Category Archives for "Photos"

Nov 11

Out There In The Fall

By Melinda VanLone | Imagination , Photos , Thoughts



As some of you know, I used to live in Dallas. I spent many years there. So long, in fact, that I’d forgotten there was such a thing as seasons. Then I moved to Philly for a bit, and discovered winter. Can’t say I liked it much. Snow shoveling is not my idea of a good time.

In Rockville for my second Fall season, I find myself once again fascinated by the actual change of seasons. I know, it sounds odd. But in Dallas there’s really only two seasons: Good God It’s Hot, and If We Stay In The Shade We Won’t Need The Air Conditioner. I didn’t own a coat. Or a snow shovel. The trees went from fully clothed to an abrupt de-robing somewhere in February. One day they had leaves, the next, they’d shriveled and died with no real warning and certainly no real change of color. You didn’t really have to clear the leaves from your lawn. The wind would blow them away. At least, that was my approach.

So now in Rockville, the leaves take their sweet time clinging to the trees. Hanging out in their Sunday best. Painting the landscape as early as September and lingering even now in November. It’s awfully nice of them, I have to say. Though I can tell we’re one good windstorm away from naked trees, I did manage to get one more glimpse at nature’s show.

Yes, I went Out.

It was nice!

Now back to words, words, words. Tarian is in trouble, and when she’s in trouble the rest of the country is in trouble too. She has a way of having global problems, rather than personal ones. This time I’m not entirely sure how she’s going to save us all. Neither is she, I have a feeling.


Nov 04

NaNo is here!

By Melinda VanLone | Imagination , Photos , Thoughts



Yes, it’s that time of year again. Leaves are falling, the air is chilling, my fingers are cramping. I’m writing more words. Lots and lots of words. New words never seen before. Well, in precisely this order anyway. I’ve been revising so much the last few months that writing new words feels strange and wonderful. I have about 8,000 words so far towards a novella code-named Calliope. Yes, it’s a story from Calliope’s point of view. She’s on a quest to get to know someone who will be very important in the stories to come. Someone Ancient. Fiery, even. For those in the know, I hope that’s something for you to look forward to.

If you don’t know who Calliope is, I direct you to Stronger Than Magic, the first book in the Xannon series.

I hope you will enjoy this peak into Tarian’s world through someone else’s eyes. My goal is to continue giving these glimpses in between the main novels, so that the complete picture of the world of Xannon is painted and so the people important to Tarian get a bit of the spotlight.

I’ll have an update for you next Monday. In the meantime, carry on.



Oct 31

Jasper’s Not Impressed With Your Costume

By Melinda VanLone | Imagination , Photos , Thoughts



Or maybe he’s not impressed with his own. Whatever. Happy Halloween to all the ghouls, goblins, beasties, nurses, kumquats, devils, ketchup bottles, pirates, ghosts, angels, purple princesses, firemen, spidermen, batmen, cat women, giant strawberries, fairies, roaring twenties flappers, wood sprites in hooker shoes, and, of course, the Great Pumpkins.

May you all forever grasp onto your sense of  wonder and childish delight, this night and every night after.


Oct 28

Fall is Falling

By Melinda VanLone | Imagination , Photos , Thoughts


As I head into my writer cave, I can’t help but notice how cold my nose is. And my toes. Fall fell while I wasn’t looking. I should have known, because they started building the ice rink in the town square. Ice! It took me by surprise because my head is still back in summer. In Texas, it’s a perpetual summer with maybe a month of cooler non-summer. Followed by more summer. This changing of seasons is still new to me. On the one hand, it sure is pretty. On the other, it sure does point out that the wheel is turning. Time is passing. I’m getting older. Trees are going bald. Flowers are tucking themselves away. Birds are packing it in and heading to warmer spots.

It kind of makes me sad. I’ve always been a fan of Spring, myself. Renewal. Awakening. Promise. Hope. Life.

But the fall leaves sure are pretty. So there’s that.


Oct 25

Fall Stream

By Melinda VanLone | Imagination , Photos , Thoughts


A benefit of hauling my behind to the Outdoors, besides the chance to breath fresh air and force my body into positions not supported by a chair, is scenes like these. If you ever visit the DC area, do take half a day and check out Great Falls National Park. It’s $5 to park. They have picnic tables, and tons of walking  trails. And oh yeah, the view is pretty fantastic.

NaNoWriMo starts in 6 days! Am I ready? Just about. Probably more ready than I’ve ever been. I’m limbering up my fingers, buying extra coffee, and planning a lot of crock pot meals. If you have any awesome crock pot recipes feel free to share! The hubby gets tired of pot roast.


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