Archive for the ‘blog’ Category
Filed Under blog, cownt, holidays, jesse james vs machine gun kelly, kill all monsters, marketing, superman, writing is hard, writing projects
Happy New Year!
Again, these aren’t resolutions; they’re just plans. And vague ones at that.
Kill All Monsters and The Cownt are priorities on the comics front. Kill All Monsters just needs a publisher, so I need to be more diligent about that. We’re just about ready to submit to a couple of more companies who needed a little more in their pitches than some of the others required. Not that we’ve heard back from everyone we initially sent it to, so there may be some following up to do if I can figure out how not to be a pest about it.
I want to get the Cownt one-shot finished and pitched by the end of the year. I’d love to see it in stores by then, and I think that’s possible, but let’s not get ahead ourselves just yet. Finishing the novel is another writing focus. Being smarter about business and marketing in general. Seeing if we can get Jesse vs. Machine Gun going again.
I think that’s enough writing goals.
Except that I’m very excited about the new digs that the old Blogarama crew have staked out. It’s going to be fun. And I’m changing the focus of my column over there slightly so that I can talk more about the kinds of comics I like most. There should be announcements by the end of the week. Maybe as soon as tomorrow.
As for this blog, I’m gonna keep on keeping on. I promised myself I wouldn’t make any more Announcements about the direction, so I won’t except to say that as my interests fluctuate, Adventureblog content probably will too.
On a personal level, I’m hoping to take Diane and David to Tallahassee this year. That’s where I grew up, but I haven’t been back in about 20 years. Yikes. Doesn’t seem that long. It’s way past time I introduced my family to those folks.
That should do it, eh? Like I said yesterday, 2008 had some disappointments and I’m still feeling that a bit. I don’t want to load 2009 up with too many expectations right away. If we keep things reasonable and just strive to make a little more progress, it’ll be a good year.
Filed Under batman, blog, holidays
I wasn’t going to do an end-of-the-year post. In fact, this post has already been up for about half-an-hour as I’m typing this. I was just going to wish everyone a happy and safe New Years Eve and be done with it.
In fact, I’ve also got to edit my post for tomorrow because it says something about not really being ready for the New Year and that’s not quite how I’m feeling anymore either.
I’ve never been big on New Year’s Resolutions and this year-end, more than ever, I’ve been of the philosophy that we make lifestyle changes incrementally, not all at once and not because of something as superficial as a calendar change. Also, I’m a little worn out from Christmas and haven’t been feeling like celebrating another holiday, even if the celebration is just thinking over the last year and making plans for the next one.
But I spent some time today catching up with the Internet and you guys have been busy. The last few days have been pretty quiet, but today I read post after post of people talking about the year that was and what they’re looking forward to in the year to come. And I guess it’s gotten me in the New Year Spirit.
I’m still not making a bunch of resolutions, but tomorrow I’ll do some thinking about what I’d like to accomplish in 2009. For tonight though, I’m preparing for that by mulling over 2008. It was a disappointing year in a lot of ways. I still haven’t finished my novel, Jesse James vs. Machine Gun Kelly was canceled before it was even published, and Kill All Monsters is moving more slowly than Jason and I would like.
But there’s also been some good movement. I still love my novel (unfinished though it is), I’m confident that Jesse vs. Kelly will see life again, the Kill All Monsters pitch is done and in the hands of some publishers (with more to follow soon), and there’s a great team working on the Cownt comic. I may not have accomplished everything that I’d hoped to for this year, but there’s forward progression, so I’m happy about that.
Good night, Internet, and Happy New Year. Be safe and I’ll talk to you tomorrow.
Filed Under blog
You may have noticed that I’ve started sneaking in more stuff recently than what I said I was going to back when I narrowed the blog’s focus. That’s for a couple of reasons.
