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...no mad skillz, no sacred destiny, just a pink tracksuit that will take her places she never wanted to go...
It's been said that a sure sign of the coming apocalypse is an 80s roller skate disco movie coming to DVD (with special features). In my science-fiction novel series entitled Apocalypse Babes, a stylish group of twenty-something friends are torn from the Babylonian arms of 2006 West Hollywood and flung nearly thirty years into the past. It might be because one of them purchased the taboo film in a nostalgic moment, setting off a chain of events more disturbing than a roller skating conga line. They wake up in an apocalyptic—but strangely familiar—landscape, complete with a hidden mountain compound and retro survivalists, hinting at hidden and retro issues they must face if they want to survive.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Page 99 Test

Ford Madox Ford famously said, “Open the book to page ninety-nine, and the quality of the whole will be revealed to you.”

Now there's a website devoted to it. As a writer, you can upload published or unpublished page 99s of your work. Or as a reader you can go read the page 99s and vote/comment. You don't get to see who wrote it until after you vote. It's a lot of fun.

I posted two excerpts from my sci-fi series Apocalypse Babes. Thoughts? Advice? Would you turn the page?

The Z Word

   Stepping over the wood fragments, she opened the cabinet and found a bottle of disinfectant. Without giving thought to her actions, she found a washcloth and began to clean the bathroom, from the fixtures to the floor. Her movements made almost enough noise to block the hushed whispers filtering past the door. Almost.
    “How long does it take?”
    “When will we know for sure?”
    “How does infection spread?”
    “Through bites.”
    “Does that mean through saliva?”
    “God, she is so dead.”
    Seffy squeezed her eyes shut as her stomach roiled. Lifting the lid on the sparkling clean toilet, she threw up again.
    “Um, that girl is on the floor.”
Gareth turned to the brunette newcomer. She was pointing at the bathroom door. Ignoring Lani's and Addy's gasps, he rushed to the bathroom and wrenched open the door. Seffy lay splayed on the floor, her skin tone matching the dingy white tile floor, her blond hair puddled around her head.
   Gareth scooped her up and took her to the couch, shadowed by Malone and the girls.
    “Is she dead?”
    He looked up to see the tense expression of the blond guy. Gareth ignored him. As he settled Seffy on the couch, he touched his fingers to her throat. The pounding of his own heart made it difficult to detect a pulse, but he finally felt a faint flutter under her skin. 


 The X Factor

    Geez, I'm running out of supporters fast. I should be nicer. Or less infected. Or something.
    “We noticed that the air is dry in here and so we'll be putting in a humidifier. Leave it on all the time and we'll make sure to keep it filled for you.”
    “Okay,” she said in a sing-song voice. “Buh-bye now.”
    As soon as they were gone, Seffy heaved a frustrated breath. She could not just sit here and stew. She had to do something.
    She grabbed the candy bars, ate one, and stuffed the other two in her front pocket. Seffy peeked out her door and saw that the hall was clear. Taking a deep breath, she eased out of her room and pulled the door closed behind her. Still clear. I swear to God, if I see Trent, I will rip his head off...with my teeth.
    To the left was the cafeteria, which meant people. So, she chose the right, and hoped it took her where she was determined to go. If she didn't get some fresh air, she'd lose what was left of her frontal lobes. Stained linoleum floor tiles stretched in front of her. Seffy began a light jog and went to the end of one hall and turned down another, in the opposite direction of Trent's room. She kept running until she heard voices.
    Spying a storage closet, she nipped inside and held her breath until the voices passed. Seffy groped for a light and turned it on. A greasy set of coveralls was wadded up in a corner next to mops and brooms and industrial cleaning supplies, rolls of duct tape, toilet paper, and light bulbs. On one of the shelves was an old baseball cap. Yuck. But she knew it would help.
    She picked up the coveralls, wincing at the stale smell of cigarette smoke, and she pulled them on. Next came the cap, and she stuffed her hair up underneath. Seffy wondered if grabbing a broom was going too far. She debated, then decided to take one. If she got caught she could say she was cleaning up a spill on aisle five.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

You Can't Outrun Them

You probably think it's because of Halloween or some TV show promo, but how can we really be sure? Isn't that the perfect cover? I heard this footage was found on an abandoned camera near Penn Station. The network used jokey anchors and goofy music, why?

De-nial. And those who deny, die.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Matched...I sure hope so

Forever Young Adult calls it TEABS: The End of an Awesome Book Syndrome.

The Hunger Games trilogy left a hole in my readerly heart (despite the disappointing ending). So a new novel has stepped up to the literary plate and claimed to bring some relief to TEABS angst.

This from io9 (click the link to view the book trailer):

"Matched is being pitched as "Brave New World meets The Handmaid's Tale," and it comes with a pre-sharpened love triangle. USA Today mentioned it as one of the dystopian teen novels to watch out for in the wake of Mockingjay, and it's already been optioned as a film by Disney and Offspring Entertainment."
Here's the blurb:
Cassia has always trusted the Society to make the right choices for her: what to read, what to watch, what to believe, and when to die. It's a small price to pay for a long life of perfection. The Society is entrusted to select your ideal mate, and Cassia has looked forward to her Matching Banquet for as long as she can remember. So when her best friend Xander appears on-screen, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is her perfect match… until she sees Ky Markham's face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black. Now Cassia is faced with impossible choices: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she's known and a path no one else has ever dared follow. How do you know what to decide when you've never had an option? What happens when love can destroy a seemingly infallible world? In MATCHED, Ally Condie debates perfection and passion, security and uncertainty. It's a suspenseful romance and compelling adventure set in a not-so-distant future, and every element of the world feels frighteningly real.
 Only time will tell if Matched can heal my trackerjacked heart, but like Gale, I'll give it another chance...

Monday, October 11, 2010

Tell, Don't Show...huh?

The awesome site io9.com had an article by Charlie Jane Anders I found fascinating (and the pictures rocked, too).Writers have been told the Holy Grail of writerly excellence is 'show, don't tell'. Who would've thunk it that this could be turned on its head? Wait, we're talking about sci-fi, where turning the norm on its head is de rigueur!

Check out my post via Science Fiction Romance Blog.