Sunday, April 29, 2012

HAARP technology


The official website for HAARP technology states that HAARP is “a scientific endeavor aimed at studying the properties and behavior of the ionosphere, with particular emphasis on being able to understand and use it to enhance communications and surveillance systems for both civilian and defense purposes.” (http://www.haarp.alaska.edu/)

Others believe that HAARP technology has a more sinister purpose.

There are rumors that HAARP technology can be used to control the weather, create sinkholes, and even cause earthquakes. There are reports from numerous people across the United States that they can hear a constant hum at particular frequencies that only started when the HAARP project came online.

Some believe that HAARP can be used for mind control.

In my Romy Malloy novels, HAARP is the culprit for all of these things and more.

In the first novel Brilliant Disguise, HAARP tech, or more specifically, the nefarious and illegal use of HAARP tech, is the driving force behind the protests and eventual arrest of Jasper Malloy, Romy’s father. Jasper is part of a group called The Seers, whose goal is to limit the government’s use of HAARP technology.

Jasper and his friends believe that the government is not only using HAARP to control and possibly damage the cosmic environment here in our dimension, but also to build portals for inter-dimensional travel and that the government’s intentions are less than altruistic.

They believe there are factions within the government who want to conquer the other dimensions, who plan to go to war before it can be discovered if other dimensions even exist and if there are intelligent beings living there capable of communicating.

Part of the fun of being a science fiction writer is that I can pretend and speculate all day long about these types of scenarios and then place my characters into all sorts of crazy situations where they have to combat the evil behind government conspiracies poorly designed and haphazardly implemented.

But... what if some of these situations were real?

What if HAARP technology really could create portals to other dimensions?

The Large Hadron Collider operated by CERN in Switzerland went online in September of 2008 in search of the fabled Higgs-Boson, or GOD-particle. It was soon shut down due to a “magnet quench incident”, causing rapid Joule heating and damaging many of the super-conducting magnets. This “quench” also caused a breach of the cryogenic field, the field in which the temperatures are artificially lowered to levels that make monitoring and analyzing particles much easier.

At the micro-second the analysts became aware this incident had happened, there was a loud bang when the energy in the magnetic field converted to heat which caused the breach in the cryogenic field. This loud bang was never fully explained.

The public was told that there was no cause for concern, that there had been no atmospheric release of any damaging particles.

But there are others who do not believe the official line.

Some believe what scientists Walter L. Wagner, Luis Sancho, and Otto Rossler stated long before the LHC came online, that using such powerful colliders and attempting the types of experiments the CERN team wanted to attempt would cause the creation of black holes and strangelets.

These scientists believe it’s possible that these black holes would be uncontrollable and could grow beyond the containment fields. Causing a breach.

And, there are others still, who believe that the team at CERN knew of the possibility of the creation of black holes, and that they were in fact counting on the LHC to do just that.

Is it possible that this faction of the team at CERN was looking to create a black hole AND use it to their own purposes? Did they want to “ride the lightning?”

What if they wanted to create a black hole, calculate its coordinates, modify the hole using HAARP technology until it in fact became a wormhole, and then use that wormhole to travel between dimensions and conquer whatever they may find?

In my book Brilliant Disguise, Jasper Malloy and The Seers find out about this plot to use the LHC and HAARP to further these government schemes.

Used together, The Seers fear that HAARP and the LHC could rip the matter of our space/time continuum, and instead of just opening a portal to another world or another dimension it could instead create a cascade of unstoppable events which could unravel the very fabric of reality.

The Seers understand and agree that dimensional travel should be explored, but they do not want it to be used as a weapon of conquest.

They instead want to use the technology to first open a dialogue with the ones on the other side, to seek peaceful and cooperative relationships.

This is the battle The Seers and Jasper Malloy face.

But, even in our real world, the chances that the LHC and HAARP technology may cause damage to our reality are not null.

Even if the ability to travel dimensionally is never realized, there is still an event horizon, a point of no return.

The LHC just might have the power to create uncontrollable black holes.

HAARP tech just might be able to cause earthquakes and control the weather.

Together, who knows what cataclysms could be ignited?

Are you ready for this brave new world?

