needmilkformycookies:”Legion” & “Wrex” by Thoroly-Good…


“Legion” & “Wrex” by Thoroly-Good Cosplay & Dashy

these are the best ME related cosplays I have ever seen in my life.

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brianmichaelbendis:Iron Fist and Luke Cage Photographed by Ron…


Iron Fist and Luke Cage Photographed by Ron Gejon Photography

The family that cosplays together stays together.

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cosplayingwhileblack:XCharacter: GyradosSeries: Pokemon i…



Character: Gyrados

Series: Pokemon

i don’t know what a Gyrados is, but that dress took some mad skills and looks awesome.

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ericafailsatlife:I’m catching up on commissions. I… I…


I’m catching up on commissions.

I… I might not be able to ever look at anything else ever.

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sai-zar-drancher:well…for the work of a week…it looks great…


well…for the work of a week…it looks great XD

Spider-Gwen, Spider-Gwen
Does whatever a spider .. uh… ken…

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drdavidmrmack:11×17 print of this version of Neil Gaiman Poem…


11×17 print of this version of Neil Gaiman Poem collaboration- Now available here!

The other prints have sold out, and @neverwear is offering a reduced special advance price here:

Neil Gaiman reading and discussing the origin of the poem and collaboration here:


here is the entire text of the beautiful poem Neil composed:

I will write in words of fire.

I will write them on your skin.

I will write about desire.

Write beginnings, write of sin.

You’re the book I love the best,

your skin only holds my truth,

you will be a palimpsest

lines of age rewriting youth.

You will not burn upon the pyre.

Or be buried on the shelf.

You’re my letter to desire:

And you’ll never read yourself

I will trace each word and comma

As the final dusk descends,

You’re my tale of dreams and drama,

Let us find out how it ends.

-Neil Gaiman

A beautiful poem of love and creation set to beautiful art 

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Post Apocalyptic Disney Princesses at Torucon 2014 This is just…

Post Apocalyptic Disney Princesses at Torucon 2014 

This is just a few of the amazing girls we had in our group!

Jasmine – Batbunny Cosplay
Merida - Studio Eevia
Pocahontas – Eirin
Aurora – Timeforlemontea
Snow White – Blitzhellion Cosplay
Mulan – Ramona
Ariel – Starbit Cosplay
Elsa – Santatory

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My Mass Effect 3 Liara T’Soni cosplay.

First time putting the make up with the costume and I’m really happy it all came together so well. This was another make up test I decided to do as practise before PAX AUS 2014. I’m glad it worked!

Photo and make up by Jen of Soylent Cosplay

this looked like some high resolution screenshot. omfg

That’s what I thought it was at first, too. Holy crap.

Asari cosplayers have the sickest makeup game. i once asked a girl at con to tell me the secret to “no seams” when they apply their cowls. apparently its tiny spatulas.

ho lee cow. That is amazing head make up/wear.

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Life is, indeed, too short to not be…

Life is, indeed, too short to not be Batman.

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Thursday Prompt: Finding Inspiration for Your Mood Board


Click to Enlarge

Tuesday we talked about the benefits of using Mood Boards. So, today’s writing/creative prompt is simple and fun.

Click the “Pick your Pic” button below, and a number will pop up. Look for the number on the photo that matches (click on the picture to enlarge), and think of the first mood or character or setting that comes to mind. It can be a single word; it can be a sentence; or it can be the start to a story or painting or piece of jewelry or whatever. You can even run the generator a few times and make a story from the combination. Have fun with it.

Leave your picture number and thoughts in the comments!

Mood Boards for Creative Types


Mood boards can carry a specific tone or element.

Recently I listened to a podcast that mentioned mood boards. I’ve heard of the idea, of course, but never in the way that author Jenny Han explained them as a guest on This Creative Life.

I was intrigued by her ideas and wanted to know more.

When I did a Google search, I learned that mood boards are popular for interior design, graphic design, gardens, weddings, book covers, and so many other things. Since QFT is devoted to writers and artists and the creative ways we look at life, it sounded like an idea worth exploring!

