Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Christian Fiction Review: Interview with the Authors of The Crossover Allian...

Christian Fiction Review: Interview with the Authors of The Crossover Allian...: To celebrate the release of the 2nd Anthology of The Crossover Alliance, we have conducted an interview of sorts to showcase the contri...

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

H L Burke's top ten

I was astonished to see H.L. Burke include Shatterworld in her top 10 books of 2015 for her. Now I want to look up some of the books she listed. I wonder what my top ten were. I'll need to think about that. What were yours?

Saturday, November 21, 2015


So, I was having a good time at Orycon37 in the Marriot Hotel. Two hours before my shift at the Northwest Independent Writer's Association, (trying to sell along with a lot of other books, my Shatterworld) my back began to hurt. I did not want to be in agony during my two hour shift. The only way I can make my back stop hurting is to lie flat on my back for a while. There wasn't any space behind the NIWA table in the dealer's room. There were too many people in both the art and dealer rooms. I didn't want to be in anybody's way. So I did what I wasn't supposed to do. I ducked behind one of black curtains that means this side is hall and this side is staff and stacked furniture.
I lay back on the carpet well out of everybody's way, closed my eyes, and mentally worked on a chapter for a book in the Tales of Talifar series, and had figured out a way to add some tension. I may have dozed off.
I woke up and there were six faces looking down at me. I sat up, saying "What? What?"
A paramedic asked me, What is your name? Do you know where you are? Who is the president?"
After I passed the test, I told the concerned group who had thought I had fainted, "I'm leaving now." and escaped back to the dealer's room.
After my shift and after the costume contest I went up to the NIWA party room, which wasn't open yet. So I lay down pressed against the wall next to the door, and like Granny Weatherwax, I put a sign on me that read, I AIN'T DEAD, and rested my back again.

Monday, November 16, 2015

A Review at Breakpoint!

I'm so pleased that an organization I appreciate posted a review of Shatterworld:

Saturday, November 7, 2015

A post by Jeff Gerke

This post on Facebook by Jeff Gerke made me happy

I love my job. Being a freelance editor of fiction is amazing. I get to work on tremendous stories with unforgettable characters written by dazzling authors, experienced and new.
Plus I get to have a hand in the formation of their stories.
I love working in all genres, from chick-lit to Regency to Westerns to cozies to rom-coms to historicals. But it's no secret that I get a special joy from working on speculative fiction. And the weirder the better!
Right now I'm working with a client whose speculative fiction is exactly the kind of thing I love. I won't give her initials, but her name is Lelia Rose Foreman.
As I'm editing her marvelous seafaring fantasy--sort of Mowgli meets Treasure Island meets John Carter of Mars--I find myself writing delightfully baffling (to others) notes like this:
Why wouldn't Bowmark use the staffshifter to release the Spitter hosts from their misery by letting the ichor of the eggs spread onto the temple floor? Would it hinder the Labarynthine warriors as they attempted to overthrow the Driddion queens?
Ah, heaven!
Seriously, this is the sort of transport, the kind of "Whoa, I've never seen THIS before," I looked for in the books I chose to publish at Marcher Lord Press.
So thank you, all novelists with whom I have worked--and those of you who will work with me in the future--for writing your fiction and for letting me join you in these brilliant worlds and stories and people. I love you all!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

An Interview of me in The Drunken Druid

Here's an interview: http://www.drunkendruidawards.com/#!blogger-feed/c1st1/post/7045701230235962861

Friday, October 16, 2015

publication to come

A story of mine has been accepted for the Crossover Alliance Anthology 2. *smiles* Then Shall All the Trees of the Field

Monday, October 5, 2015

A post about a post

So happy The Homeschool Post published a guest post from me.
The Daily News from The Homeschool Post for 10/05/2015: http://eepurl.com/bBt1rP

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Insight that staggers me

I read this article by a wonderful man I met at RealmMakers, and I feel staggered.
My husband disagreed with the quote about Tolkien, but the rest, we had seen it without seeing it. I have a lot to think about now.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

On my husband's birthday

I'll go to the airport tomorrow to pick up my husband from his trip to Rwanda. In the meantime, I'm having a great time working on book TEN in the Tales of Talifar. I'm so far ahead of the inventor of the universe, Josh Foreman, (who is supposed to provide the covers and illustrations), that he may never catch up. I hope that 2016 is the year we start published the series.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Pictures from Rwanda

