Last chance…

a fellow Indie trying to raise capital for her book – if y’all have a moment, take a look maybe make a donation!

Cristian Mihai

last_chanceAs I write these words there are 36 hours left in our campaigna day and a half in which we need to raise $901 in order to reach our goal.

The pessimist in me has already given up. He’s certain this can’t be done. He wants me to focus on a plan B or to move on. In a way, his reaction is one of the most natural of reflexes: when faced with what we consider to be an impossible task, our first reaction is to walk away. Thus, we don’t have to waste time and energy on a useless endeavor, which, in a world of “survival of the fittest,” could prove to be a fatal error.

But I also remind myself, over and over again, that any act of creation is a matter of hope. You have to believe in what you are doing, because, whether you…

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Proof of what I tell everyone

Hello all,

 

many of you know that I belong to a couple of different writers groups.  I also talk about how you will hear different advise when you are there, and how this information is something you always need to filter and decide what works for you as a writer, not what the majority have to say.

last night I presented a short story called “Ship 13 – the silence of space” its a story [part of a collection] that is centered around a multi-generational ship.  this setting is fascinating, because it puts a microscope to humanity,  when you have only enough materials and space for a set number of people – how do you deal with the most basic of problems? when you have a very finite pool of resources, how do you decide what to spend where on who.

The story is about a man whose daughter is discovered to be deaf.  There is a ship wide vote to her fate, and the story tells the results of that vote.  While fascinating in its own right, I will leave the details about it for you to discover when I publish it.  what I would like to focus on for this blog, is this:   I passed out 8 copies of the story for review. as always when I hand out my raw work, it comes back with several grammar Nazi issues, and some glaring ‘WTF’ issues that I should have caught but didn’t. the interesting thing to me is that the second paragraph of the story and the third were marked on every single copy!  4 people put down how they thought those needed to be edited, chopped.  They did little to ratchet up the tension and were extraneous words on the page.   the other 4 the reviews/people said they loved the hooks, those paragraphs helped both foreshadow the conflict and give an insight to the main character.

me, I like them – and am going to keep them in, cleaned up a bit of course, but still….

so the moral of this entire post is this,  if you want to make everyone happy don’t write, because once you write, someone will not like the words you put on your screen/paper.  If you do insist on writing (like I am doing, and will keep doing) just remember to stay true to your voice and your stories, let the critics make suggestions and be open to them in case their ideas are better [all 8 people hated the last 2 sentences of my story – good sign it needs to be reworked] but don’t let start letting the crowd dictate your story to you.

 

 

Underused beasties, a fellow indie, and Odaxelagnia

Wow ! – I am stunned and humbled by this!

Insomnia, Nightmares and General Madness

Rakshasa (also Rakasha, Rakshi, Kravyads, and more) are fascinating little buggers. A big part of several Hindi myths, they’ve been categorized as demons, gods, totem spirits, faeries, ghosts (hungry or otherwise), shapeshifters, ghouls, djinn and combinations of any or all of the above. They’re practically ripe for the picking, begging someone to use them. But unfortunately, they often go by the wayside in favor of more generic versions of most of those monster “types.”

Sad, really. There’s some great myth backing them up, and c’mon… you have to admit that the idea of a tiger-shifter with illusionary powers and a narcotic venom that not only paralyzes the victim or puts them in a state of ecstasy, but actually makes them want to be killed and devoured is pretty cool, and not nearly common enough.

Enter Robert Davis. Having had several very interesting conversations with the man – and gotten a…

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the real unreal

I got some feedback about my book and it was polite, but said the car I describe in there was not believable.

I found this very amusing, because the car I wrote about had several of the infirmities that my own real life car had growing up – from a 2X4 holding in the front seats, to needing to be put in third gear and the keys giggled, had an engine that knocked for thirty minutes after I turned it off, and sounded like a cross between a Harley and a tractor (because the exhaust system was shot.). It had a heater that made passengers all smell like antifreeze (it probably would have suffocated them but the rust holes in the roof and floor made the car ‘breezy’) it was a 1975 (?) Pinto that I bought for 50.00. It was from Michigan and was an epically bad car.

