Saturday, July 21, 2007

Acting Debut

Just a quick announcement of the acting debut of Marilyn MonREOW on tonight's installment of Bella Diana

Marilyn plays Butterball, and in spite of the inelegant character name, she pulls off a polished and convincing performance. Marilyn is a class act! I foresee a bright future ahead of her, and look forward to casting her again.

Thanks also goes to friend and fellow scribbler Thomma Lyn, for bringing Marilyn's talents to my attention. Thanks Thomma!

Now go see Marilyn MonREOW in her very first literary role!

Thursday, July 19, 2007


Hi. It’s me, Diana Channing. Sorry if I’m a little nervous, but this isn’t where I’m supposed to be. My author got tagged by someone named Karen Alaniz, but she says she’s busy, and I should respond instead. I’m afraid to ask what my author is so busy with. She’s probably thinking up more trouble for me. So I’m going to try to appease her by answering this "meme" thing.

I’m supposed to write eight things about myself. I can’t think what would be interesting about me, but I’ll do my best.

  1. I know three languages—English (of course), Spanish, and Apache.
  2. I never knew my father, who was drafted into the resource wars when I was a baby and didn’t come back.
  3. I got my first gun when I was eight. It was a birthday gift from my grandfather, and he taught me to hunt small game near our rancho. This was something he used to do with my Uncle Nick, who was killed in the resource wars.
  4. My grandmother hardly ever left the house, although she didn’t use to be that way. She was in the town of Macrina the day of the big food riot and barely escaped with her life. After that she was always nervous and preferred to stay indoors and knit or sew.
  5. After what they call the Valle Redondo Massacre, I went to live with my neighbor, Amalia Channing, and her adopted boy, Will. Neither of them are kin to me, but Amalia encouraged me to call her Auntie, and Will let me call him my brother. I had no more living relatives, so it helped to have a family, even if it was one we made up.
  6. We lived for three years on the Apache reservation after leaving Valle Redondo. The Apaches owed Auntie’s family a favor, since her sister Carina was a veterinarian and had cared for their animals without hardly ever charging them for it. But once the Nativist faction got control of the tribe, we had to leave because we had no native blood.
  7. There’s a folk song about me, but it’s not true.
  8. I’m afraid to read what my author is writing about me, but I bet it’s not true, either.

Well, that wasn’t so bad. I can think of things I've done that were a lot harder. Naming eight interesting people I met on my journey to Kentucky would’ve been more fun, though.

I hope this makes my author happy. I don't know what I ever did to make her hate me, but I want no more trouble with her.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Feedback Requested

This scene in Bella Diana, where Diana and her friends are attacked in the woods, was hard for me to write. If anyone has time to read and comment, I'd appreciate the feedback.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Snippet and Link - It's a Party!

Even in a dystopian future, you gotta have a little fun sometimes. It's a great night for a party at Bella Diana:
Seeing the four girls looking up at him, he struggled with the lock and slid the window open. "What's this?"

"Happy birthday!" Diana said.

He gave her a confused smile. "It's not my birthday."

"So? We figured you must've had one sometime."

"Well, yes. That goes without saying."

"So we thought we'd have a birthday party for you."


"Why not? Let us in, okay?"

Entire post is here

Monday, July 02, 2007

Character Study: Coyote

Once again modeling off Susan Helene Gottfried and her West of Mars blog, I'm posting a character study, drawn from my writings.

This time, I'm writing about Will and Diana's friend Coyote. He is a secondary character in Bella Diana, gets a few mentions in the first diary of Diana's Diary, and will have a role in Water Bearer.

  1. His real name is Joseph.
  2. He has heard voices for as long as he can remember, but his parents told him that they were just his imagination.
  3. His parents were killed in a train accident when he was twelve.
  4. Coyote knew about the accident ahead of time. The voices told him. But he ignored them because they were supposed to be imaginary.
  5. He has never gotten over his remorse for not warning his parents.
  6. He copes with his guilt by derailing trains. If he can get his hands on explosives and blow them up, so much the better.
  7. The funny thing is that Coyote actually likes trains and wants to be an engineer some day.
  8. Coyote considers himself crazy. After all, sane people don’t hear voices!
  9. The voices are always correct, but they don’t always tell him things in a timely manner or in a way he understands.
  10. He joined Unitas because he was getting too well known around the rail lines. He doesn’t get to destroy trains as often now, but at least he has armed protection while he does it.
  11. Before he joined Unitas, he had never been with a girl. When he found out that the pretty blonde spy and camp supporter, Macy, was a former brothel worker, he purchased her services.
  12. Macy was the first person to really believe in him and the voices.
  13. He loves her for this, and he’ll wait as long as he has to for her to love him back.
  14. After all, he’s crazy. Or so he thinks.

Character Study: Will Channing

With a nod to Susan Helene Gottfried and her West of Mars blog, I’ve decided to post occasional character studies, drawn from my writings.

I’m starting with loyal but stubborn Will Channing, from my dystopian novels. He is a peripheral character in Tin Soldier, a main character in Bella Diana, and gets a few mentions in the first diary of Diana's Diary. He also features prominently in the planned final book, Water Bearer.

  1. Will isn’t technically an orphan. He has no reason to think his parents are dead. He just hates them.
  2. When he was seven his parents hired him out him to a rancher who was a known child molester. He figured if he did a good job, he would be left alone. This worked at first, until it quit working.
  3. Will ran away and spent the next few years traveling and getting by as best he could.
  4. He coped with his memories of molestation by protecting the girls he met on the streets. This made him feel strong and in control of his own destiny.
  5. At the time Donovan Sloan caught him picking pockets in the town of Macrina, Will was caring for a young orphan named Tasha. He referred to her as his sister, even though she wasn’t.
  6. Donovan took Will and Tasha to live with Amalia and her sister Carina in Valle Redondo. After nearly four years on the streets, Will didn’t adapt very well to having rules and lessons.
  7. Everything changed when Will met the neighbor girl, Diana. They were close in age and shared the same interests, but she was smarter and didn’t need Will’s protection. He found this so surprising that he was smitten, although he was too young to realize it.
  8. Will learned how to read only because Diana liked to send him notes and he wanted to know what they said.
  9. When the government mercenaries came to Valle Redondo, Will saved Diana’s life but couldn’t save her family.
  10. Will started calling Amalia “Mother,” as a gesture of respect.
  11. He took Amalia’s last name as his own, even though she never adopted him in any legal fashion because the secession and civil war made it too confusing to figure out which “government” was the “real” one.
  12. Because Diana was so traumatized at the loss of her mother and grandparents, Will allowed her to call him “brother,” or “shilah” in the language of the small Apache tribe they sheltered with after they left the valley. He thought she’d get better faster if she felt like she still had family.
  13. By the time Will was old enough to realize that he was in love with her, Diana had been calling him “brother” for so long she could think of him in no other way. But he won't accept that.
  14. Will isn’t introspective, and he isn’t a man of ideas. But he can recognize these traits in others and he respects them.
  15. Will is loyal and reliable, almost to a fault. These traits inspire confidence when he is in a leadership role.
  16. These same qualities turn to stubborn blindness in his dealings with Diana, who won’t follow his lead in the one thing that really matters to him—building a future together as husband and wife.