Sunday, December 29, 2013

Up my Alley – International CES 2014


Photo Credit: Chelle/Morgue Files




Do you suppose I’m the only fiction writer manning a booth at an electronics show? This is the place where people from all over the world come to network about the most cutting edge consumer electronic technology. Last year there were dancing robots, brainwave reading headbands, and nano technology that could waterproof your gadgets.


A fiction writer’s draw to the event is fairly obvious. How many times have dancing robots hatched a secret plot to take over the world? The brainwave reading headbands are an Orwellian delight. Waterproof electronics, well that’s just cool. Who doesn’t want to take their Kindle in the hot tub?


Can hardly wait to see what fodder other imaginations are providing mine this year.


Why, you may be wondering, does anyone want to take a fiction writer to that annual mega tradeshow that swallows the entire Las Vegas convention center, its parking lot, and many of its larger hotels? What can I offer the high-tech world of logic?



  1.  I’m cheap. 
  2. The marketing world is already run by fiction writers. (Am I wrong?)
  3. Oddly enough this is a world I’ve spent quite a bit of time in.
  4. I speak geek.
  5. So see me for all your engiNERDing needs. I’ll hook you up with Dilbert.


Sadly I will not be signing my Action Adventure Fantasy books at the show. Yeah, the boss nixed that. Spock Techies can be such a joy killer. Muttered something about actually working for a living, I didn’t catch the whole thing, my Vulcan is pretty rusty. 






Thursday, December 26, 2013

Rapient Sugar

Photo Credit: Kurt100/Morgue Files


What does that mean? Seize the sugar. I googled it, so it must be correct.


My inner fat kid steals. While I eat healthy, she carries on like life is a Dickens novel and burrows under a blanket with a book and the emergency goldfish crackers. I caught her trying to steal chocolate someone hid in the freezer. (Stupid move, Someone. Like you don’t know my inner fat kid scouts out the freezer?) I force her to eat healthy food, but she fights it. I order an amazing salad at Panera, and refuse adding on a cookie, but she interrupts and bellows, “Don’t listen to the skinny witch! I want a cookie! I want two cookies!” Whenever I go in Panera, they get very quiet and the manager comes over to wait on me. Like none of them have ever seen an inner fat kid tantrum before?


She has absolutely no respect for reality either. My inner fat kid doesn’t care if we can fit into our jeans, she doesn’t even care if we can fit into coach seats. Some people are born color-blind, and she’s like that with her muffin top bulge. She’ll tug on my favorite long sleeved t-shirt and by-pass the full-length mirror, secure in the knowledge that from the neck-up there is no evidence of Christmas cookies. Right now she’s riding her holiday sugar high and there is no reasoning with her. It is with this brat that I must work through edits for the next week. I will be forcing spinach smoothies on her, so if you see her just ignore the screaming pleas for Hershey Kisses.


Like I’d feed ANYONE milk chocolate. Sheesh.


Especially when I have a lovely dark chocolate stash that she doesn’t even know about.


Today she cleaned the entire house just to avoid the Stairmaster. She has a very impolite nickname for the Stairmaster. As she busied herself breaking up cardboard boxes for recycling, I’m pretty sure she felt the Stairmaster eyeing her love handles because she kept tugging her shirt over them self-consciously. Tomorrow while Fifty Shades of Payday is whipping her into shape, I’ll let her screech out “THANKS OBAMA” which seems to amuse her during the ordeal. It’s going to be a rough week of veggie penance, the red room of gym-pain (which is actually yellow), and book edits (which is like the peas on the succotash because we daren’t use the icing on the cake metaphor since she’s fallen off the wagon in Candyland).


But you know, like every parent says, “I’m doing this because I love you inner-fat-kid.” And “You’ll thank me someday.” I probably shouldn’t tell you what her response to that is. I think she’s entering the teen years, and has been watching way too much cable.


Is anyone else having these troubles with their IFK lately? 

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Your Christmas Present!


Photo Credit: S. R. Karfelt


Guess wot?! I have something for you. For real. It's only good from today until Christmas though. My book, Warrior of the Ages, is free on Amazon (the kindle version).

