Friday, February 26, 2010

Free Friday

So glad today is Friday. Need the time off to recuperate, this week was friggen crazy. I'm making some progress on my Nano novel and enjoying it so far. I know there are plot issues and some other things, but it is pretty decent. Might be a bit more adult than Young Adult though as the language and violence is pretty decent.

Just a bit of a quick update is all I have for today.

So what are your plans this weekend? Writing? Playing? Do you do a lot of writing on the weekends? I tend to not write on weekends, focusing more on critiques and other minor writing things. It's more a payback for my wife giving me my writing time during the week, I kind of spend the weekends with family.

Have a good weekend.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Interview of a character

I decided that this could be fun for a change, so I wanted to interview one of my characters from my book. Here it is.

Rebecca Stevens

JS: So how are you today?
RS: I'm doing well. just chilling on this nice day. I heard you wanted to interview me, so I said, what the heck. Might be fun.

JS: How are things at home?
RS: They've been better, I've been doing good in school finally, but they still nag me all the time. *she looks away.*

JS: Are you okay?
RS: *She glances at me*

*I feel my chair shift and it starts to slide backwards*

JS: What are you doing?
RS: You know what I'm doing. I'm not going to be...

*She lowers her eyes and the chair stops.*

RS: I'm sorry about that.

JS: It's okay. *I scoot the chair closer again*

JS: That was pretty cool. How long have you been able to do that?
RS: Since I was thirteen, so I guess about three years or so.

JS: How does it feel?
RS: Feel? I don't know, I guess normal. I don't even notice anymore.

JS: Where is Alex at?
RS: Out with Yasmine like usual. I know you wanted him to be here to, but when Yasmine bats her eyes at him, he's a drooling fool. *She smiles and sits up straight. Her blue eyes glimmer a bit of joking.*

JS: Are you looking forward to your junior year of high school?
RS: I guess. School's what it is. I just want Gretchen to leave me alone. Can you make her?

JS: No. I don't think so. Do you think you could with your cool power?
RS: *She shakes her head* No. Nope. *The playfulness leaves her eyes.* I need to get going. It's getting late.

JS: Wait just a sec. I have more questions.
RS: Another time. *She gets up and leaves.*

I tried to follow her, but she wouldn't let me. That's the end of this interview I guess. Such a timid girl.

I thought this would be fun to interview my characters from time to time. Let me know how you liked it in the comments. Thank you.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

WiP Wednesday

Well its another Wednesday and things have calmed down. I've been sit for the past couple days, which is making it hard to focus on my current projects. I have gone over 6 chapters in my Nano novel, which is better than I remember. It's nice giving it three months to simmer before looking at it again. So far I have a few plot changes in mind which might help make it more cohesive and a better story overall.

My other WiP is still at a stand still in that it is getting about two hundred new words at a time when I work on it. I like the story, but think I might need to start it over and go in a different direction as I think the current one might not have the legs that I thought it had at first. I'm thinking something in a similar vein of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," but haven't completed settled on it. I know my favorite element of the story is the inner conflict of having the narrator possessed and being able to communicate with the "thing" that is inside and them working together to solve their mutual problems.

How is your current projects going? Anything you want to report?

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Samsung Moment Review

I am going to do a quick review on my new phone that I purchased.

My wife coerced me into getting a new phone when hers started to die, and how I always am, I like to get the top of the line of the new gadgets, when its time to upgrade. So I did my research, Cnet is awesome by the way, and it came down to two Sprint phones, the HTC Hero and the Samsung Moment.

I chose the Moment for a couple of reasons, the faster processor, 800mHz compared to 564mHz of the Hero, the clearer screen and the slide out keyboard.

Now on to my review.

The phone was my first smart phone and I found it a bit daunting to begin with as there is so much stuff you can do with it. Email, surfing the web, watching TV, etc. But the Android operating system made it pretty easy to do. I just logged into my Gmail account, which is required and it loaded up all of my contacts, so that made my address book up to date, which was nice, and it even sent the contacts that I didn't have email's for into my Gmail account so I have that information in there as well. Pretty neat.

