Archive for May, 2011

The writing process

Monday, May 30th, 2011

Here is the basic writing process:

Write novel #1
Put novel #1 on shelf, start writing novel #2
Decide novel #1 has been on the shelf long enough and start editing it
Give up editing novel #1, go back to writing novel #2
Finish novel #2, put it on the shelf
Edit novel #1 again
Start writing novel #3
Start editing novel #2
Give […]

Simple banana desserts

Tuesday, May 24th, 2011

Here are three quick and easy gluten- and dairy-free banana desserts.
Ingredients

Bananas
Brown sugar
Cinnamon
Vanilla
Dairy-free chocolate syrup (Onalaska is a good brand)
1 can coconut milk (regular, not lite)
1/2 cup sugar

Directions
Slice up the bananas and add one of the following toppings.
Chocolate syrup
Brown sugar and cinnamon to taste
Coconut cream. Open the can of coconut milk and drain off the liquid, […]

Inspiration

Sunday, May 22nd, 2011

Take inspiration where you can find it. It’s a common saying, but really, being inspired helps any kind of creative expression. It could be nature–birds singing on a summer’s morning, waves washing away the beach, or the whisper of a breeze through a greening spring forest. Or it could be people–going to hear your favorite […]

Disruptive ebooks

Saturday, May 21st, 2011

For ebooks, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Borders are all middlemen. Unlike printed books, however, publishers could easily handle selling ebooks directly to customers. At some point, I think price pressure will force publishers to start selling ebooks themselves.
Ideally, publishers would sell at a lower cost than the bookstores and pay a higher absolute royalty […]

Books on my writing shelf

Wednesday, May 18th, 2011

I keep a number of useful or inspirational books on my shelf for writing.

A dictionary
The First Five Pages by Noah Lukeman
Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Browne and Dave King
The Enchanted Forest And Its Family by Mavis Tofte
Designing Disney: Imagineering and the Art of the Show by John Hench and Peggy van Pelt
Fantasy Encyclopedia by […]

Gluten-free, dairy-free pie crust

Tuesday, May 17th, 2011

Here is a pie crust recipe which is gluten- and dairy-free. This recipe creates one 9 inch pie crust.
Ingredients

1 1/2 cups gluten-free flour, measured after sifting (I like Bob’s Red Mill all-purpose GF baking flour)
1/2 cup shortening (we use Spectrum which is dairy- and soy-free, I believe)
1/2 teaspoon salt
8-10 tablespoons cooled (refrigerated) water. If making […]

Good neighborhood bookstore

Monday, May 16th, 2011

We need a good neighborhood bookstore. We have Powell’s, which is amazing, but it’s not in our neighborhood (although the closest isn’t far away, either). We also have a Border’s and a Barnes and Noble, all pretty much equidistant from our house.
A good neighborhood bookstore needs to compete with all of these.
To compete with the […]

Gluten-free, dairy-free brownies

Sunday, May 15th, 2011

Here is my classic brownie recipe, updated to be gluten- and dairy-free.
Ingredients

1 cup coconut oil (use butter if you don’t need to be dairy-free, but not margarine)
4 ounces baking chocolate (note that it is difficult / expensive to find baking chocolate that is guaranteed to be free of cross-contamination)
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 cup gluten-free flour, […]

Gluten-free, dairy-free spicy corn and pea stir-fry

Friday, May 13th, 2011

This is a nice alternative to straight cooked peas or corn.
Ingredients

1 can corn
1 can peas
1 tbsp coconut milk
ginger
cumin
ground red pepper or red pepper flakes
garlic
olive oil

Directions
Heat up a wok or skillet, then pour a little olive oil in it. Add the corn and the peas. Season with the ginger, cumin, red pepper, and garlic to taste. […]

The value of hard-cover books

Thursday, May 12th, 2011

I don’t buy hard-cover books often, so when I do, it’s because they offer more value than a paperback.
One of the hard-covers I bought recently was Brandon Sanderson’s Stormlight Archives book one: The way of kings.
The reasons I bought this book are:

It’s a huge epic fantasy–1000 pages. This would be hard to physically manage in […]