So check it out, CLICK HERE!

What if you don't have a kindle/e-reader? What if you're one of those old school readers who wants a paperback copy? Well, I have something for you too. Leave me a comment and tell me what your most favorite Christmas present was, and I'll send an autographed paperback to one of you. Winner will be chosen randomly using random.org, and the cut-off will be midnight Christmas. So comment before then!

CONTEST EXPIRED. WINNER CHOSEN!

S. R. Karfelt
Very Merry!






Tuesday, December 17, 2013

More of What People Really Mean


Photo Credit: Stephanie Karfelt



If you ever need anything, call me. I hope you don’t, but I do care.

Do I look okay in this? Please say yes.

You have a very comfortable house. Mine’s neater.

What kind of car do you drive? What’s in your wallet?

Take Care! Don’t let anything bad happen to you, cause it would totally stress me out!

Can I get you anything while I’m out? While I’m running multiple errands on my lunch break. Don’t even.

Have a Good Day! I’m done talking now.

What a surprise! It’s so nice to see you! I’d totally forgotten about you until now.

See you around! I’m not putting any effort into it though.

Happy Holidays! Merry Christmas, but we’re not allowed to say what we mean anymore.



Sometimes I wake up at 3:00 a.m. and add to this list. My husband snores. Making this list makes me listen to myself speak quite critically. Don’t think I’m doing it when you talk though. I can’t usually hear you over the stories in my head. Please feel free to add to my list! I love it when you talk to me. Is anyone out there?








Friday, December 13, 2013

Finding Beth at The Glitter Globe


The Glitter Globe S. R. Karfelt




Finding Beth is a romance novel coming out on December 20th, 2013. This is Linnette R. Mullin’s first novel and she’s been working on this story for quite some time. The road to publication is paved with waiting rooms. Because she’s sweet and trusting Linnette has agreed to answer some questions for me today.

So shine the spotlight directly on her and let the interrogation games begin! Meet my buddy, Linnette R. Mullin. We crossed paths on a blog thread, and again at a writing event, and I'm pretty sure we're destined to cross paths forevermore.

Linnette Mullin Vists The Glitter Globe


Do you suppose that the reason you used the name Beth in your novel, and the reason I used the name Beth in my novel has anything at all to do with Kiss’s song Beth? Perhaps a subliminal in vitro message long, long ago? Because I could not change my character Beth’s name, it HAD to be Beth. Did your Beth HAVE to be Beth?

Hmm... I hadn't thought of that. I couldn't change my character's name, either!!! It would have to be very subliminal as I can't for the life of me remember the song. Let me go listen. Maybe it will jar a memory. Be right back...

Tapping of keys and clicking of play button. Listening. Listening. Listening...

I'm back. Nope. Sorry! There's nothing there beyond a mild, nagging familiarity that I can't quite grasp. So, I'll stick with my original reason for calling her Beth. And, yes, I do believe this was more subliminal than an "on purpose" thing. When I became pregnant with my first baby, John and I picked out a girl name right away - Rachel Elizabeth. We never had our girl, so Beth (whose full name is Elizabeth Grace) was named after never-had-daughter. I think. Regardless, I couldn't change her name. It would be like trying to change one of my boys' names. Impossible! Christopher is Christopher. Andrew is Andrew. Matthew is Matthew. Garrison is Garrison. So, Beth is Beth. 

What kind of shoes does your Beth like to wear?

Boots. She loves boots! In the summer, its sassy sandals (preferably low heels) and keds. Pinterest pics here: http://www.pinterest.com/LinnetteRMullin/fashions-for-beth/

Oh my stars, I LOVE that you have posted her shoes on Pinterest!

Did I mention I love Linnette? 

In a nutshell, Linnette,  what is Finding Beth about? (Go ahead and make it a walnut, it gives you more room for words than a hazelnut.)

Walnut? Really? Yay! Okay. Here goes:

Three years ago, Beth Gallagher lost her brother, Josh, in a tragic accident. Grief-stricken and estranged from her father, she turned to the one man her brother warned her about — Kyle Heinrich.

Now she’s discovered his dark side.

