Friday, December 16, 2011
Thursday, December 1, 2011
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
On another note, I recently gave an interview to The Fairytale Nerd, a reviewing site, which will be posted December 1st. The interview will be accompanied by a giveaway contest, so keep an eye open for it. Also, I was glad to see that the review copies I’ve sent to reviewer Majanka Verstraete of I Heart Reading in Belgium have arrived safely. Woo hoo!
Friday, November 4, 2011
I especially love trying new recipes. Yesterday, I make an Italian Love Cake.
It’s so good and easy to make; I thought I’d share the recipe with everyone.
So here it is:
Italian Love Cake
• 1 (18.25 ounce) package chocolate cake mix
• 2 pints part-skim ricotta cheese
• 3/4 cup white sugar
• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 4 eggs
• 1 (3.9 ounce) package instant chocolate pudding mix
• 1 cup milk
• 1 (12 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
• Prepare cake mix as directed on box. Pour batter into 9 x 13 x 2 inch greased baking dish. Set aside.
• Combine ricotta cheese, sugar, vanilla, and eggs. Blend well. Spread mixture evenly over the top of the cake batter.
• Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 75 minutes if using a glass baking dish, 90 minutes if using a metal pan.
• Blend pudding mix and milk until thickened. Blend in whipped topping. Spread over cooled cake.
Bon appétit. :)
Thursday, October 20, 2011
“A great story with characters that grow on you from the very beginning.“
This is The Digging Crew’s first review since it’s been re released. Check it out!
Thursday, October 6, 2011
Wednesday, September 28, 2011
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
Coffee Time Romance Reviews:
“This is a well-written story filled with descriptions so vivid that I felt like I was down in the dark mines running alongside Sammy. Heart-stopping action and suspense, combined with a fast-paced plot, are the driving forces behind The Digging Crew. If you enjoy non-stop action, Science Fiction, and girl-power, this book is for you.”
The Best Reviews:
“Mindful of Roger Corman's women in prison flicks, THE DIGGING CREW is a wonderful tale of survival. This is a terrific futuristic thriller in which the strong survive and these women are some of the strongest.”
Caribooks: Reviews with Care:
“I like stories that put together the technology of the future and that of the past ― steel and stone, laser beams and oil lamps, rocket fuel and steam engines… So, when I have got the occasion to read “The Digging Crew”, I had some expectations about quality and setting of the story. Well, I am pleased to say that my expectations have been fulfilled.”
KC Heath, Escape Time:
“THE DIGGING CREW covers the extensive breadth of this escape in writing that is totally present and full of action. There's some pretty cool science in the story, both technological and biological. The characterization is good. The prose is clean, efficient, and well tensioned.”
Reviewer’s Choice Reviews:
“THE DIGGING CREW is actually chick lit in a new setting…. Sammy and her group kidnapped my attention and held it until their demands were met.”
Fallen Angel Reviews:
“Other reviewers have referred to this book as “science fiction chick lit,” and I have to agree! It was nice to see strong female characters willing to do what was necessary to stay alive. I was quite intrigued by the twists and turns of the story, and enjoyed it…”
Monday, September 19, 2011
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Here is the back jacket for The Digging Crew:
When the women of crew 56 planned their escape from the hellish prison-mine of Carmel 5, they thought of everything…well, almost everything.
Sammy’s life is a nightmare, and it’s all her fault. First, she is caught shoplifting—a big no-no in the hard-on-crime Dominion’s world—and is shipped to a prison-mine for women on a faraway desert planet. Then on her first week there, she destroys a droid belonging to the prison…on purpose. So when she’s sent deep into the pit of the mine as punishment, Sammy doubts she’ll live to see her sixteenth birthday. After all, this is the diggers’ level, and they are the prison’s most violent criminals. To her surprise, she finds a new family in one of the digging crews. But she also makes a deadly enemy. Can she and her crew manage to escape the prison and regain their freedom?
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
Sunday, September 11, 2011
Most YA book covers are dark, so, of course, we went with white. ;)
Wednesday, September 7, 2011
Sunday, August 21, 2011
Tuesday, August 16, 2011
Here are some of the highlights: Turning History into Fiction with panelists Krista Ball, Ron Freidman, Barb Galler-Smith, Derryl Murphy, Tim Reynolds and Jack Whyte. This was the panel I found the most interesting.
