Tuesday, December 11, 2007

She's All Worked up About Sodium Citrate at Perkins

My fantasy author, Sandy Lender, works from home now, writes from home, edits from home, and pretty much stays glued to the computer. I don't think this is healthy, so I encourage her to get out when friends invite her to lunch. A friend grabbed her and went with her to a restaurant called Perkins yesterday. They've actually gone there before, and had the same angry service, so I don't think they'll be going back. (One of the wait staff was actually throwing silverware this time...like a petulant child, Sandy says.)

Anyway, Sandy likes to eat organic food when she can afford it because she hates the thought of putting pesticide-laden poison into her body. She figures cancer already has a fighting chance of killing her, given her genetics; why feed it what it needs to work faster? So she shops at the organic grocery store when possible, avoids bizarre preservatives, and watches out for unsafe food conditions. She doesn't even add salt to her food. (Sodium raises your blood pressure, she tells me.) Sitting at Perkins was dangerous enough, but when her friend read the ingredients of the Half & Half containers sitting in a little bowl on the table, and finished with "Needs No Chill" and a laugh, Sandy's eyes shot open. "WHAT?"

Anyone who knows her knows this began an internet search. Yes, the ingredients of Half & Half (the Perkins variety, at any rate) are milk, cream, and sodium citrate. Two of these ingredients should remain refrigerated. (Even I know that, and I don't hail from this society.) So what is it about the third ingredient that renders the other two no longer in need of "chill?" You people put this stuff in your coffee and drink it. (Sandy drinks neither coffee nor Half & Half, but she was still curious.)

Turns out that Sodium Citrate is a preservative; trisodium salt. And it's hazardous, according to a variety of sources on the internet. (The main source I'm using for this column is www.jtbaker.com. ) It can cause irritation to skin, eyes, and respiratory tract. It has a flammability rating of "slight." Under normal storage and use conditions, the product is stable, but when you heat it to decomposition (more than 302 degrees F), it produces carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide. Now, being from another society, I have no idea what those things are, but Sandy assures me they're bad things for humans to breathe for a long time.

What it boils down to is my fantasy author won't be eating at Perkins anymore because the service has been bad each time she's been in there and the food is less than healthy (she says I don't have to describe the grease because people already know this about such restaurants). But the Half & Half put her over the edge and she wanted me to spell this out as just another bizarre moment in a writer's life.

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Sunday, December 9, 2007

She's Got This Thing About 3:30 A.M.

I'm not sure what's so magical about this hour, but my fantasy author, Sandy Lender, tends to either fall asleep at the computer at this hour when I'm trying to get her to write, or she wakes up at this hour. She woke up at 3:30 this morning with an idea for a new fantasy novel, set on the continent of Onweald, which is significant because that's the place where a majority of the story of the Choices Meant for Gods trilogy takes place.

Sidenote: If you haven't already purchased a copy of CMFG for yourself or a loved one, it would make a fabulous Christmas present for anyone who enjoys the Lord of the Rings/Tolkien stories. I'm going on faith there because I'm not familiar with the books, only the movies. (She says I shouldn't admit such a thing because the books, while not able to convey the hotness of Viggo Mortensen, are better than the movies. I think I get her meaning, but I'm going to pretend that I don't.)

Anyway, the point of this post is to let you all know that this day in a writer's life, the writer woke up at 3:30 to scribble down notes for a new fantasy novel. And then neglected to post her usual items to her blog over at www.todaythedragonwins.blogspot.com so she just posted something for writers about half an hour ago. I think she's nuts for trying to keep up with daily posts given everything else she has going on in her life, but she's got this contest going where you can win a copy of the epic fantasy novel Choices Meant for Gods. The rules/directions are posted over at www.authorisland.com, which is a great site for readers (and writers) who want to get information about new books that are out, the authors who write them, etc.

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Sunday, December 2, 2007

She's Staying Busy

While she goes out to the swamp to see if the sheriff has blocked access to her house yet, I'm going to fill you in on my fantasy writer's weekend. I keep thinking that she should get some sort of notification when the locks get changed on her home, but she says nothing else in this process has gone smoothly, why should the "final foreclosing" be any different. Because I'm not from this society, and I have no experience with such things, I can't argue. It doesn't appear that things have been done according to your laws so far, though. It's a pity she doesn't have the funds to start suing these institutions for mental anguish...

The point of today's post, this weekend in a writer's life: my fantasy author, Sandy Lender, got to attend a writers' meeting yesterday afternoon, and then went up to St. Petersburg to visit a friend who was in town for a conference.

It sounds so much less exciting when I spell it out like that. She had a nice time and got back home by 10 p.m. At the writers' meeting, one of the people who has read Choices Meant for Gods suggested in a rather pointed manner to her publisher (who was also in attendance) that he get her second book out. That process is more complex at the moment than one might guess. Of course, I'll get to break the news here as soon as there is news to break.

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Saturday, November 24, 2007

She Sold All of Two Books Today

Now, as my fantasy author, Sandy Lender, puts it, selling two books in a day is better than selling NO books. She points out that two more people in the world are being introduced to my bride, which is great, if you think about it. But this isn't the way to replace J.K. Rowling as entertainer of the year in 2020. That must be a goal.

Oh, pardon me. The Mayan calendar states the world is ending Dec. 21, 2012, so Fantasy Author Sandy Lender only has a few years left to take over the planet as the leading fantasy author.

Anyway, the point of this post was to show that today in the life of an author/writer, Sandy stood at an art festival under a tent with several other writers, distributing information about the Naples Press Club and hearing "no" whenever she asked, "Are you a reader of fantasy?" or "Do you read fantasy?" or "Do you like Harry Potter?" etc. I suggested that tomorrow she ask people, "Do your grandchildren read books?" and go from there. That's going to be the only angle she can work with this particular crowd. I've also suggested that she dress like a fantasy author and carry the sword to get more attention. Now, you know it's bad if I'm suggesting she wear the sword...

If you'd like to check out her fantasy novel, Choices Meant for Gods, there are glowing reviews and information, including a synopsis, at her amazon page. All you have to do is hit Amazon and look up the book title when you're ordering your other gifts this season! And if your grandchildren read fantasy, you'll instantly have a hit... ;)

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Friday, November 23, 2007

She Wants to Buy a Bookshelf

Now, something like buying a bookshelf should be easy, shouldn't it? In my society, we build such things, usually into the walls. In your society, you get in a car and go to a store where the stand-alone structure is in a large, heavy box (note the word "heavy" in this sentence because it's going to come into play in just a moment) that you purchase, load into your car, and bring back to your home. My fantasy author, Sandy Lender, intends to do this exercise this afternoon.

Please note that this is the day after Thanksgiving and she's been educating me about the perils of entering a store of any kind on this day. Supposedly it's akin to going to war. But she gets on these quests... She wishes to organize her den somewhat before starting her new job Monday, and because she's going to be working at the Naples Renaissance Art Fall Festival all day tomorrow and Sunday, she feels that she either purchases a bookshelf and organizes the den today or the Earth will stop spinning on its axis and you'll all be flung into space. (OW! That was uncalled for. )

Sandy would like to express that she is not obsessive compulsive (even though she is) and that the continuance of life on this planet is not incumbent on her organizing her den today. She just wishes to get this done because she's been fretting about it for quite some time.