She flees to the Smoky Mountains to clear her mind and seek God’s will about her impending marriage. With the help of a new friend, she finds the answers she needs, but will she have the resolve to follow through? And, if so, what will it cost her?

Adam Blythe had given up on finding a woman to love him for himself rather than his money. Committed to caring for his ailing mother and running the family business, he suddenly finds his heart entangled with a woman already spoken for. Can he find a way to protect her?

Kyle Heinrich is used to getting his way, so when his fiancĂ©e leaves town without a word, he is furious. When she returns with a new man by her side, he determines to make her his — one way or another.


How long has this story been rolling around inside your heard?

Well, I'm not sure it ever rolled around in my heard (hehe), but the story took seed about 6-7 years ago. I wrote Beth's first words in January 2008. Except for one scene. That scene has plagued me since I was a teen and we just won't go into how many years ago that was. ;) It took about 3 1/2 years to write the first draft, another 1 1/2 years to edit and rewrite and edit some more. Then, another year to go through the publishing process. Whew! What a whirlwind it has been!


Is this story out now? Or will there be more books related to this one? And will any of your female characters be named Carole? Just wonderin’….

"Finding Beth" is available for pre-order on my website and on CrossRiverMedia's website right now! It releases in bookstores this Friday (the 20th)!!! Ah! My first baby finally has a birthday - December 20, 2013! Of course, my boys contend it's baby number five. I can't imagine why. ;)

Oh! I almost forgot. Carole? No. I have no current plans to name a character Carole, though I do have family members with that name so I suppose it's possible... I'm guessing your next book has a Carole?


It sure does, and that was my subtle way of trying to lay claim to the name. Thank you for visiting The Glitter Globe today, Linnette! Good luck with the book! I'm looking forward to adding it to my shelf.

For a chance to win a FREE copy of Finding Beth, be sure to leave a comment below (with an email or a way for us to find you if you do win!). And be sure to tell me what kind of shoes you wear. Your name will go into a "hat" for a drawing. For more details, check out Linnette's website.

For more information, visit:

To purchase “Finding Beth”, go to:
www.LinnetteRMullin.com – Finding Beth Tab



Sunday, December 8, 2013

These are a few of my Favorite Scenes #1

Since I'm busy editing my next book, I'm sharing an excerpt from Warrior of the Ages today. Some scenes write themselves, and some characters, Sherman Kelts of Kelts, Phelps, and Associates, just make my job so easy!

Photo Credit: S. R. Karfelt



Sherman Kelts picked Beth up from the police station in his Jag-You-Are as he called it. He announced she could pay him back by treating him to lunch.
At the Bistro of his choice in downtown Cleveland, Beth watched as Sherman actually sniffed the wine cork. Deaf to her protests he insisted on filling her glass to the top with the shockingly expensive beverage.
“You’ll love it. Just taste it.”
“I don’t drink.”
“Wine isn’t drinking.” Sherman took a large mouthful and swished it around like mouthwash. Beth decided Sherman seemed like the sort of man who could have a perfectly happy lunch with very little response on her part, quite possibly none.
Settling comfortably into her cushioned pew, Beth ignored her lawyer and the wine. She ate her organic salad, quietly thrilled to have found what her mother always called real food. Sherman ranted about retribution for her false arrest. Beth occupied her mouth with chewing to keep from arguing, almost thankful for his soliloquy.

