neversremedy8: (Book Lover)
This is just to remind writers, makari, and hobbyists that the deadline for this year's Epeolatry Contest is little less than two weeks away. Missed the announcement? Check out details here. There's still time to whip up a short short story or sonnet, so get writing!
neversremedy8: (Writing)
Attention writers, friends, and epeolatarians!

Whether you write for pleasure, money, or to quell the voices in your head, I'm holding the second annual (newly named) Epeolatry Contest.

What is it? I give you a writing challenge with a set criteria, and you produce a piece for the contest by the anniversary of my birth, September 16th at 5:47a.m. Pacific.

Why would you do this? Because it's a fun, creative exercise, and if you're one of the top three picks (I'm the only judge -- pander, pander), you'll get a handmade gift from me. AND I'm going to take on the challenge of providing audio versions of each winning story to accompany the written pieces. (So if you like the sound of my voice, yay! Bonus!)

This year, in honor of naming the contest*, I've picked a selection of 35 obscure words I believe ought to be in more common use (that's 34 for each of the years I'll have been alive, plus "one to grow on"). From those, choose three to seven words, and write a 600 word short story or sonnet. So, makari, brush up on your iambic pentameter!

You may choose any genre, but try to make your story or sonnet as sensual as possible (i.e. strong sensory descriptions, not necessarily sexual). After all, as the name of this contest suggests, you should show worship in your writing to the words you utilize.

The word list:


  1. arenaceous. adj. 1. Consisting of sand or sandlike particles. 2. (of animals or plants) Living or growing in sand.

  2. bantling. n. A very young child.

  3. cyprian. adj. Lecherous, licentious, and lewd.

  4. deliquescent. adj. Becoming liquid or having a tendency to become liquid.

  5. eidolon. n. Phantom or spirit.

  6. eyot. n. Little island in the middle of a pond or lake.

  7. fen. n. Swamp.

  8. galanty. n. Shadow play.

  9. graip. n. Pitchfork used for hurling manure.

  10. haruspex. n. A fortuneteller who used animal innards and lightning for her predictions.

  11. horrisonant. adj. Making a horrible sound.

  12. imago n. Adult form of insect.

  13. izles n. Sparks and soot coming out of a chimney.

  14. jampan n. Indian sedan chair.

  15. kaddish n. Jewish prayers for the dead.

  16. lenocinant adj. Lewd.

  17. lochetic adj. Waiting for prey; in ambush.

  18. makari. n. pl. archaic Scottish term for poets (s. "makar").

  19. myrmidon. n. A faithful follower who carries out orders without question.

  20. nympholepsy. n. 1. Trance incurred by erotic daydreams; 2. A state of violent emotion, esp when associated with a desire for something one cannot have.

  21. obeisance. n. 1. Deferential respect; 2. A gesture displaying deferential respect (e.g. a bow, curtsey); 3. Paying of homage.

  22. pataphysics. n. The branch of philosophy that deals with an imaginary realm additional to metaphysics.

  23. paynim. n. A pagan.

  24. quiddity. n. The essence or nature of a thing.


  25. quockerwodger. n. 1. A wooden toy puppet manipulated by strings or pulls; 2. insult c. 1859: A politician whose strings are being pulled by another.

  26. ravissant. adj. (f.) Ravishing; causing rapture.

  27. scopperloit. n. Rude and rough-housing play.

  28. thaumaturgy. n. The working of wonders, magic, or miracles.

  29. uxorious. n. A man submissive to his wife.

  30. vernorexia. n. A romantic mood inspired by Spring.

  31. wittol. n. Complacent cuckold.

  32. xanthic. adj. Yellow in color.

  33. yarborough. n. A hand of cards containing no card above a nine.

  34. zephyr. n. 1. A light or west wind; 2. one of the Anemoi, Greek god of the west wind.

  35. zibeline. adj. Pertaining to sables.




This contest is open to ALL AGES, although adult themes have been and may be published for any to read (a cut tag will be utilized for winning entries either way, with a caution for mature content where necessary).

