Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Repost and Update: Forget the Pearls- Destroying Eden

So some time ago, by which I mean about a year or so, a self publishing author put out a book called Save the Pearls Part 1:  Revealing Eden.  It was... hm.... controversial

Actually it was a train wreck upon crash upon a disaster with a reactor going critical just as the iceberg sent it sinking.  But, like many good dramas, this appears to be the gift that keeps on giving.  It seems that Ms. Foyt hasn't learned a single thing except that everyone loves a sequel.  So how do you follow one of the most controversial books of 2012?  Why you publish the sequel the following year!

So, to help everyone keep some perspective on this new train wreck on paper, I'm reposting my thoughts on the first train wreck this week:

Friday, January 25, 2013

Weekly Omens 1/25/13

This has been a good and bad week for me.  Some great things happened, and some not so great.

Here's a wrap up of the week's posts and news:

At Fictional Omens -

This week I finally got up my post about writing what you know and if you don't know it you need to research it.  The post was heavily informed by fellow author and fan-nerd Janine Spendlove.  Check out her War of the Seasons if you haven't.

At Mind the Thorns -

There has been no update because I suck and I haven't made myself write it yet.  This is bad.  This is very bad.  I need to write it.

Think of this as an opportunity to play catch up for those of you who are a few chapters behind.  See the favors I do you?  Here's Chapter 1 for those that have never read it.

At Bastion: The Final Hope

This week's update is an image from the point of view of one of the survivors. I'm still not sure the "story" there is direct enough but the whole project is an experiment anyway so we'll see what happens.  Comments are, of course, welcome.

In life -

It's been a bit of a crazy week.  Monday was off because of the MLK holiday (I was supposed to be writing) and I was sent on an errand to get Hot Dog for the Skylanders game.  I love my wife dearly but she's more obsessed with getting all the Skylanders than the 5-year old.

The new semester is off to a great start and content for Bastion is rolling along at a great rate.  I have several actors involved to create the multimedia content.  I have to admit that I'm very excited for it and it's distracting me from what I should be working on.

And your video of the week.... hmm...  How about Glee?  What I want to know is why do I need the Glee cover to have a great version of this song without profanity?

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Write what you know, Again

Some time ago I talked about the importance of knowing what you're writing about.  At the time it was to reference my trip to a gun range to fire a hand gun for the first time.  After all, if I'm going to write it, I should know what it's like so I can capture that for my character.

Which also reminds me that I probably should get back over there and squeeze off a few bursts out of AR-15 or so.

So, as I've mentioned my latest project is to write something that blends "Fighting back for our planet after the Alien devastation" and "We are all that is left of Humanity".  I want it to be para-military based but that means that in the backstory of my characters there will probably be some military experience.

And aside from having memorized FM22-5 (or what ever its new designation might be), I really don't know that much about the military.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Weekly Omens 1/18/13

So what a weird week it's been.  Finals week is always rough because there's so much to do and none of it is due until the middle of next week.  As someone who works best under pressure this is always a challenge because I'd so rather do anything besides work.

Speaking of anything else:  Double Prestige on the MK48 on Call of Duty.  Go me.

So here's what happened around my little patch of the web:

On Mind the Thorns

The vote was finalized and it appears that Regan is going to wait at home for Jeremiah's associate to come fetch her so together then fetch some item for Jeremiah.  More than likely she's going to spend the time scheming.  Watch Monday for the next chapter!

On Bastion:  The Final Hope

My second web-novel launched this week with a gripping (I've been told) first chapter.  Chapter one introduces Gunnery Sergeant Beaubein and the crew of a KC-130 as they escape yet another mysterious cloud of death.  It's not reader directed and it will update weekly.  Have a read if you haven't yet.

Here at Fictional Omens

I have been so lucky to have the help of fellow author Janine Spendlove in my work and she has further blessed me with a guest post on the top 5 things people screw up when writing about the military.  It's a must read.

At home

Kaylee has strep throat and Xander has a horrible case of being 5.  Fortunately there are antibiotics for the former and an early bedtime for the latter.  But aside from work and writing it's been a quiet week.

I also want to thank Spendlove and her "friend in the Herc community" for further entertaining my questions and confusions.  She has been patient and dilligent in making sure that not only do I get the details right but that everything makes sense for what a Marine would "do" in these circumstances.  As such my To Do list includes some minor revisions to BtFH Chapter 1, but thankfully nothing that overly shifts the tone or plot.

This week's Video:

At first I thought this was all me and then I saw that the Raging Vegetarian was right there with me so it was a combined effort to completely eliminate the other team.  That's me coming in from the distance, gun blazing.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Guest Post: Writing Military

By Janine Spendlove

Rob is an old friend of mine, and we’ve both kind of gotten into the whole “writing thing” on our own, around roughly the same time. It’s been really neat to go on this parallel journey with him. One of delights has been a recent project he’s working on where he’s been tapping my knowledge base for one of his characters/story scenarios.

You see, in addition to being a writer, I am first, and foremost a United States Marine. My Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) is that of a KC-130J Aircraft Commander.

Given my background and the back forth Rob and I have been having about his story (basically, me correcting all the things he’s getting “wrong” about Marine aviation – things that only someone in the community, like me, would know), he asked if I would do a guest blog post about the top 5 things people get wrong about the military.

I sat down with my husband (also a US Marine) to brainstorm and we came up with the following “top 5” (trust me, there are a whole lot more than this). Please bear in mind, given that we are both Marines, our knowledge base tends to be deeply steep in that, so what we have to say does not necessarily count for the other branches of service. So what does that mean? If you plan to write about the military, you’d better do some research.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Only if you mean to

It's no real secret, but I'm working on another major web serial that will launch within the next month.  This one, unlike Mind the Thorns, will not be reader directed, will update weekly (where I was forced to move MtT to every other week), and will feature a mix of prose, and multimedia or other updates.  My plan for it is to first have a at least a month's worth of writing done before it goes live so I have some wiggle room to ease up or work ahead as I need.

Because the story involves members of the military, I've been in close contact with several friends with military experience and they have been kind and patient enough with me to let me bounce ideas off of them, and proof read my work for factual inaccuracies and procedural oopses.

I've got a longer blog post coming soon that addresses one of those conversations but I wanted to hit on another theme that has come out here.  Specifically this:

Soldiers are trained not to fire warning shots.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Kickstart FantastiCon

While I am very proud of FantastiCon and its reception so far, it needs an editor.  To that end I've posted on Kickstarter the desire to raise $800 over the month of January to get that editing job done.

Please consider backing the project if you've enjoyed my writing so far.  For $15 you receive a signed copy of the book with your name listed as a contributor and backing pledges of $30 or more will have the chance to appear in the novel itself as an "extra".