The interface of Android 1.5 was pretty easy to use as the touch screen was clear and responsive. I've heard of lag on the HTC Hero, but on this phone didn't run across any, which was nice. Apps loaded up quickly and downloading was a snap. It came preloaded with some basic things such as facebook, cnn, espn, and Sprint stuff such as Sprint TV, Navigation. I found that to be nice and kept me busy right at the start.

The most important thing for me was call clarity and I have to say that this phone does very well, just like every other Samsung cell phone I've purchased.

So this is my quick review on this phone. I would recommend it if you are on Sprint, but I think other carriers might have better options for what you are looking for.

Monday, February 22, 2010

You can't call them Zombies!

The gap between him and the undead girl closed quicker than he expected. His legs burned and had been reduced to hobbling. Before even reaching the corner, she would have overtaken him. He made an abrupt and labored dodge to the right, back toward the park. He grimaced as his knee buckled and he toppled into the grass next to the street.

Luckily for him, the woman, still obviously not able to move in quick turns ran past him. She stuttered to a stop like a car on a jagged road and turned to face him again. Her dead eyes glared at him, a hunger that couldn’t be recreated by a human, even if they were abandoned on a deserted island for months, met his.

Almost hypnotized by her gaze, the wet grass soaked into his sweatshirt sleeve, snapping him out of the daze as she rushed again. He crawled to his feet as she closed the gap once again. With his heart racing and his body giving up on him, he threw himself over the railing of a house porch. Landing on the other side, he looked between the wooden planks as she tore at him like a lunatic. The gravely growl reached him before she did, and he would come to realize that it would be that way forever now.

Oblivious to the railing, she crashed right into it, a plank shot out, hitting Kyle in the chest. She didn’t try to climb, or go two steps to the left to climb the step onto the porch, she continued to reach for him through the thin boards. Her grey hands scratching across his sweatshirt, inches from tearing the flesh off of his chin. Kyle scooted back and grabbed the thin plank of wood. A sharp nail stuck out on one end and he looked at it, then at the girl who relentlessly pushed through the railing. Another plank had come loose and she had one shoulder through the gap. Her hand grasping for him.

Kyle stood up, heaving, sweat matting his hair across his eyes, and looked down at her. Those eyes would haunt him for as long as he would live this nightmare. He raised the plank, nail point down and drove it into her skull. Hoping that his movie knowledge would prove correct. At first she continued, pushing stronger, like it ignited her fuse, then he pulled it free and drove it down twice more in quick succession. Blood oozed out of the wound and she continued to push, growling and moaning as he wailed on her.

After five swings with his makeshift weapon, it broke as the nail stuck into her skull. She slumped, her hand’s reach faltered and she collapsed to the porch. Blood didn’t run from the wound like Kyle expected. He stood against the wall of the house, his heart pounding his ribs, his side blazing and his legs quivering. Taking in a stinging breath, his knees failed him and he slid to the porch. The urge to vomit made his quiver, but he held it in.

Back at the park five more of these creatures shambled out of the darkness. They moved slower than the woman did and Kyle realized that they wouldn’t do anything until they saw him. He crawled to the door next to him and quietly reached for the door knob. Hoping to hide inside, but his heart sank as the door was locked.

“Crap.” He muttered as the undead creatures were moving toward the fire and turning their backs turning on him. He got to his feet, checked to make sure their attention was elsewhere and snuck across the porch. He made his way over the railing and fell silently into the grass. Seeing his girlfriends house so close he started toward it.

He clenched his teeth and hurried as quietly as he could across the yard. He stopped at the edge of the grass and took one glace back at the fire. The creatures were mesmerized by the sight, but the flames were dying as the bush had been reduced to only a small fire.

Taking the cue, he hurried across the street toward his girlfriend’s house. To his left he heard the shuffling of feet and his body tightened, ready to run if he heard the familiar growl, but it never came. He was thankful for the power being out tonight.

