ALIEN LOVER: WHAT DO I CALL THEE?

One of the challenges I’ve had writing interspecies relationships has been how to refer to the object of one’s desire.

To be honest, the challenge is irrespective of genre.

It didn’t help that the following were no go’s:

  • Partner

It’s too sterile.  When I hear the word partner I think of business, not “business.” 

  • Boyfriend

I once dated a guy who told me he wasn’t comfortable being referred to as a boyfriend since he wasn’t a boy.  

He was in his thirties.

When I sat down to write Port In a Storm, I considered that  rock musician Clint Malek had seen a lot of life.  Though he hadn’t lost his sense of fun or adventure he was too mature to be called a boy.  

It was while writing Metatron’s Army I realized I needed a term I could live with.

  • Lover

Christine refers to the partners she’s had intimate relations with as lovers.  I like this term.  It’s edgy enough to reflect she enjoys the physical aspects of sex as well as the fact the scenes are explicit.

As time went on I found myself challenged by more than terminology.

How do you deal with a teen romance when one of the characters is 719 years old?

I needed to be creative.

From Shadow of the Gods

I had a lot of fun with Cayden and Mica, being sure to give perspective from each.

Cayden:

When he saw the very plain white bra that screamed virgin, he groaned.  He was going to kill Jake McLachlan, hunt him down in his next life, and kill him again.

Mica:

“Hello, Mica.  Okay if I come in?”

“Yeah, sure.”

He stopped after two steps.  “You okay?”

“Yeah, fine.”  Just feeling a little awkward.  How did one act after baring their breasts to -?   Well, he wasn’t a perfect stranger anymore, was he?

Age and species difference weren’t the only challenges I had with in the Dragon Core Series.  Due to a unique set of circumstances Lage, Lucus, and Clare have an interesting love triangle.

This is fully detailed in Cauldron of the Gods.

Terminology wasn’t the only challenge with Metatron’s Army either.  Try writing sex when a character is of a species that will die if they experience high emotion. 

Such as love or lust.

There are a variety of interesting relationships thanks to the number of species and complexity of plot.

Not to mention Cirhce was born in one universe, grew up in another only to later return to her home universe.

I did take time to highlight concerns of characters crossing dimensions and sexual cultures.

There are more than just human-Vetrian relationships in the series.

And there are times I  need to set terminology aside and simply write around the challenge.

From Dragon Core

“Cayden,” she said softly stepping close, “it makes sense you’re nervous.  This is your home, your place of business.  It’s you.  Or at least it’s a side of you I haven’t seen and – it’s different with me, right?  I’m your -.”  She frowned.  “What am I?”

God, he loved her for understanding.  “You’re mine,” he replied then kissed her.

From Metatron’s Army

From Adjudication, this is one of two simultaneous intimacy scenes I had going.

The other is in Promotion, Book 11 in the series.

“Well,” he drawled, drawing a finger over the tattoo, smiling when she shivered.  “I think the waiting is over because after this?  Telling you?  I don’t feel conflicted.”

“Because I understand?”

“Because you know you’re mine.”

“And you don’t share,” she replied, her serious tone belying her amusement.

“Damn straight,” he said then kissed her.  Passionately, the bulge in his pants letting her know he was about to drive the point home.

This article is cross posted on metatronsarmy.com.

BRINGING A STORY TO LIFE: ORGANIZE

A lot of work goes into a creative career.

It’s not just about creating.

Business basics aside one of the more challenging aspects of being a writer is how to organize what you produce.  

It’s more than choosing a genre.

The literary industry has evolved over the centuries and while it is easy to follow in the footsteps of those who came before, when it comes to organizing it doesn’t always translate.

Especially in a time of authors producing in multiple formats in multiple genres and sub-genres.

When I started on this career path I intended to publish fiction.  Thanks to a mysterious illness I went nonfiction first then circled back to fiction.  

But I do both.

An additional organizational challenge is the fact I write multiple genres.

Paranormal and sci-fi. 

Last November I decided to focus on the organizational aspects of my career.  Nine months later I’m still working on it.

Scifimagick.  This moniker marked the beginning of organizational refinement and while I will be elaborating in the near future I do have clues on elizabethmaxim.com as to how it all comes together.

