Posts made in May, 2015

#TwitterFiction LIVE

Posted by on May 13, 2015 in Blog, online publication, public speaking | Comments Off on #TwitterFiction LIVE

TwitterFiction

It’s time! Come over to my Twitter account, @BethCato, for two hours of poetry and story-starters. Reply, favorite, retweet–and, hopefully, enjoy!

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Bready or Not: Snickerdoodle Blondies

Posted by on May 13, 2015 in Blog, blondies, Bready or Not | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Snickerdoodle Blondies

Snickerdoodles are awesome. But what do you do when you need to make a lot but don’t have the time to make individual cookies?

Snickerdoodle Blondies

Make blondies, my friend.

Snickerdoodle Blondies

These are packed with all the Snickerdoodle flavor you know and love, all in a convenient new shape. The cinnamon chips add a potent oomph of flavor that takes these to a whole new level.

Snickerdoodle Blondies

Oh yeah. These are chewy, dense, and all kinds of amazing.

Snickerdoodle Blondies

I’d like to tell you how long these keep fresh, but I don’t know. My husband took them to work and they just kinda vanished. I take that as a good sign.

Modified from Can’t Stay Out of the Kitchen.

Bready or Not: Snickerdoodle Blondies

These luscious, dense, and chewy Snickerdoodle Blondies are faster to make than the cookie version and perfect for any cinnamon craving.
Prep Time15 mins
Total Time55 mins
Course: Dessert, Snack
Keyword: bars, snickerdoodle
Author: Beth Cato

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsalted butter 2 sticks, room temperature
  • 2 cups brown sugar packed
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs room temperature
  • 2 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 10 oz Hershey’s cinnamon chips 1 bag

Topping:

  • 2 Tablespoons turbinado or other raw sugar
  • pinch nutmeg
  • 2 tsp cinnamon

Instructions

  • Prepare a 9x13 pan by lining it with aluminum foil and applying nonstick spray. Preheat oven at 350-degrees.
  • In a large bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar, and vanilla extract. Add the eggs one at a time.
  • In a separate bowl, sift together the dry ingredients: flour, salt, nutmeg, cream of tartar, cinnamon, and baking powder. Gradually add the dry mix into the large bowl. Once everything is mixed, add the bag of cinnamon chips.
  • Evenly spread the dough into the prepared pan. In a small bowl, mix the turbinado sugar, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Sprinkle the topping mix over the dough.
  • Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely. Use the foil to lift out the contents and cut into bars. Store at room temperature.
  • OM NOM NOM!

Snickerdoodle Blondies

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#TwitterFiction Tomorrow!

Posted by on May 12, 2015 in Blog, online publication, public speaking | Comments Off on #TwitterFiction Tomorrow!

TwitterFiction

The #TwitterFiction Festival is ongoing through May 15th! My slot is tomorrow, Wednesday, from 11am-1pm Pacific Time (2pm-4pm Eastern). You can look up other time zones, too.

It’s very easy to follow along live. My Twitter account is public so you don’t need an account to read along. I’m doing two things: posting poems (with some repeated in graphic form), and also posting tweet-sized stories designed to act as story or creative prompts. Be inspired! Posts will go up every few minutes and the subjects are diverse.

The good news is that this is Twitter and if you can’t follow along live, that’s no big deal. The whole archive will be on @BethCato and will also be on TwitterFiction.com.

I hope some of you will follow along and retweet your favorites! I’m excited to see what will happen.

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Sunday Quote extends Happy Mother’s Day wishes

Posted by on May 10, 2015 in Blog, Quote | Comments Off on Sunday Quote extends Happy Mother’s Day wishes

“Fantasy is hardly an escape from reality. It’s a way of understanding it.”

~Lloyd Alexander

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An interview with Josh Vogt

Posted by on May 8, 2015 in Blog, others books | Comments Off on An interview with Josh Vogt

Today I welcome author Josh Vogt. He has two very different novels releasing soon–when he debuts, he debuts with style! Be sure to check out his website, too, as he has created a phenomenal resource for writers at any stage in the process.

Forge of Ashes– Your debut novel is set in the Pathfinder world. What was that submission process like?

