Written by | Posted November 19, 2013 – 4:46 pm Deconstruction

Bad things are happening in Stormwind – and beyond.

The Hand of Lothar, they call themselves.

Yva Darrows was their first target.

Tirith and Aely were their second and third.

They have since… expanded their reach and escalated their methods …

Guest Post: The Secret of Writing
comment 7 Written by on January 12, 2010 – 9:36 am

Today’s post is brought to you by the awesome Tami, who will introduce herself here in a minute (as I am still out of town). She’s an awesome writer, and you may have once known her as The Egotistical Priest. She’s filling in for me today with a little bit about the actual /process/ that is writing. Sometimes I get asked how it is that I write every day, or how I get something finished (either blog posts or RP stories or other stories). Tami’s got your answer.

INTRODUCTION
Hello, Anna’s readers! I’m Tami, from TamiMoore.com. Anna sent out the call for guest posts and asked me to give her readers a little tough love on the subject of writing.

*cracks knuckles*

WRITING
Blogging, magazine articles, short stories, novels, non-fiction books, diaries, role-playing …

No matter what flavor of “writing” they do, a lot of writers are looking for the magic bullet – the missing piece that will solve all their writing problems.

“What problems are these, Tami?”

Well, I’m so glad you asked! Let’s take a look at a small sub-sampling, which naturally has no bearing whatsoever in my own personal writing problems and issues, because any one person having THIS many writing hangups might seem unhinged …. *coff, coff* Moving on.

  • I don’t have time to write.
  • There are too many distractions, it’s too hard to concentrate.
  • My writing isn’t good enough, nobody would voluntarily read this!
  • My muse must be broken.
  • What if I’m doing it wrong?
  • Every time I sit down to one story, five more crop up and I want to write them, too!

Those are fun, eh? Any of them sound familiar?

THE SECRET
I am going to teach you the secret to writing. It answers every single one of those problems and more.

Furthermore, I’m going to give it to you absolutely free.

*waves you in closer* Are you ready?

WRITE.

NO, SERIOUSLY
That’s it.

That’s the secret.

Disappointed?

I can’t imagine why you should be. If anything, you should be filled with hope and a renewed fervor.

I’m being serious here. You, in the back, stop it with the scoffing.

If there were some magical secret to writing, that would mean that some folks had an advantage. That no matter what you did, you might never write as well as they can until you got your hands on their magic bean/pill/potion/prayer/thingy. “Powdered writing skill, just add water!”

Happily, that’s not true at all!

Write. That’s it.

Work. Practice. Do. Take action. Butt in Chair, Fingers on Keyboard – WRITE.

EXCUSES
But, but, but, how can that possibly address all of those problems?

  • Don’t have time to write? What about all the single mothers out there holding down a full time job and still producing one to two books per year? Talk about someone who doesn’t have time to write! Ask any of them and they’ll tell you – they make time to write. In a life filled with valid reasons to have no time for writing, they carve out that time.
  • Too hard to concentrate? Buy a pair of headphones or earbuds and suck it up. We will never have the “perfect” writing environment. If we NEED the perfect writing environment to write, we’d never get anything done. Real life always intervenes. You just have to bull through it.
  • Not good enough? That’s what practice is for. You get better at writing by writing really horrid stuff for a while and improving as you see what works and what doesn’t work.
  • Broken muse? No such thing. I promise, if professional authors and artists produced work on their muse’s schedule, we’d still be in the dark ages. Sure, having that artistic high is FANTASTIC, but it can and will not be how you feel every time you sit down to write. Furthermore, writing “museless” is normal and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Just write. Regardless of whether or not you feel like you’re peeling the words out from beneath your fingernails or if your fingers are flying over the keyboard. Write.
  • Doing it wrong? There’s no wrong way to write. Commercial fiction has some structures and rules it usually obeys, and you can learn those from websites and books on writing. But there’s no way to WRITE wrong. Experiment. Do it the wrong way. Do it a different way. WRITE. Practice. Learn. What have you got to lose, really? Especially when compared against what you have to GAIN!
  • Too many story ideas at once? Write them all down. Promise all of them that you love them and you’ll come back to them. Pick one and WRITE it. Finish it. Go all the way to the end and then keep your promises to those other stories. WRITE.


SUMMARY

Whether you have novels inside of you, yearning to be written or you’d really just like to update your blog more often, the answer is the same.

WRITE. No excuses.

Guest Posts Needed!
comment 1 Written by on January 8, 2010 – 12:03 pm

Due to some awesomeness (and not-so-awesomeness), I’m going to be spending a good bit of time away from the internet from now until the beginning of February – particularly a stretch where I’ll be gone for over a week.

I would LOVE to have some guest posts to schedule for that time so that the blog doesn’t have to be completely silent.

