Saturday, December 31, 2016

End of 2016: A Year In Review

Hello lovelies, it's New Years Eve and everyone is reminiscing about the last year and preparing for next year. So, I'm going to follow the trend. This year has been a year of self-discovery, fond memories and death of beloved Icons in all industries and walks of life.

On Wednesday, I was pondering how many well known celebrities died last year alone and that sent me on a hunt to figure out the exact number. I ended up on the NBC news site and it listed over a hundred people that had died in 2016. That is staggering to my mind.

We lost some of the greatest musicians, authors, artists and celebrities that the world will not soon forget, but let me give you some encouragement. Each one of the icons that died left something behind. Wether it was a story, a song, or a movie that impacted your life, they will never truly be gone. There legacy lives on in each of those that remember them: David Bowie for his music (and movies), Harper Lee for her books, Alan Rickman for his roles in Harry Potter, Sweeney Todd, and others, etc. I could really go on for pages and pages, but those are just a few that I have mourned the loss of this year.

Let's move on to a lighter topic: Self-discovery. If you would have told me at the beginning of the year that I would be writing a blog, managing a facebook page, and making 3D models, I would have said, "You're insane. I write fiction and I only use models that other people have made. I don't think a blog is a good idea."

That was my piece a year ago but here I sit writing blog number sixty-ninth blog (and I'm not out of ideas yet), my facebook page has over sixty followers, and I'm using Blender and DAZ Studio to create pictures and models like I never thought possible. This is something I never thought possible, given my intorverted personality and my indecisiveness about big decisions like this. It was definitely a year that I discovered I can step out of my comfort zone and not have everything turn out atrociously wrong.

Next year, I hope to do a bit more of this. I'm going to set more self-improvement goals than I did last year and I will be exploring publishing options (because I'm not sure about all of them and I don't know if you can know all the options out there). I would say that I'm going to set more writing goals but I'm already on top of that 110%, the first-draft and revision editing is a bit more tedious and can be frustrating at times but I will do more of that this coming year as well.

For the blog, I'm going to be continuing the What Writers Do series and talking about what writers deal with on Saturdays, with Character Introductions every other Wednesday but I'm going to be adding something new. I'm calling them Story Snippets, there will be a clip of the book I'm actually working on posted on altenate Wednesdays than the Character Introductions, along with the scenes will be a picture. (Pictures and stories are copy-righted so please do not copy and paste. You may share the blog to your hearts content.)

That's all I have for you today. Now, go be awesome and do something nice for someone else today.

-The Author, Jenny Williams.

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Writers Tag: Naughty List

Alright, my lovelies, some of you know that I absolutely love Jenna Moreci (there is a link to both her Blog and her youtube in her name) and she put out a writing tag, tagging all of her watchers, us Cyborgs. So, I decided to take the challenge instead of doing my normal Saturday Blog. (I did not come up with these questions, I'm only answering them) So, Here we go.

  The Rules are as follows:
1) Answer the questions using characters from your current WIP.
2) Do NOT use the same character more than twice.
3) Provide a brief (seriously folks - BRIEF!) description of your plot before answering the questions.
I'm going to be using the Kalista Chronicles from the Spirit Novel Chronicles because I've been working on that the most. What you need to know about the KC is that the main character Kalista is the daughter of the Fallen (and Redeemed) Angel Lucifer Angelic and the Council of Spirit, the head of the Preternatural and Mythical Creatures Agency, watches and criticizes her every move. She hates this and wants to know exactly why they do it. She ends up entangled with the Antagonist who makes her life a living nightmare. Now, to the questions

#1 Which character would get wasted at a holiday party and end up humping the Christmas tree?

This would be Braedon. Braedon is Kalista's younger half-brother, who gets caught up in the darker side of the Preternatural world. He starts dealing Salventra (Preternatural Weed) and other drugs to get by, while keeping an eye of his little sister, Nicky. He would be the one to get drunk on Euphoria at their family Christmas party.

#2 Which character deserves to get the crap beaten out of ‘em by the Krampus?

I'd definitely choose Faythe. Faythe is the first fate and she has ego issues. Her best friend (and sister in law) Azrael describes her as "A red head with an agenda." Faythe is always working out her to accomplish her goals in the background and she doesn't care who gets hurt in the process. She definitely needs a good beating.

#3 Which character is the Grinch this year?

Oh, that would be Azrael, better known as Karma, Kalista's Aunt and another Redeemed Fallen Angel. She's also a Private Investigator and Assassin for the Preternatural and Mythical Creatures Agency. As her nickname implies, she gives everyone exactly what they deserve and can come off as a bit of a Grinch, especially around the holidays.

#4 Which character would try to get a little too friendly while sitting on Santa’s lap?

That would be Nicolette, or Nicky, Kalista's youngest sister. Nicky is a flirt, a spitfire, and hides her lascivious nature behind a childlike persona. She is the manager and a dancer at a club called the Naked Eclipse II, which is a Preternatural Gentleman's Club. She has been known to get into trouble with the wrong people especially those older and more mature than she is.

#5 Who would your antagonist most like to tongue beneath the mistletoe?

Yeah, this is a no-brainer. He'd want to corner Kalista and he'd do it slyly. The Master has a thing for the daughter of his sworn enemy and won't stop until she gives into him. Kalista hates his guts, dodges all his advances, and avoids him like the plague only to be thrown to him by **bleeped spoiler**, who **shocker** has no idea who he really is.

#6 Which character would accidentally tip the menorah and light the house on fire?

That would be Julian. He is the only main character of my novels that is human. He is Kalista's best friend and, although he's well-versed in all things preternatural, tends to overstep boundaries and, to Kalista's dismay, mess things up without realizing it. 

#7 Which character is most likely to bring magic brownies to a holiday party?