Where Sci-Fi Meets Passion.  I have multiple sci-fi series, each different and unique.  What ties them together are characters driven by passion, complete with intimacy.

Including interspecies intimacy.

Where Passion Meets the Paranormal.  They say write what you know.  As a psychic I have long had a passion for the paranormal.  This allowed me to explore the world of paranormal fiction from multiple subgenres and though my style and subgenre choices have evolved, my passion for the paranormal has not waned.

Choose A Path.  Visitors to elizabethmaxim.com can explore my work by following one of the two paths with each of those paths diverging further.  As I have plenty of stories in the queue, additional paths through the maze will be available for exploration soon.

I will be making tweaks to elizabethmaxim.com in the coming weeks.  These tweaks will reflect the continuing organizational refinement and are meant to make things easier for readers and visitors.

Stay Tuned.

BRINGING A STORY TO LIFE: WHO WRITES WHO?

Listening to the Police Spirits in the Material World – on vinyl and contemplating a twist in my creative career.

It’s fun adding “favorite vinyls” back into a collection I gave away in the 90s after trading for CDs.  More interesting is discovering Aaron and I are in agreement with “must have” vinyls like Elton John’s Yellow Brick Road.

Who Made Who.  Okay, music on the mind.  Cheesy movie but the AC/DC Soundtrack to Maximum Overdrive is pretty awesome in my opinion and while that movie considered the question of which came first the robot chicken or the tech egg I’m dealing with an observation of a similar yet parallel – as in universe – consideration.  

Does the author write the story or the story choose the author?

This question occurred to me as I considered the twisty turny way The Day Before has come into being  

  • Started as an image that appeared on my mental screen
  • Observation allowed me to get a feel for the character which led to who, what, when, where, why
  • Fingers to keyboard and watch as 50 words explodes to 25000 with an acceleration rate that started somewhat slow then exploded up – or out depending how you visualize.
  • Realize that in spite of my initial thoughts if not beliefs on what this story was – it wasn’t that simple.
  • Follow the trail of breadcrumbs.

Follow the Leader.  Ironically, the image that presented itself early on was a soldier standing waiting for someone to catch up to him as he stood on a path.  I stepped back to notice the environment he was in and who it was he was waiting for while taking his measure as to why he was waiting for the individual known as a retrieval and more to the point – who was he that he was the one leading?

And why him?

Turns out this character – Cai Ranger – is not only a guide for another character he is the guide for the author.  

I began the story confident it would be a success even though I hadn’t planned it.  As I went along I saw numerous possibilities for where it would fit in my catalogue, numerous directions the plot could twist and turn, and numerous branches it could extend for future books.  And yet…

It soon became apparent that somehow the story had – like a manifestation – managed to show up in my world in a manner that showed me the story – not the writer – is in charge of this excursion.

A central theme behind manifestation is you visualize something – feed it energy – and it outmanifiests itself.  In this case – the story “manifested” into my creative studio – the place where body mind and spirit come together to create.

What’s Happening?  Though I was happily working along producing and satisfied with where things were headed I got a strong urge to step aside and read a book that showed up in my sphere one day.

Unsurprisingly there was a seemingly cosmic message delivered along with a much needed break.

This action led to another which led to another and suddenly I realized the story itself seemed to be leading me along a path to completion.  

Including where it will fit in the catalogue – Dragon Core.

It made me stop and wonder – do we pull from the well of creativity or does it drag us into itself?

Do we dream the dream or does the dream dream us?

BRINGING A STORY TO LIFE: THE DOTS CONNECT THEMSELVES

After taking time to bring a couple of visions to life in the form of new t-shirts I was setting up to work on The Day Before when I made a decision which circled back to an action taken earlier that ended up being like a tap on the shoulder from the universe saying, “How’s this for help?”

Help I hadn’t asked for but now see I definitely needed.

I did take time to just chill today but I truly am happiest when I writing/creating. 

Folding Back on Itself.  As a follow on to a conversation about Neil Young and Crazy Horse last night, Aaron sent a link to an article on Nils Lofgren this morning.  While reading it I saw an ad pop up for a musician.  The title intrigued me so I typed it into a document with the idea I would circle back around to it at some point and check it out.