I also started writing about a character that is completely inept in the kitchen.  again, I was told ‘no one is that bad a cook’ – but didn’t reply to the email for over an hour, because I made a slight miscalculation, and ended up spraying cheese all over the inside of the microwave – and the pan with the regular Mac and Cheese in it is still soaking waiting for the burnt stuff to stop smoking.  when it comes to cooking, I am about hopeless!  I once managed to evacuate a hotel in CA because I started a grease fire while cooking low-fat hamburger.  I consider any meal that I don’t end up evacuating from my body a success, and sadly I rarely succeed at cooking!

I wonder how many other things I have borrowed from my life are going to be tagged as ‘unreal’.

letting them grow up.

Hello All,
Sorry for the lack of updates, I took a break from the world and decided to sit down with a new(ish) video game. I managed to play it through in less than 2 days, and while it was fun, it felt incomplete. The main thing (other than being painfully short) was that because it was a sequel to another series you could use your original characters, but at the end of the game, the characters were still the exact same people (right down to their weapons and outfits)
Of course this stated me thinking about my own books (The Jamie Ryder Books) I have never called them a series before, mostly because each one stands on its own fairly well. The overall arc is there, but each book has to hold the reader on its own merits. The conflicts in them all need to be new, and the characters need to grow. I don’t know how many Jamie Ryder Books I am going to end up writing, or should I say how many books in that universe. But I do know each of them have to stand on their own. I thought about a couple of series that I liked in the Urban Fantasy Genre, and one of them (sorry don’t want to disclose which one) if I take the first book, and the last book and read just those, the books in the middle don’t matter. The character is still the same person they were in the first one.
I am going to re-read my own works today and tomorrow – the goal is simple, if I take the first book and the ‘final’ book – other than the fact they have the same name, can I see a difference between the ‘characters’ Jamie for instance is less passive and more grown up in her thinking. Olivia (her friend) will [hopefully] confront her own demons and evolve as a person, even the couple that are helping her need to evolve, even If just a little bit.
I will know I have succeeded if I can look at the person in the first book, and the person in the last book and think “wow, she changed, how did that happen”

Authors Gone Wild

Hey all,

For those of you rapidly scrolling up and down looking for pictures, you want girls gone wild.  for those of you reading,  last night at one of my writing groups, one of my fellow members had a piece about how they had stopped reading a poet they loved because he was having an affair.  The ensuing discussion suddenly started around how authors can and can’t, should or shouldn’t behave.

in a perfect world, an authors opinions would be unimportant in relation to their writing. their story craft would stand on its own and their own views of the world and politics and the events of the world would be unimportant.  Of course, in that same world I would have a pet giraffe that I would ride to the store with a killer stereo between its horns and an AC so I didn’t get too hot.

In the real world, especially with the need to use social media, an author will be judged by his views as much as his writing.

say for instance you have a strong view about the de-desalinization of the ocean. (and yes I choose a subject that no one will have an opinion on)  an Author that comes out in favor of oceanic desalinization, some readers that agree with him will dismiss him, either because he is not Pro-desalinization enough, or because they think he is only on board for desalinization to grow a readership.  the other extreme, an author that is willing to chain him self to the intake valve to shut the desalinization plant down and save the plankton. Most readers will decide he is unstable or that he is a publicity hound only trying to get readers.

Sad reality is, no matter what side of the desalinization debate an author is on, the only thing he can do by jumping in on it is loose readers.

My tactic has been simple, people who post things that annoy me, I turn them off my feeds, they can see what I am doing and when/if I start making money, I will contribute to the causes I believe in quietly [and hope that no one ever discovers I am pro desalinization]

we could dwell on how ironic it is that thanks to marketing and social media, an author, who by definition writes words for a living needs to self censor.