That would be Kalistasia (Asia), Kalista's oldest full-sibling. Asia just likes to cause a bit of innocent trouble when she knows she can get away with it. She plays on the riskier side of the line and a little left of center. She was into more adult activities well before she was an adult and her adopted father, Korah Eclipse didn't discourage her either. She would also be the one to spike the eggnog and not tell anyone.

#8 Which character is most likely to ring in the new year naked? And why the h*** are they naked in the first place?

Definitely Beelzebub. Bell is just the kind of lascivious and charming character to be caught naked and no one thinks twice. He is credited with having created Succubus, Incubus, and Occubus demons (responsible for making all your wildest fantasies come true before draining your life essence in a moment of passion) one night in his sleep. And why would he be naked? Simple, he gets around.

#9 Which character is absolutely kidding themselves by insisting they belong on the nice list?

That would have to be Justin, Kalista's step-father. He's a member of the Council of Spirit, superb agent, and, most of the time, a loving husband and father but he has a dark side. He is an abusive drunk and cheats on his wife, Anna throughout most of the SNC. He would say he is on the nice list because he has justified his dark deeds.

#10 Which characters would readers be most shocked to find on the naughty list?

Michael, Kalista's first love interest. Michael is a good guy, a good agent of the PMCA and a great friend but he ends up doing some awful things that get him on the naughty list (like helping the Council spy on Kalista and then lie to her about who her soulmate is in order to keep her safe or so he thinks). 

Well, that's all the questions she had. I want to tag all of my readers who are writers for this challenge. You read that right. If you have a WIP  (work in progress) or have written a book, I want to know your answers. You can find the questions and rules here. Go be awesome and I hope you have a Merry Christmas and happy holidays.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Character Introduction: Beryx Drascul

"Rex, are you even listening to me?" Freedom asked and I snapped back to the present. I sighed and looked at her mismatched eyes as she stitched the gash on my arm.
"I'm sorry Freedom. I did hear you and this isn't your fault. I just didn't listen," I admitted and she rolled her eyes. She tied off the string and tossed her long dark brown braid over her shoulders and I watched her, waiting for the rest of the argument. She walked over to the bookshelf and blew the dust from the spine.
"You should know that I never waste my breath. I told you what would happen if you tried to talk to her. She doesn't remember you and she won't until after she finds her father. Right now, he isn't in her life and she thinks he abandoned her. She doesn't remember her contract with my grandfather or him torturing her," she reminded me and I looked down at the stitched ten-inch gash in my arm. She flipped through the book searching for something but I wasn't sure what she was looking for in such an old book. She was guarding her thoughts too well.
"If Kalista doesn't remember him, how did she remember how to fight? He taught her that, didn't he?" I asked standing up from the small table in her office. She shook her head and handed me the book opened to a page with a picture of a warrior and I was confused until I recognized her face. It was Kalista. "Freedom... what is this?" I asked flipping the book over but it didn't have any markings on the cover.
"Cannon and Dagfinn taught her how to control her powers and how to fight, respectively. She remembers them but not the Master," she explained pointing to a passage on the page beside it. My eyes drifted across the page, falling on the paragraph her delicate finger indicated.
Day Ten: Kalista handled the rituals remarkably well. She doesn't seem to remember her powers or her heritage, which was the desired effect. Though, what they were trying to prevent has already happened. They wanted to hide her from the Master but they have no idea that they handed her to me. It was enlightening to see everything in her mind and how she thinks before I removed all memory of Beryx, Anya, Ephraim, and my true identity. She needed to be reminded that the Council is in control and that some things need to remain a secret.
"He really is out to kill her, isn't he?" I asked as the shock sank in. Kalista had forgotten me and that was why she attacked me. She didn't remember that we were friends, let alone anything more than that. It was hard to take all at once.
I walked out into the open living area and dropped into an armchair. The pages of the book turned and there was a colored drawing of the Master. His smile went back to his jaw, showing his two layers of sharp teeth like a shark. His orange eyes seemed to glow with fire and orange scales covered his arms and neck. Other than the scales, he looked like any other fallen angel.
"That is truer than you think. She underestimated him and he used her innocence against her," Freedom answered the rhetorical question. I turned my head to find her sitting in the chair next to me and she was holding another book.
"What's that?" I asked closing the book on my lap. She handed me the second book and my eyes widened as I read the title. Prophecies, Volume II: The Charka Aknobas and the Judge.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

What Writers Do: Sickness

Can it really be Saturday again? It must be because Sunday is tomorrow but today doesn't feel like Saturday for one reason. I'm sick... again. This stupid head cold just won't die and it leaves my brain foggy which makes it hard to write, so here are some things I do when I'm sick and it's hard to write.

1) Get comfy!
The first thing I do is slip into something comfy, usually a hoodie and sweatpants or yoga pants. I brew some tea to help my throat and use my favorite mug. I sit on the recliner couch, kick up the footstool, and grab my tablet, computer, or whatever I happen to be writing on lately.

2) Surf/search Pinterest Prompts
This can be both good and back. Mindlessly pinning things isn't good but there are a lot of story inspiring pins on Pinterest too. I have a secret board dedicated to each book of the Kalista Chronicles and one for each book of The Jennihara Trilogy/Chronicles. I also have One for the Beryx Trilogy, one for the Anna Novels, and one The Council Trilogy, besides having some of characters and stories in the works. If you're lacking ideas or don't know what to search on Pinterest here's a list to get you started
  1. Writing Prompts (this can be adapted by putting Fantasy, Dark, Antagonist, protagonist, sarcasm, etc. at the end)
  2. Inspirational Quotes. Don't knock these. They can be great sources of story inspiration.
  3. Picture Prompts: I particularly find that putting creepy, cute, or sad before or after helps narrow it down. You can use pictures and gifs too. 
  4. Character inspiration. These can be adapted and changed to fit your story. Also, try putting the word picture at the end, you'll get some interesting things.
  5. For the Book I'll Never Write. You'd be surprised how good some of these are and how deep they are.
3) Listen to Music.
For those of you who are new, there is something you need to know: I'm a Music Addict. I listen to music almost 24/7 and if I'm not listening to anything, chances are there is a song playing in my head that I will eventually start humming or singing along too. I call it my background music. 

