon, B&N and Smashwords while waiting for that and the prequel's audiobook "Pearls of Sea and Stone: Book of Seals".

Friday, September 13, 2019

Flash Fiction Fridays 22: Clarity and Otohime's Heart





You can also listen to audio only on the podcast.



If you wish to read them please look for them on my Patreon or Deviant Art. If you wish to submit your writing please send them to TeresaAmehanaGarcia@gmail.com or THGStarDragonPublishing@gmail.com.


Monday, September 9, 2019

Ame's Bookshelf Interviews: Robbin Miller "Breaking the Barriers"

It is amazing how much went wrong around getting this particular interview recorded. It is up now though! Get to know a little about author Robbin Miller, the author of "Breaking Barriers" A Girl's Dream to Play Little League with the Boys."





Audio Only Podcast: https://www.podcasts.com/mythical-minstrelsy-flash-fiction-fridays-and-ames-bookshelf-1a06920c4/episode/Interviewing-Author-Robbin-Miller-1ef5



Or Get it from the publisher (Pen It Publications): www.penitpublications.com 

Support the Podcast and related projects: www.patreon.com/Amehana 

Saturday, September 7, 2019

Here is my art from last Inktober as a Youtube flip book

Please notice that some days are more detailed than others. It is ok if you are not on point every day or only have time for "simple, but finished." The point is to explore your own creativity. It's not a competition against each other.

Friday, September 6, 2019

Double Play Flash Fiction Fridays Podcast Catch Up Day

Last Friday's Flash Fiction Fridays episode was a little slow in actually managing to get recorded and ready.

Flash Fiction Fridays #20: "I Hate Updates" and "Delusion"

The first is every college or university student's worst nightmare. The second was written for a Flash Fiction Month prompt that required an unfair rebirth or fate, and explores karma.


This Friday's episode has "Just a Little Something" and "Turnabout" as more comedic offerings. The first gives us a glimpse into the personal lives of Chinese deities and immortals, and what chaos/order they get up to, and was written for one of the Flash Fiction Month challenges. The second is a Coyote/Kokopelli tale Teresa Garcia wrote to fill her daily requirement and in honor of those two tricksters.

Flash Fiction Fridays #21: "Just a Little Something" and "Turnabout"



Remember, if you'd like your flash and short fictions, or poetry featured on the podcast I am paying $3US per piece used. Highly favored are pieces with fantasy, mythology, folklore, or legend aspects. Author retains copyright. Submissions to the podcast can be made to ladyrainstardragon@hotmail.com or thgstardragonpublishing@gmail.com. Please include in the subject line it's a podcast submission.

Please consider subscribing to the podcast at:
iTunes
 iTunes Podcast

Google Play
Listen on Google Play Music

Spotify
 Listen on Spotify


Podcasts.com (full content)

SoundCloud (flash fictions only) currently is full and will not be updated until those episodes are moved to storage.



Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Ian's Realm Saga Trilogy (Books 1 through 3) is now fully available



Yesterday the third part of The Ian's Realm Saga Trilogy Audio by D.L. Gardner narrated by Teresa Garcia (me!) went live for download!

Don't forget to check out the rest of her work.



D.L. Gardner's direct Gumroad storefront: https://gumroad.com/dlgardner





It was a good project to be part of!

Friday, August 23, 2019

Author Interview: D.L. Gardner

Audio podcast: http://www.podcasts.com/mythical-minstrelsy-flash-fiction-fridays-and-ames-bookshelf-1a06920c4/episode/Interviewing-Author-Screenwriter-and-Artist-D.L.-Gardner-8e5c

In light of her releasing the third installment of The Ian's Realm Saga in audio format please enjoy my interview of author, screenwriter, and artist D.L. Gardner.

You can order direct from her at www.gumroad.com/dlgardner and the books and audio are yours forever.

Flash Fiction Fridays #19: The Nest, Blind, and The Storage Unit Community

Audio podcast: http://www.podcasts.com/mythical-minstrelsy-flash-fiction-fridays-and-ames-bookshelf-1a06920c4/episode/Flash-Fiction-Fridays-19-The-Nest-Blind-and-The-Storage-Unit-Community-9a4f

This Friday's flash fictions are "The Nest," "Blind," and "The Storage Unit Community." These were all generated during July for Flash Fiction Month 2019 on Deviant art. You can read them in the links below or on my Patreon. Read here are the stories from the prompts meant for the first, second, and fourth days.

1: The Nest https://www.deviantart.com/amehanarainstardrago/art/FFM-July-1-2019-The-Nest-805486060
2 (3): Blind or Blindness https://www.deviantart.com/amehanarainstardrago/art/FFM-July-3-2019-Blindness-805550025
3 (4): The Storage Unit Community https://www.deviantart.com/amehanarainstardrago/art/FFM-July-4-2019-The-Storage-Unit-Community-805555439

Friday, August 16, 2019

Flash Fiction Fridays episodes 17 and 18

Much has happened that delayed the usual releases. After mama Cat's death I then experienced the death of a spirit/soul sister AND THEN the death of a beloved aunt. I intend to get one of the interviews recorded sometime tonight or tomorrow in preparation for Sunday.

Flash Fiction Fridays episode #17: Connection

Audio Only Podcast: http://www.podcasts.com/mythical-minstrelsy-flash-fiction-fridays-and-ames-bookshelf-1a06920c4/episode/Flash-Fiction-Fridays-17-Connection-by-Teresa-Garcia-18c2


Flash Fiction Fridays episode #18: Loyalty


If you'd like your short fiction featured, especially if it is myth or folklore related, please email me at ladyrainstardragon@hotmail.com or thgstardragonpublishing@gmail.com. I am also open to working your own recordings of your readings into the podcast should you choose.

Ian's Ream Saga Part 3 releases August 27, 2019

Part III of "The Ian's Realm Saga" by D.L. Gardner is expected to go live and be available for download August 27 of 2019. This is the final part of "The Ian's Realm Trilogy" book that I have worked so long to prepare the audiobook version of. It brings immense satisfaction to see that project ready for the push. I also highly recommend the other books of the series. It was a fun project to be part of and narrate for.