1) My interests won’t sit still for very long and I’m getting a bit tired of pictures of octopi and submarines. This is one of the reasons I like the catch-all Adventureblog title. Lots of flexibility. But more importantly…
2) I’m streamlining the amount of time I spend with Google Reader every day. Paradoxically, it takes me less time to find a wider variety of things to talk about than it does to sift through hundreds of posts looking for tidbits that fit my narrowed subject-matter.
I really shouldn’t make big announcements about the future direction of the blog. Chances are, they won’t stick for all that long. Please ignore any that I make in the future.
Filed Under blog, writing projects
So, the breaking news today is that the rest of the Blog@Newsarama crew and I are moving elsewhere. If you haven’t read about it and care to, here’s the initial announcement and here are a couple of follow ups from Fearless Leader JK Parkin.
Even though I haven’t been doing the heavy lifting at the blog, it’s heart-warming to read the comments of support both on the blog and other places. As JK and others have hinted, the band is staying together, we’re just switching venues. We can’t talk about where the new digs will be just yet, but we’ll let you know as soon as we can.
Filed Under blog, writing is hard
This is mostly a bookmark because I’ve found myself going back to a couple of articles that literary agent Rachel Vater posted earlier this year about author websites. The first is a collection of her thoughts on the subject; the second is her responses to reader questions about it.
So far, I think mine’s doing okay – especially at this stage of my career – but Vater’s thoughts are a good reminder of what an author website is supposed to be for. That’s why I’ll keep going back and rereading them.
Filed Under blog, sea adventures, women in fiction
I’m narrowing the focus of the blog. I’ve been thinking about it for a while and I think it’s the right thing to do for four reasons:
1. You don’t need another Star Wars blog.
Seriously, I keep seeing the same information and news all over the Internet and very often it pops up here too just because I think it’s cool or whatever. You don’t need me to tell you that John Favreau has been signed to direct Iron Man 2 or to link to Clone Wars and Spirit trailers or to say that Fringe looks exciting. There are a ton of sites that do that so much better than I do.
In fact, the only reason I’ve been doing it as long as I have is because I know there are some friends of mine who read my blog, but don’t read the major entertainment news blogs. But the rest of you don’t need that and besides, I just can’t keep up with it anymore. Which leads me to my second reason.
2. I just can’t keep up with it anymore.
Reading and filtering through a couple of hundred blog posts everyday is fun, but it’s way time-consuming. I don’t plan on dropping any of my reading, but not having to share every little tidbit that I find interesting is going to save me a lot of time that I could use writing my novel, following up on comics projects, or even just improving the content here. Narrowing my focus will limit the amount of link-blogging I do, and I think that’s a good thing.
3. Less link-blogging means better content.
I hope it does anyway. I’ve got a folder full of ideas for honest-to-goodness articles I’ve been wanting to post, but keeping up with the links has been distracting me from that. And recently I read a couple of things from other Internet writers that have made that clear to me.
At the end of June, Tom Spurgeon questioned his own site-strategy and the amount of link-blogging he was doing. He was just thinking out loud and repented of it the next day, but while mulling it over he said something that hit home to me:
…I feel that link-blogging is becoming less and less valuable, more a way for people to fake content than provide a service.
While I’d never presume to tell Tom Spurgeon how to run his incredibly successful blog, he got me thinking about my own blogging and whether or not I’m “faking content.” I certainly don’t thing that all link-blogging is useless. My day isn’t complete without going through both Tom’s blog and Dirk Deppey’s with a fine-toothed comb. But I don’t think it’s what I want Adventureblog to be.
And while I was considering that, Warren Ellis sent out one of his email newsletters that reminded me about this post with the following thoughts in it.
Wouldn’t it be nice if we could stand up now and say, okay, these are the post-curation years? The world does not need another linkblog. What is required, frankly, is what we’re supposed to call “content” these days. When I were a lad, back in the age of steam, we called this “original material.” Put another way: we like it when Cory and Xeni are the copy/paste editors for the internet, but we like it better when Cory writes a book and Xeni makes an episode of BoingBoingTV.