4) I avoid all social activity and/or chores.
Being introverted, I usually do this unless I've had about anywhere from a week to a month of mentally preparing for the encounter. I stay inside and avoid people. No calls, not many texts, no social media (besides Pinterest) and absolutely no visitors. On the chores side of things, when I'm sick, I have zero energy which means chores get pushed until my OCD/ADD kicks in and I clean a lot and all over but it looks like I get nothing done. The joys of my weirdness. 

Anyhow, that's what I do when I'm sick and need/want to write. What do you do when your sick and need to get writing or anything else done? Do you have a meticulous way you handle it or do you just lie in bed all day? Let me know either in the comments or by mail. I have several ways to contact me listed on the FanMail page. 

That's all for today. Go be awesome! 

-Jenny Williams

Saturday, December 3, 2016

What Writers Do: Around the Holidays

Saturday is here again and I'm back to my normal What Writers Do series and since it's that time of year, it's time to talk about the Holidays. Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, or Quanza (or any others I didn't mention) the holidays are a tougher time to write. Everyone wants to meet up, talk, and exchange gifts. This leaves little time to write and/or edit. So this Holiday Season I'm saying No to the rush and the busy schedule (at least one day a week). I'm calling this my Writing Day.

My Writing Days is simply this: Me taking one day a week to say no to the holiday rush and the people who want to see or talk to me. One day where I refuse to leave the house, extrovert, or be sociable at all. I will answer no texts, take no calls, and Make no visits. This is time for me to be alone, open my creative closet, and let all my ideas bury me.

Alternatively, I may have days where I need a writing hour or two. Time to get away from the rush, become a hermit, and lock myself in a room with my creativity for an hour or two (or five). The reason for this is simple: I am an INFJ (Introverted, intuitive, feeling, judging... according to the 16 personalities quiz and I agree) and sensory overload is a real thing (so is the INFJ door slam but I'll talk about that maybe in a Writer's Update).

Being an introvert makes it hard around the Holidays. For one, I want to see everyone while they are in town (at least the important ones) but I get so overwhelmed with it all that I often have to seclude myself for a few hours (or a day) to "recharge". I can't go all day talking to people and being surrounded by them (Just going to the store for groceries around this time of year is hard for me because of all the people).

I was made for a solitary life (as all introverts understand). The Holidays are tricky because there is a balance that I have to keep and thinking about it makes my brain hurt. Some writers take a vacation around the Holidays but I don't want to and my characters won't let me. So this is my solution, besides carrying a notebook and writing when I can. That's all for today. I hope you enjoyed it.

Without further to do, Go Be Awesome!


P.s. The reason I'm writing this so late in the day is because of my broken finger. I had to work up the courage (and get the pain under control) before I could even think to write. Thanks for understanding. Also check out the new header **squeals in excitement**. The picture is Kalsita and her Significant other (whom I will not disclose the name of... too many spoilers)

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

The Writer's Life: November/December

I need to apologize. I realized that I never wrote my Writer's Life Update Blog for November. I equate this to the fact that I was super excited about NaNoWriMo, but I did give that blog on Halloween that talked about my plans/tips for NaNo so that counts... right?

Anyway, This NaNoWriMo I completed the Month with 57,792 words. (Cheers for self) After completing the fifty-thousand-word goal on the twenty-first, I wanted to surpass it by ten thousand but that idea fell through because of unforeseen circumstances, mainly, life threw me another curve-ball. Let me tell you a little story (since that's what I'm good at).

Late Sunday night or very early Monday morning, I decided to take a shower. My dog, Sadie was upstairs sleeping with my husband and I figured I would get to take a shower without having her in the room with me. This was a pipe dream. I started the water, turned on my music, turned on the fan, and shut the bathroom door, so as not to wake my husband. 

Halfway through my shower, I was running conditioner through my hair and I hear the door open. I peak out from behind the shower curtain and there is my samoyed white furry dog staring at me. I had no idea how she even got the door open but knew if it stayed open my husband would wake up. 

Here is where I did a stupid thing. I leaned out of the shower to close the door without stepping out of the shower. I'm still not sure how the next part happened but I've deduced this much: While I was closing the door I slipped on some conditioner. The next thing I know, I'm falling. My torso collided with the four-inch wide edge of the tub and my left hand smacks the vanity as the shower curtain and rod fell on top of me.

When the world was still again, I felt as if I'd been punched in the stomach by the hulk and my left pinky was screaming in pain. To my own surprise, I didn't scream and I didn't cry. Sadie licked my face and I managed to turn the water off before curling up in the bottom of the tub. I laid there for five minutes before slowly standing up and finishing the shower. 

Fast forward twelve hours later when I decided that, since I was still in pain and the bruise on my pinky was spreading, that I should go to the Emergency care center on the way home from a day out with my mom. Two and a half hours later, I got an answer. I bruised my ribs and broke my left pinky finger. (end story)

Yep, I broke one finger. I have to wear a splint and wrap it with the ring finger. I can't wear my wedding rings. I have a hard time typing with those two fingers together, besides the fact that it hurts to the point that I have to keep it elevated or it throbs painfully. Because of this, my writing has taken a huge setback and I can't do much of anything I want to do.

Here's something you should know about me (that most of my friends know): I'm strong and independent. I don't like asking others for help (even if I need it). I'm also a klutz. I've been known to run into walls, doors, and even furniture when I'm sleepy or not paying attention. I trip up the stairs. I also have this strange ability to injure myself doing mundane, nonhazardous tasks or hobbies. I have no patience (for myself) when I am injured; I expect life to go on as normal and it can't.

