New Book Annoucement!

News, I has it.

Yeah, I was supposed to write this post before April 29, when I had a guest interview at the lovely Sarah-Jane Lehoux’s blog (thanks again for the fun, SJ!) that announced a new shiny thing, but I got busy with things and before I knew it, it was April 29! I was industrious and got the interview done early, but um…kind-of neglected to post to my own blog about it.

What am I talking about? Here…I’ll excerpt the part of the interview that I was supposed to blog about.

… “Light in a Dark World: Legends of the Destrati.” It’s a collection of my short stories focusing on the vampire clan Destrati. Clan Destrati is unique in that the whole of its members have turned away from the one they traded their soul to in order to gain immortality. Destrati feel that the parasitical cost of their existence is too high, and have sworn to redeem themselves in the hope that the soul they traded for immortality might find salvation. Destrati work to keep others from being coerced into trading their own souls, alone or with the guidance of others. These are their stories. Coming from Mundania Press, January 2012.

Yeah. Um…Dina!fail on the announcement there. Time just got away from me. I still need to update the website and send a newsletter and and and….

But! It’s announced now! Here, as penance for my tardiness, I’ll give you a little more detail about this upcoming project.

Light in a Dark World: Legends of the Destrati will be Kyle-centric, but will also feature others associated with Clan Destrati. There will be five or six short stories (this still hasn’t been decided yet – it will depend on my verbosity and the wordcount I end up with) set in various parts of the Destrati world, told from various points of view.

I’ll give you all more specifics as they develop. I know January seems far away, but in the writing world it really isn’t. A lot has to happen between then and now, and I have other projects I’m working on as well.

I love it.

I Suppose I Should Say Something

Alliteration, FTW!

Anyway, yes, it’s New Year’s Eve, and I will not bore you with another post on your f!list about all that this year has encompassed for me.

I do not have extravagant plans for the evening (I had made reservations at a local restaurant I like, but I canceled them yesterday as the weather is just horrific here on the Coast and I honestly just don’t feel like going out in it), nor do I have profound end-of-year reflections to share with you all.

There were Things That Happened, Things That Didn’t Happen, Stuff Went On and I Did Things and Went Places.

That about sums it up.

How exciting. Maybe I’ll write something next week about Stuff I Did In 2009 and Stuff I’m Looking Forward To For 2010 and Goals I Have For The Year That Aren’t Resolutions Because Those Get Broken And Goals Are Better.

As for tonight, I’m going to not change into nice clothes or go out. I’m going to sit around in my pajamas, work on my next scene of this latest revision of my WIP that’s being strangely uncooperative, finish setting up my refurbished laptop (still a few things to reinstall – like my printer), eat this phenomenal chicken pot pie I have baking in the oven (from Costco of all places – if your local Costco makes a chicken pot pie (in the deli section), go and get one and bake it for your eating pleasure. SO FREAKING GOOD!), and maybe watch a movie or take a nap.

Or maybe I’ll just eat and go to bed and when I wake up, it will be 2010. That sounds so futuristic! So…“The Year We Make Contact”.

Whatever I’m going to do, it will be to ignore the horrible storm going on outside.


We’re Sorry

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Anyway, yeah. My laptop is fried. It’s a long story, but the short of it is that it has to go in for repair, and that will take anywhere from two weeks to a month to get back. Hopefully – HOPEFULLY – it will be done and sent back in a week or so, but this being the holiday season, “7 business days after we receive it” may as well translate to “don’t expect it anytime soon”.

But there’s always hope, right?


I mean, the laptop is less than a year old and still under warranty, so I’m not going to have to take out another mortgage or anything to pay for it, or buy a new one (that I know of…yet). I don’t even have to pay shipping, so that’s good. This came at a seriously unfortunate time, but it’s not the end of the world, no matter what it feels like (and it does feel awful – everything is on that laptop, but the really important things are saved and available, namely my manuscripts! Weekly external hard drive backups FTW!).