Anything you’ve got in mind (even a Friday Five or two!) would be appreciated, and I’m more than happy to chat about turning an idea into an actual post if you’re not sure exactly how to approach something. If you’re a blogger, I’m happy to share some link love, but don’t feel like you need to have a blog or website to write a post!

As always, you can find me at toomanyannas [at] gmail [dot] com!

Don’t Cook and Raid, Burns Cause AFK’s
comment 6 Written by on January 7, 2010 – 3:29 pm

I love cooking. This is no secret to people that I raid with (or who are in game with me) as I frequently babble about food wherever I can get someone who will listen. However, I’ve learned a few things since I started raiding. Most of those things, I’ve learned through experience.

Usually painful experience.

(I’ll save the traitorous, deceitful avocado for another day.)

This is one of those experiences. I may have told it before, in which case, I’m sorry, and you can go read something else :P   I was reminded of it when reading Amber’s Random post today.

This story takes place just around the time that Too Many Annas came into existence, nearly two years ago. I was a full-time Resto Shaman back then and had only been raiding with TRI for about 5 months. Spaceship Hubby was (and always has been) his tanky pally self and was one of the four MT’s we needed back in the bad old days. He was a resistance tank for that particular fight, if I remember correctly.

But I digress.

We were, at the time, taking our first steps into Serpentshrine Cavern. I was a middle school choir teacher at the time, and craziness had invaded my day (duh), so our dinner wasn’t done until after the raid started.  I had chosen to make a frittata – which is basically an omelet that you bake in the oven, or like a quiche made in a skillet with no crust: eggs + stuff + oven + bake until done – since it didn’t require me to babysit it much.

The timer dinged that it was finished during a quick break before we pulled Hydross.

Running into the kitchen, in an attempt to not slow down the raid, I grabbed a pair of plates, pulled the pan out of the 450F oven (with a hot mitt) and then couldn’t find the spoon to serve it. I took off the hot mitt, got the spoon, and turned back to see what looked like my every day, normal old, metal-handled omelet pan sitting on the stove.

My brain said “That is your omelet pan. You make eggs in it all the time. The handle doesn’t get hot on the stove!”

And I grabbed the handle.

Perceptive readers will remember that crucial bit about how you don’t make a frittata on the stove. You bake it in a rather hot oven.

My hand went *psssst*, and stuck to the handle of the pan.

I’m told I made a very interesting noise at that point, and Spaceship Hubby said rather quickly “afk, kitchen catastrophe” – which, as a resistance tank was particularly problematic for the raid’s ability to just keep going, and as a raid healer, was also somewhat bad.

My careless stupidity held up a raid for 20 minutes while he found some gauze and some aloe for my thoroughly 2nd degree burned palm, and I tried not to pass out with my hand under the running cold tap in the kitchen sink.  Of course, then I realized that the blistering was just going to hurt like hell whether I raided or not. So I made some UI adjustments, took two Ibuprofen, and went back to raid healing, balancing a bag of frozen peas in my hand to keep it cold.

(When the peas thawed, I found a bag of frozen corn.)

That was the night that convinced me that I would really probably do OK with this new-fangled Clique addon.

It was also the reason that the title of this post was my raid forum signature for quite some time.

Winter’s Veil
comment 3 Written by on January 6, 2010 – 7:21 am

After fifteen or so years, Aely was pretty sure she’d be used to running off at the beck and call of whatever campaign was running, regardless of what was going on in the rest of the world. Still, spending the week of Winter’s Veil knee deep in wounded knights in Icecrown wasn’t her idea of a good time, particularly knowing that Arrens was either in Stormwind and potentially in danger, or in Dun Morogh, holed up in his little house, warm against the snow.

The timing of campaigns was inevitably inconvenient though, and armies always disregarded things like holidays and winter and whether or not your wife was pregnant or the crops needed to come out of the field. Such was the life of a soldier, and she knew it well.

None of that stopped her from a celebratory jaunt through the Hero’s Welcome on her way back towards the Kingdoms on New Year’s Eve. The cider there was spiked with a little something more than just the traditional holiday spices, and after a mug or two she was feeling warm from more than just the heat of the pub and the warm drink.

She’d dropped Arrens a letter earlier in the week, letting him know she’d be back that evening, around sunset. He’d asked her to swing by the house in Dun Morogh – a short response, really.

Ten days in the field and two mugs of cider mulled through her head and she frowned. Maybe he was tired of her having to jaunt off at a moment’s notice? Sounds of merriment erupted from the crowd around her – close and almost oppressive now, instead of welcoming.

She paid her tab and headed south.

*****

Aely’s spirits rose considerably on the trip, between the twinkling holiday lights and the realization that she’d be home a good hour before sunset. Even the sharp wind that whipped down Ironforge mountain seemed only to be a reminder that she was not, in fact, in Icecrown – the air was tinged with both wood smoke and the soft scent of evergreen trees. Wood smoke apparently from Arrens’ fireplace – as the house came into view, so did the soft trails above the chimney.

