Shinobi News: June 8, 2013

The most recent issue of RT Book Reviews Magazine gave Claws of the Cat 4 stars (out of a possible 4.5) and called it “fun, historically entertaining and a very good book.” I’m thrilled! In equally good news, Goodreads has a second Claws of the Cat giveaway in progress – click here for a chance to win one of 20 ARCs of the novel – you could get it before release! I’m also running a Comment contest through the month of June – leave a comment on any of my posts tagged #Publishing Law for a chance to win an

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News! January 19, 2013

This week in Spann of Time news: Shinobi news! The new author website is almost ready to launch, and I can’t wait to share it with the world. Also, I’m looking forward to seeing galleys of Claws of the Cat, which should be finished some time in February. I’ve finished polish edits on Book 2 of the Shinobi Mystery series, tentatively titled Blade of the Samurai, and I’ll be sending it to the publisher very soon. Upcoming Appearances 1. On January 24 I’m blogging at Chiseled in Rock. This week, we’re looking at grants of rights in publishing contracts. 2.

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What’s a ‘Shinobi’ Anyway?

Ninja fans will already know the answer to this one, but for those not already in the know: The word “ninja” comes from a Japanese word which is written using Kanji, or characters, borrowed from the Chinese. The Chinese pronunciation of the characters is “nin sha”  – or “ninja” in the Western derivation. The Chinese pronunciation is sometimes also used in Japan, but the native Japanese pronunciation of the characters is “shinobi.” TL;DR: A Shinobi is a Ninja. The different pronunciations enable me to offer the entertaining explanation that shinobi is “the Japanese word for ninja.” (Think about it for a

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Kyoto’s Bloody Ceilings

In 1600, rebel samurai attacked Fushimi Castle, south of Kyoto, in an attempt to kill five year-old Toyotomi Hideyori, the son and heir of the general who had recently united Japan. After a two-week siege, the rebels breached the walls, set fire to the castle and killed the garrison commander. With their leader dead, the remaining samurai defenders (approximately 400 men) committed seppuku (ritual suicide) inside the keep. The mass suicide flooded the wooden floor with blood, staining the timbers permanently. That portion of the keep survived the fire, although the structure was subsequently dismantled by the new Shogun, Tokugawa

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I miss my anxiety … but lately, my aim is improving.

For the most part, authors are wriggling balls of anxieties held together by dreams and duct tape. We like to pretend we’re not, but if you catch a writer in an honest moment, (s)he’ll admit it’s true. Before I had an agent, I thought my anxiety would disappear when I found one. Before I had a publishing deal, I thought a contract would cure my nervous woes. I believed a multiple-book deal would leave me smiling forever. I should have asked for a unicorn too – because clearly, I was dreaming. The question for authors – and, truly, for every

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