Magical Words Link Roundup 12-05-2016

It’s not new, but it’s still entertaining, so I give you 8 Things You Didn’t Know You Didn’t Know About Your Favorite Holiday Music, by John Scalzi.

Mental Floss takes us into the looking-glass world of contranyms – words that are their own opposites.

Lady/Liberty/Lit is a journal spotlighting women-identifying and gender-non-conforming writers who address experiences of, and ideas about, freedom of voice and body. And they are accepting submissions.

When society continually erases your achievements and treats you as inferior, it’s hard to have much faith in your capabilities.

Gwendolyn Kiste brings you a roundup of submission opportunities.


Catching up with Ms. Silver

december-alreadyHello! How is everyone? Can you believe it’s December already? Or that Christmas is less than a month away? I know I can’t! Time seems to have flown by (and some of that is due to all the presidential elections stuff, but we won’t go into that here and now) and it dawned on me that I’ve had a lot going on and not posted a darn thing here.

SO…much like how Misty will do a MW Link Round-Up, I’m going to do a Tamsin Silver Link Round-Up!

October 25, 2016 – Book Birthday for WE ARE NOT THIS! Carolina we-are-not-this-cover
Writers for Equality.

My first short story to be published by someone other than me! SQUEE! It’s called, The Color of Love, and I’m a sincerely honored to be in this amazing anthology that supports the LGBTQ Community both in NC and the world, really, for we’re all connected. In my post, entitled, “LGBTQ Short Story Out TODAY!” you can learn more about what this book is! You also can visit my website’s page for THE COLOR OF LOVE and read a snippet from the story.

rma1_trials-ebook-cover-correctedNovember 19, 2016 – Cover Reveal for TRIALS (Book 1 in the Rogue Mage Anthology).

My second short story to be published by someone other than me followed close on the heels of the first one, which is funny to me since I really do not see myself as a writer of short stories. My tale in this anthology, Mettilwynd, is unlike anything I’ve ever done! Some writers got their start doing fan-fiction while other just like to read it…I’m neither. So when I was asked by Faith Hunter to write a short story in the world of her Rogue Mage series, I was nervous as all hell. LOL! But I would have to say, it’s likely the best thing I’ve written to date and this post was the cover reveal. You can slide on over to my website and read a snippet from METTILWYND as well.

November 25, 2016 – BIG BIG BIG Skye of the Damned Announcement!outdoor-stairs-skye-magnet

Back in 2013 I worked with to do a web-series called, Skye of the Damned. By Dragon Con 2016, Lauren Steinmeyer (the lovely actress who plays Skye MacKenna in the show) and I had re-built a new website for SKYE and set it to go live in time for the convention. On November 25th, though, I made a big announcement…on something we didn’t think would really come to fruition due to all the moving parts that would have to come together for it to exist. But…it finally did. You can find out what that was by clicking above or going HERE.

trials-2November 28, 2016 – Book Birthday for TRIALS (Book 1 of 2 anthologies in the Rogue Mage World of Faith Hunter!

And suddenly, all the hard work I put into writing and re-writing my short, Mettilwynd, paid off and the book hit the “stands”! WOOOOOOOOOO!  Not only that, but our PR Goddess had each of the authors answer five questions about writing in the world of Faith Hunter’s ROGUE MAGE series. This post here is my response to those 5 questions. You can find the links to all the other writers of this anthology by going to the TRIALS BLOG TOUR!

December 2, 2016 – Soundtrack Birthday for Skye of the Damned!smaller-front-of-cd

Today is the day! The day the Hamilton Mixtape releases! I mean, sorry, it’s the day the Soundtrack for Season One of SKYE also releases! LOL! I’m so proud of Nyle and Christopher’s work on this endeavor for the show! This involved getting the rights for the music and contracts signed by the musicians as well as building the files and artwork and submitting them to the multiple locations for publishing the soundtrack. Visit this post for links to purchase, or, if you rather, visit SKYE’S MUSIC PAGE to see what bands are involved and hear their stuff!

smaller-front-of-dvdThen, coming up on December 25th, will be the DVD of Season One of SKYE! So stay tuned to both Magical Words and my newly formatted website for updates regarding the links for that when it becomes available! YAY!

