I, Ritter: Gorg Huff, Science Fiction, Magic and The Final Frontier!

Talented author Gorg David Huff of Austin, Texas has agreed to an interview to tell us about his adventures in writing.  This is a road not traveled alone and he reveals to us how others have affected his writing career along the way. Rather than be a man of many trades, he decided to put his all into writing and it has become his life's work.
1636: The Viennese Waltz (The Ring of Fire) Gorg Huff
Book #18 in the multiple New York Times
 best-selling Ring of Fire series

What is your genre? 

Now that's a question that is subject to interpretation. If you mean writing, painting, sculpting, music, then it's mostly writing with a bit of cartography and some painting. As to type of writing, it's science fiction, mostly alternate history, but also magic and space opera. The painting is mostly impressionism to abstract.

What can you tell us about "Ritter" in particular?

A decent respect for the opinions of mankind compels me to define Ritter. A ritter, in this case, is not a German knight, but a writer who can't spell. Not being able to spell, as you might imagine, makes the writing process somewhat more difficult. It makes or made for most of my life, being published not just impossible but unthinkable. Even now with the literally amazing advances in spell checking, I'm still close to unpublishable without my co-author Paula Goodlett, who can spell as well as find the many and varied other errors that creep into anything I write.

How long have you considered yourself a writer?

From the moment someone paid me for a story. In my case that was the publication of "The Sewing Circle" in the first Grantville Gazette electronic version. If I recall correctly, I was paid two and a half cents a word. The paper version of GGI was published in 2004, so the electronic magazine was probably in '02 or '03.

Finding Your Way Through the Writer’s Black Hole

For a while I wrote about the writer’s life, noting its ups and downs and the lessons learned along the way. You can read about them in the Essays menu but some of the most popular are: My Real Writing Life and The Real, REAL Writer’s Life and Final Thoughts on a Writer’s LifeDuring my time away from blogging I continued to learn writing’s tough lessons, ultimately surviving what I now refer to as the Writer’s Black Hole.
image from youthvoices.net

image from youthvoices.net
In the posts mentioned above, I was very honest about my struggles. I had thrown myself into writing, trying to learn the craft and the business aspect at the same time. Like most, I sacrificed a lot--money, family time, energy and sanity to move the mountains necessary to succeed at this thing. The more I pushed to ‘make it’, running around like a possessed chicken without its head, two things were happening: 1) I was burning out, and 2) I was beginning to accept that success doesn’t happen overnight, no matter how hard I wished it to. Notice I said accept. See, I’d already realized that truth on a brain level but not at an emotional one, and the latter is where the magic happened this time around. Both points were excruciating to swallow.

Artists: The Benefits of Using Online Art Galleries

Online art galleries are very important modern tools for artists in addition to traditional offline art displays. Uploading art images to online art galleries is a prime opportunity for otherwise little-known artists to establish a presence on the internet. Before the internet came to be widely used as it is today, art viewing and purchasing was limited to local showings of an artist's work with some exhibitions that would travel city-to-city. Aside from the in-person method, artists also have long used catalogs that show works from various artists made available to the general public. These methods are still good practice and getting out and taking your work to shows is always a positive, yet, the artists are limited in the number of people they can reach and the length of time their art display will circulate. A very important point to consider is that when using offline methods much of the control shifts into the hands of curators and gallery owners and the entire process therein is subject to be approved or rejected by them. 

Example: A Singular Creation Member Galleries

Follow-up Interview: Tanya Davis' Figurines and Illustrative Art

It has been over a year since our first interview, when Tanya Davis was first expanding her creative work from sculpting and painting figurines to applying the same skills onto vinyl platforms. After all this time and
Penguin Engineer steampunk drawing penguin wrench watercolor pencil
Penguin Engineer by Tanya Davis

checking in regularly, there has truly been no pause in her actively making new art. In this interview I will attempt to bring our readers up to speed with her latest artistic endeavors.

How far has your experiment with vinyl platforms taken you?

It is still going and I am still trying different platforms. Most recently, I am tackling going larger. Outside of the initial MunnyWorld brand, my most successful work done on blank vinyls has been the Google Android mascot and Zukie bases. My most recent droid is a Penguin Engineer based on an illustration I created by the same name.
Penguin Engineer Droid Tanya Davis android figurine
Penguin Engineer Droid by Tanya Davis

Illustration, that is something new.  How did you get into that type of art?

It was more about me practicing drawing and also giving my hands a break from sculpting. Aside from chiefly commission figurine work, illustrative drawing and painting is my main art form right now.

Since the beginning of 2014 which one of your illustrations is your personal favorite? 

My Penguin Engineer because it is the first original character I created that has a completely developed background. It was done free-hand from start to finish on the illustration board without any transferring. It was also the first one I did with the Derwent watercolor pencils. This illustration is currently available in limited edition signed watercolor prints done by local printer Mindzai Creative. Right now (mid-June 2014) there are 18 left. I have them on hand when I publically show my work or you may obtain this print here.

Quilt Art – Not Just Bed Coverings

Texas Quilt La Grange Mural Art courtyard
Mural on the outer wall at the Texas Quilt Museum
After a recent visit to a local quilt museum, I feel an enhanced awareness of the artistic work of quilters even though I had already known it to be an art form. Quilting experienced developments boosting the skill to a fine art as recently as the 1970’s and 80’s. Today there are active collectors of quilts old and new.  

The place I visited, currently the only quilt museum in the American Southwest, was the Texas Quilt Museum. I am not able to share pictures from the exhibit as photography is not allowed inside, but there is a lovely courtyard with a mural of quilts that I did capture a photo of in the main image here. They house a selection of antique, historical quilts in one area; however, the main halls showcase a themed exhibition much as you would expect to see at an art gallery. From the start of my tour I saw modern works with subject matter not typical to what I had seen in quilts before, such as savanna animals depicted in unusual hues of pink and works with photography and mosaic elements included. The proper lighting and orderly fashion of the general presentation relayed how seriously this art is taken. As my group explored the displayed works it quickly became apparent to us that modern quilters are using a wide array of materials beyond fabric alone.