Category Archives: Uncategorized

Saying Goodbye and Hello

If you’ve clicked on our Amazon links lately, you’ll notice…the Tir Athair series is no longer in print!

Don’t worry. This is intentional. We’re rebranding, leaning more heavily on the homesteading side of things, and we have lots of projects in the works.

If you don’t see updates here, follow our sister site at Ames Family Farm.

Thanks for your patience!

2016 in a Chaotic Nutshell

Finally, an update on what I’ve been up to. (Hint: it doesn’t have much to do with medieval fantasy but it’s pretty big.)

Ames Family Farm

Have you ever had a task you needed to do? And the more you put it off, the more it caused anxiety? Then months pass and you still haven’t done it?

For me, that’s writing a blog post.

I write almost daily, whether for Countryside or Backyard Poultry Magazines or one of my books. But writing about me? About what I’m up to, my goals or dreams? Or even the weekly farm mishap which resulted in animal poop spread everywhere it shouldn’t be? (Trust me, those are weekly.)

I haven’t been blogging. But I need to. Especially now that life is ramping up fast.

So, though I realize the well-intentioned futility of New Year’s Resolutions, it just happens to be New Year’s at the time that I decide I must blog weekly. Whether anyone reads it is another story. But I’ll do it. And I’ll try not to make every…

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What’s Up?

Have you met my alter ego, the urban farmer? Please jump on over to Ames Family Farm to learn where both the homesteading and writing careers go from here.

Ames Family Farm

missy2

Wow, it’s been a long time since I’ve sat down and written a post specifically for this blog. But I often get questions and comments from people seeking help with local zoning laws for livestock. Thank you for using Ames Family Farm as a resource.

I started Ames Family Farm about 2.5 years ago to secure the identity in case I proceeded with my crazy business ideas such as opening a greenhouse, creating a local homesteading educational circuit, or even just publishing a few books on the lifestyle. Soon after AFF went live, an editor from Backyard Poultry Magazine sought me out and invited me to blog for the magazine. I was flattered. After thinking it over for a short time I agreed. My posts have appeared on Backyard Poultry Magazine’s website for over two years now.

In October and November of the same year I became a published author…

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Writing Family: Worldbuilding and Homesteading

Angela Goff of Anonymous Legacy has interviewed me! Read her blog post to learn how my real-life homesteading efforts enhance the Tir Athair series.

Angela Goff

As writers, we often hear the old axioms: 

Write what you know. Write from life. Tell your story. 

But what does that really mean?

garlic with tomatoes larger

Over the years I’ve been privileged to meet some phenomenal people whose writing has grown out of their personal experiences, habits, hobbies and passions in remarkable ways. Hence this “Writing Family” series: a spotlight on various writers whose work has taken on new life from things they do every day.

One such person is medieval-based fantasy writer Marissa Ames. Her Tir Athair series exposes the wonderfully intricate medieval world, populated with complex characters navigating moral quandaries common to the human condition in all ages of the world. Yet writing isn’t her only superpower. She is also a hard-core homesteader with an impressive skill set, from making homemade mozzarella to raising chickens, not to mention being a stellar from-scratch cook.

With such a resume, it should surprise no one that she…

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2 ways to buy Nevada books in time for Christmas (with suggestions)

Books in the City of Trembling Leaves

ChristmasNVRelax—you still have time to buy books for Christmas without paying shipping fees or worrying that they won’t arrive in time. These options are for—

  1. Out-of-town family and friends who have Kindles or Nooks (or the free reading Kindle app on their computers or smartphones). Both Amazon and Barnes & Noble have e-book gift-giving options; just look for the “Give/buy as gift” button. If providing the recipient’s email address is a problem, Amazon will let you use your own. (I’m thinking you could print out the email and put it in a card or stocking . . . )
  2. Family and friends who live around here. For these, I’m talking about our local bookstores, which are suddenly competitive with the online booksellers when you absolutely have to have a tangible gift for someone to open at Christmas and you haven’t bought it yet.

Sorry, you’re on your own with…

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Turkey Legs? I Don’t Think So

Short, succinct, and totally awesome insight by author A.D. Trosper regarding medieval reinactments and the true food of the middle ages.

A.D.Trosper

As you all know I recently attended the Great Plains Renaissance Festival. As per the usual ren fest food offerings, there were turkey legs which people carried around as they munched on them. And I wondered, why turkey legs?

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Well sure we all have the image of the pompous lord or king chowing down on a large hunk of meat while throwing bones behind him for the dogs to fight over.  And sure there is a painting of Henry VIII holding a drumstick of some sort. And of course because its a large drumstick it must be a turkey, right? It couldn’t possibly be from a larger European game bird.

Well, it wasn’t turkey and nobody in Europe was dining on turkey in medieval times. How do I know this? Because turkeys are indigenous to the Americas. The only people eating turkey during those times were the native peoples of…

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Darrion by Marissa Ames

Voracious Reader

Today I am reviewing Darrion by Marissa  Ames.

darrion

 

Blurb: A short story set in the world of Tir Athair. The first time Darrion struck her, Lana loaded her wagon and left Cynegil. Two-year-olds should not hit like that. She draped the windows of her cottage with dense cloth and worked by a single candle. If she timed her flight well, she could pass through the market during changing of the guard. In another era, under another king’s reign, Lana would have rejoiced that Darrion had inherited his father’s gift. Now, if Lana does not present her son to the king, she could lose her head.

My Review: This short little prequel accomplished what it set out to do, sucked me in and made me want more. As with most of these little novellas or prequels it is way too short. Lucky for me I have the next book to…

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My First Reading Challenge

Alright, it’s scheduled and it’s going to happen!  Our first reading challenge (of many.)  The first will take place during the month of May, with all entries due by midnight, Pacific time, on May 31st.

You may get an early start on your reading!  Just get your entry in by May 31st.  Our first book will be Edgar Wilde and the Lost Grimoire, by Paul Ramey!

(See that link?  It takes you straight to Amazon.com, where the book is only $1.99.  Or you can go to Nine Muse Press‘ site itself for a free sample chapter, and the book at the same price in Kindle and non-Kindle formats.)

Rules:

1. Read the book assigned, in whichever way is compatible with your lifestyle and e-reader.

2. Review your book on Amazon or Goodreads, or both!  An additional review on your personal blog earns you an additional entry.  (This can be a cut/paste review.  It just needs to be there.)  3 reviews posted… 3 entries.

3. Link to your reviews by the end date, so we can count your entry.  Post your link either on my Facebook author page, the Facebook event page, or in the comments to the contest post on this blog.

4. Refer the contest to friends.  If your friend posts a review, then messages me on my Facebook page saying, “‘Your Name’ sent me,” you get yet another entry for each friend referred!

Prizes: These will vary from contest to contest, but you can expect things like future e-reading material from other very worthy authors!

Ask all the questions you want!  If you would like an invite to the Facebook event, and a chance to win Edgar Wilde free to the first five people to respond, simply “Like” my Facebook page and type “EW Contest” on the wall.  You will then receive an invite, a day before the contest is underway.