The Pile O Books After IYWM

Just got back from In Your Write Mind @Seton Hill University and it was fabulous. More on that tomorrow, but for now you can see the books I just added to my TBR list. I have personal ties to most of these. Have you read any of them?

 

TBR1July

1977 – Star Wars Impact

Jane Ann McLachlan had this great idea for a blog challenge for the month of October to do one day for each of the first 25 years of your life.  This is the 14th installment. 

In 1977 the Dow closes at 831
Inflation was at 6.5%
Average cost of a new house: $49,300
Average income: $15,000, this is the 1st year it’s gone down in a very long time
Gasoline: $0.65 a gallon
Movie ticket: $1.50

C.J. Cherryh wins the Campbell for best new SF writer.

President Carter pardons draft evaders.

Radio Shack releases the TRS-80.  I managed to get my hands on one years later.  Two months later the Apple II goes on sale.

Star Wars is released in May.

Elvis does his last concert in Indianapolis June 26th. Elvis dies at Graceland at the age of 42.

Voyager 1 launches.

Bill Rogers wins the NYC Marathon.  Long distance running is becoming a fad.

The first three nodes of ARPAnet are connected.  The Internet is born.

What a great year for pop culture.
Movies: Star Wars, Wizards, Close Encounters of the 3rd Kind, Saturday Night Fever, A Star is Born, Capricorn One
TV: Roots, Three’s Company, Soap, The New Mickey Mouse Club, The Love Boat, ChiPs, The Man from Atlantis
Music: Rumors by Fleetwood Mac released, The Sex Pistols release Never Mind the Bollocks Here’s the Sex Pistols, The Clash release their first album, The Saturday Night Fever Soundtrack goes nuts and Disco takes over the world (briefly) but not until 1978.

Elvis dies at Graceland at the age of 42.

Farrah Fawcett posters.  I had one on my wall. 
Digital watches. Skateboarding is making a comeback.

In 1977 I had hair down to my shoulders and was skateboarding and playing board games, like APBA Baseball, Football and Golf, Strat-o-matic Baseball, and Negamco Basketball and Golf. I even invented my own boxing and golf game.  I started playing golf with my dad that year and quit playing baseball.  

But the huge game changer was Star Wars.  I distinctly remember going downtown to Charleston watch it at the Kearse Theater and the line went all the way around the block.  Unheard of back then.  I knew kids at school that had seen it a dozen times.  My mom let us get the soundtrack.  It was the first movie soundtrack I ever owned.  I became obsessed with Science Fiction and wanted to be Han Solo.  I started buying Starlog and comics and Omni Magazine when it came out the following year. I started reading everything I could get my hands on.  It literally changed my life.  I would not be a pilot today if not for that movie.  I am still a huge Star Wars fan and even though I was deployed in 1999, when Episode 1 came out, I managed to see it in Germany. I still love Science Fiction as well and plan on writing in that genre for the foreseeable future.

Clear Ether!

Slacking and Star Wars and Merry Christmas!

I’ve been slack this week in doing a blog post but I’ve been enjoying the Christmas holidays and taking a little break.  I also got into the early beta and then early release of Star Wars: The Old Republic and have spent way too much time playing it.  It is absolutely what Star War Galaxies should have been.  The writing is fantastic, the voice acting is great and every quest has at least one cutscene.  The graphics are beautiful and the gameplay seems mostly balanced but the jury is still out on that one.  Overall I think Bioware hit a homerun with it.  The best part is my family is playing and we are doing battles together!  Five out of six of us are playing.



I sent out copies of the manuscript to 4 alpha readers and have got one back with mostly good reviews.  I still need to work on Chapter One of all chapters.  I’ve worked and reworked that thing like an old upholstered chair.  I keep putting new material on the chair but somehow it doesn’t work.  I’ve read in a few places to avoid a prologue but I think this story really needs one.  I’ve got critiques from multiple sources that the first chapter just doesn’t provide enough background to understand what’s going on at the beginning and without a lot of exposition I think a prologue will be the right answer.  I’ve plotted it out and I’m going to be working on it for the next couple of days.  I’ll send it out and then make a few more hopefully minor revisions and it will be ready for Beta Readers!


Christmas eve is tomorrow and I still need to get a few more little items for my wife, but everything else is ready to go.  We are going to do a turkey this year.  That will be a first for us, we normally do ham or Norwegian meatballs.  We also have company at the house and it really makes the holiday special.  I hope you all have a Merry Christmas or Hanukkah or Kwanzaa or whatever holiday you prefer.


Clear Ether!

Week in Review

I’m a little late getting this up due to MLK Day.  You might think that would give me more time, but I usually find a way to expand my time wasting to fill the available time alloted.  It was a fairly productive week writingwise.  I wrote 6191 words this week for a total of 93106, and am edging up on the climax.  Seems like I say that every week.  I think I’ll get through it this week.  In fact if I push I think I can finish the first draft this week, two weeks at the outside.

I posted a little vignette about how I Suck @writing which seemed to be well received, thanks to all who commented!

I also updated my Query Letter and got some feedback.  I think it’s pretty close.  Close enough to shelve until I polish the manuscript.

Some other tidbits from the week:

Charlie Stross blogged this, he is brilliant as usual:

http://www.antipope.org/charlie/blog-static/2011/01/looking-under-the-street-lamp-.html#more

Ran across this short story by @MaryRobinette Kowal http://bit.ly/flXBY0 quite awesome!

I heard this on NPR this week and liked it:

“We must see the error in our own truth and the truth in our opponent’s error.” — Reinhold Niebuhr

The next thing to tackle after the WIP is finished it to do a synopsis.  I found this website which does a fine job of walking you though how to do a thorough job http://www.writing-world.com/publish/synopsis.shtml

i09 posted this – the most complete map of the night sky so far http://io9.com/5730972/

 

Clear Ether!