Tagged 20 Minute Delay Podcast

Gail Steampunking Around Anchorage

Posted by Gail Carriger


There were some fun moments of steampunk and general Gail appeal around the town of Anchorage. I thought I’d share a few with you, Gentle Reader.

I found myself at the Red Chair Cafe, for example…

And I also tracked down the local tea house…

Yes, I did contemplate just staying in that tea house forever.

{Gail’s monthly read along for April 2017 is Brother’s Ruin by Emma Newman.}


Romancing the Inventor in Audiobook. A maid bent on seducing a brilliant cross-dressing scientist who’s too brokenhearted to notice. Or is she?


Your Moment of Parasol . . .

1900 fuckyeahmodernflapper- Walking dress (Les Modes, french magazine, 1900s)

Your Infusion of Cute . . .

Your Tisane of Smart . . .

A Passion for Passionfruit

Your Writerly Tinctures . . .  

3 Amazon Reader Review Myths

Book News:

The French blog Mes Nouvelles Lectures says of Etiquette & Espionage:

“J’ai vraiment apprécié cet univers steampunk, je le trouve assez complet et je dois dire que je suis contente de retrouver l’ambiance et l’univers du protectorat de l’ombrelle, j’avais vraiment aimé le premier tome que j’avais lu : Sans âme.”

While J.L. Gribble says:

“Gail Carriger’s foray into young adult fiction is set in the familiar world of her Parasol Protectorate series, but with a bit more…everything. Which is funny, because her adult series is pretty awesomely extreme all on its own. This novel drew much more from the steampunk genre than on the supernatural in regards to plot, with more focus on fantastical mechanical creations and devices and less on the political relationships between the worlds of humans, vampires, and werewolves.”

Quote of the Day:

“The English are denonominated by the Chinese (âng-mô, red-haired people); they also dwell in the north-west corner of the ocean, very near the Dutch, whom they very much resemble in person and dress but their language and writing re different. English manufactures are very superior, while their swords and guns, and other implements, are the best in all countries to the north-west.”

~ Ong Tae Hae, A Chinaman Abroad, 1849

Questions about Gail’s steampunk world? There’s a wiki for that!
Share & Enjoy!

Alaska for Gail is All About Glaciers

Posted by Gail Carriger

OK, so I love glaciers. I had to study glaciology for one of my minors as an archaeology undergraduate (glacial till and valley formation are key to both clay deposits – ceramics was my specialty – and site formation.) I love a good U-shaped valley.

Massive Glacier

Since I figured Alaska might be my only chance (we tried to get on a glacier when in New Zealand and failed) we flew to see glaciers and also walked on one. Hooray!

Glacier Terminus

So here is a bit of icy goodness, I promise I will return you to your regular steampunk tea octopus and fashion obsessive musings in the next blog post.

Glacier Terminus Up Close

It’s hard to get across the different sounds the ice makes as you walk on it, crunches and melodic tinkling. And so manny different ice types.

Glacier Tunnel

And this was my favorite formation:

{Gail’s monthly read along for April is Brother’s Ruin by Emma Newman.}


Romancing the Inventor in Audiobook. A maid bent on seducing a brilliant cross-dressing scientist who’s too brokenhearted to notice. Or is she?


Your Moment of Parasol . . .

1900 via fawnvelveteen tumblr fleurdulys- Umbrellas – Louis Icart 20th century

Your Infusion of Cute . . .

This is a house, in Alaska, in the middle of nowhere. Because.

Your Tisane of Smart . . .

Victorian Medical Advice on Treating Depression

Your Writerly Tinctures . . .  

“Writing a novel is a terrible experience, during which the hair often falls out and the teeth decay.”

~ Flannery O’Connor

Book News:

Quote of the Day:

Questions about Gail’s steampunk world? There’s a wiki for that!
Share & Enjoy!

Alaska Steamposium Report ~ Steampunk Outfits & More

Posted by Gail Carriger

So the Alaska Steamposium in Anchorage was a tiny but enthusiastic little con, well worth a visit if you are in the area. They treated me like royalty and I had a lovely time.

One of the things that they did was challenge the con com to dress as a Gail Carriger cover. Beatrix took this literally…

Beatrix & Gail

If you want to see more of her costume I’ll be posting a bunch of details to Retro Rack and more pictures will soon appear in the cosplay gallery on the wikia and my cosplay pinterest board.

Yes that is real dandelion fluff on a spoon. The hat was full of little inside jokes like that.

I wore my black simple outfit with the circus corset.

As you might imagine it was cold so I have undershirt and sweater on. Smaller hat (easier to pack) and so forth for a generally rather simple look. Just wait until you see what I wear to World’s Fair next month. Last time I was there it was SO HOT, that this time I am packing super light. You’ll see me in some steampunk outfits that have never debuted before.

This isn’t one of them…

{Gail’s monthly read along for April 2017 is Brother’s Ruin by Emma Newman.}


Romancing the Inventor in Audiobook. A maid bent on seducing a brilliant cross-dressing scientist who’s too brokenhearted to notice. Or is she?


Your Moment of Parasol . . .

1900 Full mourning dress for the elderly

Your Infusion of Cute . . .

Your Tisane of Smart . . .

Five Ways Reading Fiction Makes You Better at Your Job

Your Writerly Tinctures . . .  

A Writing Group that Works

Book News:

Barnes & Noble bringing all the books to the con.

Quote of the Day:

Questions about Gail’s steampunk world? There’s a wiki for that!
Share & Enjoy!

Singapore 2016: The City & The Light

Posted by Gail Carriger

So after the Singapore Writers Festival, the AB and I spent a week puttering about Singapore itself. This is my standard procedure. Whenever I accept an invitation to go abroad (which I usually only do once a year) the AB and I try to piggyback a vacation on it. (AB’s job not-with-standing, which is one of those mysterious techy ones that doesn’t allow much time off.)

Anyway, here, for you amusement, are some highlights!

Infinity & Beyond

So I read about the infinity (vanishing edge) swimming pool on the 51st floor of the Marina Bay Sands Hotel shortly after it was built. And right then and there I put it on my bucket list. To be honest, I partly accepted the invitation to go to Singapore because I wanted to swim in this pool. I know, I know, I’m shallow. (See what I did there?)

Marina Bay Sands Infinity Pool

Look swimming is my THING. I was a lifeguard. When people pick superheroes I really do want to be Aquaman (or rather, Namorita from New Warriors). I also really love heights. Combine the two and I’m there. So the AB and I spent an obscene amount of money for one night so I could swim in that pool. Life goal, and all.