I have seen the first two parts on Audiobooks.com and I believe that FindAWay, the distributor that she has chosen, has those on other venues as well, and this will join them.

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Ian's Realm Saga Part Two is available

Part Two of the Ian's Realm Saga is finished, ready, and available for purchase and download on Dianne Gardner's Gumroads store. You can listen to the story on any device that plays MP3 and are not locked into streaming only (unlike some venues can be).

It has been a pleasure working on this project. Part Three is in production and available for pre-order directly from the author. By ordering from the author directly you ensure that she receives more, especially in projects where narrators or illustrators are paid up front. Please also check out her other projects.


D. L. Gardner on Gumroad

You can also check your favorite audiobook retailer.

Author Interview: Jessica Baumgartner "My Family Is Different"



Pre Interview Questions:
a) What name and gender are being used to refer to you? If they do not match your birth name and gender are you open about it? You do not have to disclose legal/birth name and gender, but if you want it mentioned you write under an assumed identity or have more than one identity you work under for this industry that can open up new lines of discussion.

Female

b) Are you an author, poet, illustrator, editor, game writer, game creator, publisher, or multiple? If you have multiple roles in the publishing community then which ones are they? If you have multiple roles feel free to answer each question with sections for each role.

Author, poet, editor

c) What books, games, or other publishing related projects have you been involved in the production of?
Author of 2 children’s books: The Golden Rule & My Family Is Different / 1 science fiction series: Embracing Entropy (which is currently out of print and being revamped) / and numerous short stories 1 of which was featured in the Chicken Soup for the Soul Book: Inspiration for Teachers. I also do freelance editing work and assist the editor of Me First Magazine.
===

1. What got you interested in (writing/illustrating/editing, etc)?

I love stories. Ever since I was little I was making up my own worlds and getting people to laugh at true tales of my silliness.

2. What company or companies are you doing work for/with?

I do a lot of freelance work but my involvement with Me First Magazine has been incredibly rewarding, and my technical writing keeps the bills paid.

3. What projects are you currently working on?

I’m always juggling different manuscripts. I’ve been working on a non-fiction piece about when I moved to L.A. to be a singer for a while now, but also have a new middle grade children’s book I’m diving into, and a mad-scientist story involving a veterinarian.

4. Do you have any future projects in mind to take on?

Every day I have to fight with new ideas and see which ones stick around for future endeavors. I’m constantly scribbling down new ideas to plot, and researching non-fiction topics that matter most to me.

5. What is your favorite project?

That’s like asking which of my children I love most. I can’t choose between them. I can say that one of my newest unpublished short stories, “Forgotten Voyage,” was such a big part of me that I’m hoping it finds a home soon. It’s a classic hero story with a dark twist that poured out and reads real smooth.

6. Is this career something that you always wanted to do?

Not at all. Haha When I was really young I wanted to be a dinosaur. When I realized that probably wasn’t an option (one can still dream) I switched from veterinarian to singer to sculpter to you name it. And I worked in a lot of the fields I dreamed of. I was a veterinary assistant, a travel agent, a clothing store manager, a receptionist, and so on. All that experience piled up and pointed me in my true direction: writing.

Don’t get me wrong; I always loved writing and telling stories. I just didn’t think it would be a viable career. That was reserved for old cranky drunk men, or so stereotypes suggested. I’m glad that was wrong.

7. Do you find it difficult, or find some aspects more difficult than others?

Yes. I have sent out over 100 submissions already this year with only a few acceptances. That’s the life of a writer. The more lucrative the market, the more heartache you get, but I’m fully committed. It takes a lot of spark to keep burning through the publishing industry.

8. What is a normal day like for you? Is this your side job or main job?

My weekdays are very structured. I get up early, spend time with my kids getting them ready for the day, exercising together, and having breakfast. Then my husband takes over and I go to the office to write until my lunch break. I usually record ideas, poems, or blogs on my phone as I drive to the park to play with the kids at lunchtime. Then I come back to the office, write some more and head home to cart the little ones to practices and rehearsals and somehow squeak dinner, reading, and outside time in there. Once they go to bed I make time for the hubsy, but then I do some writing, outlining, or brainstorming.

The weekends are the opposite. Less structure, more adventure. We go hiking, swimming, camping, hit up local events, or bombard family, play music, dance, and run around having as much fun as we can. I also sneak in writing when everyone’s asleep on the weekends.

9. How do you manage balancing this with family and any other work you may have?

Very carefully. haha

10. What hobbies do you have?

I love to play guitar, sing, dance, swim, hike, garden, play with animals, pretend I can draw and try new things.

11. If you could be anything in the world besides this, what would it be?

A mermaid. Or a dinosaur. A MER-DINO!

12. Do you feel that school helped set you up toward following this path in the publishing industry?

Yes and no. In school we read some pretty standard books. Some were great, but a lot of them bored me. I hated Lord of the Flies and Romeo & Juliet. They didn’t say anything to me about myself or the world I knew. BUT I spent a lot of time in the library just closing my eyes and running my fingers over rows of books until I stopped on one. I loved that game. I would read the back and if I liked it I would check it out. I also had a couple of teachers who really encouraged my love of writing and reading. One suggested I become a writer and I laughed at the idea. How silly of me.

13. If you could go back to school is there anything you wish you had paid more attention to?

Math. It’s the language of numbers. I’m dyslexic so numbers and letters like to play tricks on me. I struggled with it pretty bad until I had a great math teacher in college. He really taught me how to train my brain and get to know numbers.

14. What advice do you have for the next generation?

That’s a hefty order. Haha I guess it would be: Read old books. Classic English Lit always revives my faith in humanity because 50, 100, 200… even 1000 years ago people were complaining about the same things: crooked politicians, the state of the education system, the future of the world, and financial woes. No matter how bad things seem, we’ll be okay.

15. What advice do you have for your age peers that may also want to take part in the publishing industry and specifically with your area within it?

Do the work. No one is ever a perfect writer. Keep learning. Go to workshops, find a mentor - surround yourself with writers, agents, and publishers. Listen to them and let your work grow. Be realistic about your goals and work hard.

