In which I am a crotchety old lady

A few bits of news:

1. The site header has finally been redone!

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The new header features: (a) a more up-to-date photo of The Author (as well as The Author’s Hair), (b) pictures that are actually lined up properly, and (c) some of The Author’s bad art (and one piece of good art by someone who is not The Author). Hooray!

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For those unfamiliar with the subjects of the drawings seen here, they’re all characters from Chosen. Left-to-right, we see Mr. Defrin, Kaine, Nicholas, Darek, and (suspiciously well-drawn) Hema.

2. Speaking of Chosen, for anyone who didn’t get the chance to read the sneak peak of the first few chapters, you can still do so here:

https://tjbaer.com/2015/06/12/a-sneak-peak-at-chosen-book-i/

For the uninitiated, Chosen is the first volume of my upcoming LGBT fantasy series, which I mention on this blog approximately every .25 seconds. I’ve actually made some changes to the first few chapters over the last few days, as well as adding in some new material to the “sneak peak” post above, so even if you’ve already had a look at it, now might be a good time to go have one more. Ya know. If you want to.

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3. For those who are unaware, the Chicago Blackhawks recently won the Stanley Cup, which is apparently kind of a big deal. To celebrate, they had a parade, a huge stadium event, and a general all-day avalanche of merrymaking downtown today.

As one of the few people in Chicago who doesn’t give any damns at all about professional sports, I found myself surrounded for much of the day by happy, chattering masses of people in Blackhawks jerseys, who got progressively happier, louder, and drunker as the day went on.

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Artist’s rendering. Strange how so many Blackhawks fans seem to be tiny and bald.

I’m thrilled that so many people were so very happy today, but as I’m a crotchety old lady who dislikes crowds, noise, youngins, and  especially crowds of noisy youngins, today was something of an exercise in self-control. And, I’m pleased to say, I managed to get through the entire day without once waving my cane over my head and shouting for everyone to keep it down / keep off my lawn, so I consider it a victory.

Incidentally, I seem to have a unique combination of traits that make me the absolute antithesis of other Chicagoans: I don’t care about sports, I prefer thin-crust pizza, and I always, always put ketchup on hot dogs (an offense punishable by death within the Chicago city limits).

What can I say? I’m just a rebel. A crotchety old lady rebel.

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Seen above: Me.


 

Edit: Apparently, this marks my 100th post on this blog! Wow and hooray and woot!

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I suggest we celebrate by having everyone immediately go and mail me one hundred $1 bills. Or, because I am exceptionally kindhearted, I will also accept $100 in any denomination of your choice. <3

I feel pretty and witty and…

Because “gay” really should go back to meaning “happy,” some smile-inducing LGBTQ tidbits from around the web:

1. Gandalf and Dumbledore got married across the street from the Westboro Baptist Church, and it was – wait for it – magical.

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http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2015/06/10/that-magical-moment-dumbledore-and-gandalf-got-married-across-from-westboro-baptist-church/

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Mazel tov, gentlemen. <3 Continue reading

A glorious announcement and a chance to bombard my inbox with awkward questions

Friends, I have some truly glorious news. I have accomplished something today that I never dreamed possible, something that I feel is the very pinnacle of human achievement.

I HAVE FINISHED ALL OF MY CHRISTMAS SHOPPING.

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My Christmas shopping style, it should be noted, generally involves a frenzied rush through the shops two days before Christmas, followed by a sleepless night of wrapping and papercuts and salty holiday tears.

But this year, THIS YEAR, I’ve actually managed to get things done semi-ahead of time, and even spread out my gift-buying so as to avoid my entire bank account being sucked into a black hole at the end of December.

Of course, I’ve still ended up broke, but at least I can take comfort in the fact that I would’ve been even more desperately broke had I not spaced out my holiday shopping throughout the months of October, November, and December.

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It’s the little victories.

Anyway. Despite my aforementioned impoverished status, I allowed myself two small Christmas purchases for myself – namely, season 5 of I Love Lucy and a massively dorky Snoopy shirt which I shall wear with pride until I inevitably spill something on it.

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Yeah, you wish you were cool like me.

In other news, in case you missed it, you can enter to win a signed, advanced reader copy of my upcoming LGBT fantasy novel, Chosen! Wow! Amazing! Stupendous! And other exclamatory words! Just head over to my official author page on Facebook and click “like,” and BAM, you’re entered.

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http://www.facebook.com/tjbaerofficial/

And really, what better way to celebrate the holiday season than by showering your love upon my Facebook page?