And that, my friends, is today in a writer's life. What's going to be insane is when she gets fussy with me and sends me away, and has to open the box from the store in the back of her car and carry each piece of the shelving unit into the apartment individually because it's too heavy for her to lift all at once by herself. See, if she'd just settle down and let me help...

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Thursday, November 22, 2007

She's Thankful For the Police

My fantasy author, Sandy Lender, says I must begin this post wishing everyone a happy Thanksgiving, even though I'm not from this country. And on that note, I must also list the things I'm thankful for.

Amanda Chariss
my sister Kaylin
the recent reprieve from marketing

Of course there are other things I'm thankful for, but this blog isn't supposed to be about me. In fact, today's post about my writer's life is specifically about how pleased she is that a police officer showed up at her door at a little past 4 a.m. to check out the area because someone tried to get into her apartment. (What? Wouldn't they know you moved if they'd read your blog?)

Okay, update: Sandy no longer lives out in the swamp (another thing I'm thankful for) because the banks are foreclosing on that house in the next two weeks (oooo, now those of you who haven't bought her book over at amazon.com ought to be hanging your heads in shame!) (Hey! I'm just teasing them, don't smack me!)

Back to the topic at hand because it's interesting and had her awake for two hours: and that's not easy to do. She woke up to the sound of someone rustling around the back of the condo at 3:30. That was alarming to her, so she popped out of bed to the sound of them actually trying the back door, as if to see if it was unlocked. (My smart girl keeps all the doors locked, of course, and will be enforcing those as soon as the stores open tomorrow.) Here's where the story gets psychotic (and who wasn't expecting a psychotic twist where Sandy Lender is involved?) (OW! I swear, could you go do something else while I type this?). She pops up out of bed and grabs the medieval dagger from her dresser. Oh, yes, because who doesn't keep one of those handy in the bedroom in the year 2007? Armed with the weapon, she proceeds to turn on every light in the back part of the condo and check the lock, etc. She called a friend (yes, she does have friends in the area who would be awake and not mind a call at 3:34 a.m.) to get advice on the matter. "Call the police. You won't look like an idiot," was the verdict. "And call me back." (Of course.)

After she called the police and got back on the phone with her friend, there was a bump on the front door of the condo, which actually made her mad. It takes someone will a lot of gall, she says, to try both doors once all the lights are on and it's apparent someone is home. (Yes, Dear, I'm sure they would have been surprised to have a dagger sticking clear through their midsection.)

The good news is the police arrived - even though it took them half an hour - (Why are you singing, "I'll call a cab because a cab'll come quicker"? Nice. Will anyone else know what that is?) and checked out the area. The officer told her this is a safe area. In the year that he's been on the force, he's only had two "disturbances" to check on in this neighborhood, and he assured her that she's chosen a great, quiet place to live. He also told her that he likes Duran Duran. (What? Oh, yes, it's everywhere in your home...)

So Sandy Lender is thankful for the following:

no perps in her home this morning
her pet bird
Choices Meant for Gods
the sequel to CMFG
AsphaltPro Magazine
a place to live
Red Carpet Massacre
Nigel Taiman (aww, aren't you sweet?)
all of her friends

There's more but she's complaining about how long I'm taking to do this. I believe she'd like to use the computer. If you all have things you'd like to list that you're thankful for, please post your comments. If you'd like to support the starving author, you can get your copy of the first novel in the Choices Meant for Gods trilogy at your local Barnes & Noble tomorrow during the After Thanksgiving Day sales (I'm not entirely sure what that means, but Sandy says it's pure insanity) or from the safety of your computer at http://www.amazon.com/Choices-Meant-Gods-Sandy-Lender/dp/1595071652/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1195653204&sr=1-1.

Have a wonderful day with your family and friends around you.
All my best,
Nigel Taiman

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Tuesday, November 20, 2007

She Told Me to Get My Act Together

And I found that humorous because she's just as guilty as I about doing everything other than marketing these days. It turns out my fantasy author, Sandy Lender, is devising a plan to kick our marketing efforts for her fantasy novels back into gear. I'm not sure what all it's going to entail because so far it appears to involve calling various food services to see who wants the turkey thawing in her refrigerator.

Here's the strangest thing about this writer's life: she can't seem to make up her mind. One minute, she's completely devoted and happy about something. The next minute, she'd rather eat nails than cook a turkey for Thanksgiving dinner. (What's that? Oh, great, I'm being called insensitive just because I don't understand how obnoxious it is to cook a meal like that for yourself. Well, be that as it may, she has a turkey and the makings of green bean...what!?...green bean casserole...whatever that is...to donate to the nearest fallout shelter or food bank. Pardon me. The nearest women's shelter or food bank. (Do you want to just type this for me?)

If you know of a place that will accept uncooked poultry the day before Thanksgiving, please hit the comment link below. She's going to lose it any minute here.

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Wednesday, October 24, 2007

She's Dangerous With Swords

For you to properly appreciate this, let me set the scene. My fantasy author, Sandy Lender, has a friend installing a new faucet on her kitchen sink this morning while she's at work. Apparently, the landlord will never get around to this, and because Sandy's been living in the apartment since early October, the lack of a functioning kitchen has driven her almost to the point of insanity. So the friend is hooking up pipes and whatever else your society requires to get water from one point to another when, lo and behold, the need for different pipe arises. Friend A goes to Home Depot. Friend A returns. Friend A is on the phone with Sandy when it occurs to the friend that the back door of the apartment is wide open. And that just shouldn't be so.

Now, because I follow Sandy around when I think she needs inspiration, I wasn't at the apartment to watch for intruders, but now I'm starting to think I should spend a little time there during the day...watching...and perhaps warning would-be burglars that my fantasy author is having a particularly fussy autumn. And she owns sharp weapons that she would just love to stab someone with. It would be in all intruders' best interests to select other homes to break into. She's pretty miffed at the moment. The good news: the computer containing Books II and III of the Choices Meant for Gods trilogy in their various stages of development is still in its place. Friend A returned to the apartment apparently in plenty of time to scare off the perpetrator before he or she could remove anything from out in the open. Sandy will have to check on jewelry (oh...why don't you own any jewelry?) or whatever might be stashed in the apartment when she gets there tonight.

She's ready to call up Comcast and rip them a new one because they had their service technicians in her home setting up her internet connection yesterday...kasing? What's kasing? Oh. Casing the joint, she says.

The time for Book II of the Choices trilogy to go to the publisher draws near so I recommend getting your copy of Book I, Choices Meant for Gods, so you have plenty of time to read it and fall in love with my bride, the heroine, Amanda Chariss. Amanda would also deal with the intruders with something sharp and pointy. "Stab now, ask questions later," I believe is the appropriate phrase. If you'd like to read some reviews, http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbnInquiry.asp?z=y&EAN=9781595071651&tabname=custreview&itm=1 has a few, but the majority are at http://www.amazon.com/Choices-Meant-Gods-Sandy-Lender/dp/1595071652/ref=dp_return_2/002-3163519-8684042?ie=UTF8&n=283155&s=books.

You can also order the book at both of those sites, but you get free shipping at the Amazon site. You can also order direct from the publisher at http://www.archebooks.com/BookIDX/Indexes/Fantasy/CMG/CMGDesc.htm.


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Thursday, October 11, 2007

She's Mad Now

Doesn't my fantasy author, Sandy Lender, look nice and pleasant in this picture? Well...looks can be deceiving.

