Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Wednesday Word: Feculent

feculent |ˈfekyələntadjectiveof or containing dirt, sediment, or waste matter: their feet were forever slipping on feculent bog.DERIVATIVES feculence nounORIGIN late 15th cent.: from French féculent or Latin faeculentus, from faex, faec- dregs.
I learn so man great words reading Terry Pratchett, I just can't always tell the real ones from those he made up.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Wednesday Word: All

all predet.det., & pronounused to refer to the whole quantity or extent of a particular group or thing: [ as predeterminer ] :  all the people I met | she left all her money to him| [ as determiner ] :  10% of all cars sold | he slept all day | [ as pronoun ] four bedrooms, all with balconies | carry all ofthe blame | the men are all bearded.• determiner ] any whatever: assured beyond all doubt | he denied all knowledge.• determiner ] used to emphasize the greatest possible amount of a quality: they were in allprobability completely unaware | with alldue respect.• informal dominated by a particularfeature or characteristic: an eleven-year-old string bean, all elbows and knees.• pronoun with clause ] the only thing (used for emphasis): all I want is to be left alone.• pronoun ] (used to refer to surroundings or a situation in general) everything: all was well | it was all very strange.• informal used to indicate more than one person or thing: a team of specialists who all know the patient.• dialect consumed; finished; gone: the cake is all.

Half a life time ago I was a cash-strapped college student with a penchant for growing herbs in pots. So when the local gardening supply store ran an ad stating all planters were 50% off I couldn’t resist. After much deliberation I chose two of the fancy flowerpots instead of a dozen of the plain ones—being sensible was never my strong point.

The cashier rang up my pots at full price. I pointed out her mistake. She informed me these planters were not on sale. I drew here attention to the ad, stating all planters were half off. She gave me a professional smile and said, “Yes, but not these ones.” I pointed out to here that all meant all.

I became the dreaded customer who holds up the line. It wasn’t the planters—those I could’ve walked away from—but the principle of things.

The cashier summoned the manager, and I stated my case. He instructed the cashier to charge me half price for the planters. However, I strongly suspected—and still do—that he did it only to get rid of me, not because he saw my point.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015


tussock |ˈtəsəknouna small area of grass that is thicker or longer than the grass growingaround it.(also tussock moth)woodlandmoth whose adults and brightlycolored caterpillars both bear tuftsof irritant hairs. The caterpillarscan be a pest of treesdamagingfruit and stripping leaves.
DERIVATIVES tussocky adjective
ORIGIN mid 16th cent.perhaps an alteration of dialect tusktuft, of unknown origin.
The word came up when I was doing research into fantasy creatures.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015


The great thing about designing your own cover is that you can go completely nuts.

I made this one years ago when I first spotted the magnificently cheese-tastic stock photo of a handsome man on the beach. The pose reminded me of classic pulp covers.

I couldn’t resist; I added a turgid sky and faux tear and wear, and had my own pulp cover. I finally have enough old summer-themed short stories—some of them out of print—for a small anthology and an excuse to reveal Mr. Beefcake to the world. Short Shorts is now live on Amazon and ARe.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Wednesday Word: Diablerie

diablerie |dēˈäblərēnounreckless mischief; charismatic wildness:the beauty and diablerie of the great actor.• archaic sorcery supposedly assisted by the devil.
ORIGIN mid 18th cent.: from French, from diable, from ecclesiastical Latin diabolus ‘devil.’

I'm back to writing paranormal, or maybe it's urban fantasy. I just finished a "short" story set in a brand new world, and I’m already planning the sequel(s). 

All my previous paranormal stories took place in contemporary US, with one side-trip to the Old Country, but One Hex Too Many is set in an alternate universe. It’s still contemporary US, but with a twist. Magic is real, and it can be used for nefarious purposes. The protagonist is a cop who investigates such crimes.