Marina Bay Sands Hotel

This is what the hotel looks like. Isn’t it amazing? Turns out that from below it kinda looks like a dirigible landed on top of a regular building:


Oh and the view from the top is pretty amazing too. Here’s a the sunrise over the straits (because, jet lag sometimes has beautiful consequences).

Marina Bay Sands Sunrise

After that we relocated to the Quincy Hotel which I highly recommend.

Books & Tea

Because it’s the major bookstore in Singapore I visited Kinokuniya. It’s HUGE, almost the size of Powells. There I spotted the manga!

Singapore Soulless Manga

And I also found the Custard Protocol books.

Singapore Custard Protocol Book

I’d already been told by several annoyed peeps at the festival that they didn’t seem to have the Parasol Protectorate in all of Singapore. To which I said, “I’m sorry?” Decidedly odd that I was apparently expected to do something about this.

If only I had the POWER.

The other thing we discovered is that there are used bookstores that kind of pop up in malls. Because everything is a mall in Singapore. Air conditioning is a major art form there. (And let me just say, thank you so much.) You can almost get around the whole city without ever leaving AC.

Used Bookstore Mall SIngapore

The tea in Singapore was wide ranging, wonderful, and varied. I was of course, delighted that there was good black English Breakfast most of time time.


It was mainly Australian brands, which tend to favor Ceylon over Assam as the main leaf for an EB. It’s still malty and to my preference although not as strong.

Singapore Mall tea Shop

I will say, we did not have as much luck with coffee. The AB is as much a coffee snob as I am a tea snob. We heard rumors that there was some good brew there, but never found it. (So far New Zealand holds the crown as the only place we’ve ever visited where the tea and the coffee were all consistently up to the collective standards. Good job, kiwis.) But Singapore sure has tea down pat.


The AB and I did pretty much everything one is supposed to do in Singapore after that: museums, galleries, parks, zoos, gardens, many amazing views.


Of course we went to Arab Street, Little India, and Chinatown and ate ALL THE THINGS. ANd I was happy.


Things I Wish I Knew Before I Visited

  1. Business cards and such will be last name first.
  2. Flying Singapore Air? Keep your boarding card, it’s good for 10% off most park and museum fees.
  3. Singapore is 1° off the equator and the weather is exactly what you’d expect. It rained while we were there but a raincoat was still too warm. An umbrella was all I needed, and I lived in a light skirt and top. No trousers required.
  4. Bring cash for hawker centers and mall food courts, it really is the best way to sample local cuisine and drastically cheaper than all other ways to eat. Whole families eat out of an evening in these venues.
  5. Kettles are in most rooms, I didn’t need my boil coil. Also most rooms had multi use plugs, no need for the 3 adaptors I brought.

{Gail’s monthly read along for November 2016 is Romancing the Inventor by Gail Carriger. Oh don’t look so shocked.}


Romancing the Inventor

Romancing the Inventor: A Supernatural Society Novella

A steampunk lesbian romance featuring a maid bent on seducing a brilliant cross-dressing scientist who’s too brokenhearted to notice. Or is she?


Your Moment of Parasol . . .

1865-1869The FIDM Museum _ OMG that dress!

1865-1869The FIDM Museum _ OMG that dress!

Your Infusion of Cute . . .


Your Tisane of Smart . . .

1893 General Gordans Last Stand Kartoum, occurred just before the events in the Imprudence.

1893 General Gordan’s Last Stand Khartoum, occurred just before the events in the Imprudence.


Your Writerly Tinctures . . .  

17 Questions a Reader Needs to Ask to Become a Better Writer

Book News:

Women and Words Interview

Quote of the Day:

“If you are pointing out one of the things a story is about, then you are very probably right; if you are pointing out the only thing a story is about you are very probably wrong – even if you’re the author.”
~ Neil Gaiman

Questions about Gail’s steampunk world? There’s a wiki for that!

Gail Carriger Talks About The Food In Singapore

Posted by Gail Carriger

Meanwhile – in the USA we just gorged ourselves on turquay, Gentle Reader. So here’s my post all about food in Singapore! Yes yes yes (and one great big NO).

Singapore Food: The Bad

I’m an incredibly experimental eater. You can take a look at some of the wide ranging Things I Have Stuck in My Mouth on my Ate It Weird Pinterest board. If I can, I’ve likely tried it: ostrich, alligator, crocodile, frog, snail (both types), Morton Bay bug, guinea pigs, alpaca, haggis, horse, head cheese, sweetbreads and other offal, homemade chicha beer (yes, THAT), any fruit I can get my hands on (generally I know the Spanish word for it), and so much more.

My general philosophy is I will try anything 3 times (on the theory that the first two times it might have been ill prepared). Until Singapore I had only 2 exceptions to this rule:

  1. Raw sea urchin (or uni) and yes I am willing to try it cooked.
  2. Andouillette sausage, the traditional pig colon kind. Yes it tastes EXACTLY how you would expect.

And now:

3. Durian

Durian Ice Kacang = Disgusting

I am terribly sad to say I have added durian to the list of NEVER AGAIN. Look, yes it tastes a bit like custard apple (cherimoya) meets passion fruit (maracuya) and I LOVE both those fruits, but frankly, mostly, it tastes like baby poop mixed with gasoline. And I can’t imagine any circumstances where that will change.

No, not even Durian Baked Alaska

The worst part?

It repeats on you. Or it did me. It’s been weeks and I am still terrified to burp. A durian burp is like that scene from Thelma & Louise where they explode the gas station. With added vomit.

Singapore Food: The Good

Now that I have totally grossed you out, I’m going to wax poetical about all the actually amazingly yummy  food in Singapore.

First of all, there are fresh fruit juice stands everywhere and I learned real quick not to ever pass one up. Sometimes they frap it with ice, sometimes they whip it so there’s a fruit foam at the top, and sometimes it’s more like a single-fruit smoothie. Not matter what, yum!

Hotdog Juices

Okay, maybe not hotdog juice.

Secondly, lets talk kaya (coconut jam of deliciousness). I liked the green kind with pandan best. Why is this not a thing EVERYWHERE? Why? Watch Gail wail into the deep. I want to buy kaya at my local supermarket. And while we are at it, can we add Apple Banana Butter (as in from the Apple Banana, not a mix of apples and bananas) and Passion Fruit Curd to this list? Look, I’m telling you there is a wide world away from stupid old strawberry out there. (Not that I dislike strawberry jam but COME ON.)

