Friday, May 29, 2009

Fever Dreams

I've been sick for a few days now. Maybe more than a few days. They're running together.

This hasn't been as bad as some illnesses. I saw it coming and took steps. Had the medicines running into my system early and often. And put the world on notice that I was going to be spending most of the time in bed and the world could just deal.

What's been interesting about this particular illness is my dreams. I normally have vivid dreams, but these have been...different.

Characters and plot lines long discarded have come back to life in my dreams. I've watched an array of my former favorites cross the screen of my mind, altering themselves just a little, as if to entice me to bring them back to life again on the pages of a novel.

I'll wake up, stagger out of bed for some water or another dose of medicine, fall back to sleep, and there's another set, showing off for me as I slumber.

I enjoy them, but during one particularly vivid dream, with some of my 'oldest' discarded characters, I realized it seemed less like a dream and more like I was watching ghosts. And not just any ghosts -- ghosts of loved ones long gone.

A part of me wants to resurrect them from the dead. However, love and nostalgia aren't the same as merit. They were retired for a reason and those reasons remain.

But while I want to get well, and think I finally am, I kind of hope these fever dreams last just a little while longer...

J.G. Chase

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Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Day and Night

Here's wishing a Happy Mother's Day to those who are day people, and a Happy Mother's Night to those who are a bit more nocturnal. Stand on your rights and demand that you get whatever you really want this time, be it more sleep, someone else to cook, a new book, or control of the remote.

J.G. Chase

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Thursday, March 12, 2009

Creepy Words

I stumbled upon the most wonderful old word today -- "death-damp".

Apparently it's the cold, clammy sweat which breaks out just before death.

And I love this word.

As a writer, I suppose, really, I love all words. But, per my critique partner, there are certain words I love too much, and said words get excised frequently. But they aren't words like this one. They're just ordinary words. Death-damp, now that's a word.

I confess, I love words like this. Creepy, odd, weird words. That mean creepy, odd, weird things. All alone, they conjure up ideas and images that make me want to race to the computer or grab paper and pen in order to feverishly write them down.

I want to work death-damp into everything now. Of course, I write contemporary horror and dark urban fantasy. And death-damp is circa 1895. So it doesn't really fit with my m├ętier. (Please take a moment to appreciate the accent over the 'e'. That took me a while to get in here and my spouse seems underwhelmed by the result. Or perhaps by the effort it took. Sorry, continue.) But still, it's an amazing word, and surely worth the time it'll take to figure out how to work it in to a contemporary novel.

Then again, vampires and other undeads live a long time. I'll just have one of them use it. Over and over and over again. Problem solved.

Back to tumbling "death-damp" over and over in my mind. I love that word!

J.G. Chase

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Monday, February 9, 2009

The Real Gothic Horror

I hate Valentine's Day.

Well, hate might be too strong a word. I just find it overwhelmingly pointless and more than a little annoying. And not just because I've been married for a good number of years. But because, in so many ways, it seems fruitless and completely made up to sell red hearts and white teddy bears, along with a plethora of greeting cards.

Really, the Hallmark people have decreed that this one day out of the entire year is the day to declare your love for your significant other. One day. Seems like you're getting off easy, doesn't it?

Oh, but if you do it wrong on this one day, you can pay for it for the next 364. And that's what truly turns this 'holiday' into a 'horror-day'.

And why? Because you bought flowers instead of chocolates? Proffered candies instead of posies? Bought both and were accused of just going the easy route? Bought nothing and were accused of forgetfulness and heartlessness both? Bought a flowery card and were told it 'wasn't you'? Bought a funny card and were told that it's not a day for humor? Made the wrong dinner or the wrong dinner reservations? Made the right reservations but had to wait which somehow becomes your fault? The list goes on and on.

Of course, the downside is that even if you do everything right for Valentine's's just one day. Out of an entire year. Meaning that the glow of success isn't going to last nearly as long as the bills accrued in creating that success.

Me, I've given up and declared it just another day. Thankfully, my spouse agrees. But, we are going out.

We're going to a hockey game, where we'll both drink beer and scream "Fight! Fight!" at any given opportunity. I truly married well. (And I really hope my spouse reads this, too. Because, dear? We're sticking with the plan, so don't expect breakfast in bed unless the cat brings it to us.)

J.G. Chase

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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Babysitting the Hellhound

I'm not getting a lot of writing done right now.

Not because I don't have plenty of ideas or a book I'm in the middle of or anything like that.

No, I'm not getting a lot of writing done because I'm not getting a lot of sleep. Because we're babysitting a Hellhound...perhaps the Hellhound.

My inlaws needed to drop Hellie off. No problem. But they spent the night and, since they're older and unfamiliar with our house, we kept Hellie in the room with us so neither one of them would trip over him in the night.

This distressed Hellie. He spent all of that night whining because he couldn't be with them. I spent all night quietly telling him to shup up, to come back by the bed, to lie down, and to die. He did none of them. I got no sleep and my brain refused to function the next day.

Fine. One night, right? Hellie would be normal once the inlaws were off and away. I'd take a nap somewhere and all would be well.


Hellie's into pining, apparently. In between picking on our dogs and terrorizing our cats, he wanders the house -- whining. Napping is out. Phone calls are out. Teeth grinding is in. Dog walks are very in -- Hellie likes to take a walk as often as possible. It's the only time he's not whining. So I'm taking him every hour, because that's about the point where I hit the whining limit and I'm ready to kill him and every other living thing in the house.

However, I'm not advanced enough to be able to write when I have nothing but fuzz in my brain. Nor when my eyes can rarely and barely open and, when they do, all is fuzzy. Neither when I'm walking a pack of dogs. I guess I'm just not that good.

I'll be in shape, of course, so there's a positive. Although, I'm not writing a fitness book, so it's no help there. But I've heard that being fit helps an author write a better book.

If this is the key, my next one's going to be stellar -- it's going to be about how a man is driven slowly insane by a hound from Hell. I'm sure it'll be a huge success.

J.G. Chase

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Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Consider the Blog...

What is a blog? A way to waste time in idle chat? An obligation and necessity? Or is it an opportunity to share what you love with like-minded individuals?

I'm trying to avoid the first option, feeling the pressure of the second, but am hoping for the third.

I'm an author of urban fantasy and other aspects of the fantastic. Mostly dark. So far, only dark, but with glimmers of light. As such, I live in my own mind and my own worlds quite a lot of the time. But those worlds are being created for others to visit and, perhaps, live in as well. After all, I have imagination to spare -- why not share it with others?

Why start this blog on a holiday week? Why not? Imagination and inspiration wait for no man, and choose when, where and who they strike. My hope is that they continue to hit me wherever and whenever they want.

So, happy holidays, enjoy the latter part of Hanukkah, Merry Christmas, Happy New Year. And here's to those of us who will both enjoy the festivities and see a creature of darkness lurking under the tree or hiding behind the menorah. And to those who know their delivery man is truly a moonlighting werewolf, and that the woman who works the late shift at the fast food restaurant is really a vampire down on her luck. It is for all of you that I we know we're not alone.


J.G. Chase

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