She smiled at the thought of surprising him and nearly fell off her horse as something splattered onto her cloak and hood from behind. Dropping down to crouch around Maera’s neck, she peered into the thick woods behind, only to be pelted from the side by a second lump of snow.

WHUMP.

Quickly followed by a third.

And then, over in the trees to her left she caught a glimpse of what appeared to be a large, floating eyeball, framed in green felfire.

A very amused voice rose up from behind a mound of snow – “It’s the Eye of Kilrogg, my love. It is said each warlock can summon the very eye of Kilrogg Deadye himself. Some use it to scout ahead, others use it to survey distant lands. I use it as a security measure….and to see when my love will be coming home to me.” Standing finally, allowing himself to be seen, Arrens grinned broadly. “Happy Winter’s Veil, my dear.” He launched another snowball at her, laughing as his foot slipped upon the snow, tumbling him down to the white powdery substance beneath him.

Aely ducked this one, letting it sail harmlessly past and slid off her charger, scooping up a handful of snow to wing back in his general direction and was rewarded with a satisfying “HEY!” from just within the treeline.

It didn’t take Maera long to figure out that she didn’t really want to be used as a snow-fight bunker, which left Aely relatively exposed to the barrage of well-aimed snowballs coming from behind a little hill just within the trees. Three or four unsuccessful attempts to pinpoint exactly /where/ Arrens was only resulted in laughter and more snow down her cloak, so she opted to do the only logical thing in her position.

She made a few hurried snowballs, and rushed the snowbank.

Arrens was just standing up from picking up another handful when she came scrambling over the pile of snow right at him, a few flecks of white yet clinging to her hair. He was stunned motionless as they both fell careening backwards into the snowy embankment behind them.

The resulting scuffle had no clear winner, really, other than perhaps the deep drifts around them. Both were covered in white fluff by the end, Aely half gasping, half laughing as she scrambled over to prop herself up, pinning Arrens’ shoulders under her hands. He grinned at her, and she expected to get tossed over backwards again, only to find herself pulled into a kiss that lingered far longer than it should have, given the encroaching dusk and both of them approaching being soaked through.

Aely shivered despite the embrace, and he broke the kiss, propping himself up on his elbows. “Let’s go inside, my love. The fire is warm and I’ve some spiced cider as well.” Helping her up from the ground and walking towards the door of his house, his voice trailed back to her, mischief clearly audible.

“I’ve also put up an array of mistletoe. I thought I should give you fair warning.”

He grinned, turned, and was subsequently pelted in the back of the head with another snowball.

Deconstruction

November 19, 2013 – 4:46 pm

Bad things are happening in Stormwind – and beyond.

The Hand of Lothar, they call themselves.

Yva Darrows was their first target.

Tirith and Aely were their second and third.

They have since… expanded their reach and escalated their methods …

Patrol

November 13, 2013 – 9:59 am

The cathedral bells stop ringing overnight, except for chiming the hours. Three bell strikes, and Angoleth padded softly around another corner of the Cathedral District, staying carefully in the shadows. Trained ears picked up Mogget’s soft breathing – nearly inaudible …

Riders in Lordaeron – Memory

November 7, 2013 – 1:33 pm

(Written by Jolly, Tarquin, and Annalea)

The highlands of Lordaeron were not for the faint of heart; be it the putrescence of the Scourge’s long-lingering remnant, or the rock-strewn hills and valleys that made farmers out of only the most …

Riders of Lordaeron – Logistics

September 13, 2013 – 7:11 pm

(With Tarquin and Annalea)

Once more, four people made their way through the thickets and hills of Lordaeron, this time in the crisp chill of late morning, seeking after the Rider. Aelflaed had snatched what sleep she could while Chryste …

Riders of Lordaeron – Problematic

September 11, 2013 – 9:47 am

(With Tarquin)

She hadn’t wanted to leave Jolly – not so soon after finding him again – but once away, it took about five minutes for Aely to figure out she had a problem.

That problem had just announced that …

Riders of Lordaeron: Arrangements

September 9, 2013 – 10:05 am

It was an uneasy goodbye for him, but it was agreed by both he and Aely that a stroll back to Hearthglen would not be very easy to explain, nor would the explanation needed for the three Argent soldiers once …

Riders of Lordaeron

September 7, 2013 – 9:02 am

“Light sent me ye when I needed ye afore – an’ now again when I need ye. I canna ask fir more than tha’.” She sighed and slung the shield back across her shoulders. “It’s… Light. Been awhile hasna it? …

Dark Rider of Lordaeron (Part 4)

September 6, 2013 – 2:02 pm

She blinked, but did not drop either of her shields. “Aye, though I’ve been Caltrains fir th’ last near three years. Canna say I’ve any memory ay ye.”

“Yeh’ve far moar’n yeh realize,” he replied evenly, his grip tightening on …

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