She's mad now. In fact, I think I might just step out of the way and watch what happens. You see, this blog about the life of an author is supposed to market the epic fantasy novel Choices Meant for Gods (and the upcoming sequel) and tell you about the author's life...sort of a "glimpse into a writer's life." Folks...the writer's life is in turmoil at the moment and she's not happy about it. Mostly, she's mad at herself for not planning to be miserable...she thinks she should have realized that financial hell was descending upon her and that all men abandon you in the end. I'm aware of her financial difficulties but I'm not so sure I agree that all of my half of the species is so bad... (Oh, nice, I'm not a real man!? What the deuce does THAT mean?) (In the alarming and confusing statement of the day: Sandy says I'm fabulous because I'm not real and that's one of the reasons she didn't kill me off in Book I of the Choices Meant for Gods trilogy. What on earth...)

So while she looks happy in the photo taken at her first book signing (above), you have to keep in mind that the picture was taken back in June. June 9, if I have the date right. This is October. October 11. And she's mad at several people who are going to get their butts kicked into November. And when she catches up to them next month, she just might kick their butts into December. (Funny. She wants to know if she has to pay rent on the condo if she kicks the landlord far enough into the future... That's my girl: always thinking.)

To assist her in calming down, because I think her blood pressure will have to return to normal soon or there'll be a stroke or other cardiac event taking place, those of you reading the blog could get a copy of her fantasy novel and tell her how much you enjoy it. It's available at Barnes & Noble (the store in the picture above), Borders, etc. But you can also order it online. Check out http://www.amazon.com/Choices-Meant-Gods-Sandy-Lender/dp/1595071652/ref=dp_return_2/002-3163519-8684042?ie=UTF8&n=283155&s=books to get it before they run out. There are only five copies left at the moment. (free shipping)

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Wednesday, October 10, 2007

She's Fit to be Tied

First of all, it's been so long since I sat down to work on marketing with my fantasy author that I had trouble remembering the address and password for this blog. Sandy Lender suggested I begin this post with the book cover just to remind everyone that, yes, there is a fabulous epic fantasy novel called Choices Meant for Gods that she's trying to get people to purchase and read and fall in love with.

And then she walked away in a sort of daze. Or rage. One of the two. She's currently in the midst of a divorce, a move, a foreclosure, and probably about to commit homicide...none of these things seem pleasant when taken alone. I think people in your society require alcohol to handle them en masse. Oh, she's just walked through stating the electric company is getting firebombed before the week's out. Interesting...

So we're taking a poll here at Nigel Presents Sandy Lender. You see, she's upset over the amount of money she paid for her first month's rent at the condo she's moving into, yet she wasn't able to use the toilet at said condo until last night (yes, that would be the 9th day of the month) because it was out of order and she still isn't able to use the kitchen faucet at said condo because it's still out of order. She's also become irritated because she's spending more time scrubbing mold out of the refrigerator and off the blinds and vacuuming up beds of cat hair than she's spending unpacking her belongings.

So here's the poll question:
If you were moving into an apartment/condominium and the landlord had left the place in a shambles, would you request he pro-rate the second month's rent based upon the number of days the place was unlivable during the first month? Yes or no?

It comes out to $29 a day, which, in your society, starts to add up. (Yes, yes, I already mentioned the electric company.) Oh. The $29 a day really starts to add up when the landlord screws up and has the electricity disconnected instead of switched to your name so you have to pay a $220 security deposit in addition to a $15 connection fee to open a new account. (And that's the need for firebombing? I understand now. Do you want me to just go down there with a sword, dearest?)

And that's today in the life of a fantasy writer. If you'd like to help the starving artist pay next month's rent, you can pick up a copy of her novel online at Amazon.com. The direct link is http://www.amazon.com/Choices-Meant-Gods-Sandy-Lender/dp/1595071652/ref=dp_return_2/002-3163519-8684042?ie=UTF8&n=283155&s=books. You'll love the story!

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Monday, September 17, 2007

She's Not Well

I know that headline sounds like I'm getting ready to mock my little fantasy author, Sandy Lender, but I'm actually just preparing to share with you a day in the life of a fantasy writer. She awoke in pain today and is still typing away like a good little writer thirteen hours later. (No, that doesn't sound like a martyr, dear; that sounds like an idiot. Yes, neither is appealing.)

Turns out she has an infection that is in her kidney. She at least had the sense to go to a doctor to learn this. What surprises me is that she lied to the doctor to stay out of a hospital. So I'm in charge of watching for the symptoms that she promised she'd go back to the doctor with if she noticed them. (Why do I get the impression you'll lie to me as well?) I'm getting one of those wan smiles that means I'm being deceived. The good news is she's got medication to solve the problem. (Oh, and I have something to blog about. Nice.)

The point of this is that writers don't get to take a break because they feel "icky." If you wish to become financially solvent, you have to suck it up and finish the projects you've begun or find a different career. As her old band instructor used to say (what's a band instructor?), "no pain, no gain." He also said, "no guts, no glory." And those little truisms have taken my fantasy author far in life. (Personally, I think they should take her to bed to get some sleep, but there are two important projects to complete this evening.)

And that's a day in the life of a writer. Aren't you glad you stopped in? If you'd like to support the "becoming financially solvent" concept for fantasy author Sandy Lender, you can pick up a copy of the well-reviewed epic fantasy novel Choices Meant for Gods before the sequel hits the streets. It's available at your local book store, where you'll probably have to request/order it, and at the usual online locations. Visit http://www.amazon.com/Choices-Meant-Gods-Sandy-Lender/dp/1595071652/ref=cm_cd_t_h_dp_i/104-9089752-5140754 where you get a discount when you order both Choices Meant for Gods and Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

She Was Teasing the Pterodactyl

When I walked into the kitchen area this morning, I feared the look of mischief my fantasy author, Sandy Lender, had about her. Nothing good comes of such looks. I proceeded to back back out of the kitchen area, but she stopped me with "check out the bird."

Turns out she had given Petri, her pet bird, this dish of white pellets. Now, anyone who's been paying attention to her blogs knows that Petri hates the white pellets. You know this because I've pointed out how neurotic Sandy is for standing there picking out the white pellets before giving him his food in the mornings (as if you have time for this; just let the bird pick out the pieces he doesn't like on his own...), but she continues to do this so he doesn't have to. So today she handed him a dish full of just white pellets. Apparently, she's been saving them just for this little joke. The bird was completely bemused.

It took him a good three or four minutes of staring at the dish and dancing around it before he started throwing the pellets around the kitchen...

Sandy found it enormously funny. Petri seemed pleased with the joke, too, because he didn't bite her when she replaced it with his real food. (or he could have just been pleased at the extra treats she gave him for tolerating the abuse...not sure which)

And that's your dose of a writer's life for today. If you'd like to get her back to editing and writing instead of tormenting her bird, you could assist in the success of the first book, Choices Meant for Gods, available now at Barnes & Noble, where a new review has gone up today. Yes, the lovely and wonderful Laura Crawford posted a review that has Sandy jumping for joy...

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Saturday, September 8, 2007

She's Swamped

My fantasy author is attempting to do too many things at once. What I find frustrating is how few of those things involve finishing my corrections for the sequel to the fantasy novel Choices Meant for Gods. You know, if she's going to get this second book in the trilogy out by the end of the year, she needs to get it turned in to her publisher...Anyone want to help me make that happen?