Are you ready to ride the lightning and step into another dimension?

Better get ready.

It’s here.


Monday, April 23, 2012

Content is king


The first of the Four C’s - Create.


Coming up with ideas and finding ways to put those ideas to use when writing a novel (or a blog post) can be a confusing and messy process. But there are ways to improve the process and make it enjoyable and profitable to your writing endeavors.

One thing I do to improve the process is to carry the four C’s with me whenever I write, or plan to write, or find myself at 3:00AM with a magical muse making merriment on my mind plate.

The four C’s are:
Create - Collect - Complete - Control

Today I want to focus on the first big C: CREATE.

I’ll get to the others some other day. Maybe.

Writing is meaningless unless you give the reader something meaty to chew on. Thin, stringy, tasteless meat (prose) is... well, it sucks!

Nobody wants to eat stringy ass meat! If I’m eating a steak I want a thick juicy tasty piece of Prime Rib with no gristle and so much flavor I find my lips striking out on a trek to discover the source and creator of all Good Meats even before the plate has arrived at the table!

If you can write a story equal to THAT kind of steak then you are a Chef to be reckoned with! Step off Emeril! Bam!

Whew... that was intense. And now I want a steak. Thanks folks for making me think about steak! Good lord it’s not enough lunch time yet!

But really... the first C, CREATE, is the umbrella C for the most important C under the C umbrella. That littler C is called CONTENT.

Content is the key, or... OK, to stick with the title at the top of the page... Content is KING.

The content of your writing is the only thing that will keep a reader reading. Believe me, without content your readers will be out the door and in the car halfway to the nearest Ruth’s Chris before you can even say “Once upon a time...”

And I can hear you all now, screaming down the cyber hallways... “How do we do it, o might guru? How do we create great content? How do we cook a steak so perfect we make our readers mouths water?”

I will feed you baby birds... oh yes... I will feed you.

First and foremost... START WRITING!

Do it now. Grab a piece of paper or login to your favorite word processor and start writing.

Write your first thoughts. I don’t care if your first thought is how badly you want to strangle me right now.

Write that. Come on... do it... “I want to strangle this guy right now...”

GOOD JOB!

You are on track to making GREAT content.

But there’s more. Oh yes, there is ALWAYS more.

Creating content that is worth reading requires that you SHOW the readers what is happening -- that is, as opposed to TELLING them.

Let me provide you with an example using my beloved character Romy Malloy. 

First, I will show you a bad, horrible, incorrect, not so good way to do it.

“Taxes will be raised on all corporations as well as individuals,” the woman told Romy emphatically.

Now, as far as grammar goes, that’s a good sentence right? (Shut up, you over there...  yes you!)

But as far as good content goes?

Does that SHOW you or TELL you what is happening? You tell me... go ahead, I’ll wait.

Ok I won’t wait. That’s pretty boring crap right there, I’ll tell you what. And all it does is TELL us what is happening. What did it feel like? What did it look like? Why is she being emphatic? Why the hell is she even talking to Romy?

We don’t get any real information from that sentence. And, if that’s what you’re going for, then sure, yea... it works just fine.

But what if you want GOOD content from what you write?

Try this next set of sentences on for size and tell me if you believe they tell show you a better story.

The woman reached out and placed her hand on Romy’s forearm, pressing harder the more she spoke.
“Taxes will be raised on all corporations as well as individuals,” she stated verbatim from the news report they’d both just listened to on the diner’s television.
Romy pulled her arm away and again focused intently on her salad. She hated when people touched her just to make a point. And hell she didn’t even know this lady!

Now there ya go... doesn’t that make you feel a whole lot better, hmm? What you say? I’m just askin!”

Whoa... sorry. Serious flashback to the early 80’s when I would tan on hot summer days with a Sony Walkman blaring the B-52’s into my ears. Wait... what’s a Sony Walkman you ask?

Nevermind.

Anyway, to my thinking I believe the second method worked a lot better. And it gets my point across.

Show, don’t tell.

And that’s about all I have to say about that.

Hope you enjoyed it! Leave a comment if you can, because I LOVE hearing from you!

Later!

