Monday, December 30, 2013

The Sunset Limited

Let's be honest. When it comes to any form of media except books, I'm not the go-to person. (Anyone looking for a good read should check out Inkheart, by the way.) That said, there is a band you should immediately check out.

The Sunset Limited.

You need to Facebook them right now. Or go on Soundcloud. Whichever you prefer. And get on that, because they are AWESOME. My personal favorite is hands-down 'Reach a Ruin', if anyone wants to know.

If anyone out there likes Nirvana or Pearl Jam's Riot Act-type material, you'll probably like them.

So shoo. Go listen.


Thursday, December 26, 2013


I'm normally not the person to ask for film recommendations. Either the films I like are obscenely popular already (Nolan's Batman films) or kinda...well...obscure (Mr. Sardonicus). But you guys HAVE to seek out the original version of The Stepfather. Not the remake, not one of the sequels, but the original.

That's some scary goodness right there, man. And the best-worst?-part? It's based on a real-life killer. Lost his job, carried on leaving everyday to set up a new identity, and one day shot his family. Then he disappeared for eighteen years. When they found him, he was married again...and had just lost his job again.

So yeah. Go find that movie. It may take some work-it's a little hard to come by-but it's well worth it. Sweet dreams.


Wednesday, December 25, 2013


To those who celebrate, have a very, very happy Christmas.


Monday, December 16, 2013

Old Shame

So I was looking through my old files yesterday when I came across a manuscript. Wondering what it was, I read this manuscript.


I had unearthed my old fanfiction. We shall not name what fandom from whence it came, or what the plot was, but it was bad. Lots of Mary-Sueing. No originality whatsoever. I'm cringing at the very memory of it.

On the bright side, my twelve year-old self was well acquainted with the Spell Check. Thank you, twelve year-old self.

I am, however, very grateful that I didn't post any of that on Quizilla or whatever. That would have been terrible. It was good for a laugh, though...once I got past the, 'Oh, God, WHY?' stage.


Friday, December 13, 2013


This has nothing to do with writing, The Muse, or...well, anything else. I witnessed something today that made my faith in humanity drop a couple of notches.

Whilst I was out poking through the neighborhood Goodwill, a Spanish-speaking couple went up to the register. Since this is Arizona, I didn't really notice-until the employee ringing them up started bitching that 'Well, this is America, we speak English!'

Jaw, meet floor.

I have never in my life seen such a display of blatant racism. I know it's there-the comment sections on the internet are rampant with it. But out in public, surrounded by loads of people-including some who may be from Mexico or Africa or wherever-that's new to me.

The little coward made a break for the stockroom right after-typical.

I do live in America. Everyone here is entitled to think whatever they want. If you want to be racist, there's no stopping you. That's your opinion, and you're allowed to have it. But I'm also entitled to my opinion, which is that your opinion is wrong.

I don't know. It was just vile and sad and very much not-good, and I wish I'd been close enough to him to call him on it.

That is all. Just something to think about.


Thursday, November 28, 2013


For those who celebrate, happy Thanksgiving!

Also for those who celebrate, happy Hanukkah!

For those who don't celebrate either of those things, have some pie. This whole 'it's not a holiday so I can't have pie' thing is just ridiculous. Every day is pie day.

So. Go have yourself a nice big slice of pie, because why the hell not?


Saturday, November 23, 2013


Okay, I know this has nothing to do with writing, but I had to share it.

I woke up this morning to find that my street had a small river running through it. I know, I know-rain. Big deal. But I live in Tucson. Rain here is's a novelty. I am totally justified in running out and singing "What Is This?" from The Nightmare Before Christmas. (As for the rarity that is snow, well...that's another story.)

So. Rain. It rained yesterday, too. I'm impressed.

That is all.


PS: Today is the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who. Wow. Does anyone have a favorite Doctor? I love Eleven, because bow ties are cool. (Really, they are. But only on certain people.)

Saturday, November 16, 2013


I was going to wait until Thanksgiving weekend (November 28th to December 1st, for those who don't celebrate), but my laptop is trying very hard to die. It would be just my luck that it goes to Cyber Heaven before I can post. The last one had the gall to die on a government holiday weekend. So, to be on the safe side, I shall post the synopsis to The Muse a little early. Lucky you.

"Writers everywhere talk about their muses. Those mythical beings that live in their heads, spit out ideas, and find amusement in a dripping wet author bursting from the shower to jot down the newest plot.
Alice Garden's muse has been with her since high school. They've written best-seller after best-seller, and things are smooth. But now something's wrong with Layne. Something that goes back to a year in high school when she didn't write a thing. And she has to find out what the problem is before her muse is gone for good.
Everyone deserves a happy ending. But not everyone gets it."

In all honesty, I could have gotten off my butt and finished this last year, but the world was not yet prepared for Layne's shenanigans.


Sunday, November 10, 2013


It is now November. Yay.

A post or two ago, I promised more information on The Muse. You'll get it in bits and pieces, starting with the cover. The synopsis will be up another day. Depending on the life of my computer, you may have to wait until December. We'll see.

Here it is! Based on the title and the cover, any ideas on what the book is about?

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Trick or Treat

Well, 'tis Halloween. Before you all go off to drink, eat candy, or be safe. Go with friends. Don't drink and drive. You know. All that good stuff.

And now for a picture of a Halloween scarecrow.

I did say Scarecrow...

Happy Halloween.


Friday, October 25, 2013

The more you know...

