Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Minecraft: Paper to Build

Minecraft is one of my favorite games to play to relax, and apart from exploring a new world there's nothing I like better than building something new! I like to sketch an idea first and then bring it to life - although I'm by no means an architectural genius. Well, you'll see.

Here's a sketch I did today. You might not be able to read my handwriting, but I noted where I wanted different practical things such as a garden to grow crops, gates and walls around animals such as sheep and cows, an armory and crafting hall, a second floor storeroom and third floor bedroom, and a rooftop/lookout. I also included a view of the other side of the building where I wanted room for a stable and chickens.

Next, I set out to work on my creation! Usually I build new sketches in Creative Mode, but since I've been enjoying a Survival save recently I thought I'd build it there. (Please excuse the bits of dirt where I haven't quite filled things in yet!) This isn't a perfect build and it's certainly not pretty, but it's the bare bones of what I sketched and where I wanted things. That way, it's easily personalized and improved upon. Which is a big part of the fun!

Turns out I built it a little too small - in order to fit in more animals and a larger expanse of garden/farm land, you'd probably need to make each 'wing' off of the main tower at least 15 x 15 blocks, if not more like 25 x 25 if you really want some space.

You can definitely see where I ran out of room for chickens. I felt bad for those horses, too.... 

I didn't decorate and fill out much of the inside, but it was cool to have the three rooms directly underneath the 'wings' above that held animals and the farm. The door on the left leads to an armory while the right leads to a crafting room. Straight ahead is a storage room with a double-door walk-in closet and chests. 

As you can see, the second floor (largely empty) leads out onto the open-air farm. I meant this room to be a storage room but realized I could put that on the first floor under the Stables Wing. So maybe a library and enchanter's room?

I won't bother showing the upstairs bedroom or the rooftop since I didn't have time to fill them out, either. But I've got the basics in place and only need to collect more materials to decorate it. Considering a balcony off of the third-floor (?) bedroom, but only if it doesn't cast a shadow over the garden.

Well, that's my Minecraft 'Paper to Build' for today! I want to eventually sketch some more challenging designs and bring them to life, too. 


Friday, June 2, 2017

On The Adventure Zone (And Things That Shouldn't Need Be Said)

Hi everyone and anyone,

I am floored and saddened at the way many fans reacted to The Adventure Zone's artwork reveal, and I wanted to say just a few things.

As an author, I know I would be torn apart if so many fans turned on me in this way.

As a fan, I am shaken that other fans would be so quick to criticize the creators of something so wonderful.

Everyone has a right to create their art, no matter what medium that art takes. You get to choose what your art looks, sounds, and feels like. The people who watch, read, or listen to your art are free to love it or hate it. If they hate it, they are free to seek out something that suits them better - or create something unique of their own.

I love the McElroy's as if they were my own family, as their voices have gotten me through countless times of fear and anger and sickness, and made me laugh even louder in times of happiness. If you're reading this, McElroy's, thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

That's all for now,

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Animazement 2017 is Over (And I'm Sad)

What a great con! I've been attending AZ for many years now, and this year it was really hopping. This was also my first year as a dealer - and my first year as a panelist! I met some lovely people, saw some amazing cosplay, and in general had a fantastic time.

Shoutouts to my fellow authors - Shira Anthony, Grace Duncan, and Brynn Stein - and to fellow dealers - especially our uber-friendly neighbors who kept us awake and in good spirits. Also, big thank-you to all the Adventure Zone cosplayers who put up with me asking for pictures and all but chasing down some of them! Finally, thanks to everyone who stopped by the booth, especially those of you who took a few minutes to chat with us. I can't tell you how thrilled I was to meet you!


Some observations:
  • Mac n' cheese from Concessions in the Dealer's Room is not half bad, especially at 10 in the morning

  • Maui Wowi makes some delicious coffee (and the line is shorter than Starbucks)

  • Wearing comfortable shoes ups the fun factor of walking the con by uh, about 100%

  • Get a hotel room. Get. A. Hotel. Room.

  • FM 95.3 has some great rock music and realllly helped me get through the drive there and back

  • Funimation Peep Show was totally worth going to and a lot of laughs

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Greetings and Panel Appearance

Hello again! Looks like it's been a while since I posted - don't think I'm meant for blogging.

Anyhow, I'll be at Animazement in Raleigh, North Carolina this weekend the 25th through 28th. As conventions go, it's a lot of fun. Check it out here! I will also be part of a panel on Friday night to discuss Yuri!!! on Ice and its implications for the gay romance and yaoi genres.

