Tag Archives: Jethro Tull

Rob’s Update: Madness Recovery Program

Week 32 of 2023

Greetings all


It’s the 2nd Thursday of Pennsic and that means one thing: It’s the day after Moonlight Madness, which means everything is slow in the merchant area.

Moonlight Madness is as much roaming around with friends in the merchant area as it is a shopping time. We had a great evening, with a lot of traffic interested in our vine-ripened, organic, dolphin-safe madness, so it was a lot of fun.

Overall, Pennsic has been incredibly busy. My writing output is nowhere near what I expected, but that’s because we’ve sold way more than ever. In fact, on Monday, we’d sold more than we had at any previous Pennsic. There were several irregular expenses for this Pennsic having to do with the new trailer and other such things so I hoped to break even. We did way better than that.

I got 20 copies of A Lake Most Deep and I sold them. In fact, I had people coming up asking for The Eyes of a Doll. And Where Now the Rider. So all that is exciting.

That being said, I did make some progress on Farewell, My Ugly. I got through an editing pass to catch up with where I’d lost track during the move, and I added a number of scenes to conclude various threads. I’d hoped to be in the 90s by the end of the week, but the 80s with a lot of sales will have to do.

I also had quite a bit of interest in Rob’s Riddles. Obviously, more subscribers there would be very nice.

I entitled this Madness Recovery Program, but the truth is there’s so much left to do before leaving, that program will have to start when we get home. We have the kingdom party tonight then the long process of packing out. I should be on the road Saturday morning and it’ll be good to get back to the kitties.

With that, I better take care of the customers coming into my store.

What I’m Listening To

Conversations around the merchant area, like last week. It’s a beautiful day here and people are strolling about enjoying the last couple of days of Pennsic. A pair of friends are warping the last two looms I have for sale, and they’re talking weaving stuff that is way too complicated for me.

Quote of the Week

Happy birthday to Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull! That’s one of my favorite bands ever, which is probably not a real surprise.

This quote is from Skating Away on the Thin Ice of a New Day, which is in my top 10 songs of all time.

“You were bred for humanity and sold to society.
One day you’ll wake up in the present day,
a million generations removed from the expectations
of being who you really want to be.”
– Jethro Tull, Skating Away on the Thin Ice of a New Day

Rob’s Riddles

I have a Patreon where I write Old English style riddles and provide snippets of my work. You can find it here: patreon.com/rhodri2112, along with a sample riddle.

First Line of Next Riddle:

I am a king      Conquering all before me

Latest Snippet: Chapter 2 of A Lake Most Deep

New Mythology Works in Progress

Of note, this now includes our recent releases, so if you’re not sure what we’ve put out lately, you can go here and check.

Rob’s Works in Progress

  • Sowing Spring’s Wrath (3,213)
  • Farewell, My Ugly (80,232)
  • Rick Blaine (8,845)
  • The Feasting of Vengeance (3,405)

Upcoming Events

New Releases

Book 9 in Chris Kennedy and J.N. Chaney’s Uplink Squadron MilSF series is out! This one is Uplink Squadron: To Rule in Heaven and you can get it here: amazon.com/gp/product/B0C6L99R43.

And, of course, A Lake Most Deep, book 1 of the Firehall Sagas is live. You can get it here: amazon.com/dp/B0CCKVLPBL.

Your pre-release this week is more MilSF awesomeness! It’s Stand on Xanadu, book 9 in John E. Siers’ amazing Lunar Free State series. Get it here: amazon.com/dp/B0CF441GQ7.

Tracked Items

Today’s Weight: 352.0

Updated Word Count: 208,641

Firehall Sagas Archives: 743 entries

Let me know if you have any suggestions on the website, this email, or cool story ideas at rob@robhowell.org. Especially let me know of suggestions you have for the Spotlight section.

Have a great week, everyone.

Rob Howell

Creator of the Firehall Sagas Universe

Rob’s Update: T-Minus 9 Days

Week 24 of 2022

Greetings all

No, the title doesn’t refer to the release of Todd Fahnestock’s Lorelle of the Dark. That one’s only 4 days, 4 hours, and 38 minutes away.

If you haven’t heard it’s the direct sequel to Khyven the Unkillable. By the way, you may notice that Khyven has a new cover, and it might get yet another at the end of the month. It is currently a finalist for the Colorado Book of the Year, which will get announced at the end of the month.

It’s also a great book to nominate for the Dragon Awards.

Speaking of which, if you have put in your nominations, you should go do so. Here’s the link: dragoncon.org/awards/.

Anyway, this week’s title refers to the running joke of late between me and my sweetie. That’s how much time we have left to “escape.” She even downloaded an app that will give the time down to the seconds.

We have similar, dark senses of humor, which is why we’re suited to each other.

Anyway, this past week has been wedding prep and editing primarily. I did get one day of writing in, but no more. Things will switch down the road, though.

