Science Fiction Loses One of Her Own

Leonard Nimoy, our beloved Spock, our host on In “Search Of”, the narrator of The Martian Chronicles died on February 28, 2015 at 83 years of age.  Only now am I able to write those words here on the blog.  There have been a couple of tribute posts on Facebook, but the depth at which this loss touched me has taken me quite by surprise.

I woke up today in a world without Leonard Nimoy, and I can only feel that it is less somehow without him.  There are many ways in which he will always be here, but at the same time, that spark– that creative genius has passed from this world.  His last tweet was as loving and as beautiful as the man himself.  There are so many words and so many wonderful things that can be said about him, and that have been said in one way or another all day now, that any further addition by me would only feel cheap and unworthy of such a man.  To that end I will say only this:  Thank you Mr. Nimoy. Rest well.  We love you.

leonard-nimoy

New Semester and Chapter 9

School will be starting Monday for me, but if my grades hold, I will graduate with my Associate’s degree this year.  Starting Fall 2015, I plan to be pursuing my Bachelor’s.  Still looking at transfer college options, but OSU and NSU are likely candidates.  Not sure what I’ll do after that, but I plan to go for it all the way at least to an MFA.  Not just because I want the degree, but because I want to bring readers a quality read.

In short, I want my readers to have a good time, whether it’s one of my short-shorts or a novel, I want it to be as good as it can be.  (If it still sucks, my deepest apologies.)

This weekend, in the midst of getting everything as ready for school as possible, I will also be doing the re-write for chapter 9 of Bone Sliver.  Lead Character Max has gotten himself into a hell of a pickle, and I’ve got to figure out how (and if) he gets out without divine intervention.  Not to give it all away, but things are really not rosy for our Max right now, and they may never be again.

Intrigued?  I hope so.  Also, I’ll be looking for Beta Readers again soon, so stay tuned, and let me know if you are interested in being a Beta Reader.  The only requirement is that you can give an honest opinion about what you liked, didn’t like, and what might be improved upon.  Be kind, though.  Tough, real, but not hateful, please.

If you’re interested, drop me an e-mail at d_e_chandler@live.com and let me know.

Thanks so much for checking out the work, and being patient as I work toward creating better and better stories for readers like you!

D.E. Chandler

Conference, Finals and Summer!

Well, what a whirlwind the last week or so has been!  Say that three times fast.  It felt like I lived it three times fast.  I love, love, love the conference the Oklahoma Writers’ Federation puts on every year, but it is a busy three days.

If you take advantage of all this conference has to offer, they will make sure you stay hopping from the time you wake up to the time you go pass out for the night.   I do mean pass out.  You’ll be exhausted.  Of course you are free to set your own pace, but the days do fly.

There were so many activities and so many great speakers, that (having signed up for the lunch workshops and pre-conference workshop, I only saw the inside of my room when I woke, changed, and went to bed.  I had a fantastic roomie, Vickey Malone-Kennedy, who made sure I didn’t study or sleep too much (just kidding, Vic! ;-))  As usual, all of the people were amazing, and the organization was to be applauded.

I’m sure, dear reader, that you think I gush just because I belong to this organization, (as I belong to so few…) but to give you some idea about the kinds of speakers that were guests of this conference I’ll list a few here, along with their considerable credentials.

  • Our keynote speaker this year was romance writer, Eloisa James, whose best-selling novels are published at an alarming rate by Harper-Collins.
  • Oklahoma’s Poet Laureate, Nathan Brown spoke about the importance of poetry in the life of any writer.  I hear he also sang and played, but sadly I missed this part.
  • Christine Taylor-Butler award-winning writer for Scholastic, among others,  spoke to us about writing as a career.
  • Andrew Kaufman, how could I ever say enough?  This man is among the best of the best selling independent authors in the country.  Like six-figure big.  And he is the sweetest person ever.
  • Mel Odom, a master of Fantasy and Science fiction, has authored over 140 novels, and is an instructor at Oklahoma University.  Almost awesome enough to switch my college choice.  I wonder if they’ll let me just come and take his class?  He spoke about possibilities for serial fiction to make a comeback.
  • David Morell, author of the award-winning First Blood, the initiator of the Rambo series of novels and movies.  Ph.D. in Literature and multiple award-winner, including three Bram Stoker awards.
  • Jerry D. Simmons, who was an executive in the Time-Warner Book group, who came to talk to us about all things marketing.  And boy did I take notes.  He has given all of us some much needed food for thought on the marketing front.

