Let the Write-A-Thon Commence!

Somewhat literally, since my principal distraction right now is playing "The Last of Us."

Somewhat literally, since my principal distraction right now is playing “The Last of Us.”

I’m quite pleased to report that, after a few glitches involving an overeager spam filter, I am now an official participant in the the 2013 Clarion West Write-A-Thon! Occuring concurrently with the Clarion West Writer’s Workshop–Seattle’s 29-years-running summer collaborative for dedicated sci-fi/fantasy authors, overseen this time by such masters of the craft as Neil Gaiman, Samuel R. Delany, and Joe Hill–the Write-A-Thon gives authors who didn’t or couldn’t enroll the opportunity to still motivate themselves and promote their writing.

As I’m one of those folks (I’d claim it’s because admission was competitive and required a brief essay/writing submission, but I was honestly just overwhelmed with college stuff at the time and knew I’d be intermittently busy throughout summer anyway), I’m using this opportunity to officially get back into writing my first novel, There’s Something Wrong with the Neighbor’s Cat: A Hyper-Awesome Nick Smiths Adventure! (which the more dedicated among you may remember me announcing in this post). You can see my official Write-A-Thon profile–with a new summary of the book’s plot, as well as my financial and writerly goals for the project as a whole–right here. And oh, how about that? There’s a Paypal donation button… *coughcough*


#hyperawesome [Let’s make it catch on!]

There’s Something Wrong with the Neighbor’s Cat: Character Profiles

Hey, all! It occurred to me that I haven’t put out as much preview info on my upcoming book as I probably should, so here’s some relatively spoiler-proof profiles of the main characters in There’s Something Wrong with the Neighbor’s Cat:

Nick Smiths: The son of computer sales executives from Western Washington, Nick is quick-witted and determined (when need be), but prone to letting his mind wander. He enjoys gaming, aimless internet surfing, and playing drums in a “temporarily unnamed” garage band with his friends, while his relationship with his business-minded parents and college-going sister is decidedly neutral. Nick is fresh out of junior year and ready for summer vacation, but his life is about to take a turn for the hyper awesome when he adopts his neighbor’s cat…

Niki: Niki is an Omaneki, a Spirited being capable of transforming from a human to a cat at will, retaining both higher intelligence and feline abilities in either form. She is curious, excitable, and prone to emotional swings, traits which are exacerbated the longer she stays in cat form. However, she can become serious and cunning at the drop of a hat, always keeping friends on their toes. Her role in the story should be more than a little self-evident.

Tanner: Tanner is a tanuki, a Spirited raccoon-dog that can turn into other objects and living beings at the drop of a hat. Tanner has adopted a very “American” attitude from his time in Centralia: He is crass, blunt, and rarely seen without a beer in hand. However, he means well, and stands resolutely by his assignment to protect Niki. Tanner is particularly proud of owning Plot Device, a “hypersonic biplane” which he utilizes for rapid travel.

Mimi and Lole Otakawai: A pair of young Omaneki siblings, the Otakawai twins were raised on the internet, having displayed an aptitude for technology since birth. As such, they converse almost entirely in jumbled “net-speak” and joke references, which makes communication difficult. The Otakawais are skilled with manipulating virtually all forms of coding and operating system, as well as a variety of artillery. Mimi and Lole share Niki’s zeal for discovery, though the pair is far more adventurous and strategic, provided their bickering doesn’t prevent them from working together.

Nefiria Racknyd: Though her motives and history are not always clear, Nefiria periodically serves as an impartial aide to Nick and company–when it suits her. She is a fiercely independent girl (her standard dress is a mismatched combo of tropical and goth garb), but tends to think of herself as more philosophical than she actually is. She enjoys underage-drinking exotic cocktails and finding excuses to flaunt her looks. What’s the catch, you ask? Well, depends how hungry she is…

First Info on My First Novel

I’m here to officially announce my first “real” book: There’s Something Wrong with the Neighbor’s Cat.

It’s an adventure-mystery-comedy that mixes modern and ancient Japanese lore with American life. There’ll be monsters and awkward romance, and it takes place in Washington state. So, it’s like Twilight, but awesome.