Given my injury (and the holidays) I'm going to not set any concrete goals for December. Don't misunderstand me. I will put down some things that I want" to get done. I may do them and I may be forced to put them aside and focus on other things that I can do.

Things I want to do:

1) Finish my Nano project: although I wrote over fifty thousand words, I didn't finish the story And I want to.

2) Edit the story: this is a biggy. I was writing so much and so fast that some words were omitted while I wrote so I have to go back and correct/change some things.

3) Go back to Kalista's story: Recently I've been digging back into Kalista's story and doing some planning for other books in the series. I've completed the first draft of four/five novels and the second draft of two other's but I have ideas for double that. I've been organizing them and I want to dive back into it, headlong but I don't want to leave the Star Wars book to collect dust.

Things I can do:
1) Edit: this doesn't take a lot of typing, so it's not unrealistic.
2) Plan/Outline: New ideas and books spring up from everywhere I need to organize these ideas.
3) Organize my house: this is something I don't normally have time for when I'm writing constantly. But now that I've injured my hand it makes me slow down and want to organize more.
4) Read: I have about ten books sitting around my house that I bought and want to read. I used to read more than ten books a month and now I barely get through one and pick up about ten more in the process. I want to read the newest Chronicles of Nick Book by Sherrilyn Kenyon. Finish Bloodlines by Claudia Gray. Finish the Throne of Glass novels by Sarah J. Maas and possibly read Splendors of Glooms by Luara Amy Schlitz (which I picked up at a Goodwill store), Etc. Reading has always been an escape for me and that's why I started writing in the first place.

Things I should probaly (need) to do:
1) Heal/Relax: this is the hardest thing for me because I like to do a lot of things and with an injured finger I can't (i.e. sewing, writing, rearranging, etc.).

I hate the fact that I can't' do something to the point that not being able to do it pushes me to tryharder and hurt myself more. Anyway,  enough ranting. That's all I have for this update. I will try to continue blogging as normal but please be patient with me if I don't post on time or at all. Thank you for reading, now go be awesome.

-Jenny Williams
Here is a collage of pictures to show you my hand and what I'm dealing with. It looks worse than yesterday and it's excruciatingly painful. I thank God for ice packs, Tylenol and Ibuprofen.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

NaNoWriMo Series: Part Four finale

Saturday's seem to sneak up on me and yet they always come at the end of the week. That just comes to show you that time flies when you're having fun. Anyhow, This will be the finale for my NaNoWriMo Series, which is sad to think about, so I'm going to talk about some final thoughts and what happens next for me.

Writing during NaNoWriMo is always exhilarating for me, don't get me wrong, I find writing exhilarating all the time, but writing during Nano is another experience altogether. If you're inputting your word count every day you get to see the line on your graph jump and I love that. It pushes me to write more and finish writing, which brings me to the next thing.

If you follow me on twitter or on Facebook, you already know this, but if you don't...


On Monday the Twenty-First, I officially had fifty thousand (and six) words! Wahoo! But that doesn't mean I stopped writing. I'm not even close to finishing yet. I have about half my outline still to write and I want to finish it before I return to the Spirit Novel Chronicles (which has been nagging at the back of my mind recently). 

Final thought: I started this Nano as sort of an AU for my Spirit Novel Chronicles but, now that I've written so much of it, I don't think it worked that way. It's evolved into an actual Star Wars novel combining both a few of my Spirit Novel Chronicles Characters (remade) with those of my Star Wars the Old Republic video game and Book series characters. I used a few characters from each and I have to say that it came out amazingly. I'd love to actually publish it with the Lucas and Disney stamp of approval but I'm not 100% sure about that. There are pros and cons to both but I think I made it far enough in the future from the storyline of SWTOR that it could be used as Cannon and not Legend. 

Anyhow, as of this second, I have fifty-six thousand, two hundred and something odd words. I'll let you guys know the final total on Wednesday when I post my Monthly Update blog. Well, that's all I have for you today. I hope you all are having fun with NaNoWriMo until it officially ends on the 30th. Thank you for sharing and for reading. Now, go be awesome!

Jenny Williams

P.s. Here is a picture of Wil'Ja Greeath a man character from my book. Yes, she is a Chiss. Yes, she fights with both a Saber staff (the double bladed saber) and a regular lightsaber. Yes, she is a Jedi. a Sentinel to be specific and she favors form VII (Juyo) but she does use a bit of all the forms. One Master described her fighting style as the Force in Motion. And no, I'm still not sure why her hair is white. She hasn't told me that yet. 

Saturday, November 19, 2016

NaNoWriMo Series: Part Three

It's the third week of Nanowrimo and that means it's the last stretch. The last leg of November and Thanksgiving is Thursday. Everything is getting busy but don't stop writing (If you are). This week has been a record week and I'm still fighting off that nasty germ. I haven't stopped writing though.

 I have a total of forty-two thousand eight hundred and forty-three words. Only Seven thousand one hundred and fifty seven more words to go. I've done more than that in the last three days, I may even finish before Thanksgiving. I'm still excited about the story because I know that it's going to take more than 50,000 words to finish. It's going to be at least twice that. This is a good start though.

Anyway, there isn't much to write about so I'll give you another snippet and another picture from Anthony Sims. This is Chapter One and it's pretty much unedited, so if there are any typos and such keep that in mind. Enjoy and after your done Go Be Awesome.

     Chapter One
(Updated 6/2017)
-Five years after Master Starkiller brought Ankyla to the temple on Tython.-

“Kyla. Where did she go now? Ankyla Heano!” Master Ashyr called for her from the temple steps. He’d searched inside the temple from top to bottom only to have another youngling, Sakkara Dakar inform him that Kyla had gone outside to meditate near the stream. He’d humphed at his horrid luck and closed his eyes, calming his emotions. Ankyla always brought to the surface all the emotions that he’d taught himself to suppress through years of training. 

