Posts made in February, 2016

Cover reveal: “Final Flight: A Clockwork Dagger Story”

Posted by on Feb 19, 2016 in Blog, clockwork dagger shorts | Comments Off on Cover reveal: “Final Flight: A Clockwork Dagger Story”

My final (for now) Clockwork Dagger story has a cover! This is out on April 26th and is already up for preorder for just 99-cents!

Oh yeah, it also includes the first chapter of my new novel Breath of Earth. *squee*

Final Flight

Another breathtaking short story from the author of The Clockwork Dagger and The Clockwork Crown, set in the same world…

Captain Hue hoped he was rid of his troubles once Octavia Leander and Alonzo Garrett disembarked from his airship Argus. But he was quickly proved wrong when his ship was commandeered by Caskentian soldiers. He is ordered on a covert and deadly mission by the smarmy Julius Corrado, an elite Clockwork Dagger.

Now Captain Hue must start a mutiny to regain control of his airship, which means putting his entire crew at risk—including his teenage son Sheridan. As the weather worsens and time runs out, it’ll take incredible bravery to bring the Argus down….perhaps for good.


 

 

#SFWAPro

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Bready or Not: Apple Cinnamon Cake

Posted by on Feb 17, 2016 in apples, Blog, Bready or Not, breakfast, cake | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Apple Cinnamon Cake

I mention every so often that apple pie is probably the favorite thing of both my dad and my husband. This apple cake now rates right up there, too.

Apple Cinnamon Cake

This cake is easy to put together. The most time-consuming thing is peeling and chopping the apples. The cake bakes up dense, soft, and full of cinnamon and apple flavor.

Apple Cinnamon Cake

One of the great things about this recipe is that it’s easy to parcel out leftovers–if you have any. Cut the cake into pieces, freeze each separately, wrap in waxed paper, and place in freezer bags or plastic containers. Thaw pieces in fridge, and eat them cold or warm up in the microwave or oven (the latter being the family preference).

Apple Cinnamon Cake

This apple cake is great whenever. Serve it for breakfast, snack, or dessert. It’ll make your belly happy any time of day.

Apple Cinnamon Cake

Modified from Apple Squares at Julia’s Album.

 

Bready or Not: Apple Cinnamon Cake

Apple Cinnamon Cake

These dense, luscious apple cake squares are perfect for breakfast, brunch, snack or dessert! Use firm baking apples like Granny Smith. Leftovers can be frozen in pieces, and once thawed, can be eaten straight from the fridge or heated in the microwave or oven.

  • 3 medium apples, peeled, cored, & chopped into small chunks
  • 1 heaping teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup sour cream or Greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs, room temperature

Preheat oven to 350-degrees. Line a 9×9 square pan with foil and apply butter or nonstick spray.

In a medium bowl, toss peeled and chopped apples with cinnamon and brown sugar.

In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt.

In a larger mixing bowl, whisk together the white sugar, vegetable oil, sour cream/yogurt, and vanilla extract until it's smooth. Add the eggs.

Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until everything is just mixed.

Pour half the batter into the ready pan. Sprinkle half the apples evenly over the top. Pour the remaining batter, smooth it out, then add the remaining apples.

Bake for about an hour. It will pass the toothpick test when done. Cool completely and store covered in the fridge.

OM NOM NOM!

 

Apple Cinnamon Cake

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Sunday Quote loves writing… usually

Posted by on Feb 14, 2016 in Blog, Quote | Comments Off on Sunday Quote loves writing… usually

“In a very real way, one writes a story to find out what happens in it. Before it is written it sits in the mind like a piece of overheard gossip or a bit of intriguing tattle. The story process is like taking up such a piece of gossip, hunting down the people actually involved, questioning them, finding out what really occurred, and visiting pertinent locations. As with gossip, you can’t be too surprised if important things turn up that were left out of the first-heard version entirely; or if points initially made much of turn out to have been distorted, or simply not to have happened at all.”
~Samuel R. Delany, The Jewel-Hinged Jaw: Notes on the Language of Science Fiction

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VNSA 2016

Posted by on Feb 12, 2016 in Blog, others books, whimsy | Comments Off on VNSA 2016

If you’re in the Phoenix, Arizona, area, make note that this weekend is the fantastic, glorious, squee-inducing VNSA Book Sale! This is one of the biggest used book sales in the whole country and it takes up an entire exhibition hall of the State Fairgrounds. See this pic I took last year?