I was unpleasantly surprised to find out that there is a spider with a twelve-inch legspan. It's not that I dislike spiders, but the bigger they are, the farther away I would like them to be. The Giant Huntsman Spider is not something I would like to find in my shower. Or anywhere, really.

Yeah. Sweet dreams. I won't be sleeping tonight.


Friday, October 18, 2013

New Title

I'm in the last stage of the editing now, so I don't think it'll hurt to drop the title for the next book.


And that's all the new information you're getting until November. Well, apart from the fact that I had far too much fun with these characters. That pink hair...


Friday, October 11, 2013

If it's free, it's for me!

Well, for you, actually. I wrote it. I don't need a free copy.

The Maze will be free on from Tuesday, October 29th to Thursday, October 31st. I'll post a reminder and a link when it's time.


Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Courage the Cowardly Dog

It's October. If you guys aren't watching Courage the Cowardly Dog, something's just wrong with the universe. You should. One of the creepiest, most awesome cartoons ever. Pink dog. Screams that involve organs falling out via mouth. And they said it was for kids...

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


I'm sure that some of you are enjoying hot chocolate, changing leaves, cute clothes...

In the words of Q, "Lucky bloody you."

Yup. Still ninety-odd degrees down here. On the bright side, I've never had to shovel a driveway in my life. Can't complain about that, really. That's never looked especially thrilling.

Well, that's all. There'll be another update in about...oh...two weeks, give or take. It'll be interesting. See you then.


Friday, September 13, 2013

Write What You Know

I've gotten a lot of varied advice from family, teachers, and friends. One that tends to crop up is 'write what you know'.

I really, really HATE 'write what you know'.

To some extent you should write what you know. I mean, if you've never had sex, you should probably stay away from writing an erotic novel. And that's fine. But you can't craft the whole book around 'what you know'. If that was the case, I wouldn't be writing anything, because nothing ever happens to me. (Now watch: something interesting is going to happen, like the TARDIS landing in my yard.)

I don't know, that piece of advice never did it for me. If I don't know it, I go on Google and research the bajeezus out of it until I do know it. Or I make stuff up.


Saturday, September 7, 2013

Sneak Peak!

Well, not really, since it's on the internet and all.

How have you all been? Those of you with real seasons, is it cooling down yet? I'd kill for some cooler weather, myself. I'm not a big fan of 103 degrees.

Anyways, I can't tell you too much, just that this is definitely the next project. And that you will like it-it's a huge change from the others, I can promise you that. More details later on. Like the title, the synopsis, the know. That kind of stuff.
"Alice Garden sat at her laptop and cursed three things: the blinking cursor on the screen, her lack of coffee and mints, and-and this was the big one-her muse, Layne.
“Layne,” she said, “if you don’t wake up right now, I am going to murder you in the most creative way possible. Medieval torture experts have nothing on me. So wake up!”
If he heard her, he did not care. Chances were that he’d gone back to sleep. Her nights’ sleep was ruined. His job was done.
Alice pushed the off button on her laptop a bit harder than necessary and closed it.
“Night, sweet pea.” she said tenderly. “And Layne, so help me God, if you keep pulling this shit, I’ll…I’ll…I’ll take up math teaching!”
There was no answer. Alice rubbed her scalp and shuffled back off to bed, cursing the pink-haired bastard.
* * *
            “Morning, Sweetheart.”
“Shut up.” she seethed. “I mean it. Why do you do that to me?”
“Because I can.” She smacked his arm. The skinny, pink-haired man frowned at her and inched a little ways away. “Jeeze! Is that anyway to treat your muse?”
She stuck her tongue out at him. Layne smirked and stretched out, his fingers wrapping around his purple rolly pillow. Alice scowled. How dare he be in such a good mood after ruining her nights’ sleep?
“Have you no shame?”
Of course not. Of course she would get stuck with the sociopathic being. What had she done as a child to deserve this? Maybe she shouldn’t have stolen her mother’s jelly beans so often.
“You should have shame.” she said.
“Because why?”
“Because…because…oh, fuck off.”
“If you want to help me, sure.”
I will not kill my muse. I love my job, honest!
She swiped his pillow, relishing the put-out look on his face. It was nice to know that he did, in fact, feel something besides the urge to troll.
“That’s mine!”
“Mine now.”
“Alice…” He wouldn’t. “Don’t make me do it.”
“You wouldn’t dare.”
“Just watch me.”
She watched his fingers warily, prepared to roll away like some kind of super-spy. He would not win this time. She wouldn’t let him.
One of his hands darted towards her and she screamed. Both of his hands then landed on her ribcage.
“N-no! Stop it! I h-ate being tickled, it was a…”
Oh, she hated him for this! He did this to her every time!
She got her hands under his and shoved. To her surprise and delight, she rolled him onto his back like some sort of beetle. Revenge was hers!
Before he could sit up, she pounced on him and pinned his hands above his head. Unfortunately, this gave him the perfect opening for, “I didn’t know you were into this sort of stuff, Alice.”
“There seems to be a small barrier.” He squirmed a little. “If you let me up, I…”
He knew damn well there was a problem! Layne was the cause of ninety-nine percent of her life’s problems. And he loved every minute of it.
She hated to give up her position-what terrible things could she do to him for revenge!-but he was stronger than he looked. One quick jerk of his shoulders reversed them. Oh, dear.
“Get off of me before I knee you.” she growled. He scrambled off, but not before grabbing his pillow.
“Mine.” he said firmly. “Get your own.”
She stuck her tongue out at him.
His expression turned from a smug grin to a pout.
“Hey, if I was any bigger I could crush you.”
“Yeah, but you’re not.”
That shut him up for a few minutes. Tragically, the silence didn’t last long.
Why, oh why did he have to butcher her name?
“What do you think of having the serial killer…sorry, forgot you were grounded.”
Oh, that wasn’t fair.
“What do you want, Layne?”
“Promise never, ever to call me Beanpole again.”
“And tell me that you love me.”
“And if I don’t?”
“Then I’ll give you writer’s block.”
“All right, Sweetheart.” He shrugged his skinny shoulders and flopped back. “What shall we talk about?”
“The serial killer?”
“Ah-ah-ah!” He wagged a finger at her. “Writer’s block, remember?”
Oh, God, he’d been serious. She was doomed.
“Layyne!” she wailed. “Please don’t give me writer’s block!”
There. He was amused by groveling sometimes. Usually he told her to quit acting like a five year-old, though.
“You sound like a five year-old.” Damn. “My terms will be met, or you will be stuck with writer’s block for a very long time.”
“But it’s my only defense against you!”
“I see it lasting for many months.” he intoned. “With only the loveable me for company.”
“Layyne!” She grabbed his sweater and shook him. He rolled his eyes. “That’s unfair!”
“Yeah, well, so’s life.”
She sighed. She would have to lay her pride down for a few minutes.
“I promise never to call you Beanpole again.” she said. Hopefully he wouldn’t notice that she was telling lies.
“All right, you’ve only got writer’s block for a month.”
“Wait, I’m not done!” He folded his arms behind his head. “And…I love you.”
“I love you, too, Sweetheart.” That son of a… “That wasn’t so hard, was it? Warm fuzzies all around, and you don’t have writer’s block.”
Easy for him to say.
“Shut up, Layne.”
He grinned at her and reached lazily for a bottle of orange juice.
“Shall we begin?”
One of these days, she was going to teach him a lesson.
Yeah, right."

