Friday, December 6, 2019

An old Christmas story... and things to come?


When we were first kicking off Owl's Flower, we wanted to give readers a little extra something between the first and second book. Christmas was incoming, so over the course of that December, we did a three-part story about Herne and Iris's first Christmas together.

If you missed it, no worries! You can still read it here:

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

As we move toward Book 3 (and there will be more news on that soon — follow our Twitter for potential sneak peeks!), we're also looking at the future of the site, the shop, and how we do things in general. The first book will always be free to download, and future ebooks will always be at pay-what-you-want pricing (albeit more conveniently before long!).

Eventually we'd like to do more in-between short stories (as in short-short, like what you see above). If that's the kind of thing you'd like to see on our blog for special occasions, be sure to let us know! In the meantime, we're looking forward to Christmas and hope all of you are, too. Stay warm and toasty!

Friday, November 22, 2019

BONUS RECIPE: Potato Stuffing


If you've read our first two books, you know that they come with recipes in the back. (And if you haven't read them... they come with recipes in the back!) The first two feature custom-made dishes by Angela Pritchett, but our third will will have something a bit different: a recipe that, in the story, comes from Iris's cat-having neighbor Ms. Waters.

In reality, the recipe comes from a Lebanese cookbook made by the women of St. George's Orthodox Church in Charleston, WV — in other words, the church built by Kara's family! We're looking forward to giving this family recipe (and perhaps others) a new life with new people. And today, with Thanksgiving around the corner, we thought we'd share another recipe from Kara's family.

This is an old favorite: a mashed potato-based stuffing whose recipe was passed down from Kara's great-grandmother. Does that mean it's a traditional Lebanese dish? Not quite... that's the impression we got at first, but it turned out great-grandma got it from a New England cookbook. Regardless... it's a family recipe, it's delicious, and you should all get to try it.

Here you go!

Ingredients
- 4 lbs. potatoes, peeled and mashed
- 3 cups cracker crumbs*
- 1 cup butter, melted
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1 chopped white onion
- 1 egg
- Dash nutmeg
- Salt to taste

Directions

1. Add cracker crumbs a bit at a time to mashed potatoes in a large pot.

2. Add butter, celery, onion, and egg. Mix well.

3. Add nutmeg and salt to taste.

4. Divide the mixture. You should have enough to stuff a decent-sized turkey and to bake in a casserole dish.

* If you're crushing up the cracker crumbs yourself, use unsalted crackers.

Thursday, October 31, 2019

Short Story Deities and Where to Find Them


We've made no secret of the fact that there will be new deities from all around the world coming into our future books. Book 3 (in progress), for example, will be pulling from Mediterranean and Far East traditions... and there may already be some lurking around under the radar!

But if you're looking for a little variety now, we've got a couple of young upstarts in the Owl's Flower universe. We've talked about them before on the blog, but if you're new here, this is your chance to catch up!

Each of the two stories in question is in a different publication, so you'll need to travel past our site to find them. And in one case — at least for now — you'll need to be quick!

Clare ("Clarity," Relics)


Clare was our first venture outside Herne and Iris's circle for an Owl's Flower universe story. She's also our first look at how deities are born, following her beginning as she comes into being and attempts to search out her purpose.

Like other new and inexperienced deities, Clare looks like a youngster. But, as we learn in her story (and as Herne has told Iris), a deity's physical age is generally relative to their experience and knowledge. Also, not everyone who runs around in this pantheon is benevolent; and the idea of nabbing a fresh deity with no idea what her purpose is would be appealing to some.

You can read Clare's story in Relics from Red Ted Books.


Masudah ("Kill the Cat," Unearthed)


There are two ways deities can come into being in the Owl's Flower universe. Like Clare, they can pop into existence when a need for them arises. Or, like, Masudah, they can be ascended mortals. Masudah was a seemingly unimportant boy in Ancient Egypt who, through an unfortunate accident and surprising circumstances, was elevated to the position of a god of curiosity.

Masudah's story also brings into play something the main series of books will be addressing before long: red tape. We all deal with it, and deities are no exception. Masudah's problems are exacerbated by his willingness to not play along when offered an opportunity to protect his position. Who makes that offer?... They'll be coming around in a later book.

Masudah's story is currently available in the charity anthology Unearthed from Altrix Books... but only for a little while! Unearthed will soon be going out of print to make way for Altrix's next charity title. However, we might (read: probably will) include Masudah's story in a later publication.


Will there be any further look-ins from gods on the fringe? We'll let you know as soon as we do!

Thursday, October 24, 2019

OUTSIDE OWL'S FLOWER: A New Doctor Who Zine!


