Monday, August 31, 2009

Sarah, drunk.

“Harreeeeeeeeie!” Sarah walked her bike into Harry's office, with quite a bit of trouble. “Harrrrreeeeee, guess... guess what happened to me?”

Harry looked up from his terminal with mild amusement. “You stopped a robbery at the pub by throwing a cash register at a guy with a gun.”

Sarah perked up with an expression of surprise. “Shit! Harry, you've got some kinda … kinda mind powers! How did you know?” She attempted to lean her bike nicely against the desk before sitting down, but instead the bike nearly took out Harry's desk lamp, and Sarah barely found the chair without ending up on the floor. The bike clattered to the floor, and then a stark silence fell over the room. Sarah looked at the bike, and looked at Harry. “Well, shit.”

Harry smiled sublimely with closed eyes. “I know about it because you called and told me. I'd guess at least three drinks ago.”

Sarah looked at her personal terminal, then looked at Harry. “Well, shit!” She exploded into giggles, and grabbed onto the corner of Harry's desk, to save herself from sliding to the floor.

Harry sighed. “I assume you're taking the rest of the day off?”

In response, Sarah gave a sheepish, lazy smile. She leaned on the desk with her elbow, and used her other arm to stretch out and point at Harry, nearly poking him in the face. She spoke softly, as if she had a secret. “Harry. Harry. Harry. I don't tell you this, cuz you're a jerk, and I gotta keep you on yer toes, but you're an okay guy, Harry.”
“For a jerk, huh?”

“No! No no no, you're a okay guy for everybody, not just jerks! Why are you okay to jerks, that's maybe what I don't necessessesessssssarily understand.” Sarah leaned down, laying her head on the desk. “Your desk needs a pillow. Otherwise, it's quite comfy.”


Bloody blog doesn't support formatting the way it's supposed to look. But anyway, that was a first draft clip from chapter 3 of the 3rd book. Anyone remember what I said on Facebook about Sarah?

Anyway, I'm still waiting for Amazon to figure out that Watching Yute is out. It'll probably take em a few days more.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

My website is currently lying.

It thinks that the softcover of Watching Yute is available on Amazon. It isn't, yet. Amazon will take a lil while to get up to speed, but in the meantime, any of you non-locals who want the softcover can get it through here:

For now. It's the same book as will be available though Amazon shortly. In fact, if you buy form there, I get a better profit by a little, as Amazon doesn't get a cut. The shipping is better through Amazon though, at least if you're ordering from Canada.

So now, I just have to brace for VCON

My stash of Watching Yute has been ordered, and I have my copies of Lifehack ready. My posters for sale are ready, my bookmarks, my lil flyers.. it's all ready. I think. Yes, I'm sure. I think. Now is the waiting game.

I could attack the next book, but I think I'll take a little break and nerd out with video games for a bit. Tomorrow's by BDAY! I'm aging as we speak!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Lifehack's Mana Drive- REAL?

Check it out!

Any of you who've read Lifehack, hopefully remember the 'Mana drive'- a city wide system where power is transmitted wirelessly.

Once, someone caught me, and guessed ole Nicola Tesla's ol timey experiments as the inspiration for that. Today, my dad drew the same conclusion when he came across this video.... This is also why I don't specify in my books what year they are. The future is coming at us faster than we expect.


In other news: My website, has been updated to reflect the 3 available formats of both books, AND includes the new, reasonable pricing on the hardcovers, at 23.95! (the other 2 formats being the trade paperback, $14.98, and E-book, $4.98)

At this time, the trade paperback for Watching Yute isn't actually available QUITE yet, but it will be very soon, quite likely by the end of august.

That leaves just the sci-fi convention to survive...!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


I had PLANNED to tell y'all that I was working on the HARDCOVER version of Watching Yute, but lo, the winds of fate blew favorably! It's up right now! 10 min ago!


That link goes to my storefront of 'my old publisher'. but they do 2 things that the new guys don't- hardcover and e-book. EVEN BETTER NEWS: The price of the hardcover is way better than what I was able to sell at before! (as evidenced on that page by the horrid price on the Lifehack Hardcover, which I plan to rectify soon...)

The shipping still stinks for canadians, so I'll be contacting my local folks with an offer to get in on a bulk order, where I'll suck up the shipping cost.