Kaya Pau

Kaya Pau – the steamed sweet bun form of kaya

Finally, can we talk desert?

Oh, were we already? Okay but look, look at all the gelatinous deserts! I love them so.


Singapore Food: The Ugly

I was a wiggly delighted Gail the first morning in Singapore because after breakfast I got to proudly bop along and claim I’d stuck 6 things in my mouth and I’d no idea what they were. Still don’t. Came from an unlabeled pickled-things bar. I adore pickled things.

Anyway, the first place we stayed at offered this amazing breakfast buffet with All The Things.

Around the World Breakfast

Around the World in One Breakfast: Top, L-R: Italian marinated tomatoes, Indian upma, Korean pickled items, Scandinavian smoked salmon on American hash brown patty in the Jewish fashion, Chinese red bean paste pau, French cheese and bread, egg white omelet with Thai spices & chili sauce.

What a food looks like doesn’t bother me much. Unfortunately, I didn’t get the opportunity to try Singapore’s fish head curry. At first I avoided it because it thought it’d be just like a normal Thai red or yellow curry. Turns out it traditionally comes with more tamarind in it than other curries and it has more Indian spices. After learning that, I tried hard to get hold of it, but I’d left it too late. So I have a good reason to return to Singapore.

Singapore Hawker Center Food stand

Singapore Hawker Center Food stand

I also never got to try the chili crab. I tried the local crab at a raw seafood bar, which tasted a bit like a mix of Snow and Dungeness. I’m a crab fan, but the chili crab I found to buy was always too expensive, I suspect I was there off season.

In Singapore Corn & Beans are a desert. So there.

In Singapore Corn & Beans are a desert. So there.

So what was the first hing I ate when I landed to remind me I was home? The first thing I always eat, Pinky, fish tacos nor cal style.

“It is hot — so hot! — but not stifling, and all the rich-flavored, colored fruits of the tropics are here — fruits whose generous juices are drawn from the moist and heated earth, and whose flavors are the imprisoned rays of the fierce sun of the tropics.”

~ The Golden Chersonese and the Way Thither by Isabella Brid, 1883

{Gail’s monthly read along for November is Romancing the Inventor by Gail Carriger. Oh don’t look so shocked.}


Romancing the Inventor

Romancing the Inventor: A Supernatural Society Novella

A steampunk lesbian romance featuring a maid bent on seducing a brilliant cross-dressing scientist who’s too brokenhearted to notice. Or is she?


Your Moment of Parasol . . .

Les Modes Parisiennes Saturday, July 1, 1865 v. 45, plate 5

Les Modes Parisiennes Saturday, July 1, 1865 v. 45, plate 5

Your Infusion of Cute . . .

Ruffles Chicken & Seawed

Your Tisane of Smart . . .

A Fashionable Coiffure: Rolls, Plaits, and Other Popular Hairstyles of 1863

Your Writerly Tinctures . . .  

“I am irritated by my own writing. I am like a violinist whose ear is true, but whose fingers refuse to reproduce precisely the sound he hears within.”
~ Gustave Flaubert

Book News:

The Parasol Protectorate made this list of 16 Complete Urban Fantasy Series to Binge-read all the way through.

Quote of the Day:

“Cheese – milk’s leap toward immortality.”
~ Clifton Fadiman

Questions about Gail’s steampunk world? There’s a wiki for that!

Singapore Writers Festival 2016

Posted by Gail Carriger

If you, Gentle Reader, do not follow my movements with care and precision, then allow me to say that I was at the Singapore Writers Festival a few weekends ago. Here is a little bit about it.

Amazing Lunch

First things first, I was invited to the Tanglin Club for lunch. I thought it would be with one very nice fan, Min, but it turned into a group. Which is cool, I mean, why not? This is the kind of thing that just sorta happens to me. It’ll likely get me killed or whatnot, but what a way to go!

From Lyn Tahir ‏@kentangjambu

From Lyn Tahir ‏@kentangjambu

In this instance it turned out to be one of the highlights of my trip. A delicious lunch, but even better, the most wonderful company. I had so much fun and learned a great deal about Singapore. So off to a good start.

The Singapore Writers Festival

For the Singapore Writers Festival I had a Q&A session, a signing, and a master class (very important sounding) on the Gothic origins of steampunk and everything else. A lot more than that happened: there was insane food (a whole blog post to come), super nice people, character cosplay, ministers of state, and national newspaper articles. And I had no idea of any of it (except maybe the nice people and the food) going in.

Are you intrigued?

Meeting Ministers of State

So the first thing that happened was my handler, Lyra, told me we had to go a little early to my first event, because a minister of state wanted meet me.

So I was all: Qua?!

Yes, she was serious, an honest to goodness minster of state wanted to meet… well, me.

So I was all: Oh dear what did I say on Twitter?

Turns out the lovely Sim Ann is Singapore’s Senior Minister of State at the ministries of Culture, Community and Youth and Trade and Industry and, coincidentally a fan of the Parasol Protectorate series.

Cue Gail quietly going utterly bonkers in her own head.

I mean, for real?


She arrived in the most adorable suit (yes, of course, I noticed) with assistants and a reporter and a camera-man in tow. I signed her books in the greenroom and quietly went mental. And then she stayed for my Q&A.

By SG Yung

I was thrilled to meet her. And she was thrilled to learn that, yes, I believe that she is my very first politician fan.


Then I had a Q&A. Aside from kaffeeklatsches Q&As are my favorite thing to do at any event. Likely because talking about myself is hard to bungle. I can’t make any mistakes, after all it’s a subject I know a great deal about. Still, after what had just happened in the greenroom I was a bit giddy.

By SG Young

How can you tell a giddy Gail from a regular Gail?

Yeah, I don’t know either.

I was interviewed by the lovely and extremely well prepared (not easy with me, since there is so much about me online) Khoo Sim Eng. We had a delightful time. I opened my big mouth far to often, but that’s kinda my thing. In my defense, I was in Singapore, jet lagged, having just met a major local politician.

Turns out my big mouth kept going because I ended up in the Straits Times, Singapore’s main English language newspaper, the next morning.

Because hey, why not?


Make a few jokes about a Merlion…. and there my ridiculous self is, in a major newspaper. Because I have an endless capacity for bizarre comedy and sticking my (admittedly well-heeled) foot in my mouth

I ask you again: HOW IS THIS MY LIFE?

Ah-hem, where was I?

There was a fantastic Alexia and Ivy cosplay.

Gail Ivy Alexia Festival

(Let us be clear in the fact that they are wearing full Victorian dresses in Singapore humidity, 1 degree off the darn equator. Amazing.) I’ll post more pictures of these to the wikia and to my fashion blog. Promise.