After a hopeful examination of the dessert tray, she settled on a Buy Local Fruit Compote. The waitress, a pretty redhead appropriately named Kelli, lifted the glass dish straight from her tray, setting it on the table in front of Beth. Several blueberries rolled over the edge, and Beth nabbed them off her lap, popping them into her mouth.
“Mmm, organic.”
“Organic is a gimmick. Just a way to get you to pay more,” said Sherman.
“Actually no it isn’t,” said Beth. Kelli winked at her and turned away with the luscious tray of desserts.
“For the price of that fruit, you should have gone with strawberry shortcake. Now that’s dessert – homemade cake and ice-cream. Killer fattening though. Looks like Kelli might be a big fan, if you know what I mean.” There could be no doubt that Kelli had heard every word, but she continued smiling at the couple at the next table.
 Unable to stop the truth tumbling from her lips Beth glanced pointedly at her lawyer’s paunch while he shoveled in a double chocolate cheesecake.
“Kelli and I both know exactly what you mean, and I couldn’t disagree more. You’re very observant of the perceived faults of others, but you seem blind to your own.”
“Don’t take it personally, Beth. You could eat everything on that tray without a worry.”
“Thank you, Sherman. Perhaps I should.”
Holding his fork and a hand out defensively, he said, “I didn’t mean to say that you’re too skinny. Though women look better a little underweight and that’s a fact.”
Beth motioned to Kelli, who rolled her eyes a bit and returned. She slid the check across the polished antique table. Beth immediately slipped her credit card into it, handing it back to the gorgeously curvaceous waitress. Counselor Kelts continued stuffing his feet in his mouth until the woman returned to whisper that the card had been declined.
The same was soon true of all three of Beth’s credit cards.
While Sherman submitted his take on the wisdom of purchasing a house beyond one’s means, Beth rooted in her bag, thankful to locate enough cash to keep her out of any further debt to Mr. Kelts.
“You can’t be serious.” Kelli shoved the extra fifty back at Beth.
“Don’t worry, I actually can afford it. Besides, you earned it,” Beth said.

“Thanks.” Kelli stuffed it into her pants pocket, and nodded towards Sherman. “I’ll use it to buy more cake.”


Reprint from Warrior of the Ages, Chapter Seven by S. R. Karfelt
Copyright 2013
S. R. Karfelt All Rights Reserved
Votadini Publishing ~ Horace Tupper Books


Photo Credit: S. R. Karfelt
Nicole Mason Photography
Big books move slow, that is my theory. I'm slowly making my way through edit number one of my next book. I'm donating a pile of copies of Warrior of the Ages to the local library this week, and ten copies head out from my latest Goodreads giveaway! I'm wrapping up Christmas packages to mail, and guess what I'm giving? Anytime is book time in this writer's opinion. Do you like to get books for Christmas? What book would thrill you?



Friday, December 6, 2013

What People Really Mean



Photo Credit: Missy Lynne



That’s a great picture of you. You don’t look anything like that.

Did you lose weight? You kinda need to.

You look younger. You’re old.

Do you feel okay? Cause you sure don’t look it.

What do you do? It’s time to categorize you.

Do you have any children? I hope you’ve done something productive with your life, because your job isn’t very impressive.

Are you married? If asked by the same sex it means, let’s see if we have anything in common. If asked by the opposite sex, you’re going to take it as a compliment no matter what they mean.

Where are you from? It’s time to rate your IQ and make rash assumptions. (It’s true, think Texas, Cleveland, or California – told ya.)

I’m sorry, do I know you? Why are you talking to me?

Thank you so much, you have a great day and come back soon! Thanks for buying stuff here, come back when you have some more money.

Can I help you? What do you want/Spend money or leave.

Your kids all look like you. Shallow gene pool.

Do you have a dog? I do and if you don’t there is nothing more we need to say to each other.


It was another night of deep thoughts. My mind wanders during edits. Do you have anything to add to my list? 



Wednesday, December 4, 2013

A Horse of a Different Color: My Clone's Reply to a Senator


*Since I'm busy pretending to edit my next book, my beloved Clone has allowed me to share her latest blog post here. I think it fits well into The Glitter Globe.

DISCLAIMER: My books make way more sense than my blog. I just feel compelled to say that.



Photo Credit: S. R. Karfelt


Dear Senator,

As you replied to my letter and addressed nothing even close to what I’d written about, but only wasted my time with a long letter that made no sense to me, I decided I could do the same.

Unicorns with purple horns are the rarest of unicorns. They, like ducks, are only pretty when males, as the females with purple horns are not the glorious white but actually a muddy brown - often mistakable for regular horses. Which gets me on the subject of purple ponies, but that really is a horse of a different color. Did you ever watch the Wizard of Oz? My favorite scene was the one with the horse changing color. Can you really dye my eyes to match my gown? Jolly old town!

