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Welcome to Layla's slice of Internet space

This is the blog of Alaskan writer/artist Layla Lawlor. Friend/defriend/follow at will.

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Active projects:


All entries to this blog are mirrored at both laylalawlor on Livejournal.com and [personal profile] layla on Dreamwidth.org.

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Spampocalypse

Just a quick note - I don't use this journal much anymore, but due to a recent spamalanche, I've changed comment settings to friends only. If you can't comment and you want to contact me via this journal, you can go over to the DW side, which is not similarly restricted.
I started doing these in 2006, and I think this is going to be my last one … at least the last one I do here, in the format I've used for a decade. I started doing these for writing accountability, but my needs have changed. It's really the best of all possible reasons: I don't need to do these anymore because I succeeded. I'm writing for a living now (mainly paranormal romance, as Lauren Esker); there's also a top-secret pen name for even more commercial stuff - send me a PM if you want to know what it is). The kinds of goals I used to set for myself, things like "finish a novel" or "establish a regular writing schedule" don't really apply anymore, because this is my day job now, so for a certain number of hours per day, I apply butt to chair and write. My goals are now more like "write X and Y novel and Z short story in $ESTABLISHED_SERIES", which are excellent goals to have, but they aren't the kind of goals that translate well to public accountability posts.

So basically, my year-end roundup and accountability posts worked! They worked so well I don't have to do them anymore! I am now moving on to a new way of doing my upcoming years' goals that suits my needs better.

To my vast and everlasting relief, however, for my final "how I did in the previous year" post, I can say that I managed to move the Hunter's Moon graphic novel from the "to do" to the "done" list. It has appeared on every year-end to-do list since the very first one, and this summer I did a Kickstarter and I slammed that sucker out.

So I'm ending on a high note.

I don't plan to delete this journal, and I'll still post here occasionally (at least as long as I can remember my passwords and the site remains up). I still check the notification email, so you can still contact me here. Right now, I don't have a blog to replace it; I never have managed to get a regular Wordpress blog up and running. I do have a pseudonymous fandom journal on LJ/DW that's still active (most of you know it; send me a PM if you don't and you are interested). I'm also on most of the Usual Places such as Twitter and Facebook, at least a little bit. If I manage to start journaling regularly again - and I do intend to! - I'll link to the new place here. But other than that, I probably won't post here much anymore. Maybe once or twice a year, much as I've been doing.

A happy, safe, and successful 2017 to all of you!

This entry is also posted at http://layla.dreamwidth.org/246655.html with comment count unavailable comments.

Kickstarter!

Well, hello there, rarely updated DW/LJ!

I am stopping by to announce, for any of you who don't already follow me on Facebook, Twitter, etc, that I am running a Kismet: Hunter's Moon kickstarter!



You can get the book for as little as $5 (digital) or get the print copy for $25 (b&w) or $45 (color), plus additional books and art at higher levels. Visit the link to see all the options! We are past the 2/3 mark, with 9 days to go!

If we make it to the stretch goals, there will be a print book of the Kismet side comics, additional backup stories, and other goodies.

We can do it! \o/

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Cartoon North II

I’ll be at Pioneer Park in the Bear Gallery (3rd floor, Alaska Centennial Center for the Arts) from noon-8 today for the First Friday opening of Cartoon North II. There’s sequential art on the walls from dozens of artists, some of whom will also have tables at the opening selling books, prints, cards, and so forth. I’ll be there with Freebird and Kismet!


Crossposted from Wordpress.   This entry is also posted at http://layla.dreamwidth.org/246094.html with comment count unavailable comments.

2016 goals

Keepin' it simple. My goals for 2016:

- Do a Kickstarter for the Hunter's Moon book (THIS WILL BE THE YEAR!)
- Update Kismet every week and finish the year with a page buffer
- Keep up a regular writing schedule (ideally 10K/week)
- Write at least 4 novels, one of which should not be paranormal romance
- Improve my marketing/social media efforts (e.g. update my blog more, do more Kismet promo, etc)
- Edit and self-publish Gatekeeper
- Edit and submit the steampunk novel to Dreamspinner

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2015 in review

I did the first of these year-end roundups in 2006, so this is the 10th year I've done it and probably the strangest one I've written so far.

The thing is, I hardly did anything at all on my 2015 list! So technically this year should be a dismal failure ... except this year was actually amazing because (thanks to a friend) I discovered a new "door" into writing and self-publishing, and I basically took off like a rocket. I wrote 456,000 words this year (by comparison, my previous best year was 2013, when I wrote 270,900 words. And this year's words were almost entirely useful words, as opposed to most years, when my technical annual word count doesn't take into account all of the aborted projects and false starts. This year, nearly everything I wrote through the whole year was either a completed project I self-published on Amazon, or something I submitted somewhere. And I made decent money off my writing for the first time ever.