Master Class

The next day I taught an hour long class on the Gothic roots of commercial fiction. Okay it was basically a lecture. Yes, I still do lectures. No, I don’t do them often.

By Sarah Coldheart (@sarahcoldheart)

By Sarah Coldheart (@sarahcoldheart)

The hour went pretty quickly and there were lots of excellent questions. I do like teaching people who actually want to be there. Then everyone bum-rushed the notes (I should have planned hand-outs) and I got to chat with Chris for a bit. Chris and I met in Melbourne at World Con, and I was trying to persuade him to come to San Jose for World Con 2018.

Everyone should come to San Jose for 2018. It’s going to be so good.

Then Lyra took me on a bit of a walking tour, and I went to a delicious lunch with the Festival organizers and talked to a Gothic lit writer out of the Manchester, who probably could have done a better job at the Master Class than me, and that was that.

Here is a fun wrap up video of the festival (FB native, may not work for everyone).

And here’s a link to the surprise FB live video I dropped from Singapore on YouTube. It’s not synced great but it’s me chatting at you in a kinda summation of this blog post.

More on Singapore to come!

{Gail’s monthly read along for November 2016 is Romancing the Inventor by Gail Carriger. Oh don’t look so shocked.}


Romancing the Inventor

Romancing the Inventor: A Supernatural Society Novella

A steampunk lesbian romance featuring a maid bent on seducing a brilliant cross-dressing scientist who’s too brokenhearted to notice. Or is she?


Your Moment of Parasol . . .

1887 Buddhist with Parasol


Your Infusion of Cute . . .

Gail Master Class Art by David Liew

Gail Master Class Art by David Liew

Your Tisane of Smart . . .



Your Writerly Tinctures . . .  

“There’s no such thing as writer’s block. That was invented by people in California who couldn’t write.”
~ Terry Pratchett

Book News:

Etiquette & Espionage made this list of Fantastic books and why you’d read them.

Quote of the Day:

“Who would give a law to lovers? Love is unto itself a higher law.”
~ Boethius, The Consolation of Philosophy, A.D. 524

Questions about Gail’s steampunk world? There’s a wiki for that!

Helpful Podcasts for Authors ~ NaNoWriMo Tip Sheet (Important for Writers)

Posted by Gail Carriger

November is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) around the interwebs, Gentle Reader. I don’t participate myself. Let’s be perfectly honest ~ it’s a dumb month to pick. Always has been. For me it’s particularly inappropriate as I’ve spent the first half of November, for years, on book tour for a Finishing School book. And this year I go to Singapore.

Gail Carriger on NaNoWriMo

That said, it doesn’t mean I’m not supportive of the Great NaNo. I don’t often post “how to write blogs” or the like. I think there are plenty of other authors out there who do it better than I ever could (waves at Chuck, Rachel, Kameron). In fact, I consider myself best at being an enabler. Find me at a convention and I’m one of those:

There’s a fun thing, let go do that! Food, yeah food, eat the food. And we’re walking. Party, bar, that way! And we’re drinking.

As opposed to actually organizing the thing, food, walk, or party in the first place.

But in order to be both supportive and enabling, over the course of this month, you will see a few blog posts from me that I hope will be helpful if you are participating in NaNoWriMo, or even if you just like to write and wish to perhaps publish some day.

Without further ado, Gentle Writer, here is my…

List of Top 8 Podcasts Every Author Should be Listening To…

  1. I Should Be Writing ~ Best for: emotional sympathy, writer struggles, general hand holding.
  2. Beyond the Trope ~ Best for: craft and passion. Focuses on “the deep, artistic depths of fiction” with a casual style and general inclination to geek out.
  3. The Creative Penn ~  Best for: self-publishing, book marketing, and creative entrepreneurship. Good at interviewing and sticking to topics. Pick what you want based on the episode title.
  4. Ditch Diggers (via The Murverse Annex) ~ Professional authors get brutally honest about being both professional and an author. There may be a few rants from yours truly.
  5. Internet Business Mastery ~ Best for: tips on general social media marketing and brand interaction. Not specifically for authors, which is why it is interesting as many of the core premises are still useful. But you will have to learn to ignore the dumb business lingo and constant coach marketing. If you can’t take either (and boy do I understand that) but want something with this outsider perspective try Smart Passive Income or The Social Media Examiner Show (BONUS very short episodes) instead.
  6. Rocking Self Publishing ~ Best for: self-publishing, book marketing, and creative entrepreneurship. Similar to Penn quality entirely depends on the strength of the interview. They focus on a single subject for the interview, but they tend to drift more.
  7. Writing Excuses ~ Quick pithy tips from four luminaries in SF/F. If you are a beginning author and aren’t already listening to this, you’re hopeless.
  8. The Roundtable Podcast ~ 20 min author interviews focused on craft, then a work-shopping interview in which a professional author talks craft specific to a pitched project.

“It is better to write a bad first draft than to write no first draft at all.”
~ Will Shetterly

The caveat: as with all things, these recommendations are aligned with my taste as reader, listener, and writer. As such, they tend to favor the SF/F genre, female authors, and friendly attitudes. This may not be what you’re looking for but it’s what I like. This is, after all, my little corner of the internet. MINE! Wha ha ha ha.

“You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.”
~ Jack London

I’ve left comments open but your recommendations are likely better spent on NaNoWriMo forums and if you’re spammy or snarky that sucker will get the snip snip snip. Here in Gail’s little world we play nice and polite or not at all. Etiquette must be observed!

“Use your imagination. Trust me, your lives are not interesting. Don’t write them down.”
~ W. B. Kinsella

You don’t have to take my word for it: 15 Inspiring Writing Podcasts to Subscribe to Right Now


Your Moment of Parasol . . .

Portrait of Ava Gardner, 1960’s via fawnvelveteen tumblr

Your Infusion of Cute . . .

Alexia character cookie

Your Tisane of Smart . . .
The Indonesian Mimic Octopus

Your Writerly Tinctures . . .  
Kubler-Ross Model of Grief Associated with Editing and Rewriting

Book News:
BookNut101 of 21st Century Once Upon a Times blog says of Manners & Mutiny: “Did it meet my expectations? Uh yes. Yes, it did indeed! In fact, I will go so far as to say that it exceeded my expectations – it pulled all the elements of the series together and was both entertaining and informative. I was never left feeling like the author was racing to the finish line. Rather, I felt that every chapter and every scene was calculated.”