In the meantime, please enjoy these images from Sandy Lender's time at DragonCon last weekend. The first image is Sandy in the room with an archangel in the background taking her picture. The second picture is her and fantasy author M.B. Weston, who has a novel called A Prophecy Forgotten available at Amazon.com and ArcheBooks.com.

All my best,

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

She's Back

And still crazy. As you can see, my fantasy author, Sandy Lender, had a great time at DragonCon over Labor Day weekend. She met this thing called the Great Flying Spaghetti Monster (or at least someone dressed as it). She tried explaining it to me, and I was so distracted by the people walking around in their undergarments that I just couldn't grasp all the details of the Spaghetti Monster religion, so I can't really explain it here. But I understand you can search for it in Google and get quite an education...

Anyway, Sandy is back home, as am I, and she's back to work at her day job where they're frantically trying to send five magazines to the printer over the next couple of weeks. It looks insane to me and I've recommended she quit and just work on the new magazine she and some of her colleagues are starting. Seems there's something comforting about having an income and buying food that she'd rather not let go of...And that's the writer's life for today.

I'll put together something lovely to tell you all about DragonCon, because it really was an interesting experience. The parade was surreal. We have pictures that Sandy is sending with her article to www.fantasybookspot.com that you'll be able to see at some point later today. The administrators there will have that live shortly. She doesn't mention much about the book sales because they were fairly slow. When you're stuck in the back corner of the basement of the hotel where none of the celebrities are selling a $25 hardback book that no one's ever heard of, moving half a dozen is something to cheer over. Now everyone who didn't elect to lug it back in their suitcase will have to pay the cover price over at Amazon...at least they won't have to pay shipping.

All my best, everyone.

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Thursday, August 30, 2007

She Has Clothes Everywhere

The house looks like a tornado ripped through. You all should see this. I'm not sure if she's packing to go to DragonCon or if she's had some sort of seizure that involved throwing the contents of her closet across all flat surfaces... This is almost as bad as when she's planning to go to a Duran Duran concert somewhere. (I said almost; there was a qualifier...oooh, she's also fussy...)

So my fantasy author, Sandy Lender, is preparing to leave town for DragonCon, and, as her spokesperson, I thought it fitting I should tell the world what promotional and marketing ramifications this has on the sales of her epic fantasy novel Choices Meant for Gods.

None. She's wasting her money going to a four-day party. (I've just been assaulted.)

All right. I'll be a bit more charitable. Sandy Lender will be promoting her novel while at this event, but, because she's not speaking on any panels or doing any readings, she feels that the trip is going to be very expensive (financially speaking) for the gain she'll get out of it. No one knows who she is yet, and she's not sure how much that fact will change during the show. What she's excited about is the after-the-show press. You see, she's working with the administrators of www.fantasybookspot.com to cover the event (and when you ask her about that she starts prattling about journalism and news reporting and things I barely grasp, so it's best not to ask too many questions along that thread of thought) and she has a couple of web sites that wish to carry stories about her experience at the convention afterward, so she sees potential for exposure after-the-show. This makes her feel somewhat better about the outlay of cash upfront.

And she really is looking forward to carrying a sword around for four days. (I keep telling you it's not all fun and excitement. Do you even know how to swing...) I would like to suggest that no one stand within four feet of her if she's got it out. And if you'd like to read an interview about her level of sanity, just to reinforce my point here, you can visit http://www.mindunbound.com/blog/2007/08/interview_with_sandy_lender_an.html. That went live Monday.

And if you want to pick up a copy of Choices Meant for Gods prior to the convention, Amazon.com only has three copies in stock at the moment, although we understand they've ordered more. You can get a copy from her publisher's site at http://www.archebooks.com/BookIDX/Indexes/Fantasy/CMG/CMGDesc.htm pretty easily. Or if you'll be at DragonCon this weekend, you can pick up a copy more cheaply and without shipping fees from her dealer table, A98.

Have a lovely holiday weekend.

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Monday, August 27, 2007

She's Cured me of Sleeping on Her Couch

I was jarred awake by the ear-splitting screech of the spider scream this morning. Just because I know what the particular pitch of that scream indicates doesn't make it any easier to be ripped from deep sleep with. It was a particularly large wolf spider. And my fantasy author, Sandy Lender, was particularly close to it when she noticed it. Hence the healthy-lung volume...

So now she has a dilemma. See, the carcass is curled up, still wet with bug spray...in her shower. This amuses me because she has this "thing" about leaving the carcasses for at least 24 hours (yes, she's OCD) to be sure it's completely dead before she gathers it up and throws it in the trash. But she can't use the shower until she gets rid of this thing. I've already suggested she use the guest shower, where her former significant other used to bathe, but she wrinkled her nose up at that. And she can't just rinse this thing down the drain. (I'm sure I've mentioned that the wolf spiders out here in the swamp get quite large? Oh, and she's adding in that this thing is enormous.)

Anyway, she's figuring out what to do with the body and I'm figuring out where I'll sleep from now on that won't be within scream-range. My nerves are shot for the day.

And speaking of the day, I'll be spending it coming up with marketing ideas for her DragonCon expedition at the end of the week. Those of you attending can meet her at the Dealer Room just about any time of day. She'll be pretty much chained to a table there pushing the fantasy novel, Choices Meant for Gods. If you're not attending, you can pick up the book at Amazon, where they're running low of copies at the moment, or at her publisher's site at http://www.archebooks.com/BookIDX/Indexes/Fantasy/CMG/CMGDesc.htm.

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Thursday, August 23, 2007

She Picked a Great Color

I don’t know much about color therapy, but it’s a buzzword I’ve heard come out of Sandy’s mouth more than once. If I grasp the concept correctly, it’s the use of color to ease mood or set tone in one’s life. Some people go so far as to purport color schemes can correct dysfunctions in body makeup to relieve pain or set irrational behaviors to right. (Wait a minute, I think she’s going to censor something here…for pity’s sake. I was educated at a school for Geasa’n, you know. I’m not going to write like an idiot. There’s nothing wrong with what I have here. You underestimate the audience.)

As I was going to say before she interrupted me, she selected a great color for Amanda Chariss. See, Amanda is a Protector (What? I’m not going to give anything from the plot away.) in the fantasy novel Choices Meant for Gods, and lavender is, according to one of the texts I’ve read, a color for protection. It’s also a color for spiritual intention or involvement, and, let me tell you, I’d like to get Mandy involved with me spiritually, if you know what I mean. (Oh, come on, don’t tell me this audience isn’t on board with that. Amanda will never read this. She doesn’t like this computer business or I’d have you nipping Abigail’s blog in the bud right now.)

Back to color therapy. Purple and violet, the colors that remind me of Amanda’s eyes and the gem she’s carried on her cheek since birth are power colors. Sandy is going to talk about this on her blog at http://www.todaythedragonwins.blogspot.com/ with writer Pamala Oslie, author of Love Colors, today. Pamala writes in her book that people with lavender auras are fragile, sensitive, spiritual, gentle and creative. Some of the other attributes of people with lavender auras don’t really apply to Amanda because I’d never consider her disorganized and I’ve never seen her unable to work or be responsible. The woman is (What? Oh, come on, the people reading this expect me to extol her merits; I’m in love with her.)… Fine.

Sandy, on the other hand, is a strong violet and a strong green. She took this little test in the Oslie book and it was stunning how strong those two auras turned out to be. But when we read the characteristics of people with violet and green auras…well…it was obvious.