Yuri!!! on Ice is an anime that is very dear to me, and I can't wait to talk about it on Friday. This will be rather difficult because I don't know how to describe the show, really.... It's sweet without being overly sweet, dramatic without being overdone, and while based on competitive ice-skating is never off-putting even to someone like me who knows nothing about the sport. I've watched it five or six times now and it always fills me with such joy. Even just watching the opening sequence brightens my day!

 Me, watching Yuri!!! on Ice on a bad day.

If you're attending Animazement and a fan of the show, or of gay romance or yaoi, please stop by the Dreamspinner Press booth in the dealer's room or attend our panel if you are over eighteen! I can't wait to meet new people who are interested in the same genres as I am.


Sunday, June 5, 2016

Many Thanks

Hey all,

Thanks again to everyone who read/is reading/plans to read? my first published book, I Experimented Once in College. I'm happy if I've brightened a few days or given somebody a chance to escape boredom for an hour or two.

Another big thank-you to Dreamspinner Press! From Editing to Cover Art to Marketing and everything in between, every single person was an absolute delight to work with and made me feel welcome as a first-time author. I will always remember getting my very first offer of publication and how, just a few months later, I jumped out of my seat when I got my first look at the cover art.

Finally, I'd like to thank Boy Meets Boy Reviews, Divine Magazine, Love Bytes Reviews, MM Good Book Reviews, Rainbow Book Reviews, and Sinfully MM Book Reviews for promoting I Experimented in College. The reviews have all given me great insight, and everyone I worked with was a joy.

I'm feeling so appreciative of everyone involved, and I can't wait to share what I'm working on next.


Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Coming Soon!

PhD candidate William Yderis comes to Efeldon University to teach and finish his degree in charmcrafting. For methodical, sedate, and scholarly William, the school defies his expectations—and not in a good way. The biggest surprise comes when William meets his boss, absent-minded Archmage Taliesin Karsus, a man as infuriating as he is sexy.
As William struggles to carve out his place at the university, he is drawn in to Tal’s chaotic experiments… and drawn to Tal despite his logical mind’s protests. And if Tal’s wavering affection isn’t enough to complicate William’s studies, he uncovers a plot involving an ambitious staff member, brainwashed students, sexual assault, and a threat to the lives of everyone on campus. When it comes time to face the danger, William is on his own. For the first time in his life, he’ll have to trust in his heart instead of his head. 

Hi, I’m Aishlar Snow! Today I'm shamelessly talking about my first published work, I Experimented Once in College.
I Experimented Once in College follows William, a research assistant, after he transfers from the prestigious Yvenne College of Magic to the much less palatable Efeldon University in hopes of an assistant professorship and earning his PhD. Once there, however, he discovers that the opportunity was a bait-and-switch, and the real job is one that insults his years of experience - he will be assisting Archmage Taliesin Karsus in magical experiments and otherwise serving as his secretary. 
Persuaded by the archmage's offer to ensure his dissertation is published, William signs on and quickly finds himself in over his head. Not only is Taliesin disorganized and absentminded, but he also enjoys teasing William far too much. Handling a difficult boss is one thing - handling a difficult boss who oozes charm and sensuality is quite another. 
Can William survive the Fall Semester and all it throws at him, including a plot against the school, unethical magic, a disappearance, and... a flower festival?

Coming May 11th at Dreamspinner Press   

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Update and Thoughts

Hey all,

Not sure how much I'm supposed to say about the book currently set to publish, so I'll skip over that entirely and just say how thrilled I am to be a part of the process. Anyhow, besides that I still have a number of other projects.

I'm working on the sequel to my first (in process of publication) book. The sequel was written years ago and really needs a harsh rewrite. I'm also still polishing the first book of another series, or what I like to call my White Whale - hopefully the eighteenth draft will be the final one. Aiming to have a preview up before March. We'll see how that one goes!

For a bit of fun, here's an example of the weird lengths writers go to for their stories. I wanted to visualize the exact layout of an office in my book, so I downloaded a program from Ikea (yes, really) to create the room and add furniture, which I then eviscerated in Paint. It's not pretty but it got the job done, and it really illustrated just how awfully red the office was.

Anyone else do weird things like this for their writing? I'm always curious to hear from other writers. Whether you write or not, feel free to contact me at or tweet @Aishlar.