Category: Writing

Quotes from Mercedes Lackey

Here are the contexts of the quotes tweeted from September 11 through September 17, 2014. The first six are from Beauty and the Werewolf, by Mercedes Lackey.

Beauty and the Werewolf cover“Footwear was not exactly memorable.”  Well, not to some people! But in this case Bella is confident that Sebastian will not recognize that she is wearing a pair of his mother’s boots.

“It’s not just what you are good with. It’s what you’re good at.”  Sebastian to Bella, when suggesting she might be a better sorceress than a witch.

“A whistling girl and a crowing hen always come to some bad end.”  The housekeeper’s admonition when she used to catch Bella whistling.

“A whistling girl and a wise old sheep are two of the best things a farmer can keep.”  Bella’s retort to the housekeeper.

“War is never good for trade.”  Bella remembering her father when a war seems imminent. The arms trade is an unfortunate exception.

“Curses don’t die with their maker.”  The magical distinction between a spell and a curse.

“As long as there was a chance I could help you by staying with you, that’s what I had to do.” Sue Ann Bowling, Tourist Trap. Roi’s statement to Penny when she wonders why he didn’t save himself by teleporting away from the sailboat in the squall.

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It’s Sunday, and time for Weekend Writing Warriors again (click the logo above for links to other authors) and Snippet Sunday (click the logo below.)

I’m continuing from last week with Rescue Operation. Keishala and Lelani have left, deciding they will be no help if politics are involved.


Hubble Interacting Galaxy Arp 148

“Anything I can do?” Emeraude asked.

She had seen immediately what the Inner Council had missed—how the citizens of Horizon would most likely react. Keishala and Lelani were dear to him, but right now they were best off preparing for Keishala’s next concert. Emeraude might be a real help.

“Put together a summary of what you can find about Horizon for the last forty-four years — since Zhaim took over from me as Guardian. I’ll check out the Council vote myself — though I’ve got a sickening feeling I know what happened. I can usually count on eleven of the others to see things my way, and there are eight that follow Zhaim.”


I pre-scheduled this, but I’m off at a writers’ conference. I’ll be late responding to comments and visiting around, but I will get to it next week. Believe me, comments are appreciated.

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SFR Presents logo

It’s Saturday, and time for Science Fiction Romance Brigade Presents. For information on this blog hop and links to other authors, click on the logo above. They’re still on hiatus, but you’ll find some information about the SFRB.

I’m still posting a scene from Both Sides Now, in Doc’s POV. He’s just finding out how bad a patient “Kevi” (really Roi Laian) can be.

It wasn’t a matter of ignoring Doc’s orders. It was a combination of Kevi’s feeling responsible for Nonie and the fact that he knew how his own body healed better than Doc did. It took Doc more than a fiveday to admit that—he’d insisted that at Kevi’s age the casts had to stay on for at least a month, preferably two. Kevi wanted the cast off his right hand after six days, insisting that the bones had knit to the point that continued healing would be faster without the cast.

“Use the scanner,” Kevi challenged when Doc insisted that removing the cast at this stage would be disastrous—and Kevi had been right. Doc watched incredulously as Kevi carefully spread and closed his fingers. “Still a little stiff, but they’ll come around. Got a small ball? Preferably something elastic enough to bounce?”

The next time he saw the ball, it was in Nonie’s good hand, being bounced on the floor as she grabbed for pebbles with the same hand. “Eight minus five,” Kevi called after she tossed the pebbles back to the floor, and grinned approval when she managed to pick up three pebbles and grab the ball before it bounced a second time.

Year 11 Day 106

I am going to have to start paying more attention to what I say, even casually.

I had to dispose of Patches’ body, and I was a little worried that the People would in fact take it as an insult if I buried her as if she were one of them. Sending her to the stars seemed a good way to comfort WildDog.

I forgot anything I said would be taken as the pronouncements of a god.

WildDog did not forget. He studied the stars, and decided the brightest star he could see must be Patches’ heart. He then informed anyone who would listen (which included most of the folk at the Gather) that the god Jarn had rewarded Patches for her faithfulness by putting her in the sky, where he happily pointed out her heart, her head and her feet.