Violets, according to Oslie, are charismatic (check), are often the center of attention (check), are passionate about art, causes, saving the planet (check), love music or are involved in music (check), are performers, writers or artists (check), are self-employed or in positions of leadership (check), communicate in ways that inspire and motivate others (check), have a sense of urgency as if they’re running out of time to complete goals (check), have strong desires to travel (check), multi-task (check), care about animals (check), have strong emotions (check), become bored with meaningless chatter (check), can intimidate others (check), are easily bored in relationships (extreme check), etc.

Greens, according to Oslie, seem to always be in a hurry (check), talk quickly (check), finish other people’s sentences for them (check) (yes you do), are highly intelligent (usually), are highly competitive (check), drive expensive cars (well, she wants a BMW Alana or a Corvette, which I understand are both expensive, but she’s more interested in the hood…what does that mean?), own at least one expensive home (check, but does it count if the bank is foreclosing on it? OW!), frequently ask how? (check), want to know the point or end of the story and don’t seem interested in the details (check), speak their minds, no matter whom it may offend (check), need to be in control (extreme check), has more than one degree (I’m not clear on this one), are stubborn and strong-willed (extreme check).

So, as you can see, Sandy Lender fits the violet and green auras perfectly. She also had strong blue, yellow and red auras, but she said if I list off any of the red characteristics in a public forum like this, she’d do something violent in the text she’s working on in Book III so…I bow to her wishes. (But you all are welcome to e-mail me privately. She’s not here all the time, you know.)

I think I’ve lost the point of this entire article. Oh, yes, she selected good color auras for characters in Choices Meant for Gods. There’s actually quite a lot of symbolism in that fantasy novel if people pay attention and watch for it. She says it’s the English major coming out in her. Whatever that means…

So pop over to The Dragon and check out the interview with Pam Oslie today at http://www.todaythedragonwins.blogspot.com/ for more information and to ask Pam some questions.

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Monday, August 20, 2007

She Got to Help Another Lizard

This time she didn't actually see the lizard, but some guy at the pet store was buying crickets to feed his new pet (a tegu, she says) and the fellow had not been educated on what to do. So now you get to hear/read another bizarre story about the fantasy writer's life.

Sandy Lender was standing in line to buy treats for the incredibly spoiled bird that lives in this house with her, and the fellow must have felt like an idiot for buying a bag of crickets and a bag of goldfish because he felt the need to explain himself. She empathized. She's been there before...buying crickets for a lizard back home...it's probably where the dragon fixation comes from. Anyway, the fish were NOT for a water turtle, which she thought was a logical followup question to ask. Now, tell me, how many normal people out there assume people at the pet store are buying goldfish to feed to a water turtle?

The way she figures she helped the lizard is by her next question about "dusting" the crickets. She actually asked him, "do you dust them before you feed them to the tegu?" Complete look of confusion on the guy's face. So she explained the importance of calcium powder without phosphorus and suggested he could put the crickets in a container with half an orange overnight so the little insects could fill up on all those nutrients before being fed to the lizard. This stuff is insane. Think about it for a minute. Now, the guy took her word for it without her having to explain that she used to serve on the board of the Kansas City Herpetological Society. And he stepped out of line to go get a container of calcium powder. So she feels she did her civic duty for some little reptile out there this evening.

I think she should do her civic duty for my bride's story and get the second book off to the publisher here. We're nearly done with the edits I have in mind. If you all haven't already picked up the first book, Choices Meant for Gods, I recommend you grab it at your local book store or from Amazon soon so you have time to digest it (like a calcium-dusted cricket, she says) before the second book arrives. It's available at http://www.amazon.com/Choices-Meant-Gods-Sandy-Lender/dp/1595071652/ref=cm_cd_t_h_dp_i/104-9089752-5140754.

And now I have to stop typing because she has something else she wants me to post and she's not going to stop pestering me until I take care of it.

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She Says This is My Song

And I have to agree that it has a certain romance to it that fits Amanda and me quite well. That actually puzzles me because my fantasy author, Sandy Lender, is constantly telling me to downplay the romantic angle of the book Choices Meant for Gods on this blog. It's an epic fantasy novel, not a romance novel. (But I beg to differ. And I'm the muse, so I'm calling the shots around here during editing of Book II, thank you very much.)

So here's "my song," sappy as it is.

I Was Brought to My Senses
by Sting (And what kind of name is that for a recording artist? Isn't that a verb?)

Alone with my thoughts this evening
I walked on the banks of Tyne
I wondered how I could win you
Or if I could make you mine
Or if I could make you mine
The wind it was so insistent
With tales of a stormy south
But when I spied two birds in a sycamore tree
There came a dryness in my mouth
Came a dryness in my mouth
For then without rhyme or reason
The two birds did rise up to fly
And where the two birds were flying
I swear I saw you and I
I swear I saw you and I

I walked out this morning
It was like a veil had been removed from before my eyes
For the first time I saw the work of heaven
In the line where the hills had been married to the sky
And all around me
Every blade of singing grass
Was calling out your name
And that our love would always last
And inside every turning leaf
Is the pattern of an older tree
The shape of our future
The shape of all our history
And out of the confusion
Where the river meets the sea
Came things I'd never seen
Things I'd never seen

I was brought to my senses
I was blind but now that I can see
Every signpost in nature
Said you belong to me
I know it's true
It's written in a sky as blue
As blue as your eyes
As blue as your eyes
If nature's red in tooth and claw
Like winter's freeze and summer's thaw
The wounds she gave me
Were the wounds that would heal me
And we'd be like the moon and sun
And when our courtly dance had run
Its course across the sky
Then together we would lie
And out of the confusion
Where the river meets the sea
Something new would arrive
Something better would arrive
I was brought to my senses
I was blind but now that I can see
Every signpost in nature
Said you belong to me
I was brought to my senses
I was blind but now that I can see
Every signpost in nature
Said you belong to me...

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Sunday, August 19, 2007

She Took a Seven-Hour Nap

I don't know how common this issue of migraines is in your society, but my fantasy author deals with it from time to time, and today she had to deal with it. She has what she calls "heart-stopping medication" that usually solves the migraine issue, so her quality of life has improved immeasurably since beginning this medication. Sounds ridiculous, if you ask me. But her absence from the computer gave me time to prepare some information for all of you.

First, I've registered the blog with The Truth Laid Bear site. This means stray people looking for a site about writers will see this one registered there and might come stumbling over to read about Fantasy Author Sandy Lender. And won't that be nice as a marketing tool? There are a couple other sites similar to that that I've registered with as well, but I'm awaiting confirmation and approval, etc.

Anything we can do to spread the word about the fantasy novel Choices Meant for Gods is a good thing. And one of the things we've done is announce several contest winners over at Today the Dragon Wins. You can access that at www.todaythedragonwins.blogspot.com. She's got another contest she's putting together so if you didn't get in on these, don't fret. There'll be other opportunities to win strange things related to Choices Meant for Gods.

And now I'm off to feed her crackers. It's the only thing she can keep in her stomach today.

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Tuesday, August 14, 2007

She Let Henry Get in Over His Head

As usual.
And I'm laughing about it. I had no part in the interview over at Friends of Dragons today. But Henry just about got himself in trouble with a woman twice his "level," if you know what I mean. Visit http://friendsofdragons.wordpress.com to read the interview with Morgan from Charlene Leatherman's Prophecy of Vithan.

