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January 31, 2013
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Our newest member feature for goes to :iconysabetwordsmith:!

This deviant has several published books, including a how-to book on magical and spiritual writing titled Composing Magic and well as two poetry books.

They can be found and purchased through the following link! penultimateproductions.weebly.…

Their advice to fellow writers is...

"As for publishing -- if you write what the mainstream is buying, go there, they have money and distribution. If you write or want to write things off the beaten trail, look at small press, crowdfunding, or other alternative business models. I have a whole section of my website with advice for crowdfunding projects. (penultimateproductions.weebly.… I've posted various other how-to essays; look in the Memories of my LiveJournal (www.livejournal.com/tools/memo… and see if anything grabs you."

:bulletpurple: A Solitary SecessionIt began not with armed conflict but armistice,
a long lull in an unrelated war
when the two sides entrenched themselves in space
and established surveillance stations
to watch over the no-man's-land between
the Orion-Cygnus Arm and the Carina–Sagittarius Arm.
The stations were dark and silent,
with a skeleton crew of soldiers
assigned to supervise the equipment.
Communication was only allowed on rare occasions
when ships arrived to resupply and exchange personnel.
For most, the posting was a hardship,
a punishment for mediocrity or disciplinary issues.
They grumbled and sulked and gritted their teeth
through their time "in the can"
until they could leave for a new assignment.
Some of them didn't make it.
Some of them broke under the pressure,
social beings torn out of society.
For a few, though, the posting was perfect.
The stations all used exactly the same design.
The schedule never changed.
There were no crowds of people pleading for attention
and demanding a pretense of emp
:bulletpurple:

:bulletpurple: A Turning Point in the Clockwork WarA war of attrition
depends on supply and drawdown,
how much you have and how much you use up.
With personnel, the balance concerns
the influx of recruitment versus
the outflow of casualties, deserters, invalids.
There is only so much loss
that a fighting force can sustain
and still fight.
Pilot Claude Archer was the first
to challenge his invalid discharge.
"I don't need legs to fly," he said,
patting the healed stumps of his thighs.
"My Osprey runs on elbow grease."
The members of the discharge board
paused and looked at each other.
What he said was true.  
The Osprey-class fighter jets
relied on hand controls,
and a sharp eye and iron nerve.
Fingers flicked through the stack
of discharge papers -- so many, many pages.
So many soldiers lost, never to fight again.
They could not afford to let slip even one
who might be retained, somehow,
to face the front line once more.
Far less could the war effort spare
one of its best pilots.
So they put Pilot Archer back on the roster,
and he
:bulletpurple:

:bulletpurple: Swallow the SkyThe old tiger Adoni sat on his haunches, propped up by his powerful tail, marsupial pouch faintly visible between his hind legs.  In the fading heat of evening he wore only a colorful vest and a loincloth.  His natural stripes lay dark over a tan background along the lower half of his body, augmented by dye so that they extended all the way to his face.  It was not vanity; the rest of his fur remained grizzled, his muzzle almost white with age.  It was a traditional pattern worn by shamans and wizards, a sign of favor because the tigers had tough skin which could tolerate dyes in a way that few races could.  His people had so little left of their past.
Adoni gazed around the circle of faces, strangers' eyes watching him as they sat around the cookfire.  Large kangaroos and smaller numbats made up most of the caravan.  A pair of kookaburras joined them, vestigial pinions fringing their arms.  One of the kangaroo jills had two small furry heads poking out of her pouch: her own joey and a
:bulletpurple:

:bulletpurple: Appreciating Speculative Art Part 1 Types ToolsMaybe you're an artist, and you want to improve your skills by analyzing what makes a picture work.  Maybe you have artist-friends who show you their sketchbooks, and you want to be able to give them useful feedback.  Maybe you collect artwork, and you want to be able to answer "Why did you buy THAT?" with more than "I dunno, I just like it."  Maybe you simply think art is cool, or you don't know much about it and would like to learn more.  This series will help with all of those things, as it presents some basic vocabulary and theory of art.  So relax and have fun -- this stuff isn't nearly as difficult as some people make it out to be.
Why is art important?  It expresses who we are, what we feel, and what we value.  It transmits cultural information; sometimes art is all we have left of an ancient culture.  It's also part of what makes us human.  Some anthropologists believe that our ancestors truly became what we think of as "humans" abou
:bulletpurple:

:bulletpurple: When Griffins NestIt was not always easy
for a young priest to manage a village,
with everyone's nose always
up in everyone else's business.
Don Candido did the best he could.
Somebody was forever getting into trouble.
Young men started fistfights over young women.
A vampire had come and bitten people;
although the wisewoman had driven it away,
Fiorenza had embarrassed Don Candido
and annoyed the village elders in the process.
Pasquale down the lane had shown an interest
in walking out with girls, but not in marriage.
Somebody was also carrying tales to the Church,
for now and then Don Candido would get a letter
admonishing him to mind his vows
and watch over his flock.
"Do you not believe that girl is too young
for the duties of a wisewoman?"
asked the man who collected the church tithes.
"She gets them done," Don Candido said,
"and she puts her coin in the poorbox on Sundays."
Fiorenza did this without being nagged,
which was more than could be said of some,
even if she fended off strange men in the m
:bulletpurple:

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Mexmrslovett GhuneiM  Spasm101 RollingTomorrow ShouldEverBeForgot SunshineAndDaisies Bebopboy KoronaMosel Fwe EvilpixieA missbagel Jadite Hildetann CollectTheBroken Carmalain7 EternalSunday GreyBird4  Treo-LeGigeo
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:iconripleynox:
RipleyNox Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2013  Professional Writer
I'm fascinated by crowdfunded writing. Thanks for that!
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:iconysabetwordsmith:
Ysabetwordsmith Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2013  Professional Writer
Thank you for this feature! I'm honored that you chose me and I hope your members enjoy read it.
Reply
:iconrollingtomorrow:
RollingTomorrow Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2013   General Artist
Thank you for providing such specific advice! :la:
Reply
:iconysabetwordsmith:
Ysabetwordsmith Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2013  Professional Writer
You're welcome! I've worked as an editor, so I learned how to tailor what I say to be useful in different contexts. I'm glad you found that helpful.
Reply
:iconinkedlance:
InkedLance Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2013
Congratulations for receiving the :iconwriters--club: ! ^_*
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