The Non-Specialist

KatrinaRandom Thoughts, UntalentedLeave a Comment

I found this column online at The Guardian about specialists vs. non-specialists. It hit home for me given the themes in Untalented, and how I have personally experienced the pressure to specialize.

I particularly liked the point that not everyone is suited to specialization, and how freeing it is if you are a generalist to just accept that and find ways to be productive and contribute when surrounded by specialists.

If you’ve got a kid you suspect is a generalist, let them know it’s OK to not try to fit in a single rigid box. There’s untold value in exploration and the interconnection of ideas and skills.

KatrinaThe Non-Specialist

A Book! A Book!

KatrinaUntalentedLeave a Comment

Isolte and Saroya

Untalented front smallA book! A book! A BOOK! ABOOKABOOKABOOKABOOKABOOK!

(What, you expected me to be calm? And waste an opportunity for a full Kermit flail?)

Untalented is out in the world. You can buy it from me, you can buy it from Amazon, or you can buy it from many of your favourite online retailers in the U.S. The Kindle version is also out. Epub is available from me, and will be on iTunes as soon as Apple finishes their review.

I’m still proofing the Commonwealth edition, but if you can’t wait for the extra “u”s, it looks like you may be able to get the U.S. version from and

Complete details on where to buy are on the Untalented book page. As soon as the Commonwealth and iTunes versions are approved I’ll update the links.

Should you buy the book and enjoy it, I would be much obliged if you left a review, either on Ganache Media, on Amazon, or on Goodreads.

It’s been a long road. Thank you for all your support. You know who you are.

KatrinaA Book! A Book!

So, This Is Happening

KatrinaUntalentedLeave a Comment


I’ve been sitting on this for a while because there were lots of little details to wrap up, but the wait is over.

Here’s my squee-filled cover for Untalented, created by the lovely and extremely patient Heather McDougal ( and

Fun facts about this cover:

For the front cover, we found a model who’s closer to how I picture Saroya in my head than I’d thought possible. I couldn’t find the old computer-generated sketches of her that I got from an online character generator a long time ago, but the resemblance is eerie.

The canal scene on the back cover is from one of my own pictures of Venice. Heather tied it fantastically well into the world of the story, and it wound up representing an actual scene in the book.

I have too much squee. The book itself will be coming out some time this summer. Stay tuned!

KatrinaSo, This Is Happening


KatrinaProject ShortyLeave a Comment

So after producing a little over 67,000 words in just over 2.5 months, I sense I’ve hit—not a block; let’s not call it a block, let’s really not—a mild speed bump.

I don’t want to call it a block because I believe it’s just my brain resting for a bit. The word count above is my best since NaNoWriMo 2012, and while that was an interesting exercise, it wasn’t much fun. Whereas what I’ve been writing since January IS fun, and I fully expect it to continue in that vein.

The problem with NaNoWriMo is that I became a slave to the word count, and the story suffered as a result. Right now, I’ve reached a story point that needs a little simmering. I haven’t found quite the right spice blend yet. Whereas before, I might have felt angst at not producing, at the moment I’m perfectly fine with letting my mind noodle away on the problem in the background while I attend to other things, because I know that giving the story that space will ultimately make it better.

The other important difference is that I also know not to let myself wallow for too long in simmer mode. If I don’t come out of it naturally in a few days, I’ll just kickstart the process again, even if that means a few 100- to 250-word days.

I think what I’m enjoying most about Project Shorty is finally coming to terms with some of my limitations and weaknesses. Viewed from the right angle, and harnessed properly, some of them can even be turned into strengths.

Every writer is different, and for every writer, every project is different. Know thyself, fight or surrender at the appropriate moments, and the words will flow.