PPC


Thursday, April 19, 2012

inter-dimensional travel


Hello fellow Romy-ites!

I thought today was a perfect day to throw out a little techno mumbo-jumbo for ya that should make your head spin!

I mean, hey... Romy Malloy is a trained doctor who owns a sleep clinic, (even though she is forced for financial reasons to double up as a clinic for Erectile Dysfunction <giggle>) and even with all this training and experience the subject of Dimensional Travel STILL warps her brain!

It’s a tough nut to crack. But never fear! That’s why I’m here, right?

I’m the author here and I’m supposed to be able to break all this stuff down into smaller chunks that are more easily digestible by your sensitive little tummies.

Well prepare your gullets little birdies cause I’m about to chew this crap up and regurgitate it to you in a warm moist pasty goo that will slide right down your vertical beaks...

For starters, let me give you this from my old friend Stewie Griffin, because NOBODY says it better than Stewie. Here Stewie discusses the Multiverse theory with his dog Brian:

Stewie: You ever heard of the Multiverse theory, Brian?
Brian: Of course I have. But I'm wondering if you have.
Stewie: Oh my god, so transparent. The theory states that there are an infinite amount of universes coexisted with ours on parallel dimensional planes.
Brian: The dimensional planes, right.
Stewie: Oh, don't do that. Don't...don't repeat the last two words like you already kinda knew what I was talking about. You have no idea what I'm talking about... In each of the alternate universes the reality is different than our own. Sometimes only slightly sometimes quite radically...

There you go. That’s it.

Thanks for reading.

Oh... wait... what? You want more???

<sigh>

Okay! If you insist! (heehee... you know I live for this!)

What Stewie said is actually a great start. The multiverse theory with the infinite amount of other universes, blah blah blah...

But what about the ability to travel between universes/dimensions?

Ahhh... this is where it gets GOOD.

See, I absolutely love studying science. Books, magazines, online articles... and especially if we’re talking extraterrestrial life, or cosmic beginnings, or, you guessed it, multi-dimensional theories. And I actually get to research this stuff for my books! Research is what makes your story come to life! And if you hate doing the research for your story, then maybe you need to consider writing another story.

In order for us to even imagine that moving between dimensions is possible we have to imagine that a few other possibilities are real. There are other theories and possibilities out there, but here are three that work perfectly for the Romy Malloy stories:

1.       You have to imagine/believe that wormholes exist somewhere in space/time.
2.       You have to imagine/believe that teleportation really works.
3.        You have to imagine/believe that time can be altered/adjusted to fit specific needs.

Wormholes: First you have to have an access point. If other dimensions actually exist then in order to “get” to another dimension you have to have an access point, a “portal” if you will. Wormholes have been discussed for many years as a possible reality and if you step across that threshold and believe that they DO exist, then right there you have your access point, your portal. If a wormhole exists and you have the technology to analyze and time the cosmic fluctuations and trace the possible delivery points in space/time, then you have the ability to harness the power of the wormhole and use it for inter-dimensional travel.

Teleportation: Even with a wormhole there is still the little issue of actually “placing” the object or person into the wormhole in order to move it to that dimension. You can’t get a wormhole to just open up at your front door and you hop in and tell it where you want to go. A wormhole has limitations you know. Teleportation works perfectly to fill this gap and bypass this limitation.

You may ask also why we cannot just teleport to another dimension. Good question and I can answer that by saying that teleportation has its limits as well as wormholes. The same matter can only exist on one plane of existence at a time. Teleportation is the transfer of matter from one location to the next WITHIN the same plane of existence. Because of safety concerns, teleportation devices don’t just take the metaphysical data that makes up your body and move it. No, like any good database administrator will tell you, you MUST make a copy of the data as a backup before you move it or modify it JUST IN CASE something goes wrong. Then, if there is an error while transferring, you simply restore to your last backup and you’re back in business.

And thusly, since for the few milliseconds you are within the teleportation process, there exists TWO copies of yourself... your actual self (which is being transported) and the copy of yourself left in a safe place back at the initiation point (which is eliminated the moment the teleportation process completes).

BUT... if you try to use teleportation to move between dimensions you MIGHT run into trouble. Remember what Stewie said?