Stopping in front of his girlfriend’s house, he noticed the front door open and a bloody hand print ran across the front door. He stood looking as the blood ran down the front of the door. Whoever made that mark was fresh.

Taking a look around, Kyle made sure none of those creatures were nearby and snuck up the steps. He entered the house and a sour smell hit his nose. He covered his nose and looked up the darkened stair case. Bloody hand prints moved up the stairs in steady intervals, and he knew that was where his girlfriend’s bedroom was. He shut the door behind him and made sure to put both locks on.

Footsteps moved across the hall way above him and he had to bite his tongue not to call out. If he learned anything from his previous encounter, he didn’t need to alert them to his presence. He stood at the foot of the stairway, debating with himself on how to approach this.

What should Kyle do?

1.) Search the dark and silent first floor of the house for a weapon before heading upstairs?

2.) Forget the weapon and rush up the stairs to save his girlfriend?

3.) Call the police for help?

4.) Call out for his girlfriend to see if she’s even up there before running up the stairs?

Friday, February 19, 2010

Deuces Poker Season 4 Update.

Since I haven't update you all on my poker championship a few weeks ago, my predictions were off. A lot pretty much. I think the person who I picked to be out first won the entire thing, so that shows how bad I was a prognosticator.

Anyway, so far season 4, which started early February has been fun so far. It's been a girl's game for the first two games with women winning the first two games. We even managed to have a record 28 people at the last game which was fun, but crowded.

So just wanted to update you on my poker life as well. I'm so far in 10th place for the league. Lots of new people which makes it exciting. Wish me luck, we have game 3 tomorrow night.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Reading other genre's? Good or bad?

Thursday's always are the hardest post for me to come up with. I don't know why. The first three days have a sort of theme and this day is just left out.

I was thinking of some of the books I've read this year. The 5th book of Stephen King's Dark Tower, Stephen King's "Under the Dome." Percy Jackson's first book and now I'm reading a book called "The Book Thief."

This last book is much different than the other's mainly because of the subject matter. It's about a German girl in Nazi Germany during WW2. She steals books and that's how she learns to read. Now I like this book, well most of it, but something about it doesn't sit right with me. I can't quite place my finger on it. Maybe its the Nazi backdrop, or the very depressing nature of the story. I'm going to finish it despite all this because it is well written and so far a good story.

Do any of you have certain genre's that you don't read, or make you uncomfortable to read? Do you read outside of the genre you write? Do you think it gives you a better perspective than if you didn't? What are your thoughts on this matter?

I personally read a lot of different genre's, but I mainly look for stories that interest me. The story is key to me, not the writing or the author. How about you?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

WiP Wednesday

Well today is another Wednesday and so far I'm still working on my WiP. Haven't made a ton of progress, maybe another 20 pages over the past week, but it's been a busy week with the kids getting new pets and teaching them how to care for them.

Other than that I wanted to mention a few contests that are currently running on my friend's blogs. You can find one by Elana Johnson with the prize being a few query critiques. You can find it at:,+Author)&utm_content=Google+Reader

I also know about a contest by Shelli, which is offering prizes all week long. You should check it out. You can find it at:

Both of those blogs are great ones to follow.

Also if you are into my Choose your own adventure blog, you also might want to check out my friend, Laura Diamond's blog at, because she's doing something similar with you actually writing the next part. I've submitted a couple sections already and would love for it to continue going with new writers. It's more for those that are writer inclined, but still good fun to be had.

Also Laura nominated me for a blog award. (My first, and I'm excited about.) Gives me a sort of validation that I'm doing something right.

Here it is:

A special thanks to, “Laura Diamond” Check out her blog, "Diamond-- yup, like the stone." You can find it at the link:

Here are the rules of the blog award:

1) Thank the person who tagged me. THANK YOU Laura! √

2) Copy and Paste the award on my blog. √

3) Link to the person who nominated me. √

4) Tell up to 6 lies and 1 truth about myself. √

5) Tag at least 7 people for this award. √

6) Post links to their blogs. √

7) Comment on each of their blogs to inform them of the nomination. √

Here are the lies (and one truth):

1) I have never placed in the top 3 of my poker groups points at the end of the year.