“Ankyla,” he called again before he saw someone sitting on top of a pillar near one of the training areas on the other side of the river. He blinked a few times and squinted making sure it was her in the glare of the afternoon Tythonian sun. He walked over to the twenty foot tall stone pillar that had the prophecy chiseled into its sides and looked up at her.

He shook his head with a small smirk as he noted her closed eyes, folded legs, and her hands were on top of her knees. It was the same meditation position that he taught the younglings of Bear Clan only this morning. The youngling was concentrating deep enough that she pushed everything else out and focused on the Force.

“Ankyla, Master Kael told me that you broke a lamp in the archives today,” he called up to her, instantly breaking her concentration. She tipped backwards and tumbled to the ground. She landed in a crouch with wisps of her long dark hair falling from the loose buns she'd wound on either side of her head.

She slowly stood up and bowed respectfully to the Newly instated Grand Master, never letting any embarrassment show. For a five-year-old youngling, she controlled her emotions better than most Jedi Knights in recent years.

“Yes, Master Starkiller, I did break a lamp. I was reading over an especially… difficult section of our histories and the lamp shattered,” she confessed and he nodded. Master Kael had told him much the same thing. Master Starkiller was surprised, she never apologized and she didn’t list off any excuses either. She simply told him what happened.

 She knew that making excuses was the way of a coward. She was no coward. Asher Starkiller looked down at the youngling that he’d watched grow from a babe and sighed before setting his hand on her shoulder.

“Master Kael also commended you for cleaning up the mess and apologizing for the disturbance,” he praised her and blush crept up into her cheeks. She forced the heat of embarrassment down again and cleared her mind of emotion, repeating the first line of the Jedi code to herself. There is no emotion, there is peace. 

“I didn’t want to cause trouble. I was reading through the history of the Jedi,” she restated, purple eyes flashing bright orange at the confession. Asher paused before looking around and crouching down to her level to make sure no one could hear him. She met his gaze for the first time during the conversation and he saw a darkness in her that hadn’t been there this morning during Clan Bear’s lesson.

“Child, what part were you reading?” his stern yet gentle voice prompted her to repeat the rest of the code in her head: There is no ignorance, there is knowledge. There is no passion, there is serenity. There is no chaos, there is harmony. There is no death only the force.

She inhaled deeply before letting it out slowly and gazing into his deep green eyes. She didn’t want to talk about what she'd read and what had happened. The war and bloodshed she’d read about stirred up enough anger and fear that her unharnessed powers broke the lamp that she was reading by and she didn't want to break anything else.

“I… I don’t want to talk about it,” she whispered before her eyes dropped to the metal floor of the training arena. Her eyes filled with tears as she recalled a glimpse of the battle that the force granted her. Bodies had been heedlessly chopped and left to lay where they died. It was grotesque and her anger threatened to rise again. Her nostrils flared, blood thundered in her ears, and tears burned her eyes. Master Asher saw the tears and set both of his hands on her shoulders. He was calm and calculating as he pushed soothing force energy into her.

“Ankyla, you don’t have to fear the past. It is there for us to learn from. We cannot change it any more than we can change the direction of the wind,” he wisely encouraged her and she tried to blink back her tears but they slipped out onto her high cheekbones before sliding down her angled jaw to her chin.

Her anger was smothered under the energy he lent her but it was replaced by a sadness that choked her next words. She swallowed the sudden lump in her throat and blinked furiously to keep the rest of her tears at bay.

“When I was reading, I saw the destruction. I… I felt their pain and their fear.” She paused swallowing hard and he watched her eyes. “Why didn't the Republic send help? Why weren't Troopers called? Why would they all-allow that?” she asked voice breaking at the last sentence. He dropped his hands to her elbows and let his knees rest on the metal plating under their feet.

“It’s not our place to question. Kyla, sit down and tell me what portion of history you were reading,” he instructed turning to the stream. She obeyed, wiping the tears from her eyes and taking a few deep breaths. She pulled a small data-pad from her belt and handed it to him.

She had downloaded that part of the archives to her personal data reader so that she could reflect more on it before she went to sleep that night. Just before bed was the time she was closest to the force and she hoped it would grant her some clarity as she slept.

Asher took the small electronic data reader from her and tapped the history tab. In bold letters was the title: The Sacking of Coruscant. He snapped his neck to look at her but her eyes were on the stream.

 The Sacking was an entry from the Great Galactic War that had taken place shortly before the Eternal War and it was a dark day for the Republic. He knew it well, he'd been there to witness it.

The temple had been decimated, almost all the Jedi that were there had been slaughtered before the world itself had been bombarded by Imperial troops. They were still fighting with the Senate to get permission to rebuild the temple on the Republic’s Capital.

“This is a dark piece of our history Ankyla. Your peers aren't even up to the Mandalorian war yet,” he began and a small voice whispered for him to stop. It was the voice of his Master that had now passed on and one again he listened to it. “That isn't the point. This entry doesn’t represent all our history. The Jedi and the Republic didn’t allow it to happen. We fought with everything we had but the Sith overwhelmed us. The Republic was caught unaware because of the peace talks and they didn't know about the Sith’s alliance with the Mandalorians,” he explained but she simply shook her head. Asher tilted his head at her obstinate refusal, which was out of character for her but he waited for her to explain. Ankyla balled her hands behind her back and her eyes flashed orange again as she recalled the glimpses she’d seen.