At Lilies, I’ll be doing a bunch of work but not on my computer. Just to let you all know, I will probably do a placeholder update in two weeks, as I’ll still be there.

Tonight, though, there’s more editing.

What I’m Listening To

Jethro Tull’s Thick as a Brick, the full 22:40 minute long song. I love the short version that you hear on the radio, but the full version is so much more

Quote of the Week

Today is Keith Laumer’s birthday. He was one of the greats and sometimes doesn’t get enough recognition. The Retief series is brilliant space opera satire. The list of authors who’ve written in his Bolo Universe is like looking at the 1927 Yankee lineup, a huge list of all-timers.

Anyway, here’s a quote that has always been true.

“Baby, after considerable thought I’ve reached the conclusion that the only conceivable legitimate answer to the Universe as constituted is a peal of hysterical laughter.”

– Keith Laumer

Dudes In Hyperspace

Follow the Dudes In Hyperspace here:

The latest show includes a great interview with the effervescent Marisa Wolf.

Cool Stuff In Eldros Legacy

Get five free stories and signed up with the Eldros Legacy mailing list! Here There Be Giants is at: https://dl.bookfunnel.com/qabsr57lq3+.

Lorelle of the Dark by Todd Fahnestock is coming on the 14th!

Currently available:

Get all the Eldros Legacy novels at: amazon.com/dp/B09Z9WVKYV

New Mythology Works in Progress

2023 FantaSci Short Story Contest open call.

The theme is Bonds of Valor, and you story must include deeds of valor centered around bonds between characters. This could be a romantic relationship, a buddy adventure, oaths to kings, or whatever you can come up with.

Deadline: November 30th, 2022
Word Count: 7-10,000 words
Specifics: Times New Roman, 12 point font, 1.5 line spaced.

It must also be a fantasy story. Any type is welcome, urban, epic, high, western, gothic, whatever, it just have to have magic. Finally, it cannot have been published anywhere else before.

I’m currently working on The Forgotten King, the next Eldros Legacy novel.

Rob’s Works in Progress
  • Sowing Spring’s Wrath (xx)
  • Farewell, My Ugly (10,739)
  • Rick Blaine (8,845)
  • CB (8,418)
Upcoming Events
New Releases

This week you can get a new 4HU novel, As My Witnesses! This one is by Sandra L. Medlock and Casey Moores with Robert E. Hampson. Oh, to have been a fly on the wall with those planning sessions.

And remember, Lorelle of the Dark comes out Tuesday the 14th!

Tracked Items

Today’s Weight: 324.6

Updated Word Count: 142,243

Eldros Legacy Archives: 813 entries

Let me know if you have any suggestions on the website, this email, or cool story ideas at rob@robhowell.org. Especially let me know of suggestions you have for the Spotlight section.

Have a great week, everyone.

Rob Howell

Founder in the Eldros Legacy series

Interview: C.M. DeMott

Greetings all

We continue this series of interviews with another finalist, C.M. DeMott. Many of you will get to meet her at FantaSci. More of you might know her as Morgan Wolfsinger in the SCA, a renowned bard and storyteller.

C.M. DeMott

  1. Why are you here? This includes influences, favorite creators, steps along the way, and dreams down the road.
C.M. DeMott
C.M. DeMott

I am influenced primarily by JRR Tolkein, Ursula K. Le Guin, Michael Moorcock, Rudyard Kipling, Susan Cooper and Rosemary Sutcliff. Also, Peter S. Beagle, Manly Wade Wellman, Neil Gaimon, and Charles DeLint.

I decided to write because stories are a door into a different place. A way to meet new friends and challenges, where you control the outcome. I choose to create because the stories inside me want out.

My goal is to get a series of novels I wrote published.

  1. Describe your great Lab of Creation? This includes where you work, what do you listen to (if anything), things you have to have in your work environment, and stuff you’ve tried that haven’t worked.

I work in my tower. Yes, really. My office is in a tower. I’m surrounded by books, model horses, and my airbrushing stuff.

I usually listen to music, notably Heather Dale, Metallica, Evanescence, Nickleback, Jethro Tull.

I have to have a place where I can’t be easily interrupted.

  1. What are your superpowers? This includes things you like your creations, specific techniques you do well, and some favorite successes.

I want magic, unicorns, dragons, music, and smart characters who can learn from what I throw at them in my creations.

I think I do best with writing poetry and setting a scene.

What are specific techniques you do well? Poetry. Setting a scene.

My biggest successes so far are self-publishing 7 CDs of my own music and getting 2 short stories published.

  1. What will Lex Luthor use to defeat you? This includes challenges you’ve faced that frustrated you, learning experiences, techniques for overcoming creative challenges, things you’d have done differently, and advice for new writers.

My biggest challenge is making time to write.

One of my most productive failures was a really horrible customized model horse. Gave me a better eye for perspective and anatomy.

Whenever I have a slow point, I switch to a more physical activity, like sculpting, or to writing music. Switching to a different character story line also helps.