Well, that’s it for me this time around, until next time, write hard, bathe in imagination, and HAPPY HOLIDAYS, EVERYONE!

Best, Tamsin 🙂


Party Talk!

Our little party is recovering from the holiday and prepping for another one, so I passed around the bloody marys and asked them all:

Which mythical creature do you wish existed in real life?

Gail Martin:
Woodland creatures that do your dishes when you sing.

Tamsin Silver:
Depends if you’re talking actual mythology or anything in fantasy. If you mean the former: Pegasus. If you mean the later: Vampires (if they have a soul and stuff), duh… 😉

John Hartness:
Elves. Pointy ears are hot.

Edmund Schubert:
Fair, honest politicians. (At this point I’d settle for a politician who wasn’t batcrap crazy. mm)

Misty Massey:
When I was a kid, I always liked to sit outside as quietly as I could, in the hope that the fae would reveal themselves. So far, I haven’t lucked out.

Melissa Gilbert:
I’m going to go with gnomes. My dad really likes gnomes, and I’d love for him to see a real one.

R S Belcher:
A politician who isn’t full of bullshit. (Here, have a set on the couch with Edmund.*laughs*)

Diana Pharaoh Francis:
Anne McCaffrey’s fire lizards

Magical Words Link Roundup 12-1-2016

Romance is not all Fabio and bodice-rippers, according to Janet Walden-West.

Natania Barron says ‘Penny Dreadful’ is perfect for your 2016 hangover.

Introvert Doodles artist Marzi Wilson has created some spot-on comics that every book lover will understand.

Book lovers and shameless TV bingers can unite with this list of book recommendations inspired by some of the best shows on TV.

Barnes&Noble asks writers, “What is one of your favorite novels in which the characters sucked you into the story?”

If you’re looking for festive ways to show off your geek pride this holiday season, or inspiration for what to get a special nerd in your life, The Portalist has some suggestions.

It’s been a rough year for most of us, so if you need a little dose of happiness, here you go.


Magical Words Link Roundup 11-30-2016

Clockwork Cairo is accepting submissions through the end of this year.

Terry Gilliam’s classic dystopian satire Brazil has only gotten more relevant since it came out. (I love this movie, but right now I’m not sure I can bear to watch. mm)

Need a gift idea for the readers in your life? I like these!

And I also find these repurposed paintings completely adorable.

The very last question Don Maass asked us at the end of the Writer Unboxed UnConference earlier this month, was: How do you want your novel to change the world?

On Nov. 30, NASA’s Cassini mission will begin the ring-grazing final chapter of its career at Saturn, one that will end with the spacecraft’s terminal plunge into the gas giant’s unforgiving atmosphere.

The 10th Annual Roanoke Writer’s Conference will be held in January 2017 and there are still a few spots available.


Magical Words Link Roundup 11-29-2016

Speculative fiction is the literature of change and discovery. But every now and then, a book comes along that changes the rules of science fiction for everybody.

Rose Montague’s Fun With Chapter Titles!

J K Rowling just keeps being cooler and cooler.

Just because October’s gone doesn’t mean we don’t want a good scary read. Here are nine to try.

Wow, talk about being UNturned on

Whether it’s “heroes with hang ups” like the Fantastic Four, or the light and dark Casters in Beautiful Creatures, here are eight fantasy families The Portalist would love to join.

Future Martian colonists, NASA just found you a reservoir with about as much thirst-quenching potential as Lake Superior. Good to know, since we may need it soon.

Our own David B Coe is featured on Beauty in Ruins, talking about his evolution as an author.

