Category Archives: Blog Thoughts

Why I wrote what I did

Growing up I read a lot. Historical things, fantasy, hard sci fi, space opera, novels, short stories, everything from Heinlein to Gibbon. I liked the ideas, the characters, the action, the adventure, the speculation about people and technology, as well as the facts and amazing people in real life history. I got a degree in computer science in part because computers were the future.

But then, gradually, I found it harder and harder to find new books I liked. I wasn’t sure why it was. I looked at the vast array of things on the shelf and saw nothing that appealed to me. An awesome cover would catch my eye, then I’d read the description, and put it back down. I ended up rereading older things, and got busy with a life of my own, and  went browsing in bookstores ever more rarely because the gatekeepers were not producing much of anything I wanted. If I wanted angst-ridden dystopias filled with mental sickness, hopelessness, corruption, and bad writing, I’d pick up a newspaper. Continue reading Why I wrote what I did

Merry Christmas

Have a good one, may your family and friends be healthy and happy in the new year.  May your enemy’s schadenfreude be minimal, and your plans be effective. Illegitimi non carborundum (don’t let the bastards grind you down), and may you be as lucky as Helton for at least a day 🙂

What to bring to a fight

It would be a good idea to bring a knife to a knife fight, no?

And if you have to go to a gunfight, packing as much gun as you can would be sensible.

So, when you get into a religious war, why would you go armed with… lawyers and political correctness? Even guns and money seems to come up a bit short. Wouldn’t a coherent philosophical argument, at the very least, be more appropriate?

r/K selection

A recent article I wrote referred to a Blaze blurb with an excerpt from The Future of the Gun, by Frank Miniter. It explored the effects on world outlook and life choices that gun control laws have on the people subjected to them. Short version: because the gun is a symbol of power, taking away legal guns from law-abiding citizens undercuts the appeal of the “law abiding and productive life” to young men, making them turn to gang and thug life for “power” and respect,” via gun ownership.

Continue reading r/K selection

Happy 4th!

It’s been too long. Happy Birthday, America!

Remember, today isn’t about parades, flags, grilling, or fireworks. Today is about the day a nation declared itself free, a nation founded and dedicated to individual rights as a real and actual thing, not simply lofty-sounding words constantly subject to the “needs” of the State.

Remember: Government is force. It can’t care, or be generous. It can only “give” to one what it has first taken away. It’s run by people, humans as flawed as the people they govern – perhaps even more, because they are the people who seek not to serve, but to rule. Celebrate what freedoms we have, and keep trying to keep them. We may be weakened by the political class, but we aren’t pining for the fjords quite yet.

Up to about 34,000 words on the next book, best day recently was 3000 words in a day.

Inside Politics and Publishing

It seems authoritarian creep (and creeps) manage to infest just about every large group that offers awards and titles. I used to be very active in the medieval recreation group the SCA (Society for Creative Anachronisms). I loved fighting in armor, the camaraderie, events, and the rest. But it started to get much too political and inbred (for lack of a better word) about the same time I met the young lady that became my wife, so I quit the SCA cold turkey. The SWFA (Science Fiction Writers Association) has become similarly infested with self-promoting, left-wing, intolerant hacks. There are a lot of details I’m sure I don’t know, but I’ve sort of been following it at Vox Popoli, and more recently at Sarah Hoyt‘s blog. A few days ago there was this hysterically funny posting, written mostly in animated GIFs. Among the comments were two cents worth being put in by Jerry Pournelle, Kim du Toit, Charlie Martin (not surprising, I guess), Michael Kingswood, David Brin, Mercedes Lackey, and many others. It was one of those things that was “just…. wow” to watch unfolding. An incredible rant, and magnificent comments, among them this gem by gryphonking: Continue reading Inside Politics and Publishing

700 Club

Wow. Just hit the second milestone number for The Stars Came Back, where I’m sure I’ve just recovered my upfront costs of editing, cover art, etc. Still hanging in the charts, bobbling around unsteadily but consistently between the low 20s and the high 30s on the Space Opera and Military Sci Fi charts at Amazon. The charts are recalculated ever hour or so, based on some sort of recent sales formula. So if I never sell another copy, at least I haven’t lost money. [UPDATE: check the whole chart if it’s not there. It wobbled into the #19 spot just now.]

It went live on the 13th of January. It’s now the 2nd of February. Three weeks to hit 700 net copies sold (and a couple dozen borrowed). Guess I must have done something right. *sigh* Time to work on reformatting for getting it in paperback, I suppose.

Another seven million copies and I can retire.

Shamelessly stolen from my other post.

So the question is: PoD (Print On Demand) or print run of X copies?  How many people want dead trees on their shelf?

Finding the book

Hard data is difficult to find when you are self-publishing. I have no idea how many that bought it heard about it, or what it was that appealed to them enough that they bought it.

So, a quick question to anyone that shows up here- how did you find the title? The obvious choices are: Follow The View From North Central Idaho, saw the Odds ‘n Sods post at Survival Blog, saw the Book Plug Friday post, saw the comments in Ace’s Sunday morning Book Thread., or saw it in one of Amazon’s top sellers list like these.  And, of course, the three people I know personally and sent an email to :-). Any other ways? Let me know!

How it started

Most of us have have that “what would make a great movie scene” moments, where we had an idea about how something could or should happen on the big screen. Sometimes we even see them in movies. The problem is that they need to be strung together in a way that is coherent, and there is a reason for the actions you see to be, well, reasonable. There are FAR to many movies that are little more than an excuse for special effects and random events, with plot holes you could park a small mountain in. Continue reading How it started