Thursday, August 22, 2013

It's Here!

Here it is! The Maze is now available on! Follow the link below, and happy reading!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013


You know how, a few posts ago, I said the scariest thing was that giant spider from Lord of the Rings? I lied.

Roaches, man. Roaches are the scariest thing ever.

Maybe it's because we don't get them very often, but I'm never expecting them and they always scare me. And they only ever appear in two places-cheap hotel bathrooms, à la Psycho, or outside.

And they always wait until you're relaxed to run out at you, the sorry buggers. They do it on purpose, I know it. Maybe they're gloating that they survived extinction and the dinosaurs did not. Maybe they just have bad timing. Or maybe they've seen Psycho too many times and want to hear your shriek of panic.

See you tomorrow. Check here for the link to The Maze-I'll post it the minute I get it.

Something's in the walls...

Sunday, August 18, 2013

I Spy

I think I got the picture to turn out well. Of course, I know where everything is, so maybe not. I mostly just wanted to try to write an I Spy riddle.

" I spy glasses, a teapot, Poe.
A skull, a raven, a key and a toad..
HIDE, puppies, a girl in a bow.
A white lace fan and one black rose."

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Another Photo

I was bored. So I took a picture.

I wonder what possessed them to leave so suddenly...

Thursday, August 15, 2013

One Week

No, this not a reference to that one song. But if you sing that on karaoke night, you're awesome.

One more week. I don't really have anything to say except that, so take this tidbit of information: Maxwell Raven is Nathan Raven's grandson. The more you know...

Monday, August 12, 2013

Another 'Set' Photo

Once again, I indulged my inner set designer. I tried to make it an I Spy game, but my camera is small and I couldn't quite make it work. Sorry about that.

This old cupboard might have been located in the nursery, once upon a time.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

'Set' Picture

I'll admit it. If I didn't enjoy writing so much, I might look into set designing. It just looks fun. And it's so important-the mood of anything depends on the little details people might not even notice. Take your typical abandoned house. Sheets on the mirrors, cobwebs everywhere, dust on the floor...yeah, big deal. But if you look closer, there might be other touches-cigars in an ashtray or a cracked picture. And all of that comes together to make a creepy room that just screams, 'bad place, bad place!'

So I indulged my inner set designer this afternoon and made a 'snapshot' of one of the rooms in Raven Manor. Well, a corner of one of the rooms, because I'm small and most of my furniture is too heavy to drag around for the sake of a picture. It didn't turn out half-bad, if I do say so myself.

See? Not bad. I'd imagine it being in the master bedroom, maybe. You know, before the fire...too much. Ignore that last bit.


Saturday, August 10, 2013



Twelve days until The Maze. What happened? Where did last year go?

I don't know if you guys are excited or not, but I'm on some kind of perpetual caffeine high. Seriously, it's like Christmas or something. I can't believe it's practically here!

I have all of you to thank for it, you know. Writing is fun, but it's even more fun when you've got an audience. So thank you for being my audience. It's very much appreciated.

TWELVE MORE DAYS. Maybe I'll do something fun for the last seven. Samples or pictures or something. We'll see. I have no idea what I'm doing, after all.


Friday, August 9, 2013

National Book Lovers Day

So. According to the internet, today is National Book Lovers Day. The more you know...

That's really all. I don't have anything interesting to write about. So. Go curl up with a good book or your e-reader. And if you haven't read it, check out The Book Thief. Your world will be changed, I promise. Tears may ensue.


Thursday, August 1, 2013


Holy moly, Batman! It's August! You know what that means, don't you?


When did that happen? Seriously, when did that happen? I'm sitting here in my armchair wondering how August came so quickly.

