rolanni: (Snow goddess)

While we're waiting for Snowpocalypse -- 20 total inches now predicted, and!  11 more on Friday, from Another, Completely Unrelated storm -- While, I say, we're waiting for the snow to fall, I should perhaps point you to Eating Authors, a series of blog posts hosted by Lawrence Schoen, in which diverse writers talk about their best meal ever.  Today's guest is. . .

. . .why, it's me.

Here's your link.

While I'm doing the promotion thing, please allow me to ask you, if you've read. . .any of the Carousel books, really, but most notably Carousel Seas, please consider leaving a reader review on BN, Amazon, Goodreads, your blog, or wherever you talk about books with your friends.  Thank you.

Today, as we wait for Snowpocalypse (see above), it's bright and sunny - and very, very cold.  The warmest the car's on-board thermometer would own to, on my drive into town, was 12F/-11C, with a stiff wind bringing that right down to 0F/-18C.  The Shaws on KMD was. . .not particularly busy when I stopped to pick up bottled water, but the KMD Hannaford, where I stopped to pick up items not available at Shaws, Was. A. Freaking. Zoo.  Whole shelves were empty.  There wasn't a banana in the store, unless it was already in somebody's basket, the wine section had been stripped, and the bread section; there were no muffins in the bakery section.

. . .this is going to be a Strange Snowstorm, isn't it?

While I was in town, Steve, who was catching up the laundry at home, was treated to a pre-blizzard power outage.  Hoping that wasn't Central Maine Power, helpfully giving us a practice run.

For the rest of the day, there is laundry, and making sure the dishes are caught up, and, yanno -- writing.

And!  A question for East Coast peeps:  Has it started snowing where you are, yet?

Today's blog title brought to you by Great Big Sea, Lukey's Boat.  Here's your link.
rolanni: (Carousel Seas)
Believe it or not, signing your name over and over is Really Boring.

Happily, I have (1) a short name, and (2) only 100 books to sign.

Still, I'm sorta bored, anyway, and a little down from this dumb illness, so!

Those who have read at least two of the Carousel books, tell me in comments:

Who do you love?  Huh? Huh? Who is your favorite character in the Carousel books, and why?  C'mon, you can tell me.

There are likely to be spoilers in comments.  If you don't want to be spoilt?  Don't read comments.

Let the game begin.
rolanni: (Carousel Seas)

Someone asked that I put the links I've been scattering about over the last couple days "in one place" in order to make them easy to find.

There aren't all that many links, unless someone has been adding extras in while I was napping, but, insofar as there are links, here they are:

The Night Don't Seem So Lonely -- an Archers Beach story, free to read on

Carousel Seas eBook, direct from Baen

Carousel Seas eBook, from the Kindle Store

PREORDER Carousel Seas from Audible

As stated elsewhere, I am still waiting for the delivery of the pre-ordered trade paperback editions of Carousel Seas to arrive from the warehouse.  It's snowing, so it's probable that today is the day.  As soon as the books arrive, I will unpack them, sign them, repack them and call UPS for a pickup and a ride to Uncle Hugo's just as quickly as I possibly can.

In other news, I am, preposterously, still not well, though no longer actively sick.  Which is, yanno, progress.  I've lost almost a month to this thing, which is bitter, indeed.  As soon as I can safely use my brain, I'll need to do some counting, but I don't think I'm on track for an on time delivery  anymore (insert favorite curse here).

Trooper had a delightful birthday, and thanks all his fans for their well-wishes.

I had some adventures with the ACA in between it all, but I'll save that story for another day.

Everybody be good.

rolanni: (Carousel Seas)

The Kindle edition of Carousel Seas is now available for download from Amazon.

Here's your link.

Those who prefer to download their ebooks directly from Baen, may do so from this link.


The Audible edition of Carousel Seas is now available for pre-order from this link.

For those who pre-ordered signed copies of Carousel Seas from Uncle Hugo, I am awaiting delivery of the books from the warehouse.  As soon as they arrive, I will -- as quickly as I can manage -- sign those 100 books and send them on to the Uncle.

Thank you for your patience.

rolanni: (Carousel Seas)
So! Big News First!

Audible lets me know that Carousel Seas is in production. This means that the audiobook will release simultaneously with the paper book on January 6, 2015. And there was much rejoicing!