Post your entry as a comment to this post, or email your piece with a pseudonym to mme.calico@gmail.com with the subject: Epeolatry Entry.

*epeolatry, adj., the worship of words.


UPDATE: Since the question came up, this year, I'm specifying only one official entry per person. You're welcome to post any pieces inspired by this word list, but mark your official entry as such. Thanks and happy writing! <3
neversremedy8: (Curiouser and Curiouser)
With a quick flash, and a case of mistaken identity, I found myself on the receiving end of a series of one-line emails from the maintainer of a writing-themed blog. Even after admitting in the first round of emails my name had no correlation with a girl in another state, the questions continued to come. At first, I appeared to be keeping his interest, and then, with one careless choice on my part, the flow of questions ended.

Looking back, I could see that by sending him a link to a piece I had written on the subject we discussed curtailed (and subtly implied a desire to end) the discussion we were sharing--two strangers across the digital divide. As in many situations in my life, I stuck my toe in the water to test its temperature, and then dove in with little assurance for maintaining the delicate balance the water held.

Perhaps the silence would have come anyway. Perhaps my answers had already said enough, and once proving I was nothing like the hoped-for other, he grew bored and turned back to driving. I started analyzing my own caution in the discussion, the unwillingness to throw myself forward, and then, shoving it all out there. It's a pattern, and one few people appreciate--I'm not even sure I appreciate it.

Yet, what was it really so simple as a choice to provide a link instead of a clever answer? There is also the inescapable, unknowable element in life that turns a mistake or happenstance into interest, and an interest into tedium. It's never just one thing, but it's often the final thing, the catalyst or linchpin, bringing with it a host of change whether desired or not. Sometimes the reasons add up, whittle down, or fade. At others, it comes as a cataclysm, an abrupt and absolute alteration of life.

This was a small thing in my life, to be at first someone worth considering, flattered by the attention of someone who thousands of others wanted to speak with, and then dismissed as swiftly without word. A product, in part, of my own choices. Yet it's happened so often, no wonder I remain cautious at first. There are people who knew me when I was younger, fitter, more able to be true to my core self, and more able to feel at home in my body as a sexual being. They recall clever banter in emails, over the phone, or late nights in an Italian restaurant.

Too often, I find the requirement, the expectation, for that level of constant wit, exhausting and not worth the effort. I want more and more for people to speak plainly, to avoid the circuitous games of saying what is meant, and for intent to be on the table for all to see, rather than guessed at both at the beginning and end of interest. Is it laziness as a writer? Or can I claim to be hoarding my wit for the words on a page? At least with the written word, I can be witty. My verbal responses, on the spot, especially with people who make me nervous, never come out as intended (assuming my own intent managed to stay with me throughout a given exchange, for too often it flees to a mystical land where I cannot reclaim it until after my opportunity passes).

I could also claim disability. Being chronically ill tends to sap one's strength for healthy banter, the repartee of the educated elite (or elitist, though I try to avoid the latter).

But ultimately I want to understand this element. While it often falls outside the control of the one it affects most, there are clearly some who understand its nature better than I, and are able to shape it, and make use of it as a magi would use arcane forces. They wield arcs of lightening pulled from this energy, and wrap it about themselves to appear more fascinating, draw in others.

Perhaps, though, the pursuit is not worth my energy either. Perhaps it is better I continue to do "my good work" and plod along, in hopes that someday the wisdom of how to direct opportunity comes to me without forcing it. Given what I know of those who attract the unknowable force, it seems all they do is work toward their goals, and the rest falls where intended by their own hands, or some other, equally unknowable source.

Somehow, having felt flattered to be considered by someone others consider worthy, makes the disinterest* harder to accept, even though I had not invested anything in the brief exchange (really, it was quite brief, less than a dozen response cycles), or sought it out. My self-worth is stronger than this episode, yet I feel down because of it. Why? How odd my brain. I'm giving myself good advice to drink more water, get more sleep, plow through my to-do list, and create something today. There are projects, both writing and home, which need my attention. I'll push my way through this unattractive funk, and find it again, I know, but I don't understand why this one incident brought about such inner drama, nor do I like being someone who lets the little things bring her down. There are far bigger issues to attend!