Do you know what goes with purple ponies? Glitter. Glitter and rainbows and Christmas elves. I would love to have a personal glittery rainbow that would take me from location to location the way leprechauns do - would your office look into that? I think people would really be willing to fund something like transporting rainbows. Especially if they glitter. They’d have to be careful on how they inserted the glitter though, as if it gets loose it would be everywhere, and no place of business would want to be covered in glitter. Come to think of it, houses wouldn’t either. So it would have to be glitter infused, where the glitter was in the magic rainbow gel and wouldn’t fall out. Also, that way business men and women wouldn’t get glitter on their smart and snappy suits. I wouldn’t mind being covered in glitter though, as you see I am a Christmas elf. Or just a regular elf. Help me, Senator ***, you’re my only hope. That’s a Star Wars reference - I hope you know that, you have to be in touch with things like that to be cool.

I met a duck once, and it took bread from me. I like ducks. I’d like to think I’d like platypuses, but I’m pretty sure the whole “poisonous” thing makes them scary. Isn’t it weird that Disney chose one of the most poisonous animals to make the totally normal Perry the Platypus? Now all the kids want a platypus, but can’t have one. Of course, Lion King makes kids think that lions are super friendly but with potentially evil, black-maned uncles. Thing is, lions with black manes are actually less aggressive, so Scar wouldn’t necessarily want the throne. He’d be content to eat the food.

Really, Senator ***, I wonder if our letters are even read, as the reply you sent me had something to do with nuclear issues in Iran and nothing to do with Pastor Saeed Abedini. Do you look for buzz words and address those? I am not concerned about American-Iranian relations. I’m concerned about an American who does not belong in an Iranian prison when he was allowed in by the country to do exactly what he said he would do.
I am concerned by my Senator sending me a pointless letter in reply to a real issue.

Thank you for your reply Senator, I have replied in kind.
I hope it gave whatever intern checked it over a good laugh.


Sincerely,
Kelsey


We'll see if I get a response.



Photo Credit: Karfelt/Keating


This is a picture of my clone dressed as a character in my next novel. Combined with this letter, I think this could get her on a Watch List. What do you think?


Photo Credit: Keating/Karfelt



Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Yammed



Photo Credit: S. R. Karfelt




Deep into edits for my second book, interspersed with moments of simply pretending to be editing, I’m – as always – attempting to eat healthily. Piles of veggies, fruit, and the standard issue morning oatmeal make up the bulk of my menu, but due to the fact that I’m near-sighted and spend far too much time turtling my neck towards the computer screen, I go through days where soft food is a better choice. Turtling leads to teeth clenching which leads to a sore jaw which leads to the inability to chew mountains of fresh greens.

Spinach smoothes are too cold for this time of year, especially since I’m too busy writing to waste time drying my hair. Frozen wet hair on your head doesn’t put you in the mood for frozen wet lunch. My favorite back-up is yams. This predilection for yams seriously grosses out at least two of my beta readers, but they don’t understand yams like I do. You have to cook them right and they are magical.

Never EVER microwave a yam. That is just gross. You wrap it in foil and bake it. I prefer 350 degrees for about an hour and a half, or longer. When done properly you can squeeze the sides and they’ll be super-soft. Baking them like this makes them very sweet. I never put anything sweet on them, because that’s just gross. I prefer cinnamon and a tablespoon of chopped up pecans, maybe even a few dried cranberries. You can add butter if you must, but if it has been baked long enough it won’t be necessary. 

Another beautiful way to cook yams is to slice one thinly, layer it on a foil-lined pan with a bit of olive oil. Brush a bit more olive oil over the yam slices, and maybe a sprinkle of sea salt, and cook it half to death. Usually I cook it at 400 degrees, though I can’t really tell you how long, about 20-40 minutes. I don’t do math. I just keep checking it. Usually it is done when some of the thinner pieces have been seriously burned.

Photo Credit: S. R. Karfelt


Do you feel sorry for my Dear Hubby after reading this post? Don’t, he’s horribly spoiled and he never eats yams. By the way I do mean yams, not sweet potatoes, though technically I think they’re used interchangeably. I know the difference, use yams if I’ve enticed you to try these recipes. I use that term loosely, because recipe usually means math – measurements and time and all – and that’s just gross.