State of the Art – 07/25/2017

Haven’t written one of these in a while. It makes sense to only talk about the author work when I have something interesting to share; who wants to hear ‘cranking on this’ or ‘tweeting about that’ every single week? Here’s what’s happening right now:


Getting some semi-positive responses on my query letters for Mesh. One email read ‘really liked your pacing and tension in this opening scene as well as the world you are hinting at and I wouldn’t mind reading a bit more to see if it holds up. Would you mind sending me a complete 1-2 page synopsis and the first 50 pages when you have a chance?’

For an unknown author, messages like this are manna from heaven. I sent off my synopsis and the first fifty pages – can’t wait to see what happens next.

Short Stories

Analong passed on The Battle of Victoria Crater and I just submitted it to Clarkesworld. One thing I like about Clarkesworld is that, even though they haven’t purchased anything I’ve submitted, I can expect a response in days, instead of weeks or months like other magazines. Plus, if you get rejected, your note comes in an email from Neil Clarke himself. Can’t help but respect their professionalism and respect for unknowns like me.

Social Media

Part of the job is about building my audience. As I’ve said before, it’s a process that takes time and care. So with that in mind, here’s what has been going on for me:

That’s it for right now. I’m still grinding away at my dream. Tell me about yours! 🙂

Fast Scifi Notes – 05/07/2017

This ripped tendon is still affecting my typing – saving my writing energy for Mesh. Still seeing/reading/experiencing sci-fi, so let me jot down a few notes.

Guardians of the Galaxy 2

I’m going to get some flack for this, but I don’t care. Having seen the first GotG, and now the second, I am remarkably ambivalent about this Marvel franchise. Yes, the acting is great. In fact, the actors consistently rescue what would otherwise be a plodding, hum-drum action story piling layer after layer of perilous escapes until you’re dizzied and numbed, going “Did Michael Bay direct this thing?”

I mean, if Michael Bay is your thing, great. I’m not going to judge. I just didn’t find anything compelling or interesting in the main plots. I thought the underlying themes of loss, redemption and family were interesting, but I didn’t go into the theater looking for Good Peter Quill Hunting.

And what’s with the music? Are we now living in an era where people are prepared to believe that the Seventies soft-rock classics are the pinnacle of the audio art form? When did that happen. It’s like you’ve never seen a Time Life commercial in your life. Continue reading “Fast Scifi Notes – 05/07/2017”

State of the Art – 03/24/2017

I took a little bit of a beating from what I said about writing sci-fi dystopias, but I’m not worried. You can’t be an artist if you aren’t willing to take the hits. Then Matthew Kressel said something and it represents a bit of a mic-drop on the topic:

In that spirit, I’m probably going to write my own dystopian entry for the Boston Review and I’ll let you know how that goes. People liked Superhero Shrink on Imgur and that made me feel good. Interacting with people via social media is a challenge unto itself, but it’s also therapy for me. Currently working on a number of short stories, articles, and submission entries. Would you guys like to hear about those, too?


State of the Art – 2/20/2017

Late winter in Eugene is always a tough time of year. Introverts love it, though. As dark, wet and cold as it is out there, I have a perfect reason to stay inside. On with life stuff and writing. I’m getting good feedback about ‘The Battle of Victoria Crater,’ and I’m hoping to submit it shortly. I also started sending query letters out to book agents for ‘Mesh’ and I’ll keep you posted on how that is going. Meanwhile …


State of the Art – 12/11/2016

Been a while since I posted – it’s time to get back to doing this. Here’s what has been happening in the last two months, in a nutshell:

I’m cutting this now so I can focus on writing ‘Best Night of Sleep.’ I’ll talk to you soon.

State of the Art – 10/7/2016

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately” – Thoreau

thoreauquote354When I moved to Eugene, it was with the idea that I would be starting over again. To start over, I wanted to apply some lessons learned I picked up from previous adventures. One of them is that I avoid the news. People that know me will tell you that I’m very anti-current events. I hate reading the newspaper and I positively despise the 24-hour news cycle. However, I’m on Facebook and I hear what other people say. It’s times like these that I’m very glad I don’t keep up with current events. What I *have* been working on is as follows:

and …

Right now it’s a beautiful fall morning and I’m going to take a walk by myself in some woods. I heartily recommend you do the same.

State of the Art – 9/30/2016

It makes me laugh to see ‘Portlandia’ go full meta, with one of their filming locations turning into the kind of people they regularly lampoon. Oregon is famous for that kind of bohemian doublethink. Anyway, here’s the State of the Art for this week:

I’m digging through thousands of public-domain NASA photos for material to put together a book cover for ‘Search and Rescue’ if I end up self-publishing it. I like pictures like this, but would have to do a lot of Photoshop work to get it into the kind of shape I want. Thoughts?

State of the Art – 9/23/2016

Can’t believe how fast the week has flown by. I’ve been banging away at a few things and I can’t wait to share them with you. On a personal note, I’m working through some stuff. Not fun, but that’s life. I don’t want to focus on my mess. I’d rather tell you about the State of the Art. Here’s what happened on InkICan this week:

Your weekly dose of awesome

This comes from Youtube – one of my favorite bands when I was a teenager was Information Society. They introduced me to cyberpunk and modern rock long before anyone else. The band was rather innovative – they had a track at the end of one album which, when played, gave you a little ASCII story that would appear on your modem screen. Back in the 90s, I loved how music embraced technology and it’s always occupied a warm spot in my heart.

Weekly Digest – 9/9/2016

sea-flight-sky-earthAnd we’re off! Finished writing a short story, now time for some blogging.

The best part about today is that for one day, both American and European people write today’s date exactly the same. Only happens eleven other times in a year. I updated the site header with something more ‘futuristic’ and I hope you enjoy it. I’m not completely sold on it and I may change it if something else catches my eye.

Almost ready to submit ‘Search and Rescue’ for publication. I haven’t decided whether I want to try Asimov’s or Analog first. Thoughts?

Feel free to check out About and Short Stories, as I’ll be updating them periodically with new material. I’m also interacting quite a bit with people on Reddit, so feel free to join the party.