The biggest thing I’d tell new creators is to keep trying. Analyze what you’re doing that isn’t working, and try to find a way around the road block. For myself, I wish I could go back and pay more attention to grammar and punctuation.

Lightning Round
  • Favorite Muppet? Kermit, of course.
  • Favorite Musical Performer We’ve Never Heard Of(Ed. Note: I put this here to help us all find cool new things to listen to. She didn’t provide an answer here, so I will point out that she’s got 7 CDs available. Just sayin’)
  • Winter, Spring, Summer, or Fall? Winter
  • Favorite Superhero? Dr. Strange
  • Best Game Ever? Circus Maximus
  • Favorite 1970s TV show? Dark Shadows
  • Do You Have Pets? (provide pictures if you want) 3 cats
  • Favorite Weird Color? Dappled silver black.
  • Favorite Historical Period? 450-550 CE British Isles.
  • Steak Temperature? Rare
  • Favorite Chip Dip?  None
  • Beverage(s) of Choice? Black tea

Tell me again where we can find your stuff?

Where can we find you?

  • FantaSci Con this March in NC
  • The Pennsic War (August 2022, PA)

Do you have a creator biography?

C. M. DeMott is a small animal veterinarian living in southwest Virginia. Since discovering the Society for Creative Anachronism in 1976, she has been writing and performing original ballads based on legend, faery tales, and myths under the name Morgan Wolfsinger.

She currently has seven CDs out, and is working on an eighth. “Choices” in Talons and Talismans II was her first published story. “Fluffers” in The Keen Edge of Valor is her second. You can find her music at morganwolfsinger.bandcamp.com.

* * * * *

Thanks to Cathy for hanging out, and I can’t wait to hear her play something at FantaSci.

Rob’s Update: Great Feast for Ravens

Week 45 of 2020

Greetings all

What a really productive week here in Robland. I finished my read-through of None Call Me Mother, and I’ll have all the tweaks and details finished on the manuscript no later than Monday. Probably tomorrow. That’s even with taking time off today to game.

It was actually the swiftest verbal read-through I’ve had so far, in part because I kept wanting to read more. I still cry at the spots I want to cry at and I get excited in the battle scenes. One of the reasons I think writers start writing is they want the kind of fiction they want to read themselves. I love this series. I’ve hated writing it at times, but now it’s something I’m really proud of.

I also had time this week to finish another Shijuren story, this one set in Achrida involving Edward and the characters there. It’s a twist though. Let’s just say, I chose the most unlikely, most reluctant hero I could think of for my entry in the anthology. Anyway, it needs editing, but it’s not vaporware.

Speaking of which, I got completely caught up on that, too. What a week. We even decided upon a title. The title of Libri Valoris II will be: Songs of Valor.

I did some work on the wiki, too, of course, though a lot of it was to create links and placeholders to finish a hyperlinked version of the manuscript. That’s what I’m going to be doing today.

I stacked a lot of productive days this past week and it’s time for me to start on next week.

What I’m Listening To

Songs from the Wood by Jethro Tull. It should come as no surprise that I really enjoy Tull’s weird combination of music. Skating Away on the Thin Ice of a New Day is in my top 10 ever.

Quote of the Week

This week’s quote comes from the Ruriksaga. What’s the Ruriksaga? Glad you asked. It’s the story of how Periaslavl came to be in Shijuren. I thought it was time to use my poetry skills again so I added part of it to the story.

Volodomyr spoke,            son of Rurik
Here my father fell,          fated for Woden’s hall
Our ring-giver gifted        great feast for ravens
His spear shattered          his sword sundered
In the flickering                 of flame’s glory
We shall remember           rightly of his deeds
Now feed to fire’s wrath   my father’s life-house
And here a hall                  high shall we raise
He shall be called              king in mind-songs

News and Works in Progress

  • The Ravening of Wolves (32,068)
  • ACP (10,077)
  • CB (8,418)
  • Cynewulf (8,642)
  • Gato (2,312)

Recent Blog Posts and Wiki Additions

  • Lots of Wiki Additions.

Upcoming Events

New Releases

The first new release is from a very old friend, Kirsten Tautfest. I remember us not quite being of age drinking at Kirby’s, still one of the coolest bars ever. Anyway, she just released the 15th in her Red Tales series, called Red Tales: Compartment Syndrome. You can find it here: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08N5L1Q6J/.

There’s also a new 4HU story out this week! This one is by Casey Moores, and it’s got a new company that has a different mission than all the other merc units. It’s called These Things We Do: The Story of Bull, and you can find it here: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08N5ZJRYV.

Today’s Weight: 353.8

Updated Word Count: 244,421

Shijuren Wiki: 376 entries

Let me know if you have any suggestions on the website, this email, or cool story ideas at rob@robhowell.org. Especially let me know of suggestions you have for the Spotlight section.

Have a great week, everyone.

Rob Howell

Currently Available Works
Four Horsemen Universe
The Phases of Mars
Short Stories

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