Doctor Who - Five - Books

That awkward moment...

... when you get two back-to-back notifications that your preorders of Bloodline and The Raven King have both been shipped today, with an expected arrival date of tomorrow.

Why do I not have two heads so I can read both of them simultaneously?! Now I have to CHOOSE!

(It's not really as hard as it might have been six months ago, though. I love Maggie's writing and am eager to see how the Raven Cycle plays out, but The Force Awakens ate my brain and still hasn't coughed it back up yet.)
A Pocket Full of Murder

Good (Book-Related) Things

Two lovely surprises in as many days!

First, a friend on Facebook pointed me to a recent article at featuring Quicksilver as one of Five Books With Asexual Protagonists (and furthermore declaring my post about writing Tori's character to be "excellent", which was a nice bonus).

Then today I got a package in the mail containing two US hardcover copies of A Pocket Full of Murder which, at first glance, seemed no different from the author copies I already had. I was mystified at first, but then I spotted the note tucked inside:


Your book has reprinted! Please find a sample copy enclosed.

Best wishes,


And sure enough, when I checked the title page it turned out to be the SECOND edition. Whoop!

I am so, so, happy and relieved to know that the book is doing well enough to exceed my publisher's expectations -- and I suspect making this year's CLA Top Ten Best Books for Children shortlist probably had a good deal to do with the bump in sales, so I am grateful for that all over again.
Zootopia - Nick & Judy

I wish I could take full responsibility for this, but the truth is they get it from both sides

It's a snow day (well, technically an ice day) so all three boys are home, and the two youngest are playing Lego in their room. My 13-year-old is cheerfully singing his own set of modified lyrics to "Uptown Funk", including "too hot (hot diggity)" and "uptown / burn your corpse."

Last night he and his 15-year-old brother had a rap battle in the kitchen featuring some of the most ridiculous forced rhymes I have ever heard -- I wish now I'd written them down, because by the end I was gurgling and choking with laughter.

I enjoy my kids' warped sense of humor so much.
Zootopia - Judy

Zootopia (!!!)

I never imagined I was going to even feel compelled to see this movie, let alone enjoy it. The trailers looked cute, but gave so little hint of the plot that I really didn't know what to expect, let alone whether it would appeal to anyone but little kids who think animals dressed up as people are funny. In the end, I only took my kids to see it because it had such a good critical rating and I hoped it would pleasantly surprise me.

But I loved it. I loved it SO MUCH. It was everything I wanted and didn't know I was going to get from a movie like this.

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I want to see it again. Not in the theatre, probably, but when it comes out on video I'm definitely making my husband and oldest son watch it.
A Pocket Full of Murder

A Pocket Full of Good News!

I just found out that A Pocket Full of Murder has been shortlisted for the Canadian Library Association's 2016 Book of the Year for Children award, given to the best books for age 12 and under. Out of a pool of 230 eligible books and a longlist of 48, it was selected as one of the top ten finalists, which makes me very happy indeed. Thanks to all the lovely CLA librarians and other book-loving judges who made this possible!
Book Book Book

Just got my copyedits for A LITTLE TASTE OF POISON...

And here I'd been thinking this would be the week I could finally get to a couple of other authors' manuscripts I'd promised to comment on! The best laid plans...

I confess to opening the Word document with a little trepidation, as one never knows what sorts of things will come up in copyedits or how much work it's going to be. Plus I haven't looked at A Little Taste of Poison in a couple of months, and I've felt a bit shy of reading it again for fear I won't be able to see anything but its flaws -- a tendency that copyedits always tend to magnify, since the whole point is to point out errors that the author didn't catch.

However, not only are all the queries mercifully light, the CE closed with "Great ending! The whole book was charming and well-written -- a pleasure to work on." And that buoyed my spirits enormously, because I very rarely get those kinds of comments -- most of my CE's have been all business and if they liked the book there was no way to tell.

So I feel much encouraged now and able to go to work on the manuscript with a cheerful spirit.
Talk Talk - Colour of Spring

Well, I'm back.

For reasons that still make me grimace and sigh heavily whenever I think about them (more on that later), I have wiped my Tumblr and Twitter of followers and abandoned both sites for the time being.

