Dead End

I don’t ever get these – and I refuse to keep it going – but since someone (Star Wars Anonymous) tagged me, I’ll at least answer some questions, spout random facts, and show you my gloriousness in full color.

This is me and my muse and we are fantastically happy:

Photo(2)

Here are 11 facts:

1. I secretly love Microsoft and wish that things had gone as planned and they had taken over the world.

2. I secretly love robots and wish that things had gone as planned and they had taken over the world.

3. I secretly love to write sentences using the “I secretly love … and wish that things had gone as planned and they had taken over the world” formula.

4.  I was once attacked by a screaming caterpillar.

5. I wrote my first fiction at age 5. It was a story about how my father and I would take a canoe made of cheese down to San Antonio. I call it fiction because it was a lie that I told as if it were absolutely true.

6. I have an unhealthy obsession with doing things in order – and refusing to participate in activities where they are done out of order. This is especially true for movies, television series, books, comics, games, etc.

7. I was once that guy at the end of the bar that pretended to be a writer by not talking to anyone, getting extremely drunk, and then writing about it.

8. I’ve had a series of recurring dreams about Hunter S. Thompson, Kurt Vonnegut, Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, and Les Claypool in which they all tell me that I am destined for great things if i would just get off my ass and do them.

9. My muse is flesh and blood and I am in love with her and plan to conquer a universe with her – probably the microuniverse since we’re bigger than it.

10. Orange is my absolute favorite color.

11. My favorite Marvel superhero, at the moment, is the Earth-616 60-70s Vision.

And now to answer the questions posed:

1) Do you actually want to be participating in this blog tag right now?

Absolutely not.

2) What does the future hold for you?

The door I intend to walk through, hopefully. That would be courteous of it – perhaps temporal chivalry is not dead.

3) What is the biggest lie you have ever told?

This one.

4) What’s your favorite moment in Star Wars?

It’s a tie, and more about the music than the action – Battle of Hoth and The Asteroid Field in Empire Strikes Back

5) Have you ever done a really nice act and no one has witnessed it?  You know you should feel good about just doing the nice thing with no one watching, but you actually kinda want some credit.  What was that nice thing?  Share it with the world!  (finally)

I hacked into my high school’s server to reverse a lot of terrible things a friend of mine had done to it. I did it to keep him from getting expelled – knowing he hadn’t covered his tracks. He still doesn’t know why his malicious plan never succeeded.

6) What’s your favorite weather?

Light rain and thunder in the early summer.

7) What did you think you were going to be when you grew up?  Do you still want to be that?  Are you that?

Paleontologist. No. No.

8) What’s the best food or drink you’ve ever had?

Panzarotti di spanici – I think that’s what it’s called

9) What’s one regret?

An ill-advised purchase of a Ford F-150 when I knew better.

10) What’s your biggest pet peeve?

Postcard wisdom – which is passing knowledge to someone else based on something someone else has told you without actually knowing what the hell you are talking about.

11) What’s your guilty pleasure music right now?

The Flaming Lips

Here’s 11 questions you can answer quietly to yourself:

1. What is the difference between popcorn and popped corn?

2. Are there 13 hours in a day, or just 12?

3. On a clock face, how many different times are there for each time the hands sit at a 90 degree angle?

4. How can you oppose opposition?

5. How many days are on a typical calendar?

6. If you have two hands, would you use them?

7. If an unstoppable force and an immovable object have kids, can you push them around?

8. What is reality?

9. What’s my name?

10. What do Vision, Wonder Man, and the Human Torch have in common?

11. What is the only way to kill a vindaloo?

Status Update

With the last of my first batch of pro mags having returned polite rejections, I’m now back to development and redevelopment.

Maybe you’ve heard me mention “Pushing Daisy”. It’s the first piece I ever submitted to professional publishers and has had the most rejections, but also the most positive feedback. It’s just not quite good enough. I’m encouraged by this. I know the story has potential and that it is a valid piece of art that plenty of people would consider quality science fiction with a poignant message and a good plot – I just can’t seem to get it past the first slush.