So. Twenty-two more days. Then I'll quit blogging about it. Maybe six months down the road I'll go, 'remember The Maze? Yeah, when I was writing it...'

Or maybe not. Odds are good I'll be gushing over the next one. And I think you'll really like the next one.

See you soon.


Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Scary Stories

When I was but a child of six, I stumbled upon a book of scary stories. Being a glutton for sleepless nights, I got my mother to buy it for me. It had the relatively mundane title of Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark. After having been scarred by Joanna Galdone's reading of The Tailypo, I was brave. How bad could they be?

I spent the next week sleeping with the lights on. The book spent the next year shoved under the bed.

The stories themselves were nothing to write home about. Yeah, they were scary. That was the point. And some of them were genuinely frightening. My best friend and I made the dog sleep in the room with us because we thought a vampire would come in through the window. The dog was a great sport about that, by the way.

But the stories were not the worst part, oh no. That honor goes to the illustrations. Imagine, if you will, a cross between Tim Burton and the...never mind. I'll provide an example for you.

That's not even the worst of them. Most of them were much worse. Anybody remember these?

Monday, July 29, 2013


There are few things more inspiring than A) math tests and B) road trips. I suspect the monotony triggers some sort of creative flow. The road trip-ideas I enjoy. I can sit there and brainstorm while pretending to be asleep. The math test-ideas, though...really? Really, Characters? You couldn't have waited twenty minutes or whatever? Talk about terrible timing.

Sunday, July 28, 2013


There are few things more horrifying than waking up to hear, 'we're out of coffee'.


This last winter, Tucson actually got snow. I know, I know, the impossible. The apocalypse. But it really did snow-proper snow, like in a Christmas movie. That was bad. But being out of coffee is worse.

Imagine, if you will, stumbling over to the coffee pot, reaching for your mug, and picking up the pot. The pot is mysteriously light. You don't care, you're half-asleep. So you go to pour yourself a cup of deliciousness...and there's no sound. No coffee is coming out of the pot. And then someone tells you, 'yeah, we're out of coffee'.

That's when you drop to your knees, raise your hands to the ceiling, and let out a really big "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!" If you can find the energy, anyway.

I think I'll take the snow over that scenario.

Saturday, July 27, 2013


I could put a Sherlock reference in with a title like that, but I'll restrain myself.

Humans, as a rule, love to prove each other wrong. I don't know why we do it, but there you go. So, as a human, I am about to tell you that you are all WRONG! Well, most of you, anyway. Probably all of you.

Be honest. You think the Raven family's last name is pronounced like the bird. 'Ray-ven'. I can see why. It's spelled like the bird. It would make sense for it to be pronounced the same way. But it's not.

No, the little voice in my head wanted it to be pronounced all weird. So it's actually pronounced 'Rah-ven'. Like 'ha'. I don't know why. It just happened. Life's weird like that.

Oh, you're probably pronouncing my last name wrong, too. It's not 'sque-hee-la' or 'squig-lee-a' or anything like that. It's a little lame, actually. 'Squeg-lee-a'. Really, just like it looks. But everybody always just looks at it and does this little flailing thing. That's how I know they've come to my name on the list, when they do the little flail. Anybody else have that problem?

-Lalla (which, by the way, is 'la-la'. Like that creepy yellow Teletubby.)

Friday, July 26, 2013


I would like to take this posting to correct something. Dogs do indeed eat homework. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise. Don't believe me? I have the story to back it up.

Once upon a time, I had a puppy. A cute, sharp-toothed little puppy that had a fondness for all things paper. And that puppy ate my homework.

That's actually not quite true. He shredded my homework. It's not inconceivable that some pieces would have been ingested, though.

Said homework blew off the table without my noticing and he found it first. By the time I got there, all that remained were small chunks of lined paper with bits of Spanish on them.

Never mind the fact that no one believed me. Never mind the fact that everyone insists that 'dogs don't eat homework!' They are lying.

On another note, editing on The Maze is now completed. Now it's just going to sit on my flash drive until it's time to be published. Whee.


Friday, July 19, 2013


I love nightmares. Weird, huh?

I'm not talking about the personal ones. You know, the 'giant daddy long-legs fell into my hair' types. I hate those as much as the next person. They're horrible and you wake up all itchy and paranoid. Daddy long-legs need to stay on the ceiling, not hang out in my hair.

I'm talking about the ones that play out like an unmade horror film. The ones that have a soundtrack and camera angles and stuff. I dream in movies a lot. Once I dreamt of a James Bond/Batman Begins crossover...but that's a story for another time.

The other night I had a really good one involving some dude, an evil trunk, and a possibly haunted house. There were some more details-something about a fishpond murder-but I'll keep those to myself. I wrote it down and it's turning into a short story. It might grow longer. I hope it does. They have a habit of doing that.


Sunday, July 14, 2013

I Have No Idea What I'm Doing

I hear two questions on a fairly regular basis. The first one is 'what's the book about?' I don't like that one. They expect a black-and-white answer. That said, I can usually BS my way through. (They need to have a BS-ing class in schools, because that's a very important life skill.)

The other one is worse. 'How do you write?' Or something very similar. I SHOULD go the mature route and say 'Why, I outline, do character bios, plan for six months, etc.' What actually comes out is the following:

Really, that could be me. Only with thumbs know, human features. And no fur. I think it disappoints people. Maybe I should start to lie and give them the 'mature' answer above.