These are just a few of the amazing speakers.  The list was 22 people long.  I wish I had room in this post to go over everything, but I am going to go over my notes and try to distill what it was that I actually came away with besides the mind-blowingness of the speakers, organizers and conference as a whole.  Given the choice, I would not miss this next year for the world.

Oklahoma Writers’ Federation is possibly a writer’s best resource in Oklahoma (aside from those amazing classes at college!).  The next best that I know of is the Nimrod conference in Tulsa every year. It’s much smaller, and just one Saturday, but it’s more intimate and they do have editors that will review your work and sit down with you to talk about what is working or not.

Oklahoma is not the desert for writers that I once thought it was.  We’ve got resources, it’s time to shout them from the rooftops and let people know they are here!

See you at the next conference!

D.E. Chandler

 

 

OWFI Contest Deadlines, Novel Progress and More

It’s a week into January, and I’ve started revisions on my first novel-length work, Bone Sliver.  I’m nearly done with chapter two (fixing plot holes, slowing the pace, deepening characters, developing side-stories, etc) and will be starting chapter three by day’s end with any luck.  The last couple of months have been a whirlwind, and I suspect that it’s only going to get busier as I gear up for Spring Semester at school.

With the deadline for the OWFI (Oklahoma Writers’ Federation) contest looming (February 1), I am racing the clock to get the manuscript ready.  OWFI is a group of writers’ groups and independent writers from all over the Oklahoma area.  By that I mean, we have people from all over come to conference, enter the contest and receive The Report on a regular basis.  Part of their motto is, “Supporting writers and the craft of writing in Oklahoma, The United States and around the world.”  If you or someone you know might be interested you can check out the OWFI website for more information.  I went to my first big conference last year, and it was amazing!

This semester at school holds two Literature courses (English Lit 1 and American Lit 1), Humanities and Nutrition.  The Nutrition course will help me in developing the healthy clean-food recipes for my upcoming cookbook.  I think I even have the title pinned down.  

Does all this leave a lot of time for social media?  No,  but a moment can be found here and there to let folks know I haven’t been abducted by aliens (at least not long term…).  It also doesn’t leave a lot of time for socializing, but I will make some time for family and friends when I can.  There will also be an ongoing Doctor Who marathon this weekend as my incredibly supportive hubby said I could have seasons 1 and 2 for my birthday!  But I can’t write and geek out on British sci-fi at the same time, so it must be relegated to breakfast and lunch breaks.

Between the classes, blog, novel, starting the spring garden and getting back in the gym; making time to do photo shoots or play in the paints is probably going to be scarce too.  At least for now.

Apparently 2014 is going to be another breathless year.  Hang onto your hats!

Be well,

D.E. Chandler

Off to Osage County!

Well, Bags are packed, and First thing in the morning, I leave for Osage County, off to wildlife adventure!  You’ll be able to read all about it soon, in the Green Country Guardian, when the premier online issue comes out in September.  I’m very excited to get to help out with a project I feel has so much potential to help bring together green country’s eco-community.  I can’t wait to see what all is inside!  There are a few of us who have tried something like this before, but these guys are really pulling hard to get this one off the ground.

I look forward to lots of great wildlife and scenic shots of some of Green Country’s beautiful borderlands, and lots of inspiration for writing.  See y’all soon!

Photography and Art Classes

Well, having taken most of my initial creative writing classes, I am ready to start photography and art this semester when school starts.  In late August, I will pack up my new toy (camera) and go to school to learn how to make it work its magic.  Then it’s off to art class to learn to play with other new toys.  I hope to get the basics down pat and be able to start creating images to go with my writing. It’s not possible to express how excited I am.

Other than that, it’s History and government (Govt…bleh), content editing and writing. Oh, and all the mundane stuff we have to do to exist. It’s gonna be a blast!