“Why didn't the Republic send help? The temple was on the capital world and it was guarded by armed troopers who should have sent a message to command,” she reasoned. He watched her eyes spark again as she stared at his face, “Shouldn't it have caused worry and raised some sort of alarm? Why did the Jedi sign the treaty of Coruscant after what Darth Malgus did? Why didn’t they fight to honor the fallen? I know that there were less than a hundred Jedi but why didn't the Troopers storm in?” She passionately asked and Asher knew that she was allowing dark thoughts to cloud her mind and distort her judgement. He turned the data-pad off and set it on the ground between them. He bent his legs into a pretzel shape beneath him and focused on the stream.

“Kyla, we cannot understand the will of the Force or the reasoning of others. We aren’t asked to understand or to judge them only to remember their mistakes and learn from them.” He reminded her and she turned back to the stream. He watched her chest heave as she tried to regain her peace and find her center. “During the Great Galactic War and the false peace that turned into the Cold War many Jedi did things that they knew were wrong,” he began and her eyes returned to their bright purple hue. She stared up at him and his face went slack with the emotionless mask he wore as the wind blew his chin length hair back from his face.

“Masters faked their own deaths and went into hiding in order to undermine the treaty. Knights killed with relentless aggression that should never characterize a member of the Jedi order. Consular sought out dark rituals to help hide themselves from enemies and Padawans followed suit, using dark force abilities to accomplish their Master’s orders,” he expounded and her mouth dropped open in horror.

Ankyla couldn't understand it. She wasn't prepared for this deep of a history lesson. Knowing that some of the greatest Jedi that came before her had betrayed the code and their entire order to accomplish their own ends made her heart ache in her chest.

She slipped on her own mask of emotionless concentration and watched the silently flowing stream. The only thing those Jedi did was bring chaos, war, and destruction to the Republic. The history of the Republic could be traced from one war to the next and her young heart longed for peace. She repeated the code again as she closed her eyes and thought on its precepts.

 There is no emotion. There is peace. There is no ignorance. There is knowledge. There is no passion. There is serenity. There is no chaos. There is harmony. There is no death. Only the force. The Jedi of that time had violated each line of the code and for what?she questioned but then another though stopped her anger and chilled the blood in her vines. What keeps me from doing the same?

She straightened, setting her hands on her own folded knees and took a few deep breaths. Thinking about War would only lead to anger. She needed to think on something else. She turned her head to The Grand Master and noted how his eyes watched her, waiting for more questions.

“Has there ever been a time of true peace, Master?” Kyla asked, thinking of the next section she was going to read: The Cold War and the Eternal War. The synopsis said that they were the most recent, most devastating, and yet the shortest Wars to befall the galaxy and it had shaken both the Empire and the Republic.

“There was a year or two, between the Cold War and the Eternal War, where the greatest champions of both the Sith and the Jedi banded together to help destroy a greater deadlier group of Cultists known as the Revanites,” he explained and her heart leapt in her chest.  Can it be true? Can the Sith and the Jedi truly be united to fight against one evil?

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Character Introduction: Dinore'an Zan

**This is a Character Introduction for my Star Wars the Old Republic Book/Series to go along with My Nano Novel. Also it's a bit long**

Raen sat in the middle of the mediation chamber on her cylinder seat with legs tucked underneath her. Meditation was all that filled her free time for the last three years. She needed to clear her mind of the gang wars, the death, and the scheming she was helping to quell here on Coruscant where the Jedi High Council had assigned her. She was stationed here to help the aging Master Kravyn Hydra. Now he only dealt with the diplomatic side of things, leaving the more agressive negotiations to her.

The destruction of the Great Galactic War, the Cold War, and the Eternal War had allowed gangs and spice dens to thrive while the Republic focused on the imminent problems with the Sith and the subsequent Eternal Empire. Now, they were focusing on individual planets and rebuilding their ecosystems, which meant they needed the riffraff taken care of properly and who better to do that than a Jedi. This led to her meditating in her downtime, if she had any.

She cleared away the thoughts of her last trip, a mission that helped free the Yavin system from Imperial threat and the information she'd obtained for the Strategic Information Service. She'd given the information to her contact in the SIS, so there was no use dwelling on it while she meditated. She focused her mind on the Jedi Code and whispered it to herself again.

"There is no emotion. There is peace. There is no ignorance. There is knowledge. There is no passion. There is serenity. There is no chaos. There is harmony. There is no death. There is the force," she recited letting the emotion and the death fade away. "The force will guide me," she added before her astromech droid, T7-03 beeped, letting her know that she had a visitor. She grabbed her outer robe from the floor and tied it in place before she walked into the living area.

Standing by the elevator in long flowing robes similar to her own were Master Kravyn Hydra, a human male with close cut greying hair and a kind disposition, and newly appointed Master Ashyr Starkiller, a Zabrak with green eyes and red and black tattoos. The stories said that the tattoos weren't his choice and His tribe were tattooed as infants, it set them apart from the other Zabrak warriors but Grand Master Shan didn't judge him by it when his parents messaged the temple about his force sensitivity and neither did the other Masters. She bowed to them as they removed their hoods and mirrored her movement.

"This is unexpected. What can I do for you Master Starkiller?" She asked knowing that Kravyn would have holoed before coming over. He didn't like to come to her apartment unannounced. Master Starkiller smiled at her intuition and tilted his head as he looked at her. She had grown since she left the academy on Tython three years ago and he noticed the hue of her hair had changed but her violet eyes hadn't change at all.

"I was talking with Kravyn about your latest success and he mentioned that you met the Director of the SIS. I wanted to see what you thought of him," He stated with a glimmer of curiosity in his green eyes. She saw it immediately and froze. She'd only mentioned it to Kravyn and now she wished she hand't. The older Master mouthed a silent 'I'm sorry' over Master Starkiller's shoulder and she nodded. She gestured toward the rooms metal couches and they all sat down before she responded.