What was really annoying was that most of them could see the outline he pointed out, and by the time the People left to follow the game, the bright star was the dog star, the group of stars was being referred to as the great dog, and there was a buzz of speculation as to what I would next put in the Heavens.

It’s a good thing I have a project: the Northern ice cap. It should be the right time of year to finish exploring its edge.

Quotes from Jane Austen

Mansfield Park CoverHere are the contexts of the quotes tweeted from @sueannbowling between September 4 and September 10, 2014. All but the last are from Mansfield Park, by Jane Austen.

“You must try not to mind growing up a pretty woman.” Edmund to Fanny, when she is embarrassed by her uncle’s admiration of her person.

“If any one faculty of our nature may be called more wonderful than the rest, I do think it is memory.” Fanny to Mary Crawford, as they are sitting in Mary’s half-sistert’s shrubbery and talking of how it has been changed.

“One cannot fix one’s eyes on the commonest natural production without finding food for a rambling fancy.” Fanny is still rhapsodizing on the shrubbery.

“There is no escaping these little vexations.” Mrs. Grant to Mary, pointing out that no matter where one lives, things will never be perfect.

“A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of.” Mary’s response.

“I cannot intend anything which it must be so completely beyond my power to command.” Edmund’s response to Mary’s comment on income.

“It’s not that things really work like the songs.” Sue Ann Bowling, Tourist Trap. Penny’s comment on Roi’s question on whether a folk song would make sense in her culture.

Murder at Mansfield coverAs a murder mystery, this stands up, though we don’t realize it’s a murder mystery until halfway through the book. The problem is, it also tries to be a takeoff on Jane Austin’s Mansfield Park, and the two themes clash. I found myself constantly confused by the fact that while the characters have the same names as those in Mansfield Park, their characters and relationships are totally different. It was hard to remember which set of characters I was dealing with.

Like Mansfield Park, Murder at Mansfield Park deals with three sisters and their offspring, plus several outsiders. But the families are different, though unfortunately some of the names stay the same. The oldest of the sisters, Maria, marries sir Thomas Bertram of Mansfield Park. He is comfortably off, though not so rich as the Sir Thomas Bertram of Mansfield Park. She has two sons, Tom and William, and two daughters, Maria and Julia.

The second sister, Julia, marries a widower Mr. Norris. He is quite well off, with properties in Antigua, and a young son, Edmond, but the older Mr. Norris dies before the story starts. Edmond, here the widowed Mrs. Norris’s stepson, seems to share only the first name of the Edmond of the original Mansfield Park.

Francis marries a Mr. Price, but this Mr. Price is the heir to a considerable fortune. His parents do not approve of the match, and Francis dies quite young – apparently in childbirth with Fanny. By the time the story starts, Fanny’s father and grandparents have died, and while Sir Thomas, as her only surviving relative, does take her in, she is by far the wealthiest of the characters.

The most important of the outsiders are Henry Crawford and his sister Mary, with Henry being recast as a professional improver.

Lady Bertram is still indolent, and Mrs. Norris is still an interfering busybody. The other characters were totally different from those in Mansfield Park, though they have the same names.

As I said, the book stands up as a murder mystery, and it does have a good deal of Jane Austen’s style, obtained all too often by cribbing from other books. (Julia despairing when William is sent to sea owes a lot to Marianne pining for Willoughby, for instance.) But for those of us who genuinely like the original Mansfield Park and feel we know the characters, it is simply confusing.

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It’s Sunday, and time for Weekend Writing Warriors again (click the logo above for links to other authors) and Snippet Sunday (click the logo below.)

I’m continuing from last week with Rescue Operation. Emeraude has just suggested that Roi contact his three supporters who were off planet at the time of the vote. Roi is the first to speak.


Spiral Galaxy NGC 3370

“Already planned on that, Audi. If it had been ten to ten with Zhaim breaking the tie, or if fewer than twenty had voted, I might be able to challenge it. As it is — I’m sure going to try, but I’m afraid it may take a vote for reconsideration. Over two-thirds of the Council. And I’m not sure I can get it, at least not right away.”

Keishala sighed as she picked up her music tablet. “Come on, Lani. If you’re going to finish that before the concert, we’d better go somewhere else. If it’s going to be politics, neither of us is going to be much help.”