*(For all I know, it's a total overreaction on my part--well, it's already an overreaction either way--but he might just have been busy. And what is it I hope will occur? To be liked? I'm already liked by many people! Stupid, stupid brain. Give me happier chemicals, damn you!)
neversremedy8: (Book Lover)
Less than 24 hours until short stories should be posted. They don't have to be your best work, they just have to meet these criteria. Get cracking, and get those 600 words or less to me before Friday, 5:47a.m. Pacific! Who knows what fabulous prize you might win? (Or what fabulous story might inspire you to further writing!)
neversremedy8: (Writing)
Writers! Write a short story (600 words max.) using at least THREE of these words slated for deletion from Collins dictionary* by 5:47a.m., September 16th.

Bonus points for stories containing steampunk, sci-fi, and/or erotic themes because I'm a sucker for such stories.

I'll post the top three with proper attribution and linkage by Mabon, and winners will each get a handmade gift from me. ♥

Feel free to post your submission as a comment below, or if you want to remain a nony mouse, send it via pm or email with a pseudonym you'd like to have me use instead.



In case you have trouble with the link, these are the words to consider for your writing:

Aerodrome
Alienism
Bever
Brabble
Charabanc
Deliciate*
Frigorific
Supererogate
Younker


*I'm a satyr; I love this word.
neversremedy8: (Writing)
(Cross-posted on WordPress.)


Several months ago, I read among many, a scathing review of the Twilight series in which someone had actually counted the number of adverbs in a given chapter. There were an appalling 26.

Reading famous authors' books on writing, including Stephen King's brilliant On Writing, mentions again and again how writers should eliminate any and all adverbs. At least, that's the impression that's stuck since reading said books.

I've become paranoid about adverbs. I feel guilty when I see one, give an internal groan, and berate myself for using them as a writer. When I churn another one out, I assume I will only need to find some more inventive way to write the same phrase without the offending word. It's as though the use of adverbs is seen as a form of laziness in writers. I'm starting to have nightmares that soon they'll be coming after my adjectives and commas next. DMS is especially unhappy with my standard usage of commas, double spaces after periods, and character in my writing voice. I do not conform to their AP style!

At what point do I cross the line into an obscene and unforgivable number of adverbs? Is Meyer's 26 a number to avoid? Or is the cut off a bit earlier, say, around 15 or 20? Is there a ratio of adverbs per page that's acceptable? And how will I be viewed by readers who count adverbs in any given chapter and find I've come up with a surfeit of such descriptive words?

So, here I am reading through Eila, Book 1, during what I hope will be our final editing pass before we send off query letters (and stalk) editors to get in good with some big-named publishing house, and I've been circling and keeping count of adverbs. The introduction is ok, there are only three. The first chapter has a more worrisome number: 17. But chapter two has an unacceptable 37 adverbs, and the third contains an obscene number: 43.

Near to hyperventilating over these numbers, I began thinking about what I had read through. The content is standing much stronger than it did in draft zero several months and two previous editing passes ago. I am able to see the characters and their actions better due to the clarity of the writing. What's more, as I circled adverbs and considered them in context, I began to realize that not every adverb needed to be removed. Oh sure, there were the superfluous words ending in -ly that did not add to the flow of the text, but there were, as I found, good reasons to keep a number of adverbs in their current places. They supported and enhanced the text rather than detracting from it.

I questioned why adverbs were considered so heinous by a great number of people, and started to see the good adverbs from those that tugged at readers eyes and hindered the enjoyment of the story. Why do we have adverbs if they are considered malignant to effective storytelling?

It dawned on me, as I am certain others have discovered, that like profanity, every word has its place. Some may have spawned from the laziness inherent in verbal communication, but when used in a way that gives a story greater vitality and nuance, how could we not use them?