Steve and I took the morning off to wander over to the Chinah Dinah for breakfast and thence to Augusta for the Maine Crafts Guild Show at the Maine State Museum. It was a nice show, if smallish, and included paper sculpture, jewelery, stone art, and Stephanie Crossman, who does 3-D art in net. Check this out. After the show, we began a tour of the Maine State Museum, which neither of us has visited for several years, but Steve's back had been bugging him and it was not, sadly, getting better, so we cut the tour short and came home by way of the grocery store and Subway. Happily, my new car has heated seats.

Home again, we dined on our Subway tuna sub, with a rare glass of lunchtime wine, and set about charging All! The! Things! Because?

The Weatherbeans are saying this about the weather around the Confusion Factory:
Tonight 11/01 80%: Rain with a chance of snow in the evening...then rain and snow likely after midnight. Snow accumulation up to 1 inch.
Sunday 11/02 80%: Snow likely. Snow may be heavy at times in the morning. Total snow accumulation of 4 to 8 inches possible.


Thank you.

The snow shovels have been taken out of summer storage, and stationed strategically. I would like to say that I'm ready for this, but -- I'm not. My goal for this year is to keep both doors to the outside clear of snow -- last year, circumstances forced me abandon the front door, and it's never a good idea to only have one way out of. . .anywhere, really.

Those who read here often may recall that I had set myself to emptying out a file cabinet in the basement. I am pleased to report that the file cabinet is now empty, though I have a box of personal correspondence which will have to be saved in some fashion, and a box of tearsheets, notes and photographs from my couple-year stint as one of the Town Line's top reporters. I have a call in to the Maine State Archive to see if there's any interest; if not -- out they go, because they're certainly no use to me.

I also have a pile of professional correspondence, including a letter from our very first editor, explaining that our first three books simply didn't sell, and giving her recommendations for improving ourselves as artists. It's. . .a treasure, and I've put it aside with the rest of the stuff I've been slowly gathering to archive somewhere else.

So, that.

In other news, yes, I'm writing -- at the moment, we're at about 14,000 solid words on the second book of the Five Book Dash, as I go through the pieces pulled form Dragon in Exile and rectify them, adding in other narrative lines as necessary.

And, now, I'd better check on the status of All! The! Things! and, yanno, get to work.

Hope you're having a lovely weekend, wherever you are.
rolanni: (Carousel Seas)

So, the hospital came through with an early check-in time, but then we got to sit around for a couple hours before Steve's turn came in the outpatient operating room.  We talked with one of the nurses while we were waiting; she professed herself a great reader, though not of science fiction, and was, indeed, able to reel off quite a list of authors who do not write science fiction.  She credited her Kindle with increasing the number of books she was able to read, because of being able to just buy the next book without ever leaving her chair.  And then she said, "No, wait! I did read one science fiction book, and I liked it a lot!  It was called. . .it was called. . .Old Man's War.  But I don't remember the author."

Steve and I were able to help her out, there.

In fact, I did not take the galleys with me, remembering, as I did, and in the nick of time, the accommodations available to waiting family members.  This turned out to be a wise choice, for many reasons, not the least of which is that I really only had about 45 minutes to myself before Steve was back with a clean bill of health.  So, yay! for clean bill of health.

Once the hospital released us, we repaired to Tim Horton's for a late lunch. Tim Horton's in Waterville subscribes to FM 107.9 (the MIX, to you), which is a local Waterville station on which Tim's advertises,  thus this makes Perfect Sense.  The MIX plays oldies.  I mean Really Old Oldies, like, for instance, Gold Dust Woman (to which, yes, I know ALL the words), and so we will ritually blame Tim Horton's for the title of today's blog post.  Here's your link

After lunch, we came home (as he was coming out from under the anaesthesia, Steve insisted several times that the doctor was supposed to have given me a note to go to the ocean.  Alas, the doctor fell down on this important detail, so we went home.), whereupon Steve went to bed, and so to sleep.  The cats thought this was a Splendid! Idea! so they went to sleep too, which left me to ply my craft in wakeful solitude.  There are about 100 pages left of galley-reading left.  Can she finish in time to get the corrected pages into overnight FedEx by four p.m. Friday?  Tune in tomorrow for the answer to this, and other, thrilling questions. . .

