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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Thursday, July 25, 2013

Celta Thursday: Heart FORTUNE (coming 8/6) cut scene!

Here's the second scene from Heart Fortune that was cut significantly or all together. (I'm working on Heart Light -- current title, and Ghost Layer, the 2nd book in the Ghostlayer series).

Druida City, a week later

"I'm going after my HeartMate," Glyssa Licorice told her friend Camellia D'Hawthorn, and Camellia's husband, GreatLord Laev T'Hawthorn, after dinner at their home.

"Do you know his surname, yet?" Camellia asked, running her fingers through her hair, brown eyes gleaming.

With some haste and a charming smile, Laev stood. "I'll leave you ladies to–"

Glyssa ignored Camellia for the moment and aimed her forefinger at him. "You. Stay. You're part of my plan." It was so fun to order a great noble around, she'd never thought she'd be in a position to do so, but she was sure she'd guaged the man correctly.

"Plan?" His black brows rose. His hands came together but he stopped himself just before he rubbed them together. He took his seat again, a plush leather wing chair. "Let's negotiate."

Glyssa raised her own brows, and wished they were black. Or brown like Camellia's. Even blonde. Just not foxy red. Then Glyssa smiled widely. "Not much negotiation, I'm going to give you something you've wanted."

Laev stretched out his legs. "Is that so?"

"So." Glyssa nodded and turned to his wife, one of her oldest friends, Camellia Darjeeling D'Hawthorn. "How's the legal case proving you're the descendant of the Captain of the starship Lugh's Spear coming?"

Camellia winced and frowned at Glyssa, then send a smoldering glance to her husband. "Did you put her up to this nagging?"

Raising his hands and grinning, Laev shook his head. "I didn't." He winked at Glyssa.

She gave a little cough. "Camellia? How's the legal case–"

"Heard you the first time," Camellia shifted in her own deeply cushioned chair. "The JudgementGrove ruled in my favor."

"Overwhelming evidence showing you were descended from the Captain," Glyssa said, waving her previously pointing finger.

At the same time Laev grumbled, "Two months ago." Then his gaze rested on Glyssa. "You're going to help me convince Camellia that we need someone at the excavation site of Lugh's Spear to keep an eye on the proceedings and ensure Camellia receives her due from the salvage."

Laev T'Hawthorn was the canniest entrepreneur in the business.

"That's right," Glyssa said.

Camellia said, "Paying someone to look after our interests at a remote archaelogical site when we don't even know anything of value will come of it is stu– foolish." Camellia set her chin. Uusally that would be the end of any discussion, but Glyssa knew she'd be able to push her friend this time, and she had Laev on her side.

"More like a gamble," said Laev. His feet, crossed at the ankles, twitched. He liked gambles.

I'll be putting up more of the scene next week, and perhaps the week after. Merry meet and merry part and merry meet again!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Last Celta Thursday Posting: Heart Search cut opening bit

Celta Thursday, Heart Search bit with Camellia and notes:

This place wasn't at all the very upscale, very expensive Darjeeling's Teahouse, modeled after an ancient Earthan place. But the Darjeelings were not the well known Tea Family, that Family which was of GrandLord status and rich and snobby. No, they were not named after a plant like most of the Families of Celta. In the rankings of Families they were merely a GraceHouse, of the third noble rank.

But the Darjeeling Family was old, founded before the Tea Family even. Founded in the first decade of the colonization of Celta, when even those who'd funded the starships and journey through space, were choosing their names. Those now called the FirstFamilies.

And Camellia had secret papyrus, journals that dated from the same era. Papyrus that told of tea. Recipes that she didn't think even the Tea Family, despite all their great claims, knew of.
Camellia's Flair – psi power – was a gift of blending teas. Some were popular only with tea afficiandos, a couple had become very popular with the Druidan city folk, targeted to their tastes. A good selling point for her her teahouse – teahouses.

Only her most trusted friends who had secrets of their own and knew how to keep them knew of these papyrus – Glyssa Licorice who was the PublicLibrary Heir, and Tiana Mugwort. Glyssa had more secrets than Camellia, and Tiana had one big secret she was bound by a Vow of Honor not to tell. So they were comfortable with each other.

Two more beings knew of the papyrus, the starship, Nuada's Sword , and the Captain of that ship, Ruis Elder.

While the Tea Family owned whole plantations in the south of the continent, near the great Plano Straight, Camellia had a couple of greenhouses, one bio-liquid and one soil, and actually got some of her tea from the great greensward in Nuada's Sword . That made her tea special, limited in quantity, another selling point.

She and her friends were of the few who knew Panglish, the ancient Earthan tongue of the colonists.

Today she went to Darjeeling's Teahouse, the beginning of her empire. Camellia planned on at least five teahouses, after several different ancient Earthan traditions. Darjeeling's Teahouse, the first, was of the Indian tradition, bright and bold with tiles of colorful patterns and rafters tinted primary colors.

She even had three different kinds of Darjeeling tea, two that she and Nuada's Sword had developed from ancient genetic strains.

**Note: Traditions: Japanese, Chinese (Asian?), English/British, Russian, Indian*DONE
Laev convinces her to do one for the FirstFamilies (think tearoom/restaurant in the V&A), half-papered with William Morris green leafy paper, tiled scenes of each of the Ogham trees around the room. Stained glass?

Merry meet and merry part and merry meet again.

