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Celestial Goldfish

January 2017

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Jan. 20th, 2017

Celestial Goldfish

Late January News & Publications

Originally published at BethCato.com. You can comment here or there.

This has been the January of Let’s Get a Million Things Done as I get ready to go on a big trip and to write my next book. Weird fact: I have a novel outline that’s 11,300 words in length. I have never had an outline that comprehensive, and I find it both intimidating and comforting.

Here are some new links to end the month!

Nice mentions:
– Rocket Stack Rank included my Galactic Games story “Minor Hockey Gods of Barstow Station” on their Hugo consideration list!
– Also on the subject of awards, Jason Sanford gave Breath of Earth a nod over in his recommendations.
– Fiction Unbound delighted me by mentioning Breath of Earth as a way to fight pre-inauguration blues. (It will also prove effective post-inauguration.)

New short story:
“Left Hand Awakens” at Perihelion SF

New poetry:
– “The Flesh is Weak” in Eye to the Telescope: Robots
– “Being Human” in Star*line 40.1
– “A Net to Snare a Unicorn” and “Preventative Measures” in Mythic Delirium 3.3

Oh yeah, and remember that collection I have coming out in November? You can preorder directly from the publisher for a nice discount right now! It’ll be available to order on Amazon and other sites later this year.

Red Dust and Dancing Horses

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Jan. 18th, 2017

Celestial Goldfish

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

Originally published at BethCato.com. You can comment here or there.

You know I love maple-flavored sweets. Maple works in a savory way, too–and creates meaty magic in this recipe for Maple Chicken Thighs.

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

This is some seriously good chicken. It marinates for up to a day in the fridge, resulting in tender, lightly-sweetened chicken. It does not create a heavy glaze and it’s not like teriyaki. It is… just plain delicious.

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

Honestly, I think the leftovers are even better. This chicken is phenomenal cut up in a salad or used with a touch of dressing in a wrap.

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

This is yet another recipe inspired from the cookbook Maple by Katie Webster. (Seriously, if you love maple, get this book.) The original version of this recipe included shallots (which I never buy) and apples and pears (which I knew my husband wouldn’t want with his supper).

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

Give this chicken recipe a try, and discover a new way to love maple!

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

These chicken thighs need to marinate for at least 12 hours, so plan ahead! The sweet-savory marinade penetrates the chicken, creating wonderful flavor and tenderness. The leftovers are phenomenal! Modified from the cookbook Maple by Katie Webster.

  • 3/4 cup apple cider or apple juice
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 3 green onions; white parts only, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 1/2 to 3 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs, each thigh cut into thirds

The day or night before serving

In a medium bowl, whisk together the apple cider/juice, maple syrup, vinegar, white portions of green onions, ginger, thyme, salt, and pepper. In a gallon-size re-sealable bag, place the cut-up chicken. Pour in the marinade and seal the bag.

Refrigerate the bag for 12-24 hours, turning the bag every so often.

To cook

Preheat oven at 425-degrees. Place the chicken in a 13x9 baking dish with all or some of the marinade; the chicken shouldn't be fully covered.

Bake for about 40 minutes, turning chicken once at the halfway point.

Chicken is fabulous fresh and as leftovers! Cooked chicken can also be portioned and frozen.

OM NOM NOM!

 

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

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Jan. 15th, 2017

Celestial Goldfish

Sunday Quote is now 37

Originally published at BethCato.com. You can comment here or there.

“Substitute ‘damn’ every time you’re inclined to write ‘very;’ your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.”
~Mark Twain

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Jan. 13th, 2017

Celestial Goldfish

COVER REVEAL: Red Dust & Dancing Horses & Other Stories

Originally published at BethCato.com. You can comment here or there.

It’s my 37th birthday, and I am sharing something awesome with the world: the cover of my short story and poetry collection, out this November from Fairwood Press!

Red Dust and Dancing Horses

The artist is Kazuhiko Nakamura. The collection will include several of my steampunk horse stories, so this cover is absolutely perfect. Look for a full table of contents and preorder links in the coming months!

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Jan. 11th, 2017

Celestial Goldfish

Bready or Not: Five-Minute Spicy Mexican Fudge

Originally published at BethCato.com. You can comment here or there.

I am here today to preach about fudge inclusiveness as I share a recipe for Five Minute Spicy Mexican Fudge.

