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


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

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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


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.

Evening walk

This evening we hiked up our hill in a direction we’d never been before to investigate a large and suspiciously square clearing that Orion found on Google Earth (we’ve lived here 11 years and we’re still finding new things!). We did eventually find it, though it’s so overgrown that it was very difficult to determine its age or, most of all, WHY someone cleared a bunch of trees in a large square block in the middle of nowhere, with no apparent roads going to it. Thwarted homesteader perhaps? Lost pioneers? We found some stumps that we were pretty sure were cut with an axe; if so, this area was cleared a century ago! Fairbanks’s dry climate and slow-growing trees are excellent at preserving old wood. There is, however, no sign of occupation: collapsing cabins, old vehicles, etc.

We decided, eventually, that this was probably a woodcutting area for the early-1900s gold-mining operation in the valley. In an area that’s mostly scraggly swamp spruce, this particular small ridge seems to support large birch trees, many of which are now growing in clusters as if growing up from old birch stumps. Our theory is that the turn-of-the-century miners would climb the hill to cut wood (with hand tools!) and then skid the logs down the hill to the valley where they used them for firewood or construction.


Most of the walk up to the clearing is through black spruce forest with a dense carpet of moss underneath. We came upon this fungus-encrusted fallen spruce log and I thought it was neat enough to take a picture of it.


As we wandered around the clearing, we found ourselves conducting tree-stump CSI. This looks like old axe marks to us.

More photos under the cut.

Read the rest of this entryCollapse )

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Conventions and shows in 2015

I’m actually attending enough shows this year that it’s worth making a post about! Here’s where I will be in 2015:

Sept. 26 & 27, 11am-8pm
Egan Convention Center, Anchorage, AK

UWA Women’s Bazaar
Nov. 7 & 8, 10am-4pm
Pioneer Park Centennial Center for the Arts, Fairbanks, AK

Pop Con
Nov. 6, 3-10pm & Nov. 7, 2-9pm
UAF Wood Center, Fairbanks, AK

At the UWA show and Pop Con I will be sharing a table with Ellen Million of Ellen Million Graphics.

Nothing is scheduled yet in 2016. Now that Kismet is updating regularly again, I’d like to start doing a show or two a year outside Alaska, but that’s obviously contingent upon being able to make travel plans.

Crossposted from Wordpress.   This entry is also posted at http://layla.dreamwidth.org/244428.html with comment count unavailable comments.

New site for Kismet updates

Kismet has a new home for updates:


The old site will remain up, but the comic will no longer update weekly there. (Though I'll still be updating it as a perma-archive in batches of pages every few months.)

The reason for the move is because I needed somewhere I could schedule automated updates rather than having to update the comic manually each week. This means fewer missed updates for you, and easier updating for me!

The new site uses Disqus comments, like the old one, and the overall look is similar. You shouldn't notice too many differences. The only major difference is that I'm now including text transcripts below each comic, for anyone who has trouble reading the words on the image.

And this week's page IS up, fyi!

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May. 6th, 2015

Status of the Kismet Page-a-Thon:


5 pages of 12.


5 pages of 12.

Scanned/Cleaned up/Lettered:

0 pages of 12.


0 pages of 12.

I still know there's no way I'm going to actually manage this many pages in one week. Plus, I jumped ahead and did an easy scene first, so it'll slow down as I get back into the Galleria stuff. But I'm making good progress so far!

I also posted some Kismet things on Tumblr:
Some thoughts on Linton's sense of identity
A short Sagan fiction snippet
A brief fic with Stella & Morphine

(The latter two are part of a new project I'm trying for awhile, writing little text snippets featuring randomly generated characters. I'll do a proper roundup post eventually.)

This entry is also posted at http://layla.dreamwidth.org/243740.html with comment count unavailable comments.

May. 4th, 2015

I'm slipping farther and farther behind on my Kismet page buffer, so this week is gonna be a Kismet Page-A-Thon. One of my goals for May is to get pages done through the end of summer (since June and July, at the very least, are usually too busy to get anything done Kismet-wise), so I'm gonna put that up as my week's goal and see how much of it I can get done. I know I won't manage it all - I'll be over the moon if I can just get the penciling/inking part done - but let's see how it goes, shall we? I got two pages penciled and inked today, so that's excellent progess!


2 pages of 12.


2 pages of 12.

Scanned/Cleaned up/Lettered:

0 pages of 12.


0 pages of 12.

I also posted an old Telulah Hawkins text snippet on Tumblr (something I came across while going through old AppleWorks files). I'm going to be putting more Kismet stuff up on the Tumblr this month, but I'll always link from here (possibly in batches, if I end up posting a LOT).

This entry is also posted at http://layla.dreamwidth.org/243555.html with comment count unavailable comments.

Today's page is up


If the split-screen page effect is weird and hard to follow, let me know! I thought about doing the two scenes separately, but then decided to run them side by side. (A layout decision which probably made more sense when I originally drew these pages, at which point the narration went straight from the split-screen introductory shot of Linton and Signy to this page. The dream sequence was added a bit later.)

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