2) I'm allergic to cats.

3) I have never lost on a Scratch-it Lottery Ticket in the State of Oregon.

4) I have played and beaten every Final Fantasy game.

5) I started to write because of my mother's passion for writing.

6) I have gotten wasted on a few occasions in high school, which is why I don't do it now.

7) I've been to most of the states in the United States.

All right, folks. Let me know which one of these you think is true!

Now my nominations for this blog award:

1) Elana Johnson:

2) Teen Writing for Teens:

3) Shelli:

4) Bethany Wiggins and Suzette Saxton:

5) Deb Salisbury:

6) Nathan Bransford(A hometown boy. Can't not nominate him.):

7) Jeanne Gassman:

Take a look. Other than that I'm still pushing along. This newest project is just proving harder than I initially imagined.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Percy Jackson Movie Review

So, as you might have guessed, based on the book review last week, I saw the movie over the weekend.

The story: What can I say? The similarities are name, demigods and that's pretty much it. There isn't much thats the same as the book. The story on its own works decently for a movie. Their on a quest to save his mother and he needs three items to be able to do so. So the quest begins. I'm not going to harp on the differences, but as the story goes for the movie, it was pretty straight forward and simple to follow. Some of the action pieces were well done as well as I felt the special effects served their purposes. I would have liked more development of the bad guy as it sort of comes out of nowhere how he's revealed and such, so when it happens it seems a bit bland.

The characters: I felt that the three main characters were very stereotypical teenagers. The smart and feisty girl. The mack daddy kid and the brooding main character. There wasn't enough depth to really care about what happened to either of them. I think they did this to cater to the audience as Grover came across as comical at times, but more childish comedy than any substance behind the stuff he does. The relationship that the main character explores with Annabeth seems sort of odd in the movie because they are enemies then all of a sudden they are close. There isn't any sort of transition between the two points. The minor characters were that, minor. Nothing notable about them besides their Greek Mythology reference.

The overall feeling of the movie was a cheap cash-in on the success of the book. I liked the idea and if adapted more true to the book it would have been a better story. Overall it came across with very little of the charm and magic that the book held which was too bad. I honestly think they will make the sequels, but don't know how they will fit in with the other books as some of the main things that are carried over in the rest of the books are omitted from the movie. I would give this movie a 5 out 10. A good movie if you can look at separate from the book, not so much if you are comparing them.

Monday, February 15, 2010

You can't call them Zombies!

They were closing in faster than he wanted or expected. Their stench moving closer with each moaning step. He looked to the fence and decided against that choice as it could lead to a worse situation. Bracing himself, he listened for the shuffling of their footsteps, sweat clung to his neck as he scanned the dark park. Which way was out. He had gotten so turned around.

He didn’t have time to think as a cold, bony finger touched his shoulder. He bolted. His entire body blazed with adrenaline as he ran. He hoped he wouldn’t run into anyone or anything as he ran. A moment after starting he crashed into someone. His shoulder drove through the person, just how he imagined a football player must feel when tackling someone.

Instead of stopping, Kyle spun, let out a small scream as something damp spread onto his shoulder and he kept running. The footsteps and moans grew further behind him as he ran. The stench continued to follow him as he darted toward the direction he hoped was his girlfriends.

More moans started as he entered a playground. He needed to stop. His legs wobbled, and his chest burned. A small twist of pain began in his stomach. He only ran for ten minutes and his body treated it like a mile and a half. In the distance he could see the flicker of some light. He looked at the comforting swing in the glimmer of moonlight, but pressed on.

The moans were following him and there seemed to grow in number by the moment. The sand beneath his feet continued to pull at his tired legs and he stumbled twice falling hard. The sand clung to his palms and stung a cut in his hand that he hadn’t noticed.