The theory states that there are an infinite amount of universes coexisted with ours on parallel dimensional planes.

What if, by some random act of sheer stupidity, your calculations are off and you wind up making your destination point the SAME as your source point? A-HA! You will run smack dap into a wall and like a bug on the window of a Mack truck you will be the SAME matter trying to exist at the SAME time on the SAME dimensional plane! FAIL!

So, that’s why you must have a teleportation device in order to place your sorry ass into the flow of the wormhole.

Time alteration/adjustment: Have you guessed it yet? Einstein postulated about it in his little theory of relativity. Galileo probably knew. Newton certainly understood the possibilities. Da Vinci HAD to know it was possible. I am referring of course to the ability to alter or adjust time relative to your physical location, better known as time travel. Similar to the issues with teleportation, you cannot just willy-nilly move between dimensions in an instant without first understanding where, and more importantly WHEN you are moving to.

Imagine if there really were another dimension right next to ours. Reach your hand out as far as you can. This other dimension is right there. But you can’t touch it. Why? Because, even though within cosmic multiverse realms that dimension is really close, in the physical sense it exists an infinite distance away from you. There would never be enough time and energy available for you to travel there before you die.

How do you get around this? You adjust or alter time. Stop it. Reverse it. Speed it up. You have to, don’t you see? Time must become irrelevant while you are in the transition from one dimension to another.

Consider a space traveler who leaves earth on a round trip mission to sling his spaceship around the sun and blast past the black hole at the center of our galaxy skipping just up to the event horizon and then shooting back to earth in what seems to his clock as only a ten year trip.

Time dilation makes that ten year trip for the space man actually about 100 years here on earth! Now imagine travelling an INFINITE distance to get to another dimension. Not bloody likely!

How to get around this?

Bend time.

Fold space. Like a piece of paper with two dots at either end, the distance in a straight line is a long way. But if you fold the paper in half you almost completely eliminate the distance... in fact you CAN eliminate the distance, at least in real terms.

Then using teleportation and wormholes you can just step right through and arrive at the exact same time, or only micro-seconds, after you leave your own dimension.

AND THAT my dear Romy-ites is how it is done in Romy’s world.

I hope this little discussion will get you by until the day I can finally publish the novel.

Still waiting on Baen Publishing to respond... very slow process.

Unfortunately, I can’t just open a wormhole and teleport there to that day while folding the fabric of time and make the release date right now.

Or can I...?

Hmm...


Monday, April 16, 2012

QnA! #1 -- The D.P. Prior Interview!


Hello fellow plotters and Romy-ites!

Today I have a VERY special treat for you.

A fellow fantasy writer and all around great guy D.P. Prior has agreed to sit through a (virtual) interview for my little ole blog!

Let me just say this up front -- D.P. is incredible.

While spinning out great novel after great novel in his “Shader” and “Nameless Dwarf” series, D.P. somehow finds the time to edit others work AND fulfill his duties as a husband/father/etc. etc. Read on and find out just how busy this guy is!

D.P. will be offering “The Scout and the Serpent” (Nameless Dwarf 3) FREE starting April 18-21 in preparation for the release of his next NEW novel “The Ebon Staff” (Nameless Dwarf 4).

Here’s the cover for “The Ebon Staff”:




Stay tuned to D.P.’s blog for exact dates and updates on his books and releases here -- http://www.dpprior.blogspot.com/

Believe me, this is one author you REALLY NEED to keep your eyes on. Read his blog AND his books.

You will be very happy you did!

Thanks SO MUCH D.P. for taking the time to share a bit about yourself and your work. I promise to buy a round as soon as I am in your neck of the woods in the U.K.!

And now... ON TO THE QnA!


Q.     Tell us a bit about yourself and the secrets of what you're currently working on.

Hello, Paul and thanks for having me on your blog.

I’m the author of the Shader series of epic fantasy books and the Chronicles of the Nameless Dwarf. I divide my time between writing and editing (http://homunculuseditingservices.blogspot.com). I’m always updating about my works in progress, reader feedback, cover art etc on my blog http://dpprior.blogspot.com.