16. Is there anything else that you’d like to add that we didn’t discuss?

Everyone is a writer nowadays but fewer people are reading. If you really care about literature and word art, support more authors.

FFF # 16: Devotion (and poetry)


Friday, June 28, 2019

Flash Fiction Fridays #15: Awake (and poetry)



I recorded this before my voice went out. Hopefully I will have the text story for Flash Fiction Fridays ready by the end of the day. I've been sick the past few days. I thought it was allergies... It was not allergies...



There's an interview still for me to record, and I need to send out some more questionairres for others on my list. I'm attempting to get back into the swing of things after we had to put Mama Cat down.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Review of "Grief," a graphic anthology by Frank Gogol

GriefGrief by Frank Gogol
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I bought this book for my son and I to share when we found the Source Point table at the local comic convention in 2019. I was hugely excited to get to have it signed as well. That is a rare treat for my son and I.

I finally got the chance to sit down and have a proper read through of the book instead of here and there as I could. I found it to be a very healing experience. My son has not gotten to take the time to read through yet, but I expect that he will enjoy it as much as I have and find things that he will identify with as well. We deal with grief over loved ones both human and furry that were taken from us too soon. Two of the deaths were natural causes (at least one cancer, the other we aren't sure of), one a horrible accident mere feet from our home, and one from poisoning. The past few years have been rough one could say. There have been other things to mourn such as lost friendship and the fact that my son has not had a "normal" childhood.

The last story, "Embrace," which apparently was the first written, hit particularly hard for me as I myself am a parent of an autistic young man that has had to overcome much. We have had to find our own way around obstacles. He's disclosed to me at times that he has felt like a monster, so I expect to have many discussions with him about "Monsters." Each of these tales contained a piece of things I needed reminding of. It has made me feel better and less alone to read it. I have another tool that will help my son as we navigate our most recent losses.

Thank you. I can't praise this highly enough.

View all my reviews

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Interesting Folklore Blog I'd like to share

Green Shinto on Facebook shared a good blogpost that they had found about the octopus kami. The entire blog looks pretty interesting for those looking for writing prompts or folklore tidbits.
https://arjungwriter.com/

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Short Hiatus From Podcast and Youtube

I would rather not retype the whole thing. I will take a short hiatus from the Youtube and Podcast to mourn and recuperate. I will continue working on other projects. I just need to turn inward some for a bit.
~Teresa

Other projects will not have a hiatus.

Saturday, June 1, 2019

Interviewing Debi Stanton Author and Publisher with Pen It Publications


Here is my interview with author and president of Pen It Publications, Debi Stanton. As with all the interviews I am working my way through doing I hope to cast more light on the individuals that make the publishing world work. By illuminating these areas perhaps it will overall be a less mysterious place for those thinking about joining it.

 ===

Pre Interview Questions:
a) Is Debi Stanton your legal name or a pen name/DBA name? If so, would you mind telling us why you chose one over using your legal name. It is my legal name.

b) Are you an author, poet, illustrator, editor, game writer, game creator, publisher, or multiple? If you have multiple roles in the publishing community then which ones are they? If you have multiple roles feel free to answer each question with sections for each role. I own Pen It! Publications, LLC with my husband, Ray. I am also an author of 17 books and I always have more in the works!

c) What books, games, or other publishing related projects have you been involved in the production of? There are way too many to list. We have published over 500 books in the past 4 years and have more coming in every day. We are excited to be a part of each and every author’s story.
===

1. What got you interested in (writing/illustrating/editing, etc.)? I have been writing since I was a child. I was a voracious reader and writing was a natural transition. I minored in Art, but don’t illustrate, it is much too hard! And editing…that is probably my least favorite thing about writing, so we pay others to do it 😊

2. What company or companies are you doing work for/with? (In case you have more than one job and want to give them a shout out or it impacts your publishing at all.) We own Pen It! Publications, LLC which is a traditional publisher.

3. You are the President of Pen It Publications. Can you tell us the story behind the company and what caused you to get involved with it? My husband and I got married in 2014 and he had just written his first book. I had published a few. He was shopping his book around to publishers and was just not happy with what they offered. Most were vanity presses who wanted to charge him thousands of dollars. I was already publishing Pen It! Magazine, a magazine for authors and I had been traditionally published, but always felt like I was just a number. So, I mentioned that I always wanted to start my own publishing company. I knew a lot about publishing, but didn’t know much about the business side of it. Ray had owned his own business for over 30 years and said, “well, I do.” So within two weeks, we were up and running. We hired 1 illustrator and 1 editor, and we were in business. Now we employ around 50 people and have hundreds of authors. I truly love what I do. Our motto is: Everyone has a story…What’s yours?

4. What projects are you currently working on?
I am working on a series of books called: People Watching…. The first one is People Watching…In the Airport. They are going to be funny looks at people watching.

5. Do you have any future projects in mind to take on? I have a novel that I need to finish that I started a few years ago. I have 16 chapters done but just haven’t had the motivation to finish it. I won’t share that title right now.

6. What is your favorite project you have done? Wow, each project we work on for our authors is wonderful…so I’ll talk about one I have written myself. My favorite book is The Fellowship Flock. It hasn’t been much of a seller, but we are going to do a new cover for it and republish soon. It is set in Fairhope Alabama and surrounds a little church and all of the comedy and drama that ensues.

7. Is this career something that you always wanted to do? Yes, I started writing, transitioned into running writing groups, then to publishing Pen It! Magazine and then into Pen It! Publications.

8. Do you find it difficult, or find some aspects more difficult than others? I truly hate editing. I tend to get sucked into the story and skip over errors, so we pay others to do that job.

9. Have you observed any way that an author or poet makes it harder for themselves to find a publisher? Have a good query letter. I get submissions all the time that are just attached to an email with no query letter, no information about the story, etc. Also, make sure that you have edited it to the best of your ability. It doesn’t have to be perfect, but do the best you can.

10. I have noticed and heard many younger people trying to figure out how to become an illustrator. Do you have any specific advice or suggestions for those budding artists? We do hire young talent. The best tip I can give is to be diligent. If an author or publisher gives you a book to illustrate, be timely, keep in touch and be responsible to meet your deadlines. It’s very important to us and to our authors that we publish in a timely manner.