In the meantime, it's been a long, and sporadically stressful, day.  I'm very tired, but realize that I need to eat something, though I've no idea what.

So, let me get off of the intertubes and  go solve that interesting problem before I fall asleep with my face in the keyboard.

Everybody stay safe.

rolanni: (Carousel Seas)


It's quite warm here in Central Maine, which I suppose I should appreciate, if only for the savings in oil.

All of my mail programs are now talking nicely to the new email protocol.  I'd hate to tell you how long it took me to finish my bit, after Steve did the hard part.  Let's just say it took a Warren Zevon concert on youtube to get me to the other side.

This morning, we went out early to Skowhegan, to admire the repaired Indian, He Who Watches, and for Steve to see the eye doctor.  The morning was damp, and, as mentioned, warm; and the leaves stood out nicely.  (Here's a link for those who are interested in more detail regarding the Skowhegan Indian.)

Tomorrow, Steve has long-scheduled outpatient procedure.  Don't know exactly when tomorrow -- the hospital doesn't want to disclose too early -- but tomorrow, for sure; they promise.

In the meanwhile, I have galleys to read.  The galleys will of course be going with me to the hospital tomorrow, and I'm hoping to make my Monday deadline by emailing pdfs of the corrected pages to the publisher.

So, that.

In other news, and as reported yesterday for them what indulges, the eARC for Carousel Seas is now available for purchase and download from Baen.  Here's the link.

For those waiting for the paper book, and who also would like to have their book signed and/or personalized, there is a deadline approaching for personalizations, pre-ordered from Uncle Hugo's.  Here's your link.

And, with Mozart's Enthusiastic Support™ from the top of the file cabinet, I'm going back to work.

Mozart displaying Enthusiastic Support of my efforts.Mozart displaying Enthusiastic Support of my efforts.

Today's blog title brought to you by Bad Company, singing "Bad Company."  Here's your link.

This just in!

Monday, October 13th, 2014 11:20 am
rolanni: (Carousel Seas)

The proofs for Carousel Seas, the Thrilling Conclusion to the Archers Beach Carousel Trilogy by Sharon Lee, that started with Carousel Tides, and continued in Carousel Sun, just landed in my inbox!

What this means to you -- yes, you! -- is that the eARC of this long-awaited novel should be available for purchase on the Baen site realsoonnow.

You know what to do, I think?


I'll be over here, finishing a short story.
rolanni: (Carousel Seas)

Thanks to everyone for their timely suggestions regarding timepieces!  I have Ebayed, and a new watch will be with me next Tuesday (Monday being, of course, a bank-and-post-office holiday.  Do you know where your Christopher Columbus costume is?)

A couple people asked if I just can't have the crystal replaced -- which was, in fact, my first thought, coming as I do from a generation where things that got broken were repaired.  The local jewelry repair shop, however, threw up its hands and claimed there was nothing to be done; and the Dakota warranty only covers the watch's innards, not the band, clip, crystal, or stem.  Something to bear in mind the next time you buy a Dakota watch.

In the meantime, I'm moving forward with an Archers Beach short story, and will likely be posting an outtake from Carousel TIDES (that's the first book in the trilogy) on Splinter Universe sometime later today, just to get us all in the mood for Carousel SEAS (that's the third book in the trilogy.  For completists, Carousel SUN is the middle book.)

SPEAKING OF CAROUSEL SEAS:  Time's running out to preorder your very own signed and/or personalized copy.  Here's how to do that.

Everybody caught up?


I'm off to do some housekeeping, including the ever-popular left-handed vacuuming, since my right hand is still kicking up a fit.

What're you doing that's fun today?

rolanni: (view from space by rainbow graphics)

The Uncle has once again come through, for those of you who have been waiting and wondering when you can pre-order your signed copy of Carousel Seas, the Thrilling Conclusion to the Archers Beach Trilogy by Sharon Lee.  Carousel Seas will be published in January*, in trade paper format. Awesome cover art is by Eric L. Williams.

I have had some folks ask me why they should bother buying from Uncle Hugo's, which charges "extra" (by which they mean "full price"), and here's the answer:  You don't have to bother buying from Uncle Hugo's; follow your bliss; buy from whatever store or vendor you like best.  However, if you want a signed and/or personalized copy of Carousel Seas, Uncle Hugo's is your only source.