I’m currently working like crazy on the last two books of the Chronicles of the Nameless Dwarf, a 5-novella fantasy series. The plan is to bring all five books out in one volume called The Nameless Dwarf (The Complete Chronicles)during the summer. 

I’m also gearing up to recommence work on the third book of the Shader series, The Unweaving. This story is in total redraft and brings the first Shader trilogy to an end. The Shader books are much broader in scope than the Nameless Dwarf books and take a lot more careful construction.

Interestingly, the Nameless Dwarf books are a spinoff from the Shader series and pick up from where Nameless leaves the story. They started off as a light short story (which was published in Pulp Empire) but rapidly grew into an idea for a story arc of epic proportions. Whereas Shader is quite dense and at times cerebral, the Nameless books are in many ways a throwback to the old style sword and sorcery I grew up with, but with an emphasis on rich characterization and close point of view. They’ve become my most successful books to date.

Q.     How did you get into writing in the first place?

I started trying to write a novel at about the age of nine. I tried desperately to hide it, but the early attempts were all ripoffs of The Hobbit. I remember writing about these little people with hairy feet who were not (under any circumstances) to be called hobbits. For a few years it was all Tolkien rehashes and then I gave up. 

My next attempt came years later with a novel called The Trials of Ignatius Grymm. This was the tale of a holy knight fighting undead and witches as told by his squire. That novel reached about 80 pages before it was scrapped. It later formed the basic idea for The Resurrection of Deacon Shader, which features a cameo from Ignatius Grymm towards the end.

I finally started to take writing a little more seriously when I rented a property in the outback and worked daily on Resurrection. I made all the mistakes new writers are prone to and thought the first draft was a masterpiece! It went through two editors and only then did I realize the whole book needed to be rewritten from scratch. That’s when the Shader series was born. Resurrection became the seed of something vast -- six full length novels, two of which are already published. Books 3 and 4 are planned for release later this year and 5 and 6 will follow next year.

Surprisingly, Tolkien was not much of an influence for my writing beyond the age of 13 or so. My chief influences are the writers I grew up reading: Robert E. Howard, Lin Carter (Thongor!), L. Sprague de Camp, Michael Moorcock, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Stephen Donaldson, and David Gemmell. More recently I’ve been influenced, at least stylistically, by Joe Abercrombie.

Q.     What motivates you to create such colorful characters? 

My chief motivation came from the utter lack of characterization in my first attempts at writing novels. The characters were two-dimensional talking heads who spoke merely to explain things to the reader, and of course they all used that bizarre version of English known as fantasy-speak, replete with Yoda-esque passive voice and pseudo-Shakespearian constructions.

I discovered the hard way that characters are the key to everything in fiction writing and so I started to allow them to breathe. I continued to outline plot, but the characters were no longer bound by it. I’d put them into situations and see how they responded. Sometimes that meant the plot had to change in some surprising ways.

I hope the characters are sketched broadly enough for readers to identify with at least some aspects of them. The Nameless Dwarf, for example, may have started out as a D&D character in the 80s, but in the books he is quite different. He suffers from manic-depression, has horrific past deeds to atone for, and even combines elements of Hilaire Belloc, Druss the Legend and Falstaff.


Q.     I am always amazed at folks like you who not only write but also find the time to edit for other writers. On top of taking care of little ones! How do you do it, and what other hidden talents do you possess that we might not be aware of?

I have to try to balance editing commitments with writing and, as you mention, childcare. Sometimes I have to close to editing commissions while I am finishing off one of my own books. It then often follows that I have a lot of back-to-back editing jobs during which I scarcely write. This proves useful for a number of reasons. During these periods I still make notes for the books I’m planning to write, and the pause from actual writing allows ideas to gestate. If I was continuously writing I’d probably not take the time to let themes, plot, and character grow in such an organic fashion. 

Also, editing requires a different (although closely related) skill set to writing. The scrutiny of the text, the objectivity, but also the attempt to see how the work comes across to a reader, helps to expose the craft of writing and makes me much more aware of these things in my own work. As a result, I think, my first drafts have become much better, allowing subsequent drafts to focus more on bringing out depth of character and thematic issues than the basic mechanics of story-telling.