While I’ve made numerous rewrites and revisions, I think I am on my final version now; feeling that, I have chosen to submit it to a contest. A large contest. It’s a first, so not banking on this, just trying something different.

In the meantime, I wrote a sequel to Pushing Daisy that can stand alone, so I’ll be adding that to my submission pieces. If Pushing Daisy doesn’t win the contest – and i won’t know for about four months – I’m going to put it back into the rotation. It’s changed so much since I first submitted it that I think I can resubmit to the first group of mags I tried. That would incude: Asimov’s, Clarkesworld, Analog, Strange Horizons, among others.

I’m also still looking to collaborate with artists to illustrate some of my work. I’m planning on biting the bullet and self-publishing an anthology of my throw-away pieces. Illustrations would just make it that much better.

Part Three of City of Light is still in development. Lots has changed to the entire story, so I’m having to edit huge portions of my “Bible” and that’s extremely time consuming. Paring 37 elements that it took me two years to create down to 9 that will still accomplish the same thing is a hell of a lot of work.

You’ll see me a lot more soon – I promise.

OH!

And I’m very close to thinking about taking the first step of making the effort to begin the process of preparing myself to do what is necessary to open the pathway to making it possible for me to go back to college. ; )

Flash Rant – #2083

color-bars

PLEASE STAND BY

Nothing makes me want to go back to school more than people that do not deserve the credit they are given.

As I’m stuck in endless development meetings while  my regular work – work that brings us money – suffers, I notice a trend: Other people just want our money.

A couple of decades ago, “computer geek” was an exclusive moniker for someone who lived and breathed computers, not someone who surfs the latest wave.

I bring in my monster Alienware laptop to meetings and people scoff – they see Windows 8 and they scoff – they see what I can make my computer DO and they gulp.

“How did you do that? I didn’t think Windows 8 could do that.”

It’s not Windows 8, it’s not my laptop – it’s me. I could make your Apple do stuff you didn’t know it could, too. My computer is mine. I know it up and down, inside and out, backwards and forwards.

And hey, I’m not saying you’re stupid if you don’t know how to use your technology – I’m saying don’t fuck with me about my arsenal of tech when you choose yours based solely on which company sold you best.

I’d rather not choose a “brand” – I love technology, and I will gravitate towards which ever technologies allow me most easily to make them my own. If that’s an amalgam of Android, Apple, and Windows hardware, with a base of reliable open-source software that meets my needs and conforms to my view of the universe, then I think I’m doing right by me.

In the 21st Century, when it comes to technology in a very competitive market, there is one absolute truth: NOTHING does EVERYTHING.

Could you make an educated decision on which smartphone fits your lifestyle best if there were no commercials, no salespeople, no ads, no social media, no other people to influence you?

Would you know how to research a company, its goods, its history, its bottom line?

If tomorrow we lived in a world where advertising was outlawed and information was free, would you take the time to think about what you said, believed, followed, and bought?

Why wait?

When i find out my company paid a ton of money for a website that took months to develop that i could have built in WordPress in a day, I get pissed. I get angry at salesmen touting their “cutting edge” mobile devices but unable to  do anything with their devices but talk to people, play simplistic games, and watch porn. I get especially pissed when salespeople come to us to sell us robust canned software packages that are really just tweaked open-source packages that we could have developed on top of for free.

Everyone gets Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest – every company wants you to “get it” because once you get it, they’ve got you.

Video games are changing – you want virtual worlds and full immersion, forget it. Games like Skyrim and Bioshock and Mass Effect seem like they have steam, but there is a continuous cacophony of voices influencing the video game developers these days through social media that weren’t there ten years ago. Even when a brilliant developer starts on a project that has potential, the corporate entities are going to listen to the cacophony and direct the creative teams to do what “the people” want. A decade ago, there weren’t 1,000,000 “followers” screaming “I WANT MORE PVP”. Now there are. Suddenly, my franchise diverts millions of dollars away from solidifying a full-immersion single-player RPG to quickly develop additional multiplayer aspects. What happens? The game sucks all the way around.