I often jot titles of groups or songs down to circle around to later and typically that later is weeks from the date I jotted it down.

Right after bringing the manuscript for the latest Dragon Core story up I decided to check out the artist’s new album.

I was that intrigued by the title – Where the Guitar Meets the Forest.

I launched iTunes and – the album wasn’t listed.  However, several other songs were available so I clicked on a few.  One jumped out not because of the song’s title but because the lyrics perfectly fit the essence of the book I’m working on!  The song, 1000 Days, reminded me that I hadn’t yet set up a playlist for this book and while that isn’t technically necessary it often helps put me in a frame of mind for a scene or a character.

In this case the song is helping with two scenes, the one I’m working on and one that’s toward the end of the book.

I couldn’t help but think of the breadcrumbs that had to be laid in order for me to circle around to something I needed yet didn’t know I needed.

  • Trip to Record Store to land a gem that led to an interesting and somewhat passionate conversation about Neil, CSNY, and a number of other issues intertwined over the decades.

The guy just got the Neil album in. It wasn’t there when Aaron visited 24 hours earlier.

  • Aaron deciding to send me the link and then putting a bit of pressure on me to read it.

It was one of those things I was going to look at later but he kept talking about it – read an excerpt – so I read it.

  • Seeing an album with an intriguing title while reading the article.

I normally ignore ads.

  • Deciding to look up the artist then deciding to check out her other work when the album in question didn’t show up.

The first couple of songs I listened to turned me off to the point I was going to give up but something told me to try other songs.  Glad I followed that instinct!

  • Choosing the song that ended up being a perfect match for what I needed for the scene I’m working on.

It helps me think ahead and keep to the theme line I’ve got going, something that isn’t always easy when you have multiple plot lines going.

Secret Messages.  As a final note I can consider that there are multiple messages in these events.  In taking time out to put this article together I ate into time I might have spent on the novel.

It’s time for dinner.

My guess?  Someone’s telling me I need more chill time.

Happy 4th of July!

The new t-shirts are on my store under the EM logo.

BRINGING A STORY TO LIFE: SOURCE

Enjoying a bit of peace and quiet and a much cooler morning.  It got so hot during our heat wave that our food processor bowl melted while in use.  The round area that has the blade come through is now oblong. 

 I loved hearing Aaron say, “Oh, that’s why it sounded so funny.”

I was listening to music through headphones at the time and missed all that audio fun.  Thankfully, we live in a time when you can get replacement parts easily; you don’t have to buy an entirely new appliance.

As I listen to the sounds of the morning which include enough wildlife I sometimes feel I live in a zoo, I’m mentally sorting through projects in the queue.   It isn’t just that there are a number of possibilities it’s the order in which they should be done. 

Temporal Awareness.  At the start of the pandemic shutdown I wrote about what it felt like having my temporal awareness turned on its ear.  

As someone who already worked from home the inability to have any contact with the outside world for months on end was surreal.

I channeled that frustration into writing making it one of the more prolific times of my writing career.

I finished Beacon, Rainmaker, Mirror, and Redemption among other projects in a span of about three months. 

It came at a cost.

Burnout.

I know that work burnout was a common problem during the pandemic.  I read several articles in which people talked about the effects of being shut in or – if they couldn’t work from home – being completely overwhelmed.  And yet I couldn’t relate.

Career burnout wasn’t my burnout.

It took until yesterday to understand that my burnout was related but different.  It wasn’t career burnout so much as life burnout. 

 As someone who has worked from home for twenty-seven years, other than a period of incredible productivity, it wasn’t my career that was impacted.

Outside acknowledging the challenges of going from minimal outside interaction to none, I never considered the impact of total lockdown on my life outside my career.

Work Front and Center.  There was a cost to the constant attention on work from home in our community and in the world.  It hid the impact of what was happening outside that construct.

When you’re so busy focusing on making something work you can miss all the areas of your life that are being starved of critical energy.

 Missing the Signs.  Because my productivity  was not negatively impacted  I missed warning signs that not all was well.  Or, if I did sense something wrong I simply channeled it into my work, exacerbating the problem.

