Welcome to fieldnotes, the series where I share a random assortment of things I love and am enjoying at the moment.

Fell & Fair

Fell & Fair is one of the most beautiful combinations of fantasy, science fiction, video games, books, history, and general nerdom. The creative side of a medieval & fantasy clothing shop, Fell & Fair consistently puts out quality content, from cinematic portraits to hilarious reels.

I’m not one who is into the short video medium on social media–it annoys me more often than not–but Fell & Fair’s work nearly always brings a smile to my day.

I enjoyed this particular reel, especially since it came out the day after I rewatched a certain relatable episode of the Mandalorian.

Dune

I’m ashamedly lacking in my fantasy and science fiction novel intake. Despite the fact that I write the genre, I tend to read more classic literature than anything imaginary. Dune has been on my list for a while, but I was still excited to see the newest adaptation.

I loved it. The world is so intricately built, and the multiple layers of culture, myth, and politics are just what I like in a story. I tend to like science fiction films that aren’t loud, and while there are intense action sequences, Dune never feels the need to stuff every single moment with music or noise.

The Feather Stitch

Yes, I like to sit with a tiny hook and skein of yarn and crochet while I’m watching my science fiction movies. It’s even better when I have a great tutorial for a stitch that looks awesome and has a nice, elegant drape. Nordic Hook’s feather stitch tutorial is detailed for those who are newer to this style of stitch, but with the breakdown of steps and pictures for each one, I could easily jump to the parts I needed.

feather stitch Nordic Hook

Brandon Sanderson’s Fantasy & Science Fiction Writing Course

While I studied writing in college, my courses had a heavy literary focus. While I am very thankful for my classes and professors, none of the classes were geared to help someone manage an epic fantasy set in an elaborately made universe. Sanderson’s channel ended up in my Youtube algorithm and I happened to watch a short video of his about writing. I liked the video so much I watched another, and finally decided I would listen to his class lectures.

The lectures were fantastic. Sanderson put to words much of what I knew but had learned without the help of books or professors, helping me to utilize my tools better. I picked up a lot of tips that helped me arrange my ideas and sort through how to approach finalizing the story that I’ve been writing for nearly twenty years. If you’re writing any sort of fantasy or science fiction, this is a great course to listen to (even if you haven’t read any of his books, like me).

Vanessa Barragão

I’m not quite sure when I discovered Barragão’s work, but I’ve been hooked ever since (pun maybe intended). A textile artist, she worked with latch hoots, crochet, and more, primarily sculpting art based on coral reefs and other environments in nature. This is one of my favorite pieces, but she is worth a look and a follow–her work is excellent.

Ghost

After a criminal gang kidnaps a teenage girl with the power to reverse the age of objects, Brenna is forced to revisit her past and consider whether to bring truths to light or remain hidden to survive.

In 2021 I began a writing experiment on Instagram. It started as a web serial confined to image slides but soon outgrew the medium. I made an author’s site and have tried to put up a chapter weekly since. Designed to challenge me to write under a deadline while forbidding me from going back and changing the text, this project has become a real joy (and at times, a pain).

You can read this project on my author’s site.

ghost web novel mary tait

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