Sunday Quote is flying back from GenCon today. Hopefully.

Posted by on Aug 20, 2017 in Blog, Quote | 0 comments

“Every book has a soul, the soul of the person who wrote it and the soul of those who read it and dream about it.”
~ Carlos Ruiz Zafón

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Re-post: Gen Con Schedule

Posted by on Aug 16, 2017 in Blog, call of fire, public speaking | 0 comments

(If you’re looking for my Bready or Not post, I shifted it to Tuesday night so I could share it on social media before my trip! You can find my Matcha Cheesecake Bars recipe here.)

As this posts, I should be on the way to Gen Con. *knock on wood*

I have events throughout the day on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. If you’re there, I hope you can take a brief break from gaming and drop into a panel or two! I will have cookies, though I don’t know how long they’ll last. If you partake in a cookie, you can also get one of my brand new ribbons to add to your badge.

The book vendor should have copies of my Clockwork Dagger duology as well as Breath of Earth and Call of Fire; follow me on Facebook and Twitter for updates on the stock on hand.

Gen Con 2017 schedule

Thursday

10:00am – 11:00am: Writer’s Craft: Characters with Disabilities Westin/Caucus
Explore ways to include characters with disabilities in your stories in a respectful and realistic way. With Gail Z. Martin, Beth Cato, Mary Robinette Kowal

3:00pm – 4:00pm: Writer’s Craft: Are You Overthinking the Story? Westin/Caucus
Climb out of the rabbit hole of self-doubt and get back to writing! Learn to identify when you’re overthinking the story. Featuring Beth Cato, Kelly McCullough, Richard Lee Byers, Toiya Finley

Friday

11:00 – 12:00pm: Writer’s Craft: Creating True Leaders Westin/Chamber
Learn to craft inspirational characters that embody the traits of a great leader! Featuring Stephen P. Kelner, Jr., Beth Cato, Richard Lee Byers, Geoffrey Girard

12:00pm – 1:00pm: Writer’s Craft: Writing a First Draft Westin/Chamber
Most writers begin with a draft. Learn how to get that first draft down, what a draft looks like, and what to do with it. Features Beth Cato, Christopher Husberg, Kelly McCullough, Toiya Finley

3:00pm – 3:45pm: The Once and Future Podcast LIVE! Westin/Chamber
Join host Anton Strout with Mercedes Lackey and Beth Cato for a live recording of this weekly geeky podcast for readers and writers that focuses on all things fantasy and SF. (Note that I need to dash out a few minutes early to make sure I make my signing at 4pm.)

4:00pm – 5:00pm: Signing (Exhibit Hall)

Saturday

12:00 – 1:00pm: Writing 101: Themes—What’s a Theme and Do You Need One? Westin/Chamber
Educators and experts always go on and on about the theme of a story, but what is it and should you worry about it? Featuring Beth Cato, Bradley P. Beaulieu, Howard Andrew Jones, Karen Bovenmyer

3:00pm – 4:00pm: Reading: Kelly McCullough & Beth Cato Westin/Congress I
Writer’s Symposium authors read from their latest works in an intimate small-room setting. Join us for this unique opportunity to experience the authors’ personal interpretations of their own works.

4:00pm – 5:00pm: Writer’s Craft: Alternate History Westin/Capitol I
Want to write a story where Rome never fell? Or where a time traveler saves Kennedy? Learn tips for writing awesome alternate history stories! Featuring Charlaine Harris, Eric Flint, Beth Cato

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Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

Posted by on Aug 15, 2017 in Blog, blondies, Bready or Not, breakfast | 0 comments

I’m presenting many wonderful matcha baked goods this month, but this one, dear readers, is the most delicious. The most divine. The most appropriate way to celebrate the release of Call of Fire.

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

My husband takes most all of my baked goods to work. These Matcha Cheesecake Bars earned a rare and vociferous response.

To directly quote, with expletives replaced Mad Lib style to make this work-safe and kid-safe:
“She needs to laminate that [noun for excrement].”
“Those were [verb for copulation, -ing] on point.”

Yeah. This recipe is a winner.

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

Plus, these bars are ridiculously easy to make. You make a crust. Mix up some green cheesecake. Do some layering and swirling.