My family are very much involved in the redrafting process of my novels. I tend to read scenes out loud to Theo and Paula and have to field a lot of cries of “Word repetition!” or simply “Eh?”. They’ve both been really helpful with the development of ideas. I often walk into a room and start blathering on about some exciting plot revelation I’ve just had and they ask all sorts of questions that take the ideas further. Theo even made up a few characters when he was 7 or 8 and they slowly crept into my Shader stories.

Besides writing and editing I still train a couple of clients in the gym (I’m a certified personal trainer, virtually retired!). I homeschool my son Theo and will be primary carer for my daughter Cordelia once my wife’s maternity leave is over. I also record and perform music, although that’s taken a backseat lately due to all the writing commitments. There’s a bunch of my songs up on iLike. 

Q.     Aside from the next installment of The Nameless Dwarf, what can we expect from D.P. Prior in the future?

Nameless book 4, The Ebon Staff, is currently being revised and edited and should be released in 2-3 weeks. After that I’ll be starting work on four editing commissions whilst transferring the detailed notes for Nameless book 5 to a scene by scene breakdown. I’m hoping to divide my working day between editing and starting the first draft as there are some exiting developments unfolding for the series that are dependent on all five books being completed,

After that it’s on to The Unweaving. My schedule for the year also includes completing The Archon’s Assassin (Shader 4), a Shader short prequel, The Seventh Horse, and the start of a new series of Nameless Dwarf adventures,Tomb of the Shaman. To achieve all that I’m shifting my study into the attic and buying a globe drinks cabinet.


Monday, April 9, 2012

Wash/rinse/repeat


Got to thinking about outlining and paragraph structure over the weekend. I was helping my college age daughter edit an essay for an advanced English course. Her task was to analyze in a 3-5 page paper the poem “Digging” by Irish poet Seamus Heaney. (Great poem BTW, and I would recommend reading it).

We encountered an issue with her paper that is common for all younger writers and something for which even mature writes need to stay alert.

I am referring to weak outline/structure, or even the failure to do an outline/structure.

Of course for an academic essay it is essential to consider the outline/structure of the paper before you start. But it’s also a step that can benefit novel writers as well.

To show the importance of outlining and structure it’s probably easier to tell you a neat little mantra I use whenever I set to writing and provide a quick example of a good outline.

My Mantra:
Wash/Rinse/Repeat

Or, more bluntly:
SAY what you’re going to say.

SAY what you need to say.

TELL us what you just said.

Seems redundant right? Well, that’s the point. Preachers use it all the time with the old “If it’s worth saying and remembering then say it three times.”

Here, let me give you an example of a short essay with a TITLE, a THESIS, and a BODY paragraph.

First, let’s outline the paper. I will outline the ENTIRE paper, as well as each individual paragraph. Believe me, this makes things a LOT easier in the end.

OUTLINE: Describing Rubeus Hagrid
I.                    Thesis.
a.       State that I am going to write about Hagrid.
b.      State that the goal is to give the reader an understanding of what he looks like.
c.       State the original statement again using different words.
II.                  Paragraph.
a.       Answer the first statement above (State that I am going to start describing Hagrid)
b.      Start describing Hagrid. How big? Basic looks? How does he speak?
c.       Wrap it up by saying again that I have just described Hagrid.

And here’s the actual essay:
Describing Rubeus Hagrid
In this essay I am going to describe Rubeus Hagrid. After you read this you will know who he is and what he looks like and my task of describing Hagrid will be complete.
Better known as just “Hagrid”, Rubeus Hagrid is a character in the Harry Potter books. Hagrid is large because he is a half giant. He has a large fuzzy beard and speaks with a funny accent. Most kids think he is funny but some people think he is scary. This is not really a problem though since he is only a character in a book.

And there you have it. Using a good outline is just about the simplest way to help write a paper that will get a point across.

Using the Wash/Rinse/Repeat outline/structure strategy you can come up with about 3-5 topic points for each paragraph that you can then use to “fill-in-the-blanks” and Voila! You have a paper.

But how does this work when writing a novel you may ask?

That’s the great thing about this method.

It works for complex subjects as well.

Well, it’s kinda the same, and kinda not the same.

