Saturday, January 19, 2008

Shared Mind Conspiracy?

Last night, I settled down in front of the television under my afghan, not tired enough to sleep, so I turned to the sci-fi channel. The new Flash Gordon was on. I say "was on" because even when I'm in front of the television, I have a magazine, book, laptop, or sketch pad in front of me so I rarely just watch something.

Anyway, there's a new character in that show and when I heard his name, I slapped my forehead and thought "You HAVE to be kidding me!" Is nothing from my mind original? Is it all subconsciously known and just spit out when I think I'm being new?

Why? His name was Tarek. How they spell it, I don't know, but that's how I spell my Tarek. I assure you, "my" Tarek was born a few months ago, long before I heard the name on Flash Gordon. And it was a blend of his parents's names (I won't share yet, don't want to spoil the plot of Daughter of Gods.) This same thing happened when I was writing my Manipulated Evil Trilogy and gave the character Rania her name. I thought it sounded unique enough but within a few short months, I saw it in a few books and heard it on television at least once.

So I have to wonder, is there some thought-string we all share, the information tagging along through everyone's subconscious to spill out in clusters?

It doesn't really matter, I suppose. My Rania is still Rania and my Tarek will remain. Took me forever to come up with that combination of letters and actually like it, so I'm not going to chuck it just because the writers of the Flash Gordon series thought of it too. Though I do have to wonder if their Tarek is new or if I missed something about the original Flash Gordon because I really am not familiar with that one.

Ok, so maybe my characters' names aren't as original as I once thought and hoped they were, but hopefully they keep their individual identities just the same.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

The Old and the Scary

Every once in a while to make sure things are as they should be with my listings and where my name and books are found, I run a quick search through Google or one of the other popular search engines. I also keep an eye on where my website hits are coming from to see what's working and what's not. Today, I stumbled on a few things in my search - things from a year ago, things from several years ago and EEEK. Scary to say the least. I have things at places I don't even remember being a member of. What it would take to get back in those sites and de-amateur-ize my pages, I don't know.

It's funny to look back now on where I started - an uncertain youngster not at all certain my writing was good. How I managed to stumble along, tripping over my own feet with my lack of knowledge, I'll never know for sure, except that my writing is really good, good enough quite a few people took notice along the way and lifted me up when I needed it most.

What's even scarier is to think just how amateurish what I post on the web today will be next year or five years from now. But the lesson is this - be careful what you put on the web. You never know when it will creep back out from the crevasse of time and scream at you.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Another Goodbye

Day by day, do any of us have any clue to how we are affecting the people around us - even those who don't interact with us one on one?

We've lived at our current address for ten years. From the time we moved in, I knew how lucky we were to have such wonderful neighbors. Our road is full of younger families and many kids grouped around the same ages. And right across the road was the dear couple we purchased our home from. Older, we viewed them as the road grandparents. We would wave at each other, stop to chat when we could, and watch out for each other. George was always busy taking care of his yard, his garden, or just enjoying the view. He offered yard care advice to me through the years and helped me several times in tackling things too large for me to handle alone.

I noticed recently that George's truck wasn't moving at all. This couple isn't a sedimentary couple, so this stood out to me. During the cold months, he usually drove, either their car or their truck, but I'd been missing seeing him. I'm not one to pry into the affairs of others, so I didn't ask, I just kept an eye out, hoping to see him wave again one day. Yesterday, we discovered he passed on after a stay in the hospital. Silly as it may sound my oldest daughter stood still when I told her and then said "who's going to tell my dog to be quiet?" Yes, George helped out more than we realized. He was a part of our lives even from across the road. We're really going to miss him.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Rise of the Arcadians Review

Coming Late January 2008
Rise of the Arcadians
T.C. McMullen
ISBN 978-0-9754372-8-5
Published by
Open Reign Publishing,
a division of Star Publish

She's called Scout by the men of the Citadel, where no other woman is allowed except for the few who cook and clean. In a not-so-far-future world where the earth's very surface has changed, and civilization as we know it today is only a memory, Scout mysteriously comes and goes and carries out her self-assigned mission: to keep the Citadel's fighters supplied, so they can defend the remnants of what used to be the eastern United States against invasion by the cannibalistic Oceaners. Scout has a real name, though, and a home unknown to the Citadel although it's not that far away. A home from which she has all but exiled herself, and a destiny that calls her back just when her chosen allies need her most.