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Saturday, August 11, 2007

She Hasn't Repressed This One, Careless Memory #5

A Glimpse into a Writer's Life

When my fantasy author, Sandy Lender, was in high school, she watched the James Bond movie On Her Majesty's Secret Service. Yes, it was a little late in life to be introduced to the James Bond series, she tells me, but she doesn't want to air all that in a public forum. More repression.

Believe it or not, I am familiar with the James Bond series because Sandy's a wee bit obsessed with it and she says I get to take on a few of the spy's characteristics in Book III of the Choices Meant for Gods trilogy. I can only imagine... She's very fond of Roger Moore, while I'm keen on Pierce Brosnan's portrayal of the character. Turns out she was very pleased with Pierce as well, but found herself unable to look at him the same way after he came up out of his bondage in Die Another Day looking like the popular depictions of Jesus Christ (yes, your God). She says she just can't lust after him any longer. And I just can't continue that thread of thought any longer.

This memory is of her watching On Her Majesty's Secret Service (which is her favorite of the Bond films, even if it doesn't have Roger or a Duran Duran theme song affiliated with it). It was not a school night or she wouldn't have been allowed to watch the movie all the way to the end. She had an insanely early bedtime on school nights (which is probably why you're predisposed to staying up until 3 and 4 a.m. now). I'm sure everyone reading this is familiar with the ending of that movie. The first time Sandy saw it, she was stunned. No happy ending? The countess dies? She was "floored," as she puts it. It was a sort of turning point for her. She realized then (and I find this disconcerting) that stories don't have to have a happy ending. She was intrigued by the idea that a disturbing ending where the bad guy "wins" or at least comes away with a "draw" can be THAT compelling.

I don't like the way she thinks.

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Friday, August 10, 2007

She Wishes You a Happy Duran Duran Appreciation Day

My fantasy author, Sandy Lender, is one of the biggest Duran Duran fans you'll ever meet. She's been obsessed for 23 years. Imagine that.

Today is (officially; this is real) Duran Duran Appreciation Day so she would like to celebrate with all of you. If you go to http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,20038840_20038841_20047913,00.html you can hear the new song that the band has prepared in collaboration with an artist known as Timbaland (and I can't believe I just typed that) and another artist Sandy's obsessed with known as Justin Timberlake. The song is called Nite Runner and she wants me to say...no... (I'm not typing that. I don't care. That is in no way related to marketing.)

While listening to all the new Duran tunes you find around the web, you could also be reading Sandy Lender's epic fantasy novel, Choices Meant for Gods. (See, that's related to marketing, Sweetheart.) You can pick up the novel at http://www.amazon.com/Choices-Meant-Gods-Sandy-Lender/dp/1595071652/ref=dp_return_2/002-3163519-8684042?ie=UTF8&n=283155&s=books.

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Thursday, August 9, 2007

She Chased this Lizard Around

You readers out there really have to help me get the word out about Sandy's book so more people buy it so she can start earning big royalty checks or something. Somehow, we've got to get her moved out of the swamp. Today, she opens the front door, steps back to wait for whatever might be lurking to show itself (and, yes, things do actually "show themselves" sometimes when she opens the front door - remember the wolf spiders out here?), and fixes her attention on this small black streak at the floor. Sure enough - lizard. This tiny black lizard darted in.

So she set all her stuff down and chased the lizard around the living room until she caught him and tossed him out into the swamp. What I found most amusing about the scene was the sigh of resignation as she set all her stuff on the couch. It was a very small lizard so she feared bruising his body when she picked him up. My suggestion that she just grab his tail got me a lecture on how stressed-out lizards drop their tails and thus lose their fat stores and have to expend energy regrowing the tail, so she didn't want to risk picking him up by his tail, either.

Ridiculous, if you ask me. The poor thing is probably still sitting under a rock in shock anyway...

If you'd like to support the "Get Sandy Lender Out of the Swamp Fund", you can purchase her epic fantasy novel Choices Meant for Gods at http://www.amazon.com/Choices-Meant-Gods-Sandy-Lender/dp/1595071652/ref=dp_return_2/002-3163519-8684042?ie=UTF8&n=283155&s=books, where you can also read some excellent reviews of it.

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Wednesday, August 8, 2007

She Started a Blog for Readers

If you enjoy test-driving (and I've no idea what that means) your material before spending your hard-earned cash on new books, check out http://fromthestart.wordpress.com.

This new site features new works from authors who write in a variety of genres, from poetry to non-fiction to memoirs to sci-fi/fantasy to young adult to slasher/horror, anything you want to try out will find its home at From the Start over the next few months. Site administrator Sandy Lender is taking submissions from authors now to post new "first chapters" so readers can review material before making buying decisions.

Stop by http://fromthestart.wordpress.com and sign up for automatic feeds so you'll always know when new material has been posted for your reviewing enjoyment.

All my best,

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She Gets Messages About Turtles

I find it amusing that my fantasy author, Sandy Lender, receives updates about turtles she doesn't know. There is a charming young woman named Laura Crawford who lives in the northern regions of your country who sent a note to Sandy about a sizable snapping turtle that safely crossed the road. The note mentioned some smaller turtles that made it across a road as well, and Sandy told me this is great news.

Turns out Sandy has pictures in her photo albums of stray, random, wild turtles that her friends have picked up off the road and photographed specifically to send evidence to her that the little reptiles made it safely from one side to the other. Isn't that bizarre? But she seems thrilled to pieces over it, so, what can you do? I think it's one more bit of evidence that she's not quite right in the head, if you know what I mean.

That's a writer for you. Eccentric.

The other messages she gets usually come from sea turtle conservationists. She has a collection of sea turtle images because the Turtle Time volunteers are constantly photographing nests and nesting females and turtle tracks and babies rushing over sand dunes to get to the Gulf. They are remarkable little creatures...

So maybe she's not completely out of her mind to collect these images and to care that these creatures stay safe. But I still find it a little odd.

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Sunday, August 5, 2007

She's Got Two Problems

One is more serious than the other.

My fantasy author, Sandy Lender, hasn't seen the "cute" (her description, not mine) corn snake out by the front porch for several days now. But what she saw when she got home this afternoon about stopped her heart. She said it was ironic to find a cottonmouth snake on her property mere hours after watching a couple of snake handlers display one at the zoo. I asked her if she killed it and her response (and, yes, I suggested she seek psychiatric treatment) was "you can't just kill some poor critter that's minding its own business out in its natural habitat; he's not getting in here."

Now the other problem is of the non-venomous variety. She's got frog eggs in the guest bathroom commode that she refuses to flush away. She doesn't venture into that room since the individual that she wouldn't let me stab left, so there's no telling how long they've been in there. And there's no telling whether they've been fertilized because she only found one frog - and let's face it - as I've heard in your television programming, it takes two to tango. The little boy frogs have to actually touch the eggs or however it works here. Anyway, she's worried about prospective buyers coming to the house and seeing messy frog stuff there. I suggested a sign on the back of the commode: "Creating Life in Progress." She didn't seem to appreciate that...

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She Hasn't Repressed This One, Careless Memory #4

A Glimpse into a Writer's Life

Sometime within the past couple of years, some sort of family gathering occasioned Sandy Lender, my fantasy author, to be among a number of extended relatives. For some reason, one of them asked the question (and I'm paraphrasing because I wasn't there and Sandy doesn't remember it word-for-word) "what was your best birthday party from your childhood?" Well, Sandy thought on that for about two seconds and announced "the one where a bunch of my friends were invited to Sloppy Joe's!"