Bready or Not: Five-Minute Spicy Mexican Fudge

I do not sneer at some fudges as being “better” or “real.” To me, it does not matter if the fudge is produced on stove top with a candy thermometer, or with a jar of marshmallow cream, or melted in the microwave.

When it comes to fudge, what matters is this:
Does the fudge taste good? Is the texture pleasing to the palate? Does it make me mutter, “Calories be darned to heck,” and reach for another piece?

Bready or Not: Five-Minute Spicy Mexican Fudge

That is the criteria by which fudge should be judged.

That said, I present to you a fudge that is zapped in the microwave and assembled all of five minutes. Let it set in the fridge for a few hours, and ta-da! You have a fudge that will keep well for days. It also holds up well at room temperature if you’re serving it at a party.

Bready or Not: Five-Minute Spicy Mexican Fudge

The Mexican spice element comes from cinnamon and cayenne pepper. I used the minimal amount of pepper, 1/8 teaspoon, which provides complexity but absolutely no discernible heat. Tweak the scorch level to your personal taste. Do, however, sprinkle coarse salt to add some lovely contrast.

Bready or Not: Five-Minute Spicy Mexican Fudge

Originally featured at the Holy Taco Church. Recipe adapted from Wine and Glue.

Bready or Not: Five-Minute Spicy Mexican Fudge

Bready or Not: Five-Minute Spicy Mexican Fudge

The fudge comes together in mere minutes in the microwave, creating dense, chocolatey fudge that lasts well at room temperature or in longer-term storage in the fridge. Adjust the amount of cayenne pepper to your preferred heat level!

  • 3 cups milk chocolate morsels (bag and a half)
  • 1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp cinnamon (Mexican cinnamon preferred!)
  • 1/8-3/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • kosher or coarse sea salt

Line an 8 or 9-inch square pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper. Lightly grease it.

Use a microwave or sauce pan to melt together the chocolate and sweetened condensed milk. If you're using the microwave, use short bursts of 20-30 seconds and stir well between each.

Once the chocolate mix is smooth, pour in the vanilla extract, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper. (Note that 1/8 teaspoon provides a little flavor, not much heat, so add cayenne and taste to adjust to desired heat level.)

Immediately pour the fudge into the prepared pan. Smooth out to edges and sprinkle salt all over the top. Let set in fridge at least four hours before cutting. Keeps in covered dish in fridge for upwards of a week.

OM NOM NOM!

 

Bready or Not: Five-Minute Spicy Mexican Fudge

Jan. 8th, 2017

Celestial Goldfish

Sunday Quote summons Steinbeck again

Originally published at BethCato.com. You can comment here or there.

“I’ll get the book done if I just set one day’s work in front of the last day’s work. That’s the way it comes out. And that’s the only way it does.”
~John Steinbeck

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Jan. 6th, 2017

Celestial Goldfish

The Impulse Buy Newsletter – And a Forthcoming Giveaway!

Originally published at BethCato.com. You can comment here or there.

Impulse Buy

My fellow Harper Voyager Impulse author Liana Brooks runs a great newsletter called Impulse Buy. Every Tuesday, she highlights books that are on sale for under $5. This month, it features a giveaway of Chuck Wendig’s novel Invasive. Next month… I’ll be giving away a Kindle copy of the second book in my Clockwork Dagger duology, Clockwork Crown!

Sign up for Impulse Buy over here. Good luck!

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Jan. 4th, 2017

Celestial Goldfish

Bready or Not: Maple Cranberry Pecan Granola

Originally published at BethCato.com. You can comment here or there.

Let’s start off 2017 with something delicious and healthy: Maple Cranberry Pecan Granola.

Bready or Not: Maple Cranberry Pecan Granola

It’s super easy to make granola at home, and wow, is it cheaper than buying the stuff at the store. If you have a nearby store that sells oats in bins, that’s the way to go–my Sprouts often puts their oats on sale, too.

Bready or Not: Maple Cranberry Pecan Granola

It’s easy to customize this to your preferences. Switch out the pecans for walnuts. Use raisins or dried blueberries for the cranberries. Whatever. Make it your own.

If you need gluten-free food, that’s easy, too–just use gluten-free oats! Ta-da.

