Sketches and things

Checking my files, I actually do have some artwork to show, even if it’s just sketches. So here we go!

A super ugly dragon

I’m currently in that stage with the baby where he’s allllllllmost crawling. He scoots around on his belly and finds toys on his own, so I have entire minutes to myself again. Our usual routine is that our morning is spent doing school or chores, and the afternoons are nap or screen time. That’s when I get to draw or whatever. But the baby doesn’t have that routine yet, so I feel like I have zero time to do anything extra.

My life is intensely boring. 😀

On the plus side, a boring life means that I want to write and draw adventurous things, so there’s that.

Certain day jobs become useful when monsters attack. Like … fighting monsters for a living.
30-minute speedpaint

So that’s what I’ve been up to. Living in my head a lot, not doing much else except keeping children alive being a mom.

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Character concept sketches

I’ve been building a new character for some stories. Actually, he’s kind of an old character I’m adapting, but whatever. This is Jayesh, and he has a tiny dragon that is actually half his magic. I had to draw them hanging out.

A picture’s worth a thousand words, right? These guys have had a short story so far, and I can’t wait to put them in a book. Thinking of tossing the story online somewhere so folks can give it a shot.

Confession: I love similes

I’m knee-deep in editing the final book of Malevolent right now. In the big battle in the middle of the book, my editor keeps saying, “Too many similes … too many similes … can we have some metaphors instead?”

This is my confession. I love similes.

I never thought about them very much until I read Signal to Noise by Eric Nylund. It’s a cyberpunk book in which everybody has brain implants that let them interface with computers. They all work in these “bubbles” instead of offices. The bubble interfaces with their implant and lets them visualize their own thoughts and ideas as metaphors. For instance, one character’s office is a steel plant with lots of machinery running. When the hero gives her bad news, in the background, the steel plant has an accident and molten metal spills everywhere.

The whole book is like that. It’s crushingly vivid because there’s a powerful visual metaphor in every paragraph. I counted, once. Every single paragraph. But it has to be that way, because the things he’s describing are impossible to imagine otherwise.

So I developed a habit of way over-describing the crazy things I was trying to write about. Here’s a sample of what my poor editor was talking about, from the middle of Malicious:


As before, I felt the barrier as hot and cold at the same time, like having a fever. I slipped into a weird trance state, almost dozing with my eyes open. There were life motes here. I could use them–this barrier was like a water main under high pressure. All I had to do was give it a crack.

Instead of blocking out Mal’s immense death power, I reached out and grasped it. He made an awful sound, a soft scream I had never heard before.

“It’s okay!” I said, unwilling to break out of my trance. It hurts to have your motes yanked, so I tugged as gently as I could. His motes had a pull like a gravity well and a definite shape. Wielding them like a magnet, I aimed them at the mote stream of the barrier at my feet. Life motes poured into both of us, hot, violent, unpredictable. I pulled in more and more, the pressure building as a fever-heat behind my eyes.

The ghouls were twenty feet away and galloping toward us like apes. Mal stood paralyzed, eyes closed, suffering as I used his power. He wouldn’t be able to stop them.

But I could.


See? Six similes in three paragraphs. I’ll have to revise this. I think I have a problem.

In the meantime, have a few Inktober sketches!

inktober-17-treeswift
Tree swift

 

inktober-17-monitor
Monitor lizard