Monthly Archives: October 2006

Zumayans’ Workspaces No. 6

Here’s Joan Upton Hall’s workspace:

Joan HallJoan Upton Hall retreats to her home outside of Austin, Texas, to write. It helps her get into the mood if she surrounds herself with books and and just the right music to fit the current scene she’s writing. The picture on her teeshirt is her Zumaya urban fantasy, Arturo el Rey, Book 1 of the Excalibur Regained series.

She welcomes contributions on her favorite subjects at the Writers’ Bulletin Board of her website, Your article will appear with your name and and whatever link you send.

Joan is also a columnist, and her column, Demystifying Writers’ Demons, appears in several newsletters for writers. She has several short stories published, as well as books on writing. Visit her website for more information on Joan, her interests, and her published work.

Did you like this? Share it:

Zumayans’ Workspaces No. 5

This is Gloria Oliver’s workspace. I’ll let her speak for herself:

Gloria OliverWell, MD Benoit brought up this interesting proposition about Zumaya Authors sharing our workspaces with the world so they could see where our ideas bore fruit. I thought “Hey, that would be like way cool!” but first I would need to CLEAN my work space! As a couple of weeks went by and the cleaning of the area didn’t seem to be happening, I figured I needed to take steps. So in a moment of utter brilliance I thought “You know, if I cleaned my work space for the photo, then it truly wouldn’t BE my work space then would it? So why not actually take a pic of the disaster area I work in as it stands?” So here you are. My work space in all its cluttered glory. And it changes too! A bit here and there migrates, disappears, or gets added to almost every week. 😛 (Current clutter includes – CDs for promo disks, To Do list, charging e-book machine, Japanese translated manga, bottle of water, notebooks, and who knows what else!)

Honestly though, this isn’t my only work place. Writing happens in several locations for me. I have a couch where I sometimes do editing work on the laptop. My desk at work where I write before the day starts. Even the small break room at the office where I type away on the laptop at lunch. Even my car, where a small notebook will drink down my fervent thoughts at a stop light for later perusal. 😛 I am all over the place. lol.

Now for some obligatory info! I’ve been with Zumaya since about 2001, my first book In the Service of Samurai (YA Japanese Fantasy) was published in 2002. Vassal of El was published in 2004, and Willing Sacrifice should be released in 2007. I am a Spec Fic writer, but all my novels so far have been in the Fantasy genre. I have several short stories in varied anthologies as well. If you want any more info on me and/or my works, drop on by See you there!

Did you like this? Share it:

A musical discovery

Kevin RamessarLast week I went to the National Arts Center to listen to my favorite jazz artist, Kellylee Evans. Kevin Ramessar was opening for her.

One word.


In keeping with Kellylee’s style of music, Kevin, surrounded by sax, base, and drums, played his own compositions as well as those of great guitar players such as Don Ross. His piece, Kairos, particularly affected me. His own composition, it demonstrates through music the inequal passage of time and our perception of it.

Of course I promptly bought his latest CD, Sojourn. I’ve been playing it often. Sojourn is a mix of classical pieces and more modern ones, but they all have something in common: they take us through a musical journey full of wonders. His interpretation of one of Bach’s Chaconne is truly beautiful. Here’s what the blurb at CD Baby includes:

“Combining Latin American rhythms, Classical subtleties, crossover styles, and improv, Ramessar presents a rich tapestry of music for the classical & steel-string guitar from several countries (Brazil, Paraguay, Turkey, Germany, Canada, USA) in virtuoso fashion, as he tells his story. […]

Equally at home playing an intricate solo fugue by Bach, creating stirring world beats and sitar-like melodies, singing an intimate ballad or wailing on a powerful original rock anthem, Kevin has a history of moving audiences.”

Kevin is classically trained on the guitar, and he brings that training into all of his music and then transcends it by adding his own passion and obvious love of his instrument and of music. Whether live or on CD, Kevin Ramessar is truly a remarkable experience.

Did you like this? Share it:

Zumayans’ Workspaces No. 4

Here are Cheryl Swanson’s jungle digs in Kauai.

Cheryl Swanson In her office she’s got all the necessities: her surfboard, a motorized desk that rises at the push of a button so she can write standing up , even an ocean view.

Is she grateful she’s living in paradise?


Kauai is a cultural exile, Swanson whines, after ten years of living in San Francisco. According to her, not only is her neighborhood anything but cosmopolitan, politically engaged or culturally sophisticated, but the neighbor is wont to shoot your dog if he lifts his leg (the dog, not the neighbor) on his (the neighbor’s, not the dog’s) banana trees.

Check out this pathetically unappreciative author at Her debut thriller with Zumaya, Death Game, has just launched.

Death Game is hard to put down, Swanson says. Let’s hope she shows up in her office long enough to notice she’s getting a few readers…

If you’re still not convinced Cheryl has a hard time writing in paradise, here’s what a part of Kauai looks like:


Mountains, surf, and sand. Yeah, Cheryl, we feel real sorry for you.

Did you like this? Share it: