Saturday, December 31, 2011

The Blood Solution: Progress Report 4

Approaching Infinity: Book Three
Word Count: 41,400
The Goal: 75,000

My initial goal was 30,000 words by year's end. Needless to say, I'm glad to have exceeded that. Hopefully, I will be able to continue at the pace I've been keeping in spite of my full-time job.

Thanks to everyone who's supported me this and previous years with these books, to Robert, Jean, Elizabeth, and Josh in particular. Thank you Ai for your patience, understanding, and all the second chances. Thanks also--and most of all--for Faye.

Happy New Year!

Friday, December 23, 2011

My Favorite Book

1969 : Roger Zelazny : Creatures of Light and Darkness

I've talked about this book here before. It's still worth mentioning again, though, that no one seems to get the connection to Monkey (Journey to the West). Zelazny was brilliant.


Monday, December 19, 2011

Aura Battler Dunbine

聖戦士ダンバイン (1983)
I just finished watching this series for the first time. While it may not be for everyone, especially if you're not particularly interested in Japanese animation, it was startlingly engaging for being almost 30 years old. My interest in Japan started with animation and I'm still a fan, but I find, like most stodgy old people, that I prefer the stuff of my own generation. That being said and biases aside, I strongly believe that anime of the 80's up through the early 90's is far superior to that being produced today with regard to pacing and basic story-telling ability.

I was having a conversation with a friend, thinking about Dunbine and other things—movies, in particular—that came out of the 80's. I won't call it a Golden Age, but I do feel that, in general, the pacing for movies was better then, that they were better punctuated, and you came away with a clear sense of progression and development. These days a lot of what we see seems to meander and we suddenly find ourselves at the end, not sure how we got there or how we're supposed to feel. I will say that many cable TV series in the last few years do not appear to suffer this.

My humble opinion, anyway. And perhaps all due to my poor choices, but here's a meaningless exercise: think about the last movie or TV show or whatever you saw—something you'd been looking forward to—and ask yourself about how the story unfolded, how the pacing was, and how successful or unsuccessful the piece was overall in light of those things.

(Oh, and Lor Kalkin's color scheme was actually NOT influenced by the Dunbine. Just a coincidence.)

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Blood Solution: Progress Report 3

Approaching Infinity: Book Three
Word Count: 32,000
The Goal: 75,000

(10,000 words a month for the last three months = pretty pleased with myself.)

Friday, November 18, 2011

Print Versions Available from Amazon.co.jp!

Woohoo! I had hoped that this would be the case, but was a bit shocked to find the CreateSpace print versions of The Artifact Competition and The Gun Golems available from Amazon.co.jp!

I'm not much of a salesman, but I really can't believe how easy Amazon and CreateSpace make this process. Being published is within anyone's reach (which may be a bit scary, but the almighty consumer will still cull the wheat from the chaff).

Friday, October 28, 2011

For Halloween

...and to continue—if only briefly—paying homage to 20-year-old Sega Genesis/Mega Drive games.

Though I was never a big fan of the actual game play, I was rather impressed with the intros and cut scenes for the old Splatterhouse games, maybe because I like Halloween, or maybe because I like the idea of a talking mask...

Here is the intro to Splatterhouse 2:

video

Thursday, October 27, 2011

For Great Justice

This is perhaps past its prime, but the original is so much better than all the bastard children it's spawned that it bears revisiting. Plus, there are still some people who remain innocent of the whole phenomenon. In my view, though, the following is all one ever need see of it.

And now, without further ado...

All Your Base Are Belong To Us

video

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Science Fiction Mixed with Martial Arts

Sci-Fi and Martial Arts

That sums up the Approaching Infinity genre quite handily. The assignation may seem obvious, but it eluded me for quite a while (embarrassing, I know). Even after both Amazon reviews described it as such, when someone asked me to boil it down, I was hard-pressed to answer, but here we are: Sci-Fi & Martial Arts.

Besides The Matrix or The One or The Chronicles of Riddick (which are all quite different from Approaching Infinity), does anyone have any titles to add or to recommend? There are a whole slew of them in Anime: Hokuto no Ken, Dragon Ball Z, Kakugo no Susume, etc., but any titles would be appreciated.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

The Blood Solution Back Cover Copy

I've added the blurb for Approaching Infinity: Book Three to the AI site and reproduced it here.  Comments of any kind welcomed!

The Blood Solution
With the Gun Golems and their god defeated, the Empire proceeds on its quest for The Place with Many Doors. On Sarsa, Jav Holson enlists the aid of Raus Kapler, and together they set out to subdue what little resistance the rest of the planet has to offer. That proves to be more than anticipated when Jav finds himself abandoned by the Kaiser Bones and neither he nor Raus are able to raise their armies of the dead. On Zahl, another outsider, this time a cousin of sorts to the Emperor, joins the ranks of the Shades to help bolster their numbers along with Blue Squad, called out of retirement until new Grans—the Empire's giant mobile weapons—can be completed.

The Place with Many Doors still lies far ahead, but the Three Worlds await and will prove to be the Empire’s greatest challenge when Garlin Braams exercises the Blood Solution, a plan more than 600 years in the making to meet and turn back the Viscain invasion. In their still-weakened state, can the Empire survive an encounter with the concerted might of three planets long-prepared for their coming and armed with the Entitlement of God?

Monday, October 3, 2011

An Unlikely Post 2: The Sequel

Fall is finally here and I know this for sure only because the kinmokusei is in bloom.

God I love fall.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Gun Golems: Print Version Available!

The print version of The Gun Golems is now available here from Amazon.com and here from CreateSpace.  Thanks for your support!

Monday, September 19, 2011

The Artifact Competition: Print Version Available!

Please help support independent authors (and me!).  The print version of The Artifact Competition is available here from CreateSpace!

Update!
Find it here at Amazon.com!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Button-no-wa

My friend, Rena Komatsu, is making hair scrunchies to help raise money for the 3/11 earthquake and tsunami victims living in Fukushima, Japan.  Please click the banner down below the blog archive on the right and check their web site out!  If you are in need of a scrunchie (and ladies, let's be honest—who isn't?), you too can help!

Ganbare, Komatsu-san!

Monday, September 5, 2011

More Reviews!

A host of new reviews showed up here on Amazon. I have read that you shouldn't place too much stock in praise or condemnation regarding your own writing, but I can't help but be encouraged.  Work continues on AI Book 3: The Blood Solution with chapter 4 nearly complete!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Onward!

Well, it's back to work tomorrow after a 3-week break. Not sure what I'm going to find as there were two major staff additions in my absence, but all should be well.

During my time off, I got just about everything I wanted to accomplish done, which rocks. With the books and short stories up at either Amazon or Smashwords, I can now focus on the third Approaching Infinity book. I imagine there will be time for the occasional short story as well (hopefully there's interest for both...).

Thank you all for your support!

And please let me know what you think—be it good, bad, or ugly—at one of my sites or at Amazon with a review!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Ghost Squad: Kalkin's Dilemma

Now Available!

Please take a look here at Amazon!  Although it may say $2.99, it's $0.99.  Thanks again to Chris Seaman for the cover!  Future Ghost Squad stories will be coming out soon (but don't be confused by the cover which will be the same for all Ghost Squad stories)!

Approaching Infinity Books

Now also available from Smashwords!  Check here for all titles!

Update - Saturday, February 11th, 2012
Unfortunately, no titles are currently available from Smashwords.com. They were removed so that they could be enrolled in Amazon's KDP Select program.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Buy My Book 2: The Sequel

I spent the day getting it ship-shape, and it's ready!  The Gun Golems, with a fantastic cover once again from Chris Seaman by way of 99designs.com, is available on Amazon.com.

I've tried to make these two books affordable.  I definitely think they're worth $2.99 a piece.  Please support me as a starving artist, one with a family depending on me for food and shelter...  Okay, I won't try to guilt you into anything, but $2.99?!  Come on! :-)

Anyway, for those of you who do purchase the e-book, please don't hesitate to give me feedback.  Each of the books has its own individual page here where comments are welcome.