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

Mind you, I’m not a big cheesecake person, but thanks to the cookie-like crust, these are not rich like standard cheesecakes. You really get the best of everything here, and the matcha powder adds a wonderful fresh flavor and a lovely green tint.

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

Do note that the type of green tea you use may produce different results. I used a Rishi sweet green tea blend that includes sugar, making it ideal for lattes or baked goods.

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

I plan on re-making this with a variety of teas. Look for another version of this recipe in the coming months!

Adapted from Every Day Dishes.

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

This incredible recipe will please cheesecake lovers and convert non-cheesecake eaters as well. Note that different green teas may produce different results in taste and tint; sweet matcha powder will obviously contain more natural sweetness, but the recipe turns out well when standard matcha is used, too.

  • Crust
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 10 Tb unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 Tb vanilla extract
  • Cheesecake layer
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 Tb unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 Tb all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tb matcha (sweet or regular)
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven at 325-degrees. Line an 8x8 or 9x9 pan with aluminum foil and apply nonstick spray.

In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

In a large mixer bowl, cream together the softened butter and brown sugar for about 3 minutes, until light and fluffy. Add 2 eggs and the vanilla extract, followed by the combined dry ingredients.

Use an uneven spatula to smooth out HALF of the batter in the prepared pan. Place the other half in another bowl for now. Clean the mixing bowl before the next stage, if desired.

To make the cheesecake layer, beat together the softened cream cheese, sugar, butter, flour, and matcha powder. Mix in the egg and vanilla until it is mostly smooth.

Pour about HALF of the cream cheese mix on top of the batter in the pan and smooth it out. Dollop the remaining crust and cheesecake batters over the top, and use a butter knife to swirl them together.

Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, until it passes the toothpick test in the middle. Let cool at room temperature for an hour, then place in fridge to continue chill and set for another hour or two.

Lift it up by the aluminum foil and place on a cutting board to slice into bars. Store in a lidded container in fridge, with waxed paper or parchment between stacked layers.

OM NOM NOM!

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

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Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

This incredible recipe will please cheesecake lovers and convert non-cheesecake eaters as well. Note that different green teas may produce different results in taste and tint; sweet matcha powder will obviously contain more natural sweetness, but the recipe turns out well when standard matcha is used, too.

  • Crust
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 10 Tb unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 Tb vanilla extract
  • Cheesecake layer
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 Tb unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 Tb all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tb matcha (sweet or regular)
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven at 325-degrees. Line an 8x8 or 9x9 pan with aluminum foil and apply nonstick spray.

In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

In a large mixer bowl, cream together the softened butter and brown sugar for about 3 minutes, until light and fluffy. Add 2 eggs and the vanilla extract, followed by the combined dry ingredients.

Use an uneven spatula to smooth out HALF of the batter in the prepared pan. Place the other half in another bowl for now. Clean the mixing bowl before the next stage, if desired.

To make the cheesecake layer, beat together the softened cream cheese, sugar, butter, flour, and matcha powder. Mix in the egg and vanilla until it is mostly smooth.

Pour about HALF of the cream cheese mix on top of the batter in the pan and smooth it out. Dollop the remaining crust and cheesecake batters over the top, and use a butter knife to swirl them together.

Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, until it passes the toothpick test in the middle. Let cool at room temperature for an hour, then place in fridge to continue chill and set for another hour or two.

Lift it up by the aluminum foil and place on a cutting board to slice into bars. Store in a lidded container in fridge, with waxed paper or parchment between stacked layers.

OM NOM NOM!

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CALL OF FIRE is out today!

Posted by on Aug 15, 2017 in Blog, call of fire | 0 comments

calloffire_500x332

Today is the day! Call of Fire is out! This sequel to Breath of Earth takes Ingrid and company to the Pacific Northwest as she evades the Unified Pacific and tries to find out more about her profound geomantic powers. Guest starring Theodore Roosevelt as himself!

I probably don’t have to remind you that first week sales are huge to a book’s publisher, so if you haven’t preordered, please do order in the next week or two. It’s available at pretty much every online bookstore. If your brick-and-mortar B&N or indie store isn’t carrying it, you can order it there (which might inspire them to get some extras for their shelves, too).

Thank you for your support!

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