Quote of the Day:
“Pointed dialogues about yesterday’s eggs and the toughness of Saturday’s meat are conducted fortissimo between cheerful youths in the road and satirical young women in print dresses, who come out of their kitchen doors on to little balconies.”
~ P. G. Wodehouse, The Man with Two Left Feet And Other Stories

WorldCon 2016, Kansas City Report

Posted by Gail Carriger


WorldCon is always one of my favorite conventions because of the people I get to see, old friends and new. However, being a pop-up con, it changes depending on where it takes place. Not necessarily in structure but in character and organization. I have to say that (from my perspective) the organization at Kansas City seemed spot on. The greenroom had decent snacks, the people behind the scenes were nice, panels were well attended, the bar was hopping, and a good time was had. Frankly, an author can’t ask for more out of a con. (I know there were fires and people running about to deal with them, but I didn’t notice ~ which is also the mark of a well organized convention.)


With T & H @ WorldCon

There were panels, signings, gossip, delicious food, and terrible tea (don’t worry, Gentle Reader, I’ve recovered from the shock). I saw friends from con circuit, the world of podcasting, and the itnerwebs. I met with Ty (my tumblr mod among other things) and secrets were exchanged. It’s what happens when you see me in person. (Although I let a few secrets out in this month’s Chirrup.)


What with a two week book tour and this two week trip (I was visiting friends before the event) I haven’t been home much. Even with Scrivener iOS I’m not getting much writing done. I’ve no events next month and only the one weekend in October so I intend to be very diligent. Fingers crossed (or fingers typing, as the case may be).

{Gail’s monthly read along for August 2016 is Alanna: The First Adventure by Tamora Pierce.}



Your Moment of Parasol . . .

PArasols copy

Your Infusion of Cute . . .

6 Portland Teashop Townsend copy

Tea shop in Portland

Your Tisane of Smart . . .

Top 10 Ultimate Steampunk Movies

Your Writerly Tinctures . . .  

What’s in a Name? How to Avoid the “Claire” Confusion

Book News:

ace-artemis-fanartist- My Finishing School otp.

ace-artemis-fanartist on tumblr- My Finishing School otp.

Quote of the Day:

“Arguments are to be avoided; they are always vulgar and often convincing.”

~ Oscar Wilde

Questions about Gail’s steampunk world? There’s a wiki for that!

Scrivener On The Go Report ~ Author On The Move

Posted by Gail Carriger

I don’t ordinarily do these kinds of posts, Gentle Reader, but sometimes I report things for you because I need to chronicle things for me.

Gail Carriger On The Go Set Up: iPad Mini, bluetooth keyboard, scrivener iOS

First here is a great article on how to get started on Scrivener.

Here is are the tools I use to write on the go:

This setup is ideal for writing rough drafts on planes (tiny seat trays) and traveling in general without a laptop. However because it is not ergonomic I wouldn’t use it in the long haul.

So here’s my report on moving between:

Scrivener Native on Mac Desktop & Scrivener iOS on iPad


I’ve been using Scrivener for Mac on my MacBook Air for the last year. (Yes, I was a late adopter.) I use it for writing my rough drafts since editing (from developmental on) requires track changes, which means I must switch to Word (which I loathe, but that’s another story).

What I wanted Scrivener iOS to do is as follows:

  • Work on my iPad mini with my tiny keyboard (iWerkz Universal Foldable Bluetooth Keyboard, which I LOVE) on planes and in hotels while I am on the go.
  • This means it needs to work OFFLINE for sometimes weeks at a time (I don’t trust hotel wifi), and then sync when I get home and rejoin my home wifi.

On Dropbox:

I’ve only used it in a very limited capacity for transferring larger images. I’ve never had it installed on any of my iOS devices.

What I used before Scrivener iOS?

Evernote Pro.

Evernote has compatibility issues if you keep it open (in native desktop mode) on a home computer and also try to use it remotely on an iOS, or if you use it remote on multiple iOS devices at the same time. The work around for this is to ensure you only have Evernote open on one device at a time. So what I do before a trip is sync, close out, and shut down my home computer. Then I open and sync to my iPad. Reverse when I get home.

Step-by-Step Actions I Took with iOS

(Is the the point were I confess to having one worked in QA for The Learning Company? Yes, including Oregon Trail. I know ALL the ways to die.)

  1. Ensured both MacBook Air and iPad had updated software.
    1. iPad needed update to 9.3.3 ~ Updated
    2. MacBook needed update to 10.11.6 ~ Updated
  2. Researched Dropbox Syncing with iOS for Scrivener
    1. It assumes you have Dropbox and iOS already installed on iPad.
  3. Using desktop: Created a new writing folder in my Dropbox
  4. Installed Dropbox on my iPad
    1. Signed into Dropbox on my iPad
  5. Using desktop: Reorganized Dropbox for ease of regular use
    1. Backed up (created duplicate of) project I intend to work on
    2. Moved project to Dropbox
    3. Scrivener iOS wants to have ONLY scrivener projects in its Dropbox folder
    4. So I created alias link for the now cloud based project to live in my less limited desktop folder (no I don’t use Scrivener for everything, e.g. working cover art needs to be kept separated but still coupled to the project)
    5. Tested link for functionality on desktop with Scrivener
    6. Quit Scrivener desktop
  6. Checked for Scrivener Updates (Up to date at 2.8)
  7. Purchased Scrivener (for iOS)
  8. Followed the Setting Up Dropbox Sync instructions
    1. I did not use the default. I created my own named folder for my writing projects (defaults make me nervous, too searchable by virus etc.)
  9. Looked like everything set up well, so I opened the project on my iPad
    1. On a random notes page for next chapter I wrote sentence. Pressed Sync button. Pressed “Done” button. Quit App
    2. Opened project using alias on my desktop
    3. Scrivener desktop opened me to the exact part of project I had just edited remotely and my edits where there
    4. Success: while at home and always connected wireless!
  10. Testing for remote plane use, Airplane Mode: Desktop to iOS
    1. Made sure I was quit out of both Scrivener & Dropbox for iOS and desktop
    2. Put iPad in Airplane mode
    3. Opened Scrivener on my Desktop
    4. Transferred some notes out of Evernote (the old way I used to do this) and puttered about with manuscript.
    5. Saved the manuscript and quit
    6. Turn off airplane mode
    7. Open Scrivener iOS, synced as requested
    8. Open manuscript, navigated to what I had just done
    9. Found everything updated
    10. Success!
  11.  Testing for remote plane use, Airplane Mode: iOS to Desktop (THE KICKER)
    1. Checking safety net.
      1. Remote: if I type something and do not sync…
      2. Scrivener iOS warns me on the next time I open but saves the changes (presumably on the iPad)
    2. Working in airplane mode on the iPad, not being careful…
      1. Typed away for a bit
      2. Attempted to sync, received notification of no internet connection
      3. Typed more
      4. Swiped to quit without pressing “Done” button
      5. Last sentence still saved! (Good work Scrivener!)
    3.  Working in airplane mode on the iPad, what happens when I get home?
      1. Typed some more pressed done button
      2. Puttered for a bit, fixing a few things correcting spelling
      3. Quit Scrivener iOS
      4. Reopened, everything still good (perhaps should have quit again at this juncture?)
      5. Switched iPad out of airplane mode
      6. Synced
      7. Was told by app to “Close Project and Sync” did as ordered
      8. Swiped to close iOS app
      9. Opened desktop version
      10. Received a conflict notification from desktop. But new work seemed to be there. Not quite sure what I did wrong.
    4. Some issues I noticed
      1. The above syncing conflict seems to occur even when I quit out of everything in the correct order, but as the edits seem to be carrying over I am not too worried
      2. Existing documents created in the desktop and worked on the iOS do not show spelling errors


