Wednesday, August 29, 2012

My Life Isn't All Laughs, You Know

Last week, Karina presented a bit of a tale I'm telling her to her crit group.  They loved it--why wouldn't they?--but everyone wondered when the jokes and pratfalls were going to start.  They thought it seemed kind of dark.

That's because it is.

Is your life always funny?  Trust me, mine hasn't been, and in the legendary definition of adventure, I've had a lot of danger and discomfort.  However, like to many dangerous and uncomfortable situations, they've also been interesting, so I choose to tell them.  Why Karina tends to make these shorter stories and write the funny ones as novellas, I don't know.

Here's the piece she submitted.  She's finishing the story this week.

Dante assigned Judas his own special place in Hell for betraying his Savior.  I was wondering what horrible sin I’d committed to deserve my own unique inferno.
I slunk my way along the streets of the Faerie side of Los Lagos, trying to ignore how the glare of neon signs and pixie flash did nothing to dispel the gloom.  A temperature inversion had trapped the noxious fumes of Mundane technology, shrouding the autumn afternoon in a dismal, dirty gray fog.  People had been warned to stay indoors.  The Mundanes, insular by nature, anyway, were only too glad to hole up with their televisions and Xboxes, but the Faerie were still too new to this dimension to give up their social ways.  The many races that made their homes in this “brave new world” wouldn’t let a little smog get in the way of their gossip and shopping.
With my treasure left behind in the mountains of Caraparavalenciana, I didn’t have the means for shopping—even if dragons did shop—and I was hoping to avoid any gossip about why the resident undersized drake was prowling the streets.  Unfortunately, the higher you got, the thicker the air; my nose balked at the idea of flying.  I kept to the back alleys until I got to my destination, then flapped my way to the second story of a ramshackle hotel that dared to call itself The Ritz.  It was putting someone on, that’s for sure.
I didn’t care about the digs.  I’d come to visit another Judas in his hell.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Me and the Magic Mirror


Karina's writing up a case where I got some assist from the Magic Mirror, and she asked me to tell you a little about his backstory.

I think you probably are familiar with it from Snow White.  Stepmother 's magic mirror feeds her vanity until she gets into a jealous rage because Snowy's fairer than she.  She orders the huntsman to take the girl into the woods and kill her, but he sends her running, and she meets seven dwarves...yadda yadda.

The Faerie version is this:  Said huntsman takes her to the dwarves for safekeeping while he finds the Bishop to get help.  her Mad Majesty, meanwhile, tries to poison Snow White, which didn't really work, since a couple of mages and Yours Truly were there to put a kibash on the idea.Queenie does time, Snowy ascends the throne--after which, she's set up with Prince Charming--or, in this case, Duke Karl Reichfield II, a smart and kind nobleman who wasn't a threat to her throne but helped her rule wisely.  Their grandson still rules the tiny kingdom, which is nestled between France and Germany.

But of course, we confiscated all her evil magical items, and we came across the mirror.  Since I, as a dragon, am naturally used to having my ego stroked, I was put in charge of it, and we got to talking.  Turns out, Shiny wasn't such a bad sort; he was originally created to share information and truths.  He has the ability to see into any mirror (which, incidentally, is how Her Majesty found Snow White, while the maiden was primping after cleaning house).  However, he was made with neutral purpose; it wasn't really his fault that the queen was the fairest in the land (within  a limited definition of land) nor that Snow White would blossom into womanhood so sweetly and well, fair.

Still, the Queen fed his ego almost as much as he fed hers.  He got used to her attentions, the guilt cleanings, etc.  You don't really want to know the details.  Fact of the matter was, he saw what was happening to her, but turned a blind eye, so to speak.

The monks were all for breaking his spell along with the glass, but I saw potential.  I dunno; maybe St. George rubbed off on me.  Anyway, I argued for clemency, and having wisdom of the ages and all that, made my case.  Shiny was locked away in the Vatican vaults until someone could decide on a useful way to redeem himself.  I consulted with him once in a while, and then the Gap opened, and my Mundane friend Natura introduced me to self-esteem therapy."