…And, frankly, no-one’s going to do a better job of being the internet’s copy/paste editors than the BB crew anyway. They have the time, they have the money, they have the setup, they have the audience and they have the momentum of nearly a decade in the job. Nobody needs another linkblog like that. There are already thousands of them. The job of curation is being taken care of. Look ahead.
I’m challenged by that. And while I doubt that reviews are exactly what Ellis had in mind, I’m not going to be able to improve by continuing to let linking eat up most of my time.
4. I’ll be able to get out more.
Right now, when I read something nifty on someone else’s blog, my initial instinct isn’t to comment on it. It’s to save the link so I can write about it later. I think it would be nicer to provide feedback directly on other people’s blogs, so I’m going to try to do that more.
So, what’s the focus going to be?
Like I said, I’m cutting out all the Star Wars and Star Trek stuff. In fact, I’m cutting out most of the scifi stuff altogether. There are a ton of great scifi blogs already covering that. I’ll probably still geek out on some new TV show or movie enough that I’ll want to talk about it, but I’ll try to keep that to my Off Topic blog when that’s the case.
What I want to keep talking about here are two things. One is sea adventure. That includes pirates, fish-people, Atlantis, mad scientists in submarines, sea monsters, all that stuff. I said earlier that I’ve really been drawn to that lately, but it’s not just lately. Anyone who knows me knows what a sucker I am for this stuff and always have been. Especially pirates.
It also includes jungle islands filled with loin-cloth wearing heroes (male and female), lost cities, giant gorillas, and dinosaurs. That may not be what most people think of when they hear “sea adventure,” but it’s what I think about. So I’ll keep talking about all that too.
The other thing I’m going to keep talking about could go by the hoity toity label “women in heroic fiction,” but I prefer to call them Action Girls. Meaning nothing disrespectful by the use of the word “girl;” it just flows better and I don’t think it’s really a diminutive term anyway. Anyway, I’m far too fascinated by strong, heroic women to quit talking about them, so you’ll still be hearing much more about Wonder Woman and Black Canary and the others than you want to.
(A third topic that’s being grandfathered in is giant monsters and giant robots because Jason and I are still hard at work on Kill All Monsters! and it’s a subject of interest. But I’m going to be more exclusive about which monster/robot links I post.)
Not that I’m cutting out the link-blogging cold turkey, you understand. As they relate to the topics of Sea Adventure and Action Girls, I’ll still be sharing plenty of links (and art and videos). It’s just that in cutting out everything else, I hope to be able to write more “original material” about those topics, in the form of both blog essays and my novel.
So, hopefully everyone’s down with the new direction. I really think it’s going to make this place more fun.
Filed Under blog
Just got back from Wisconsin a couple of hours ago. The trip was great except that there was no Internet.
Actually, that’s probably for the best too. I got a ton of reading done and caught up on some DVDs I took with me. Saw Kung Fu Panda and Incredible Hulk too. Guess I have a lot of reviews to write.
Anyway, home safe. Hope you liked Gallery Week. I’m starting to get some nice comments from a few of the featured artists and that makes me happy. The Internet is a wonderful thing.
Geez, I’m feeling lovey today.
It’s going to take me forever now to catch up on my ‘net reading, so bear with me while I sort through the backlog. Of course, you always do.
It’s good to be home.
Filed Under blog
We’re going to be in Wisconsin next week and I’m not sure what the Internet situation will be. I’ve got posts scheduled to go automatically, so there’ll still be new content every day, but if I’m not responding to emails and comments, that’s why.
Hopefully I’ll have a way to connect though.
Filed Under blog, dinosaurs, flying saucers, indiana jones
Siskoid’s Blog of Geekery is one of my favorite places on the Internet, so it was a very cool honor to be chosen as his “Someone Else’s Post for the Week” a week or so ago. It made me realize though that I really needed a different banner for my blog than “Blogger Generic.”