Saturday, July 6, 2013


Hey, guys.
The House on the Moor is going to be free on Amazon from July 8th to July 12th. I'll post a reminder and a link when it's time.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

One More Month

Oh, man. One more month.
Well, technically a little over a month, but you get the idea.
I'm scared. It's always really unnerving to publish anything. It's's like turning a paper in to a really strict, fail-if-you-wrote-the-next-GREAT-AMERICAN-NOVEL kind of teacher.
See you guys in August. Well, I'll probably blog again before August. So never mind. See you guys later.

Monday, July 1, 2013


Oh, my, it's July and
I think I might die!

Seriously, I'm starting to wonder.
Those of you who live in Arizona are well aware of the heat wave we've been getting. It's pretty hard to avoid, unless you live in a cave somewhere, like in that one Pendergast story. Those of you who live in other places, however...
Yeah. Going outside makes me feel like a hot dog on a grill. If it weren't for all the nasty happenings, I'd kill to be at Raven Manor right now. At least it's nice and cool. And kind of creepy...

Thursday, June 20, 2013


I don't always have a soundtrack for my books, but when I do...
Never mind.
Anyways, The Maze has a soundtrack! I don't do it for everything-although Color Blind had a really big, grunge-based one-but every so often, a book comes with its own soundtrack.
I tend to add to it as I go along, but seeing as the book is almost done, so is the soundtrack. Just for grins (and because I'm really, really bad at coming up with things to blog about), I'm going to put it up.

Ivy: Worry About You
Screaming Trees: Black Rose Way
Doves: Kingdom of Rust
The Doors: Riders on the Storm
Counting Crows: Ghost Train
Charlotte Gainsbourg: The Songs That We Sing
Lupe Fiasco: Superstar
The Sunset Limited: Time

I'm pretty sure the Ivy song is supposed to be nice and soothing, but I heard on Kingdom Hospital and I find it a little creepy. Anyways...


Wednesday, May 29, 2013

It Has Begun

No, really, it has begun. The final stages of editing, that is. This is always a combination of the most exciting thing and the most depressing ever.

That said, at least I'm on track. There's been times I thought life was going out of its way to screw me over. Maybe it was. Or maybe it wasn't. What do I know?

Yeah. Another...what, three months? That was fast. It's always fast. Where did the time go? I remember when I got the idea for The Maze. It was raining and the idea just hit me like a caffeine rush. And then I got writer's block two chapters in.

So. Three months and it'll be time. Are you ready?

I'm not.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Color Blind

Looking back, it's really hard to believe that it's been almost two years since I published Color Blind. Seriously, when did that happen?

It's been a while since I thought about it. Especially the cover. I know, a weird thing to focus on. But I drew that. And considering I can't draw to save my life, it isn't that terrible. I mean, compared to my high school art projects, that sketch is amazing. (Yeah. Those projects really were that bad.)

Somebody asked me why I'd drawn a palm tree as the cover for a book about such horrible topics. There is a reason for that, I swear! The summer I drew that cover, we had a really bad storm. Hurricane-force gusts of wind, the news said later. My neighbor's tree-a big, thick-trunked beast-lost a branch. One of our own heavy trees was uprooted. Power lines blew down! Yeah, it was intense. But at the end of that storm, guess what was still standing? This tall, skinny, fragile-looking palm tree. Of all the things to survive, it was the one thing I thought was going down. But there it was, none the worse for wear.

Anyways, I got to thinking that Cole and Nancy are kind of like that palm tree. No matter what life hurls in their direction, they're still standing. And that is why there is a palm tree on the cover of Color Blind.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

'Tis May...

I have begun one of two things I dread. Editing. Technically, I've begun both things-the other is readying for the most epic of battles...THE MATH FINAL.

After next week I'll be able to sit down and really look at The Maze. This post is mostly just to report that everything is still on schedule for August.


Thursday, March 28, 2013


I know I said I'd see you all in May. I lied., I'm not publishing early. Sorry. I did make a website, though, if anyone wants to take a look! Follow the link below. Until May-I'm telling the truth this time, I promise!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Happy Day!

After several days of procrastination, I have finished the final draft of The Maze! I hate finishing final drafts. It's just so...depressing. But I did it anyway!
It has to sit and stew until May, and then I have to open it up and look it over for errors, and then it'll be available in August. Isn't that lovely?
So...until May, I suppose. Bye, all.
<3, Lalla

Friday, March 15, 2013


Just because I can, I give to you...a random scene from the upcoming 'The Maze'. If you can guess the context, you're a mind reader. Congratulations.

"Supper was dull and Marie had hoped that Maxwell would go back to bed afterwards. He didn’t and at nine-thirty, everyone was sitting in the library. Maxwell and Jennings were talking and Marie was leaning against Maxwell’s side, half-asleep.

They must have thought she was asleep after a while, because the topic turned from rabbit season to more interesting topics. Namely, their marriage.

“Things seem to be working out well, Max.”


“She’s very shy, though.”

Hey! Would he rather have her be annoyingly loud?


“Max, are you even listening to me?”

He yawned.

“Of course, Jennings.” Marie had to doubt that. “Marie’s shy, I heard you. I’ve never been one for parties anyway, you know that.”

So there.

“You seem to be very fond of her.”

“Of course I am, she’s my wife.”

“You didn’t even know what she looked like before you married her.”


That went both ways, in case he’d forgotten. Why was Jennings so interested in this? It had nothing to do with him. She wasn’t about to throw him out, although she wasn’t going to be sorry when he left.

“I didn’t think you’d actually do it.”