Everyone stared at her as if she were crazy.

Now, as Sandy told the story to me, I thought, of course your relatives thought you were crazy; who in all of Onweald would consider a place named "Sloppy Joe's" to be a favorite anything? But, as it turns out, they stared at her in wonder because she was never taken to Sloppy Joe's for her birthday.

In other words, she's insane.

As luck would have it, the memory of a bunch of her friends sitting at Sloppy Joe's (turns out this is a restaurant of some nature where the "chef" serves this bizarre type of hamburger that falls apart very easily—hence the name "sloppy," which is probably what appealed to the child in her) eating bizarre food and playing bizarre games was accurate, but it was someone else's birthday. Her father was annoyed that her favorite birthday memory was from someone else's party. I think that just goes to prove that she's repressed too much…

What about the rest of you? Any favorite birthday memories you want to share? There's a comment field here you can use.

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Saturday, August 4, 2007

She had a Surreal Moment on Sea Turtle Patrol

If any of you read Sandy Lender's blog over at www.todaythedragonwins.blogspot.com, you know that she has a section of beach that she walks on Saturday mornings checking on sea turtle activity with the group Turtle Time. She's very much a fan of Archie Carr, and while I have no idea who that is, I'm certain I'll be getting a full education as soon as I'm done with this post. (You know how she is...)

So today, at the end of her walk, a fellow and his fishing buddy approached her to ask a question about one of the nests, if there were any new nests, etc. Toward the end of the conversation, the fellow said that he had met her a year or so ago when she and her husband (and why do even I shudder at that reference now?) were assisting with one of the nest excavations. The guy proceeded to relate that she had just moved to the area (slight time-line confusion, but who's counting?) and was helping with the Turtle Time group, etc. Now, Sandy found this extremely odd. See, she didn't recognize this guy. She had no clue who he was when she started talking to him. She wants to know how a person randomly recognizes another after more than a year of absence after only one meeting over a turtle nest. She needs to learn this secret because she's terrible with such things (as evidenced by her inability to recognize this person this morning).

Oh, I've been reminded to give the sea turtle report. There were no new nests today and neither of the two that are close to "ready" in her zones hatched last night. She did, however, spend some time filling in the ghost crab holes near the nests that are ready to hatch in hopes that the crabs will be frustrated by the harrassment and will move away before the babies make their run for the Gulf. (Apparently, ghost crabs like to grab and eat baby sea turtles so Sandy likes to encourage the crabs to leave the area.)

That's all for the fantasy writer's life today. You can still get her fabulous fantasy novel at http://www.amazon.com/Choices-Meant-Gods-Sandy-Lender/dp/1595071652/ref=cm_cd_t_h_dp_i/104-9089752-5140754.

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Friday, August 3, 2007

She's Bipolar Now

I think it's official. The woman...

She wanted me to post an article about the surprise Top 10 List that the lovely EM Sky posted on her blog yesterday. I'll get to that in just a moment. First, I must tell you that I went to Amazon.com to check the link to include at the end of this article so you'd know how to pick up your own copy of Sandy Lender's fantasy novel. I just wanted to make it easier for everyone. Looking at the myriad numbers and images on the page, I noticed that her ranking had changed (it changes every hour when the computers at Amazon update the overall sales reports of the site). Silly me. What was I thinking announcing that? I said the number 138,562 and she nearly accosted me. (Yes, accosted is the right word. You practically strangled me.)

Anyway, the fantasy author Sandy Lender knows good and well that number means nothing. She's researched it. But when you're a new author just getting to know the system, seeing your ranking jump from 830,+++ to 138,+++ in a day is pretty doggone exciting. She'd like to thank EM Sky. Not only did Ms. Sky run a positive and glowing review of Choices Meant for Gods Tuesday night of this week with her Wet Ink publication (which you all can subscribe to through this http://www.mindunbound.com/newsletters/2007_august.html link), but yesterday she posted a Top 10 List of valuable life lessons she learned from reading the novel. You can read this entertaining list at http://blog.mindunbound.com/.

Once you've been fully amused, click over to Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Choices-Meant-Gods-Sandy-Lender/dp/1595071652/ref=dp_return_2/002-3163519-8684042?ie=UTF8&n=283155&s=books to get your copy this evening.

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Tuesday, July 31, 2007

She Got Another Good Review Today

To see the wonderful review from the lovely EM Sky (who delivers a really strong hug, by the way), visit http://www.mindunbound.com/newsletters/2007_august.html#fantasy. That link will take you directly to the review of the epic fantasy novel Choices Meant for Gods.

If you scroll up the page, you'll see that the entry is an entire online newsletter pertaining to books and features a contest where readers can win one of the novels featured in this month's issue. My fantasy author, Sandy Lender, recommends everyone enter the contest because it allows you to receive the free monthly newsletter, which allows you to stay on top of what's new in the realm of speculative fiction literature.

Enjoy the piece!

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Monday, July 30, 2007

She's in Marketing Mode

My fantasy author, Sandy Lender, gave me permission to talk about my bride's story today. And that pleases me just fine.

Amanda Chariss is the incredible heroine of the epic fantasy novel Choices Meant for Gods, which I encourage everyone to read. If you don't already have a copy, you can pick one up at any local book store. If it's not on the shelf, they can order it for you. Easily. If you don't feel like dealing with unruly book store employees, you can get it at http://www.amazon.com/o/ASIN/1595071652/ref=s9_asin_image_1-1966_g1/105-8001163-2859664?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=center-3&pf_rd_r=10TVDGS539SGZYCWCBRW&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=288448601&pf_rd_i=507846 or the publisher's site at http://www.archebooks.com/BookIDX/Indexes/Fantasy/CMG/CMGDesc.htm.

While you're waiting for it to arrive, let me tell you a little about it. You see, you can read the synopsis at Sandy's site at http://www.todaythedragonwins.blogspot.com/ or at the publisher's site at the link above, or at any number of the sites that hosted her during the two-month online book tour/virtual tour she just managed and completed, but I can give you the real synopsis.

All the marketing materials will tell you Choices Meant for Gods is an epic fantasy novel. All the propaganda and promotional pieces will tell you that Chariss is an orphan who's been on the run from an evil sorcerer all her life and she's finally found the will to stand and fight; and with that will has come the truth about her destiny and her purpose and her place in prophecy's evil plan to put her in charge of protecting a god who is not even worthy of her notice. But I can tell you that Amanda Chariss isn't just the protector of the gods of Onweald. She is the stunning and amazing woman who will change the course of my life. Now, Sandy has warned me not to make more of the romance between Mandy and me than the book portrays because we don't want people coming to the novel expecting a romance novel; you won't get one.

It's a fantasy novel. High fantasy with a new world that Sandy has created. High fantasy with new creatures and monsters that no other fantasy author has dreamt up before. High fantasy with gods and goddesses who walk among the mortals, influencing and affecting our lives—and not always for the better. High fantasy with prophecy and history and legends and family lineages that all interweave with current events to create an atmosphere that spells danger and intrigue for my bride.

It sets my nerves on edge, believe me. I'd rather it was a romance novel. For a variety of reasons. But for those who prefer a heavy hand at romance, you can pick out that thread under the rest of the plots in Choices Meant for Gods and be delighted with it…as I am.