I’m pre-scheduling the post for next weekend, but I won’t be here. I’m attending the Alaska Writers’ Guild Conference in Anchorage, so my comments will be late. I’ve also sent the summary and first ten pages of Rescue Operation for critique at the conference. Wish me luck!

Snippet Sunday logo

SFR Presents logo

It’s Saturday and time for Science Fiction Romance Brigade Presents. a blog hop where we share about 200 words from something we’ve written. For rules and links to other participants click on the logo above. (You may not get participants, as the hop seems to be on hiatus.)

This is still from Both Sides Now, a continuation from last week in Doc’s POV.

Kevi turned out to be perfectly serious about re-breaking and setting his hands, and insisted on the same treatment for his feet. “You’re not up to it, Doc said at first, and then “Not both sides at once,” followed by “Hands and feet both?”

By then Coralie had found a box with the medical code symbol, and she and Kevi spent the next morning inventorying its contents. Kevi happily identified antibiotics, painkillers, and a field fracture kit that included not only bone setting materials, but a portable bone-scanning kit. “No more excuses,” he told Doc, and forty-eight hours after his awakening the bandages on hands and feet were replaced by casts. Without painkillers. Kevi insisted that the drugs would interfere with both his ability to tell when the bone fragments were properly positioned and his normal rapid healing, though he had no hesitation in using both painkillers and antibiotics on Nonie.

Doc did succeed in getting Kevi to promise not to try to walk other than to and from Doc’s prized indoor sanitary facilities, and moved him into one of the finished bedrooms adjacent to those facilities. And he began to understand exactly what Kevi had meant when he’d said he was a terrible patient.

If you want to see more of Kevi (an alias for Roi Laian, as the reader should be fully aware at this point) he is the main character in Homecoming, Tourist Trap, and Horse Power, though he’s much younger there.

Year 11 Day 45

Some images stay in your head forever.

I think I will always remember WildDog, sitting on the ground next to the snowfield I teleported in for the Gather, with Patches’ head in his lap. I knew she was failing, but she so obviously wanted to go with WildDog that I didn’t even think to object. I don’t think WildDog encouraged her to overdo, it, either. It was just that her time had come.

Death is nothing new or strange to the children of the People, and WildDog looked up at me with tears running down his face, but with complete understanding that his companion was gone. “She just laid her head in my lap and died,” he said.

“She was old,” I told him. “I think she hung on to see you again, and I believe her last moments were happy.”

He looked down at Patches’ head, and gently stroked her half-bald ears. “Can we bury her?” he asked. “Or is that just for people? Because she’s sort of people too.”

Yes, the People buried their dead, but my own people teleported their dead into the sun. I couldn’t manage that; my esper skills weren’t up to it. But I could wait until night fell and send her body toward the stars, and that somehow felt right.

So I told WildDog to look for Patches in the stars, where she would be guarding him as she had done since his birth.

Quotes from J.R.R. Tolkien

These are the contexts of the quotes tweeted from @sueannbowling between August 28 and September 3, 2014. The first six are from The Two Towers, by J.R.R. Tolkien.

Map Rohan“A wild beast cornered is not safe to approach.” Gandalf, as they approach Saruman trapped in Orthanc.

“The guest who has escaped by the roof will think twice before he comes back in by the door.” Gandalf, when Saruman tries to invite him back into Orthanc.

“He cannot be both tyrant and counselor.” Gandalf, speaking of Saruman at Orthanc.

“I grieve that so much that was good now festers in the tower.” Gandalf, after Saruman has refused to work with them, and chosen instead to remain a prisoner in Orthanc. This is from the book, not the movie.

“Do not meddle in the affairs of wizards, for they are subtle and quick to anger.” Gildor’s saying, quoted by Merry to Pippin when Pippin is curious about the palantir.

“Do not then stumble at the end of the road.” Gandalf’s advice to Aragorn as he gives him the palantir.

“I took a fresh look at the consequences of what I believe, and I didn’t like what I saw.” Sue Ann Bowling, Tourist Trap. Penny’s thought, after a discussion with Roi on the effects of a local law she had taken for granted.


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