But the awkward thing is, I can't talk about a lot of it, because a lot of what I'm writing is paranormal erom (erotic romance) under pseudonyms and I'm not ready to disclose them publicly yet. I did launch the Lauren Esker pen name for slightly plottier paranormal/shifter romance, and Lauren now has a website and a mailing list and is generally doing pretty well.

Looking back at last New Year's goals:

- I DID NOT: edit any damn thing, publish the Hunter's Moon book (which has been on every single one of the last 10 years' lists; it's the world's most amazing procrastination success story), or finish the year with a decent page buffer for Kismet (though I do have next week's page done!)
- I DID: write two novels (actually considerably more than two), keep up with Kismet updates (with one or two skip weeks, but mostly I did pretty well), and I have done amazing at keeping up with a writing schedule and marketing (of my erom/paranormal romance) this year if I do say so myself, though I really need to do better on marketing Kismet and maintaining my blog. I also attended an anime convention and two local shows, got a print version of the first Sun-Cutter chapter together, and started selling more craft/art stuff.

Back shortly with 2016 goals!

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Dragon space librarian

This is for Chuck Wendig’s character creation flashfic challenge. Anyone can participate — rules are at the link. Post your description of a character, link to it at Chuck’s blog, and next week people will pick from the communal character pool and play with them!

Key: the dragon space librarian

Key is a dragon who hoards knowledge. She [or perhaps he, or it, or they] dwells in a hollowed-out asteroid, networked with tunnels — spacious, well-lit, and warm, with lamplit reading nooks every so often — that are filled with books. Key has a copy of every physical book, from Earth and a thousand other worlds, that she can get her claws on. But there is more than that: the station houses a computer at its heart that has what Key claims is a repository of all knowledge from the entire span of recorded history.

This is clearly an exaggeration.

Still, if you are looking for a piece of information that can be found nowhere else in the galaxy, Key’s Library is the best place to go — making it a mecca for the desperate, the lost, the seekers of knowledge … and of course a certain number of bounty hunters and their ilk. You will be welcomed, and fed, and given access to the library for as long as you like.

Key loves talking to visitors.

But in order to leave, you must give her a book she doesn’t already have, or a piece of information that is not in the computer. If not, well …

(Whether the outcome of not being able to do this is “… and then she eats them” or “… and then they stay as part of her staff of space librarians and help a space dragon curate an asteroid full of books” is left up to the individual writer.)


Crossposted from Wordpress.   This entry is also posted at http://layla.dreamwidth.org/245288.html with comment count unavailable comments.

This week’s creative updates

I have a new book out as Lauren Esker, Handcuffed to the Bear. It’s been added to my books page. (Hopefully Amazon will have the “Look Inside!” working soon. At least it’s not just me; it looks like things are laggier than usual right now.) It’s tropey F/M romance, this time on the general theme of “handcuffed together and hunted in the wilderness”. With extra bonus ensemble action.

I’m planning to put together a print version of the first 68 pages of Sun-Cutter for Senshi-Con in September. I worked on the cover today – process photos are posted at the Kismetcity tumblr and also on my Patreon.

SOMEONE WHO SHALL REMAIN NAMELESS challenged me to write a submission for this anthology (the werefolk one, not the alien artifacts one, though both sound fascinating). SOMEONE ELSE WHO SHALL ALSO REMAIN NAMELESS pointed me toward this one.  (I have the worst friends. And by worst I mean best.) I’m somewhat snowed under, but hoping to manage a submission to at least one of these!

And speaking of things I don’t have time to write, I think this week’s flashfic challenge at Chuck Wendig’s blog sounds marvelous — this week, create a character and sketch them out in 250 words or less. Next week, all these characters will be up for grabs for people to write about. This kind of collaborative fiction-writing totally sounds like my jam. In fact, I might work on something for that tonight …


Crossposted from Wordpress.   This entry is also posted at http://layla.dreamwidth.org/245164.html with comment count unavailable comments.

Introducing Lauren Esker

Wolf-in-Sheep's-Clothing-400px

I have a new alias! I will be writing het (F/M) romance as Lauren Esker.

(Some of you who follow me here have heard me talk about this elsewhere, so this won't be news to you.)

Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing – Can the big bad wolf and a sheep shifter have a happy ending? Curvy farm girl Julie Capshaw was always warned away from the wolf shifters next door, but Damon Wolfe is the motorcycle-riding, smoking hot alpha wolf of her dreams.

Lauren’s books will be mostly paranormal romance and romantic suspense. Feel free to like and follow "her" (me) on Facebook; I'll have snippets of upcoming novels, photos reference for the books, and stuff like that. There shouldn't be anything non-worksafe, although the books do contain sex scenes.


Crossposted from Wordpress.   This entry is also posted at http://layla.dreamwidth.org/244795.html with comment count unavailable comments.

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