So!  The Rules, and Links:

* You may now pre-order a signed copy of Carousel Seas from Uncle Hugo’s Bookstore via this link

*You may also, for a limited time, have your pre-ordered signed book personalized. “Personalized” means you ask the author to write something special on the title page in addition to their name.  These can be as simple as, “To Marge,” and as complex as “To Marge in memory of that night in Seattle.”  Fair Warning: I, as the Signing Author reserve the right not to inscribe a book with a personalization I find to be, in my sole judgment:  (1) offensive, (2) too long, (3) anything else.  You will use the Special Instructions box on the order form to write out your personalization — Please check your spelling, ’cause I’m going to assume that you’ve typed it out exactly as you want it.

*There is a deadline involved if you want your pre-ordered signed copy of Carousel Seas personalized.  That deadline is November 15, 2014.  So you need to do this now.

*There will only be a limited number of signed copies of Carousel Seas available, they will only be available through Uncle Hugo’s SF Bookstore in Minneapolis.  The exact number of signed copies available depends upon how many are pre-ordered.  So, sooner is better than later to order, if you want a signed copy.

**Here’s the link again.

Thanks very much for  your interest and support.

*For the purposes of this discussion, I am using "publish" to mean PUBLISHED IN PAPER FORMAT.  Obviously, the eARC and the eBook editions will be published somewhat soon, same like always.

**The Uncle is doing me — and you! — a pretty substantial favor here, so please be courteous. While you’re there, look at the Lee-and-Miller page, to make sure you have All the Books!  And!  Look around the place a little, why not?  There might be Even More Cool Books that you've missed.

rolanni: (Snow goddess)

Check me on this:  Today is April 16, yes?


Well, on the overnight -- that would be the night of April 15 -- it snowed, and when I awoke this morning at Ohghod o'clock, necessary because of those appointments and errands we had discussed in this space yesterday, there was three inches of fresh snow between me and my car -- and also, of course on the car.

But, wait, there's more!

It had rained like a sonofagun all day yesterday, which meant that there was a nice coating of ice beneath the snow.

So, I made it to my early medical appointments on time, by leaving very early, even by my standards.  By the time I was in town proper, the roads were in pretty good shape -- slushy, but doable -- but out in our neck of the woods, things were still a little dicey when I left, even though the town plow had been through.

The medical stuff went along pretty quickly.  I did have a little bit of downtime in the waiting room, where I wrote 68 words in longhand, which points up an existing scene and makes it more poignant (yes, you WILL cry).  This was, may I just add, My Entire Writing Output for the Day.

That taken care of, I motored over to Selah Tea for a long-delayed breakfast and coffee!  Veggie frittata FTW!  After that, I walked down to gym, then 'round the corner to Universal Bread Bakers, to take on a loaf of whole wheat bread, still hot.  ("If it survives the day," says Adrian the baker, "just put it in a plastic bag.  It will stay fresh."  Yes, well.  It may survive the day. . .)

Next stop was the Framemakers, where I arrived amid scaffoldings and glaziers.  It would seem that last night after the bars had closed, someone decided to karate-kick the plate glass windows at the front of the store (where artworks and pottery are often on display), connected, and shattered the whole -- including the rounded corner of antique glass that, as it was discovered later, cannot be replaced, because no one in Maine does that kind of work anymore.  The slightly good news is that the gentleman was caught by the police, and conducted to jail, where he's reportedly charged with a felony, because -- antique, irreplaceable glass.

I left the cover art for Carousel Seas in Amy's capable hands for framing, and hope soon to have it on my wall with the cover art for its sister books.

After that, it was just cleaning up the minor errands, and I was home in time to have a late-ish lunch of soup and salad and -- still warm! -- bread with Steve.

Tomorrow, Minou the fur coat bear and I assay the dentist for what one devoutly hopes is the last in a series.  Then, I really need to get some writing done.