Heading toward the flickering light like a moth, he pulled himself over the small chain link fence separating him and pushed onward. As he approached, the light wasn’t coming from a dying streetlight like he initially thought, but a car had crashed into a power pole. The flickering light came from the small bush set ablaze by the downed power line. That answered the question as to why the park and the surrounding houses were dark.

As he approached, he noticed the car was empty. The driver’s side door was open and blood trailed away. It wasn’t in drips like the injured person walked away, but in a long steady line like the driver was dragged away.

A moan came from the other side of the bush and Kyle faced the sound this time. In the light it didn’t seem so scary and he clenched his fists, ready for a fight. What emerged wasn’t something he expected, despite what his imagination had conjured up.

A woman in a nice yellow dress limped out from around the bush. He noticed how nice the dress looked except for her missing left arm. Blood drenched the side of the dress. She stopped as she saw him, if she could see, as dried blood matted her face. Probably from the gash across her forehead. A sneer crossed her lips and a low guttural growl erupted from somewhere deep inside of her.

His first instinct was to ask, “Are you okay?”

He regretted how stupid it sounded almost instantly as she rushed him without any hesitation. No slow shuffling or anything like in the park. This one saw him, saw food and didn’t want to wait.

Kyle remained frozen as she closed the twenty yard gap in a hurry. His brain analyzed the way that her stiff limbs moved with such speed.

Moments before she would have gotten to him, he snapped out of the shock and ducked out of the way. She lost her balance and fell as well.

Kyle turned to face her as she picked herself off the ground. She turned slowly; a fresh scrap took away a piece of her cheek. Her teeth glimmered in the firelight, full of anger. The low growl came again and she charged. This time, Kyle didn’t hesitate and he ran, and almost immediately his legs burned again and the stitch in his side started again. He realized that he was only a block away from his girlfriend’s house and ran that direction.

What should Kyle do next?

1.) Should he lead the lady in the yellow dress to his girlfriend’s house?

2.) Should he lead her back to the park and hope to lose her?

3.) Try to stand and fight her with whatever weapon he can find?

You decide. I look forward to hearing what you think. Please post comments on how you like the story so far. I’m interested if you enjoy it or if it’s just not something you want to participate anymore.

Friday, February 12, 2010

A couple of questions to ponder over the weekend

I have a couple of questions for you guys to think about over this romantic weekend.

I was thinking about romantic relationships in relation to my writing and have noticed that they are there, but more of a subplot. I don't write romance so that could play a part, but I still try to fit in a bit of romance in my stories. My current novel has no real romance, but there are moments when you think that it is possible between the main female character and a couple of the other guys in the story, but its never realized. The male protagonist has an established girlfriend, which adds that element, but its not fully explored as there are circumstances that prevent it throughout.

I think I use romance more as a way to deepen the character. Show another level of them that people can relate too.

So my questions to you:

How important do you think romance is to stories that aren't romantics? Does it add an extra element to the story that is needed? Do you think is required in all stories regardless of genre? What are some of your favorite romantic moments in literature?

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Children's first pets. Am I crazy or what?

So at the beginning of the year, my wife and I made a deal with our oldest daughter that if she took care of our four cats for a month that she would be able to get a pet of her own. Now that time has come and she is being a normal kid and flip flopping between what she wants. We limited it to a small pet, so no dogs, or cats because we all know how that would go. A week later, I would be taking care of it.

So we have decided to let her pick this Saturday, which coincides with us getting our tax return, and now she is still debating between two female rats,(2, I guess because they need company or something like that.) or a guinea pig.

So I turn to you my readers, those of you that have kids, have you given them the responsibility of a pet before? How old were they and how did it work out for you? What sort of pet should we let our nine year old daughter have? Also as a surprise to my youngest daughter (3) we are going to let her pick as well. Knowing her it will probably be whatever her older sister gets, but just in case it isn't, what do you think she should get?

Anyway, just a few questions and wanted to get some opinions on what worked for you.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

WiP Wednesday

Well good news today. After toiling around with trying to bounce between two projects. I think, (Think. Think. Think.) that I have finally found the muse to continue with one of them to the end. I've failed at trying to do the bouncing, which I hoped would work and I might fall back on if this project hits a rough patch. So far this week its been going well. Written 15 new pages since Monday which is a relief.