11. What is a normal day like for you? Is this your side job or main job? Gosh, I work from about the time I get up until I go to bed some days. I am always answering email, helping format books, corresponding with staff. It is a crazy life, but I love it.

12. How do you manage balancing this with family and any other work you may have? It is important to do, but sometimes I find I neglect things other than work. Ray and I take a vacation at least once a year. Last year we went to Hawaii and Israel. I just have to say, “I’m not working” and let the authors and staff know that I am going to be away. They are very respectful of my time and know I will be in touch as soon as I can.

13. What hobbies do you have? Besides writing? I would say travel. My husband and I love to travel.

14. If you could be anything in the world besides this, what would it be? Besides this huh? Well, probably a teacher at a college…teaching writing of course. Or, I would lead conferences and seminars. I love being in front of people and teaching them.

15. Do you feel that school helped set you up toward following this path in the publishing industry? Yes, definitely. I majored in English and took multiple electives. I had one teacher, Mrs. Lloyd who really inspired me. She was a creative and inspirational lady and I admired her greatly. I have five degrees, so I guess I was an education junkie. I have an Associates in Business, a Bachelor’s in Business, a Bachelor’s in Computer Software Technology, a Master’s in Business and a Master’s in Health Care Administration…and lots of Student Loans! LOL

16. If you could go back to school is there anything you wish you had paid more attention to? History. I love reading non-fiction and I wish I had been more into history.

17. What advice do you have for the next generation? Don’t doubt yourself. You can do it!

18. What advice do you have for your age peers that may also want to take part in the publishing industry and specifically with your area within it? Publishing is time-consuming. It can take over your life, but the rewards are so worth it. Be kind to people and they will love working with you.

19. Is there anything else that you’d like to add that we didn’t discuss?

I would just like to say thank you to all of our authors and staff. You have made us what we are today. I am so very blessed to have all of you in my life. I can’t thank you enough.


Debi Stanton



=Full Podcast content=
www.FlashFictionFridays.com
Podcasts.com: http://www.podcasts.com/mythical-minstrelsy-flash-fiction-fridays-and-ames-bookshelf-1a06920c4
iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/mythical-minstrelsy-and-flash-fiction-fridays/id1461538463
Google Play: https://playmusic.app.goo.gl/?ibi=com.google.PlayMusic&isi=691797987&ius=googleplaymusic&apn=com.google.android.music&link=https://play.google.com/music/m/Iregmi7sag7o3fg6p3e32k5ghwq?t%3DMythical_Minstrelsy_and_Flash_Fiction_Fridays%26pcampaignid%3DMKT-na-all-co-pr-mu-pod-16
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/1vLsYYcHOkDdasTFvqe9Ph

=Flash Fiction Only Pods=
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/teresa-garcia-34


=Financial assistance for the projects=
Patreon: http://www.patreon.com/Amehana
Ko-fi: http://www.ko-fi.com/amehana
Paypal: http://paypal.me/thgstardragon

=Other places and ways to support=
Want to visit me, see some of my other works, or support me? Find me at:
THG StarDragon Publishing, Mythical Minstrelsy & Arashiryuu Productions Discord: https://discord.gg/hvswe2A
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Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Teresa-Garcia/e/B009Q938VE
Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/TeresaGarcia
Storenvy: http://thgstardragon.storenvy.com/   Check now and then for new things, some I can't list just yet.
Publishing Website: http://www.thgstardragon.com
Publishing Blog: http://www.thgstardragonpublishingblog.com
Commissions Info: https://www.deviantart.com/amehanarainstardrago/journal/Commissioning-Information-566657935
Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/Amehana
Livejournal: http://rainstardragon.livejournal.com
Dreamwidth: http://rainstardragon.dreamwidth.org


=Reviews, Readings, and Requests=
Want to send me something to read on here or to review? Have a particular request?

Need to send something the old-fashioned way? Maybe you've got a hard copy of a book you want reviewed, or a copy of some of your own work for me to look over? Perhaps you have some of your work you'd like me to record?

THG StarDragon Publishing
Attn: Teresa Garcia
PO Box 249
McCloud, CA 96057
USA

Email necessary?  Send me a note at ladyrainstardragon@hotmail.com but bear in mind that I have been having problems with it eating things sometimes from even verified senders.

Friday, May 31, 2019

Flash Fiction #14: Kagayaku's Decision (sword spirit fiction)


Podcast Audio: http://www.podcasts.com/mythical-minstrelsy-flash-fiction-fridays-and-ames-bookshelf-1a06920c4/episode/Flash-Fiction-Fridays-14-Kagayakus-Decision-sword-spirit-story-8781


Kagayaku’s Decision

The fire guard kept watch, but mortal eyes saw none of the minor kami gathered in the room with their soldiers, nor the influence of the major kami, butsu, and bosatsu the forces regularly prayed to. The incense kept time with a steady creep and rising wisp.

She watched him sleep, just as every other sword in the room watched his or her own master sleep. The males as usual outnumbered the women. It did not matter though. Swords were not normally capable of reproducing on their own, nor at all. The humans truly did not reproduce on their own either, just as they did help was required although of a different type.

He was childless and wifeless, unlike most of those sleeping men sprawled orderly around them. Breaths and heartbeats were for the lord of the clan and for their families. His beat only for his master, half hollow instead of the full ones of the others. The murmurs had already started several years ago, after she had been awarded him, as to if there would be anyone to inherit her. More bothersome though was how colder and more distant he became with each passing year. Soon he would not be the young man she had known with such promise.

She sat straighter where she knelt in seiza beside the head of her warrior and her physical body. Her job was to protect him. Thinking of what he could become made her heart hurt. They had faced too many of those together. He could not become one of the hollow ones who only fought for rice and who tasted so bitter on her sharp tongue. Kagayaku steeled herself, her lips pressing together. The other sword spirits of the room turned their eyes to her, sensing the change in the flow of ki.