Open Is Closed.  Regardless of the state of the states I still work from home.  Thanks to the delta variant and other unknowns it’s business as usual as far as the pandemic is concerned.

Masks, social distancing, and good health habits.

This lack of real change and the knowledge that it will likely remain so for the foreseeable future had me turning to my de facto approach, writing.

Excuse Me.  An interesting thing happened.  Somehow the message from the nonwork areas of my life that were suffering got to the productivity camp and, as you can predict, everything shut down.

Few things cause panic for an author.  Writer’s block is one of them.

Because my attention was on the impact to my productivity I missed that the symptoms had nothing to do with writing.

There was no writer’s block.

Ignoring the symptoms since I didn’t map them to nonwork issues, I continued focusing on my career.

It never occurred to me it was soul burnout related to the pandemic.

Meet Me Halfway.  Apparently, my higher self has a clue.  It figured out I’m going to double down on the creative outlet as a coping mechanism – something I’ve done my whole life – so it plugged into that part of the energy spectrum.  This led to a series of “coincidences” that got the message through.

That while my body and mind were doing just fine, my spiritual health was in need of some serious TLC.

The Edge of Nowhere.  I decided to work with Event Horizon which does an amazing job of pulling me out of myself so I can solve issues unhindered by “noise.”  Sure enough I started to see where energy blocks were having a negative impact.  As with all Event Horizon sessions, a number of solutions were offered to address the situation.

I Can’t Hear You.  It was during one of the better sessions that I realized that while I gave myself suggestions to address issues I wasn’t following up.  I kept setting the stuff aside for later after which I would go back to writing.  Luckily for me, this time I listened.

One Thing Feeds Another.  As I followed through on the suggestions I was inspired to go back and do another EH session during which more insight was gained and more suggestions given.  This went on for a few days and I noticed those other energy blocks began to dissolve.

In some cases I didn’t even realize there was a block until it was gone.

Helping Hand.  I continued working with Event Horizon and continued to follow through on the suggestions and continued to see improvements including subtle messages from the universe that helped me on my way.  And then a funny thing happened.  The messages became not so subtle.  In fact, they got downright direct.

Read My Lips.  The universe has a fun way of getting the message across and I’ve long known that when we ignore the messages, they get louder. 

This isn’t always a good thing.

In this case the increased volume was relatively harmless.  A book that had appeared in my sphere of awareness months ago reappeared.  This time I paid attention and bought it.  I also got an email from a dear friend, the right words at the right time.  Interestingly, both sources had the same message

Don’t forget the basics!

It was through each of these messages I realized that in all the chaos I had forgotten to nurture my own spirituality.

I was so busy being there for everyone and everything else I forgot to be there for this.

Energy In Bloom.  As I read the book and did the exercises which included relaxation, meditation, visualization, grounding, I found the creative whispering increasing in volume.

The voice of the source – what goes into bringing a story to life.

Bruised But Healing.  When you are a creative, to create is to feed the soul. The worst thing that can happen is to turn off the spigot but just as damaging, as I’ve learned, is to turn it on full blast. I believe my soul understands this now. I recognize the need to find other ways to nurture that soul.  Especially when the avenues open to me are cut off by lockdown.

CH-CH-CH-CH-CHANGES

I want to take a moment to thank readers for their patience while I’m turning a tanker mid-voyage.

Tweaking my career.

I have endeavored to communicate every step of the way but the truth is my career is not and has never been static.

One of the major reasons I went into tech was because I have a passion for always learning, always improving.  Always exploring.

Just as with my career in tech my career as a writer which literally started when I penned my first fiction piece at age 6** has and will continue to evolve.

I’m pleased to share the following:

To better serve readers I have decided in lieu of a newsletter to do what I call Data Sheets.  These will be publications dedicated to very specific nonfiction topics that will be available for purchase.  Information will include my ongoing work with EMF Sensitivity, with a rather interesting twist:  Psi energy and GMFs are more esoteric forms of EMFs but are EMFs.  As a psychic I have gained incredible insight into these topics and look forward to sharing my observations.  As with all my nonfiction my audience will include those who are what I term sole practitioners of life and those who prefer to work with advisors.

