On Writing & Publishing by Robin D. Owens

Personal notes on writing techniques, writing a novel, my writing career and threading your way through publishing a book.

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Location: Denver, United States

RITA Award Winning Author -- that's like the Oscar, folks! Futuristic/Fantasy Romance and Fantasy with Romantic Subplots.

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Friday, March 29, 2013

Feral Magic Excerpt

For those who haven't read Feral Magic (2.99) yet (amazon: http://tinyurl.com/cdudkn8) Here's a taste:

Heart pounding, Dak whipped around and stared into the fluid airwaves of the dimensional portal. The gate solidified. He saw Bretine change shape. Fast, so fast! That speed was her special gift.

Nowe a white tiger with black stripes, Bretine sprang from the opening, roaring, all fangs and fur and claws, aiming for Dak.

But Earth's moon was up. He'd established a bond with it, pulled on it before, could do so now. He yanked viciously hard, changed fast, losing muscle mass as he converted it to energy.

He rose to meet the tiger, roaring his own challenge, lunged with teeth toward her skull for a death stroke. She'd aimed for the man and gotten the panther.

They clashed and rolled, both curled tight in a ball, both reaching with hind paws to protect their own bellies and rip at the other's gut.

His ears drummed with his blood and his own roar. Bretine's growls. And female human screaming too loud and shrill. Brandy.

Who with two swipes would be dinner for Bretine. After Brandy would be baby Favel.

Dak had everything to lose if he didn't fight and win.

May you enjoy all the worlds you visit today.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

A Taste of Celta

A taste of Celta. All right, while thinking about a comment, I thought about making something like "A taste of Celta" a regular thing...maybe weekly if I can manage it. I looked at my files and I have FOUR GIGS of Celta stuff. That includes multiple copies of chapters, drafts, etc.

Warning you now that if I do this, there will be days where you might only get a phrase cut out of a chapter.

And now to throw the FamCat among the skirls...what day would be good for you? Weekday or Weekend?

Below is the original drawn Celtan map, drawn during HeartMate and features of Heart Thief added...complete with grease and/or tea stain.

Yesterday and Today - Day Off/Writing

Yesterday and Today - Day Off/Writing: Yesterday was a day off. I took a nap in the morning (and ended up sleeping most of the day in my clothes), listened to music, and reread a new book by an author who is hit-and-miss for me, this one was good the first time around but I don't think I'll be rereading this particular book very often. The day was okay, but had a couple of disturbing dreams. The music was great. :)

Today I dragged myself out of bed, worked on Ghost Seer and made up about 300 words from the dearth of yesterday, then switched to Feral Two, where I made up the wordage for all of yesterday (less than Feral Magic). I listened to my shuffle selection on Pandora. The day was good, I got a satisfied feeling of scenes written, characters played with, etc. The music was great. :)

So, right now, I am happier writing and working at a steady pace than resting and being plagued by NOT writing and working.

May you enjoy all the days.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Of the far past, the past, and the present

I spent this afternoon at the new History Colorado Center. I went to see the diorama made in the 1930's of Denver in 1860 (there were about 2 of the original buildings remaining at that time, now none). I looked through copies of old photographs of Denver for a scene in my book, Ghost Seer. I found one that will do very well (unavailable online), though I will flip the sides of the street and...put in some buildings where there is currently a huge hole in the ground for new construction (not sure what, because I was driving). So that's the far past.

Recent Past: I used this pic to keep my memory fresh for the overturned bus scene in Enchanted Ever After:

And the present...Well, I drove by the above corner today and it's obvious they're widening the highway because instead of a hill, there is a sheer drop...I think I made it a sheer drop in the book...

I anticipate another research day next week, following the walking tour in the Haunted Heart of Denver that I made a map for so I can get things straight.

That's it!

Have given up research on one particular item of the Old West for my new Ghostlayer series. When 10 websites exactly repeat the same "facts," that you're pretty sure ain't true from multiple more scholarly hard-copy works you've consulted, you know not to believe the sites...Spent all yesterday morning, and on and off in the pm on this...and my heroine wouldn't do that much research, the matter wouldn't mean enough to her, so on with the writing!