And in this mindset, I picked up Zero History by William Gibson on the paperback shelf at the library and read two pages, engaged in the complexity of his language. I stopped at the end of page two and counted: ten adverbs in two pages. There were two adverbs on the first page--a sin to have any in those first, crucial paragraphs--and here he has two! Eight on the second, with two so close they might as well be in the same sentence together. Ten adverbs in two pages.

If the father of the cyber-punk novel can use adverbs, deftly and in moderation, then so can I.

Adverbs in this post: 4
neversremedy8: (What Big Eyes You Have)
There will be no earthquake
the ground will not tremble
the skies will not swell
with the tears of ninety-nine virgin brides
the snow will not blanket the body
to lay it to rest
soft shoots will not burst forth
from the ground

There will be only silence
or bird song or the rush of traffic
and the stuttering breath of defeat
when at last the foot falters
the head falls, the unremarkable crash
of flesh given up to the inevitable

A slight heartache might come
for a lover or child or friend
but . . .

There will be no chasm
to swallow the evidence
the wind will not tear or scream
the floods will not bring
final communion
the stars will not cascade to the earth
leaving fiery craters to mark the grave
the final words will go unrecorded
and unremembered

So . . .

why knot the rope?
Why kiss the blade?
Why sip from the poisoned cup?

There will be no twister
come as carriage over a rainbow.
There will be no flash of light
to indicate transcendence.

There will be cold
and fear
and vulnerability
and regret
and pain
and then. . .

there will be nothing.

There will be no mark
left in death that had not already
been made in life.






c. May, 2011, Raven Jennifer Demers.
neversremedy8: (Writing)
Co-author (R): Hey there... I just got your msg.
I'm here, too.

Me: I see that. Are you ready to work? Or do you need a few minutes to vent and/or share?

R: *snaps to attention* Work was the suck. Done venting, at the moment. Ready to work!

Me: *laughs* Sorry work sucked. Let's get back to work. We covered the keyboarding issues . . . sort of.

R: Yup-ish.

Me: Still not clear [. . . a whole bunch of story stuff I'm not going to reveal. Stream of pointed questions.]

R: Good questions.

me: Good stall tactic.

R: Thank you.

me: I recognize managerial devices when I see them. You're welcome.

R: I use it when dealing with people too smart for my own good.

me: Nice flattery ploy, but it won't work. I know you're smarter than I am.

R: *shrug* It's not about being smarter... (and I think you have the leg-up, there... mine's divided).

me: Answer the questions, or I'll start using male gender pronouns for you.
*waggles finger*
*threateningly*

R: WAH! OKIES!
Researching something... give me a sec.

me: *plays elevator music in her brain*
Why is it always "Girl from Ipanema?!"
neversremedy8: (Not Enough)
To my friends blessed with good health, I need to live vicariously right now. Tell me a fairy tale. Tell me what it's like to live without pain and exhaustion and struggle with everything you do. Describe a day in your life. Describe what it's like to wake everyday not dreading how you'll get through. Seriously.

I can count on one hand the number of good days I've had in the last year, days without pain, without some type of illness, feeling fully cogent, alive, alert, and energetic, and none of those days were consecutive.

I really need to hear good news, good health, be reminded of what it's like. This week hasn't been any harder than any other in the last year, but after so long, having the same level of difficulty each week after week after week without change only makes it harder, because it feels like there's no end in sight. It's rather like our economy. My jobless friends--most of them--finally have jobs, but for all those months and months and months of waiting, worrying, starving, it helped each of them to hear the good news as others started getting work. more and more. Hope and an end in sight.

I don't have either right now. Please tell me a tale. You can make it up, if you'd like.

(x-posted 1st part from FB)
neversremedy8: (Writing)
I just finished the final missing scene for the first draft of the second book in our series.

Of course, I'm also still waiting for Sera to finish her end of the first edit of the first book, but she's almost finished wading through my editorial notes on the first seven chapters. Which is pretty good considering how lengthy some of my edits can get.

