Yes, that’s right: my darling sister finished drawing the cover illustration for this novel, which is now in the process of publication. The link above leads to the official site, where there are purchase links to Amazon and Barnes & Noble. At the moment only the ebook versions are available; paperbacks will be out in the next couple of weeks.

The reason I’m using images rather than text here is that the book (and its series and its website) are PG-rated and dedicated to my young nephews and niece. Not like it’s a big huge secret that I’ve also written less family-safe stuff over here; I just don’t want some kid to go searching for the series or book title and turn up this archive. There’ll be plenty of opportunity for that when they’re older XD

So this book is YA portal fantasy. Yeah, it’s pretty much what I always write: a focus on character interaction and introspection against a backdrop of fantasy adventure. Fans of swashbuckling action may be disappointed, and the very nephews and niece to whom it’s dedicated may not like it, but I love it to pieces. And obviously I’ll be happy if anyone else reads and enjoys it!

Though I’m extremely happy as it is. The cover art is freaking gorgeous, and at the very least the Kindle ebook looks fantastic. Also? I’ve mentioned Alexa reads Kindle books aloud, right? I’ve been having her read mah very own novel to me from my Echo Dot lately, and it’s so much fun.

I’m still working on filling the official website with commissioned art; it’s been somewhat difficult, since the majority of the characters are non-human (and of those only a few of them even qualify as “anthro”), so a lot of artists aren’t up to drawing them. But it’s working out, and that’s exciting. I’ll draw some more art of my own for it eventually, too.

Anyway, I’m working on the second book, and eagerly awaiting the proof copies for the paperback editions. I’m ecstatic about this; it’s a project that’s been extremely long in the making, and now it’s finally in its final stage!

Funeral report and whatnot

Sister P joined us from Georgia, and brought Malachi, her youngest (except for the one that’s incubating), along with. I shared a hotel room with them, and since Malachi is 23 months old and got sick for a while, there was a lot of Disney Jr. and not a lot of sleep.

Dad was the main speaker at the funeral, and, as he has always been an incredibly good speaker, that went well. There were a couple of poor musical numbers (we are a family of choir voices, not soloists), including the obligatory couldn’t-get-through-the-last-verse-because-crying-too-hard piece. Then we went to the cemetery for a short graveside service, including the military honors.

At least one of the Air Force Honor Guard members was a woman, which meant more to me than most other things that happened around these events. And I think I cried harder than at anything else when the bugler played Taps. Then, when they fired the salute, little Malachi very cheerfully said, “Uh-oh!” and that was the best possible touch.

Grandma did not attend any of the gatherings, because her Alzheimer’s is progressed so far that she would only have been miserable and paranoid at such things, but we did visit her afterward. A very kind and dedicated cousin has been living with and taking care of her; well done that cousin, and may she have a just reward.

Mostle and Jakebii also joined us from Utah, and it was the first time all six members of my immediate family had been together for several years. That was nice, but dealing with extended family is always a pain in the ass.

Extended family (unless you keep in close touch with them) is essentially a group of strangers, and your chances are just as good with them as with an actual group of strangers of finding common interests to discuss. But since they’re family, you’re forced to interact with them. Oh, and did I mention they probably have all of your personal flaws, too? Ugh.

In happier news, I did get to watch the Broncos game in the hotel room on Sunday. I seriously thought we had no chance against the Pats a second time, so I was very pleasantly surprised! We’re going to the Super Bowl!!!

In the Denver airport, I had to take a selfie with the signs I’d read about on the internet, because I love thems:

One night, as I slept imperfectly in a hotel bed, I dreamed about a zombie infestation in the mansion I was in. I was trying to find a sock for one of them. Then the paladins arrived, led by Deanna Troi, and I knew we were shifting genres from survival horror to action. That was a relief.

We got home from Washington late (by my standards) on Monday evening, and Beeks spent an hour jumping four feet in the air. Today I went back to work tired and with a super cold out of nowhere (seriously it sprang at me at precisely 11:30 this morning), but it’s been a decent day. Next week we’ll go to Disneyland for a more cheerful time out of town.

My grandfather always loved photography so much that I must not neglect to end this entry with the customary random assortment of pictures.

Seriously what does this look like.

Once I saw this squirrel as I was pulling out of the garage.

OK, you can’t even see her if you increase the brightness, but WAYBEE IS IN THAT BOX. A black box was around, and even though it was on the counter where she’s not supposed to be, she couldn’t resist getting into it and camouflaging. Ju can just see a bit of one little foot. ACH WAYBEE.

You are the queen of many faces; how you can move me with just one glance

Today is a day of possibly going to the zoo! My father suggested we go to a restaurant tonight to celebrate my graduation, but in pondering where I would like to go my thoughts kept moving to Denver restaurants… and if one is going to Denver, WHAT ABOUT THE ZOO. (Or the aquarium; I love the aquarium in Denver too.) Of course that means giving up the choice of restaurant, since there is a place up there my mom adores that we have to go to if we go to Denver at all… BUT THE ZOO. In a few hours we may do this thing.


(The zebras were all clustered over in one corner of their area, and this was the best angle I could get.)

(I look like I’m meditating or something XD)

(I had never seen a peacock in person doing this, and it was so interesting how he rattled his tail and how the females were deliberately and ostentatiously ignoring him.)

(“Crocodile a gift of Gay and Lesbian Fund for Colorado,” says the sign. Other contributors to the zoo get their names on benches and stuff. Badass Gay and Lesbian Fund for Colorado gets a GAY CROCODILE.)

And I am, in fact, graduated. I turned in all my final paperwork and signed everything on Thursday. It is a lovely thing to be finished and to have an associate degree. Interestingly, my sister finished her school at almost exactly the same time, only hers is a bachelor’s. She has far more patience for school than I do. Ugh. School.