I started out simply wanting to get involved with RPG writing, so, after having some pro sales, I sent samples around to various game developers and publishers. James Sutter, Paizo’s head editor, liked my work and ended up buying a couple short stories from me: The Weeping Blade and Hunter’s Folly. After that, he asked if I wanted to pitch a novel, which involved a pretty in-depth outlining and approval process—but it all worked out in the end!

– How much reading and research was involved to ground you in Pathfinder?

I read at least 15 of the other Pathfinder Tales novels, partly to figure out what other authors had been doing in that world. I also scoured dozens of manuals and supplement guides to give myself a firm base. Since I’ve been a gamer most of my life, I was already somewhat familiar with the setting, but I definitely had to brush up in a lot of areas. Fortunately, James was quite helpful in offering suggestions if I ever got stuck on a particular plot point.

– What’s FORGE OF ASHES about?

It focuses on Akina, a dwarven barbarian who returns to her mountain home after fighting abroad for a decade. But when she discovers her family has been disgraced and her mother has disappeared into the deadly tunnels beneath the city, she sets out to find out what really happened in her absence–which crosses her path with plenty of monsters, magic, and mayhem!

– I love that your main character is a female dwarf. Was writing that perspective as fun and intriguing as it sounds?

Absolutely! I enjoyed exploring dwarven culture through her eyes, since she’s a bit of an outsider in her own home when she returns. People have certain expectations of her, or expect her to act a certain way given her instinctively violent nature, but it was fun to discover the other facets of her character beyond the fight scenes and usual dwarven stereotypes.

Enter the Janitor– Now, you have quite a year ahead as you also have two novels forthcoming from WordFire Press. Can you share more about the first book that comes out in May? Is it set on Earth?

It is on Earth, yes. The title is Enter the Janitor, and it’s the first book in my dark humor urban fantasy series, The Cleaners. In Enter the Janitor, Ben is a janitor who works for a supernatural sanitation company that keeps the world clean and safe from “Scum.” His latest job involves tracking down an imbalance between Purity and Corruption that could wipe out whole cities while also keeping his new, germaphobic apprentice alive.

– “Supernatural sanitation.” I can’t help but grin when I read that. What inspired this?

It was one of those little “mind shifts” I occasionally have when brainstorming new ideas. I read a lot of urban fantasy, where you’ve got wizards as detectives or secret societies of occult government agents and whatnot. But then I wondered what if a wizard or mage took a different career path…as a janitor or maid or plumber? They could easily infiltrate almost all of society, protect us from magical threats behind-the-scenes, and still have their staffs and wands in the form of mops and squeegees. Once I got to thinking about it, everything fit quite naturally.

– What’s an average work day like for someone in the supernatural sanitation field? I hope they make more than minimum wage…
There is actually a good deal of grunt work for your average Cleaners employee. They keep up the appearance of normalcy by tending to public bathrooms or providing in-home maid services, all the while alert for threats from Scum and other nasties that want to corrupt the world and everyone in it.

– Do you have preorder links for your books? Please share!
Sure thing! Here are two for Forge of Ashes at Paizo and on Amazon.

Enter the Janitor will have preorder links soon!

– You have a fantastic collection of helpful links in your Writer’s Toolbox. What is some of your favorite advice for writers who are just starting out?
Don’t stall out on any one project. Get your story written, even if it’s not the best first draft. Then, as you revise and polish that draft, start also working on the next story. Always be moving forward so you don’t get stuck with an unfinished manuscript that just gets the first few chapters reworked every so often.

– I have to ask… what is your favorite type of cookie?

Mint chocolate flavored of any size or shape!

Josh Vogt– Is there anything else you want to add?

Sure! I’ve got a little YouTube channel I’ve been slowly, but steadily fleshing out with videos from various events, conventions, or just me talking about the writing adventure I’m on. Folks can often find news and updates there, plus snippets of panels or presentations I’ve done.

– Thanks for dropping by, Josh!

About my guest: Josh Vogt has been published in dozens of genre markets with work ranging from flash fiction to short stories to doorstopper novels that cover fantasy, science fiction, horror, humor, pulp, and more. His debut fantasy novel, Forge of Ashes, adds to the RPG Pathfinder Tales tie-in line. WordFire Press is also launching his urban fantasy series, The Cleaners, with Enter the Janitor (2015) and The Maids of Wrath (2016). You can find him at JRVogt.com or on Twitter @JRVogt. He’s a member of SFWA as well as the International Association of Media Tie-In Writers.

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