That's two books in what? Four months? This one took longer because 1) we didn't already know every last detail by heart like we did with the first book, and 2) oh yeah, I'm back in school. Amazingly, I'm still maintaining A/B level grades considering how little time I allot for studying.

Aaaaand .. Ana's sick. We're definitely staying home tomorrow. I've already loaded her up with a ginger tisane, some liquid meds, and a box of lotion tissues. It was a struggle to get her to drink the tea, but hopefully she'll be more willing to drink the breath deep tea tomorrow morning.

Aaaaaaaaaand, I figured out the next scenes for both Iblis and Daisy. More to come tomorrow.

Prolific? Me? Nah. Any good? That remains to be seen.

I'm drained and exhausted, and I already know at least three major things I need to fix across both finished books.

'Night bunny muffins.
neversremedy8: (Plotting Dandy)
I joined [livejournal.com profile] sixwordstories a couple of weeks ago, and in one night, wrote over two dozen to slowly add to the community. My first two entries:

No master remains here, save me.

*

Finally, mana's returned. Everybody stand back.
neversremedy8: (My Favorite Plot Twists)
The answer to any continuity problem is "magic."
neversremedy8: (My Favorite Plot Twists)
Thanks, [livejournal.com profile] bzarcher, this is one way to spend my sick day ...

All icons beyond are made from Dresden Codak's Essential Third Act Twists. (For explanation of terms see this fabulous blog post.) The one I'm using are my favorites from the list.

Same rules apply as in all icon communities: take what you want, comment if you take, and absolutely credit both the source (Dresden Codak) and the creator of the icons (me). K?

See the Icons! )

H.P.S.

Nov. 3rd, 2009 07:19 pm
neversremedy8: (Cleverly Disguised)
I want to start my own historical preenactment society!!!

Oh gods, Archer, look what you've done! You've gotten me hooked on another time-wasting, inspirational webcomic. *sighs* I guess I'm only supposed to do my homework half-assedly from here on out, because with this, I only want to write MORE!

Free Books

Sep. 10th, 2009 12:25 pm
neversremedy8: (Book Lover)
I have four books left over from two classes dealing with AIDS. Anyone want them for the cost of shipping? AIDS & Accusation by Paul Farmer, 28 by Stephanie Nolan, AIDS in Africa by Poku, and Race Against Time by Stephen Lewis. I'm only keeping one book on the subject (Women at the Crossroads), but before I donate them to a library, I'd like to offer them free to anyone interested in the research.

Also available are the last three vampire novels by Anne Rice: Blood & Gold, Blackwood Farm, and Blood Canticle. I don't think I even read the last two, because they came out after she stated she no longer needed an editor. She was just that good. *rolls eyes* No one is good enough to stop needing an editor. Except maybe Mozart, and he's dead. These are also the last ones to be written before she returned to the Catholic church and managed to write a book about Jesus' life and make it boring. So, yeah, free if anyone wants them. All hard covers. Yours for the cost of shipping.

La!

NOTE: [My sci-fi/fantasy bookshelf now has a big space open on one row, and I'm writing out a placeholder card that reads: "Reserved for the first five novels by Raven Jennifer Demers. Take that, Creative Visualization! Oh wait ...]
neversremedy8: (Writing)
Thanks to wonderful sites like the three I've listed below, I've managed to figure out most of what I need to know about formatting the Eila manuscript, which I want finished now so that when we edit in ten or eleven days (when's my birthday, again?), we can do so more easily. However, two questions remain, but are not as urgent:
  1. How do you format the contact info for two authors on the title page? Do you just pick one author's contact info? Or can you put both on there? All of the info I've managed to drum up is formatting for scientific journals, not novel criteria.