I am making minor adjustments to my websites.  This is to make things easier for readers and those seeking specific information, including what goes into being a paranormal fiction writer.

I will provide additional information in the weeks and months to come, including video material.  

I’m also continuing to write.

Stay tuned!

**Won an award too!

WRITING: IN THE HEAT OF IT

Taking a break from The Day Before in what locals call unusual heat and as most houses don’t have AC (including this one) finding creative ways to address challenges.

You know it’s hot when your champagne glass needs its own ice bucket.

As uncomfortable as it is, it’s not nearly as bad as what I’ve dealt with over the years.

  • Michigan

Grew up without central air.  Add humidity to heat and you get something called the heat index.  Plenty of nights sleeping on top of the covers.

  • Louisiana 

School lets out in May for a reason

  • Arizona

The day Aaron and I unloaded the moving truck?  It was 118.

The day we moved into the Fort Collins house? Minus 18 – real not wind chill.

A balm to it all aside from the trees and cooler night temperatures that allow for a comfortable sleep is the fact we recently invested in an Audio-Technica turntable with Boston Acoustics Pre-Amp and ELAC speakers.  While Aaron was eager to grab up Neil Young and Radiohead LPs- though I surprised him with a Ray Manzarek collectible – I opted for the following as my first repurchases

  • Emerson Lake and Palmer Works I
  • This is The Moody Blues
  • Beatles Rubber Soul
  • ELO Time

I grew up on 8 tracks and vinyl, graduated to cassettes including those I recorded from vinyl, then CDs, and eventually streaming.

I eschew satellite because thanks to compression ratios, guys sound like they have their speedos too tight.  No thanks.

We’ll definitely be adding to the collection including Bob Seger’s Live Bullet and Elton John’s Yellow Brick Road, though we won’t be replacing everything we listen to.

I’m making great progress with The Day Before which will fit nicely into the Dragon Core series and is more fantasy than sci-fi.  As always I have plenty in the queue and will be updating as appropriate.

In the meantime, keep cool and

Stay tuned

METATRON’S ARMY UPDATE UPDATE

Taking a brief break from read/edit on Positional Play, 4th in the Metatron’s Army series.  

I reread each manuscript, correcting or updating as appropriate then, with the story fresh in memory, write up a blog summarizing what went into that particular chapter of the sci-fi epic.

The blogs are posted on metatronsarmy.com under Alerts on the Explore menu.

In addition to correcting errors that slipped through I’ve added previews of subsequent books to the end of the current one.

Though books 1 and 2 have been submitted for update and 3 will go in this afternoon, it will be a bit before all books are completely updated.

I will post a blog entry letting readers know when all the updated books are available for download.

On a side note:  After in-depth and ongoing EMF Sensitivity research I was able to discover the root cause of migraines plaguing me for the past 3 plus decades.  I also discovered the cure.

It validated work released in my books on the subject.

I will be providing more information in the not-too-distant future in the inaugural newsletter.

Stay tuned.

METATRON’S ARMY PROJECT

Enjoying a bit of sunshine and working on a project for the Metatron’s Army series.

Over the next weeks I will be releasing a blog post for each book in the series.  These posts will provide unique insight into what went into the chapter each release represents along with a book excerpt.  I will be posting these blog entries on metatronsarmy.com under Alerts which is located in the Explore Menu Option.

As part of this project I am rereading each manuscript and – as an author’s edits are never finished – I will be uploading any changes/edits I make to ensure what is available is the latest.

Stay tuned!

This information will be cross-posted on metatronsarmy.com.

NEW OFFERINGS

Wishing everyone a Happy Cinco de Mayo!

We’re doing homemade tacos – I do the seasoning myself and we do veggies in grape seed oil.

I’ve been working on upcoming projects some of which are book releases but some of which are not.

  • Enhanced blog offering

I’m still working out the details of blogs that will be more focused per each of the websites.

  • Newsletter

I’m working out the details so I can describe to readers what they can expect in terms of content, release schedule.

  • Novels

I have novels planned across multiple series along with a couple of single title releases in the planning.

I will be releasing additional information as appriorate.

Stay tuned!