Guest Blog: How To Win A Fantasy Writer’s Heart

Today’s post is a guest blog by my critique partner and friend, the fantasy writer A. S. Akkalon.

By day, A.S. Akkalon works in an office where computers outnumber suits of armour more than two-to-one, and by night she puts dreams of medieval castles, swords, and dragons onto paper.

She blogs bad advice, random silliness, and the occasional short story at, and can often be found grubbing in the leaf litter under the Twitter trees (@AkkalonAS).

She’s currently editing her high fantasy novel, “Rain on Dragon Scales”, which takes itself more seriously than her blog, but not too seriously. It also has dragons.

If life has taught her anything, it’s that the cat is always right.


You’ll find my corresponding blog, How To Win The Heart Of A Romance Writer, on her blog at

How to win a fantasy writer’s heart

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Problems with International Writing

I apologise when people tread on my foot.

I say, “That’s not bad” when I think something is great, and, “That’s quite good” when I think it’s awful.

I have an opinion on whether you should put the milk in first or last when making tea.

Yes, I’m British.


I write for all romance lovers, and have readers from the UK, Canada, the US, and Australia among others, but I aim my books at the US market for many reasons – it’s the home of romance, my agent is in the US, it’s a bigger market than the UK, and I get extra brownie points for writing things like, “Bloody hell!”

It has its benefits, but also its drawbacks. In particular:

What the hell do I call women’s underwear?

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The nine main stereotypes of writers – with cats

I’m guilty of three. You?

The Cat's Write

There are so many writing stereotypes out there. For example, when most people picture a writer they imagine a poor-coffee-loving-intelligent-but-crazy-bohemian-hermit who spends their days dreaming up fantastical worlds and despicable murders. It may shock some people to learn that some writers love the sun, prefer to be outdoors, and actually, NO, they don’t know a single thing about how a computer works, but if you need help with anything Microsoft word related – well you’re in luck! (Another stereotype?? Whoops).

Here are what I think are the nine main stereotypes of writers:

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An Author’s Dubious Search History

Authors are a hindrance to anti-terror efforts all over the world.

Why? Because of this:


Due to our Google searches, authors must make up a good 70% of anti-terror watch lists. And while we’re being investigated for searching Does Quicklime Really Dissolve Corpses Quickly?, the real terrorists and criminals are getting away with it.

By the way, when your colleagues are discussing TV shows, don’t jump in with, “Actually, that’s not accurate. It takes several minutes of continuous inhalation for chloroform to render a victim unconscious. And also, strangling somebody is nowhere near as easy as TV makes it look.” You’ll suddenly find that nobody wants to work on 1:1 projects with you.


In my file alone, there are search records including:

1. What’s the parasite that swims into the penis?

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Author Interview: A.E.McAuley

Andrea McAuley is an up-and-coming author with a fantasy novel under her belt and two intriguing projects underway, including one about a café for dead people that I’m already dying to read (geddit? Wink wink).
She loves cheesy 90s shows, tea, and writing. She has two adorable dogs called Zeus and Hank. If that’s not enough to turn you into a fan, well… you’re hard to please, jeez. Perhaps read on and fall in love over an interview?
Or maybe this’ll do it…

Zeus and Hank. I definitely do not have plans to steal them.

1. I see you’ve finished your first novel, Flightless. What’s it about, and where did the inspiration come from?

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Book Review: BITE SOMEBODY, Sara Dobie Bauer

Highlights of this review:

  • Six out of five stars if you name your main character after a penis wig.
  • Find out how appealing your blood type is to vampires.
  • Farting couches.
  • How to overcome female premature ejaculation with ralphing.
  • Hot surfer dudes.

If that doesn’t make you want to read on, you’re dead inside and should go and feel ashamed of yourself in a dark and preferably smelly corner.

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Why I’m A Hypchondriac

My name’s Anna and I’m a hypochondriac.

I know I’m a hypochondriac because I’ve diagnosed myself with it using the internet.

I know because the slightest sniff of a symptom and I’m on Google finding out how many types of cancer I have (hint at least three, no matter what symptom it is).

If I had everything I’d diagnosed myself with, I’d be clinically dead. Twenty-four times.

But there’s a reason I’m like this.



Draw up a chair and let me tell you The Story of a Hypochondriac.


San José Library on Flickr

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Folklore Thursday Guest Post: The Loch Ness Monster by Allison Thurman

Anyone who follows me on Twitter will know I’m a big fan of the Loch Ness Monster. So much so that my third novel, jokingly assigned the working title Love is Nessie-sary, is set at Loch Ness.


Once upon a time on Twitter I saw a link to a blog post from a fellow author, Allison Thurman, about her love of “the weird stuff”–ghosts, UFOs, cryptozoology, and other Forteana / paranormalia. In it, she mentions making papier-mâché Loch Ness monsters.

I’d found a woman after my own heart.

So I asked Allison if she would write a guest post for a Folklore Thursday, and she kindly agreed. So check out her blog, follow her on Twitter, and read on…

Allison: What can I say that hasn’t been said about the Loch Ness monster?

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