“I don’t enjoy living alone.” Maxwell said quietly. “Besides, it worked out fine. Obviously.” She felt him lift his hand and imagined him gesturing towards her. “Stop worrying.”

“As long as you’re happy, Max.” Jennings sounded a little annoyed. “It’s just that since that last…”

“No. Not tonight.”

Drat. She would have liked to hear what ‘that last’ thing was. Whatever it was, Maxwell probably wasn’t going to share it with her.

They were silent for several minutes. The sounds in the walls were a little louder now and Marie wondered if whatever was in there had multiplied that afternoon.

“Sorry, Max.” Jennings said. He still sounded annoyed. “I just want to make sure you’re all right.”

“I’m fine.”

“Are you sure? These noises you insist you hear…”

“There is something there.” Maxwell sounded uneasy. “We’ve both heard it. Something’s there, and if I have to tear the wall down to prove it, I will.”

“It’s talk like that that worries people.” Jennings said. “Perhaps a trip…for your health…”

His health? This was just a cold!

“My health is fine. Now drop it.”

Either Jennings didn’t hear the warning tone, or he didn’t care. Marie was inclined to think it was the latter.

“Max, I really don’t think…”

“That’s enough.”

“Listen to me.” Jennings’ voice was harsh. “I know you feel fine, as far as things go, but we’re all worried about you. It isn’t helping that you’re hearing things that aren’t there. I’m your friend, Max, I want to help you.”

“I don’t need help. Now drop it.”

All right, maybe it was time to get up now..."

Monday, March 11, 2013


I'm about done with the final draft of The Maze-I'm thinking it'll be done-done by the end of March. After a two-month sit, I'll edit the living daylights out of it and then present it to you. And maybe, just for grins, give you guys another little sample.

Friday, March 8, 2013


I don't think it's natural to feel such...well...glee at torturing my characters. I'm pretty sure it's a bad sign. It's not that I don't like poor old Max, it's just that he lends himself so well to dealing with my wrath. Sorry, Max. I'll do my best to give you a happy ending, but I'm leaning towards doing something very terrible.
I'm so glad I'm the writer in this situation.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013


For those who don't have a Facebook (or didn't know I was on there...I am!), here is the cover for 'The Maze'. Whoo!


Saturday, March 2, 2013


I think I can safely say that I'm on the downward slide here, and that I have a publication date set for The Maze. Look for it on Amazon on August 22nd, 2013. For those who don't know, this is 'sequel' of sorts to The House on the Moor, which is already on Amazon. Now, let's hope that nothing terrible happens to cause a delay...

Friday, March 1, 2013


My characters must think I'm a terrible person, threatening them with insanity all the time. I feel a little bit bad for doing it, to be honest, but the plot demanded it. Do any other writers out there ever feel guilty for abusing their characters?

Sunday, February 24, 2013


Well, The Maze is making steady progress towards completion. I think it's going nicely, but one thing's on my mind.
I like snakes. I don't want a big bucketful in my bed or anything, but they don't fill me with disgust when I see one. Hopefully that's not bleeding through here too much.
Bye, all!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day to everybody! Got a date? Hope all goes well. Don't have have a date? Stay home and read. Wishing you did have a date? There's always The Lady and the Tramp! Because hey, that spaghetti kiss is just cute no matter how old you are.

Monday, February 11, 2013

The Terror of Writer's Block

Many things scare me. Cockroaches, the giant spider from Lord of the Rings (seriously, that thing was horrible!), getting a long-legged insect caught in my hair...
But there is one thing that is even worse than all of those things. Well, maybe excepting the giant spider.
I think it should be renamed 'artist's block' because really, doesn't every creative person hit a roadblock at some point? My grandmother, who is a really fantastic artist, has this problem now and again. It sucks. Everyone who's ever tried to create something, be it a picture, a short story, or a song, has hit this problem. Doesn't it just make you wanna rip your hair out in frustration?
I'm just getting over a nasty bout of the stuff myself, brought on by a rather nasty math exam I had a couple of weeks ago, and it's slow going. The real horror of it is getting right back into the frame of mind I was in before it hit. I have to admit, I'm afraid I won't. Even though I know it's all turning out fine, I have this (hopefully irrational) fear that I slipped too far out of touch with the story and that it'll show that I had that little break. And that is what scares me the most.
Well, apart from the spider...

Thursday, January 31, 2013

A Preview

Life is trying very hard to intervene in my writing, but here is proof that it is failing! (But only just failing, I'll give it that...) Anyways, this is chapter one of 'The Maze', coming to this August.

The old black house rose up out of the moor like a finger warning off all visitors. The steeples slashed into the cloudy sky and the gargoyle-shaped rain spouts spat water down from their perches. Marie Norrel

Raven now, good Lord.

didn’t like the look of this house one bit.

Her opinion of it did not matter, unfortunately. Much in the fashion of one of those ‘mail-order brides’, she had been shipped off to be the wife of the mansion’s current owner, Maxwell Raven. Technically she was his wife already, and the only good thing about that was the elimination of the ceremony. She had never liked parties, and the idea of having a massive one like that made her stomach hurt. Besides, she’d never looked good in white.

The horses did not like the house any more than she did and the coachman had quite a time of forcing them up to the door. Marie pretended not to hear the swearing and threats he was hurling at the poor things.

“Sorry about them, Ma’m.” he said, once they were stopped. “They never have liked coming up here. Something in the air, I think.”

Marie shrugged. She thought the place was cursed. It probably was. There wouldn’t be so many stories about it if it wasn’t.