Way to go, dude.

Smaller and mobile is not the pinnacle – full-immersion and seamless interaction with AI that cannot be distinguished from live gamers is. Evolving virtual universes and epic experience is where video games were always headed – I could point to a number of games that have derailed that, but in the end, its the corporations that will prevent the industry from getting back on track. Those corporations will listen to the cacophony, and voices like mine won’t be there because the cacophony lies.

And I always tell the truth!

labyrinth-door-riddle

Oh, what a lie!

Marvel Project – May 1969

IronRepulsorParty’s over – back to work. Way behind now.

Here’s a summary of May 1969 as it happened in the Marvel universe:

The Shocker reappears and goes after the Lifeline Tablet, which is being held by Captain Stacy. Spiderman battles Shocker and defeats him again, but is unable to locate the tablet.

HYDRA stages a phony funeral for Captain America with the intent of luring all his friends, including the Avengers and Nick Fury, into a deadly trap. With his secret identity secure once again, Captain America reappears and with Bucky’s help is able to defeat Madame Hydra and her henchmen, thus saving the attendees of the funeral.

The disabled Man-Slayer reawakens and Captain Marvel must battle him once again. Later, in a confrontation with Yon-Rogg, Mar-Vell learns that Una can be returned to life again.

Mysteriously returned after his apparent death, the Leader offers his services to General Ross, promising to capture and subdue the Hulk. Using a plastic prison, the Leader does just that, but has ulterior motives, knowing that the Hulk is the only threat to his maniacal plans.

Diablo uses Dr. Doom’s former love interest to try and force him into a partnership. Unwilling to join forces with such a villain as Diablo, Doom tricks the master alchemist and sends him far into the future.

Naga, still toying with Sub-Mariner, infuriates Karthon, who in a rage kills his master, saving Namor from certain death.

As Doctor Strange and Clea explore the city together, Nightmare appears as Eternity to Doctor Strange. Nightmare unleashes denizens of past lifetimes into New York City in an attempt to draw Strange into a confrontation – at which point, Nightmare reveals that he has captured Eternity and holds him prisoner.

Doom’s hypnosis of the Fantastic Four begins to fade and the quartet are able to regain their powers long enough to stand against the robot army Doom has unleashed against the populace. Seeing his plans foiled, Doom decides to destroy the village all together. Sue Storm arrives and saves her companions from death.

Iron Man manages to escape from the Controller but is unable initially to save the human batteries the Controller is drawing his power from. As Controller nears a large city where he plans to turn hundreds more into human batteries, Iron Man renews his attack against him. Unbeknownst to Controller, Iron Man secretly separates Controller from his batteries and is eventually able to defeat him once the connection is broken.

A new SHIELD agent, Robert Rickard, steps in and tries to remove Nick Fury from command of SHIELD. In truth Rickard is a HYDRA agent attempting to kill Nick Fury and destroy SHIELD from the inside.

Clint Barton (Hawkeye)’s brother arrives with valuable information on Egghead’s world domination scheme. The Avengers bring him along as they face off against Egghead, and the other Barton apparently dies saving their lives and foiling Egghead’s plans.

The Black Panther is tasked with finding Daredevil and delivering to him the antidote that will save his life. Both Panther and Daredevil face off against Starr Saxon, but Daredevil is forced to let Saxon escape.

Thor, Balder, and Sif stand against Pluto and he moves his Mutate army of the future to the present day. Informed of Pluto’s transgression of authority, Zeus sends him back to Hades.

Making off with Alex, the Pharoah drains him of cosmic power and becomes the Living Monolith, a being of extensive power. Alex is able to use his powers to defeat the new foe, but in doing so, he soon realizes that he cannot control his powers.

Best moment of may 1969:

Captain America returns to action after faking his death.

Capreturns