So it’s not the end of the world. It’s just the (hopefully very temporary) end of the lifestyle to which I’d become accustomed. Yeah, I’m bummed bigtime – I has a BIG sad 🙁 – but I’ll bounce back soon enough.

I’m trying to look on the bright side of this crisis/fiasco/craptasticness (and believe me, I did NOT need this today on top of a few other…issues I’m dealing with that I won’t detail here.*sings* “Always look on the briiiiiiiiiiiiiight side of life!”) – lappy is under warranty, I don’t have to shell out big bucks, it will come back nice and shiny and fixed, it’s good that it’s in because there’s obviously a big problem that needs serious attention, I have the most important things backed up or otherwise available, I have access to other computers, etc. – but anyone who knows me knows I’m a pragmatist, and I adapt well and make the best out of a situation and make do with the tools I have.

If that means mustard ends up on the ceiling, well, that’s your fault for letting me in the kitchen, isn’t it? It’s not like you weren’t warned! It doesn’t mean I’m unaffected by the situation or that I won’t complain about how much it sucks before I get on with it.

Sometimes “getting on with it” isn’t ideal, but it’s what you’ve got, so stop whining already and go. I believe the phrase is “suck it up and move on”. I’ve had my frustration vents and moved through the stages of grief already. This note is just to let you all know, really, that I’ll be scarce the next however long, as I’ll be borrowing computers and connections to get what needs doing done.

So being a pragmatist helps. As do cupcakes and a borrowed laptop.


In Which I Recycle Last Year’s Post

Like I need to add anything else to the upcoming busy month, but hey, I’m apparently masochistic at the moment.

Okay, yes…I’m one of those people who has started listening to Christmas music already. I know, I know. But I really love the holidays. Halloween used to be my favorite until I came out of my Goth closet and could dress how I wanted to every day of the year and not care about being seen as a freak (for the record, I was 25), but now Christmas is my favorite.

Thanksgiving, however, was not overlooked. I mean, a foodie like me ignore a holiday that’s all about FOOD? PIE? LOTS AND LOTS OF PIE?! (Not to mention leftover pie!!) And turkey and mashed potatoes and corn and stuffing…. At the moment, I never want to eat again, though I know I’ll make a plate of leftovers in a few hours.

Anyway, what was I writing about? I mean, before my stomach started doing the writing? Oh, yeah! Masochism! I mean, the holiday spirit!

Okay, here’s the deal. It’s not like a contest or anything, because I don’t have the time or energy for that, but I’m making an attempt at initiative and preparedness and updating my holiday card list.

Yes, you heard right. No, I’m not too early. It’s after Thanksgiving (just)! I mean, by the time I get the list done and cards mailed, I’ll be right on time! Theoretically.

If you want to be on my holiday card list, post a comment here (don’t worry, these will be screened!) or e-mail dina [at] dinajames [dot] com with your snail mail addy, and I’ll send you a holiday card.

If you received a card from me last year, you’re still on the list, unless for some reason you annoyed me between the last time I made the list and now (or I’m just a techie prat and somehow deleted you by accident or never put you on it to begin with – which I’ve done). If you received one last year and don’t want one this year for whatever reason, let me know that, too.

If you’re feeling in the holiday spirit yourself, or are one of those people who will torture yourself with guilt and angst if you don’t return the favor, my snail mail addy is:

Dina James
P.O. Box 574
Astoria, OR 97103

I keep this list for subsequent use, but will remind you all yearly to send me any updates. I realize people move about and change names and such, so let me know if your address has changed from the last time I sent you one, if that’s happened!

And just to let people know up front, the card design will once again be drawn by the very talented Becky Hitchin, NOT by me. I, personally, can’t draw anything beyond what I learned to do in my high school art classes, so before you even ask, NO, I did not draw the picture on the card you’ll receive.

I’m setting you all a deadline of December 15 to get me your address. This will (hopefully) give me time to get my act together and send them on time.

And so to work.