“After this coming battle I have work that must be done. Who may I ask to instruct me in what men seek of their women?” Her own eyes turned determinedly toward several belonging to those most known to visit the geisha of the floating world, locking with them. Among there kind none bowed to the others, save to he that dwelled in the shrine of the Sun’s Child and still sang of the taste of Orochi’s blood and the vanquishing thereof.

Each reddened, their lips played several emotions.

“Why, Kagayaku? Do you intend to bear him a son to in turn carry you for our lord yourself? That may be easier than hunting him a wife. Do you not know the sort that he himself looks toward?” Jari, sword of the youngest out of the targeted quintet chuckled.

“He looks to none so, I have indeed watched. He does not even look to other men so. If I can find him one, so be it. If I must show myself to him, so be it.” Kagayaku smoothed imaginary wrinkles in her lap, her displeasure giving a cold ring to her song.

“I do not think you can be demure enough, younger sister.” At length Mashite, he that was quickest to smooth words sighed. “The women my master sees all act subservient and haughty at once. And far more flirtatious. It would be a shame to model yourself after such peacock, or to find him such. No, he needs someone that will tend him as loyally as you do, that will not flinch to treat him should his armor fail.”

His armor’s spirit scowled and made a rude gesture beneath where crossed arms hid his fingers. “I only move as swift as he, no swifter.” His eyes slid over Kagayaku and he scowled more.

“She must be willing to put up with long nights of loneliness, and drunkenness.” Other swords began voicing their opinions and advice, not all of it delicate and often far coarser.

A few hours before dawn all had decided to try to find someone and to let the others know, then to somehow arrange introductions. They quieted as the ningen began to stir and go about their preparations. Today there would be either death, or life, for each of them. Perhaps some of their own also would be sent to the shadow lands to walk the wind scoured and mist shrouded beaches, or to the lands over which Lady Izanami now ruled, unable to send the dead back home since her once-husband’s betrayal of her modesty and mysteries.

Her ningen’s fingers caressed her hilt, and she drew a deep breath. Kagayaku’s bearer would not be one of the fallen, if she had her way. Beneath his touch she sang.


Bosatsu = Bodhisattva, a buddha who waits for all to Awaken before leaving The Wheel

Butsu = A buddha that has gone on but turns to give deliverance and guidance to show the Way.

Jari = grit

Kagayaku = luminous

Ki = energy. Known as chi in China

Kami = spirit, deity, god/dess

Mashite = not to mention, let alone

Ningen = human

This was intended to be a short story, but may unfurl into a novella through later flashes to the characters. It is born out of a long ago talk that planted the seed for a samurai that unknowing and reluctantly falls in love with his sword. It also somewhat draws on the reluctant king story seed although the ningen will never rise to king nor emperor.


Full Podcast content
www.FlashFictionFridays.com

Podcasts.com: http://www.podcasts.com/mythical-minstrelsy-flash-fiction-fridays-and-ames-bookshelf-1a06920c4

iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/mythical-minstrelsy-and-flash-fiction-fridays/id1461538463

Google Play: https://playmusic.app.goo.gl/?ibi=com.google.PlayMusic&isi=691797987&ius=googleplaymusic&apn=com.google.android.music&link=https://play.google.com/music/m/Iregmi7sag7o3fg6p3e32k5ghwq?t%3DMythical_Minstrelsy_and_Flash_Fiction_Fridays%26pcampaignid%3DMKT-na-all-co-pr-mu-pod-16

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/1vLsYYcHOkDdasTFvqe9Ph


Flash Fiction Only Pods

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/teresa-garcia-34

Financial assistance

Patreon: http://www.patreon.com/Amehana

Ko-fi: http://www.ko-fi.com/amehana

Paypal: http://paypal.me/thgstardragon


Other places and ways to support

Want to visit me, see some of my other works, or support me? Find me at:

THG StarDragon Publishing, Mythical Minstrelsy & Arashiryuu Productions Discord: https://discord.gg/hvswe2A

DeviantArt: http://amehanarainstardrago.deviantart.com

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Teresa-Garcia/e/B009Q938VE

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/TeresaGarcia

Storenvy: http://thgstardragon.storenvy.com/ Check now and then for new things, some I can't list just yet.

Publishing Website: http://www.thgstardragon.com

Publishing Blog: http://www.thgstardragonpublishingblog.com

Commissions Info: https://www.deviantart.com/amehanarainstardrago/journal/Commissioning-Information-566657935

Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/Amehana

Livejournal: http://rainstardragon.livejournal.com

Dreamwidth: http://rainstardragon.dreamwidth.org

Illustration Process demonstration: Watercolor brush pens (layer 1)

The above video is an illustration technique demonstration using watercolor brush pens. This is ONLY the first layer. I was unable to record the following layers. A video of a full process watercolor will be done at a later date with a different work.

I needed to soothe myself and needed some brain tingles. I've been wanting to use my watercolor brush set more so I decided I would somewhat simulate the feel of Chinese brush art with modern tech. Elements I included are water lily, strata rock, rushes, tree stump, lake grass, ornamental goldfish.

This is the finished result after passes with a waterbrush for blending and then going back with the brushpens for more detailing.

https://www.deviantart.com/amehanarainstardrago/art/Lily-Fish-Pond-Waterbrush-marked-799865515

Later I will make this available as a poster in Second Life and I think it suitable for a print in our analog world as well. It is currently available as a print in the DeviantArt store, just follow the link from the work in my gallery.

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Musing about Second Life's Premium account and Basic account changes

I do not normally write about Second Life prices here. However we do utilize Second Life at times to obtain digital photography and videography for our projects, to network, for my involvement with the Trotsdale Library, various writing contests, and even some of our books (not all as the porting was an experiment to test the market in SL books) being available inside Second Life.

I am somewhat disappointed in Second Life right now.

I (Teresa Garcia as Amehana Ishtari/Arashi) have 42 groups current. Over the years there have been times I have had to pare out groups that I would have preferred to keep in order to make room for groups that I needed for administration duties for communities or for storefronts in sims that require vendor groups instead of renting out parcels that can be set to one's store group. Between Meditation/Shrine groups, the Library group, various Pony/Furry communities, storefronts, and artist/book/networking communities, my store group for Arashiryuu Productions / THG StarDragon Publishing, and a couple family/friend groups I only have space for a few shopping groups that I use to get discounts on set pieces from manufacturers I like to follow. Now the basic accounts are dropping the number of group slots available and increasing the amount it costs to go premium.

