Cue the Q & A!

So yesterday was all about The Lurkdom asking questions. So, thanks for that. We got some great ones. Miranda answered most in the comments section, but for simplicity, I've included them here.

Holly Dodson asked What's your favorite kind of pie?
Miranda: Miranda says, "The kind that has blog mixed in!" Okay, really though... I LOVE blackberry pie. It is more difficult to find in the store, so I do also love a good peach pie.

Alicia: For desserts, I'm more of a cake gal, but I've been known to narf pudding pie like you wouldn't believe. The best by far (not for dessert) is pork pie. (Note to family: please send me samples.)

Kikyo_Cat had three questions.
1. Miranda, what was your favorite part of ACen?: (For more information on ACen, go here.)
Miranda: I only went for 12 hours, so I didn't really do much during the day other than spend three and a half hours in line, and then spent three hours wandering the vendor halls with Mary. The latter was very enjoyable! But I have to say I had a really great time being snuck into the Soap Bubble thing, thus avoiding another three hour line, and hanging out with my friend and former Graverobber, Ian!
2. Alicia, how many full stories/books have you written?
Alicia: From what I can remember, 15. This includes flash fiction and some extremely awful "short stories" from high school.
3. What type of animal was your first pet and what was his/her name?
Miranda: My first pet was a Pekinese name Winnie or Winny... I'm not sure how we spelled it.

Alicia: The first non-imaginary pet was a blue and red beta fish named Norbert. Whenever I put a mirror up to his tank, he'd threaten himself.
Pam Harris asked What one book would you both recommend that every writer should read?
Miranda: I don't know about which book every writer should read. I don't really classify myself as a "writer," per se. I guess I'm sort of the non-fiction writing half of this team! But as far as what book should everyone read, I'm completely biased and I'm just going to say my favorite novel of all time. The Hellbound Heart by Clive Barker. As a caveat to that, though, I suppose I should point out that probably not everyone will enjoy this book's story or content. But as far as imagery and the way Barker writes... it's amazing. Hellbound Heart is most definitely rated R, if not NC-17... so for a more friendly read by him (because all of his writing is wonderful), I recommend the Abarat series, which is a young adult series, and obviously is less likely to offend readers. Be warned, it still has a lot of dark imagery, so may require some explanations to younger readers. Also, another more "kid friendly" Barker novel is The Thief of Always! You'll find Abarat in the kid's section, but Thief is usually in the adult horror section... not sure why, as it is considered a young adult story.

Alicia: For a book on craft, Self-Editing for Fiction Writers definitely. It's something we all need to get published. You shouldn't be surprised I'm going to say The Dark Tower as a fiction component. It has world building, character development, amazing story arcs, and is a lesson in writerly determination.

Marquita Hockaday asked two questions.
1. Alicia - how did you get such unique/sophisticated taste in music? Have you ever gotten a story idea from a song?
Alicia: I get bored with my music every so often and go on a new music search. Between Hubby and one of my drooling fanatic friends, they keep me with a lot of options. Also, has helped a lot in that department. Since November 2009, I've heard over 2,000 bands through this app.

I do have a couple of story ideas based off songs and albums on the backburner. These are my "one day" projects.

2. What made you two want to have a blog together?
Miranda: Slice of the Blog Pie has always really been Alicia's! I'm sort of just a squatter. My 'Zombie Thursday' entries actually began as a joke. Alicia posted an entry that was a letter to her blog saying she though they should reserve one subject to talk about every week, like on a Thursday. Being the cheeky gal that I am, I made an anonymous comment with the name 'Blog' and suggested that every Thursday she should talk about zombies! And you can guess the rest... I have my own blog, but never write in it because I don't really have anything interesting to say. Fortunately, Alicia seems to trust me enough to hijack every Thursday or any other day I see fit! Over the last year and half we've had contests, and joint entry blog fest things, a spooky-themed month of October, and who knows what else in the future.

Alicia: See above. Miranda's pretty awesome about the zombie feature. It's actually the most frequented topic on The Pie.
Pete gave a word problem.
So, two trains are traveling toward each other. one leaves from new york at 7am averaging 50mph, the other from chicago at 9am averaging 45mph. what is the difference between llamas and alpacas? 
Miranda: Ooo! I know this one! Besides the obvious (Llamas have two L's in their name, and alpacas do not), llamas are bigger than alpacas and have been bred to be pack animals. Alpacas on the other hand are bred mainly for their fleece which makes fantastically soft yarn! However, both animals will spit at you when frightened or upset, so best to keep your distance.

Alicia: It's a known fact llamas can open doors. I'm not sure if this can be said about their alpaca cousin.
D also had a word problem.
You want to hire a temporary employee for one month. You offer him reasonable wages, but the employee suggests an alternative. For the first day of work, he will be paid a penny. For the second day, two pennies. For the third day, four pennies. The salary for each subsequent day will be double the previous day's, until the one month term is over. Ignoring the legalities of such a situation, would it be a good idea to accept the potential employee's proposal?
Miranda: Only if the potential employee is me! After one month I'd be set for like three years :D Fun math problem!! After day 22, I'd already have more than I make in a year. Holla!

Alicia: This is a fantastic idea. For me as the employee. I'm going to see if I can get this to work at the day job.

Keep asking us questions either in today's comment thread or yesterday's!
_______ hit of the day: Paralyzed by Rock Kills Kid