My husband sent me these pictures from Rwanda this morning. I am so excited. We are a part of Lighthouse in Butare/Huye, and as such are helping this small business of growing mushrooms in a woman's cooperative that is increasing the income of the lowest strata of people in Rwanda. These brave women are now able to send their children to school and eat better. Thank you, Pastor David Nahayo.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

A review of Somewhither by John C. Wright

I give this book five stars (on Amazon) only because I'm not allowed to give it ten stars. This book has everything. If you like adventure, you will like this book. If you like horror, you will like this book. If you like fantasy, if you like science fiction, you will like this book. If you like romance, there's even some of that around the 80% mark. There is Wizard of Oz. There is Star Trek. There is mythology, language, physics, theology, and magic. Think of a word, it's probably somewhere in the book. Well, maybe not everything. I don't remember any Aztecs. They'll likely be in the next book.

At any rate, what the book is mostly full of is love: love of goodness, family, home, Earth, freedom, and truth. The main character, Ilya, is so delightful that whenever he thought about his mother (whose disappearance turns out not to be from death) I would think about how I would love to add him to my already adorable set of sons. If you like Odd Thomas, you will like Ilya. Like Odd, Ilya does a lot of thinking, ranging from the mundane to the deep to the hilarious to the bizarre. I laughed a lot. I cringed a lot.

Even thought the novel is crammed with riches, it is not a blob or a mess. All the details are polished and pointed. What the book does not have is an ending. Now I have to wait for the next book. That's irritating in one way, and comforting in another. I will have another chance to read about Ilya.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

a review of Shatterworld, by Denise Ellyson

:Shatterworld is a YA, Faith based, Sci-fi which was a great read outside my normal taste. I’ve not read a lot of YA but I enjoyed it. It was a cross between the 100 TV show and Divergent the movie with a pinch of Exodus. I loved the story of a twelve year old straining at trying to be what her family needs and what she desires. The Faith cult that pushes her to fit into their mold and the way she see God work in her to help save their colony. This is a great faith based read without being preachy. I didn’t feel like the beliefs expressed were to initiate me but to show where the internal struggles came from. I really enjoyed it. If I had any critics its that I want to know more.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Review of Amish Zombies From Space by Kerry Nietz

Kerry Nietz did it again. He took a horror trope and turned in into a science fiction premise that works while simultaneously talking about how people cope with change, community, and family. I did not get the book for free, I paid full price and feel like I got a good deal. In some ways, this is not great literature, in that the writing is not lyrical by any means, which a five star book must usually have for me to rate it so highly, but the story-telling is clear and intelligent. I would have preferred more technical details of how this all works, but Nietz wisely neglected to write a manual to please me, and chose to tell a rollicking tale that at the end made me cry and will please everybody who likes stories of endurance, family, and the big questions of life. I can't look at the cover because it's so icky, but I have grown to trust the author despite his choice of shlocky titles and the occasional unsettling art. This book can be easily read as a stand-alone, though reading the previous Amish Vampires from Space will surely help. There is an indication at the end that there be a sequel to AZfS, and if there is I will buy it. I just hope I won't take so long to get around to it, as I did this, because, you know, zombies, yuck. If you haven't read any of his previous books, such as A Star Curiously Singing, I would like to recommend his other books as well. Do yourself a favor and read at least samples of his novels and see if you would like to go for his rides.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

The End on the Kruliss novel

I reached the end of the Kruliss novel on the plane flying home from Florida and the visit with grandchildren there. Yesterday I typed in what I wrote in long hand in the notebook on my lap where I sat next to a window with a view of clouds. I was beginning to feel the Yay! of finishing a book when I remembered I need to insert about ten more flashbacks. And someday I've got to come up with a title for book number nine in the Tales of Talifar series.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Two places you can buy Shatterworld



Friday, June 5, 2015

The Tuning Station by Chris Crawford


There have been plenty of debates between a Christian and an atheist in fiction. But only rarely are both characters as compelling as they are in The Tuning Station, in which we are offered what is arguably the most original approach to this scenario. What if you could have such a debate with a person from whom you could hide very little - because that person is you from a parallel universe? Finding themselves in a mysterious station which allows them to revisit scenes from their lives, the two set about trying to figure out where their lives diverged from one another. What follows is quite literally a journey of self-discovery, as the two iterations discover what they share, what distinguishes them, and what each gained and lost by following the path they did. The story that Crawford tells is deeply moving and powerful, and it works well not just as science fiction, but as a profound and poignant dramatic exploration of religious questions. I highly recommend it. 

