Thursday, August 30, 2012

News Shell 6

The news continues to come in at a fast pace. The news mer-boy is being kept busy delivering all of the News Shells in a timely manner. Let's open today's edition and see what we find.

Modeling Jellyfish?

Once again its time for the jellyfish fans among you to rejoice. Russian biologist and photographer Alexander Semenov has produced a beautiful collection of undersea photographs that you definately should not miss! Take a look at this story from io9 by Robert T. Gonzalez.

Men Who Wish To Drown

Men Who Wish To Drown is the name of a short story by Elizabeth Fama, author of the upcoming novel, Monstrous Beauty. You can read the narative in its entirety on In addition, Anna and Elena Balbusso provide a stunning illustration to accompany the story.

Underwater Wheelchair

There are some people that you simply cannot hold back. Sue Austin is an artist, and has been wheelchair bound since the mid 1990's. She teamed up with diving experts to create an underwater wheelchair complete with propeller and fins. Mashable is the place to visit for the full story, a video, and a link to Ms. Austin's web site.

Cynthia's Interview

I was the subject of a recent interview on author Carolyn Turgeon's blog, I Am A Mermaid. Visit Carolyn's blog, and scroll down to the August 29th interview, or go directly to the article. In the interview, Carolyn and I discuss the 2011 mermaid convention, Second Life, and other very mermaidly subjects. Thank you, Carolyn!

Best wishes and starfishes,
-Mermaid Cynthia
cynthia (at)

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Saturday, August 25, 2012

News Shell 5

The latest News Shell, delivered just this morning, is here to keep us up to date on what is going on in the mermaid community and elsewhere.

Mermaid Radio

Merfolk have had their own magazine for over a year now. So it must be time for a Mermaid Talk Show! Find Your Wave is a production of Mermaid Lanai and you can find the introductory episode online now at Blog Talk Radio. In the first episode, Live & In Tail, Lanai talks about what we can expect in the next few weeks. Look for Mermaid Lanai on Facebook and Twitter as well.

Sea Monster? Me?

A number of articles have come out recently about Sea Monster Week. Sea Monsters From A to Z is a list compiled by 'Stubby the Rocket' at, featuring art by Georgi Markov.

In this article, a sea monster is defined as, 'Any sufficiently awesome water-dwelling creature that we perceive as being monstrously cool', so we know we're in good hands. Merpeople are indeed included in the list, and so my mer-brothers and mer-sisters, we are sea monsters after all.


'The ocean is alive with bloodthirsty dragons, vengeful warriors, and those who can ransack another's thoughts. Selinne is a mermaid just trying to survive.' This is the world of Merminia, a short novel by Emm Cole. One reviewer of Merminia said, 'This is truly an exciting read'. Look for the Kindle edition on Amazon. You can learn more about the book on Ms. Cole's web site as well as her Twitter page.

Ms. Cole has always been fascinated by mythical creatures, especially mermaids. Mermaids and mermaid fans should truly enjoy this book.

Feeling Doodley?

I recently heard about a new feature on the Google home page. We are all familiar with the I'm Feeling Lucky button. Now, if you use Google Chrome and place your mouse pointer over the Lucky button, the words will spin and land on one of several choices, I'm Feeling Artistic, for example. What happens when a mermaid clicks on the button, I'm feeling Doodley?

The Doodley button provides a look at past Google doodles, complete with background information on the creation of the doodle. I was given the doodle about Jules Verne, author of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Quite appropriate I must say, must be mermaid magic.

The Jules Verne doodle features a number of port holes to an undersea view.  The view can be changed by moving a lever on the right side of the doodle. What will you discover? Sea monsters, perhaps?

Best wishes and starfishes,
-Mermaid Cynthia
cynthia (at)

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Monday, August 20, 2012

Mermaid Jill

Our mermaid guest today lives in Florida and has close ties with the Renaissance and pirate cosplay communities. Please help me welcome Mermaid Jill to the blog!