When I shame-facedly admitted that to Siskoid, he proved his awesomeness further by volunteering to make me a new banner. Which you now see at the top of the page there. Indy, flying saucers, and dinosaurs. Everything a growing boy needs. I decided the rest of the blog needed a new look to go with it, so I’m trying out this seaside theme. For me, the ocean is adventure.
Thanks, Siskoid. Final Rating: HOT!
Filed Under blog, cloverfield, indiana jones, spoilers, star wars
In the comments on this post, a reader and I got to talking about spoilers and I realized I had more to say about the topic than I could do justice in a comment.
The reader (I wish I could put at least a name to him/her, but I respect Internet anonymity as long as it’s as polite and insightful as this person is) expressed her/his desire to go into Indy and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull as cold and spoiler-free as possible. I know the feeling.
When The Empire Strikes Back came out in 1980 I was so excited to see the next Star Wars movie that I wanted to know everything about it as quickly as I possibly could. I read at least the comics adaptation and possibly the novelization before I ever saw the movie, so I knew the entire story before I ever set foot in the theater. I knew that the little, green pest in the swamp was the great Jedi Master Yoda, and I knew that Vader at least claimed to be Luke’s dad (though I didn’t completely believe him until Yoda confirmed it in Return of the Jedi).
I also knew that the movie ended on a cliffhanger, but that didn’t make the end of Empire any easier for me to take. It was a long three years until Jedi came out and I could find out what happened to Han.
Empire is my favorite Star Wars movie now, but at the time I hated it. Not “hated” the way a lot of fans hate the prequels, but hated it as in I didn’t like it nearly as much as I had liked Star Wars, which I had gone into completely cold (and which didn’t leave me hanging the way Empire did). I decided that when Jedi came out, I was going to know a lot less about it than I had Empire.
That was a lot easier in the mid-’80s than it is today what with the Internet and all. Heck, even by the early ’90s it was getting difficult. I’m watching T2 again right now and remembering all the interviews Schwarzenegger gave before that movie in which he revealed that he was playing the good guy this time around. That absolutely spoils the first 30 minutes of the movie where Cameron (albeit half-heartedly) tries to keep the identity of the good guy a secret.
Then there are trailers like the ones for Double Jeopardy and The Italian Job where they just tell you the entire movie — including the end — in three minutes. I just re-watched the Italian Job trailer and it still pisses me off.
How much info to seek out before I see a movie or read a comic is a hard call to make and I don’t always know where to draw the line. I’d always love most to go into a story completely cold, but there are some spoilers that make me more excited to see a movie, not less.
I got some complaints when I posted links and an image for possible designs of the Cloverfield monster before the movie came out. At least two of the links were obviously bogus and the other two, as far as I was concerned, were just rumors, but some folks didn’t want to know even about the rumors and I respect that. The image I posted turned out to be as false as I’d suspected it to be, but I distressed some readers because they thought I’d ruined a big part of the movie for them and I apologize for that.
I thought maybe I’d done it again by posting that Indiana Jones still with Marion Ravenwood in it. Even though it was fairly widely publicized when Karen Allen was cast, there are folks who didn’t know that Marion was back for this movie and I may have spoiled something by sharing that image, even though it’s an image that the studio wanted released to promote the movie.
And now that I’m talking about it, I’ve done it again for people who missed those previous posts.
Here’s where I try to draw the line on this blog. Although I don’t want to push away any readers, ultimately I’ve got to write about stuff that interests me or I’ll be second guessing myself all day long. (More about that philosophy and how it pertains to fiction-writing later.) So when it comes to spoilers, I’ll never knowingly give away a major plot point or surprise on this blog. I will however share things that get me more excited to see or read something, even if that means I’m no longer going into it cold.
Knowing that not everyone feels that way though, I’ll also try to do a better job about putting potentially spoilery images behind cuts. In my excitement to share something cool, I might forget that occasionally, but I’ll try. Hopefully that’ll work for everybody.