So!  What've you been doing on this beautiful spring day?

rolanni: (Carousel Sun)

Here's the cover (as different from the art) for Carousel Seas, coming to bookstores near and far in January 2015!  *is very pleased*

Cover, Carousel Seas, by Sharon Lee Art by Eric L. Williams

Cover, Carousel Seas, by Sharon Lee
Art by Eric L. Williams

rolanni: (Mozart Easter 2009)

Steve and I took Mozart to the vet this morning; he was crying for food, but when offered, rejected it, except for a few cat treats.  Since we've been giving him medicine to increase his appetite and pain medicine, it seemed like either the appetite increaser had stopped working, or the pain (if he's in pain, which we don't know; we only know that the pain medicine seems to make him rest easier) was trumping the hunger-pangs.

I, being the pessimist in the family, didn't expect to bring Mozart home with us today, and I'm very pleased to report that the vet had another plan of treatment, which includes increasing the pain meds, and stopping the appetite increaser.  While he was there, the vet also hydrated him and gave him a shot of something that will settle his stomach, in case that's an issue.

Five minutes.  If he could just talk to us for five minutes...

Right now, he's in his spot in my office next to the radiator, sleeping.

For those collecting all the cards, the diagnosis is kidney failure.  While Mozart's numbers are nowhere near as Scary as Socks' were when we lost him early last year, he is on a decline.  He'll also be sixteen years old on the first of March.  What we're doing here is palliative care; nobody expects to win; we're aiming at keeping him with us for as long as is feasible, without subjecting him to cruelty or pain.

* * *

A couple days ago, I reported that my editor at Baen had let slip that Carousel Seas, the last book in the Carousel trilogy would be coming out in Fall, rather than in January 2015.

In one of those rare cases of mutual misunderstanding, we both happen to be right.

Simon and Schuster, which of course distributes Baen Books, has but three seasons in its year.  Happily for them, they have no Winter.

For future reference, here are the Publishing Seasons:

Spring: February through May
Summer: June through September
Fall: October through January

So!  Carousel Seas will indeed be published in January 2015, or Fall, according to Simon and Schuster.

Everybody confused now?


Thursday, August 1st, 2013 05:50 pm
rolanni: (storm at sea by rainbow graphics)

Carousel Seas

by Sharon Lee

Approximately 106,817 words

Submitted August 1, 2013

rolanni: (Carousel beauty)

So!  Carousel Seas having gone out to beta readers, and High Summer being upon us, I went down to the sea again, to be sure I'd gotten my world-building right.

AsyouknowBob, Carousel Tides takes place before the Season begins. Carousel Sun takes place during the Early Season, and early in the Season itself -- which is close enough, ambiance-wise, to September, so long as you remember it backwards.

Carousel Seas, however, takes place in July and August -- the Highest of High Season; and it's been a Very Long Time since I've been at the ocean in High Season.

Boy, was it noisy.

I took a bunch of pictures, some of which are posted here.

We got home last night, and didn't do much more than unpack, and reassure the cats that, indeed, we had returned (well, that and eat pizza).  Today, I've been taking care of the mail that piled up while we were gone.  Unsurprisingly, that included some bills, but -- more surprisingly, because one never exactly know when these things will hit -- the D&A money for Trade Secret was also waiting for us, as well as the authors' copies for the mass market edition of Dragon Ship, and! the contract for the Audible edition of The Tomorrow Log.

And!  As if all of that wasn't enough excitement, one of the beta readers has already returned their impressions of Carousel Seas.

All of which leads me to believe that we ought to stop away from home more often.

The rest of my Sunday will be in the service of crafting an InfoDump, and reading the contract.

Tomorrow, I'll sit down and read Carousel Seas my own self, which I haven't done yet.  I'm looking forward to finding out what the story's about.

What've y'all been doing while I was gone?


Sea waves are green and wet,
But up from where they die,
Rise others vaster yet,
And those are brown and dry.
-- Robert Frost, Sand Dunes

What writers do

Wednesday, July 17th, 2013 08:44 am
rolanni: (from LAG)

Last evening I finished what I'm calling the "last draft" of Carousel Seas.  It's a slightly more tentative last draft than my "last drafts" usually are, but! unless the beta readers (who now have the manuscript in hand) find something Irrevocably Broken, this is the draft that will go to Madame the Editor, who will, in the fullness of time, request such revisions and/or clarifications as seem Good to her.

For those playing along at home, the final score is 106,715 words.  This was more than I expected, but as explained elsewhere, the villain was chewing up the scenery and I let her have her head.

Or, yanno, she would've had mine.