Friday, March 15, 2013

War room

Almost every morning I go into an international writing war room. People are there all around the clock since some of them are in Europe (Sweden, Ireland, England), and throughout every time zone of the States. And some of us work in the mornings, some of us very late at night... Here's a pic (small so the names are not seen)

We talk about our work, occasionally brainstorm, discuss publishing (some of us are, and most of us were with Luna) but mostly we war or slog. Since I am one of the slower writers, I like the 30 min wars with little breaks, not the 1k1h (1000 words in an hour, which I can rarely do. So we go at the 00, the 05, the 10...and ostensibly the person who writes the most wins. The key here is motivation and accountability.

All writers are welcome, at any time, if you are respectful of others and the writing process. The war room does need a password, and will request a screen name. Email me if you want in. May you be cheerful today.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Feral Magic Cut Scene - Worldbuilding

Feral Magic Cut Scene - Worldbuilding. This is the scene with Dak in his castle's dimensional portal room. A cut version of this scene is in the novella, but not the entire one I wrote.
Ferix Dimension
Delay, delay, more delay! Dak snarled at another one of his cousin's, Hakit. A man who, a few hours earlier, would have cowered before his scowl. But now Dak's brother was regent instead of him and had the power of the klatch behind him, not Dak.

Hakit did take a step back, hunched his too thin and scholarly shoulders. "We have determined the planet our baby Chief travelled to. It is called Earth by the inhabitants who live in the area where he arrived. We cannot tune our own portal to Earth. You must go by this portal, transfer twice until you reach Waycross, and then to Earth."

Dak suppressed a shudder. He didn't like portal hopping. Each time it roused the panther in him and messed with his control of his nature, sensitized his nerves and dulled his mind. No help for it, he had to do this. "What do you know about this 'Earth?'"

No smile from the man. "Shapeshifters – our kind is rare there."

Just as Dak had deduced when he'd smelled the traces of the planet in his nephew's nursery pen. He tensed, spun the whir knife in his fingers. "Bad for the babe if natives find him."


The door slammed open. Dak aimed – stopped. A man of the golden brown panther klatch marched forward. Nolen's face was set in angry lines. He was the brother of the late pantherwoman who had married Dak's brother, the Chief. "What's this I hear about you losing my nephew?"

Dak had never had patience with the late Chieftess' impulsive brother. Only allowing his teeth to grit for a moment before answering the man, Dak said, "If you want him returned safely, you had better keep that news behind your fangs. The more rumor spreads, the harder it will be for me to bring him back."

Back from where! Nolen roared, his blue eyes blazing.

Wherever his magic took him! Dak shouted.

"Earth," whispered Hekit under his breath. They both focused on him.

The newcomer widened his stance and folded his arms. "You want me to believe a baby transferred into another dimension by himself?"

"You want to tell me my nephew didn't have the power to do that?" Dak shot back.

A huge sigh. "No." Nolen turned to Hakit. "Earth, you say?"

"That is what I was told."

"Did you not check out the nursery yourself, Nolen?" Dak asked.

"I need permission."

"As leader in this matter and former regent, you have mine. Go," Dak said.

The golden panther stormed back through the door.

Dak said, "I want to be gone before Nolen returns. If the golden panther has any more information I need, send it to Waycross. The connections for innanimate dimensional travel still work well?"

"Very well and very fast. It is only living mass–" Hakit spread his hands.


"Here," Dak's cousin handed him a band of gold with an oddly glowing orange-red jewel.

"What's that?"

"A bespelled torque."

"Too small," Dak sneered.

"It isn't for you. It's for the cub. It is synchronized with our dimensional portal and bespelled to bring him here directly if you get within a few feet of another portal. Such jewelry is very rare, and made by your late sister-in-law, the queen."

Hakit scanned Dak from head to toe. "It has a mass limit of forty pounds."

Dak shrugged a shoulder as his lip curled. "I"ll find and bring back the babe."

Hakit's pointy brows lifted. "One never knows what one will find in other dimensions. What dangers." The words, the tone, reminded Dak that this cousin had spent more time in other worlds than Dak. Something he had always considered a detriment in Hakit. He'd come back with some strange notions.

"Take the circlet." Hakit clamped the jewelry around Dak's upper arm. The pantherman shuffled back, his gaze glancing to one of the murals showing another world on the solid small cavern walls.

"Regarding Earth–"

"Have you been there?"

His cousin's gaze met his own. "No." He straightened and Dak sensed he drew on the support of the klatch again to speak his piece. "I have heard that Earth does not have a set portal."