Scrivener really does seem to work well if both devices stay consistently connected to wireless, and you set it up as instructed.

I took it on my 10 day book tour, no wireless hook up and a few thousand words or so, and when I got home and synced up, everything went smooth as butter.

So far as I am concerned I have a new way of working on the go. Fantastic.

Cost: $20 (for Scrivener iOS)

Time cost for set up: 3 hrs (includes some writing & editing)

{Gail’s monthly read along for August 2016 is Alanna by Tamora Pierce.}



Imprudence ~ Custard Protocol Book the Second

Rue and the crew of the Spotted Custard return from India with revelations that shake the foundations of England’s scientific community. Queen Victoria is not amused, the vampires are tetchy, and something is wrong with the local werewolf pack. To top it all off, Rue’s best friend Primrose keeps getting engaged to the most unacceptable military types.

Rue has family problems as well. Her vampire father is angry, her werewolf father is crazy, and her obstreperous mother is both. Worst of all, Rue’s beginning to suspect what they really are… is frightened.


Your Moment of Parasol . . .

1862 Title- Le Follet Date- Tuesday, July 1, 1862 Item ID- v. 42, plate 100

Le Follet Date Tuesday, July 1, 1862 v. 42, plate 100

Your Infusion of Cute . . .

Your Tisane of Smart . . .

Six Forgotten Female Pioneers of Photography

Your Writerly Tinctures . . .

Everything You Wanted to Know about Book Sales (But Were Afraid to Ask)

Book News:

*Poster Alexia

Fan Art of Alexia

Quote of the Day:

“Never grow a wishbone, daughter, where your backbone ought to be.”

~ Clementine Paddleford


13 Top Tips for The Traveling Writer

Posted by Gail Carriger


This post, Gentle Reader, was originally written as a guest blog for the estimable Pornokitsch.

I started attending conventions as a fangirl long before I was a professional writer. I knew what to expect and when I got my first Guest of Honor invitation I was over the moon. I still get a little thrill at the very idea that someone wants me to attend a convention… as a guest!

Maid Travel


But it’s not the same thing. Whether heading out on a book tour or invited as a guest to a small local sci-fi convention, attending programming at a larger conference, or visiting one of those monster book festivals or comicons, there are some things I think a professional writer should always keep in mind.

So here, for your amusement (and perhaps education) are my highly subjective…


Tips for the Traveling Writer

1. Thou shalt follow the 6, 2, 1 rule

What’s that? At least six hours sleep, two full meals, and one bath.
Actually, I usually try for 8, 3, 2. I recommend a morning swim (at most cons I get an AM pool to myself) plus a hot tub mini soak and shower. People often forget about the hotel pool when there is a major event, so if you like to swim don’t forget the bathing suit and goggles.

2. Sleep well

I highly recommend investing in ear plugs and an eye mask. That way odd noises and insufficient curtain coverage in strange hotels won’t be a bother. I carry a decongestant as well, in case I’m stuffed up from flying or allergies or temperature shifts.

2. Start as you mean to go on (but probably can’t)

My start? Egg white omelet, vegetarian, no-cheese. As an avowed not-really-breakfast person I force myself to eat this omelet every morning. Most hotels have something like it on the menu. Why? Because it’s the only meal I know I can guarantee I will have time to eat; egg whites are a good solid protein that sticks without weighing me down, and it is always hard to get veg on the go. Convention green rooms and cafes are available for snacks, but those snacks are usually carb heavy and if you get protein, it’s meat or cheese. I find if I start right I don’t worry as much about the rest of the day.

3. Soak thy feet, every night

Keeping in mind that I wear stilettos, I still feel that this applies to everyone – especially at those bigger conventions where you’re walking for miles. I soak my feet and rub lotion into them every night (no matter how tired or how drunk) and this is one of my biggest tips. Nothing is worse than sore feet, treat yours with love.

4. Thou shalt wear deodorant but not perfume or cologne

I know, you love that scent, but no one else does (no matter what they say) and you’re likely putting on too much. Yeah, you really are. This rule holds doubly true if you are flying.

5. Thou shalt tip thy maids

Look, working as a maid in a big hotel really sucks. Leave a tip each day in a prominent place (I usually go for the zone of little bottles in the bathroom) and I add a note with a heart that says “Thank You”. Be a decent human.

 6. Thou shalt wear layers

You could be going to the hottest place on earth, or the coldest, but you’re in a convention center or a hotel or a bookstore, and the AC/heating is notoriously tricky. I carry a scarf and a light cardigan at all times.

7. If offered a mint, take it

It’s usually a subtle hint. Take the hint, take the mint. Carry mints yourself, share the love.

8. Honor thy moderator

Moderating a panel is a rough job, but someone has to do it. Be nice. Be polite.

9. Thou shalt carry badge, ID, business cards, phone, cash, name tent, mints, individually wrapped toothpicks, tissues, pain killers & other meds, snacks, and water upon thy person at all times.

Some conventions are great about supplying these kinds of things, some aren’t. Be your own savior, be someone else’s, hack the planet.

10.  Thou shalt not eat raw onions

Well I mean you CAN eat them, just not when on the road and at events. Your favorite food? Practice a little willpower, for everyone’s sake. Eat as many as you want when you get home.