The EDGE party was super fun. Everybody got to wear feather boas and drink giggle juice.
My favorite panel/round table was Writing In English…as a Second Language with Marie Bilodeau, Harold Cardona, Ann Cooney, Ron Freidman, Neil Godbout and me. It was downright cathartic. So much so in fact, we all agreed to do it again next year.
But I think the most amazing moment of the con was when Jake Whyte sang The Hippopotamus Song at the Dead Dog. AWESOME!
The weekend was capped off with a tour of the Royal Tyrell Museum with Robert J. Sawyer as guide. How cool is that! :)
Thursday, August 11, 2011
Friday, August 5, 2011
Tuesday, August 2, 2011
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
On a different note, I saw several good movies this summer. Thor was entertaining, although the love story felt force. That aspect of the plot didn’t work for me. X-men: First Class was really good. I especially liked Michael Fassbender in the role of Magneto. That’s smart casting! Of course, I saw Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 2. I loved it! I thought it was a highly satisfying ending for this series. I wasn’t sure they could pull it together, but they did. I’m a bit sad that’s it over though. I also saw Captain America and enjoyed it quite a bit. It has the right blend of humor and action--a fun movie.
Monday, July 11, 2011
The evolution of a cover
By Michelle Milburn
1. This cover was a bit of an experiment for me with using photomanipulation as a tool in digital painting. I started out with a sketch that was a combination of photo and drawing. At this point I was primarily concerned with keeping unity with the first two covers, which both included two figures (one of which was Amir) in the foreground. Each book also has a unique cultural setting, which is depicted in the background.I used the first book's cover as a guide for the size of the title text, as well as a little bit of colour (mostly whited out in this first image.) I wanted an arrangement of the two figures in the foreground to be similar to book two's cover, which has Amir facing off against a bear. However, this time I wanted Amir to face forward, while I thought one of the book's antagonists (Mokoi) would make a good imposing figure in the foreground. The setting for book three is an Asian-inspired travelling city, so this was the natural environment for the two figures. At this point I'm just playing around with the elements, which at this point are as visually disimilar as they can get. My Amir placeholder is a ridiculous-looking little blob, so...
2. ...let's sketch him a little more presentably. Also, adjusted the ratio to fit the Kindle, though I left some sky space above this in Photoshop so the book can be used with other ratios as well. After meeting with Nathalie I sought out some specifically Korean roofs for the buildings. Since roofs are one of the most striking features of Korean architecture, I thought I should take advantage of this feature when depicting the book's setting. I am taking roofs from some photos and adding them to buildings from other photos to make new buildings, then drawing what I need on top. (Notice the guy with the backpack on the left. He is going to go when I begin painting.) Also, the buildings have been rearranged.
3. Buildings still shifting a bit, though not as much as before. Also, we need more atmosphere here, and the right hand side of the picture is looking really heavy to me at this point. I love the colours of the sky in book one, so I temporarily reveal them by erasing my Photoshop "whiteout" where I feel the sky could be darker. I will repaint the sky later (don't want to steal!), but these are the colours I'm interested in using and I'm just playing with composition.
4. Buildings painted. The clouds are painted with a custom cloud brush I created using Photoshop's brush editor.
5. Amir gets his final makeover, and Mokoi gets a few touchups as well.
Monday, July 4, 2011
Monday, June 27, 2011
Monday, June 20, 2011
Thursday, May 26, 2011
Michelle Milburn is the talented artist who did the cover art for this volume. Learn more about her in coming posts.
Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Thursday, May 12, 2011
On a different note; I saw Thor the other day. It was entertaining enough, the typical popcorn summer movie. Apparently, there is a snippet after the credits (which I missed, boohoo) that plays into the larger Avengers story that’s coming soon. Guess I’ll see it when the film comes out on DVD.
I plan to go see Priest next, but I’m not holding out a lot of hope that it’s going to be good. Would love to be proven wrong, though.
Thursday, April 21, 2011
Thursday, April 14, 2011
Sunday, April 3, 2011
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Friday, March 25, 2011
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Friday, March 18, 2011
Monday, March 7, 2011
Also, for those of you who don’t know, both The Princes of the Golden Cage and The King’s Daughters are now available on the Kindle—those links will take you to their respective pages on Amazon.com. :)