A hard stare this time, from deep brown-black eyes. "Earth is not a member of the Dimensional Collective–"

"By my claws," Dak swore.

"–and has an erratic and moving portal."

As if the mission wasn't hard enough. Dak felt as if he'd been flung into an icy pool of water. He had to save the babe! "I'll deal with it." His cat fangs prickled his gums. He would not lose control.

His cousin handed him a thick gold link chain and a packet of paper money good throughout the Collective. "This will fund your trip. People of Earth like this."

"Who doesn't? Shiny."

"And take this," Hakit handed him a faceted red jewel the size of Dak's palm, and about as thick.

Dak scowled. "I don't like taking this portal locator. We only have two." He tried to shove it back at Hakit.

"Earth has a floating portal. You've been authorized to have it," his cousin replied blandly, probably believing that Dak was more upset at no longer being regent than he showed. And, yes, he was, but worry for his nephew, Flav, gnawed him. Dak stashed it in the personal storage space in his aura. "Thanks."

The portal hummed and the arched doorway revealed a room on another world. "Leaving now," Dak said.

"Good luck."

To Dak's surprise Hakit stepped forward and hugged him tightly. Dak swung an arm around the black pantherman's shoulders and hugged back, feeling the man's full mane under his robe. His cousin was concerned, too.

Then Dak stepped back from his kin and through the portal, leaving his kin and world behind.

An attacker jumped him.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Puma Ranch Road

I'd like to say that I am now on Facebook nearly every day. But I realize this goes to amazon and goodreads, so I'll have to update more often.
Story re: Feral Magic novella series. As those of you who've read Feral Magic know, there was a Dimensional Portal in one of the valleys near Idaho Springs, and after the climax of the story, I left Brandy and Dak at a Bed and Breakfast there. I was looking for valleys near Idaho Springs, Colorado, and came across the name "Puma Ranch Road." I researched it, and when I was up in that area last weekend, I went looking for it, and found it. Unfortunately there were a couple of problems. First, the road was going UP and not DOWN into the valley. Second, it is not open to the public, and third, I made a promise to myself that if I found a dirt road that looked like it might have ice or snow on it, I wouldn't go on it this trip, but wait until the summer.

So here's a picture of the warning sign...that means I'll find another valley and rename a road...

May you enjoy every place on Earth you look at today.

Wednesday, March 06, 2013


I think the only jaglions are here: http://www.bearcreeksanctuary.com/jaglions_photos_5.htm accidentally conceived and born. No pics because I respect the copyright, and not quite what Dak, my black jaguar shapeshifter with the lion's mane would look like. Still, the site is bookmarked...and if I ever get to go to Ontario...

May you enjoy all the heroes you read about today.

Monday, March 04, 2013


An edgy lawman whose leg and life have been shattered... an uptight, rational accountant who's inherited a psychic "gift" along with a fortune...and ghosts of Old West gunmen...Welcome to the Ghostlayer series by RITA Award-Winning author Robin D. Owens.

Book One: Ghost Seer:
Contemporary Denver, Queen City of the Plains, modern and thriving...and haunted by restless and reckless ghosts of a dusty past that only a few can sense.

Accountant Clare Cermac doesn't think of her gypsy ancestry very often, that is until she inherits a fortune, and the gift to see ghosts – and to help them move on to the other side. Not just any ghosts, but those of the Old West. Strong and determined, she struggles to save her sanity and her life.

Zach Slade (Jackson Zachary Slade) leaves southern Montana with a disability pension in his pocket and a bitterness in his heart after the recent betrayal of his fellow deputies. He'd thought he was a member of a team, but he'd been considered an outsider. And though he has paranormal "hunches" when he sees crows, he doesn't believe in woo woo. He can't work for the public anymore, and going "private" with his investigative skills is being bought.

Two lives derailed, touched with the supernatural, collide…and the ghosts of the wild, wild West are no more reckless than two people challenging each other mentally, emotionally, physically.

Friday, March 01, 2013

Research: Welsh Holiday, St. David's Day

Research: Welsh Holiday, St. David's Day! I just learned about this. So here's a daffodil.

And here's a leek along with Welsh Women's Names. :)

May you enjoy your day wherever you are, and whatever you prefer, DAFFODIL OR LEEK!

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