I use a basic account due to my income. Although the premium account has 70 slots I did not see a need to pay monthly for something that I wasn't certain I could always cover out of my personal expenses plus that I pay monthly for inworld rent for the store and covering the library's rent (that is my responsibility now as Zepdek has had personal issues to attend, meaning his financial contribution had to drop).

I heard about the changes first through CrimMip, a fellow admin for Nisa/Dreaming Twilight (the group whose land I normally use when obtaining Second Life originating visuals for projects). I heard about it next from Bixyl Shuftan through their blog article. There is a bit of a conversation ongoing now in the SL Newer's discord chat. Some that I have talked to see no problems with the amount of group slots, feeling they are coming no where near their cap. Others, like myself, are frustrated because they are and do not wish to switch to premium to increase their groups slots, already putting quite a bit of money into the platform through virtual land rent, market purchases, and tipping performers.

I can understand increasing prices for premium accounts. They did decrease (temporarily) land prices for those that buy land. However they lowered the amount of group slots and ofline IMs for basic accounts, a feature that theoretically costs no money. They do have to pay their developers and admins. It does put people like me in a strange spot though. Porting my clothing goods and furniture items over to an alt account is not possible due to licensing agreements of used components. Transferring stores to another account would not work due to still having to keep the same groups to rez the vendors from my main account (and then I'd end up missing payments due to notices going to another email). Asking admin duties to transfer to an alt would not work as well either due to my main account already being an established and known name, the other account not being as well known since my main alt is a prize dispersal for library based contests, who started out as an "I'm overwhelmed and want to enjoy and explore inworld but want to focus on a handful of people right now" account.

So, now I weigh and decide. Basic has dropped seven slots. If I need to jiggle groups for any other needs that arise admin group wise for communities and networking I will have to drop seven, which would include those I currently need. I also wonder how well this move will work for them. Honestly I am glad I do not work for SL or have to figure out good financial moves for their company. They have such a large user base and not many are going to be happy with price increases, especially with the fluctuation of the $L and if the monthly stipend for inworld spending that goes with a premium does not increase.

How will this impact THG StarDragon Publishing's sponsoring of the Trotsdale and Intersim Library Network? At this time I do not know. I continue paying the library's rent. I need to set aside some funds for a prize for the next contest. I need to decide whether it will be writing, art, or if I should shake things up and ask people to make reading videos or tracks. Tonight at 5 PM Pacific Illya Leonov has his music hour followed by his story hour. This week he plays chapter 10 of Past Sins, an MLP fanfic. Sundays I normally (unless ill or too inundated) read or stream, now at 5 PM Pacific and sometimes followed by other readers. How will it impact the Library, or my own store group and meditation group? With a decrease in group slots for the basic account I can guess that fewer peoplewill be getting notices of the inworld events, and overall the world will get smaller for Second Life users as they will have fewer options available to them. The work around of a Subscribomatic to send messages has the pitfall of it's owner only being able to use it to send announcements for one group, meaning that if they have to have work arounds for several groups they may end up with several of the free alternate accounts and have to switch between them for what should be a simple thing... advertising.

SL Blogpost: Land Price Reductions, New Premium Perks, and Pricing Changes
Bixyl Shuftan's article: http://slnewser.blogspot.com/2019/05/linden-lab-raising-price-of-premium.html
Second Life Forum Discussion Thread: https://community.secondlife.com/forums/topic/437783-what-are-your-opinions-on-the-new-land-price-reductions-new-premium-perks-and-pricing-changes

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Interviewing children's author Rochelle Lazauskas of Pen It Publications

Today I share my interview of Rochelle Lazauskas, author of the children's books "Moey's Big Back Yard" and "Moey's Day At The Farm," which I illustrated for.

You can purchase these books on Amazon or direct from the publisher. If you're in McCloud for the annual Lumberjack Fiesta you can also drop by my book booth to buy a copy!

Moey's Big Back Yard
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Moeys-Big-Back-Yard-Adventures/dp/1976212340
Publisher: https://www.penitpublications.com/product-page/the-adventures-of-moe-moey-s-big-back-yard-by-rochelle-lazauskas

Moey's Day at the Farm
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Moeys-Day-Farm-Rochelle-Lazauskas/dp/1950454126
Publisher: https://www.penitpublications.com/product-page/moey-s-day-at-the-farm-by-rochelle-lazauskas

Filmed using the short Miikare cellphone/tablet stand for my tablet with answers and the tall telescoping Miikare cellphone/tablet stand to hold the phone.

=======

 Pre Interview Questions:
a) What name and gender are being used to refer to you? If they do not match your birth name and gender are you open about it? You do not have to disclose legal/birth name and gender, but if you want it mentioned you write under an assumed identity or have more than one identity you work under for this industry that can open up new lines of discussion.
a) Mrs. Rochelle Lazauskas

b) Are you an author, poet, illustrator, editor, game writer, game creator, publisher, or multiple? If you have multiple roles in the publishing community then which ones are they? If you have multiple roles feel free to answer each question with sections for each role.
b) Author

c) What books, games, or other publishing related projects have you been involved in the production of?
c) Moey's Big Back Yard & Moey's Day at the Farm

===

1. What got you interested in (writing/illustrating/editing, etc)?

1) I have always been interested in writing and story telling.

2. What company or companies are you doing work for/with?
2) I publish through PenIt! Publications

3. What projects are you currently working on?
3) I currently am writing my third in a series children's book

4. Do you have any future projects in mind to take on?
4) Working on my future project ( see # 3)

5. What is your favorite project?
5) Any project concerning my dog, Moe. So, both of my books.

6. Is this career something that you always wanted to do?
I have always wanted to write a book, and have been writing short stories for many years.
I have not published any of them, though.


7. Do you find it difficult, or find some aspects more difficult than others?
7) When the ideas come to me, I find it very easy to complete the thought.

