Tag Archives: freelance

Inktober Day 14: Scary Clowns

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So much for doing my pre-novel research. Assignments are starting to call, so those are going to be featured more this month. Case in point: today’s Ink is from a Carnival-themed game that Tangent Artists is working on. Here’s UNCLE LUCKY.

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Uncle Lucky, by Monica Marier copyright (c) 2016, Monica Marier

A bit uncanny, yeah? I get the feeling that he’s one of those clowns who doesn’t understand that people don’t like clowns. I think he’s blissfully unaware of how creepy he is.

Have I Been Wrong About Fan Fiction?

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Art from my First Fan Fiction: Slayers Encore (2002)

Fan fiction: it’s something all writers do (whether they’re aware of it or not). When it’s good, it’s an innocent joyride in someone else’s vehicle. Worst-case scenario, it’s a naive early attempt to be the next ____ (Tolkien, J.K. Rowling, George R.R. Martin etc.) with new names on the characters and a worn old plot device. In both cases fan fiction is written for the sheer love of a series, created out of a desire to see our deepest fan-desires put into words. There are thousands upon thousands of forums and websites dedicated to fan fiction, probably in numbers to rival the #1 commodity: porn.

While I myself have dabbled in the art of fan fiction, I decided early on, that if I was going to be serious about my writing, I should steer clear of other people’s works and instead concentrate on my ability to write original stories with my own characters and canon. I spent years building the worlds of CRIT! and Skeleton Crew among my other works and I think I did a good job. Fan fiction helped me build those skills, but I was ready to fly on my own now.

So I said goodbye to fan fiction and never looked back. I haven’t written any since 2004. I tell everyone in my panels that fan fiction is a skill builder—an exercise to build story-writing skills without the hassle of creating a new world and characters. It can help form new authors, but no self-respecting author wastes the bulk of their effort on it. Messing with copyrighted works makes publishers uncomfortable and it’s a sign of unprofessionalism.

At least, it used to be that way.

Now more and more big-name franchises are plumbing fan fiction for writers. This decade, entertainment companies have discovered that fan fiction is an untold wealth of hidden talent, and what is more, their fiction is a testing ground for how well they work with a given canon! Doctor Who, Star Trek, and other properties are taking note and are asking to see fan fiction from future writers!

…And I don’t have any.

I’d disciplined myself for so long, with the aim of building my credibility, that I’ve shot myself in the foot. I’ve lost 3 writing opportunities so far because they’d asked for a sample of fan-fiction and I’d had no time to write any.

I’m already struggling to make my mark on the internet. This just seems like an anvil dropped on my head. I also have to admit that I was wrong about fan fiction and lament for the stories I never wrote—ideas that have long since disappeared into the ether.

The game has changed again, and I’m left holding 3 aces in a game of Jenga.

 

 

Still plugging away

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Now that the Rogue’s Guide is completed and launched, I’m turning my attention more to the Must Love Dragons relaunch and it’s been sloooooooooow going. A lot needs fixing which leads to more fixing and further flaws… you guys ever seen the money pit?

(Property of Universal Pictures)

At least the foundation is good. (I’m laughing as I type this because we just found out we have to replace the house’s trimming and get the roof inspected here at Wineberry House. Plus we have ants.)

In the meantime, here’s a draft of the new cover art we’re going to be using for MLD (some alterations in text, and art etc. pending). Overall I’m pleased with it. I love how Linus looks kind of cool, but also like you want to punch him in the face. We’re going to do similar half-face images for the other 2 books in the works. I like the half-face because it leaves a lot of room for the reader to fill in the rest with their imagination. I hate seeing an image of a character I like and not have it match the image in my head.

(Btw, my brother modeled for this. I think he did a great job)

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copyright(c)monica marier, 2016

 

The only other thing of note text-wise is that Wendria’s name will be changed back to Kiyana to match the CRIT! comic, since Both CRIT! and MLD will be launched by the same publisher, Tangent Artists. The Linus Saga, in essence, will be presented as a “novelization” of CRIT! despite the deviating story-lines. Nothing will change storywise other than the names and a few minor details, but the company feels we should unify the whole setting to better match our existing publications featuring Linus Weedwhacker.