Anyway, let's hope it keeps coming. Hope everyone else has a good productive week.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Review: Percy Jackson and the Olympians Book 1. The Lightning Thief

So I just finished the first book of this middle grade novel. It took me a total of 4 days to read it. I was expecting a massive accomplishment since I've heard it compared to "Harry Potter" and has a movie coming out. (Movie's off of books usually mean they have an audience.)

This book wasn't quite up to the hype that I've been hearing about it. Although, I enjoyed it for the Greek mythology brought up to date, which I thought was very clever, I never got the sense of wonder that other books in this genre tend to inspire. I think the primary reason for this was the writing was a little bit too telling at times when I wanted to get a better sense of what was going on. It could attributed to the younger audience, but once again "Harry Potter" didn't have this same sort of feel to it.

The characters were nice, a little predictable, but that wasn't a bad thing as they did their roles well. The story moved along at a quick pace and kept me entertained, mainly through the god references, and mythology, but the plot was pretty simple and the big twists I saw a while ahead of time. I think it's my age that probably did that as I've grown accustom to more adult novels so these twists weren't so surprising.

If I think about it from a younger mindset, I think that it would have worked a lot better.

However, there were two things that really bothered me about the book, one was it seemed like they were going to get done with their quest like a week ahead of the deadline and they just happen to come across a casino that fast forward's time? It seemed a bit convenient, however it was cleverly done, but seemed like they just added it because things were getting done faster than the writer hoped.

Another thing that bothered me and this might not have been the writer's doing, but I've always read about how the first book should stand on its own and tie up all loose ends. This book leaves a major plot point wide open at the end. This could have been done by the publishing house after they decided to continue it in a series so they left it open. I think this bothered me because of the fact that if this book wasn't a series, I would have been left with a sort of what the heck was that ending?

Overall the book is good minus those couple points above and maybe I was just not its target audience. I would give the book a good 3.5 out of 5.

Have you read it, what did you guys think of it as fellow writers?

Monday, February 8, 2010

You can't call them Zombies!

*Author's note* Sorry for the missed post on Friday. It was a very hectic day that by the time I got home and the kids to bed I was a mindless zombie so I went to bed around 10:30. Anyway, on to some real life zombies.

Looking down the street, he felt that time wouldn't wait for him to take the long way so he headed into the park. The usual banter from the crickets was nonexistent, even the familiar howl of the dog by the house nearest the park was absent.

A sickening feeling crawled over his skin like a nest of ants began to erupt from his pores. With the added motivation of the repetitive sound of his girlfriend's terrified voice, he pulled his hood over his head and hurried into the shadows.

His heart pumped quickly as stuck his hands in the kangaroo pouch. The whisking of grass as he quickly sped across the baseball field outfield added to his nerves. A low grumble stopped Kyle in his tracks. The hairs on his arms sprung up like a current of electricity passed across his skin. The growl continued to grow closer.

Swallowing the growing lump in his throat, he turned toward the sound. He couldn't see anything in the darkness. Not even the trusty moonlight could penetrate the deep shadows. He fumbled for his cell phone in his pocket, but stopped at the sound of a slow crunch behind him, in the infield dirt. Someone drug their foot through the dirt which made Kyle grit his teeth.

Fumbling through his pocket, he gripped the edge of his cell and the sound of the scratching dirt vanished. He spun toward the sound, his heart racing, sweat popping up along his temples. He always wondered what it felt like to be scared out of his mind, and it was closing in quickly.

"Who's there?" He called out. Trying to keep his voice steady failed as it came out in a ragged whisper.

Somewhere in the distance a growl started up again. He just called them toward him, whatever they were. More growls joined in and he counted at least five more all in the same field he stood.

The cold chill of a night breeze blew across his forehead and he couldn't stop his teeth from chattering. A hand touched his arm and he let out a shriek. He bounced away, almost losing his bladder and darted to his left, hoping that he wouldn't run into anyone or anything.