And speaking of our own, y’all did hear about Trials? The new book of short stories set in Faith Hunter’s Rogue Mage world? It’s available now!

Quick-Tip Tuesday: Deadlines!

David B. Coe/ D.B. JacksonAs the year winds down, and I start considering all the work I need to get done in the next few weeks, my mind naturally turns to the topic of deadlines. Deadlines are one of the harsh realities of life as a professional writer. We are always working under one deadline or another; often we face several at once, some of them external, some of them self-imposed. I am looking at four looming deadlines right now, one that I established myself, one that is contractual, one for a short story that I promised to a friend [waves at Misty], and another for an anthology to which I’d like to submit another story.

Writing to deadline is something pros do. Ask any writer what he or she feels is a defining characteristic of a professional writer and s/he is bound to mention hitting deadlines. If we can’t hand in work on time, we’re not going to last long in this business.

So what are some secrets for successfully working under deadlines?

1. Treat all deadlines as immutable. No writer wants a reputation for missing deadlines or constantly asking editors for extensions. It makes us look bad. It suggests that we are not able to produce on demand, which is another element of being a professional. But more than that, we don’t want to get bogged down with a project that lingers and lingers, never getting done. This is why I treat my own self-imposed deadlines with the same respect I extend to deadlines imposed by others. When I work on a book that I’m writing on spec — by which I mean a book I’m going to finish and then try to sell to a publisher, as opposed to a book that’s already under contract — I set a deadline for the completion of that novel and I stick to it.

Why? A couple of reasons. First, I don’t want to get in the habit of letting deadlines slide. By treating all of my due dates with the same sense of finality I reinforce a good habit. And second, I set goals for each calendar year. Every deadline I miss makes it harder to meet the next goal on my list. It becomes a self-reinforcing pattern of failure and missed end-points.

2. Keep deadlines realistic. Do you ever watch Chopped on the Food Network? For those who aren’t familiar with the show, it’s a cooking competition in which contestants are given specific ingredients they have to use in a dish that they complete in a set amount of time. My wife and I love it. Invariably, an episode will crop up in which someone tries to make, say, risotto, in ten minutes, despite the fact that risotto ALWAYS takes longer to cook. Invariably, these people get chopped — in other words, they lose.

Writers sometimes do something similar by agreeing to, or giving themselves, unreasonable deadlines. If you write a thousand words a day, chances are you won’t be able to complete a 100,000 word novel in two months. The math doesn’t work. So don’t expect it of yourself, even if it’s a deadline no one but you will ever know about. Don’t set yourself up for failure.

“But,” you say, “what if an editor asks me to make that two month deadline?”

Be honest with her. Tell her that two months won’t work, but you can get it done in three, or three and a half. When it comes down to it, the editor is going to get the book at the same time no matter what. You can only write so fast. Faced with the choice between A) an honest assessment of your writing pace and a book handed in when she expects it, or B) a book promised on an unattainable schedule and then handed in a month late, just about every editor will choose A.

3. Set intermediate goals to keep yourself on pace. I find that it’s not enough for me to know that I have a deadline three months away. I can promise myself that I’ll finish my 100,000 word novel on time, but I need a measuring stick by which to keep track of my progress. And so I set word count goals along the way. I try to have X number of words written by the end of the first month, and X+Y finished at the end of month two.

As I’m making my schedule, I keep in mind that life happens. Each month I’m going to miss a day or two of work. This time of year holidays limit our productivity. Sometime in the summer I’ll be traveling with my family. Certain times of the year tend to be busier than others with conventions, family events, birthdays, etc. I need to consider all of these things.

In other words, when I set my intermediate goals, I keep in mind all the possible delays I might encounter. Again, my goals are to meet the deadline and to avoid setting myself up for failure. So I try to be as realistic with my intermediate measures as I am with the deadline itself.

Deadlines are a reality, but with some forethought, discipline, and honest planning, they shouldn’t be anything we can’t handle.

Keep writing!