So! What this writer is doing today, as a reward for having been a Good Writer and finished a book (the third book completed this year here at the Confusion Factory) is:

1.  A podcast interview (with Steve), rescheduled from yesterday
2.  Cleaning up All The Stuff Trooper threw down from those High Places that he has made his own, and deciding where in ghod's name to put it
3.  Doing the laundry
4. Waiting for the electrician to manifest, sometime after noon
5. Paying the bills and balancing the checkbook
6.  I'm also considering vacuuming the house -- but that might make for too heady a celebration

The next book (the first of the five interlaced Liaden books that will comprise the end of the Agent of Change/Theo Waitley story line) is due on May 15, 2014.  We have a short story due in September, and I ought to write an Archers Beach short story -- actually two, per character request -- but, in essence, for today at least. . .

I never have to write again!

. . .and that feels swell.


rolanni: (what it's like)

The Saturday morning cat census here in East Winslow is:
Mozart in his hammock overlooking the Cat Garden
Scrabble on the heffalumps in Steve's office
Trooper, chasing his Special Green Spring up and down the hallway

The Saturday morning author census:
Steve in his office, tweaking and updating webpages, among other things

Sharon, still down among the commas, and hoping to be done with this part realsoonnow.

What's doin' at your house?

rolanni: (what it's like)

So, I'm still down among the commas, going through what I'm optimistically calling the Final Draft of Carousel Seas.  I'm actually pretty pleased with it, in meta.  There are of course, fiddly bits to be fiddled, a couple of scenes to be expanded and/or sharpened, but it was ever thus.

In point of fact, I spent this morning with a scene that I hadn't red-lined as needing expansion; it was a pretty good scene and it did what it needed to do, which (so I thought when I was writing it) was to set up the next scene and the arrival on-screen of a character.

Now, we all know that it's good if a scene carries its weight and also does at least one thing to move the greater story along.  Right?

But, it's even better, if a scene can carry it's own weight, and move the big story along, and illuminate something new about the characters, and foreshadow an upcoming piece of business, and set up the next scene, with (now) an added twist of tension.  That's like -- Super Scene.

So, anyway, tinking with this middling important bit, the work of which  had been dealing with a necessary point of plot, and setting up The Arrival.  And --I'm watching myself start to dig into the sentences, sharpening this viewpoint, upping the stakes, adding a bit of by-play to show the relationship between the two characters confronting this situation -- and I'm not even thinking about what I'm doing, really, I'm just sort of doing some internal nodding, like I'm following along with whoever is actually doing the work, here:  "Yeah, that's good.  Oh-ho!  Why didn't I see that?  Nice, nice..." &c

I added maybe a hundred words to the scene, but it was enough to take it from a middling important scene that did its job, no muss, no fuss; to a scene that really rings some changes, and carries all that work I listed above.

And?  I can't tell you why I made the alterations that I did.  Often when I'm going in to rework/strengthen/expand a scene, I'm going in with a game plan; an idea of what needs to be punched up (or down).  This scene wasn't even tagged as a problem; I had no game plan.  I read the scene, my fingers rolled the screen back to the beginning and I started in, without any idea that anything was wrong, but a feeling that something could be better.

Which is why writing is an art, not a science.

Oh, and about Thomas Dolby?

The first time I heard "She Blinded Me With Science," my ear wouldn't make sense  of it -- there were too many "unnecessary" and "distracting" bits of business going on that had nothing to do -- in my opinion as a non-musician -- with the music.

And, yet -- try to take out the seeming side-bits, and you get something that's. . .flat, less diverse, and very much less joyously loony.

So now you know what it's like, down here among the commas, at least some of  the time.

I'm going to go get some lunch, and get back to it.


rolanni: (baby dragon from rainbowgraphics)

Frequent readers of this space will recall that Steve and I, among many others,  contributed an essay to Dragonwriter: A Tribute to Anne McCaffrey and Pern.  The table of contents, with links to samples from each essay are now available for you -- yes, you! -- to read.

Here's your link.

And it's back to the living room office and the final day of red-pen-editing of Carousel Seas.  Tomorrow, I'll be at the keyboard, inputting corrections, expanding zipped scenes, and straightening out one tiny little plot-kink.

No, the glamor never does stop. . .

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