Bready or Not: Maple Cranberry Pecan Granola

Eat this granola by itself, or with milk or almond milk as cereal, or as a topping for yogurt or ice cream. Heck, you could even use it in cookie or granola bar recipes.

However you eat it, know that it’s delicious–and good for you, too!

Bready or Not: Maple Cranberry Pecan Granola

Bready or Not: Maple Cranberry Pecan Granola

Bready or Not: Maple Cranberry Pecan Granola

A Bready or Not Original! This healthy granola is great by the handful, mixed into milk as cereal, or as a topping for yogurt or ice cream. Use gluten-free oats to make this gluten-free. Double or quadruple this recipe to jar it for gifts.

  • 2 cups rolled (old-fashioned) oats
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 Tb avocado or olive oil
  • sprinkle of salt
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries

Preheat oven at 325-degrees. Line a large, rimmed cookie sheet with foil and apply nonstick spray.

In a large mixing bowl, stir together all of the ingredients EXCEPT the cranberries. Spread the mixture on the cookie sheet. Bake for about 20 minutes, gently stir the granola, and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, until it's crisp and golden. Let set out on stove top to cool; it will continue to crisp up.

Once it is room temperature, gently stir in the cranberries. Store in a sealed container up to 1 month.

OM NOM NOM!

Bready or Not: Maple Cranberry Pecan Granola

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Jan. 3rd, 2017

Celestial Goldfish

New Publications at the Start of 2017!

Originally published at BethCato.com. You can comment here or there.

Well, hi there. Things have been awfully busy here. I have a wee bit of breathing space between major deadlines, so I’m trying to get a thousand other things done. It looks like the next few months will stay pretty intense, too.

I sent out my newsletter today. If you’re signed up, check your spam folder! You don’t want to miss my Apple Snickerdoodle Bar recipe. If you’re not signed up, what the heck is wrong with you you can remedy that by looking at the right hand side of BethCato.com and putting your email address in that convenient little box. I’ll be revealing the cover of my new story collection on the Cato Log on January 12th, so sign up now so you won’t miss that!

I had several new works released in November and December. Here’s the latest:

Stories
10 Things Newly Manifested Wizards Should Never Do at Daily Science Fiction
– reprint podcast of “Overlap” at StarshipSofa

Poetry
– “A Net to Snare a Unicorn” and “Preventative Measures” in Mythic Delirium 3.3
At the Very Least in Grievous Angel

Geeking Out
A Binge-Watcher’s Guide to the Great British Bake Off at B&N SFF Blog

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Jan. 2nd, 2017

Celestial Goldfish

Goals for 2017

Originally published at BethCato.com. You can comment here or there.

2017 is here! I did pretty well with my 2016 goals, though I am frustrated with the amount of short fiction that I wrote and kept on submission. I haven’t had so few stories in circulation since I first started writing year-round in 2008. I’ve heard magazine editors lament that this is what happens to authors once they have novel contracts. Even so, I hope to be more prolific in 2017.

Here are my goals for the new year:

calloffire_500x3321) Write a new novel in the first part of the year.

2) Complete the next two edit stages for Call of Fire (copy-edits and first pass pages).

3) Prepare comprehensive marketing plan for release of Call of Fire in August. This includes regular updates on my personal blog, scheduling interviews and blog posts for other blogs and sites, and seizing other viable opportunities.

a) Don’t have a mental breakdown.

4) Release Call of Fire in August.

a) Don’t have a mental breakdown.

5) Write a new story (fiction or nonfiction) or poem each month, if balanced with novel obligations. Aim to have at least ten works on submission at all times.

6) Read at least 100 books during 2017 and post reviews for each.

7) Attend several conventions and book festivals; at this point, that includes the Tucson Festival of Books (March 12th), Phoenix Comicon (May 25th-27th), and World Fantasy in San Antonio November (2nd-5th).

8) Develop concepts for new novels.

9) Be honest with myself about my stress and personal limits. Don’t hold it all inside. Reach out to writer friends. Let my agent know what is going on. Take time out for my husband, son, cat, and family. Read. Bake. Go thrift store shopping.

10) Don’t give up. I’ve come a long way in the past year and there’s plenty of mountain left to climb. If tired of climbing, use dynamite.


Along the lines of goal #3, my January newsletter will be sent out tomorrow! Sign up to get the previous month’s recipes all in one spot along with the latest book news.

 

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