More growls moved toward him. Seeming to speed up as he ran. He glanced over his shoulder and didn't see anything until he ran into a soft, cold form. They both tumbled and while using his hands to brace himself, he flung his cell phone out.

He landed on his arms, a stiff shot of pain shot up his left one and he grimaced as he fell to the ground. Adrenaline flooded his body as he pulled himself off the ground and quickly searched for his cell phone. It couldn't have gotten too far he thought as he patted the ground around where he fell.

To his right a low moan came, and he stopped looking in the direction. The stench of crap made his eyes water and he dumbly asked, "Who's there?"

Only a groan returned. More lumbering sounds closed in on him. He backed up into a fence, the sound of clothes shifting surrounded him from all sides. From the corner of his eye he caught the glimpse of a puff of hair against a pale scalp. He thought he saw blood on the skin, but wasn't sure. He couldn't be sure of anything with the way his body succumbed to the growing fear.

Somewhere to his left he heard the skitter of something that could be his cell phone, or something completely different. Clenching the chain links in the fence behind him, he felt a piece prick his skin.

Jumping over the fence could be an escape, or he could try for the thing he thinks is his cell phone, whatever he needs to do is get to where he can see whatever is making these noises.

Which choice should Kyle make?
1. Forget about his cell phone and hop the fence, hoping that he can get to a better lit place.
2. Go for his cell phone in case he needs it for an emergency as well as use it as a light to get out of the park to his girlfriends?

You decide, and you better hurry because whatever is making these sounds are closing in on him fast. Both are dangerous options. Tune in next Monday to see where you have decided it goes now.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

My thoughts on publishing

So I've been trying to get published for a while now and I have learned a few things.

It is hard, frustrating, and very tedious. However, despite these things, it is fun. Not like lounging on the beach fun, but it has some good moments.

I have learned that perseverance counts a lot in this field. You need to keep motivation despite the rejection you face on a daily basis. From agents, from your friends who don't write, from other writers keeping you down, etc. There are many obstacles you face and if you want to reach your goal, you need to break past them and make sure you keep focused.

This is hard sometimes with life things in general getting in the way. Carving out some time to write on a daily basis can be hard, but if you set aside an hour or two a day for yourself, you can reach your goal.

You have to be flexible and work around such obstacles, learn how bounce around without being stopped.

These are a little bit of the things that I have learned over the years. What are some of the things that you could add to this list? What things have you employed to get the time to write, schedules? Locking yourself in your room despite the distractions beating down the door? Have you ever wanted to quit so bad that you actually shut your computer off or set down the pen, vowing never to touch it again. yet come back to it later the same day or the next day? If so then you have the it factor, with a little luck and talent, you can make it. So keep going, if it's something you can't live without.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

WiP Wednesday

Well today is a better Wednesday than the last one, except for being a bit under the weather. Today I have decided that instead of picking on project to work on, I'm going to bounce around them all.

Remembering that my first novel came from a novella to start is how I am approaching these. Going to write these until they come to their own ending. Then I'll go back and put some meat onto the very bare bones.

So for those of you keeping count, I am currently working on four projects at once. Wish me luck as I hope to have all four in first draft format by the beginning of Summer. (June 21st.) I know it seems like such a long time, but writing 4 300 word books(or there about) it's not long at all.

Oh yeah, it might only be one done by that time, or two, but no less than that.

Project 1: Currently at 100 pages.
Project 2: Currently at 35 pages.
Project 3: Currently at 20 pages.
Project 4: Currently at 9 pages.

Any suggestions, should I not bounce between them and focus my energy on one? Or do you think it can work with my bouncing around between all four of them? What would you do in my case?

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Zombieland Review

I'm going to let you know in advance, that I understand this film came out in theaters a while ago, but also the DVD/Bluray was just released today so I thought I would post a review of the film.

For those of you that don't know this movie is about Zombies, and they are kicking butt in terms of killing lots of people. However, there are a few survivors left and this film follows 4 of them as they make their journey across the US.