However, I've kept Messaging open on my old Tumblr and added back all the Twitter people who've DM'd me over the past year, since I do intend to check DM's and Notifications now and then. I just won't be scrolling through my dash or dipping my toes into the Twitterstream every few hours like I used to.

I hope moving back to Dreamwidth/LiveJournal will lead not only to more creative uses of my time and a recovery of my increasingly shallow and scattered ability to concentrate (something that's become more and more of a concern to me over the past couple of years or so) but also some thoughtful and meaningful discussions with the friends and followers I still have.

So who's still out there after all these years? Drop me a comment and say hi, I'd love to hear from you!
Leonardo - Wings

Yuletide Reveal: "Those Sighs on Which I Fed My Heart" (Leonardo [TV])

So despite the minor panic I caused myself by reviewing canon and brooding over various ideas in my head and not actually starting my Yuletide story until the second week of December, and then finding out that it wanted to be 7K instead of the 2-3K I'd anticipated, I'd have to consider my first Yuletide as a pretty great experience.

For one thing, it got me over my "Woe, I haven't been able to write anything since I finished Nomad copyedits in July, what if I've forgotten how to write FOREVER" fit of the vapours. This is no small thing, seeing as I had tried several times to work on other stories (including the post-Quicksilver Alison/Faraday fic I've been promising people forever) but couldn't seem get past the first page. Writing this story, however, knowing that it would be read by very few people but that I had a good chance of making at least one person very happy, turned out to be therapeutic. I wrote the whole thing in just under a week.

So here it is:

Those Sighs on Which I Fed My Heart (7K, Leonardo [TV], gen/mild het, teen)

I like to think this fic is pretty comprehensible even if you haven't seen the TV show, if you grant the premise that Leonardo da Vinci, Niccolo Machiavelli, Lorenzo de' Medici and the girl Leonardo will one day paint as the Mona Lisa are all wacky teenagers hanging out in Florence together having adventures. Here's a a great rundown and summary of the series (with screencaps!), courtesy of innerbrat. (At the very least, you should pop over to see how insanely pretty the cast is. Especially Akemnji Ndifornyen.)

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Will I sign up for Yuletide again next year? It depends on my schedule, but there's a pretty good chance, I think. I like the idea of writing at least one fic a year to remind me what it's like to write for fun and for the pleasure of a small audience, instead of angsting over contracts and deadlines and Bookscan rankings and all that dreary business stuff.
Talk Talk - Colour of Spring

Dear Yuletide Author

Hurrah, you got me as your assignment! Thank you so much for doing this! This is my very first Yuletide as a participant and I am ridiculously excited about it.

Please don't feel intimidated or worried on any level about writing for me. I know how dismal it can be to write under pressure and with a bucketload of anxiety about whether it will measure up to expectations, and I would hate to make you feel that way. Fic should be fun, even if it stretches us in new and unexpected directions. And you are giving me a gift just by writing a story about a fandom and characters I love.

I am on AO3 as RJ_Anderson and on as R.J. Anderson. (The archive is far more comprehensive, mostly because I am too lazy to edit and re-upload a bunch of old, mostly jossed fics to AO3.)

As a reader I love stories with witty dialogue and wordplay, characters who are practical and level-headed, romances based in mutual respect and understanding rather than mere physical attraction, and interesting, well-reasoned plots. I also like to feel that the fics I read could actually fit somewhere into canon, either past or in some plausible future - basically, I want to believe, and that's hard to do when it's a cracked-out AU or wildly unlikely crossover (though I'm not against crossovers or AUs either, when they're done well).
Things I prefer to avoid in stories: explicit sex, incest, non-con, gobs of profanity / blasphemy, lengthy descriptions of gore, character assassination for the sake of plot convenience (i.e. killing Ron Weasley or making him evil so Harry and Hermione can get together), depressing stories without so much as a glimmer of hope.

The following fandom-specific info is on my AO3 signup form, but just in case it gets lost or scrambled or you'd like to see it all in one convenient place, I'll copy it here:

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And that's it! Thank you so very much again, and I hope these few comments have been of some help to you and are not too harrowing. I can't wait to see whatever story you come up with!

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