Thanks again in advance!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Buy My Book!

Okay, it's been a long time coming, but here it is!  A world, over 9 years in the making (don't know if that's impressive or, uh, the opposite of impressive, but...), makes its commercial debut!  Please check out The Artifact Competition, available from Amazon.com (click the picture).  

The Gun Golems, the immediate sequel, should be available next weekend or shortly thereafter so you won't be left hanging once you finish The Artifact Competition.

Thanks in advance for your support!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

99designs.com

A friend of mine told me about 99designs.com last week and it sounded too good to be true.  But the very night he told me, I started a contest with my fingers crossed.  When I got home from work the next day there was already a striking design waiting for my feedback.  It wasn't exactly what I wanted, but first drafts often aren't.  I continued to work with that designer, and others as they tried match my criteria and my taste, until I got the final product you see here by Chris Seaman.

I'm very pleased and cannot put into words how valuable I find this site.  It's good for everyone.  You get what you want and the designers get a place to show off their work.

Thanks, Jesse!  I owe you dinner in Roseville.  My mom'll drive us there if your mom'll pick us up.  (Ah, just like back in junior high...)

Friday, May 27, 2011

Approaching Infinity!

I've just put up a new blog dedicated to the Approaching Infinity books. Please take a look here.

Um... that's it.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Resuming the Fight

Well, not much to report, except that I have started working again on Approaching Infinity: Book 3 (nearly a year on hiatus for that particular project!).  After two and half months of writing absolutely nothing, I'm totally out of practice.  But I'm hopeful.  Hopeful that it won't take too long to get back into the swing of things and hopeful that I can maintain a consistent pace.  Wish me luck.  Or, on second thought, don't.  It's all me or nothing at all, right?

Anyway...  Onward!

Friday, May 6, 2011

A Confession

I'd always intended to post more regularly.  The last couple of months have been fairly eventful with the 3/11 earthquake and work has been... stressful.

I wouldn't be unique, I'm quite sure, in saying (repeating, in fact) that time is always the enemy.  There's never enough of it--or maybe I'm just pisspoor at using it effectively--so towards the end of February, I started to think I should just give it all up.  The writing I mean.  Of course it's a lot of work.  Of course I want to be able to devote adequate attention to it.  Of course I want to produce something that I find valuable.  Of course I want to share the results with others who may also find some inherent value.  But in the end, there's a whole lot of wanting and not much in the way of satisfaction.

I really shouldn't complain.  I have a job (at least I did before Golden Week...), I have a roof over my head and food to eat (could even spare a little of the latter), I have a wonderful wife and daughter, both of whom I love dearly.  So... what?  I don't really need anything. 

But I want.

Writing is to me, I suppose, what religion is to others.  I don't put on special clothes or chant or anything, but it's that unquantifiable thing--the spiritual thing, I guess--that keeps me going.  The stories have a life of their own in the back of my mind and they always make themselves heard.   The stories may not be good, they may have dead ends, but they speak to me.

It took about two months for me to start rising out of the funk that began at the end of February.   What this means, number one, is that, hopefully, there will be more frequent posting here.  What this also means is that I think I'm going to forgo pursuing the traditional publishing route.  I'm not giving up on my desire to be published, not yet, anyway, but am actively considering alternatives.

King Yellow is on hiatus.  All Things Comfortable, too.  I'm not going to make any promises until I can provide concrete, factual details on the project I've just started.  Updates to follow.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Wow, it's been a while!

Man time flies!  I've been meaning to post for a long time now.  No excuses.  Well, I've got a ton of them, but not a one that's worthwhile.  Couldn't make much headway with All Things Comfortable.  I'm not ready for it yet.  Have come up with an idea for a one shot Shades of Viscain story dealing with the ill-fated Ex(peditionary) Squad.  Have also been working on King Yellow, which ultimately will detail the Viscain Empire's origin.  I'll put something up in the projects section soon.

Watched all of Dexter and was totally blown away.  I know it's wildly popular so if there's something wrong with me for liking it, it's not just wrong with me...

Faye turned 2 and had a great birthday.  See?  She's currently killing us with cuteness.