Monday, January 30, 2012

Do's and Don'ts: Style Tips for Night Owls

It's taken some time, your lifestyle wasn't very accepted for a long time. But now everything's starting to change and it's time to get your groove on. You've been waiting for this opportunity, to get out there, be yourself and find a tasty thing to spend your nights with. There's just one problem: you look like this.


The pale skin, the bad hair, the clothing being about a century out of fashion - you've got some problems. And, even if you're more accepted in today's society, those problems at a little hard to get past if you don't approach it right. You've made the decision: it's time for a makeover.

Let's try not to screw it up, huh?

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Pirates vs Ninjas: SOPA, PIPA and ACTA

Sometimes, I'm made painfully aware that, as a US citizen, I might be stuck in some sort of magical bubble that prevents facts from reaching through. This isn't to say I'm ignorant of what's around me, I stay fairly well informed despite the media's attempt to do otherwise. I'm just saying sometimes certain things happening in foreign countries will not quite be included in the "what's around me" part of that statement. Every once in a while, certain world events will slip by unnoticed like a ninja and catch me off guard.

See, one of the things that I've observed for some time is that the US has been in two wars for a while. I don't mean "wars" in the sense of "Iraq" and "Afghanistan" because those were just two fronts of the same war - "The War On Terrorism". But there's a second war that's been pretty aggressively fought lately: The War On Piracy. All forms of piracy, from guys in speed boats to New Zealanders who store some files for people for a fee.

Well today, I spotted the ninja.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Inherent BS: Word Count


Let's face it, it's impossible to escape the fact that we live in a world where "too long; didn't read" is, itself, too long to be bothered with. The audacity of being so lazy you have to reduce an incomplete sentence into just letters can leave the mind boggling. In the next few years there's little doubt we'll be seeing the semi-colon go bye bye too. And, yes, my lack of faith in the internet's tolerance of the English language is that strong. And I'm a novelist.

So, clearly, I'm also fucked.

Monday, January 16, 2012

A Word To Indies: Graphic Design And You

Today, I'm going to talk to you about coloring in the lines and not treating your books like kindergarten art projects.

After recent posts about publishing, self publishing and the direction I think the future should go in - I was starting to look for other topics to talk about. But as I was looking at my long To-Do list I realized that there were still things I needed to do that I've seen a lot of indies mess up. In fact, I've messed them up here or there myself. So if anyone's going to tell you this message, it should be one of your own:

You can't do everything on your own unless you learn what you're doing first.

Now this isn't to say that you have to shell out a lot of cash to someone for everything you don't know how to do. In fact, for most things that you're not 100% certain on, you can probably learn how to do it. But there's some things that you just cannot, under any circumstance, allow your inability to louse up. Specifically, for the purposes of this post: don't fuck up your cover.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Inherent BS: Luck and Entry Fees


Friday the 13th, an ominous day for most because of silly superstition and things no one really understands. The origins of the day have long been discussed and fails to have a satisfactory answer. The reasons rarely have any attachment to reality (or each other) and are usually the long form of "we picked it at random". In fact, here's a couple I always find amusing myself:

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Alterpedia - Vampires


As a service to the community (and a little bit of shameless plugging for my book here) I feel it necessary to educate the populace about those persecuted souls that happen to be something other than human. For knowledge is power and I like to pretend I'm powerful. Once a week, we will address those topics that deal with Alters, and this week we’re covering:

Vampires



One of the most storied and varied Alters in fiction and folklore, the Vampire is found in variations across the world with differences from one region’s legends to another. Ranging from the popular European depictions to the more modern depictions from film and literature, many stories spread about Vampires and their kin. The accuracy of these stories range from accurate to completely off the mark - leaving the question: which of these are true?

If we studied every aspect of these legendary figures we would spend an eternity addressing all of the subtle changes from one variation to another. Instead we shall address the most significant features of Vampires, both real and imagined.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

A Word To The Indies

For the last few posts, I've been laying it into the publishing industry for not supporting the independent authors that have been springing up like weeds everywhere. But to leave it at that, I feel, would be a disservice to everyone. There's someone else that needs to have a little bit of a reality check: Indies.


Recently I've been proudly posting the banner "Indies and eBooks: Saviors of the Industry!" and I stand by that. I firmly believe the things I've said about how the sheer numbers of indies can and will make an impact if they're allowed to. I believe that men and women like you, me and everyone in between can come together and patch this industry up like the music and film industries were in the past.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Indies and eBooks: Saviors of the Industry! - Solutions

For those following me last month, you know that I've been on something of a rant about the failures of the publishing industry and the grim numbers they keep touting. But all along I've been saying that Independents and eBooks can and will turn things around if we put a full measure of support behind them. The eBook support has become so obvious that a lot of publishers have finally started to move in the right direction. But I still believe that independents just might be able to patch the rest of the holes and fix this thing once and for all before it crumbles around us.


Just one question: How?