Comments? Concerns? Think I’m out of my gourd? Leave a comment.

 

 

One Down, ? to Go

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Werrrrll good news for those who enjoy my Tangent Artists work. I’ve just finished my contributions and edits of our group-project: Steal This Tome, A Book For Thieves.  I hope to post a sneak preview shortly so you can see what you’ve been waiting for.

I was going to post about how I’ve been blocked and rather paralyzed by fear and doubt these last few days, but you know? Screw that. I have been busy. I’m only disappointed with myself that I haven’t done everything, and that’s frankly out of the question.

A lot of my friends are going through this right now too. The bad economy, job instability, the fear of what may happen politically this year, as well as all of our own personal problems—we all have a lot on our table. Maybe our friend got published, maybe someone we know was asked to be a guest at a convention, maybe that chance we didn’t take really paid off for someone else? We’re not them, and we can’t compare their success to our own. We all have our own stories.

We have to look at our victories, no matter how small, and revel in them. Don’t bask in the glory for too, long, you have a job to do after all, but every victory helps us launch ourselves further. More importantly, we set a precident for ourselves.

I can do this, because I’ve already done so much.

So instead of being a sad sack tonight, I’m going to celebrate. I’m still writing and drawing. I’m still hoping that someday it will make enough to help my family. I have all the time in the world, and nothing but possibilities.

Go forth and do!

Inktober Day 20

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Here’s today’s Inktober offering. My dad always used to do the Fr. Guido Sarducci voice and routines for me and my brothers when I was younger. My brother Dave and were joking recently that he’d make a great character in a supernnatural campaign so we made a tribute character for him: Padre Vinnie Sargento. Mmm. Vintage cheese.

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The Padre by Monica Marier

Inktober Day-2

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Here’s today’s #Inktober post!

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Day 2: Lizard Mornings, by Monica Marier 2014

Today I go back to my weirdest of specialties: Lizards. I don’t have a clue why— lizards are something I just happened to stumble on with the revelation that can draw them effortlessly. That’s not to say that they’re perfect lizards, or really accurate ones. They just sort of flow out of my pen without me thinking about it, whereas horses and cats are STILL a struggle for me. It’s never come in handy, and it’s never been something I’ve sold before, but there you go—life is weird.

Today’s exercise was more about getting a handle on fine using a fine-liner pen without snapping the tip off. I’m also trying to regain my hatching chops, which I seldom use under the excuse of time-management.

So that’s it for today. Lizards…drinking coffee… yeah.

Back to Work Day!

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“Smile Honey!”

“Don’t wanna!”

“Ah, c’mon! It’s the first day of school!”

“I don’t want to! Everyone hates me.”

“It’s your job. You’re an internet writer and artist. And now that the kids are going to school today you have to update the blog.”

“I can’t. I’m sick. I have to stay home”

“You work from home.”

“Damn it.”

I don't want to smile.

I don’t want to smile. Smiling sucks.

 

I actually had it pretty good this summer. I spent oodles of time with my kids coming up with stories and adventures and projects, and introducing them to my MMORPGS. But I didn’t get much work done. That’s how it goes, and frankly I’m not sorry I had a blast with my kids. But it’s time to dust off the parts of the keyboard that aren’t: QWEASD and get my working pants on.

So, here’s some stuff I’m working on now:

Book 4 of the Linus Saga: Working Title “Inquire Within” It’s a more serious missal where we get to meet all of his brothers and sisters and see how they interact.

Linus Saga Prequel: I’m working on a novel where we see a young asshole-ish Linus meet Deirdre for the first time and what eventually culminates in their marriage. Should be fun.

Madame Bluestocking’s Pennyhorrid 2: Working Title: “The Lost Mines of Nadoras” in which Kelly and Lynald become claim jumpers hoping to strike magic in an abandoned zynythstite mine.

I’m also working on some commissions that I might reveal in the fullness of time, if the clients should allow it, and I’ll be bringing back Character Spotlight Wednesday this week starting with Quince.

Pass the Coffee. It’s going to be a long 9 months. Goodbye, Lord of the Rings Online. It’s been fun.