8. What is a normal day like for you? Is this your side job or main job?
8) Writing is sort of an extra curricular activity for me.

9. How do you manage balancing this with family and any other work you may have?
9) I write in the quiet hours, when others are asleep or not at home.

10. What hobbies do you have?
10) I like to paint, draw, & make one of a kind jewelry. I love to try any kind of craft project, and love to keep my hands busy.

11. If you could be anything in the world besides this, what would it be?
11) I would love to be in the medical field, helping others.

12. Do you feel that school helped set you up toward following this path in the publishing industry?
12) Absolutely. In school I took creative writing classes & that's been an enormous help.

13. If you could go back to school is there anything you wish you had paid more attention to?
13) Yes, that'd be math. I've never been very good with math.

14. What advice do you have for the next generation?
14) It's never too late to do what you love. Never give up.

15. What advice do you have for your age peers that may also want to take part in the publishing industry and specifically with your area within it?
15) Don't let anyone stop you from writing, if you truly love to write. It is never too late to reinvent yourself. Grandma Moses did it, I did it, and so can you!

16. Is there anything else that you’d like to add that we didn’t discuss?

16) Writing is a very freeing experience.

=======

Full Podcast content
www.FlashFictionFridays.com 
Podcasts.com: http://www.podcasts.com/mythical-minstrelsy-flash-fiction-fridays-and-ames-bookshelf-1a06920c4
iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/mythical-minstrelsy-and-flash-fiction-fridays/id1461538463
Google Play: https://play.google.com/music/m/Iregmi7sag7o3fg6p3e32k5ghwq?t%3DMythical_Minstrelsy_and_Flash_Fiction_Fridays%26pcampaignid%3DMKT-na-all-co-pr-mu-pod-16 
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/1vLsYYcHOkDdasTFvqe9Ph

Flash Fiction Only Pods
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/teresa-garcia-34


Financial assistance
Patreon: http://www.patreon.com/Amehana
Ko-fi: http://www.ko-fi.com/amehana
Paypal: http://paypal.me/thgstardragon

Other places and ways to support
Want to visit me, see some of my other works, or support me? Find me at:
THG StarDragon Publishing, Mythical Minstrelsy & Arashiryuu Productions Discord: https://discord.gg/hvswe2A
DeviantArt: http://amehanarainstardrago.deviantart.com
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Teresa-Garcia/e/B009Q938VE
Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/TeresaGarcia
Storenvy: http://thgstardragon.storenvy.com/   Check now and then for new things, some I can't list just yet.
Publishing Website: http://www.thgstardragon.com
Publishing Blog: http://www.thgstardragonpublishingblog.com
Commissions Info: https://www.deviantart.com/amehanarainstardrago/journal/Commissioning-Information-566657935
Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/Amehana
Livejournal: http://rainstardragon.livejournal.com
Dreamwidth: http://rainstardragon.dreamwidth.org

Saturday, May 25, 2019

Minnie's Choice AKA Minnie's Decision available for purchase


Kitties do so love to roam, but sometimes what they really want is a home. Minnie thought that she wanted to be wild and free until she spent time with a shy little girl. Learn how they both find out what love is in this sweet story published by our friend over at Pen It Publications.

Minnie's Choice AKA Minnie's Decision
By Patsy E. Stackhouse
Illustrated by Teresa Amehana Garcia

I was paid per illustration, so sales do not net me any royalties, and my Amazon Associates account did not sell enough for them to allow it to continue so purchasing via my Amazon link nets no finder's bounty.


Friday, May 24, 2019

Flash Fiction Fridays #13: The Story of Flame and The Shrine of the Gatekeeper



This Friday the flash fictions presented are once again set within what is now the Dreaming Twilight universe.

"The Story of Flame" is an older flash fiction that Lacy/Aria wrote before I discovered and became involved in Nisa. Here we learn about the moment Flame passed from a Nisean Guardian and Ascended to one of the Spirits of the Land.

"The Shrine of the Gatekeeper" by Teresa Garcia (myself) tells of the moment that Raikou first entered into Nisa after making the long passage through the mists and moutains (the Dreaming Twilight) that sealed the version of her land the known Raikou hails from.

You can help support the parcels of the lands including the current iteration of Nisa maintained by Dreaming Twilight in Ontario (as we slowly purchase the sim in bits and spurts) by visiting our locations inworld. If you open up about land and see it is a parcel owned by Dreaming Twilight than that is part of our collective. If you visit inworld you can send Linden dollars to Java Charisma which will go toward paying tier. Or, you can donate toward the tier so we can continue unfolding the varous lands and storylines by sending tips over Paypal to java.charisma@gmail.com.

Full Podcast content
www.FlashFictionFridays.com
Podcasts.com: http://www.podcasts.com/mythical-minstrelsy-flash-fiction-fridays-and-ames-bookshelf-1a06920c4
iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/mythical-minstrelsy-and-flash-fiction-fridays/id1461538463
Google Play: https://playmusic.app.goo.gl/?ibi=com.google.PlayMusic&isi=691797987&ius=googleplaymusic&apn=com.google.android.music&link=https://play.google.com/music/m/Iregmi7sag7o3fg6p3e32k5ghwq?t%3DMythical_Minstrelsy_and_Flash_Fiction_Fridays%26pcampaignid%3DMKT-na-all-co-pr-mu-pod-16 
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/1vLsYYcHOkDdasTFvqe9Ph

Flash Fiction Only Pods
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/teresa-garcia-34


Financial assistance
Patreon: http://www.patreon.com/Amehana
Ko-fi: http://www.ko-fi.com/amehana
Paypal: http://paypal.me/thgstardragon

Other places and ways to support
Want to visit me, see some of my other works, or support me? Find me at:
THG StarDragon Publishing, Mythical Minstrelsy & Arashiryuu Productions Discord: https://discord.gg/hvswe2A 
DeviantArt: http://amehanarainstardrago.deviantart.com 
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Teresa-Garcia/e/B009Q938VE 
Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/TeresaGarcia 
Storenvy: http://thgstardragon.storenvy.com/   Check now and then for new things, some I can't list just yet.
Publishing Website: http://www.thgstardragon.com
Publishing Blog: http://www.thgstardragonpublishingblog.com 
Commissions Info: https://www.deviantart.com/amehanarainstardrago/journal/Commissioning-Information-566657935
Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/Amehana
Livejournal: http://rainstardragon.livejournal.com 
Dreamwidth: http://rainstardragon.dreamwidth.org

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Interview with Dragon Hearts RPG Creator Rowan Wookey




Podcast/Youtube/Blog Interview

Submit to Teresa Garcia
ladyrainstardragon@hotmail.com (in case of FB problems, for backup)
Responses will be recorded and posted on my Youtube channel, my podcast, and on my blog.