This makes the coming of the softcover version seem a little anti-climactic, but... hey, good news is good news. The hardcover of Lifehack is pretty a heck, and I expect the Yute Hardcover to be all the more glam.

Hey folks, got your copy of lifehack handy? (not the first edition), see the nanite-thing on the bottom of the cover, on the spine? Notice how he's more on the front than the edge? Well, Yute has him centred on the spine, and he lined up happily to Lifehack when sitting on the shelf together. One more book to complete him..... COULD I BE WRITING THE NEXT ALREADY?? Sarah and her fishy anatomy say yes.

SO! Long distance friends, leap on the hardcover or e-book now of ya want, or hold out for the softcover launch. LOCALS: If you wanna upgrade your softcover pre-orders to a hardcover, let me know! I'll be attempting to contact all you local pre-orderers to make sure you're aware.

Monday, August 24, 2009


For the 'proof copy' anyway. But the extensive editing is done, and in the hands of the publishers. First I have be sent that proof copy, and approve it before it'll be available in mass quantities to the public.

Which reminds me, any of you folks local to me who want me to order you a copy when I do my personal batch, (thus saving you shipping etc), let me know if you haven't already. for the locals, I'm doing $15cdn. (Retail is officially set for $15.98 US, but such stupid little details are of little consequence for my locals.. OK... fine, I just don't wanna bother counting friggin coins and doing conversions!)

I had to create an official description for the web sales and amazon.. and choose a mere FIVE keywords! I went with lesbian,revenge,suicide,drama,nanites. Geez. So much more to say, and not a clue what to leave out.

And I thought writing the back over was tough. As enthusiastic as I was for the first book Lifehack, Watching Yute is something else. Far more personal. Lifehack is a fun adventure, sprinkled with drama and a handful of giggles, but Yute sets aside a lot of the action, so it can really amp up the drama. I should shut up. Just read it.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Obsessive? OCD-ish? Me? Naaaahhhh....

One mister Dueckman commented to me this ev... er, last evening, (I really thought it was friday, not thursday, or I wouldn't have gone out)... he said I get a little obsessive over things.

True enough.

Exhibit A: Some time ago at his place, I watched a Rammstein concert on his big honkin' TV, and since then I've become a big fan of Rammstein. As long as I don't worry too much about the lyrics. They sing 95% in German, and I've found that lyrics I don't understand allow me to concentrate better on things like writing. They're easier to ignore. Now and then, I look up a translation for a song. Half time time I discover it's really not something I'd want to be listening to, nor for any German-speaking person to hear me listening to. Thusly, when the German student I'm hosting is around, you bet I use earphones.

My wife got understandably sick of my brining up Rammstein at least a couple times a day. So, I looked into music by other German rock bands. Die Krupps sing mostly in english it seems. No thanks. 'Oomph' sings in German a lot, but they're.. too pretty. After the guttural vocals, and wall-of-guitar and synth that the flaming (literally, not in the gay way) Rammstein offered, these other bands were like eating mayo after developing a taste for grapefruit. So I'll kepe listening to Rammy, and just shut up about it. Right after this. I promise. I guess.

Exhibit B:Video games. It might root from my younger years, when I got roughly two, maybe 3 NES cartridges a year, but I'm picky about games. I still get games that I know will last me a long time. Usually I'm more or less stuck into one game at a time, and I get stuck deep. Since I got my PS3, this has meant over a year of Oblivion, then half a year of littleBIGplanet, and most recently about half a year of Fallout 3. Each one, in turn, became topics my wife got sick of.

Exhibit C
: Creative hobbies. Once upon a time, I was huge into music composition. I released over 200 tunes in the 604 area back in the day, the bulk of which were techno, with a little orchestral, and other genres. Rowan Lipkovits called me the msot prolific creator in the areas code. Note that he didn't say BEST.

Then I rediscovered art of the visual variety. The result can be sampled in the art section of my website, as well as various graphic works and contracts that ave happened over the years. The art led to image descriptions, which led to short stories, which led to books, which I have trouble shutting up about. You'd think that would feed well into some ability to self promote.

