October 2009


Ok, so you’ll all get a review of the awesomeness of the awesome Ben Vereen concert later, but in the meantime, I have devised a contest to keep you occupied:

These days, the Drollerie Press forums practically echo with emptiness.  The only people who wander through are two DP authors, and we really only haunt one thread (Word Associations).  This is very sad, because the forums have enormous potential for community fun!  Thus, I have hatched a devious plan to kick-start new forum activity, and it involves (GASP~!) a free book.  So, here’s the contest scoop, and hopefully both the contest and the prize will be fun for all:

Anyone who, between now and November 30, A) Posts in the DP forum (you may need to register to do so, if you are not already a member.  When you register, please also send an e-mail to drollerie_interact@yahoo.com with the words “forum name” in the header and the name you registered in the body of the text) and B) Guesses one of my top two favorite forum posts as DokodemoElisa will be entered in a drawing to win one of two copies of Kinlea Keeper OR (if you can’t wait until the end of November to read Kinlea Keeper) a copy of the Curse, the second book in the series, which will be coming out by February.

HINT: NEITHER of my favorite posts are posted in the Word Association thread.

You can post your guesses along with your forum name as a reply to this post or e-mail it to me at dokodemoelisa@yahoo.com.  Happy forum-going!  -E.G.D.

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Ok, so I’m barely coherent at the moment, but get this: we got out of Jingju class early today so we could go see Ben Vereen talk in the temporary dance building on the other side of campus.  A) As we all know, the man is one of the greatest greats Broadway ever saw (have I mentioned I have a BA in musical theatre?), B) MAN OH MAN can the man tell a story, C) I got a free ticket to his show this Saturday, D) HE SIGNED IT!!!!  E) He said I have beautiful eyes (SQUEEE!).  I also got a picture with him and a few of my friends from the theatre department.  I may post that later when I have my camera cable and stuff handy.  I’m totally going to frame this ticket with that picture if it turned out at all well.   Yeah, I’m really hyper-high at the moment, and now I need to go play an elegant female Jingju part in rehearsal in something like ten minutes.  We’ll see how that goes.  In the meantime, OMG BEN VEREEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Dang.  Wow.  -EGD

Ok, so it isn’t just jingju.  The vog, an evil, evil volcanic pollution-fog that comes here to Honolulu all the way from Kona, has been making it extremely difficult for me to focus.  My eyes are streaming, my sinuses are full of burning goo, my ears are all plugged up, I’ve been pushing migraine in the headache department for days, and on top of all that I’m in an insanely intense training program that requires me to memorize large swaths of a script in extremely stylized Chinese, which is NOT one of the three languages I speak and understand.  It’s like memorizing very specific and important (not to mention long) monologues in gibberish… with tones.  Also, the movement style is so counter-intuitive for one of my roles that it’s painful and mind-bending.  I don’t think I’ve ever felt more completely out of my depth and incompetent in my life.  And one of my long-suffering professional actor teachers from China appears to be growing disappointed in me, which makes it all worse.  Blargh.  The vog and the jingju, they are eating my brains slowly (and apparently with a dull plastic spork), and if nothing more important, my ego may not survive the ordeal.

In my defense, the play isn’t until February, and if I have even an eighth of my brain left by then, I WILL KNOCK EVERYONE’S SOCKS OFF SO HELP ME THE GOD OF LONG LOST BUT FONDLY REMEMBERED FREE TIME SO HA!

If anybody needs me, I’ll be hiding in the closet rocking back and forth and reexamining my outwitted zombie plan.  -EGD

This may seem a bit odd, but reading Angela Korra’ti’s Faerie Blood sharply reminded me that I have been remiss in my campaign to review all the Drollerie Press books I like, though I’ve been pretty successful in not-reviewing the ones I didn’t, which is probably to my credit.  Anyhow, the book-I-liked that I skipped was David Sklar’s Shadow of the Antlered Bird, and I bring it up now in part because I liked it for many of the same reasons I liked Faerie Blood.  Both FB and SAB (Yes, I shortened the titles for convenience’s sake) were utterly charming, and both dealt with Faerie in a way of which I strongly approve.  They also both displayed a refreshing and blended balance between the ancient magical beings and magical world and the modern environment with which they surely must come to cope.

Back to FB, though, I saw a lot of myself and the way I see the world in its pages.  It plays to my age-group and my social tastes as a twenty-something gamer geek and musician with a penchant for Faerie-lore, and I found myself relating to the characters as though they were fiction-world proxies for my buddies from college.

Also, I found the romantic element of the story delightful and heart-warningly innocent (another thing, incidentally, FB shares with SAB), and I found myself impressed by the intimacy Korra’ti achieves with her story’s sense of time and location.  It’s a very well crafted piece, and it made for a very fun afternoon in a beanbag chair with a cup of tea, which I needed to distract me for a bit from midterms and intensive Jingju (Beijing Opera) training, if only for a short while.  If you get a chance (and now would be a good time, because Drollerie’s running one heck of a sale in their bookshop), and if you like Faerie stories, by all means, get your hands on a copy of this book.  And yyyyyeah… when you’re finished with Faerie Blood, try Shadow of the Antlered Bird.  It’s shorter, but goes just as well with a cup of tea and a beanbag chair ^_^.  -EGD