11. Thou shalt follow the protocols of cosplay

No realistic weapons, no sticky substances (AKA the PB and J rule), no view-obstructing wings or hats, be aware of your costumed dimensions. I am well known for my abhorrence of the backpack, but if you insist on one, please be aware of it sticking out behind you. Nothing is worse than being a short female constantly whacked in the face by a backpack-wielding Sasquatch, particularly on planes.

12. Thou shalt not dress like a slob

Look, if you are traveling for work, you’re traveling for WORK. Whether that is as a professional writer or appliance servicing technician. Represent.

13. Say thank you

Someone invited you, someone brought you in, someone argued to make you a guest. Try to find that person and thank them. Thank the people running registration, and the green room, and programming, and the dealer room, and the bookstore. Mostly these are fans and volunteers. They make the event happen and they do it because they want to meet you, they want to meet writers. All they get are complaints, and issues, and fires to put out every day. Don’t add to their stress. And if there is a Dead Dog Party and you happen to be invited, do go. They are often the most fun and you get to meet all the people behind the scenes.


View Alone


{Gail’s monthly read along for August 2016 is Alanna: The First Adventure by Tamora Pierce.}



Imprudence ~ Custard Protocol Book the Second

Rue and the crew of the Spotted Custard return from India with revelations that shake the foundations of England’s scientific community. Queen Victoria is not amused, the vampires are tetchy, and something is wrong with the local werewolf pack. To top it all off, Rue’s best friend Primrose keeps getting engaged to the most unacceptable military types.

Rue has family problems as well. Her vampire father is angry, her werewolf father is crazy, and her obstreperous mother is both. Worst of all, Rue’s beginning to suspect what they really are… is frightened.


Your Moment of Parasol . . .

Daisy Greville, Countess of Warwick via antique-royals tumblr

Daisy Greville, Countess of Warwick via antique-royals tumblr

Your Infusion of Cute . . .

Your Tisane of Smart . . .

The Victorian Baby: 19th Century Advice on Motherhood and Maternity

Your Writerly Tinctures . . .  

Why Aren’t More Books Factchecked?

Book News:

Vampire Book Club lists Imprudence as one of the new releases for July

Quote of the Day:

“Love and scandal are the best sweeteners of tea.”

~ Henry Fielding

Questions about Gail’s steampunk world? There’s a wiki for that!


Egypt from a Dirigible: Imprudence & Timeless (Parasol Protectorate Special Extras)

Posted by Gail Carriger


In Imprudence Rue and her crew visit Egypt just as Alexia and Conall did in Timeless.

Rue goes in for the capital, Cairo, while Alexia spent most of her time in the port city of Alexandria.

Ancient Alexandria

  • Founded by Alexander of Macedon (the Great) c. 332-331 B.C.
  • Located in the Nile delta
  • Renowned for its giant lighthouse – one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, destroyed
  • Library at Alexandria, destroyed
  • Mouseion (of which the library was a part) Ptolomy’s center of science and philosophy
  • Roman catacombs
  • Capital of the country for close to 1,000 years
  • Citadel of Qait Bey, Pompey’s Pillar, the Roman Theater, the Presidential Palace, Montaza Palace, and the Ras el-Tin Palace
  • Additional information on Ancient Vine

Victorian Alexandria

Alexandia shoreline 1882, personal collection



  • Egypt under the Muhammad Ali Pasha dynasty (1805–1953)
  • Khedivate of Egypt under British patronage ~ specifically Sanctioned khedival rule (1867–1914)
  • Nominally independent Sultanate of Egypt and Kingdom of Egypt, ending with the Revolution of 1952 and the formation of the Republic of Egypt
  • 1882 civil unrest, rebellion

In Imprudence I have one quick reference to the troubles of 1882. I knew of this from my prior research for Timeless. I did a blog post about it at the time, in March of 2011 when we were experiencing the Arab Spring.

Alexandria 1882 landscape rebellion, personal collection


From Wikipedia: “Isma’il was succeeded by his eldest son Tewfik, who, unlike his younger brothers, had not been educated in Europe. Tewfik pursued a policy of closer relations with Britain and France but his authority was undermined in a rebellion led by his war minister, Arabi Pasha, in 1882. Arabi took advantage of violent riots in Alexandria to seize control of the government and temporarily depose Tewfik.”

Alexandria 1882, personal collection


“British naval forces shelled and captured Alexandria, and an expeditionary force under General Sir Garnet Wolseley was formed in England. The British army landed in Egypt soon afterwards, and defeated Arabi’s army in the Battle of Tel el-Kebir. Arabi was tried for treason and sentenced to death, but the sentence was commuted to exile. After the revolt, the Egyptian army was reorganized on a British model and commanded by British officers.”

Victorians leaving Alexandria by steam ship, 1882, personal collection




In Timeless, Alexia visits Alexandria, in April of 1876 when things are comparatively calm.

The eagle eye will notice that the background for the US cover is actually Cairo, where Alexia never goes in the book. Although I think I added a mention of her stopping over, just to explain away the cover. I’ve no idea what city is depicted in the background of the second omnibus.

Japan set Timeless floating over a rather lush river, it’s possible there are some areas of the Nile that are that green. Generally it’s a bit more bare or palm tree riddled, but I won’t quibble too much. Germany put Alexia back into Cairo.

Nile River


Alexandria is all the way off to the left in this image. Cairo is the bottom tip.



  • Rue visits my version of steampunk Egypt in October of 1895 during the reign of Tewfik’s son, Abbas II.
  • Sudanese territory has been lost (as the British would think of it) to an Islamic state.
  •  Shortly after Rue leaves in 1896 (Abbas II), a massive Anglo-Egyptian force, under “General Herbert Kitchener, began the reconquest of the Sudan.[12] The Mahdists were defeated in the battles of Abu Hamid and Atbara. The campaign was concluded with the Anglo-Egyptian victory of Omdurman, the Mahdist capital.”
  • At first I was going to take Rue back to Alexandria, partly so I could use Alexia to discuss how the city has changed in the past 20 years. But in Timeless I mention that Lord Maccon purchased property in Cairo for their retirement, well within the plague zone. So I switched Rue’s location to Cairo. Lost a bit of writing time there since I’d already done 2K on Alexandria in a new more steampunky form, but it worked much better for the plot line to be in Cairo, anyway.
  • I scrabbled about for any further Victorian perspectives on Cairo or the rest of Egypt between 1883 ~ 1895. But there appears to be no major issues of civil unrest and in this the British press seems akin to their modern counterparts, which is to say, not particularly interested if there is no blood involved.
  •  I didn’t spend a great deal of time on it as, quite frankly, Rue doesn’t spend a great deal of time in the city. Although I hope you will notice I steampunked Cairo up especially as compared to Alexandria in Timeless. The march of technological advancement is strong with this one.