Thank you for agreeing to be interviewed. Below are several questions. You do not have to answer all of them but the more that are answered and the more detailed they are the more viewers and listeners get to know you and your work. Some may seem a little silly. If there is something that hasn’t been asked on this please feel free to make an addition and share your answer. Based on the answers to the following questions there might also be some additional questions I end up asking you before this is read out and recorded.

Please also send the author/illustrator/etc picture that you use associated with your work’s image (or your book in the wild photo if you’re shy). If you do not yet have one please have someone help you with a photo that you feel captures how you wish to present yourself to the world. This can also be a stylized drawing of your or your persona if you have reasons (such as safety or transitions) not to show yourself in a recognizable fashion.

===

Pre Interview Questions:
a) What name and gender are being used to refer to you? If they do not match your birth name and gender are you open about it? You do not have to disclose legal/birth name and gender, but if you want it mentioned you write under an assumed identity or have more than one identity you work under for this industry that can open up new lines of discussion.

Rowan and Male

b) Are you an author, poet, illustrator, editor, game writer, game creator, publisher, or multiple? If you have multiple roles in the publishing community then which ones are they? If you have multiple roles feel free to answer each question with sections for each role.

Game creator and general nerd.

c) What books, games, or other publishing related projects have you been involved in the production of?

DH

===

1. What got you interested in (writing/illustrating/editing, etc)?

Many moons ago before the advent of smartphones and when laptops were about as portable as a ton of bricks, I played other games of a similar ilk and got fed up of them being buggy or the developers buggering off for real life (touch of irony there). So I decided to create my own.

2. What company or companies are you doing work for/with?

Apart from my own none I can say.

3. What projects are you currently working on?

I really..really..really.. want to get DH updated to new shinyness. I’m also doing my Masters degree does that count as a project? Then of course there’s the IVF stuff now that’s a project ;) not really work related but time consuming. Most of the other stuff I can talk about is on github https://github.com/rwky/

4. Do you have any future projects in mind to take on?

Yes tons, of which none I can think of at the moment but there’s a huge list somewhere..

5. What is your favorite project?

DH will always be my fav.

6. Is this career something that you always wanted to do?

Nope I wanted to be a biochemist when I was at college, even got accepted for MSci (Master in Science) at Nottingham University but decided it wasn’t for me.

7. Do you find it difficult, or find some aspects more difficult than others?

Sitting on my arse for 12 hours a day isn’t so good when you’re in your 30s. 30 year old me wishes he could tell 20 year old me to go outside more so the 30 year old me bits would ache less.
I’m pretty well adapted for the long distance asynchronous communication (i.e. email) but being on call 24/7 for the past 10+ years does get a little tiring at times.

8. What is a normal day like for you? Is this your side job or main job?

In the words of Forrest Gump “What’s normal anyways?” I don’t have a normal day, every day is different. Assuming I’m at home I wake up, check my emails/calendar and write today’s todo list, then I get cracking on it. Most days I get through most of it but inevitably some days something blows up (normally multiple things in one go) so then I have to deal with a mountain of shit.

DH is a side job (though was main job for a while years ago) my main job is “making bits of the internet work” (quoting myself), if it’s to do with Linux servers or web programming then I probably do it/have done it.

9. How do you manage balancing this with family and any other work you may have?

I’ll let you into a secret, there are two of me! (Something I often tell clients when they wonder how I can do so much). I don’t really manage to balance I just do what I can and let some off the less urgent stuff fall by the wayside. Adulting sucks ya know!

10. What hobbies do you have?
Is beer a hobby? If so then that. I’m also a fairly avid pokemon go player and also play on steam/nintendo 3ds/nintendo switch. TV is one of my favourite things to relax with especially in the bath. I’m endeavoring to read the Anne McCaffrey Pern series again (takes a while) on kindle.

11. If you could be anything in the world besides this, what would it be?

Can I say a cat? Seems like they have a good life! Though job wise. I would like to work in the space industry.

12. Do you feel that school helped set you up toward following this path in the publishing industry?

Not at all. I did all my relevant qualifications after getting into programming.

13. If you could go back to school is there anything you wish you had paid more attention to?

Nah, I was one of those annoying people that’s good at most academic subjects. TBH IMHO most of high school was a waste, I’m not a fan of how the UK education system works, it’s highly focused on memorizing things instead of being able to use knowledge. Degree level isn’t much better which is why I left Manchester Uni to go to the Open Uni. Manchester’s masters courses are “read this book, remember this algorithm” where as the OU is “Here’s a project, go figure out how to do it”. Since my memory is abysmal these days, in the words of homer simpson “everytime I learn something new it pushes something old stuff out of my brain”, the school of remembering things by rote is useless to me.

14. What advice do you have for the next generation?

* Go outside the world is big weird and wonderful, go see it.
* Don’t fall for rampant consumerism this planet is finite, try not to screw it up for yourselves and future generations.
* Keep your options open, what you think you want to do now probably won’t be what you want in 10, 20, 30 years.
* Relaxxxxxxxx….that thing you’re worrying about probably isn’t that bad (ok sometimes it is but unless you’re dying it’s probably not).

15. What advice do you have for your age peers that may also want to take part in the publishing industry and specifically with your area within it?

Don’t be afraid to take the jump into something new, it can be scary especially when you have a significant other, kids, mortgage etc. but if it’s something you really want to do then go for it, life’s short so try and be happy with it.

16. Is there anything else that you’d like to add that we didn’t discuss?

Pie should be a mandatory food group.