There are a lot of ways to create mood boards. They can be done the old fashioned way, like a middle-school collage made with poster board and a glue stick. Or, I think Pinterest does this really well for some people. I’ve saved an interesting image or two in a secret writing folder, but I’ve never tried a specific board for an entire book.

Pinterest is amazing, but it can also be a rabbit hole and any time I go on there for one thing, I’m distracted by all the pretty home décor and games I can play with my kids and parties I can throw. For me, Pinterest isn’t a great tool when I’m supposed to be focusing. I also think there are benefits to having a board that you can see hanging in your office or access without an Internet connection.

I dug around the web, and there are some great posts for getting started. Here are two that I found helpful. I’ve included the main points, but you should check them out for pictures and greater detail.

This one looks at different ways specific mood boards can be used for writing (or any other creative pursuit):

  • Make a board for each character in the story
  • Focus on the setting
  • Ignite a general story idea


These ideas can be used as a whole, or within individual mood boards for each theme/topic/element.


A mood board can be used to inspire creativity in general.

And this post looks at how mood boards can boost your writing productivity:

  • Use it to set the mood
  • Get into the heads of your readers
  • Look for tension and conflict


One of Jenny Han’s main points on the podcast was how she uses boards to determine the tone of her novels. I know some people do this with music. Personally, I love the idea of having a visual reminder of the tone, but you could definitely add lyrics to your mood board or whatever else works for you.

As far as characters, I have a writer friend (hi Sabrina!) who chooses not only an actor to represent each of her characters, but an exact character that inspires her. Her example was, “He isn’t James Spader—he’s James Spader as Raymond Reddington from The Blacklist.” I think being that specific can really help to know how your own characters will act in certain situations, adding to the overall mood. So, slap a picture of Raymond Reddington onto your mood board for added inspiration.

A few other reasons you might want to use a mood board:

  • World building—much more than just creating a setting, mood boards can help build a world from scratch, especially for something like steampunk or science fiction that might combine eclectic elements from different genres.
  • If you’re writing historical fiction, you can use it to keep costumes, settings, buildings, etc. in front of you.
  • Use it to create a timeline/chronology of events through pictures, etc.
  • Elicit writer emotion/delve into the subconscious–play around with pictures that draw you in, and find out if there are themes that interest you.

Especially as emerging creative-types, I think mood boards can be a fantastic tool for writer’s block or motivation. And I love the idea that playing around with different media–pictures, music, videos, poetry, quotes, whatever–can be the springboard you need to get that story going.

So, I made a quick one for the project I’m working on.


The mood board for the novel I’m currently writing.

Can you guess what it’s about?

I think mood boards probably work better when you’re starting out than when you’re almost finished with a project, but it did give me some ideas for revisions and left me with a sense that my novel is probably a little weirder and more disturbing  than I had noticed while writing it. At the very least, I’ve been convinced that I should try working with mood boards as I start my next project.

What do you think about mood boards? In what ways do you use them for your creative processes?

Earthsong: Volume II, Chapter V

Earthsong-chapter5coverContinue reading Crystal Yates’ Earthsong, Chapter Five.

Or if you’re just joining us or missed any previous sections, start at the archives.

Happy reading!

Feature Friday: Folk and Fairy Tale Resources Posted about QFT!

This week our website and blog were mentioned at Folk and Fairy Tale Resources!

They said, “If you like your fairy tales with a mixture of science fiction, fantasy, and curiosities, then Quantum Fairy Tales might be the place for you. They have a unique and interesting blend of genres, and they seem to be open to writing experimentation.” Sounds about right!  Check out their post HERE.

Pretty great, right?

We poked around a bit, and found that their site has a lot of different articles and publishing opportunities dedicated to folk and fairy tales. Check them out!

Thank you for linking to us, Folk and Fairy Tale Resources!

Happy Book Birthday to The Perilous Journey of the Not-So-Innocuous Girl!

The day has finally arrived, and we couldn’t be more thrilled to celebrate Leigh Statham, our very own Clockwork Gnome, and the release of her debut, The Perilous Journey of the Not-So-Innocuous Girl!

