Feb 16, 2023 | Uncategorized |
Hello, all. Just a reminder that I will be at Boskone 60 this weekend. I’m not on any panels, but I will be reading in the Broad Universe RFR on Saturday morning at 9:30am (eep). Also, if you’ve been meaning to pick up a copy of An Elf’s Equations, I am bringing the LAST of my stock, all eight copies, so swing by the Broad Universe table in the Dealer’s Room, where I am likely to be when not attending Nalo Hopkinson’s panels.
Full disclosure: you can get 2nd edition copies on Amazon, but they are more expensive.
Dec 31, 2022 | Books, News |
Good news for the New Year! The gorgeous new second edition of my books are now available as paperbacks on Amazon.com!
Also, in an effort to reduce my stock of the first edition paperbacks, I have drastically reduced their price. They are now $8 each or $20 for the set. So if you’d prefer not to buy from Amazon or just love a good bargain, go to https://diannasanchezworlds.bigcartel.com/.
Happy New Year, everyone!
Dec 21, 2022 | Books, Writing Life |
At last, at long, long last, I’ve revised all three of the Enchanted Kitchen novels, and they are now available on Amazon as eBooks. So if you’ve been looking for a last-minute stocking stuffer for your favorite Kindle user, here’s your chance!
As you may know, Dreaming Robot Press ceased publishing my work in the summer of 2021, and I regained all rights to my work. I’ve been meaning to get the books cleaned up and back online ever since, but self-publishing is not for the faint of heart nor short of time. Fortunately, my friend Jay O’Connell stepped in to help. He and I were in a writing workshop together when I was still in college and for several years shortly after. In addition to writing excellent science fiction for adults, he’s also an amazingly talented artist and graphic designer. Jay created the gorgeous new covers and formatted the ebooks for me. I am utterly delighted with the results!
You have questions, I know. Here goes:
Will you be issuing print versions with the fabulous new covers?
Yes, eventually. Right now, I’m focusing on getting things to people in time for Hannukah and Christmas.
What will happen with the old versions?
I still have hundreds of print copies of the old version. I am discounting them in my online bookstore to clear out the old stock. So if you don’t mind waiting until after the holidays, you can get them for a bargain price. I am happy to sign and personalize each print book for you. Just let me know in the comments when you order!
What’s different in the new versions?
Very little. I’ve gone through and corrected numerous errors, including continuity errors between the books, mangled Swedish, and a rather embarrassing math error in An Elf’s Equations. We also removed some of the back matter in Elf just to make it a little more streamlined.
When is A Wizard’s Warning going to be published?
Honestly, I have no idea. There are numerous problems with the novel that I have to tackle. I’ve just done one — figuring out self-publishing — but a major barrier is that Puerto Rico is one of the settings, and I have never been to Puerto Rico, nor am I Puerto Rican. I’d intended to go there for research purposes, but then the Pandemic happened, and I have not been traveling much of anywhere if I can help it.
I also question whether I should be writing about a culture I have no direct experience with. I wanted Max to be Hispanic, like me, but I’m New Mexican, which is a tiny cultural niche of Hispanic. We actually speak a very old form of Spanish that hasn’t significantly changed since our ancestors came over from Spain in the 17th century. I wasn’t sure whether anyone would be able to relate to such a small community. There are a lot more Puerto Ricans out there, and I thought it would be more relatable. Also, I wanted Max to be part merman, and it’s rather difficult for merfolk to live in New Mexico. But I’ve become increasingly uncomfortable with trying to portray a rich and vibrant culture I know almost nothing about. So until I can go there, talk to the people, explore the ocean and shoreline caves, and most importantly, eat the food, I really can’t write the novel.
Will you ever write anything else in the Enchanted Kitchen series?
Probably. I am considering writing a collection of short stories. I’ve received requests for stories about Grumpkin, Quercius, and Thea, even Mr. Pricklesnout. I have ideas for stories about a young Bogdana and Millie opening a restaurant in Pixamitchie with her dad. But I’ve written exactly none of this. Right now, I’m awaiting inspiration.
Are you writing anything else?
I’ve been working on a series of short stories for adults set in a fictional town in New Mexico, Encantado. The first of these has been published in Witches of a Certain Age. I also have a YA science fiction novel in the works, plus lots of other possible projects I’ve had on the backburner for quite some time. Now that the Pandemic seems to be settling down, I’m hoping to have more time to work on all of them.
And that’s it! Happy Holidays, everyone!
Jan 11, 2022 | Events |
I’m equal parts sad and relieved that Arisia will not be happening this year. To help everyone cope with the massive loss of social contact, Broad Universe has organized a virtual reading, and I’ll be there!
For those new to Rapid Fire Readings, each author will have about 8 minutes to read a selection. Don’t miss the chance to discover your next favorite author!
Once you register, we’ll send you the link to the Zoom room. (Don’t forget to check your spam folder.) And we’ll send another reminder the day before and the day off the reading.
The room will open at 6:55pm ET Friday, Jan. 14 and a short Q&A will follow the reading.
Nov 28, 2021 | Books, Uncategorized |
Drumroll, please! I am delighted to announce that my books are now available for purchase directly from me! Every volume will be signed and shipped straight from me to you. I’ve set up an online marketplace here, and for you, my favorite readers, I’ve set up a discount: free shipping until the end of 2021 when you use the discount code WINTER2021. You can also order all three books for $30, almost 25% off the standard price.
But wait, you say. What’s going on here? I know you have loads of questions. Here are some answers:
Why are you selling your own books, Dianna? And why can’t I buy them on Amazon or Barnes & Noble or, well, anywhere?