Back home from RWA

LOVED SEEING PEOPLE AT THE SIGNINGS, but otherwise back from the worst trip in recent memory, some of it my fault, but the hideous broken tooth incident due to the Atlanta Marriott Marquis and the miserable way they handled it, just put the ha, ha, cap on it. Speaking of which, after 4 hrs in the dentist's office yesterday, I have a temporary crown that is flat (tap, tap, grind, grind is what the lady inserting it said). I knew enough to shut my eyes when the Dr. said "this is going to pinch." Yeah, they all say that. MANY THANKS TO MY GREAT FRIEND ROSE who came over on Sunday with hard boiled eggs which were my meals until I could get into the dentist. And now back to work... Blessings to all!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Celta Thursday delayed due to RWA and broken tooth, no kudos to the Atlanta Marriott Marquis

I posted the thing on FB this am but since then I broke a tooth at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis (and they gave me a list of 4 dentists to call, 2 numbers don't have offices or aren't open on Friday, I am floundering, I have no transportation). I am using something an EMT recommended as a (literal) stop gap until I get home on Sunday, dentist on Monday, but am just wrung out, so I will post something when I can. Self-pity party soon to commence in my hotel room with myself as the only "celebrant." :)

Merry meet and merry part and merry meet again,

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Celta Thursday, Cratag gets his Fam, original scene from Heart Change


So he looked at the animals, none of whom had been a threat so he'd dismissed them without truly observing them. There was a beige cat sitting elegantly by D'Marigold's feet in a proud pose, with an interesting triangular face, white muzzle and yellow eyes. Obviously D'Marigold's Fam.

The little girl had an arm around a big cat who was nearly limp in her arms. Two cats already.

Well, cats were more common than dogs. Maybe there would be a fox? He'd heard foxes were good Fams.

There was a fox, aloofly watching from a cube set in a strategically good place for defense. As well as two housefluffs, a grumpy looking wolf, and a black and white cat who gazed at him from upside down eyes, all paws in the air, with a goofy smile.

Cratag stepped toward the fox and as he did so, came within the personal space of the wolf, who growled and warned mentally, Come no closer, warrior.

Cratag was surprised he could hear the beast. Peace, I mean no harm to you or yours. I think only to speak with the fox. Unless you wish...

I am only here for company.

Not quite the truth, Cratag saw a large dressing on the animal's leg. He stepped back and turned toward the fox.

I think the fox is not for you, the wolf snickered.

Cratag pivoted back...and nearly tripped on the goofy cat who'd thumped down from his perch and had run to him. The cat fell over, between Cratag's feet, and he had to settle into his balance or windmill like a fool.

Lying on Cratag's shoes, plump side rounded, the cat gazed up at him with cheerful delight, a little drool escaping his mouth. Greetyou, FamMan.

This scene still makes me smile, especially my lovely (and not quite so goofy) cat, Dingo.
Blessed be,

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

400+ Author Signing Next Week!

400+ Author Signing next week. Next week I will be signing 3 times at the Romance Writers of America Conference in Atlanta, here: http://www.rwa.org/p/cm/ld/fid=564 This event, Wednesday night, is FREE AND PUBLIC! I will also be signing at Harlequin on Friday am (free books), and Berkley on Friday pm (free books), if you have paid for the conference.

I WOULD LOVE TO SEE YOU. All the profits (mine and the publishers) for Wednesday night goes to literacy, both a local literacy group in Atlanta/Georgia and a National Group.


Thursday, July 04, 2013

Celta Thursday, cut scene from Heart Duel (book 3)

Celta Thursday, cut scene from Heart Duel (book 3)

"Rrrrrowwwwllllllll!" the yowl pierced Holm's ears.

"Huh?" he grunted.


He opened his eyes. On his chest, just beneath his chin, sat Meserv.

"Rrrrowwwwllllllll" The kitten howled at the moons.

Holm winced. His kitten might have been plumper than his brother, Phyll, but Holm would wager his howls were more piercing, as piercing as his sire Zanth's.

The ground was cool beneath him. Long, dewy grass tickled Holm's ears.


"I'm awake!" Holm said, shifting to cradle the kitten on his arm as he sat upright.

Where are We? Meserv asked, a whimper in his telepathic whisper.

Holm sighed and looked around,. but didn't need to see the path or the clearing or the tall trees to know that he'd sleep-teleported. Again.

For some reason he'd thought Meserv was a charm, and that now he had the kitten, he wouldn't find himself in the middle of the ancient labyrinth in the dark of the night. He rubbed between Meserv's ears with two fingers. The Fam's little tongue came out to swipe a few times at Holm's cheek. Salty.

Sweat, Holm assured himself, just sweat, nothing else. Though the cool summer breeze rustling the trees dried his skin and made him shiver. He looked down. He wore his loincloth. He'd started sleeping in it after the third time he found himself awaking in the labyrinth.

"We're in the labyrinth," he said.

What's that?

One side of Holm's mouth lifted. He put the kitten down, stood, and shook out his body, testing for cramps or stiffness. None.

"This is an old, old place. It is used as a meditation tool, a journey to calm the mind or lead the spirit to deeper understanding." Ironic that he'd never been able to find that still center inside himself, yet when he sleep-teleported he was transported to the center of the labyrinth, as if he'd already travelled the path in, and needed to walk out. He shivered again and rubbed his face. At least he hadn't had the nightmare, too. Or if he had he didn't remember it. Not that he ever needed to recall the nightmare since it so vividly reflected a past experience. The past experience that had harrowed him to his soul. The time he'd failed to save his brother's life...and his brother had had to save his.

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