Cynthia: Tell me a little about yourself, Jill.
Jill: I grew up in Northern New Jersey. I never really swam up there. My grandparents had moved to Fort Myers before I was born. We would constantly be visiting them, so I grew up swimming off of Fort Myers Beach and Sanibel.

Mermaid Jill - by Valiant Heart Photography
Cynthia: How did you first get into mermaiding?
Jill: I was constantly in the water growing up. My grandparents had a pool in their backyard for years. I was also fascinated with marine life. I'm allergic to most furred animals so I looked in another direction, one where allergies wouldn't be a problem. That, combined with seeing Disney's The Little Mermaid in theatres when I was just two, and terrified by Ursula. My cousin and I would always pretend we were mermaids, seals, or dolphins while swimming. A few years back I met Mermaid Raven at the Tampa Bay Area Renaissance Festival. I was working in a shop that sold bellydance clothing, and she was a rose girl. She was friends with my boss, who would buy flowers from her nearly every day. We hit it off and through Raven I discovered I could realize my dream of being a mermaid.

Cynthia: Tell me about your work on the Indian Princess.
Jill: The Indian Princess is a paddleboat that runs off of Fort Myers Beach. I tend bar on that boat, as well as the Pieces of Eight Pirate Cruises. The Pieces of Eight is a bit more mermaid friendly, we even did a special skit for Valentine's Day where the captain had captured me and wanted a tear, inspired by Disney's Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.

Mermaid Jill - by James Teeter
Cynthia: You are also involved with pirate cosplay?
Jill: I do pirate, mermaid, and renaissance 'cosplay'. I'm slowly building my Steampunk repertoire as well. My parents took me to Renaissance faires when I was a child, my brother and I became obsessed. The obsession only grew as my seamstress grandmother encouraged us and eventually taught me to make my own costumes. That eventually led to a job working at renaissance faires all over the country, and was part of the reason I snagged my job on the Pieces of Eight pirate ship.

Cynthia: Who other than family has been an inspiration to you?
Jill: Science in general and the wonder of the oceans. When I was younger I had the great opportunity to attend Seacamp for a few summers. It's a delightful summer camp in the Florida Keys that is focused on Marine Biology. I was absolutely fascinated by sea creatures. For a long long time I had even wanted to be a Marine Biologist. Funnily enough, I even attended one of the best colleges for Marine Biology in the United States, Eckerd College, though I graduated with a degree in Creative Writing and Theatre. Young children also provide a wonderful inspiration. Anytime I swim along Fort Myers Beach little children come running up and asking me all sorts of questions. I love seeing their faces when a mermaid offers them a seashell and takes a picture with them. Frequently they run back to their parents and say, 'I told you they were real!' 

Cynthia: Do you have any special stories from your adventures?
Jill: I don't have any terribly exciting mermaid stories just yet, aside from the embarrassing time my top tried to swim away from me off of Fort Myers Beach.

Cynthia: Is there anything else you would like to share with us?
Jill: If anyone is curious about my tail(s), I have made all of them myself. I have a Finis Wave monofin, which I altered mildly. All four of my tails, I have made myself. Though, I am in the hopes that I can save up and buy a silicone tail from Mermaid Raven. Of course, by the time I've saved enough she'll have released an entirely new and tempting tail design, haha!

Cynthia: Thank you, Jill!  Look for Mermaid Jill on Facebook as well as the local Renaissance faires.

Best wishes and starfishes,
-Mermaid Cynthia
cynthia (at)

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Mer-Palooza 2012

Last weekend, mermaids and mermen from many seas converged on the Wyndham Orlando Resort in Orlando, Florida for this year's premier mermaid convention, Mer-Palooza.  Here are just a few photos from the event.  I will share more as time goes on.  A big thank-you splash to Caribbean Pearl and Melissa Marie Irizarry for sharing this first set of photos with us!