As someone who is currently devouring the book, I’m so thrilled to introduce it. It’s a great voice from a great new author, it’s action-packed, has some of the best imagery I’ve read, and a protagonist who actually grows and evolves throughout the book. If you’re not into steampunk, don’t let that deter you! Its characters, plot, and setting will draw you in, and I really believe it will resonate with anyone who appreciates great storytelling.

And look at this cover. Can you believe how amazing it is?

The-Perilous-JourneyIt must also be acknowledged that real-life-Leigh is sharp-witted and hilarious. She’s so dang smart, guys. This might sound intimidating, but she’s also incredibly warm, generous, and determined to make life better for everyone around her. She watches out for the underdog and devotes so much time and energy to important causes that make a difference.

If ever there was anyone who had something important and entertaining to say to the world, this is your girl. You’ll love her. Trust me.

But you don’t have to take my word for it. Here are a few snippets from my favorite reviews on Goodreads:

“If I got to choose the next Disney princess, Marguerite would be it. She is smart, beautiful, and spunky… Not only was the story enjoyable and suspenseful, but the steampunk imagery was AWESOME! This book was a lot of fun and a great read.” – Sarah

“For me, The Perilous Journey of The Not-So-Innocuous Girl had somewhat of a Doctor Who feel about it, and perhaps that’s why I enjoyed it so much…If you love a good adventure story you’ll want to check this out.” – Ash

“This is a masterful steampunk story inspired by real events, and absolutely worth a read.” – Cora

Check out the full reviews HERE.

So, get your hands on a copy of The Perilous Journey of the Not so Innocuous Girl today! You can grab it from The King’s English or Amazon. Or try your local bookstore—if they don’t have it, request it!

If you’ve already received the book, please post a review on Amazon and Goodreads. Help her have a great first week, because everybody’s birthday week should be awesome!

Happy book birthday, Leigh! I hope the day is as awesome as you deserve!

About the book:  Lady Marguerite lives a life most 17th century French girls can only dream of: Money, designer dresses, suitors and a secure future. Except, she suspects her heart may be falling for her best friend Claude, a common smithie in the family’s steam forge. When Claude leaves for New France in search of a better life, Marguerite decides to follow him and test her suspicions of love. Only the trip proves to be more harrowing than she anticipated. Love, adventure and restitution await her, if she can survive the voyage. You can check out the first chapter HERE.


leighLeigh Statham was raised in the wilds of rural Idaho, but found her heart in New York City. She worked as a waitress, maid, artist, math teacher, nurse, web designer, art director, thirty-foot inflatable pig and mule wrangler before she settled down in the semi-quiet role of wife, mother and writer. She resides in North Carolina with her husband, four children, five chickens and two suspected serial killer cats. If the air is cool and the sun is just coming up over the horizon, you can find her running the streets of her small town, plotting her next novel with the sort of intensity that will one day get her hit by a car.

Connect with the Author: Website |Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads


The Dragons of Literature

So there’s been quite that kerfuffle in the social medias of late about “Keeping YA Kind.”

Sounds nice, doesn’t it? We should all be kind.

But perhaps some background is in order.

A certain YA author, who famously writes about children who deal with violence, horror, and other traumas of identity, but who equally famously does not include many women, commented in an interview that he did not understand women.

This may seem innocuous, but put it back into context. It means he finds dealing with shape-changing monsters more easily understandable than women.

The author, almost certainly, meant nothing offensive by his statements. But in a way, that compounds the problem. It seemed so innocuous, so innocent to make women more unknowable than a monster.

And that’s why some women had a problem with it. And they pointed it out. They didn’t call for boycotts. They specifically called for more discussion as the answer.

But people were so upset! How dare you say that an award-winning author does or said something problematic? That’s unkind! And we need YA to be kind!

And that’s the origin of the movement. Really, it’s about silencing people who would indicate that things are not perfect. It’s about not making a fuss. It’s about not saying that things could be better.

And here’s the thing that really gets me about it.