Obviously when writing a large story you are not about to make each paragraph iterative like you would in an essay paper.

But... you DO have to stick to a consistent theme, right?

Character, setting, style, plot, subplot, throughline, backstory... all of these require a consistency so that the reader does not get confused.

Using an outline/structure model similar to the one for an essay works just as well for a novel.

Line ‘em up, give ‘em priority, put ‘em in order, and PRESTO CHANGO there you have it! An outline for a novel and a basic structure to guide you all the way through it!

There’s just quite a few more blanks to fill in than with an essay.

Hopefully this helps you out a little so that the next time you have to write an essay you have a good starting point. And, for your next novel, you can get a good head start as well.

Thanks for reading!

Later!

PPC

Thursday, April 5, 2012

I want you to want me

It’s time for an adult conversation.

Are you ready for it? It’s not for the weak heart-ed.

So, here it comes...

I want you to want me.


And you know what?

I am sure you want me to want you too.

It’s true, and you know it.

After all, isn’t that what this is all about?

The THAT in that sentence refers to the desire to have others like you, (to go to your blogs, to buy your books, to read your stuff).

And the THIS in that sentence refers to... well, to this. Blogs. Twitter. Facebook. LinkedIn. Pinterest. Triberr.

It’s all about wanting people to like you. Otherwise, why would we be here?

Honestly, if it wasn’t for my deep seated human instinct to like-and-be-liked, I would be off playing Tiddlywinks with myself. (Oh you want that statement modernized?)

Fine.

If I did not have the deep seated human instinctual desire to like-and-be-liked I would be off in a dark room watching porn between rounds of Tiger Woods golf, Halo 4, Skyrim, and Mass Effect 3.

There. Is that better?

Seriously.

This Social Media thing is all about the likey.

I likey you and you likey me.

I want you to know more about me. To read my blogs and buy my books.

That’s the God’s honest truth.

And you know what?

I REALLY want to know more about you and buy your books.

So make me like you.

Make me want to buy you.

How you ask?

I am so glad you did ask just that.

ANNOUNCING the ALL NEW series of posts on The Plotters of Cantaera and Dimensions - Romy Malloy blogs:

QnA!

That’s right, I hate ampersands.

None of that & garbage here.

Just a good old-fashioned-down-home-southern-fried-date-your-cousin-and-marry-your-brother kind of thing that just SMACKS of NASCAR and Fried Mayonnaise balls!

QnA!

The Question-n-Answer forum to beat all forums!

Well, ok, truth to tell I am not out to beat other forums.

I just want to know more about you other writers out there. And readers too, if you care to play.

And maybe together we can generate a few more blog reads and book buys and that’s a good thing right? Stimulate the economy and all?

Anyway, here’s how we play.

If you are interested in answering a few intimate (not that intimate) questions and allowing me to post the answers here on my blogs for the whole world to see, then either comment below or catch me on Twitter (@paulpcarter).

A few lucky folks will also receive a “special” invitation from me via my knee-man Guido. He should be knocking on your door right about... now!

Ha!

Scared ya!

Anywhooo... I hope I get a great response to this (or ANY response for that matter) because I REALLY do want to know more about you.


Later!

PPC




Wednesday, April 4, 2012

The keys to the kingdom


Had a dream last night I was a Hobbit traversing the levels of Minas Tirith in Gondor searching for the house of the scribes. I’d been tasked with the duty to have the scribe’s pen a new copy of a text and the King needed it immediately. The heights were frightening, and worse the house of the scribes was hard against the edge of the sixth tier with a fountain draining over the steps making the way slick and treacherous.

It’s not hard to decipher this dream (and for the record, I recognize no real value in dreams other than entertainment. It’s fun, but...)

What I believe this dream illustrated was an old assumption/ambition/anxiety I held that the traditional path of publication was the ONLY path; the bound form of words written the Holy Grail of writer-ly success.

My subconscious used those buried feelings of inadequacy to create a scene in which I felt that pressure to achieve that goal.

Wow. Seriously time for Sigmund.

But look, I have already passed that crossing, moved beyond that point in my life to where I now have a maturity as a writer to rise above such imprisonment and ensorcellment.