Verdict: Yeah, I might be a TAD obsessive. Shucks. Darn. I consider it as appreciation of a topic, a full immersion. Many of my obsessions are a waste of time. Arguably, all of them are. But to quote Phillip J. Fry, "You can't waste my time, my time is worthless!"

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Caitlin's different in the dark.

Ironically, she recently learnt the word "Monsters!".

I went to sleep Tuesday night, and everything seemed fine. Around 02:30, or 02:15 or so, I awoke, realizing... something was wrong. I lifted my head, and looked behind me to the other side of the bed. My wife was missing. In her place was some creature, roughly 25 lbs, and it was waking up.

In the relative darkness, mistaking it for my beloved daughter, I reached out to it to try to ease it back to sleep.


Nein, nein, nein.

This was not my daughter. It was quickly revealed to me that this was some kind of monster. Again, it was hard to see in the darkness, but I'm pretty sure this monster was a collection of three butts, and roughly a dozen little feet.

No matter how I tried to position it, or myself, it tossed, turned and squirmed so that there was always a diapered butt or a foot jammed in my face.

Giving up on it sleeping after an hour or so, I reached for the clicker, and turned the TV on to 'treehouse' The radiance of the TV washed over the room, and the monster was gone.

"Caitlin!" I declared, "How did you get here? Where's the monster? How did you fight it off?"

Caitlin righted herself from what looked to be a perpendicular sleeping position, looked at me, and started watching TV. After a while, she would tire, and go back to sleep. Waiting for that to happen, I turned towards her, away form the TV, and attempted to get some sleep.


"DA-EE, WAYUP! WAY-UP, DA-EE!" Wake up? Was the monster near? I could have sworn I felt one of it's feet jab me. With the TV still protecting us with its silent glow, I held Caitlin close, out of direct view of the TV. It seemed to be working. I reached to the clicker covertly, and turned down the brightness.

The next hour or so was a blur. There was light, there was darkness, the monster turned the fan off on me, causing me to melt. Must kung fu and perpendicular sleeping positions were attempted.

Eventually, I relented to the TV again, and while she watched it, I thought I may as well haul this laptop over and get something done, since my daring to sleep always resulted in the monster attacking, or Caitlin remanding me to wake up. Or to hammer my ribs with her elbow.

Shortly after I opened up my file to work on, Caitlin mistook the laptop for the monster, and attacked. After disarming that tussle, Cailtin's mommy arrived, and managed to get Caitlin to 'sleep' without the monster coming back. It took a while. and we spend much of the remaining time sleeping as a human H.

It's almost midnight now. Let's hope the monster doesn't come back tonight.

Yute news:

I'm at about 20% through THE FINAL PASS through the manuscript. Everything's moving along as planned.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Myspace? Really?

"Do they still exist? I thought facebook ate them!" -paraphrased from my wife, Michelle.

Yeah, well, it didn't. And now I'm on Myspace. Why? Aw heck, why not. My blog is also getting pumped there now. I need to dump a pile of graphics on it or something.

And as I predicted in my earlier post, it's about lights-out time, and I am half way through implementing the suggestions from Megg to Watching Yute. 128/256 pages.

Everyone say hello to Amazon-

Hello, Amazon!

Starting with this post, my blog will be getting pumped into my corner of, as well as the home of this blog, 'blogger', and facebook notes.

So, Amazon finally got me. After years of irritation by their hand when I was with my old print/disto outfit, my new source is far more Amazon-compatible. I'll spare you my cynical theories.

As well, shipping cost when a person buys my books through Amazon are way better than form anywhere else. I actually get a teeny bit less profit, but this is offset easily by the number of people who didn't want to pay a cost for shipping equal to the cost of the book. How does Amazon do it? Dark arts, my friends, dark arts. Wait, I said I was going to spare the cynicisms. At any rate, Amazon will be the focus for the selling of my softcover versions of my books. Hardcovers will still be through ole' lulu, and subject to horrific, unholy shipping costs, especially to Canada.

That's alright though, I'm not pushing the hardcovers, I'm just making them available for a handful of collector-y types. I have little doubt that most of my hardcover sales will be done personally, as I order in batches and dilute the horrible shipping cost.