Once again T.C. McMullen blends speculative fiction elements with some of Humankind's most universal and potent myths, and peoples the resulting universe with characters whose flaws make them all the easier to care about. In Desire (otherwise known as Scout), she's created a memorable yet believable action heroine on whose coming of age struggle a continent's fate depends. The people surrounding her are just as real, and the best thing about Desire - in this reader's opinion - is how her developing relationship with one special man enhances instead of changes her. There's warning here, of what our own world's future may hold if we continue on our current pathway; but there's also hope.

I do hope this apparent standalone book is really the first volume in a new McMullen series, because I definitely want to read more about Desire and her people!

--Reviewed by Nina M. Osier, author of the Farthinghome series from eBooksOnThe.Net (first volume now available in paperback from Cambridge Books)

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Star Publish Changes Ownership

After almost four years as Owner & Director of Star Publish LLC
(, Kristie Leigh Maguire is retiring from the
publishing business.

Effective January 1, 2008, the new Owner & Director of Operations for
Star Publish is T.C. McMullen. Maguire will remain with Star Publish
as Publishing Consultant and an author.

A woman of all trades, T.C. McMullen has delved into areas of book
creation from authoring, editing, designing, illustrating,
publishing, marketing and teaching. She began writing professionally
in the mid 1990s after receiving her diploma from Long Ridge Writers
Group in Connecticut for completing the "Breaking Into Print" course.
Her first novel, a psychological thriller Whispers of Insanity, was
published in 2002. Shortly after, T.C. joined Global Authors
Publications as Senior Editor and Artistic Development Editor. In the
following years, she chose to go freelance with her services, working
for Global Authors Publications, Jada Press, and Star Publish as well
as providing services for individual authors for dozens of titles,
many award winning. At the start of 2008, T.C. steps into
leadership of Star Publish. To date, she has seen five of her own
titles in print including the reader acclaimed Manipulated Evil
Trilogy with two more titles soon to be released. She also offers
three writing courses at Long Story Short School of Writing. She
resides in rural Pennsylvania with her three daughters, husband of
seventeen years, and two canines to keep everything a bit more

The year of 2008 promises to bring exciting challenges and changes
for both Star Publish under the leadership of T.C. McMullen, and for
Kristie Leigh Maguire. As Maguire stated, "I am looking forward to
getting back to my own personal writing career. However, I am so use
to multi-tasking that I created a new company geared toward authors.
If you are an author and need a customized cover for your book, a
professionally written press release, or a video book trailer
customized to your book and posted to, then check out my
new company, Book Covers and More!"

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Where does time go....

A new year. That's what it says when I scroll my mouse over the time bar on the computer so it must be so. As I sit here typing, I can remember back to when the roll from one year to the next meant little to me, yet I can't remember what food in the fridge is from the meal we cooked three days ago or three weeks ago.

I also didn't think it's been so long since I last posted to this blog. Shame on me.

A lot has happened since October after the fun I had at the conference. First, I was offered the lead of Star Publish. I've worked with Star Publish since its creation in 2004. When I was offered the reigns, it wasn't a simple thing at all. On one hand, it was a tremendous responsibility I was asked to take on for a wonderfully set up company. On the other, Star was my main source of employment. Freelance, I do much work for others, but Star was the most consistent and yes, sometimes easiest to work for because Kristie Leigh Maguire and I knew what to expect from each other. I debated for many weeks, then decided this is what I do - publishing, writing, books - all of that is my life second only to my children.

So onward and forward I go, taking the head of a fantastic company, trusting my skills and knowledge and ready to help others not only in the designs of books but in presenting it to the world as well.

The second thing that happened is I finished RISE OF THE ARCADIANS and it is ready for release any day now. I'll let you all know when and where it can be purchased. I have my next series begun with DAUGHTER OF GODS ready for editing and the asked about AMONG THE ANCIENTS is again in motion. I apologize to all those I've spoken to recently who asked of it. I didn't realize how much attention it gained when I announced I was working on it. I jumped the announcement of it a little early and hit a few snags in its plot but have worked through those and am now well on the way to "the end" hopefully before the finish of this new year 2008.

So I welcome the new year and new opportunities and hope all of you do as well.