Dr. James F. McGrath
Clarence L. Goodwin Chair in New Testament Language & Literature
Department of Philosophy and Religion, Butler University

I went to Amazon to copy my review and paste it here, but my review had disappeared. I liked the book.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Feeling a bit twitterpated

Two days ago I received an email saying Shatterworld will launch on June 23. Trying to figure out how much promotion to do, and thinking I should wait until the book is physically in my hands in case something goes wrong. Finding it hard to finish up the Kruliss novel. I write a sentence, and then think about who I should contact.

Saturday, May 16, 2015


Recently we were in Kirkland, WA visiting with two of our sons. We had taken them to The Red Robin restaurant for dinner, and two of us were enjoying our hamburgers on gluten-free buns, when Josh, the collaborator, leaned over and said, "Mom, you are so good at this, I can't believe you haven't done it already. You ought to write a novel from the viewpoint of a Driddion." All I could think was, "Yeah, right."
His teen-age son heard this and said, "Oh, I can see this. The dialogue goes, "Click click click click click." I laughed.
Last year, Josh said he wanted me to write a Game of Thrones type book involving the Gigantics. That seems so far outside my skill set. I don't understand politics, jockeying for position, outflanking opposition, gathering allies, and all that sort of social maneuvering. I do understand stabbing enemies with a knife. I think he's going to need to hire someone else to write that book. Still....that could be fun if I could write like that. We're going to have to work a lot harder on the Gigantic society for me to understand them well enough to write from their viewpoint.
I was thinking that when I finish the Kruliss novel (still looking for a title) of maybe telling a Mountain Man's story. Maybe Montee. I assumed he survived the Warrior Woman attack, but since he never ran across Bowmark again, I just let him go off and do his own thing. A Seafolk story would be interesting. Thinking.
So far:
Scarred King I, II, and III--Bowmark POV Human young man
Sailing From Stoneshell--Spearmark POV Human young man
Killing the Siij--Eberamend POV  Garloon buck, from youth to adulthood, Risli POV Human young woman, Chanter I POV Siij, male pre-birth to adulthood
The Ungols Ride to War--Klikatak POV Ungol male youth to adulthood, short story
Finding Home--Cryout POV Human young man
A Little Magic--Dawn POV Human Little young woman
The Journey of Pledgekept--Pledgekept POV Human young man
The Kruliss novel--Atiuk POV Kruliss male youth to adulthood

Hmmm, our intended audience is young adult, so I won't apologize for the ages of the main characters, but that so many of them are young men tells me I do need to add more variety. Maybe I do need to add some dialogue in clicks.

correspondence for collaboration

In case you're interested, here's a little correspondence between my son and I about the series we are collaborating in:

On Fri, May 8, 2015 at 1:38 PM, Lelia  wrote:
I think I have an idea for the ending of the Journey of Pledgekept. What’s been bothering me is so far in Stone Grove, is he’s been watching Bowmark act. At the ending, HE needs to be the actor, not the watcher. So, I’m thinking, when the nobles convene to vote for the first time in their lives, Pledgekept will address them in story or song. He can’t fight. I’ve spent an entire novel establishing that. But he can tell a story. So I’m running through scenarios right now, not writing, but thinking through this conversation and that. What would be the most dramatic? Thinking, thinking.

Still waiting to hear from you on whether or not the slight changes I put in the Kruliss novel pass your inspection before I go too deeply into the rest of the novel.
From: Josh Foreman 
Sent: Friday, May 08, 2015 6:35 PM
To: Lelia
Subject: Re: end for journey

I'll try to read that tonight.  Been a very busy week at work.

From: Josh Foreman
Sent: Sunday, May 10, 2015 7:35 PM
To: Lelia
Yeah that works.  The only minor thing I'd like is if there was an indeterminate amount of days between the first and second Gigantic encounter so I can fill it with other stuff in a movie if needed.

at 7:45 PM, Lelia  wrote:
I’ve seen enough movie adaptations of books to know the movie director can put in as many days as she likes between scenes.

