From (Deep in the Heart of) Texas Hill Country

English: Texas Hill Country, on Route 187 head...

Texas Hill Country, on Route 187 heading North, just north of Garner State Park. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’ve spent the last few days in Texas Hill Country, visiting my aunt and working on a project. But before I tell you about that, let me walk you through her ranch.

My aunt Margie lives on a small ranch immediately outside of Utopia, Texas. When she first moved there a couple of decades ago, the smart-aleck kid I was thought the name was doubly appropriate; the idyllic climate and beautiful countryside were indeed paradisaical, and the location was, just like the original meaning of utopia, nowhere. Continue reading

Japanese Folklore Panel in Indianapolis

Momijigari (紅葉狩, the demon-woman of Mount Toga...

Momijigari (紅葉狩, the demon-woman of Mount Togakushi) from the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi (今昔百鬼拾遺) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Did you ever want to know the difference between a mononoke and an ayakashi? Do you know how to escape a kappa, if one wants to eat you? Have you ever wondered if you were missing some in-jokes in your favorite anime or Asian film? (Yes, very likely.)

Continue reading

Catch a Kitsune at Anime Crossroads!

Tengu as a kite-like monster, from Toriyama Se...

Tengu as a kite-like monster, from Toriyama Sekien’s Gazu Hyakki Yakō (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

You can find the two-hour panel “Japanese Folklore & Mythology: A Primer for Anime, Manga, & Film” at Anime Crossroads on Dec 8. Admission is included with con badge.

We’ll talk about Japanese folklore, supernatural creatures such as tengu and dragons and kitsune, why it’s smart to fart at a kappa, and when to greet your friends with, “Moshi moshi!” Continue reading

Signposts on the Way to “Making It” – Goals

Audiobook Collection

(Photo credit: C.O.D. Library)

It’s good to have realistic expectations as well as goals, right? And likely goals as well as shoot-for-the-moon goals, right? Authors — and everyone — should have many small goals as they make their way toward large goals.

So in a fit of procrastination from Real Work, I’ve compiled a just-for-fun list of things which would make me happy, small or large signposts on the way toward Arrived — wherever that is.

Continue reading

Announcement: a new book is coming soon

Laevatein & McCoy

Laevatein the Doberman and McCoy the skeleton

So you knew I was working on bringing Kitsune-Mochi to you, right? Did you know I’m also working on a non-fiction book?

My day job is in behavior, animal behavior specifically (though I’m also certified in TAGteach), and I’m working on a book in that field. Continue reading

How To Help Your Favorite Authors – Guest Post

A question I’ve received several times on Facebook or elsewhere is, How can we help promote? I love that people want to help me (and other authors) promote their books. Here’s a great little article by Lindsay Buroker on promoting an author’s work. Not just for me — do this for any book you enjoy!

As authors, we spend a lot of time trying to promote our books. Our biggest obstacle is obscurity because there are a lot of books out there. No, really. A lot. Continue reading