Now Shiny hangs in a small room in the local charity clinic, where his job is to help others see the good in themselves.  His frame has tarnished, but with each goodness he does, it regains a little luster.  You'd think this would be an easy, satisfying job.  He begs to differ.  Apparently, some people don't' want to believe in their own beauty--even when a magic mirror points it out.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Coyote Fires and Reluctant Dwarves

Came across this old interview of Garn, one of the dwarves in Magic, Mensa, and Mayhem adn thought you might enjoy it.  Incidentally, we are still holding at $103 in donations o the victims of the Colorado wildfires. You can't tell me you aren't enjoying the story, so what's the deal?  Toss them a couple of dollars with the donate button, and I'll finish telling Karina the story.  Don't forget, too, that we're donating all our profits from the e-book sales, and donations of $25 get a free copy of Magic, Mensa, and Mayhem.

  1. Can you tell us your name and the title of the book you live in?

(Muttering to himself: I can't believe Kent talked me into this...) I'm Garn, and I'm a dwarf and one of the conspirators in the DragonEye, PI, novel, Magic, Mensa and Mayhem.

  1. Describe to our readers what your role in the book is.

I think I'll pass actually. Vern has told me about your Mundane concept of "spoilers" and has told me what he'll do to me if I provide any.

  1. How did you convince your author to put you in this book?  For example, did you visit a dream or make yourself known some other way?

I don't really know what you mean by that. I didn't ask to be put in this book. I'd rather have not been mentioned at all, but I do have a key role in the whole case, so she couldn't have left me out, I suppose.

  1. Would you tell us about one of your favorite friends from this book?

I guess that would be Kent, my traveling companion for the convention. We'd actually just met before the trip. Don’t tell him, but at first, I was kind of excited to have him for a roommate. I'd heard a lot about his performance as Graf Goldhacker in The Day the Mine Ran Dry. Dwarf Entertainer gave it three diamonds. Anyway, he turned out to be quite shale--er, Mundanes would say, "a flake"?  Thought he could dress like that Gimli character and roam the streets of BillyBeaver's Fantasyland spouting off lines get himself "discovered."

Still, got a heart of gold, he does. And he did eventually break into Mundane television. He was supposed to get a role on Atlantis until they canceled the show. Now he's got a role as the assassin in the movie Live and Let Fly.

  1. Do you plan on appearing in another book or are you happy to be where you are?

I think I'm done with adventuring, intrigue and getting on Vern's bad side. I've got my Faeriemet mine here in Faerie Australia and I'm happy.

  1. What would you like our readers to know about you?

Only that I'm sorry the Mundane world got involved in what should have been Faerie scheming. It was a cultural misunderstanding, really.

  1. Did you learn anything during your adventure in this book?

(Growling) My ancestors were right: never trust an Elf.

  1. Can you tell us what you think is the most exciting thing that happened to you in your book?

As in fear-for-my-life exciting? Probably the trip to Florida. On that abomination of a transport. Airships!  Dwarves were meant to be underground, not in the air!

  1. Is there anything in your story you wish you had not done? Why?

I should have been more casual about my pickax. I realize now my possessiveness drew attention to it.

  1. What was your main motivation?

What every dwarf's motivation should be: a mine to call his own.

  1. Introduce us to your main adversary?

Galendor. Uppity, politicizing, better-than-Elvish High Elf. If he hadn't set those--sorry. Spoilers.

  1. Is there anything you would like to have done but your author stopped you?

I don't understand the question. She wasn't there. She just wrote down the story as Vern told it.  Now what I would have liked to have done, but Vern stopped me, was take my pickax to Galendor's family jewels.

  1. Here’s your chance to speak your mind.  What do you want to tell everybody?

If yer looking for the best Faeriemet in two universes, you'll find it at Garn's of the Outback. High quality, reasonable rates.

Oh, and I don't have any hard feelings toward Vern or Grace. They were just doing their jobs--and they made Gozon fulfill his part of the agreement and give me the mine he promised. Spent two days of talking him into it, too. That's actually pretty fast for a High Elf, amazingly fast considering it was Gozon.