On Sun, May 10, 2015

From: Josh Foreman
Sent: Sunday, May 10, 2015 11:48 PM
To: Lelia
Subject: Re: end for journey

You're forgetting the ENTIRE POINT OF MY WORLD, which is that every story told in every medium is canon and DO NOT CONFLICT. If the book says "the third day on the river..." then a movie I make is not going to move that stuff around.  Part of the reason this isn't done in other fictional worlds is because the material being made in one medium isn't designed to be flexible for other mediums.  But if we make sure our stories are approached from the ground up with that flexibility then that will make the multimedia expressions much easier to manage. What we are building is unprecedented, and so this stuff has to be figured out as we go.  But it's that ground-breaking approach that is going to bring success!   

On Mon, May 11, 2015 at 3:53 PM, Lelia  wrote:
Oh, right. You have a lousy employee.

Subject: Re: end for journey
 Well you have seniority so I'll never fire you.  ;) 

Josh has to put up with a lot with his stable of one writer so far. From book to book, sometimes from chapter to chapter, I change what is capitalized and what isn't. I change the names of things. I change what is hyphenated and what isn't. I forget the names of cities and continents. 

What I have to put up with is his occasional changing what an alien looks like. Then I have to go back through all the novels and change all my descriptions. And after I'd written about a particular alien that I had invented (and he graciously let stay in the pantheon) for five books, he GAVE THE ALIEN FOUR LEGS! Huff huff huff. It is his universe, so he gets final say. Still....go back and change. The Giants became the Gigantics and lost a pair of arms, and changed the nature of their feet, and hands, and everything else. Go back and change.

Then there was the time we were working slowly through the first long book (which later became a trilogy). The first book took years to write as we were still working through the geography, peoples, and rules for the world of Talifar. So here we were, two years in, and my son tells me, "Oh, I forgot. Bowmark needs to be chased by a Warrior Woman through the entire novel." Explosion ensues. So Bowmark (who Josh had initially named Bomar) now is chased by a Warrior Woman for the second half of the novel, or, one and a half novels, unless we change the book again.

We wrestle from time to time about the names and their spellings of the aliens. I usually win those arguments (ie. Bomar to Bowmark). When everybody in my critique group trips over a name, even though it's OBVIOUS to me how it should be pronounced, I change the spelling. And go back and change.


Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Joys of Collaboration

So. I sent in another chapter of the Kruliss novel to my oldest son, Josh. I was super happy with the chapter. I know I might not like the chapter later, and that things might need to be changed around, but I felt good at the moment and chose to revel in that moment. My son emailed back in an hour: OH NOES, you forgot the MOST IMPORTANT scene. Then he said what I forgot to put in. I wrote back and complained that he should have told me what the most important scene was BEFORE I started writing the book. He emailed back that he HAD.


Then he wrote the chapter the way he wanted it and sent it to me. I was highly offended at how he messed with my sacred text. I gave myself a week to calm down and think, and then rewrote his chapter to accommodate the character arc I had been working on, and sent it back. Best Beloved and I drove up to see our sons that weekend, and I think the first thing Josh said after, Hi, Mom. was Now I know how you felt about having your words messed with. I laughed heartily and told him the story of how Jimmy Carter and his wife co-wrote one book and swore they would never do so again. Then Josh started arguing for some of the things I left out or changed in my rewrite. And he was absolutely right on some of his points. Some. So I agreed where I could as we discussed pacing, modern writing techniques and reader expectations, geography, and biology. Then he had a friend take some authors pictures. All in all, a great weekend.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

A little grumpy. A little squeee.

Today I'm feeling a little grumpy because I am going through the novels in the Tales of Talifar series (set in Josh Foreman's universe) and breaking apart as many long sentences as possible into little snippets. Because. Today's readers can't read long sentences.
I'm also a bit squeee. I had a lunch date with a lady in my Sunday School Class, and we are having wonderful times with each other. She is interested in literature and almost everything else in the world. She didn't run away even when I got on my obsessive monologue about introducing new crops into Rwanda. And she loves art! We set another date for next week at a Thai restaurant, and then a tour through art stores. After Mom died and another friend got a job, I've had no one to go to art stores with. I am looking forward to this.
Now, back to breaking sentences.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

This and That- February 2015

Today on FaceBook (a social media site) my oldest posted an article about zombie ladybugs and asked me to tell Nature to stop stealing his best ideas. I said I would get right on that.