My publisher, Dreaming Robot Press, officially went on hiatus in the summer of 2020. A lot of small presses have been driven out of business by the pandemic, and I am terribly sad that I won’t be publishing with Corey and Sean Weaver anymore, but I wish them all the best as they move into a new chapter in their lives. They’ve returned all rights to my books to me. This means that all of my books have been out of print and unobtainable for more than a year. To all of you who wrote to me asking where you could buy my books, I am so sorry, especially if I didn’t answer. But the good news is that I bought all of the stock of my books from Dreaming Robot Press, and I can now sell them to you.
Okay, that was over a year ago. Why did it take you so long to create a marketplace so that I can buy your books?
There’s a fun answer to that and a less fun one. The fun answer is that, for a brief shining moment last summer, it looked like I was going to sell the film rights to my books, which would be made into an animated series for a streaming service. I never did find out which one because the deal fell through, alas, as most of these do. I have a friend who’s had one of his novels optioned at least five times, and it has yet to be made into a motion picture. At any rate, I was very focused on the film rights for a while, and if that had happened, I likely would have found a new publisher to reprint my books, and then this wouldn’t have been my problem.
The less fun answer is that I was busy with multiple, difficult personal crises. No one in my immediate family came down with COVID-19 (as far as we know), and thank all that’s good in the universe that everyone I know who did catch it survived and either has recovered or is in the process of recovering. Nonetheless, living through the pandemic was and is still hard and time-consuming. Add to that multiple non-COVID health and other problems for myself and various members of my family, many of which were very tricky to treat and some of which are still unresolved, and I literally have had no time to do anything but cope with the crises of the day for over a year.
What about A Wizard’s Warning? That was supposed to be published about now, wasn’t it?
I am unlikely to ever finish A Wizard’s Warning. It’s about half written, but I simply have no time to work on fiction right now, and I have no publisher, so there’s very little point. Until I have the time and mental space to figure out how to self-publish, I’m afraid that the Enchanted Kitchen series ends with An Elf’s Equations. I’m very sorry. I know a lot of you were looking forward to Max’s moment in the spotlight. Maybe someday, things will calm down enough for me to pick up that manuscript again. I am considering trying to write short pieces someday: Bogdana as a young witch, Quercius as a young dodonos, an adventure with Grumpkin as the main character, and of course, a Thea-based adventure. But I can’t promise anything right now, nor for the foreseeable future.
What about eBooks? I don’t see them in your marketplace.
As for eBooks, I have yet to figure that out as well. I’m hoping to reformat the existing files, but I have no idea how difficult or complicated that will be. I may need to commission new covers. Once I have them ready, I’ll let you know.
Thanks to everyone who has supported me and my family through this difficult time, and to all the people who wrote and told me how much they’ve enjoyed reading my books. You have been a bright light in a dark time.
Jul 1, 2020 | Cooking, Recipes |
Today is the first day of July, that glorious time of summer when farmers’ markets are flush with delicious fresh fruit. Rhubarb ripens early, the advantage of being the stalk of a plant rather than the more complex fruit, but berries are usually close behind. Here in New England, the strawberry season is just ending, unless you are lucky enough to have everbearing strawberries, and the raspberry season is just getting started. So this is the ideal time to experiment with pies.
I confess: raspberry rhubarb is my number one, all-time favorite pie, especially with a nice dollop of ice cream on top. I know not everyone likes raspberries (you know who you are), and I can respect that, especially since that leaves more raspberries for me. So this recipe is flexible, allowing you to use as much of either berry as you like. The goal is to have around 5.5 to 6 cups of fruit total for a 9-inch pie, 6 to 7 cups for a 10-inch pie. You can also adjust the amount of sugar you use depending on how tart you like it. For a very tart pie, use just 3/4 cup. For a rather sweet pie, use 1.5 cups. And you want a nice flaky, buttery crust to complement the tartness of the fruit.
For some unfathomable reason, I haven’t ever posted my crust recipe, so let’s start with that. This is my mother’s recipe, and it’s actually a quiche crust recipe, but it is so very, very good that I use it for nearly every pie I make. The critical thing is to never touch the crust with your hands. Use a fork or a dough blender, but keep the dough nice and cold. That’s how it stays flaky.
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 egg, lightly scrambled
- 1 Tablespoon vinegar
- 1.5 cups butter/vegetable shortening/coconut oil (but really, butter is best)
- 7 Tablespoons ice water
Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl. Blend in butter/shortening. Combine wet ingredients separately and add to flour mixture. Mix well without touching the crust with your fingers, adding ice water as needed until the crust is still crumbly but largely sticks together. Roll to about 1/8-inch thickness. Makes two crusts.
Now for the pie:
Strawberry Raspberry Rhubarb Pie
- Two pie crusts
- 3-4 cups chopped rhubarb
- 1-2 cups sliced fresh strawberries
- 1-2 cups fresh raspberries
- 3/4 to 1.5 cups sugar
- 4 Tablespoons corn starch
- 2 teaspoons dried orange peel or fresh orange zest
- Optional: one egg white
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a 9- or 10-inch pie plate with one pie crust. Combine all fruit, sugar, corn starch, and orange zest in a bowl, stirring to coat fruit thoroughly. Pour into pie plate and distribute evenly. Cover with remaining pie crust and crimp together edges. Slash the top crust several times to allow filling to vent. If desired, brush top crust with egg white for shiny finish. Place on a baking sheet in oven and bake for about an hour or until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbling. Remove and allow to cool 10-15 minutes before serving or filling will not set (though it will be no less delicious if it’s runny). Serve hot or cold with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.