Where Do Superheroes Spend Their Twilight Years?

Misty MasseyMisty Massey

Today we welcome friend of Magical Words Lauren Harris, who’d like to tell you all about an exciting project she’s heading. So heeeeeeere’s Lauren!


Hi! I’m Lauren Harris, IGMS Assistant Editor and author of the Millroad Academy Exorcists series. (You might remember me from a past post on MW, Eight Ways to HOKWOP.) I come to you today with an anthology and a Magical Words EXCLUSIVE giveaway! It’s my pleasure today to introduce a new anthology I brainstormed, ELYSIAN SPRINGS: ADVENTURES FROM THE NURSING HOME FOR AGING SUPERHEROES, which explores the twilight years of heroes, villains, and sidekicks in ten tales and one comic. The stories are both hilarious and heartbreaking as authors make the complex subject of aging accessible through the modern-day mythology of superheroes. It includes stories from MW’s very own Misty Massey, as well as authors like Gail Z. Martin, Tee Morris, Ken Scholes, and […]

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To Be Or Not To Be?

Misty MasseyMisty Massey

To be. Is, are, was, were. The most used verb in our (or probably, any) language. It has a purpose and a place in writing and in speech. But use it too much, and suddenly your stories become bland and dull. Want to know how I know? Because my editor challenged me to take every instance of the verb “to be” out of the story I owe him.

John Hartness, you’re a cruel man and I love you for it.

You see, I agree with his assessment. The problem with “to be” lies in its calm. When someone screams or leaps or scrambles or argues, something happens. I, the reader, ride along on the wave of action the writer creates. If I use various forms of “to be” instead, I run the risk of my action falling flat. Let me illustrate.

With “to be”:

She was dark haired, and her […]

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What the Actual?

Misty MasseyMisty Massey

I love going to cons. Very often it’s my only chance to see people I adore, since we don’t all live close enough to have coffee dates. But not only that – it’s just fun. I got home from Congregate a few hours ago. While there I moderated a panel on diversity in SF/F and its fandom (which was incredible! I wish you all could have been there!) served on panels about the Weird Wild West, settings in fiction, and Kickstarters, read my work out loud to an appreciative audience, and appeared as the middle bottom square in a truly hysterical version of The Hollywood Squares (John Hartness sat next to me, and I just can’t describe how crazy the whole game was!) Friday night I shut down the bar with a bunch of people, and Saturday night my husband and I flitted from room party to room party until […]

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Say You Don’t Know Me

Misty MasseyMisty Massey

I’m constantly told that Amazon (the mighty, mighty online retailer that can sell you books for crazy low prices as long as they’re not throwing a fit against the publishers of said books) is a bad company and I shouldn’t buy from them because they contribute to the fall of the brick&mortar stores. It’s hard to resist, though, when you can shop and buy without ever putting on your shoes, right? The trouble is that Amazon likes to institute policies that make us less interested in using their services. The latest involves reviews.

Originally, Amazon would not allow family members or very close friends of authors to post reviews. I suppose I can understand that – a review from my mom or my bestie would automatically be a five-star because they love me and want me to succeed, and goodness knows, we don’t want that to happen, right? But now […]

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Five Things To Remember When You’re Building A Blog Tour

Misty MasseyMisty Massey

Posting this on behalf of the delightful Gail Martin, who’s off on a lovely vacation! Enjoy!

A ‘blog tour’ is when an author lines up a number of blogger sites which have agreed to post a guest blog by that author during a certain period of time–usually a week or so–in order to promote a specific event–usually a book launch.

Blog tours can be valuable ways to get your message out to a broad audience, utilizing the networks of your host bloggers. Done right, not only can your blog post reach readers of the host blog who might not visit your own sites or be aware of your work; you can also benefit from publicity about your post done by the blogger via Twitter, Facebook and other channels.

Readers who like your post may re-tweet the link or post a direct link to what you’ve written on Reddit or a […]

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It’s All In What You Consume

Misty MasseyMisty Massey

I have a terrible habit of guessing who the bad guy in within the first fifteen minutes of a mystery show. Or I suppose it’s not bad that I guess, but that I announce it out loud to the person watching with me. And because television is based on formulas, I’m most often right. (I have learned to keep my mouth shut in movie theaters, for which my husband is grateful. *laughs*)

The other night I started reading a new author, and within three chapters, I’d already guessed the bad guy and his motivation. Sometimes an author intends for his reader to know who the villain is right away, but this book is trying to keep it a secret until the big reveal at the end… and there I was, already nailing it. Which means that the author didn’t do what he wanted. The writing was solid, but the author […]

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Planning It Out

Misty MasseyMisty Massey

I was on vacation at Edisto Beach all last week. My family rents a house there every summer, and we spend the week building castles in the sand, swimming in the ocean and playing bocce on the beach. Every year, while we’re there, my husband and I start fantasizing about living on the coast. It would be much better for his asthma, since we currently live in the worst part of South Carolina for people with allergies and respiratory issues. For me, it would be going home. I’m very much a creature of the coast, and I’d prefer to live somewhere that the air actually moves now and then. (Even now, after living here for decades, it still creeps me out to walk outside and realize there’s not a breath of wind at all.) In years past, we’ve toyed and talked but done nothing concrete about our wish to move.


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