There are other avenues to Valinor.

There is self publication.

And it’s awesome.

There’s a VAST array of opportunities waiting out there for someone to come along and take hold of. To own them. To make them their own. To jump on and knock down and hog tie with a rope then drag home to the butcher and make ham pies out of!

But you must NOT pretend that it’s all warm Dutch Apple Crust with scoops of vanilla ice-cream on top!

No, no, no, my dear little plotters!

As a writer in this new wilderness, we MUST get to a skill level where we are good enough, or at least to the point we at least know we WILL be good enough someday (the sooner the better) that we don’t NEED someone to open the doors for us. We don’t need someone who’s stronger or better or more skilled (skillier??) than us.

We have our OWN damn set of keys now!

And we are going to take over the kingdom!

We will prevail! WE WILL WIN! And we will... (someone, I think it’s my wife, taps me on the shoulder)

Wait, what?

Oh. Right. We were having a conversation of sorts here.

Ok, the POINT is, you can do this. And here are the steps you need to take to grasp that brass ring holding the keys to the kingdom:

  • Get your butt on Social Media - Twitter, Facebook, etc. etc. They all have benefits. Get an account, try it out, read about how others are doing it. Sure it’s a little scary at first. Get over it. OWN IT!
  • Read A LOT - I mean everything. How-to’s, tips, advice, (here’s a good one here) ... (he laughs maniacally)... Also, read other books. Learn how your favorite writer writes. Figure it out. Then figure out how you can do it in the way you would do it.
  • Take a class - “Aw, but Mr. Carter that’s hard!” (So what? I say)... “But, but, I don’t have time!” (So freaking what? I ask... do you want to write?)... “But...” ...JUST FREAKING STOP IT! Do you know how many English and writing classes I have taken? Do you punk, do you??!! Ever since 9th grade when Mrs. Fisher told me I had some chops (she didn’t say THAT exactly... she said I had some skill as a creative writer, or something... she was PROPER, man I mean proper). I took every English class I could stomach in college. (Ah, who am I kidding? I live for this shit!) But it’s not just English and creative writing. I took Poli-Sci and was so good the Dean asked me to major. (yuck). I took History, Science, etc, yada yada because that stuff helps us writers too. And not just College. I READ EVERYTHING about writing. There are books to buy, but there’s TONS of free crap online. You can get almost everything you need to know there.
  • FIGURE IT OUT - By this, I mean to WRITE. You have to write to be a writer. It’s like water for fish. Bees and nectar. Peanut butter and jelly. You just HAVE to write in order to be a writer.


So, there you have it fellow plotters. Consider this your daily encouragement.

Now get your asses BACK to that keyboard and give me 2000 words! Pronto!

Later!

PPC



Sunday, April 1, 2012

Stop Sucking And Start Writing


As you can tell if you look to your left I now have a book for sale on Amazon and Nook.

Smashwords is coming soon too... good lord give me a minute would ya??!!


Check it out when you get a minute and buy it too if you can (it’s only $0.99 for goodness sake).

So just what the heck is this “Stop Sucking And Start Writing” thing anyway?

This is the book I didn’t know I was going to write. It just snuck up on me, so to speak.

While waiting on my uber-busy illustrator to get the cover done for the first Plotters of Cantaera novel, I decided it was time to compile a few tidbits of sage advice  tips I have spewed forth over time and release them into the ether in a format you can take with you anywhere.

That’s right fellow plotters! You know have access to the best blog posts straight from the pen (keyboard) of yours truly!

And now you don’t even have to find access to your favorite wi-fi hotspot just to read it!

Come on, I know you were clamoring for a way you could read me while you’re out on the beach taking in the rays.

And when the boss throttles the Internet pipeline after he catches the sales force looking at inappropriate sites again?

No problem!

Open up your Kindle or Nook and grab my latest piece of Aristotelian advice by the throat and use it as your muse to knock out the next 10,000 words in that Next Big Novel!

Go get your copy of “Stop Sucking And Start Writing” today!

And while you’re at it, leave a comment or do a review. Your humble indie-author truly appreciates it and he just might mention you in his next blah-blah-blog post.

Later!

PPC