  2. There's a variation in the agreement for what symbols to use for line breaks. At this point I'm going with the "use what feels right, unless the editor says otherwise" (the same philosophy I'm taking with the italics being underlined issue, which apparently isn't much of one anymore?). The problem I foresee is not the line breaks, but the areas where I actually want a dividing line or visible break between POVs. At present, I'm using a single * for line breaks and a * * * * * for separation of points of view where I would want a delineation marked beyond just the line break. Suggestions from the pros and more knowledgeable folks on the subject?


Links I Liked:
CMU
Klein Edit
Louisa Burton

Baudelaire

Jun. 25th, 2005 10:24 pm
neversremedy8: (Good Breeding and Low Morals)
I think I should have read Baudelaire when I was in my late teens when I could appreciate the dark, hopelessness of his writing. Tragically beautiful, yes, but I just cannot appreciate it as I might have when now I hold onto light and life. There was such despair in his writing, co-mingled with his sensuality. *sighs* I have greater hope and find it difficult to overlook my pity for the life he led. Still ... some of his poesy catches in my throat when I try to read it.

Beauty

Conceive me as a dream of stone:
my breast, where mortals come to grief,
is made to prompt all poets' love,
mute and noble as matter itself.

With snow for flesh, with ice for heart,
I sit on high, an unguessed sphinx
begrudging acts that alter forms;
I never laugh, I never weep.

In studious awe the poets brood
before my monumental pose
aped from the proudest pedestal,
and to bind these docile lovers fast
I freeze the world in a perfect mirror:

The timeless light of my wide eyes.


EDIT: G'night. Dream well all. I sleep now. *snore light*
neversremedy8: (Default)
Guess what just came, this minute, just now?

GUESS? GUESS! Give up?

MY BOOK! I don't mean some book I ordered, I mean MY BOOK! The book I wrote! Six beautiful glossy-covered copies of MY BOOK!!!!!!!! Oh my god! Go my hod! Can you believe it? I'm sitting there, holding this box in my hand, opening it very delicately, and then... then... BAM! I've got a copy of my very first book in my hand!

It's supposed to be listed soon on Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, and Borders!

Since it hasn't updated there yet (and I think you can call a local B&N or Borders and have them order a copy and then hold it at their store for you), you can see it (or order it if you'd like), directly from the publishers:

My Name Was Indigo

MOM: Expect a slight charge on your card, I'm sending you a copy!
neversremedy8: (Default)
Don't mind this, just a note to myself, so I can get back here when I need to:

http://www.vampifan.com/musetta/vander.html

Perfect gal to play MOIRA ... or good for artist to render!
neversremedy8: (Default)
Misses Enaen, yes we does. ::sniffles:: Can't seem to recall his new e-mail address, and I've already asked Jessica for it more than five times in the last year and a half. I know it's his first initial, second initial, last name and then the @ whatever college he's attending. If he's still attending. ::pouts:: Misses EQ, too. ::twang:: Misses my bow and arrow, and tight black leathers, and blasting the brains of critters with a sweet smile and sunny-yellow robe.

Just found out (thanks to four fan letters in two days) that Big Butt Magazine (::snickers:: What a name!) is reprinting a series of pictures of mine. Actually, they might be slides from the same set that they didn't print before, but everyone's telling me how great I look in the "new issue". Mrrrph? What new issue? I only received a few copies of one of the magazines I've been in, and I've been in several issues of four different magazines. No one ever tells me these things . . . I'm going to have to write to the publisher (she's my fri-end) and ask her what all the hoo-haw is. But hey, it's nice to be recognized again, and now I can push the promotion of my book with my fans! ::bounces::

Working steadily on character descriptions and cover ideas for Aveline so she can draw her pretty pictures of my -- err -- "our" story (gots ta reco'nize Ms. Sera's efforts here, too). Of course, I'm only half way through the descriptions and I've already written five pages (spent two hours on it last night). I set a deadline for myself . . . must get it into Ave by Friday. So I set a schedule. Wrote last night, write tonight, edit it tomorrow and such, then send it when I'm satisfied Thursday night/Friday morning. ::hears the crack of the whip:: Hey, who's back there with that whip? Ow! All right! I'm facing the screen!

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