My interview on Friday felt like it went pretty well too. They’re very laid-back there, and thus it’s difficult to judge how the interview went by the usual standards of how an interview goes. But I got a much more detailed tour of the place, including what’s in which cupboard and such, and that’s pretty hopeful, I think.

An attractive lesbian, whom I had not seen before on my previous tour, works there. She was quite friendly and winning. That certainly didn’t lessen my desire to work there. Damn how straight I look right now.

An event of interest took place during the interview that I report in part because it seems like a promising thing and in part because it amused me. During my tour, the gal that was showing me around got stuck in the lab for a minute because someone asked her to put in an order for something. At this time, two of the doctors came in with a slide. Looking at it under the microscope, one of them says, “I think it’s a louse. Look at it; do you think it’s a louse?” The other doctor looks and says uncertainly that it’s probably a louse. “You guys can look at this and see if you think it’s a louse,” says the first doctor as they both go to look it up in a book of Things One Might See On A Microscope In A Vet Clinic.

I glance into the microscope as well, and immediately recognize the little guy (who is totally not dead and still waving his legs around, by the way). Say I, “That’s anoplura, the sucking louse.” And just then, they find him in the book, and confirm what I have just said. “Wow,” one of the doctors remarks, “she knew that right away.”

So possibly I impressed a couple of doctors because they happened to be looking at one of the things I can 100% positively identify. There are about thirty billion trillion things that might appear under a microscope, and it was pure luck that this was one I remembered. Maybe that luck will win me a job! Who knows? I will find out sometime this week.

Lately I’ve been having a lovely time sleeping in. I’ve been slowly getting a few other things on my to-do list done, too. However, if I get hired at this place that interviewed me and my free time is over, I won’t complain.

Cantata went well. I was especially impressed with the women’s unison last night. Sometimes during rehearsal, our attempts at unison make me wince, but last night I thought we sounded pretty good. The soloists managed not to embarrass us, which is really all you can ask of a volunteer choir. Yesterday I had the most amazing headache, and some of the high notes did not help, but I survived.

Now to talk about some dreams.

I often have dreams wherein I find a nerdstore full of merchandising and manga and CD’s and stuff. Usually, a lot of time spent in the store eventually tells me that there’s nothing there I’m interested in, and it’s very disappointing. This dream was a little different.

In it, my siblings and I had all, apparently, been adopted at a young age (though if we were all children of the same biological parents, I must have been at least 10 when the adoption took place, since that was my age when my brother was born; the dream seemed to gloss over this detail), but none of us had ever known our biological parents. They had died, and we were looking through their house at all the stuff they’d left behind, and what should we discover in the basement but half a world’s worth of nerdy stuff *__*

There were shelves and shelves and shelves of audiobooks, and while I was looking through them seeing which ones I wanted, I noticed a corner dedicated to Rurouni Kenshin stuff. The only things I remember clearly were some stamps (like this sort of stamp, not the kind you put on letters) and some doujinshi. Of one doujinshi title, which was about Sayo and therefore not terribly interesting, there were about eight copies.

This seems like a really insensitive dream XD “Oh, our biological parents have died? I GET ALL THE AUDIOBOOKS.” But I do sometimes dream about discovering a cache of RK merchandising that I’m allowed to have. At some point during my internship, brother and I escaped some bad situation by getting into a spaceship and flying to an alien planet. The aliens welcomed us with this ritual they had where we crawled around these circular shelves high above a room, and on the shelves I discovered a bunch of Kenshin stuff that slowed me up quite a bit.

Another type of dream I have sometimes is one in which I’m dating a dude. It’s always very awkward and uncomfortable, especially if he’s one of the actual guys I dated in real life before I realized I’m gay. The one exception to this is Saitou; if Saitou’s in my dream, I have no issue whatsoever with the fact that he’s male. Usually I’m head-over-heels in love with him, and he either doesn’t recognize my feelings or pretends not to (either just to mess with me or because he’s not interested). Sometimes we’re even pretty good friends (or partners in some badass pursuit), and he still doesn’t appear to notice what I want. On very rare occasions, we actually hook up.

The other night, I had such a dream. Saitou was a policeman or security guard (go figure) and wore as part of his uniform a checkered hat that should have looked very silly but, because it was a dream, only made him more handsome. And he was a fan of musicals, but he’d seen many more than I had, so my attempts to bond with him over this were something of a failure. Too bad for me.

Going Home

Today we are driving home. Yay home! I will see my cat ^__^ We had fun at Mostle’s house, though; she has the best house ever. I got to meet her cat and her fish and her frog, but I was already tolerably familiar with the rats. I wish we could have stayed longer. This vacation has been five days long, but it feels like nearly all of it has been spent driving. I don’t mind long drives at all, but that did mean a lot less time with relatives.

So I will be in the car all day. Anyone that wants to email me something interesting is certainly welcome to!

Medical concerns revisited, Sixx A.M., Duoface, vacating

So that weird lump in the back of my neck? It seems to have diminished, and the pain is entirely gone. I haven’t had the crampy whatevers for the last couple of nights. So that seems hopeful.

My brother sent me Sixx A.M.’s new album today, and this song Live Forever makes me think Heero/Duo. Evidently I’ve reached that stage. What am I talking about… I hit that stage, like, a year ago. Speaking of Duo, I am drawing the most epic picture. It was probably unwise to start a tablet drawing so soon after a bad wrist episode, but it gripped me all vicey. I just hope I can get it done before we go… and then I’ll have several days of no large amounts of computing. Because did I mention? We’re going to Utah this week. I finally get to see Mostle’s house and her cat. Good jobon that!!

I had more to say, but now I don’t feel like it. So I shall work on my picture fora bit longer and then go to bed.