Art and literature were never about kindness. Art can be kind, to be sure, but when you insist that art be kind, you are closing off the great majority of art’s beauty. Art and literature are about changing the world. Art often shows us what is ugly in the world. It shows us the monsters. And when we understand what is real about the monsters, we can defeat them.

Neil Gaiman paraphrased G. K. Chesterton by saying “Fairy tales are more than true – not because they tell us dragons exist, but because they tell us dragons can be beaten.”

But if we never face those dragons, if we pretend those dragons don’t exist, we can never beat them.

So yes, a famous author said something problematic. Does that make his writing bad? Does that mean you should never read him? No it doesn’t. H. P. Lovecraft was a vile racist. His stories are still worth reading. Thomas Jefferson and George Washington owned human beings; but they still did great things that we benefit from today.

But if we revere those people without a thought to the problematic aspects of their lives, we become complicit. We say that owning slaves was irrelevant and being racist is unimportant. And despite what the people accomplished, those things aren’t true.

So when an author, even a good one who has written things that helped people, says something problematic, it does no one any good to ignore that he said that thing. It doesn’t diminish the good he did, but the problems must still be seen for what they are.

Otherwise we’re all food for dragons.

Earthsong: Volume II, Chapter IV

Earthsongch4Continue reading Crystal Yates’ Earthsong, Chapter Four.

Or if you’re just joining us or missed any previous sections, start at the archives.

Happy reading!

Writing Prompt: Show, Don’t Tell

For this week’s writing prompt, I wanted to piggy back off my latest blog post about showing vs. telling.

Here are a couple of “telling” sentences. I challenge you to incorporate description into these sentences and leave your best one in the comments. Have fun!

1. Sarah ran down the labyrinth path, passing strange creatures as she tried to rescue her brother from the Goblin King.

2. Ron dropped a lizard’s eye into the potion, plugged his nose, and drank it.

3. Hal opened the airlock and jettisoned Dave into space.

4. Make up your own descriptive sentence.

Once Upon a Time: Showing vs. Telling

I’m going to let you in on a little secret when I read submissions. Whenever I read a story that starts out with the phrase “Once upon a time…,” I automatically prepare myself for a story that tells rather than shows. What do I mean by this? Novelist and short story writer Emma Darwin does a great job of explaining:

SHOWING is for making the reader feel they’re in there: feel as in smell, touch, see, hear, believe the actual experience of the characters. As John Gardner says, it’s by being convincing in the reality and detail of how we evoke our imagined world – by what the characters do and say – that we persuade the reader to read the story we’re telling as if it really happened, even though we all know it didn’t. That means working with the immediate physical and emotional actions and experience of the characters: your rage beating in your ears, the wind whipping your cheeks, a beggar clutching at your coat. The more I talk about Showing, the more I call it evoking.

TELLING is for covering the ground, when you need to, as a narrator (whether the narrator is a character, or an implied, external narrator in a third person narrative). It’s supplying information: the storyteller saying “Once upon a time”, or “A volunteer army was gathered together”, or “The mountains were covered in fine, volcanic ash”. So it’s a little more removed from the immediate experience of the moment. The more I talk about Telling, the more I call it informing.

In her article, Darwin gives great examples of showing/evoking vs. telling/informing and how talks about how to use each effectively. This article is a great resource for improving this aspect of writing.

In reading submissions at Quantum Fairy Tales, I find that one of the top reasons a story is rejected is due to too much telling/informing throughout a story. Not all cases are like this, but this issue is a common one we encounter.

So, if you find yourself wanting to start a story with “Once upon a time…,” think about your reasoning behind this type of start. Does your reason involve unloading a bunch of information on the reader right at the beginning (most likely, you want to give a lot of background information about the story)? If so, this probably isn’t the best choice. Think about another way to approach your story that focuses on showing/evoking.

Earthsong: Volume 1, Chapter III

earthsongchapter3coverContinue reading Crystal Yates’ Earthsong, Chapter Three.

Or if you’re just joining us or missed any previous sections, start at the archives.

Happy reading!