New Year’s Resolutions

. . . because everyone else is making them, at least those who follow the Western calendar.

So, I, Alma T.C. Boykin hereby resolve:

1) to finish the two 1/2 to 3/4 finished novels currently fighting for space on my desktop.

2) To publish the rest of the Colplatschki books, as well as the sequel to Hubris and the Cat novel, A Cat At Bay.

3) To take the time to learn how to use GIMP and to make proper covers for my short stories.

4)To continue trying to write more gooder.

5) To continue dressing as if I lived in the wrong century.

6) To keep from gaining weight.

Topography Tells the Tale

Everyone knows the Great Plains are flat, and the High Plains/ Llano Estacado are so flat that they make pancakes look like the Appalachians and Alleghenies. You can stand on a tuna can in Dalhart, TX and see all the way to Wichita, KS. Except . . . once you start walking the ground, you discover that it ain’t necessarily so. Especially if you are walking in spring, during or just after the rainy season. Continue reading

Holiday Excerpt “Blackbird”

As readers of the Colplatschki Chronicles are aware, Christmas as such is not celebrated on Colplatschki, except by a few secretive Old Believer heretics. The feast of St. Basil-Pastor in early spring has become Christmas and New Years combined. In this excerpt from the book Blackbird, Elizabeth von Sarmas’s distant cousin Matthew Charles Malatesta and his family keep the feast. Kiara is Matthew’s wife, Barbara his mistress. (Blackbird will come out in late spring, 2015).

According to tradition, the Feast of St. Basil marked the beginning of the new farming year. Lambing season, calving, preparations for planting, all began around the saint’s day, and so it made sense to celebrate the new year then, even if the calendar disagreed. Matthew and Kiara had both shaken their heads at the description in a book from just after the Great Fires, claiming that the year began just after the winter solstice. “That’s foolish. The worst of winter is still to come, there’s nothing growing, nothing new, no major feast day then,” Kiara had snorted. “If this is true, the Landers were mad indeed.” She’d picked up her next piece of embroidery, declaring, “St. Basil’s day is the start of the new year, as it should be.” Matthew had not disagreed. Continue reading

Peaks of Grace Update

The edits on Peaks of Grace, the fifth Colplatschki Chronicles novel, are done, and the cover is about half-way done. As a result I’m planning a mid-January release, barring unforeseen events and bad life rolls.

When the Dark Comes Rising . . .

OK, how many of you finished the verse? 🙂 So you’ve read Susan Cooper’s books, too.

I always come back to them this time of year. Over Sea, Under Stone didn’t do much for me, but then I read The Dark is Rising and got hooked. Eventually I memorized the entire poem set that goes with the books, aside from the Welsh-language bit. As much as I like the others, the first book to feature Will, the seventh son of a seventh son, the last of the Old Ones, is still the best. Continue reading