"Yes, I met Theron Shan and his wife quite by accident. I was in the market buying some groceries and new robes when one of the vendors mistook me for Jen'Ari Shan, who had just left his shop with her husband. The Vendor started to make trouble and Theron came over to see what was going on. He ended up taking the rodian into custody after I found out that he was dealing spice," She explained without saying anything specific about the encounter. Master Starkiller didn't need to know what she'd found out and neither did Grand Master Shan, who was Theron's mother.

"Did he say anything to you?" He pointedly inquired and she forced herself to stay emotionally blank even with the spark of annoyance that flickered Inside her.  This was personal and the Council usually stayed out of the personal affairs of its Jedi knights, trusting them to keep the Code and remember the rules that bound them. Above all, Attachment is forbidden. She smoothed her robes and shook her head.

"What do you really want to know Master Starkiller? Theron is the director of the SIS. He acted professionally and without bias. Was there something he should have said to me?" She asked downplaying the encounter since she didn't want the details getting back to Grand Master Shan. Jen'Ari had specifically told her not to say anything to the Council about their encounter and practically begged her to forget it all together. Raen wished she could.

"Master Kael seemed to think that there would be something more but he didn't explain. He said that I needed to ask you about it and gauge your reaction. I don't see anything worth reporting back to the Council.  Just be careful in your dealings with the Shan family," he offered, standing up to leave again. She didn't stand and she refused to look away from his eyes. He had no idea what he was saying and she suppressed the anger that wanted to rise to the surface at the implications of it.

"Don't worry, Master Starkiller. He is the Director of the SIS and his wife is the Empress of Zakuul . I know the proper procedures," she hinted as Master Kravyn looked from Ashyr to Raen waiting for one of them to break eye contact. Kravyn could sense the tension between them escalate and it was the first time he ever wondered who would win if they fought. Ashyr was a Master but Raen had more power and more control. She simply lacked the age of a Master. Master Starkiller placed his hood up to cover his horned head and tattooed face.

"I'm glad to hear that from you. I need to go now. Master Shan wanted me to return to Tython as soon as possible. May the Force be with you," He excused himself breaking eye contact and walking back toward the lift. Raen didn't trust herself to reply and she didn't move until Master Starkiller was inside with the door closed behind him. She let her shoulders slouch as she leaned back against the couch.

"Raen, I didn't know telling Master Kale would make him question you. I thought it a harmless meeting. Are you alright? Your force energy seems clouded," he hinted and she shook her head. She'd only recently returned to Coruscant and she hadn't even had the chance to sleep yet.

"I'm just thinking about the battle over Yavin. I was meditating when you arrived. Why is Master Starkiller on Coruscant anyhow?" She asked, sounding more hostile than she'd intended. Master Hydra's grey eyes clouded and she knew it was to check up on her.  "Why is the Council suddenly so interested in my affairs? Have I done something wrong?"

"It's not like that Dinora'en. They always check on knights after a battle like that and Master Dacole spoke very highly of you and of Savion. They want to promote both of you to the rank of Master because of it. Master Kale wanted someone to talk to you about it first. I didn't think Ashyr would take it that far though," he eluded to Ashyr's secrecy and Raen continued to shake her head. She sat up straight again before standing.

"I'm sorry that you were dragged into this. I need to continue my meditation and clear my mind before Savion arrives to talk over a few battle strategies before he returns to Tython as well," she excused herself and Master Hydra sensed something else in her words but he knew better than to ask. He stood up and they bowed before he turned to leave.

"May the force be with you Dinora'en Zan."

"And Also with you, Master Hydra," she echoed before he stepped onto the lift and she let her emotionless shield fall. She knew exactly why Master Starkiller had come to see her. They were afraid that she would form a bond with her parents, the ones that the Council and her first master Candorace Wraith tried to hide  from her. She hadn't let it affect her since her trip to Dantooine and now it all crashed down around her because of what happened on the trip back from Yavin.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

NaNoWriMo Series: Part Two

It's Saturday, which means I made it through the week. Let me apologize right away for any strange writing. I've been sick all week and after getting antibiotics on Wednesday, I broke out last night and have not felt right since. Anyhow, life goes on so here I sit writing my normal Saturday blog.

I'm still excited for NaNoWriMo even after Twelve days, thirteen chapters, and twenty two thousand words. The story is getting underway and my main characters are developing nicely. I've chosen to focus on three main characters and I have many supporting characters though we only learn of some in passing. All influence the plot and move it forward.

I'm enjoying being immersed in a galaxy far, far away. The Star Wars universe is full of possibilities, especially during the Old Republic Era which I am a fan of. I'm mainly working off the games and the books, which is where everyone should start in my opinion. Anyhow, where was I? Oh, yes. The time gap between the Old Republic Era and the Battle of Yavin is vast and unexplored by most authors. I had this revelation when I set out to read and play anything I could find in this era. Now, after playing and reading all of it, I needed more.

So here I sit twenty two thousand words in and barley scratching the surface. My characters have begun there journeys and so have I.

(Announcer Voice) A journey of epic proportions, a choice between Light Side and Dark Side. One cannot serve two masters. Each character must decide where they stand and each one had their own battles to face.

(Clears Throat) That's all I really have for today. Keep your head up and charge that mountain of words. We're almost halfway there! Don't give up! Now, Go be Awesome!

-Jennifer Williams (Writer in Waiting)

P.S. Here is a Picture from one of the scenes I have yet to write. The young Padawan is Ankyla Heano, the Master holding the sphere is Siman Dacol, and the droid is R3-D5. This is just after a small battle takes place. (Picture made by Anthony Sims my Graphic Designer. Do not copy.)

Sunday, November 6, 2016

NaNoWriMo Series: Part One

Hello, my Lovelies! It's the first Saturday of November, which as you all should know by now (unless you are super new to my blog. if you are thanks for coming) is Nation Novel Writing Month. If you can't tell, I'm super excited about NaNo because I'm writing a Star Wars novel. I'm excessively excited because I am a Star Wars fan and not just the movies. I love the books, the games, the cosplays, the fan made things, all of it.

