Month: December 2015

Off to Editing


One more step on the road to publication: COYOTE has been sent off to the editing and proofreading mavens. Now I bite my fingernails and see what horrors they come up with.

In other news, I figured out how to make an ebook file for myself and deliver COYOTE to my various Kindles. Feeling smart (for now).


Who speaks Czech?

CoyoteThe Tales of Coyote

One of the occasional difficulties encountered in writing stories is that the characters will do things that make life harder on the writer. As the writer I’m supposed to be in charge, right? But if this difficult thing the character does actually makes the story better, well, who am I to stop that?

So a character in the book Coyote decided to give readers a bit of a peek into her origins by speaking the occasional phrase in Czech. She had been raised in the United States of America since about the age of seven, but was born in the Czech Republic. So Czech was her first language, and it occasionally still slips out. (Yes, this is a real thing. It’s called “code-switching” and is totally fascinating. See example #1 here: Five Reasons People Code Switch)

Then the character kept doing it, and it became one of the many interesting layers that I think add up to a god story. So I had to let her keep on speaking Czech once in a while. My problem with this? It’s not what you think. I wasn’t particularly worried that the reader wouldn’t understand what she was saying. I actually though that made for a kind of twisted fun. My issue had a much more selfish flavor: I don’t speak Czech.

So here’s this character I’m writing about, she turns to say something in her native language to another character, and I type… skwownns sns. Gobbledygook. Later on, my gobbledygook got replaced by the helpful offerings of Google Translate. But I know there will be the occasional reader out there who does speak Czech, or whose grandma speaks Czech, or who is just better at using Google Translate than I. And that person is going ot be let down.

Enter my first foray into the world of professional translation. Surprisingly (or perhaps not, what with the interconnectedness of everything these days) there are lots of fast, affordable places to get a set of phrases translated from English to Czech. Who knew? (You did? Huh. Well I didn’t.) So I typed all the things my character wanted to say into a table, and sent that table off to some company I’d never heard of, hoping that some nicely translated Czech phrases would come back to me sometime.

And it worked! Amazing what you can get done with a little trust, a little hope, and a little internet. So a mere $50 later my character is speaking real Czech, which I still don’t understand, but which I at least feel so much better about. Yeah, I don’t understand it, and neither will most of my readers, but it’s good to know that all those things in my story that I don’t understand are at least correct.

Coyote Cover is Finished!

CoyoteThe Tales of Coyote


The cover for Coyote is finished and it is beautiful! I am hugely grateful to Dan Boris (Artist and illustrator, author of the children’s book Dozi the Alligator, and all around talented person) for his help in getting my dream that much closer to reality. After seeing that cover, even I want to read the book again (for perhaps the hundredth time).

Coyote Cover Shot

CoyoteThe Tales of Coyote


The cover photo for the book Coyote has been selected. A view of Mount Hood from just outside Sandy, Oregon. My thanks to my lovely model, who shall remain nameless, for coming out on a cold, winter’s day for this!

So now what?

Unfiled musings

Well the first issue with creating a website seems to be what the hell goes on the home screen? I’ve got all these subcategories and little areas of the site fully imagined in my head. Just not what goes on the home screen. Splashy photo, anyone?