In Yute news,

The last of 4 volunteer editors delivered the book back to me today, and right on schedule, I've begun the final pass through the book before it gets thrown at the presses... or at least for the proof copy, THEN, the big batch.

It's interesting how 4 different people find different kinds of things. Of course most of the basic errors were found by all, (I'm sure a few remain) but everyone found different sentences tat struck them funny, or uses of various words that different people had different opinions on.

Each of the four, Adam Zilliax, Gilles Picard, Delores Picard, and Meggin Dueckman, provided very useful perspectives. I'm a third through Meggin's suggestions, and hope to be half way through by lights out tonight. Onward!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Wosrt movie ever? And elevator fun. And Rammstein.

I had heard some 'buzz' about this movie being the worst ever made. It's called "The Room". There's actually many movies of the same name, but this specific oddity is the 2003 film written, produced, directed, starring, and I think funded by one person, Tommy Wiseau. Ambitious. And foolish on a near-biblical scale.

My friends and I are connoisseurs of bad movies. The Korean answer to King Kong, "A*P*E", comes to mind, along with "Mega Shark vs Giant Octopus", starring Debbie Gibson. Both effects trainwrecks. Not that all horrid movies need special effects to burn in flames. Thank you, Mr. Wiseau, for showing us how low a budget can go. When I heard about 'The Room", I figured I had to get a copy. I didn't watch it. I waited until I could see it with a pack of friends, so that we could all weigh in on whether the buzz about how bad it is was warrented. Muh of the buzz came from sources who may not know the horrors of Debbie Gibson's recent exploits, after all.

Yeaaaaah, it was bad. There was a plot. A plot thta would have been served well by a 30 second clip, and four less sex scenes. And some continuity. And acting. One of the afore mentioned sex scenes was THE EXACT SAME FOOTAGE from a previous sex scsne. One of the sex scenes looked like it took place in a giant crib, as my friend Chris said, due to the awkward framing of the stair railing. There were several times where a plot device or event happened that would normally have a huge impact on the story, but are scarecly mentioned again, like a character being revealed to be on drugs and in trouble with a gang, or the female lead accusing ole' Tommy of hitting her, and her mother kinda.. not... well... I just can't... put it into words. One character shows up towards the latter part of the film with an ENTIRLY DIFFERENT ACTOR playing him, with no reaosn at all. He doesn't look, or even dress similarly. We're just supposed to flow with it, I guess.

Then there's Tommy Riseau himself. A very memorable man. He looks like he might be a cousin of Christopher Walken, except with some kind of serious narcotic problem. He sounds like ..... well... if you thought Arnie ever had an accent of interest, you ain't heard nuthin yet. The best thing about his acting, from his flat canned laugh, to spaced out glazed out attitude to almost everything, is that it really allowed the other actors to shine in comparison.

Where most enjoyably bad movies achieve thier non-goal primarily with laughable effects, The Room does this the old fashioned way. With horrendous writing, acting, editing, and production values. If you value bad movies at all, you owe it to yourself to take Tommy's pet project for a ride. I don't know if I want to sent him hatemail, or a notice of appreciation.


So, after I'd been abused by Tommy, I wheeled by butt home at about 11:30. My outdoor elevator greeted me as I came around the back of the house. I opened the door and wheeled in, and held the UP switch. Up we go. Wheeee. Is it just me, or is it getting slower? This happens now and then. Usually it means that the circuit breaker had popped in the last day or so, and the list has been unable to charge it's capacitor.

Standard electrical current isn't enough to run the lift, so it maintains a significant charge in its capacitor/battery. When the power is cut, the capacitor is good for a few trips up.

for the second time since getting this lift, I find myself watching the speed drop gradually as I get closer and closer to the top. Another foot up I go.. and another... and.. a few inches... and.. so close... so close....! COME ON... and... no.

When the lit gets to about a foot form the top, it gets a bit of a mind of it's own, which is usually fine. It wants to finish the trip up. Alas, it doesn't have the power. It clicks, gaining no height, and clicks. And clicks. And clicks. When it's in this mode, it won't even allow me to go back down.

Deep sigh, look to the sky. Nice night out. Could be a few more stars, but it was prett at any rate. Alright. Now what? The lift is trying hard still, and won't give up despite making no progress. I cna help it. Just a few more inches up, and the door will be able to open up onto the deck. I reached over to the tower that the lift runs on, and grab it, trying to pull some of my own weight. Maybe me and the struggling lift can get the job done together.

