Alright, I’m going to do something I haven’t done in a while.
I’m going to write a lighthearted blog post!
Aaaah! Is that possible?
Yes, why, yes, it is.
The events of this year have been pretty harsh for me, and my stories have as a result taken a darker turn. This could be because of the general Zeitgeist related to current social and political events, or possibly because each story feels like I’m delving deeper into my characters’ psyches and they want to challenge me even more.
In any case, it’s time for me to lighten up and share a bit of joy!
(And, no, I’m not going to share the story about my pen exploding in the tram on Friday and the very nice ladies who were pointing out where all the bits had flown so I could pick them up like a pecking crow.)
I’ve decided to delve into both old stories and new and share with you some of the scenes that were simply a giggle to write!
So settle in, lean back, and enjoy a laugh (or not if you don’t share my humor or aren’t a fan of humor at all, in which case try The Ever Spirits; that thing supposedly needed a warning at the beginning!)
So. Shall we tango?
Rules from Never Trust A Prince
This was my first novella, and while searching for a funny excerpt, I got distracted giggling at the chapter titles, so I’m just listing them:
Never Encourage a Cousin Named Ebermeister
Never Stalk a Princess Who Knows How to Wield Beer Mugs
Never Think a Tidy Dragon Means It’s Any Less Hungry
Never Refuse a Would-Be Hero When You’re Would-Be Dragon Fodder
Never Rescue the Owner of an Ornery Horse
Never Flee a Charmer Who Speaks Animal
Never Rile a Slave-Trader Who’s Holding a Sharp Knife
Never Cheat a Five-Headed Troll That’s Just Doing Its Job
Never Bargain with a Pirate Who Has Orts in His Whiskers
Never Doubt a Pink Man with Purple Hair
Never Insult an Authority Who Can’t Even Doodle
Never Overlook the Horse Especially When It’s Behind You
Never Ignore Good Advice When It Comes From A – Man?!
Haven’t read this one? Get a copy here. But be warned! It is a very silly book.
Under A Caged Sky
In this book, everyone’s been mutated to have wings with powers, and my main character’s mother’s wing feathers turn into leaves, one of which lands outside their apartment building and sprouts into a prehistorical-sized tree. Anza goes outside with Jace (her partner with wings of ice) and stares up at the boughs of alien leaves in breathless wonder.
Inhaling deeply, I close my eyes to savor the moment.
“I know,” Jace breathes by my side. “It looks like Mr. Broccoli.”
My eyelids shoot open like a popped balloon. “What?”
Captain Oblivious motions upward. “You remember. Tall broccoli-stalk dude. Scary as crap. Came on every evening at seven pm to terrify children into eating our vitamins before they ate us—”
“I know who Mr. Broccoli is. I just can’t believe you’re comparing my mom’s ancient wonder to a psychotic vegetable.”
“It wasn’t psychotic. It was concerned.”
“It chomped on kids who spurned their veggies!”
“It taught good habits for those spurnful kids.”
Now we break for a randomly shared picture of a woman with a star in a very unfortunate area:
Now back to your regularly scheduled blog post.
No One to Save Her
This is a collaboration I wrote with the lovely Iris Ng Bakalar, and the excerpt I’m taking from it is from one of Iris’s chapters! This is at the very end when they can go outside their walled city. It’s not so much ha-ha funny as uplifting 🙂
“It’s a storm! My first storm!”
She laughs as a bolt of lightning snakes down the sky in the distance. “Look! Did you see that?”
I whip around. “Lightning? Where?”
Thunder rumbles, crashes through the dancing rain. Serycia grips my arm and points skywards and I know she’s holding her breath as I am, two children in awe and wonder of something they’ve only ever dreamt about. I search the sky too, my eyes running over the shifting grey.
Lightning cracks the sky, stunning blue-violet like a whip of the gods.
“You don’t just tell lightning when to come!” Serycia laughs.
We break again to offer a free steampunk short story involving unseen heroes… It’s a super-short story I wrote in 2012.
“No one’s staring.”
I peered down my nose at Chesterdown. “You’re a cat wearing goggles and walking on its hind legs; of course someone’s going to stare! And we can’t afford the attention. Not when we’re lying low hiding from The Wardeness.”
Click the image (or here) to get a free copy from Instafreebie! Or, if you don’t want to register with them, click here to download the mobi (for Kindle) from Dropbox, here for a pdf, or here for the epub file. Also, if you’d like to, you can sign up to my mailing list here
Heiress of Healing
This epic fantasy has few lighthearted moments, but here is one of them:
“Do you remember your second day at the palace?” Quentyn asked suddenly, with something nearing a smile in his voice.
Knowing him, it probably was a smile. At her expense.
“You were carrying around that silly plate of scones.” His hand paused. “Because you were too proud to eat them standing up.”
Iminique burrowed deeper into the pillow. She remembered those luckless scones all too well.
“And then – do you remember what happened then, Im?”
“I don’t want to.”
His next words tripped over a chuckle. “The queen ate them. Im, don’t you see the absurdity of it? It was the best gossip that week – just imagine the whispers. The queen stole the nanny’s scones and ate them!”
Iminique refused to look up. Quentyn’s hand lifted from her head, and she could imagine his slender fingers dancing expressively in the air.
“Not to mention the queen’s discussion with the magnate that night. ‘Darling,’ he would have said, ‘Did you steal the nanny’s scones?’ ‘Why, yes, Declan, husband,’ she would have answered, ‘and I ate them, too.’”
A soft, helpless laugh escaped Iminique. It truly was a bit absurd.
“And then the magnate would have asked, ‘And how did your pilfered scones taste, darling?’ And she would have answered, ‘Wilted, darling. As if she’d been carrying them around all day! In the heat. In her pocket.’” Quentyn leaned down, whispering theatrically in Iminique’s ear, “It’s a good thing I made the one she ate taste like dust.”
Heiress of Magic
And finally comes everyone’s favorite pair stuck in a magic pendant! In this one, two of the characters are locked in amber, with their faces mashed up against it and their arms and legs twisted like clay. The girl’s hand rests in a very, um, sensitive place on the guy… and she has no mercy.
“Aargh! Use your brain, puckus-face. Do you think they explained their motivations before stuffing us in here? Hello! Hello! Gads, why isn’t my hand near your forehead so I could thump something that might actually start working – oh, no, you are not getting hard!” Her fingers flicked against his erection. “Stop that!”
“Then stop fiddling with my balls. You’re caressing them like—”
“I’m not caressing anything! Gads, the arrogance. I’m flexing my fingers if you must know. They’re the only thing I can flex.”
“You’re flexing your tongue pretty well, seems like to me.”
Thanks for checking out my long time no laugh blog post! I hope it brought at least a little tiny smile to your day 🙂