So getting into the writing of Nanowrimo. I am ahead of the game I have ten thousand  and seventeen words (according to their official checker which is the same as my count on Microsoft word.  YAY!). In lieu of that, I rewarded myself (Like I talked about in Mondays Blog Check that out here if you haven't read it yet). I went out to the Dipson (movie theater) with my best friend and it was good to get out of the house after writing that many words in five days.

Writing Star Wars has been amazing so far. I absolutely love the freedom and yet the confines of  writing an AU story in the Star Wars Universe because I am such a huge fan. I also want to give you a bit of my writing to read. I've had my best writing pal read over it for me already so here is the opening bit.

*Insert Star Wars FanFare* 
(Updated 6/2017)
-A Long Time Ago in a Galaxy Far Far Away-

A figure in a dark flowing Jedi cloak slipped into the temple under the cover of darkness, carrying a small bundle comfortingly to his chest, hidden under the yards of fabric. No one was awake to question him and no one would realize what he was carrying. He walked up the temple steps of Tython and toward the chambers of Grand Master Satele Shan. It was her decision that would decide the babies fate. 

He’d contacted the Grand Master when he left the babe’s home world a day before and now, the time for action was upon him. A silver protocol droid was walking out of her chambers when it spotted him. It turned its bulbous head to him before it stopped. 

“Good evening, Master Jedi. She’s expecting you,” was all the droid said before it moved on. The Master Jedi dropped his hood, revealing his red and black tattoos that covered his face. Small black horns jutted from his head in a circular pattern but his hair hid most of them. Being a Zabrak was difficult in the Jedi order, many people distrusted him, especially with his coloring. The Jedi Council was suspicious of him until he proved himself and Jedi Master Satele Shan, then a knight, put her reputation on the line for him, initiating him just before the Sacking of Coruscant.  

With that in mind, he walked inside, keeping the babe under his cloak, and scanned the room. Satele’s chambers weren’t elaborate by any stretch of the imagination. The antechamber where he stood held a long table with six chairs around it. It was where she held personal meetings and briefings. Satele wasn’t here and he wasn’t inclined to walk into her meditation chamber without being invited. 

“Ashyr, I sense fear in you. That’s highly unlike you. Why are you afraid to see me?” came the aging Master’s kind yet emotionally calm voice. She walked out of her room in a simple robe, unlike the more decorated ones she wore when she went out on missions. Her hair that had once been dark brown was now completely grey with age and her skin was wrinkled around her eyes, showing just a hint of her true age. She was well over ninety years old, which was above average for a human being but she was still spry and as agile as ever. The force was indeed with her. 

“Sorry, Master Shan. I do not fear for myself. I was entrusted with a message and a parcel for you,” Ashyr stated as he moved his cloak aside to show her the tightly wrapped bundle with the child sleeping inside. She started to respond when the force whispered to her and she closed her mouth. She held out both arms to him and the younger master placed the babe in her arms. 

Satele looked down at the baby and loosened the swaddling around its face. Its eyelids fluttered open and light Purple eyes shown from a pale face and silken dark hair covered the top of the baby girl’s head. Satele smiled at the babe before focusing on Asher again. His green eyes wandered over her face and waited for any hint of a decision. 

“What is the message, Asher?” she prompted, caressing the babe’s soft cheek with one boney finger. The child cooed softly and he bowed his head, clearing it off distraction.

“Her mother wished for her identity to remain a secret. She would not hint at the child’s heritage. She insisted that you’d know when you saw the baby,” he relayed while she walked over to the table. She sat at the head of it and watched the child in her arms. It's eyes were bright as they looked around taking in the new scenery. 

“She was correct. I can feel the baby’s connection to the force already and through it, her connection to me. Why did her mother give her to you? I didn't think she would ever give up a child, given her own beginning. Does the father know?” Satele asked but didn’t look up this time. The baby wriggled enough to pull one hand from the bindings and wrap that tiny hand around the Grand Master’s finger. Satele smiled wider and Asher refused to move as if he were made of stone. She glanced at him and he cleared his throat.

“No, the father isn’t aware that a child was ever conceived. Master Zan and the father were separated for the duration of her pregnancy due to their different assignments,” he informed her in a hushed tone. She watched him and her light blue eyes narrowed as she scrutinized his words while he shifted his weight from one foot to the other nervous about the fate of the child.

“Her father is a part of the Order as well. That is… interesting but it doesn’t change my decision. Is she weaned?” The Grand Master asked, unshaken by that fact. Asher was a bit taken aback by his Master’s intuition but quickly suppressed his emotions and nodded. Satele’s eyes drifted back to the baby and she tensed as the force granted her a vision of the child’s future. 

The little bundle in her arms would have a rough life ahead of her but that didn’t mean she couldn’t be trained. Asher walked over to the table and sat down as the force swirled around his Master surrounding her in a light blue haze. He waited patiently, clearing his mind of the emotions he’d felt on the voyage here and an immense burden lifted from his shoulders. He’d brought the baby to her matriarch and it was no longer his responsibility. 

Satele pulled out of the vision and nodded once. Her countenance darkened with the weight of the vision and she knew what had to happen. She turned to Ashyr, who’s green eyes watched her, waiting for an answer and trying to determine what she would say. 

“Yes, I believe it’s the will of the force for us to train her. I will raise her until she is old enough to live with the other initiate’s in the tower of knowledge,” she informed him and he nodded in obedience. He began to stand but stopped as her piercing eyes grazed him once more. 

“Do not tell anyone of her heritage. She will have a new start as her mother before her. You will never reveal her true identity to anyone. Her new name is Ankyla Heano.”