Unsurprisingly, our readers are a bit into Doctor Who — in large part because both of our creators are! So you can expect to see us in charity anthologies, zines, and the occasional official/spinoff release. At the moment, sales for Ginger's third solo-run zine (fourth she's staffed) are underway, and a few friends of Owl's Flower (and the other creator) are involved!

A Pile of Good Things is raising funds for the Cancer Research Institute with a shiny new zine and merch bundle dedicated to Matt Smith's Eleventh Doctor. 28 artists (including Ginger) and nine writers (including Kara) brought their interpretations of the Time Lord to the page.


So what will you find inside? Ginger's piece remembers everyone's favorite Impossible Girl in multiple forms. Kara's story introduces the Doctor and Clara to a suspicious cult that specialized in magical light. Altrix Books co-owner Paul Driscoll imagines a lonely post-Pond 11 as a Victorian bird fancier, and Sophie Iles contributes art of the same time frame. Managlitch City Underground creator Michael O'Brien mixes some Trek-ish tones with temporal confusion. And our friend William J. Martin is all about the eyebrows.

You can get the zine alone, or with a merch bundle that includes charms, a patch, a pin, prints, a bookmark, and a lanyard. Or you can get just the merch bundle, or you can get just the pin. Lots of options.

Long-time followers of our work will remember that Ginger's last two zines raised approximately $4,000 combined for various charities. Why not help us make it three? If you're a fan of Owl's Flower you'll be getting Kara's writing and Ginger's art in an exclusive new venue. You'll also get to discover new artists and writers along the way!

Zines are on sale for a limited time at rathzem.com — then they're gone. Don't miss out!

Thursday, September 26, 2019

A Nature God's Guide to Changing Seasons

Art by Ginger Hoesly from Owl's Flower Book 2: Ghost Fall.

When we first designed Herne, we pulled from a variety of sources —not just in terms of his general appearance, but also when it came to how he "dresses." He had to wear something when he was gallivanting around in the forest because we wanted to, you know, depict him. We knew it would likely be very leafy, whatever it was... one of Kara's early suggestions resembled the Night Elf Druid starter outfit from World of Warcraft (fortunately for us all it didn't remain that way):


Readers will know that Herne ended up with a leafy green toga-style deal that grows up around him as necessary. But the leaves change. So what happens when the leaves aren't green?

Simple: autumn toga.

If you've read Ghost Fall (and if you haven't, you can pay what you want for a digital copy or pick it up in print!), you'll have seen the first example of Herne's look changing with the seasons. When the leaves turn, so does his getup. But that's not where it stops.

Our upcoming third book takes place in winter — right around Valentine's Day to be exact. Iris learns, as do we all, that even Herne's day-to-day look is affected by changes in season. Well, it makes sense; nature is his domain, so he'll reflect it and vice-versa. How exactly that manifests, you'll get to see when book 3 comes out. We're both pretty fond of it.

For now, get caught up on our first two books so you'll be ready when the third lands! And enjoy the changing leaves!

Thursday, September 12, 2019

BEHIND THE SCENES: Ineffable Charms and Upcoming Conventions!

Image result for colored pencils

This week, Ginger is releasing some heavenly merch in her store, and Kara's making some 2020 plans!

First up, Good Omens fans will want to check out Ginger's store today as she's putting out new designs inspired by Crowley and Aziraphale (and their love of sushi!). Prints are available for order, and charms are available for pre-order (provided minimum orders are met).

Meanwhile, keep your options open in 2020, as Kara has plans to be present at two conventions so far! More information will be forthcoming on which and when, and hopefully there will be some good Owl's Flower rep at both. Stay tuned!

Friday, September 6, 2019

BEHIND THE SCENES: New Pins and... We're Okay!

Image result for hampton roads

Hello again, readers!

First off, just a quick note to let everyone know that Hurricane Dorian has come as close as it's going to come to Kara's place in Hampton Roads. There was some wind and a bit of flooding, but otherwise it wasn't much cause for concern. If you or your loved ones are anywhere in the path of Dorian, please stay safe and look after yourselves.


Ginger has turned her "Thank God and Scotland" shirt design into a pin! A limited number are available, so if you're interested, be sure to grab one now. They turned out looking great, and they have two pins and nice safe backs so you can display it on a jacket or bag without fear of losing it.

She's got lots of other pins, shirts, prints, and more in her shop, so be sure to check it out! It's a great way to get your hands on some Ginger originals if you're an Owl's Flower fan; plus, as it's her own shop and not hosted through a third party, you know exactly where your money is going.

There's more on the horizon, including an upcoming charity anthology and some other cool stuff. So keep an eye on our blog, Facebook, and Twitter!