Modern Alexandria

Alexandria Image #95


* second largest city in Egypt
* typical Mediterranean climate: extremely warm/humid days in summer, breezy and cool in the evenings, winter is chilly with rain and hail not uncommon, spring and autumn are best weather.

Mix of ancient and modern.



Want more behind the scenes sneak peeks? Join the Chirrup


Your Moment of Parasol . . .

carolathhabsburg- Mourning attire. Fashion plate, circa 1894

carolathhabsburg- Mourning attire. Fashion plate, circa 1894

Your Infusion of Cute . . .

Bean Back wiskers curled paws2

Your Tisane of Smart . . .

Why We Should Never Underestimate the Intelligence of an Octopus

Your Writerly Tinctures . . .  

Female Spies and Gender Bending Soldiers Changed the Course of the Civil War

Quote of the Day:

“Indifference is the revenge the world takes on mediocrities.”

~ Oscar Wilde

Questions about Gail’s steampunk world? There’s a wiki for that!

Gail On The Move ~ Your Questions Answered

Posted by Gail Carriger

This is part of the spontaneous AMA I ran a few weeks ago. Thanks to all who asked questions and gave me ideas for future blog posts.

You, Gentle Reader, are the best!

What was your favorite cities that you have visited and which ones are on your bucket list? 

I fell unexpectedly and deeply in love with Strasbourg last time I was in France. I find myself enamored of border areas, like Alsace. Places that have long histories of invasion and culture conflict, like Budapest. The history and cuisine is always fascinating, and the people often slightly grumpy and stoic (which I find utterly charming ~ see Pillover or Sidheag).

Most of my personal bucket list is focused on Archaeologically rich areas and specific sites: Petra, Amarna (the tomb builders village that John Romer excavated), some lesser known sites in Belize, Rhodes, Crete, Thermopylae, I could just keep going.




As an author I have a different list. I really love visiting genre readers in foreign lands so I’d love to go somewhere like Japan or Turkey or Thailand. I’ve found that, as my writing take me places, I discover lands that I never would originally thought to visit but which move me deeply. Added bonus = they may end up in my writing. On the other hand, sometimes researching for my writing opens my eyes. I’d love to see the Sudd someday. And I didn’t know about it at all until I researched Imprudence.


When traveling from home to do events (panels and workshops, etc) how do you fare eating wise? 

Not great. It helps that I am not a picky eater, but I do have a sensitive stomach. I am a grazer (small amounts of food, frequently) so I can “time set” my stomach to a different time zone pretty easily. I’ve found that, for me, this is really helpful in dealing with jet lag as well.

I have a huge number of safeties in place for long distance travel. Hard boiled eggs are a miracle of protein delight (I only eat the whites), if I can find them one the road, I buy them. I start out most trips with 6 hard boiled eggs in a little cooling bag and I’m pretty insistent about getting a fridge in any hotel room.

If I’m lucky enough to have a handler I ask that the handler bring me: whole milk, fresh fruit, smoothie, a bag of spinach, and a bag of arugula. If not, the moment I have free time at the start of an event I find the nearest convenience store and stock up on what I can. I’ve learned it’s always easy to get carbs, but lean protein, fruit, and veg are hard.

I tend to be packing some trail mix and these great coconut macadamia nut cashew protein balls from Trader Joes (or I make my own bliss balls). It’s smaller than most regular protein bars, lower in sugar and higher in protein.


Sweets stall in Budapest


How do you keep from consuming foods your body just may not agree with while you travel?

Well I’m more picky when I travel. I pretty much avoid red meat, sugar, and fried things, because I know they don’t agree with me and I worry about keeping up my immune system and energy. I also do not eat fish (my favorite) in a landlocked state or at airports. Some hotels make it easy, most do not. As a rule there are only one or two things on a hotel menu that fit my “travel criteria.”


The Great British breakfast is the exception to all rules.


My biggest tip is to start any long day at a convention with an egg white omelet, all veggies (bonus for spinach), no cheese. I’m a light enough eater that if room service isn’t too ridiculously expensive, this will do me for both breakfast and lunch. It’s hard to mess up, egg whites are a perfect protein and exist everywhere, and every place has some sort of vegetable they can cook and stick into it. I can go for 3-4 hours on half an omelet and a piece of toast. It’s great!

Did you study abroad? 

Sort of. I took my MS from Nottingham University in England. I also did a stint of grade school in Devon when I was 10 (and numerous summers). But since my Mum is British and I already spent a great deal of time there I don’t entirely think of England as abroad. To me Ohio, where I did my undergrad was more alien and strange.


I’ve excavated and lived during the field season in Italy and Peru, although I’ve worked on artifacts from all over the world. And I’ve done a language immersion program in Mexico. But I’ve never stayed anywhere long enough to really feel like I lived and learned in another country. I was about to move to Italy for a few years when I met and fell in love with the AB instead.


One of the sites I worked on.

When are you coming (back) to England? 

Here is the Why Doesn’t Gail Visit Me? post that explains how I decide where to go. I only do one international trip a year. It depends on many factors. If I have a new book out, if a convention/publisher or event wants me there and is willing to cover some of my costs. Whether said event is close to friends or family. Whether my partner can come with me, and get the time off work. I really don’t like doing international trips by myself anymore.

Tea on the go – what if the only available spot is Starbucks? What would Alexia do? 

Drink their English Breakfast blend with whole milk (or a mix of skim and half & Half when in those odd parts of the world where they don’t offer whole, I’m looking at you Florida). It actually isn’t that bad, nor was its predecessor, the Awake blend. I’ve drunk far more than I care to admit.

Here is what I do when I can…

{Gail’s monthly read along for April is To Play the Lady by Naomi Lane.}


Your Moment of Parasol . . .

1944 Costume designed by Irene for Ingrid Bergman in Gaslight (1944)
From the collection of Larry McQueen on Pinterest

Your Infusion of Cute . . .
Old Books Repurposed into Paper Saucers and Cups by Cecilia Levy

Your Tisane of Smart . . .
18 Rules of Behavior for Young Ladies in 1831

Your Writerly Tinctures . . .  
KU Scammers on Amazon – What’s Going On?

Book News:
Gail made a B&N Best Book Nerd Tweets list

Quote of the Day:

“There is no such thing as a little garlic.”

~ A. Baer

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