Cursed or not, here she was and here she would stay unless she was lucky enough to get a divorce. Or the house caught fire. Either of those would be fine.

She was shaking, but when the coachman caught her eye she mumbled something about being cold. It was cold out here, after all. And the light drizzle wasn’t making it any better. She wondered if she would forget what the sun looked like.

The coachman deposited her bags in the hallway and left to deal with the horses. Marie pulled her coat tightly around her and looked around.

The hallway was deserted. It was lined with pictures and a few mirrors, and there was an old oak table by the door. It had a bowl for cards, but there weren’t any in it. It was dark inside, with only a few candles throwing shadows on the walls.

No servants came to help her or get her suitcases and she wondered if she should go into another room. It was cold in here and she wanted very much to find a nice warm fire.

After a few more minutes, she decided to explore a little. She lived here after all.

Her footsteps echoed in the hallway. The sound only intensified her unease and she wished someone else would come. Surely other people lived here. There was no way she’d gotten the wrong location, as much as she might have wanted to.

She finally came to a door with an envelope tacked to it. The envelope had her name on it in bold, flowing script and she picked it up. What in the world was this?

Hullo, Marie.

If you’ve found this letter, congratulations! You’ve gotten past the hallway. I’ve been meaning to get that redone, it’s always given me the creeps.

I’m sorry I can’t be here to meet you. Work has always taken up more time than I would like, but the busy season’s nearing its end. Since you’re probably bored and mad at me, why don’t you wander around a bit? There’s more notes like this one scattered around. See if you can find them. It’ll give us something to discuss besides the weather.


Humph. She was not happy about this, not one bit. She was supposed to get to know her husband through notes? Really?

Well, it would certainly be an interesting story someday. Who knew? Maybe they’d have a good laugh about this twenty years down the road, if they were still married and still getting along. Assuming they got along in the first place.

She tried the door and found that it opened. Inside was a very large fire. The room itself seemed to be a parlor or something. It too was deserted, but there was a tea set on the table, as well as a small envelope. She picked that up first.

Hullo, Marie.

     You like mint tea, don’t you? Help yourself, I know it’s cold outside. It’s always cold out here, even in the middle of summer. Get used to it.

You have found the parlor! Good for you. You can leave your coat in here if you’d like. And don’t worry about your luggage, it’s been brought upstairs. If you can find it, you can have it back. Don’t worry, it won’t be hard.


Marie did like mint tea. She wondered if he’d had a lucky guess or something else. It didn’t matter, really.

She poured herself a cup and shrugged out of her coat. There was no coat rack here and she ended up leaving it on a wooden chair. It would have to do. If he wanted his furniture safe, he’d provide a coat rack.

Now, to rescue her suitcases. She wanted a change of clothes, preferably warmer ones.

She left the room with her teacup and looked around. The three other doors were closed. At the end of the hall was a sweeping staircase that looked like it had been taken out of a palace. Who knew, perhaps it was.

She looked at it. It seemed to go on and on. It looked sturdy enough, though, and she wanted her suitcase. She would go up.

The staircase did indeed go on and on. Or maybe it just felt that way. Whatever the case, she was relieved to reach a floor with an open door. She was pretty sure it was the third floor. Or maybe the fourth.

She went into the room and spotted her suitcases leaning against the wall. Ah, fresh clothes at last! Huzzah!

She shut the door and felt around for the buttons up the back of her dress. She almost wished someone would show up to help her out.

It took longer than usual to get the buttons undone, but that was probably because her hands were shaking. After a few minutes, she had her dress off. She felt very exposed, standing in here practically naked. Hopefully the door had a good lock.

Once she was dressed again, she combed her hair out of her face a bit and looked around the room. It was a very nice one, all done up in blacks and reds and golds. There was no sign that anyone else lived in this room and for that she was grateful.

There was another envelope stuck in the mirror frame and she went to take it out. What did he have to say this time? That this mirror was a two-way?

Hullo, Marie.

You have found your way to your-our? We’ll talk about it later-bedroom. I hope you like it. It’s about…six, I think, so if you want to make your way to the dining room downstairs there’ll be something warm for you.


Sure enough, the clock downstairs chimed six. How had he known what time it would be? That was a little disturbing, actually.

Disturbing or not, she was hungry and she went downstairs to seek out the dining room.

It took her ten minutes to find it-why was this house so blasted huge?-and when she did, it was empty. She was relieved about that. After finding all those strange little notes, she wasn’t really prepared to meet Maxwell Raven quite yet. She didn’t even know what he looked like, for heaven’s sake! All she knew about him had come from the papers, and that information was scarce.

There was a steaming teapot on one end of the table, accompanied by-surprise, surprise-a white envelope. She sat down, wondering again at the lack of servants, and picked it up.

Hullo again, Marie.

You have reached the end of the line! Well, for today. It’s getting late. Hopefully these notes haven’t made you too upset at me. Work, remember?

Hopefully we…

“Can get to know each other as time goes on. Maxwell.”

The sudden voice had startled her and she jumped, the paper fluttering to the floor.

The owner of the voice was standing right behind her, leaning over her shoulder. Presumably this was Maxwell-the black hair was a dead giveaway.

“Hullo, Marie.”

Yes. This was the writer of the little notes and the cause of her nerves. She would admit, earlier she’d entertained giving him what-for for not meeting her when she arrived. Now, though, she could barely squeak out a “M-Maxwell Raven?”

He nodded and looked her up and down. She knew she should stand up, but she thought that if she did she might fall. No, sitting was the best option right now.