In other news, the house is sold, the business is sold, and construction on our new home should begin soon. This morning I delivered cups of Valentine candy to all the neighbors who might be impacted by that construction. On each cup I attached a Valentine note saying that I was sorry if the house-building causes any inconvenience.

I'm not quite to the halfway point on the Kruliss novel. This is a lot of fun to write. Josh has been sending me incredibly beautiful pictures of Arctic and Antarctic ice. I'm submitting Sailing from Stoneshell to the Ubergroup of Scribophile (a website of people who critique each other's work.) I need to go critique a lot more pieces to get enough credit to post the whole novel. And I'm waiting on an editor we hired to work on The Scarred King. Moving along in my plan to begin publishing the Tales of Talifar series this year.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year 2015!
This is the year that at least the first in the Scarred King trilogy will be self-published, and possibly the next two as well. Or, possibly, the editor we hired will persuade Josh to connect all three into the one novel they started life as.

2014 is the year I "joined" the 500 club, as explained by Randy Ingermanssen, the SF thriller writer in Battle Ground: once the novel has been figured out, I write at least 500 words per day on the thing, no matter what. It used to take me years, but this time I wrote a novel in two months. The next novel took three months. I don't know how long it will take me to write The Journey of Pledgekept, but I expect not too long as so much of it has already been written in other novels. I merely need to take the same scenes and rework them from his viewpoint. fun, fun, fun.

I had a good time over Christmas brainstorming another novel with my oldest. With the caveat that they all need editing, here is what we have so far in The Tales of Talifar series: The Scarred King I, The Scarred King II, The Scarred King III, Sailing From Stoneshell, Killing The Siij, Finding Home, A Little Magic, the short story The Ungols Ride to War, and the two novels I'm working on now: The Journey of Pledgekept, and the Kruliss novel. The Kruliss started out life as Binkutts, but I complained that every time I tried to think of their names, I kept coming up with Binkies. I'm still fussing about the specie's name. I'd rather they had a name that did not end in two esses. So, polar bear/centaurs that live at the poles of Talifar. Josh wanted me to write a novel with a brilliant and profound ending, but he could not tell me what that might be. So I had a species I still did not understand, no plot, and no idea what profound thing any of them might do. Generally, when writing about aliens, authors will throw in a human as a point of reference, so what if we had a slave human? What would a strong, giant alien that lives on ice need a human for?

Josh wondered if we would be too (something) if we made the slave's story something like Joseph's in the Bible. I seized on that idea like a pit bull. Think of the strength of Steinbeck's East of Eden. Okay, now what. So we started to draw timelines, and discovered that what I thought Josh wanted for the big boss battle, or the climax of the book, he actually wanted as preface to all the adventures. Aargh! So we played what if for a couple days and hammered out a rough plot that I think is going to be a lot of fun to write. I've already sent him the first chapter, and he's written back what he wants to see changed. We're using the Aleut language as inspiration for names, and Vikings for the starting point that then morphs into alien morality. We're always concerned about reasonable physics, economics, and social structures. We spent a lot of time watching on-line videos about icebergs and floes, and thinking about food and physiology. Yeah, this novel is going to be fun.

2014 I threw two novels I wrote decades ago onto Amazon for downloading onto Kindle. I haven't advertised Streets of God or Pilgrimage. I just wanted them out in case Shatterworld and its sequels ever gets published and a reader wants to read more stuff by me. Josh is trying to figure out how to push Tales of Talifar without using his GuildWars connection and thereby being unethical. If he were saying these were GuildWars stories, yeah, that would be unethical. I don't think announcing that he is an artist for them is unethical. Everybody else announces what their background is. Why shouldn't he?

In 2014, I reentered the world of the hearing (although music is still hideous noise) and found out I was allergic to much of the world. Also had a gall bladder taken out and a host of medical issues came and went, so I'm in pretty good shape now, better than in years. We sold (are selling) our house and moved into a small apt. to free up money to build a strong house for us, our autistic daughter, and her caregiver that we hope will last without needing major repairs for the next forty or fifty years. If the house and business sales go through as they look as though they will, 2015 will be a busy year of continual plan revision and building. And writing.