For a spate of five-star reviews of Choices Meant for Gods, visit Sandy's page on Amazon.com at http://www.amazon.com/o/ASIN/1595071652/ref=s9_asin_image_1-1966_g1/105-8001163-2859664?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=center-3&pf_rd_r=10TVDGS539SGZYCWCBRW&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=288448601&pf_rd_i=507846. And stay tuned this week for a new review from a valuable source…Sandy will be announcing that over at her site at Today the Dragon Wins (http://www.todaythedragonwins.blogspot.com/) shortly. She's downright giddy about it.

All my best to you,
Nigel Taiman

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Sunday, July 29, 2007

She's Giving Away Cool Stuff

My fantasy author, Sandy Lender, is giving away free stuff. It's all intriguing merchandise, as well, I might add, so I recommend getting in on these easy contests.

The Book Trailer Contest
If you haven't yet read the epic fantasy novel Choices Meant for Gods—never fear. This contest is perfect for you. It involves no outlay of cash on your part.
1. Go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFg0kW_T-3g
2. Watch the trailer for Choices Meant for Gods
3. Rank it with a five-star rating AND leave an uplifting comment for its creator, Jamieson Wolf by Saturday, August 4

Just like that! You'll be entered in a contest to win a dragon-knife necklace that fantasy author Sandy Lender will send to you with some autographed piece of CMFG memorabilia.
Your deadline to enter The Book Trailer contest is this Saturday, August 4, so don't put it off!

The Photo Contest
If you have (or haven't) finished reading the epic fantasy novel Choices Meant for Gods (it's a 418-page book—you really get your money's worth), this contest is for you merely because you already own it.
1. Have a friend take a picture of you reading the book
2. E-mail the jpeg to KoraTaiman@yahoo.com with your physical address (so we know where to mail your winnings) by Saturday, August 18

Presto! You'll be entered in a contest to win a package of spa products from Arcana's bathing rooms. (Wait a minute…how come I don't get any of this stuff you're giving away?) Fine. The grand prize for the most creative photo gets the large package of spa goodies. The second-place prize for the person who just gets their name pulled from a hat (and, of course, true to form, it's a Duran Duran cap) is a slew of CMFG memorabilia—signed by the author.
Your deadline to enter The Photo Contest is Saturday, August 18, so get creative and get your picture taken!

The Scavenger Hunt Contest
This is actually not as complex as it sounds. If you've already read the epic fantasy novel Choices Meant for Gods, you can answer these three questions easily. If you haven't read the story of Amanda Chariss, go get it at http://www.amazon.com/Choices-Meant-Gods-Sandy-Lender/dp/1595071652/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/105-8001163-2859664?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1185119987&sr=1-1, but the questions can be answered by following the links in the hints offered in the questions.
1. Got to http://choicesmeantforgods.wordpress.com/2007/07/21/scavenger-hunt-contest-with-cmfg/
2. Answer the three questions in an e-mail to KoraTaiman@yahoo.com by Saturday, August 4
3. Be sure to mention The Scavenger Hunt Contest in your subject line

Easy as that…You're entered in the Scavenger Hunt Contest for a chance to win a mini-spa package of lavender goodies from Arcana's bathing rooms. (Do I really have to keep calling them "goodies"? What exactly are "goodies"? There's got to be a more masculine way I can refer to this…)
Your deadline to enter The Scavenger Hunt Contest is Saturday, August 4, so don't delay getting over to Kora's blog at http://choicesmeantforgods.wordpress.com/2007/07/21/scavenger-hunt-contest-with-cmfg/.

The Author Island Contest
How about winning an autographed copy of Choices Meant for Gods itself? The exquisite DeNita Tuttle is running a contest at http://www.authorisland.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=blogsection&id=6&Itemid=511.
1. Go to http://www.authorisland.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=blogsection&id=6&Itemid=511 and scroll down to the fabulous purple and orange fantasy cover with my bride's reflection shining off her sword
2. Click on the "email me your answers" link with the answers to the administrator's two simple questions by the September 30 deadline
3. DeNita will let you know after September 30 if you've won

Another easy one, don't you think?

So you have four simple opportunities to win good prizes from the Choices Meant for Gods marketing machine known as Sandy Lender. I recommend taking advantage of them all.

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She Hasn't Repressed This One, Careless Memory #3

A Glimpse into a Writer's Life

When my fantasy author, Sandy Lender, was in high school, she didn't date much (I understand that dating in your society is somewhat similar to courting in my society) because her parents flipped out on her and kept her basically "locked in the tower" and didn’t let her out except to go to school. This isn't to say that she had no interest in dating. You can't repress all that social conditioning. Turns out that during her junior year of high school, in fact, there was a lad by the name of Allen (or however he spelled it) who caught her eye.

(At this point I'm supposed to tell you that his name in no way influenced the character Godric Alan Taiman in the novel Choices Meant for Gods as the young man she knew was an intelligent, handsome gentleman and Godric…well…we all know my opinion of that fool.)

Here's the non-repressed memory that she's actually letting me share with you, if you can believe it. She rode in this huge yellow vehicle (bus?)… She rode the bus to get from her parents' house to her school each day and Allen sat next to her to discuss the gods only know what. So when she got to school and visited with her best friend, Christine (whom you've seen pictured on this blog, by the way), the conversation, of course, turned to the trip. As Sandy announced to her friend, "oh, guess who I got to sit next to on the bus," Christine's eyes bulged and she tried to stop Sandy from continuing. Yes, you know where this is going, don't you? The next thing Sandy knows, someone's chin has come to rest on her shoulder, Christine turns an amazing shade of red, and what equals a teenage girl's most embarrassing moment ensues. The lad said something to her to the effect of "who did you get to sit with?" to tease her, which I find very clever. I think I like this fellow very much.

I'm actually laughing as I type this. She tells the story better than I do because she's dramatic about it, you know. The sad ending to the story is that Allen's parents were divorcing and he moved to California (I don't know what that is…oh…oh, by the gods! That's half-way across the continent from you!)…

Well, I'm not laughing anymore. He moved to California with one of his parents about two or three weeks after that event and she never saw him again.

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Friday, July 27, 2007

She Needs to Stop Abby

My fantasy author, Sandy Lender, has taken the day off of work to get some personal items taken care of. So I have been given free access to the computer.

I feel almost giddy.

I wonder if this means she trusts me...

Hopefully this post won't result in her rescinding that trust. There's something I could use some help with (besides how to get the iTunes on this computer to stop looping a constant stream of Duran Duran songs). I'm sure you're all aware by now that the misguided Abigail Farrier has her own blog where she posts entries from her diary. This diary is a sampling of her ramblings from nearly a decade prior to the happenings of the story in Choices Meant for Gods. They are...well...embarrassing for the poor lady at best. I've asked Sandy to make Abby stop posting these things. Sandy seems to think they're merely good marketing ploys; will help build sympathy for the woman. I disagree.

Could those of you who are familiar with Abby or her blog at (and please don't hold this name against me) http://AbigailLovesNigel.blogspot.com please reply and let me (thus Sandy, who reads this) know that Abby's blog should be radically changed. I could use your support in this campaign.

Thank you for your help.

All my best,
(And if you aren't familiar with the character Abigail Farrier, you can read all about her by ordering your own copy of Choices Meant for Gods at http://www.amazon.com/Choices-Meant-Gods-Sandy-Lender/dp/1595071652/ref=cm_cd_t_h_dp_i/104-9089752-5140754.)

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