VNSA

That picture was taken on Sunday, which is the LEAST CROWDED of the two days. Saturday is crazy because people line up hours before it opens, the fire marshal regulates how many people can enter the building, and it is really an overwhelming number of books and people. I like Sunday because it’s easier to browse AND all of the normal books are 50% off. This year Sunday happens to be Valentine’s Day. I told my husband that the VNSA sale is what I want. That’s how I roll.

If you go, be sure to take a rolling cart, tote bag, or some way to carry books. Don’t trust your arms alone to safely your treasures.

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Bready or Not: Dulce de Leche Brownies

Posted by on Feb 10, 2016 in Blog, Bready or Not, brownies, chocolate, holy taco church | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Dulce de Leche Brownies

Right before Valentine’s Day, I like to share new brownie or chocolate recipes. Today I’m posting a recipe that was originally at the Holy Taco Church: Dulce de Leche Brownies.

Dulce de Leche Brownies

This is a dangerous recipe, and I’m not just talking calories. Sweetened condensed milk becomes lava after mere minutes in the microwave. Make this recipe with care.

Dulce de Leche Brownies

I have had this recipe for ages–I clipped it off a box of Challenge Butter. Mind you, I live in Arizona, so I can easily buy ready-made canned Dulce de Leche at any store, but I wanted to go hardcore to make this accessible to cooks around the world.

There is a warning in the original recipe to watch the bowl closely. This is legit. After the 3rd cooking burst in the microwave, I found my bowl had runneth over. Sweetened condensed milk everywhere. HOT, sticky stuff. Stuff that burns. Yeah.

Dulce de Leche Brownies

I cleaned up the microwave and the outside of the bowl as best I could, and from then on, I did 50-60 second cooking bursts, and even then I stopped it early a few times.

Was it worth the clean-up and risk of 3rd degree burns? HECK YEAH. Brownies?! Hello!

This makes a 9×13 pan of luscious, fudgy brownies. If you like’em cakey, you’ll have to go elsewhere. Sorry. The dulce de leche isn’t a super-thick layer. You can’t even see it in most of the bars, but you taste it. It’s ninja dulce de leche.

Dulce de Leche Brownies

Subtle. Sweet. Potentially harmful to your health while preparing and while eating.

Modified from recipe from Challenge Butter.

Bready or Not: Dulce de Leche Brownies

Dulce de Leche Brownies

Dulce de Leche adds a layer of sweetness to these luscious, fudgy brownies! This is modified from a Challenge Butter recipe; my version was originally posted at the Holy Taco Church.

  • Dulce de Leche
  • 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 Tablespoon corn syrup
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • Brownies
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 11/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 4 eggs, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder (optional but awesome)
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 recipe Dulce de Leche (above) (or use canned Dulce de Leche)
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips

To make Dulce de Leche

(Note that you can buy canned Dulce de Leche on the Hispanic foods aisle in many grocery stores and skip this step! You can also make it in a crock pot or stove--look up these other methods online. Microwave is faster, but has some danger involved.)

Combine sweetened condensed milk and corn syrup in a LARGE microwave safe bowl. You need the bowl large because the stuff will start to boil like an erupting volcano.

Microwave on 50% power, stopping and stirring every 2 minutes. Start watching VERY CAREFULLY about the 5 minute point. It will start to boil over very quickly. Start doing 1 minute increments, stirring well in between. At the 10 to 12 minute point, it will thicken and look caramel-colored rather than white. It might look curdled but that goes away when you stir. Add in the butter and stir until it's melted. Set aside.

To Make the Brownies

Preheat oven to 325-degrees F. Line a 9x13 pan with foil and butter it or spray it with Pam.

In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugars until fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Combine flour, espresso powder, cocoa, and salt. Add dry ingredients into creamed mixture; mix until well blended.

Spread about 1/2 of mixture in the prepared pan. This will just cover the bottom. Drop spoonfuls of Dulce de Leche evenly over this layer and smooth out. Sprinkle chocolate chips all over. Cover with remaining brownie batter; an offset spatula is great to smooth it to the edges.

Bake 35 to 40 minutes. Cool and cut into squares.

OM NOM NOM!

Dulce de Leche Brownies

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