Nope. Plan B. Jump. I stow my sunglasses, lock the wheels, and grab the rims. I push up, yanking the chair up off the floor of the lift just a tiny bit, giving the lift a small window of time when it only has to deal with it's own weight. Jump, jump, jump! It's noisy! I look back at the distance between where the lip of the inner door is, and where the lip of the top floor door is. I made it up about an inch. JUMP MORE! BAM! BAM! BAM!..... nope, that was the end of that.

I'd done pretty well....! A bit more. BAM BAM BAM! Then my wife comes along. I kind of figured that my jumping would have eventually woken her. Hi hon. Oddly, she wasn't impressed with the situation.

Plan C. Get my wife to pull up on the lift as I jump. No, no good. I gave her a little time to have an idea before I start making the inevitable phone calls.

411. "Residential" I instruct the robot that answers. "Pitt Meadows BC." .... "Police." Last time this happened, we called the local volunteer fire department. I don't know why I didnt phone them this time, as if there's no fire department at night. I ended up on the non-emergency line for the police, on hold. I wan't in a rush, I wasn't in immediate danger, I didn't want to call 911 for this.

And I waited. And waited. My wife had a try and grabbing under my arms, and hauling me over the doors. Yeeeeah, no, I knew it wouldn't work, but she wanted to try. Or at least try ripping off my armpits. "How much have you had to drink?" "Three?" Guinness. Whooph. But this had been over the last ten hours, so I wasn't particularly silly or anything.

The hold messages told me not to hang up and dial again. I was getting ready to call 911, but they might tell me to call the non-emergency, at which time, I'd be at the bottom of whatever caller queue I may have been in. My wife brought me the house's cordless. I left my cell in it's holding pattern, and called 911.

"For fire, ambulance or police?" Shucks, I dunno, really, whatever ya got. She said she was sending police, after I explained a bit of the situation. So I waited. I pulled out the cell again, and started playing the crappy little games that came with this ... I dunno, seven year old thing. They were crap, I shut it off. My wife voice comes from the kitchen. "Do you want water or anything?"
Nah, I was good. Bored and sore, but good enough.

Then I hear a firetruck park in front of the house. Three guys come around the side of the house, led by my wife. "Hi guys! I'm not quite a cat up a tree, am I?"

Plan D, similar to plan C. "Kay guys, if this works, nice n simple. Easy and done. Otherwise, it's gonna get less graceful." The three of them grabbed atthe lift and pulled up whil eI jumped again. BAM BAM BAM BAM. After a couple tries, we made it to under an inch form the goal. All the time, the lift is still clicking away desperate to make progress. That last inch would just not do it. It was time to get ungraceful.

The have their own perspective on things, so I didn't wana ot be too bossy and interrupt while they pondered ripping the door open with oe of those fireman-garden-hoe-crowbar jobbies. This damned lift cost 16. We don't want rippage. They came to the same conclusion, and eventually we ended up with plan E, which was how this was resolved the last time this happened.

One fellow climbed into a lift with me, and squirmed around in front, then picked me up, lifting me out of the chair. (Hey there, how ya doin'. Aren't ya glad I overdid the deodorant this morning?) while the other two yanked the chair out from under me, over the doors, and onto the deck. So here I am, suspeded over the floor by this guy as I try to reach the edges of the lift to help support my weight. Soon I found myself arched over backwards over the doors, singing quietly "I believe I can fly!". "Geez, no flying!" one says, "Don't make ups laugh now, of all times!"

My focus was not on the chair, somewhere below me. Just aim my butt onto it, the rest is easy, fellas. Annnnnd, contact, my weight was supported. And I was missing a shoe, and my other foot was still astop the doors. Easily solved, but silly as heck anyway.

Being in a standing position can be a little disconcerting, when you spend all your time sitting or laying down. The bloodflow isn't used to having to work on an entirely vertical body. I didn't get TOO dizzy, bt I felt it. That and being mildy squished in the ribcage by a fireman trying not to drop me. And he whole part where my head was slightly upside down. After making sure I was all in one chunk still, the firemen were on thier way! It wasn't how nay of us had planned to top off the evening, but all's well that ends well. Time to call up the repair guy....