Reader Mail:  Thanks for the tips on your listings page! I got to meet four tail vendors at Merpalooza this weekend, and am about to order my first one. Woot! Matt

The Tailman, Thom Shouse, and mermaid friends

A marvelous weekend at the best mermaid gatherin' ever. Mermaids, Mermans, Pirates n' merfolks came fer 3 days o' magical celebration o' the most beautiful creatures o' the sea.  -Caribbean Pearl

A Gallery of Favorite Mermaids

Mark Siegel will soon be releasing a mermaid themed novel, Sailor Twain. In honor of Sea Monster Week and the novel's release, the author is sharing his favorite mermaid artworks with us. Check out the Gallery of Favorite Mermaids in this article at

You know, I didn't think we were THAT monsterous...

Best wishes and starfishes,
-Mermaid Cynthia
cynthia (at)

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Thursday, August 9, 2012

Mermaid Food

As we swim in the ocean, we quickly realize that there are no fast food restaurants here. No cafes, no diners. What's a mermaid to eat? A quick look around shows two possibilities: fish and seaweed.

What if I don't like seaweed? There is a way to find out: Sea Chips by Maine Coast Sea Vegetables.

Sea Chips are corn chips flavored with dulse and kelp... in other words, seaweed! Sea Chips are low in sodium and are certified organic.

As you may know, I am originally from the northeastern US. A friend of mine once bought me a Maine care package, which included a bag of Sea Chips as well as salt water taffy and seaweed flavored health bars. I really wanted to like the Sea Chips, I'm a mermaid after all. The first few chips did not taste all that good, but it was something new, and I was thinking that the taste would grow on me. I'll get used to it.

After several more chips, I came to realize that this wasn't going to happen. I had to admit to myself that I really didn't like seaweed.

It appears that I am not alone. One reviewer of the seaweed chips said that they tasted like 'low tide'.

Everyone's taste is different, however. If you would like to give the seaweed chips a try, swim on over to One bag is $3.45 and a case of 12 bags is $37. The taste test will have to wait a little while, though. The SeaVeg store is closed during the month of August, and will reopen on September 4th.

When you start munching your Sea Chips at work, your co-workers will know that you're crazy a mermaid!

Mermaids 101

Author Doreen Virtue is known for her '101' style beginner's books on fantasy topics. Examples are Angels 101 and Fairies 101. Her latest work is 'Mermaids 101, Exploring the Magical Underwater World of the Merpeople', and it is due to be released on November 19, 2012.

In this book, you will hear about people's experiences with mermaids, and learn how you can tap into your inner merperson. Ancient and modern mermaid descriptions and images are provided. Doreen also included information on those of us that get our tails wet in oceans, pools, and lakes. If you are always searching for more information on mermaids, then this book is for you. Pre-orders are being taken now at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Best wishes and starfishes,
-Mermaid Cynthia
cynthia (at)

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Saturday, August 4, 2012

News Shell 4

Today's News Shell, delivered promptly, is full of news of interest to merfolk and their fans. Let's dive in and see what is going on.

Mermaid Marie-Chantal

In my previous blog post, we met Mermaid Marie-Chantal from Montreal, Canada. Let's check back with Marie and see how she is doing...

Oh, dear! Mermaid Marie seems to have gotten herself into a tight spot.

Actually, this is just one example of Marie's digital art. Check out her Facebook page to see more.

Tera Lynn Childs

E.J. Stevens of Paranormal Romance Everything recently interviewed Tera Lynn Childs, author of the three mermaid themed novels known as the Fins series. They also discussed a Just For Fins giveaway, the most recent title in the series.

Support Mermaids

Artist Jennifer OBremski has designed a Support Mermaids ribbon magnet for your car. The magnets are $5 US each plus $1 shipping ($1.50 shipping for 2). Visit Jennifer's Etsy Shop to order, or her Myths & Legends Facebook page to send a note for more information.  (Updated 15-Aug-2012)

Mermaid Retreats

MidAtlantic Mermaid Retreats in Williamsburg, Virginia offer adult retreats and mermaid day camps for kids. The price for the mermaid retreat begins at $325 US, and you can find complete information at their web site.

The Top Ten

Smashing Lists has published their Top Ten Mythical Creatures list, with Siren sitting in the number 10 spot. Check out the complete list at their web site, and see if you agree with their choices.

Best wishes and starfishes,
-Mermaid Cynthia
cynthia (at)

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