“Pleasure to meet you at last.” he said. “Sorry for the notes. They’ve always told me I was a bit dramatic.”

They? Who was they? Never mind, she didn’t really want to know.

“I-it’s fine.”

He flopped into the chair beside her and tapped his glass. Out of nowhere, a somberly-dressed man darted out with a tray in hand. Where had he been all this time?

Maxwell shook his head when the man made to place something in front of him.

“I’m not hungry, Edgar. Don’t bother.”

“Very good, Sir.”

Marie had started out hungry, but now her stomach was too knotted up to accept anything except tea. Even the tea tasted a little strange.

“So.” Oh, Lord. Conversation time. She hadn’t been looking forward to this, not one bit. “Your trip up was acceptable, I hope?”

“Very nice.” she lied. “Very smooth.”

He laughed and leaned back.

“Mind if I smoke?”

As if she would say anything if she did!

“No, not at all.”

“Good.” He toyed with his lighter for a few minutes before touching it to his cigarette. “Smooth, hm? Lucky you. Every time I came back from school the path hadn’t been redone and I’d end up being knocked around.”

Funny, that had happened to her. She’d wondered if the path had ever been redone, to be honest.

“I meant the first part.”

“Thought so.”

She was at a loss for words and instead prodded the soup. Onion. She liked onion. Either Maxwell knew more about her than she did about him, or he liked a lot of the same things. She hoped it was the latter.


“Max.” he corrected. “I’ve never gone by Maxwell except at school.”

“Max.” she said. “Where was everyone earlier?”

“I was busy and the servants were on the upper floors. Why?”

“Just curious. For a moment I thought I had the wrong address.”

“Ah. No, you have arrived at the right place. I hope you have warm clothes in those trunks of yours, because it’s cold most of the year here. And wet.”

Oh, great. It wasn’t that she didn’t like the rain, but she hated being cold. The heating had gone out once and she’d insisted on staying at school over the break while it was being fixed. That had been almost as bad as freezing.

“I think so.”

“Good. If not, go shopping or something.”

Well! That was a rather nice change. Her father, rich or not, had never been too pleased to send them shopping ‘just because’. Maybe this wouldn’t be so horrible after all.

They sat in silence for the next few minutes, then Maxwell stubbed his cigarette out and stood up.

“I hate to leave you so soon, but I have to take a short trip. I’ll be back sometime next week and then we can get to know each other better. Get used to the house or something.”

“A-all right.”

She didn’t dare ask him where he was going. It wasn’t any of her business, obviously, or he would have told her. Her father always hated being asked silly questions. ‘If I don’t tell you, mind your own.’ he always said.

“Oh, before I leave…keep off the moor. It’s not that I mind you going out, but it’s a bit of a death trap. If you fall into the mire, good luck getting out.”

“Thank you for the warning.”

“If you need anything, ring the bell. The servants will help you if you get lost or something.”

Before she could say anything else, he’d left. After a moment, she heard the front door open and close. There was no sign that he’d been there except for the stubbed-out cigarette and the lingering smell of smoke.

* * *

Marie finished her dinner around six forty-five and went upstairs to take a nice hot bath. Maybe that would warm her up. The chill that had settled over her when she first reached the moor simply would not leave.

The bath was nice but all too soon the water grew cold and she had to get out. What a pity. Ah, well. At least she had a little bit of time to get used to this place before Maxwell came back.

Maxwell…she didn’t understand him. She wondered if he would be always be like this, all dark and mysterious and gone all the time. She didn’t know which was worse: marrying a man like her father or marrying one who seemed to be his polar opposite. She supposed she would find out.

The sheets on the bed were soft and someone had slipped in and placed a bed warmer under the mattress. She wondered when that had happened and decided she’d find out in the morning.

She couldn’t sleep and she ended up switching the lamp on to read. She was working on a new adventure novel-one of those ‘lost world’ types that were so popular nowadays-and she had just reached the big lizards. What crazy ideas people could come up with!

 It was raining again and she could hear the wind battering against the old mansion. She wondered if this place was sturdy. It creaked and groaned like an old horse and she hoped it was stronger than it sounded.

There was a crack of thunder and the light flickered. Great. Now she couldn’t even read! She put her book down while she could still see the nightstand. Now what was she supposed to do?

Her question was answered by another clap of thunder. The lamp went out and she tugged the blankets up over her head. She didn’t like it here, not one bit.

She’d been lying there for about half an hour when the rain finally began to slow. The lamp flickered back to life. Thank goodness.

Lamp or no lamp, Marie didn’t feel any more at ease. As such, she spent the rest of the night looking around the room and wishing with all her heart that morning would come soon.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

A Joyous Announcement!

Well, at least a good one.
As of right now, my annual Writer's Block from Hell has not set in, which means I am making okay progress on my next novel! This novel, titled 'The Maze' will see in August of this year. It will, if that means I have to borrow Indiana Jones' whip and make it. So far that isn't seeming too likely, though.
You're probably asking yourself, 'Why should I care?' Well, if you liked 'The House on the Moor', you'll probably like this one. It's not a sequel, but they are related.
Below is my current blurb, but I may change it before I release it. If anyone has any opinions, throw them out there!
"Marie Norrel has never met her husband. When she finally arrives at Raven Manor, she finds that Maxwell Raven is not a commonplace person. He has a past that casts a long shadow over the present. Marie is willing to overlook this mysterious past…until the noises in the walls begin."

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year's!

Happy new year's to everyone! May your hangover, if you have one, be over soon.