Novel Prequel: Olivia Tames Terror
When gods invade a public school, they don’t count on a teenage dancer waiting for them on detention. In this free YA adventure, Olivia Tames Terror, Livi learns her friends’ strengths and weaknesses when they take on the minor Greek gods, Phobos and Deimos. It takes a team to repel an invasion by the gods of Panic and Dread, but it takes a disobedient cynic like Livi to lead them. And she’ll need to lead them again in her forthcoming novel, when Olivia Tames Olympus, also by K. Alan Leitch. Wattpad members| Free on Inkitt
All characters and settings registered by the author for U.S. Copyright. The novel that follows, Olivia Tames Olympus is available for publication.
Spock explains to Fake Spock why the universe sucks, now.
Recently, my sister told me that J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek films are reboots, not revivals. You know the ones: where Christopher Pine replaces William Shatner, the planet Vulcan blows up and Spock logically responds by making out with Uhura? Right. Those films. My sister, who was a Trek fan even before I was, says that she can enjoy them as completely separate stories from the originals. That would make them a reboot: a story with the same origins and premise, but without being tied to existing continuity.
But those films aren’t reboots. They’re the worst kind of continuation; the kind that erases the original continuity. Continue reading
He was a great author, but Bram Stoker didn’t have the voice we want to read now.
Every writer who’s submitted anything has had so sit through a stern lecture about Voice. “The Voice isn’t quite right.” “Publishers are super-attuned to voice.” Or, my personal favorite: “Your narrative has no voice.”
No voice? None? With thousands of words filling hundreds of pages it would have to at least sound like me. When I speak, people hear my voice, so surely it’s the same when I write.
Agents may have been sparing my feelings when they gave me these actual points of feedback. They couldn’t have meant the narrative was silent, so maybe they just didn’t like the writing. I think there’s more, though. I think part of it might be that they want something in #ownvoices. Continue reading
If you want to experience every emotion in the space of a minute, just sign up to Twitter. It’s a place where writers can be abused, men can be accused, and a President can spread lies faster than any time in history. The #WritingCommunity on Twitter, though, is also a place for writers to find a support network… and one of the most supportive friends I’ve found is author Michele Sagan, who’s just been agented for her thriller, The Lies He Tells.
And it only took her twenty years. Continue reading
I’ve been interviewed! Visit The Muffin for my views on how silence, Starbucks and being a teacher helped me to write my recently published YA short, Weak as Tissue. I keep reading how teaching doesn’t qualify us to write YA. Really? How could it not? (Also click here for links to other published stories.)
Women were known to fight in Medieval battles
It wasn’t long ago that academic medievalist and author, Adam D. Jones, shut down an argument by tweeting that women played much more prominent roles in medieval society than most of us realize. Despite that contribution to history, though, our fiction would have us believe that they spent their time languishing in locked-up towers, waiting for princes or knights to finally get off their horses for the rescue. Only recently have authors begun cladding medieval heroines in armour and chain, and some of those authors are copping more than a bit of flak for it in the often-hostile Twittiverse.
Jones says they’re right, though… and that’s the first reason for authors to rewrite what we think we know about minorities. Continue reading
Here’s some free fiction! I’m posting this as an experiment; something unpolished that I wrote in an hour, and posted raw. As writers, I think that we focus on editing areas that are important to us, but maybe not to our readers. Comments on how this story could improve are welcome, so that I can compare a list of readers’ editing priorities to my own. Yes, learning can be fun!
Visit my profile page for links to twenty published, more polished stories.
“Oh, hey, Dylan,” the stranger said, rising out of Elliot’s favorite chair. “You’re finally home.”
Somehow, my reflex was to explain: to apologize to this intruder for holding up her busy schedule of breaking and entering. “I, uh… had some shopping to do,” I told her stupidly.
She glanced around at the collection of cloth bags near my feet. “Shame,” she said about my motley montage of groceries and toiletries. “I wish you’d called. I could have saved you the trouble.” I could see that this confident stranger was wearing heels, but her steps were oddly silent as they crossed the floor toward me. Kneeling, she started poking through my bags.
Behind me, the open door framed me with the fluorescent glow of my building’s hallway. The buzz from old lights like that drove me crazy; Elliot had always sworn she couldn’t hear them, but I needed to close the door.
I needed to get rid of the stranger, first. Continue reading
The best mornings used to be the ones when the lorikeets would visit. They’d paint my balcony rail with their plumage, giving the mural of landscape behind them a purpose. With the lorikeets visiting, blue water and swaying foliage would become something steadier: a background they could dive-bomb and ascend. Trees would become the pedestals for their prizewinning beauty. Continue reading
Visit WOW: Women on Writing and KYSO Flash for my latest flash fiction: YA coming-of-age Weak as Tissue and an undersea rescue with under-skull parallels, In Deep… or read anything from my full list.
It’s not the magic that makes a story. It’s the ordinary guy who makes it magical.
The Power of Three needed a fourth…
I’ve been watching a lot of Charmed lately. No, not the stylish reboot, but the original white-girl series that helped make way for a better deal than girls had back then. My discovery of the series is thanks to a beloved student whom I’ll call TLT, who insisted that I watch at least the first three seasons. Since the show is older than she is, I thought I had better see what kept her coming back.
But here’s my shameful little secret: I’m now into Season Six.
The question, then, is what kept me coming back? I guess it was partly the much-needed replacement of hard-hearted Shannen Doherty with her surprisingly funny successor, Rose McGowan. Maybe it was partly the development of Leo, the witches’ own personal Great Gazoo who would appear inside sparkles to save their lives and sire their spawn. Maybe I just like watching those stained-glass windows shatter. What it wasn’t, though, was the magical powers or the nasally delivered rhyming couplets. It wasn’t the interminable series of failed dates with mannequin co-stars, nor the increasing density of Alyssa Milano’s makeup.
Mostly, what kept me coming back was a supporting character named Darryl. Continue reading