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…okay, there are literally thousands of better ways to celebrate, but will any of them potentially win you a copy of a book so glorious that even I, the author herself, cannot look upon it without being momentarily blinded by its sheer, dazzling brilliance?

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Ooooh. Dazzling.

I’m also pleased to announce that I’ve done a few more site renovations. The Books page has been spiffed up (you can now click on the book covers to go to each book’s individual page), and the main Chosen page now has some extra goodies on it as well.

Lastly, an important announcement!

I’m going to be doing a new segment on this blog called Ask Me Anything, which may be the least creative title in the long, sad history of uncreative titles. But it does at least give you a good idea of the general idea of the thing, which is that readers can use this opportunity to ask me questions, whether they be about writing, my books, or my opinions on politics, religion, or cheese. (Important note: I am lactose intolerant.)

So, head on over to my Contact page and send me your questions – I’ll answer them here on the blog (and link to your site as well, should you like me to do so). If you’d like to remain anonymous, that’s also completely fine, provided you agree to wear a mysterious hat and trenchcoat when sending me your questions.

SO. In conclusion. Hey, ask me some questions!

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In which tea is necessary (on your shirt).

You know what’s absolutely necessary?

tea

Tea.

And you know who needs to know that?

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Everyone.

“But T.J.,” you may say. “I am but one person. How can I possibly spread the holy word of tea unto the ignorant masses all by myself?”

Well, random internet person, I am here today to answer just that question.

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Visitors with Sherlock-levels of observation may have noticed that there’s a new tab at the top of the site now, with the mysterious moniker of “Store.” Whatever could that mean?

Allow me to enlighten you. Today, I’m pleased to announce the official opening of the T.J. Baer Shop over on CafePress, for all your merchandise-related-to-my-books needs!

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http://www.cafepress.com/tjbaershop

What’s available at present is a line of T-shirts featuring a quote from Mr. Defrin in Chosen, regarding the vital importance of tea in all human endeavors. A tea-tee, if you will. (Or even if you won’t.)

The front:

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The back:

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Show your support for tea, me, and Chosen (as well as the wise and wonderful Mr. Defrin) with your very own “Tea is always necessary” T-shirt. Because if we don’t tell the world of the true and mighty awesomeness of tea, how are they ever to know? (Also, if you don’t walk around with the URL to my blog on the back of your shirt, they may never find their way here to this mad little block of gif-filled cyberspace, and that would be a tragedy indeed.)

So, yes. In conclusion: Buy my shirts. And my books. Or just send me a wad of cash in the mail; whatever would be most convenient.

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In other news:

The weather in Chicago has taken a turn for the dismal as of late, going quite suddenly from sunny, eighty degree days to gray, cold, depressing weather that makes me wonder if there even is such a thing as the sun. I’m bearing it as best I can, though the fact that two days of gray weather has put me into such a major funk is probably not a good sign for the winter to come.

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/autumn angst

On the plus side, my apartment is warm and has a cat in it, as well as an impressive supply of tea. And tea, as I don’t believe I’ve ever mentioned before, is pretty great.

If only there were some sort of T-shirt available to express to the world my true feelings about tea, while at the same time shamelessly pimping my upcoming novel and this site…

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http://www.cafepress.com/tjbaershop

Reasonably priced fungus for all!

Incidentally: You may recall how I mentioned in June that my first novel, the curiously named and non-mushroom-related Talking About Fungus, was going to be available for the low-low Pride Month price of $0.99. Well, why celebrate Pride for only one month? Thus, I’m going to keep the Kindle Edition of TAF at this Super Awesome Amazing Did You Buy It Yet and If Not Why Not Price for the foreseeable future. Hurrah!

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Talking About Fungus (Kindle Edition) – $0.99

I’m also working on making a print edition of TAF available with the spiffy new cover, so look out for that in the coming days/weeks/months/however long it takes me to stop being lazy and edit the bloody thing.

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And now to go take a shower. …with seagulls.

Until next time.

TAF on A Blog Abroad

So, the supremely awesome Rebecca B. has made me a very happy author by pimping my book on her blog, “A Blog Abroad.”

A Blog Abroad | Book Pimping: Talking About Fungus <–Here.

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So, yes, this pleases me.

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http://www.ablogabroad.com/

If you’re into K-Pop, sarcasm, or good, intelligent writing on a number of topics, you should absolutely check out the rest of her blog. And click on some ads while you’re there, so she can get paid. Because getting paid is pretty great.

Also, buy my book.

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