Ever heard of Rammstein? (rrrrram-SHTINE!) Most might only remember the 'one hit wonder' single from the 90's, 'Du Hast', mistakenly translated from German as "You hate", but actually meaning "You have".. that's a whole stoty unto itself.

They were a one hit phenomenon in North America, but in Europe, they're bloody HUGE. Think "What if Metalica hadn't decided to go into alternative wuss rock, and instead went and bought a lot of jet fuel, and a book of matches?"

My friend Ryan had used one of their songs, "Reise, reise" as the soundtrack to the intro vdeo to his drinking team, the Chuggernaughts. That vid is pure awesome sauce, due in no small part to the song. and the 62" TV that would one day be violated with "The Room". I tried to find the song, but didn't have much luck.

So there I am another time at a small impompty party, where I barely knew half the people. No biggie. Ryan's in the habit of putting something on 'in the background' on that TV, whether it be some pimptacular blackspoitation starring Nichelle Nichols (Uhura), or something more musical.

Today, it was Rrrrramstein. The familiar music started up, and I thought it was a new Chuggernaughts video. No, it was a convert at the Nimes colloseum in france. It was huge. Epic huge, and packed. The music slowly gained volume and energy, until BAM, the curtain dropped, and the audience exploded. (not literally. Not yet, anyway). With a bit of a lull in the music, the centre stage opened a metal door, revealing what looked a lot like a man-sized vagina. It widened, revealing the lea singer, Till Lindemann. The audience roars again. Expressionless, and with minimal wasted movement, Till GOOSE STEPS up to the micrphone.

You heard me. A German goose stepped onto a stage in France, and they LOVED it. Ohh, the times, they are a changin'. for the record, rammstein is on record as being very anti-nazi. But they're also very anti-everything. It's the image, and it works.

Know what about Rammy? They like fire. LOTS of fire. Huge fire. They like firing volleys of flares across the audience. They like being on fire, they like setting other things on fire. I'm not a fan of concerts, but holy excrement, it was amazing. All six members of the band are trained and licenced pryotechnicians, not to mention the crew.

I've become quite a fan of them, and you might have gathered. One hitch is that the lyrics are 99% in German. That's fine, I listen for the sound, not the lyrics. Now and then I look up some translations.

Rammstein songs come in many varieties, from mildly political, social observations, and sometimes singing the praises of swimming behind a menstruating woman. Yeah. This is why I listen to it wiht earphones when our German student is around. She knows what I listen to, and that the lyrics mena nothing to me, bt I'd just as soon not subjet her to Till's menstruation appreciation if I don't have to.

Note to self- stop looking up song translations if I plan to continue enjoying the music.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Codename: Echo- revving up

The third book is now in the outlining phase. Hehe, yeah, before the 2nd is even released. I'm at a phase with the 2nd where I'm waiting on outside factors, so I've got my fingers into 'echo' (not the final name, I haven't decided that yet).

So, I more or less know how it's going to end now, More or less. Watching Yute went a long time without it's ending decided. I waited for the characters to show me the way. As I wrote, it became clearer and clearer how tings were going to play out.

I suspect echo will have a similar maturation process. I encourage it. Even with Lifehack, the characters decided a lot. I reallllly went easy on Regan and Alisia. Cassidy, the hero if Watching Yute didn't have it so easy.

And the hero of echo? Will her path be easy, hard, glorious, or miserable? I really don't know yet, and that's the way I like it.

I did have names picked out for her, and her male travel partner. Yeah, this time, (gasp!) the main character is straight!... kind of. Muaha. I don't know how much to reveal at this point, but she's very... different. Getting psyched!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009


Finished cutting my Watching Yute bookmark supply. I order 100 postcards with 2 bookmark designs on them, then cut em when I get em. Now that I think of it... why don't I make it 2 DIFFERENT designs on each postcard? Oh well. Next time, maybe.

If we call VCON, (Vancouver sci fi convention) the official launch of the book, I'm on course for that October 2nd date. In all honesty, it will be available to order online before that, as I have to order my supply first.

Bah, short entry today, Caitlin cookie please help me cookie!!!!