This film is very straight forward, and basic in terms of the plot. 4 survivors trying to live long enough because they want to get to a safe zone at an amusement park. Well they think its safe, and some hijinx happen between the characters on the journey. I'm not going to ruin the plot, but lets just say that there is some good times to be had.


I think this is the strongest part of the movie. Woody Harrelson is great at the redneck zombie killing machine. His one liners and confidence has you rooting for him in most situations. I think Woody takes the movie and makes it better than if he wasn't in it. He fits the role perfectly.

Jesse Eisenberg, was very believable as being the scared weakling of the group. He does grow up and I liked how they showed that throughout the plot. Even his major moment was done very well to show his pinnacle of change.

Emma Stone, was a pleasant surprise. I hadn't heard of her before this movie, probably because I didn't see Superbad. (I know. Bad me. I'll get to it.) For her character I felt that she did the strong woman pretty well. She has her moments where she shows real heart, which was a nice contrast to how we meet her.

Abigail Breslin, did very well. She grew up in the role as she played off perfectly with Emma in terms of their banter and dialogue. I think the way that her character is in conflict with what she wants and what she knows is right was very well portrayed.

This movie isn't a straight up zombie film, which I'm glad it wasn't because there are so many of those that do it better, but this one did something that hadn't been done before. It was more of a road trip film with zombies in the backdrop. Don't get me wrong, their is plenty of zombie scares when they happen, but they don't happen as frequently as they could have if they were going for a straight horror film.

I have heard people compare this to "Shaun of the Dead," because it is a comedy, but I disagree. There are comedic elements in both of them, but Zombieland works with it more between the characters and their interactions, while "Shaun of the Dead" does it more in reaction to the Zombies. Granted they do both cross into each other's territory, and both films are great for what they are. I preferred "Zombieland", mainly for the greater scares that happened, but that's just me.

Overall I give this film a 4.5/5 but I'll be the first one to say that I'm slightly partial because I'm a huge zombie movie fan. Anyways, what do you guys think of the film, am I on, or off?

Monday, February 1, 2010

You can't call them Zombies!

Thank you to all of you who voted. The end result is that more people wanted to participate, so I’m going to start it today and allow a new poll to go until Friday.

You can’t call them Zombies!

The darkness crept along the path as Kyle walked along. His eyes darted back and forth searching the shadows. The news stories were mentioning crazy things for the past hour. Things about cannibals running rampant among the citizens, eating and devouring each other. Kyle figured it was crazy, and knew things like that only happened in movies, or T.V. shows, not in real life. Regardless, his mother called after him before he left, “Honey be careful, the news is talking about crazy people out there.”

He thought about responding to her, but she was well drunk by then and it wouldn’t have been a fair argument. She had a tendency to get paranoid about anything on the news, and it drove him nuts most times. He still remembered the day that she wouldn’t let him go to school because of the Columbine shootings. It was all the way across the country, but she kept him home for two weeks because she could. Today he didn’t care, if the news was right, he needed to be with his girlfriend, she had called him after the first report of an incident in his town, which was an hour ago.

She had been freaking out because she swore she saw one of those cannibals hanging around her neighborhood. He still remembered her exact words, “I saw one. He ran after my neighbor and tackled her. Please come.”

That was all he needed to hear, he headed out immediately.

Now he stood at the entrance to the park and the short cut to his girlfriend’s house and heard the shuffling of footsteps nearby. Kyle’s skin crawled at the low animalistic groan emanated from the shadows. With his pulse quickening, he looked over at the silent and well lit street he stood on. It would take fifteen more minutes to get to his girlfriend’s house, and it could be too late, or he could be there in five minutes by cutting through the park.

Which choice should Kyle make?
1.) Cut through the park and get to his terrified girlfriend faster?
2.) Stay along the well lit streets, and be there fifteen minutes later?

You choose for Kyle. I’ll follow the choice you want. I hope you enjoy this story as this is just the beginning and I plan to keep it going for as long as people remain interested in the plot.